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Friday, January 13, 2017

How John McCain dispatched a trusted aide across Atlantic to get dirty dossier

Sen. John McCain said he did 'what any citizen would do' in turning over the dirty dossier, which contained unconfirmed secrets about the president-elect, over to the FBI.

The Guardian charted the path of how the dossier came to be and how it was that McCain got his hands on the controversial documents.

The story of the dossier began with an investigative firm in Washington, D.C., being tapped by one of Trump's primary allies to dig up some opposition research on the Republican hopeful.

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Anglers reply to aquarium’s canyon pledge

Ocean City attorney Mark Cropper fired a shot across the bow of National Aquarium officials this week, following their late December pledge to withdraw their application to designate Baltimore Canyon an urban marine sanctuary if no common ground could be established between the aquarium and local opponents of its protectionist efforts.

In a Jan. 5 letter to National Aquarium CEO John Racanelli, Cropper, who represents numerous local marinas and the Ocean City Marlin Club, said the aquarium should make good on that promise because the common ground he seeks does not exist.

“It is clear that the local community in and around Ocean City, Maryland is not supportive of this endeavor by the aquarium, nor will it ever be,” he wrote.

Cropper included in his correspondence to Racanelli copies of letters of opposition from the Town of Ocean City to Gov. Larry Hogan and a similar letter from the Worcester County Commissioners to Hogan and the county’s delegation to the Maryland General Assembly.

Also enclosed in the packet was a copy of a letter from seven members of congress, including Rep. Andy Harris (R-1st), to the administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Kathryn D. Sullivan.

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Arizona Good Samaritan shot dead man attacking police officer

A hero passer-by shot and killed a gunman who ambushed an Arizona state trooper who was helping at the scene of a car crash.

The trooper was helping a woman who had been ejected from a car in a rollover crash when he was brazenly attacked by the suspect.

But a Good Samaritan stepped in and gunned down the assailant in the middle of the road.

Now the Arizona Department of Public Safety are trying to find the hero who intervened, because they believe the trooper may not be alive if it weren't for her actions.

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This couple gets emotional about Obama leaving office

National Reciprocity Bill Will Apply to Non-Resident Gun Carry Permits

Would allow residents of states with strict gun laws to circumvent certain carry restrictions

Rep. Richard Hudson (R., N.C.) clarified on Wednesday that his national concealed carry reciprocity bill would apply to permits issued by states to non-residents.

After Hudson introduced the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017 last week, questions were raised about whether it would apply to permits issued by some states to non-residents. In an interview with the Free Beacon, Hudson confirmed that permits issued by any state to residents or non-residents would have to be recognized by all other states under his legislation.

“My legislative intent is to ensure a non-resident carry permit is recognized, and I’ve confirmed this with legislative counsel and Judiciary Committee staff,” Hudson said.

Many gun owners in states that use a “may issue” permitting process, such as California or New Jersey, are not able to obtain concealed carry permits from their home state—even if they’ve passed a background check and met the training requirements—since the final decision in those states is left at the discretion of government officials. However, those same gun owners may be able to obtain a non-resident permit from a state with different gun laws. Under Hudson’s proposal, that permit would allow them to carry across the country—including in their home state.

More here

OBAMA DOG SUNNY BITES WHITE HOUSE GUEST

President Obama had to deal with a small domestic crisis at the White House -- a family friend was bitten by Sunny, the First Family's 4-year-old dog.

We're told the incident occurred Monday when the 18-year-old was visiting the White House. Sources connected to the girl tell us she went to pet and kiss Sunny, and the dog bit her on the face.

Sunny -- a female Portuguese Water Dog -- left a nasty gash under the girl's eye. We're told the Obamas' family physician, Dr. Ronny Jackson, checked her out and decided she needed stitches.

She's gonna be okay, but we're told she'll likely have a small scar ... which upset her. She posted various pics of the injury and her visit to Dr. Jackson on social media.

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Horowitz's 'Big Agenda' Reveals Trump's Coming DC 'Earthquake'

Donald Trump's victory in the 2016 election was more than a historic upset. It was the beginning of a major political, economic, and social revolution that will change America — and the world — forever.

So posits New York Times bestselling author David Horowitz in his soon-to-be-published "Big Agenda: President's Trump's Plan to Save America."

"Big Agenda" is the first major book to be released on Trump's presidency (release date January 17), and reveals major components of his "first 100 days" plan and first-term agenda.

Radio host Rush Limbaugh has praised "Big Agenda," saying it "provides a clear assessment of the challenges the new president faces and a road map for a winning agenda that conservatives will embrace."

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Comptroller Franchot Announces Opening of 2017 Tax Filing Season

ANNAPOLIS, MD – Comptroller Peter Franchot announced today that Maryland will begin processing personal income tax returns for Tax Year 2016 on January 23, 2017, the same day the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) begins accepting returns. In an ongoing effort to combat tax fraud, the agency will not immediately process a state tax return if W-2 information is not on file. Employers are required to report wage information to the Comptroller on or before Jan. 31.

“When Americans have been directly affected by fraud, identity theft, data breaches and other financial crimes, the security of the Maryland taxpayer remains my top priority this tax season,” Franchot said. “Making sure W-2 information is on file at the time a return is received is in keeping with that effort. Last year, my agency stopped processing state tax returns from more than 60 companies whose purpose was to prey on the vulnerable, the homeless and those with limited financial means. I will continue to lead the charge against these unscrupulous practices this tax season.”

