Archive for February 18, 2012
By Lauren Fox
Maine GOP says some vote counts reportedly ended up in the spam folder
There’s a chance Ron Paul won Maine after all.
Maine’s republican party announced Friday that it will recount votes cast in the state’s non-binding GOP caucus, which initially showed a 194-vote victory for Mitt Romney.
The state’s GOP chairman Charles Webster released a statement Friday announcing the party is working “diligently to contact town chairmen throughout Maine” to independently verify the results from each of the counties’ caucuses.
Webster told Politico that the state party made clerical errors during vote tabulation Saturday, and that some E-mailed results filtered into a spam folder. [Up Close, Romney Wins Over Converts.]
Webster has said he doubts newly counted votes will change the outcome of the caucus.
The Paul campaign, which invested heavily in the Maine caucus, admonished state GOP officials for cancelling the Washington county caucus because of a snowstorm.
“That’s right. A prediction of 3-4 inches—that turned into nothing more than a dusting—was enough for a local GOP official to postpone the caucuses just so the results wouldn’t be reported tonight,” spokesman Gary Howard wrote in an E-mail to supporters.
“This is MAINE we’re talking about. The GIRL SCOUTS had an event today in Washington County that wasn’t cancelled!” he wrote. [See a slide show of who's in and out for the GOP in 2012.]
Washington county plans to hold its caucus Saturday, but Webster has said repeatedly the population is so small that he doubts it will change the results.
It’s unclear whether the party’s clerical errors and an additional county caucus will yield a victory for Paul, but a win would mark the second incorrectly called Republican contest in the 2012 election.
By Lauren Fox
In the swing state of Ohio, it appears Texas Rep. Ron Paul’s grassroots following has taken hold.
A Fox News Poll released Thursday shows in a head-to-head matchup, Ohio voters prefer Paul to Obama 42 percent to 41 percent. “Ohio voters, like all voters, are concerned about our nation’s future and understand that Congressman Paul is the best person to be our next president, as he will enact real spending cuts and put us back on the path to prosperity,” campaign chairman Jesse Benton says.
Paul’s not the only candidate overpowering Obama in Ohio polls, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney performs well against the president, beating him 44 percent to 38 percent.
Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum’s blue collar background also resonates with voters in Ohio, who’ve seen a loss of manufacturing and jobs in the state. Santorum overtakes Obama 43 percent to 40 percent.
Winning Ohio will be a major victory in 2012. Ohio played a critical role in the 2008 election outcome, marking a strategic victory for the Democrats who not only won with Obama, but earned two hotly contested congressional seats and won control of the Ohio House for the first time since 1994.
It appears four years later, the Obama campaign has lost it’s grip on the Buckeye state. The only candidate the president polls better than is former House speaker Newt Gingrich, who earned 37 percent of the vote, while Obama won 43 percent.
Reince Priebus is chairman of the Republican National Committee.
Three years later, the law isn’t producing the results it was supposed to
Some milestones are worth celebrating. Others, we’d much rather forget. Today, sadly, is the latter. On this day in 2009, President Barack Obama signed the stimulus bill into law.
Three years and $825 billion later, the results are clear. Instead of producing an economic recovery, the stimulus produced only broken promises and massive debt. The stimulus failed—and by the president’s own standards at that.
In early 2009, the incoming administration offered detailed predictions of exactly what the stimulus would accomplish. Those predictions, especially the five boldest, have proven to be terribly wrong. So on this anniversary, in lieu of gifts, let us offer the president a little accountability.
First, Obama’s economic advisers promised the stimulus would keep the unemployment rate below 8 percent. In 2012, the unemployment rate was supposed to fall below 6 percent. The prediction was not meant to be taken lightly. In a January 2009 radio address, Obama announced he was releasing a report based on “rigorous analysis” that charted unemployment through 2013 so “the American people can see exactly what this plan will mean for their families.”
Today, 12.8 million Americans are unemployed, 8.2 million cannot find enough work, and 1.1 million have given up looking for work altogether. Unemployment still remains above 8 percent, the supposed maximum rate, and certainly above 6 percent. For 36 straight months, unemployment has been higher than what the president promised. That’s more than a rounding error; that is a failure of leadership.
Second, Obama promised the stimulus would not only have a large impact but also an immediate impact. Said the president-elect, “I’m confident … our 21st century investments will create jobs immediately,” adding, “We’ve got shovel-ready projects all across the country.”
