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Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Greg Bassett Was Fired From The Daily Times Gannett Newspaper Today

Mr. Greg Bassett was let go today from the local Daily Times Newspaper, this has been confirmed by Salisbury News.

With daily circulation numbers plummeting downward in recent years, Gannett has been trying just about anything and everything to hold on, nothing is working.

Salisbury News numbers have risen around 50% ever since the first of the year. While we have always enjoyed incredible daily traffic, we wondered why things had really taken off once again.

We came to the conclusion that most are not willing to pay for their on line articles and quite frankly we also believe people simply gave up on the Daily Times at the end of the year. 

I am told they are currently trying to replace Mr. Bassett. We wish him the very best in the future.


(CUMBERLAND, MD) -- Maryland State Police homicide investigators are now working with state public safety investigators in an ongoing investigation after an inmate who was assaulted in a Western Maryland prison late last year has died from his injuries.

The deceased inmate is identified as Michael Armstead, 53. Armstead was serving a life sentence at the North Branch Correctional Institution in Cumberland, Md.

A suspect has been identified who is an inmate at the same prison. He is also serving a life sentence. Charges against him are pending.

Shortly before 10:00 a.m. on November 27, 2012, staff at the North Branch Correctional Institution witnessed the suspect assaulting the victim as inmates were moving to the dining hall. Correctional officers and staff interceded and ended the assault. Armstead had sustained trauma to his head and was transported to the Western Maryland Regional Medical Center in Cumberland.

In the weeks following, the victim was transferred to hospitals in the Baltimore area for treatment. He was pronounced dead at Bon Secours Hospital on January 9, 2012.

The victim’s body was transported to the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner in Baltimore for an autopsy to determine the cause and manner of death. The medical examiner has now ruled Armstead’s death was a homicide caused by a head injury.

As per procedure, the initial assault investigation was conducted by the Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services Internal Investigations Unit. Investigators maintained contact with Maryland State Police Homicide Unit investigators during their investigation. Following the death of the victim, Maryland State Police homicide investigators are continuing the investigation, with assistance from the DPSCS IIU investigators. Upon completion of the investigation, it will be presented to the Allegany County State’s Attorney’s Office for review and charges.

Maine Trailer Tags Are Not Legal For Delaware Residents

Heavy Fines if Found in Violation

-- The Delaware State Police (DSP) and the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) are reminding Delaware residents with "T" tag trailers that the practice of getting them registered from the State of Maine as a cost-saving measure is a violation of Delaware Code. This practice also poses a safety risk to all motorists since trailers with Maine plates are assumed to be uninspected.

At any time on the roadways of Delaware one can most likely expect to see a disproportionate number of trailers from Maine that are being towed by Delaware registered vehicles. First State drivers may not understand this odd combination. The State of Maine allows any citizen from any state to register their trailers at an extremely low cost and in some cases without inspection.

Col. Nathaniel McQueen, Jr. of the Delaware State Police explained, "Delaware law requires that if you live in this state for 60 consecutive days you are required to register your vehicles and trailers in Delaware. The only exception to this law is those vehicles that are covered under the International Registration Plan (IRP) which are normally 18-wheeled tractor trailers."

Jennifer Cohan, Division of Motor Vehicles Director stated, "If you are not a tractor trailer owner/operator registered with IRP and you live in Delaware and you have your trailer registered in Maine, you are violating Delaware law."

The penalties for violating this section of the traffic code (Title 21 section 2102) include fines of no less than $400 nor more than $600 for the first offense; the penalty for each subsequent offense is not less than $800 nor more than $1,200 or imprisonment of not less than 10 days or more than 30 days.

In order to address this ongoing violation of Delaware code the DMV and the DSP are joining together to address this situation. Over the first few months of 2013 the agencies will work to educate impacted groups and remind them of the requirements. DSP and DMV do understand that there will be questions on the issue. Those with concerns are encouraged to call the DMV at 302-744-2535 for clarification.

Family Of Woman Shot By Trooper Sues Md. State Police

A Frederick County family is suing Maryland State Police after a Libertytown woman died in her home after a 2010 confrontation with a state trooper.

Police were called to the home of Veronica Harding-Perkins at about 12:45 a.m. June 17, 2010, after her husband, Dean Perkins, called 911 to report that she had been drinking and throwing furniture onto the sidewalk from their home in the 12100 block of Liberty Road, police said.

When then-Cpl. Eric Corbin arrived, he entered a business attached to the house and saw a gun in Harding- Perkins' hand, police said.


Climbing Out Of The Red?

The Postal Service is trying 55 new ways to make money as it struggles to climb out of the red. It's selling greeting cards with pre-paid postage. It's also offering same-day delivery service when you order something from a local shop. But government auditors say the revenue generated from these new projects pales in comparison to what the agency needs. Altogether, they would net about $140 million, when the Postal Service lost $16 billion last year.

ER Visits Tied to Energy Drinks Double Since 2007

A new government survey suggests the number of people seeking emergency treatment after consuming energy drinks has doubled nationwide during the past four years, the same period in which the supercharged drink industry has surged in popularity in convenience stores, bars and on college campuses.

From 2007 to 2011, the government estimates the number of emergency room visits involving the neon-labeled beverages shot up from about 10,000 to more than 20,000. Most of those cases involved teens or young adults, according to a survey of the nation's hospitals released late last week by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

The report doesn't specify which symptoms brought people to the emergency room but calls energy drink consumption a "rising public health problem" that can cause insomnia, nervousness, headache, fast heartbeat, and seizures that are severe enough to require emergency care.


Why Americans Are Broke, And Getting Further In Debt

Just as the president reminded us yesterday we are not a deadbeat nation, merely borrowing money today to pay the bills of yesterday, so, as the NY Times reports in this all-too-real article, many of the citizens of the US are also living not just paycheck-to-paycheck but short-term-loan-to-short-term-loan. As one debt-consolidation service noted "They've been borrowing just to meet payments on previous loans; it builds on itself." Rings an awfully loud bell eh? (and yes, we know the government's finances are not run like a households - though at some point the check book needs to balance). People in tough 'economic' situations fall into the 'poverty trap', borrowing money at ever higher interest rates in a shell game to keep previous borrowers at bay. The average debt for households earning $20,000 a year or less more than doubled to $26,000 between 2001 and 2010 - as people dig deeper, precisely because they long to escape. As the focus of the article notes, "the belt-tightening was the easy part... the larger problem was cash-flow." Critically, experiments show that 'economic' scarcity by itself - independent of personality or any other factors - fuels a drive to borrow recklessly.
Via NY Times:
The belt-tightening was the easy part. Cancel the cable. Skip the air conditioners. Ration the cellphone, unplug the wireless Internet, cook rice and beans — done, and done. The larger problem for LaKeisha Tuggle, 33, who had lost her public relations job, was cash flow: After her unemployment insurance and savings ran dry, there was none.

The usual explanations for reckless borrowing focus on people’s character, or social norms that promote free spending and instant gratification. But recent research has shown that scarcity by itself is enough to cause this kind of financial self-sabotage.

“When we put people in situations of scarcity in experiments, they get into poverty traps,” said Eldar Shafir, a professor of psychology and public affairs at Princeton. “They borrow at high interest rates that hurt them, in ways they knew to avoid when there was less scarcity.”

People dig deeper precisely because they long to escape.



12U Baseball Travel Team
January 19th, 2013
At the Moose Lodge in Salisbury, MD
Doors open at 5:00 pm     
Auction to start promptly at 6:00 PM
Light Refreshments will be available for purchase

Upon arriving you will purchase a numbered paddle:  $7.00 in advance, $10 at the door…… 

Increase your chances of winning with additional paddles, they can be purchased the night of the auction for  JUST…..$3.00 each 

Auction items will be on display with a bid price of 1, 2, 3, or 4 quarters.  As items are presented, if you want to bid, you place amount in the basket provided and hold your paddle in the air.  If the auctioneer picks your paddle number from the bucket, you WIN the item, and walk away with an AMAZING product for only 1 -4 Quarters!!!!  There will be over 90 items up for bidding!

Pampered Chef
Celebrating Homes
Home Made Baskets                                              
Cookie Lee Jewelry
and Many More Items!!!!



(WEST FRIENDSHIP, MD) – Maryland State Police are investigating a single vehicle crash that injured a state trooper this afternoon in Howard County.

The trooper is identified as Corporal Matthew Telep, assigned to the JFK Highway Barrack, who is a five-year-veteran of the Maryland State Police. He is listed in serious condition at the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center. The initial assessment determined he sustained what are believed to be non-life threatening injuries.

Shortly before 4:30 p.m. today, State Police and Howard County Police units responded to calls reporting a crash on eastbound I-70, just east of Rt. 32. Arriving troopers and officers found the marked State Police car against a tree off the right side of the roadway.

The trooper was trapped inside the vehicle and was extricated by personnel from the Howard County Fire Department. He was flown by a Maryland State Police helicopter to Shock Trauma.

The preliminary investigation by Maryland State Police troopers from the Waterloo Barrack and the CRASH Team, indicates the trooper was in uniform in a marked patrol car traveling east on I-70. For reasons unknown at this time, the vehicle traveled off the right side of the interstate. The driver’s side of the car struck the tree. A motorist who called the barrack later this evening said they witnessed the crash and believed the trooper was cut off by another vehicle. There is no description on that other vehicle at this time. Investigators will be following up on that information.
Cpl. Telep is believed to have been returning home after a highway escort assignment. He had escorted an oversized load from Baltimore to Western Maryland earlier today.

Eastbound I-70 had to be closed during the initial rescue and investigation. The fast lane was reopened just before 6:00 p.m. All lanes are expected to be reopened by 7:30 p.m., if not sooner. Westbound traffic was halted briefly while the helicopter landed in the westbound lanes. State Highway Administration personnel responded and assisted with detours around the scene.

The investigation is continuing.

Sorry, Middle Class. The VAT May Be Inevitable

If the government fails to enact structural reforms in spending, an entirely new source of revenue will be needed. The most likely one is a value-added tax that would crush the middle class.
FORTUNE -- You can't blame middle-income Americans for wondering whether the new "fiscal cliff" deal really protects them from big tax increases in the future. That's essentially what President Obama promised in championing the hike in rates for high-earners signed into law on January 2. Still, the politicians and pundits keep talking about how our steep deficits and mountainous debt will rise even after the new revenue is counted. So it's only natural for the folks to ask the obvious question: Now that the affluent are paying far more, where's the extra cash supposed to come from?

