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Monday, January 23, 2012

The Decision Is Final, Wilber Out, Tilghman In

It's not often you're going to see me disagree with certain Council Member, both in the City or in the County. However, today and tomorrow just might surprise you quite a bit.

While many of you know me as Joe Albero the Blogger, most of you are unaware of my corporate experience. I have spent millions of dollars over the past 30+ years of my life on attorneys. Either for patents, opening businesses, defending myself and Family, or whatever, I've been around a lot more than most realize.

In the case of the City Council, waiting around until almost 10:30 PM tonight to learn the Council had not only let Paul Wilber go, the retained a new law firm and agree to pay the same rate as what they had been paying Paul Wilber's Firm.

I personally have a serious problem with that. I do not believe Mr. Tilghman has the wisdom Mr. Wilber has on Salisbury matters. Now don't take me wrong. Mr. Tilghman is a very fine lawyer. However, as a businessman I would have at negotiated a special rate for at least the first six months until they were able to get up to speed.

Nevertheless, the Council chose not to go that route and I'm confident there will be plenty of people out there challenging why such a deal was made. I do believe in time Mr. Tilghman will serve the City well. I am NOT on the City Council and I do NOT expect those members to tell me why they chose to do what they did. I'm simply stating I would have done things differently.

That being said, I have already spoken to several people who were very pleased to see Mr. Wilber go. Perhaps we'll get into some of their reasons at a later point. In the mean time, Mr. Wilber served the City for 14 years. In that time his Firm has seen a substantial rate increase and they have made millions of dollars from the City of Salisbury.

I do not, nor will I ever feel bad for Mr. Wilber, this is business. Someone said at one point during the closed session tonight, (talking about the Baltimore Colts) they just packed up and left in the middle of the night. I instantly replied, you mean like what's going on with Paul Wilber. Things got quiet really fast.

My point is, things happen. The Citizens elected certain people to run the City. They made a business decision. Letting anyone go is not easy. Hiring someone new will bring on serious criticism, that's a given. Business is business, the decision was made and every one needs to move forward. That includes the Mayor, Shields and Mitchell.

Now, it should be known that Mayor Jim Ireton chose to have nothing to do with the interview process tonight. Once again, he was invited, threw his hissy fit and let it be known he might not participate. He openly stated he thought it might not be legal for him to sit in on those proceedings and Mr. Wilber abruptly told the Mayor he was invited by the Council and it was perfectly legal. Mayor Ireton did not like that answer.

So tomorrow is a new day. WBOC, WMDT and the Daily Times were not present when the Council came back into open session.

In closing, for the record, if you were watching the final open session and saw the interruption, my apologies to all of you. I was the one who raised my voice. I was in the back of the room taking a picture, (shown above) of the Council when Kris Adams daughter Alex Adams turned around and said, "If you take my picture it will be the last picture you ever take". I responded by saying, "don't threaten me". She opened her mouth and said it again. Mrs. Adams then turned around as she continued to take video and put her camera in my face, THE PRESIDENT OF SAPOA. Mrs. Adams, not one of my children would ever be so disrespectful. The apple didn't fall far from the tree. Again, my apologies for the interruption to all of you as well as the Council.

Expect The City To Provide A Letter Of Apology

You can expect the City of Salisbury to provide a formal letter of apology to Councilman Tim Spies. Mind you, you might only see that Press Release here because, well, you know, that would mean the rest of the Press would have to apologize as well.

Holy Cow, I can't Believe What I'm Seeing

I'm going to make this brief for the time being as I have to get back to the GOB. However, from everything I've witnessed so far, Paul Wilber is being terminated as the City Solicitor of Salisbury and if I was a gambling man I'd say Mark Tilghman will more than likely be his replacement.

In the most unusual Council Meeting I have ever witnessed, the Council majority chose to move forward TONIGHT by asking the Mayor and others to go into a closed session to interview the two law firms that entered RFP's RIGHT NOW. The Mayor may or may not participate in these interviews but my guess is that they will absolutely choose a new law firm to represent the City some time after 9 PM.

It's also my understanding that Paul Wilber does NOT want to play second fiddle attorney but stated he will represent the City for the Waste Water Treatment Plant. Mind you, the taxpayers can expect Wilber's Firm to charge full rate instead of a discounted rate, should the Council choose to do so.

Man, this is just unbelievable. I'll be back later with more details.

Neighborhood Services Code & Compliance Drops ALL Charges Against Councilman Spies

Once the information was published right here on Salisbury News, once we called out the Daily Times for completely screwing up and purposely attacking and defaming Councilman Tim Spies for numerous alleged violations, once WE cleared the air, Code & Compliance dropped ALL charges against Mr. Spies. It is now a dead issue. Tonight, Mrs. Laura Mitchell made the attempt herself to call out and defame Mr. Spies before she was immediately smacked down by Mr. Spies announcement that all charges have been dropped. She stuttered for several seconds but the reality clearly embarrassed her to no end and turned a shade of red I haven't seen in quite some time.

So you see, when you have a source who knows the TRUTH and spreads the TRUTH, think twice before ever trusting the Daily Times AND other Blogs who have nothing but HATE for those people who truly care about Salisbury and the Eastern Shore.

Mr. Spies, I'm VERY sorry you had to go through all of this and I truly hope the Daily Times, (and others) retract their statements/charges to vindicate you the proper way. Shame on SAPOA as well. Scumbags come to mind.

Let's Talk About Bennett Middle School A Little Bit

With all the discussion going on with the County Council, Board of Education and citizens expressing their opinions, let's go one step further and talk about the new location of the new Bennett Middle School.

First of all, did you know that 90% of the land chosen and purchased for that school is in a flood plane zone, 90%!!!!! IF they build that school, do you also realize their intent is to create floating footers and more than likely there will be severe settlement to the structure.

Did you know Bennett Middle School was never submitted to be remodeled. It was not even an option. Did you know Matt Holloway told the Board of Education several months ago NOT to come back to the Council unless they had a "different design," yet he recently voted to move forward with the original design.

Do you know why John Hall voted YES for the Middle School projects, "for the votes." That's right, he's more interested in getting VOTES from the BOE when he runs for re-election. He actually does NOT support the Middle School proposal.

The, let's go back to Gail Bartgovich and her reason for saying no. How in the hell can any Council vote to sign a commitment letter when the Council has yet to see the 2013 Budget! How can ANY Council Member vote to do so that far in advance.

Since that day we have seen O'Malley state he wants to raise the sales tax to 7%, increase cigarette tax, liquor tax, flush tax, increase tolls and the list goes on and on but more importantly he wants each County to pay for the teachers pension, which will cost the taxpayers of Wicomico County close to an additional $4,000,000.00 a year. Tack on the $3,500,000.00 mistake on Bennett Middle School and oh, wait a second, let's not forget a County TAX INCREASE, which isn't enough to cover Bennett Middle School.

More importantly, don't you ever think for a second that we've forgotten about Pollitt's statement in which you will not only see a tax increase this year, you'll see several tax increases year after year just to help pay for Bennett Middle School, not to mention Parkside renovations and three other schools already on the books, yet no one in the Main Stream Media, the County Executive or the BOE are mentioning.

The politics of this entire thing is so screwed up, it isn't funny. Now, tomorrow you will see the Council Chambers LOADED with wet pants liberals begging for things that are not necessary. Don't you think its time you confront Matt Holloway and say, why were you against it and now for it? To those of you who do NOT support this project, you need to show up at that Council Meeting and be heard.

Wicomico County cannot afford this $100,000,000.00 School. In closing, (for now) I want to add some images from Bennett High School.

