12 Numbers Which Prove That Americans Are Sick And Tired Of Politics As Usual

Barack_Obama_and_John_Boehner_enjoying_Saint_Patrick's_Day_2014The American people are increasingly waking up to the fact that nothing ever seems to change in Washington D.C. no matter which political party is in power.  In fact, as you will see later on in this article, an all-time high 53 percent of all Americans believe that neither party “represents the American people”.  Over the past several decades, we have sent a Bush, a Clinton, another Bush and an Obama to the White House, but the policies coming out of Washington have remained pretty much the same the entire time.  The mainstream media would have us believe that the Republicans and the Democrats are constantly fighting like cats and dogs, but the truth is that the Republicans want to take us to the same place that the Democrats want to take us – just a little more slowly perhaps.  And behind the scenes, Republicans and Democrats have a good time with one another and they are ultimately controlled by the same set of oligarchs.  The Americans people are really starting to recognize what a sham our system has become, and the numbers show that they are quite fed up with it.

House Oversight Committee Suggests AG Holder Was In On Targeting Of Conservatives

House Oversight Committee, citing newly-released emails between the Internal Revenue Service and the Department of Justice, is broadening its investigation into the government’s targeting of tax-exempt conservative groups.

According to Oversight Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), the emails provide reason to believe that Attorney General Eric Holder’s DOJ was well-aware of, and possibly involved in, the targeting.

The emails were released by Judicial Watch last week, and indicate that embattled IRS official Lois Lerner had been in contact with Richard Pilger, who heads up the DOJ’s Elections Crimes division.

In a May 8 email to Nikole C. Flax, former chief of staff to former-Acting IRS Commissioner Steven T. Miller, Lerner wrote:

I got a call today from Richard Pilger Director Elections Crimes Branch at DOJ … He wanted to know who at IRS the DOJ folk s [sic] could talk to about Sen. Whitehouse idea at the hearing that DOJ could piece together false statement cases about applicants who “lied” on their 1024s –saying they weren’t planning on doing political activity, and then turning around and making large visible political expenditures. DOJ is feeling like it needs to respond, but want to talk to the right folks at IRS to see whether there are impediments from our side and what, if any damage this might do to IRS programs. I told him that sounded like we might need several folks from IRS …

Watchdog: Chris Christie Sheds His ‘Open And Honest’ Reformer Disguise

This article, written by Mark Lagerkvist, was originally published April 24 by Watchdog.org.

Governor Chris Christie’s office sends New Jersey Watchdog a message every other Tuesday — a reminder of how the Governor and his staff flout the law and fight transparency in State government.

“This email serves to hereby request a two-week extension regarding your OPRA request nos. W82964 and W82965,” it states.

Since January, the Governor has so far taken seven two-week extensions.

Under OPRA, the State Open Public Records Act, a governmental agency must grant or deny access to records “as soon as possible but not later than seven business days after receiving the request.” An agency is allowed extra time only if it needs to retrieve records from storage or archives.

In contrast, Christie and company already have had 15 weeks to decide whether to provide records of the State-paid travel expenses of the Governor and his senior staff. Requests for explanation of the delays have gone unanswered.

By stringing out the process indefinitely — a devious tactic that clearly circumvents the letter and spirit of OPRA — Christie’s crew technically avoids making a decision that can be appealed in court. Meanwhile, the public’s right-to-know languishes in limbo.

Watchdog: Chris Christie Sheds His ‘Open And Honest’ Reformer Disguise

This article, written by Mark Lagerkvist, was originally published April 24 by Watchdog.org.

Governor Chris Christie’s office sends New Jersey Watchdog a message every other Tuesday — a reminder of how the governor and his staff flout the law and fight transparency in State government.

“This email serves to hereby request a two-week extension regarding your OPRA request nos. W82964 and W82965,” it states.

Since January, the Governor has so far taken seven two-week extensions.

Under OPRA, the State Open Public Records Act, a governmental agency must grant or deny access to records “as soon as possible but not later than seven business days after receiving the request.” An agency is only allowed extra time if it needs to retrieve records from storage or archives.

