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Member since: Fri Sep 17, 2004, 03:59 PM
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a powerful nugget of truth which exposes that when the government says “trust us” we shouldn’t.

In Klayman v. Obama, federal judge Richard Leon debunks the biggest lie of all – that the NSA spy program effectively combats terror attacks. Buried deep in his ruling is a powerful nugget of truth which exposes that when the government says “trust us” we shouldn’t. Footnote 65, found at the bottom of page 62 of the 68-page ruling has received inadequate attention in the press. It reads:

The Government could have presented additional, potentially classified evidence in camera, but it chose not to do so. Although the Government has publicly asserted that the NSA’s surveillance programs have thwarted fifty-four terrorist attacks, no proof of that has been put before me.

The footnote then provides citations to propublica.org and The Washington Post, and statements by Senators Patrick Leahy and Ron Wyden to support Judge Leon’s skepticism. An in camera review is a secure proceeding whereby the judge reviews allegedly sensitive information in private. If there were evidence of the actual effectiveness of the spy program the government would have no reason not to present it to a judge in camera.

In other words, the Government lies, and we are foolish to accept self-serving claims made by those in power without proof.


Many Of Us Are Severely Underpaid & Here Is PROOF:

You're Severely Underpaid, And Here's Proof
The Huffington Post | By Jillian Berman

Ordinary Americans are paid too little considering the value of their labor, while CEOs are mostly overpaid, according to recent research. That's unlikely to change in 2014.


Here are four charts that show the difference between what is and what "should" be.

(All charts and calculations created by Bivens and his team at EPI for The Huffington Post).

1. Minimum wage workers are severely underpaid:

What the federal minimum wage would be in 2014 if it kept up with productivity: $18.30.
What it actually will be: $7.25.


2. Even workers who are making more than the minimum wage are still getting stiffed:

What the average worker wage would be in 2014 if it kept up with productivity: $71,697.
What it actually will be (according to projections): $55,644.

3. At the same time, CEOs are way overpaid:

What average CEO pay would be in 2014 if it kept up with productivity: $6.6 million.
What it actually will be in 2014 (according to projections): $16.2 million.

4. The result of all of this is that the ratio of CEO-to-average worker pay is way higher than it should be:

Average CEO pay would be 104 times average worker pay if it tracked with productivity.
Average CEO pay will actually be 328 times average worker pay in 2014 (according to projections).


If you made $50,000 a year, the average salary of your boss would be:

Germany- $600,000
France- $750,000
Italy- $1,000,000
Canada- $1,000,000
Britain- $1,100,000

In the USA if your salary is $50,000 the average salary of your boss is: $23,750,000
28 DEC 5:26 AM

Same-sex Couples Shatter Marriage Records In Utah

Same-sex Couples Shatter Marriage Records In Utah
Salt Lake Tribune | By By Marissa Lang
Posted: 12/28/2013 8:38 am EST

SALT LAKE CITY (RNS) -- In the week since a federal judge overturned Utah’s ban on same-sex marriage, the number of weddings in the state has skyrocketed, shattering records and accruing thousands of dollars for Utah’s 29 counties.

As of close of business Thursday (Dec. 26), more than 1,225 marriage licenses had been issued in Utah since last Friday (Dec. 20). Of those, at least 74 percent, or 905 licenses, were issued to gay and lesbian couples.


With an average marriage license costing $40, counties in Utah made a grand total of more than $49,000 in the three-and-a-half days most county clerk’s offices were open this week.

About three-quarters of that money came from gay and lesbian couples seeking marriage licenses in the immediate aftermath of U.S. District Judge Robert J. Shelby’s ruling that overturned a statewide ban on same-sex marriages.


Greeting the New Year---4 Resolutions For 2014 - By Charles M. Blow

Greeting the New Year
This is the season of lists: roundups and recaps, forecasts and resolutions.


1. To stop treating politicians like sports stars, political parties like teams and our national debate like sport.

Politics is not a game. There are real lives hanging in the balance of the decisions made — or not made — by those in power. Often, those with the most to lose as a result of a poor policy move are the most vulnerable and most marginalized. Those folks need a voice, and I will endeavor to be that voice.

2. To force politicians to remember, with as much force and fervor as my pen can muster, that they are servants, not rulers.

A democracy is a government by the people, for the people. Politicians too often bend in the presence of power. They believe that it is they who possess power, rather than the people who elected them. And power and money are kissing cousins; you will rarely find one not cozied up to the other. Money is corruptive, and power addictive. Together they work against the greater good. That cannot stand.

3. To remember that justice is a natural aching of human morality.

In the core of most people is an overwhelming desire to see others treated fairly and dealt with honestly. That is not a party-line impulse but a universal one. I will do my best to highlight that basic quality. For instance, I believe that there will come a time when we will all look back at the brouhaha over same-sex marriage in disbelief and disgrace, and ask: Why was that even a debate?

4. To focus more fully on the power and beauty of the human spirit.

Regardless of their politics, the vast majority of the people I meet, when they can speak and listen and act of their own accord and not in concert with a group, are good, decent and caring people. Most work hard or want to. They love their families and like their neighbors. They will give until it hurts. They fall down, but they bounce back. They are just real people, struggling to get a bit and get by, and hoping to share a laugh and a hug with an honest heart or two along the way. That is no small observation and not one of little consequence. I believe that I can write more about those traits.


Duck Dynasty, Oh Calm Down-

Doonesbury: Women, Controlling Our Own Bodies - Even The Lady Parts


LOL, This Letter From A+E About Resuming Duck Dynasty Cracked Me Up!

"Duck Dynasty is not a show about one man's views. It resonates with a large audience because it is a show about family… a family that America has come to love. As you might have seen in many episodes, they come together to reflect and pray for unity, tolerance and forgiveness. These are three values that we at A+E Networks also feel strongly about," the statement said. "So after discussions with the Robertson family, as well as consulting with numerous advocacy groups, A&E has decided to resume filming Duck Dynasty later this spring with the entire Robertson family."


US Sailors To Sue TEPCO: “We’re seeing leukemia, testicular cancer, thyroid cancer, brain tumors &..

70+ USS Ronald Reagan Crew Members, Half Suffering From Cancer, to Sue TEPCO For Fukushima Radiation Poisoning
Brandon Baker | December 27, 2013 2:28 pm


At least 71 sailors—many in their 20s—reported radiation sickness and will file a lawsuit against Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), which operates the Fukushima Daiichi energy plant.

The men and women accuse TEPCO of downplaying the danger of nuclear radiation on the site. The water contaminated the ship’s supply, which led to crew members drinking, washing their bodies and brushing their teeth with contaminated water. Paul Garner, an attorney representing 51 sailors, said at least half of the 70-plus sailors have some form of cancer.

“We’re seeing leukemia, testicular cancer and unremitting gynecological bleeding requiring transfusions and other intervention,” Garner told New York Post.

Senior Chief Michael Sebourn, a radiation-decontamination officer assigned to test the aircraft carrier, said that radiation levels measured 300 times higher than what was considered safe at one point. Meanwhile sailors like Lindsay Cooper have contrasted their initial and subsequent feelings upon seeing and tasting metallic “radioactive snow” caused by freezing Pacific air that mixed with radioactive debris.

“We joked about it: ‘Hey, it’s radioactive snow!” Cooper said. “My thyroid is so out of whack that I can lose 60 to 70 pounds in one month and then gain it back the next. My menstrual cycle lasts for six months at a time, and I cannot get pregnant.


Ayn Rand Helped FBI Find Communist Influence In 'It's A Wonderful Life'


Before War On Christmas 2013 fades into memory, let’s take a look at how the FBI examined a Christmas Classic for evidence of communist propaganda. According to a nifty article in Aphelis, Frank Capra’s tale of the redemptive power of sentimental glurge was listed as potentially subversive, as part of a widespread investigation into alleged communist influence in Hollywood — as if anyone needed to investigate such an obvious fact, haw haw!


Among the group who produced the analytical tools that were used by the FBI in its analysis of It’s a Wonderful Life was Ayn Rand … (who had also) published a similar report all by herself.


The consulting group’s fear was not that communist infiltrators in Hollywood would make movies calling openly for Marxist revolution, but rather that commies were trying, as one FBI document put it,

to corrupt non-political movies by introducing small casual bits of propaganda into innocent stories and to make people absorb the basic premises of Collectivism by indirection and implication. Few people would take Communism straight, but a constant stream of hints, lines, touches, and suggestions battering the public from the screen will act like drops of water that will split a rock if continued long enough. The rock they are trying to split is Americanism.




"Duck Dynasty Should Get Real-Show Robertson Being As Homophobic As He Pleases..."

*Richard Kim has a fantastic take on the Duck Dynasty brouhaha—he wonders if the campaign to punish Phil Robertson was actually misguided:

Duck Dynasty and the Fake Outrage Machine
Richard Kim on December 26, 2013 - 4:21 PM


A&E now has, if not an obligation, a golden opportunity. The network should return Robertson and Duck Dynasty to the air, but not in the adulterated, cartoon version that has conservatives so besotted (a Facebook page calling for a boycott against A&E has generated over 1.8 million likes). No, Duck Dynasty should get real. It should show Robertson being as homophobic as he pleases, in his home, his church, his community. The show’s editors have previously been criticized for asking Robertson to not say “Jesus” at the end of his prayers; they should now let him get his Jesus freak on, whether in words that invoke hellfire and damnation or those that profess to love the sinner but hate the sin. And, as long as the show’s producers “guide” reality along, they should film Robertson interacting with actual gay people. If the LGBT population of West Monroe, Louisiana is camera-shy, they can fly some folks in for a good old duck hunt. I bet Mary Cheney is pretty handy with a shotgun.

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