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Friday, August 28, 2015

Like If This Made You Laugh

Posted by Club Parada on Friday, June 12, 2015

Williams: The Struggle for Economic Liberty

Here's my taxi question. If a person is law-abiding, has a driver's license, has a car or van that has passed safety inspection, and has adequate liability insurance, is there any consumer-oriented reason he should not be able to become a taxicab owner/operator? Put another way: If you wish to hire the services of such a person, what right does a third party have to prevent that exchange?

Many cities have granted monopoly power to taxi companies — the right to prevent entry by others. Sometimes this monopoly takes the form of exclusive government-granted rights to particular individuals to provide taxi services. In other cases, the number of licenses is fixed, and a prospective taxi owner must purchase a license from an existing owner. In New York City, such a license is called a taxi medallion. Individual medallions have sold for as high as $700,000 and corporate medallions as high as $1 million. In other cities — such as Miami, Philadelphia, Chicago and Boston — taxi licenses have sold for anywhere between $300,000 and $700,000. These are prices for a license to own and operate a single vehicle as a taxi.

Where public utility commissions decide who will have the right to go into the taxi business, a prospective entrant must apply for a "certificate of public convenience and necessity." Lawyers for the incumbent taxi owners, most often corporate owners or owner associations, appear at the hearing to argue that there is no necessity or public convenience that would be served by permitting a new entrant. Where medallions are sold, the person must have cash or the credit standing to be able to get a loan from a lender, such as the Medallion Financial Corp., that specializes in taxi medallion purchases. Medallion Financial Corp. has held as much as $520 million in loans for taxi medallions.

So what are the effects of taxi regulation?

More here

Maryland State Police Arrest Frederick County Man On Child Pornography And Sexual Abuse Related Charges

(Columbia, MD) Members of the Maryland State Police Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force (ICAC) arrested a Frederick County man on child pornography and sex abuse related charges yesterday.

The suspect is identified as Joseph Joe Garza, 28, of the 8000 block of Inspiration Avenue in Walkersville, Maryland. He was arrested without incident and transported to the Frederick County Detention Center. Garza is charged with the possession and distribution of child pornography, and sexual abuse of a minor.

As a result of the investigation a search and seizure warrant was executed at Garza’s residence yesterday morning around 6:00 a.m. by the Maryland State Police Computer Crimes Unit, troopers assigned to the Criminal Enforcement Division, Western Region, Department of Homeland Security, and state troopers from the Frederick Barrack. Investigators identified Garza as the focus of the investigation. Police believe Garza is a tenant of the residence which runs a registered day care.

Execution of the search warrant resulted in numerous types of digital media recovered by investigators. While on scene, a digital forensics team found several images and videos of child pornography. Garza told police about his sexual contact with minors. Garza was arrested on scene and charged with one count of distribution of child pornography 21 counts of possessing child pornography and sexual abuse of a minor.

Police urge citizens with any information regarding this case to contact Sgt. Hudacko by phone at 410-953-8270 or by email at Calls may remain confidential.

The Maryland Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force is part of the Maryland State Police Computer Crimes Unit and is comprised of police agencies from around the state. Its primary mission is to protect children from computer-facilitated sexual exploitation. The Task Force works cooperatively with law enforcement agencies and prosecutors to provide resources to combat these crimes. Additionally, the Task Force provides community awareness campaigns helping to prevent the spread of these crimes through education.

Reliving the Crash of ‘29

[First published in Inquiry, November 12, 1979.]

A half-century ago, America — and then the world — was rocked by a mighty stock-market crash that soon turned into the steepest and longest-lasting depression of all time.

It was not only the sharpness and depth of the depression that stunned the world and changed the face of modern history: it was the length, the chronic economic morass persisting throughout the 1930s, that caused intellectuals and the general public to despair of the market economy and the capitalist system.

Previous depressions, no matter how sharp, generally lasted no more than a year or two. But now, for over a decade, poverty, unemployment, and hopelessness led millions to seek some new economic system that would cure the depression and avoid a repetition of it.

Political solutions and panaceas differed. For some it was Marxian socialism — for others, one or another form of fascism. In the United States the accepted solution was a Keynesian mixed-economy or welfare-warfare state. Harvard was the focus of Keynesian economics in the United States, and Seymour Harris, a prominent Keynesian teaching there, titled one of his many books Saving American Capitalism. That title encapsulated the spirit of the New Deal reformers of the ’30s and ’40s. By the massive use of state power and government spending, capitalism was going to be saved from the challenges of communism and fascism.

One common guiding assumption characterized the Keynesians, socialists, and fascists of the 1930s: that laissez-faire, free-market capitalism had been the touchstone of the US economy during the 1920s, and that this old-fashioned form of capitalism had manifestly failed us by generating, or at least allowing, the most catastrophic depression in history to strike at the United States and the entire Western world.


Minn. Terrorism suspect granted class-A truck driving license. Would also like to drive school busses.

I don't even really know what to say about this. Is it insane? Yes. Is it further evidence that this country isn't really interested in dealing with the threat of homegrown radical Islam? Yes. Is it a painfully obvious recipe for disaster? You bet.

However, according to FOX 9 Minneapolis, it's also the truth. A man whose name appears on the no-fly list thanks to his efforts to radicalize young people has been given a Class-A commercial driver's license. That allows him to drive large semi-trucks that he can fill with whatever totally legal items he pleases.

...Oh and he'd like to drive school busses too:


Police Use ‘Vampire Technology’ To Combat Crime

BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore City police have enlisted the help of a vampire to help combat crime. Vampire is new technology allowing crime scene technicians to process fingerprints found on a scene in seconds.

Meghan McCorkell has more on how it works.

City police will be among the first in the country to use the technology to instantly process fingerprints.

It’s like something you’d see on CSI, but the Vampire Forensic Tactical Device will soon be here in Baltimore.

“It gives us that real time intelligence and real time crime-solving ability,” said city crime lab director Steven O’Dell.


Go Topless There, Not There

The green colored states are those where top freedom is in effect.
The orange colored ones have amibiguous state laws on the matter.
The red colored ones are the ones where the mere showing of the female breast in public is illegal according to state law.