Last year, the Maryland Comptroller’s office stopped accepting income tax returns from 61 companies doing business in 68 locations, including 23 different Liberty Tax Service franchises, for submitting numerous highly suspicious returns. Collectively, they filed thousands of state returns that the agency believed to be fraudulent. Processing of business tax returns began Jan. 6.

The 2016 tax return filing deadline this year, which coincides with the IRS deadline, is Tuesday, April 18, rather than the traditional April 15 deadline which falls on a Saturday this year. Since Emancipation Day is observed on April 17 in the District of Columbia, the IRS pushed the filing deadline to Tuesday April 18. Taxpayers are encouraged to file their returns electronically for the fastest possible processing of their claims and to ensure they receive all possible refunds. A list of approved vendors for use in filing your electronic return can be found at www.marylandtaxes.com.

Free state tax assistance is available at all of the agency’s 12 taxpayer service offices, Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. A list of office locations can be found at www.marylandtaxes.com. For more information on any tax-related matter, please visit the Comptroller’s website at www.marylandtaxes.com or call 1-800-MD-TAXES (1-800-638-2937) or 410-260-7980 in Central Maryland.

Tips For Hate Crime Hoaxers

A few things fake victims might want to try.

In a country of more than 320 million people, everything must happen once. So it's somewhat surprising that not one of the alleged post-election hate crimes committed by Trump supporters has turned out to be true.

They are false in one of two ways: Either they aren't "hate" or they aren't true. This week, we'll provide tips for selling a hate crime that didn't happen.

Hate Crime Hoaxer Tip No. 1: Don't invent hate crimes that could form the opening of a Harlequin Romance novel.

Liberal girls always seem to be imagining strong, rough, Heathcliff-type white men demanding that they disrobe or become "sex slaves." (Oddly, Heathcliff keeps doing this in well-trafficked areas in the middle of the day with no witnesses.)

The hijab hoaxer at the University of Michigan described her imaginary Trump-supporting pursuer as white, in his 20s or 30s, with an athletic build, unkempt and intoxicated. He demanded that she remove her hijab. (After a police investigation, she admitted she made it up.)

The alleged hijab victim at University of New Mexico, Leena Aggad, said her hijab was ripped off by "a really buff guy wearing a Trump shirt." (The attack was serious enough for her to tell the media about it, but not serious enough to report it to campus security, much less the police.)

More here

Salisbury Zoo Seeking Christmas Tree Donations

SALISBURY – Caretakers with the Salisbury Zoo are coming up short in gathering old Christmas trees for animal exhibits within the facility.

Jessica O’Neill, zookeeper, said the trees enhance the animals’ wellbeing and provides them with a source of entertainment.

“So the Christmas tree is a form of enrichment,” she said. “Enrichment is anything that is given to an animal that they don’t (get) on a daily basis. It can be anything from a novel food item to a scent to a puzzle feeder.”

The zoo traditionally receives Christmas tree donations from local hardwood stores in the area, according to O’Neill. Yet, this year the facility received less than the typical year.

“In the past, stores have donated trees, but this year they didn’t have any to give us,” she said. “We have a few trees so they will be given to some of the animals for enrichment.”

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Worcester County Sheriff’s Office Press Release 1-13-17

The Worcester County Bureau of Investigation is currently investigating an assault/armed robbery that occurred on 1/8/2017 at approximately 11:40 p.m. on southbound Rt.113 in the area of Rt. 589 in Showell, Maryland. The victim was forced to pull onto the shoulder of the roadway when the suspect vehicle, described as a dark colored passenger vehicle, stopped in front of the victim. Three African American males exited the suspect vehicle and subsequently assaulted and robbed the victim at knifepoint. The Worcester Bureau of Investigation is requesting anyone with information or who may have observed the assault/robbery is asked to contact the Worcester County Bureau of Investigation at 410-632-1111.

This incident does not appear to be related to the police impersonation cases that were reported earlier.

Maryland’s Harris Meets with Trump; Perhaps About NIH Post

WASHINGTON (AP) — Maryland Rep. Andy Harris, who reportedly is in the running to head the National Institutes of Health, met with President-elect Donald Trump in New York on Wednesday.

Harris, the lone Republican in Maryland’s congressional delegation, is also the only member of Congress to have conducted NIH-funded research.

The Johns Hopkins-educated anesthesiologist’s name has been tossed around for weeks as the possible new director of the medical research center in Bethesda, which has about 18,000 employees in the state.

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AMERICAN PRIDE DINNER

Seats are still available for Ladies Night Out, next Tuesday!
January, 17th 6:30pm ~  CELEBRATE AMERICA!

A portion of proceeds to benefit National Kidney Foundation
WEAR YOUR RED/WHITE/BLUE!  PRIZES FOR MOST PATRIOTIC!

Reservations Required ~ 410.219.1117
All American Menu, Wine & Cocktail Pairings!
Four Course Dinner w/ Pairings ~ $50pp, plus tax & tip.

1015 EASTERN SHORE DRIVE SALISBURY, MD 21804
RESERVATIONS & INFORMATION / 410.219.1117

Arby’s to Sell Venison Sandwiches in Nebraska Next Week

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Fans of venison in Nebraska can go from the end of deer hunting season this weekend to sandwich hunting season at Arby’s next week.

Arby’s says it will sell its venison sandwiches at two of its Nebraska locations next week because people in the state clamored for the creation after an initial offering elsewhere last fall.

Arby’s says the venison steak sandwiches will be offered at a restaurant in Lincoln starting Wednesday. A day later, an Omaha restaurant will start selling them.

