AMAC Magazine: Volume 17, Issue 3 - May/June 2023

Saving a Generation at Risk - Providing for Low-Income Americans.

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De-Dollarization: A Serious reat . . . Page 34 A Commonsense Fix to Deliver Primary Care to Low- Income Americans . . . Page 12



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Dear AMAC Member, AMAC members serve as a constant reminder that there is a lot of good in this world. I am convinced that there is no task too great, no goal too big that we can’t accomplish together so long as we remember where we come from. As I write this letter, I am visiting with my son and his new bride. They are very much in love. Seeing their affection on full display is endearing, as I watch my daughter-in- law wipe the crumb from his beard, then peck him tenderly on the cheek. Love is kind. Beautiful. Pure. And I am again reminded that God is love. Love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth (1 Corinthians 13:4-8). Over the last two years, the war on truth has been raging. Our values of faith, our belief that God created man and woman and that each of us is called by name, have been under assault. Society’s degradation of the role of mothers and fathers, the dismissal of the importance of the nuclear family, and the war against common-sense governing have metastasized at an alarming rate. Our financial institutions, public schools, universities, corporations, military, and, sadly, government institutions are all under enormous pressure from an evil force that seeks to separate mankind from the Spirit of truth. This culture war has manifested in such a way that Americans are deeply divided. But here is the good news: God will not abandon you who turn your heart towards Him and ask Him to lead you in truth and teach you. The last two years have brought AMAC and its more than two million members count- less opportunities to counter evil with good. Good ideas  combined with action  results in good citizenry, and that results in good policy-making for the people, by the people. On matters of principle, AMAC members stand firmly like a rock. Some of our recent wins can be found on page 50. We encourage you to become engaged by visiting . Together, we demonstrate hope, faith, and our combined efforts to be doers of good and overseers of that which is noble and true. We hope you enjoy this edition of the AMAC Magazine. Please share your feedback with us by scanning the QR code below or by visiting us at . God bless you, and God bless America.


Chief Executive Officer, Association of Mature American Citizens



Publisher AMAC, Inc.

Managing Editor Pamela Smith Creative Director Emily Z.

Editor in Chief Rebecca Weber Associate Editor Alexa Astuto

Cover Artist Paul Partlow

Senior Contributing Writers

Alex Ayers Bob Carlstrom Robert B. Charles Stephen Fauer, CFA

Gerry Hafer Andrew Mangione Palmer Schoening D.J. Wilson

Advertising Representative Gia Ricottone

Contact AMAC 888-262-2006 |

PLEASE NOTE: This issue of the AMAC Magazine went to print on May 9, 2023.

VOLUME 17 ISSUE 2 CORRIGENDUM Please note our added correction in Volume 17 Issue 2. Page 44 - ID Resolve’s correct phone number is 844-603-0563. Page 45 - SimpliSafe can be contacted at Page 49 - Join AMAC or renew your existing subscription.

Rebecca Weber Chief Executive Officer & Editor in Chief

04 • AMAC Magazine









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MAY/JUN 2023

VOL. 17 ISS. 3




28 CENTERFOLD A GENERATION AT RISK How the Radical Left is Destroying American Youth


ESG: Putting Politics Over Pensions



A Commonsense Fix to Deliver Primary Care to Low- Income Americans



Explosive Federal Growth Must Stop


Ask Rusty


AMAC Benefit Highlight






AMAC Lifestyle

De-Dollarization: A Serious Threat . . . 34


A Return to Yesteryear


Member Benefits Directory


Just for Fun Solutions on page 32

Apollo II’s Buzz Aldrin Receives an Overdue USAF Honor . . . 40


AMAC in Action


Mature American Citizens, Inc. 5 Orville Drive, Suite 400, Bohemia, NY 11716 1-888-262-2006 |

06 • AMAC Magazine

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Puing Politics Over Pensions

