POLITICAL: McCutcheon decision was actually pretty mundane

Thursday, April 10, 2014

http://us7.campaign-archive1.com/?u=a62f6d3a19ffbd4c6852a4c85&id=0eaf58a7dc&e=da6c31a530

We proudly filed a brief in the Supreme Court’s McCutcheon case. The Court ruled in favor of McCutcheon on Wednesday, a victory you helped secure.

In fact, it’s the latest in a string of victories in the area of campaign finance.

You’re going to hear a lot of misreporting and bad analysis about McCutcheon. I’ve already seen it. You’d think raping babies was just legalized, given all the hysterical shrieking.

Like Citizens United before it, the shrieking needs to be misleading to work. The exaggeration and outright lying has already begun. The ever-shrill Common Cause alleged that, The Supreme Court just…

gaveled in a new era of political corruption
made it easier to bribe politicians

The truth is, the McCutcheon decision was actually pretty mundane.

Before McCutcheon, an individual could donate only…

$2,600 to individual candidates
$32,400 to national party committees
$5,000 to political action committees

After McCutcheon, that same person could donate only…

$2,600 to individual candidates
$32,400 to national party committees
$5,000 to political action committees

Oh the humanity!

What ACTUALLY changed is the total amount that an individual could contribute in a political season. Before McCutcheon those caps were…

$48,600 to all candidates
$74,600 to all PACs and parties
For a total of $123,200

After McCutcheon, there is no cap.

The hysterical bawling about this decision is that now the rich will have more influence over elections… As if they didn’t have this influence already, under the silly, incumbent-protecting laws we’ve had since 1972!

But this Common Cause led bluster doesn’t make sense…

The individual contribution limits remain the same! Does anyone honestly believe that a mere $2,600 contribution is going to swing a federal election?

If not, then how much more “king-making” power has been granted to wealthy individual donors, now capable of giving to 20 or more candidates, when before this week, they could only give to 18 1/2?

Some will argue that there’s too much money in politics, and that these additional donations make that problem worse. To them, I recommend the article below.

As for the McCutcheon decision, this was a 5-4 victory. It was another step forward in a fight we’ve been waging for 14 years!

Justice Clarence Thomas wrote a concurring opinion with the majority. For years, he’s been the leading voice in defense of the First Amendment. He argued that the Buckley v Valeo distinction, between expenditures and contributions, should be overturned. And that’s what we argued in the brief you funded.

But since our loss in McConnell decision (2003), we’ve had victories in Wisconsin Right to Life I and II, Citizens United, Van Hollen, and now McCutcheon that are unraveling these establishment protection schemes. And that’s why we consider this a victory.

We will, with your support, remain in the fight.

You can read the brief we filed here: http://www.downsizedc.org/blog-content/mccutcheon-ddcf-amicus-brief.pdf

You can read the decision here: http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/13pdf/12-536_e1pf.pdf (corrected)

And you can support our continued efforts in the Courts here:
https://secure.downsizedcfoundation.org/contribute/

Jim Babka
President
Downsize DC Foundation

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POLITICAL: Drone killings are US military and president’s prerogative?

Monday, April 7, 2014

http://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2014/04/suit-challenging-drone-strikes-that-killed-americans-16-year-old-boy-is-tossed/#p3

Suit challenging drone strikes that killed Americans, 16-year-old boy is tossed [Updated]
Judge says drone killings are US military and president’s prerogative.
by David Kravets – Apr 4 2014, 7:00pm EDT

*** begin quote ***

“The court’s view that it cannot provide a remedy for extrajudicial killings when the government claims to be at war, even far from any battlefield, is profoundly at odds with the Constitution,” Hina Shamsi, director of the ACLU’s National Security Project, said in an e-mail. “It is precisely when individual liberties are under such grave threat that we need the courts to act to defend them. In holding that violations of U.S. citizens’ right to life cannot be heard in a federal courtroom, the court abdicated its constitutional role.”

*** end quote ***

This is tough one.

Basically the Gooferment can do what it wants.

But then couldn’t it always?

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POLITICAL: The McCutcheon case

Friday, April 4, 2014

The Supreme Court has decided the McCutcheon case. If you haven’t heard yet, it’s a disaster.

Few were surprised with the result. The Court has held that aggregate limits on contributions — the total amount you can give to all candidates, not the amount you can give to any one candidate — are unconstitutional. The inevitable result of this decision will be to reduce the number of relevant funders of campaigns. We’re on our way from Lesterland to Sheldon City — from a democracy where about 150,000 Americans are the relevant funders of campaigns (the same as are named “Lester”) to a world where about 40,000 Americans are the relevant funders of campaigns (the same as are named “Sheldon”).

