The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not represent our advertisers

Sunday, July 31, 2011

BREAKING NEWS: Obama, Boehner, Democrats Reportedly Strike Debt Deal

President Obama says leaders in both parties have reached a deal on a debt-reduction plan. Obama also said, is this the deal I wanted, no.

Democrats do not seem to be happy. More to come...

BREAKING NEWS: Obama To Make Statement

President Obama will make a statement from the White House briefing room at 8:40p.m. ET regarding the ongoing debt talks.

From Fox News

Final 'Harry Potter' Film Tops $1 Billion

Movie being carried mainly by strong international box-office results

On the eighth try, Warner Bros.' highly lucrative Harry Potter franchise passed the $1 billion mark.

"Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows -- Part 2" is being carried mainly by its strong international box office, with $690 million banked to date.

Not that the domestic market has been indifferent to the film -- it has taken in $318.5 million through this weekend.


Senate Negotiators Scramble To Finalize Debt Deal After Reid Bill Tanks

Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid has signed off on a tentative debt-ceiling compromise, saying he hopes lawmakers can finalize a deal and move to a vote as early as Sunday.

At the same time, concerns were spreading on the conservative side that the emerging plan could cut too deeply into defense spending, raising questions about whether the framework can attract enough bipartisan support.

Reid, becoming the first congressional leader to publicly endorse the plan, said late Sunday afternoon through a spokesman that he had signed off on it "pending caucus approval."


Why Republicans Should Not Compromise On Raising the Debt Ceiling

There is a 24 trillion dollar Budget gap over the course of the next 10 years between the Tea Party's debt ceiling plan and the Democrats plan. The Democrat's plan proposes to make cuts in spending in the range of 7 trillion dollars over the next 10 years - and the Tea Party's plan proposes 31 trillion. So the two sides are 24 trillion dollars apart. Actually - that is not entirely accurate as the Democratic proposal is 'loaded' or 'stacked' with artificial spending cuts.

Here at SBYnews we try to keep our reading audience informed as to what will actually transpire if the budget ceiling is not raised. Back in 1995 - under Clinton - a similar scenario played out and all of the non-essential federal employees were temporarily furloughed. However - what most of the public doesn't know is that when the debt ceiling was raised - these same furloughed federal workers were issued back-pay for not working. In other words they were paid for not working.

So for those individuals who saw John McCain on FOX news TV the other night complain about the Tea Party's position - make no mistake about it - I was there to - and John McCain was one of the federal individuals who was also issued back-pay for not working during the furlough period.

BREAKING NEWS: Live Debt-Crisis Special On FBN Tonight

The FOX Business Network will offer a one-hour special Sunday night, hosted by Neil Cavuto, looking at the latest developments in the ongoing debt crisis. Watch it live starting at 9 p.m. ET.

From Fox News

Breaking News-Reid's Debt-Ceiling Bill Fails in Test Vote, Negotiators Polish Alternative Package

Democrats' debt-ceiling bill failed to clear a key Senate hurdle Sunday afternoon, putting the onus on bipartisan negotiators to come up with an alternative plan with just two days to go until the Treasury runs out of ways to pay all of America's bills.

The vote on Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's plan was expected to fail. Sixty votes were required to advance the proposal, and it fell far short in a 50-49 roll call.


Bay Bridge Drivers To Get Toll Hike Reprieve

WASHINGTON - Motorists will get a break from the toll hikes expected this October in Maryland, at least temporarily.

Reacting to a deluge of public comment, the Maryland Transportation Authority says its board is still working to tweak the plan that would have seen tolls double on the Bay Bridge beginning Oct. 1, with a second hike planned to begin July 2013.


'Very Close' To Debt Deal; Boehner Plan With An Escape Hatch

A Republican source close to the negotiations tells NBC News that both sides are "very close" to agreement on a two-step debt-ceiling deal.

It is essentially the original Boehner plan -- without the balanced-budget amendment and with modified triggers, what amounts to an escape hatch if a joint committee can't get the cuts needed. The plan would get enough in cuts, roughly $1 trillion, to last about six or seven months.


Big Federal Cuts Would Ravage Maryland

Report: Cutting 22 percent would cost 150,000 jobs

While Congress and the White House were fighting last week over spending cuts, tax hikes and the debt ceiling, a business group released a report examining what would happen to Maryland if federal spending were cut by 22 percent, as suggested by a bipartisan commission.


Are Both Parties - Republican & Democrats in Cahoots?

Late on Saturday, Reuters laid out these elements of a possible deal:
$2.8 trillion deal. It would raise the debt ceiling by that amount through 2012 and make equal spending cuts.
Most commercial FDIC lending practices require that once an initial commercial loan term has expired - they will usually extend the loan term for a period of 6 months for a nominal fee. So why is it then that the Obama Administration wants to circumvent established industry guidance standards by allowing the debt ceiling to be raised to a date until after the next Presidential 2012 election? Talk about a hypocritical stand! And why are the Republicans going to cede this concession away? Aren't 'We The People' suppose to send these representatives up there to represent us and not their own self interest. Isn't it interesting that the people who hold these key elected positions are being derelict in their duties by requiring such preconditions to raising the debt ceiling. I believe it is high time for the Tea Party to take sweeping action once again - and clean both chambers. As for the nation defaulting - let it default - I believe the US will emerge much stronger in the end.

Prospects For A Debt Deal Darken As Republicans Point Finger At Obama

House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell attempted to lay Washington’s debt-ceiling debacle squarely at President Obama’s feet in a press conference on Saturday, making public their effort to drag Obama back into the center of frenzied negotiations to cut spending and increase borrowing authority ahead of a Tuesday deadline. “He’s the leader of the Democratic party and the President of the United States,” McConnell said. “He needs to tell us what he’ll sign.”

“It’s time for them to tell us what they’re for,” echoed Boehner, repeating the Republican canard that suggests Obama, who’s endorsed Majority Leader Reid’s latest bill and put forward a series of proposals himself behind closed doors, has no plan. “It’s time to tell us how they’re going to get us out of the cul-de-sac they’ve driven our country into.”

