Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Congressman: Bundy Militia Has Set Up Road 'Checkpoints' In Nevada


The militia, as reported by Horsford's constituents, "have set up checkpoints where residents are required to prove they live in the area before being allowed to pass," the letter said.
They have also maintained a presence, sometimes armed, along highways and roads, as well as community sites like churches and schools, the letter asserted.
Journalists on the scene at the height of the Bundy Ranch standoff estimated as many as 1,000 protesters had gathered earlier this month.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Texas student hides AK-47 in school bathroom for ‘committing violence’ if demands aren’t met


A student in Texas reportedly admitted to bringing multiple guns — including an AK-47 assault-style rifle — to school on Monday in a plan to commit violence if his demands were not met.
According to the San Antonio Express-News, the parents of the 17-year-old male student reported him as a runaway to the police when they woke up and determined that he was not at home. KSAT reported that the parents also found that three guns were missing in the home.
After the student was located at Madison High School, two of the loaded guns and a knife were found by searching his backpack. The teen admitted that an AK-47 had also been hidden in a trashcan in a school restroom.
“The student had said that he planned making some demands over the [public address system] announcements later today at Madison High School,” North East Independent School District spokesperson Aubrey Chancellor told KSAT. “He didn’t say specifically what those demands were, but he did says if those demands were not met, he had planned on committing violence.”
It was not immediately clear if the student had planned a mass shooting, but authorities said they would continue to talk with him.
The San Antonio Express-News reported that Texas school districts “lost millions in attendance revenue” in recent days after email threats warned of a mass shooting at a school.............

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Indiana youth pastor admits to posing as teen girl online to solicit nude photos from boys


A former Campus Life Director for Youth for Christ from Huntington, Indiana pleaded guilty Wednesday to charges that he sexually exploited a minor.
Nathan Hasty used a fake Facebook page to solicit naked photographs from children, including ones who belonged to Youth for Christ. An FBI agent tasked to the case told WANE that Hasty established multiple Facebook accounts under false names in order to initiate conversations of a sexual nature with underage boys.
Eventually, he would attempt to coerce the boys into sending him nude photographs.
In the fake accounts, Hasty pretended to be a lascivious sixteen-year-old girl and struck up conversations with boys, mostly between the ages of 12 and 14. He would eventually ask them to send nude photographs, and even enticed some of them into webcam sessions in which he watched them masturbate while claiming he didn’t have a camera.
According to the FBI affidavit, Facebook cooperated with the investigation, providing authorities with the IP address of the accounts. Because the same IP address was used for all accounts, authorities believed they all originated from the same computer.
Hasty was suspended from Youth for Christ as soon as the organization learned of the FBI investigation.
Watch a report on Hasty’s arrest from INC News here.

Texas pastor: Hoax Jewish registration flyers in Ukraine are sign of ‘blood moon’ apocalypse


Pastor Matt Hagee, son of Texas megachurch pastor John Hagee, said this week that the Ukrainian flyers ordering Jews to register with the new Russian-allied government — now regarded as a hoax — are a sign that his father’s apocalyptic “blood moon” prophecy is coming true.
Right Wing Watch reported that during this week’s installment of his “Hagee Hotline” show, Matt Hagee compared the order for Jews to register with the Russian occupation government to the exclusion of Jews from Spain, which took place in 1492.
On March 31, 1492, King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella ordered the expulsion of all Jews from Spain in what is known as the Alhambra Decree. While the decree was by no means the origin of anti-Semitic sentiment in Europe, it ushered in one of the darkest periods of vicious religious persecution in the continent’s history.
According to Matthew Hagee, the Alhambra Decree was issued on the night of a so-called “blood moon” eclipse, in which four full lunar eclipses occur in a six month interval. The light of the sun shines through the Earth’s atmosphere at the moon, giving it a red color.
“What happened in 1492 happened again last week in the Ukraine,” he said, “on the first of four blood moons.”
John Hagee has published a new book called Blood Moons: Something is About to Change, in which he details an end times scenario in which, he said, “God is literally screaming at the world, ‘I’m coming soon.’”
John Hagee predicted that a “world-shaking event that will happen between April 2014 and October 2015.”
“God sends Planet Earth a signal that something big is about to happen!” said the pastor, who famously declared that Mormonism is not a Christian sect and therefore has no protections under the First Amendment. “He’s controlling the Sun and the moon right now to send our generation a signal, but the question is, are we getting it?”.........

