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America : Against The Wall with JJink

7 Reasons You’re Not Free To Leave

April 9, 2014 by  
Filed under General News

source:libertsrianmoney
If you’ve talked about the decline in American freedoms with anyone then you’ve probably heard the old phrase: “If you don’t like it you can leave it!”

Now, a response like this really doesn’t deserve any response. It’s a knee jerk reaction with absolutely no connection to the declining freedoms in America. You’re saying that you take issue with the way the country is being run. They might as well be saying too bad. Of course, everyone blind enough to respond this way has their own desires for their country. You’re just not rude enough to give them the same snide remark in return.

But… life can get awfully boring at times. I understand. If you ever get in a debate with one of these men or women, here are 7 reasons you’re not actually free to leave America.

1. You’re Still Extorted If You Leave

A small country in Africa called Eritrea actually taxes it’s citizens for being alive. It has a draconian tax system that requires all citizens pay a 2% tax no matter where they are in the world. That means, if their citizens move out and use absolutely none of the governments services, they’re still required to pay 2% of everything they make. This practice has been attacked by the United Nations for its treatment of human rights. It’s the only country…

Wait… There are two countries in the world that practice citizenship based taxation. The second country, of course, being the United States.

No matter how little you use the services in the United States, you’re required to pay taxes. In fact, even if you’re required to pay taxes in the country you move to (because you use their services,) you still need to pay the US government.

While the world is anxious to harp on one of the smallest nations in the world for a 2 percent tax, virtually no one is allowed to mention the elephant in the room. United States citizens can be required to pay over half of their income while living somewhere completely different. Of course, human rights violations don’t count for America.

2. You’re Forced To Participate To Leave

You’re free to leave America. Well… As long as you’re willing to do exactly what they want you to do. Every border in the United States of America is guarded. If you’re within 100 miles of any border, the government can do virtually whatever it wants to you. Of course, the fact that you happen to walk into that zone consents to your participation.

If, you have the bold idea of using a plane to get out of the country. You’re required to go through poking and prodding of every inch of your body. No, your constitutional rights don’t apply there either. You have to be careful not to carry too much cash with you. And… God forbid… Don’t carry a full size tube of toothpaste!

Free to leave seems to have a very odd definition to some people.

Oh… And let’s not forget the fact that I need to get a passport. That passport costs a little over $100 (Yep… That’s free.) That passport is not even a guarantee of government. They can refuse to give me a passport for absolutely any reason they choose. If I don’t have this permission slip. They won’t let me out anyway. They can even take this passport for whatever reason they choose.

Freedom. As long as they permit it!

3. Trading Slave Masters

Reagan_and_Gorbachev_hold_discussions

To tell an anarchocapitalist or anarchist that they’re free to leave America is like telling them they can pick whichever rapist they choose. It doesn’t matter which country a person chooses to go to. The fundamental problems are still the same. In fact, the concept of country is completely absurd and foreign to the principles.

When a libertarian minded individual talks about the problems with this country, they’re not just whining. They are using one of the only freedoms they have left to try and make a difference to the place they are right now.

There are very few reasons to leave when you’re just going to find more of the same. People everywhere feel the need to control people using violence. People can’t always just walk in the other direction. There is only so much land on this planet. Eventually, someone needs to step up and say, “This is wrong.”

4. You Can Squeeze Through A Needle Too

You’re free to do absolutely anything you want to do. I agree with that statement in some contexts (including leaving the United States.) I am free to flap my arms and fly away! Heck, I could go to the Olympics and win them! Anything is possible. I’m free to do it… Sure… Unfortunately, reality sometimes kicks in the door.

Anyone can expatriate. They only have to do a few different things like: Save the money to travel, ask for a passport, find a location, see if they’re legally allowed there, find out if they can make a new income there, find a new place where they can actually make an income, go to through airport security, get grooming products taken, have to explain the vibration (I won’t tell), check out the new country, find out it’s not quite what they’re looking for, find a new location, go there repeating all the steps, repeating that until the perfect location is found, wait 5 or more years for citizenship qualification (or pay a boatload), ask for your new citizenship, get rejected, try again, get accepted, ask if you can renounce your us citizenship, go the the meeting, prove that you’ve paid all the taxes you’ve owed for the last five years (despite having not been there), finally get rid of the citizenship (if you’re lucky), and of course, abandon your family for the rest of your life.

