Glenn Beck: Who doesn't love a surprise?

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I was sitting around over vacation, kind of moping; pondering the former greatness of America and wondering what the heck happened to our country. How did we allow it to get to this point? It's so far beyond left and right, Republican and Democrat.

Then I suddenly remembered something that Nancy Pelosi said and it totally cheered me up:


SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE NANCY PELOSI, D-CALIF.: But we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it.



Now we get to find out what's in this health care bill! Who doesn't like a good surprise or two?

It doesn't take a genius to realize that the reason Nancy Pelosi wouldn't tell anyone what's in the bill, is because she knew if people understood it, they wouldn't want it. If it was so great, she would have gone over every single one of the 2,400 pages on C-SPAN. She wouldn't have rushed it through over the course a weekend. She wouldn't have had to bribe members of her own party. But the bill is not great. It's really, really far from great. So they had to be deceptive.

As Nancy Pelosi promised America with a straight (and kind of stretched face) that we'd love what's in this bill — while refusing to show details. Was I the only one in America who heard the voice of my grandfather from beyond the grave: "If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is."

There are news reports now of people actually calling insurance companies and saying, where do we get our free Obamacare? I hate to rain on the free "Obama cash" parade, but there are a couple of problems. As we constantly point out, you'll start paying for this program now, but not get the benefits till 2014.


Most importantly, free health care for all isn't actually free. Someone has to pay for it and I have news for you: It isn't just going to be "the rich."


And it's weird, now that the health care bill has already passed, Paul Volcker has suddenly decided to address the concerns the Tea Party-goers had all along: How do we pay for this? The solution? You guessed it: more taxes.

If you will recall, President Obama promised he wouldn't raise taxes by a single dime on anyone making less than $250,000. I have to remind you because no one else in the media will:


THEN-PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE BARACK OBAMA: No family making less than $250,000 a year will see any form of tax increase: Not your income tax; not your payroll tax; not your capital gains taxes; not any of your taxes.

If you make less than $250,000 — less than a quarter of a million dollars a year — then you will not see one dime's worth of tax increase.

Show of hands: How many people make less than a quarter million dollars a year? All right, well, I am talking to you then. You will not see your taxes increase one single dime.

If you have a job, pay taxes and make less than $200,000 a year, you'll get a tax cut.



One of the first moves President Obama made when he took office was his solution to fund SCHIP: Raise cigarette taxes. Which, by itself this is a ridiculous idea — you are banking the future of children's health care on the hopes that more people continue to buy and smoke cigarettes? Hey kids, when you grow up please, smoke cigarettes so that your children can have a healthy start to their lives.

That's besides the point. I think there are a lot of people who smoke that make less than $250,000 a year — that's called a tax hike.

He also sought to raise the capital gains tax, which affects every single American who invests — and that would be you if you have a 401(k).

Volcker has now come out and said that we're going to have to raise taxes in order to bring deficits under control. Did we try the not spending money thing and it didn't work out? He said we need to consider a European-style "value added tax" or VAT.

According to Reuters, Volcker said: "The value-added tax 'was not as toxic an idea' as it has been in the past and also said a carbon or other energy-related tax may become necessary... He said getting entitlement costs and the U.S. budget deficit under control may require such moves. 'If at the end of the day we need to raise taxes, we should raise taxes.'"


Oh, thanks Nancy. I needed that pick-me-up.

In a total shocker, the George Soros-funded Center for American Progress is a big fan of this idea. Remember: A carbon tax, but also that special VAT tax — would be added on top of the federal tax, raising the $1 trillion needed to cover the projected shortfall in 2020, which would require a 7 percent tax on everything we consume.

You can't just force 32 million people to get health insurance and then mandate that all preventative care is "free." That does cost something and you'll pay for it. Insurance companies will be forced to give you preventative care for "free," which means they'll have to pass the costs on to consumers anyway — almost like a tax.

Part of the bill that has already passed and supposedly will save us money and have absolutely no waste, is a federal trust fund that will pay for more bicycle paths, playgrounds, jungle gyms, sidewalks and hiking trails. There is also a new board set up that will decide what preventative tests you have and don't have to take. It's called the United States Preventative Services Task Force.

That's weird, I don't remember Nancy Pelosi talking about how the government would be dictating my health care and saddling America with extra taxes for hiking trails. In fact I kind of remember them saying no one would get between me and my doctors.


By the way, even though something is marked health care or peanut brittle, it can still be full of snakes.

People can't be dealing with even more crushing taxes during these economic times. That's probably why a woman named Doris confronted President Obama about the coming tax storm recently:


DORIS: Is it a wise decision to add more taxes to us with the health care? Because we are over-taxed as it is.

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Well, let's talk about that, you know, because this is an area where there's been just a whole lot of misinformation. And I'm going to have to work hard over the next several months to clean up a lot of the misapprehensions that people have...


