The genius behind PayPal , Peter Thiel , speaks with Glenn Beck on the foolish monetary policy bankrupting America and the likelihood of a Clinton presidency being a one term affair .
The genius behind PayPal , Peter Thiel , speaks with Glenn Beck on the foolish monetary policy bankrupting America and the likelihood of a Clinton presidency being a one term affair .
” More than a dozen lucky rabbits were given Swedish massages four times a day, courtesy of U.S. taxpayers, as part of a study to figure out whether massage can help recovery times after strenuous exercise — a practice Sen. Tom Coburn says makes a mockery of federal spending.
The rabbit massages are one of the hundred wasteful products Mr. Coburn, an Oklahoma Republican, identified in his latest edition of the Wastebook, an annual compendium of the ridiculous and outrageous items in government spending, which he is releasing on Wednesday.”
If you think Swedish massage for rabbits is absurd get a load of these expenditures …
” Other highlights included the National Science Foundation paying academics to teach monkeys to gamble, government sponsorship of a children’s play about brain-eating zombies and a first-person combat shooting video game the Army developed — but which intelligence officials fear terrorists could use to train their own recruits. Indeed, Hezbollah has adapted the game’s design to train suicide martyrs.
Mr. Coburn’s investigators also found scientists putting mountain lions, monkeys, rats and cows on treadmills. That’s reminiscent of a previous famous item Mr. Coburn spotted that involved sticking shrimp on a treadmill to try to see if tired shrimp were less healthy. “
Click Map To Go Interactive
” From a distance, the small group of Haitian immigrants at the public library looks like a prayer meeting or political gathering. Dressed colorfully but comfortably, the women speak in heavily accented English and sit every day for hours around a small wooden table studying to be nurses.
The library sits at the heart of one of the most diverse counties in the USA. More than 50 languages are spoken in the public schools, and this is what more and more communities across America will look like soon — very soon.
Racial and ethnic diversity is spreading far beyond the coasts and into surprising places across the USA, rapidly changing how Americans live, learn, work and worship together — and even who our neighbors are.
Cities and towns far removed from traditional urban gateways such as New York, Miami, Chicago and San Francisco are rapidly becoming some of the most diverse places in America, an analysis of demographic data by USA TODAY shows.
Small metro areas such as Lumberton, N.C., and Yakima, Wash., and even remote towns and counties — such as Finney County, Kan., or Buena Vista County, Iowa — have seen a stunning surge in immigrants, making those places far more diverse.
The result: For the first time, the next person you meet in this country — at work, in the library, at a coffee shop or a movie ticket line — will probably be of a different race or ethnic group than you.”
Click The Pic For Interactive Map
” Although the Obama administration has yet to release the federal healthcare premiums for 2015, some private insurers have.
One of them in Minnesota has indicated that they will be showing increases of up to 60% for their ACA-compliant policies. Preferred One, the largest and lowest-cost provider of health insurance in the state, pulled out of the state’s MNsure exchange last month due to its being “unsustainable.” “
” Furthermore, a study was also just released that surveyed 2,600 businesses around the state, finding that 74% said prices of healthcare insurance increased after the law went into effect and that most of these increases were over 10%.”
” With the election only weeks away, pundits are visualizing how a Republican-controlled Senate would impact future policy decisions. Today’s Washington Post highlights the supposed plight of federal workers under a Republican Congress.
The piece discusses House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan’s budget proposal:
Under the Ryan budget, the contribution of most federal employees toward their retirement plan would increase by 5.5 percentage points with no increase in benefits — effectively a pay cut. Ryan emphasizes a “defined-contribution system” that centers on employee payments to their retirement program instead of the current system, which includes pensions from the U.S. government. He estimated his plan would save the government $125 billion over 10 years.
That $125 billion in savings, however, would come from the pockets of federal employees.
The piece continues in a similar vein discussing Republican-supported legislation that would make it easier for federal employees to be disciplined, fired, and restricted in their conference expenditures–all reasonable proposals. It cites federal employee union officials on the difficulties these policies would place on federal workers.
But the piece fails to mention the elephant in the room: federal employees are compensated more generously than their private-sector counterparts.