I n recent years, there has been a significant push towards invest- ing with an “ESG” or environment, social, governance focus. The idea is that by investing in companies that prioritize sustainability, social justice, and ethical governance, investors can not only generate a financial return but also contribute to a better world. While the intentions behind ESG investing may appear to be noble, it is important to consider the harmful effects that this trend can have on people’s pensions and the left-wing political agenda that is driving it. One of the primary problems with ESG investing is that it often involves investing other people’s money in less profitable securities despite the higher risk of poor financial returns. Investors who prioritize ESG consid- erations may be willing to overlook potential financial risks or missed opportunities in order to support their social or political beliefs, most often without the investor even knowing it. This can be particularly harmful for

pension funds, which have a fiduciary duty to prioritize the financial inter- ests of their beneficiaries above all else. When pension funds prioritize ESG factors over financial returns, they are gambling with the retire- ment savings of millions of Americans. In addition to the financial risks, ESG investing can also have negative effects on the economy as a whole. By prioritizing investments in certain industries or companies that meet specific ESG criteria, investors may be inadvertently creating market distor- tions that can harm competition and innovation. For example, if financial institutions prioritize investments in companies that meet certain environ- mental standards, it could create a bubble in the market for these “green” investments, leading to overvaluation and potentially damaging conse- quences when the bubble bursts. It can also be difficult to define and measure the goals of ESG investing. While environmental factors like

carbon emissions or social factors like labor practices are relatively easy to assess, issues like governance are much more subjective. For example, the standards of “ethical governance” can vary widely depending on an investor’s political beliefs or cultural background. This subjectivity can lead to inconsistencies and biases in ESG investing, which can ultimately harm the financial performance of pension funds. Perhaps most concerning is the potential for ESG investing to become a form of “greenwashing.” This occurs when companies or funds make misleading or exaggerated claims about their environmental or social impact in order to attract investors who prioritize these factors. While there are certainly many companies that genuinely prioritize sustain- ability and ethical practices, there are also many that use ESG market- ing as a way to obscure or distract from other issues, such as poor financial performance or question- continued on page 10

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ESG investing often prioritizes a political agenda over the best financial returns for customers. The last thing seniors need is government pension offices or financial institutions squandering their hard-earned retirement savings.

able governance. For pension funds, investing in companies or funds that engage in greenwashing can lead to significant financial losses and reputational damage. In recent months, the detrimental effects of ESG investing have become increasingly clear. In November 2022, the Biden Labor Department issued a rule overturn- ing the Trump administration’s ban on ESG-based federal pension fund investing. In response, House Republicans introduced, H.J.Res. 30, a commonsense joint resolution to protect federal workers from this unproven and highly-risky form of investing. In a rare bipartisan victory, both the Republican controlled House and the Democratic controlled Senate passed the legislation, but President Biden vetoed the measure even though he faced opposition within his own party. “Allowing managers of private employee retirement plans to consider woke ESG factors not only undermines retirees’ financial inter- ests, it puts these managers in conflict with their fiduciary duties under the

Employment Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA),” the Club for Growth said in a statement. “The Biden Administration rule is more woke bureaucratic overreach that imperils retirees’ hard-earned savings accounts and aims to corrode what should be a freely operating market with woke requirements that shift more control to government.” While Congress has finally stepped into this debate, state governors and legislatures have been active against harmful ESG investments using state pensions. Fourteen states — Arizona, Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Minnesota, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Caro- lina, Texas, Utah, and West Virginia — have adopted legislation limiting state business with ESG investment funds or financial services. Some states, like Texas, have gone further in limiting state pension investing with financial services companies that boycott coal, oil and gas, other energy companies, or other critical industries impacting the environment like agriculture, lumber, or mining. So what can people do to protect their retirement accounts or pension funds

from the potential pitfalls of ESG investing? They can make sure their pension or retirement fund manag- ers prioritize financial performance above all else. People have every right to know that their pensions or retire- ment accounts are being invested responsibly, and should be notified if their institution chooses to prioritize ESG investing over more traditional, proven investments. Individuals have every right to invest in ESG and risk potential losses. But government pension offices and retirement fund managers should not force their clients to participate in ESG invest- ing, which has little track record of good returns. ESG investing often prioritizes a political agenda over the best finan- cial returns for customers. The last thing seniors need is government pension offices or financial institu- tions squandering their hard-earned retirement savings. Palmer Schoening Palmer Schoening is part of AMAC Action’s advocacy team in Washington, DC. He is a graduate of Hillsdale College and George Mason University’s School of Public Policy.

