Category: Regulation


GOP Lawmaker Proposes Lifetime Lobbying Ban

 

 

 

 

 

 

” Rep. Rod Blum (R-Iowa) introduced legislation on Tuesday to prevent members of Congress from ever becoming lobbyists after they leave office.

  Blum, a freshman lawmaker, argued his bill would help limit lobbyists’ influence on the legislative process so members of Congress won’t feel pressured to cater to their wishes for their own self-interest.

” This bill would finally close the revolving door between Congress and special interest groups, restoring integrity to our political system and ensuring that politicians focus on representing their constituents instead of catering to lobbying groups who offer a lucrative post-electoral career,” Blum said in a statement.

” This lifetime ban on lobbying is another step in that effort to make Congress more accountable to the people by reducing the incentive for our elected officials to use their position for their own personal gain,” Blum added.”

 

The Hill has more on this great first step in the fight for responsible government 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Remy: Best Song Ever! (Tax Code Edition)

 

 

 

Published on Apr 15, 2015

Remy channels One Direction to help us understand the tax code.

Written and performed by Remy. Music tracks and background vocals by Ben Karlstrom. Produced and edited by Meredith Bragg.

Approximately 2 minutes.

Visit http://reason.com/reasontv/2015/04/15… for downloadable versions and subscribe to Reason TV’s YouTube channel to get automatic notifications when new material goes live. You can follow Reason on Twitter at @reason and follow Remy on Twitter at @goremy.

LYRICS:
Make them pay four months of earnings (oh, that’s a good one)
Have them look for lost receipts (ooh, I like it!)
They’ll have about as much fun
as their last colonoscopy
People everywhere will get ripped off…
the paper version of the Apple Watch

And we’ll dance all night, it’s the best code ever
Some folks pay a lot, others they pay never
And you’ll get tax breaks if you’re really clever
It’ll take so long, it’s the best code ever
They’ll be like “oh, oh no”
We’ll be like “yeah, yeah, yeah.”
We’ll be like “awww.”

You may have heard that all your info
on our systems can be hacked with ease
But rest assured if they don’t get them
they’ll be in the care of folks like these
Yes historians will all agree
among the greatest works in history

And we’ll dance all night, it’s the best code ever
Some folks pay a lot, others they pay never
and if you don’t comply you’ll go to jail, however
Why would you not file? It’s the best code ever
They’ll be like “Oh, oh no”
We’ll be like “yeah, yeah, yeah” “

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Look At How Many Pages Are In The Federal Tax Code

 

 

 

” As they rush to file their taxes by April 15, Americans are rightfully frustrated with the complexity of the 74,608-page-long federal tax code.

  The federal tax code is 187 times longer than it was a century ago, according to Wolters Kluwer, CCH, which has analyzed the federal tax code since 1913.

  Amazingly, in the first 26 years of the federal income tax, the tax code only grew from 400 to 504 pages. Even through President Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal, the tax code was well under 1,000 pages. Changes during World War II made the length of the tax code balloon to 8,200 pages.

  Most of the growth in the tax code came in the past 30 years, growing from 26,300 pages in 1984 to nearly three times that length today.”

 

Read more

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s Not Red State vs Blue State. It’s City vs Country

 

 

 

” As a resident of the upstate portion of New York (not the Big Apple) I have written frequently about the depressing, negative effects which liberal tax and spend policies combined with strangling regulatory burdens have had on the state, as well as the economic death spiral which has followed. Many of the complaints I hear from residents of the more rural, upstate region center on the unbalanced power held by New York City and the complete disconnect between the government and the more conservative, rural communities to the north and west. But even as a person studying and experiencing these effects first hand, I don’t think I ever grasped the full impact of this disparity in the way it’s spelled out by William Tucker of the American Media Institute.

  Binghamton, New York — once a powerhouse of industry — is now approaching Detroit in many economic measures, according to the U.S. Census. In Binghamton, more than 31 percent of city residents are at or below the federal poverty level compared to 38 percent in Detroit. Average household income in Binghamton at $30,179 in 2012 barely outpaces Detroit’s $26,955. By some metrics, Binghamton is behind Detroit. Some 45 percent of Binghamton residents own their dwellings while more than 52 percent of Detroit residents are homeowners. Both “Rust Belt” cities have lost more than 2 percent of their populations.

  Binghamton is not alone. Upstate New York — that vast 50,000-square mile region north of New York City — seems to be in an economic death spiral.

  The fate of the area is a small scene in a larger story playing out across rural America. As the balance of population shifts from farms to cities, urban elites are increasingly favoring laws and regulations that benefit urban voters over those who live in small towns or out in the country. The implications are more than just economic: it’s a trend that fuels the intense populism and angry politics that has shattered the post-World War II consensus and divided the nation.

  That comparison between the city of Binghamton and the wreckage of Detroit is a true eye opener, but it’s not the only such story in the non-city portions of the state. IBM was once the powerhouse of employment in the greater Binghamton area, employing more than 16,000 people as recently as the late 1980s. Today the entire complex has been sold to local developers and the computer giant employs a few hundred people (many of whom are contractors) renting out a tiny portion of the old complex. Kodak employed 62,000 people in Rochester during the same period as IBM’s heyday. Today there are roughly 4,000 workers. Xerox and Bausch & Lomb were also huge employers there but are now largely (or entirely) gone.

  These stories are repeated over and over again in cities and towns across the upstate region, so it’s more than coincidence. Tucker ties it all together. “

 

Read the rest of Jazz Shaw’s piece at Hot Air

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Upstate New York Is Becoming Detroit With Grass

 

 

” Binghamton, New York — once a powerhouse of industry — is now approaching Detroit in many economic measures, according to the U.S. Census. In Binghamton, more than 31 percent of city residents are at or below the federal poverty level compared to 38 percent in Detroit. Average household income in Binghamton at $30,179 in 2012 barely outpaces Detroit’s $26,955. By some metrics, Binghamton is behind Detroit. Some 45 percent of Binghamton residents own their dwellings while more than 52 percent of Detroit residents are homeowners. Both “Rust Belt” cities have lost more than 2 percent of their populations.

  Binghamton is not alone. Upstate New York — that vast 50,000-square mile region north of New York City — seems to be in an economic death spiral.

  The fate of the area is a small scene in a larger story playing out across rural America. As the balance of population shifts from farms to cities, urban elites are increasingly favoring laws and regulations that benefit urban voters over those who live in small towns or out in the country. The implications are more than just economic: it’s a trend that fuels the intense populism and angry politics that has shattered the post-World War II consensus and divided the nation.

  Upstate New York, the portion that lies beyond the New York metropolitan area, has become “The Land That Time Forgot,” a broad swath of depressed cities and low-profit farmlands that stretches from Newburgh and Poughkeepsie in the Hudson Valley through the old manufacturing centers of Schenectady and Troy, across the Allegheny Plateau to Syracuse, Rochester and Buffalo, all the way west to Jamestown, the city with the lowest percentage of college graduates in America.”

Story continues

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Playground Safety Requirements Are Absurd

 

 

 

 

” A combination of government regulations and free market innovation has created playgrounds that are incredibly safe for kids… except if they die of boredom. All the fun stuff is gone, but boy is what’s left non-lethal!”

 

 

 

 

 

 

” The CDC reports that in the 10 years from 1990 to 2000, there were just 31 deaths from playground falls, and 70 percent of these were at playgrounds in someone’s backyard. This means that on public playgrounds, there was an average of about one death per year from falling. With about 40,000,000 kids in America under age 10, that means the chances of a child dying or seriously hurting himself in a playground fall are infinitesimal.”

 

 

 

 

 

” Nevertheless, the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) has proposed new standards that would revamp the surfacing materials on playgrounds. ASTM’s stated mission is to prevent concussions and head injuries. But with the chances of these accidents already so low, you have to wonder about their true intentions.”

 

 

    There are no slides , no swings and no seesaws left thanks to this insane pursuit of safety uber alles by the do-gooders of society and yet they are still not content ? What is left to take away from the kids ? More importantly , one wonders how much of this over-regulation of our lives results from a real desire to save lives and how much of the Nanny State is driven by lawyers and the fear of liability ?

   Read on at Reason.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Price Of Ground Beef Hits Record In February: $4.238 Per Pound

 

 

 

” The average price of a pound of ground beef climbed to another record high in February, hitting $4.238 per pound, according to data released today by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

  A year ago, in February 2014, the average price for a pound of ground beef was $3.555 per pound. Since then, the average price has increased 19.2 percent in one year.

  Five years ago, in February 2010, the average price of a pound of ground beef was $2.277, according to the BLS. The price has since climbed by $1.961 per pound, or an increase of 86.1 percent.”

Change you can believe in , which is the only change left after a trip to the grocery store … read on

Google Makes Most )f Close Ties To White House

 

 

 

 

” As the federal government was wrapping up its antitrust investigation of Google Inc., company executives had a flurry of meetings with top officials at the White House and Federal Trade Commission, the agency running the probe.

  Google co-founder Larry Page met with FTC officials to discuss settlement talks, according to visitor logs and emails reviewed by The Wall Street Journal. Google Chairman Eric Schmidt met withPete Rouse, a senior adviser to President Barack Obama, in the White House.

  The documents don’t show exactly what was discussed in late 2012. Soon afterward, the FTC closed its investigation after Google agreed to make voluntary changes to its business practices. (See the FTC document on Google).