The spin session, which came just hours after word leaked that McConnell was turning away overtures from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and demanding to negotiate directly with the President, marked an escalation in an already fraught standoff that has the U.S. Treasury preparing drastic measures should the debt ceiling not be raised by Tuesday.


Why Girls Should Grill

There is still a certain gender stereotype aflame when it comes to manning the grates - the "women cook, men grill" attitude, as recently coined by Forbes.

But, plenty of ladies like Elizabeth Karmel are lighting the way as beer can chicken equal opportunists.

Karmel is the Executive Chef of Hill Country Barbecue Market and Hill Country Chicken, where she bestows her low-and-slow knowledge on brisket, sausage, ribs and all the fixin's.

She is also the creator of Girls at the Grill: a group to encourage women to grab their tongs and grill with the best of 'em.

Five Reasons Girls Should Grill: Elizabeth Karmel

1. It’s fun!
"Why do you think the guys kept it to themselves all these years?!"


Federal Judge Rules Florida Drug Law Unconstitutional

A federal judge has struck down a Florida drug law that convicts suspects of a drug offense even if they are unaware that the controlled substance is illegal.

U.S. District Judge Mary Scriven found the 9-year-old law unconstitutional in a decision Wednesday and called for the resentencing of Mackle Shelton, who had faced 18 years in prison.

The ruling could pave the way for drug cases currently in the courts to be thrown out.

"Obviously, we are immediately drafting motions and pursuing this line on behalf of our own clients' (cases) that are pending, but we can't do much retroactively since those cases are closed," said Bob Wesley, public defender for Orange and Osceola counties. "I think it will be a robust line of litigation for all of us who appear in Florida criminal courts."

Tampa attorney James Felman, who won the landmark case, says the Florida legislature went too far.

"What the legislature attempted to do was essentially presume guilt and then let you come in and prove your innocence if you wish to avoid being imprisoned," Felman told


Huge Pot Farm Bust In California National Forest

UKIAH, California - Law enforcement officials said Friday they struck a major blow against illegal marijuana cultivation on public lands in the heart of Northern California pot country.

The two-week operation to purge the Mendocino National Forest of illicit pot gardens uprooted 460,000 pot plants and led to more than 100 arrests, U.S. Attorney Melinda Haag said.

About 1,500 pounds (680 kilograms) of processed marijuana, 27 guns and 11 vehicles were also seized.

The 900,000-acre (364,225-hectare) forest — larger than Rhode Island — spans six counties in a region of mountains and forests known as the Emerald Triangle for its high concentration of pot farms. Agents raided more than 50 gardens teeming with trash, irrigation pipes and chemicals that damage forestland and waterways, authorities said.

"The Mendocino National Forest is under attack by drug traffickers," Haag said.

The operation was part of an annual summer effort to eradicate marijuana from public lands across the state. Six sheriff's departments, the state anti-narcotics bureau and at least a half-dozen federal agencies took part in the effort in the forest.

Spearheading the raids was Mendocino County Sheriff Tom Allman, who in his years on the job has had to balance county medical marijuana ordinances with state law and the complete federal ban on the drug. Allman said none of the gardens busted showed any sign of being used to grow medical marijuana.


Entire South Dakota Town Goes Up For Sale

Thinking of buying some land? How about owning a whole town along with it?

Evidently in South Dakota, a whole town counts as a sellable property. Because in the tiny town of Scenic, S.D., the owners are packing up and moving out, selling the entire town in the process.

Which means this showcase – including a saloon, dance hall, museum and a jail – can be yours if the price is right. The town, 46 acres in total, is on the market for $799,000. Located 40 miles southeast of Rapid City, S.D. in the Badlands, NewsFeed has every reason to believe that the small town of Scenic indeed lives up to its name. And for the price, there's no better way to put your own mark on the map.

The amenities that come with the asking price sound like they're plucked straight out of a western film. A trading post, a general store, and a post office, all remnants of a town that saw its heyday decades ago, and contained in a three-block town that sits 30 miles from its nearest neighbor. Its population sits at fewer than 10 people, down from a couple hundred in past Census reports. The town's decline started as early as the Great Depression, when the town hit a rough patch and businesses were forced to close.

South Carolina Distillery To Legally Produce Moonshine

The distillery is to be called Dark Corner, but this is one operation that no longer has to keep itself hidden in one.

Thanks to loosened small-batch laws in South Carolina, Joe Fenten and Richard Wenger will be setting up shop in Greenville, the state's second-largest city. According to Reuters, it's the first time moonshine will be legally produced in the state. They're able to do so because of reduced taxes on micro-distilleries.

So break out the still and pour in some corn mash and sugar. They plan to produce their moonshine in the style of yore, producing the un-aged corn whiskey in a custom-designed copper still, a brew that will measure 100-proof, or 50% alcohol.

Of course, this begs the question if it can still be called moonshine if produced under legal (taxable, that is) circumstances. Though the two entrepreneurs will abide by the law in their operation, they are also planning to memorialize all the not-so-legitimate moonshiners that came before them.

Their Dark Corner Distillery will include a museum dedicated to the eponymous Dark Corner region of the country, a mountainous region of North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee that is the home of hooch.

Student Aid At Stake In Debt Crisis

College students heading back to school in the next few weeks could get caught in financial limbo if Congress doesn't make a deal to keep United States from defaulting on its debt.

Nobody knows for sure what will happen. But student financial aid will be among the tough choices for Treasury, as it figures out what bills get paid, if Congress fails to meet an Aug. 2 deadline to raise the cap on federal borrowing and defaults on its debt.

At stake is some $800 billion in student financial aid, ranging from Pell Grants to direct student loans.

Even though many students have already gotten word of their grant or loan levels for fall semester, in many cases, the money hasn't been dispersed and won't be available until school starts this fall.

"I don't think anyone's certain, exactly, what will happen," said Haley Chitty, spokesman for the National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators.

Department of Education spokesman Sara Gast said the agency is working with the Treasury Department, and can't yet offer details as to how financial aid could be impacted.


Lawyer: 2 Americans Held In Iran Could Be Released

Two Americans jailed in Iran on charges of espionage could be released after a court hearing slated for Sunday, their lawyer said.

