Friday, January 13, 2012

Romney: Income inequality is just 'envy'

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- According to Mitt Romney, the nation's growing focus on income inequality is all about envy.
"You know, I think it's about envy. I think it's about class warfare," the leading Republican presidential candidate said Wednesday on The Today Show.
When asked if there are any fair questions about wealth distribution, Romney replied, "It's fine to talk about those things in quiet rooms and discussions about tax policy and the like."
Romney has accused President Obama of promoting the "bitter politics of envy." The president is ramping up his talks about the nation's growing income divide and the shrinking of the middle class. He is focusing on the tax benefits afforded to millionaires and executives.
Romney, who is one of those millionaires, is taking a different path. He says he's distancing himself from what he calls "a very envy-oriented, attack-oriented approach."
Instead, he is talking about making America a merit-based society, rather than an entitlement society.
"I believe in a merit nation, an opportunity nation where people by virtue of their education, their hard work and risk taking and their dreams -- may be a little luck -- could achieve great things," he said Thursday at a campaign rally in Florida.
A growing number of Americans are latching onto the idea of income inequality, which prompted thousands of people to participate in Occupy Wall Street-type protests around the nation last fall.
About two-thirds of the public believes there are "very strong" or "strong" conflicts between the rich and poor, according to a Pew Research Center report released Tuesday. That's up 19 percentage points since 2009

Kalispell's Depression (Montana)

Mitt Flop Romney vs Mitt Flop Romney

A Bad Case of Chosen People Syndrome.

Dog Poet Transmitting.......

May your noses always be cold and wet.

I'm no prophet but a middle range expert on the obvious. While most minds are focused on the heinous, political escapades of anal fixated, Republican, Israeli buttboys and girls and the sold out, warmonger Obama with his new Orthodox chief of staff, the rest of us are wondering what's wrong with you. New bumper sticker; “Hey Obama, do you think you could rule any better with that menorah jammed up your ass”? Well, there goes decorum and politesse right out the door and innuendo. I'd like to be nicer, if this were a cleaner, greener landscape. I'd like to be deferential and exceedingly more humane and forgiving. I try to do my best under the circumstances but the circumstances demand calling them out and calling them on it. The times demand that the villagers pick up their pitchforks and rakes and storm the palace gates.

Johnny Depp was by the White House playing Stepin Fetchit for the Stepin Fetchit in Chief, probably at the behest of Tim Burton, as a sort of friendly gesture in this land of friendly fire and collateral damage. Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt stopped in the other day. No doubt their excuse had something to do with garnering attention for their favorite charities; much like Bono doing a sunglasses ad during the Bush administration; all hot and bothered about AIDS in Africa and the low profit return on his charity. Billions are hanging like unreachable mangoes above the devastated landscape of Haiti, serving as nothing more than interest bearing vehicles for bankers. You pitiful, miserable, poor excuses for upright walking entities. The Punisher is coming and he IS GOING TO kick your asses... in “all the old familiar places” and so on and so forth.

Anyway; about not being a prophet... under the radar of the obvious, big changes in the human schematic are burbling and bubbling and talking sub rosa about massive migrations coming, along with the confusion of previously, more or less, well ordered relationships and Bishop Pike economies, along with great opportunities in the servitude industries; take a hike pilgrim. You didn't go to Wharton and the closest you got to The Ivy League was when you were working for that landscaping contractor re-pointing those brick walls that they build to keep your sort out. Don't worry, Roland ,the Headless Thompson Gunner is on the way.

Yesterday was one of those Woo Woo periods where some unnamed and yet to surface evil was being distilled in the laboratory of Dr. Frankenstein, post modern, recently of Fort Detrick. I could feel it in the air; bad guys up to bad things. Bad guys that don't understand the principles of risk, in counterpoint with the unpredicted, juxtaposed to free will and the dictates of fate. It didn't work with Napoleon either. He bled his country white under the guise of patriotism, all dressed up like a hot chick, who'll do anyone at any time but you know she only has eyes for you. Uh huh, it's chicks with dicks time for the STD shore leave express. You can't tell nobody nuthin. . You can't tell nobody nuthin.

That's the biggest problem in any time or situation. People are so goddamned confident about their certainty of direction and action. Those bankers and brokers and corporate creeps are all monkeys reaching into the vase for the avocado and they just can't let go of it and so they get caught by the trapper and wind up on a spit. It's scrambled monkey brains and grits for the demons in the pits.

I'd like to have more sympathy. I'd like to have more compassion. I'd like to see things come back from sideways but the wide boys won't accommodate. They like the death and destruction. They like to think they're mobbed up like all those wanna be gangsters over at The Yonkers Racetrack, with that brittle blonde on their arm, ten years past her use by date. What the Hell. They didn't want to talk to it anyway. They just wanted to fuck it. Now they limp along, in mutual contempt, at the paramutual window and playact like something out of the, yet to be written, “Wiseguys and Gun-molls”. He owns a hardware store. She owns an attitude and the closest they've ever been to The Mafia is when they walked by a flash-mob in the mall.