Yes. You are certainly free to leave.

5. You Have To Pay Whatever They Want

The United States doesn’t just tax its citizens. When you relinquish your US citizenship you may be required to pay an “exit tax.” That exit tax is the equivalent of 30% of your assets. So, if you have a $200,000 home, even if you didn’t just sell it, you’re required to pay the government $60,000.

You don’t only need the amount of money you need to live to leave but you also need whatever pointless fees the government of the United States chooses you have to pay. Nope, not even giving up citizenship is free these days. There is fee after fee you’re required to pay.

6. You Can Still Be Forced To Die In War

Constitution_of_the_United_States,_page_1

It doesn’t matter if you leave and renounce your citizenship. If you’re a man then you can still be drafted to die in any war the United States government pleases within 10 years of expatriation.

So, to clarify this: You have to leave for around 5 years to get a new citizenship (typical but there are other options.) It takes at least 6 months to 1 year to renounce your citizenship. Then, you have to wait another 10 years to not worry about them sending you off to war. Only 16 years away from the sweet taste of freedom. You better hope the US doesn’t get in any big wars anytime soon.

7. You Need To Ask Permission

You’re not free to leave when you’re required to ask permission to leave.

As mentioned before, you can’t leave the United States without a passport. You can’t even give up your citizenship without going to a US consulate and applying for it. (Yes. They can reject your request to renounce your citizenship.)

The next time someone tells you that you’re free to leave do the following: (No, don’t really do the following.)

1. Lock them in your trunk.

2. Give them forms they can fill out to get permission to leave your trunk and tell them they’re free to leave.

3. If they try to escape without permission, lock them back up and don’t let them fill out their escape forms for a while.

4. When they properly fill out their escape forms, make them wait a few months, and then pull them out of the trunk to “free them.”

5. As of that point, throw them in a different trunk and give them some blank forms.

6. Then tell them to be thankful that you protect their freedoms so much better than the US government.

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Global Rankings Study Depicts an America in Warp Speed Decline

April 8, 2014 by  
Filed under General News

source alternet

April 8, 2014  |

If America needed a reminder that it is fast becoming a second-rate nation, and that every economic policy of the Republican Party is wrongheaded, it got one this week with the release of  the Social Progress Index (SPI).

Harvard business professor Michael E. Porter, who earlier developed the Global Competitiveness Report, designed the SPI. A new way to look at the success of countries, the SPI studies 132 nations and evaluates 54 social and environmental indicators for each country that matter to real people. Rather than measuring a country’s success by its per capita GDP, the index is based on an array of data reflecting suicide, ecosystem sustainability, property rights, access to healthcare and education, gender equality, attitudes toward immigrants and minorities, religious freedom, nutrition, infrastructure and more.

The index measures the livability of each country. People everywhere depend on and care about similar things. “We all need clean water. We all want to feel safe and live without fear. People everywhere want to get an education and improve their lives,” says Porter. But economic growth alone doesn’t guarantee these things.

While the U.S. enjoys the second highest per capita GDP of $45,336, it ranks in an underperforming 16th place overall. It gets worse. The U.S. ranks 70th in health, 69th in ecosystem sustainability, 39th in basic education, 34th in access to water and sanitation and 31st in personal safety.

More surprising is the fact that despite being the home country of global tech heavyweights Microsoft, Cisco, IBM, Oracle, and so on, the U.S. ranks a disappointing 23rd in access to the Internet. “It’s astonishing that for a country that has Silicon Valley, lack of access to information is a red flag,” notes Michael Green, executive director of  the Social Progress Imperative, which oversees the index.

If this index is an affront to your jingoistic sensibilities, the U.S. remains in first place for the number of incarcerated citizens per capita, adult onset diabetes and for believing in angels.

New Zealand is ranked in first place in social progress. Interestingly, it ranks only 25th on GDP per capita, which means the island of the long white cloud is doing a far better job than America when it comes to meeting the need of its people. In order, the top 10 is rounded out by Switzerland, Iceland, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Canada, Finland, Denmark and Australia.

Unsurprisingly these nations all happen to rank highly in the 2013 U.N. World Happiness Report with Denmark, Norway, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Sweden among the top five.

So, what of the U.S? In terms of happiness, we rank 17th, trailing neighboring Mexico.