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Why Left Opposes Sessions: He's Right; They're Wrong

Richard Allen, President Ronald Reagan's first national security adviser, once wrote an essay for Human Events describing a visit he made to Reagan's California home in 1977.

Allen went there, he wrote, to ask Reagan to support his campaign for governor of New Jersey. He and the future president ended up talking about foreign policy.

"I'd like to tell you of my theory of the Cold War," Reagan told Allen. "Some people think that I am simplistic, but there is a fundamental difference between being simplistic and having simple answers to complex questions."

"So," Reagan said, "my theory of the Cold War is that we win and they lose."

Twelve years later, the Berlin Wall came down.

Reagan led the West to victory in the Cold War because he understood — as he explained in a 1983 speech to the National Association of Evangelicals — that at its core the Cold War was a moral struggle against an "evil empire."

In that same speech, Reagan said that "freedom prospers only where the blessings of God are avidly sought and humbly accepted.

"The American experiment in democracy rests on this insight," he said. "Its discovery was the great triumph of our Founding Fathers, voiced by William Penn when he said, 'If we will not be governed by God, we must be governed by tyrants.'"

More here

Statewide Smoke Alarm Law Reminder

New Smoke Alarm Law Reminder

        A new state law aimed at reducing home fire deaths went into effect on July 1, 2013.  It requires replacement of any battery-only operated smoke alarm that is more than 10 years old with a unit powered by a 10-year sealed-in battery having a “Hush” button feature – ultimately affecting more than 800,000 Maryland homes with battery- only operated smoke alarms.  The effective date for this requirement to be completed by is January 1, 2018. 
        Why is a sealed-in battery important?  Nationally, two-thirds of all home fire deaths occur in homes with either no smoke alarm or no working smoke alarm, mainly due to missing or disconnected batteries.  By sealing the battery inside the alarm, the unit becomes tamper resistant and removes the burden from consumers to remember to change batteries, which in turn, will save lives.  These sealed-in, long-life battery smoke alarms provide continuous protection for a decade, and national fire experts with the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) and National Association of State Fire Marshals (NASFM) recommend their use.
        The new Maryland Smoke Alarm Law, Public Safety Article Sections 9-101 through 9-109 requires the replacement of smoke alarms when they are ten years old; (ten years from the date of manufacture).   This replacement requirement is already in the adopted State Fire Code, reference to the 2013 edition of NFPA 72, Paragraph 14.4.7.  It is envisioned that adding the wording in State Law and publicizing the requirement will hopefully result in the widespread replacement of older nonfunctioning or unreliable smoke alarms.   The date of manufacture, while sometimes hard to locate, should be printed on the back of the smoke alarm.   If no manufacture date can be located, it is clearly time to replace the smoke alarm. 
        The new law heavily emphasizes the use of sealed-battery smoke alarms with a long life battery and a silence/hush button feature.  However, it is critical to understand these devices are appropriate only where battery-only operated smoke alarms presently exist or in locations where no smoke alarms are present.  (It is never acceptable to remove required wired in smoke alarms and replace them with any type of battery-only operated device).  A 110 volt electrically powered smoke alarm may only be replaced with a new 110 volt unit with a battery backup.
        Smoke alarms need to be placed on every level of the home and outside the sleeping areas, such as, the hallway accessing the bedrooms.  It is also recommended to place them inside each bedroom to allow sound sleepers to be alerted if smoke begins to enter the room.  Please remember to keep bedroom doors closed when sleeping to help ensure smoke, toxic gases and flames can't easily enter the bedroom allowing you more time to escape.
        State Fire Marshal Brian S. Geraci emphasizes the value of smoke alarms, “The importance of ensuring the proper maintenance and use of smoke alarms is paramount.  The materials used in products we keep in our homes tend to burn much more readily, thus giving us a very limited window of time to escape the effects of fire.  These early warning devices can be the difference between life or death in an incident of an uncontrolled fire inside our homes”.

smoke alarms

smoke

UPDATE: New trial DENIED in Rollins' indecent exposure case

From Wednesday

Rollins' defense lawyer alleges jury misconduct, judge errors

Delaware Preps Roads For Yet Another Possible Storm

"Just saw Deldot spreading liquid salt on road next to my shop".

In Md. shooting spree case, suspect’s words may not be admissible

ROCKVILLE, Md. — Prosecutors will likely concede police violated the Miranda rights of the man charged with fatally shooting two people in Montgomery County last May — the day after he allegedly shot and killed his wife.

Eulalio Tordil is charged, but still unindicted In Prince George’s County, in the killing of his wife, Gladys, who had filed several protective orders against her husband.

In a status hearing Thursday in Circuit Court, State’s Attorney John McCarthy told Judge Sharon Burrell his office is leaning toward acknowledging Tordil’s questioning was improper.

“We likely will concede a Miranda violation for voluntariness,” said McCarthy.

After the hearing, McCarthy would not discuss specifics of Tordil’s questioning.

“I think everybody knows this from watching TV, it’s improper to continue to talk to someone, after they’ve made a request for a lawyer,” McCarthy told reporters.

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One-on-one with Governor Hogan, as he enters his third legislative session

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WBFF) -- Governor Larry Hogan has only been in office two years but he's entering his third legislative session.

That time brings with it more experience and the reality of dealing with more challenges.

FOX45 talked with the governor on Wednesday about his priorities, the legislature's priorities and bridging any divides that exist.

The governor says he's focused on education, the environment, transportation and jobs.

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Rand Paul: Trump Intel Leakers 'Should Go To Jail'

“What I would say is that if there is private information that someone is blackmailing a public figure and the public figure or someone takes it to the intelligence agencies, you would think it would be private. And really, this is so important that I think whoever leaked it should be prosecuted.” Paul told Fox News’ Neil Cavuto.

