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Thursday, November 29, 2012

LET THIS VIRAL PICTURE OF AN NYPD COP GIVING A HOMELESS MAN WINTER BOOTS RESTORE YOUR FAITH IN HUMANITY

‘Tis the season of giving, and no time was that more apparent than on a street corner in New York City earlier this month.

That’s when a tourist witnessed an NYPD officer giving a homeless man without shoes — and with blistered feed — a pair of winter boots. The photo taken of the scene, unbeknown to the officer at the time, has since gone viral.

The cellphone photo of Officer Lawrence DePrimo, snapped by Jennifer Foster of Florence, Ariz., on Nov. 14, has been made it onto news sites and blogs around the world. The photo posted on the NYPD’s official Facebook page has been liked more than 315,000 times and shared more than 74,000 times. According to the New York Times, as of Wednesday evening it had been viewed by more than 1.6 million people. 

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Confirmed: US Planned To Nuke The Moon


A B53 bomb is seen in this handout taken October 19, 2011 and released October 20, 2011.(Reuters / Handout)
A B53 bomb is seen in this handout taken October 19, 2011 and released October 20, 2011.(Reuters / Handout)
In a secret project recently discovered, the United States planned to blow up the moon with a nuclear bomb in the 1950s as a display of the country’s strength during the Cold War space race.
The secret project, called “A Study of Lunar Research Flights”, as well as “Project A119” was never carried out but initially intended to intimidate the Soviet Union after their launch of the first artificial satellite, Sputnik 1, which demonstrated their technological power, the Daily Mail reports.
The sight of a magnificent nuclear flash from Earth was meant to terrify the Soviet Union and boost US confidence, physicist Leonard Reiffel, 85, told the Associated Press. The nuclear device would have been launched from a missile from an unknown location. It would have ignited upon impact with the moon, causing a massive explosion that was visible from Earth.
The detonation would have been the result of an atom bomb, since a hydrogen bomb was too heavy for a missile to carry the 238,000 miles to the moon.
Astronomer Carl Sagan was responsible for some of the calculations that could cause the nuclear detonation. Sagan, who later became a famous author of popular science, was a young graduate student at the time. He worked as a NASA advisor from the 1950s onward and died in 1996.

7 OF 10 AMERICANS PREFER 'MERRY CHRISTMAS' OVER 'HAPPY HOLIDAYS'

There’s hope for America yet. According to a new Rasmussen poll, Americans still prefer stores to show signs reading “Merry Christmas” instead of “Happy Holidays.”

The huge majority of Americans, 68%, voted for “Merry Christmas” over the “Happy Holidays” voters, who comprised 23% of the population surveyed. In all 34 of the categories Rasmussen polled, "Merry Christmas" won by a wide margin.

With men, “Merry Christmas” was ahead 69% to 2%.

With women, it was ahead, 67% to 23%.

Whites: 69% to 20%.

Blacks: 56% to 40%.

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‘WELFARE NATION’: THE SAD TRUTH

Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich during the Republican presidential primaries often referred to President Barack Obama as the “food stamp president,” a charge that was met with piercing and outraged cries of “racism!”

“Over here you have a policy which, with Reagan and me as speaker, created millions of jobs — it’s called paychecks. Over here you have the most successful food stamp president in American history, Barack Obama,” Gingrich said.

Supposed “racist dog whistles” aside, it should be noted that Gingrich is not the first person to voice concern over the expansion of our so-called “welfare nation.”

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Five New ObamaCare Taxes Coming January 1

Although some of the "fiscal cliff" taxes can be avoided through a deal made in Congress, new ObamaCare taxes are guaranteed to kick in on January 1, amounting to $268 billion tax hike. From Americans for Tax Reform:
The Obamacare Medical Device Tax  a $20 billion tax increase:  Medical device manufacturers employ 409,000 people in 12,000 plants across the country. Obamacare imposes a new 2.3 percent excise tax on gross sales – even if the company does not earn a profit in a given year.  In addition to killing small business jobs and impacting research and development budgets, this will increase the cost of your health care – making everything from pacemakers to prosthetics more expensive.