We find ourselves languishing for the very fact we have allowed corporate America to hijack the entire Republican Party, and some parts of the Democratic Party. This influence has bought corporations and the rich a rigged tax code that has redistributed wealth from the middle class to the rich over the course of the past three decades. This lack of shared prosperity and opportunity has retarded our social progress.

America’s rapid descent into impoverished nation status is the inevitable result of unchecked corporate capitalism. By every measure, we look like a broken banana republic. Not a single U.S. city is included in the world’s top 10 most livable cities. Only one U.S. airport makes the list of the top 100 in the world. Our roads, schools and bridges are falling apart, and our trains — none of them high-speed — are running off their tracks.

With 95 percent of all economic gains funneled to the richest 1 percent over the course of the last decade, and a tax code that has starved the federal government of revenues to invest in public infrastructure, America will be a country divided by those who have and those who have not. In  The World As It Is, Chris Hedges writes, “Our anemic democracy will be replaced with a robust national police state. The elite will withdraw into heavily guarded gated communities where they will have access to security, goods, and services that cannot be afforded by the rest of us. Tens of millions of people, brutally controlled, will live in perpetual poverty.”

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USS Liberty Cover Up – Full Movie- The Loss Of Liberty

February 24, 2014 by  
Filed under Video

Israel attacks America to cover-up its War Crimes

Due to the fact that the entire mainstream media (MSM) is owned by the Israeli zionists, the American public is not aware that Israel is the biggest threat to American national security, and many believe that Israel is in fact at war with America and has colonized and occupied it just like the Palestine. The apartheid state of Israel’s unprovoked attack on The USS Liberty, the assassination of a true human rights & peace activist, the honorable Rachel Corrie are just a few examples of Israel’s war against America.

Sinking Liberty: Who will write the final chapter on Israel’s 1967 confrontation with the U.S. Navy?

How Obama’s Chief Negotiators on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Treaty Received Huge Bonuses from Mega Banks

February 20, 2014 by  
Filed under General News

source:libertyblitzgrieg

Anyone that has spent any time whatsoever looking into the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade treaty, understands that it is a oligarch crony capitalists’ wet dream. Being negotiated entirely in secret, the treaty is designed to institutionalize corporate rule, giving companies the ability to sue governments and prevent them from exerting regulatory control over their own societies.

Bill Moyers has described the treaty as “Death for Democracy,” and now, unsurprisingly, we find out that several of the main negotiators for the TPP have received huge payments from taxpayer bailed out “Too Big to Jail” banks.

From the Republic Report:

Officials tapped by the Obama administration to lead the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade negotiations have received multimillion dollar bonuses from CitiGroup and Bank of America, financial disclosures obtained by Republic Report show.

Stefan Selig, a Bank of America investment banker nominated to become the Under Secretary for International Trade at the Department of Commerce, received more than $9 million in bonus pay as he was nominated to join the administration in November. The bonus pay came in addition to the $5.1 million in incentive pay awarded to Selig last year.

Michael Froman, the current U.S. Trade Representative, received over $4 million as part of multiple exit payments when he left CitiGroup to join the Obama administration. Froman told Senate Finance Committee members last summer that he donated approximately 75 percent of the $2.25 million bonus he received for his work in 2008 to charity. CitiGroup also gave Froman a $2 million payment in connection to his holdings in two investment funds, which was awarded “in recognition of [Froman’s] service to Citi in various capacities since 1999.”

Many large corporations with a strong incentive to influence public policy award bonuses and other incentive pay to executives if they take jobs within the government. CitiGroup, for instance, provides an executive contract that awards additional retirement pay upon leaving to take a “full time high level position with the U.S. government or regulatory body.” Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan Chase, the Blackstone Group, Fannie Mae, Northern Trust, and Northrop Grumman are among the other firms that offer financial rewards upon retirement for government service.