You tell me the last time you ever heard of a tennis match at night? The Shorebirds don't even get this kind of technology in lighting but the Board of Education FOUND the additional money in the High School Project to come up with a few hundred thousand additional dollars to buy lights for freakin tennis courts.

If you think for a SECOND they aren't coming up with pie in the sky ideas for a MIDDLE SCHOOL built in a flood plane with soil that CANNOT handle this kind of structure, imagine the additional funding that will have to be used to correct the BS purchase of land that should have never been bought in the first place.

Folks, these liberals don't give a sh!t what you think. They are buying that "swamp land in Florida", "the Brooklyn Bridge", you know how it goes. The Board of Education gets what they want and then, (like the images show above) they'll take chains and LOCK YOU OUT of their property that YOU paid for.

If you are against Bennett Middle School, GO TO TOMORROW'S COUNCIL MEETING AND SAY SO.

New Posts to fall below throughout the evening.

Letter To A Real Editor

Hello Joe,

I would like to congratulate council members Joe Hollaway, Stevie Prettyman, Gail Bartkovich and Bob Culver for their hard decision on the Bennett Middle School issue. As I have said at a recent county council meeting, the make up of this County Council is unique and not an accident.

A conservative council was voted in by the taxpayers to lead this county through some very tough economic times.

Though I might not agree with all the decisions they have made they were right on with this one.

This issue from the very beginning was put forward with smoke screens (14 million dollars suddenly coming out of nowhere), intentionally misleading information (the State will pay for 96% of this project), trying to make an end run around the Charter to make it fit the BOE needs (using previously legislated funding for the project without going through the proper legislative procedures), presenting conflicting information to the County Council (BOE stating the school could not be renovated by a recommendation that someone thinks was made in 2005 but for some reason they didn't have a copy of this document. Councilmen Culver was however able to produce documentation from the County Executive's briefing stating the school could be renovated). Perhaps if the BOE had just told the citizens right up front that they didn't want to renovate the school because it was in the way of the ball fields layouts and a renovated middle school wouldn't go along with the aesthetics and grandiose they wanted to be projected by the new high school.

All the problems that were presented by concerned citizens are all items that could be addresses in a phased renovation of the school. These are the air conditioning, asbestos and lead abatement, electrical upgrade, modern technology in electronics and security are all taken into account during renovation. Wouldn't it have been nice for the citizens and County Council to at least have had something to compare in order to make a decision? I know of a sixty eight year old building at one of our local colleges that was recently renovated to Gold LEED standards. I've recently read where someone said distrust has crept into this project. I've got news for that person. There has been distrust mounting between the BOE and the citizens for many years and it doomed this project from the start. I've also read the recent rant by retired school teacher Mr. Geoff Smoot and found that it is extremely sad that this once productive member of our school system has fallen victim to his own headlines. Mr. Smoot, VOICE believes that if you give the citizens and the County Council the true information they will make a wise decision. I once again invite you to join us in finding the facts behind issues and presenting them to our fellow citizens for them to make informative decisions. We currently have some informative information that we will be putting out at the BOE budget hearings and hope you can come join us. Perhaps you will be able to justify our findings.

To the County Council we once again want to thank you for making the proper decision.

John Palmer Jr.,

McGruff Safe Kids Now Warning About Synthetic Drugs

Plan. Prepare. Share. (a division of Boerner, Inc. and a 20-year licensee of The National Crime Prevention Council/McGruff Safe Kids) has produced two new products to help teens and young adults understand the high likelihood of abuse associated with the use of new synthetic drugs.

These “Scary Spice” and “Bath Salts’” broadsides provide valuable information about new and evolving synthetic drugs. “Scary Spice”, or synthetic marijuana, is promoted and sold as a “legal” form of pot, though many of the chemicals that go into it are being outlawed on a state-by-state basis. It is an herb, or plant material, that is sprayed with chemicals to create a marijuana-like high. “Bath salts” are a powder that can be snorted, smoked or injected. It has caused catastrophic side effects, including extreme paranoia, hallucinations, cardiac arrest and even led to suicide.

“Synthetic drugs under any name are nothing to fool around with; Camp Pendleton had these brochures developed to provide a broadside that identified the drugs, the problem and offered helpful resources for people who are considering using these drugs”, said Jerry Cole, Substance Abuse Prevention Specialist for the STAY DRUG FREE program at Camp Pendleton Marine Corps Base.

“We were contacted by the United States Marine Corps and were hired to develop a self-guided presentation on synthetic drug abuse said, Kurt Boerner, president of McGruff Safe Kids, a 20-year licensee for the National Crime Prevention Council said. After research, including interviews with resources in the drug use prevention field, and drug treatment field we developed these “Scary Spice” and “Bath Salts” brochures. In creating this material we used our extensive experience gleaned from 20 years of working with law enforcement agencies, the business community and community resources to create another valuable personal safety guide.”

The information described below provides details of the disastrous effects that these drugs have had on people. The objective of these pieces is to convince people to stay drug free and/or seek help for drug related issues.


Historic Louisville Church Owes LG&E $32,000 Dollars

LOUISVILLE, KY. (WDRB) -- A historic Louisville church is in danger of holding worship service in the cold and dark this weekend. As of Thursday night, Lampton Baptist Church is without power.
"I said, well, how could it be this much?" asks Longtime Pastor James Miller. Rev. Miller recently discovered the church has a $32,000 LG&E bill. "It just blew me away."
And this didn't just happen overnight. In fact, the first sign of trouble came last January. Church official Roberta Alston says, "And then the next bill that came in was this, which was really shocking."
"$17,000 in one month... after they had paid it down," says Miller.


The Best States To Grow Up In

Newborn children can't choose the states in which they grow up any more than they can choose the size of their parents' bank accounts. But voters in every state choose how much to spend on public programs benefiting children, with telling results.


Breaking News- The New City Solicitor

Mark Tilghman is now the new City Solicitor.

More To Come....

Charting The US (Un)Recovery

How does the current recovery compare to those of the past? The following charts from the Council on Foreign Relations [8] puts the current (un)recovery in context and despite some apparently bright news recently, the pictures underline the economy's weakness since the NBER's recovery began in June 2009.

The x-axis shows the number of months since the end of the recession. The dotted lines are composites of prior recoveries representing the weakest and strongest experiences of the past. The recovery's start date is set using the recession dates established by the National Bureau of Economic Research's Business Cycle Dating Committee. By the committee's methodology, the current recovery began in June 2009.

Go Here To See

IRS Says It's Ready To Field Your E-Filings

If you're organized enough to have all your tax documents in order, you can go ahead and get a jump on the tax season by e-filing. The Internal Revenue Service says it's ready to process tax returns filed online.

More »

US Rebounds? Prosperity Around the Corner?

America overcomes the debt crisis as Britain sinks deeper into the swamp ... Britain has sunk deeper into debt. Three years after bubble burst, the UK has barely begun to tackle the crushing burden left by Gordon Brown. The contrast with the United States is frankly shocking ... The latest report on "Debt and Deleveraging" by the McKinsey Global Institute shows that total public and private debt in the UK is still hovering at an all-time high. It has risen from 487pc to 507pc of GDP since the crisis began ... The ordeal of belt-tightening will be grim, dragging out for a generation if Japan is any guide. The Japanese at least began their post-bubble debacle as the world's top creditor nation with a trade super-surplus and a savings rate of 17pc. Britain has no such buffers. It is a very different picture in the US where light is emerging at the end of the tunnel. American banks, firms, and households have been chipping away at their debts, more than offsetting Washington's double-digit deficits. The total burden has dropped to 279pc, down from 295pc at the peak of the boom. Households have purged roughly a third of the excess, roughly tracking the historic pattern of post-bubble deleveraging. – UK Telegraph


Average American Worker Spends Nearly $1,100/Year On Coffee

Some say that coffee is the fuel that keeps the American workforce moving forward. And it's a fuel that comes with a hefty price tag, as a new study shows that the average member of the American workforce spends almost as much on coffee every year as they do on commuting to and from their job.

