John Boehner

ALEC: Pursuing Universal Stewardship – Part One

ALEC: Pursuing Universal Stewardship – Part One

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Editor’s Note:  Over the next few weeks VLTP will be publishing a series exposing the American Legislative Exchange Council’s (ALEC) involvement with advancing their conservative agenda, model legislation and resolutions worldwide.  We have discovered and begun to monitor the activities of ALEC overseas as they pursue developing and  sponsoring legislation they favor in foreign countries. Unfortunately these activities are a two way street, in that ALEC has numerous foreign elected officials serving as full members, who come to America, meet with U.S. state lawmakers and develop new laws they favor for America’s citizens.  All this will be covered and exposed through this new series beginning today – Bob Sloan, Executive Director.

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By Susan Kraykowski

News of the death of former Conservative British Prime Minister, MargaretThatcher, on April 8, 2013, threw American conservatives’ idolatry of Lady Thatcher into a bright spotlight. It’s entirely appropriate, that President Obama speak to the nation upon the passing of important world leaders – especially those from our allies – and send an official Boehner at ALECdelegation to their funerals. Why, however, has House Speaker, John Boehner (R-OH), insisted upon a special resolution in Thatcher’s honor, as well as upon sending his own, hand-picked representatives to the funeralin addition to the official delegation? Why also is an American presidential library-style memorial to Thatcher – money almost entirely raised in the US – in the planning stages?

One might assume, given this evidence, that perhaps the “special relationship” between American conservatives and their cousins-across-the-pond is a bit more special than usual – and one would be correct in this assumption.

The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) has been busy in the United States for a couple of decades, writing the “cookie-cutter” bills that turn up in state legislatures all over the country – the bills which have practically identical wording in them and always seem to benefit corporations and conservative causes over ordinary individuals or community health, education and welfare funding. ALEC and its associated think tank, The Heritage Foundation – of which Lady Thatcher was patron – have recently been extending their tentacles into international territory.

Recently – over most of the past decade – interesting similarities in policy and in the wording of legislation have been turning up in the United Kingdom, especially in England, as well as in the European Parliament. ALEC member organizations have sponsored British MPs as speakers for ALEC events in the United States. Young British Conservative Party trainees – across the pond, one has a “traineeship” as opposed to an internship – attend CPAC each year in droves (one wonders exactly how their ALEC sponsors explain all our 2nd Amendment frothing-at-the-mouth to them). And, there are some strangely easy-to-obtain masters degrees in such disciplines as international relations and public policy from certain sub-institutions of higher learning, offered to British MPs who slip into the US through a loophole in the law that allows them to skip registration as foreign agents if they are in the country pursuing educational opportunities. That seems to be set up to work the opposite way, as well, for American ALEC members.

On the surface, none of this looks especially threatening. Neither does a special resolution in the House of Representatives, honoring MargaretThatcher, after the near-unanimous passage of which, Speaker Boehner declared the House in recess, so no other business could be transacted. That is part and parcel of his prime directive from ALEC, of course: pass no legislation favored by President Obama, even if Republicans originally proposed it and/or a majority of Americans support it. Of course, everyone knows that every dangerous iceberg has an innocuous looking tip, sticking out of the water.

Thatcher - JonesIn subsequent articles, we shall explore the international ALEC iceberg. For each of the above-mentioned issues into which ALEC has insinuated itself on the international stage, we will trace contacts, examine timelines and connect the dots between ALEC, its subsidiary organizations and shells, its members – both individuals and corporations – and the Members of Parliament in the UK and the European Union. MargaretThatcher, deceased though she now is, was one of the architects of the structure built over the years to advance international corporate interests over the interests of either national governments or the social well-being of the people governed. The most important point here is, unless registered as foreign agents, Americans influencing British and European domestic policy, are committing illegal acts. If foreign nationals attempt the same in the United States without registering as agents of a foreign power, they are also committing illegal acts.