This article has been prepared for informational purposes only and should not be relied on for financial, tax, legal, or accounting advice. You should always consult your tax, legal, and accounting advisors before engaging in any financial transaction.

10 • AMAC Magazine

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Primary Care A Commonsense Fix to Deliver to Low-Income Americans

I n a sharply divided Congress, Republicans and Democrats have an opportunity to cross party lines and address a tragic problem that has persisted for decades: Millions of people still cannot access a primary care physician. Nationwide, roughly 92 million depend on Medicaid and the Chil- dren’s Health Insurance Program, both of which lack sufficient access to primary care. Because many of these people cannot access a family doctor, they often forgo routine care and resort to the emergency room when an illness escalates. Forty-four percent of Medicaid patients, for example, visit the emergency room

number of primary care physicians had stopped seeing Medicaid patients. Then, he witnessed something truly devastating. A young mother arrived whose baby had died from whoop- ing cough, a respiratory infection that could have been treated if the mother had access to a pediatrician. Dan never forgot that young mother and child, nor have we. Her story inspired the introduction of the Helping Everyone Access Long Term Healthcare, or HEALTH, Act, which was just reintroduced last week. To increase access to primary care physicians, the HEALTH Act provides

each year — almost four times the rate of patients with private insurance. Expanding access to primary care is deeply important to both of us. Our effort to address this problem was inspired by a leader we both knew and loved: Dan Weber, the founder of the Association of Mature Amer- ican Citizens, whose passion for this issue stemmed from an experience that broke his heart. When he took his child to the emergency room during a summer trip to upstate New York, he was shocked by the number of people waiting in the rural hospi- tal. He started talking to people only to discover that many were there because they had no other choice. A

12 • AMAC Magazine

duced in 2018, the HEALTH Act has previously gained the support of Democratic and Republican lawmakers, but it has yet to make it to the floor for a vote. This year, Congress has an opportunity to pass this bipartisan fix to give millions better access to long-term care. Research has shown that those who have access to primary care treatment are less likely to suffer from severe illnesses or premature death. Conversely, those who have a relationship with their doctor benefit from better health outcomes. The HEALTH Act is not a mandate. Physicians can continue receiving Medicaid and CHIP reimbursements if they so choose. It simply provides an additional option to make it easier for physicians to treat low- income patients. In addition to delivering better care to low-income people, the HEALTH Act provides significant relief to doctors, hospitals, and taxpayers. A recent study found that doctors lose an estimated 17.4 percent of Medicaid claims to billing issues. Under the HEALTH Act, doctors would save thousands of hours in burdensome paperwork and be free to focus on caring for patients. For primary care visits alone, elim- inating layers of administrative costs would save taxpayers an esti- mated $2.8 billion annually. Even more astounding: If just 7 million of the roughly 20 million emergency room visits by Medicaid recipients became nonhospital visits, it would

save an estimated $6.5 billion in taxpayer dollars. Fortunately, the momentum for the HEALTH Act continues to grow. In addition to the Association of Mature American Citizens’s 2.2 million members, Free2Care’s coalition of more than 70,000 physicians and 8 million members also support the bill. We are proud that Rep. Scott DesJar- lais (R-TN), a physician himself, is an original co-sponsor of the bill because he has seen firsthand how this legislation will help doctors treat Medicaid patients. We have had a number of constructive conversa- tions with members on both sides of the aisle and are hopeful that the bill will garner strong bipartisan support. The HEALTH Act certainly doesn’t solve every problem facing our healthcare system, but this common- sense fix is an important step to providing low-income people with more options for primary care treat- ment. We encourage every member of Congress to join our effort to pass the HEALTH Act and improve access to care for millions of vulnerable people. Their lives could very well depend on it.

doctors with an option to receive a tax deduction for pro-bono medical care. Under the current system, the administrative costs of applying for Medicaid or CHIP reimbursements are so high that many doctors opt out of the program. At the same time, doctors want to help those in need. Roughly 40 percent of physicians provide pro-bono medical care, even though under current law, they cannot deduct services provided at private practices, only services offered through a charity. The HEALTH Act would change that, giving doctors more flexibility to care for patients in need. First intro-

Rep. Daniel Webster & Rebecca Weber

Daniel Webster is a US representative for Flor- ida. Rebecca Weber is the president and CEO of the Association of Mature American Citizens, which represents 2.2 million seniors, and is the daughter of the late Dan Weber, who founded the organization.

This op-ed originally appeared in the Washington Examiner on May 2, 2023.

Volume 17 Issue 3 • 13


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O ur Veterans and active- duty military personnel deserve to be recognized and supported for their bravery, sacrifice, and commitment. Those same brave Veterans all too often lose their life to suicide. PureTalk has partnered with America’s Warrior Partnership, an organization dedicated to helping Veteran’s in crisis and ending Veteran suicide. Join PureTalk in the fight to save Veteran’s lives by rounding up your purchase and making a donation to this valuable organization. PureTalk also shows their appreciation to our military by offering a 15% discount to Veterans and all active duty military personnel. PureTalk’s values are your values. AMAC has proudly endorsed PureTalk for many years, and each month thousands of our members, just like you, make the switch to the American cellular service. An American company for true patriots. Just like you, PureTalk has been putting America first for years. Its chairman

is a U.S. Veteran, so they know how important it is to support our troops, and make sure they offer a military discount. Money isn’t all you save with PureTalk, though. When you switch to PureTalk, you save American jobs. 100% of its customer service is right here in the United States. And as PureTalk grows, its ability to employ more hard-working Americans grows, too. How much can I save with PureTalk? The average family of four saves $75 a month for a total of $900 a year by switching to PureTalk. Monthly plans for AMAC members start at just $10 per month with talk, text, and blazing fast data. So how can PureTalk charge so much less? For starters, they don’t donate millions of dollars to Democrat candidates for office. PureTalk also doesn’t operate brick-and-mortar storefronts with high overhead costs the way Verizon does. Not only that, unlike Verizon, PureTalk doesn’t bundle a bunch of add-on products or services into its

phone plans as Verizon does. Verizon insists they’re “free,” but they’re really extra costs buried in your monthly fees. PureTalk is happy to pass these savings along to their customers, whereas Verizon just lines their own pockets. PureTalk has 5G and covers 99% of Americans. PureTalk operates on the largest 5G and GSM networks, covering 99% of Americans. With PureTalk you’re getting the same exact network for much less cost. Check out their coverage map, and you’ll see just how extensive the coverage is. 100% U.S. customer service. We’ve all experienced the frustration of calling customer service and struggling to speak with someone halfway across the world. PureTalk customer support is 100% US- based. PureTalk is committed to keeping its customer support 100% in the USA.

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Will Social Security Be ere for Me?

Dear Rusty, I am 56 and hope to hold out to get maximum Social Security at age 70. However, with all of the talk of Social Security funds being depleted, is it wise to continue with this mindset? Will there even BE Social Security benefits for folks in my age bracket? Should I think about starting Social Security benefits as soon as I am eligible? I am employed; however, I don’t have a large amount of savings. I contribute to my company’s 401(k) and receive the match, and I own my own home (almost paid off) with an esti- mated $250,000.00 in equity, but I won’t be able to stay in the home long term. Any insight you can provide would be greatly appreciated. Signed, Weary Worker

your age 62 benefit would be cut by about 30 percent, while your benefit at age 70 would be about 76 percent more than your age 62 benefit. So even if the worst-case scenario happens (which almost certainly won’t), an across the board cut of 20+ percent to your age 70 benefit would yield a higher monthly payment than that same cut to your age 62 benefit amount. So, I suggest you stick with your current strategy to continue working and wait as long as practically possible to claim your bene- fits (up to age 70). As an aside, AMAC (Association of Mature American Citi- zens) has, for years, been proposing (to Congress) its “Social Security Guarantee Plus” which would restore Social Security to solvency for generations to come and would not require an increased payroll tax rate. Congressional reaction has been generally positive, making us hopeful for a reasonable solution to the problem. Signed, Russell Gloor This article presents the opinions of the AMAC Foundation Staff and is intended for informa- tion purposes only. It does not represent legal or financial guidance.

Dear Weary Worker, I don’t suggest changing your strategy due to fears of Social Security not being there  it will be. Although the program is facing some future financial issues, the very worst that could happen is that everyone’s benefits might be cut by 20+ percent if Congress fails to act to restore the program to solvency before the Trust Funds are depleted in the early to mid-2030s. In my opinion, Congress is not likely to fail to act because to do so would be political suicide. The fact is, they already know how to fix Social Security’s financial issues; they just lack the bipar- tisan spirit and political fortitude to do so until they extract every possible ounce of political capital from the issue. So, it’s largely a matter of how long Congress will wait to reform the program. Right now, the Social Security Trust Funds hold about $2.8 trillion in reserves to ensure full benefits will be paid. But Social Security now pays out more in benefits than it receives in revenue, so the extra money needed to pay full bene- fits is taken from those reserves. What is

needed is reform which addresses the reality that people today are living much longer and collecting benefits for much longer than the program is structured to accommodate. Many possible solutions are on the table in Congress, including raising the full retirement age a bit to deal with the reality of people living much longer and increasing the program’s tax revenue by withholding a bit more from American workers. The reform will likely include some variation of both, as well as other “tweaks” which further guaran- tee the program will be there for future generations. As for the thought of claiming your bene- fits as soon as you are eligible (age 62), be aware that Social Security has an “earnings test” which applies to anyone who collects benefits before reach- ing full retirement age (FRA). If you are working full time when you first become age-eligible, you likely wouldn’t be able to collect benefits because your bene- fit amount would be insufficient to pay the penalty for exceeding the earnings limit ($1 for every $2 over the limit) within one year. And, as you may already know,

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16 • AMAC Magazine

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Explosive Federal Growth Must Stop

T he growth of the federal government since the middle of the last century has been stag- gering. As shocking is the accelerat- ing pace of power concentration  as if individual liberties and sovereignty were not affected when the govern- ment grows. Obviously, they are. In a zero-sum game, more government means less liberty. Before looking at the data, consider our republic’s founding ideas, what defines us  individual liberty, indi- vidual sovereignty, and equal oppor- tunity assured to all citizens. Our pathbreaking Constitution guides self-governance, while our Bill of Rights articulates specific, inviolable individual guarantees. Why? The Magna Carta (or “Great Charter”) of 1215, amplified by people such as Jean-Jacques Rousseau, John Locke, Thomas Paine, and our Founding Fathers, put words to a core notion: the government must be limited to

protect the rights of the individual. That is it, in a nutshell. Put differently, if the law is to mean anything, if governments are to be held accountable to the people, if people are to be viewed as owning their own decisions, property, bodies, and destiny, that all comes back to keeping government limited, not letting it grow to the point where it crushes the individual. So, having set that baseline, and recognizing that the size of govern- ment bounces around a bit based on population growth, geographic reach, wars, and crises, the repub- lic’s future still depends on keeping government limited. Have we done that? Have we kept our eyes on the ball, things in proportion, government limited? No. We have failed miserably at keeping govern- ment limited  and now need to turn into the wind and get it done.

Said James Madison in June of 1789: “The powers delegated by the proposed Constitution to the federal government are few and defined.” Said Jefferson, if the Republic is to survive, the central government must be “rigorously frugal and simple.” Have we done that? Laugh or cry, but no. Reads the Tenth Amendment: “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohib- ited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the People.” Have we kept faith with that core understanding, that assurance, that firmly held conviction? What do you think? So, let’s look at the data, the numbers that track vertical federal growth, starting back mid-last-century. We could look at a thousand points, but here are a few. continued on page 20

18 • AMAC Magazine


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e True Size of Government 1984-2020






In 1940, total federal employment was under 700,000, federal contrac- tors minimal. By 2014, we topped two million. Today, 2.85 million employees exist, with 5000 contractors, many paying tens of thousands of employ- ees. Within any given department, on any given day, the numbers keep rising, uncapped. Sliced differently, as federal agencies and contractors multiply, oversight and accountability recede, becom- ing harder and harder. Thus, with roughly 500 federal agencies, we watch contracts proliferate — often for things no one wants or can afford, yet elites in government, tied to contractors, buy anyway.