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Obama Sides With TSA Against Ron and Rand Paul

The White House is standing by the Transportation Security Administration in its standoff with Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) and his father, Republican presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas).
The elder Paul called the TSA a "police state" Monday after Sen. Paul was reportedly detained by TSA after he refused to take a pat-down from TSA officials at the Nashville International Airport.
White House Press Secretary Jay Carney said Monday that he didn't have any reaction to Paul's comment about "police state."But Carney sided with the TSA saying, "I think it is absolutely essential that we take necessary actions to ensure that air travel is safe."


Walmart Casts Itself As "Retail American Idol" In Search For New Products

Your dream of putting hard work into inventing a new product so that it can be sold for bargain prices at big box stores around the country is about to come true. Walmart is holding a contest for inventors to compete for a spot on their shelves.

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Deputies: Waffle House Patron Shoots, Kills Armed Robber - Greenville News Story - WYFF Greenville

SPARTANBURG COUNTY, S.C. -- An armed robber was killed by a customer at an Upstate Waffle House early Saturday, according to Spartanburg County deputies, and a second armed robbery suspect who fled the scene was later arrested.

The shooting happened at the Waffle House on Chesnee Highway just after 1 a.m.

According to an incident report, two armed men entered the restaurant and tried to rob it. A customer in the Waffle House, who is a concealed weapon permit holder, was also armed with a handgun and attempted to hold the suspects at gunpoint until law enforcement could arrive, deputies said.

Read More

FAA Funding Back On Track

Prospects are looking brighter for long-term FAA funding. The agency has been running on a series of continuing resolutions. That's because lawmakers have been unable to reach agreement on labor rules. Last summer FAA suffered a temporary shutdown. But now Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and House Speaker John Boehner have found a compromise. It leaves intact a National Mediation Board ruling that lets workers form a union with a simple majority of those voting. It also lets stand a Republican-backed rule that 50 percent of workers must say so before a union election can be held. The compromise will be put to the test later this year in time for 2013 budget talks.

The Right to Bear Arms: Over 10,800,000 Guns Sold In The USA In 2011 By Mac Slavo

The United Nations may think they’re weapons of mass destruction, but Americans seem to disagree.

2011 was yet another record breaking year for gun sales, with Americans purchasing some 10.8 million firearms, a 14% increase over the previous year and up over 50% from ten years ago as reported by the National Shooting Sports Foundation:


Agriculture Secretary Re-Deploys Poultry Inspectors

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack is proposing a new system for inspecting poultry. He says it could save the government $95 million in the next three years. The jobs of 1,000 government inspectors would change. Instead of inspecting birds for flaws, they would be re-deployed to jobs with more impact on food safety. Such as sampling for pathogens and checking sanitary conditions at slaughter sites. Chicken processors would take over the inspections of birds. The poultry industry supports the move, but some consumer groups oppose it.

Jesse's Café Américain

Corzine, MF Execs and JPM Named in RICO Lawsuit

Privately sponsored RICO lawsuits have a difficult time obtaining the types of information that are required to make a conspiracy case unless they get lucky in the discovery process or find a willing whistleblower. The defendants generally lawyer up and stonewall, using the types of court maneuvers that prove so effective in mortgage fraud cases, theft of customer funds, and mass foreclosures based on forged documents.

The chances of an Obama Administration investigation with teeth seems unlikely. Their Justice Department has strong ties to the big banks and mortgage companies and a very poor record of prosecuting fraud cases.

Of course there is little reason to hope for anything different from any Republican administration. Ron Paul would be honest enough, but it is hard to tell which laws he would choose to enforce and which ones would be considered an intrusion on free markets.

It might be more effective for the public to demand the appointment of a special prosecutor with a proven record of effective investigation of the big banks. Too bad Eliot Spitzer was taken out of the picture in a bank sponsored 'investigation' into his sex life by the Bush Justice Department.


USPS Union Taks Failed While Price Of Stamps Went Up

Postal labor union talks failed this weekend, as the price of stamps went up. The Postal Service has declared an impasse in the contract talks with the National Association of Letter Carriers and the National Postal Handlers Union. The two unions represent more than $242,000 postal workers. Their contracts expired in November. The deadline for talks has already been extended twice. At issue is how much power the Postal Service will have to alter pay and benefits and issue layoffs. The impasse triggers 60 days of mediation. If that fails, an outside arbitrator will decide a final solution. At the same time, the price of postage was raised Sunday. First class stamps go up a penny to 45-cents — the first hike in 2-1/2 years. It's expected to earn the cash strapped postal service $888 million more in revenue this year.

EU Slaps Iran With Oil Embargo Over Nukes

(AP) BRUSSELS - The European Union formally adopted an oil embargo Monday against Iran and a freeze of the assets of the country's central bank, part of sanctions meant to pressure the country to resume talks on its nuclear program.

Diplomats said the measures, which were adopted in Brussels by the EU's 27 foreign ministers, include an immediate embargo on new contracts for crude oil and petroleum products, while existing contracts will be allowed to run until July.



Agenda includes Capital program to support 52,000 jobs; Civil Marriage Protection Act of 2012; Creation of Maryland Innovation Initiative; Streamlined P3 Process; Legislation to Promote a More Sustainable Future and Continue Maryland’s commitment to quality, affordable health care

Bill summaries for the Administration’s 2012 legislative agenda are
available here.

ANNAPOLIS, MD (January 23, 2012)
– Governor Martin O’Malley today unveiled the Administration’s 2012 legislative agenda focused on job creation, innovation, sustainability, health care, and equal protection under the law, just days after releasing the Administration’s FY 2013 budget proposal focused on many of the same priorities.

“To move Maryland forward, we must be willing to make the modern investments our modern economy requires to create jobs,” said Governor O’Malley. “This session, our legislative agenda will help us create jobs for Maryland families, protect the quality of life for all Marylanders, and continue our push for a more sustainable future. Together, we can expand opportunity today, so that our children can compete and win the jobs and opportunity of tomorrow.”

In July, Governor O’Malley announced that he is sponsoring legislation for marriage equality, a bill that would ensure equal protection under the law for Maryland’s same-sex couples who wish to marry and their children while providing exemptions for religious institutions.

The Governor’s agenda includes legislation to create jobs through innovation, infrastructure investments, regulatory reform, and public-private partnerships.

The Administration’s legislative package also includes bills to promote a more sustainable future for Maryland. Following the 2011 regular session, the Governor created a task force to study the impact of the use of septic systems in Maryland, and the extent to which they contribute to the pollution of the Chesapeake Bay. Governor O’Malley is reviving the push for septics legislation this year with the Sustainable Growth and Agricultural Preservation Act of 2012, a bill that implements a four-tiered comprehensive plan to guide growth on central sewer and septic systems and ensure the land use and pollution impact of future Marylanders is minimized. The Governor will also fight to protect the State’s family farms by raising the exemption for some agricultural properties, and work to secure the future of the Chesapeake Bay through the Bay Restoration Fund.

Governor O’Malley will again seek legislation to promote offshore wind in Maryland. This year’s legislation will enable the State to harness the wind off Maryland’s shores and create thousands of jobs by establishing an offshore wind energy credit (OREC) within the Renewable Portfolio Standard program.