In the USA, though the majority of states are top-free, some cities in those states have passed (unconstitutional) ordinances that annul the state's top free statute.

In Canada, the law on public decency is found in Sections 173 and 174 of the Criminal Code. However, what constitutes an indecent act is not defined, and is open to interpretation by the courts. Topfreedom is allowed in Ontario, Sasketchawen and British Columbia following specific court cases on the matter but the case for topless equality has not been heard by the Canadian Supreme Court yet.

The following cities are officially topless "tested":


NASA: Rising Sea Levels, Shrinking Ice Has Big Impact On Md.

BALTIMORE (WJZ)—From space to right now on the ground, NASA researchers are racing to keep up with the world’s melting ice.

WJZ’s Alex DeMetrick reports, their findings have a direct impact on Maryland.

Greenland may have ice a mile thick, but water is running, forming rivers, lakes and waterfalls.

At both north and south poles, ice is unlocking and melting into oceans, which are also warming and expanding. That combination has raised the sea level three inches in 20 years.

“Well, it’s a big deal because already we’re seeing effects from that. The biggest effect we see now is storm surge change,” said Dr. Tom Wagner, NASA scientist.


State Of Florida Passes Law Which Makes Nudity Legal At All Public Beaches

The state of Florida has made a bold change to its laws concerning nudity at public beaches, and this one might ruffle some feathers. Beginning August 1st, full nudity will be legal at all public beaches – as long as you obtain a Florida State Nudity License (FSNL).

Governor Rick Scott approved the bill passed by the state legislature making public nudity at state-owned beaches legal, and he encourages tourists and residents to make use of new law. “Today is a great day. Not only will it be legal to hang out at the beach totally nude, but we encourage you do to so,” Governor Scott said. “As long as you are a fairly attractive person, nobody is going to complain.”

One part of the new law, which may be infuriating to some, is the weight limits for those who may strip down completely. “If you are overweight by more than twenty pounds, you will not be given a license. You will be politely asked to go on a diet and come back at a later date to try again. It really is not that complicated.” Scott said. “We want everyone to enjoy this. Obtaining a license will not be hard for those who meet all of our standards, and it will be a quick and easy process. Residents and guests in the state may visit any of our town halls, where we will have employees trained to record the weight of those wishing to go nude. You will also be asked to submit a picture of your face and genitals. If you’re not too ugly or fat, then they will issue you a license for a fee of only $10, which will be good for 1 year.”


TV Shooter Was Reprimanded During 2012 Election For Wearing An Obama Sticker

The disgruntled former WDBJ reporter who fatally shot two former co-workers on live television in Roanoke, Va. on Wednesday was reprimanded during the 2012 election for wearing an Obama sticker while waiting in line to vote in what station bosses said at the time was a clear violation of journalistic ethics.

That was just one of many complaints filed against Vester Lee Flanagan II during his TV news career. Numerous former colleagues and bosses have come forward to describe Flanagan as a poor performer with a chip on his shoulder who was often confrontational and aggressive.

The 41-year-old California native fatally shot WDBJ reporter Alison Parker and cameraman Adam Ward while they were filming a live segment Wednesday morning. A woman being interviewed was shot but is expected to survive. Flanagan shot himself and died, but not before posting gruesome video of the shooting on social media.

Sowell: Sorting the Candidates

Despite a nuclear Iran looming on the horizon, the media seem to be putting most of their attention on two candidates for their respective parties' presidential nominations next year. Moreover, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump each make their own party nervous.

If next year’s election comes down to Clinton versus Trump, a lot of people may simply stay home in disgust.

When we are this far away from the official start of the primary election season, we can usually just say, “It’s still early days.” Many a front runner this early in the process ended up out of the running by the time the party conventions were held, and totally forgotten by election day.

That is the way it usually is. But that is not likely to be the way it will be this time.

This is Hillary Clinton’s last hurrah. It is now or never for her. And the Democrats have nobody comparable as a vote-getter to put in her place.

Even if an investigation finds Mrs. Clinton guilty of violating the law in the way she handled e-mails when she was Secretary of State, the Obama administration is not likely to prosecute her. And President Obama can always pardon her, so that the next administration cannot prosecute her either. So Hillary doesn’t even have to take a plea bargain.

Read more here

MSNBC Just Made a HUGE Announcement about Al Sharpton – WHOA!

Rev. Al Sharpton has had a long “career” of making money off of racism. He is the definition of a race hustler, and has made millions of dollars. His efforts have caused riots and deaths, while his political connections have allowed him to avoid prosecution for not paying Federal taxes.

But the left-wing MSNBC news channel just gave him bad news. Instead of a daily show in prime time, he is being moved to Sunday at 8 am. Or, as one paper put it, Sharpton is being moved “from prime time to church time.” And instead of five hours of air time, he will be reduced to one.

Clearly, MSNBC isn’t happy with Sharpton’s ratings, but are scared to death to fire this guy. Hilariously, Sharpton ran to Twitter to make it sound like the move was his decision, and a promotion!


Eight Early Signs of Serious Disease

Serious health problems often start with subtle, minor symptoms that most people dismiss.

After all, who wants to run to the doctor for every small ache, pain, or bump?

But the key to getting an early diagnosis and increasing the chances for a cure is knowing which changes to look for, says Pat Salber, M.D., a board certified internist in San Francisco (

Here are eight subtle symptoms that can be a sign of something serious:

1. Stiffness that doesn’t go away.

(Read more here)

OPA Looks To Sell Home To Collect Unpaid Assessments

BERLIN – Each year, Ocean Pines Association residents are expected to pay an assessment fee to the homeowners association.

This year, that amounted to $921 for most residents. While many — in fact more than 97 percent of them — pay the annual fee by the May 1 deadline, there are those that don’t. And while those unpaid fees represent less than $500,000 of the more than $8 million billed annually, Ocean Pines Association (OPA) officials are serious about collecting the debt. Serious enough that this year the homeowners association purchased the foreclosed home of a resident who owed back dues. The association is now selling the home at market value in an attempt to recoup what the individual failed to pay the association.