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Black Sabbath - Zeitgeist

Black Sabbath - Methademic

Black Sabbath - Dirty Women

Black Sabbath - "Loner"

Black Sabbath - End of the Beginning

The Allman Brothers-Whipping Post at the Fillmore East in NYC (1970)

Duane Allman & Eric Clapton 1970 - Studio Jams 1 thu 6

FRANK ZAPPA - Whippin' Post

Grand Funk Railroad -- Heartbreaker -- 1974

Steppenwolf - Draft Resister

steppenwolf-the pusher

Steppenwolf - Magic Carpet Ride

The Guess Who - No Time


The Tubes - What Do You Want From Life

Devo - [I Can't Get No] Satisfaction

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Burning Man organizer plans anything-goes ‘Bundyfest’ to mock scofflaw rancher

Jon Stewart on Cliven Bundy: ‘Sean Hannity has now made Glenn Beck the voice of reason’

Pat Robertson: Jesus said an asteroid could destroy Earth next week


Televangelist Pat Robertson warned on Monday that Jesus had said that an asteroid would destroy the Earth — and it could happen as soon as next week.
On Tuesday, three former NASA astronauts are expected to present their findings that the Earth had experienced far more impacts from large asteroids than previously thought.
For Robertson, the news was just the latest reason to hype his book, The End of the Age, which asserts that the End Times predicted in Revelation will be brought on by a meteor.
“I wrote a book!” Robertson advised viewers. “It deals with an asteroid hitting the Earth. I don’t see anything else that fulfills the prophetic words of Jesus Christ other than an asteroid strike.”
“There isn’t anything that will cause the seas to roil, that will, you know, cause the skies to darken, the moon and the sun not to give their light, the nations terrified on Earth of what’s happening. There isn’t anything that’s going to do that.”
He continued: “We’re big enough to draw some of them in. And as somebody said, it’s ‘blind luck.’ Well, it’s the mercy of the Lord. But if that mercy ever got lifted, whew.”
Robertson advised his viewers to “read what Jesus said” about “nobody living on the face of the Earth.”
“That’s what Jesus himself said!” he advised. “So, hey, just get ready. Get right. And stay right with the Lord.”
“It could be next week, it could be 1,000 years from now. But nevertheless, we want to be ready whenever the Lord says, ‘I’m wrapping it up, and it’s time to come home.’'...............

Friday, April 18, 2014

Princeton Study: U.S. No Longer An Actual Democracy


Asking "[w]ho really rules?" researchers Martin Gilens and Benjamin I. Page argue that over the past few decades America's political system has slowly transformed from a democracy into an oligarchy, where wealthy elites wield most power.
Using data drawn from over 1,800 different policy initiatives from 1981 to 2002, the two conclude that rich, well-connected individuals on the political scene now steer the direction of the country, regardless of or even against the will of the majority of voters.
"The central point that emerges from our research is that economic elites and organized groups representing business interests have substantial independent impacts on U.S. government policy," they write, "while mass-based interest groups and average citizens have little or no independent influence."
As one illustration, Gilens and Page compare the political preferences of Americans at the 50th income percentile to preferences of Americans at the 90th percentile as well as major lobbying or business groups. They find that the government—whether Republican or Democratic—more often follows the preferences of the latter group rather than the first.
The researches note that this is not a new development caused by, say, recent Supreme Court decisions allowing more money in politics, such as Citizens United or this month's ruling on McCutcheon v. FEC. As the data stretching back to the 1980s suggests, this has been a long term trend, and is therefore harder for most people to perceive, let alone reverse.
"Ordinary citizens," they write, "might often be observed to 'win' (that is, to get their preferred policy outcomes) even if they had no independent effect whatsoever on policy making, if elites (with whom they often agree) actually prevail."

