Obama says no to 401k plans for troops

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President Barack Obama and Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe review the troops on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, April 28, 2015, during a state arrival ceremony. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
– The Washington Times – Thursday, April 30, 2015

The president announced on Thursday that he does not support the blended military retirement plan recommended by a commission of experts earlier this year, just one day after Housemembers included it in their fiscal 2016 defense policy bill.

President Obama said that while he supports 10 of the 15 recommendations from the Military Compensation and Retirement Modernization Commission, he could not support the proposal to have troops contribute to a 401k-like savings plan that would be matched by the government in an effort to offer some retirement benefits to troops who don’t serve 20 years.

Defense Secretary Ashton Carter echoed the president’s remarks, saying that the department will continue to analyze the rejected reforms, including the retirement changes, over the coming months.

“The choices we face about military compensation are both vexing and critically important,” Mr. Carter said in a statement. “DoD will continue to work closely with the Congress and thecommission to achieve the goals we share: ensuring the long-term strength and vitality of our all-volunteer force, and honoring all our servicemembers.”

The president said he did support implementing the majority of proposals, including better collaboration between the Defense Department and VA, improved child care and mandatory transition assistance.

The commission warned against implementing only certain pieces of their recommendations when they introduced their full report in January, noting that lawmakers should take the 15-package reform proposal in one piece as-is to avoid any unintended effects on the budget or on maintaining an all-volunteer force.

Members of the commission stressed that the retirement reform is needed to ensure that the vast majority of service members who leave the military before hitting the 20-year mark receive some type of retirement benefit.

On Wednesday night, Lawmakers on the House Armed Services Committee voted to include implementing the blended 401k-like retirement system by Oct. 1, 2017 in their version of the fiscal 2016 defense policy bill, which still needs to be approved by the full House and reconciled by Senate negotiators.

Rep. Chris Gibson, New York Republican, introduced an amendment to put off making the drastic change for another year, urging lawmakers to use that time to listen to veterans in their districts and get veterans service organizations, who are largely against the idea, on board.

He was overwhelmingly defeated by other members of the committee, who said now is the time to implement changes.

Copyright © 2015 The Washington Times, LLC.

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James Dobson: Christians soon to be ‘hated minority’

WND EXCLUSIVE
JAMES DOBSON: CHRISTIANS SOON TO BE ‘HATED MINORITY’
New warning of fallout from Supreme Court

STORY BY: BOB UNRUH


James Dobson hosted a panel of Christian leaders on his “Family Talk” radio show Wednesday and warned that Christians are about to face a new status in America as a “hated minority” if the U.S. Supreme Court decides, as many expect, to mandate same-sex “marriage.”

“The heart of what’s happening is an attempt to impose a new morality on all of America,” said Maggie Gallagher, a traditional-marriage advocate for 25 years.

The author of “The Case for Marriage,” Gallagher is co-founder of the National Organization for Marriage and a senior fellow with the American Principles Project.

Homosexual advocates have no interest in a “live and let live tolerance,” she said. “After redefining marriage, the next thing on their agenda is to redefine Christianity.”

Under the new regimen, there will be no difference between man and woman, husband and wife, she said.

The attitude is that if you “see something different, there’s something morally wrong with you.”

Christianity, she said, “will enter a new phase, as a hated minority group.”

She and several others joined Dobson to discuss the U.S. Supreme Court case in which justices, including Elena Kagan and Ruth Ginsburg, who already publicly have endorsed same-sex marriage, will hear arguments April 28.

The interview is available online.

The 6th Circuit Court of Appeals previously ruled states have a right to define marriage.

Also visiting with Dobson, who recently clashed with the Obama administration over its abortion mandates, were Jim Garlow, senior pastor of Skyline Church in San Diego, and Brian Brown, president of the National Organization for Marriage.

Dobson noted that marriage has been defined as the union of a man and a woman since God created the institution thousands of years ago, predating any government.

And he detailed how in 31 state elections, 31 times voters adopted the traditional definition.

A petition has been created in support of ordinances that allow Christian business owners to live by their faith.

The courts, however, Dobson said, “have steadily been ruling that traditional marriage is unconstitutional and discriminatory and those decisions have found their way now into the Supreme Court.”

“Almost all the court watchers are predicting the highest court in the land is about to redefine marriage.”

If that happens, he said, it “will change everything in the culture,” including churches, schools, businesses, the military and family.

“Who knows where it will end?”

Brown said the judiciary doesn’t have a right to rule on the issue.

“All of us can see there’s nothing in the U.S. Constitution that says anything about the redefinition of marriage,” he said.

But, he said, “We’re at a point in history where ideology trumps all, the notion that judges should be bound at all by what the Constitution or what precedent says.”

He noted that in 1971, the Supreme Court dismissed a case regarding redefining marriage, saying there was no federal question there.