Masoud Shafiei said Saturday the fact that the session in the trial of Shane Bauer and Josh Fattal would coincide with the second anniversary of their arrest may indicate that they will be freed.

The Muslim world also has a tradition of pardoning prisoners for the holy month of Ramadan, which starts early in the week ahead.

The two men and Bauer's fiancee, Sarah Shourd, were detained on July 31, 2009, and Iran accused them of illegally crossing the border to spy. Shourd was released last year on $500,000 bail and has said she won't return to Iran for trial.

They deny the charges and claim they were only hiking in a scenic, mountainous area in the semiautonomous Kurdish region of northern Iraq, near the Iranian border.

The lawyer said Shourd has not been summoned for Sunday's trial session, and he thinks that's another indication that the case is almost over and his clients will be freed.

Shafiei suggested the court could convict the two but then sentence them to time served.


Louisiana Troopers: Dad Sleeps While 8-Year-Old Drives

An intoxicated man was arrested early Saturday morning when Louisiana state police determined he took a snooze while his 8-year-old son took the wheel, authorities said.

The man allegedly told police he was letting his son drive while the family traveled between Mississippi and Texas. The boy was doing the speed limit, 70 mph, and pulled over when the police cruiser turned its lights on, authorities said. The boy apparently sat on the edge of the driver's seat in order to reach the gas.

The boy’s father, Billy Joe Madden of Hattiesburg, Miss, rode in the passenger’s seat and his 4-year-old daughter sat in the back when police pulled the truck over in Livingston Parish, near Baton Rouge. The child’s driving was apparently so erratic that it alarmed motorists, who called authorities.

Madden, 28, was booked on charges including Child Desertion and Allowing a Minor to Drive. It was not clear Saturday afternoon if he had an attorney.

The children have since been handed over to Louisiana Child Protective Services and are awaiting the arrival of family members. There were no injuries.


Are Baby Boomers To Blame For Debt Crisis?

Washington (CNN) -- Baby boomers -- those born between 1946 and 1964 -- have been described as "the pig in the python" and the "sandwich generation."

They lived well, grew up in relative abundance and, some say, expected their Social Security, health care and government support to be there as they grew old.

Now, as the future of the country's economy is up in the air, is this group of 80 million aging Americans -- many of whom are sprinting toward retirement age -- the ones to blame for the nation's shaky economic system?

The answer is not so simple.

Baby boomers grew up during relative prosperity, from the economic boom of the post-World War II '50s to the "Me" generation of the '60s through the lucrative uptick in the Reagan '80s. And then there were the budget surpluses they enjoyed during the Clinton '90s.

As a result, many were able to buy second homes, take out loans at low interest rates, buy cheap gas and pump money back into the economy.

Life was good, many say, until September 2008.

In the last days of the Bush administration, the economy went belly-up, forcing Washington to bail out Wall Street in order to prevent another Great Depression.


It’s A Great Time To Be In The Thrift Store Business

How’s this for an unorthodox economic indicator: Stores selling secondhand merchandise on the cheap are absolutely booming.

Thrift stores run by the likes of Goodwill, St. Vincent De Paul, the Salvation Army, Savers, and independent operators have all been reporting better-than-average business lately.

The Los Angeles Times, for instance, reports that Goodwill stores in southern California are on pace to record-breaking sales this year, while sales at one St. Vincent De Paul store were up 16.5% in April, compared to the year prior.

This isn’t merely a SoCal phenomena. Thrift stores are booming everywhere from Modesto, California, to Kansas City, Missouri, and beyond. The Savers chain of non-profit thrift stores opened its 250th store last fall, and at least 19 more locations are opening in 2011.


Judge Judy - Here's Who You Support With Taxes

Boonies Celebrates 10 Years Today

Surfin´USA (Beach Boys)

San Francisco Judge Removes Circumcision Ban From Ballot

San Francisco residents will not be voting on whether male circumcisions should be banned in the city this fall.

A Superior Court judge ordered Thursday that the proposed measure, which had initially made it onto the November 8 city ballot, be removed entirely.

The measure proposed banning male circumcisions with the penalty of jail time or a $1,000 fine. It would not have granted religious exemptions.

From the beginning, the controversial ballot measure faced strong resistance from medical, religious and civil liberties groups.

Should teens make circumcision decision?

Superior Court Judge Loretta Giorgi wrote that male circumcision is "a widely practiced medical procedure" and that medical services are left to the regulation of the state, not individual cities.

The judge's ruling was hailed by the Jewish Community Relations Council, the Anti-Defamation League and others who had sued to remove the measure from the ballot.


Are Middle-Aged Local Anchorwomen A Target For Downsizing?

Drilling deeper in news of Marianne Banister leaving WBAL-TV

The departure last week of Marianne Banister from WBAL-TV after 15 years of co-anchoring a team that always finished first or second in its time period raised big questions about the changing face of television news in Baltimore.

In the past year and half, several long-time anchors have signed off the local airwaves, including Sally Thorner at WJZ, and Mary Beth Marsden at WMAR.

By long-time, we’re talking 15 years or more of coming into Baltimore homes every night with the local news. And some of those who have left the airwaves have some very definite opinions about the changes taking place.

Banister spoke candidly with The Baltimore Sun about her departure, saying it was not her idea.
“I want to make this clear: This is not my choice,” she said. “I’m not retiring. I’m not leaving to ‘spend more time with my family.’”

According to what the 51-year-old Banister says she was told, her non-renewal was strictly a matter of dollars and cents


Smallest Med School In U.S. To Open With 8 Students

University of Kansas' satellite school aims to help fill need for rural doctors

A Kansas college hopes young doctors will be more willing to practice in small towns if they go to a medical school in a rural area.

The University of Kansas will have what it says is the smallest four-year medical education site in the country when eight students begin taking classes on Monday on a satellite campus in Salina, Kansas. The move is in response to a shortage of rural doctors in the United States.

Cancer StrickenGround Zero Worker Gets $0 Settlement Check

Cancer-stricken Ground Zero worker Edgar Galvis has finally received a compensation check -- for zero dollars.