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Obama’s budget would cut the deficit by $1.05 trillion, says Congressional Budget Office


WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Barack Obama’s fiscal 2015 budget request would boost U.S. tax revenues by nearly $1.4 trillion over 10 years if fully enacted, slashing deficits by $1.05 trillion while funding new spending, the Congressional Budget Office said on Thursday.
There is virtually no chance that Congress will advance Obama’s plan in its entirety. But the CBO’s latest analysis will feed campaign messaging by both Democrats and Republicans ahead of congressional elections in November.
The analysis compares Obama’s request to a new “baseline” estimate that CBO released last week that assumes no changes to current tax and spending laws.
But Obama’s budget plan is loaded with new policy changes, including an assumption that sweeping immigration reforms are enacted, producing a net 10-year deficit reduction of $158 billion.
It proposes to boost revenues by limiting tax breaks for wealthy Americans and businesses, imposing a new tax on millionaires, raising tobacco taxes, and restoring estate and gift taxes to their previously higher, 2009 levels.
At the same time, it would boost spending by expanding cash tax credits for low-income Americans, canceling the “sequester” automatic spending cuts to military and domestic programs, and increasing funds for job training programs, among other changes.
Republicans, who last week in the House of Representatives passed an austere, 10-year balanced budget plan with deep domestic spending cuts and no tax increases, will focus their criticism on tax hikes in Obama’s plan. Democrats, who are basing their re-election campaigns on efforts to reduce the gap between rich and poor, are expected to highlight Obama’s proposals to aid the middle class and the poor.
The CBO analysis shows that Obama’s budget plan would increase deficits slightly relative to current law in fiscal 2014 and 2015, with deficits just above $500 billion in both years.
Deficits in later years of the 10-year budget window would begin to rise again in both Obama’s plan and the current-law CBO estimate as more of the Baby Boom generation retires and draws federal benefits. But deficits under Obama’s plan in those years would be lower than the CBO baseline as the new revenue measures gain steam.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Missouri Mayor Says He 'Kind Of Agreed' With Alleged Jewish Center Shooter


Marionville, Mo. Mayor Dan Clevenger spoke warmly this week of Frazier Glenn Miller, who allegedly went on a killing rampage on Sunday in Overland Park, Kan.
"He was always nice and friendly and respectful of elder people, you know, he respected his elders greatly. As long as they were the same color as him," Clevenger said while laughing, according to television station KSPR. "Very fair and honest and never had a bit of problems out of him."
Clevenger said he sympathized with some of Miller's views, but didn't like to broadcast that.
"Kind of agreed with him on some things but, I don't like to express that too much," Clevenger, the owner of a local repair shop, said.
He told CNN this week that he didn't buy some of Miller's claims.
"He had a lot of hate built up inside of him," Clevenger said. "And every time he'd come down here, he'd go on about different races -- mainly Jews. He claims they're all bad, but I don't believe that."
However, KSPR unearthed a letter to the editor that the mayor sent nearly a decade ago to a newspaper in Aurora, Mo. in which he expressed admiration for Miller's mission.
"I am a friend of Frazier Miller helping to spread his warnings," Clevenger wrote, according to KSPR. "The Jew-run medical industry has succeeded in destroying the United State's workforce."
Clevenger also reportedly wrote that the "Jew-run government backed banking industry turned the U.S into the world's largest debtor nation."
He seemed to stand by those positions in his interview with KSPR, blaming Jews for the country's economic woes.
"There some things that are going on in this country that are destroying us. We've got a false economy and it's, some of those corporations are run by Jews because the names are there," he said. "The fact that the Federal Reserve prints up phony money and freely hands it out, I think that's completely wrong. The people that run the Federal Reserve, they're Jewish."
But Clevenger denounced Miller's alleged violence, calling the deadly shooting "terrible."
"He didn't have any right to do that and I think he should pay with his life," Clevenger said.

