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Buttigieg’s Port Visit Falls Apart When People Spot Dozens of Stalled Ships Right Over His Shoulder

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At the height of the supply chain crisis, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg was on paternity leave — something he was roundly criticized for. Don’t worry, though. He got back just in time to save Christmas, according to the mayor of the city which is home to one of our biggest ports.

Never mind that Buttigieg is finally visiting the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, two of the biggest supply-chain bottlenecks in the United States, months into a supply-chain crisis that has limited what Americans can buy and jacked up the prices we pay for it. After all, it took Vice President Kamala Harris how long to visit the border after she was put in charge of taking care of the “root causes” of the border crisis?

Rather, let’s take a look at the fact that — as Buttigieg did a victory lap at the ports — evidence that the crisis still hadn’t been solved was lurking over his shoulder.

And yet, there are plenty in the administration and on the left who would prefer to pretend this crisis didn’t exist. When they play pretend, we here at The Western Journal hit them with the facts about our snarled supply chain in the United States — and how President Joe Biden is responsible. You can help us bring readers the truth by subscribing.

According to The Hill, Buttigieg was introduced by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti (a Democrat, as if you needed to ask) as the “man who saved Christmas” before his Tuesday speech.

Buttigieg wasn’t about to disown the moniker, calling the movement of goods at the ports “an extraordinary achievement,” noting they set a record high.

“One of the reasons why Christmas was not in fact canceled is that ports like L.A. and Long Beach moved record levels [of] goods, allowing an all-time record high in terms of retail sales his holiday season,” he said.

“When there is an issue affecting ports here, you will feel it as far away as my Indiana hometown,” said Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana.

“Not only is this about the presents under the tree, this is about essential goods like medical goods that are needed in this moment of continued public health challenge,” he added.

And, of course, he acknowledged challenges — which is nothing that a little (or a lot) of infrastructure spending couldn’t fix.

“As long as the pandemic persists, as long as we are making up for decades of past disinvestment, we are going to see impacts on shipping times and shipping cost,” Buttigieg said.

But overall, Buttigieg and the Biden administration had saved Christmas, right? Sure, unless you happened to look over Pete’s shoulder:

The problem hasn’t much changed, it seems. On Monday, the day before Buttigieg’s visit, National Review reported that on Friday, “there were 105 ships waiting for berths at Los Angeles and Long Beach” — the highest number ever.

The difference, according to National Review’s Dominic Pino, is that you don’t notice it quite so much anymore because of how the ports in Los Angeles and Long Beach are handling incoming ships.

“Back in November, the port authorities in southern California adopted a new queuing system for ships that allows them to wait anywhere in the world without losing their spots in line,” Pino wrote. “They did this because the exhaust from all the ships idling near the ports was harming the air quality. For a few weeks, this change made it appear as though the number of ships waiting had declined because they were no longer clogging up the harbor. But the Marine Exchange of Southern California adjusted its counting method soon after.

“Only 16 of the 105 ships waiting are within 40 miles of the ports, FreightWaves says. The other 89 are scattered all over the world, with many congregating off the Baja peninsula.”

Buttigieg “saved Christmas,” in other words, because someone hid the problem elsewhere for him. A few post-holiday grinches noticed, however:

Oh, and they are pretty empty.

This was a shameless PR stunt — which is normally fine, given that shameless PR stunts are what politicians and administration officials are wont to do.

However, to shamelessly tout your accomplishments, there have to be accomplishments. A desultory look over Pete’s shoulder — and a more comprehensive look at the ships idling off the coast because they can’t dock in Los Angeles or Long Beach — showed there are none.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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Clarence Thomas Speaks Out on Supreme Court Leak: ‘It Changes the Institution Forever’

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Robert Mueller

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas said Friday that the leak of a draft opinion that could lead to overturning the Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion has severely damaged the court.

“I do think that what happened at the court is tremendously bad… I wonder how long we’re going to have these institutions at the rate we’re undermining them,” Thomas said at the Old Parkland Conference, according to Fox News.

He repeated the concern and elaborated further in remarks quoted by The Washington Post.

“I wonder how long we’re going to have these institutions at the rate we’re undermining them. And then I wonder — when they’re gone or destabilized — what we’re going to have as a country,” he said, according to The Post.

Thomas has spoken out previously about the pressures faced by the court to rule in ways liberals want.

Last week, Thomas said Americans are “becoming addicted to wanting particular outcomes, not living with the outcomes we don’t like,” according to the Daily Mail.

“It bodes ill for a free society,” he said, according to The Washington Post.

“We can’t be an institution that can be bullied into giving you just the outcomes you want. The events from earlier this week are a symptom of that,” he said then.