The 51-year-old Queens man, who suffered sinus problems and then throat cancer after months of removing toxic debris from the World Financial Center, was relieved to get a check in the mail for his court settlement with Merrill Lynch, whose offices he had cleaned.

But he was stunned when he saw the amount: $0.00.

His award had been $10,005, but his lawyers at the firm Worby, Groner, Edelman & Napoli Bern lopped off $2,579 for unitemized legal expenses.

Then they took a 33.3 percent fee of $2,124.

They also subtracted $352, a fee to the lawyer who referred him.

The remaining $4,950 was withheld for unspecified "liens," the letter says. Galvis thinks this was repayment of workers' compensation for aid.

"I have hit rock bottom," said Galvis, who is jobless and $30,000 in debt. "I was expecting a check, and you can imagine how I felt when I opened it. I couldn't believe it. I thought it was a joke."

The father of two, who lives in Glendale with his fiancée and her two kids, said he had to sell his car and relies on relatives for rent. "I get collection agencies whenever I open the mail. What little credit I had I don't have anymore," he said.


Executive Branch Late Attempt At Debt-Limit Deal To Avert Default

The White House and Republican congressional leaders made significant progress toward a deal to avert a potentially catastrophic first-ever government default threatened for early next week, according to officials familiar with the talks.

Under a plan negotiated late Saturday night, the nation's debt limit would rise in two steps by about $2.4 trillion and spending would be cut by a slightly larger amount, the officials said. The first stage -- about $1 trillion -- would take place immediately and the second later in the year.

Congress would be required to vote on a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution, but none of the debt limit increase would be contingent on its approval. The officials who described the talks did so on condition of anonymity, citing their sensitive nature.

President Barack Obama is seeking legislation to raise the government's $14.3 trillion debt limit by enough to tide the Treasury over until after the 2012 elections. He has threatened to veto any legislation that would allow a recurrence of the current crisis next year but has agreed to Republican demands that deficits be cut -- without tax increases -- in exchange for additional U.S. borrowing authority.


Saturday, July 30, 2011

Robert W. Jackson III Executed Early Friday Morning

While most of Delaware slept, a bleak chapter in the lives of a Hockessin family was finally put to rest after nearly two decades.

Robert W. Jackson III, the man convicted in the 1992 ax murder of 47-year-old Elizabeth Girardi during a botched robbery, was executed by lethal injection at the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center north of Smyrna. He was pronounced dead at 12:12 a.m.

Jackson’s last meal consisted of steak, a baked potato, potato skins, corn and a soda. During his final days, he has been sleeping, eating, reading, writing letters, talking with staff, and visiting with family and his attorneys, according to the Department of Corrections.

Governor Jack Markell denied Jackson’s request for a reprieve, and two requests Wednesday by his lawyers to delay the execution went ungranted.

At 12:02 a.m. the execution began in the execution chamber. Witnesses watched Jackson, dressed in all white, strapped down to table with intravenous lines in each arm. James T. Vaughn Correctional Center Warden Perry Phelps asked Jackson if he had any last words.

Jackson at first directed his words to Christopher and Claudia – the victim’s surviving children.

“Are the Girardis in there? If you are in there, I've never faulted you for your anger. I would have been mad myself," he said. "[But] I didn’t take your mother from you.”

Jackson then hinted that his accomplice, Tony Lachette, was actually the guilty party in the case. Indeed, his lawyers argues that Lachette privately confessed to the killing to a number of people, but those claims were never corroborated by investigators.


Washington Spending 101

How to Stop the Explosion of Debt

Here’s a quick new online class for those wondering how to stop the explosion of debt. It’s Washington Spending 101.

As President Reagan said, “Only a constitutional amendment will do the job. We've tried the carrot, and it failed. With the stick of a balanced budget amendment, we can stop government’s squandering, overtaxing ways, and save our economy.”

Just a few weeks ago, the Balanced Budget Amendment wasn’t even a part of the conversation in Washington, despite the overwhelming support it has among the American public. Thanks to the dedicated efforts of House Republicans, it is now an integral part of the debate over how to solve America’s spending problem and stop the explosion of debt.

BREAKING NEWS: House Defeats Senator Reid’s Deficit-Reduction Bill

The Republican-held House rejects Democratic Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid’s deficit-reduction bill 246-173.
From Fox News

Rep. Harris Votes Against Smoke And Mirrors Reid Plan

Washington, DC – Today, Rep. Andy Harris voted against the smoke and mirrors Reid Plan which includes over $1 trillion in imaginary savings. In addition, Senator Reid has repeatedly stated that his was the only plan that could pass both chambers, yet it was rejected by a bipartisan and  overwhelming vote in the House of Representatives.

“I came to Washington to end budget tricks, accounting gimmicks and empty promises,” said Rep. Andy Harris. “The Reid Plan has no Balanced Budget Amendment that would provide the permanent accountability America needs in Washington. In light of yesterday’s grim economic news, we need to end the uncertainty and fear that President Obama and Senator Reid continue to promote. We need to send a strong signal to job creators that we are serious about getting our wasteful spending under control.”

Currently, the U.S. Government has a national debt of $14.5 trillion and runs an annual deficit of $1.65 trillion a year

BREAKING NEWS: House Votes On Senator Reid's Deficit-Reduction Bill

House begins vote on Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's deficit-reduction bill.

From Fox News

Today's Survey Question

Who has the best selection and prices of produce in the Salisbury area?

Daily Times To Raise Daily Rates To $1.00


This week the Daily Times took until Wednesday to report on a Monday night City Council Meeting. Their printed news is days behind. Their advertising rates are out of this world and God Forbid a Family Member dies, wait until you see what they charge you for an Obituary! Believe me, my Father in Law recently passed and it was a car payment on a Mercedes.

Salisbury News delivers you REAL TIME NEWS, not news that is two or three days behind and certainly not weeks behind either.

If we haven't proven to you that we're the most dedicated source of news, information, human interest and opinion, well, I've wasted 7 days a week, 365 days a year for the past 7 years. In other words, there's no convincing you anyway. Just pay the $1.00 a day rate for old news and I'm sure you'll be happy.

In the mean time, I agree with the comment above.