“This is one of the strategies we have available to help make us whole with delinquent assessments,” said OPA General Manager Bob Thompson. “It’s not something we necessarily want to do.”

It’s also unusual. Thompson says this is the first time the association has purchased a house to recover back dues. Though officials have considered the possibility before, generally there’s too much owed to the bank on a home to make it worthwhile.


Breaking News: Obama OKs pay raise for federal civilian, uniformed employees

President Barack Obama is exercising his authority to give federal civilian employees and uniformed service members a pay raise effective Jan. 1, 2016.

Obama sent a letter to congressional leaders Friday authorizing across-the-board and locality pay adjustments .

“Specifically, I have determined that for 2016, across-the-board pay increases will be 1.0 percent,” he wrote. “Also, I will make a decision by November 30, 2015, regarding an alternative plan for locality payments under 5 U.S.C. 5304a. The alternative plan for locality payments will be limited so that the total combined cost of the 1.0 percent across-the-board base pay increase and the varying locality pay increases will be 1.3 percent of basic payroll, consistent with the assumption in my 2016 Budget. These decisions will not materially affect our ability to attract and retain a well-qualified Federal workforce.”

In addition, Obama sent a similar letter to congressional leaders saying he was authorizing a pay adjustment for uniformed service members.


St. Louis Grandmother Blasts 'Black Lives Matter' Protesters

In a video that has gone viral, a black grandmother slammed the "Black Lives Matters" activists for protesting on behalf of "the thug" who was fatally shot by St. Louis police officers in Ferguson while he was wielding a handgun.

A recent shooting near where Michael Brown was fatally shot last year by Officer Darren Wilson resulted in the death of a 9-year-old girl, Jamyla Bolden, who was killed by a stray-bullet while she was doing homework.

"Who do you think they protested for?" Peggy Hubbard asked about the "Black Lives Matter" activists in a video she posted. "The thug. The criminal, hollering police brutality."

"Are you [expletive] kidding me? Police brutality? How about black brutality? You black people, my black people, you are the [expletive] most violent [expletive] I have ever seen in my life," she said.

(More info and video here..)

City looking to put backflow check valves downtown

OCEAN CITY — A precisely shaped flap of rubber may be all that Ocean City needs to solve a problem that has been plaguing the resort since it built its very first public utilities: backflow flooding.

City government is seeking bids from vendors to purchase CheckMate Inline Check Valves, a product of Tideflex Technologies, which could help alleviate downtown flooding caused by bay water backing up through stormwater outfalls during high tides.

“They’re a valve that can go inside a storm drain pipe that remains open during normal rainfall, but if you have high tide, once you get a certain pressure on the other side, it’ll close up and prevent tidal waters from coming back in,” said City Engineer Terry McGean.

Approximately 15 valves of various sizes are slated for purchase once prices are received, said city Environmental Engineer Gail Blazer. The valves will be installed in pipe system spanning St. Louis and Edgewater Avenues, from the area of Fourth Street south.


Advanced Placement Framework-- Pure Anti-American Propaganda

It is a sorry state of affairs that American public education is not much more than propaganda. The Advanced Placement U.S. History (APUSH) curriculum and testing has made recent news for its abandonment of facts that support America’s exceptionalism. Leftists laughably pass it off as education to “redirect the course away from rote memorization of facts and toward historical thinking skills.” But such revisionism of our nation’s past is dangerous for its future.

Only after public outcry did the College Board “revise” the APUSH framework to include a patronizing reference to “American exceptionalism.” That checked the proverbial box so as to prevent state legislatures controlled by conservative believers in America-first to refrain from the termination of taxpayer funding. The Leftist educrats have not substantively improved the APUSH curriculum or testing. Instead, they perpetuate the type of education that lives up to famed Communist and Soviet leader, Vladimir Lenin, who declared, “Give me four years to teach the children and the seed I have sown will never be uprooted.”

Keep in mind a chilling fact that makes the reversal of this “framework” critical: The American History portion will be followed by AP European History and AP U.S. Government rewrites. Unless the College Board and its committed cultists are met with impactful opposition to their efforts to destroy the best of American history, additional aspects of our children’s education will soon follow suit. The educrats will continue rewriting facts to fit their false narrative of America and its impact on the world.

More here

If You Bought Starkist Tuna Recently, They May Owe You $25

Thanks to a recently settled lawsuit, you can now have your tuna sandwich and eat it, too. Consumerist reports that a class action lawsuit against Starkist might put some extra money in your pocket, or tuna cans in your pantry.

A consumer sued Starkist claiming that the company under-filled its five-ounce cans of tuna, which is against state and federal law. Starkist denies the claim and insists it did nothing wrong, but agreed to settle with the plaintiff, and that means you win in the end.

If you bought five-ounce cans of chunk light tuna in water or oil, or solid white tuna in water or oil, between February 19, 2009 and October 31, 2014, you might be eligible for $25 or $50 in vouchers for Starkist products. Overall, Starkist will pay up to $8 million in cash and $4 million in vouchers, so your full payout might be less if too many people sign up.


This Is What Tourette Syndrome Looks Like

"Are you sure?" I asked my daughter before writing this column.

"Yes," she said resolutely.

Veronica is profoundly grateful for all the prayers, kindness and advice from strangers, friends and family alike that she received earlier this summer when I first told you about her plight. We hope sharing the rest of her story can help pay it forward in some way.

In May, she stopped breathing normally. Describing the condition in words cannot adequately capture how torturous it was: She felt "air hunger" with every inhalation. At first, it looked and sounded like a gentle sigh. But the small gasps soon morphed into a horrible "stridor," up to 30 to 40 times a minute, every minute, every hour, every day.

As we faced agonizingly long wait times to see doctors, we turned to crowdsourcing and We heard from many other parents of children with mystery ailments and chronic illnesses on similar all-consuming searches for answers. Was it anxiety? Vocal cord dysfunction? A pulmonary embolism? Lyme disease? Food allergies?

Along the never-ending journey, Veronica was diagnosed with postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome and joint hypermobility, which led to an inconclusive side investigation into Ehlers-Danlos syndrome.