In the FY 2013 budget, the Administration will invest to provide access to health care for over one million adults and children in Maryland. This session, Lt. Governor Anthony G. Brown will champion the Administration’s legislation to create jobs by streamlining and improving the State’s framework for creating public-private partnerships, lead efforts to move the Maryland Health Benefit Exchange to the next phase of development, and advocate for a series of geographically based Health Enterprise Zones in underserved communities impacted by health disparities to improve access to care among Maryland’s families and children.

“Governor O’Malley and I are focused on strengthening our communities by creating jobs and improving the health and wellbeing of all Marylanders,” said Lt. Governor Brown. “Our legislative proposals will advance innovative ideas and tools to encourage private sector investment in job-creating public infrastructure projects, continue Maryland’s nationally recognized leadership in implementing health care reform, and to address health disparities by expanding access to primary care in underserved communities. I look forward to working with the General Assembly and all stakeholders to build consensus around these important priorities.”

Bill summaries for the Administration’s 2012 legislative agenda are available here.

Two Former Soldiers Land In Jail For Bribery

A bribery scheme has landed two former soldiers in prison. Former Sgt. Charles Finch and Sgt. Maj. Gary Canteen were convicted and sentenced to jail time for their roles in a trucking contract scandal. The Justice Department says the pair took a $50,000 bribe from two people working for AZ corporation, so the company could get a $20 million contract for work in Afghanistan. Finch and Canteen will also pay $250,000 in restitution.

Do Women Feel More Pain Than Men? Study Says, 'Yes'

Tiiu Leek's pain began suddenly nearly a decade ago, upending her successful career as a television newscaster for KCLA in Los Angeles.

"I got this intense burning pain in the right groin and it did not go away," said the now 61-year-old. "It was as if someone had taken a hot iron and simply put it in my body on a nerve."


Republicans In Florida Want To Sell Off Their State To The Highest Bidder

And they don’t want you to know about it. The State Senate in Tallahassee is considering legislation that will allow lawmakers to privatize critical parts of the commons and outsource government duties to private corporations. That could include everything from selling off public parks to corporate chemical factories or handing over state prisons to corporations like the CCA, which lobbies for harsher drug penalties since they turn a profit off each person they incarcerate. And here’s the most radical thing about the legislation – it allows the lawmakers to make these deals behind closed doors in complete secret. Deals wouldn’t be made public until the contracts are already signed – eliminating any chance of voters being able to weigh in or protest their community being sold. Private corporations are eating up our communities and Republicans are the ones spoon-feeding them.


The SOPA Debate and How It’s Affected By Congress’s Understanding Of Child Porn

One thing I’ve learned from the whole SOPA affair is how obscure our lawmaking process is even in this digital age. The SOPA Opera site I put up doesn’t do anything but display publicly available information: which legislators support/oppose SOPA and why. But it still got a strong reaction from users, possibly because they misunderstand our government’s general grasp of technology issues.


In 2011 Nearly Half The Population Received Some Form Of Government Benefit

While politicians may debate whether or not America is the most "generous" (with other generations' money of course) socialist welfare state in the history of mankind, the undoctored numbers make the affirmative case quite clear and without any chance for confusion. The single most disturbing statistic: in 2011 nearly half of the population lived in a household that receives some form of government benefit, which in turn accounted for 65% of total federal spending, or $2.5 trillion, and amount to 15% of GDP. And yet some people out there still think these people, long since indoctrinated to do little but mooch off the welfare state (which will continue subsidizing its existence so long as debt rates are so low that the government can issue trillions each year without fears of consequences) will halt their iTunes purchases, will voluntarily stop subsisting on the government's teat, or will rebel against a government which is their only source of income? Why? Especially since something tells us that there will be a peculiar overlap between this 50% and the 50% of Americans that pay zero taxes.


Roe v. Wade Passes 39th Anniversary

On the 39th anniversary of the landmark Roe v. Wade Supreme Court case on Sunday, which established protection for abortion rights, President Obama reaffirmed his support for a woman's right to choose in a statement released on his blog.

Obama called the right to choose a "fundamental constitutional right," despite how "sensitive and often divisive" the issue may be.


Thanks To Citizens United, Multinational Mega Lobbyist Firm Salivates Over $4 Billion In Campaign Cash

The WPP Group is perhaps the most important lobbying corporation you've never heard of.

On Saturday, protesters will stage demonstrations across the country to mark the two year anniversary of the Citizens United, the Supreme Court case that opened the door to unlimited, and largely secret, corporate money flooding into American elections. But not everyone is grimacing at the prospect of special interests buying the 2012 vote.

Last summer, Sir Martin Sorrell, chief executive of the world's largest advertising and lobbying corporation, the WPP Group, told investors that he is bullish for this year. Political spending in the United States, Sorrell said confidently, "has already kicked off" and will rise to $4 billion -- "as best as we can anticipate." "The Supreme Court decision recently," he said referencing Citizens United, "on lobbying and funding of lobbying, pushes it further."

Most American media outlets segregate campaign spending from from special interest lobbying. But the British CEO's conflation of the two may be a more accurate representation.

The WPP Group is perhaps the most important lobbying corporation you've never heard of. The holding company owns the top players in the influence industry, including firms aligned with both parties. WPP owns Blue State Digital, the digital strategy firm behind Obama's 2008 web operation, as well as the the Glover Park Group, the lobbying and public relations operation run by ex-Clintonites. Mark Penn, the polling the guru behind Hillary Clinton's loss in the Democratic primary last cycle, heads a WPP-owned firm.

The slice of $4 billion in political spending WPP Group hopes to make off the election won't just be from Democrats. Ogilvy Government Relations, a powerhouse K Street company and WPP-owned firm, is run by Wayne Berman, one of Mitt Romney's most productive fundraisers. Charlie Black, the GOP uber-lobbyist who closely guided John McCain's campaign and recently signed up with team Romney, leads the Prime Policy Group, yet another corporate lobbying operation owned by the WPP Group.


South Carolina's Attorney General Detects Voter Fraud

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - South Carolina's attorney general has notified the U.S. Justice Department of potential voter fraud.
Attorney General Alan Wilson sent details of an analysis by the Department of Motor Vehicles to U.S. Attorney Bill Nettles.
In a letter dated Thursday, Wilson says the analysis found 953 ballots cast by voters listed as dead. In 71 percent of those cases, ballots were cast between two months and 76 months after the people died. That means they "voted" up to 6 1/3 years after their death.


Obama Administration Approves Rule That Guarantees Near-Universal Contraceptive Coverage

Today, in a huge victory for women’s health, Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius announced that most employers will be required to cover contraception in their health plans, along with other preventive services, with no cost-sharing such as co-pays or deductibles. This means that after years of trying to get birth control covered to the same extent that health plans cover Viagra, our country will finally have nearly universal coverage of contraception.

Opponents of contraception had lobbied hard for a broad exemption that would have allowed any religiously-affiliated employer to opt out of providing such coverage. Fortunately, the Obama administration rejected that push and decided to maintain the narrow religious exemption that it initially proposed. Only houses of worship and other religious nonprofits that primarily employ and serve people of the same faith will be exempt. Religiously-affiliated employers who do not qualify for the exemption and are not currently offering contraceptive coverage may apply for transitional relief for a one-year period to give them time to determine how to comply with the rule.

Twenty-eight states already require employers, including most religiously affiliated institutions, to cover contraception in their health plans. The only change is that now they must cover the full cost.


Santorum Brushes Off S.C., Takes On Iran In Florida

Coral Springs, Florida (CNN) - Trying to brush off his third-place finish in South Carolina on Saturday, Rick Santorum went straight to Florida on Sunday in search of momentum.

Newt Gingrich's strong win in the Palmetto State was something of an equalizer, Santorum argued, emphasizing the importance of the January 31 primary here in the Sunshine State.Before a crowd of more than 150 people – and 20 or so vocal Ron Paul supporters – Santorum said that the contests won by his opponents were races they should have won, because they were competing so close to their homes.


Study Challenges Supreme Court’s Image As Defender Of Free Speech

Washington - The Supreme Court led by Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr., the conventional wisdom goes, is exceptionally supportive of free speech. Leading scholars and practitioners have called the Roberts court the most pro-First Amendment court in American history.

A recent study challenges that conclusion. It says that a comprehensive look at data from 1953 to 2011 tells a different story, one showing that the court is hearing fewer First Amendment cases and is ruling in favor of free speech at a lower rate than any of the courts led by the three previous chief justices.

The study arrives as the Supreme Court prepares to consider two major First Amendment cases. On Tuesday, the court will hear arguments in Federal Communications Commission v. Fox Television Stations, No. 10-1293, which asks whether the First Amendment allows the government to regulate vulgarity in broadcast programming. Next month, the court will consider United States v. Alvarez, No. 11-210, which asks whether the government can make it a crime to lie about receiving military decorations.

In neither case is a ruling in favor of the free speech argument assured. Indeed, how the court decides the cases will help determine whether the court’s reputation as a fierce protector of the First Amendment is deserved.


Tennessee Tea Party Wants Slavery Removed From School Textbooks To Make Founding Fathers Look Good

As if the Tea Party hasn’t butchered American history enough since their creation, the Tea Party in Tennessee is demanding the immediate removal of any mention of slavery as it applies to the Founding Fathers because they want schools clean up their image and teach students “the truth about America.” Tennessee now wants to join Texas in changing American history as it is presented in textbooks and how it is taught by teachers in school.


100% Unverifiable Statewide E-Voting In South Carolina's 2012 GOP Primary

The voting systems in use for the nation's first three all-important electoral contests in the 2012 primary --- from Iowa to New Hampshire to Saturday's South Carolina Primary --- go from pretty great to intolerably horrible. And then comes Florida, which deserves its very own special category, thereafter.

The "First-in-the-Nation" caucuses in Iowa allowed voters to vote on hand-marked paper ballots, counted by hand in front of the public at the caucus site, with results announced to everyone right then and there before being called in to GOP headquarters and before ballots were move anywhere. The wonderfully transparent system allowed for Republican voters by the Iowa GOP (which they hypocritically fight against allowing for everybody else in other states, and even in their own during general elections) is just about as close as we general get in this country to Democracy's Gold Standard. It's also what allowed reporting errors to be discovered and confirmed by the public after an election with some 122,000 votes counted transparently within an hour or so of polls closing, leading to almost nobody charging "fraud" even though just 34 votes are said to separate first and second place in the certified results of the impossibly, and historically, close election.

As of the "First-in-the-Nation" primary in New Hampshire, however, election transparency for voters and their ability to oversee their own elections began to disappear. While a lucky 10% of voters enjoyed hand-marked, publicly hand-counted paper ballots, the rest of the state's voters were allowed to vote on hand-marked paper ballots, but forced to tolerate secret tabulation on oft-failed, easily-manipulatedDiebold optical-scan systems programmed by a company (LHS) with a history of criminal behavior and convictions. The results from those 90% of Granite State voters may have been tallied accurately by the Diebold op-scanners or, as seen in the disastrous 2008 Presidential Primary, not. Since NH doesn't bother to actually check to see if their machines tallied the hand-marked paper ballots correctly, we're unlikely to ever know if they did --- barring a recount request where, by then, the secure chain of custody of the paper ballots would be uncertain (to put it mildly.)


4 Die In NYC Subway Incidents In 24 Hours

NEW YORK -- Four men have died in New York's subway in less than 24 hours.

Police say the mishaps — all on Saturday — are unrelated.

The first victim was found unconscious at about 2 a.m. in Queens' Elmhurst Avenue station at Broadway, on the R line. Police say he may have fallen down the stairs. He reportedly was in his 60s.


ESA Finally Drops Support For SOPA, After The Fact

In the aftermath of the death of the Stop Online Piracy Act, many are still fuming over the sudden 180 that the Entertainment Software Association demonstrated, just a few hours after the House of Representatives decided to throw in the towel.

Aside from the joy of victory, that First Amendment rights were in slightly less danger for the time being, there was also a sense of validation, especially among gamers. (Primarily those who had contacted game publishers that supported of the bill, in hopes of convincing them otherwise.) While the response among individual companies varied, it's unquestionable the voices of their customers were heard. But the one entity whose support for SOPA never wavered was the ESA.


The Entire Campaign In One Cartoon

'Walmart Of Weed' Plans D.C. Location

A California-based retailer that bills itself as a "one-stop-shop" for marijuana growers says it has plans to open a location in northeast D.C.

weGrow, which currently has three stores in California and Arizona, sells hydroponic equipment used in marijuana cultivation.

The company says on their website that they have plans to move into an address at 1522 Rhode Island Avenue NE just north of Montana Avenue.


Demi's Message To Baby Ava

Blacks Face Bias In Bankruptcy, Study Suggests

Blacks are about twice as likely as whites to wind up in the more onerous and costly form of consumer bankruptcy as they try to dig out from their debts, a new study has found.

The disparity persisted even when the researchers adjusted for income, homeownership, assets and education. The evidence suggested that lawyers were disproportionately steering blacks into a process that was not as good for them financially, in part because of biases, whether conscious or unconscious.

The vast majority of debtors file under Chapter 7 of the bankruptcy code, which typically allows them to erase most debts in a matter of months. It tends to have a higher success rate and is less expensive than the alternative, Chapter 13, which requires debtors to dedicate their disposable income to paying back their debts for several years.

The study of racial differences in bankruptcy filings was written by Robert M. Lawless, a bankruptcy expert and law professor, and Dov Cohen, a psychology professor, both with the University of Illinois; and Jean Braucher, a law professor at the University of Arizona.


Immigration Authorities Released Felon Who Then Killed 3

When burglar Kesler Dufrene became a twice-convicted felon in 2006, a Bradenton judge shipped him to prison for five years. And because of his convictions, an immigration judge ordered Dufrene deported to his native Haiti.

That never happened.

Instead, when Dufrene’s state prison term was up, Miami immigration authorities in October 2010 released him from custody. Two months later, North Miami police say, he slaughtered three people, including a 15-year-old girl in a murder case that remains as baffling today as it did the afternoon the bodies were discovered.

DNA on a rifle found inside the house and cellphone tracking technology later linked Dufrene to the Jan. 2, 2011, slayings.

But North Miami detectives never got to interrogate him. Just 18 days after the murders, Dufrene shot and killed himself when he was cornered by Manatee County sheriff’s deputies in Bradenton after an unrelated break-in and shooting there.

The episode is a black eye for U.S. authorities, who by law could not detain Dufrene indefinitely after the Obama administration ordered a temporary halt of deportations to the island nation. The deportations were halted because of the carnage wrought by Haiti’s January 2010 earthquake.


Americans Are Less Nationalistic Than Flag-Waving Politicians Think

Are American politicians out of sync with the public when it comes to foreign policy? There is considerable reason to believe so.

Throughout the scramble for the GOP presidential nomination, the major candidates have certainly been rabidly nationalistic. In a major foreign policy address on October 7, 2011, Mitt Romney proclaimed that “the twenty-first century can and must be an American Century.” Championing a vast military buildup, he argued that, to secure this “American Century,” the United States should have “the strongest military in the world.” By contrast, he assailed the “shameful” role of the United Nations and other international institutions and declared that he did not see any reason to obey them—or the international law they represented—when it did not suit the U.S. government.

Romney’s newly-anointed top competitor, Rick Santorum, says nothing about the United Nations, international cooperation, or international law in the “10 Steps to Promote Our Interests Around the World” posted on his campaign website. Instead, he argues that the United States is “intrinsically better prepared to lead than any other nation.” He adds: “I truly do believe that we are ‘the last best hope of earth,’” but, alas, under President Obama, “we have been weak where we should have been strong and we have been appeasing of evil.” Naturally, then, Americans should be “increasing our military preparedness.”

By contrast, polls show that most Americans favor a more cooperative world order based on international law, a stronger United Nations, and a less dominant role for the United States in world affairs.


BREAKING NEWS: Nation's Five Largest Mortgage Lenders Agree To Restructure Loans

Banks and U.S. states agree to draft settlement over deceptive foreclosure practices.

From Fox News

One Day Ahead Of State Of The Union Address, American Dissatisfaction With Economic, Political Issues At Record

As Obama takes the stage for tomorrow's State of the Union address, in which, among other things, he probably will not announce that the US debt limit is effectively $16.4 trillion, or 107% of GDP and rising, he faces a very unhappy audience: one which according to Gallup [7]has seen its dissatisfaction with economic and political issues hit record levels. Among the Gallup observations: "As President Barack Obama prepares his annual address to Congress, Americans are broadly dissatisfied with the state of the nation in several specific issue areas, with satisfaction down sharply in some cases since January 2008. However, three issues -- the nation's economy, the size and power of the federal government, and the moral and ethical climate in the country -- fit both of these unwelcome criteria." And with the only response the administration has in the past three years consisting of either printing more money which sends all assets, especially energy, higher in price, or fiscal stimulus of which 90% and more is lost due to inefficiencies and corruption, we don't see satisfaction rising any time soon.


How To Create A Depression

Cambridge - European political leaders may be about to agree to a fiscal plan which, if implemented, could push Europe into a major depression. To understand why, it is useful to compare how European countries responded to downturns in demand before and after they adopted the euro.

Consider how France, for example, would have responded in the 1990’s to a substantial decline in demand for its exports. If there had been no government response, production and employment would have fallen. To prevent this, the Banque de France would have lowered interest rates. In addition, the fall in incomes would have automatically reduced tax revenue and increased various transfer payments. The government might have supplemented these “automatic stabilizers” with new spending or by lowering tax rates, further increasing the fiscal deficit.

In addition, the fall in export demand would have automatically caused the franc’s value to decline relative to other currencies, with lower interest rates producing a further decline. This combination of monetary, fiscal, and exchange-rate changes would have stimulated production and employment, preventing a significant rise in unemployment.

But when France adopted the euro, two of these channels of response were closed off. The franc could no longer decline relative to other eurozone currencies. The interest rate in France – and in all other eurozone countries – is now determined by the European Central Bank, based on demand conditions within the monetary union as a whole. So the only countercyclical policy available to France is fiscal: lower tax revenue and higher spending.


Poll: Gingrich Surges To Lead In Florida Primary

Fresh off his victory in Saturday's South Carolina primary, a new poll shows Newt Gingrich surging into the lead in the next Republican battleground, Florida.

An InsiderAdvantage poll released late Sunday shows the former House Speaker leading his main rival, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, in the Sunshine State with 34 percent support from likely GOP voters to Romney's 26.

Rep. Ron Paul (Texas) receives 13 percent support for third place in the poll, followed by former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum with 11 percent.

The survey's results show a sharp rise for Gingrich. Last week, two polls showed Romney leading in the state by double digits.

A CNN/Time/ORC poll released Wednesday showed Romney at 43 percent, ahead of Santorum at 19 percent and Gingrich in third with 18 percent support. A Public Policy Poling (PPP) survey released last Monday showed Romney leading a second-place Gingrich by 15 points.

"The poll shows a huge bounce for Newt Gingrich, coming out of South Carolina," said Matt Towery, chief pollster for InsiderAdvantage.

Towery said the new Florida numbers reflect a Gingrich rise nationally.


Honduras Is Test Of New US Policy On Gay Rights

San Pedro Sula, Honduras - From U.N. chambers to the halls of the State Department, global pressure on countries to protect the rights of gay people and transgender people is rising.

For Josue Hernandez, the new emphasis can't come fast enough.

The 33-year-old gay activist bears the scar of the bullet that grazed his skull in an attack a few years ago. He's moved the office of his advocacy group four times. Still, he feels hunted in what is arguably the most homophobic nation in the Americas.

"We are in a deplorable state," Hernandez said of gays in Honduras. "When we walk the streets, people shout insults at us and throw rocks. Parents move their children away."


Landmark Ruling By Supreme Court Prohibits GPS Monitoring Without Warrant

In a landmark decision issued today, the United States Supreme Court unanimously ruled that the Fourth Amendment requires law enforcement to get a warrant before they may attach a GPS device to a vehicle in order to track the movements of a suspect in a criminal investigation. In the case of United States v. Jones, investigators had attached a GPS unit to the undercarriage of a vehicle driven by a suspected drug dealer. The GPS unit was configured to use a cell phone to call and report his location. Over about a month of time, nearly 4,000 pages of data about his location was sent to law enforcement. During the month-long surveillance, they went underneath Jones' vehicle a second time and replaced the battery.

The Supreme Court held that the property interests of the vehicle's driver required the police to first obtain a warrant before using a GPS device. Importantly, the Court distinguished the case of Jones from a prior decision of U.S. v. Knotts, which had upheld the use of a beeper hidden in a canister to track a chemical shipment. Because the beeper in that case was placed with the consent of the container's owner before it was transferred to the suspect, it was different than Jones. No one in Jones consented to the placement of the GPS device.


Obama Looks To Bait GOP

“No drama-Obama” is walking into the lion’s den Tuesday — and he couldn’t be happier about it.

President Obama will use this year’s State of the Union Address to draw a clear line between himself and congressional Republicans. He’s looking forward to a slew of television shots showing grim-faced GOP lawmakers reacting with stony silence to policy pitches he hopes will resonate with middle-class voters in an election year.

The White House has said in no uncertain terms that Obama’s path to another term will be cleared by open conflict with a Republican-controlled House that is deeply unpopular with voters, so observers expect a pugnacious Obama to take the lectern in his last State of the Union Address before the November election.

“President Obama’s approval ratings may not be great, but Congress’s hover near single digits — so if there’s one slam-dunk opponent for Obama to take on this fall, it’s the 535 men and women who will be sitting in front of him,” said David Meadvin, the president of Inkwell Strategies. Meadvin is a former speechwriter for both Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) and Attorney General Eric Holder.

“As we saw back in 2010 when Obama used his speech to take the Supreme Court to task, Obama has no problem defying tradition or ruffling some feathers,” he added. “He only stands to gain politically by picking a fight with Congress.”

Though Obama did attack the court last year over a campaign finance decision he disliked, the president’s last State of the Union was wrapped in conciliation. In the days after the attempted assassination of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), lawmakers in both parties sought to cool tensions — with Republicans and Democrats sitting side-by-side in some cases to highlight the mood.

Opponents said they’re confident that Obama will take shots at Republicans throughout an address they suggest is more about the state of the president’s campaign than the union.

“I don’t think there’s any question that this is another stump speech,” said Republican strategist Doug Heye. “He’s been in full on-campaign mode. The campaign has been a part of every planned activity that has come out of the White House, and the State of the Union is a part of that.”

Here's more

Back In The Day

What Are Newt Gingrich’s Big Ideas?

Gingrich once proposed a law that would put anyone caught with more than two ounces of pot to death. 

On Saturday’s edition of “Up With Chris Hayes,” Gary Johnson brought up an old Newt Gingrich idea I hadn’t heard before: Putting individuals who brought more than two ounces of marijuana into the United States to death. That sounded extreme, even for Gingrich. So I looked it up. And sure enough, there it is: “The Drug Importer Death Penalty Act of 1996.” What makes the bill even more amazing is that Gingrich himself is a confessed pot smoker. When he was young, he said, experimenting with drugs “was a sign we were alive and in graduate school in that era.”

McDonnell Proposes Selling Naming Rights To Roads, Bridges

WASHINGTON - WTOP's traffic reports could include updates on congestion near the Five Guys Interchange or on the State Farm Insurance Bridge.

That's if a proposal from Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell that would allow the state to sell naming rights to its transportation infrastructure passes the General Assembly.

Under the proposal, private entities will be able to put their names on highways, interchanges, bridges and other infrastructure for an annual fee.


Military Intervention vs. Maritime Union Power

For the first time in 40 years, the U.S. Armed Forces will be deployed to intervene in a labor dispute, facilitating a scab operation against union dockworkers at the Port of Longview in Washington.
In the long dispute between International Longshore Workers Union (ILWU) Local 21 and EGT Development, the international conglomerate is now poised to make its first grain shipment from its new $200 million export terminal, violating its contract with the publicly-owned port and the union’s jurisdiction on the waterfront.
But it may take an army to cross the picket line.

Special County Council Legislative Session

Re: Bennett Middle School- Alternate Funding Plan

At the request of a County Council majority, Council President, Joe Holloway has scheduled a Special Legislative Session for 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, January 24, 2012 in the Council Chambers. The purpose of the meeting will be to discuss additional financial information the Council received from Finance Director, Andrew Mackel, on January 20th regarding the affordability of funding for the Bennett Middle School project.

At its meeting on January 17th the County Council voted 4-3 against going further with the project until it has information it needs to determine whether the county can afford principle and interest payments on bonds for the project, while still meeting the county’s other financial obligations.

It Didn't Matter, Until It Did

WHEN Obama wrote a book and said he was mentored as a youth by Frank (Frank Marshall Davis was his Mother’s boyfriend) an avowed Communist, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN it was discovered that his grandparents were strong socialists who sent Obama's mother to a socialist school where she was introduced to Frank Marshall Davis. He was later introduced to young Barrack Hussein Obama. People said it didn't matter.

WHEN people found out that Barrack Hussein Obama was enrolled as a Muslim child in school and his father and stepfather were both Muslims, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he wrote in another book he authored "I will stand with them (Muslims) should the political winds shift in an ugly direction" people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he admittedly, in his book, said he chose Marxist friends and professors in college-- people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he traveled to Pakistan after college on an unknown national passport, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he sought the endorsement of the Marxist Party in 1996 as he ran for the Illinois Senate, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he sat in a Chicago Church for twenty years and listened to a preacher spew hatred for America and preach black liberation theology, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN an independent Washington organization, that tracks Senate voting records, gave him the distinctive title as the "most liberal senator," people said it didn't matter.

WHEN the Palestinians in Gaza set up a fund raising telethon to raise money for his election campaign, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN his voting record supported gun control, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he refused to disclose who donated money to his election campaign, as other candidates had done, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he received endorsements from people like Louis Farrakhan and Mummar Kadaffi and Hugo Chavez, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN it was pointed out that he was a total newcomer and had absolutely no experience at anything except community organizing, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he chose friends and acquaintances such as Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn who were revolutionary radicals, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN his voting record in the Illinois senate and in the U.S. Senate came into question, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he refused to wear a flag lapel pin, and did so only after a public outcry, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN people started treating him as a Messiah and children in schools were taught to sing his praises, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he stood with his hands over his groin area for the playing of the National Anthem and Pledge of Allegiance, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he said he favors sex education in Kindergarten, including homosexual indoctrination, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN his personal background was either scrubbed or hidden and nothing could be found about him, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN the place of his birth was called into question, and he refused to produce a birth certificate, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he had an association in Chicago with Tony Rezco--a man of questionable character and who is now in prison and had helped Obama to a sweet deal on the purchase of his home-- people said it didn't matter.

WHEN it became known that George Soros, a multi-billionaire Marxist, spent a ton of money to get him elected, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he started appointing White House Czars that were radicals, revolutionaries, and even avowed Marxist/Communist, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he stood before the Nation and told us that his intentions were to "fundamentally transform this Nation" into something else, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN it became known that he had trained ACORN workers in Chicago and served as an attorney for ACORN, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he appointed cabinet members and several advisors who were tax cheats and socialists, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he appointed a Science Czar, John Holdren, who believes in forced abortions, mass sterilizations and seizing babies from teen mothers, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he appointed Cass Sunstein as Regulatory Czar who believes in "Explicit Consent," harvesting human organs without family consent, and allowing animals to be represented in court, while banning all hunting, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he appointed Mark Lloyd, as Diversity Czar, who believes in curtailing free speech; taking from one and giving to another to spread the wealth; who supports Hugo Chavez, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN Valerie Jarrett was selected as Obama's Senior White House Advisor and she is an avowed Socialist, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN Anita Dunn, White House Communications Director said Mao Tse Tung was her favorite philosopher-- and the person she turned to most for inspiration, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he appointed Carol Browner as Global Warming Czar, and her being a well known socialist working on Cap and Trade as the nations largest tax, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he appointed Van Jones, an ex-con and avowed Communist as Green Energy Czar, who since had to resign when this was made known, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN Tom Daschle, Obama's pick for health and human services secretary could not be confirmed, because he was a tax cheat, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN as President of the United States he bowed to the King of Saudi Arabia, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he traveled around the world criticizing America and never once talking of her greatness, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN his actions concerning the Middle-East seemed to support the Palestinians over Israel, our long time ally, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he upset the Europeans by removing plans for a missile defense system against the Russians, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he played politics in Afghanistan by not sending troops early-on when the Field Commanders said they were necessary to win, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he started spending us into a debt that was so big we could not pay it off, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he took a huge spending bill under the guise of stimulus and used it to pay off organizations, unions, and individuals that got him elected, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he took over insurance companies, car companies, banks, etc., people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he took away student loans from the banks and put it through the government, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he designed plans to take over the health care system and put it under government control, people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he claimed he was a Christian during the election and tapes were later made public that showed Obama speaking to a Muslim group and 'stating' that he was raised a Muslim; was educated as a Muslim; and that he is still a Muslim-- people said it didn't matter.

WHEN he set into motion a plan to take over the control of all energy in the United States through Cap and Trade, people said it didn't matter

WHEN he finally completed his transformation of America into a Socialist State , people finally woke up -- but it was too late.

Add these up one by one and you get a phenomenal score that points to the fact that Barrack Hussein Obama is determined to turn America into a Marxist-Socialist society.

All of the items in the preceding paragraphs have been put into place. All can be documented very easily. Before you disavow this do an internet search. The last paragraph alone is not yet cast in stone. You and I will write that paragraph. Will it read as above or will it be a more happy ending for most of America ?

If you seek the truth you will be richer for it.

Don't just belittle the opposition.. Search for the truth. Democrats, Republicans, Independents, Constitutionalists, Libertarians all need to pull together or watch the demise of a free democratic society.