New Posts to fall below this one.

Judge: Time To Unseal Nixon's Watergate Testimony

WASHINGTON (AP) - Thirty-six years after Richard Nixon testified to a grand jury about the Watergate break-in that drove him from office, a federal judge on Friday ordered the secret transcript made public.

But the 297 pages of testimony won't be available immediately, because the government gets time to decide whether to appeal.

The Obama administration opposed the transcript's release, chiefly to protect the privacy of people discussed during the ex-president's testimony who are still alive.


Maryland Adds 28,300 Government Jobs In Last Five Years

Maryland has added 28,300 government jobs in the last five years, the second most among the nation's 50 states.

So maybe the movement to shrink the size of government isn’t as strong as you might think. Some of Maryland's federal jobs, to some extent, have been under pressure as government leaders explore ways to reduce spending.


St. Joseph Medical Center's CEO Resigns

Jeffrey Norman brought in during shake-up following stent scandal

The executive brought in to lead St. Joseph Medical Center as a crisis manager after a doctor was accused of placing unnecessary stents in hundreds of patients resigned Friday without explanation.

Jeffrey K. Norman became chief executive officer during a management shake-up in the fall of 2009, just months after Towson cardiologist Dr. Mark G. Midei stopped practicing at the hospital. Midei has since lost his license to practice medicine.

Norman plans to leave on Aug. 22. Hospital officials said they would begin a search for a successor immediately.


Editor's Choice - 07/30/2011

These were the five (5) best, or most important, posts for July 29th, as judged by the editors of Salisbury News.

Sussex Council Split Over Variance Fees

GEORGETOWN — Sussex County Council is split over how much citizens should pay in board of adjustment fees.
Councilman Vance Phillips, R-Laurel, is pushing to have the fee reduced by $250. George Cole, R-Ocean View, and Joan Deaver, D-Rehoboth Beach, say the reduction is too drastic; they would prefer a smaller reduction or a tiered system based on what Kent County officials charge.
Under the proposed ordinance, the application fee for all variances would change from $400 to $150. The fee for special-use exceptions would remain at $400 except for a fee of $150 for certain cases: manufactured-home applications under emergency or hardship conditions when nonconforming homes are replaced or placement of more than one home on a farm of 10 acres or more.

Budget, Debt Worries Plague Troops

CAMP LEATHERNECK, Afghanistan – A half a world away from the Capitol Hill deadlock, the economy and debt crisis are weighing heavily on U.S. troops in Afghanistan.
And the top question on their minds Saturday even as bombings rocked the city around them, was one the top U.S. military officer couldn't answer.
Will we get paid?
"I actually don't know how the answer to that question," Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff told a group of troops, while at the same time telling them they will continue to go to work each day.
But he offered a bit more optimism than defense officials have acknowledged when those questions have come up in recent weeks.
"I have confidence that at some point in time, whatever compensation you are owed, you will be given," said Mullen, who is making his 15th trip to Afghanistan, just two months before he retires. But, he noted, "There are plenty of you living paycheck to paycheck so if paychecks were stopped it would have a devastating impact very quickly."
Questions on military spending and how the ongoing budget struggles will impact them dominated the morning meeting at the Kandahar base, and it was the first one Marines asked when he moved on to Camp Leatherneck later..

Judge Prohibits Texas From Denying Driver’s Licenses to Legal Immigrants

A judge this week ruled this week that Texas can no longer deny driver's licenses to legal immigrants with temporary visas and must issue standard licenses instead of non-standard ones approved by a state panel three years ago.
Judge Orlinda Naranjo said in a ruling Wednesday that the Texas Department of Public Safety exceeded its legal authority when it adopted a policy in 2008 as part of a crackdown on identity theft and fraud that requires immigrants applying for driver's licenses to prove they're in the country legally.
Gov. Rick Perry, a popular choice among Republicans looking for a 2012 GOP presidential contender, supported the policy that was a blueprint for a new law that is set to take effect at the end of this September. Under the law, all legal immigrants with visas authorized for less than one year or scheduled to expire in less than six months are still entitled to standard-issued driver's licenses.

Are Internet Explorer Users Dumb?

CNN) -- Are users of other Web browsers smarter than the people who use Microsoft's Internet Explorer?
A new survey doesn't quite say so. But it sure as heck suggests it.

The survey by AptiQuant, a Vancouver-based Web consulting company, gave more than 100,000 participants an IQ test, while monitoring which browser they used to take the test.

The result? Internet Explorer users scored lower than average, while Chrome, Firefox and Safari users were slightly above average.


New York State Passes 'Good Samaritan' Law To Fight Overdose

New York state last week became the largest state in the nation to adopt a “Good Samaritan” law to fight overdose. The law bars arrests and prosecution for personal possession of drugs, paraphernalia or underage drinking when someone calls for help to save the life of an overdose victim.

Overdose—now the leading cause of accidental death in New York and the number one injury-related killer of adults 35-54—is responsible for some 28,000 annual deaths nationally.

Most overdoses occur in the presence of other people and take several hours to cause death. But research finds that in up to half of cases, no one calls for help. 911 calls are also often delayed as witnesses try ineffective methods of reviving people such as slapping them or dousing them with cold water. The most common reason given for not calling 911 or for delaying help-seeking is fear of arrest and prosecution.
“Overall [the new law] really sends a very strong message to law enforcement and the general public that saving lives is much more important than putting people into the criminal justice system,” says Dr. Sharon Stancliff, medical director for the Harm Reduction Coalition (HRC), an organization that advocates for measures to improve the health and lives of drug users, whether or not they desire abstinence.


Relatives Charged In Murder Of 10-Year-Old Found Locked In Box

CNN) -- Four members of an Arizona family have been charged with murder in the death of a 10-year-old girl whose body was discovered locked in a box outside her family's house. She had suffocated.
The charges were filed Thursday, a day after Phoenix police arrested the four.

Police released a statement saying the four relatives of Ame Deal had been entrusted with caring for her. The arrest came after police said they learned that the family routinely confined her inside the box when she misbehaved.


World Population Predicted To Hit 7 Billion This Year

If this keeps up, things are going to get crowded.