I’ve written a short piece about the mistake in the Supreme Court’s decision. But as I’ve long insisted, the real problem in American democracy is not the Court. Or at least, not only the Court. The real corruption is the way we fund elections. This decision makes our fight against that corruption even more urgent.

Now is the time to add your name and support the Government by the People Act.

This Act is an opportunity to take our elections back from the handful of funders whose grip on our democracy tightens by the day. And only by adding your name to the call for reform will we be able to compete with the Lesters or Sheldons of this country.

They say the darkest hour is just before the dawn. If so, then the dawn is not that far away.

Act now to fight back and voice your support for the Government by the People Act.

-Lessig and the entire Rootstrikers/Demand Progress Team

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This is an understandable decision. I’m not so sure it’s good or bad. 

Secession!

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POLITICAL: The FDA is a roadblock

Friday, March 21, 2014

http://www.weeklystandard.com/articles/can-boy-s-life-be-saved_784914.html#

Can This Boy’s Life Be Saved?
The answer may depend on President Obama.
MAR 24, 2014, VOL. 19, NO. 27 • BY MICHAEL ASTRUE

*** begin quote ***

The January 31, 2014, Boston Globe front page included two life-and-death stories. One announced that the U.S. Department of Justice would seek the death penalty for Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, who is facing trial for the Boston Marathon bombing. Animated debate about the proper penalty for Tsarnaev continues around Boston.

The other story snapped my head back because it involved a death penalty for Jack Fowler, a 6-year-old boy dying of the more virulent form of Hunter syndrome (also known as MPS-II). The drug he needs to survive, which he is being denied, is one that I had first proposed in 2003 when I was CEO of a small biotech company focused on rare diseases. In 2005, after two years of developing this drug, Shire Pharmaceuticals bought my company over my objections, and I lost touch with the program. Jack’s situation is particularly compelling, but hardly unique.

*** end quote ***

As everyone knows the Gooferment is immoral, ineffective, and inefficient. 

What’s surprising about this is that BHO44 hasn’t jumped on it.

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POLITICAL: The problems with its ignition switches from 2001!?!

Monday, March 17, 2014

http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304914904579435171004763740?mod=djemalertNEWS

BUSINESS
GM Now Says It Detected Ignition Switch Problem Back in 2001
GM Says Problem Occurred In Pre-Production of Saturn Ion

By JEFF BENNETT CONNECT
Updated March 12, 2014 8:11 p.m. ET
General Motors Co. now says it may have known about problems with its ignition switches dating back to 2001 when it was developing but had not yet launched the Saturn Ion.

In documents disclosed to federal regulators, GM said it had found some sort of issue contributing to the ignition’s inner workings which have now been linked to a recall of 1.6 million vehicles and 12 deaths.

The auto maker said an ignition switch design…

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So how much is this going to cost the Sheeple (aka taxpayers)?

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POLITICAL: “New” Federal “Rights”

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Same-Sex Spouses to Get New Federal Rights

The Obama administration will give same-sex couples who are legally married the same status as other married couples in federal legal matters—including bankruptcy proceedings, prisoner visitation and death benefits for slain police officers, Attorney General Eric Holder said.

The Justice Department, Mr. Holder said, would issue new instructions to its employees on Monday to extend the same protections historically afforded to heterosexual married couples. He made the announcement at a speech in New York to the Human Rights Campaign, a major gay-rights advocacy group.

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Excuse me, but “rights” don’t come from the Gooferment!

“Rights”, which the Gooferment grants, can be taken away just as quickly!

Argh!

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POLITICAL: Gooferment rules apply universally, automatically, and unavoidably

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

http://www.strike-the-root.com/rules

Column by Paul Hein.

Exclusive to STR

*** begin quote ***

The fact that certain rules, of, say, a sport, or a social organization, no longer apply to you does not mean that you are thereby exempted from ordinary ethical and moral behavior. It only means that you have separated yourself from the organization whose rules you formerly voluntarily accepted.

Ah, all except one organization: government. Our Rulers assume that you are on their team, and subject to their rules, which they have drawn up, and frequently modify. The Cardinals, or Ford, or the Knights of Columbus can draw up whatever rules they want, and change them as they see fit, but so what? If you don’t belong to those organizations, it’s moot, as far as you’re concerned.

But the rules laid down by the Rulers, which they call “law,” are thought, as least by the Rulers, to apply universally, automatically, and unavoidably. And any attempts at withdrawal will be dealt with severely: consider the Confederacy.

*** end quote ***

Yup, the King’s subjects: have to pay for “services” they don’t want, can’t use, and can’t afford!

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POLITICAL: SOTU is a crock

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

http://www.ijreview.com/2014/01/111537-seven-big-lies-obama-told-in-his-state-of-the-union-speech/

Seven Big Lies Obama Told In His State Of The Union Speech

*** begin quote ***

2) Raising minimum wage will help families

Obama sayeth, “[We] have a bill to fix that by lifting the minimum wage to $10.10… This will help families. It will give businesses customers with more money to spend… So join the rest of the country. Say yes. Give America a raise.”