A leaked text of the TPP’s investment chapter shows that the pact would include the controversial investor-state dispute resolution system. A fact-sheet provided by Public Citizen explains how multi-national corporations may use the TPP deal to skirt domestic courts and local laws. The arrangement would allows corporations to go after governments before foreign tribunals to demand compensations for tobacco, prescription drug and environment protections that they claim would undermine their expected future profits. Last year, Senator Elizabeth Warren warned that trade agreements such as the TPP provide “a chance for these banks to get something done quietly out of sight that they could not accomplish in a public place with the cameras rolling and the lights on.”

read more:http://vimeo.com/78324869

February 15, 2014 by  
Filed under General News

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<script src=”https://1.rp-api.com/rjs/repost-article.js?3″ type=”text/javascript” data-cfasync=”false”></script><a href=”http://s.tt/1XYg7″ rel=”norewrite”><img src=”//img.1.rp-api.com/thumb/10256784″ style=”float:left;margin-right:10px;” /></a><a href=”http://s.tt/1XYg7″ rel=”norewrite”><strong>Why the First Issue Is Money in Politics</strong></a> (via <a href=”http://s.tt/1XYg7″ rel=”norewrite”>Moyers & Company</a>)<p>
Constitutional scholar and activist Lawrence Lessig, whose march through New Hampshire to get money out of politics is featured on our broadcast this week, often says that his crusade is the most urgent in America because it impacts virtually every&hellip;
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Banks find appalling new way to cheat homeowners

September 25, 2013 by  
Filed under General News

source:By David Dayen

A few months ago, Ceith and Louise Sinclair of Altadena, California, were told that their home had been sold. It was the first time they’d heard that it was for sale.

Their mortgage servicer, Nationstar, foreclosed on them without their knowledge, and sold the house to an investment company. If it wasn’t for the Sinclairs going to a local ABC affiliate and describing their horror story, they would have been thrown out on the street, despite never missing a mortgage payment. It’s impossible to know how many homeowners who didn’t get the media to pick up their tale have dealt with a similar catastrophe, and eventually lost their home.

As finance writer Barry Ritholtz has explained, home purchases involve a series of precise safeguards, designed to protect property rights and prevent situations where borrowers who are perfect on their payments get evicted. “In a nation of laws, contract and property rights, there is no room for errors,” Ritholtz writes. “The only way these errors could have occurred is if several people involved in the process committed criminal fraud.”

Any observer of the mortgage industry since 2009 is no stranger to foreclosure fraud, and the fact that virtually nobody has paid the price for this crime. But the case of the Sinclairs involves a new player in that rotten game: Nationstar. Unheralded just a few years ago, the firm, owned by a private equity behemoth, has been buying up the rights to service mortgages, accepting monthly payments and distributing the proceeds to the owners of the loan, taking a little off the top for itself.

Nationstar has racked up an impressively horrible customer service record in its short life, failing to honor prior agreements with borrowers and pursuing illegal foreclosures. The fact that Nationstar and other corrupt companies like it are beginning to corner the market for mortgage servicing should trouble not only homeowners, but the regulators tasked with looking out for them. It didn’t seem possible that a broken mortgage servicing industry could get worse, but it has

Nationstar is at the forefront of a massive shift in mortgage servicing. In the past few years, the largest servicers were arms of major banks, like JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Bank of America, Citi and Ally Bank. Those were the “big five” servicers sanctioned for an array of fraudulent conduct in the National Mortgage Settlement, which mandated specific standards for servicers to follow, like providing a single point of contact for customers and an end to “dual tracking,” when a servicer offers a trial modification to a borrower and pursues foreclosure at the same time.

The banks realized that they could sell the servicing rights and evade these standards, along with the higher labor costs associated with implementing them. What’s more, they would avoid new, higher capital requirements associated with holding servicing assets, allowing them to give bigger dividends to shareholders and bigger bonuses to executives.

So the big banks started selling off their servicing rights, not to other banks, but to specialty financial services firms like Green Tree, Nationstar, Walter Investment Management and Ocwen, all of whom are in kind of an arms race to become the biggest servicer.

Last October, Ocwen purchased the entire servicing portfolio of Ally Bank, covering about $329 billion in loans. Ocwen has also purchased part of JPMorgan Chase’s servicing, as well as a slice from OneWest Bank; it is attempting to dominate the market.

Nationstar acquired business from Bank of America and Aurora Bank in 2012, and more in 2013. Wells Fargo is poised to sell some servicing rights as well, and Nationstar will surely bid for those rights. As of June 30 of this year, Nationstar has the right to collect on $318 billion worth of home loans—growing three-fold in under two years—and it will seek to add even more in the future. The company, majority owned by the private equity firm Fortress Investment Group, recently raised $1.1 billion in capital to buy up more servicing rights from banks around the country.