Using data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the average wage for a federal civilian employee in 2013 was $81,076, compared to the average wage of $55,424 for private-sector employees. “
” The federal government has shelled out more than $700 million in paid leave to more than 57,000 employees who were home from work for time periods stretching from one month to three years, a Government Accountability Office report has found.
In a 62-page report published Monday, the GAO analyzed why so many federal employees were home and getting paid for such long periods of time and they discovered a variety of reasons.”
” In many cases, employees were home awaiting the outcome of investigations into alleged misconduct and criminal actions. Some racked up paid leave for “physical fitness activities,” and others were away from work seeking professional development. Employees also took paid leave for “recuperation” from overseas work.
Hundreds of federal employees remained at home, collecting a paycheck, for years.
The report found that during a three-year period beginning in 2011, 263 employees remained on paid leave for one to three years at a cost of $31 million.
In some cases, about five percent of the time, the federal government couldn’t come up with a reason why some employees were home on paid leave.”
Those 263 employees cost the US taxpayers an average of $117,870 each to sit on their asses … “We’re in the best of hands”
” California continues to have – by far – the nation’s highest level of poverty under an alternative method devised by the Census Bureau that takes into account both broader measures of income and the cost of living.
Nearly a quarter of the state’s 38 million residents (8.9 million) live in poverty, a new Census Bureau report says, a level virtually unchanged since the agency first began reporting on the method’s effects.
Under the traditional method of gauging poverty, adopted a half-century ago, California’s rate is 16 percent (6.1 million residents), somewhat above the national rate of 14.9 percent but by no means the highest. That dubious honor goes to New Mexico at 21.5 percent.
But under the alternative method, California rises to the top at 23.4 percent while New Mexico drops to 16 percent and other states decline to as low as 8.7 percent in Iowa.
The only other state to approach California in the alternate rankings is Nevada at 20 percent, although Washington, D.C., is close at 22.4 percent. “
Does anyone else find it peculiar that the poverty rates are greatest in the areas of Obama’s greatest support ?
” Obama has done more than any other President before him. Here is a list of his impressive accomplishments………..read them all very carefully!
First President to apply for college aid as a foreign student, then deny he was a foreigner.
First President to have a social security number from a state he has never lived in.
First President to preside over a cut to the credit-rating of the United States .
First President to violate the War Powers Act.
First President to be held in contempt of court for illegally obstructing oil drilling in the Gulf of Mexico .
First President to require all Americans to purchase a product from a third party.
First President to spend a trillion dollars on “shovel-ready” jobs when there was no such thing as “shovel-ready” jobs.
First President to abrogate bankruptcy law to turn over control of companies to his union supporters.
First President to by-pass Congress and implement the Dream Act through executive fiat.
First President to order a secret amnesty program that stopped the deportation of illegal immigrants across the U.S., including those with criminal convictions.
First President to demand a company hand-over $20 billion to one of his political appointees.
First President to tell a CEO of a major corporation (Chrysler) to resign.
First President to terminate America ’s ability to put a man in space.
First President to cancel the National Day of Prayer and to say that America is no longer a Christian nation.
First President to have a law signed by an auto-pen without being present.
First President to arbitrarily declare an existing law unconstitutional and refuse to enforce it.
First President to threaten insurance companies if they publicly spoke out on the reasons for their rate increases.
First President to tell a major manufacturing company in which state it is allowed to locate a factory.
First President to file lawsuits against the states he swore an oath to protect (AZ, WI, OH, IN).
First President to withdraw an existing coal permit that had been properly issued years ago.
First President to actively try to bankrupt an American industry (coal).
First President to fire an inspector general of AmeriCorps for catching one of his friends in a corruption case.
First President to appoint 45 czars to replace elected officials in his office.
First President to surround himself with radical left wing anarchists.
First President to golf more than 150 separate times in his first five years in office.
First President to hide his birth, medical, educational and travel records.
First President to win a Nobel Peace Prize for doing NOTHING to earn it.
First President to go on multiple “global apology tours” and concurrent “insult our friends” tours.
First President to go on over 17 lavish vacations, in addition to date nights and Wednesday evening White House parties for his friends paid for by the taxpayers.
First President to have personal servants (taxpayer funded) for his wife.
First President to keep a dog trainer on retainer for $102,000 a year at taxpayer expense.
First President to fly in a personal trainer from Chicago at least once a week at taxpayer expense.