It’s not hard to believe that Obama, who has never run a business, doesn’t understand that artificially forcing a business to pay someone more than their wage is worth will put more people out of the labor market. Making job creation more expensive leads to fewer jobs.

*** end quote ***

I’m sorry that I believe that the “minimum wage” is essentially a tax on the poor and “middle class”. As, if  there was a difference.

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POLITICAL: Kaine says “Our goal of making sure that instability in Afghanistan”

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Mr. Ferdinand Reinke
1641 International Dr Unit 414
McLean, VA 22102-4831

Dear Mr. Reinke:

Thank you for contacting me about our troops serving in Afghanistan. I appreciate hearing from you.

Over a decade ago, the United States overthrew the Afghan Taliban that was providing a safe haven for Al Qaeda – the terrorist organization that attacked our country on September 11, 2001. Since then, we have decimated core Al Qaeda and its affiliates, and paved the way for the Afghans to establish democratic institutions, take control of their own security, and join us as partners in the fight against extremism. With our main mission in Afghanistan – destroying Al Qaeda – nearly complete, I support bringing our troops home as quickly as we can, consistent with our goal of making sure that instability in Afghanistan poses no danger to American interests.

Throughout my years in public service, I have witnessed first-hand the extraordinary challenges faced by our troops and their families. In 2006, I had the pleasure of visiting members of the Virginia National Guard stationed in Afghanistan who faced tremendous threats to their personal safety as they fought for their country. Throughout our Commonwealth, I have talked with military families who have endured the pain of lengthy separation from their loved ones when they are deployed overseas.

When I was Governor of Virginia, I signed the Military Relief Act to assist military families that encountered urgent needs for basic living expenses. In addition, I signed the 5-Star Statement of Support to confirm that we would assist state employees who served in the Virginia National Guard and Reserve.

As a member of the Senate Armed Services and Foreign Relations Committees, I will continue to be a strong advocate for our troops who serve abroad – before they deploy and after they return home. We must support their well-being to show our gratitude for the incredible sacrifices they endure for us all.

Thank you once again for contacting me.

Sincerely,

Signature

Tim Kaine

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For the record, all i said was: “bring them home NOW!”!!!!!

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POLITICAL: A very upsetting example

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

http://toprightnews.com/?p=761

Illegal Alien With 7 Kids Got Food Stamps, Housing & Social Security – for 20 Years (Video)
by Top Right News on January 18, 2014 in amnesty, Border Security, Economy, GOP, Immigration, Obama, Politics

*** begin quote ***

Illegal alien and mother of seven, Florida resident Marita Nelson, receives $240 in food stamps, monthly medications, $700 in Social Security and a housing allowance.

And she has been receiving government assistance for over 20 YEARS – ever since she illegally entered the U.S. by swimming the Rio Grande.

*** end quote ***

If this is true, then The Sheeple are fools.

This is unacceptable!

Why should the producers subsidize the moochers?

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POLITICAL: Treatment of the poor

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

 

 
 
Why Are the Poor and Minorities Less Likely to Vote?
 
Even when America’s underclass isn’t formally stripped of its ballot, a slew of barriers come between them and full representation and participation.
 
Clip Better   http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2014/01…

Interesting that the Gooferment “poverty programs” don’t distinguish the “takers and moochers” from the “truly needy”.

From my experiences with Homefront NJ, the “charity” people and Clients both felt that the State Gooferment politicians and bureaucrats were more interested in keeping the poor dependent.

Of course, Homefront NJ, (populated by a bunch of smart business women and some with Wall Street backgrounds), didm ’t want to keep help the same people. Put them on the “ladder of success”, show folks how to climb, and make sure they get going. Then move on to the next person to help.

The State, and to a lesser extent the Federal Gooferment, didn’t make that easier.

Argh!

That’s why the Gooferment should try and do “welfare”, “charity”, or “help”!

Conflict of interests.

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POLITICAL: Global financiers create political cover

Sunday, January 19, 2014

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2013-12-13/war-china-inevitable

Is War With China Inevitable?
Submitted by Tyler Durden on 12/13/2013 22:10 -0500

*** begin quote ***

Global financiers created the circumstances that have led to America’s probable economic demise, but they don’t want to be blamed for it. War provides the perfect cover for monetary collapse, and a war with China might become the cover to end all covers. The resulting fiscal damage and the terror Americans would face could be overwhelming. Activists who question the legitimacy of the U.S. government and its actions, once considered champions of free speech, could easily be labeled “treasonous” during wartime by authorities and the frightened masses. (If the government is willing to use the Internal Revenue Service against us today, just think about who it will send after us during the chaos of a losing war tomorrow.) A lockdown of civil liberties could be instituted behind the fog of this national panic.