This means that homeowners victimized by big-bank servicers, who were supposed to get a commitment to honest treatment as part of the National Mortgage Settlement, instead got their servicing rights sold to companies no longer bound by the terms of that settlement. So homeowners lose all of their protections, and often have to start back at square one with their new servicer. For example, if a borrower was in process on a loan modification with their old servicer, the new servicer can choose to simply not recognize that modification, and demand the full monthly payment under threat of foreclosure. This is a very common practice.

What’s more, this new breed of non-bank servicers scooping up all these servicing rights has proven themselves as a bunch of cheats profiting off their customers. Green Tree Servicing has a terrible record of ripoffs. Ocwen has been sued in state court over its practices, including an innovative scam involving sending homeowners a check for $3.50, and claiming that cashing the check automatically enrolls the customer in an appliance insurance plan, which costs $54.95 a month.

Fitch, the credit rating agency, wrote in a research note in June that the growth of non-bank servicers “may pose challenges to a potential orderly transfer of servicing,” and that the involvement of private equity firms “raises questions” about the ultimate endgame for these servicers. In effect, servicing has shifted from big banks to private equity and hedge funds, and neither really have the customer’s needs in mind.

Nationstar is no different in the non-bank servicer space. While the company promised California that it would adhere to all settlement obligations on the servicing rights it purchases, the Sinclairs were subjected to familiar abuse. The family paid their mortgage on time since purchasing their home in 2003. Last year, they received a loan modification. But their servicer sold the rights to Nationstar, and Nationstar didn’t honor the modification. In June, the Sinclairs sent in their mortgage payment, and Nationstar sent it back in full. Then it sold the home. When questioned, Nationstar claimed the Sinclairs didn’t notarize one page of their modification, which turned out to be untrue.

It was a clear attempt to find an excuse to deny the modification and push the Sinclairs into foreclosure. Mortgage servicers actually make more money with foreclosures than with loan modifications, because of how their compensation structure works. Servicers load up various foreclosure fees on homeowners that they get to keep, and they get paid off first in a foreclosure sale. A loan modification simply cuts their percentage balance on the loan.

This is not Nationstar’s only scam. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which recently started examining non-bank servicers, put out a report this summer on the illicit practices of these firms. CFPB found that servicers like Nationstar often failed to inform homeowners about the change in servicing rights when they are transferred, meaning that the homeowner kept paying the wrong servicer. This is a clever way to facilitate late fees; just don’t tell the customer where to send their money.

Servicers also delayed property taxes paid out of escrow accounts, making borrowers late on those taxes and triggering more delinquency fees; failed to refund insurance premiums and other fees due back to borrowers; did not communicate properly with borrowers in need of a loan modification; lost documents solicited from borrowers for that process and made it impossible to complete the applications; failed to even properly file documents associated with the transfer of servicing rights; and charged customers default fees “without adequately documenting the reasons for and amounts of the fees,” and neglected to waive certain fees or interest charges.

CFPB also found that non-bank servicers like Nationstar had no comprehensive compliance management system in place to ensure that they followed all applicable consumer protection laws. Many didn’t even have formal, written policies or independent auditors. They hadn’t been subject to any examination prior to CFPB, so this stands to reason.

Nationstar is being sued in New York’s Supreme Court for auctioning off non-performing loans that it would rather not service at a severe discount, shortchanging investors in the process. The company’s auction sales, made with an online auction company that its private equity parent firm has a “business affiliation” with, end up allowing Nationstar to recoup its take, with all the losses falling on the underlying loan owners. So Nationstar has managed to infuriate both sides of the mortgage deal, the lenders and the borrowers, with its unscrupulous practices.

Getting examiners inside these “specialty” companies is a start, and new servicer rules coming from CFPB in January would cover non-bank servicers as well. But no regulator has the resources to deal with such flagrant abuses. Mortgage servicing is a sewer, and it needs to be completely overhauled from the ground up. If Nationstar represents the future, then until it faces real penalties or an expulsion from the industry for its conduct, private property rights in America will have to be seen as theoretical. Just ask the Sinclairs.

source:

Common Core: A Lesson Plan for Raising Up Compliant, Non-Thinking Citizens

September 25, 2013 by  
Filed under General News

source:rutherford.org

By John W. Whitehead September 23, 2013

“A fool with a tool is still a fool.  A fool with a powerful tool is a dangerous fool.”—Michael Fullan, international school reform authority, on the powerful “tool” that is Common Core

As I point out in my new book, A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State, there are several methods for controlling a population. You can intimidate the citizenry into obedience through force, relying on military strength and weaponry such as SWAT team raids, militarized police, and a vast array of lethal and nonlethal weapons. You can manipulate them into marching in lockstep with your dictates through the use of propaganda and carefully timed fear tactics about threats to their safety, whether through the phantom menace of terrorist attacks or shooting sprees by solitary gunmen.  Or you can indoctrinate them into compliance from an early age through the schools, discouraging them from thinking for themselves while rewarding them for regurgitating whatever the government, through its so-called educational standards, dictates they should be taught.

Those who founded America believed that an educated citizenry knowledgeable about their rights was the surest means of preserving freedom. If so, then the inverse should also hold true: that the surest way for a government to maintain its power and keep the citizenry in line is by rendering them ignorant of their rights and unable to think for themselves.

When viewed in light of the government’s ongoing attempts to amass power at great cost to Americans—in terms of free speech rights, privacy, due process, etc.—the debate over Common Core State Standards, which would transform and nationalize school curriculum from kindergarten through 12th grade, becomes that much more critical.

Essentially, these standards, which were developed through a partnership between big government and corporations, in the absence of any real input from parents or educators with practical, hands-on classroom experience, and are being rolled out in 45 states and the District of Columbia, will create a generation of test-takers capable of little else, molded and shaped by the federal government and its corporate allies into what it considers to be ideal citizens.

Moreover, as Valerie Strauss reports for the Washington Post: “The costs of the tests, which have multiple pieces throughout the year plus the computer platforms needed to administer and score them, will be enormous and will come at the expense of more important things. The plunging scores will be used as an excuse to close more public schools and open more privatized charters and voucher schools, especially in poor communities of color. If, as proposed, the Common Core’s ‘college and career ready’ performance level becomes the standard for high school graduation, it will push more kids out of high school than it will prepare for college.”

With so much money to be made and so many questionable agendas at work, it is little wonder, then, that attempts are being made to squelch any and all opposition to these standards. For example, at a recent public forum to discuss the implementation of these standards in Baltimore County public schools, one parent, 46-year-old Robert Small, found himself “pulled out of the meeting, arrested and charged with second-degree assault of a police officer” simply for daring to voice his discontent with the standards during a Q&A session with the superintendent.

Even calling this event a forum is disingenuous, given that attendees were not allowed to stand and ask questions. Instead, attendees were instructed to write their questions on a piece of paper, which the superintendent would then read and members of a panel would answer. In other words, there would be no time or room for debate, just a one-sided discussion. And this is what life in our so-called republic of the United States has been reduced to, a one-sided monologue by government officials who neither care about what “we the people” have to say, nor are they inclined to hear us out, just so long as we pay their taxes and abide by their laws.

“Don’t stand for this. You are sitting here like cattle,” shouted Robert Small to his fellow attendees as he was being dragged out of the “forum” on the Common Core standards. “Is this America?”

No, Mr. Small, this is no longer America. This is, instead, fascism with a smile, sold to us by our so-called representatives, calculating corporations, and an educational system that is marching in lockstep with the government’s agenda.

In this way, we are being conditioned to be slaves without knowing it. That way, we are easier to control. “A really efficient totalitarian state would be one in which the all-powerful executive of political bosses and their army of managers control a population of slaves who do not have to be coerced, because they love their servitude,” writes Aldous Huxley. “To make them love it is the task assigned, in present-day totalitarian states, to ministries of propaganda, newspaper editors and schoolteachers.”

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Constitution FAIL: School Teaching Kids That Cops Can Take Anyone’s Guns at Any Time

September 21, 2013 by  
Filed under General News

source:mrconservative

Our schools are desperate to teach children to hate or misunderstand the Constitution of the United States of America. If you don’t believe it, here is another example with kids being taught that they really don’t have any rights to resist unlawful search and seizure nor do they have inviolable rights to own a gun.

(See also: Pittsburgh School Teaching Kids to Lie?)

As in the *video above, we’ve seen this desire of authorities to make sure kids are taught that there really isn’t any truth to the Constitution, but in this latest case we have a school attempting to make kids believe that the Second Amendment is a meaningless, empty right and that government should have the dictatory power to do what ever it wants, when ever it wants.