First President to repeat the Holy Quran and tell us the early morning call of the Azan (Islamic call to worship) is the most beautiful sound on earth.
First President to side with a foreign nation over one of the American 50 states ( Mexico vs Arizona ).
First President to tell the military men and women that they should pay for their own private insurance because they “volunteered to go to war and knew the consequences.”
Then he was the First President to tell the members of the military that THEY were UNPATRIOTIC for balking at the last suggestion. (Thank God he didn’t get away with THIS one.)
How is this hope and change’ working out for you? “
” While corporate welfare, whether in the form of subsidies or bailouts, is more often associated with the federal government, state governments also regularly use generous, targeted subsidy packages to entice corporations to locate within their borders. As these charts show, corporate welfare is a significant problem at the state level, with New York State leading the rest.
This week’s charts use data from the Subsidy Tracker 2.0 dataset compiled by Good Jobs First, a government accountability and smart-growth advocacy group, to display the states (plus the District of Columbia) that disperse the highest amounts and numbers of subsidies, along with the top parent corporations that cumulatively benefit from these subsidies.
Comprehensive data on total state assistance to private businesses have long been hard to access, since the relevant information has been inconsistently scattered among various government reports and websites. The Subsidy Tracker project is an ambitious effort to compile state data on subsidized projects, amounts, beneficiaries, and outcomes in one location. The dataset distinguishes between 11 types of subsidies, including tax credits and rebates, property tax abatements, low-cost loans, infrastructure assistance, and enterprise zones. The dataset is a constantly updated work-in-progress; while it does not yet contain every single state subsidy, it is one of the most comprehensive sources of state subsidies assembled so far. Additionally, the database compilers decided to count sales tax exemptions on business purchases of inputs as a “subsidy.” However, some economists argue that applying sales taxes to input purchases would inefficiently favor vertically integrated firms over firms that purchase inputs from other businesses. Therefore, this kind of sales tax exemption is not a “subsidy,” but an efficient tax policy. Despite these important limitations, the dataset can give us an early glimpse of the rough value of the subsidies that each state issues. The User Guide provides further details on the methodology.
The first chart displays the states known to have extended cumulative subsidies exceeding $1 billion, according to the dataset. In the top portion, the states are ranked, left to right, from the highest amount of subsidies to the lowest amount of subsidies. In the bottom portion, the equivalent number of deals are displayed for each state.
New York state clearly leads the pack, extending a known 71,759 subsidy deals worth $21.71 billion. The second highest corporate beneficiary in the dataset, Alcoa, received a plum deal from the Empire State in 2007, raking in an astounding $5.6 billion to build an aluminum plant. “
” Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) took aim Wednesday at the National Institutes of Health for blaming the agency’s slow response to the Ebola outbreak on budget cuts.
” We have people who go blithely on TV and say we don’t have enough money to study Ebola. Have you seen what the NIH spends money on?” Paul, a prospective 2016 presidential candidate, said at a campaign rally for Republican congressional candidates Dave Brat and Ed Gillespie.
” Nine-hundred thirty-nine thousand dollars spent to discover whether or not male fruit flies would like to consort with younger female fruit flies,” the senator said to laughter. “One hundred seventeen thousand dollars spent to determine if most monkeys are right handed and like to throw poop with their right hands.”
” And the NIH spent $2.4 million for an “Origami condom,” said Paul, who said he spared folks in the room an explanation because it was a family audience.
Paul appeared to be referring to a project to “radically” redesign the condom for the 21st century, according to the Origami website, in part to reduce HIV transmission.
The NIH, Paul said, now spends about $30 billion a year, up from $17 billion in 2000.
” When they say they don’t have enough money with their big cuts, look at the bottom line,” Paul said. “No money has been cut in Washington, but it’s about time we do cut money in Washington.”
” The Republicans in Congress hold significant leads over the Democrats on four of the six issues that U.S. registered voters say are most important in determining how they will vote in November: the economy, the way the federal government is working, the situation with Islamic militants in Iraq and Syria, and the federal budget deficit. Democrats, by contrast, top their Republican rivals on just one of the six: “equal pay for women.”