A new study shows that the earth's population will hit 7 billion in 2011, which is double what it was in the 1960s, according to Discovery News. What's more, researchers predict that another 2.3 billion people will be added to our planet over the next 39 years. In case you were wondering, that's a lot of people in not a lot of time.

Telomere Length Suggests Poor People Age Faster

CBS) Can being poor speed aging? How about eating poorly? A new Scottish study says yes to both questions, and the answer lies in a person's telomeres.
Which begs the question - what are telomeres? They are the cap-like molecular structures on the tips of the chromosomes that scientists say are closely linked to biological age.
"We know that people who are born with shorter telomeres than normal also have a shorter lifespan," Dr. Maria Blasco of the Spanish National Cancer Research Center in Madrid, told The Independent in May. She created a $700 test that supposedly predicts aging by measuring telomeres.

Alas, Gay Marriage Will Yield Gay Divorce. Prenups Are In Order

As gay couples in New York gear up for the first full weekend during which they're eligible to tie the knot, someone they hope they'll never run into has a few words of caution: be careful.

That someone is the divorce lawyer, the antidote to petits fours and place settings, with an admonishment to homosexual brides- and grooms-to-be to legally protect themselves before saying "I do." “Not to take a bloom off this romantic rose, but as people are lining up for marriage licenses, it's something to think about,” says Lois Liberman, a divorce attorney and partner at Blank Rome LLP, one of New York City's largest matrimonial firms.

Sometimes, the sheer act of getting married is enough to torpedo a relationship. “I would hate to call that a trend, but I've seen people together for 18 years, then they finally got married, and after several years, the chafing of legal bounds do a number on people,” says Liberman.


Brother, Can You Spare A Billion? Apple Has More Cash Than Uncle Sam

An iPod in every pot? The Statue of Liberty holding an iPad in her left hand? Steve Jobs’ on Mount Rushmore? Don’t laugh, considering Apple (Stock Quote: AAPL) now has more cash on hand than the U.S. government.

According to the U.S. Treasury, Uncle Sam closed the day of business on July 27 with $73.768 billion in total operating balance (TOB). In effect, TOB means the amount of money the government can spend before it bumps up against the debt ceiling.

Apple, on the other hand, reported in its June earnings statement that it has $76.156 billion in cash and securities. It’s been a good week for Apple, which is now the biggest smartphone vendor in the world, with 18% market share, according to a new report from Strategy Analytics.



One story my grandfather told me many times was about the night he was walking the rails between camps. Walking was his only mode of transportation for short distances and, apparently, served him well. That is, until the night a train approached just as he was crossing a trestle bridge. He knew that he couldn’t make it to either side faster than the train so he slipped over the side and wrapped his arms around one of the railroad ties. After the train passed he tried to scramble back up to the tracks, but couldn’t lift himself up. As it was pitch black, he didn’t have any idea what was underneath him, nor how far down it was. It could have been a long fall to solid ground which would have injured or killed him. It could have been to deep water which posed another problem for him since he couldn’t swim. Concern turned to fatigue and he decided this was the end. He could hang on no longer. He could never recollect just how long he hung there but it was long enough for him to decide that this might just be the end. I could only imagine the thoughts going through my grandfather’s mind at this time. The desperation and sense of life’s final moments must have been terrifying. So, finally, he let go and dropped six inches to solid ground. He was always amused to tell that story on himself, knowing that whoever heard it would like it.

(This is part 3 of my grandfather’s life – part 4 next week)

Salisbury Police Department Press Releases

On July 26, 2011 at approximately 9:02 pm, Officers of the Salisbury Police were on routine patrol in the area of North Salisbury Boulevard and observed the below listed suspect who was known to the officers to be wanted on an outstanding warrant for theft. The suspect was stopped and taken into custody. A search of the suspect, incident to arrest, revealed a quantity of suspected “crack”/cocaine and a CDS smoking device containing suspected cocaine residue.

ARRESTED: Amy Ann Collins, 35 years of age Hebron, Maryland

Wicomico Co. District Court Arrest Warrant-
Malicious destruction of property
Possession of cocaine
Possession of CDS/Paraphernalia

DISPOSITION: Released to Central Booking
CC # 201100028628/201100029197

On July 27, 2011 at approximately 8:52 pm, Officers of the Salisbury Police Department received a call to respond to the Walmart Department Store on North Salisbury Boulevard for the report of a shoplifter. Upon arrival the officers met with store security who advised the officers that store employees had observed the below listed suspect take property from the store without making any attempts at payment. The property was recovered from the suspect and was returned to the store.

ARRESTED: Juvenile, 16 years of age Salisbury, Maryland

CHARGES: Theft (under $ 100)

DISPOSITION: Released to guardian
CC # 201100029343

On July 28, 2011 at approximately 9:52 am, Officers of the Salisbury Police arrested the below listed suspect on an outstanding arrest warrant charging the suspect with an assault that occurred on July 5, 2011. On that date the Salisbury Police met with the victim of an assault that occurred at T’s Market on North Salisbury Boulevard. The victim advised that she had been involved in an argument with the below listed suspect who was a family member. During the argument, the suspect struck the victim then threatened the victim with a box cutter type knife. The victim was not injured by the box cutter and did not require medical attention.

ARRESTED: Gina Marie Miller, 32 years of age Salisbury, Maryland

First degree assault
Second degree assault
Reckless endangerment

DISPOSITION: Released to Central Booking
CC # 201100025989

He's My Brother

Two young boys walked into a pharmacy one day, picked out a box of tampons and proceeded to the checkout counter.

The man at the counter asked the older boy, "Son, how old are you?"
"Eight," the boy replied.

The man continued, "Do you know what these are used for?"
The boy relied, "Not exactly, but they aren't for me.  They're for him.  He's my brother. He's four.  We saw on TV that if you use these you would be able to swim and ride a bike. Right now, he can't do either."

Puppy Fakes His Own Death

Larry Flynt Says He's Offered Casey Anthony $500,000 To Pose In Hustler

If Larry Flynt has his way, Casey Anthony could reintroduce herself -- nude -- to America on the pages of Hustler magazine, and make well over $500,000 in the process.