Those jobs never materialized, and it was not for lack of workers—or shovels. As President Obama remarked in June 2011, “Shovel-ready was not as shovel-ready as we expected.” He chuckled through the mea culpa, but it’s no laughing matter. Obama failed to deliver—and at great cost to taxpayers
By: Ethan A. Huff
Taxpayers slapped with $32 billion bill to pay for TSA molestation of their children and seniors
According to a recent Reuters report, the administration wants to charge airlines a $100 departure fee for every commercial, business, and other type of jet that takes off from an airport. The plan would also eliminate federal grant funding for medium and large-sized airports to complete construction projects, which means the airports would have to significantly raise fees for travelers and airlines in order to cover these costs.
This massive proposed shakedown of Americans who utilize air travel would not be necessary, of course, if the TSA and its pseudo-security monstrosity was simply eliminated altogether, as is one of the proposed plans being made by 2012 presidential candidate and Texas Representative Ron Paul. If airports and airlines were permitted to simply establish their own air travel screening protocols, in others words, none of these federal fees would even be necessary.
But being the war-mongering globalist that he truly is, Obama would rather have air travelers directly cover the costs of TSA goons digging around in granny’s underwear, or taking off the diapers of young children. In essence, he would rather that every air traveler pay directly to be blasted with ionizing radiation in the backscatter x-ray machine, or to be molested by the prodding hands of a TSA screener.
What this will all accomplish, of course, is the utter destruction of the private airline industry, which is already having a difficult time staying afloat as frustrated travelers increasingly choose other forms of travel to avoid being illegally groped and screened. And just like General Motors, the endgame of this scenario is the takeover of the airlines industry by the federal government.
Sources for this article include:
By Neil Munro
White House officials are trying to downplay the growing political damage caused by a shrinking federal statistic: the percentage of working-age Americans who actually have jobs.
The increasingly visible statistic shows that roughly 11 million working-age Americans are being excluded from the nation’s formal tally of 13.75 million unemployed Americans.
Today’s 2012 Economic Report of the President attempts to bury the statistic in a 448-page blizzard of statistics, jargon and reassuring comparisons. “In the last 23 months, businesses have created 3.7 million jobs,” says the upbeat report, released at 4 p.m. on a Friday afternoon by the President’s Council of Economic Advisers.
Democrats are touting downward ticks of the formal unemployment rate to 8.3 percent, but Republicans are making an increased effort to highlight the painfully low employment participation rate.
A new chart produced by the Republican Study Committee shows the downward jumps of that job-participation rate, even after President Barack Obama deployed his trillion-dollar stimulus in February 2009, and after Obama declared the summer of 2010 a “Recovery Summer.”
“I expect you will be seeing this chart on the House floor during debates, it will be shown at town hall meetings and in district events,” committee spokesman Brian Straessle told The Daily Caller.
Amid the optimistic text in today’s economic report, the detailed tables reveal a sharp statistical decline.
by: J. D. Heyes
How out-of-hand has the “war on terror” become? So much so that now, the Department of Homeland Security has taken to monitoring social media Web sites trolling for would-be terrorists, as if the world’s most dangerous killers were Tweeting their plans.
Only, DHS isn’t just trolling for terrorists by monitoring Twitter and Facebook. No, the department – which at least one presidential contender, Rep. Ron Paul, believes is out of control – is wasting valuable and limited assets evaluating media reports, organizations and news sites like The Drudge Report for anti-government attitudes and social unrest.
But wait, you ask. What does monitoring American-based Web sites and social media applications have to do with the war on terror? Probably nothing, but you may remember that the Department of Homeland Security was born out of legislation passed immediately after the 9/11 attacks to protect “the American people from terrorist threats.”
First Amendment, anyone?
You’re not the only one who isn’t buying the spying. The Electronic Privacy Information Center, a watchdog organization looking to protect civil liberties, privacy, the First Amendment and constitutional values in an increasingly interconnected world, has convinced a House subcommittee that the DHS activity is suspicious enough to warrant closer examination. The hearings come on the heels of the group’s acquisition of some 300 pages of DHS documents resulting from a Freedom of Information Act request which lay bare the agency’s “intelligence gathering” activities online.
“The Department of Homeland Security’s monitoring of political dissent has no legal basis and is contrary to core First Amendment principles,” says EPIC’s director, Ginger McCall, who says a government agency that monitors what ordinary Americans are saying about federal policies goes too far, and has direct implications on freedom of speech.
“The language in the documents makes it quite clear that they are looking for media reports that are critical of the agency and the U.S. government more broadly,” she said. “This is entirely outside of the bounds of the agency’s statutory duties.”