The Obamacare “Special Needs Kids Tax” – a $13 billion tax increase:  The 30-35 million Americans who use a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) at work to pay for their family’s basic medical needs will face a new government cap of $2,500 (currently the accounts are unlimited under federal law, though employers are allowed to set a cap).

There is one group of FSA owners for whom this new cap will be particularly cruel and onerous: parents of special needs children.  There are several million families with special needs children in the United States, and many of them use FSAs to pay for special needs education. Tuition rates at one leading school that teaches special needs children in Washington, D.C. (National Child Research Center) can easily exceed $14,000 per year. Under tax rules, FSA dollars can be used to pay for this type of special needs education. This Obamacare tax provision will limit the options available to these families.
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Tom & Nicole McGuire Get 15 Years In Prison

Tom & Nicole McGuire of Delmar, Maryland received a 15 year sentence in prison today. If and when they get out they'll be on a 5 year probation as a tier 3 sex offenders. Traveling to Annapolis several times for the new sex offender laws has proven to be well worth it. Getting these scumbags off the streets and away from children is the best Christmas present I could ever receive.

MSM Starting to Notice Democrats' Recklessness in Fiscal Cliff Talks

One of Democrats' enduring, systemic political advantages a mainstream media whose levers are overwhelmingly controlled by people who agree with them on most issues. But sometimes Democrats push their luck, and many in the press cannot help but notice. In the midst of a deluge of Republicans showing flexibility on "revenues" -- for better or worse -- Democrats have thus far been unwilling to commit to, well, much of anything at all. Compromises require real, tangible concessions from both sides, and a number of MSM stalwarts are beginning to point out that Democrats aren't doing their, ahem, fair share. The Washington Post's editorial board is urging Congressional Democrats to get serious and calling on President Obama to fill the leadership vacuum, essentially echoing what the GOP has been saying for years:

Democrats, meanwhile, are sounding more and more maximalist in resisting spending cuts. Many insist that Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and education — pretty much everything except the Pentagon — are untouchable. Senate Majority Whip Richard J. Durbin (Ill.), who had been one of the more reasonable Democratic leaders, said Tuesday that, while he favors reform of entitlement programs, it shouldn’t be part of the negotiations on the fiscal cliff. The Post’s Greg Sargent reported that union leaders and other liberals came away from a White House meeting encouraged that administration officials agree. “They expect taxes to go up on the wealthy and to protect Medicare and Medicaid benefits,” one attendee said. “They feel confident that they don’t have to compromise.” Don’t have to compromise? Elections do have consequences, and Mr. Obama ran on a clear platform of increasing taxes on the wealthy. But he was clear on something else, too: Deficit reduction must be “balanced,” including spending cuts as well as tax increases. Since 60 percent of the federal budget goes to entitlement programs such as Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security, there’s no way to achieve balance without slowing the rate of increase of those programs. 

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Judge Sentences Ohio Man to 29 Days in Jail for Imitating Disabled Girl's Limp

In an apparent case of rudeness being elevated to criminality, a 43-year-old Ohio man has been sentenced to 29 days in jail for mocking a ten-year-old girl with cerebral palsy.

Canton (Ohio) Municipal Judge John A. Poulos ordered the maximum sentence for William Bailey, who pleaded no contest Tuesday to reduced misdemeanor charges of disorderly conduct and aggravated menacing, the Associated Press reported.

According to the The (Canton) Repository, Bailey was captured on a cellphone video imitating the way the girl, who uses crutches and has trouble walking.

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Make the Democrats Own the Obama Economy

One bright spot of Barack Obama's re-election was knowing that unemployment rates were about to soar for the precise groups that voted for him -- young people, unskilled workers and single women with degrees in gender studies. But now the Democrats are sullying my silver lining by forcing Republicans to block an utterly pointless tax-raising scheme in order to blame the coming economic Armageddon on them.

Democrats are proposing to reinstate the Bush tax cuts for everyone ... except "the rich." (Why do only tax cuts come with an expiration date? Why not tax increases? Why not Obamacare? How about New York City's "temporary" rent control measures intended for veterans returning from World War II?)

Raising taxes only on the top 2 percent of income earners will do nothing to reduce the deficit. There's not enough money there -- even assuming, contrary to all known history, that the top 2 percent won't find ways to reduce their taxable income or that the imaginary increased government revenue would be applied to deficit reduction, anyway.

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Bing Takes On Google In Fight For Holiday Shoppers

If Black Friday lines and stories of violence, vehicular assault and child abandonment taught us anything, it's that the holiday shopping season is a dark, competitive time.

Now search engines are getting into the cutthroat holiday spirit. In a new attack on Google, Microsoft's Bing search engine accuses its rival's Google Shopping tool of being dishonest by only including paying vendors, ranking listings by how much they pay, and not clearly marking the results as sponsored.

To make its point, Bing has launched a detailed site accusing Google Search of unsavory business practices and coined a new word: Scroogled.

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After Victory, Liberals Want Income Redistribution

During the campaign it was commonplace to note that President Obama didn't have much of a second-term agenda. Beyond his desire to raise taxes on higher earners, most of the president's platform amounted to a promise to "not go back" -- that is, to protect the accomplishments of his first term.

But Obama's liberal supporters do have a second-term agenda, and it is a far-reaching one. That agenda, laid out a new article in the liberal magazine the American Prospect, is enough to set off alarm bells among conservatives in Washington and around the country.

In the piece, author Mike Konczal summarizes the work of some influential thinkers on the left who are asking the question: Now that Obama has been re-elected, and Obamacare is safe from Republican repeal, "what's next for the welfare state?"

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Lawmakers Clash On Internet Royalty Bill

While House Judiciary Committee members did not see eye to eye on whether existing royalty rules for Internet radio services like Pandora should be reformed, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle on Wednesday argued that broadcasters should start paying royalty fees for playing songs on over-the-air radio stations.

The focus of the Judiciary Committee's intellectual property subcommittee hearing on Wednesday centered on weighing the merits of a bill -- the Internet Radio Fairness Act (IRFA) -- sponsored by Reps. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah), Jared Polis (D-Colo.), Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) and Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.) that proposes to put Internet radio services on the same royalty-setting standard as cable and satellite radio. Pandora, a major backer of the bill, hopes this will lower the rates of its royalty payments so they're more level with the royalty fees paid by cable and satellite radio services.

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When Americans Took Pride in Paying Taxes

Taxes are a necessary evil, and they're about to get a bit more necessary, with Congress seemingly poised to raise taxes on a least some Americans beginning in 2013.

But Americans didn't always view taxes with the dread and indignation they do today. In fact, during World War II, as the government was hiking taxes on most workers to help pay for the war, Irving Berlin wrote an upbeat patriotic ditty called "I Paid My Income Tax Today," which Danny Kaye sang and hundreds of radio stations played. And until the 1980s, many Americans paid income taxes at far higher rates than we have today, with little of the antipathy that taxpayers feel toward Washington now.

The paradox today is that the tax burden on most Americans is at the lowest level since at least 1979, according to the Congressional Budget Office. That's one reason Democrats are pushing for tax hikes on the wealthy, to help narrow the huge annual deficits that have pushed the national debt above $16 trillion. Yet even as tax hikes on the wealthy are starting to seem inevitable, a huge fight is brewing over keeping them modest and exacting sharp cuts in government spending in exchange. The fight that's starting now over fairly modest tax hikes reveals a country that has changed dramatically over the last 30 or 40 years. 

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GOP: Forget Tax Rates In Talks On The Deficit, Let’s Look At Spending

Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) on Wednesday shot down a proposal by a senior GOP lawmaker that the House agree to President Obama’s demand to extend middle-class tax rates as Republicans sought to put the focus of negotiations on spending.

