Thursday, January 31, 2013

Would the Ohio EPA whitewash one of its own reports?

Ohio Watchdog
The Ohio EPA has approved $4.7 million to buy and close a golf course in the name of water quality. Just one problem: the water's fine. The EPA's own water quality report makes no mention of chemicals or other pollutants. In fact, it's missing the entire section on pollutants, the section you'd find in every other water quality report the agency published last year. What's going on?
Also, see our previous story on this deal,Ohio EPA clubs historic Aurora golf course”. whose financing appears to be in violation of both state and federal law, by Jon Cassidy on January 16, 2013 stating;
Thanks to a state environmental agency, Arnold Palmer will always hold the record at Aurora.  The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency is paying $4.7 million so that the city of Aurora can buy a high-end golf course . . . and close it down.  In doing so, the agency is skirting federal and state law, maybe even breaking it.  What’s in it for the dealmakers? The course owner is making a bundle on a property he bought out of receivership four years ago. Aurora gets title to 196 acres of open space for free. And the Ohio EPA gets a rare chance to do something about fertilizer runoff, an issue it’s legally required to ignore across the state’s expanses of farmland.  To read more.....

What is the News Worth Knowing and Why Don't We Know It?

By Rich Kozlovich
For weeks I have been watching the news in stark amazement.  Am I the only one who noticed that an awful lot of hours have been devoted to a football player named Te’o, a cycler named Lance, Mrs. Obama’s new hair-do and Bob Beckel claiming that the only thing America “really” wanted to know during Steve Kroft’s interview with the President of the United States and Hillary Clinton was how they got worked things out together to get along. Say what?  My mother, who turned 88 this year has a phrase for this kind of thing:  “That falls under the category of who gives a crap!”  Only she doesn't say crap.  Clearly a fit phrase for this whole last couple of weeks of news….well actually most of what passes for ‘news’ from the main stream media. 
By comparison how much time has been devoted discussing about efforts by N. Korea and Iran to develop a nuclear delivery system. You know - two countries who were part of what President Bush called the Axis of Evil -which of course made the media smugly snicker.  How about the potential military conflict between China and Japan over the Senkakus islands in the East China Sea?  Mali is just now coming to the media's attention.  I linked information about this  on October 13th.  On to Timbuktu! A New Jolly Little War We Can't Find on a Map, on October 30th , -What Mali's Crisis Means for the Future of Western Military Intervention, and on November 2nd,  Welcome to Islam: The Sound of Silence in Mali.
What passes for news is full of meaningless dribble that is an effort in misdirection from the facts about important realities that allow people to develop understanding and make good decisions.   Instead we get news that is filled with lies of omission, lies of commission and outright bias.  I wonder how these people sleep at night.   The word jaded comes to mind when I think of the main stream media. 
Or is it more?
We have to understand that the media was heavily infiltrated with Stalinist sympathizers or outright Communists from the 1920's on. But not only the media!  During the Great Depression FDR expanded government tremendously when he created all those new agencies.  Agencies which very quickly became infiltrated by Communists, allowing them to act secretly as agents for the Soviet Union while on America's payroll.  Largely with the help secret communists acting as agents for Stalin like Harry Hopkins.   The intercepted messages between the Soviet Union and their agents in the U.S. (known as the Venona intercepts) clearly showed that Hopkins was contact No. 19 who KGB defector Oleg Godievsky named as a Soviet intelligence agent. In fact he quoted another KGB operative Iskhak Akhmerov as saying that Hopkins was “their most important Soviet war-time agent in the United States”.  Hopkins was FDR’s closest aide, often seeing him daily, and even living in the White House.  
Hopkins was directly responsible for getting Roosevelt, who was totally unprepared and extremely ill, to go to Yalta and negotiate what would become the fate of Eastern Europe under Stalin's iron boot. As Reed Irvine states in his January 5, 2000 article, Harry Hopkins: Traitor, Not Hero”;
 “Hopkins said the Russians had been "reasonable and farseeing." Robert Sherwood, a Roosevelt speechwriter, called Yalta "a monstrous fraud." Hopkins had been instrumental in our supplying, with no conditions, the arms that enabled Stalin to defeat the Germans. He helped seal their control of Eastern Europe, and he is suspected of having authorized shipments of uranium that helped them develop their A-bomb."
More importantly it was discovered by the U.S. Office of Strategic Services (OSS), forerunner of the CIA, (both of which were infiltrated by Soviet agents during the war and after) that Stalin was "diverting American Lend-Lease supplies shipped to Russia via the Pacific to the control of the Japanese, in exchange for materials Moscow was receiving from Japan."  When this betrayal was discovered by the OSS "they were ordered by highest authority: drop the subject, make no mention of it."  Apparently serving the interests of the Soviet Union was a far larger priority than serving American interests and saving American lives. 
In spite of all the propaganda from the media about FDR he wasn’t the brightest pebble in the brook.  He, like his cousin Teddy was a failure in his business ventures, and his understanding of leftist dictators was appalling, especially Stalin, which Hopkins nourished.   By the way; if you look Hopkins up in Wikipedia you would think was a wonderful public servant, instead of the traitor that he was. 
As for the media, there were people like I.F. Stone who was very influential in the U.S. among left wingers, and who was according to KGB general Oleg Kalugin was “functioning as a Soviet intelligence asset”,  which was later confirmed through Venona.  It has been touted that he broke with the KGB, but apparently he hadn’t broken with his loyalty to Stalin or the Soviet Union or International Communism - take your pick - because he later re-established contact with them. 
Then there was Michael Straight, who became editor of the New Republic, a “left-liberal magazine …read by many influential people in government and elsewhere”, founded by his parents.  He was recruited into the Communist Party while attending Cambridge University in England, along with infamous Soviet spies Guy Burgess, Donald Maclean and Anthony Blunt.  All acting as Soviet agents!  Later he claimed that he broke with the Soviets, but “for years he neglected to tell anyone about his Cambridge comrades, specifically Guy Burgess, whom Straight knew to be working at the British embassy in Washington during the Korean War and undoubtedly sharing Anglo-American military secrets with his Soviet bosses.”   We really do have to start thinking clearly about this.  Those who presumably left the Communist party yet refused to testify about those who remained were protecting Soviet agents because those who stayed had to be agents or else.  