EPIC says documents it has obtained show that DHS has used contractors to monitor Twitter, Facebook, Hulu, Wikileaks, Drudge and other news sites including the Huffington Post. The documents reveal that the contractors were required to provide DHS with reaction regarding potential “threats and hazards,” as well as any media reports that reflect adversely on the U.S. Government and the Department of Homeland Security (D.H.S.) ability to prevent, protect and respond, to recovery efforts or activities related to any crisis or events which impact National Planning Scenarios.”
The program should also highlight “both positive and negative reports on FEMA, C.I.A., C.B.P., ICE, etc., as well as organizations outside of D.H.S.,” the documents said.
Looking over your shoulder
Now, DHS officials admit that, yes, the agency was monitoring the Web for any negative opinion of the government. But they said the operation was only undertaken as a one-and-done test, then quickly dropped, because it didn’t meet “operational requirements or privacy standards” which “expressly prohibit reporting on individuals’ First Amendment activities.”
By: Ethan A. Huff
Health freedom efforts have sealed yet another win, this time in Bolivar, Mo., where the Bolivar Board of Aldermen recently voted to stop fluoridating the city’s water supply. The Bolivar Herald-Free Press reports that Mayor John Best cast the tie-breaking vote in favor of ending artificial water fluoridation, which has been setting the city back about $20,000 a year in added costs.
The decision comes not even five months after the Board voted to keep fluoridation intact (http://bolivarmonews.com), when mixed opinions on the matter prevented efforts to cut the city’s budget in a practical way, as well as cease the forced medication of Bolivar’s 10,000-or-so residents in the process.
“Instead of washing your mouth out with fluoride, how about brushing your teeth?” suggested Mayor Best at the recent meeting, pointing out all that drinking fluoride is far different from getting a topical fluoride treatment, which is how the chemical supposedly helps prevent tooth decay. “It’s a topical treatment. It’s not the ingestion of fluoride that works.”
According to reports, four of the city’s aldermen voted to discontinue fluoridation, three voted to keep it, and one abstained. Mayor Best later convinced the abstainer, however, to vote to keep fluoridation so that he could cast the tie-breaking vote. Either way, fluoridation is now a thing of the past in Bolivar, a relic of bad science that continues to poison millions across the country who still live in fluoridated towns and cities.
Commenting on suggestions made by some back in September that the Board should uphold fluoridation just because some health officials still believe it to be beneficial, Alderman Arleen Ferguson took a stand for critical thinking rather than blind adherence to tradition by suggesting to attendees at the meeting that fluoridation is more of a religious dogma than it is sound science. Alderman Ferguson, of course, voted to stop fluoridating Bolivar’s water supply.
“I trust myself and what I read and I trust my ability to discern the different medical things that I have read,” said Ferguson. “I think what [dentists are] presenting is what they have known and what they have had … and I know things do change. I do trust their ability … but I do trust myself and what I read and what I know as a person” (http://bolivarmonews.com).
To learn more about the dangers of fluoride, visit:
Sources for this article include:
By Sara Burrows
State agent inspects sack lunches, preschoolers purchase cafeteria food instead
See editor’s note at end of story.
RAEFORD — A preschooler at West Hoke Elementary School ate three chicken nuggets for lunch Jan. 30 because the school told her the lunch her mother packed was not nutritious.
The girl’s turkey and cheese sandwich, banana, potato chips, and apple juice did not meet U.S. Department of Agriculture guidelines, according to the interpretation of the person who was inspecting all lunch boxes in the More at Four classroom that day.
The Division of Child Development and Early Education at the Department of Health and Human Services requires all lunches served in pre-kindergarten programs — including in-home day care centers — to meet USDA guidelines. That means lunches must consist of one serving of meat, one serving of milk, one serving of grain, and two servings of fruit or vegetables, even if the lunches are brought from home.
When home-packed lunches do not include all of the required items, child care providers must supplement them with the missing ones.
The girl’s mother — who said she wishes to remain anonymous to protect her daughter from retaliation — said she received a note from the school stating that students who did not bring a “healthy lunch” would be offered the missing portions, which could result in a fee from the cafeteria, in her case $1.25.
“I don’t feel that I should pay for a cafeteria lunch when I provide lunch for her from home,” the mother wrote in a complaint to her state representative, Republican G.L. Pridgen of Robeson County.
The girl’s grandmother, who sometimes helps pack her lunch, told Carolina Journal that she is a petite, picky 4-year-old who eats white whole wheat bread and is not big on vegetables.