In contrast, Christie and company already have had 15 weeks to decide whether to provide records of the State-paid travel expenses of the Governor and his senior staff. Requests for explanation of the delays have gone unanswered.

By stringing out the process indefinitely — a devious tactic that clearly circumvents the letter and spirit of OPRA — Christie’s crew technically avoids making a decision that can be appealed in court. Meanwhile, the public’s right-to-know languishes in limbo.

SCOTUS Gets Schuette Right

I think it’s a bit of a shame that the Supreme Court had to devote time to rendering a decision in Schuette v. Coalition to Defend Affirmative Action, Integration and Immigration Rights and Fight for Equality By Any Means Necessary (BAMN) et al. I was under the impression that state-sponsored racism had fallen out of favor — as much of an anachronism as the Klan and its famous son Robert Byrd, the late Democratic superstar Senator. Nonetheless, the 2006 Michigan Civil Rights Initiative (Prop 2), which bars State schools from denying admissions out of racism, met with legal opposition from a consortium of racist hate groups, including the magnificently monikered BAMN.

Thus did the court, which has certainly had its share of missteps of late, affirm the people of Michigan’s overwhelming desire to let merit speak for itself in matters of academia. By a 6-2 majority (Justice Elena Kagan recused herself), the highest court in the land ruled — nay, reminded — that ignoring merit in favor of skin color deserves no more of a place in our modern society than the Jim Crow laws the Democrats spent decades devising and defending.

A Stealth Threat To The Constitution

It isn’t often that you’ll see a large majority of Republicans and Democrats in Congress agree on something. But they did last week, when members of the House and Senate tried to ban an Iranian diplomat from entering this country.

In a real “poke us in the eye” move, Iran had announced it was naming Hamid Aboutalebi as its new ambassador to the United Nations. It just so happens that Aboutalebi was one of the leaders of the mob that stormed the U.S. embassy in Tehran back in 1979 and took 52 Americans hostage. As you may recall, they were kept in captivity for 444 days and were released only when Ronald Reagan succeeded Jimmy Carter as President.

When Iran said it was appointing Aboutalebi as its ambassador to the U.N., Tea Party favorite Ted Cruz (R-Texas) immediately introduced a measure in Congress to ban him from stepping on U.S. soil. The measure passed by voice votes in both the House and Senate, without a single dissenting vote.

When the bill got to Barack Obama’s desk, the President signed it — then promptly announced that he wasn’t going to enforce it. He attached a signing statement that said he would treat the bill “as advisory in circumstances.”

Bunkerville Was Not The BLM’s First Rustler’s Roundup

The raiders arrived at dawn. Contract cowboys backed by Bureau of Land Management rangers and other heavily armed law enforcement personnel fanned out across the desolate, but alluring, Nevada countryside to confiscate livestock owned by a family that — under a controversial claim of sovereignty — had grazed on public lands without paying fees to the Federal government.

“They have been overgrazing and damaging the land for years,” asserted BLM spokesman Mike Brown, who also pointed out that the family — the last holdouts in the region — had been fined millions of dollars for trespassing on public land. In defiance of Federal judicial rulings and the “consensus” of their representatives, the family persisted in claiming that they had a right to graze cattle on land their ancestors had settled many decades ago. The dispute had been going on for decades, and the institutional patience of the Federal government had been exhausted.

A previous roundup nearly resulted in tragedy when a member of the family doused himself in gasoline and threatened to set himself on fire. The 59-year-old man, who had no previous criminal record, was tackled, beaten by law enforcement officers, arrested and prosecuted on terrorism-related charges.

If You Owe Back Taxes, Do You Get A Bonus? IRS Employees Do

When an average American is delinquent in his Federal income tax payments, the Internal Revenue Service can make his life pretty unpleasant.

But when an IRS employee owes back taxes — and there are thousands who do — not only does he get consideration from his government employers that average Americans don’t get; he also goes home with bonus pay.

According to the U.S. Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, the IRS paid out $2.8 million in bonuses to more than 2,800 employees “with recent substantiated conduct issues resulting in disciplinary action,” including $1 million to “more than 1,100 IRS employees with substantiated Federal tax compliance problems.”

Those payouts, which also included paid time off and step increases in the government’s merit job system, took place between October 2010 and the start of 2013. The final IG report was published internally on March 21, but was released to the public this week.

Although the IG report attempts to explain that enforcing tax law and dealing with IRS employees through the merit system are two endeavors segregated by government policies, it nonetheless remarks that rewarding IRS employees who are delinquent in their tax payments represents an apparent conflict of interest:

Georgia Governor Signs Broad ‘Pro-Gun’ Bill Into Law

The State of Georgia just passed into law a piece of bipartisan gun legislation that removes restrictions on where licensed gun owners can take their firearms, even though some 2nd Amendment supporters had been hoping for much more.

Republican Governor Nathan Deal, who’s up for re-election this year, signed HB 60 into law Wednesday, over the vehement objections of gun control groups like Americans for Responsible Solutions, the creation of former Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.

The law will take effect on July 1 of this year. It passed through the State Legislature with bipartisan support, garnering a “yes” vote even from Democratic State Senator Jason Carter — the grandson of the former President and the Democrats’ nominee in the Georgia Governor’s race.

According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Deal emphasized the law’s broad support, but noted that more-lenient gun legislation still doesn’t exempt the State’s gun owners from the dragnet of registration and permitting required to obtain a license:

There are always opportunities for people to use any piece of legislation as a political tool if they don’t like it. But there was bipartisan support for the bill. The main story that should come out of it is the final product is significantly different from earlier versions. And some of the more [pause] interesting parts were removed.

Surprise: Race Card-Loving Eric Holder Doesn’t Like Affirmative Action Ban

Attorney General Eric Holder, who has repeatedly attributed Congressional attempts to investigate his Justice Department on the color of his skin, weighed in on the Supreme Court’s latest ruling on affirmative action.

The Nation’s highest court Tuesday upheld a Michigan law banning the use of race as a factor in the admission process of colleges in the State.

On the heels of the 6-2 ruling, progressives like House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) and Al Sharpton were quick to criticize the justices’ decision, echoing the tones of a scathing 58-page dissent to the ruling written by Justice Sonya Sotomayor.

The dissenting justice, joined by Ruth Bader Ginsberg, said that “a majority of the Michigan electorate changed the basic rules of the political process” and “uniquely disadvantaged racial minorities.”

“Race matters. Race matters in part because of the long history of racial minorities’ being denied access to the political process,” Sotomayor said.

“Race matters to a young man’s view of society when he spends his teenage years watching others tense up as he passes, no matter what neighborhood he grew up. Race matters to a young woman’s sense of self when she states her hometown, and then is pressed, ‘No, where are you really from?’” she continued.

What Would The Founders Think Of The Bundy Ranch Situation?

It’s an interesting exercise to consider what the Founding Fathers would think of the Bundy ranch/Bureau of Land Management standoff. After all, the Founders are long gone. But we do have their writings and their recorded quotations from which to glean their wisdom.

Among the grievances cited in the Declaration of Independence were: “He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out our substance. He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our Legislatures.” What better description is there of the BLM and its enforcers — not to mention the myriad other unConstitutional alphabet soup agencies that now have their own military enforcement arm?

The Declaration also cites: “…imposing taxes on us without our consent,” and “…depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of trial by jury.” This perfectly describes Cliven Bundy’s grievance with the BLM.

The Founders believed government’s job was to protect the rights of the people. The Constitution they drafted was designed to place limits on government, not the people.

Texas Man Has To Put His Dog Down With Bare Hands After Deputy Shoots, Injures – But Refuses To Kill

Cole Middleton, who lives in rural Rains County in East Texas, dialed 911 after arriving at home last Friday morning to discover his home had been burglarized. It looked to Middleton like someone had broken in and stolen an iPad, jewelry and firearms.

A deputy arrived a while later. Middleton had joined his dad in a field to do some farm work while he waited for the sheriff’s office to respond, and, from a distance, he saw the car pull up.