Thus, the Government Accountabil- ity Office (GAO) reports that in 2020, even before the major COVID spend- ing wave, the federal government spent $665 billion on contracts, a $70 billion jump over 2019. Lots of contracting tricks, meant to solve problems, only add to them. For example, contracts falling outside federal acquisition regulation — which slows the process — jumped from $1.6 billion in 2016 to $16.5 billion in 2020. That is a tenfold increase in four years, or rampant acceleration. Other data is sobering. Over the past hundred years, federal debt — on which we pay interest, often to foreign nationals — has gone from $408 billion to $31 trillion. Since

Ronald Reagan’s tenure, it has accel- erated from $1 trillion to the current record, with no end in sight. So, our current federal debt is 75 times what it was a century ago, more than 30 times what it was 35 years ago, with interest going vertical. Putting aside vulnerability to foreign countries buying our debt, like China — monetary policy, that is the Federal Reserve, which regulates interest, cannot keep up. As overspending grows — compounded by senseless cuts in energy production — inflation naturally takes off. The reason is obvious. If the govern- ment spends more than it takes in, it must print money not backed by real wealth, so the value of each dollar

continued on page 22

20 • AMAC Magazine


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US National Debt Surpasses $31 Trillion Gross federal public debt in the United States (in trillion US dollars)

gender, environmental, social, or so-called equity “justice.” Returning to basics, America — the idea and nation — was not founded on “group equity,” but individual liberty. Just glance again at the Bill of Rights, the Federalist Papers, and why we fought a revolution. America was never about Marx- ism, fomenting divisions, having an all-powerful government tell us what to do, or anything other than a basic process — for assuring, through limited government, conditions under which all can take stock of their own God-given talents, embracing “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” The key again is very simple — if the government is limited, the individual has room to thrive. Net-net, we are at an inflection point. While the data tells a compelling story, along with horrifying accounts of arrogant, misguided, often indif- ferent and immoral leaders dictating how we walk, talk, live, think, raise our children, and be “American,” the bigger point is simpler: the govern- ment must be limited. The good news is this understanding can empower correction; the bad news is time is running out. In a zero-sum game, more government means less liberty. Robert B. Charles Robert B. Charles served in the Reagan and Bush 41 White Houses, as Assistant Secretary of State under Colin Powell, and counsel to the US House National Security subcommittee for five years; a former litigator, he taught law at Harvard University’s Extension School, recently authored “Eagles and Evergreens” (2018), and consults in Washington, DC.


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falls; what you can buy with a dollar declines. Last year, the government pulled in $4.9 trillion but spent $7 trillion. Inflation is the result, trig- gering Federal Reserve interest rate hikes, raising the interest we must pay on runaway federal debt. See the vicious cycle? Other signs of federal growth and overreach are everywhere, from overregulation to forced cultural transformation. Slowly at first, but now with accelerating speed, we are losing control over the government’s growth — in dollars and power — forgetting that limited government assures freedom. On the regulation front, rules pushed out by the federal bureaucracy have

not only exploded in number, but in size, complexity, and intrusiveness, so now our kitchen stoves, refrigerators, and lawnmowers; how we manage streams, ponds, and puddles; what, where, and when we can eat, drink, sell, buy, and entertain; and recently, even whether and how we go to church, celebrate with family, and live life are regulated. Without citing chapter and verse, constitutional challenges — and thankfully a few were wins — confirm reality. Americans have begun to lose control over their federal govern- ment, a problem compounded by the rise of bureaucracy, media and social media power, and the influx of ideological contaminants, including Marxist teachings disguised as racial,

22 • AMAC Magazine

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