I'd show you the whole answer, but it was 17 minutes long. I thought Obama was the smartest human ever created. Did he really need to filibuster poor old Doris?

The fact is they lied saying America could afford this bill... that's why

Most Americans were against this because they knew it was reckless. Oh, but Glenn! The CBO said it this bill was just wonderful and that we would actually save money!


And Alan Greenspan just came out and said that if the numbers are correct, then everything will be fantastic!

Yes, he did. But he also talked about if the numbers were wrong:


ALAN GREENSPAN, FORMER CHAIRMAN OF THE FEDERAL RESERVE: What happens if we are wrong? In other words, in the case now, where our buffer between our capacity to borrow and our actual debt is narrowing, for the first time, I think, in the American history, there's a question, supposing we are wrong on the cost estimates and, indeed, they are actually much higher than the best estimates can generate. The consequences are very severe.


"Very severe"?

First of all, weren't you and I mocked and called crazy racists for expressing concern about jamming a massive, multi-trillion dollar entitlement through right now? Greenspan just said it.

Secondly, this is kind of a big "if," don't you think? Heads: America stays the same; tails we all die. I'm not a gambling man, but does anyone really believe the government has any idea what they are talking about with estimates?

Let me give you a couple examples of government estimates as we consider the estimated $1 trillion health care bill:

• Boston's "Big Dig" Highway Project

Estimated preliminary price tag (in 1985): $2.5 billion

Actual cost with interest: $22 billion

• Medicare Part A

Estimated price tag for 1990: $9 billion

Actual cost in 1990: $67 billion

• Medicaid's Special Hospital Subsidy

Estimated cost for 1992: less than $1 billion

Actual cost in 1992: $17 billion

This would be entertaining if it were "The Price Is Right" and the yodeler was going up the mountain. Unfortunately, this isn't "The Price Is Right," this is our country.

What was it Greenspan said?


GREENSPAN: Supposing we are wrong on the cost estimates and, indeed, they are actually much higher than the best estimates can generate. The consequences are very severe.


Is that like a "broken leg" severe or "we're all going to die" severe? Either way, thanks for the timely advice, Al.

Forget for a minute the mountain of past evidence that proves government can't accurately predict cost estimates, former CBO Director Doug Holtz-Eakin says in a frightening op-ed that this health care bill would certainly "increase the crushing debt," not save us money.

Great. Listen, I can settle this. It requires two things for this not to be really, really severe:

The government has to be right about the cost estimates

The necessary cuts Congress promised to make have to actually happen

Would you bet your life on either of these ever happening? If they don't make the cuts, their figures way wrong. And we've seen the government's track record on cost estimates.

I thought health care was essential to fixing the economy. Why are we now immediately rushing for new taxes? I know: It was that evil George W. Bush. Obama didn't know how bad it was. But didn't he say this?


OBAMA: One year later, the worst of the storm has passed.


Wait, if we can't fix our economy unless we fix health care and this will save us money and the worst is behind us, why do you still have to have crippling taxes? What about all those savings we will reap from health care? I thought we were actually decreasing the deficit?

America, it's time to draw a line in the sand. How many times will you allow them to lie to you? How many times will you watch them take your money and screw it up? How many times will you believe them that they can "fix" something like Medicare or Medicaid?

We have hard work to do and Republicans and Democrats and independents can do it. But the first thing we have to do is stop believing that there's an easy way out.

It's like we've fallen for the "Nigerian prince" e-mail scam. We sent them $10,000 because they promised we'd get to share a $20 million inheritance with them. And we got burned. But soon another e-mail from the prince came in. We sent another $10,000 and we got burned again and we swear we've learned our lesson. But then we get a third e-mail from another Nigerian prince. But this is a different Nigerian prince!

Stop believing the e-mails from Nigerian princes. They’re not telling the truth.

— Watch Glenn Beck weekdays at 5p & 2a ET on Fox News Channel

On the radio program Thursday, Glenn Beck sat down with chief researcher Jason Buttrill to go over two bombshell developments that have recently come to light regarding former Vice President Joe Biden's role in the 2016 dismissal of Ukrainian Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin.

"Wow! Two huge stories dropped within about 24 hours of each other," Jason began. He went on to explain that a court ruling in Ukraine has just prompted an "actual criminal investigation against Joe Biden in Ukraine."

This stunning development coincided with the release of leaked phone conversations, which took place in late 2015 and early 2016, allegedly among then-Vice President Biden, Secretary of State John Kerry, and Ukraine's former President Petro Poroshenko.

One of the audiotapes seems to confirm allegations of a quid pro quo between Biden and Poroshenko, with the later admitting that he asked Shokin to resign despite having no evidence of him "doing anything wrong" in exchange for a $1 billion loan guarantee.

"Poroshenko said, 'despite the fact that we didn't have any corruption charges on [Shokin], and we don't have any information about him doing something wrong, I asked him to resign,'" Jason explained. "But none of the Western media is pointing this out."

Watch the video below for more details:

Listen to the released audiotapes in full here.

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A recently declassified email, written by former National Security Adviser Susan Rice and sent herself on the day of President Donald Trump's inauguration, reveals the players involved in the origins of the Trump-Russia probe and "unmasking" of then-incoming National Security Adviser, Gen. Michael Flynn.

Rice's email details a meeting in the Oval Office on Jan 5, 2017, which included herself, former FBI Director James Comey, former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates, former Vice President Joe Biden, and former President Barack Obama. Acting Director of National Intelligence, Richard Grenell, fully declassified the email recently amid President Trump's repeated references to "Obamagate" and claims that Obama "used his last weeks in office to target incoming officials and sabotage the new administration."

On Glenn Beck's Wednesday night special, Glenn broke down the details of Rice's email and discussed what they reveal about the Obama administration officials involved in the Russia investigation's origins.

Watch the video clip below:

Fellow BlazeTV host, Mark Levin, joined Glenn Beck on his exclusive Friday episode of "GlennTV" to discuss why the declassified list of Obama administration officials who were aware of the details of Gen. Michael Flynn's wiretapped phone calls are so significant.

Glenn argued that Obama built a covert bureaucracy to "transform America" for a long time to come, and Gen. Flynn was targeted because he happened to know "where the bodies were buried", making him a threat to Obama's "secret legacy."

Levin agreed, noting the "shocking extent of the police state tactics" by the Obama administration. He recalled several scandalous happenings during Obama's "scandal free presidency," which nobody seems to remember.

Watch the video below for more:

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To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.

Colleges and universities should be home to a lively and open debate about questions both current and timeless, independent from a political bias or rules that stifle speech. Unfortunately for students, speaking out about personal beliefs or challenging political dogma can be a dangerous undertaking. I experienced this firsthand as an undergraduate, and I'm fighting that trend now as an adjunct professor.

In 2013, Glenn Beck was one of the most listened to radio personalities in the world. For a college senior with hopes of working on policy and media, a job working for Glenn was a ticket to big things. I needed a foot in the door and hoped to tap into the alumni network at the small liberal arts school where I was an undergrad. When I met with a career services specialist in early March 2013 about possible alumni connections to Glenn Beck, she disdainfully told me: "Why would you want to work for someone like him?" That was the beginning and end of our conversation.

I was floored by her response, and sent an email to the school complaining that her behavior was inappropriate. Her personal opinions, political or otherwise, I argued, shouldn't play a role in the decision to help students.

That isn't the kind of response a student should hear when seeking guidance and help in kick starting their career. Regardless of the position, a career specialist or professors' opinion or belief shouldn't be a factor in whether the student deserves access to the alumni network and schools' resources.

Now, seven years later, I work full time for a law firm and part time as an adjunct teaching business to undergraduate students. The culture at colleges and universities seems to have gotten even worse, unfortunately, since I was an undergrad.

College is a time to explore, dream big and challenge assumptions.

I never want to see a student told they shouldn't pursue their goals, regardless of their personal or political beliefs. College is a time to explore, dream big and challenge assumptions. I never got access to the alumni network or schools' resources from the career services office.

Lucky for students in 2020, there are several legal organizations that help students protect their rights when an issue goes beyond what can be handled by an undergraduate facing tremendous pressure from a powerful academic institution. Organizations like Speech First and the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), for instance, are resources I wish I knew about at the time.

When I experienced mistreatment from my college, I spoke up and challenged the behavior by emailing the administration and explaining what happened. I received a letter from the career services specialist apologizing for the "unprofessional comment."

What she described in that apology as a "momentary lapse of good judgement" was anything but momentary. It was indicative of the larger battle for ideas that has been happening on college campuses across the country. In the past seven years, the pressure, mistreatment and oppression of free expression have only increased. Even right now, some are raising concerns that campus administrations are using the COVID-19 pandemic to limit free speech even further. Social distancing guidelines and crowd size may both be used to limit or refuse controversial speakers.

Students often feel pressure to conform to a college or university's wishes. If they don't, they could be expelled, fail a class or experience other retribution. The college holds all the cards. On most campuses, the burden of proof for guilt in student conduct hearings is "more likely than not," making it very difficult for students to stand up for their rights without legal help.

As an adjunct professor, every student who comes to me for help in finding purpose gets my full support and my active help — even if the students' goals run counter to mine. But I have learned something crucial in my time in this role: It's not the job of an educator to dictate a student's purpose in life. I'm meant to help them achieve their dreams, no matter what.

Conner Drigotas is the Director of Communications and Development at a national law firm and is a Young Voices contributor.