“What got me so mad is, number one, don’t tell my kid I’m not packing her lunch box properly,” the girl’s mother told CJ. “I pack her lunchbox according to what she eats. It always consists of a fruit. It never consists of a vegetable. She eats vegetables at home because I have to watch her because she doesn’t really care for vegetables.”
When the girl came home with her lunch untouched, her mother wanted to know what she ate instead. Three chicken nuggets, the girl answered. Everything else on her cafeteria tray went to waste.
By Mike Barrett
Mercury found in dental amalgam fillings has been an issue within the dental community and beyond for many years. These fillings, used since the American Civil War, contain an estimated 50 percent mercury. Whenever friction meets these fillings, toxic mercury gases are emitted. This means that with each chew and dental drill comes an emission of mercury gases, leading to numerous health problems. While nearly half of dentists have stopped using amalgam fillings due to health dangers, the Food and Drug Administration has yet to act on these issues.
FDA Ignoring Own Scientists Warnings on Amalgam Fillings
In December 2010, the Food and Drug Administration convened its second scientific advisory panel on dental amalgams. Scientists yet again told the FDA that amalgam use in children, pregnant women, and hypersensitive adults must come to a halt. The toxic vapors emitted are harmful to everyone, but these groups of individuals especially suffer.
According to Campaign for Mercury Free Dentistry:
Dr. Kotagal said there is “no place for mercury in children,” Dr. Ismail said “children less than 6 years of age, I would restrict it significantly,” Dr. Thompson said “definitely not in pregnant women and definitely not in those below 6 years of age,” Dr. Fleming said we need contraindications for pregnant women, and Dr. Burbacher said, “why put amalgams in children if we know they’re going to live with that for the rest of their lives? And we don’t know what that’s going to do.”
In 2009, no one on the FDA’s panel agreed to the FDA’s ruling – unrestricted amalgam use in children and in pregnant women. Then, in 2011, FDA Center Director Jeff Shuren – the person in charge of amalgam issues – was put in the hot seat after being confronted by dentists, consumers, and scientists. In response to the concerns voiced by the dentists, consumers, and scientists, Shuren said that the FDA would make ‘an announcement by the end of the year’.
Needless to say, no such announcement has been made. Until the FDA listens to its scientists, children will continue to develop neurological system complications, and the toxic vapors will continue to toxify the environment.
By: Jonathan Benson
With every new revision of the American Psychiatric Association’s (APA) controversial Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) comes the addition of new so-called “mental disorders” that are really just variances in human behavior. And the manual’s proposed fifth edition is no exception, as it proposes reclassifying normal behaviors like bereaving the death of a loved one, for instance, or spending “too much” time surfing the internet, as mental disabilities that necessitate taking psychiatric medications.
The successor to DSM-4, which was originally published in 1994, DSM-5 is set to be released in May 2013 following various preliminary draft revisions, several public comment periods, and general review by the psychiatric and medical communities. But so far, thousands of health professionals have already come out in opposition to the new manual in its current form, as it basically redefines a number of otherwise normal human behaviors as supposed mental illnesses.
According to David Pilgrim from the University of Central Lancashire in the U.K., it is obvious that DSM-5 “will help the interests of the drug companies” by widening the scope of what is considered to be mental illness. He told Reuters Health in a recent interview that the new guidelines “risk treating the experience and conduct of people as if they are botanical specimens waiting to be identified and categorized in rigid boxes.” He added that it is a “form of collective madness,” and referred to the proposed revisions as a “pseudo-scientific exercise.”
The original 1840 Census of the United States contained only one classification for mental illness, after all, which was known as “idiocy/insanity.” But throughout the following century, the number of recognized mental disorders jumped to over 100, while today, the APA recognizes more than 300 behaviors as mental illnesses in DSM-4. And for DSM-5, that number will likely jump significantly higher.
“Many people who are shy, bereaved, eccentric, or have unconventional romantic lives will suddenly find themselves labeled as mentally ill,” said Peter Kinderman, head of Liverpool University’s Institute of Psychology in a recent interview. “It’s not human, it’s not scientific, and it won’t help decide what help a person needs.”
What it will do, though, is give the field of psychology more opportunities to prescribe psychotropic drugs like Adderall, the popular medication for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), to children. ADHD diagnoses, after all, have been steadily rising over the years as the field of psychiatry continues to expand the scope of symptoms and perceived behaviors that constitute this so-called mental illness.
Sources for this article include: