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Wednesday, January 08, 2014

Craig Calls On Sebelius, O’Malley And Brown To Work Together To Fix Zip Code Bug

Harford County Executive and Maryland candidate for Governor David Craig urged U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley and Administration healthcare point man and Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown to solve a problem on the federal health care website which sends Marylanders to other states to seek in-person assistance.  The so-called navigator program and other iterations such as application assisters are provisions of the Affordable Care Act intended to help people sign up for health insurance coverage.

Sebelius wrote in the op-ed, “A happy, healthy New Year,” which ran in the Baltimore Sun January 1, that people could seek “in person” assistance by consulting a local help section on health care.gov.  

The section allows consumers to enter a zip code to get assistance in person if they are having difficulty with the Maryland exchange.  Entering a Baltimore zip code, however, sends consumers to distant areas including York, Pennsylvania and Alexandria, Virginia.

“This should be a relatively easy fix for the two Administrations to work together on to incrementally reduce mass confusion over the Affordable Care Act,” said Craig. “The federal and state government should be directing people to the correct resources in a consistent and accurate manner, and the misleading data on the federal website only makes matters worse for people already having trouble getting health insurance in Maryland.”

It turns out Baltimore zip code 21201 is served by an organization on 201 E. Baltimore St within that same zip code.  The non-profit has received 30 major grants, $23 million in cumulative funding and $8 million in taxpayer funds from the Maryland Health Benefit Exchange which administers Maryland Health Connection.  Maryland is one of 14 states administering their own exchange.

It appears a software glitch causes zip code searches to direct people to neighboring states that opted to use the federal exchange.   The David Craig campaign used a live chat customer service feature on the federal site attempting to clarify if it is the government’s intention to send Maryland consumers to Virginia to seek in-person assistance. When asked if it was required to go to Virginia to seek assistance, the federal government’s live chat representative said, “Yes that is correct.”

“This is unacceptable,“said Craig. “Federal and state information need to be integrated at least on a basic level, or they need to disable the zip code search function.”

Typing in “Baltimore” on some computers directs consumers to a link to Maryland Health Connection, where ultimately resources can be found within the state.   Many individuals, however, are accustomed to providing zip codes in daily transactions, which in this case, will either send people across state lines or cause them to give up on seeking assistance.

How to Fight Poverty -- and Win

When President Johnson launched the War on Poverty on Jan. 8, 1964, he pledged “not only to relieve the symptom of poverty, but to cure it and, above all, to prevent it.” Sadly, the half-century legacy of Johnson’s Great Society has not lived up to that noble goal.

The War on Poverty has not done justice to the poor. Our responsibility to our neighbors in need demands more: a redirection of public policy and a commitment from each of us to do what we can in our own communities.

Despite spending nearly $20 trillion since the War on Poverty began, the poverty rate remains nearly as high today as it was in the mid-1960s. Today, government spends nearly $1 trillion annually on 80 federal means-tested programs providing cash, food, housing, medical care and targeted social services for poor and low-income Americans. Clearly, policymakers can’t hide behind reams of programs and billions in spending and declare they’ve done their duty to the poor. Good intentions aren’t enough.
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20 Simple Secrets Of Happy Families — All Backed By Science

Where You Live Matters

Via 100 Simple Secrets of Happy Families:

People who are highly satisfied with their neighborhood are 25 percent more likely to be highly satisfied with their family life.

The less open the communication between adults and children, the more pessimistic the children are likely to be and the less likely the children are to feel secure in their family relationship. This is nearly doubly as significant in stepparent-children relationships.

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POLICE TAKEDOWN: WHERE'S THE LITTLE GIRL???

MMA Fighter Kills Armed Intruder, 'Severely' Injures Another And Scares Off Two More In Home Invasion Gone Wrong

A mixed martial arts fighter in New Mexico may face charges after authorities say he fended off four home invaders - killing one and severely injuring another - during a an early morning break in on New Year's Day.

According to authorities in Dora Ana County, MMA fighter Joe Torrez fatally beat and stabbed one of the intruders, beat another so badly he needed to be taken from Torrez's home in an ambulance and then convinced the other two to retreat in fear.

Authorities found the body of 25-year-old Sal Garces near Torrez's trailer home in the 600 block of King James Avenue.

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UPDATE: Two Dead In Navy Helicopter Crash

Search continues for fifth crewmember
 

Two crewmen have died and some wreckage has been found following a Navy helicopter crash off the coast of Virginia Beach Wednesday morning. One crew member remains missing.

Petty Officer Brandyn Hill with the Coast Guard told WAVY.com five people were aboard the helicopter when it went down about 18 nautical miles east of Cape Henry, the northeast corner of Virginia Beach. The Navy said the distress call went out around 10:45 a.m.

The Navy said it took 25-30 minutes to rescue the first two sailors after the distress call was made. A total of four were rescued in less than an hour. The fifth crew member remains unaccounted for at this time.
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Homeless Moderate Risk Tier II Sex Offender Notification

Lewis E. Brittingham III, 50 Georgetown, DE
5'05" tall, 150 lbs.
Grey hair, blue eyes

Resume:
Georgetown, DE- Lewis E. Brittingham III is not wanted. This is a Homeless Sex Offender Public Notification. Brittingham is a moderate risk Tier II sex offender who has registered as homeless in Georgetown, DE. If you have information that Lewis Brittingham is occupying a residence please contact 302-672-5306 or by utilizing the Delaware State Police Mobile Crime Tip Application available to download at: http://www.delaware.gov/apps/. Information can also be provided to the Delaware Crime Stoppers at 1-800-TIP-3333. Information may also be provided via the internet at www.tipsubmit.com

Send an anonymous tip by text to 274637 (CRIMES) using the keyword "DSP."

Tip From Dinwiddie, VA.

I don't know what part of Virginia, or any other state you were staying in last night, but it was cold out here in Dinwiddie, VA. Seeing as how this was the coldest temperature in the past 20 years, here's a little survival tip I thought of and used that really worked.

CARSON: Are All The President’s Critics Racists?

A few years ago, I was participating in a national radio interview when the questioner asked me, “Dr. Carson, I notice that you don’t speak very often about race. Why is that?” I replied, “It’s because I’m a neurosurgeon.” The puzzled look on her face demanded further clarification.

I proceeded to explain that when I take a patient to the operating room and open the cranium, exposing the brain, I am operating on the actual thing that makes that person who they are. The hair, scalp and skull bones are merely external coverings of the critical entity — namely, the brain — which determines all the most important things about us as human beings.

We have a choice of concentrating on superficial characteristics, which mean little or nothing, or concentrating on the source of our humanity, our intellect, our personality and the content of our character.
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Mumia Abu-Jamal’s Lawyer To Obama’s Justice Department

President Obama’s nominee to be the nation’s top civil rights enforcer is a race-obsessed lawyer who tried to permanently free unrepentant cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal.

This radical so-called civil rightslawyer, Debo Adegbile, was until fairly recently head of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund. Like Attorney General Eric Holder, Adegbile is a staunch affirmative action supporter and doesn’t appear to believe that white Americans are entitled to civil rights protection. Currently he serves as senior counsel to the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee, which is chaired by Sen. Pat Leahy (D-Vt.).

It’s yet another nomination to high federal office in which Obama isn’t even trying to conceal his anti-American radicalism. “Obama’s nominee process involves finding the worst person on earth for that job or any job,” as Daniel Greenfieldobserves. “It’s a process that never fails.”

Interestingly, Adegbile has a personal story that’s similar to Obama’s. The DoJ nominee was raised by a single mother in the absence of her son’s Nigerian father, reports the Washington Post.

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Rockfish Poaching Bust Nets 2 Baltimore County Men

Crime bust on the Chesapeake Bay! Two Baltimore County men face nearly a million dollars in fines after they’re caught stealing hundreds of pounds of striped bass. It happened on the Patapsco River.

A rockfish poaching bust nets two watermen, Terry Myrick and John Messenger, landing them in hot water Tuesday.

“They exceeded their daily catch limit,” said Joe Offer, Maryland Natural Resources Police.
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Pimping The Empire, Progressive-Style

Supporting the central state to protect your favored cartels is simply pimping for the Empire.

The central illusion of both Left (so-called Progressives) and Right (so-called conservatives) is that the Central State's essentially unlimited powers can be narrowly directed to further their agenda.

(I say "so-called" because the "Progressives" are not actually progressive, and the "Conservatives" are not actually conservative. Those labels are Orwellian double-speak, designed to mask the disastrous consequences of each ideology's actual policies.)

Let's begin by stipulating that ideology, any ideology, is an intellectual and emotional shortcut that offers believers ready-made explanations, goals, narratives and enemies without any difficult, time-consuming analysis, study or skeptical inquiry. This is the ultimate appeal of ideology: accepting the ideology relieves the believer of the burdens of analysis, skeptical inquiry, uncertainty/doubt and responsibility: all the answers, goals and narratives are prepackaged and mashed together for easy consumption.

This is one of the core messages of Erich Fromm's classic exploration of ideology and authoritarianism, Escape from Freedom.

And what is the essential foundation of authoritarianism? A central state. This is not coincidental.

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95% Of Total Consumer Credit Lent In Past 12 Months Is For Student And Car Loans

Another month, another disappointment for all those who hope the consumer will finally "charge it." In November, consumer credit was expected to grow by $14.25 billion, instead it rose by $12.318 billion. However, it was once again the components that were key, because while $11.9 billion or the vast majority of November's credit growth was in the form of car and student loans (i.e., non-revolving), a tiny $458 million was for revolving, or credit card, purchases.

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FBI Officially Admits They Do Not Enforce The Law

Today ZeroHedge published an interesting report about the FBI’s change to their mission statement.

What the writer failed to acknowledge is that the FBI has been involved in almost every major cover-up in U.S. history. We could list 100+ incidents whereby the FBI injects itself into an investigation; with the demonstrated purpose of learning about what evidence has been revealed; find out what people know, and then cover it all up.