These results are from a Sept. 25-30 poll in which Gallup asked registered voters to rate the importance of 13 issues to their vote for Congress, and then to indicate which party would do a better job on each issue. The accompanying graph simultaneously displays the rankings of these issues on both dimensions. The higher an issue is, the greater the Republican Party’s advantage. And the farther to the right an issue is, the more important it is to the electorate.
The 13 issues measured in the new poll include eight that appeared in a Gallup Poll conducted in April, before the midterm campaign season came into full bloom, plus five new ones. In total, six issues were rated above the average of 69%, in terms of the percentage of voters saying they are extremely or very important to their vote:
- the economy (88%)
- the availability of good jobs (86%)
- the way the federal government is working (81%)
- the situation with Islamic militants in Iraq and Syria (78%)
- equal pay for women (75%) and
- the federal budget deficit (73%)
On the No. 1 issue, the economy, Republicans have more than doubled their April lead over Democrats, to 11 percentage points. “
Read the rest at Gallup
” A paradox haunts America’s first black president. African-American wealth has fallen further under Barack Obama than under any president since the Depression. Yet they are the only group that still gives him high ratings. So meagre is Mr Obama’s national approval rating that embattled Democrats have made him unwelcome in states that twice swept him to power. Those who have fared worst under Mr Obama are the ones who love him the most. You would be hard-pressed to find a better example of perception-driven politics. As the Reverend Kevin Johnson asked in 2013: “Why are we so loyal to a president who isn’t loyal to us?”
The problem has taken on new salience with the resignation of Eric Holder. America’s first black attorney-general has tried to correct the gulag-sized disparities in prison sentencing between blacks and whites. His exit leaves just two African-Americans in Mr Obama’s cabinet. Given the mood among Republicans, it is hard to imagine the US Senate confirming a successor to Mr Holder who shares his priorities.”
” After spending nearly half a billion dollars on 20 planes to outfit the Afghan Air Force, the Defense Department turned around and scrapped 16 of the aircraft for 6 cents on the pound—just $32,000, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction has learned.
The Defense Logistics Agency carried out the planes’ destruction at Kabul International Airport as the SIGAR was investigating the Defense Department’s failed program to outfit the Afghans with a fleet of twin propeller military transport aircraft. The G222 aircraft, manufactured in Italy, proved impossible for the Afghan military to maintain and the Pentagon terminated the program in March 2013, three months after the SIGAR initiated its investigation. By then, the department had spent at least $486 million on the aircraft.
SIGAR determined that the aircraft flew only 234 hours out of 4,500 required from January through September 2012. “
” Sorry, America. China just overtook the US to become the world’s largest economy, according to the International Monetary Fund.
Basically, the method used by the IMF adjusts for purchasing power parity, explained here.
The simple logic is that prices aren’t the same in each country: A shirt will cost you less in Shanghai than in San Francisco, so it’s not entirely reasonable to compare countries without taking this into account. Though a typical person in China earns a lot less than the typical person in the US, simply converting a Chinese salary into dollars underestimates how much purchasing power that individual, and therefore that country, might have. The Economist’s Big Mac Index is a great example of these disparities. “
Heck of a job , Barack … read more
” While by now everyone should know the answer, for those curious why the US unemployment rate just slid once more to a meager 5.9%, the lowest print since the summer of 2008, the answer is the same one we have shown every month since 2010: the collapse in the labor force participation rate, which in September slid from an already three decade low 62.8% to 62.7% – the lowest in over 36 years, matching the February 1978 lows. And while according to the Household Survey, 232,000 people found jobs, what is more disturbing is that the people not in the labor force, rose to a new record high, increasing by 315,000 to 92.6 million! “
” PolicyMic came up with a handy infographic that shows how the U.S. spends of American taxpayer’s money: $15,700 every second.
As you can see, there’s a lot of blinking going on, but not much ado about the U.S.’ burgeoning welfare state – and the over $17 trillion in national debt that comes with it (not to mention the roughly $100 trillion in debt liabilities). “
Read more from Kyle Becker at IJR
” You will want to remember this date March 26, 2015.
According to one of the top minds in the U.S. Intelligence Community, that is when the United States will enter the darkest economic period in our nation’s history.An alarming pattern has caused many in the Intelligence Community to secretly prepare for a “worst-case scenario.”