There's a reason for bringing this up. As has been stated ad infinitum, the main problem is not the vampire bats in the roof rafters of the ship of economy and state. It's all the little people pretending to be a part of the operation. They're the people who make it possible for shit on a shingle to be made with the actual ingredients and served to everyone else. They'll tell you they like the taste but a lot of people don't mind eating shit if you serve it to them warm. A lot of people don't mind the deaths and the destruction as long as they are employed. They believe what serves their purposes to continue on into the support net of lies that hold them up and allow them that safe detachment, from the awareness of the impact of what they do and who they serve.

It's the same thing with religion. How out of touch do you have to be to invest trust and fidelity into the presumed legitimacy of the world's biggest drag queen; dressed up in ermine and encrusted hats that look like they belong on the head chef at the Mardi Gras, at the after parade buffet? How really dumb do you have to become to actually believe that The Prince of Peace wants you to slaughter goatherds and their families? How fucked up do you have to get to perform in videos, while pissing on the dead and dismembered, piled up around you, that you were so brave and collected as to kill with your vastly superior weapons? You're going to Hell, buddy. How twisted can you get to really believe that God hates the same people you do? That's not God. That's The Devil, fool.

God hasn't got anything to do with any of this crap. What kind of a moron supports torture of people completely unconnected to the events they are being tortured for? What kind of moron doesn't get that the events and acts that are used to legitimize the torture, were actually carried out by the people running your government? That's right, the people doing the torture are working for the people who did the things these people are being tortured for. So tell me, how can they possibly answer the questions? Since it has already been publicly admitted by members of the very agency that created it, that Al Qaeda does not exist; who exactly is it that you are killing?

Since it is a known fact that Qaddafi was working on a currency for the African continent how is it that you, you fool of a Schmoo public, can watch news broadcasts that make no sense, in content or context and believe something that you don't even understand in the first place? How is it that you can sit there with a Budweiser in one hand and your dick in another and not be affected whatsoever by the destruction of an underground water project that WAS one of the wonders of the world? How can you cheer and wave your flags, while the most evil nation on Earth, created as a territorial refuge for the bankers that have looted and bankrupted your country, not only murder their neighbors on all sides but do it with your money and the lives of your children? You got Chosen People Syndrome. It's like Stockholm Syndrome, only a lot more people die. Repeat after me, Jesus was not a Jew. Are these people behaving like the guy you have turned into Elmer Fudd in a robe? You are on the verge of receiving everything you deserve.

Well, you're not reading this are you? You're wondering if it's safe to break out that Kim Kardashian blowup doll for a little polyurethane, deep lung time; given that your wife left for her mother's fifteen minutes ago and doesn't appear to have forgotten anything that came to mind since she left. There sits the photo of your, “young and dumb and full of cum” dead son on the mantelpiece over the gas fireplace. He sure looks good in his military suit. He'll sit there forever young till the end of your days. He died for his country. No, as a matter of fact, he died for the profit of bankers who have no country. He died for worse than nothing. They all died for worse than nothing and in the meantime, the bankers are making war on you too. They took your job and now they're going to take your house and the president of your country takes his orders from them.

Yeah, well, business as usual on the precipice of Hell. Dark clouds on the horizon for the doomed empire of useless shit; full time worshipers at the First Church of Plastic Kitsch. You bet, she'll be coming around the mountain when she comes. She'll be breathing fire and dressed in awesome attire; ready willing and able to show you the meaning of, “ashes to ashes and dust to dust”.

End Transmission.......

50 Things I Hate About Romney PRT 1

Obama asks Congress for debt limit hike

President Obama formally notified Congress on Thursday of his intent to raise the nation’s debt ceiling by $1.2 trillion, two weeks after he had postponed the request to give lawmakers more time to consider the action.

Congress will have had 15 days to say no before the nation’s debt ceiling automatically is raised from $15.2 trillion to $16.4 trillion.
In a letter to House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio), Obama wrote that ”further borrowing is required to meet existing commitments.”
Obama had sought to make the request at the end of last month, when the Treasury came within $100 billion of its borrowing limit. However, with Congress on recess, lawmakers from both parties asked the president to hold off. The House is out of session until Jan. 17, and the Senate until Jan. 23.
Since then Treasury officials have used special revenue and accounting measures to maintain the nation’s solvency. Yet the White House cast the delay as a technicality, saying there is no chance the limit will not be increased, even if Republican lawmakers attempt to object.
Under an agreement reached in August, Congress and the White House moved to raise the debt limit in three increments while also implementing $2.4 trillion in budget cuts. The deal, however, also gave Congress the option of voting to block each of the debt-ceiling increases by passing a “resolution of disapproval.”
Even if such a resolution were passed, Obama could veto it, and he could be overridden only by a two-thirds supermajority in each chamber.
In September, when the first debt-limit hike was scheduled to take effect, the Republican-led House passed a disapproval resolution, but the Democrat-controlled Senate blocked it and the debt ceiling was raised
White House officials said they do not expect the Senate to support a disapproval resolution this time even if the House passes one again.
Read more from PostPolitics
Why Obama won't be the first billion-dollar man
What if Tim Tebow was a Muslim?
Ron Paul: The most dangerous man in the GOP