“Someone should go to jail. If this was an intelligence agency head talked to the media, they should go to jail. If it was the Obama administration, they should go to jail.” Paul urged.

“The reason is you don’t want your public figures succumbing to blackmail.” Paul continued.

“Now he’s saying the information is false and I have to rely on his word on that. But let’s say any public official is being blackmailed. What are you supposed to do? You’re supposed to go to the FBI and give them the information.” The Senator further noted.

“But if you can’t trust the FBI to keep it secret and the FBI is going to tell the press what someone is blackmailing you about, what will happen is it will lead to where more public figures will be likely to be extorted or to be blackmailed.” Paul lamented.

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Rand Paul on Donald Trump Being Blackmailed, Obamacare and Rex Tillerson

The top 15 American cities for young college grads

As the semester resumes for college seniors around the US, the next important decision many will make is where they should move after graduation.

A ranking of the best major metropolitan areas from the American Institute for Economic Research (AIER) may help students having trouble making the call.

AIER calculated its list using nine economic, demographic, and quality-of-life factors. AIER defines major metropolitan cities as having over 2.5 million residents.

The report states that the most important factor in determining where recent graduates should relocate is the prevalence of other young recent grads.

"The location you choose to go to college determines where you will likely spend the next four years of your life, and possibly where you will start your career," Amanda Knarr, program coordinator at AIER, said in a press release. "Our ranking reflects the characteristics that make cities attractive to the average college student."

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CVS Selling Generic Version of EpiPen at a Sixth of Price

CVS is now selling a rival, generic version of Mylan's EpiPen at about a sixth of its price, just months after the maker of the life-saving allergy treatment was eviscerated before Congress because of its soaring cost to consumers.

The drugstore chain says it will charge $109.99 for a two-pack of the authorized generic version of Adrenaclick, a lesser-known treatment compared to EpiPen, which can cost more than $600.

CVS Health Corp., the nation's second-largest drugstore chain, says it cut the price of the generic version of Adrenaclick nearly in half. The lower price is now available at all CVS stores. The chain runs about 9,600 retail pharmacies in the United States, including several locations inside Target stores.

The emergency treatments are stocked by schools and parents of children with severe allergies. They are used to stop anaphylaxis, the potentially fatal allergic reactions to insect bites and stings and foods like nuts and eggs.

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Pocomoke approves land swap deal

Pocomoke City and its fire company are scheduled to go to closing at the end of the month after the council approved a deal that gives the town all rights to the former fire company property, while the fire company gets to use the former VFW property for storage.

After the contracts are signed at closing, the fire company will have 270 days, or about nine months, to remove its property from its former home.

While the town owns the lot and main building of the former firehouse on Fifth Street, there is a storage shed located on the property constructed and owned by the fire company. The town had previously tried to secure a grant to demolish the building, but was unable to do so, in part because of objections from the Maryland Historical Trust.

That shed is still in use by the company, but has agreed to swap the shed for the former VFW property off Dun Swamp Road, which can then be used for storage. It’s located between the town’s solar array and wastewater treatment plant and therefore not a good candidate for development, Ernie Crofoot, city manager/city attorney, said.

The town had been using the former VFW to store Christmas decorations, Crofoot said.

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Woman Robbed In Berlin Area Yesterday

We have yet to receive a press release but sources have informed us that a women was forced off the road on 589 yesterday and robbed by assailants. More to come...

Facebook Takes on a Bigger Role in Journalism

Facebook is launching a journalism project aimed at strengthening its ties with media organizations to help them expand their audiences, come up with new products and generally promote trusted news in today's "post-truth" era.

The project is in its early stages and as such, light on specifics. But the company envisions Facebook engineers working with news organizations to create new ways of telling stories and novel advertising or subscription models, right from the early stages of development. The company also wants to help promote "news literacy" and support local news.

"It's very early in the process but certainly something we are really excited about," said Dave Merrell, lead product manager at The Washington Post, which is among the news organizations working with Facebook. "We worked with Facebook on numerous products over the years, but often were not involved in the product development stage."

INSTANT GRATIFICATION

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Amazon to create 100k Jobs by 2018

Amazon will create 100,000 full-time jobs in the United States with full benefits over the next 18 months, the tech giant announced in a statement Thursday.

The company says the positions are for workers across the country and across all skill and experience levels. Most of the positions will be at fulfillment centers, including new ones under construction in California, Florida, New Jersey and Texas.

"Innovation is one of our guiding principles at Amazon, and it’s created hundreds of thousands of American jobs," said Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos in a statement. "These jobs are not just in our Seattle headquarters or in Silicon Valley—they’re in our customer service network, fulfillment centers and other facilities in local communities throughout the country."

Amazon has quickly ramped up its workforce over the last few years, as it pushes to open up more fulfillment centers to get packages out to its customers more quickly. In 2011, Amazon had 30,000 U.S. employees. At the end of last year, it employed 180,000 people.

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Four More Years of Obama? At Least That Many.

Barack Obama faced the nation Tuesday night to announce his upcoming campaign. Oh, wait, that was his farewell address. Such a struggle to tell the difference. Far from bidding America the adieu we so desperately wanted — parting would have been far more sweet than sorrow in this case — Obama doubled down on his perpetual campaign and announced he’s not going anywhere. “I won’t stop,” he declared. “In fact, I will be right there with you, as a citizen, for all my remaining days.”

And we were so close.

Presidents typically retire to their home states upon leaving office. Not this one. “Obama has no plans to quietly recede from the nation’s capital,” Mark Alexander wrote yesterday. “In fact, the Obamas will be taking up residence in a nine-bedroom mansion in the District’s most exclusive neighborhood, and you can be certain that he’ll be out on his front stoop stumping for his failed policies every time Trump endeavors to alter or abolish one of them.” Indeed, last March Obama threatened — er, promised — that America is “not rid of me yet, even after we’re done with the presidency.”

This doesn’t mean simply giving flowery speeches now and again. No, Obama is architecting a massive apparatus (think his Obama for America PAC on steroids) so he can pretty much campaign ad infinitum. In one sense, who can blame him? That’s about as long as it will take to try to salvage his disastrous legacy. Alright, let’s be real. Even eternity wouldn’t be long enough for that.

Still, Obama’s going to try. And here’s how he plans to do it.

Coastal Highway’s Poor Condition Days After Snow Explained; SHA Admits ‘Could Have Done A Better Job’

OCEAN CITY — With 10-plus inches of snow falling on the resort last weekend, it took mid-week warming temperatures and a steady rain to truly clear Coastal Highway, leading the State Highway Administration (SHA) this week to acknowledge it dropped the ball somewhat in Ocean City.

Last Saturday’s storm dumped nearly a foot of snow on the area, essentially crippling the flow of traffic in the resort area unaccustomed to so much of the white stuff in a single event. It was expected that even the main roads, including Coastal Highway and Philadelphia and Baltimore avenues, would be largely unpassable on Saturday and even into Sunday, but the resort’s main thoroughfares were still largely covered with snow on Monday and even Tuesday to some extent.

On Monday, Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan said at a Tourism Committee meeting he had been in contact with SHA officials about the perceived lack of effort in the resort following the storm and had been told SHA admitted to not deploying its full resources on Coastal Highway, which is owned and maintained by the state. At Tuesday’s Transportation Committee meeting, Public Works Director Hal Adkins said he too had received a similar explanation from SHA officials.

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Obama Intel Officials Used ‘Russia Blackmail’ Claims to Undermine Trump Relations with Israel

U.S. intelligence officials warned their Israeli counterparts not to trust President-elect Donald Trump with intelligence secrets, citing alleged fears that Russia held blackmail information over Trump, according to a report today in Israel’s respected Yediot Ahronot daily newspaper.

The alleged blackmail information that U.S. officials reportedly warned Israel about seems to be in part referencing details contained in a debunked document of mysterious origin purporting to be an intelligence report alleging that Russia collected compromising videos and information on Trump.

In the report, investigative journalist Ronen Bergman writes of a meeting that took place “recently between Israeli and American intelligence officials (the date of the meeting is not mentioned to protect the sources of the report).”

Bergman continued:

Gas Taxes May Go Up Around The Country As States Seek To Plug Budget Holes

Oklahoma lawmakers are staring into a budget hole that's nearly $900 million deep — and they might not be able to cut their way out of it. Legislators are considering tax increases to help fund state government, and one idea is gaining traction: Hiking taxes on gasoline and diesel.

This year could see a wave of state tax hikes on gasoline and diesel. Oklahoma is one of about a dozen states seriously considering increases, a list that includes Republican strongholds like Mississippi, Louisiana and Alaska, where Gov. Bill Walker has proposed tripling taxes on motor fuel.

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Invitations Are In




Former senator Mikulski joining Johns Hopkins faculty

BALTIMORE (AP) — Former U.S. Sen. Barbara Mikulski will join the faculty at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore.

The university announced Thursday that the 80-year-old Mikulski will start next week as a professor of public policy and an adviser to university leaders.

Mikulski was the longest-serving woman in the history of Congress. The Baltimore native represented Maryland in the Senate for 30 years and retired earlier this month.

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The Video CNN Will NOT Want Trump to Get His Hands on!

JUST IN: FBI Releases Hillary Rodham Clinton Emails… The Truth Is Out!

While all hell was breaking loose on the political front this weekend between the Golden Globes and other Trump smear fests, the FBI uber quietly released 300 pages of records that were part of their investigation into Hillary Clinton and her email debacle. It was of course ignored by the media. The subject matter of the records was far from favorable towards Hillary Clinton.

Evidently an FBI official warned the FBI in general in April of 2015 that they were going to be dragged into the Clinton mess. The Daily Caller clarified that “forum shopping” meant “seeking a favorable opinion on the classification issue by asking different officials to rate emails as unclassified.” So, it’s obvious the State Department went shopping for a favorable opinion on classification of the emails. That’s called corruption.

From the Conservative Tribune:

Last Sunday saw bitterly contested NFL games and the Golden Globes — but while America was wrapped up in television, the FBI quietly released 300 pages of records from its investigation into former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s private email server, The Daily Caller reported.

This fifth Clinton investigation release by the FBI on its vault website touched on several topics, and they weren’t favorable toward the Clintons.

In April 2015, an FBI official emailed other FBI officials, warning them that the State Department was going to be dragging them into the Clinton email classification issue.

“You’re about to get drug (sic) into an issue on classification of the Clinton emails,” the official wrote.

“They are contesting CTD’s classification decision and would like to discuss it with you. (Forum shopping I believe.) I’ll call you and give you some info, then they’ve asked if you could call _____ (last name I think)

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IN YOUR FACE LIBS – Mexico Ready To Discuss WALL!