*** end quote ***

You have to look at the financial fraud being pulled by the Fed.

The Chinese are in control of our fate. (Not that they don’t have their own problems.)

So, when these very ugly chickens come home to roost, how will the elite avoid the “french revolution’s guillotine”? 

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POLITICAL: Bernard von NotHaus, “Rosa Parks” opposing the FED

Friday, January 17, 2014

LIBERTY DOLLAR NEWS:
December 2013 Vol. 15 No. 12

Tortured Without Being Sentenced: Bernard von NotHaus

*** begin quote ***

Judy Shelton, a noted economist who knows which way is up, author of The Coming Soviet Crash (1989) and Money Meltdown (1994) that influenced my work on the Liberty Dollar, a longtime veteran of Washington, a friend who was an approved witness for my trial by not called to testify by my Dumb and Dumber attorneys and the first person to brand me as the “Rosa Parks of monetary policy,” has published a quick 68 page booklet, Fixing the Dollar Now.

*** end quote ***

This fellow, Bernard von NotHaus, made a mistake. Poking the Banking Cartel, called the “Federal Reserve System” (i.e., the OPEC of money). Note that despite the name, it’s not “Federal”. It’s a private cartel!

And, as Bernard von NotHaus pointed out, the “dollar”, (technically The Federal Reserve Note), is NOT a store of value.

This is a direct assault on the wealth of the People. It hurts the “non-rich”, who have the capability of holding non-dollar denominated assets. The poor and those on fixed income, who have to spend most or all of their income, are paying the hidden taxes. And when they get a few dollars ahead, their savings are marginalized by low rates of return and the Fed’s printing press.

You have to hold gold, silver, nickels, or any asset that is not in “dollars”. Jury is still out on bit coins in my mind.

YMMV!

I call this political because Bernard von NotHaus is a political prisoner in limbo!

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POLITICAL: Tim Kaine opposes repealing the ACA

Thursday, January 16, 2014
January 15, 2014

Mr. Ferdinand Reinke 
1641 International Dr Unit 414
McLean, VA  22102-4831

Dear Mr. Reinke:

Thank you for contacting me about the health care reform law, known as the Affordable Care Act.  I appreciate your taking the time to share your views.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) was signed into law by President Obama on March 23, 2010.  I support the ACA as an important first step towards putting patients in charge of their own health care decisions and slowing the growth of health care costs.  Health care cost increases have bankrupted hundreds of thousands of people and imposed real financial burdens on businesses.  I find it intolerable that the wealthiest nation in the world spends more on health care than any other nation yet we receive second-rate results for our money.  ACA curbs the worst insurance company practices and increases access to affordable and quality health care to the tens of millions of Americans who are uninsured. 

Because of the ACA, millions of children can remain on their family’s health insurance until they are 26 years old and insurance companies are prohibited from denying care to those with pre-existing conditions.  Seniors can receive free preventive care that will help reduce the cost and incidence of chronic diseases and purchase more affordable prescription drugs.  Forty-seven million American women now have access to preventive health services.  Small businesses are eligible for tax credits to help defray the costs of purchasing insurance for their employees.  And insurance companies are required to rebate excess premiums to their customers.  These measures represent just some of the positive effects of ACA. 

I oppose repealing the ACA and the benefits described above.  I acknowledge we have more to do to lower health care costs while improving the quality of care.  Other nations have shown it can be done through promoting preventive care, effectively using technology, paying our health care providers by patient outcomes, and finding ways to reduce defensive medicine and lower malpractice premiums without taking rights away from patients. 

Controlling the cost of health care is essential to reducing the deficit and our national debt.  I am ready to work with anyone interested in finding smart savings in health care, especially in Medicare.  Inaction is not a solution to our problems.  There are many good ideas for improving our health care system and through common ground and compromise, we can find credible solutions.

I will continue to work on improving ACA and reducing the cost of health care for Americans.  For more information about ACA, including how it will affect you, details about every feature of the law, and to read the text of the law itself, please visit www.healthcare.gov.

Thank you again for contacting me. 

Sincerely,

Signature

Tim Kaine

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Not very responsive to my “stop it” request.

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January 15, 2014

Mr. Ferdinand Reinke 
1641 International Dr Unit 414
McLean, VA  22102-4831

Dear Mr. Reinke:

Thank you for contacting me about the health care reform law, known as the Affordable Care Act.  I appreciate your taking the time to share your views.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) was signed into law by President Obama on March 23, 2010.  I support the ACA as an important first step towards putting patients in charge of their own health care decisions and slowing the growth of health care costs.  Health care cost increases have bankrupted hundreds of thousands of people and imposed real financial burdens on businesses.  I find it intolerable that the wealthiest nation in the world spends more on health care than any other nation yet we receive second-rate results for our money.  ACA curbs the worst insurance company practices and increases access to affordable and quality health care to the tens of millions of Americans who are uninsured. 

Because of the ACA, millions of children can remain on their family’s health insurance until they are 26 years old and insurance companies are prohibited from denying care to those with pre-existing conditions.  Seniors can receive free preventive care that will help reduce the cost and incidence of chronic diseases and purchase more affordable prescription drugs.  Forty-seven million American women now have access to preventive health services.  Small businesses are eligible for tax credits to help defray the costs of purchasing insurance for their employees.  And insurance companies are required to rebate excess premiums to their customers.  These measures represent just some of the positive effects of ACA. 

I oppose repealing the ACA and the benefits described above.  I acknowledge we have more to do to lower health care costs while improving the quality of care.  Other nations have shown it can be done through promoting preventive care, effectively using technology, paying our health care providers by patient outcomes, and finding ways to reduce defensive medicine and lower malpractice premiums without taking rights away from patients. 

Controlling the cost of health care is essential to reducing the deficit and our national debt.  I am ready to work with anyone interested in finding smart savings in health care, especially in Medicare.  Inaction is not a solution to our problems.  There are many good ideas for improving our health care system and through common ground and compromise, we can find credible solutions.

I will continue to work on improving ACA and reducing the cost of health care for Americans.  For more information about ACA, including how it will affect you, details about every feature of the law, and to read the text of the law itself, please visit www.healthcare.gov.

Thank you again for contacting me. 

Sincerely,

Signature

Tim Kaine


POLITICAL: More Than 2.1 Million People Had Their Insurance Canceled

Thursday, January 9, 2014

http://www.breitbart.com/InstaBlog/2014/01/01/5-Reasons-2-1-Million-Enrolled-is-Not-That-Impressive

Five Reasons 2.1 Million ‘Enrolled’ Is Not That Impressive
by JOHN SEXTON 1 Jan 2014

*** begin quote ***

3) More Than 2.1 Million People Had Their Insurance Canceled – Estimates vary on the number of people nationwide who had their insurance cancelled because of Obamacare. Some have suggested the number is between 4.5 and 6 million. Two weeks ago the Obama administration claimed that there were only 500,000 people who had lost insurance who had yet to gain it back. That number seemed low but it’s worth noting that, at least so far, no one has claimed they have closed that gap. In other words, even if you ignore point #2 and grant them 2.1 million, Obamcare is still a net loss in the number of people insured.

*** end quote ***

Remember this whole “health”, “health care”, “health care insurance”, or something else matter was to get the uninsured.

Signing folks up to Medicaid doesn’t count.

This is a total disaster.

I wonder what comes next?

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POLITICAL: the “Bystander President” seems appropriate

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2013/12/31/the-blindsided-president-obama-loose-grip-reins-of-state

‘BLINDSIDED’ PRESIDENT: OBAMA’S LOOSE GRIP ON THE REINS OF STATE
by SCOT KENDALL 1 Jan 2014 

*** begin quote ***

2013 was anything but a banner year for President Obama.

A peppering of failures and scandals marked the first year of the second term of the “most transparent administration in history.” These scandals came in a variety of shapes and sizes, but they all shared one prominent feature.

That is the amount of knowledge Obama claimed to have of them before they happened – none.

*** and ***

Let’s hope that 2014 sees the “blindsided” president (whom the GOP has called the “Bystander President”) learning from his mistakes and taking a more active role in the governance of his country and the doing of his job. As the year unfolds, we’ll all be keeping a close watch.

*** end quote ***

Seems appropriate.

How many time can he use the same excuse?

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POLITICAL: $85M paid to dead; SSA doesn’t know who is dead or alive

Sunday, January 5, 2014

http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2013/12/30/OPM-274-Million-Paid-to-Dead-Federal-Retirees-Over-Past-3-Years

OPM: NEARLY $85 MILLION PAID TO DEAD FEDERAL RETIREES IN 2013

by EDWIN MORA  30 Dec 2013, 9:46 AM PDT

*** begin quote ***

However, an audit by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) released on Dec. 27 found that the SSA may not always know who is dead.

“SSA’s methods for processing death reports may result in inaccurate, incomplete, or untimely information for users of its death data,” noted the GAO. “Consequently, this could lead to improper payments if benefit-paying agencies rely on this data… Because SSA does not verify death reports from sources it considers most accurate, the agency risks having erroneous information in its death data, such as including living individuals or not including deceased individual.”

*** end quote ***

Argh!

It’s not like it’s THEIR money.