He said Christians are going to have to stand up for their beliefs.

Garlow continued, “If I were the evil one, I would set out to destroy marriage.”

And he warned that the attacks by homosexuals now on businesses will expand.

“What we’re seeing happen to businesses today will happen to churches tomorrow,” he said. “[They may] lose their buildings, or keep their buildings and agree they’re going to perform same-sex marriages.”

He cited existing cases stemming from attacks on Christians who run the Ocean Grove camp in New Jersey, a wedding chapel in Idaho and Houston pastors who opposed a transgender-rights ordinance.

WND has compiled a “Big List of Christian Coercion” with dozens of cases in which Christians have been fined, threatened or penalized for recognizing the biblical definition of marriage.

“It’s evidence of what’s’ going to come to the church,” he said.

Dobson added that ministries “better decide now what you will do when forced into that corner.”

Dobson is a familiar critic of government. He recently described President Obama as the “abortion president” and warned America is heading toward “depravity.”

In his October 2014 newsletter, he wrote about the Old Testament account of Abraham’s nephew Lot, “who chose to take his family into the wicked cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.”

“The men living there had become desperately depraved, burning with lust for each other. Jehovah told Abraham that their sin was so grievous that the Lord decided to rain utter destruction upon them. Abraham pleaded with the Lord on behalf of the people, but the patriarch could not find even ten righteous men in either of the cities to justify mercy,” he wrote.

“Why have I chosen to recount this biblical story from so long ago? Because I am convinced that America and other Western nations are sliding in the same direction,” he warned. “We have not yet reached the depravity of Sodom and Gomorrah, but that appears to be where we are headed.”

Dobson added: “Judge Robert Bork, the brilliant jurist who was shamefully denied a seat on the Supreme Court, wrote a book about this danger 18 years ago. It was titled ‘Slouching Towards Gomorrah.’ I think he had it right.

“Many influential men and women of the judiciary are leading us toward perdition,” he said.

His concerns were shared by the Rev. Billy Graham in a Sept. 30 column for Decision magazine.

Only Graham didn’t hold quite as positive an opinion about America as Dobson. While Dobson said America is on a moral slide, Graham said it’s already hit bottom.

“Even though America is just as wicked as Sodom and Gomorrah ever were, and as deserving of the judgment of God, God would spare us if we were earnestly praying, with hearts that been cleansed and washed by the blood of Christ,” he wrote.

Dobson pinned part of the blame for a crumbling America on federal judges – especially those who of late have found ways to undermine traditional marriage.

“Modernists, libertarians and atheists today recognize no condemnation of sexual perversion in the Bible. However, this historical account illustrates how God views it. The outrageous behavior of the wicked men of Sodom and Gomorrah sealed their doom. Fire and brimstone fell from the sky on both cities and utterly destroyed them,” Dobson explained.

“The story of Abraham and Lot also illustrates how entire societies can become so corrupted by evil that divine judgment eventually destroys them, or they simply fade away. It happened to the people of Greece, Rome, Pompeii and other cities and cultures where wickedness became the order of the day. One thing is certain. God is the holy Sovereign Lord of all heaven and earth, and He will not be mocked.”

WND reported previously Dobson described Obama as “the anti-religious freedom president.”

In his newsletter at the time, Dobson said, regarding Obama’s abortion mandates, “Among other things, [Obama] was targeting religious freedom and set about accomplishing that from the beginning. That was the activity to which I objected strenuously during my comments in Washington. I offer no apologies for expressing those views now. The effort to force Christians to violate their consciences must be opposed with all vigor, regardless of the consequences – primarily because it is unconstitutional. Christians are being chastised, dismissed, harangued and sued for daring to practice their deeply held convictions in the public square. Family Talk is among those who have been pressed against a wall.”

WND also reported that when Dobson spoke to the National Day of Prayer, hundreds stood and cheered his condemnation of the government’s ongoing attempts through Obamacare to require Christians to participate in something that profoundly violates their faith – abortion.

Dobson, through his Family Talk, had fought the Obamacare requirement that employers must pay for abortion-causing agents for their employees. The U.S. Supreme has struck down that requirement now.

Dobson at that time bluntly backed up his opinion.

“[Obama] has made it so that every American will have to pay toward the support of abortion,” he said, citing hundreds of millions of dollars in taxpayer funds that already go to Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest abortion provider.

“How can anyone challenge my characterization of Mr. Obama as ‘the abortion president? … He even voted three times in the Illinois state senate not to protect babies who were born alive after surviving botched abortions,” he said.

Regarding the current fight over the definition of marriage, WND has reported several state judges already are suing for being told they must perform same-sex marriage services.

A petition has been created in support of ordinances that allow Christian business owners to live by their faith.

WND has done a series of reports on friend-of-the-court briefs submitted in advance of the ruling. One argues changes could have far-reaching effects.

“If the traditional definition of marriage is not a rational basis for legislative action, it is hard to imagine what is. Put another way, if rational-basis review invalidates traditional marriage, it seems likely that few other laws would be safe from the federal courts.”

Such a determination “would enable federal courts, through mere disagreement with the wisdom or utility of state policy, to overturn scores of state laws that afford government benefits or impose government costs on some (but not all) citizens. That result would undermine federalism, liberty, and our nation’s democratic processes.”

WND reported longtime conservative leader Pat Buchanan urged Christians to fight the “LGBT fanatics” who are demanding they betray their faith, even if it means civil disobedience.

In an interview with WND, Buchanan, the author of “Suicide of a Superpower: Will America Survive to 2025?” and other bestsellers, spoke on the controversy over the Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act.

Buchanan forcefully condemned defeatism among social conservatives and rejected retreat or even compromise. Instead, the one-time presidential contender and Reagan White House aide urged Christians to put the laws of God above the laws of man.

“This battle can be won, but it cannot be won if we do not stand our ground and fight against this moral onslaught from the left,” he said. “The hill to stand on and fight on is the God-given natural right and the constitutional principle that people of faith may choose not to associate with those whose actions are abhorrent and whose lifestyle is insulting and offensive to that faith.”

Buchanan dismissed arguments that “gay”-rights activists are simply asking for political freedom or the same rights as any other citizen.

“The LGBT militants are not asking to be left alone,” he said. “They are demanding that we accept the morality of homosexuality and same-sex marriages and manifest that acceptance, under pain of law and sanctions, in our daily lives.”

What’s America’s future going to be? Pat Buchanan offers his opinion in “Suicide of a Superpower: Will America Survive to 2025?”

Buchanan added: “As the Romans demanded of the Christians, the LGBT fanatics want us to burn incense to their gods. The answer is no. If it comes to civil disobedience, so be it.”

WND also reported a team of prominent Christian leaders worked on a statement to inform the public – including Supreme Court justices – that they will engage in civil disobedience rather than follow a ruling that establishes homosexual marriage in the United States.

Among those leading the charge are Dobson, Rick Scarborough of Vision America Action, Mat Staver of Liberty Counsel and James Robison of Life Today.

Get James Dobson’s classic, “When God Doesn’t Make Sense,” from the WND Superstore.

Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2015/04/christians-facing-new-status-as-hated-minority/#a3hmlKWbwHZR2K8g.99

Martial Law in Wisconsin

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by DAVID FRENCH April 20, 2015 4:00 AM

‘THEY CAME WITH A BATTERING RAM.” Cindy Archer, one of the lead architects of Wisconsin’s Act 10 — also called the “Wisconsin Budget Repair Bill,” it limited public-employee benefits and altered collective-bargaining rules for public-employee unions — was jolted awake by yelling, loud pounding at the door, and her dogs’ frantic barking. The entire house — the windows and walls — was shaking. She looked outside to see up to a dozen police officers, yelling to open the door. They were carrying a battering ram. VIDEO: David French Discusses ‘Wisconsin’s Shame’ She wasn’t dressed, but she started to run toward the door, her body in full view of the police. Some yelled at her to grab some clothes, others yelled for her to open the door. “I was so afraid,” she says. “I did not know what to do.” She grabbed some clothes, opened the door, and dressed right in front of the police. The dogs were still frantic. “I begged and begged, ‘Please don’t shoot my dogs, please don’t shoot my dogs, just don’t shoot my dogs.’ I couldn’t get them to stop barking, and I couldn’t get them outside quick enough. I saw a gun and barking dogs. I was scared and knew this was a bad mix.” RELATED: Politicized Prosecution Run Amok in Wisconsin She got the dogs safely out of the house, just as multiple armed agents rushed inside. Some even barged into the bathroom, where her partner was in the shower. The officer or agent in charge demanded that Cindy sit on the couch, but she wanted to get up and get a cup of coffee. “I told him this was my house and I could do what I wanted.” Wrong thing to say. “This made the agent in charge furious. He towered over me with his finger in my face and yelled like a drill sergeant that I either do it his way or he would handcuff me.” RELATED: No, the Left Is Not Going to Stop Trying to Criminalize Free Speech They wouldn’t let her speak to a lawyer. She looked outside and saw a person who appeared to be a reporter. Someone had tipped him off. The neighbors started to come outside, curious at the commotion, and all the while the police searched her house, making a mess, and — according to Cindy — leaving her “dead mother’s belongings strewn across the basement floor in a most disrespectful way.” Then they left, carrying with them only a cellphone and a laptop.

Read more at: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/417155/wisconsins-shame-i-thought-it-was-home-invasion-david-french