According to what Middleton told KLTV News, his dog Candy – an animal that, judging from posted photos, looks like an Australian cattle dog – was in the yard when the deputy arrived. Middleton had trained her to herd cattle, and described her as a “natural” when it came to farm work. Candy was barking, as dogs tend to do in unfamiliar or exciting situations, but wasn’t acting aggressively toward the officer.

“She’s barking when he pulls into the driveway letting me know someone’s at our house, an intruder is here, or a person who she would think was an intruder that she’s unfamiliar with,” said Middleton. “She’s barking. The officer gets out of his car, and all the while we’re headed up [there]. He gets out of his car and shoots my dog in my front yard.”

1 Peter 1:18-19

“For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.”

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An Unprecedented Plague Has Hit Oranges And Another Has Hit Bananas

Florida Orange - Photo by Benjamin D. EshamWhat is causing all of these plagues to hit our food supply?  Have you heard of citrus greening disease?  Probably not, but it has already gotten so bad that it is being projected that Florida’s orange harvest will be the smallest in 30 years.  Have you heard of TR4?  Probably not, but it has become such a nightmare that some analysts believe that it could eventually wipe out the entire global supply of the type of bananas that Americans eat.  In addition, another major plague is killing millions of our pigs, and a crippling drought that never seems to end is absolutely devastating agricultural production in the state of California.   Are we just having bad luck, or is there something else to all of this?

Citrus greening disease has been a steadily growing problem that has reached epidemic levels this year.  Because of this disease, the U.S. Department of Agriculture is projecting that orange production in the U.S. this year will be down 18 percent compared to last year.  Here is more on this horrible plague from Yahoo News

A citrus disease spread by a tiny insect has devastated Florida’s orange crop, which is expected to be the worst in nearly 30 years, and sent juice prices soaring on New York markets.

EFF’s Suggestions For Government Surveillance Oversight

This piece, written by Electronic Frontier Foundation Legal Director and Legislative Analyst Mark M. Jaycox, originally appeared on the foundation’s website on April 23.

EFF recently filed comments with the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board (PCLOB) concerning Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Amendments Act (FAA), one of the key statutes under which the government claims it can conduct mass surveillance of innocent people’s communications and records from inside the US. EFF maintains that the government’s activities under Section 702 that we know about are unconstitutional, not supported by the statutory language, and violate international law.

The PCLOB, created as a result of recommendations by the 9/11 Commission, is an agency charged with ensuring privacy and civil liberties are included in the White House’s counterterrorism activities. After a long delay, the board became operational in February 2012. Their first report, issued in January 2014, reviewed the government’s use of the Patriot Act to collect all Americans’ calling records. The report largely agreed with our concerns about that program, carefully described how it is illegal and recommended the government stop the program. In our recent comments, we urge the PCLOB to take the same careful approach to the government’s activities under Section 702.

Debate Over Federal Land Heats Up In West

This article, written by Rob Nikolewski, was originally published by Watchdog.org on April 23.

Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy may have brought the fight to the forefront, but western States’ public officials for some time have battled to get control of Federal lands back in the hands of the States.

Officials from nine States gathered in Salt Lake City last week for the Legislative Summit on the Transfer for Public Lands, which was planned long before the controversy over Bundy’s cattle grazing on Federal land became a national news story.

The issue is simple, those public officials say. Giant tracts of public land can be better managed by States, not the Federal government.

“It’s the right thing to do for our people, for our environment, for our economy and for our freedoms,” Montana state Sen. Jennifer Fielder said at a news conference.

New Mexico State Representative Yvette Herrell (R-Alamogordo), who was joined by Wendell Bostwick, president of the New Mexico Association of Counties, at the public lands summit, told New Mexico Watchdog the Bundy standoff “has brought awareness to the general population of what’s happening in the western States.”

However, Herrell said, ”This is not a land grab, and this not about privatizing these lands.”

Another Low Attack On Black Conservatives From The Left

Taking the left’s attacks on black conservatives to a new low, Illinois Democratic Governor Pat Quinn urged supporters to read a shockingly stupid article comparing black Republican voters to Jews who collaborated with Nazis.