Update: TPM reached Clevenger, who said he's "all done" talking about Miller.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Pollution From Asia Makes Pacific Storms Stronger


What happens in Asia doesn't stay in Asia, a new study warns. Pollution from booming economies in the Far East is causing stronger storms and changing weather patterns over the Pacific Ocean, which in turn is changing weather in North America, scientists report.

"Whether the weather [in North America] will change in a good direction or bad is hard to say at this time," says Renyi Zhang, a professor of atmospheric sciences at Texas A&M University in College Station. Zhang is a co-author, along with several scientists from the U.S. and China, of a study released in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on Monday.

The scientists say pollution from Asia is likely leading to stronger cyclones in the midlatitudes of the Pacific, more precipitation, and a faster movement of heat from the tropics toward the North Pole. As a result of these changes, "it's almost certain that weather in the U.S. is changing," says Zhang.

Smaller Drops, Bigger Storms

Zhang and his colleagues used computer modeling to study the effects on the weather of aerosols, which are fine particles suspended in the air. The main natural aerosols over the Pacific are sea salt tossed up by waves and dust blown off the land.

But those natural particles are now increasingly outnumbered by human-made ones. According to Zhang, the most significant aerosols the team considered are sulfates, which are emitted primarily by coal-fired power plants. Other aerosol pollutants are released by vehicle emissions and industrial activities.

In the atmosphere, such aerosols scatter and absorb sunlight, and thus have both cooling and warming effects on climate. But they also affect the formation of clouds and precipitation—and the magnitude of that indirect effect on clouds is one of the biggest uncertainties hampering scientists' ability to forecast climate change.

Clouds form when water vapor condenses around aerosol particles to form liquid droplets. Because pollution increases the number of particles, it leads to more water droplets—but smaller ones. Those smaller droplets in turn rise to greater heights in the atmosphere—and even form ice—before they precipitate back out.

In an earlier paper, Zhang and his colleagues used satellite data to show that the amount of "deep convective clouds," including thunderstorms, had increased over the North Pacific between 1984 and 2005. The most likely reason, they concluded, was an increase in aerosol pollution from Asia. "The intensified Pacific storm track likely has profound implications for climate," they wrote.

Global Effects

In the recent study the scientists took a first stab at considering those global implications. Standard global climate models simulate the atmosphere at grid points that are too widely spaced to resolve the fine-scale processes involved in cloud formation—which is one reason clouds remain such a knotty problem for climate scientists. But the researchers found a way to embed a "cloud resolving model" into a conventional climate model.

They then used that "multiscale" model to compare the preindustrial atmosphere of 1850, when levels of aerosol pollution over the Pacific were low, with the present atmosphere.

The simulations confirmed that human-made aerosols are now spreading across the Pacific and having large effects on the storms that sweep east during winter. The storms are more vigorous than they would be without pollution, with more ice and a broader "anvil" shape to the cloud tops. And those more vigorous storms are having a significant effect on the global atmosphere: They're increasing the flow of heat from the equatorial region toward the Arctic, says Zhang.

What about North America? The Pacific storm track has a big effect on American weather, and large-scale natural changes like El Niño and La Niña are known to disrupt its usual pattern, leading to floods and droughts.

"What we have shown is that aerosols from Asia can get transported over the Pacific and change weather in North America," Zhang says—but nailing down the nature of the change will require more research.

"We've been getting some weird weather, such as a very cold winter [in the eastern U.S.], so the next question is, does that have something to do with Asian pollution?"