He was also related by “marriage to two certified Soviet agents – Louis Dolivet and Gustavo Duran”, also about whom he wasn’t “conspicuously forthcoming”.  This was the editor of the New Republic “who regularly instructed his liberal readers on Cold War issues.”
Then there was “famed newspaperman Drew Person, whose sensational exposes in his syndicated column, appearing in hundreds of papers and widely broadcast radio show, made him a prominent and powerful figure”, who made a “specialty of attacking anti-Communist spokesman of the day in the executive branch and Congress.” Although I am not aware of any evidence that he personally was a Communist, or a Soviet agent, two of his “legmen” were.  This would appear to be a classic case of infiltration, just as it was with FDR.  Many of these types were fellow travelers, or as Stalin described them, “useful idiots”.
When you look more deeply at that media you find startling facts that seem almost beyond belief.  On November 12, 2012 I wrote an article about the New York Times entitled; The Lady is a Hag.  I felt it was important to do some history on the media and the number one socialist dictator in the world - Fidel Castro.  What follows is from that article.
At the death of CBS news guru Don Hewitt Humberto Fontova wrote an article calling him a Castro Enabler because of “his media advance-work helping install a Stalinist regime in Cuba”.
He went on to say that; “Hewitt of CBS still seemed proud of his work as a Castro media auxiliary. During that interim, over 20,000 Cubans were murdered by firing squad and beaten or starved to death in forced labor camps. Another 70-80 thousand were ripped apart by sharks or drowned in the Florida straits (attempting to flee a nation that previously took in more immigrants per-capita than the U.S.” (Please follow the link to see the truth about Hewitt’s deliberate chicanery over the interview with Elian’s father by Dan Rather.  If you had doubts that there is such a thing as leftist corruption amongst “journalists” this would certainly dispel them.)
What does that have to do with the New York Times you may ask?   This is merely demonstrating how badly infested the main stream media is with leftist thinking, and has been for decades.   
Fontova went on to say that New York Times reporter Herbert Matthews “made Fidel Castro an international pop star on the front page of the world's most important newspaper.” “The February 1957 NYT's headline article proclaimed that, "Fidel Castro has strong ideas of liberty, democracy, social justice, the need to restore Cuba's Constitution....this amounts to a new deal for Cuba, radical, democratic and therefore anti-Communist."  That was a lie and they all knew it.
But that shouldn’t surprise anyone that the NYT would lie about socialist dictators.  Walter Duranty is in my opinion the epitome of infamy when it comes to journalistic corruption in favor of leftism.   Who was Walter Duranty? 
 In this article by Roger Simon; “Announcing the Winners of the Inaugural Walter Duranty Prize", (a prize for journalistic mendacity) they state that Duranty deliberately “whitewashed the repressive evil deeds of the Soviet Union”…. most prominently in the case of the Ukrainian Holodomor: the forced starvation of between 1.2 and 12 million ethnic Ukrainians, depending on whose estimates you believe.  In other words, a lot of people.  Duranty called that genocide “an exaggeration and malignant propaganda”.  This appeared in” newspaper of record”, the New York Times.  British author Malcolm Muggeridge called Duranty: “The greatest liar I have met in fifty years of journalism.” Duranty also made sure that the Soviets knew that the New York Times would “vet all reports about” the Soviet Union before it appeared in the NYT; “effectively making that newspaper a U.S. branch of Pravda, for a time anyway.”  Duranty won the Pulitizer Prize for his mendacity; a prize that the NYT refuses to return, and the prize committee refuses to revoke in spite of the now known truth of his actions.
Simon notes that polls have shown that sixty percent of the general public has little trust in the media.  He wonders who are the other forty percent?  Good question since it is clear that the media supports a movement that has murdered over one hundred million people, kept them starved, disease ridden, down trodden, abused and tyrannized since the terrible  beginning of that movement; The French Revolution.  What kind of person would have confidence in them? 
For the media to support leftist thinking is unconscionable.  The leftist media knows the truth and must be insane, otherwise how could they possibly support such thinking?  And now society begins to understand.  The people have been lied to by these powerful entities; they will not forget or forgive.  
As for the “Old Gray Lady”! I keep hearing seemingly conservative commentators who feel saddened that the Times is dying.  I think perhaps that insanity is an infectious disease in journalism, or perhaps they don't have the courage to be a rock in the current.  Heterodoxy isn't for the faint of heart!
No one can be characterized as a lady who, for all of these decades, has been guilty  of promoting such a vile cancerous philosophy as socialism.  She's not a lady, she's a hag, and much of the media is equally as vile.  When the “Old Gray Hag” disappears that will be a day for rejoicing.  Not only for ourselves and our children and grandchildren, but also for the 100 million poor suffering people who were slaughtered by the socialist monsters of the 20th century.  Monsters they supported!
This brings me back to my point.  What is the news worth knowing and why don’t we know it?  I know that it can't be a conspiracy to keep us uninformed, misinformed and ignorant because we all know "there is no such thing as a conspiracy".  And I know that must be so because my friends who don't read history books have told me so.  So then, if the answer is that there is no conspiracy, I still have to ask; what is the news worth knowing and why don't we know it?   