In a tweet that has since been deleted, Quinn’s campaign directed his Twitter followers to a Chicago Sun Times column penned by writer Neil Steinberg.

Steinberg’s inflammatory piece suggested that blacks who supported Republican gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner were selling out their communities for personal gain just as some Jewish people had during the Holocaust.

He writes:

Let me be clear: As a general rule, individuals will sell out the interests of their groups in return for personal benefit. It isn’t just a black thing. Jews collaborated with the Nazis during World War II, helping them to round up their own people in the hopes they’d be the last to go. The Republican Party will deny global warming until the ocean laps at Pittsburgh simply because doing something about it crosses the immediate profit of the coal burners and oil companies and carbon spouters who write the checks. No tobacco company has any trouble finding people who, at a hefty salary, stare into the camera and say no, all that lung cancer stuff is just fiction.

Another Low Attack On Black Conservatives From The Left

Taking the left’s attacks on black conservatives to a new low, Illinois Democratic Governor Pat Quinn urged supporters to read a shockingly stupid article comparing black Republican voters to Jews who collaborated with Nazis.

In a tweet that has since been deleted, Quinn’s campaign directed his Twitter followers to a Chicago Sun Times column penned by writer Neil Steinberg.

Steinberg’s inflammatory piece suggested that blacks who supported Republican gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner were selling out their communities for personal gain just as some Jewish people had during the Holocaust.

He writes:

Let me be clear: As a general rule, individuals will sell out the interests of their groups in return for personal benefit. It isn’t just a black thing. Jews collaborated with the Nazis during World War II, helping them to round up their own people in the hopes they’d be the last to go. The Republican Party will deny global warming until the ocean laps at Pittsburgh simply because doing something about it crosses the immediate profit of the coal burners and oil companies and carbon spouters who write the checks. No tobacco company has any trouble finding people who, at a hefty salary, stare into the camera and say no, all that lung cancer stuff is just fiction.

Another Low Attack On Black Conservatives From The Left

Taking the left’s attacks on black conservatives to a new low, Illinois Democratic Governor Pat Quinn urged supporters to read a shockingly stupid article comparing black Republican voters to Jews who collaborated with Nazis.

In a tweet that has since been deleted, Quinn’s campaign directed his Twitter followers to a Chicago Sun Times column penned by writer Neil Steinberg.

Steinberg’s inflammatory piece suggested that blacks who supported Republican gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner were selling out their communities for personal gain just as some Jewish people had during the Holocaust.

He writes:

Let me be clear: As a general rule, individuals will sell out the interests of their groups in return for personal benefit. It isn’t just a black thing. Jews collaborated with the Nazis during World War II, helping them to round up their own people in the hopes they’d be the last to go. The Republican Party will deny global warming until the ocean laps at Pittsburgh simply because doing something about it crosses the immediate profit of the coal burners and oil companies and carbon spouters who write the checks. No tobacco company has any trouble finding people who, at a hefty salary, stare into the camera and say no, all that lung cancer stuff is just fiction.

Another Low Attack On Black Conservatives From The Left

Taking the left’s attacks on black conservatives to a new low, Illinois Democratic Governor Pat Quinn urged supporters to read a shockingly stupid article comparing black Republican voters to Jews who collaborated with Nazis.

In a tweet that has since been deleted, Quinn’s campaign directed his Twitter followers to a Chicago Sun Times column penned by writer Neil Steinberg.

Steinberg’s inflammatory piece suggested that blacks who supported Republican gubernatorial candidate Bruce Rauner were selling out their communities for personal gain just as some Jewish people had during the Holocaust.

He writes:

Let me be clear: As a general rule, individuals will sell out the interests of their groups in return for personal benefit. It isn’t just a black thing. Jews collaborated with the Nazis during World War II, helping them to round up their own people in the hopes they’d be the last to go. The Republican Party will deny global warming until the ocean laps at Pittsburgh simply because doing something about it crosses the immediate profit of the coal burners and oil companies and carbon spouters who write the checks. No tobacco company has any trouble finding people who, at a hefty salary, stare into the camera and say no, all that lung cancer stuff is just fiction.