The pornography magnate told HLN's "Nancy Grace" show on Thursday night that talks are ongoing that could land Anthony on the pages of his magazine, weeks after a Florida jury acquitted her of murder in her 2-year-old daughter Caylee's death.

Anthony's camp dismissed the report as "nonsense."

But Flynt insisted he was serious about the offer, which he said would include $500,000 up front plus 10% of all profits. He said any payment that the Orlando woman might receive for interviews with media outlets would be "chicken feed" compared to what she'd receive by appearing in Hustler.


Five Big Debt Debate Lies

Transparency: After months of dire warnings about not raising the debt ceiling, the public is still not convinced it's a big deal. Maybe that's because they've been repeatedly lied to about what's at stake.

Even with the clock ticking down, twice as many Americans still say lawmakers should vote against a debt ceiling hike as say they should vote for it. President Obama has said this is because the public isn't paying attention.

Just as likely is that they are paying attention, but have been turned off by the many falsehoods being bandied about — most of them by Obama himself. The five big ones:

Aug. 2 is the drop-dead deadline: This has been the White House line for months, and it's so widely accepted that several news outlets have countdown clocks on their sites. It's not true.
The New York Times on Tuesday reported that the government will have enough cash to pay all its bills until Aug. 10. And Wells Fargo Securities chief economist John Silvia says the debt ceiling won't be hit until sometime in September.

We risk defaulting on the debt: Despite countless warnings, there's zero chance the federal government will default, since each month the government takes in far more in taxes and fees than it pays in interest.

The White House itself, while publicly clanging the default alarm, has been privately reassuring banks that it won't default on the debt, even if the debt ceiling isn't raised.

Social Security payments are at risk: "I cannot guarantee that those checks go out on Aug. 3 if we haven't resolved this issue, because there may simply not be the money in the coffers to do it," Obama claimed earlier this month.

Also a complete fabrication. In June, for example, the government took in more than $250 billion, according to Treasury's monthly report. That was enough to pay that month's worth of interest, plus all Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and veterans benefits, and all Defense and Homeland Security costs, with billions of dollars left over.

A long-term debt ceiling hike is a must: Democrats refuse to sign a short-term hike, claiming that poses a risk to the economy. "A short-term extension would not provide the certainty the markets are looking for," Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid claimed. Obama has echoed that concern.

But it's a phony connection. For example, Congress raised the debt ceiling 17 times during President Reagan's eight years in office — an average of once every 5 1/2 months — and the economy boomed.

Obama wants a deal: We can't prove this is a lie, but Obama's given every indication that it is. After all, he's done nothing to lead this to a resolution and plenty to disrupt it, all while claiming he wants an agreement. More likely, Obama thinks a debt crisis he can pin on Republicans is the path to victory in 2012.

There's no question that failing to raise the debt ceiling in a timely fashion would be economically disruptive, if for no other reason than that the economy is so anemic it can ill afford any shock
But it's also clear that, even if Congress misses the Tuesday deadline, the sun will still come up Aug. 3, and many of Obama's big lies will be exposed.

Gov’t Trying To Ban Sale Of Your Supplements

Sen. Orrin Hatch blasted a new bill that health experts are calling a government takeover of the vitamin industry.

New legislation proposed by Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., earlier this month would crack down on the testing, labeling, and sale of dietary supplements nationwide.

“I don’t know why we should add more regulation when what we have on the books is working,” Hatch, a Utah Republican, told Newsmax.

The increased regulation almost certainly will deny many Americans easy, affordable access to the natural health products they rely on daily, experts warn.

“This unnecessary power grab would benefit FDA regulators and pharmaceutical companies by taking their competitors off the market, and it would harm the American public,” says Michelle Minton, director of the Insurance Studies Project at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a Washington D.C. watchdog group.

Sens. Durbin and Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., quietly submitted the Dietary Supplement Labeling Act of 2011 over the July 4th weekend.

Despite its innocuous title, the bill would force a massive reclassification of food additives and dietary supplements to be managed by the Food and Drug Administration.

Durbin’s bill was made public on the same day the FDA issued proposed new guidelines that would alter the way the agency approves and polices vitamins and dietary supplements.

“Regulatory hurdles such as these are a means by which government bureaucrats get in the way of individuals’ ability to make their own decisions about their healthcare,” warns Minton.

The combination of the two anti-supplement initiatives would force natural health manufacturers to submit to expensive government testing, adopt new labeling, and compete for market share with well-funded pharmaceutical makers who already have long-standing and mutually lucrative relationships with the FDA, health industry insiders say.

Popular supplements now being sold without government interference would be removed from shelves, in some cases for years, pending FDA tests and approval. The cost of all dietary supplements would likely spike as a result of the additional regulatory burden.

Under existing law, the FDA already has enough authority to ensure supplement safety, said Sen. Hatch. “In fact, several former FDA commissioners have said that the agency already has the appropriate and sufficient level of oversight of this industry," he said. "I don't know why we should add more regulation when what we have on the books is working."

Read more on Newsmax

Readers’ Choice – 07/30/2011

These were the most popular posts for July 29th, judged by the most approved comments.

Today In History – 07/30/2011

1502 - Christopher Columbus landed at Guanaja in the Bay Islands off the coast of Honduras during his fourth voyage.

1619 - The first representative assembly in America convened in Jamestown, VA. (House of Burgesses)

1729 - The city of Baltimore was founded in Maryland.

1733 - The first Freemasons lodge opened in what would later become the United States.

1889 - Vladimir Zworykin, called the "Father of Television" was born in Russia. He invented the iconoscope.

1898 - "Scientific America" carried the first magazine automobile ad. The ad was for the Winton Motor Car Company of Cleveland, OH.

1932 - Walt Disney's "Flowers and Trees" premiered. It was the first Academy Award winning cartoon and first cartoon short to use Technicolor.
Disney movies, music and books

1937 - The American Federation of Radio Artists (AFRA) was organized as a part of the American Federation of Labor.

1942 - The WAVES were created by legislation signed by U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt. The members of the Women's Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service were a part of the U.S. Navy.