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POLITICAL: Obamacare has more “surprises”

Friday, January 3, 2014

http://townhall.com/columnists/betsymccaughey/2014/01/02/obamacares-biggest-whopper-n1769921

Obamacare’s Biggest Whopper
Betsy McCaughey | Jan 02, 2014

*** begin quote ***

But the nastiest truth about the health law is still to be exposed – the tightening hold the federal government will have over your doctor, even if you’re paying with private insurance. Obama said “you’re not going to have anybody getting in between you and your doctor in your decision making.” It was a lie from day one, just like the president’s other sales pitches.

*** end quote ***

Sarah Palin called it “death panels”.

You can believe that they will set “standards”!

Argh!

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POLITICAL: Rush Holt touts Endangered Species Act

Friday, December 27, 2013

Dear Mr. Reinke,

Tomorrow marks the 40th anniversary of one of our nation’s strongest and most successful environmental laws: the Endangered Species Act. Passed with overwhelming bipartisan support and signed by President Richard Nixon, the Act was the first comprehensive law to address the global extinction crisis.

The Endangered Species Act took a zero-tolerance approach to achieving its goals: no new extinctions, no exceptions. As a result, 99 percent of listed species have been saved from extinction and are on the path to recovery. Some iconic American species, such as the bald eagle, the American alligator, and the Pacific gray whale, have recovered from the brink of extinction and are now thriving in their natural habitats. Beyond the preservation of individual species, the Endangered Species Act helps to keep the interdependent web of live strong.

Today, conservation efforts under the Endangered Species Act are a model for preserving biodiversity around the world. Unfortunately, some in Congress have suggested that weakening provisions of the Act would somehow yield greater benefits for the species it was designed to protect. As a member of the House Natural Resources Committee, which has jurisdiction over the Endangered Species Act, I am committed to protecting our nation’s strongest and most successful environmental law.

Keeping America Safe, On and Off the Battlefield

Congress has taken another step in the ongoing and urgent effort to prevent suicide among members of our armed forces. A new defense bill that passed earlier this month included a provision I wrote to increase suicide prevention and outreach services for key segments of our Guard and Reserve.

These are specific pools of reservists who, when not assigned to active duty units, live and work among us in our communities in their civilian occupations. As such, they lack the ready access to mental health resources available to their active duty counterparts. My provision enables the Adjutant General of any state to request from the Pentagon address data for reservists in his or her state for the purpose of conducting suicide prevention and outreach activities.

The provision is an outgrowth of the Sergeant Coleman S. Bean Individual Ready Reserve Suicide Prevention Act, which I introduced in 2010 following the death by suicide of Sgt. Bean, an East Brunswick reservist about whom I have written previously.

The defense bill also included a provision I wrote to authorize a top-to-bottom review of programs in the Department of Defense to recruit and retain scientists, technology experts, mathematicians, and engineers. This amendment is a direct outgrowth of my work on the National Commission on Research and Development in the U.S. Intelligence Community, which published our final report this summer. It is imperative that American find, train, and retain world-class talent in these fields. The security of our nation quite literally depends on it.

Working For You

Recently, I was contacted by a Plainsboro veteran who is working hard to put himself through graduate school. Due to his past military service, he is eligible to receive federal tuition support – but although he had submitted a claim to the VA months earlier, his school still hadn’t received any payment. I reached out to the VA to resolve the problem, and the tuition payment was quickly made.

Have you encountered a similar problem with the VA, Social Security, Medicare, a passport center, or any other federal agency? If so, please call me at 1-87-RUSH-HOLT or by sending an e-mail. I’ll do all I can to address your problem.

Sincerely,

Rush Holt
Member of Congress

P.S. Just a reminder: I always want to hear from you, but to ensure a prompt response, please don’t reply to this e-mail. Instead, please visit holt.house.gov/contact or call 1-87-RUSH-HOLT (1-877-874-4658).

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Sorry but how about the dead eagles at the California wind turbines?

Guess that “The Dear Leader” can do whatever he wants.

And I wonder if the Northwest Loggers who lost their jobs to save the spotted tree owl, which is being wiped out by other owls, would agree.

Snail darter, etc. etc.

Sorry, but the Gooferment doesn’t do anything — morally, effectively, or efficiently!

And, just because it was “bipartisan” doesn’t mean anything other than everyone got paid off!

And, no mention of Obamacare?

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POLITICAL: Obamacare makes fraud legal

Saturday, December 21, 2013

http://www.strike-the-root.com/has-government-legalized-fraud

Has Government Legalized Fraud?
Column by Lawrence Samuels, posted on December 12, 2013
in Statism Health Care Fraud/Waste/Abuse
Column by L.K. Samuels.

Exclusive to STR

*** begin quote ***

The federal government must have made fraud a legal practice. What else could one conclude in light of Obamacare?

When President Obama, his administration and his Democratic cohorts promoted the Affordable Health Care Act, they advertised it with a slew of silver-tongued falsehoods, eloquent misstatements and outright lies. In other words, Obamacare was passed by Congress under clearly fraudulent statements of epic proportions. Almost every promise devised to sell Obamacare to the public and Congress was untrue. Millions of people have lost their coverage, although President Obama stated in 30 to 40 versions that, “If you like your health care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health care plan, period. No one will take it away, no matter what.” There were no caveats, no exceptions, period.

And yet Obama and his staff knew for years that millions of health care plans had to be cancelled because they would be considered substandard by the new law. Lisa Myers at NBC News revealed this shame. She said that the Obama administration had known since the summer of 2010 that millions of Americans could lose their insurance under the law, where “50 to 75 percent of the 14 million consumers who buy their insurance individually can expect to receive a ‘cancellation’ letter . . . . ” As more information keeps coming out, it turns out that Obama’s polished statements had been carefully vetted by his staff, but coldly calculated to deceive the buying public.

Any salesman employing such deceitful business practices would be prosecuted in a New York second. But nobody has brought a class action suit against Obama or his administration for massive and unmitigated fraud. No attorney general from any one of the 50 states has filed charges. The conclusion one would have to reach is that the government has the right to commit fraud.

*** end quote ***

It would certain appear that “political lies” have reached a new level of audacity.

“I wouldn’t believe you, if your tongue came notarized.” … attributed to Judge Marilyn Milian, but may have an earlier history.

Clearly, anything that the Gooferment, politicians, or bureaucrats say or publish can not be trusted.

Wonder when the revolution will start?

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POLITICAL: GM $14 billion in taxpayer dollars

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

http://www.lewrockwell.com/2013/12/eric-peters/14-billion-up-in-smoke/

The Bailout
By Eric Peters
Eric Peters Autos
December 13, 2013

*** begin quote ***

In Washington, they always try to announce unpleasantness during the off-hours (weekends, holidays and such) so that – hopefully – the stink will be less noticed.

In Detroit, too.

The recent announcement of the accession of Mary Barra as the new CEO of General Motors just happened to be exactly coincident with the announcement that the federal government has divested itself of its remaining partial ownership of GM.

This is good news.

The bad news – according to the Center for Automotive Research – is that $14 billion in taxpayer dollars went up in smoke as a result of the government’s “investment” in GM.

*** end quote ***

Sorry, but that is just the bailout cost.

What about all the lawyers, productivity, and personal losses?

Frau Reinke lost 5k$+. Where does that get tallied?

And, the loss of market discipline.

Bailouts are addictive. And, immoral, ineffective, and inefficient!

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POLITICAL: Replace Congress entirely!

Sunday, December 15, 2013

FROM MY OLDER FRIEND

*** begin quote ***

Psychology 101 – (Simple truth)

If you start with a cage containing five monkeys and inside the cage, hang a banana on a string from the top and then you place a set of stairs under the banana, before long a monkey will go to the stairs and climb toward the banana.

As soon as he touches the stairs, you spray all the other monkeys with cold water.

After a while another monkey makes an attempt with same result … all the other monkeys are sprayed with cold water.

Pretty soon when another monkey tries to climb the stairs, the other monkeys will try to prevent it.

Now, put the cold water away.
Remove one monkey from the cage and replace it with a new one.

The new monkey sees the banana and attempts to climb the stairs.

To his shock, all of the other monkeys beat the crap out of him.

After another attempt and attack, he knows that if he tries to climb the stairs he will be assaulted.

Next, remove another of the original five monkeys, replacing it with a new one.

The newcomer goes to the stairs and is attacked. The previous newcomer takes part in the punishment…… with enthusiasm, because he is now part of the “team”.

Then, replace a third original monkey with a new one, followed by the fourth, then the fifth. Every time the newest monkey takes to the stairs, he is attacked.

Now, the monkeys that are beating him up have no idea why they were not permitted to climb the stairs. Neither do they know why they are participating in the beating of the newest monkey.

Finally, having replaced all of the original monkeys, none of the remaining monkeys will have ever been sprayed with cold water.

Nevertheless, not one of the monkeys will try to climb the stairway for the banana.

Why, you ask? Because in their minds…that is the way it has always been!

This, my friends, is how Congress operates… and this is why, from time to time:

ALL of the monkeys need to be REPLACED AT THE SAME TIME.

*** end quote ***

I think he’s on to something. 

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POLITICAL: Cell phone ban

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

CNET December 10, 2013
CNET COMMUNITY
How do you feel about in-flight cell phone calls?

Dear CNET members,

{Extraneous Deleted}

In October the US Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) gave the green light to allow the use of electronic devices from takeoff to landing, which allows you to play games, read books, listen to music and videos, and so on. But what it doesn’t allow is voice calls or mobile broadband services. However, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission is considering also lifting this ban — which would mean that at above 10,000 feet, the person next to you could break out his cell phone and start chatting with his buddies about what a great partying week he had.

I don’t know about you, but I’m not too keen on hearing everyone’s conversations throughout my flight. And the great news is a chairman of the House Transportation Committee agrees with me (OK, he’s not exactly agreeing with me, but I share his opinion). As he says, flights are noisy enough without having to listen to a plane full of passengers shouting to be heard on their phones. He has introduced a bill that would prohibit passengers from making in-flight cell phone calls on commercial aviation flights.

So what do you think of all this? Do you support a bill to prohibit cell phone calls in planes? Why or why not? Do you even think the government should be involved in this at all or should it be left to the airlines to decide? If the ban was lifted, what do you imagine would happen? More air rage and scuffles among passengers? Or maybe nothing — people will be respectful and everyone will be able to take advantage of it. Check out this CNET article titled “New House bill seeks to ban in-flight cell phone calls” and share your thoughts!

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Why can’t the airlines decide? I’d much rather have free wifi.

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POLITICAL: FTC protecting us from piano teachers?

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303562904579224251626379422?mod=Opinion_newsreel_2

POTOMAC WATCH
Strassel: Piano Sonata in FTC Minor
Music teachers, beware. The feds are onto you. Better not try to raise the price of your lessons.
By KIMBERLEY A. STRASSEL
Nov. 28, 2013 4:51 p.m. ET

*** begin quote ***

While this abuse of power has received no national attention, it has riled the music community. Brian Majeski, the editor of the journal Music Trades, lambasted the FTC in a December editorial, noting that “a consumer watchdog that sees piano teachers as a threat either has too much time on its hands, or badly misplaced priorities.”

That might be too kind. Whether it is the IRS targeting conservatives, the Justice Department hounding Gibson Guitar, or the EPA conducting an armed raid on an Alaskan mine—this administration has a tendency toward abuse of power. That’s how antitrust laws created to tackle megamonopolies end up being used to hound and hammer a nonprofit devoted to piano teachers.

*** end quote ***

Anyone still think that this isn’t Gooferment?

Argh!

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POLITICAL: Estimate 80 million with employer health care plans will be cancelled

Monday, December 2, 2013

http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013/11/26/evidence-shows-obama-administration-predicted-tens-millions-would-lose-plans/

HEALTH CARE
Almost 80 million with employer health care plans could have coverage canceled, experts predict
By Jim Angle
Published November 26, 2013FoxNews.com

*** begin quote ***

Almost 80 million people with employer health plans could find their coverage canceled because they are not compliant with ObamaCare, several experts predicted.

Their losses would be in addition to the millions who found their individual coverage cancelled for the same reason.

Stan Veuger of the American Enterprise Institute said that in addition to the individual cancellations, “at least half the people on employer plans would by 2014 start losing plans as well.” There are approximately 157 million employer health care policy holders.

*** end quote ***

I wonder if this will make a dent in the thinking of “The Sheeple”?

Probably not!

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POLITICAL: Obama’s Disdain

Saturday, November 30, 2013

http://www.forbes.com/sites/realspin/2013/11/19/obamas-disdain-for-the-constitution-means-we-risk-losing-our-republic/2/

OP/ED | 11/19/2013 @ 8:00AM
Obama’s Disdain For The the Constitution Means We Risk Losing Our Republic
M. Northrup Buechner is Associate Professor of Economics at St. John’s University, New York.

*** begin quote ***

The most important point is that Mr. Obama does not consider himself bound by the Constitution. He could not have made that more clear. He has drawn a line in the concrete and we cannot ignore it. Those who currently hold political office, and who want to keep our system of government, need to act now. Surely, rejection of the Constitution is grounds for impeachment and charges should be filed. In addition, there are many other actions that Congressmen can and should take—actions that will tell Mr. Obama that we have seen where he is going and we will not let our country go without a fight. At the close of the Constitutional Convention of 1787, Benjamin Franklin was asked what form of government had been created. “A republic,” he replied, “if you can keep it.” We are losing it. If Mr. Obama’s reach for unprecedented power is not stopped, that will be the end. Everyone who values his life and liberty should find some way to say “No!” “Not now!” “Not yet!”

*** end quote ***

Unfortunately, BHO44 is a “true believer”. It’s yet to be seen of all the opportunists will follow him down the road to Perdition.

The Constitution enshrines the power of impeachment in the minority party.

To muster the needed votes, the majority must essentially ask the minority: “Really, seriously, you agree with this?”

Then and only then can the most powerful man in the world be rebuked.

We’ll see.

But based on Pelosi and Reid, I would not hold out much hope.

The particular “Titanic” is going down hard!

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