And alarmingly, he and his colleagues believe the evidence they’ve uncovered proves this outcome is impossible to avoid.
In an exclusive interview with Money Morning, Jim Rickards, the CIA’s Financial Threat and Asymmetric Warfare Advisor, has stepped forward to warn the American people that time is running out to prepare for this $100 trillion meltdown.
” Everybody knows we have a dangerous level of debt. Everybody knows the Fed has recklessly printed trillions of dollars. These are secrets to no one,” he said.
” But all signs are now flashing bright red that our chickens are about to come home to roost.”
The cost of living gap is amplified by federal taxes being based on the same income levels regardless of cost of living. Someone who earns $40,000 a year in Jackson, Miss., is taxed at the same federal rate as someone earning $40,000 in San Francisco, Calif.”
” The mean income of the top 5 percent of households in Manhattan soared 9 percent in 2013 over 2012, giving Manhattan the biggest dollar income gap of any county in the country, according to data from the Census Bureau.
The top 5 percent of households earned $864,394, or 88 times as much as the poorest 20 percent, according to the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey, which is being released Thursday and covers the final year of the Bloomberg administration.
“ The recovery seems to be going to those at the top, much more than those in the middle, while those at the bottom may even be losing ground,” said Andrew A. Beveridge, a sociologist at Queens College of the City University of New York. He attributed the disparity to the surging costs of housing and the lack of housing subsidies and other forms of public assistance available to many needy families.
The wealthiest New Yorkers are benefiting in part from the rise of the financial industry, including hedge funds and investment banks, which has helped lift the income of the most affluent households to levels reached before the recession. The recession lasted roughly from 2007 to mid-2009.
For all of New York City, median household income rose to $52,223 from $51,640, still well below the $55,307 recorded in 2008. Among racial and ethnic groups, non-Hispanic whites had the highest median income at $75,145, while Hispanics had the lowest income at $36,196. Household income climbed in every borough except Staten Island.”
While the rest of the people suffer through this years long “recovery” the cronies of the democratic “party of the people” continue to amass a larger share of the wealth . Here is a breakdown of political contributions in the state of New York by county from Open Secrets . The counties that make up NY City have been highlighted in red .
County Total Dems Repubs Dem % Repub % Albany $832,453 $383,191 $182,555 65% 31% Allegany $358,232 $5,150 $321,455 2% 107% Bronx $924,489 $491,981 $259,147 63% 33% Broome $239,018 $80,235 $84,933 47% 50% Cattaraugus $246,716 $99,125 $116,425 43% 51% Cayuga $29,384 $11,300 $4,200 73% 27% Chautauqua $65,337 $17,533 $23,540 41% 56% Chemung $100,828 $25,318 $43,720 34% 59% Chenango $52,544 $5,675 $15,318 27% 73% Clinton $88,266 $55,160 $10,443 77% 15% Columbia $159,884 $49,484 $81,913 33% 55% Cortland $51,948 $1,230 $41,350 3% 97% Delaware $16,977 $1,170 $13,040 8% 89% Dutchess $1,784,367 $802,868 $238,474 76% 23% Erie $2,181,003 $727,933 $855,811 44% 52% Essex $46,639 $29,314 $10,792 71% 26% Franklin $41,397 $35,133 $2,050 93% 5% Fulton $18,545 $3,300 $7,500 31% 69% Genesee $53,296 $1,430 $20,125 5% 67% Greene $33,729 $12,214 $18,825 39% 60% Hamilton $2,350 $0 $1,100 0% 100% Herkimer $11,248 $750 $8,840 8% 92% Jefferson $58,041 $26,620 $24,067 53% 47% Kings $3,438,912 $2,348,115 $557,592 78% 18% Lewis $6,207 $300 $3,750 7% 93% Livingston $35,399 $14,100 $14,800 47% 49% Madison $552,482 $174,930 $112,349 60% 38% Monroe $1,337,043 $360,273 $404,245 45% 50% Montgomery $54,773 $31,706 $4,641 87% 13% Nassau $9,210,840 $4,908,779 $2,562,665 63% 33% New York $95,166,048 $32,967,225 $18,250,397 62% 34% Niagara $137,591 $22,160 $62,208 25% 69% Oneida $248,758 $26,426 $160,517 14% 86% Onondaga $954,560 $370,729 $338,036 52% 47% Ontario $270,380 $105,737 $56,580 61% 33% Orange $485,413 $158,788 $169,341 48% 51% Orleans $5,941 $250 $700 26% 74% Oswego $23,659 $7,715 $9,200 45% 