1945 - The USS Indianapolis was torpedoed by a Japanese submarine. The ship had just delivered key components of the Hiroshima atomic bomb to the Pacific island of Tinian. Only 316 out of 1,196 men aboard survived the attack.

1956 - The phrase "In God We Trust" was adopted as the U.S. national motto.

1965 - U.S. President Johnson signed into law Social Security Act that established Medicare and Medicaid. It went into effect the following year.

1968 - Ron Hansen of the Washington Senators made the first unassisted triple play in the major leagues in 41 years.

1974 - The U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee voted to impeach President Nixon for blocking the Watergate investigation and for abuse of power.

1975 - Jimmy Hoffa, former Teamsters union president, disappeared in Michigan. His remains were never found.

1987 - Indian troops arrived in Jaffna, Sri Lanka, to disarm the Tamil Tigers and enforce a peace pact.

1990 - The first Saturn automobile rolled off the assembly line.

1996 - A federal law enforcement source said that security guard Richard Jewell had become the focus of the investigation into the bombing at Centennial Olympic Park. Jewell was later cleared as a suspect.

1997 - 14 Israelis were killed in a double suicide bombing in a Jerusalem marketplace. The Islamist group Hamas claimed responsibility for the bombings.

1998 - A group of Ohio machine-shop workers (who call themselves the Lucky 13) won the $295.7 million Powerball jackpot. It was the largest-ever American lottery.

2000 - Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt were married.

2001 - Lance Armstrong became the first American to win three consecutive Tours de France.

2003 - In Mexico, the last 'old style' Volkswagon Beetle rolled off an assembly line.

from On-This-

Word of the Day – 07/30/2011



n. meaningless speech uttered in a state of religious ecstasy or trance.

from Rare Words II by Jan and Hallie Leighton; copyright 2008: Levenger Press

Quote of the Day – 07/30/2011

“I have not failed. I've just found 10,000 ways that won't work.”

- Thomas A. Edison (1847 - 1931), (attributed)


Today’s Weather – 07/30/2011

for Salisbury, MD -

Today -
Partly cloudy. Hot. High 93F. Winds NNW at 5 to 10 mph.

Tonight -
Partly cloudy skies. Low 71F. Winds light and variable.

Tomorrow -
Mainly sunny. High 91F. Winds NE at 5 to 10 mph.

from the Weather Channel

Farmer's Market TODAY

Don't Miss This Yard Sale

It's a Yard Sale Paradise---Saturday, July 30th from 5:30am -9:30am. Location: 6271 Westbrooke Drive, just off Nanticoke Road in Salisbury. Furniture, jewerly, dishes, electronics, TV's, appliances, books and lot more. Come early for the best buys. You shouldn't pass this one up. Lots of new and gently used items.

Friday, July 29, 2011

BREAKING NEWS: Senate Puts House Debt Bill On Hold

Senate tables House GOP debt ceiling bill for now as Senate Democrats work to advance their own last-minute legislation.

From Fox News

Breaking News---House of Representatives Boehner's Revised Debt Limit Bill Passes House, as Senate Dems Work on Rival Legislation

With the U.S. moving perilously closer to defaulting on its loans, the House passed an increase in the federal debt limit as part of Speaker John Boehner's third version of a deficit-reduction bill, which includes a balanced budget amendment -- a pivotal provision for securing the support of hard-line Republicans.

The bill passed in a 218-210 vote, with all House Democrats opposed, as well as 22 Republicans. But it isn't likely to advance in the Senate, where Democrats are working on rival legislation ahead of the Treasury's Tuesday deadline to increase the debt limit.


Rep. Harris Will Vote For Historic Budget Control Act

Washington, DC – Today, Rep. Andy Harris will vote for the historic Budget Control Act of 2011, which will reduce spending by more than $2.7 trillion over the next decade, is coupled with a Balanced Budget Amendment, and would end the debt limit crisis.  The bill would also cut government spending by a larger amount than the debt ceiling increase.
“I didn’t come to Washington to put off making the tough decisions necessary to deal with our crippling debt and deficits,” said Rep. Andy Harris. “I came to Washington to end budget tricks, accounting gimmicks and empty promises. A Balanced Budget Amendment will provide the permanent accountability that America needs in Washington. The Budget Control act ends the debt limit crisis, and builds an environment for a strong, healthy economy and the job creation we so desperately need.”
Currently, the U.S. Government has a national debt of $14.5 trillion and runs an annual deficit of $1.65 trillion a year.

Don't Forget The Farmer's Market Tomorrow

Pres. Obama Takes Historic Step To Get America Off Oil & Tackle Global Warming Through Cleaner Cars

Washington, D.C.—President Obama today announced the outline of proposed clean car standards that by 2030 will cut annual gasoline use nationally by as much as 23 billion gallons, reduce annual emissions of global warming pollution by as much as 280 million metric tons, and save Americans over $80 billion at the gas pump annually.* 

The standards will cover cars and light trucks in model years 2017-2025, and are expected to require that these vehicles meet a global warming pollution standard equivalent to a 54.5 miles-per-gallon fleet-wide average by 2025.    

Foster Hardiman, Federal Field Organizer with Environment Maryland, issued the following statement in response to the announcement:

“Oil is America’s Achilles heel, holding us back from protecting our environment and growing our economy.  But today’s clean cars proposal is the single biggest step this country has ever taken to end our addiction to oil—and tackle global warming—and the Obama administration should be loudly applauded for taking it.  By ensuring that the cars of tomorrow are much cleaner and more fuel-efficient than the cars of today, we will reap huge global warming pollution reductions and oil savings.  Cleaner cars will benefit Maryland’s environment and our families’ health, while saving Maryland residents money at the gas pump and helping to protect our national security.

“We will work with the administration to further strengthen several elements of this proposal, as the problems of global warming and our addiction to oil demand that we make the final standards as strong as possible.  We can do this by putting American ingenuity to work and avoiding loopholes that will mean lost oil savings and pollution reductions. 

“We again applaud the Obama administration for this historic step forward that will benefit Maryland’s environment, our health, our economy and our national security, and we look forward to working with the administration to strengthen this proposal moving forward.”