During the campaign, Donald Trump repeatedly promised that he would build a wall on the Mexican border. And he wasn’t just going to build a wall — he was going to make Mexico pay for it. Most people rightly laughed at the idea, because the notion of Mexico paying for a border wall they don’t want it ludicrous. But was Trump right all along? Mexico has a new foreign relations secretary, and he is evidently open for negotiations.

Luis Videgaray has just taken his position as foreign relations secretary, and he is open to discussing matters with Trump. “(He) said Tuesday his country isn’t just willing to negotiate changes to the North American Free Trade Agreement, it wants to start talks as soon as possible,” the Associated Press reported. “He (also) said Mexico is willing to negotiate over Trump’s plan to build a border wall.”

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto also emphasized the importance of negotiating. “With the change of government in the United States on 20 January, the instructions for secretary Videgaray is (sic) to accelerate dialogue and contacts so that from the first day the bases for building a constructive work relationship can be established,” he said.

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Christian Persecution in America

Actress Meryl Streep’s political diatribe at the Golden Globes awards isn’t the only surprise attention-getting provocation from the event. Nominee film “Hidden Figures,” a box-office hit about the true story of three black women mathematicians who played important roles at NASA in the early days of the space program, is also generating unexpected controversy.

The controversy surrounds Kim Burrell, the black gospel singer whose song “I See A Victory” appears on the soundtrack of the film.

Burrell, in addition to being a gospel singer, is a pastor, and, with the release of “Hidden Figures,” a video emerged on the internet of her passionately preaching in her church against homosexuality.

Burrell was scheduled, as part of the film’s promotion, to appear and perform, along with the film’s soundtrack producer, Pharrell Williams, on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show.” But DeGeneres, an open lesbian, canceled Burrell’s appearance as a result of the video.

Next, Burrell’s radio show, which is produced at Texas Southern University, was canceled.

Then she was dis-invited from the BMI Trailblazers of Gospel Music Awards, where she was a co-honoree.

More here

Williams: The Black Community and Crime

Today’s level of lawlessness and insecurity in many black communities is a relatively new phenomenon. In the 1930s, ‘40s and '50s, people didn’t bar their windows. Doors were often left unlocked. People didn’t go to bed with the sounds of gunshots. What changed everything was the liberal vision that blamed crime on poverty and racial discrimination. Academic liberals and hustling politicians told us that to deal with crime, we had to deal with those “root causes.”

Politicians who call for law and order are often viewed negatively, but poor people are the most dependent on law and order. In the face of high crime or social disorder, wealthier people can afford to purchase alarm systems, buy guard dogs, hire guards and, if things get too bad, move to a gated community.

These options are not available to poor people. The only protection they have is an orderly society. Ultimately, the solution to high crime rests with black people.

Given the current political environment, it doesn't pay a black or white politician to take those steps necessary to crack down on lawlessness in black communities.

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Hogan proposes anti-crime bills tackling drunken driving, sexual assault

ANNAPOLIS, Md. — Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan introduced Thursday an anti-crime package designed to prosecute drunken and drugged drivers and legislation to assist victims of sexual abuse.

The proposal would also change what kind of evidence prosecutors can introduce in cases against sex offenders.

With survivors of crime victims by his side in the Statehouse, Hogan introduced the “Justice for Victims Initiative.” The bill would allow prosecutors to admit evidence of a defendant’s prior record of sexual assaults.

The bill builds on legislative efforts by Sen. James Brochin who fought for similar proposals, Hogan said.

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Protests 101: College civics classes focus more on demonstrations than citizenship

College-level civics courses have been hijacked by a progressive ideology that emphasizes instruction in organizing political movements rather than understanding the American system of government and the Western tradition upon which it is built, according to a report published this week.

“Making Citizens: How American Universities Teach Civics,” a report published by the National Association of Scholars, examines the curricula at four universities and concludes that courses aimed at understanding America have largely been replaced by vocational classes on how to transform it.

“In practice this means that instead of teaching college students the foundations of law, liberty, and self-government, colleges teach students how to organize protests, occupy buildings, and stage demonstrations,” the study says. “These are indeed forms of ‘civic engagement,’ but they are far from being a genuine substitute for learning how to be a full participant in our republic.”

The 525-page report includes case studies of four universities — Colorado State University, the University of Northern Colorado, the University of Wyoming and the University of Colorado-Boulder — where civics education ranges from less than stellar to nearly nonexistent.

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Racist Opinions Are Hateful-- That Shouldn't Make Them Crimes

Hate crime laws have been in the news on multiple fronts this week.

In Washington, the Senate Judiciary Committee opened confirmation hearings on Senator Jeff Sessions, Donald Trump’s pick for attorney general. Session’s approval is likely, but one argument made against him is that he opposed the Hate Crimes Prevention Act of 2009, which sexual orientation and disability protected categories under federal hate crimes law.

Though they’ve been in effect since the 1990s, hate crimes statutes have always been constitutionally and morally unsound. At best they are a symbolic declaration that crimes inspired by certain types of bigotry are especially odious. At worst they are a vehicle for grandstanding prosecutors eager to make a political point. Either way, they should disturb anyone who believes criminals ought to be punished for their harmful actions, not for their ugly opinions.

To grasp how gratuitous hate crimes prosecutions can be, look no further than Dylann Roof’s case. The Charleston mass-killer is a depraved monster; the day he is put to death, America will be a better, cleaner place.

Immediately after Roof’s bloodbath, Charleston County Solicitor Scarlett Wilson charged him with nine counts of murder. She later said South Carolina would seek the death penalty, and urged that he be tried in state court first. But the state’s legitimate interest in bringing Roof to justice was muscled aside by the federal Justice Department, which emphasized its desire to make Roof’s race-hatred an explicit centerpiece of the trial. There was no danger of Roof getting away with murder. But Washington wanted to federalize the case to spotlight the defendant’s beliefs.