The JFK assassination, Gulf of Tonkin, TWA Flight 800, Keating 5 / Lincoln Saving & Loan, Oklahoma City bombing, September 11th, Boston Marathon bombing, Benghazi, Seal Team 6, and the list is almost endless.
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Law Enforcement Officers Per Capita For Cities, Local Departments

The following table shows the number of total full-time law enforcement employees and officers per agency in 2010, as reported to the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting Program. Columns on the right show the number of police employees and officers per 10,000 residents. Click column headings to sort the data.

Employee totals for the most populous 100 localities reporting data are listed.

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Iraq War Veterans Watch Losses Of Hard-Fought Gains In Fallujah

Robert Reynolds chokes up when asked to recall what it was like to be among U.S. forces who routed al Qaeda-linked fighters from the western Iraqi city of Fallujah a decade ago.

“We lost hundreds of men, so many men, and so many more men were injured,” said the former Marine, who received a Purple Heart for the bullet he took in the arm during the combat.

Like other Americans who put their lives on the line in one of the most intense U.S. combat operations in decades, Mr. Reynolds, 36, finds it hard to come to grips with news this week that Fallujah had fallen back into the hands of al Qaeda — just two years after U.S. forces pulled out of Iraq.
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Rand Paul Exposes The Crony Federal Reserve On The Senate Floor

Consumers May Be Cheesed Off: Velveeta In Short Supply

Playoff parties may have one fewer dip option this year.

Kraft Foods says some customers may not be able to find Velveeta cheese over the next few weeks. A representative for the company, Jody Moore, didn’t give any reasons for the apparent shortage, saying only that they happen from time to time given the “nature of manufacturing.”

She noted that the lack of availability is more noticeable because of the seasonal demand during the NFL playoffs. The company has been airing TV commercials featuring a recipe for a chili con queso dip made with Velveeta.
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BREAKING NEWS: Maddux, Glavine, Thomas Elected To Baseball Hall Of Fame

Longtime White Sox slugger Frank Thomas and 300-game winners Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine, former teammates on the Atlanta Braves, were elected to baseball's Hall of Fame.

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Md. Announces Clothing Company Expansion

ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- A new Carlisle Etcetera national distribution center is opening in Carroll County, and the English American Tailoring Company in Westminster is expanding.

Gov. Martin O'Malley and Carroll County economic development officials made the announcement Tuesday.

Both companies are part of the Tom James Company, the world's largest manufacturer and retailer of custom clothing.

Carlisle Etcetera is relocating from New York. The company is planning to buy the former Marada building and create a facility for women's apparel.
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Federal Government Exchange Is No Remedy For Troubled Maryland Exchange

Zip Code Glitch Affects Health Care Consumers in all 14 States with Exchanges

The first issue stems from yesterday’s announcement in which the campaign discovered a software glitch that directs people seeking in-person assistance with Obamacare to surrounding states instead of to organizations near where they live. Originally assumed to be a problem isolated to Maryland, the “local help” feature on the federal government’s healthcare.gov site is directing people in 14 states which operate their own exchange to other states. It appears the software is not coded correctly and nobody thought to integrate federal and state information, so the website is incorrectly defaulting to send consumers to other states that opted to use the federal exchange. The misleading data in Baltimore, for example, would cause people to believe they must drive to Virginia or Pennsylvania to seek the assistance of so-called navigators. Even more logistically challenging, people in Denver, Colorado are shown listings of navigator resources in Kansas and Wyoming.

“If misleading data is produced on the front end, then I shudder to think what this thing looks like on the back end,“ said Maryland candidate for Governor and Harford County Executive Craig, referring to the federal exchange.

The issue takes on greater importance as U.S. Rep. John Delaney (MD 06) recently called on the O’Malley –Brown Administration to consider eliminating the under-performing Maryland state exchange and divert consumers to the federal exchange. Gov. Martin O’Malley and healthcare point man and Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown have not ruled out migrating to the federal exchange. They are submitting emergency legislation to deal with thousands of people who believe they properly enrolled for insurance, but may not have actual coverage due to data transfer problems between the state exchange and insurance carriers.

The second issue is that the federal exchange, like Maryland, is experiencing back-end enrollment problems, and the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services does not disclose the number of people who paid their first month’s premium and received a health insurance card. This could mean that Marylanders will again experience the same problem of thinking they have insurance when they do not.

In remarks similar to those he made to the Daily Record newspaper in Baltimore yesterday, Craig said, “Nobody can be confident in critical back-end procedures with the federal health care site until the federal government discloses how many people actually get insurance. The Congressman’s proposal only kicks problems up to the federal government, increases the mass confusion already surrounding Obamacare and empowers bureaucracy, not consumers.”

Craig has previously called on the Administration to re-allocate up to $150 million in taxpayer funds for the marketing and outreach of Maryland Health Connection and instead launch a public awareness campaign letting consumers know they can sign up for coverage directly through insurance carriers or brokers.

On the matter of the software glitch on the federal site, the Craig campaign entered zip codes for the largest cities in the 14 states running their own exchanges. Entering a place name, i.e. “Baltimore,” directs a person to the state exchange. Yet, when a Baltimore zip code is entered the search results lists only out-of-state organizations. Actually, a non-profit organization serves Baltimore with health care navigators, and if the site worked similar to a basic web-based store finder application the listing would appear however search terms are entered.