Will the court pull back from the opinions expressed in the leaked draft?

Thomas said Friday that, until the leak took place, it was unimaginable that such a thing would happen.

“The institution that I’m a part of — if someone said that one line of one opinion would be leaked by anyone, you would say, ‘Oh, that’s impossible. No one would ever do that,’” Thomas said, “There’s such a belief in the rule of law, belief in the court, belief in what we’re doing, that that was verboten.”

 “And look where we are, where now that trust or that belief is gone forever. And when you lose that trust, especially in the institution that I’m in, it changes the institution fundamentally. You begin to look over your shoulder. It’s like kind of an infidelity, that you can explain it, but you can’t undo it,” he said at the conference sponsored by the American Enterprise Institute, the Manhattan Institute and the Hoover Institution.

“Anybody who would, for example, have an attitude to leak documents, that general attitude is your future on the bench,” Thomas said. “And you need to be concerned about that. And we never had that before. We actually trusted — we might have been a dysfunctional family, but we were a family.”

Thomas said the principle of stare decisis — which means that precedents are generally accepted — is a guideline, not a commandment.

“When someone uses stare decisis, that means they’re out of arguments,” he said. “They’re just waving the white flag.”

He later spoke about those who lack of courage, without being more specific.

 “Like they know what is right, and they’re scared to death of doing it. And then they come up with all these excuses for not doing it.”

During his remarks, he said that as a black conservative, he has had issues with one particular group.

“People assume that I’ve had difficulties when I’ve been around members of my race,” Thomas said. “It’s just the opposite. The only people with whom I’ve had difficulties are white, liberal elites who consider themselves the anointed and us the benighted. . . . I have never had issues with members of my race.”

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas said Friday that the leak of a draft opinion that could lead to overturning the Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion has severely damaged the court. “I do think that what happened at the court is tremendously bad… I wonder how long we’re going to have these institutions at the rate we’re undermining them,” Thomas said at the Old Parkland Conference, according to Fox News. He repeated the concern and elaborated further in remarks quoted by The Washington Post. “I wonder how long we’re going to have these institutions at the rate we’re undermining them. And then I wonder — when they’re gone or destabilized — what we’re going to have as a country,” he said, according to The Post. Thomas has spoken out previously about the pressures faced by the court to rule in ways liberals want. Last week, Thomas said Americans are “becoming addicted to wanting particular outcomes, not living with the outcomes we don’t like,” according to the Daily Mail. “It bodes ill for a free society,” he said, according to The Washington Post. “We can’t be an institution that can be bullied into giving you just the outcomes you want. The events from earlier this week are a symptom of that,” he said then.

Will the court pull back from the opinions expressed in the leaked draft?
Thomas said Friday that, until the leak took place, it was unimaginable that such a thing would happen. “The institution that I’m a part of — if someone said that one line of one opinion would be leaked by anyone, you would say, ‘Oh, that’s impossible. No one would ever do that,’” Thomas said, “There’s such a belief in the rule of law, belief in the court, belief in what we’re doing, that that was verboten.”  “And look where we are, where now that trust…

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Parents’ Group Speaks Out After Reportedly Being Targeted by FBI, Merrick Garland as Terrorist ‘Threats’

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The head of a parents’ organization — consisting mostly of concerned mothers — that was reportedly targeted by Attorney General Merrick Garland’s FBI said Garland himself is “the terrorist.”

Moms for Liberty co-founder Tiffany Justice told the Daily Caller she was concerned investigations into the group’s members might “intimate our moms” in a piece published Friday.

The remarks came two days after House Republicans said they’d found smoking-gun evidence the FBI was investigating parents’ groups that had engaged in protests at school board meetings, despite Garland’s protestations to the contrary.

(Here at The Western Journal, we’ve proudly supported parents standing up to woke ideology like critical race theory — and we’ve decried the interference at the federal level by President Joe Biden’s administration. We’ll continue fighting for parental rights. You can help us by subscribing.)

The letter to the Department of Justice, authored by Ohio GOP Rep. Jim Jordan and signed by other Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee, noted the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division had created a threat tag for investigations into parents’ groups — EDUOFFICIALS.

“We have learned from brave whistleblowers that the FBI has opened investigations with the EDUOFFICIALS threat tag in almost every region of the country and relating to all types of educational settings,” the letter noted.

“The information we have received shows how, as a direct result of your directive, federal law enforcement is using counterterrorism resources to investigate protected First Amendment activity.”

Garland had come under fire after an Oct. 4, 2021 memo directed the FBI to look into “threats” against school personnel.

Should critical race theory be removed from the classroom?