Gerard Jackson wrote this in his article Is Journalism and Treason Now Joined at the Hip?;
"Treason is an ugly word and an even uglier crime. In simple language treason is the act of betraying one’s country to those who would destroy it and enslave its people. This definition is so simple that leftwing sophisticated journalists sneer at it. To them treason is merely relative with one country’s traitor being another country’s hero. This is the appalling moral and intellectual state of current Western journalism. The moral rot runs so deep that one despairs of living long enough to see any improvement."
On any issue of consequence I feel that it is important to know the history, i.e., the events and characters involved with the issue.  Tell me the history and I will give you the answer and the history of the main stream media clearly shows who and what they are.  And they are not honorable! Some of the most prominent people in the main stream media and Hollywood have declared that Fidel Castro - a man who is clearly a mass murderer - is one of the greatest men in modern history.  Are we to believe his crimes aren’t known to these people?

Now the next questions every clear thinking person should be asking are these.  What are they promoting and what are their goals and why - and based on their past history can they be sane?

Recommended reading.  Stalin's Secret Agents by M. Stanton Evans and Herbert Romerstein.

The EPA's Lisa Jackson: The Worst Head of the Worst Regulatory Agency, Ever

Henry I. Miller 1/30/2013
President Obama and his minions seem to think that freedom is a four-letter word.  His administration has imposed an array of intrusive, nanny-state, financial, environmental and consumer-product regulations that will cost Americans hundreds of billions of dollars.
Public policy has consequences, and excessive, unwise regulation has contributed to a potentially catastrophic slowing of the nation’s economic growth.  The Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank’s survey of 39 economic forecasters released in November predicted that over the first three quarters of 2013, GDP growth will average 2.1% and will rise only to 2.9% in 2015.  They predicted that unemployment will average 7.8% this year and drop to a still unacceptable 6.9% by 2015.  To Read More…..

Magician Economists Like Bernanke Can’t Pull Prosperity Out Of A Hat

by Matthew Melchiorre on January 30, 2013 · 0 comments
Inflator-In-Chief Ben Bernanke defended today his third round of quantitative easing and additional $45 billion monthly purchases of U.S. Treasuries (totaling $85 billion per month in Fed balance sheet expansion) as efforts to combat “transitory factors” dragging down the economy. Yet there has been nothing “transitory” about the almost five-year recession lasting since 2008.  As I explain in Forbes, Bernanke is no more than a magician attempting to paper over the real problems within the U.S. economy with the sleight of hand of the printing press. Ultimately, he and his central banker cohorts cannot defy a fundamental law of economics known as Say’s Law: People supply what they demand.  By focusing solely on demand-boosting measures, inflationary economists do not address the root cause of the current malaise…….Printing money isn’t just ineffective. It’s redistributive and distortionary….To Read More…

“Right-To-Work” Train Rolls On: Next Stop, Pennsylvania?

 by Matt Patterson on January 30, 2013 · 0 comments  in Features, Labor, Regulation
The earthquake that was Michigan’s right-to-work law has produced a number of interesting aftershocks, not least of which is the right-to-work rumbling in Pennsylvania where lawmakers (guided by Rep. Daryl Metcalf) have introduced legislation called “Pennsylvania Open Workforce Initiative,” aimed at ending compulsory unionism.  The initiative actually consists of a number of bills, including:……. Metcalfe, a long-time and passionate advocate of right-to-work, acknowledges the economic benefits of such legislation. But more than that, he sees the issue as one of basic freedom:  To Read More…..

Germs In Reusable Grocery Bags Can Prove Deadly

by Angela Logomasini on January 30, 2013 · 0 comments
Cloth supermarket bags may be fashionable, but they can also prove deadly, according to a recent research paper published by the University of Pennsylvania Law School. The researchers point out that after the city of San Francisco banned plastic bags, the number of emergency room visits for bacterial related diseases increased significantly. A Reason.com blog post explains the connection:
Basically people were schlepping leaky packages of meat and other foods in their canvas bags, then wadding to the bags somewhere for awhile, leaving bacteria to grow until the next trip, when they tossed celery or other foods likely to be eaten raw in the same bags.
It is in fact plausible that at least some portion of these illnesses did in fact result from reusable bags. Another study conducted by researchers at the University of Arizona and Loma Linda University in 2010 measured bacteria in a sample of reusable bags, finding many containing dangerous bacteria, such as coliform (found in half the bags) and E. coli (found in 12 percent of bags). They also noted that consumers reported that they rarely wash the bags in an attempt to control the development of such pathogens….To Read More……
My Take – This was as a result of greenies demanding a solution to another non-problem.


Destroying Initiative Through the Welfare State

Written on Wednesday, January 30, 2013 by John Rizzola
It is difficult to view America’s financial situation with any optimism these days. We are increasingly becoming a nation of people dependent on the government to take care of us as opposed to nation of rugged individuals. The WWII generation has been called the greatest with good reason. It is becoming increasingly suspect that our financial system has been rigged to fail. This is particularly true when it comes to entitlement spending.
Currently our federal budget allows 70% of funds to be directed at welfare programs that create and reinforce dependency. What makes this worse is that our society fails to teach our children the truth about the way the system is supposed to work. I have spoken with many a college student who does little more than draw a blank when asked simple questions about where the money for these programs comes from. Consequently, our current generation does not understand the ill- gotten results that will befall them as the dependent class begins to outnumber the independent or producing class….To Read More…. 

Obama administration takes steps to implement individual mandate

By Sam Baker - 01/30/13
The Obama administration took new steps Wednesday toward implementing the individual mandate in its signature healthcare law, downplaying the scope of the unpopular provision by stressing rules that allow exemptions from the requirement to purchase insurance. The Internal Revenue Service and the Health and Human Services Department emphasized exceptions to the mandate, which were detailed in new regulations that also laid out the process by which the IRS will calculate penalties for going uninsured.
The mandate requires most taxpayers to either buy insurance or pay a fine to the IRS. It's one of the most politically unpopular provisions of the healthcare law, and was at the core of last year's historic Supreme Court case over the healthcare law.  HHS referred to the politically charged provision as a system of "shared responsibility" payments….To Read More…….

Out of control: 47 new regs for every new law

Paul Bedard  January 30, 2013 5 Comments
Somebody forgot to tell Washington's regulatory agencies that it's Congress that makes laws governing American commerce. According to a new Competitive Enterprise Institute study provided to Secrets, agency bureaucrats have finalized 47 times more new rules than laws passed in 2011, a runaway record over the past nine years.
CEI found that Congress passed just 81 new laws in 2011, but regulators OK'd 3,807 regulations. A year earlier, Congress approved 217 new laws compared to 3,573 rules, or 16 times more rules.
"It's quite eye-opening," said CEI's Wayne Crews. "Regulators issue vastly more rules than those elected to make laws. Calling it unaccountable rulemaking is an understatement. It's un-Democratic."
The business community has complained bitterly for years about the burden of new regulations under Obama and this will give them new ammo to fight the administration….To Read More…..

Taxpayers stand to lose $27B in bailout, watchdog says

Published January 30, 2013
Associated Press
A government watchdog says U.S. taxpayers stand to lose $27 billion from the 2008 financial bailout, up from an estimate of $22 billion made in the fall.
A report issued Wednesday by the special inspector general for the Troubled Asset Relief Program says the estimate is higher because of increased losses for the Treasury Department on sales of shares in bailed-out companies.  Ally Financial, the former financial arm for General Motors, still owes $14.6 billion of the $17.2 billion in aid it received. The report says taxpayers can expect to lose $5.5 billion on that investment because of the company's losses on risky mortgages issued ahead of the financial crisis.
The report also criticized the Treasury for lacking a plan to unwind its investment in Ally. Taxpayers own 74 percent of the company.  Ally and GM together owe more than half of the $67.3 billion still owed U.S. taxpayers by companies that were bailed out during the financial crisis, according to the quarterly report to Congress by Special Inspector General Christy Romero…To Read More.....

How President Obama Lost His Shirt to John Boehner

Ralph Benko, Contributor
 The House, under the leadership of Speaker John Boehner, has precipitated a postponement in the debt ceiling fight until May. This represents a strategic choice by Boehner to make the Sequester fight, not the debt ceiling fight, the next major engagement. Much of the mainstream media now is accusing Congress of “kicking the can down the road.” They are missing the strategic implications.   In retrospect, at the Battle at Fiscal Cliff, Boehner took President Obama to the cleaners…..While Obama churlishly, and in a politically amateurish manner, publicly strutted about having forced the Republicans to raise tax rates on “the wealthiest Americans” Boehner, quietly, was pocketing his winnings.
Dazzled by Obama’s Ozymandias-scale sneer most liberals failed to notice that Boehner quietly made 99% of the Bush tax cuts permanent. As Boehner himself …..“”Who would have ever guessed that we could make 99% of the Bush tax cuts permanent? When we had a Republican House and Senate and a Republican in the White House, we couldn’t get that”…….Boehner thereby won a triple jackpot, a bonanza for conservatives and supply-siders … while Obama, giving up all that for a trivial symbolic victory, lost his Progressive shirt. The mainstream media, with a few exceptions such as Howard Kurtz at the Daily Beast, was too deep in the tank to report that the Emperor has no clothes….To Read More…..   And a bonus link.  The End Of The Karl Rove Death Grip Signals A Reagan Renaissance

The Art of Grace: Engaging the Left

Written on Tuesday, January 29, 2013 by Joe Dan Gorman
Nobody wants to embrace the arsonist that’s been burning down their house…just the contrary. Initial human-nature suggests ‘stringing him or her up’ by his or her ‘unspeakables.’  But when the number of arsonists equal or exceed our own, that’s hardly a viable option. And where would we find enough string?  Contrary to popular belief, ‘kindness’ is not weakness, nor is it acquiescence… it is the first step of a successful diplomat on any path to victory. 
We’re starting to see folks who’ve traditionally voted Democrat, that for the first time are ‘beginning to pay attention’ to our message of lost liberties & freedoms—not because we’ve been so convincing or so compelling— but because our message is accompanied by real-life interactive visuals (jobs, paychecks & groceries).  This is where Ayn Rand’s quote could not be more appropriate: “You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality.”
Overworked and underpaid - As ‘the task’ of meeting the ever-increasing ‘day to day’ cost of living gets more and more difficult—to many, the vanishing American Dream seems to get clearer and clearer… like focusing a lens on a camera…….A lifetime of believing in unicorns is not immediately purged from one’s system. They’re kinda like crack heads and Government is their ‘Dealer.’   To Read More….  

Negative Growth: Economy Tanks in Fourth Quarter

30 Jan 2013
Yesterday, Breitbart News reported that consumer confidence had dropped to its lowest level in almost two years. Much of the media spun the number as the result of a payroll tax increase that hit millions who were repeatedly told by Obama that only the rich would see their taxes increase. Surprise! But the spin didn't explain why consumer confidence had steadily dropped during the months prior. Well, now we know: The American economy has taken a nosedive.
For the first time in over three years, the U.S. Gross Domestic Product shrank. Between October and December of 2012, the GDP had a negative growth of 0.1. And let's remember that this is the same quarter where we saw the media go into hyper-drive to spin Obama's anemic job and GDP growth into a repeat of the Roaring Twenties.   The problem with the American economy is that Obama and his media can't fool it. Happy talk and spin and distractions about contraception don’t create jobs or growth. You might be able to fool legions of people into voting a certain way, but you can't fool them into spending and hiring and investing. …To  Read More….

Get Over It! We Are Not All Created Equal

Written by Capt. Katie Petronio, USMC
ednesday, 30 January 2013

The Marine Corps Times recently published a handful of articles in regard to opening Infantry Officer Course (IOC) to females and the possibility of integrating women into the infantry community. In mid-April the Commandant has directed the ‘integration' of the first wave of female officers into IOC this summer following completion of The Basic School (TBS).

This action may or may not pave the way for female Marines to serve in the infantry as the results remain to be seen. However, before the Marine Corps moves forward with this concept, should we not ask the hard questions and gain opinions of combat-experienced Marines (male and female alike) as to the purpose, the impact, and the gains from such a move?   As a combat-experienced Marine officer, and a female, I am here to tell you that we are not all created equal, and attempting to place females in the infantry will not improve the Marine Corps as the Nation's force-in-readiness or improve our national security…….. In the end, my main concern is not whether women are capable of conducting combat operations, as we have already proven that we can hold our own in some very difficult combat situations; instead, my main concern is a question of longevity. Can women endure the physical and physiological rigors of sustained combat operations, and are we willing to accept the attrition and medical issues that go along with integration?..... To Read More…..

Obama Shuts Down Southern Defense Mechanism

January 30, 2013 by Bob Livingston 
The Federal government has decided to shut down a surveillance system that protects the southern border and coastline against low-flying aircraft and missiles and assists U.S. Customs and Border Protection in interdicting illegal border crossings and smuggling. More »

Government Gave 4,317 Aliens 2 Social Security Numbers a Piece

January 29, 2013 By Matt Cover
 (CNSNews.com) – A report from the Social Security Administration Inspector General (IG) found 4,317 instances where a non-citizen was able to obtain two Social Security numbers, including 542 instances that happened since 2001.  “We identified 4,317 instances where the Numident record of 2 SSNs assigned to noncitizens contained matching first, middle, and last names; dates and places of birth; gender; and fathers’ and mothers’ names,” the IG reported on Dec. 10, 2012.
Numident – which stands for Numerical Identification System – is the master file of applications for social security numbers. The IG found that SSA had issued multiple numbers to 4,317 non-citizens from 1981-2011.  The IG found that the errors occurred because SSA did not cross-check the names of the people applying for an additional Social Security number….To Read More……
My Take – Clearly this creates a capacity for illegal activity, but does this also mean that if you have two SSI numbers you could collect two checks at retirement?  

Gov't Doles Out $10.3 Billion in Improper Unemployment Payments – In 1Year

By Penny Starr January 29, 2013
The Federal-State Unemployment Insurance program paid out $10.3 billion in benefits in 2012 to people who should not have received the money, according to the Department of Labor (DOL).  The data provided on the government website, paymentaccuracy.gov, shows those payments amount to 11.42 percent of all the unemployment insurance checks handed out – an increase from 11.36 percent in 2011 and in excess of the government’s “target” for overpayments of 9.66 percent.  The DOL states that most of the data reported on its paymentaccuracy website was for the federal government’s fiscal year, which runs from Sept. 30 to Oct. 1, but that some data may have come from calendar year tabulations, which is why the department “used the term fiscal reporting year to best describe the time period in which the most current information was reported.” To Read More….

Influential U.N. Body Elects Sudan to Leadership Position

By Patrick Goodenough January 30, 2013 
Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, has been indicted by the International Criminal Court but remains relatively free to travel and his regime has now been elected to a leadership post in an important U.N. body.   Three months after Sudan was controversially elected onto an influential United Nations body with key human rights-related responsibilities, Khartoum’s Islamist regime scored a further diplomatic coup this week when other members elected it as vice president.  The decision to select Sudan as vice president of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) drew sharp criticism from activists concerned about the northeast African country’s human rights record. President Omar al-Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court (ICC) on war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide charges.  To Read More….  


Shale gas, chemistry and the manufacturing multiplier effect

By American Chemistry on January 29, 2013 in Industry
The awards season is upon us and shale gas is winning acclaim as the star of America’s economic recovery. Kevin Bullis, senior editor for energy at MIT Technology Review, is just the latest thought leader bestowing accolades on shale gas. Bullis noted in a Fox News commentary that the mention of a manufacturing renaissance conjures images of advanced robots doing the heavy lifting on the shop floor or an advanced factory making wind turbines.  But “the real American edge might be something entirely more mundane,” Bullis wrote recently. “Cheap starting materials for plastic bottles and plastic bags.”  The economic resurgence starts with natural gas, according to Bullis:
“The plummeting price of natural gas—which can be used to make a vast number of products, including tires, carpet, antifreeze, lubricants, cloth, and many types of plastic—is luring key industries to the United States. . . . Over the last 18 months, these low prices have prompted plans for the construction of new chemical plants to produce ethylene, ammonia for fertilizer, and diesel fuels. To Read More…..

Bill Gates: Polio is nearly eradicated!

Medical & Pharmaceuticals  January 30, 2013
When the nations of the world pledged to eradicate poliomyelitis back in 1988, there were an estimated 350,000 cases in 125 endemic countries. Now billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates says we stand on the brink of eradicating the dread disease.
Gates told a lecture in London that ridding the world of polio would be “one of the great moral and practical achievements of our age,” and could be accomplished within six years.  There were only 250 children paralyzed with polio last year, and it’s endemic in just three countries: Afghanistan, Pakistan and Nigeria.  To Read More….
My Take – Would Oprah or one of those idiots she interviews about vaccinations and autism tell me how this could have been down without vaccinations?  If there is no alternative there is no problem.  The real issue is the problem they are claiming there are serious health problems via vaccinations when there is not. 

No Pay? Little Sacrifice for Many in Congress

By JEREMY W. PETERS Published: January 29, 2013
WASHINGTON — In principle, it sounds self-sacrificing, even noble: Congress swears off collecting its paychecks until it passes a budget.   But behind the “no budget, no pay” proposal, which the House passed last week when it voted to temporarily extend the debt limit, is also a basic reality: many of those who support the concept are so wealthy that their Congressional paychecks represent little more than a rounding error.
Take Representative Dave Camp, a Michigan Republican who led the charge on the measure in the House. He has a net worth between $3.8 million and $9.7 million, according to an analysis of his most recent financial disclosure by the Center for Responsive Politics…….. both Republicans and Democrats, are similarly wealthy.  Congress, for all its democratic trappings, has long been richer than a typical collection of 535 Americans. But the gap between the financial standing of members and the population as a whole appears to have grown in recent decades, analysts of financial disclosure forms say.   To Read More….. 

Students taught cannibalism allowed

University where Obama spoke instructs in 'this type of violence'  -  The curriculum for Egyptian students at Sunni Islam’s “most reputable school” worldwide includes permission for them to use Christians and other non-Muslims as lunch, according to a startling report.  The institution is Cairo’s Al Ahzar University, the site of Barack Obama’s speech to the Muslim world in 2009.
 “In the future, the Egyptian Islamists will not only be conducting systematic violence, but cannibalism against Christians and moderates,” concludes Arabic-language researchers Walid and Theodore Shoebat in a report on their website.  In a television interview cited in the report, an Egyptian Islamic scholar told the interviewer, “Listen also to what they teach to kids.”  The curriculum says, according to the scholar: “We allowed the eating of the flesh of dead humans … under necessary conditions. It (human flesh) must not be cooked or grilled to avoid Haram (evil) … and he can kill a murtadd (apostate) and eat him.”  To Read More….and make sure to see the video….it is important!  It isn’t in English, but the subtitles will translate ……chillingly translate for you. 

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The Economy is a Lot Worse Than You Think

 By Alan Caruba
This first appeared here.  I wish to thank Alan for allowing me to publish his work.  RK
Most Americans know the economy is in bad shape even if a majority voted to reelect the man most responsible for making a bad economy worse. And, no, it was not George W. Bush who is responsible for the 2008 financial crash. It was the government with its housing programs that encouraged giving mortgage loans to those who could not afford them and then bundling those “toxic assets”, and selling them to banks who then found themselves in trouble for investing in them.
 Another partner in the nation’s financial woes has been the Federal Reserve, a banking cartel given the right to literally print money. The Fed recently released the fact that its holdings in U.S. government debt has increased by 257 percent since President Obama took office! Those holdings are at an all-time record of $1,696,691,000,000 at the close of business on Wednesday, January 23. The other major holder of our debt is China at $1,170,100,000.000.
 It’s worth taking a few minutes to see how the policies of President Obama, whether a deliberate effort to ruin the economy or just the result a lack of understanding of how the U.S. economy works, has put the U.S. on the precipice of failure comparable to what is occurring in Europe. It is a global, as well as national problem as the central banks of the EU desperately transfer billions among themselves to stave off a catastrophe that will destroy the wealth of their citizens.
 The federal government ran a deficit (the difference between what it owes and what revenues it takes in) of $292 billion for the first two months of fiscal year 2013—October and November 2012—amounting to $4.8 billion of borrowed money every day. The Congressional Budget Office reported that federal revenues rose by $30 billion—a ten percent increase over last year—but spending increased even more, going up by $87 billion (16%).
 Spending on Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security was about 7% higher--$8 billion than last year. For years, Congress has resisted reforming these “entitlement” programs and Obamacare has only exacerbated the problem. In order to fund its establishment, the Obama administration took $716 billion from the Medicare funds. The Social Security funds have been “borrowed” by Congress for years while the numbers of eligible senior citizens has steadily increased as “baby boomers” come of age.
 The call for higher taxes on “millionaires and billionaires” has fallen hardest on the middle class, in reality increasing taxes on them. The reality is that the middle class taxpayer pays 25% of their income in federal income tax these days, but when you add in 13.3% in the federal Social Security and Medicare payroll taxes, it adds up to 38.3%. According to the Tax Foundation, the average state’s income tax rate on the middle class is 4.82% (not all states have an income tax in addition to the federal government.) That brings the total to $43.12% of middle class income drained off to pay taxes.
 Add in all the other taxes we pay on gasoline, telephones, and other necessities, and the middle class is being tapped for half their earnings.
 The Republican Party, in power in the House of Representatives, has offered legislation to bring some relief to middle class and other taxpayers. It has sent annual budgets to the Senate where they have died for the past three years.
 All this has been happening during the first term of the Obama administration. In a January 25th commentary posted on AmericanThinker.com, Steve McCann noted that “As of the end of 2012, the United States has experienced the worst five-year period—which includes, as the end of the final four years, Obama’s first full term—since 1928-1932 and the start of the Great Depression.”
 McCann cited that fact that, since January 2008, the employment age population has increased by 11.7 million, yet there are 3.0 million fewer Americans employed. “Factoring in the population growth and 2008 labor participation rate, the unemployment rate for December 2012 would be 11.4% as compared to 4.9% in December of 2007.”
 “At the end of 2007, the median household income was $54,489 (inflation adjusted); at the beginning of 2012, it had dropped to $50,020—a decline of nearly 9%.” During this same time, while incomes were eroding, the cost of living increased 20% from December 2007 to September 2012.
 There are other stark statistics that the mainstream media tends to under-report. In December 2007, there were 26.5 million Americans on food stamps at a cost of $30 billion. By December 2012, 47.4 million were using this program and the federal government was running advertising to get more to apply for it. During Obama’s first term, food stamp recipients increased at a rate of 11,133 per day!
 No matter how one measures the U.S. economy, the news is bad and holds little promise of improving. Economic growth is anemic as Obama increased debt $50,521 per household in his first term, more than the first 42 presidents in 53 terms combined.
An excellent monthly publication, Budget and Tax News, published by The Heartland Institute, is a very good way to gain the information and insight you need to understand these issues.
No need to wonder why Obama wants to increase the debt ceiling and no need to wonder why his policies continue to cripple the economy, whether it’s the failure to approve the Keystone XL pipeline or to rein in an avalanche of economy-killing regulations from the Environmental Protection Agency. Obamacare contained 18 hidden taxes when it was passed by a Democrat-controlled Congress that didn’t even read its more than 2,000 pages.
At some point this combination of increased taxes, low employment, and stagnant economic growth has to implode. That outcome can be avoided, but the nation is running out of time. 
© Alan Caruba, 2013

Get Out of Debt Card!

By Rich Kozlovich

What is the news worth knowing and why don’t we know it?  Let’s just deal with domestic issues, primarily the budget and the nation’s debt.  There is more hot air circulating about this than there is even about Lance and Oprah.  Most of it meaningless because the economy really is far worse than the main stream media reports and important facts are being ignored by those in leadership positions!  Why?

Let’s start with the cost of regulations, because they will amount to the same thing to business and the consumers, higher costs.  It was estimated that it would cost the American consumer 1.75 trillion dollars to pay for the regulations imposed by the federal government.  Although that number is disputed because of the way in which that figure was computed, it has to be recognized that it is high and we know it is growing.  And it is the consumer that pays those costs, because as businesses costs go up prices go up.  At least until the costs get so high that they go out of business because the consumer can no longer afford it.   

According to Warner Todd Huston  on January 16th there has been an increase of  $518 Billion in Regulations Since Obama Took OfficeHe goes on to say that

Despite Obama's promise to cut unnecessary regulations, his administration issued $236.7 billion in new rules in 2012.   According to a report by the American Action Forum, headed by former Congressional Budget Office Director Douglas Holtz-Eakin, the direct costs of the regulations force American businesses to waste 87 million man-hours to fill out regulatory paperwork. Adding Obama's 2012 regulatory costs to that of the rest of his first term adds up to a total of $518 billion in new costs forced onto an already anemic economic recovery. ….Indeed, in 2011, Obama released a plan claiming he would cut regulations and reduce the burden on the business sector. Not long after, Obama operative Cass Sunstein praised Obama, claiming that his plan would work "to eliminate unjustified regulatory costs and to reduce burdens." Sunstein went on to say that Obama had done more to cut government red tape than any president in recent history.   Sunstein was given one Pinocchio for his misleading claims, and for good reason, as Obama's small cuts have been dwarfed by the increases.   American Action Forum says that the costs of regulations have "added tremendous costs to the economy" and finds that the year 2012 tops every year in the past twelve in "terms of final rule cost." 

Regulations are an unseen tax on the poor.  Since these impositions, whether needed or not, raise the cost of all products and services. 

On January 14, 2013 Hans Bader wrote and article, Obamacare Imposes New Fees, Cost Increases On The Public, dealing with this issue reporting:

Obamacare was sold to the public based on the fallacy that it would cut healthcare costs, but each month brings additional evidence that it will drive up healthcare costs instead. The New York Times reported last week that “health insurance companies across the country are seeking and winning double-digit increases in premiums for some customers, even though one of the biggest objectives of the Obama administration’s health care law was to stem the rapid rise in insurance costs for consumers. Particularly vulnerable to the high rates are small businesses and people who do not have employer-provided insurance and must buy it on their own. In California, Aetna is proposing rate increases of as much as 22 percent, Anthem Blue Cross 26 percent and Blue Shield of California 20 percent for some of those policy holders.” Earlier, Obamacare resulted in hikes of 41-47 percent in health insurance premiums for some policyholders in Connecticut. The Times notes that in “other states, like Florida and Ohio, insurers have been able to raise rates by at least 20 percent for some policy holders

 On January 17th John Hayward wrote an article,Uncle Sam’s hoarded, wasted wealth”, noting that it is impossible for Washington to go bankrupt due to lack of assets.  He says that:

The federal government is racking up a trillion dollars in bills each year that it cannot pay.  It long ago passed the point where any private-sector business or individual would have been required to declare bankruptcy, if not face charges of mental incompetence to manage their own affairs. But Washington is not really “poor.”  It is very rich in assets, which it could sell or lease to pay its bills, without raising anyone’s taxes.  Many of these assets would produce health economic activity in the hands of private investors, while Uncle Sam leaves them strewn carelessly across the landscape, like toys he refuses to put away after playing with them.

The Institute for Energy Research just released a new study that inventories these “vastly underutilized” federal assets:
Federal real property totals over 900,000 assets with a combined area of over 3 billion square feet and more than 41 million acres of land. Additionally, the federal government owns over 600 million acres of lands and minerals onshore, and owns or manages a total of approximately 755 million acres of onshore subsurface mineral estate.  Offshore, the federal government owns some 1.76 billion acres of lands and mineral estate, extending out 200 nautical miles from our shores.  The federal government’s total mineral estate holdings are therefore about 2.515 billion acres of lands.  Thus, the federal government’s mineral estate land holdings surpass the total surface land area of the nation of Canada.

In fiscal year 2009, federal agencies reported 45,190 underutilized buildings, an increase of 1,830 underutilized buildings from the previous fiscal year. In fiscal year 2009, these underutilized buildings accounted for $1.66 billion in annual operating costs, according to the General Accounting Office (GAO). The majority of federally owned and leased space is held by the Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs, the U.S. Postal Service, and the General Services Administration (GSA). For example, the federal government’s landlord, the GSA, owns or leases 9,600 assets with more than 362 million square feet of workspace. According to the GSA, in a 2009 report, almost 40 percent of its assets were under performing. In October 2010, a congressional study evaluated the savings that could occur based on better administration of the government’s above ground assets that totaled over several hundred billion dollars.
How much is all this worth?
IER estimated the worth of the government’s oil and gas technically recoverable resources to the economy to be $128 trillion, about 8 times our national debt. Further, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimated that state and national coffers could generate almost $150 billion over a 10 year period from royalties, rents, and bonuses if these resources were immediately opened to oil and gas leasing. The CBO study estimates are considered to be conservative when compared to historical data and estimates by other analysts and do not consider the earnings from taxes paid by these industries. IER estimated the government’s coal resources in the lower 48 states to be worth $22.5 trillion for a total worth to the economy of fossil fuels on federal lands of $150.5 trillion, over 9 times our national debt. Most of the coal resources in Alaska are deemed to be federally owned and are estimated to be 60 percent higher than those in the entire lower 48 states but are not included in these estimates.
So why are we in debt?  The other thing that is discussed a great deal is the Debt Ceiling and Default.  Both of which are apparently not being reported properly.

On January 14, 2013  J.D. Foster, Ph.D. wrote this article.  Debt Ceiling: Default Not at Issue, Federal Spending Is”.  He says;
“The only way the federal government would default on its debt in the event the debt ceiling remains unchanged is for the Treasury to choose to default—…... Suggestions to the contrary in the press and elsewhere are simply inaccurate and shameful.  The amount of debt the federal government is allowed to issue is set by statute. Federal spending is similarly established by law. Treasury is at once prohibited by law from issuing additional debt above the limit and obligated by law to spend certain amounts for designated purposes. …..If the federal government exhausted its financial management tools, then government spending would be limited to incoming receipts. At that point, the law setting a debt limit and the laws in place directing government spending would conflict—something would have to give…... Very simply, reaching the debt limit means spending is limited by revenue arriving at the Treasury and is guided by prioritization among the government’s obligations. How the government would decide to meet these obligations under the circumstances is a matter of some conjecture.
One thing is clear.  When those in responsible positions don’t tell the truth and those in the media don’t report the truth we have to ask why?  It is clear that the national debt could be paid, the money owed to the Social Security Administration could be repaid, and Medicare and Medicaid could be solvent.  Admittedly there would still have to be changes, but when we also realize the interest on the national debt in fiscal year 2011 was $454 billion, the highest ever in spite of the lowest interest rate in 200 years,  it must become clear that ending the debt is the first change necessary.  And apparently that can be done. 
The questions that once again must be asked are these. What is the news worth knowing, why don’t we know it, and why aren't we hearing about this on the six o’clock news?