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Usama Dakdok with Pamela Geller and Robert Spencer.

Would you believe me if I told you I attended a bible conference where an Egyptian-born minister sold dozens of Korans to eagerly awaiting Christians? Believe it or not, that was the scene Monday night at a high school in Rochester, Minnesota.

Usama Dakdok is founder of The Straight Way of Grace Ministries, a Christian outreach to Muslims and herald of the threat posed by Sharia Law. He stood at the center of a recent controversy in Mansfield, Ohio, where the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) applied pressure to a school district where he was scheduled to speak. Superintendent Dan Freund caved to CAIR’s pressure, citing concerns for public safety. The Tea Party organization which organized the event pursued legal action against the district. The episode drew attention to Dakdok’s message and that of his critics.

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Imagine going to the grocery store and noting that all the price tags have been changed. Instead of showing how much each item costs in plain dollars and cents, the new tags show a percentage. Perplexed, you track down a manager to ask what gives.

The answer: That’s what percentage of your income you must pay for each item.

That would be an outrage, would it not? After all, why should your income affect what you pay for produce? Yet that is precisely how we charge taxpayers for services provided by government.

In Minnesota, residents rushing to postmark last minute tax forms will be subjected to a leaflet campaign organized by the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), aided by volunteers from the Inter Faculty Organization (IFO). These government unions will be chanting their tiresome old manta – soak the rich.

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Atlas Shrugged Part I hit movie theaters this weekend. While entertaining and provocative, there were times when the film seemed a bit preachy, and the characters a tad exaggerated. In particular, there’s a scene where steel magnate Hank Rearden is engaging a government bureaucrat from the State Science Institute. Rearden has developed a new metal, lighter and tougher than steel, which has tremendous applications. Rather than congratulate him, the G-man is there to deliver a reprimand for overproduction. Flabbergasted, Rearden asks a simple question. “Is Rearden Metel good or not?”

The question is irrelevent. If Rearden Metal is not good, it’s a physical danger to the public. If it is good, it’s a social danger.

This exchange struck me as unrealistically frank. That was until I came home and saw video of U.S. Representative Jesse Jackson Jr. making precisely the same argument about Apple’s iPad.

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There is a struggle between the classes, we are told. The haves are dominating the have-nots. If only the oppressive wealthy would let up and allow the poor to rise, there would be social justice and equality.

It has been an effective narrative. But it has ignored the tremendous social pressure placed upon “have-nots” by members of their own community.

Consider Charles Payne. You might recognize him from his regular guest appearances on the Fox Business Network. Payne is the CEO and Chief Analyst of Wall Street Strategies, sought after for his market opinions. But he didn’t start there.

In his keynote address at David Horowitz’s recent West Coast Retreat, he spoke of his rise from rags to riches, and the upward mobility available in America. The oldest of three brothers, Payne spent his early years as an army brat at Fort Lee in Virgina. He recalls being content with simple pleasures. His parents’ relationship was strained, however. Eventually, his mother moved the boys to Harlem where Payne caught his first glimpse of true poverty. Payne describes a loss of innocence in an environment where “wineos, junkies, and hobos” were common decor.

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Who says public radio is boring? We spiced it up Monday by injecting the radical concept of blind justice into a debate over the federal budget deal.

Called upon to bring the Tea Party perspective to a roundtable discussion on NPR affiliate KCRW’s To the Point, I joined host Warren Olney, Mother Jones’ David Corn, Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin and others. The panel was asked to consider who came out of the budget deal a winner.

The exchange began with politics-as-usual. Rubin and Corn agreed that House Speaker John Boehner had emerged as the political victor, though they parted on whether that was a good thing. I brought a different take.

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