The Speaker’s swift rejection of an idea floated by Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.), a respected party strategist and former chairman of the House GOP campaign committee, came as Republicans voiced increasing concerns that the debate over the so-called “fiscal cliff” had become dominated by talk of taxes rather than spending.

Comparing the nation’s spending crisis to a “freight train,” Boehner said “it’s time for the president and Democrats to get serious about the spending problem that our country has.”

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BREAKING NEWS: UN Votes In Favor Of Palestinian Statehood

The U.N. General Assembly votes, 138 to 9, to recognize a Palestinian state, with 41 nations abstaining.

From Fox News

CRITICS GO BERSERK, HURL INSULTS AT BECK OVER ‘OBAMA IN PEE PEE’

Many on the left are reeling after radio and television host Glenn Beck exercised his First Amendment rights in the creation of his own Obama-themed piece of art. As TheBlaze reported on Tuesday, Beck submerged an Obama “bobblehead” doll in faux urine. His reasoning? To highlight the hypocrisy of individuals who would decry his creation, yet defend the desecration of Christian themes (like this image of a crucified Obama).

Obviously, as noted by TheBlaze’s Tiffany Gabbay, Beck’s project is similar to the infamous anti-Christian photograph titled “Piss Christ,” showing a small plastic crucifix soaked in the artist’s real urine.

The reaction to his “art” has been swift, with left-of-center outlets lambasting the action and with Twitter users hurling slurs at Beck. One individual took to the social media platform to call the host “disgusting and disrespectful” and a “F**kwit.” Another promised to “slap” the commentator if she ever encounters him in person. And yet another dubbed him “WORSE than feces.” Here are some of these responses, as captured by Twitchy:

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We're Heading For Economic Dictatorship


Forget about that dead parrot of a question – should we join the eurozone? The eurozone has officially joined us in a newly emerging international organisation: we are all now members of the Permanent No-growth Club. And the United States has just re-elected a president who seems determined to sign up too. No government in what used to be called “the free world” seems prepared to take the steps that can stop this inexorable decline. They are all busily telling their electorates that austerity is for other people (France), or that the piddling attempts they have made at it will solve the problem (Britain), or that taxing “the rich” will make it unnecessary for government to cut back its own spending (America).

So here we all are. Like us, the member nations of the European single currency have embarked on their very own double (or is it triple?) dip recession. This is the future: the long, meandering “zig-zag” recovery to which the politicians and heads of central banks allude is just a euphemism for the end of economic life as we have known it.

Now there are some people for whom this will not sound like bad news. Many on the Left will finally have got the economy of their dreams – or, rather, the one they have always believed in. At last, we will be living with that fixed, unchanging pie which must be divided up “fairly” if social justice is to be achieved. Instead of a dynamic, growing pot of wealth and ever-increasing resources, which can enable larger and larger proportions of the population to become prosperous without taking anything away from any other group, there will indeed be an absolute limit on the amount of capital circulating within the society.

The only decisions to be made will involve how that given, unalterable sum is to be shared out – and those judgments will, of course, have to be made by the state since there will be no dynamic economic force outside of government to enter the equation. Wealth distribution will be the principal – virtually the only – significant function of political life. Is this Left-wing heaven?

Well, not quite. The total absence of economic growth would mean that the limitations on that distribution would be so severe as to require draconian legal enforcement: rationing, limits on the amount of currency that can be taken abroad, import restrictions and the kinds of penalties for economic crimes (undercutting, or “black market” selling practices) which have been unknown in the West since the end of the Second World War.

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Disney, Sears Used Factory In Fire That Killed 112

Amid the ash, broken glass and melted sewing machines at what is left of the Tazreen Fashions Ltd. factory, there are piles of blue, red and off-white children's shorts bearing Wal-Mart's Faded Glory brand. Shorts from hip-hop star Sean Combs' ENYCE label lay on the floor, along with a hooded Mickey Mouse sweatshirt from Disney.

An Associated Press reporter searching the Bangladesh factory Wednesday found these and other clothes, including sweaters from the French company Teddy Smith and the Scottish company Edinburgh Woollen Mill, among the equipment charred in the fire that killed 112 workers on Saturday. He also found entries in account books indicating that the factory took orders to produce clothes for Disney, Sears and other Western brands.

Garments and documents left behind in the factory show it was used by a host of major American and European retailers, though at least one of them — Wal-Mart — had been aware of safety problems. Wal-Mart blames a supplier for using Tazreen Fashions without its knowledge.

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Walmart On Thanksgiving

Progressive firebrand Alan Grayson is heading back to Congress, but before he does – he made a little pit-stop at Walmart on Thanksgiving night.  

But it wasn't to go Black Friday shopping. Instead – Grayson showed up to lend support for Walmart workers and the pending Black Friday strike that took place in 46 different states around the nation. According to WatchDogWire.com – Grayson showed up at an Orlando Walmart and handed out turkey sandwiches to employees while affirming their right to unionize. Walmart management called the police, and Grayson was escorted off the property. There’s a reason why they call him the “Congressman with Guts.”

Daily Job Cuts

November 29 , 2012



November 28 , 2012

November 29 , 2012



November 28 , 2012

CATCHING PIGS


THIS IS THOUGHT PROVOKING

There was a chemistry professor in a large college that had
some exchange students in the class. One day while the class was in the lab,
the professor noticed one young man, an exchange student, who kept
rubbing his back and stretching as if his back hurt. The professor asked
the young man what was the matter. The student told him he had a bullet
lodged in his back. He had been shot while fighting communists in his
native country who were trying to overthrow his country's government and
install a new communist regime.
In the midst of his story, he looked at the professor and asked a
strange question. He asked: "Do you know how to catch wild pigs?"
The professor thought it was a joke and asked for the punch line.
The young man said that it was no joke. "You catch wild pigs by finding
a suitable place in the woods and putting corn on the ground.
The pigs find it and begin to come every day to eat the free corn.
"When they are used to coming every day, you put a fence down one side
of the place where they are used to coming. When they get used to the
fence, they begin to eat the corn again and you put up another side of the fence.
"They get used to that and start to eat again. You continue until you
have all four sides of the fence up with a gate in the last side.
"The pigs, which are used to the free corn, start to come through the
gate to eat that free corn again. You then slam the gate on them and
catch the whole herd. Suddenly the wild pigs have lost their freedom.
They run around and around inside the fence, but they are caught. Soon
they go back to eating the free corn. They are so used to it that they
have forgotten how to forage in the woods for themselves,
so they accept their captivity."
The young man then told the professor that is exactly what he sees
happening in America . The government keeps pushing us toward
Communism/Socialism and keeps spreading the free corn out in the form of
programs such as supplemental income, tax credit for unearned income,
tax exemptions, tobacco subsidies, dairy subsidies, payments not to
plant crops (CRP), welfare, medicine, drugs, etc. while we continually
lose our freedoms, just a little at a time.
One should always remember two truths: There is no such thing as a free
lunch, and you can never hire someone to provide a service for you
cheaper than you can do it yourself.
If you see that all of this wonderful government "help" is a problem
confronting the future of democracy in America , you might want to send
this on to your friends. If you think the free ride is essential to your
way of life, then you will probably delete this email. But, God help us all
when the gate slams shut!

D.C. Breaks Ground For Center At Vietnam Memorial

Jill Biden and Defense Secretary Leon Panetta joined an effort Wednesday to build an education center at the Vietnam Veterans Memorial to tell the stories of generations of veterans killed in combat, including the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

They gathered with military families for a ceremonial groundbreaking on a site next to the Lincoln Memorial on the National Mall for the $85 million museum. Organizers still must raise $38 million before construction can begin.

The veterans group that built the Vietnam memorial wants to open the center in 2014, in time to welcome the last troops home from Afghanistan.

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When Work Is Punished: The Tragedy Of America's Welfare State


Exactly two years ago, some of the more politically biased progressive media outlets (who are quite adept at creating and taking down their own strawmen arguments, if not quite as adept at using an abacus, let alone a calculator) took offense at our article "In Entitlement America, The Head Of A Household Of Four Making Minimum Wage Has More Disposable Income Than A Family Making $60,000 A Year [6]." In it we merely explained what has become the painful reality in America: for increasingly more it is now more lucrative - in the form of actual disposable income - to sit, do nothing, and collect various welfare entitlements, than to work. This is graphically, and very painfully confirmed, in the below chart from Gary Alexander, Secretary of Public Welfare, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (a state best known for its broke capital Harrisburg). As quantitied, and explained by Alexander, "the single mom is better off earnings gross income of $29,000 with $57,327 in net income & benefits than to earn gross income of $69,000 with net income and benefits of $57,045."
 [7]

Elevator Prank

MATH IS HARD - THAT IS WHY WE'RE SCREWED


Did you ever wonder where the term FISCAL CLIFF came from? All of a sudden it was immediately adopted by the entire MSM and all the politicians and corporate CEOs as the mantra to scare Americans into believing it must be avoided. It is clear to me that the powers that be did focus group testing to develop the proper term that would strike fear into the hearts of non-critical thinking ignorant Americans across the land. Nevermind that this fake crisis was created by the very people who are running around like chickens with their heads cut off warning of the dire consequences. The fiscal cliff is just another diversion created by the ruling oligarchs to keep the masses distracted. If we did nothing, taxes would go up, the arms industry would lose some profits, and Federal spending would be modestly cut all the way back to 2010 levels. The economy would suffer a short recession and would be growing again by the 4th quarter of 2013. Sounds horrific. The truth is that the lowlife politicians, their corporate puppeteers, and the Wall Street cabal don’t want to cut spending, pay more taxes or see their profits reduced. Therefore, a grand bullshit compromise will ultimately be announced to great fanfare and a 500 point stock rally will ensue.
But, as the story below clearly and factually details, nothing will be solved. The entitlement can will be kicked down the road like it has been for 30 years. No one in Washington DC gives a shit about the long-term future or unborn generations. They care about the next election. They depend on the fact that 99% of the public don’t understand deficits, debt, unfunded liabilities or accrual accounting. The American public wants to be lied to and mislead. They don’t want to think. They don’t want to do the math. It’s hard and won’t give them the answer they want. I wonder what percentage of Americans actually understand the concept of net present value? If you stopped a person on the street, they would probably think you were asking about net pleasant value. Our politicians have promised the American people $86 trillion more in entitlements than they have the money for. And this is based on an unrealistic discount rate of 8%. If we use a realistic discount rate of 4%, the unfunded liability will be north of $150 trillion for Medicare and Social Security. When you add in all the State and local unfunded liabilities, you approach $200 trillion. These figures are so mind numbingly large, that Americans just tune it out. This is what the oligarchs depend upon. They will slowly destroy your lives through their man made inflation and eventual decision to not honor their entitlement promises.
The sheeple will not rise up. They will passively be led to slaughter. Math is hard.

States Win Big In Powerball

Even the thought of selling the winning Powerball ticket leaves Tooshar Chowdry at a loss for words.

Since the Powerball craze took hold, people have been pouring in to Chowdry's Exxon shop in Falls Church spending big money to win big - in part because they know a winning Megamillions ticket was sold here just last March.


The lucky streak of sales is big business for stores and states alike.

In Virginia, 60 cents of every ticket sold goes toward public schools while in Maryland and D.C. ticket sales benefit the general fund.

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Americans Rediscover The Right Of Self-Determinationl


After a hiatus of nearly 150 years following the Civil War, over a million Americans have recently rediscovered the word secession, one of the most toxic, politically incorrect words in American English. Never mind the fact that our nation was actually born out of secession from England back in 1776.

Since the re-election of Barack Obama on November 6, thousands of Americans have been signing petitions each day on a White House website known as "We the People" calling for the secession of their respective states from the Union.

As someone who has advocated the peaceful dissolution of the United States, because it is too big, for over twenty years, I find the sudden interest in the much maligned s-word to be almost beyond belief.

Delaying Anti-Jihad Ads Cost Metro $35,000

Metro was slapped with hefty attorney fees and legal costs after attempting to block the posting of controversial anti-jihad ads in rail stations throughout the region.

An email obtained exclusively by Legal Times shows that Metro agreed in October to pay $35,000 to the American Freedom Defense Initiative, the New York-based organization behind those ads.

This came after months of legal wrangling that ended when a federal judge sided with AFDI and ruled that the ads were protected speech. Some city officials and community leaders rallied against the banners, calling their message hate speech.

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Big Spending State Running Out Of Options


By THE WASHINGTON TIMES

Friday, November 23, 2012
The only solution liberals have to today’s problems is spending money. Whether it’s crime, poverty or even unemployment, the answer for them is always to create a brand new program — never mind measuring whether similar efforts in the past yielded any positive results. An analysis by Maryland's Department of Legislative Services shows how this strategy eventually runs out of money.

Annapolis closed this year’s budget hole by hiking taxes on families earning more than $100,000 annually (which counts as middle class in expensive Montgomery and Howard counties), sloughing off some public pension liabilities to local governments and expanding gambling opportunities. It’s not going to be enough, as the structural deficit is expected to keep growing and debt service will consume an ever-larger share of incoming revenues. Gov. Martin O'Malley and the General Assembly squeezed taxpayers so much, there’s pretty much no room left to cover future shortfalls.

Public spending in the Old Line State has risen steadily over the last several years, at an average of 5 percent annually, while population increased less than 1 percent.Contrary to lawmakers’ claims, this year’s ominously named “Doomsday budget” didn’t actually cut spending. Maryland’s budget ballooned by $3 billion this year to $37.1 billion. Deficits are equally massive, weighing in at $1.8 billion in 2012 and $1 billion in 2013.

Those gaps were all filled with temporary fixes, leading to an increase in the public debt to almost $28 billion, a burden of more than $14,000 for each Maryland resident.The cost of servicing that debt will increase from about 6.5 percent in 2013, to about 7.5 percent by 2018. The latest figures from the Department of Legislative Services predict a deficit of over $400 million for 2014 and 2015. Those numbers could easily grow, depending on the outcome of negotiations in Washington over the fiscal cliff.

White House Christmas: Zippers And "Bo-flakes" Deck The White House

"Bo-flakes" featuring the first dog and ornaments fashioned from zippers are among the new twists on traditional favorites at the White House this Christmas season.

First lady Michelle Obama unveiled this year's decorations before an appreciative crowd of military families Wednesday, then spent some time doing holiday crafts with military kids.

The theme for this year's decorations is "Joy to All," but first dog Bo seems to steals the show.

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Andy Harris Press Release On Hurricane Sandy


Rep. Andy Harris Testifies Before Senate Environment and Public Works Committee about Hurricane Sandy

Washington, DC – Today, Rep. Andy Harris testified in front of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee about the impact of Hurricane Sandy. The 1st Congressional District had many areas impacted by Hurricane Sandy particularly the communities of Crisfield, Smith Island, Marion, Fairmount, Deal Island, Ocean Pines and Princess Anne. Rep. Harris provided the following testimony at the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee:
            “On October 31, I toured the affected sites in Crisfield and Ocean City with Governor O’Malley and I was stunned to see the evident devastation that some of our communities like Crisfield suffered,” said Rep. Andy Harris. “Last week, I hosted a tele-town hall meeting with over 1,000 residents from impacted communities. I was encouraged by the federal and state coordinated response efforts to date, but we need to ensure that our resources are always made available to those parts of our community most in need of assistance.”

BREAKING NEWS: Former President George H.W. Bush Admitted To Hospital

Former President George H.W. Bush, 88, reportedly admitted to Methodist Hospital in Houston for treatment of bronchitis. 

October New Home Sales

October new home sales came in at 368k, which was well below the 390k expected by economists.
Making things worse, the September number was revised down to 369k from 389k.
Here's the full statement from the Census:
Sales of new single-family houses in October 2012 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 368,000, according to estimates released jointly today by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. This is 0.3 percent (±18.3%)* below the revised September rate of 369,000, but is 17.2 percent (±21.2%)* above the October 2011 estimate of 314,000.
The median sales price of new houses sold in October 2012 was $237,700; the average sales price was $278,900. The seasonally adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of October was 147,000. This represents a supply of 4.8 months at the current sales rate.
Lately, new home sales have been lagging new home permit and building activity, which has some economist concerned that supply may be building.

Food Stamp Use Up Nearly 10 Percent in 2011

The number of households receiving assistance via the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, better known as food stamps, grew by 9.8 percent in 2011, according to a new brief from the Census Bureau. The report shows that 13 percent of households benefited from the program, up from 11.9 percent in 2010. All told, there were 14.9 million recipient households in 2011.

According to data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which administers SNAP, food stamp usage and spending have climbed sharply over the last decade. In 2001, 17.3 million people used the program, with benefits totaling $15.5 billion. Participation climbed in 9 of the 10 subsequent years, and total benefits climbed in every year. In 2011, 44.7 million people participated, with benefits climbing to nearly $72 billion.

The District of Columbia saw the biggest jump in SNAP participation last year, with 35.3 percent more households receiving food stamp benefits than in 2010. Alabama and Hawaii saw the next largest increases, at 20.7 percent and 19.1 percent, respectively. Food stamp usage declined in only three states: Iowa (where it declined by 0.5 percent), Alaska (-0.6 percent), and Wyoming (-5.1 percent).

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Politics Justice Education Chesapeake Bay Beat & Environment Health Business Sports CRISFIELD STILL WAITING FOR GOVERNMENT HELP AFTER SANDY

CRISFIELD – Nearly a month ago, Superstorm Sandy sent flood waters washing through Teresa Shallcross’ home in this little city on the edge of the Chesapeake Bay. Her home of 20 years is uninhabitable because her furnace is slowly falling through her water-damaged floor.

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CRISFIELD CHAMBER TO HOST MEETING OF BUSINESSES AFFECTED BY HURRICANE SANDY


What:                    Information Meeting for Businesses Affected by Hurricane Sandy
Where:                 Crisfield City Hall, 319 W. Main St., Crisfield, MD 21817
When:                  Tuesday, December 4, 2012 at 9:00 a.m.

The Crisfield Area Chamber of Commerce will host an information meeting for all businesses affected by Hurricane Sandy next Tuesday, December 4, 2012 at 9 a.m. at Crisfield City Hall located at 319 W. Main St.

All businesses are invited to attend this information session.

Speakers at the meeting will include:

·         John N. Hickman, Director of the Small Business Development Center at Salisbury University
·         Daniel K. Thompson, Director of the Somerset County Economic Development Commission
·         Representative from the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development
·         Representative from FEMA

Information will be presented on what assistance is available to small businesses affected by Hurricane Sandy.

All businesses, regardless of whether they are members of the chamber, are invited to attend.

For more information, please contact Valerie Howard at (410) 968-2500 or info@crisfieldchamber.com

The Battle Over Obamacare Continues

This week - the Supreme Court ordered a lower court, the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, to re-hear a case challenging the constitutionality of Obamacare. Liberty University filed suit against the law’s "employer mandate," arguing that it violates the First Amendment and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, since it could lead to employers paying for health insurance that covers birth control. The lawsuit was previously dismissed on technical grounds since the employer mandate has fully gone in effect yet. But the Supreme Court ordered the Fourth Circuit to hear the case again on its merits. The Supreme Court’s decision earlier this year upholding Obamacare didn't even consider the employer mandate, which holds the entire law together. So, depending on how the Fourth Circuit rules in this case, the Supreme Court could once again determine the fate of tens of millions of Americans who don’t have health insurance. Stay tuned.