The answer is that America's teachers, nurses, truck drivers, police officers, computer programmers and construction workers should indeed be worried. To understand why, it's important to carefully analyze the most likely trajectory of tomorrow's budgets. To get the best view of our fiscal future, I spoke to Congressional aides who recently prepared new forecasts incorporating projected receipts from the recent tax increases. Those projections closely track the numbers prepared by the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office in March and August of last year, when the fresh revenues from high-earners are included.


White House Condemns Morsi’s Call for Destruction of Israel, Will Still Send Him F-16s and 200 Tanks

In other news, the administration also condemned something that Adolf guy said, but will still give him all the tanks he wants.

The mainstream media mostly refused to cover Morsi’s remarks, but every outlet is now broadcasting that White House spokesman Jay Carney condemned them. This is the media’s typical handling of any foreign policy issues that are politically damaging to O. They refuse to report on them until they get talking points or a positive angle from the White House.

The media is emphasizing the raw hatred, which with statements like “the descendants of apes and pigs” and “Egyptian children must feed on hatred“, are pretty glaring. But the Carney condemnation of religious hatred misses the point. This isn’t just bigotry. Lots of people are bigots. Some are even extreme bigots.


Why Expansionist Central States Inevitably Implode

BREAKING NEWS: FAA Grounds Boeing 787 Dreamliner

The FAA grounds the Boeing 787 Dreamliner pending safety check of the plane's lithium batteries. 

Extreme Ravens Fan

Language Warning on the Videos
TURN YOUR VOLUME DOWN this guy is loud!

This was his reaction to the Ray Rice touchdown at the end of the 3rd quarter to tie the game. 

 End of 4th quarter, Ravens down 7, and Mr. Doom and gloom is certain the game is over, until Jacoby Jones scores to tie it up with seconds left in regulation sending it to OT. Here's the reaction!
 Here's the reaction to the interception in OT that led to a game winning field goal for the Ravens!


On Obama’s New National Security Team, Keep Your Eye on the PolicyBy: Ron Paul
President Obama announced his choices for key national security posts this past week, and there has been both celebration and gnashing of teeth in Washington and around the country. There is widespread belief that either or both of these nominees will have an immediate and profound effect on US policy. However, this belief is really just a mistaken over-emphasis on personnel over policy. We should not forget that cabinet secretaries serve the president, and not the other way around.
Many who object to our continued foreign policy of endless war and empire overseas feel encouraged by Obama’s choice of Senator Hagel to head the Defense Department. Hagel has shown some admirable willingness to advise caution overseas. He is seen as unenthusiastic over the prospects of a US war on Iran, which is certainly to be welcomed. But let us not forget that he did vote for the war against Iraq, he has expressed support for multi-lateral sanctions on Iran, and last year he wrote in the Washington Post that, on Iran, he supports “keeping all options on the table, including the use of military force.”

Nevertheless because he does represent a more moderate voice in foreign policy than the neo-conservatives can tolerate, they are dragging his name through the mud. In choosing Hagel, then, we can hope the president is signaling that he will pursue a less aggressive foreign policy in his second term. But we cannot count on it.



Seen At Dollar Tree In Salisbury


Bagpipes at a Funeral

As a bagpiper, I play many gigs. Recently I was asked by a funeral director to play at a graveside service for a homeless man. He had no family or friends, so the service was to be at a pauper's cemetery in the Kentucky back country.

As I was not familiar with the backwoods, I got lost and, being a typical man, I didn't stop for directions.

I finally arrived an hour late and saw the funeral guy had evidently gone and the hearse was nowhere in sight. There were only the diggers and crew left and they were eating lunch.

I felt badly and apologized to the men for being late. I went to the side of the grave and looked down and the vault lid was already in place. I didn't know what else to do, so I started to play.

The workers put down their lunches and began to gather around. I played out my heart and soul for this man with no family and friends. Played like I've never played before for this homeless man.

And as I played 'Amazing Grace,' the workers began to weep. They wept, I wept. We all wept together. When I finished I packed up my bagpipes and started for my car. Though my head hung low, my heart was full.

As I opened the door to my car, I heard one of the workers say, "I never seen nothin' like that before and I've been putting in septic tanks for twenty years."

Apparently I'm still lost.... it's a man thing.

Weather Event Informational Bulletin

Wicomico County Department of Emergency Services

Weather Forecast National Weather Service 

The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Watch for Dorchester, Somerset, Wicomico, and Worcester Counties, which is in effect from Thursday evening through late Thursday night.  Total snow accumulations of 2 to 4 inches possible.  Snow will mix with rain late Thursday afternoon before becoming all snow Thursday evening.  Snow will end late Thursday night/early Friday morning.

Heaviest snow accumulations will be on grassy areas.  Snowfall is expected to be heavy at times which will lead to hazardous driving conditions.

A Winter Storm Watch means there is a potential for significant snow, sleet, or ice accumulations that may impact travel.

Wicomico County Dept. of Emergency Services (DES)

The DES is continuing to monitor the situation in conjunction the National Weather Service and Maryland Emergency Management Agency.  Additional Informational Bulletins will be issued if necessary. 

FBI: 77% Of JUSTIFIABLE Homicides Involved Firearms; 99% For Police

According to the FBI's unified crime report, 77.3% of justifiable homicides, defined as the killing of a felon during the commission of a felony, committed by private citizens in 2011 involved firearms. That's 201 involving a firearm out of 260 total justified homicides.

For justifiable homicides committed by law enforcement officers in 2011, the number is even higher. According to the same FBI unified crime report police used firearms in 99.2% of the justifiable homicides they were involved in, 390 of 393 to be exact.

Furthermore, the FBI's unified crime report tells us that the rate of firearms use in justified homicides has never fallen bellow 77.3% between 2007 & 2011. Similarly the rate for law enforcement officers has never been below 98.7% for that period.


Winter Storm Watch

Winter Storm Watch
Statement as of 2:35 PM EST on January 16, 2013

... Winter Storm Watch in effect from Thursday evening through
late Thursday night...

The National Weather Service in Wakefield has issued a Winter
Storm Watch... which is in effect from Thursday evening through
late Thursday night.

* Areas affected: the Virginia Northern Neck and Maryland Eastern

* Hazards: snow

* accumulations: 2 to 4 inches.

* Timing: snow will mix with rain late Thursday afternoon before
becoming all snow Thursday evening. Snow will end late Thursday
night/early Friday morning.

* Impacts: heaviest snow accumulations will be on grassy areas.
Snowfall is expected to be heavy at times which will lead to
hazardous driving conditions.

Precautionary/preparedness actions...

A Winter Storm Watch means there is a potential for significant
snow... sleet... or ice accumulations that may impact travel.
Continue to monitor the latest forecasts.

Passion, Principle, And Politics

Recently I received two email articles outlining analyses of the GOP 2012 presidential election loss, one written by Rabbi Pruzansky and another written by Professor Hollis.

The authors agree that Romney was an outstanding candidate, that he was an admirable man, and that Ryan was a wise choice as a running mate. They concur that he lost because our nation has become immature, and irresponsible. They both fear that because of this, America as we have known it, is over or at least close to the brink.

I agree with the authors about the challenges posed by a left-wing media and I acknowledge that the institutional woes that characterize our current culture are worrisome. But, when it comes to the authors’ conclusion that the nation hit a tipping point with this election and that we are over the brink in terms of people who do not want freedom outnumbering those who do, I believe they are wrong.

Passion for Romney?

The place to begin is with the lead candidate on the ticket. Ms. Hollis writes of the "enthusiasm, passion, commitment and determination" that characterized Romney supporters. Do you remember voting for Romney with passion? Not many people I know did; I can think of one. No, they voted with passion all right, the passion of despair about Obama; these voters were even labeled "ABO, Anybody but Obama voters."

And, there was not much passion for Obama either. Perhaps his victory margin, or most likely, a percentage much greater than that, voted for him because they did not like Romney.

Was there passion and enthusiasm for Romney? No.

Passion, enthusiasm, commitment and determination were there in 2012, there for Ron Paul.


PETA Begs Obama To Include Hunting Ban

Wondering if the administration is "against senseless violence and slaughter, or it isn't," People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is making an 11th hour pitch to President Obama to include a hunting ban in his gun control measures to be unveiled Wednesday.

"Americans' views are evolving on many issues, from same-sex marriage to gun control, and the time is right to reconsider the dangerous message that the practice of killing animals for fun is acceptable and should even be protected," Tracy Reiman, PETA's executive vice president said in a letter to Obama.

The animal rights group is angered that Vice President Biden has been calling hunting "responsible" gun ownership.


Is Obama Shaping A New Majority?

In the 20th century, only two presidents shaped new governing coalitions that outlasted them. They were the only two men to appear on five national tickets.

The first was FDR, who rang down the curtain in 1932 on the seven decades of Republican hegemony since Abraham Lincoln that had seen only two Democrats in the White House. And Grover Cleveland and Woodrow Wilson had made it only because of divisions inside the GOP.

Franklin Roosevelt would win four terms, and his party would win the presidency in seven of nine elections between 1932 and 1968.
Richard Nixon was the next craftsman of a governing coalition. While he won with only 43 percent in 1968, by 1972 he had cobbled together a New Majority that would give the GOP four victories in five elections between 1972 and 1988. In two of those victories, Nixon and Ronald Reagan would roll up 49-state landslides.

Roosevelt and Nixon both employed the politics of conflict and confrontation, not conciliation, to smash the old coalition. Find me something to veto, Roosevelt once said to his aides, seeking to start a fight with his adversaries to rally his grumbling troops.

"They hate me, and I welcome their hatred," said FDR in the 1936 campaign. He believed that if a slice of the electorate was incorrigibly hostile, one ought not appease or court them, but use them as a whipping boy to rally the majority. With FDR, the foil was Wall Street, the "money-changers in the temple of our civilization."


Now Turn In Your Guns!

U.S. Government Claims - Just Like The Nazis - The Truth Is Too Complicated And Dangerous To Disclose To The Public

In the classic history of Nazi Germany, They Thought They Were Free, Milton Mayer writes:
"What happened here was the gradual habituation of the people, little by little, to being governed by surprise; to receiving decisions deliberated in secret; to believing that the situation was so complicated that the government had to act on information which the people could not understand, or so dangerous that, even if the people could not understand it, it could not be released because of national security. And their sense of identification with Hitler, their trust in him, made it easier to widen this gap and reassured those who would otherwise have worried about it.

"This separation of government from people, this widening of the gap, took place so gradually and so insensibly, each step disguised (perhaps not even intentionally) as a temporary emergency measure or associated with true patriotic allegiance or with real social purposes. And all the crises and reforms (real reforms, too) so occupied the people that they did not see the slow motion underneath, of the whole process of government growing remoter and remoter.

Similarly, America has - little by little - gone from a nation of laws to a nation of powerful men making laws in secret. Indeed, even Congress doesn't know half of what others are doing.

Secretive, unaccountable agencies are making life and death decisions which effect our most basic rights. They provide "secret evidence" to courts which cannot be checked ... and often withhold any such "evidence" even from the judges. For example:
"I find myself stuck in a paradoxical situation in which I cannot solve a problem because of contradictory constraints and rules — a veritable Catch-22," the judge wrote. "I can find no way around the thicket of laws and precedents that effectively allow the Executive Branch of our Government to proclaim as perfectly lawful certain actions that seem on their face incompatible with our Constitution and laws, while keeping the reasons for their conclusion a secret."



Trevin Jamar Parker was reported missing to the Fruitland Police Department on January 13, 2013. He was last seen on January 13, 2013 in Fruitland, Maryland. Parker made statements to his family that he would run away instead of returning to his primary residence located in Princess Anne, Maryland. Parker is in the company of another runaway, 15 year old Liaisa Stephenson. 

Anyone with information should please contact the Fruitland Police Department.
Detective Tracy Kilgore
Fruitland Police Department
208 S. Division Street
Fruitland, MD 21826
(410) 548-2804 - Office

Yard Signs Available

304 W. Main Street side entrance.

Supreme Court: Floating Home Is Not A Boat

The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that a Florida man’s floating home was a house, not a boat, and not covered under maritime law, in a case that could affect thousands of people around the country who make their home on floating structures in marinas, bays and coves.

The high court ruled 7-2 for Fane Lozman, who argued that the gray, two-story craft approximately 60 feet in length that he towed to the marina in Riviera Beach, Fla., should not have been subject to seizure seized under maritime law.

Justice Stephen Breyer, who included a picture of Lozman’s craft in the opinion, said maritime law affects vessels which are “watercraft or other artificial contrivance used, or capable of being used, as a means of transportation on water.” The key words, Breyer said, were “capable of being used” and the court was concerned with practical possibilities, not merely theoretical.


Obama Urges New Restrictions On Assault Weapons, Magazines As Part Of Gun Control Plan

President Obama called Wednesday for a new and tougher assault-weapons ban and a 10-round limit on magazines, as part of a comprehensive plan to curb gun violence that includes 23 steps he took without congressional action.

Already facing stiff opposition from gun-rights advocates and Republican lawmakers, the president called on Congress to pass several major changes to the country's current gun laws -- some of which are already being considered like the restrictions on semi-automatic weapons and high-capacity magazines.

Obama called as well for legislation to bar the possession and importation of armor-piercing bullets and to require criminal background checks for nearly all gun sales. The president, speaking at the White House, said he would use "whatever weight this office holds" to get the proposals passed.

"If there's even one life that can be saved, then we've got an obligation to try," Obama said. "When it comes to protecting the most vulnerable among us, we must act now. ... Let's do the right thing." 

Update On Brooke Mulford

Brooke was discharged last night from CHOP however on the way home to my mom's she started throwing up. Spoke with doctor and decided to keep heading to my mom's since we were due to go back to CHOP this morning for chemo. She slept through the night and then threw up in the parking garage this morning. Having trouble getting an IV put in now. Once they can get IV in she will get more fluids and then chemo. Think it's going to be a long day.

Best Wishes Suzanne

Another Letter From The President

Joe --

This Saturday, Michelle and I are heading out to events as part of the National Day of Service.

It's a day to put politics aside, give back to our communities, and honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. by following his example. If we want to bring about change, it has to start with us, person by person and block by block.

So today I'm asking all Americans to join me, and make a commitment to serve their communities - this weekend, and throughout 2013.

I wanted service to be a big part of my inauguration because it's played a huge role in my life.

As a young community organizer starting out in Chicago, I learned that the best ideas, the ones that succeed, take hold at the grassroots. No one needs to wait on politicians or Washington: Change happens when individuals take responsibility for one another and their communities.

At the Day of Service in 2009, I visited with military families and wounded service members at the Walter Reed Medical Center and painted walls at a homeless shelter. Joe packed his toolbox and helped Habitat for Humanity hang drywall in new housing in D.C., while my girls, Michelle, and Dr. Jill Biden filled care packages for our troops overseas.

Be part of the inauguration -- make a long-term commitment to serving your community:



Americans Seized In 'Terrorist Incident' At Algeria Gas Plant

A number of Americans are among a total of 41 people reportedly seized by militants at a gas field in Algeria, a U.S officials said Wednesday. The unfolding situation was described by the British government as an "ongoing terrorist incident."

The official was unable to confirm local reports, cited by Reuters, that seven Americans were among the hostages at the gas operation, a joint venture including oil giant BP, Norwegian oil firm Statoil and Algerian state company Sonatrach. "The majority of those held are Algerian nationals," a senior U.S. official said.

BP said in a statement that the site was "attacked and occupied by a group of unidentified armed people."



Braced for a fight, President Barack Obama on Wednesday unveiled the most sweeping proposals for curbing gun violence in two decades, pressing a reluctant Congress to pass universal background checks and bans on military-style assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines like the ones used in the Newtown, Conn., school shooting.

A month after that horrific massacre, Obama also used his presidential powers to enact 23 measures that don't require the backing of lawmakers. The president's executive actions include ordering federal agencies to make more data available for background checks, appointing a director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and directing the Centers for Disease Control to research gun violence.


George Zimmerman Defense: We Have Trayvon Martin's School Records

The legal team for George Zimmerman, the man accused of shooting and killing Trayvon Martin, has received a copy of the 17-year-old's school records.

"We are entitled to receive the school records because some information in Trayvon Martin's file could be relevant in the defense of George Zimmerman," the website for Zimmerman's legal defense said today.

The records have not been made available to the public but according to Zimmerman's legal team, portions could be revealed later.


Obama To Use D.C. ‘Taxation’ Plates On His Limo

President Obama has agreed to place license plates on his presidential limousine that call attention to the District’s lack of voting rights in Congress, White House officials said Tuesday.

The plates will incorporate the “Taxation Without Representation” slogan that appears on standard-issue plates around the District, a reference to its 618,000 residents’ lack of representation in the House and Senate despite a population that outstrips two states.

Mr. Obama’s limousine will sport the plates during inauguration weekend and for the remainder of his term, officials said.


Sharp Divergence In Maryland Counties' Job Growth, Economic Performance

Annapolis, MD - Change Maryland issued a report today that shows how each of the state's 24 jurisdictions are performing on job growth. The report comes on the heels of the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics quarterly report on employment released last week.

Analyzing employment trends since 2007, Worcester County has emerged as the clear leader attracting jobs. Since 2007, the county has increased employment levels just over 50%, a remarkable gain of over 10,000 jobs in the five-year period. The county's property tax rate is among the lowest of any of the state's 24 jurisdictions, while the local income tax is the lowest.

"The county with the lowest taxes is attracting the most jobs and generating the most economic activity," said Change Maryland Chairman Larry Hogan. "We need only look to our own backyard for yet more proof that lower taxes lead to economic prosperity."

A separate Change Maryland report issued last summer showed that Worcester County increased its individual income tax base more than any other county. In the most recent Internal Revenue Service data, Worcester increased its tax base just over 2% as measured by net gross incomes flowing into the jurisdiction.

Hogan also noted that Worcester enjoys bipartisan government at the county commission level.

“One-party monopoly rule - whether at the state or county level – is leading to economic stagnation, lost jobs and overall decline," said Hogan. "Bipartisan governance, on the other hand, enables a robust debate on tax and fiscal policy that is missing on the state level and in our largest jurisdictions."

The correlation between high local tax burdens is also made clear by looking at the worst-performing jurisdiction. Baltimore City's property tax rate is the highest in the state and double the average. The local income tax rate is also the highest. Its loss of nearly 9600 jobs since 2007 is the worst decline of any Maryland jurisdiction. IRS numbers also show Baltimore City leading the state in tax flight.

A BLS analysis measures the nation's 328 largest counties in year-over-year job growth. By that measure, Anne Arundel County is leading the state, with an employment gain of 3.6% from 2011 to 2012, the 27th highest growth rate among large counties. Prince George's and Baltimore City, with flat employment growth, garnered the 288th and 280th spots, respectively, in terms of growth rates, far below other large U.S. counties.

County employment and wage data are compiled under the Bureau's Quarterly Census of Employment and Wages program, which produces detailed information on local employment after each quarter.

W.C.B.I. Press Release


DATE: January 14, 2013 

CBI Case # 13-000021

LOCATION: Old Ocean City Road Berlin, MD

ACCUSED: Unidentified Suspects 

NARRATIVE: In October of 2012 an elderly victim (whom wishes to remain anonymous) was contacted by a person claiming to be from American Sweepstakes Network and was calling to congratulate her on winning $2,500,000.00. The victim had not entered any contest and was surprised that she won. The suspect advised her to send $4,500.00 to insure the check would be sent to her residence. The next day he called back and asked her to get a “Moneypak” card with $1,000.00 on it. She then read him the numbers on the back of the card giving him access to the money. This continued from October 2012 until January 14, 2013 with the suspect each time claiming he was from (American Sweepstakes Network or American Cash Rewards Sweepstakes). The suspect would provide delays and reasons why the two and a half million had not been delivered. Each time the suspect would have the victim wire money or purchase “Moneypak” cards giving him or them access to the accounts. The victim had lost a total of $40,000.00 . She had accepted that she was probably never going to see the sweepstakes prize. She then requested they return all the monies she provided to them. They agreed but requested that she send them another $1,000.00 to insure that they would send the money. When she refused to send them any more monies she began to be threatened by the suspect(s) claiming that if she did not send more money that they would have the U.S. Marshall’s, and Homeland Security lock her up. This is when she contacted the authorities. Worcester County Bureau of Investigations was contacted Monday January 14, 2013 and asked to assist.
Worcester County Bureau of Investigations wants to warn citizens not to provide personal information over the phone or computer to someone you do not know. “If it sounds too good to be true it usually is.” If someone calls you and advises you that you won a sweepstakes this should be a warning that someone is about to scam you. Never wire any money or provide any account information to someone claiming that any amount is needed before obtaining your sweepstakes.

Planning Commission - January 17, 2013 - Change Of Location

The elevator at the Government Office Building is out of service. The Planning Commission meeting scheduled for tomorrow, Thursday, January 17, 2013 will now be held at theWicomico Youth & Civic Center in Danang 3 tomorrow at 1:30 p.m.

BREAKING NEWS: President Obama Unveils Gun-Control Proposal

President Obama will announce his plan to stem gun violence with a call to again ban military-style assault weapons and limit high-capacity magazines. WATCH LIVE at 11:55 a.m. ET on Fox News and

Rape Victim Sues Ocean City Nightclub

A federal civil trial has begun in which a 26-year-old woman is suing the manager and employees of the popular Ocean City nightclub Seacrets for $1 million, claiming she was raped after club security tossed her out and left her on a bench near a parking lot without her belongings.

The incident happened during the 2008 Memorial Day holiday weekend. The victim, who isn't being identified, said she's hoping a jury will help define how far a club's security should extend.

"It's an interesting case because the jury has a tough decision to make," said attorney Alex Brown, a liability expert.


Sen. Mikulski Tours Crisfield Recovery Efforts

CRISFIELD, Md. (AP) — Maryland Sen. Barbara Mikulski will visit the city of Crisfield to observe recovery efforts that are ongoing in the wake of Superstorm Sandy.

Mikulski, a Democrat, will be given a tour Wednesday by Crisfield Mayor P.J. Purnell. Mikulski’s office says 585 homes in Crisfield sustained damage as a result of the hurricane, and 71 homes had major damage. More than 50 businesses were also affected by the storm.


Rep. Harris Supports $17 Billion In Hurricane Sandy Relief

WASHINGTON, DC: This evening, Representative Andy Harris M.D. supported an amendment that would provide $17.1 billion in aid for those impacted by Hurricane Sandy. Last evening, Congressman Harris co-sponsored and voted for The Sandy Recovery Improvement Act of 2013 that will streamline the relief effort for those impacted by Hurricane Sandy and future storms. The amendment did not have the massive pork barrel spending for items not related to Hurricane Sandy that was included in the Senate bill. Representative Harris released the following statement on his vote:

“I have seen firsthand the devastating impact Hurricane Sandy had on families and small businesses on the Eastern Shore. The $17.1 billion in aid I voted for will assist those impacted by the storm. In addition to the funding, I supported an amendment that would control spending to ensure the $17.1 billion would not add to our over $16 trillion national debt.


Mega retailer Wal-Mart says it will hire 100,000 newly discharged veterans over the next five years and will buy an additional $50 billion worth of U.S.-made products over the next ten years.

The new effort, said Wal-Mart U.S. Chief Executive Bill Simon on Tuesday, is the company's way of lending a helping hand to the sputtering U.S. economy and boosting lackluster employment figures.

"We've developed a national paralysis that's driven by all of us waiting for someone else to do something," said Simon. "But if we're waiting on government, we're waiting on a process that can't act with the same speed as business."


Moody’s Economist Advises Md. To Fund Education But Not Raise Gas Tax In 2013

Mark Zandi, chief economist for Moody’s Analytics, gave Maryland senators an upbeat analysis of the economy, along with some advice on what they could do to help the “winners” and “losers” in the current economy.

Testifying before the Senate Budget and Taxation Committee, Zandi, who is frequently quoted in the national media, said state policymakers should look at the longer term and focus on educational structure and infrastructure. They should make the “the right kind of investments” to level opportunities for the middle and lower income Marylanders.

But then Zandi added that Maryland needed to “make your tax code fair, simple and competitive.”



CNN’s Piers Morgan confirmed Ben Shapiro’s skepticism about whether tonight’s “debate” on gun control would be “balanced.” The Breitbart Editor-at-Large accepted an invitation to appear on Morgan’s show for a rematch, then turned down the offer when it became clear Morgan planned to turn his “town hall” into a propaganda rally. Morgan then offered Shapiro two one-on-one segments, and the debate back on was on.

As fate would have it, Shapiro’s flight from Los Angeles to New York was grounded in Denver due to an unruly passenger (without a gun). Ben arrived at the CNN studio too late to participate in the debate--but all he missed was the spectacle of Piers Morgan browbeating a black conservative and a woman from the Tea Party in front of his anti-gun guests and to the enthusiastic cheers of the hopelessly stacked studio audience.

This is “debate” in the same way that communist dictatorships practice “democracy.” There’s an opposition present, of course, but the better they are--and the Tea Party's Scottie N. Hughes was particularly good--the more it proves their guilt. At the end, Piers turned to family members of murder victims for their verdict. They choked back tears as they accosted the two Second Amendment defenders: how dare they fail to capitulate!


Rape Victim Sues Ocean City Nightclub

Victim seeking $1M in damages from Seacrets club
A federal civil trial has begun in which a 26-year-old woman is suing the manager and employees of the popular Ocean City nightclub Seacrets for $1 million, claiming she was raped after club security tossed her out and left her on a bench near a parking lot without her belongings.
The incident happened during the 2008 Memorial Day holiday weekend. The victim, who isn't being identified, said she's hoping a jury will help define how far a club's security should extend.

"It's an interesting case because the jury has a tough decision to make," said attorney Alex Brown, a liability expert.

Seacrets is the largest nightclub in Ocean City, where the capacity can swell to 5,000.

In a Baltimore court on Monday, the woman's attorney admitted she fell to the floor at the club in front of a security guard.
Her complaint claims she was ejected for being too intoxicated and that security refused to let her get back in to find her friends and get her personal belongings, which included her identification.
Seacrets personnel escorted the plaintiff to a bench adjacent to a Seacrets parking lot, the complaint said. The woman left in search of her friends but came back about a half-hour later.

The complaint said a man then repeatedly punched her in the face and body for several minutes. After disappearing and coming back minutes later, the complaint said the man then dragged the plaintiff to an area behind a building, where he raped her.