IRS buyouts — lightning strikes twice

(Editor's note: This column originally appeared Thursday afternoon. Federal News Radio posted the Federal Report early because the announcement of more IRS buyouts was breaking news and had not been reported elsewhere).
The Internal Revenue Service, Uncle Sam's top moneymaker, advised employees Thursday it will have a very limited buyout program that will pay up to 400 workers to take regular or early-retirement no later than March.
The limited number of buyouts has been offered to many of the same employees who were asked if they would take $25,000 to retire last year. The agency has around 100,000 employees.
The maximum buyout payment before deductions will be $25,000. Employees who get offer letters can also take early retirement under the CSRS program, which covers most of those eligible. That allows them to get an immediate annuity if they are 50 with at least 20 years service, or at any age if they have 25 years of federal-military service. Annuities will be reduced 2 percent for each year the retiree is under age 55.
IRS officials said the new round of buyouts will be similar to those announced last November. They were generally limited to analysts, people in communications and outreach jobs, and embedded support operations.
The IRS collected $2.3 trillion in fiscal 2010, spending 53 cents for every $100 it brought in. It processed about 230 million returns.
Although Congress makes all the tax laws, — some splendid, some incredibly stupid and short-sighted — the revenue collecting agency takes most of the heat from the public. Many IRS offices were high-security long before the 9/11 attacks. In February 2010, an "angry" taxpayer crashed an airplane into a building with IRS offices in Austin, Texas. The pilot and a career IRS worker, who had a reputation for helping taxpayers work through problems, both died.
Politicians also find the IRS a convenient whipping boy. One presidential contender, Rep. Ron Paul (R-Tex.) has said he would abolish the agency altogether.
IRS made the call for a second round of limited buyouts after analyzing its budget situation. Many other agencies are going through the same process. The General Services Administration announced this week it has asked for buyout authority. It expects/hopes to downsize by 5 percent.
Air Force is having a second round of buyouts this year. When the numbers shake out, the 2011 and 2012 buyouts could impact as many as 13,000 civilians.
More buyout/early out offers are expected as agencies figure out their fiscal year 2012 budgets from Congress. IRS, for example, got $305 million less than in the previous year. In an email to workers, the agency said "...cost-cutting measures remain in place, but we do not see an immediate need for a second, expanded round of buyouts..."
The unknown in the buyout operation is how many people will take them. The government has a huge number of people already eligible to retire, and that almost doubles when people with the age and service to take early retirement are included. But in the past, officials have found that few people take early-retirement unless it is accompanied with a buyout, and that the number of buyout takers is usually less than projected in times — like now — when the economy is bad and the outside job market is weak.

Next stop in the Soros: Themed revolution express-Indonesia

By Wayne Madsen
George Soros and his CIA, National Endowment for Democracy (NED), International Republican Institute (IRI), and National Democratic Institute (NDI) minions — the latter two dedicated to spreading the myth of competitive American politics to the rest of the world — are using a simple story of police and judicial corruption in a small Indonesian town to craft the next themed revolution.

The target for the Sorosian democracy manipulators — who are, in essence, political alchemists who wring their hands over maps of the world in expensively-furnished suites in a myriad of non-profit organization offices in New York and Washington, DC — is the world's most populous Muslim nation, Indonesia. The theme for the nascent Indonesian revolution, which is designed to implant political leaders who are more compliant to the wishes of the international bankers, e.g., the Rothschilds and their ilk who pull Soros's strings, is the unlikely sandal, the cheap flip-flop that is common footwear throughout Southeast Asia.

The Soros NGO manipulators, who are carrying on a tradition of CIA and non-profit foundation interference in the affairs of Indonesia pioneered by Barack Obama's mother Ann Dunham Soetoro in the 1960s and 70s, sezied upon an outrageous five year prison sentence levied against a 15-year boy by a corrupt judge in Palu, in central Sulawesi. The crime for which the teen was convicted was the alleged theft of a pair of worn out sandals from a police officer. Police corruption is rampant in Indonesia and police brutality is not news in Palu, Jakarta or any other Indonesian city just as it is not news in New York, Oakland, or Seattle.

All over Indonesia, as if on cue from the foreign manipulators who dream up creative cognitive dissonance and tension campaigns, people began leaving old sandals and flip flops at police stations. The uprising, if it can be called that at an early stage, is being called the "Sandal Revolution" by the Soros-manipulated media, which includes all the usual New York-, London-, and Doha-based suspects who cannot see corruption in east Jerusalem, Wall Street, or Washington, DC but have the uncanny ability to spot it hundreds of miles away in Jakarta, Damascus, Moscow, or Beijing. As in any Muslim society, the shoe or sandal is considered unclean and the message for Indonesian authorities is not different than that of the Iraqi journalist who tossed his shoes at visiting President George W. Bush.

Indonesia is still a democracy in transition, having ousted its long-time U.S.-supported dictator Suharto in 1998. Suharto and his cronies grew comfortable with their lucrative business deals with western oil and mining companies over the years, business ventures helped along by the diligent World Bank and Ford Foundation work of Obama's mother and Indonesian step-father. However, for the geldmeisters of London, Frankfurt, and New York, Indonesia is a problem. The current government in Jakarta, headed by President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, stands between the Indonesian people and the barons and tycoons of Wall Street and the City of London for the wholesale exploitation of Indonesia's vast natural resource wealth — including much-coveted oil, natural gas, gold, rare earth minerals, and precious gems.

In the past, the West tried to use the specter of "Al Qaeda," operarting through its local Southeast Asian affiliate, Jemaah Islamiya, as leverage with the governments of the region. However, with the "official" withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq, the opening of a Taliban office in the U.S. protectorate and Arabic language propaganda center of Qatar, and the secret burial at sea by the U.S. Navy of someone purported to be Osama bin Laden, a new bogeyman has appeared in east Asia: the Chinese dragon.

On March 24, 2011, WMR reported on Obama's and the CIA's secret plans to stage a coup in Indonesia: "Reports now coming out of Jakarta strongly suggest that the Obama administration is involved in backing a generals' revolt with the aim of toppling democratically-elected President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono, a former general who is now considered a political reformer. Fears that a possible coup against Yudhoyono is being planned by right-wing active duty and retired Indonesian army elements are being fueled by an Al Jazeera report that a cabal of Indonesian generals have held secret meetings with leaders of Indonesia's radical Islamist groups to help plan terrorist attacks in the country that would then be used as a pretext for an army coup against Yudhoyono. The generals would claim that the ouster of the president was necessitated by his weak leadership in the face of terrorism. In fact, the renegade generals consider Yudhoyono to be too much of a reformist. The rumors of a planned coup against Yudhoyono come amid the publication by WikiLeaks of U.S. embassy Jakarta cables that report alleged widespread corruption, personal enrichment, nepotism, and spying on political opponents by Yudhoyono's administration."

However, something happened between March and the present — "Al Qaeda" has been largely vanquished or co-opted (since its support was needed to topple Muammar Qaddafi in Libya and Bashar al Assad in Syria), Bin Laden and his top echelon have been killed by SEAL team members or drones, and China has now replaced the CIA-contrived Al Qaeda as danger number one to the United States. Obama is establishing five military bases in Australia, which are seen as much as a threat to Indonesia as they are to China. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has made nice with the generals in Burma, the communist government of Vietnam, and the nepotistic kleptocracy in the Philippines to cement into place a military cordon sanitaire around China.

There are just a few stumbling blocks — Indonesia and Malaysia — which are keenly aware of the manipulative powers of Soros and the bankers. Both nations have seen their currencies — the rupiah and ringgit — attacked by the blood-sucking vampires of Wall Street and memories are long in Southeast Asia. In 1997, then-Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamed suggested that the type of currency speculation engaged in by Soros should be banned. Soros countered, with World Bank President James Wolfensohn at his side, by saying that Mohamed was "a menace to his own country" and a "loose cannon." Mahathir had previously stated: "It is a Jew who triggered the currency plunge."

Years later, Mahathir recanted his earlier remarks and absolved Soros of any wrongdoing. However, many Southeast Asians surmised that Mahathir's own legacy was at risk by being painted by the western media as an "anti-Semite," an old and increasingly worn-out canard. Mahathir's comments remain shared by political leaders and businessmen from Kuala Lumpur and Jakarta to Hong Kong and Tokyo, those who know very well about the machinations and tactics for which Soros has been responsible that have had such a devastating effect on the economies of Asia.

President Obama has recently approved a new Pentagon anti-China military plan for Asia, one that primarily targets China and North Korea. With the U.S. shifting its focus to Asia from the Middle East and Afghanistan, look for more sandals to fly in Indonesia and the theme getting picked up across Indonesia, Malaysia, and other nations in the region. Soros has found a new theme and it is not the rose of Georgia, the lotus of Egypt, or the tulip of Kyrgyzstan, but the unclean sandal of Indonesia.

But before Obama considers throwing his weight behind the Sandal Revolution, he should keep one thing in mind. When the CIA operatives, wearing their signature blue button-down Oxford shirts, blue blazers, and khaki trousers arrived at the Indonesian Badan Intelijen Negara (BIN), the Indonesian State Intelligence Agency, to collect all the files it possessed on Barry Soetoro, aka Barack H. Obama, Jr., Barry Obama, and Soebarkah, as well as on Stanley Ann Soetoro, aka Ann Sutoro and Ann Dunham and Lolo Soetoro Mangunharjo, aka Mangundikardjo, the BIN officials were happy to comply, with one big exception. The copies were happily handed over to the CIA, however, the originals were held in an extremely safe place, one only known to the former head of BIN, the current President of Indonesia, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono. Any attempt to foment a sandal revolution in Indonesia will be met with a distribution of documents so embarrassing to Obama it will make the WikiLeaks caper look like a minor disclosure of an unimportant company's Christmas card list. During an election year, such a disclosure would certainly spell the quick end of the Obama administration.

Toilet on tap: Panel recommends Americans drink more waste water to combat future shortages

Wastewater is a drought-proof supply and a very viable option compared to imported water and other options'

Next time you pour a glass of water from the tap try not to think about this - you might be about to drink what you once flushed away.
Rising numbers of Americans are consuming wastewater, or 'toilet on tap', without even realising it, according to an official report.
Even though it once contained human waste, food scraps and bath scum, the National Research Council claims that it could actually be better for you than fresh water.
It also says says that only wastewater that has been treated gets back into circulation, although  the last industry-wide study was done was back in 1980.
Waste not, want not: Water flushed down the toilet heads to a treatment plant, and more Americans are drinking it without even realizing it
Wastewater includes substances such as oils, soaps and chemicals and is sent to a treatment plant where material is filtered out and it is oxygenated to make it safe for consumption
Waste not, want not: Water flushed down the toilet, or emptied from sinks, bathtubs, washing machines and dishwashers heads to a treatment plant where materials like oils, soaps and chemicals is filtered out
According to the U.S. Geological Survey, wastewater is nothing more than 'used water'.
It includes substances such as oils, soaps and chemicals and comes from sinks, bathtubs, toilets, washing machines and dishwashers.
Businesses and industries also contribute their share of used water that must be cleaned.
Wastewater is sent to a treatment plant where large material is filtered out before it is oxygenated to make it safe for human consumption.
The NRC looked at water drawn from a normal source that had five per cent wastewater and compared it to a sample which had been completely treated.
'You can have a supply that is as safe as the current drinking water supplies. It's a drought-proof supply.'
- Professor Jörg Drewes
By examining 24 different potential contaminants and a number of pathogens, they found no difference in risk between the two.
In fact, when it came to the pathogens, the fully wastewater sample had fewer.
The announcement from the NRC is a change from its stance in 1998 when a paper said that reclaimed water should only be used for drinking as 'an option of last resort'.
Jörg Drewes, an engineering professor at the Colorado School of Mines who contributed to the report said that wastewater was now a 'viable option'
He said: 'This can be done reliably without putting the public at risk.
'We can really say that there is no difference from the risk standpoint. You can have a supply that is as safe as the current drinking water supplies.
'Wastewater is a drought-proof supply. People are always generating wastewater.
'That can be a very viable option, the committee felt, compared to imported water and other options.'
Water scarcity is growing problem in the U.S. especially in arid states like California and Arizona.
Contributing to the problem is the amount we waste - less than 10 per cent of drinkable water is used for cooking, drinking, showering or washing dishes.
Olga Naidenko, a senior scientist at the non-profit Environmental Working Group, said: 'We flush it down the toilet, literally...we have to do something'.
In the instances where wastewater has been put back into the system, voters have sometimes reacted badly and rejected it.
Water reuse projects also tend to be more expensive than most water conservation options, although they are cheaper than seawater desalination.
In Arizona a case is currently ongoing in the Federal Court over the use of reclaimed water to make snow at a ski resort.
Until it is resolved the U.S Forest Service in Flagstaff has put up a sign telling people not to eat the snow, even though it is considered safe for skiing.

EBT Nation – Electronic Benefit Transfer.

Since the recession ended in summer of 2009 we have added 14,000,000+ Americans to food stamp programs. Family Dollar Stores up 23 percent in 2011 while overall stock market flat.


They say a nation is not measured on how it treats its wealthiest, but on how it treats those that are struggling.  From this base the mission of the United States is becoming muddied by the large scale financial speculation that has fractured the core of our economic system.  Everywhere you look you are starting to see signs posted of “EBT accepted here” meaning those with food assistance can use their debit cards in the stated location.  Food stamps now labeled “SNAP” are typically the last rung on the economic ladder for millions of Americans.  With the latest round of information we see that we are in record territory for those receiving food assistance.  Over 46,220,000 Americans are receiving this assistance.  How is it that we officially exited the recession in the summer of 2009 yet continue to expand the number of Americans on food stamps?

The numbers continue to grow
There is little fudging in the food stamp figures because these are fellow Americans that largely have reached their final option economically.  Millions go to places like Wal-Mart or dollar stores to maximize their disbursement.  Stories of Americans waiting until midnight at the end of the month in Wal-Marts just so their debit cards are refilled are somewhat shocking yet true.  Some tend to think that there is no issue but just look at the latest food stamp data:
Source:  Zero Hedge
“The recession officially ended in the summer of 2009 and at that point, 32,000,000 Americans were receiving food assistance.  Today the figure is over 46,220,000 so in our recovery, we have added more than 14,000,000 Americans to the food stamp figures.”
What we are largely seeing is a split in our economic prospects that is extremely pronounced.  You have few high paying jobs still growing that require very specialized skills like engineering and healthcare but a large number of lower paying jobs entering the market.
Since many Americans are trying to stretch their dollars, all you need to do is look at the dollar store growth to realize where most of the money is going from food assistance:
family dollar store
Locations like Family Dollar (FDO) are up over 23 percent in the last year even though the overall stock market was flat for 2011.  This is why you are seeing EBT signs popping up everywhere.  These are locations that will accept the Electronic Benefit Transfer debit cards.  With over 46 million Americans on food stamps it is extremely likely that you have run across a fellow American on food assistance but simply did not realize it.  Is this really the recovery we had in mind?
Until we see the food assistance participation numbers dropping, it is hard to believe that there is any recovery for the working and middle class of this country.  With the average worker wage coming in at $25,000 many are just one paycheck away from being another statistic.

Does Mitt Romney Care About Jobs or Just Making Money?

When Mitt Romney Came To Town — Full, complete version

Study: Placebo performs as well as antidepressant drugs in treating depression

(NaturalNews) The more that researchers truly study the effects of antidepressant drugs on depression patients, the more it becomes painfully obvious that these mind-altering medications are utterly useless. A new study conducted by the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) has revealed that antidepressant drugs work no better than talk therapy, placebo pills, or basically anything else, at relieving depression.

Funded in part by the drug industry, the new study follows the same pattern as several other recent studies that, even though they were not intended to do so, actually expose antidepressant drugs as a scam. Though the study's authors and various commentators were quick to dismiss the findings as not necessarily indicative of the fact that antidepressants provide no medical benefits, any reasonable person looking at the study with an open mind can clearly see that this is, in fact, the case.

For the study, which was published in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, researchers randomly assigned 156 depression patients to either take the antidepressant drug Sertraline (Zoloft) daily for 16 weeks; a form of psychotherapy called supportive-expressive therapy twice a week for four weeks, then weekly for 12 weeks; or take inactive placebo pills for 16 weeks.

At the conclusion of the study period, researchers reported virtually no difference at all among the groups in how depression patients responded to their treatments -- roughly 25 percent from each group saw an improvement in their depression symptoms, while the rest continued to struggle with their symptoms.

"I was surprised by the results," said lead researcher Jacques P. Barber, dean of the Institute of Advanced Psychological Studies at Adelphi University in Garden City, New York. "They weren't what I'd expected."

And to those who put their faith in Western medicine's drug-based solutions for depression, how could the results not be surprising? After all, a study such as this one is an embarrassment to both the drug and mental health industries, as it shows that their so-called solutions are no better at treating depression symptoms than taking a sugar pill.

It's not that the drug doesn't work, it's that everything works, including the drug!

And in trying to gloss over the results, some outside commentators inadvertently admitted that virtually anything can work to treat depression -- yes, anything. Dr. David Mischoulon, an associate professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, for instance, actually told Reuters Health that, rather than disprove the effectiveness of antidepressants, the study actually shows that "everything seems to work to some degree."

So when a scientific study proves that a certain pharmaceutical drug fails to live up to its hype, experts trying to defend that particular drug just have to claim that everything, including that drug, can be helpful in treating a condition, and voila, it is still effective. This is, of course, an amazingly unscientific and absurd way of looking at the findings, but it is the only way apart from scrapping the useless drug that its defenders can (very poorly) try to justify its existence.

The new space race: China and India to create world's biggest telescope

  • 100-foot-wide optical telescope is nine times bigger than ones in use today
  • Will pick out objects 13 billion light years away
  • Sharp enough to pick out planets orbiting distant suns

China and India are catapulting to the forefront of astronomy research with their decision to join as partners in a Hawaii telescope that will be the world’s largest when it’s built later this decade.

China and India will pay a share of the construction cost - expected to top $1 billion - for the Thirty Meter Telescope at the summit of Mauna Kea volcano. They will also have a share of the observation time. It’s the first advanced telescope in which either nation has been a partner. 
China and India have signed on to be partners for a project to build the Thirty Meter Telescope, which will be the world's largest when it's finished in 2018, at the summit of Mauna Kea volcano in Hawaii
China and India have signed on to be partners for a project to build the Thirty Meter Telescope, which will be the world's largest when it's finished in 2018, at the summit of Mauna Kea volcano in Hawaii
‘This will represent a quantum leap for the Chinese community,’ Shude Mao, professor of astrophysics at National Astronomical Observatories of China, said. 
The Thirty Meter Telescope’s segmented primary mirror, which will be nearly 100 feet long, will give it nine times the light-collecting area of the largest optical telescopes in use today.
Its images will also be three times sharper.
The telescope, known as TMT, will be able to observe planets that orbit stars other than the sun and enable astronomers to watch new planets and stars being formed. It should also help scientists see some 13 billion light years away for a glimpse into the early years of the universe. 
The TMT observatory will be so powerful it will allow scientists to see some 13 billion light years away and get a glimpse into the early years of the universe
The TMT observatory will be so powerful it will allow scientists to see some 13 billion light years away and get a glimpse into the early years of the universe

‘Many things are manufactured in China, but we want to move up in terms of technology. We want to catch up as fast as we can. We also want to make contributions to world peace,' said Professor Shude Mao

China joined as an observer in 2009, followed by India the next year. Both are now partners, with representatives on the TMT board. Japan, which has its own large telescope at Mauna Kea, the 8.3-meter Subaru, is also a partner. 
TMT may not hold the title of world’s largest for long, however, as a partnership of European countries plans to build the European Extremely Large Telescope, which would have a 42-meter, or 138-foot, mirror.
Mao said Chinese astronomers would likely want to use TMT to study the origin of planets outside our solar system, black holes, dark matter and dark energy.
China has leading theoretical astrophysicists, but it lags in the field of observational astronomy, Mao said. The telescope will help China overcome that. 
‘China is ambitious in terms of its science goals. Really it wants to catch up as fast as we can,’ he said.
Mao said the project will also be valuable for the image China broadcasts to the world.
‘There are many things that are manufactured in China, but we want to move up in terms of technology,’ he said. ‘We also want to make contributions to world peace. TMT offers a great opportunity to do this.’
All astronomers, wherever they are from, look at the same sky, he said.

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Caught on video: Recall Scott Walker for protecting foreclosure fraud.

8p or so for the Recall Scott Walker movie to be up and viewable. Your back story is here and here, in 1080p off the trusty Canon 60D.

As a former AAG and licensed title insurance producer myself, I can't wait to debut this 14-minute short film in the late afternoon. It is exporting to the computer now at 12p EST and I will need to find some good broadband here in Harrisburg, PA where I am following a disturbing domestic violence case that is part of a much larger picture of abuse including the Penn State molestation debacle and today's story on a series of women who have either been hurt or killed by jackass men who give the rest of us a bad name. Anyway, wait until you see how Scott Walker's staff attorney Brian Hagedorn gave us the brush off, he didn't even accept ANY of Mr. Paul's written paperwork while trying to pretend that His Excellency had no authority to issue a Executive Order or to in any way investigate the matter. Hagedorn also thinks that same-sex couples should not have hospital visitation rights. From the new movie you can also see that Walker and Hagedorn hate women and minorities, so there's fun for everyone with these two, Katy bar the door!

Accord Aurora v. Weisbaum, 2011 NY Slip Op 4184; 2011 N.Y. App. Div. LEXIS 4108 (May 17, 2011) P12 In sum, Aurora failed to authenticate Exhibit D, the document purporting to be an assignment of the note. Thus, regardless of other alleged proof problems relating to that note and the Carlsens' alleged [*9] default, the circuit court's finding that Aurora was the holder of the note is clearly erroneous--

Romney’s Free-Enterprise ‘Trial’ Aligns Republicans With Obama

(For more campaign news, see ELECT.)
Jan. 12 (Bloomberg) -- Republican front-runner Mitt Romney, who has cast the 2012 presidential campaign as “free enterprise on trial,” finds himself in a struggle over the role of capitalism in an unlikely place: within his own party.
As Romney attempts to frame a general election contest with President Barack Obama on the economy, some of his rivals for the Republican nomination have made many of the same arguments against him that Democrats have.
Texas Governor Rick Perry accused Romney of practicing “vulture” capitalism during his days as a private equity executive. A film bankrolled by supporters of former House Speaker Newt Gingrich charges that Romney’s firm, Bain Capital LLC, eliminated jobs and turned “the misfortune of others into their own enormous financial gain.” These are complaints the Obama campaign will be ready to reinforce during the campaign.
“We’ve understood for a long time that the Obama people would come after free enterprise,” Romney told reporters aboard his campaign plane yesterday during a flight to South Carolina, site of the next primary. “Little surprised to see Newt Gingrich as the first witness for the prosecution.”
With the U.S. economy the dominant concern of voters, Obama heads into November’s election seeking to portray himself as a champion of middle-income Americans who is confronting Wall Street and Republican obstructionists in Congress. The president signaled his re-election message with a Dec. 6 address in Kansas, saying the nation is at “a make-or-break moment for the middle class.”
Kent Hughes, director of the Program on Science, Technology, America and the Global Economy at The Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, dismissed Romney’s portrayal of Obama as political hyperbole.
“I don’t really see free enterprise being put on trial by any of the candidates, including President Obama,” he said. The president “looks, as previous administrations have, for business to play a leading role in everything from job-creation to long-term productivity growth.”
Republican criticism of Romney’s business record could prove damaging if it depresses enthusiasm for the party’s eventual nominee among the white working class.
“Obama is never going to convince those white working- class voters to stay home rather than vote for Romney,” said Dan Schnur, a campaign adviser to Republican presidential candidate John McCain’s first bid for the White House in 2000. “Some of that rhetoric from Gingrich and Perry can.”
Key to Victory
White working-class voters have become increasingly important in the Republican electoral coalition, said Ruy Teixeira, a political demographer and senior fellow at the Center for American Progress in Washington.
A Republican nominee “literally can’t win without a very large supermajority from the white working class,” Teixeira said. “It’s the key to their victory. The stakes couldn’t be higher.”
Republicans succeeded in the 2010 midterm congressional elections by gaining a 30-percentage-point lead among white working-class voters, Teixeira said. Obama won election in 2008 even with an 18-point gap among those voters because of support from minority groups and college-educated whites.
Seizing the Moment
Romney seized his moment before a national television audience on the night of his New Hampshire primary victory to define his differences with the Democratic president in terms of fundamental economic principles, portraying Obama as a practitioner of “the bitter politics of envy” who would “turn America into a European-style entitlement society.”
“This president takes his inspiration from the capitals of Europe,” Romney told his supporters.
Romney promised instead to “lead us down a different path, where we are lifted up by our desire to succeed, not dragged down by a resentment of success.”
For now, it is Romney’s Republican rivals who are stoking resentment and providing recorded comments that Democrats could turn against Romney should he become the party’s nominee.
Companies such as Romney’s Bain Capital “come in and loot people’s jobs, loot their pensions, loot their ability to take care of their families,” Perry said at a town hall meeting in Fort Mill, South Carolina, on Jan. 10. “They’re just vultures sitting out there on the tree limb waiting for the company to get sick. And then they swoop in, they eat the carcass, they leave with that, and they leave the skeleton.”
Hard Times
With the move to South Carolina, the Republican presidential race is shifting to an electorate that has faced more difficult economic times than many other states.
The November unemployment rate in the site of the first nominating caucuses, Iowa, was 5.7 percent. In New Hampshire, which hosted the first primary election, it was 5.2 percent.
By contrast, the jobless rate in South Carolina was 9.9 percent in November, the most recent month for which state-level figures are available. In the states that host the next nominating contests, unemployment in Nevada is 13 percent and in Florida it is 10 percent.
David Woodard, a Republican political consultant and director of the Palmetto Poll at Clemson University in South Carolina, said the attack on Romney runs counter to the ideological outlook of voters in the state.
The South Carolina electorate, particularly in Republican primaries, “really embraces free markets and capitalism,” Woodard said.
Blessing or Curse
The primary-season attack on Romney’s record in business could work to his advantage in a general election campaign if it allows his campaign to perfect a response, Schnur said.
“If they come up with a very effective answer, this is a blessing -- if they don’t, it’s going to hurt even more,” said Schnur, now director of the Unruh Institute of Politics at the University of Southern California.
Romney’s response based on free-market principles “is a little bit abstract” for voters in the November general election, he said. “You’ve got argue it in terms of jobs.”
Carter Eskew, a strategist for Democrat Al Gore’s 2000 presidential campaign and now a managing director at the Glover Park Group in Washington, said Obama’s allies were likely to reprise the attacks on Bain if Romney becomes the nominee.
“My guess is the Obama campaign has already filmed a lot of people who will talk about how Romney’s business enterprises resulted in their being fired,” Eskew said.
--With assistance from John McCormick and Lisa Lerer in South Carolina. Editors: Mark Silva, Mark McQuillan.

Judge rules in favor of OWS protesters retaking Zuccotti Park