Paul’s Annual ‘Festivus’ Report on Fed Spending Finds $482 Billion in What He Calls ‘Wasted Taxpayer’ Money

Sen. Rand Paul on Friday released his annual federal spending audit in which the Kentucky Republican found what he considers about $500 billion in wasted taxpayer resources – from billions on COVID-19 relief funds to ineligible recipients to a $118,000 study on the Marvel movie villain Thanos.

Paul’s 2022 Festivus Report – inspired by the send-up Festivus holiday on the “Seinfeld” sitcom – finds “a whopping $482,276,543,907” worth of federal waste, according to Fox News.

Paul takes particular aim at the $3.5 trillion Inflation Reduction Act that the Democrat-controlled Congress recently passed.

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Med School Trained Faculty to Admit, Address Their Own Racial ‘Bias’

The University of Utah School of Medicine reportedly trained its faculty to acknowledge their own biases through diversity, equity and inclusion training modules, according to documents obtained through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request by the medical watchdog group Do No Harm.

Do No Harm obtained three training presentations which were used between 2021-2022 to train faculty members about how to incorporate diversity, equity and inclusion in the workplace. The trainings instructed faculty to understand their own biases and lectured the school on using affirmative action practices to increase minority hires.

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Federal Government Leaves Border Hospital with $20 Million Bill for ‘Free’ Health Care to Illegal Aliens

A hospital in Yuma, Arizona, is owed $20 million for medical services provided to illegal immigrants.  

“We’ve calculated that over a six-month period, from December 2021 to May 2022, we had $20 million in charges that we’re unable to bill anyone for, for services we provided to migrants alone,” Dr. Robert Trenschel, president and CEO of Yuma Regional Medical Center, told The Daily Signal during a phone interview Wednesday.  

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Kari Lake Says Appeal Coming Following Dismissal from Superior Court Judge

Arizona Republican gubernatorial nominee Kari Lake had her election challenge completely dismissed by Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Peter Thompson Saturday. Following the ruling, Lake tweeted that an appeal would be coming.

“My Election Case provided the world with evidence that proves our elections are run outside of the law. This Judge did not rule in our favor. However, for the sake of restoring faith and honesty in our elections, I will appeal his ruling,” tweeted Lake.

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Commentary: The Christmas Tree Is a Tradition Older than Christmas

Why, every Christmas, do so many people endure the mess of dried pine needles, the risk of a fire hazard and impossibly tangled strings of lights?

Strapping a fir tree to the hood of my car and worrying about the strength of the twine, I sometimes wonder if I should just buy an artificial tree and do away with all the hassle. Then my inner historian scolds me – I have to remind myself that I’m taking part in one of the world’s oldest religious traditions. To give up the tree would be to give up a ritual that predates Christmas itself.

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Commentary: The Story of the Christmas Truce of 1914—and Its Eternal Message

War had already been waging in Europe for months when Pope Benedict issued a plea from Rome on Dec. 7, 1914 to leaders of Europe: declare a Christmas truce.

Benedict saw how badly peace was needed, even if it was only for a day. The First Battle of Ypres alone, fought from October 19 to November 22, had resulted in some 200,000 casualties (mostly German and French soldiers, but also thousands of English and Belgians). The First Battle of the Marne was even worse.

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Former Google CEO Is Quietly Bankrolling Dozens of White House Jobs

Former Google CEO Eric Schmidt helped fund the salaries of more than two dozen Biden administration officials through Federation of American Scientists (FAS) fellowships, Politico reported.

Schmidt Futures, a philanthropic organization headed by Schmidt, helped fund a FAS program titled “Day One Project” which placed fellows in science and technology positions in the White House following the 2020 elections, according to Politico. The fellows have served in departments such as the White House Council of Economic Advisers, the White House Council on Environmental Quality and the Department of Energy.

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Commentary: The Way an American Magazine Helped Launch One of Britain’s Favorite Christmas Carols

In 1906, a new carol appeared in “The English Hymnal,” an influential collection of British church music. With words by British poet Christina Rossetti, set to a tune by composer Gustav Holst, it became one of Britain’s most beloved Christmas songs. Now known as “In the Bleak Midwinter,” it was voted the “greatest carol of all time” in a 2008 BBC survey of choral experts.

“In the Bleak Midwinter” began life as a poem, which Rossetti simply titled “A Christmas Carol.” When the hymnal paired her words with music, the poem took on a new identity in song – a phenomenon documented by literature researcher Emily McConkey. But it also became embedded into popular culture in nonmusical forms. “A Christmas Carol,” or parts of it, has appeared on Christmas cards, ornaments, tea towels, mugs and other household items. It has inspired mystery novels and, more recently, became a recurring motif in the British television series “Peaky Blinders.”

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University of North Carolina Quietly Scrubs Race-Based Criteria from Fellowship Program

A University of North Carolina (UNC) nutrition fellowship program scrubbed criteria that made the fellowship exclusive to black, indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) students after a civil rights complaint was filed alleging the program violated federal anti-discrimination laws, the program’s website reveals.

UNC’s Fellowship for Exploring Research in Nutrition originally claimed students must be a “Racial/ethnic background of [BIPOC] that is historically marginalized in academia and the field of nutrition in the United States” to be considered, according to a Dec. 19 snapshot of the website. However, the current website appears to have removed the criteria from the list.

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University of Iowa Trains Committee to Hire Faculty Based on Diversity, Equity And Inclusion Standards

The University of Iowa Office of the Provost trained its Faculty Search Committees to interview candidates through diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) lenses, documents obtained by Do No Harm through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and shared with the Daily Caller News Foundation revealed.

A training given to the Department of Pediatrics at UI’s medical school broke down different types of implicit biases and provided a list of practices committee members could follow to limit bias in hiring decisions, which included having a diverse committee that is trained and use “accountability strategies,” spending 15-20 minutes on each candidate and evaluating through standard criteria, the documents show. Committee members were also taught to “grade” prospective candidates after an interview rather than use a ranking system and to evaluate whether they made biased decisions if “women and people of color” were not advancing.

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Commentary: Nativity Sets Around the World Show Each Culture’s Take on the Christmas Story

For many Christians around the world, celebrating the Nativity, or the birth of Jesus Christ, is the most important part of the Christmas season.

Among the most common Christmas traditions are small sets of figures depicting Joseph, Mary and Jesus that are displayed in individual homes, and live reenactments of the manger scene in communities and churches. While Nativity sets focus on the holy family, they can also include an angel, the three wise men bringing gifts, shepherds or some barnyard animals.

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Washington State’s Dem Gov, Attorney General Propose Major Gun Control Measures

Democratic Washington Gov. Jay Inslee and Attorney General Bob Ferguson held a press conference Monday to announce three new measures for the upcoming 2023 legislative session that aims to curb gun violence in the state.

The measures would ban assault style weapons, hold manufacturers and retailers accountable for gun sales and implement a permit-to-purchase requirement for all gun buyers, according to a press conference. Inslee cited an increase in gun violence as the reason for the new legislation, and believes the laws, along with mental health assistance, will curb gun violence in Washington.

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