State Highway Administration Defends Speed Camera Program

The controversy over whether to change Maryland's three-year-old speed camera law arrived in Annapolis Tuesday, with some lawmakers calling for accountability and the State Highway Administration touting the value of its program.

State Highway Administrator Melinda B. Peters said serious accidents in work zones have reached a 10-year low and only 2 percent of drivers are ticketed by the speed cameras. Peters told lawmakers it's necessary to have cameras operating in construction zones even when workers are not present — a practice some lawmakers have criticized — because the jersey barriers and irregular traffic patterns are a hazard.

"Work zones are challenging to maneuver for even the most experienced drivers," Peters said.


Oracle Says Java Is Fixed; Feds Maintain Warning

Oracle Corp. said Monday it has released a fix for the flaw in its Java software that raised an alarm from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security last week. Even after the patch was issued, the federal agency continued to recommend that users disable Java in their Web browsers.

"This and previous Java vulnerabilities have been widely targeted by attackers, and new Java vulnerabilities are likely to be discovered," DHS said Monday in an updated alert published on the website of its Computer Emergency Readiness Team. "To defend against this and future Java vulnerabilities, consider disabling Java in Web browsers until adequate updates are available."

The alert follows on the department's warning late Thursday. Java allows programs to run within websites and powers some advertising networks. Users who disable Java may not be able to see portions of websites that display real-time data such as stock prices, graphical menus, weather updates and ads.


Two Boys Suspended For Playing Cops And Robbers At Recess

Two more Maryland school kids got into trouble for pointing their fingers playing cops and robbers at school.

Actually, in the Eastern Shore schoolyard during recess in this latest case.

It happened last week at White Marsh Elementary in Talbot County.

The two six year olds had been playing and were suspended for a day.


DNR: Conowingo Dam Sediment Hastens Bay Pollution

Sediments behind the Conowingo dam threatening bay restoration efforts must be dealt with sooner rather than later, and Exelon should be part of the solution as part of the relicensing of its hydro-electric power plant, a Maryland natural resources official said Tuesday.

Bruce Michael, director of the Resource Assessment Service at the Department of Natural Resources, made the comments as the Chesapeake Bay Program released a study using a new statistical method to gauge bay pollution levels that found sediment pollution from the dam has been increasing.

The dam across the Susquehanna River, the bay's major freshwater source, has kept sediments and other pollutants from reaching the bay for decades, but scientists warn it is reaching capacity. That means that storms more frequently are pushing muddy water over the dam, threatening ecologically important bay grasses, oysters and other species.


WCSO Press Release 1-16-13

18 Charged In Drug Trafficking Operation

Federal prosecutors say 18 people have been changed in a drug trafficking operation that spanned three states and transported hundreds of pounds of marijuana.

The 18 were charged in indictments and complaints unsealed Tuesday. Fifteen people were arrested and search warrants were executed on homes and businesses in Maryland, New Jersey and California.



Remember the “Obama phone lady”? She’s the outspoken Obama supporter who was caught on video back in September ranting about how the president deserved a second term — mainly because he had given her, among many others, a free phone. She became an instant classic.

Well, she’s back. And not only is she back, she’s back in one of the most incredible ways: in an interview with conspiracy-crazed radio host Alex Jones.

In a sit down with Jones this week, the woman (real name: Michelle Dowery) gave what can only be described as one of the (if not ​the​) most entertaining interview of the year (so far, anyway).


Social Security Now Called 'Federal Benefit Payment Entitlement"

Have you noticed, your Social Security check is now referred to as a "federal benefit payment"?

Our Government gets away with way too much in all areas of our lives, while they live lavishly on their grossly overpaid incomes!

Remember, not only have we contributed to Social Security but your employer did too. It totaled 15% of your income before taxes. If you averaged only $30K over your working life, that's close to $220,500.

If you calculate the future value of $4,500 per year (yours & your employer's contribution) at a simple 5% (less than what the government pays on the money that it borrows), after 49 years of working you'd have $892,919.98.

If you took out only 3% per year, you'd receive $26,787.60 per year and it would last better than 30 years (until you're 95 if you retire at age 65) and that's with no interest paid on that final amount on deposit! If you bought an annuity and it paid 4% per year, you'd have a lifetime income of $2,976.40 per month.

Entitlement my butt, I paid cash for my social security insurance!!!! Just because they borrowed the money, doesn't make my benefits some kind of charity or handout!!

Congressional benefits ---- free healthcare, outrageous retirement packages, 67 paid holidays, three weeks paid vacation, unlimited paid sick days, now that's welfare, and they have the nerve to call my social security retirement entitlements? We're "broke" and can't help our own Seniors, Veterans, Orphans, and Homeless.

In the last months we have provided aid to Haiti, Chile, and Turkey. And now Pakistan ....... hideout of bin Laden. Literally, BILLIONS of DOLLARS!!!

Our retired seniors living on a 'fixed income' receive no aid nor do they get any breaks while our government and religious organizations pour Hundreds of Billions of $$$'s and Tons of Food to Foreign Countries!

They call Social Security and Medicare an entitlement even though most of us have been paying for it all our working lives and now when it’s time for us to collect, the government is running out of money. Why did the government borrow from it in the first place? Imagine if the *GOVERNMENT* gave 'US' the same support they give to other countries.

Sad isn't it?