Follow Brian Clark Howard on Twitter and Google+.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Cage The Elephant - Ain't No Rest For The Wicked

Pic Of The Moment: Obama Administration Exonerated On Benghazi

CBO Lowers Obamacare's Price Tag By $104 Billion Over 10 Years


CBO projected that the federal government would spend $164 billion less than previously expected on Obamacare subsidies by 2024. It appears that a number of factors contributed to that change. Premiums, especially in the near term, are expected to be lower than previously projected: The office estimated premiums would rise on average by about $100 in 2015. They are still expected to rise over the next decade, but at a lower rate than previously thought.
It's a combination of rising medical costs, a healthier enrollment population in 2015 and the make-up of the Obamacare plans, which have narrower provider networks and lower provider payments than their counterparts in the large-group market, that contribute to the CBO's calculations on premiums. Other changes, such as a smaller under-65 population, also factored into the revisions.
The savings on subsidies are somewhat offset by other revisions by CBO, including fewer individual mandate penalty payments and an estimated increase in the number of active workers with employer-based coverage (about 1 million per year), which decreases expected federal revenues.
The net effect is that the law is projected to cost $104 billion less over 10 years than CBO's most recent estimate in February 2014.

Monday, April 07, 2014

Fox News Was Accurate On Climate Science Just 28 Percent Of The Time In 2013

Think Progress

None of the three major cable news networks have a perfect record on portraying climate science, but Fox News was the most innacurate of all in 2013, according to a new report.
The report, released Monday by the Union of Concerned Scientists, looked at segments on the cable networks’ prominent evening and weekend programs that mentioned “global warming” or “climate change” in 2013. Researchers found that segments on MSNBC were the most accurate, with just 8 percent of the segments containing misleading statements about the science behind climate change. CNN was next in terms of accuracy, with 30 percent of segments containing misleading statements, and Fox was last, with 72 percent of segments containing misinformation or misrepresentations of climate science.
UCS report

CREDIT: Union of Concerned Scientists
The nature of the misleading statements differed from station to station, with CNN’s inaccuracy growing from debate guests who doubted certain aspects of climate science, such as the relationship between climate change and extreme weather. Fox hosts and guests, on the other hand, would more often accuse climate scientists of hiding or misrepresenting data, and were also more likely to state outright that climate change was not occurring. Accurate coverage of climate science on Fox came primarily from Special Report with Bret Baier and The O’Reilly Factor, and despite being the least-accurate of the three networks according to the report, Fox’s 28 percent accuracy rating is an increase from a 2012 UCS report, which found that Fox was accurate just 7 percent of the time.
MSNBC contained misleading coverage from the opposite side of the spectrum, with hosts sometimes overstating how fast sea levels are rising or making links between things that aren’t yet scientifically known, such as climate change’s effects on tornadoes.
Aaron Huertas, science communications officer at UCS, told ThinkProgress that the differences in accuracy among the networks were largely a result of sourcing. When CNN did have accurate coverage, they relied on federal and academic scientists, with their misleading coverage coming mostly from debates that featured ideological guests.
“For CNN, I was surprised to see so many segments in which people were still arguing about whether or not climate science is valid,” Huertas said in an email. “The basic science on climate change is as clear as the science linking smoking to lung disease; there’s no reason to have debates about whether or not that science is valid, even if there are still some people who reject the science for ideological reasons.”
The report focused on accuracy of coverage, but it also uncovered another discrepancy among the cable networks: MSNBC covered climate change more often than CNN or Fox did. The report noted 132 MSNBC evening and weekend segments that mentioned climate science in 2013, while Fox had 50 segments mentioning climate science and CNN had 43. Huertas said that Chris Hayes’s two shows on MSNBC had nearly as many segments that discussed climate science as all the CNN shows looked at by the report. But Huertas said ultimately he was more interested in whether the networks got climate science right when they did mention it than how much they covered it in total. When a network covers climate science but does so inaccurately, it can be just as unhelpful as not covering it at all — a point illustrated by the news of last week’s IPCC report, which Fox covered for more than 5 minutes (compared to CNN’s one minute, eight seconds) but which it called a waste of time.
“We can disagree — heartily — on how to respond to the facts, but reality is reality,” Huertas said. “CNN could host more debates about policy and drop debates on established science. Fox News could do more to differentiate between political opposition to climate policy and rejection of climate science. MSNBC has proven it can cover nuanced science accurately, so it could do more to curtail the occasional segments in which hosts or guests overstate the effects of climate change.”
CNN, MSNBC and Fox News did not respond to ThinkProgress’ request for comment in time for publication.