Eighth graders at a school in Campobello, S.C. were essentially told that cops can confiscate your legal guns whenever they want and that there is nothing preventing them from doing so.

This all came to light when a parent found that his child’s answers to a quiz were marked wrong when they should have been marked right.

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Employment gap between rich, poor widest on record

September 16, 2013 by  
Filed under General News

source:AP

WASHINGTON     (AP) — The gap in employment rates between America’s highest- and lowest-income families has stretched to its widest levels since officials began tracking the data a decade ago, according to an analysis of government data conducted for The Associated Press.

Rates of unemployment for the lowest-income families – those earning less than $20,000 – have topped 21 percent, nearly matching the rate for all workers during the 1930s Great Depression.

U.S. households with income of more than $150,000 a year have an unemployment rate of 3.2 percent, a level traditionally defined as full employment. At the same time, middle-income workers are increasingly pushed into lower-wage jobs. Many of them in turn are displacing lower-skilled, low-income workers, who become unemployed or are forced to work fewer hours, the analysis shows.

“This was no `equal opportunity’ recession or an `equal opportunity’ recovery,” said Andrew Sum, director of the Center for Labor Market Studies at Northeastern University. “One part of America is in depression, while another part is in full employment.”

The findings follow the government’s tepid jobs report this month that showed a steep decline in the share of Americans working or looking for work. On Sunday, President Barack Obama stressed the need to address widening inequality, warning that proposed budget cuts will worsen the gap.

“The folks in the middle and at the bottom haven’t seen wage or income growth,” Obama said on ABC’s “This Week.”

While the link between income and joblessness may seem apparent, the data are the first to establish how this factor has contributed to the erosion of the middle class, a traditional strength of the U.S. economy.

Based on employment-to-population ratios, which are seen as a reliable gauge of the labor market, the employment disparity between rich and poor households remains at the highest levels in more than a decade, the period for which comparable data are available.

“It’s pretty frustrating,” says Annette Guerra, 33, of San Antonio, who has been looking for a full-time job since she finished nursing school more than a year ago. During her search, she found that employers had become increasingly picky about an applicant’s qualifications in the tight job market, often turning her away because she lacked previous nursing experience or because she wasn’t certified in more areas.

Guerra says she now gets by doing “odds and ends” jobs such as a pastry chef, bringing in $500 to $1,000 a month, but she says daily living can be challenging as she cares for her mother, who has end-stage kidney disease.

“For those trying to get ahead, there should be some help from government or companies to boost the economy and provide people with the necessary job training,” says Guerra, who hasn’t ruled out returning to college to get a business degree once her financial situation is more stable. “I’m optimistic that things will start to look up, but it’s hard.”

Last year the average length of unemployment for U.S. workers reached 39.5 weeks, the highest level since World War II. The duration of unemployment has since edged lower to 36.5 weeks based on data from January to July, still relatively high historically.

Economists call this a “bumping down” or “crowding out” in the labor market, a domino effect that pushes out lower-income workers, pushes median income downward and contributes to income inequality. Because many mid-skill jobs are being lost to globalization and automation, recent U.S. growth in low-wage jobs has not come fast enough to absorb displaced workers at the bottom.

Low-wage workers are now older and better educated than ever, with especially large jumps in those with at least some college-level training.

“The people at the bottom are going to be continually squeezed, and I don’t see this ending anytime soon,” said Harvard economist Richard Freeman. “If the economy were growing enough or unions were stronger, it would be possible for the less educated to do better and for the lower income to improve. But in our current world, where we are still adjusting to globalization, that is not very likely to happen.”

The figures are based on an analysis of the Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey by Sum and Northeastern University economist Ishwar Khatiwada. They are supplemented with material from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s David Autor, an economics professor known for his research on the disappearance of mid-skill positions, as well as John Schmitt, a senior economist at the Center for Economic and Policy Research, a Washington think tank. Mark Rank, a professor at Washington University in St. Louis, analyzed data on poverty.

The overall rise in both the unemployment rate and low-wage jobs due to the recent recession accounts for the record number of people who were stuck in poverty in 2011: 46.2 million, or 15 percent of the population. When the Census Bureau releases new 2012 poverty figures on Tuesday, most experts believe the numbers will show only slight improvement, if any, due to the slow pace of the recovery.

Overall, more than 16 percent of adults ages 16 and older are now “underutilized” in the labor market – that is, they are unemployed, “underemployed” in part-time jobs when full-time work is desired or among the “hidden unemployed” who are not actively job hunting but express a desire for immediate work.