54% Otsego $80,360 $30,635 $27,936 50% 46% Putnam $254,789 $161,381 $46,776 78% 22% Queens $2,017,775 $1,319,483 $214,036 83% 13% Rensselaer $81,218 $25,599 $16,415 58% 37% Richmond $646,894 $245,350 $291,433 45% 54% Rockland $686,287 $289,070 $248,210 54% 46% Saratoga $591,700 $119,103 $289,534 28% 69% Schenectady $172,619 $32,170 $74,433 30% 68% Schoharie $22,100 $4,375 $9,825 30% 68% Schuyler $17,857 $5,894 $6,860 44% 52% Seneca $23,275 $18,075 $3,050 86% 14% St Lawrence $70,106 $18,754 $8,039 70% 30% Steuben $268,910 $75,518 $121,175 32% 52% Suffolk $7,121,374 $1,765,721 $1,313,877 56% 42% Sullivan $93,515 $35,399 $48,207 42% 57% Tioga $31,489 $10,860 $4,550 70% 30% Tompkins $761,230 $622,917 $39,181 92% 6% Ulster $307,856 $207,806 $61,191 77% 23% Warren $102,985 $25,107 $55,520 30% 67% Washington $32,751 $11,360 $8,480 51% 38% Wayne $45,227 $12,067 $13,150 48% 52% Westchester $13,844,798 $6,196,725 $3,578,224 61% 35% Wyoming $11,063 $750 $3,180 19% 81% Yates $19,500 $5,600 $10,992 32% 62%” These figures show county-by-county breakdowns of all contributions of $200 or more to federal candidates, parties, PACs, and outside spending organizations (including super PACs). The party breakdown shows how much went to Democratic and Republican candidates, parties and “leadership PACs.” Where party percentages don’t add up to 100 percent, the rest went to outside spending organizations, third parties or independents. The overall total also includes contributions to corporate, labor and ideological PACs that are not affiliated with either party. Totals are based on contribution data from the Federal Election Commission released electronically on August 19, 2014.
Feel free to distribute or cite this material, but please credit the Center for Responsive Politics. For permission to reprint for commercial uses, such as textbooks, contact the Center.”
Is it any wonder why Obama considers Manhattan his own personal piggy bank ? Remember that the last time a Republican won the electoral votes of New York was in 1984 .
Published on Sep 11, 2014
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” The U.S. public is coming around to the Republican position on immigration, according to the latest Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll.
The survey found that 35 percent of Americans believe the Republican Party is better positioned to address immigration, as against 27 percent who think Democrats would do a better job. The December margins had favored Democrats 31 percent to 26 percent for Republicans.
Proposals to offer some 11 million illegal immigrants a pathway to citizenship are losing support considerably. Now, 53 percent are in favor with 45 percent opposed. In April, those in favor numbered 64 percent against 35 percent who were opposed.
Pollsters attribute the shift in public opinion to the influx of children who illegally crossed into the United States from Central America earlier this year. The GOP message has been that security on the border is lax and that a 2008 bipartisan law intended to discourage sex trafficking has had the unintended result of encouraging illegal migration and needs to be amended. “
” Congress has just returned from a 5-week recess to a lot of unfinished business—it has yet to send even one of the 12 spending bills due on Sept. 30 to the president’s desk.
A new report by the Taxpayers Protection Alliance and Our Generation reveals that members of Congress take home a big paycheck for meager results in Washington. At $174,000, members of Congress make more than 95 percent of American income earners. Once generous benefits are added, members’ compensation totals $286,000 per year. And at least one member of Congress argued recently even this generous compensation package wasn’t enough—that Congress also should get a housing stipend.
Congress’s main job is to budget. But when it comes to passing annual spending bills, members of Congress have not accomplished that in full and on time since 1997. Many were hopeful Congress would use this year’s head start into the appropriations process (Congress agreed on the spending level in December 2013, instead of April 2014) to actually meet the deadlines, but such hope has long given way to resignation. There is simply not enough time left in this fiscal year. “