Rand Paul: Dick Cheney used 9/11 as excuse to invade Iraq for the benefit of Halliburton


In a videotaped 2009 speech before student Republicans at Western Kentucky University, Rand Paul — who was just beginning his run for the Senate seat he eventually won — explained that former Vice President Dick Cheney, who counseled against war in Iraq in 1995, pushed for war following 9/11 to benefit his former employers at military contractor Halliburton.
In the video, discovered by David Corn at Mother Jones, Paul can be seen standing at a lectern describing Cheney’s opinion in 1995, when he said that invading Iraq would be, “a disaster, it would be vastly expensive, it’d be civil war, we would have no exit strategy.”
Paul said:
There’s a great YouTube of Dick Cheney in 1995 defending [President] Bush Number One [and the decision not to invade Baghdad in the first Gulf war], and he goes on for about five minutes. He’s being interviewed, I think, by the American Enterprise Institute, and and he says it would be a disaster, it would be vastly expensive, it’d be civil war, we would have no exit strategy. He goes on and on for five minutes. Dick Cheney saying it would be a bad idea. And that’s why the first Bush didn’t go into Baghdad. Dick Cheney then goes to work for Halliburton. Makes hundreds of millions of dollars, their CEO. Next thing you know, he’s back in government and it’s a good idea to go into Iraq.
Paul then goes on to describe events following the 9/11 terrorist attack when, then CIA director, George Tenet is told by George W. Bush adviser Richard Perle that the attack had given them reason to invade Iraq, despite the fact that the intelligence had yet to show a connection:
The day after 9/11, [CIA chief] George Tenet is going in the [White] House and [Pentagon adviser] Richard Perle is coming out of the White House. And George Tenet should know more about intelligence than anybody in the world, and the first thing Richard Perle says to him on the way out is, ‘We’ve got it, now we can go into Iraq.’ And George Tenet, who supposedly knows as much intelligence as anybody in the White House says, ‘Well, don’t we need to know that they have some connection to 9/11?’ And, he [Perle] says, ‘It doesn’t matter.’ It became an excuse. 9/11 became an excuse for a war they already wanted in Iraq.
Corn points out that the speech Paul was giving was not a one time event, describing Cheney’s desire for war.
In a videotaped 2008 Montana speech, also uncovered by Corn,  Paul directly linked Cheney ‘s Halliburton “millions” to the 2001 Iraq war:
It’s Dick Cheney in 1995 being interviewed on why they didn’t go into Baghdad the first time under the first [President] George Bush. And his arguments are exactly mirroring my dad’s arguments for why we shouldn’t have gone in this time. It would be chaos. There’d be a civil war. There’d be no exit strategy. And cost a blue bloody fortune in both lives and treasure. And this is Dick Cheney saying this. But, you know, a couple hundred million dollars later Dick Cheney earns from Halliburton, he comes back into government. Now Halliburton’s got a billion-dollar no-bid contract in Iraq. You know, you hate to be so cynical that you think some of these corporations are able to influence policy, but I think sometimes they are. Most of the people on these [congressional] committees have a million dollars in their bank account all from different military industrial contractors. We don’t want our defense to be defined by people who make money off of the weapons.
As Corn points out, there have long been suspicions that Dick Cheney used the post-9/11 war on Iraq as a way to thank Halliburton for making him a very wealthy man after stepping down as Secretary of Defense under former President George H.W. Bush.
In 2012, Corn writing for Mother Jones uncovered video of Mitt Romney telling wealthy donors that 47 percent of people would vote for Barack Obama because they were “dependent upon government.” The video was widely believed to be damaging to the Romney campaign.............

Friday, April 04, 2014

Founding Father enthusiast Allen West’s book filled with fake Founding Father quotes


A review of former congressman and Founding Father enthusiast Allen West’s new book has turned up a wide assortment of fake quotes attributed to Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, Abraham Lincoln and other famous historical figures.
According to the Palm Beach Post, West’s “Guardian of the Republic,” which outlines his political philosophy and his “warrior code,” includes many quotes that have been described by historians as erroneous.
“Thomas Jefferson said it first: ‘A government big enough to give you everything you want is also big enough to take it away,’” West wrote.
According to researchers at the Thomas Jefferson Foundation in Charlottesville, Virginia, while that quote has appeared on coffee cups and t-shirts, it doesn’t appear in any of Jefferson’s writings. So many fake quotations have been attributed to the drafter of the Declaration of Independence, that the foundation felt compelled to create a “Spurious Quotations” list.
Three other fake Jefferson quotes in West’s book appear on the foundation’s list.
West is not alone in repeating debunked quotes. President Barack Obama — as a senator in 2005 — and John McCain — as a 2008 presidential candidate — are among those who have previously quoted George Washington as saying that “the willingness with which our young people are likely to serve in any war, no matter how justified, shall be directly proportional to how they perceive veterans of earlier wars were treated and appreciated by our nation.”
West includes that quote in his book. But the words aren’t Washington’s, according to Mary V. Thompson, a research historian with the Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington.
A quote attributed to Patrick Henry in West’s book didn’t come from the Virginian’s writings or speeches, says Henry biographer Thomas Kidd, a professor of history at Baylor University.
West quotes Henry as saying: “The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government.”
Kidd described the quote as a new one that has gained popularity via the Internet.
“The thing that’s strange about that quote to me is it actually sounds like something that Henry might have said. I find it puzzling that it keeps getting used. You can find similar things that Henry has said that are actual quotes,” Kidd said.
Kidd added, “If we admire these people, then I think we should represent what they actually said.”
Asked to provide sources for the Jefferson quotes and some others in the book, West co-author Michele Hickford has declined comment and a spokeswoman for Crown Publishing has not responded.
West, who is currently touring to promote the book, could not be reached.

Remember When Republicans Said Social Security And Medicare Would Destroy Freedom Too?


The two programs are now a staple of American political culture. But a backward glance at the political environment during their inception reveals equally fierce, ugly antipathy from conservatives -- including screaming warnings that they'd be ruinous to freedom.
During the 1935 debate over Social Security, Republicans likened it to slavery and dictatorship.
"Never in the history of the world has any measure been brought here so insidiously designed as to prevent business recovery, to enslave workers and to prevent any possibility of the employers providing work for the people," said Rep. John Taber (R-NY).
"The lash of the dictator will be felt," said Rep. Daniel Reed (R-NY), "and 25 million free American citizens will for the first time submit themselves to a fingerprint test."
Rep. James W. Wadsworth (R-NY) cautioned that passage of Social Security would open the door to a government power "so vast, so powerful as to threaten the integrity of our institutions and to pull the pillars of the temple down upon the heads of our descendants."

Three decades later, when Medicare was first conceived in the early 1960s, the public was deeply divided, and similar warnings were voiced. Embodying the conservative movement's sentiments at the time was Ronald Reagan, who taped a recording on behalf of the American Medical Association warning that the program would, quite simply, lead to the destruction of freedom.
"If Medicare passes into law, the consequences will be dire beyond imagining," Reagan said. If opponents failed to scuttle it, he warned, "One of these days you and I are going to spend our sunset years telling our children, and our children’s children, what it once was like in America when men were free."
Republican presidential nominee Barry Goldwater, in 1964, likened Medicare to free vacations and beer. "Having given our pensioners their medical care in kind," he said, "why not food baskets, why not public housing accommodations, why not vacation resorts, why not a ration of cigarettes for those who smoke and of beer for those who drink?"