The days and weeks passed in slow motion. Veronica remained bedridden. She lost sleep. She lost friends. She felt "like a zombie" and battled "brain fog." An aspiring doctor, she had to quit her volunteer job at a local hospital's oncology ward. Instead, she spent the summer as a patient in a blur of medical clinics and diagnostic labs, shuttling between experts in cardiology, pulmonology, rheumatology, genetics and neurology.

More here

Swastikas painted on Montgomery Co. speed cameras, sign

WASHINGTON — Police are searching for a suspect who painted green swastikas on two Montgomery County speed cameras and a neighborhood sign earlier this week.

Montgomery County Police say they were driving through Olney, Maryland, on Wednesday morning and spotted a large green-colored swastika painted on a speed camera along Olney Laytonsville Road near Headwaters Drive.

After checking the surrounding area, police located a second green-colored swastika — this time on a speed camera on westbound Olney Laytonsville Road just before Spartan Road.


Nebraskans get more than enough signatures for vote to bring back death penalty

Nebraskans for the Death Penalty announced Wednesday that they have gathered enough signatures to force a repeal vote on the newly enacted state law eliminating capital punishment.

Organizers said they gathered 166,692 petition signatures in 82 days, which would be enough if declared valid to place the measure on the November 2016 ballot and block the newly enacted law from going into effect Sunday.

The signatures must still be validated in the next 40 days by the Nebraska Secretary of State. The death-penalty ban goes into effect Sunday.

“Nebraskans sent a strong message about crime and punishment in our state by signing this petition in extraordinary numbers,” said Don Stenberg, Nebraska’s state treasurer and former attorney general, in a statement.

The group needs 57,000 valid signatures to qualify the measure for the ballot and double that to prevent the law from taking effect prior to the vote.

“If Nebraskans weren’t overwhelmingly supportive of capital punishment, it would not have been possible to gather this many signatures in less than 12 weeks,” Mr. Stenberg said. “I believe it’s especially important to have overshot the 10 percent figure by this margin to make it clear that the repeal of the death penalty will not become law until voters have spoken at the ballot box and to limit new avenues for appeal of death penalty sentences.”

A traditionally red state, Nebraska shocked many onlookers earlier this year when its unicameral, non-partisan state legislature approved a death-penalty repeal, then overrode Republican Gov. Pete Ricketts’ veto.


Sprint offers DirecTV customers free year of phone service

NEW YORK (AP) — Sprint is offering DirecTV customers one free year of cellphone service in a bold move aimed at the satellite TV company’s new owner, AT&T.

AT&T, which bought DirecTV for $48.5 billion in July, has been promoting a bundle that knocks $10 a month off a combined bill for video and wireless phone service. For a single line, the value of Sprint’s promotion is about $50 a month. It’s Sprint’s way of offering DirecTV customers a bundle without actually owning a video company.

Sprint, which is in the midst of a turnaround effort, has been making a range of promotional offers to lure customers. But so far, the Overland Park, Kansas, company hasn’t been as successful as T-Mobile, which went through its own turnaround.


Jeb Bush distances himself from brother, father on judicial nominations

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has tried to put some distance between himself and his famous family’s history of judicial nominations, saying he would look only at potential picks who have a “proven record” rather than bowing to political considerations.

He said past presidents — whom he didn’t name, but the past two Republicans in the White House were his father and his brother — have picked people “that don’t have a proven record” because they’ve been too worried about facing an increasingly bloody Senate confirmation process.

“They wander, and you go, ‘How could that be?’” Mr. Bush said at a town hall meeting this month in Keene, New Hampshire.

“Because we’re in this partisan environment now where every one of these appointees, it’ll be a big huge fight, and so, I believe we need to have people of experience, of a proven record, a consistent judicial philosophy that you know because they’ve done it over and over and over again, and then you got to fight like hell to make sure they get passed, and that’s my pledge,” the former governor said.

Carrie Severino, chief counsel and policy director at the Judicial Crisis Network, a conservative legal advocacy group, said Mr. Bush’s sentiment is “exactly right, in my opinion.”


Anti-Christie PAC Closing as Jersey Governor's Campaign Founders

A super-PAC called Stop Chris Christie is shutting down, saying the New Jersey governor’s campaign for the Republican presidential nomination is so underwhelming that opposition is no longer necessary.

“We looked at the polls and all the indicators seem to be showing that Chris Christie is going nowhere fast,” Tom Bjorklund, treasurer of the political-action committee, said in interview. “It’s always difficult to make the case for stopping someone who isn’t doing well.”

Christie, 52, has struggled to crack the top tier of Republican contenders for the 2016 nomination. In recent weeks, the field of 17 hopefuls has been dominated by billionaire real- estate developer Donald Trump, and Christie is behind 10 other Republicans.


U-2 Spy Plane Successor In The Works, Report Says

Lockheed Martin is developing a successor to the U.S. military’s legendary U-2 surveillance plane, according to a media report.

Flightglobal reports that Lockheed Martin’s Advanced Development Programs, better known as Skunk Works, is planning a new version of the U-2.

“Think of a low-observable U-2,” Lockheed’s U-2 strategic development manager Scott Winstead told Flightglobal. “It’s pretty much where the U-2 is today, but add a low-observable body and more endurance.”

Nicknamed the Dragon Lady, the U-2 is one of the longest serving aircraft in the U.S. Air Force. Like the B-52 bomber, the U-2 first took the skies for the U.S. military in the 1950s. Ever since then, the plane has played a crucial role.

A high-altitude manned surveillance plane, it can fly twice the altitude of a commercial plane flying for 12 hours above 70,000 feet. The U-2 can also reach speeds of more than 475 mph.

Flying 13 miles above the earth’s surface, it can carry two and a half tons of the most advanced sensors and communications equipment in the world.

Reaching such high altitudes helps to make it an extremely effective reconnaissance platform. In fact, the U-2 flies so high that pilots wear spacesuits and have to breathe from an oxygen tank.

More here

North Korean Sub Fleet On Mystery Mission?

Two-thirds of North Korea’s submarine fleet was reportedly on the move and off of Seoul’s sonar this week despite an announcement by the two Koreas that they were ratcheting down the saber rattling that followed a land mine explosion in the demilitarized zone earlier this month.

More than 50 North Korean subs, believed to represent about 70 percent of Pyongyang’s fleet — were still unaccounted for Wednesday in a potentially ominous development that a spokesman for South Korea's Defense Ministry called "unprecedented." Seoul and the U.S., which maintains a strong presence in South Korea, responded by increasing military surveillance.

"The number is nearly 10 times the normal level … we take the situation very seriously," Kim Min-seok, the defense ministry spokesman, said Tuesday.

The submarines initially left their ports at the height of the crisis, and the motive behind their deployment was not known, said Scott Snyder, of the Council on Foreign Relations.

"It is not clear whether this is a defensive or offensive move; thus it requires continued watchfulness," Snyder said.

South Korean news agency Yonhap quoted a military official as saying the country was "mobilizing all our surveillance resources" to find the missing subs. Yonhap also reported that the submarines, which slipped away from their bases on Friday, likely had returned to naval bases in North Korea. But until they are accounted for, officials say their is concern on the seas surrounding the peninsula.


Carozza’s committee to work on Worcester stadium idea

When the Maryland Stadium Authority unanimously approved a proposed stadium for Worcester County earlier this month, the project was sent on to the legislature for another approval.

The state legislature’s budget committee has 30 days to review and comment on the project, with the deadline for any action expiring in early September. However, freshman Delegate Mary Beth Carozza (R-38C), who represents portions of Worcester and Wicomico counties, is on the committee conducting the review.

“At this point, I support the feasibility study to better understand if our local area can support this project,” Carozza said.

The stadium was proposed by Hat Trick Consulting, a Texas company, and was made public in January. The centerpiece of the stadium is a proposed hockey arena, which could then be converted into meeting or other athletic space depending on the season or availability.


Watchdog: Solyndra Misrepresented Facts To Get Loan Guarantee

A four-year investigation has concluded that officials of the solar company Solyndra misrepresented facts and omitted key information in their efforts to get a $535 million loan guarantee from the federal government.

The company's collapse soon after getting federal backing provided ammunition to lawmakers and other critics who portrayed it as wasteful government spending. The company's failure likely will cost taxpayers more than $500 million.

The report by the Energy Department's inspector general was released Wednesday. It's designed to provide federal officials with lessons learned as it proceeds to grant billions of dollars in additional loan guarantees. The inspector general found fault with the Department of Energy, describing its due diligence work as "less than fully effective." The report also said department employees felt tremendous pressure to process loan guarantee applications.

In the end, however, the inspector general said the actions of the Solyndra officials "were at the heart of this matter."

"In our view, the investigative record suggests that the actions of certain Solyndra officials were, at best, reckless and irresponsible or, at worst, an orchestrated effort to knowingly and intentionally deceive and mislead the department," the IG's report said.

In September 2011, the company laid off 1,100 employees, ceased operations and filed for bankruptcy protection. Obama personally visited the plant in 2010 to cite it as an example of economic progress stemming from the Democratic-led stimulus bill.


Hungary May Use Army To Stop Flood Of Migrants

The Hungarian government has considered using its army to secure its southern border against migrants from the Middle East, Africa, and Asia pouring into the country via Serbia, a government spokesman said Wednesday.

Reuters reported that Zoltan Kovacs said that any decision to send troops to the frontier would have to be approved by Budapest's parliament, which would discuss the issue next week. On Tuesday, Kovacs said that the migrant flow needs to be better controlled. Hungary is preparing laws to make it a crime to cut through the fence or to enter Hungary illegally and is increasing the penalties for human traffickers.

"It is in the interest of all of us, Hungarians and Europeans, to develop some kind of order," Kovacs told the Associated Press, warning that otherwise many European cities could face unsustainable situations.

Hungary is attempting to build a 13-foot-high fence to keep out the migrants, many of whom are from Syria. However, the Associated Press reported that record numbers are crossing the border in what is being called E.U.rope's worst refugee crisis since the end of World War II.

Police said that 2,533 migrants were detained on Tuesday, up from 2,093 on Monday and by far the highest figure of the year. About 140,000 migrants have reached Hungary already this year, over three times as many as in all of 2014. Over the past week, the average was nearly 1,500 people a day.


Report: Bill Clinton ‘Incensed,’ ‘Very Agitated’ by Hype Around Biden Candidacy

The potential first First Gentleman is reportedly “very agitated” by the possibility Vice President Joe Biden may challenge Hillary Clinton for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Politico detailed President Bill Clinton’s frustration with the state of his wife’s campaign in a piece out Wednesday:

Clinton’s camp, hands full with the email controversy and a surprisingly stout challenge from independent Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, isn’t in a patient mood. Bill Clinton, according to a person who has spoken with the former president in the last couple of weeks, is “very agitated” by the possibility of a Biden candidacy and incensed at the press hype around a possible bid.


Fiorina Aide: 'This Is Ridiculous'

The deputy campaign manager said she feels "confident" they'll try to keep the former Hewlett-Packard CEO from debating.

The deputy campaign manager of Carly Fiorina's presidential effort said she feels "very confident" that CNN and the Republican National Committee will keep the former Hewlett-Packard CEO off the debate stage on September 16 despite her rising popularity.

"I think CNN and the RNC have made it very clear that they have every intention of doing that," the staffer, Sarah Isgur Flores, told Bloomberg Wednesday. "I feel very confident that they’re going to do that."

Flores, a former RNC aide, also wrote in an entry on Fiorina's Medium account Wednesday that "the political establishment is still rigging the game to keep Carly off the main debate stage next month" because CNN will use polls from before the Republican field's first debates on August 6 to determine who qualifies for its debate.

Fiorina's widely praised performance in a "candidate forum" that night helped propel her polling numbers, but the inclusion of the earlier polls and the paucity of more recent polls could keep the only woman in the 17-candidate Republican field from appearing on the debate stage.

A RealClearPolitics poll average puts Fiorina at seventh in the field, although she polls as high as second in some smaller state polls.

"I am a little surprised that the RNC and CNN feel quite so strongly to keep her off the stage yet again," Flores said Wednesday. "I’m upset because this is ridiculous."


ACLU Aims To Destroy Nevada School Choice Law

The American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit in Nevada on Thursday, seeking to undo what is currently the most far-reaching school choice law in the country.

Nevada’s program, passed and signed into law earlier this summer, creates what is essentially a universal school voucher program. Any family with a child currently in public schools is eligible to claim a voucher worth approximately $5,000 a year to pay for private school tuition, supplies or tutoring. The program is more expansive than those in other states, which typically limit vouchers to low-income families or children with special needs. Already, almost 3,000 families have applied to participate in the program, set to begin Jan,. 1.

The ACLU’s Nevada branch says the voucher program is unconstitutional, though, because it will lead to state funds being given to religiously-affiliated private schools. 


Statement from Governor Larry Hogan on Maryland State Superintendent of Schools

ANNAPOLIS, MD – Governor Larry Hogan today released the following statement:

“Dr. Lillian Lowery has been a dedicated public servant to the state of Maryland, and has devoted her career to bettering public education and working to ensure our teachers and students have the tools they need for success. This year, our administration was proud to provide a record level of investment in K-12 education, and our commitment to improving schools will always be a top priority. I thank Dr. Lowery for her service and wish her the best in all her future endeavors.”

Rebuilding New Orleans benefiting few Ten years after Katrina, residents still see racial politics in city’s image

President Obama will visit New Orleans Thursday to mark the city’s progress on the 10th anniversary of Hurricane Katrina, but most black residents say the government-funded recovery still hasn’t reached them.

On his visit, the president intends “to celebrate the remarkable revival of an American city,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest said Wednesday. In a speech, Mr. Obama also will touch on the need to combat climate change to lessen the severity of such storms.

“This is, once again, a thriving, exciting place to live and do business,” Mr. Earnest said. “In the mind of the president, this is an indication of what communities can do when they band together. And they had the strong support of the federal government as the people of New Orleansand the people of Louisiana, and either party, would readily tell you.”

But a majority of blacks in New Orleans, 59 percent, said in a poll released this week that the city has “mostly not recovered.” Despite the federal government having spent more than $100 billion on rebuilding the storm-ravaged Gulf Coast since 2005, most black residents in New Orleans “feel life in the city has gone downhill since then,” said the survey by Louisiana State University.


Proposed Berlin Youth Activity Center Seeking Loan From State To Get Project Underway

BERLIN – Town officials again voiced their support of the activity center proposed by a local businesswoman as she seeks funding help from the state.

The Berlin Town Council unanimously passed a resolution in support of Carmella Solito’s plan to build a youth activity center — to feature daycare and gymnastics, among other things — on Old Ocean City Boulevard.

Now that she has the support of local government, Solito is expected to receive a loan from the Maryland Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) to enable the Berlin Activities Depot to become reality.

“It’s a loan from the state so they need to make sure local government is in support of this,” said Ivy Wells, the town’s economic and community development director.


Does She Still Have A Security Clearance?

The Republican chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee is directly questioning whether Hillary Clinton still maintains her security clearance despite the ongoing FBI investigation into the mishandling of classified information, according to a new letter to Secretary of State John Kerry.

In the Aug. 24 letter, which marks a significant expansion of the Republican senator's inquiry, Sen. Charles Grassley writes, "Since the [intelligence community inspector general] IC IG made a referral to the FBI pursuant to 50 U.S.C. §3381, has Secretary Clinton's security clearance been suspended pending the outcome of the inquiry?”

The suspension of a clearance is standard practice, a kind of interim step taken to preserve security until an investigation is complete, according to current and former military intelligence officials.

"If you have a circle of people and they are the source of the leak, all of them, normally would be suspended from their positions, they can't go in the building," Chris Farell, a former special agent for Army counterintelligence, told Fox News. Farrell now works as an investigator for Judicial Watch, which is suing for Clinton records.

"The clearances would be suspended by the security manager and it would be made known that there is an active investigation into the loss of classified information, and no information should be shared with these individuals pending the outcome," Farrell added.

In the four-page letter, Grassley said, based on a letter from Clinton's personal attorney David Kendall, that neither he nor his associate Katherine M. Turner had sufficient security clearances to handle the emails -- which contained at least two highly classified documents identified by the intelligence community's IG.

More here

Almost 200 Retired Generals, Admirals Tell Congress: Stop the Iran Deal

Nearly 200 retired U.S. military generals and admirals sent a letter to Congressional leaders Wednesday, asking them to vote down the Iran nuclear deal.

According to The Washington Post, which obtained a copy of the letter, many of the signees have worked in the White House going back three decades.

The letter was addressed to House Speaker John Boehner, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, and Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid.

"As you know, on July 14, 2015, the United States and five other nations announced that a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) has been reached with Iran to prevent it from developing nuclear weapons," the letter reads.

"In our judgment as former senior military officers, the agreement will not have that effect. Removing sanctions on Iran and releasing billions of dollars to its regime over the next ten years is inimical to the security of Israel and the Middle East. There is no credibility within JCPOA's inspection process or the ability to snap back sanctions once lifted, should Iran violate the agreement. In this and other respects, the JCPOA would threaten the national security and vital interests of the United States and, therefore, should be disapproved by the Congress.

"The agreement as constructed does not 'cut off every pathway' for Iran to acquire
nuclear weapons. To the contrary, it actually provides Iran with a legitimate path to doing that simply by abiding by the deal."

More here

US Ambassador Kennedy Used Private Email

Senior staff at the U.S. Embassy to Japan, including Ambassador Caroline Kennedy, have used personal email accounts for official business, an internal watchdog said in a report Tuesday. Some emails contained sensitive information.

The State Department's Office of Inspector General said that it identified instances where emails labeled "sensitive but unclassified" were sent from or received by personal email accounts. Department policy is that employees generally should not use such accounts for official business, the watchdog's office said.

"Employees are also expected to use approved, secure methods to transmit sensitive but unclassified information when available and practical," says the report.

The finding comes in the midst of a department review of thousands of Hillary Rodham Clinton's emails that were sent and received from a private email account while she was secretary of state. Clinton also used her own email server.

The inspection of the embassy's operations was conducted between January and March. Kennedy, the daughter of the late President John F. Kennedy, has served as ambassador in Tokyo since November 2013.


Denver City Council Questions Opening of New Chick-fil-A Store

Plans by the restaurant chain Chick-fil-A to open a location at Denver International Airport have run into turbulence. At a meeting last week, members of the Denver City Council questioned whether the chain discriminates against gays and lesbians.

“Denver has been at the forefront of honoring gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender employees and their families with non-discrimination clauses and partner benefits for many of these decades,” read a statementmade by several members of the council.

“These are longstanding values Denver has held. When Denver International Airport proposed a concession with a company that had a history of funding opposition to this recognition, it was important that we as a City Council take a pause to ensure that all the policies are in place with all of the entities involved to ensure there will be no discrimination, and that benefits will be provided equally to all employees and their spouses, regardless of their sexual orientation.”

The first to raise the issue of Chick fil-A’s politics at the meeting was Robin Kniech, the council's first openly gay member. Kniech said he was most worried about a local franchise generating "corporate profits used to fund and fuel discrimination."


U.S. Injecting LGBT Rights 'Into the DNA of the United Nations'

(CNSNews) - The United Nations Security Council on Monday held its first-ever meeting on the persecution of homosexuals by Islamic State terrorists -- the same terrorists who are slaughtering Christians and forcing women and young girls into sexual slavery.

But Monday's focus was all on LGBT "rights and issues."

"It was a very moving meeting," U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Samantha Power said after the closed-door session, sponsored by the U.S. and Chile, ended. "Again, we’re getting this issue into the DNA of the United Nations, but until today the Security Council had never broached this topic, and so today also represents a small but historic step."

Power mentioned other persecuted groups in passing, noting that ISIL "is going to come up again in many, many Security Council meetings, rest assured. When it comes up, it’s also imperative that in addition to talking about the threat that ISIL poses to Christians, to Yezidis, to Shia, to any Sunni or anybody who doesn’t share their warped ideology -- to cultural artifacts of the kind that have been destroyed monstrously here in the last couple days -- alongside that, it is essential that the fate of LGBT persons also be raised and discussed, and we will work with our Council partners and colleagues to ensure that it isn’t just the United States raising it.


EPA Withholds Mine Spill Documents From Congress

A congressional committee blasted the Environmental Protection Agency today for blocking release of documents related to the Gold King mine disaster, which poured deadly chemicals into the largest source of drinking water in the West.

“It is disappointing, but not surprising, that the EPA failed to meet the House Science Committee’s reasonable deadline in turning over documents pertaining to the Gold King Mine spill,” said Rep. Lamar Smith (R-TX). “These documents are essential to the Committee’s ongoing investigation and our upcoming hearing on Sept. 9. But more importantly, this information matters to the many Americans directly affected in western states, who are still waiting for answers from the EPA.”

Smith – who frequently spars with the EPA – is chairman of the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee. EPA director Gina McCarthy has been asked to appear and answer questions about the agency’s role in creating a 3-million-gallon toxic spill into Colorado’s Animas River on Aug. 5. Critics say McCarthy and the EPA have been unresponsive, secretive and unsympathetic toward millions of people who live in three states bordering the river.

More here

GOP Should Worry Less About Trump and More About Itself

Commentators and political consultants are working overtime to divine why Donald Trump's candidacy is explosively successful despite his breaking all the established rules. They're outthinking themselves.

They say he is a flash in the pan, the darling of disaffected independents, the tea party's dream, a Clinton plant or the right wing's narcissistic alternative to Barack Obama.

Folks, it's not that difficult. For many Americans — who knows what percentage? — the Republican Party is not an antidote to President Obama's seven-year wrecking ball.

They look at the GOP and occasionally see strong rhetoric but mostly observe a lack of inspiration, energy and any sense of urgency about the current state of affairs. They recall that when Republicans didn't have control of Congress, they asked for patience until they recaptured the House. In the meantime, we were not supposed to rock the boat and jeopardize the upcoming elections.

Since winning back Congress, they've offered a similarly tired excuse: We don't have control of the presidency. Just wait until 2016, and we'll really turn things around. But for now, let's be calm.

Calm? What is there to be calm about?


Is Trumpism the 'New Nationalism'?

Pat Buchanan: To the Donald, 'the world is not Davos; it is the NFL'

Since China devalued its currency 3 percent, global markets have gone into a tailspin. Why should this be?

After all, 3 percent devaluation in China could be countered by a U.S. tariff of 3 percent on all goods made in China, and the tariff revenue used to cut U.S. corporate taxes.

The crisis in world markets seems related not only to a sinking Chinese economy, but also to what Beijing is saying to the world; i.e., China will save herself first even if it means throwing others out of the life boat.

Disbelievers in New World Order mythology have long recognized that this new China is fiercely nationalistic. Indeed, with Marxism-Leninism dead, nationalism is the Communist Party’s fallback faith.

China has thus kept her currency cheap to hold down imports and keep exports surging. She has run $300 billion trade surpluses at the expense of the Americans. She has demanded technology transfers from firms investing in China and engaged in technology theft.

Disillusioned U.S. executives have been pulling out.

And the stronger China has grown economically, the more bellicose she has become with her neighbors from Japan to Vietnam to the Philippines. Lately, China has laid claim to virtually the entire South China Sea and all its islands and reefs as national territory.

In short, China is becoming a mortal threat to the rules-based global economy Americans have been erecting since the end of the Cold War, even as the U.S. system of alliances erected by Cold War and post-Cold War presidents seems to be unraveling.

Enter the Donald.


Worcester County starts opioid awareness program

Worcester County is responding to a hefty increase in the percentage of opioid-related misuse, overdose and death rates by creating a long-term awareness campaign called “Decisions Matter.”

According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health provided by organizers, heroin related overdose deaths have jumped almost 300 percent between the years of 2002 and 2013 to almost three people per 100,000.

Col. Douglas Dods of the Worcester County Sheriff’s Office, chair of the committee, said opioid abuse, heroin use in particular, has increased 80 percent between 2011-2012 nationally, and locally 7.4 percent of local high school seniors have reported using heroin. Dods said 20 percent of seniors have reported using opioids not prescribed to them.


Don't Miss the Beatles Tribute Band This Weekend!!

Saturday, August 29
Twist & Shout is the most exciting and powerful Beatles tribute rock ensemble to hit the states in years. The members of Twist & Shout have recorded a half-dozen albums since the mid-70's on major/indy labels, and have toured extensively with top-name artists. Twist & Shout instantly captures audiences with a driving sound and remarkably contemporary stage presence that delivers an incredibly authentic and memorable mix. 

Doors: 7 PM | Show: 8 PM
$10 Admission | 18+ Show

Friday, August 28

Don't miss Downtown Salisbury favorite Flint Eastwood this Friday at Headquarters Live! 

Doors: 7 PM | Show: 8 PM
$10 Admission | 18+ Show

Labor Day Weekend 2015
Labor Day Weekend at Headquarters Live is going to be off the charts! Nappy Roots is performing on Saturday, September 5 and Ballyhoo! is taking the stage on Sunday, September 6. Find more details on our website!


Headquarters Live is a music venue in Downtown Salisbury. The focus here is on music, sound quality and the performers. It is a truly unique experience compared to anywhere else in the area! Sure, we have a bar - serving domestic and craft beers, wines and wine cocktails - but it's so much more than that!

Check out our website for more upcoming shows and events!

Refugee Resettlement Meetings Held In Spartanburg

U.S. assistant secretary of state Ann Richard is in Spartanburg, S.C. this week to discuss a controversial refugee resettlement program in the area. Richard, who oversees the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration, will meet privately Tuesday morning with a small group of less than a dozen community leaders and activists.

The meeting will be held at 9:00 a.m. EDT at the Mary Black Foundation (349 East Main Street) in downtown Spartanburg.

Among those invited to attend? Upstate political activist Michelle Wiles (see her voter voices profile here) and former congressional candidate Christina Jeffrey, who has been following this issue for several months.

Back in April this website broke the news of the controversial resettlement program – which involves dozens of refugees from war-torn Syria being shipped to the Spartanburg area by government-subsidized “non-profits.” After profiting handsomely on these “resettlements,” the refugees are then left to fend for themselves … imposing costly new burdens on local governments.


You Can Buy Gas For Under $2 Per Gallon In At Least 12 States Right Now

A few weeks ago, we heard gas prices would probably start dipping below $2 per gallon in many parts of the country as soon as this fall. And in some states, those low prices can already be found at some gas stations. But even so, given the price of crude oil right now, gas should be even cheaper, experts say.

Even in the 12 states that have at least one gas station selling fuel for under $2 a gallon, the average price in those states is still well over that mark, according to AAA’s Daily Fuel Gauge Report.

Those states include Alabama, New Jersey and Texas, AAA’s Michael Green told MarketWatch, and “the number of states with stations [selling gas for] under $2 is likely to grow fast in the coming weeks.”


Priest Sentenced To 6 Months In Prison For Groping Woman On US Airways Flight

Almost exactly a year after he was caught groping a female passenger on a US Airways flight from Philadelphia to Los Angeles, a Catholic priest has been sentenced to six months behind bars in a federal prison, followed by six months of house arrest.
According to a grand jury indictment [PDF], on Aug. 17, 2014, the priest touched the woman’s breast, buttocks, and inner thigh for his own sexual gratification, and without her permission.

Reuters reports that when the priest boarded the flight, he asked if he could be moved to a seat in the rear of the plane to “sit next to his wife.”

At some point, the woman sitting next to the convicted groper woke up to find him touching the top of her leg and wrapping his arm around her body to grab her breast.

She got up from her seat, went to the plane’s lavatory and called a flight attendant to report the assault.


Investors Want McDonald’s To Spin $20 Billion In Property Off Into Real Estate Investment Trust

While McDonald’s doesn’t own the majority of its restaurants, it does own tens of billions of dollars’ worth of the real estate where those restaurants operate, leasing them to franchisees. That’s a valuable asset, and the company is facing pressure from some investors to spin off its land and buildings into a separate, publicly traded McDonaldland. I mean, real estate investment trust. Which they should name McDonaldland.

Investors in other companies are keen on the REIT idea, too. Darden plans to transfer a number of its own restaurants to an REIT, and investors want Macy’s to do the same. Selling property to a trust is the only reason why Sears posted a profit during the most recent quarter.

The Wall Street Journal points out that REITs have benefits for investors, since their tax structure is different from a regular business. Almost half of McDonald’s value is in its worldwide real estate, which would leave the remaining company to be valued based on its earnings from franchise fees.

This trust would own only McDonald’s property in the United States, and that’s a substantial amount of real estate. Experts don’t even know exactly how much there is, but they know that there’s between $20 billion and $35 billion that the company could raise, which they could go on to use to buy shares of the company back, pay debt, or invest in more pantry spices.


Double Standards



Hillary’s Security Breach, And Why It Matters

Perhaps you've heard of Sergey Lavrov — or perhaps you haven't. He has been Russia's foreign minister since March 9, 2004.

Imagine what U.S. intelligence agencies might have gained if they'd had access in real time (or even with some delay) to every email and direct message Lavrov sent or received from Jan. 21, 2009 through Feb. 1, 2013.

Those were tumultuous years for Russia. Vladimir Putin returned to the presidency, replacing Dimitry Medvedev. The Obama-Medvedev Commission was formed at the beginning of that period — the vehicle by which the relations between Russia and the United States were to have improved across a variety of crucial fronts.

Yang Jiechi was the foreign minister of the People's Republic of China during those years. Imagine if President Obama had had access to all of Yang's Internet trails and the data that flowed to and from his virtual desk. What an advantage to our president that would have been! What a trove of insight into the ambitions of the PRC's inner core of powerful party elites.