 

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Acknowledgement to the following for providing research and materials used in the Expose –

Former VLTP Program Director, Ron Rabatsky

EU/UK Research team led by na~Saighneain

House Republicans Perpetuate Voter Fraud Myth, Fine With Disenfranchising Voters

“House Republicans criticized the Justice Department for challenging voter ID laws. The critical lawmakers believe that DOJ is acting in a partisan manner and that DOJ’s actions show that the Obama Administration is more concerned with winning in November than protecting against election fraud.”

That’s correct folks, Voter Suppression is just fine with Republicans in Washington.  But, of course it is.  ALEC Alumni Messrs. Boehner and Cantor are in charge.  And what Republican is looking forward to a visit from the “muscle” of the Cabal–a Tea Party challenger in the next primary.

But that’s just my opinion and I could be wrong. Please click here to read the extent to which the radical right will go to win this next Battle of the War for Control of the Government*–disenfranchise those who would stand in their way at the polls.  Prevent the Justice Department from doing it’s job.  What else is a House Republican to do?

*engaging Organized Labor early and get them to spend all of their money fighting for survival in WI, MI, OH, and IN, was the first skirmish of the war.

A Wolfram in ALEC Sheep’s Clothing

[summary and lead in as written by Bob Sloan on our Facebook page, Voters Legislative Transparency Project]

Great blog post from 2old2care on “BecauseIcan” blog about ALEC and the way in which the cabal keeps sending out their members masquerading as “journalists” for the RW in an effort to downplay ALEC’s activities. This has been happening for decades – only now we’re up on it as are many more Americans. When we see the articles and just perform a cursory research skim of the authors, journalists and speakers – we always come away with the knowledge that most of those supporting ALEC, praising their work and legislative efforts…are in fact members of ALEC or one of their affiliates. None of the stories are being written by unbiased reporters or journalists – they all come from the same playbook (written by ALEC or Koch) and are slipped into the media in support of ALEC.

I urge all to see for themselves…pick any RW article in support of ALEC and/or the Kochs, then put the author’s name in a search with the American Legislative Exchange Council, or Heritage, CATO, Mackinac…and watch the thousands of returns pop up on your screen.

As a fan of 2old2care’s writing, I also urge you to read it by clicking here

Keystone XL: A Pipeline to Higher Oil Prices

  • Midwestern refineries produce more gasoline per barrel than refineries in any other region in the United States. That gasoline is then sold to U.S. consumers.
  • In contrast, refineries on the Gulf Coast of Texas produce as much diesel as possible, much of which is exported internationally.
  • The Keystone XL tar sands pipeline would divert oil from the Midwest to refineries on the Gulf Coast of Texas. By taking oil from Midwestern gasoline refineries to Gulf Coast diesel refineries, Keystone XL will decrease the amount of gasoline available to American consumers.
  • TransCanada, the company sponsoring the pipeline, pitched the pipeline to Canadian regulators as a way of increasing the price of crude in the United States. Right now, Midwestern refineries are buying crude oil at a discount—and a deep discount at that. This allows them to produce products more cheaply than they would otherwise be able to. Building Keystone XL would change that. If TransCanada’s analysis is accurate, under current market conditions, Keystone XL would add $20 to $40 to the cost of a barrel of Canadian crude—increasing the cost of oil in the United States by tens of billions of dollars.

    To read more about the Keystone XL scam, John Boehner’s favorite legislation, considering it was his last holdout bargaining position on the last extension of middle class tax cuts, please click here

Koch Operative Steered $55 Million To Front Groups Airing Ads Against Democrats; Ads Assailed Candidates Over Abortion, 9/11, Medicare

Charles and David Koch, the billionaire owners of of Koch Industries, are known as big spenders when it comes to lobbying and influencing public policy. Now, a new document filed with the IRS reveals how the Koch political machine funneled over $54.5 million in previously undisclosed funds to a litany of front groups designed to smear Democrats.

The disclosure suggests that a very wide variety of Republican groups active in the last major election, from pro-life organizations that ran ads on abortion to shadowy fronts that aired partisan commercials with the infamous Ground Zero Mosque conspiracy, have been highly dependent on Koch money. The document also reveals that the Koch’s political network spent much more on electing the current Congress than previously known.

To read Lee Fang’s entire article, please click here: