Joel B. Pollak

Joel B. Pollak

Latest News

Minimum Wage protest, California (Robyn Beck / AFP / Getty)

Minimum Wage Inflation: Dems Want State Hike to $13 per Hour

The California State Senate voted on party lines Monday to raise the minimum wage to $13 per hour by 2017–a 44% increase from where it stands today, at $9 per hour. Just two years ago, Gov. Jerry Brown signed a bill that increased the minimum from $8 per hour in 2013 to $10 per hour by 2016. The new bill, introduced by State Sen. Mark Leno (D-San Francisco) as a measure to reduce poverty and inequality, would amount to a staggering and unprecedented 62.5% increase in four years.

Wang Qun, Laurent Fabius, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Federica Mogherini, Javad Zarif, Philip Hammond, John Kerry

Reported Deal on ‘Snap-Back’ Iran Sanctions Has 3 Fatal Flaws

With one month left for talks, news has emerged that the P5+1–six powers negotiating with Iran (Russia, China, France, Britain, Germany and the U.S.)–have reached a deal on “snap-back” Iran sanctions–i.e. sanctions that would be removed as part of a nuclear deal but which would automatically be restored if Iran broke the agreement, due June 30. Reuters suggested that all that remained was for Iran to agree, and a major obstacle would be gone. Yet the snap-back “deal” has three fatal flaws.

Blue State Blues (Breitbart)

Blue State Blues: FIFA Stands for ‘F— Israel, F— America’

For decades, our global betters have been urging Americans to take more of an interest in soccer. And we have–though not the interest the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) had in mind. This week, the U.S. Department of Justice revealed that 14 FIFA officials had been indicted for corruption. In somewhat related news, FIFA is to vote this weekend on suspending Israel from international soccer because of security-related travel restrictions on some Palestinian players.

Da Vinci Fire (Nancy Yuille / Associated Press)

LAPD Anti-Terror Cops Arrest Suspect in Massive Downtown Fire

The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) has arrested a suspect, Dawud Abdulwali, 56, on arson charges connected with the massive downtown fire last December that consumed the Da Vinci apartment complex. The Los Angeles Times reports that Abdulwali was arrested Tuesday morning during a traffic stop, and after a lengthy investigation.

Rand Paul

Rand Paul Joins Left in Blaming GOP ‘Hawks’ for ISIS

President Barack Obama once dismissed ISIS (or “ISIL”) as a “junior varsity” outfit. As the terrorist organization has grown in size, wealth, and power, Obama’s allies on the left have moved from dismissing ISIS outright to blaming Republicans for its rise, arguing that it would never have emerged if President George W. Bush had not invaded Iraq. (Democrats’ support for the war is conveniently omitted.) Now, Sen. Rand Paul has joined the left in blaming GOP ‘hawks’ for the rise of ISIS.

AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File

California Democrats Disagree: How Much Surplus to Waste?

California is enjoying another year of budget surplus–and the state’s Democrats cannot wait to spend the spoils. Though Gov. Jerry Brown’s new plans call for spending an additional $7.5 billion more than originally budgeted–an increase that is larger than the entire budgets of some states–Democrats in the state legislature are predicting a $2.5 billion surplus in the year to come, and bickering over which of the state’s generous social welfare programs will benefit from the new cash.

Barack Obama, Michelle Obama

Obama Disgraces the Dead with False Claims of Success

There is no commitment to America’s fighting men and women that President Barack Obama has not broken. When he ran for office in 2008, he promised to leave a residual force in Iraq to secure that country against external meddling and internal collapse. When he took office, President George W. Bush handed over a relatively stable and secure Iraq, thanks to the “surge” Obama opposed, and thanks to the sacrifices made by thousands of Americans, killed and wounded in battle.

Gaza Flotilla (Israel Defense Forces / Screenshot / YouTube)

With Iran Ship, Obama Reaps What He Sowed in Gaza Flotilla

The international diplomatic and military crisis sparked by Iran’s decision to send an “aid” vessel directly to Yemen–along with an escort of warships–rather than to the international coordinating point in Djibouti was the latest escalation in Iran’s attempt to assert its new dominance as a regional power. Notably, Iran’s tactics mirror those used by Palestinian activists, backed by Turkey, in the 2010 Mavi Marmara incident, when an Islamist “aid” ship challenged the Israeli navy off Gaza.

Steve Glazer (Steve Glazer / Flickr / CC)

CA Unions Lose Big in East Bay Special Election

California’s powerful unions lost a key special election this week in an all-Democrat race for State Senate in the East Bay that pitted a reformist candidate, Orinda Mayor Steve Glazer, against a reliable Big Labor vote, Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla. The race took place on what was nominally Republican turf, after State Sen. Mark DeSaulnier resigned. Heavy spending by independent groups on both sides–and the state’s new “jungle” primary–helped Glazer win 55%-45%.

George W. Bush

5 Reasons the Iraq War Was Not a Mistake

The media have finally extracted from Hillary Clinton the question they have pressing her Republican rivals to answer for several weeks now: knowing what we now know about Iraq–that it did not have the weapons of mass destruction (WMD) it was thought to have–should we still have invaded Iraq? The answer journalists wish to hear is “no,” because it is a way of excusing President Barack Obama for the predictable (and predicted) mess that transpired when he withdrew from Iraq.

UCBERK

University of California At Center of Antisemitism Fight

The University of California has produced some of the most blatant cases of campus antisemitism in recent months, with Jewish students singled out for their faith–often by anti-Israel activists. That prompted 57 rabbis and 107 members of the UC faculty to write to the administration Monday, the Los Angeles Times reports, to ask that it adopt the State Department definition of antisemitism, which includes demonizing Israel, delegitimizing Israel, or holding double standards for Israel.

Spencer Platt/Getty Images/AFP

Democrats Have a Demographic Problem in 2016

A report by Daniel J. McGraw in this weekend’s Politico brings rigorous data analysis–i.e. “quick back-of-the-napkin math”–to bear on the GOP’s demographic “problem”: namely, that Republican voters tend to be old, so more of them are dying. (If you are a Democrat, this is not a problem, as death has historically posed no real impediment to voting.) Yet the real demographic problem in 2016 is not the age of Republican voters: rather, it is the age of the Democratic candidates.

Pat Brown and Jerry Brown (Associated Press)

Man-Made: NYT Blames Jerry Brown’s Dad for CA Drought

CORONADO — When Republican presidential candidate Carly Fiorina called California’s drought “man-made” earlier this year, blaming mismanagement by the state’s liberal politicians, Democrats mocked her. The Washington Post’s fact-checker even gave her two “Pinocchios” for the claim. However, on Sunday the New York Times appeared to agree that the drought is man-made, at least in its impacts–and blamed former Gov. Pat Brown, father of current Gov. Jerry Brown.

Luis Gutierrez, Loretta Sanchez

Once out, Now in: Sanchez Declares for U.S. Senate

Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D-CA) has formally announced that she will run for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by a retiring Barbara Boxer (D-CA) in 2016. She will challenge California Attorney General Kamala Harris, who was the first to declare her candidacy earlier this year, and had already begun raising millions of dollars in the hopes of clearing the field of rivals.

Obama at Press Dinner - NPR Photo

Obama’s Iran Deal Lie Collapses: Russia Says No ‘Snap-Back’ Sanctions

President Barack Obama has defended the impending nuclear deal with Iran by promising Americans that there will be automatic “snap-back” provisions to restore sanctions automatically if Iran cheats on its obligations: “If Iran violates the deal, sanctions can be snapped back into place,” he said in April. On Wednesday, Russian UN Ambassador Vitaly Churkin told Bloomberg News that there would be no such provisions: “There can be no automaticity, none whatsoever,” he said.

Human Rights Council

Video: Iran, North Korea, Cuba Slam U.S. at UN Human Rights Council

Following the Obama administration’s craven presentation of America’s–largely imaginary–human rights shortcomings to the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) Monday, the member states took their turns to add to the criticism. In many cases, the countries piling on were dictatorships that murder and persecute their own citizens with absolute impunity.

Breitbart Video Picks