Half a century later, Republicans loudly and proudly proclaim their support for both programs, and are loathe to admit their party ever opposed them.
But history repeats itself. In 2010, Democrats passed the Affordable Care Act -- the largest expansion of the safety net since Medicare -- following a similarly intense debate. Democrats heralded it as a step toward a more humane society, and Republican opponents warned it would pose a grave threat to economic freedom. Unlikely Social Security and Medicare, Obamacare failed to win over even a fraction of Republicans, who were reduced a small, deeply ideological rump in both chambers of Congress after two landslide elections for Democrats.
This week, Obamacare took a leap toward sustainability as it crossed the milestone of 7 million insurance sign-ups. Even as conservative wonks concede that the program is probably here to stay, the residue from the hyper-partisan and polarizing debate lingers, and Republicans remain committed to dismantling it. But if past is prologue, over time as the coverage expansion and benefits fully take effect, the fatalistic warnings will fizzle and Republicans will come to terms with the new health care program.
"In politics, losses always worry people more than abstract future gains entice them. Now, every vote to repeal or eviscerate Obamacare risks offending millions – and the potential to arouse pushback will only grow," argued Theda Skocpol, a Harvard professor, sociologist and liberal author. "This story isn’t like Social Security, where most potential beneficiaries saw few gains for two decades. Affordable Care is already a massive presence in U.S. health care. It cannot be rolled back and those who keep championing that Lost Cause will do so at rising political peril."

Tuesday, April 01, 2014

Republicans Rage Against The Dying Of Their Favorite Obamacare Memes


More People Have Lost Coverage Than Gained It
RAND Corp, a non-profit think tank, dealt the death blow Monday in a new analysis reported by the Los Angeles Times. The study concluded that less than 1 million people were now uninsured because their previous coverage had been canceled and they hadn't signed up for a new health plan. The Times estimated that about 9.5 million previously uninsured people had gotten covered.
Which makes these previous proclamations from Republican leaders obsolete.
“The Administration is recognizing the grim reality that more Americans have lost health insurance than gained it under ObamaCare," Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) said in a Dec. 19 statement.
Americans for Prosperity, the conservative group assaulting Democrats nationwide over the law, was still trotting out the line this month. "Millions of people have lost their health insurance, millions of people can’t see their own doctors, and millions are paying more and getting less," said one television ad that PolitiFact rated "False."

The White House Is Cooking The Books On Obamacare Enrollment
The denial -- Obamacare 'trutherism', if you will -- had started last week when the White House said that enrollment had hit the 6 million mark. Conservatives called the new numbers into question, with Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY) going so far as accusing the administration of "cooking the books." Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC) backed that reading in an appearance on Fox News.
But these are mostly semantic arguments. It's true that some people won't pay their first premium for their new coverage and the final enrollment number could fall back below 7 million. But Republicans are clearly struggling to process the fact that so many people signed up at all.
How many did exactly -- whether it's 6.8 million or 7.2 million or whatever the final number -- is immaterial to the law's ultimate success. The allegations of impropriety are simply intended to undercut the unexpectedly good news for the law: A lot of people decided they wanted to have health insurance.

Low Enrollment Numbers Prove Americans Don't Want Obamacare -- So We Should Repeal It.
Even though the demand for Obamacare coverage proved to be there in the end, Republicans were still doubling down this week on repeal.
“The president’s health care law continues to wreak havoc on American families, small businesses and our economy," House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) said in a Monday statement. “House Republicans will continue to work to repeal this law and protect families and small businesses from its harmful consequences."

Sen. Ted Cruz tweeted #FullRepeal on Monday afternoon. House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan's budget, released Tuesday, repeals most of Obamacare. These statements came alongside a new poll that found support for the law had broken even for the first time.
The politics of this new reality are still unclear. It remains possible that the Republican base's hatred of Obamacare, paired with the 2014 fundamentals, could be enough to propel them to victory in November. But at some point, the GOP will have to reconcile its long-held worldview with the fact that millions of people are benefitting from the law.
For today, though, they seem content to rage against the dying of their memes.