Among households making less than $20,000 a year, the share of underutilized workers jumps to about 40 percent. For those in the $20,000-to-$39,999 category, it’s just over 21 percent and about 15 percent for those earning $40,000 to $59,999. At the top of the scale, underutilization affects just 7.2 percent of those in households earning more than $150,000.

By race and ethnicity, black workers in households earning less than $20,000 were the most likely to be underutilized, at 48.4 percent. Low-income Hispanics and whites were almost equally as likely to be underutilized, at 38 percent and 36.8 percent, respectively, compared to 31.8 percent for low-income Asian-Americans.

Loss of jobs in the recent recession has hit younger, less-educated workers especially hard. Fewer teenagers are taking on low-wage jobs as older adults pushed out of disappearing mid-skill jobs, such as bank teller or administrative assistant, move down the ladder.

Eric Reichert, 45, of West Milford, N.J. Reichert, who holds a master’s degree in library science, is among the longer-term job seekers. He had hoped to find work as a legal librarian or in a similar research position after he was laid off from a title insurance company in 2008. Reichert now works in a lower-wage administrative records position, also helping to care for his 8-year-old son while his wife works full-time at a pharmaceutical company.

“I’m still looking, and I wish I could say that I will find a better job, but I can no longer say that with confidence,” he said. “At this point, I’m reconsidering what I’m going do, but it’s not like I’m 24 years old anymore.”

Associated Press writer Tom Raum, Director of Polling Jennifer Agiesta and News Survey Specialist Dennis Junius contributed to this report

Head of Syrian Rebels Calls for Terrorist Attacks On America

September 14, 2013 by  
Filed under General News

source:washingtonsblog

Why Are We Supporting Guys Who Want to Blow Us Up?

We knew that the Syrian rebels are mainly Al Qaeda, and that the U.S. has been supporting these terrorists for years.

And we knew that rank-and-file Syrian rebels have:

But even we were shocked to learn that the head of the Syrian rebels is also the global boss of Al Qaeda … and that he is calling for fresh terrorist attacks on America.

CBS News reports:

Al Qaeda chief Ayman al-Zawahri called has called on Muslims to continue attacking Americans on their own soil in order to “bleed” the U.S. economy.

***

“To keep up the hemorrhage in America’s security and military spending, we need to keep the Unites States on a constant state of alert about where and when the next strike will blow,” Zawahiri said.

Reuters noted in February 2012 that al-Zawahri is backing the Syrian rebels, and asking his followers to fight the Syrian government.

But al-Zawahri has since taken control of the main Al Qaeda rebel terrorist group in Syria: al-Nusra.

Terrorism experts at the Bipartisan Center’s Homeland Security Project (co-chaired by 9/11 Chairs Lee Hamilton and Thomas Kean) report (page 24):

A recent illustration of the fractured nature of the al-Qaeda network was provided during the spring of 2013 when Zawahiri [the global head of Al Qaeda] personally intervened to settle a dispute between Jabhat al-Nusra and al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI). Zawahiri rejected AQI’s assertion of control over al-Nusra and declared the Syrian group to be under his direction.

In doing so, Zawahiri was trying to assert control over two of al-Qaeda’s most virulent affiliates. AQI had mounted a series of spectacular attacks in Iraq over the past year, demonstrating that it was a force to be reckoned with.  According to the Congressional Research Service, there were some dozen days in 2012 in which AQI carried out simultaneous multicity attacks that killed hundreds of Iraqis.  And the al-Qaeda affiliate in Syria is widely
acknowledged as the most effective fighting force in the war against Bashar al-Assad’s regime.

Let’s put this in context.   Most of the Syrian “rebels” are Al Qaeda.  The U.S. government has designated these guys as terrorists.

Things are getting better, not worse:  Al Qaeda is gaining more and more power among the rebels.

And the U.S., Saudi Arabia, Qatar and Israel  have been backing these guys for years.  Indeed, we’ve long known that most of the weapons we’re shipping to Syria are ending up in the hands of Al Qaeda. And they apparently have chemical weapons.

We’re arming the same guys who are threatening to blow us up.

This is even stupider than creating Al Qaeda in the first place to fight the Russians in Afghanistan.  At least then, they didn’t threaten America while we were arming them

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