In some states, listings show no search results. In most large cities, however, ranging from Boston to Las Vegas, users are directed across state lines. HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius promoted the “local help” feature to Marylanders seeking “in-person assistance” in a Baltimore Sun op ed January 1, and identical versions ran in other newspapers across the country.

Inside Disney World's Abandoned Theme Parks

Last week we took a look at the ruins of what was once the Miracle Strip Amusement Park in Florida. Naturally, that got me thinking about the biggest attraction in Florida: Disney World. Disney World occupies an insane amount of land in Florida, and Disney owns even more that is undeveloped. Surely, hidden away somewhere there must be the ruins of a Disney park or two.

There are two to be exact: Discovery Island and River Country. The adjoining parks are the only two Disney parks to ever be closed permanently. Luckily for us, they were abandoned rather than demolished.

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Antares Launch Scheduled For Today Postponed

Antares Launch Postponed:
Early this morning the Antares launch team decided to scrub today’s launch attempt due to an unusually high level of space radiation that exceeded by a considerable margin the constraints imposed on the mission to ensure the rocket’s electronic systems are not impacted by a harsh radiation environment. The solar flux activity that occurred late yesterday afternoon has had the result of increasing the level of radiation beyond what the Antares engineering team was monitoring earlier in the day. Overnight, Orbital engineers who are experts in the field ran numerous models to ensure that all possibilities to preserve the launch were examined. However, due to significantly elevated flux levels, the Antares team decided to postpone the launch to spend the day further examining the potential effects of the space radiation on the rocket’s avionics suite.
Today, in consultation with NASA and outside experts in the field of “space weather,” Orbital will continue to monitor the levels of space radiation with a goal of setting a new launch date as soon as possible. If we are able to launch on Thursday, the launch targeted launch time would be 1:10 p.m. (EST), with Cygnus arriving at the ISS Sunday morning, January 12.

Guerrero To Return To Salisbury With Very Special Gifts

Fernando Guerrero will be returning to Salisbury on the 17th but it's very important you know he'll be doing so as a "Belated Santa". 

Fernando has been living and training in California pursuing his fighting AND acting career. Yes, Fernando just did another Airline Commercial and quite frankly he's doing pretty darned well out there. 

However, he has never forgotten his roots. Throughout ALL of the people he has met there and associated with, he has made connections with different companies who have been willing to make incredible donations towards children and young adults.

That being said, I happen to know Fernando will be returning to Salisbury with anywhere from 50 to 100 pairs of Name Brand Sneakers and toys from Leap Frog, educational.

Shoe sizes will be for elementary and high school sizes and he will be giving them out at Brew River. Salisbury News is proud to make this announcement in the hopes that you will spread the word and gather those people in need of these items as those in NEED are so important first. 

We'll see you at Brew River on the 17th and we want to thank Fernando Guerrero, (Santa) for his kind generosity. 

Bill de Blasio And The Politics Of Inequality

The election of a new New York mayor usually has little political significance for the rest of the nation. Often it is a local anomaly in a city that makes its own political weather and does not follow trends found in the rest of America. Sometimes it is an expression of private grief. But the inauguration of Bill de Blasio was different.

Not only did he win handily on an unapologetically progressive ticket, his installation was presided over by President Bill Clinton and endorsed by the presence of Hillary Clinton, whose failure to declare whether she will run in 2016 is causing all other Democratic wannabes to stay their hand. The Democrats appear to be saying that if Mrs. Clinton wants the job, it is hers, so until she decides, donors won’t waste a single cent on backing anyone else.

Ever aware of the latest undercurrents of Democratic thought, President Clinton alluded to the debate that is gaining traction among not only Democrats but among Independents and even some Tea Party members, too: the gap between the rich and the poor is too much to bear and must be addressed.

Referring to “this inequality problem [that] bedevils the entire country,” President Clinton describedincome inequality as “not just a moral outrage. It is a horrible constraint on economic growth. … We cannot go forward if we don’t do it together.” It echoes President Obama’s belief that “dangerous and growing inequality and lack of upward mobility” is “the defining challenge of our times.”

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GOP Establishment's War On Tea Party Comes To Texas

The Republican establishment's war against the Tea Party has come to Texas. According to a report in theDallas Morning News, "Some of Texas’ biggest business trade groups are moving to counter tea party and anti-government forces that have dominated recent Republican primaries."

The Texas Future Business Alliance, described as a "mix of 10 major business groups, including the chemical industry, bankers, builders and contractors," is reportedly "sending out mailers and providing other support on behalf of GOP candidates" who favor more government spending and want to take on the Tea Party.

A person involved in the Texas Future Business Alliance who refused to go on the record, said, "A lot of the business community is tired" of the Tea Party.

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Republicans Help Georgia Democratic Senate Candidate Michelle Nunn

If one ever needed proof that establishment Republicans and Democrats amount to one party rule in Washington, look no further than this story.

Former Republican Senator Richard Lugar’s leadership political action committee, The 19th Star PAC, sent $5,000 on Dec. 12 to Democrat Michelle Nunn, who will face the winner of the Republican primary for Saxby Chambliss's seat. Chambliss, a Republican, is retiring.

Nunn also received a donation from another Republican, former Virginia Senator, John Warner.

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BREAKING NEWS: Helicopter Crashes Off Of The Coast Of Virginia Beach

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) - A Navy helicopter went down Wednesday morning off the coast of Cape Henry in the northeast corner of Virginia Beach.

Petty Officer Brandyn Hill with the Coast Guard told WAVY.com five people were aboard the helicopter when it went down about 18 nautical miles east of Cape Henry. The Coast Guard was notified just after 11 a.m.

WAVY News Art Kohn spoke with Cmdr. Mike Kafka with U.S. Fleet Forces Command and confirmed two people have been rescued and were en route to a hospital and two others were on a raft. The remaining person on board is still unaccounted for.
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UPDATE: The Navy says one crewman has died after one of its helicopters crashed during a training mission off the coast of Virginia today.

Extended Unemployment Benefits Impose Unconscionable Burdens

Reinstating emergency unemployment benefits, as President Obama urges, would slow growth and impose unconscionable burdens on the working poor.

State governments provide a basic benefit averaging $300 per week for 26 weeks. During the Great Recession, Washington financed additional benefits for as long as 99 weeks.

With the recovery in its 55th month, the emergency is over. Another extension would make long-term benefits de facto permanent and create another entitlement. Republican leaders are correct to insist Democrats identify equivalent spending cuts or new sources of revenue.

Advocates argue those benefits provide the strongest economic stimulus, because the unemployed spend whatever money they receive on necessities. However, their supporting studies assume other federal programs are not cut or taxes are not raised to finance benefits.

Cutting other outlays, for example on roads and schools, would have an even bigger negative impact on GDP and jobs than failing to again extend unemployment benefits would, because some of the latter would not be spent but would rather be used to pay down credit cards and other debt.

Additional taxes to pay for more unemployment benefits would impose a terrible burden on the working poor — the very folks Obama constantly reminds need the most help.

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Md. Casinos Generate $65M In Revenue In Dec.

BALTIMORE (AP) -- State gaming officials say Maryland's four casinos generated more than $65 million in revenue.

The Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency announced December's figures on Tuesday.

Hollywood Casino Perryville generated nearly $6.5 million from slot machines and table games. Casino at Ocean Downs generated more than $3.3 million in revenue on its 800 slot machines.
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The Most Magnificent Welfare Program Of All Time?

From the point of view of a defender of liberty, ObamaCare is the most magnificent welfare state program of our generation.

Premium expenses are going up for most people. Deductibles are going up for most people. Cancellation letters are going out to millions of people. The number of people signing up is less than the number of people who have received policy-cancellation letters. In short, the costs are being front-loaded, and the benefits are being back-loaded.

Always before, welfare state politics has been based on a specific strategy: “Benefits first. Costs later.” This is called front-loading and back-loading. The best examples of this process are Social Security and Medicare. The costs are now coming due for these two programs. According to Prof. Lawrence Kotlikoff, the back-loaded cost of the two programs is now in the range of $200 trillion, present value. But no one really cares. Those costs will be imposed in the future. Politicians care only about the immediate future, namely, the next election.

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Attacking Those Who Can’t Fight Back

There’s little debate among academic economists about the effect of minimum wages. University of California, Irvine economist David Neumark has examined more than 100 major academic studies on the minimum wage. He reports that 85 percent of the studies “find a negative employment effect on low-skilled workers.” A 1976 American Economic Association survey found that 90 percent of its members agreed that increasing the minimum wage raises unemployment among young and unskilled workers. A 1990 survey reported in the American Economic Review (1992) found that 80 percent of economists agreed with the statement that increases in the minimum wage cause unemployment among the youth and low-skilled. If you’re searching for a consensus in a field of study, most of the time you can examine the field’s introductory and intermediate college textbooks. Economics textbooks that mention the minimum wage say that it increases unemployment for the least skilled worker. The only significant debate about the minimum wage is the magnitude of its effect. Some studies argue that a 10 percent increase in the minimum wage will cause a 1 percent increase in unemployment, whereas others predict a higher increase.

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Life in the Electronic Concentration Camp

The Many Ways That You’re Being Tracked, Catalogued and Controlled

What is most striking about the American police state is not the mega-corporations running amok in the halls of Congress, the militarized police crashing through doors and shooting unarmed citizens, or the invasive surveillance regime which has come to dominate every aspect of our lives. No, what has been most disconcerting about the emergence of the American police state is the extent to which the citizenry appears content to passively wait for someone else to solve our nation’s many problems. Unless Americans are prepared to engage in militant nonviolent resistance in the spirit of Martin Luther King Jr. and Gandhi, true reform, if any, will be a long time coming.

Do Democrats Really Want To 'Fix' Obamacare?

Many leading Democrats say they want to "fix" the Affordable Care Act. "I think what most Americans want us to do is not repeal Obamacare, which is what our Republican colleagues are focused on, but fix it," said Sen. Charles Schumer on "Meet the Press" on Dec. 22. "The president is working to fix it; we are working in the Senate to fix it; we urge our Republican colleagues to join us in fixing it."

Sounds good. But what, precisely, are Democrats on Capitol Hill doing to fix Obamacare? The answer is not much.

"It's just a talking point," says a GOP Senate aide of Schumer's claim. (A Schumer spokesman did not respond to requests for comment.)

"No Democratic fixes jump out," says a GOP House aide. "Seems like all they want to do is continue delaying portions of the law to insulate themselves against the political fallout."

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Unemployment Debate Driven By 'Spin And Not Facts'

Sen. Tom Coburn said Tuesday the debate about unemployment should be about creating jobs and not extending benefits.

"This is the sixth year of this, of extending unemployment benefits. The question people ought to be asking is, 'What are we doing to create jobs, rather than to pay people who don't have a job who are looking for a job?'" the Oklahoma Republican said on "Fox & Friends" shortly before voting against a Senate bill to extend benefits for three more months.

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Executive Wants County Vehicles Exempt From State Gas Tax

The Baltimore County Executive is supporting a move to have county owned vehicles be exempt from the state gas tax. Maryland's gas tax jumped by 3 and a half cents per gallon last July.

Kevin Kamenetz tells WBAL Radio that he would like to see the same exemption allowed for state owned vehicles given to county owned vehicles. He says it would save Baltimore County about $2 million annually.

Kamenetz is also in support of restoring any of the money given to local governments from the state gas tax revenue. During the recession the highway user funds given to counties from the revenue were reduced. He says the county now only receives $3-million which is down from the $45-million it used to receive in highway user funds. The money is used for highway maintenance projects.
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EPA Proposes Restrictions For New Wood Stoves

FAIRBANKS, Alaska – The federal Environmental Protection Agency has proposed new standards for wood stoves that would reduce the maximum amount of fine particulate emissions allowed for new stoves sold in 2015 and 2019.

Maximum emissions would be reduced by one-third next year and by 80 percent in five years, the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reported.

Fine particulate pollution is made up of solid particles and liquid droplets that measure 2.5 micrometers in diameter or less. The EPA currently certifies non-catalytic wood stoves if they produce less than 7.5 grams of fine particulate per hour.

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Republicans In Position To Win Midterms

Republicans are expected to see gains in both the House and Senate in the 2014 midterm elections, if three factors — the president, the economy, and the electoral playing field — align, writes political analyst Larry Sabato for Politico.

"[President Barack Obama's] job approval numbers are perhaps the best indicator of the public's overall political orientation at any given time, a kind of summary statistic that takes everything at the national level into account," Sabato explains.

"In a large majority of cases, the president's party does poorly in midterms, especially the second midterm of a two-term administration," he adds.

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Madoff Ponzi Scheme: Once Again, Is JPMorgan Chase Too Big To Jail

In another major victory for JPMorgan Chase and its CEO Jamie Dimon, prosecutors said today the bank will be able to avoid criminal charges under a deferred prosecution agreement despite having "turned a blind eye" to evidence of the Ponzi scheme of Bernie Madoff, whose principal accounts were held by the bank for 22 years and were central to his multi-billion dollar fraud.

Instead, prosecutors announced today that the bank will pay $1.7 billion to defer for two years criminal charges that the bank failed to report suspicious activity that might have tipped off investigators to Madoff's scheme years earlier, $350 million to cover civil money penalties for violations of the Bank Secrecy Act and another $543 million to settle civil suits filed by victims of the Ponzi scheme.

It was the second time in three months that the Obama administration Department of Justice declined to push JPMorgan Chase, the country's largest bank by assets, to trial on criminal charges. In November, the DOJ accepted a payment of $13 billion from the bank to avoid criminal charges growing out of the sub-prime mortgage scandal that helped drive the American economy into a recession.

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Police Find Potential Bombs, Chemicals In Anne Arundel Man's Home

WASHINGTON - Anne Arundel County police have arrested a Glen Burnie, Md., man after finding suspected bombs and bomb-making materials inside his house.

A relative of 28-year-old Todd Wheeler called 911 on Jan. 1 for medical help. Officers went to the relative's Millersville home and found Wheeler with serious injuries that looked like he'd been near a chemical blast. The nature of his injuries led police to Wheeler's home on Edgerly Court.

"Numerous chemicals as well as weapons, and CDS, were found within the home. All of these materials which included acids, fuels, oxidizers, and explosive precursors have been sent to the lab for analysis," says Division Chief Keith Swindle with the Anne Arundel County Fire Department.

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New Record: Feds Issued 56 Regs For Every New Law, 3,659 In 2013

The Obama administration made up for the lack of laws passed in Congress last year, issuing a whopping 3,659 rules regulations, crushing claims that Washington isn't doing anything.

Only 65 public laws were signed by President Obama in 2013, meaning that his government issued an average of 56 new regulations for every one, a record high ratio, according to the annual analysis by theCompetitive Enterprise Institute.

The surge in regulations has led critics to charge that Congress is now a bystander to federal regulatory agencies.

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Candidate Accuses Democrat Of Trying To Buy Him Out Of Kentucky Senate Race

A third-party candidate in the Kentucky Senate race has accused Democrat Alison Lundergan Grimes’s campaign of trying to buy him out of the race.

Ed Marksberry claims in a 15-page missive that affiliates of her campaign offered him and his campaign manager benefits in exchange for his full exit from the race. Marksberry dropped out of the Democratic primary last year to run as an independent after alleging the state party inappropriately favored Lundergan Grimes.

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High Tobacco Taxes Spark Huge Black Market In Northeast

High-cigarette tax jurisdictions are losing out on up to $729 million in tax revenue each year due to illicit trade in tobacco products.

That is according to a new study from the nonprofit research organization RTI International. The figure represents an upper-end estimate of aggregate revenue foregone by the cities of Boston, Philadelphia, New York, Providence and Washington, DC. All five are top destinations for cigarette smugglers seeking to take advantage of high cigarette tax rates that push economy-minded buyers, including underage smokers seeking to avoid high, legal prices, to the black market.

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RANKED: The Best, Healthiest And Most Effective Diets

What makes a diet best? In Best Diets 2014, the latest set of exclusive rankings from U.S. News, the DASH diet beat out 31 others, including Atkins, Jenny Craig and Slim-Fast, to win the "Best Diets Overall" crown. Among the 13 commercial diet programs marketed to the public, Weight Watchers came out on top. (Our methodology explains how.) We also ranked the diets on likelihood of weight loss, ability to prevent and control diabetes and heart disease, healthiness, and how easy they are to follow.

Our analysis puts hard numbers on the common-sense belief that no diet is ideal for everybody.

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A Failure In Progress

Because the Obamacare website is performing better than it did during its admittedly disastrous first weeks, and because congressional Democrats have not defected in the numbers that would have put the law’s near-term survival in question, supporters of the law believe that they have turned a corner. They are convinced that those of us who oppose the law can do no more than temporarily obstruct it, and that the benefits it is starting to bring to the American public will ultimately make it popular and then unchallenged.

In reality, Obamacare remains an unpopular law with deep flaws. It is performing much worse than the advocates predicted as recently as September. At the end of that month Health and Human Services secretary Kathleen Sebelius told NBC Nightly News, “I think success looks like at least 7 million people having signed up by the end of March 2014.” It was last year that the Congressional Budget Office came up with that estimate for the number of people who would enroll in Obamacare’s exchanges. Nobody now expects the target to be hit. The administration is not touting that measure of success any more, and neither are its supporters — even after the supposed triumph of its “tech surge.”

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Poverty Level Under Obama Breaks 50-Year Record

Fifty years after President Johnson started a $20 trillion taxpayer-funded war on poverty, the overall percentage of impoverished people in the U.S. has declined only slightly and the poor have lost ground under President Obama.

Aides said Mr. Obama doesn’t plan to commemorate the anniversary Wednesday of Johnson’s speech in 1964, which gave rise to Medicaid, Head Start and a broad range of other federal anti-poverty programs.

The president’s only public event Tuesday was a plea for Congress to approve extended benefits for the long-term unemployed, another reminder of the persistent economic troubles during Mr. Obama’s five years in office.“What I think the American people are really looking for in 2014 is just a little bit of stability,” Mr. Obama said.

Although the president often rails against income inequality in America, his policies have had little impact overall on poverty. A record 47 million Americans receive food stamps, about 13 million more than when he took office.

The poverty rate has stood at 15 percent for three consecutive years, the first time that has happened since the mid-1960s. The poverty rate in 1965 was 17.3 percent; it was 12.5 percent in 2007, before the Great Recession.

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Salisbury Kennel Club Obedience Classes-PROBLEM

Regretfully, Verizon’s telephone answering service for most of the Salisbury area is out of service, and has been inoperable for almost a week. Anyone who wishes to enter our classes, please just show up at the Training Center at the time listed on the website www.salisburymarylandkennelclub.org for the desired scheduled class. Schedules will be adjusted to suite your convenience, and paperwork will be handled at that time. Thank You. Barbara Furbush

I’ve Opted Out Of Obamacare For Life

The creator of The Drudge Report, the biggest news aggregator on the internet, shot out a tweet today declaring that he would rather “pay the tax” than sign up for Obamacare, stating that it is “monopoly money anyway.”

Drudge has been a staunch critic of the Affordable Health Care Act since its inception, regularly carrying stories that have exposed how Obamacare has caused millions of Americans to lose their health insurance plans, and seen millions have their premiums skyrocket.

Drudge’s declaration that he would rather pay a fine than enroll via a government healthcare exchange is an opinion that is shared by many Americans.

Take cancer survivor Bill Elliot, who has opted to pay the fine for not having health insurance because he lost his existing plan and now cannot afford the new premiums in the federal exchange. Elliot explained back in November that he did not want to “burden” his family with the cost, so will instead “just let nature take its course.”

After sharing his story on national news programs and being critical of President Obama, Elliot found out that he is now being audited back to 2009 by the IRS. Even more disturbing is the fact that C. Steven Tucker, a health insurance broker who offered to help Elliot keep his insurance, is also being audited by the IRS, back ten years to 2003.

This is just one example of how Obamacare is literally ruining lives.

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SFD Calls For Service 1-7-14

  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 22:35:28Nature: Odor InvestigationAddress: 700 Priscilla St Salisbury, MD 21801
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 22:29:45Nature: Odor InvestigationAddress: 700 Priscilla St Salisbury, MD 21801
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 22:25:07Nature: Flood With Electrical HazardsAddress: 922 W Schumaker Manor Dr Salisbury, MD 21801
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 22:24:59Nature: Assist Fire DepartmentCity: Salisbury
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 21:39:07Nature: Petroleum SpillAddress: 501 Hammond St Salisbury, MD 21801
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 21:26:41Nature: Subject FallenCity: Salisbury
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 21:23:40Nature: Cold RelatedCity: Salisbury
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 21:18:38Nature: Suicide AttemptCity: Salisbury
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 21:08:04Nature: Gas LeakAddress: 601 E Church St Salisbury, MD 21801
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 19:11:27Nature: Medical AlarmCity: Salisbury
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 19:07:28Nature: Flood With Electrical HazardsAddress: 601 E Naylor Mill Rd Salisbury, MD 21801
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 18:45:48Nature: Lines DownAddress: 150 E Lincoln Ave Salisbury, MD 21801
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 17:57:37Nature: Flood With Electrical HazardsAddress: 405 Naylor St Salisbury, MD 21801
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 17:03:06Nature: Sick SubjectCity: Salisbury
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 11:38:56Nature: Medical AssistAddress: 712 Ramsey Ct Salisbury, MD 21801
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 11:34:32Nature: InjuryCity: Salisbury
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 11:30:54Nature: Difficulty BreathingCity: Salisbury
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 11:28:49Nature: Chest PainCity: Salisbury
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 10:12:59Nature: Pi AccidentAddress: 1315 Mt Hermon Rd Salisbury, MD 21801
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 10:12:53Nature: Pi AccidentCity: Salisbury
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 08:31:57Nature: Cold RelatedCity: Salisbury
  • Tuesday January, 7 2014 @ 03:43:50Nature: Sick SubjectCity: Salisbury

Hey Brother, Can You Spare A Dime For The Eastern Shore?

GOVERNOR O’MALLEY AND CARROLL COUNTY OFFICIALS ANNOUNCE OPENING, EXPANSION OF CUSTOM CLOTHIER FACILITIES

ANNAPOLIS, MD
– Governor Martin O’Malley, along with Carroll County Economic Development officials announced the opening of a new Carlisle Etcetera LLC national distribution center and the expansion of English American Tailoring Company in Westminster. Both companies are part of the Tom James Company - the world's largest manufacturer and retailer of custom clothing. Relocating from New York, Carlisle Etcetera is planning to purchase the former Marada building and establish a facility for women’s apparel. The English American Tailoring Company is planning to retain its current operations and 380 full-time employees in Westminster and expand its custom men’s apparel facility. As part of the new facility and expansion, the companies plan to add an additional 75 employees over the next five years.

“The continued investment in Maryland and Carroll County by the Tom James Company sends a strong message that we have the kind of highly-skilled workforce, supportive business climate and strategic location that world-class companies need to grow,” said Governor O’Malley. “This success has not happened by accident, but because of the strategic choices we're making together to build a strong, growing and resilient economy.”

Dave Rousch, President of the Board of Carroll County Commissioners, supported the project. “This is a great example of why the retention of resident industries is so important,” he said. “In Carroll County we put a great emphasis on nurturing our local companies so they are positioned to grow and expand right here.”

“A significant part of our decision to relocate our national distribution center from Long Island City, New York to Westminster was the assistance provided by the State of Maryland and Carroll County Economic Development, which is helping us to hire and train new employees at the center,” said Jim Brubaker, CEO of Carlisle Etcetera. “Westminster has been a great place for Tom James to make high-end custom clothes for over 30 years. Our new women’s facility plus the expansion of the Tom James English American factory further anchors Tom James’ commitment to Westminster and the State of Maryland as a great place to do business.”

As part of the project, the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development (DBED) has approved a $250,000 conditional loan based on job creation and retention and capital expenditure. In addition, Carroll County has approved a $30,000 job training grant to assist in training new employees.

Headquartered in New York, Carlisle is a high-end fashion company that produces couture dresses, suits, separates, and accessories with a sense of classic style that is modern yet appropriate for any professional or social occasion. It was founded in 1981 and acquired in 2012 by Tom James Company and Royal Spirit Limited of Hong Kong. Founded more than 100 years ago, the English American Tailoring Company manufactures high quality men’s garments.

Man Gets 13 Years For Robbing Salisbury Bank

BALTIMORE (AP) -- A man has been sentenced to 13 years in prison for robbing a Salisbury bank.

Forty-three-year-old Gary Allen Mitchell of Salisbury was sentenced Tuesday in federal court in Baltimore.

According to his plea agreement, Mitchell entered the PNC bank on March 21. Prosecutors say Mitchell gave a teller a note and said he had a gun.

He demanded money and the teller gave him more than $4,000. He fled, but police found him a short time later, smoking crack cocaine.

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Bonus Army: US Military Attacks Demonstrating American War Veterans

After you read and then view the video/film, ask yourself - - - can it happen again???? This was not covered in my history books! 1932 video/film. I never read this in my history books. Do you think the military, acting on orders from a broken federal gov't, won't march against its own? Hard to believe this happened 81 years ago.