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DHS Nominee: 'We Are a Very Overly Medicated Society'

Part of the nation's opioid addiction problem stems from "a very overly medicated society," retired Marine Corps General John Kelly, the Homeland Security Secretary nominee, told his confirmation hearing on Tuesday.

"It's amazing to me, but I just found out very recently that an old friend, who's not so old, just 62 years old, after a very successful life, just overdosed on heroin." Kelly said the heroin was cheaper and more available to his friend than the opioids for which she apparently could not get a prescription.

"And of course, part of the problem, I think, and this I think would be outside my area if I'm confirmed, but part of the problem is, we are a very overly medicated society. Huge amounts of opiods are prescribed legally for things that in the past, probably would not receive that level of medication. So the point is, huge problem, getting worse, and the profits are just unbelievable to the cartels that control the whole marketing and transporting."

"One hundred percent of the heroin that we consume in the United States is in fact produced in Mexico, and it's creeping down now into Central America," Kelly said.

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George Soros Lost $1 Billion After Trump Won

The Wall Street Journal reports Thursday that billionaire left-wing financier George Soros lost nearly $1 billion as a result of Donald Trump’s surprise victory in the November 2016 presidential election.

The Journal‘s Gregory Zuckerman and Juliet Chung report:

Billionaire hedge-fund manager George Soros lost nearly $1 billion as a result of the stock-market rally spurred by Donald Trump’s surprise presidential election.

But Stanley Druckenmiller, Mr. Soros’s former deputy who helped Mr. Soros score $1 billion of profits betting against the British pound in 1992, anticipated the market’s recent climb and racked up sizable gains, according to people close to the matter.

The divergent bets of the two traders are a stark reminder of the challenges even acclaimed investors have faced following Mr. Trump’s unexpected victory.

Thanks to Soros’s diversified portfolio, his funds still earned 5% on the year. However, Druckenmiller — who stopped working for Soros in 2000 — did much better, predicting that a Clinton win would cause the markets to rise and then fall, while a Trump win would do the opposite, the Journal notes.

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Governor Larry Hogan Announces 2017 Justice for Victims Initiative

Measures Aimed to Prevent Repeat Sex Offenders, Prosecute Human Traffickers, Support Victims of Crime, Keep Serial Drunk Drivers Off the Road

ANNAPOLIS, MD –
Governor Larry Hogan today announced the administration’s Justice for Victims Initiative, a series of proposals to help prevent future victims of crime, protect Maryland’s most vulnerable citizens, and stop repeat offenders. Joining the governor for the announcement were leading victims’ rights advocate Roberta Roper; Wicomico County Sheriff Mike Lewis, and Sergeant David Owens, who investigated the 2009 murder of Sarah Foxwell by a repeat sexual predator; anti-drunk driving advocates Rich Leotta and Marcy Goldman; and Baltimore County Senator Jim Brochin, as well as cabinet secretaries, state’s attorneys, and state and local law enforcement officials.

The Justice for Victims Initiative includes proposed legislation that will help prevent repeat sexual predators, protect victims of human trafficking, provide transitional housing for victims of crime, and toughen penalties for repeat drunk drivers.

“Making Maryland safer begins with making sure that we have a criminal justice system that holds offenders accountable for their actions and the harm they cause, while also supporting victims and the community in the process of healing,” said Governor Hogan. “The Justice for Victims Initiative we are announcing today is bipartisan, common sense legislation that will help protect the most vulnerable among us, improve services for the victims of crimes, and help us reduce and prevent the number of future victims of crime."

"The voices of crime victims and survivors are making our nation a better place to live, and making for a more just and fair society," said Roberta Roper. "To achieve positive change, someone has to listen and someone has to take action to change old behaviors and fully apply the law. We thank Governor Hogan for listening and making positive changes."

The proposals announced by Governor Hogan build on a strong record of protecting and supporting victims of crime in Maryland. During the 2016 legislative session, the Hogan administration worked closely with the legislature to enact the Justice Reinvestment Act, a landmark criminal justice reform law that includes key provisions to strengthen victims’ rights, including reforming the restitution system to ensure offenders repay victims for financial losses caused by their crimes.

The governor recently announced $46 million dollars in grants to directly aid victims of crime, which fully funded all eligible requests from victims’ service providers across the state. In April 2016, the Hogan administration convened the first-ever governor’s statewide Victim Services Conference to share best practices and resources among victims’ service providers.

The Governor’s Office of Crime Control & Prevention has also joined with the Office of the Attorney General to survey 135 law enforcement agencies on the handling of sexual assault evidence kits in an effort ensure that justice is served in every case of sexual assault.

Governor Hogan’s Justice for Victims Initiative includes:

Repeat Sexual Predator Prevention Act of 2017: Governor Hogan announced this bipartisan measure, modeled after legislation put forward by Senator Brochin during the 2016 legislative session, which will allow courts to admit evidence of a defendant’s prior history of sexual assault convictions during prosecution for subsequent sexual offenses. Data shows that many sexual predators follow patterns of behavior, and this proposal will ensure that prosecutors have the tools needed to bring these criminals to justice.

Trump Slams BuzzFeed As "Failing Pile Of Garbage", Tells CNN "You Are Fake News"

In an epic (mutual) trolling between president-elect Trump on one hand and BuzzFeed and CNN, on the other, the two media organizations which issued yesterday's unsubstantiated report about Russia having compromising information on the president-elect, Trump first addressed the question of why he referred to Nazi Germany, saying it is "disgraceful" that intelligence communities would allow the release of any information. "That's something Nazi Germany would have done and did do," he says.

He then unleashed on Buzzfeed which alone published the 35-page memo behind the Russian allegations, saying "Buzzfeed which is a failing pile of garbage... will suffer the consequences"

And then, in an even more stunning episode, Trump slammed CNN reporter Jim Acosta, who he also called out during the presser over their report on a two-page synopsis they claim was presented to Trump.

With Trump looking to call on other reporters, Jim Acosta yelled out, “Since you are attacking us, can you give us a question?”

“Not you,” Trump said. “Your organization is terrible!”

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Right-to-work movement gaining ground in Ohio

An Ohio township north of Cincinnati soon may become the first place in the state to enact a right-to-work ordinance.

West Chester officials announced this week that they are planning a resolution that would forbid workers from being forced to join or otherwise financially support a union as a condition of employment. If enacted, it would be the only place in Ohio with such a rule.

"There is a ton of evidence that says that companies would rather relocate and build their business in right-to-work states. I think we should move ahead on this as quickly as possible and give potential manufacturers that are looking at Ohio or looking at the region, another reason to come to West Chester," Mark Welch, president of the West Chester Board of Trustees, told the Hamilton Journal News.

Don Boyd, director of labor and legal affairs for the Ohio Chamber of Commerce, told the Washington Examiner that West Chester's move was the "logical consequence" of the expansion of right-to-work laws in recent years to nearby states such as Michigan and Indiana. Ohio is now at a competitive disadvantage.

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Thank God Its Friday 1-13-17

What will you be doing this weekend?

HUD Paid Employee $1 MILLION Over This Single ‘Racist’ Word

Taxpayers wrote a $900,000 settlement check to a federal employee to compensate her for once being likened to a “Little Rascals” character by her boss, The Daily Caller News Foundation’s Investigative Group has learned.

The secret settlement appears to be one of the largest-ever discrimination settlement payouts to an individual federal employee. The payment came after an Equal Opportunity Employment office ruled that the remark was racist and accepted without challenge the claim that it caused nearly a million dollars worth of emotional harm.

The offending boss was Mary K. Kinney, then-executive vice president of Ginnie Mae, which is part of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

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Two LAPD officers who shot and killed a 16-year-old in Boyle Heights last year hadn't turned on their body cameras

Two Los Angeles police officers who shot and killed a 16-year-old last year in Boyle Heights didn’t turn on their body cameras until after the shooting, according to a report made public Wednesday.

Chief Charlie Beck said in his report to the Police Commission that the LAPD is investigating why one of the officers delayed turning on the department-issued camera until after Jose Mendez was shot. The officer, Beck wrote, had been trained to use the body camera five months earlier.

The second officer who fired his gun was working within a 90-day grace period the LAPD allows officers as they get used to the technology.

The shooting came more than a year after the city announced an ambitious plan to put body cameras on more than 7,000 LAPD officers. Supporters say the cameras can help provide transparency and accountability at a time when policing is under intense scrutiny, particularly shootings by officers.

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In Praise of Tillerson, Trump's Secretary Of State Pick

The Financial Times reports Tillerson Gets Rough Ride from Russia Hawks on the Hill.

The rough ride was from Senator John McCain, Senator Marco Rubio, and Senator Lindsey Graham.

Rex Tillerson, Donald Trump’s pick for secretary of state, faced a tough grilling over his relationship with Russia and its president Vladimir Putin on Wednesday, while also stumbling on whether ExxonMobil had lobbied against Russian sanctions.

Mr Tillerson faced pointed questions from Marco Rubio, a Republican member of the Senate foreign relations committee, who several times said he found some of Mr Tillerson’s answers “troubling” and “discouraging”.

Leaving the committee hearing into Mr Tillerson’s nomination, Mr Rubio told reporters he was “prepared to do what is right” in regards to confirming or blocking Mr Tillerson’s appointment, leaving open the possibility that he could be leaning towards the latter.

In addition to Mr Rubio, two other Republican senators — John McCain and Lindsey Graham — have also stated that they have concerns about Mr Tillerson’s relationship with Mr Putin.

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Powellville Ladies Aux Dinner TONIGHT


Flying in Dubai

Psychotherapy for Retirees

How to Maintain a Healthy Level of   Insanity in RETIREMENT...
 

 
1.

 
 
At lunch time, sit in your parked car with sunglasses on, point a hair dryer at passing cars and watch them slow down!
 
 

 
2.

 

 
On all your check stubs, write, "For Sexual Favors"
 
 
 

 
3.

 

 
Skip down the street rather than walk, and see how many looks you get.
 
 
 

 
4.

 

 
With a serious face, order a Diet Water whenever you go out to eat.
 
 
 

 
5.

 

 
Sing along at The Opera.
 

 
 

 
6.

 

 
When the money comes out of the ATM, scream 'I Won! I Won!'
 
 

 
7.

 

 
When leaving the Zoo, start running towards the car park, yelling, 'Run For Your Lives! They're Loose!'
 
 
 

 
8.

 

 
Tell your children over dinner, 'Due to the economy, we are going to have to let one of you go....'
 
 

 
9.

 

 
Pick up a box of condoms at the pharmacy, go to the counter and ask where the fitting room is.
 

 
And The Final Way To Keep A Healthy Level Of Insanity: My Favorite...   
 
 

 
10.

 

 
Go to a large Department store's fitting room, drop your drawers to your ankles and yell out, "There's no paper in here!"