The memo came after a wave of parental protests and contentious school board meetings — particularly in Loudoun and Fairfax counties in Virginia — over critical race theory in the classroom.

“In recent months, there has been a disturbing spike in harassment, intimidation, and threats of violence against school administrators, board members, teachers, and staff who participate in the vital work of running our nation’s public schools,” the memo read.

“The Department takes these incidents seriously and is committed to using its authority and resources to discourage these threats, identify them when they occur, and prosecute them when appropriate.”

During testimony later that month, Garland insisted the directive only involved “concerns about violence, threats of violence, other criminal conduct.”

That doesn’t seem to be the case. The House Judiciary Committee’s letter notes the FBI interviewed a Moms for Liberty member after an investigation that began when a tip submitted to the bureau through the National Threat Operations Center hotline, claimed she told a local school board “we are coming for you.”

The snitch said the mother was a threat because she was part of a “right wing mom’s group” and “is a gun owner.”

Jordan then noted that when the FBI interviewed the mom, they discovered she only meant Moms for Liberty sought “to replace the school board with new members through the electoral process” because of their stance on mask mandates.

Justice told the Daily Caller that she was “sad to see” the FBI investigations “happening to people that care most about this country.”

The mothers who show up at school board meetings, she said, were “genuinely concerned about their children’s education” — but Garland’s DOJ sees them as “the enemy.”

“This should not be happening and we are going to do everything we can to ensure that it stops,” she told the Daily Caller.

In a statement, Justice and her fellow Moms for Liberty co-founder Tina Descovich said this was “proof of what many of us suspected and some of us knew: that the Department of Justice was using counter-terrorism authority under the PATRIOT Act to investigate parents of schoolchildren.”

“We at Moms for Liberty knew first hand of the first example Jim Jordan cited, because she was – as the whistleblower letter says – one of our members,” the statement read.

“The mother was terrified. She had been contacted by the FBI. She had been told by the FBI not to say anything about that call. She had also been told that there were many other mothers being investigated.”

The letter was more confirmation of what Garland has strenuously denied: that FBI resources are being used to treat parents as potential domestic terror suspects without any specific threat.

The House Judiciary GOP had already blown the whistle on the EDUOFFICIAL tag last November. We now have a rough idea of how promiscuously it’s being applied and how little threat there actually is.

While no sinister, violent, far-right threat against school boards has, as of yet, been uncovered, we now have credible reports of the FBI harassing a member of a conservative mothers’ group based off of a cardboard-flimsy rationale.

When Garland’s memo was released, it seemed clear the FBI was being weaponized against a widespread parents’ revolt in which wholly rational anger was being unleashed — in a constitutionally protected manner — against school boards that were adopting woke ideology or prolonging mask mandates beyond reasonable limits. This anger led to, among other things, a Republican sweep of statewide offices in off-year elections in increasingly blue Virginia, including for governor.

Perhaps when Garland was talking about investigating “threats,” he wasn’t talking about any hazard to the well-being of school-board members or educational employees. Instead, it was about the Democrats’ 2022 electoral chances.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

The head of a parents’ organization — consisting mostly of concerned mothers — that was reportedly targeted by Attorney General Merrick Garland’s FBI said Garland himself is “the terrorist.” Moms for Liberty co-founder Tiffany Justice told the Daily Caller she was concerned investigations into the group’s members might “intimate our moms” in a piece published Friday. The remarks came two days after House Republicans said they’d found smoking-gun evidence the FBI was investigating parents’ groups that had engaged in protests at school board meetings, despite Garland’s protestations to the contrary. (Here at The Western Journal, we’ve proudly supported parents standing up to woke ideology like critical race theory — and we’ve decried the interference at the federal level by President Joe Biden’s administration. We’ll continue fighting for parental rights. You can help us by subscribing.) The letter to the Department of Justice, authored by Ohio GOP Rep. Jim Jordan and signed by other Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee, noted the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division had created a threat tag for investigations into parents’ groups — EDUOFFICIALS. “We have learned from brave whistleblowers that the FBI has opened investigations with the EDUOFFICIALS threat tag in almost every region of the country and relating to all types of educational settings,” the letter noted. “The information we have received shows how, as a direct result of your directive, federal law enforcement is using counterterrorism resources to investigate protected First Amendment activity.” BREAKING: The Biden Administration has mobilized FBI counterterrorism resources to investigate parents, including at least one member of @Moms4Liberty, for expressing protected political speech at local school board meetings. This is a grave abuse of power. pic.twitter.com/MdK0vm51VN — Christopher F. Rufo ⚔️ (@realchrisrufo) May 12, 2022 Garland had come under fire after an Oct. 4, 2021 memo directed the FBI to look…

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