Pray for Americans to seek the truth and take action for it will keep us FREE. Our biggest enemy is not China, Russia, North Korea, and Iran; our biggest enemy is a contingent of politicians in Washington, DC. The government will not help, so we need to do it ourselves.

Question....will you delete this, or pass it on to others who don't know about Obama's actions and plans for the USA, so that they may know how to vote in November, 2012 and the ensuing years?

It's your decision.

I believe it does matter. How about you?

Cop Shoots Dog ‘in Cold Blood’ Responding to 9-1-1 Call At Wrong Address

A police officer in Dekalb County near Atlanta responded to a 911 call on Wednesday and shot a pet German Shepherd just moments before finding out he responded to the wrong address.

Now, the owners of the dog are outraged, and there seems little they can do about this very sad incident.


Frog Plays Ant Crusher

Fill In The Blank 01/23/12

My favorite Rock Singer is _____.

Muslims Discovered America

Whits Pages

Go to the website and put in your address and you will get EVERYONE'S name and address around your neighborhood.

White Pages - for your neighborhood This is truly amazing. Go to website: Enter your address, and up comes a map of your area...and a list of all neighbors and their phone numbers!


It was just weeks after Barrie P. Tilghman was initially elected in what was probably the dirtiest campaign ever by a candidate for that office - although her susbsequent campaign against Duke Shannahan is a close second. She suspended then police chief Coulbourn Dykes, who later resigned, for matters involving his conduct in that position and -- because he was friendly with Dykes -- then City Attorney Robert Eaton.

She tried to replace Mr. Eaton with Robin Cockey, who had been her campaign manager, but the City Council -- which then included Jim Ireton, who also was elected in 1998 -- objected. In early June the Council unanimously voted to reinstate Mr. Eaton, who continued in that position until Paul Wilber became the City Attorney several months later.

At about that time occurred one of the most bizarre episodes during Tilghman's reign of terror. After Cockey presented the City with a bill for services performed at Barrie's request but without the Council's prior knowledge or approval and threatened to sue the City, Barrie caused the bill to be paid, again without Council prior knowledge or approval.

And the saga doesn't end there. After she canned Chief Dykes, Ed Guthrie served as acting police chief until, following a search that involved interviewing numerous candidates from elsewhere, Barrie nominated and the Council confirmed Allan Webster, then with the Baltimore County police force, and the rest, sadly, is history.

You may recall that during his mayoral campaign several years ago, Ireton said that upon being elected he would promptly remove both Webster and Wilber from their positions. That, too, is part of the Salisbury saga.

Viewed in perspective, the pending demotion of Paul Wilber by the City Council does not seem extraordinary. By the way, Cockey recently wrote a letter, published in the Daily Times, bemoaning the Council's decision, in which he says that "Paul Wilber and the citizens of Salisbury alike deserve better treatment than this." And how about Bob Eaton, Mr. Cockey?


The Wicomico County Council will be holding a special meeting tomorrow to discuss Bennett Middle School again.

It turns out the Board of Education has finally come through with financial information the Council had asked for numerous times in the past and the BOE simply didn't deliver it.

Based on these new figures, Bennett Middle School could be back on the table, time will tell.

One thing is for sure, the County Council is being more than fair by requesting this new meeting and no one can ever say they are one sided. They will discuss this new finding and perhaps take another vote.

Original Post 9:52 AM.

New Posts to fall below.

Today's Help Wanted 01/23/12

Businesses looking to fill positions can put their information in comments for FREE.

Amber Nichole's Bridal Shop Has Re Grand Opening

On Sunday, Amber Nichole's Bridal Shop held a Grand Re Opening relocated on the Downtown Plaza.

We found it very interesting that Senator Jim Mathias showed up to join in this celebration but Mayor Jim Ireton was a no show.

Great way to show your, (lack of) support there Mayor. Here's a business that could have easily gone elsewhere but instead reinvested back into the community.

Afghan Soldier 'Killed French Troops Over US Video'

An Afghan soldier who shot dead four French troops has said he did it because of a recent video showing US Marines urinating on the dead bodies of Taliban insurgents, security sources told AFP.
"During the initial interrogations by French soldiers, he told them he did it because of the video in which American soldiers were urinating on bodies," an Afghan army officer said.
The report was backed by an intelligence source and another with access to information from the Afghan ministry of defence, both of whom requested anonymity.
"In his initial confessions, he said that he was strongly motivated to kill the soldiers when he saw the video of a foreign soldiers urinating on Afghan corpses," the intelligence source said.
French Defence Minister Gerard Longuet said during a visit to Kabul at the weekend that he had been told the soldier who killed the four soldiers and wounded 15 others was a Taliban infiltrator.

Nassim Taleb Says "The Only Candidate I Trust Is Ron Paul"

Nassim Nicholas Taleb, author of Fooled By Randomness and The Black Swan is endorsing presidential candidate Ron Paul.

This is according to Taleb's Facebook page.

Horrific Murder No Surprise In US Meth Hub

When a 23-year-old Fresno woman fatally shot her two toddlers and a cousin, critically wounded her husband then turned the gun on herself last Sunday, investigators immediately suspected methamphetamine abuse in what otherwise was inexplicable carnage. It turned out the mother had videotaped herself smoking meth hours before the shooting.


Gingrich Aims For Repeat Of Tea Party Mobilization

Newt Gingrich mobilized the tea party vote to help him win the South Carolina Republican presidential primary, according to exit poll results and interviews with supporters.

Supporters of the conservative tea party movement were crucial to Gingrich's victory in Saturday's primary to be the Republican nominee facing President Barack Obama in November's election, exit poll data from South Carolina showed.

Almost two-thirds of Republican voters said they backed the tea party, a three-year-old, grass-roots movement focused on smaller government and fiscal reform. Among tea party supporters in the South Carolina primary, Gingrich had a lead over Mitt Romney of 20 percentage points.

The Gingrich campaign tapped into a network of experienced activists left over from the 2010 midterm elections, when the tea party helped to elect four new congressmen in the state.

Tea party backers, many of whom originally had supported Michele Bachmann or former pizza magnate Herman Cain before they dropped out of the 2012 race, worked the phones and bombarded social media in the final days of the South Carolina race.

More here

"I Will Believe In Corporate Personhood When One Of Them Is Executed In Texas."

As the anniversary of the infamous Citizens United decision nears (January 21), you can count on Jim Hightower to stick it to the Supreme Court (5-4 corporate majority): "If a corporation is a person, where's its navel?"

 Although Citizens United is generally considered the most recent apogee of the expanding legal concept of corporate personhood, it was - on a more focused level - a case about campaign financing. What the ruling did was nullify a section of the McCain-Feingold election financing reform law. In overturning a District of Columbia federal court ruling, the Supreme Court opened the floodgates of corporate, union and Super PAC expenditures in elections as "third parties."


Ron Paul Tops Twitter As Most Talked About Candidate

According to the Washington Post’s @mentionmachine, Ron Paul was the most talked about candidate “on the most tumultuous day” of the South Carolina campaign.

The graph below confirms that the establishment media is pushing Newt Gingrich and Mitt Romney while ignoring Ron Paul.


Today's Survey Question 1-23-12

Do you support Governor O'Malley's proposal to raise the sales tax to 7%?

Federal Agencies In D.C. Area Will Open Late Monday

WASHINGTON, DC (WUSA) -- Due to expected icy conditions, Federal agencies in the Washington, D.C. area will open at 11:00 a.m. on Monday, January 23.

Employees will have the option for unscheduled leave or unscheduled telework.


OMG - George Clooney