  Google’s access to high-ranking Obama administration officials during a critical phase of the antitrust probe is one sign of the Internet giant’s reach in Washington. Since Mr. Obama took office, employees of the Mountain View, Calif., company have visited the White House for meetings with senior officials about 230 times, or an average of roughly once a week, according to the visitor logs reviewed by the Journal.”

 

    No wonder Google seeks to change it’s search parameters to be the arbiter of what constitutes “Truthy” websites , read more of the unprecedented White house access afforded the search engine goliath here .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

—-

The World’s Next Credit Crunch Could Make 2008 Look Like A Hiccup

 

 

 

 

” We are certainly living in strange times. An unprecedented monetary experiment is coming to a staggered end and no one knows the potential repercussions – a plague of frogs cannot be entirely ruled out.

  For the time being, the markets remain sanguine, expecting, for example, a gentle increase in the Bank of England’s main interest rate to just 1.5pc by the end of the decade. And, who knows, maybe the markets are right.

  But maybe it’s too quiet. Last week, Ray Dalio, the founder of the $165bn (£110bn) hedge fund Bridgewater Associates, wrote a widely-circulated note warning his clients that the US Federal Reserve risked setting off a 1937-style crash when it starts raising interest rates again.

  Then, as now, the central bank had spent years printing money in order to help the American economy recover from the 1929 crash. But the side effect was a stock market bubble, which promptly burst when the Fed prematurely increased rates. Mr Dalio is worried about a repeat performance: “We don’t know – nor does the Fed – exactly how much tightening will knock over the apple cart.”

  It’s true that the policy and regulatory response to the last crisis often sows the seeds for the next. It is not hard to map out a sequence of events in which that proves to be the case again. If it were, a US stock market crash might be the least of our problems.”

 

Read more at the Telegraph

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Big Brother Fears As NYPD Attaches Microphones To Lampposts To Listen Out For Gunshots… But They Can Also Record Your Conversations

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

” Technology now in use by the New York Police Department may be picking up stray conversations.

  Three hundred ShotSpotter microphones are being placed in high crime areas of the Bronx and Brooklyn, with the aim of alerting police immediately when they overhear the sound of gunshots.

  However, the devices pick up more that just the bang of shots being fired in potential crimes, and evidence from conversations they’ve listened in on has been used in court.”

We find the raven emblematic of the death of our privacy

” Audio recordings from ShotSpotter have been used to corroborate testimony that led to convictions in a 2011 Massachusetts murder where a voice was heard shouting ‘No Jason, no Jason!’ before shots were fired. 

  NYPD officials and New York Mayor Bill de Blasio announced a pilot program for the microphones earlier this week.

  Sensors in seven districts of the Bronx have already begun working, and the devices will be turned on in ten districts of Brooklyn on Monday, according to the New York Times. “

   ShotSpotter amounts to “Big Brother” listening posts throughout the public streets , and despite assurances to the contrary raise legitimate privacy concerns:

” The restrictions on triggering events have not stopped some privacy advocates from saying that evidence procured by the ShotSpotters may violate the Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable searches and seizures. 

‘ If [ShotSpotter] is recording voices out in public, it needs to be shut down,’ the ACLU’s Jay Stanley told Take Part.

  He said his organization is ‘always concerned about secondary uses of technology that is sold to us for some unobjectionable purpose and is then used for other purposes.’ “

   One thing that has become readily apparent in recent years is that if there is a way to abuse and/or misuse technological advances , the State will find a way … Read more on the huge potential for civil rights abuses represented by State ears recording on public streets here

   If public eavesdropping becomes socially acceptable , in the name of “public safety” of course , then it follows that the next step , also for “the public good” , will be something along the lines of what the head of Scotland Yard recently proposed … surveillance cameras in our homes .  

Get Ready For Optimus Prime Shipping: FAA Approves Amazon Drone Experiments

 

 

 

 

 

” It seems like all that hype from Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos about using drones for deliveries wasn’t hype after all. The Federal Aviation Administration announced today that it has awarded an experimental airworthiness certificate for a drone design presented by Amazon Logistics, the online retailer’s in-house fulfillment and delivery company.

  The certificate amounts to a learner’s permit for drone operations. It allows Amazon to conduct flight operations under 400 feet altitude, during daylight hours, “in visual meteorological conditions,” the FAA announcement states. Additionally, the certificate requires that “the [unmanned aircraft] must always remain within visual line-of-sight of the pilot and observer. The pilot actually flying the aircraft must have at least a private pilot’s certificate and current medical certification.”

  As with all of the experimental drone airworthiness certificates being issued by the FAA in advance of formal approval of unmanned aircraft, Amazon’s permission slip to fly comes with some oversight. Amazon will have to report monthly data to the FAA on how many flights it conducted, the amount of pilot time associated with each flight, and information on “unusual hardware or software malfunctions, any deviations from air traffic controllers’ instructions, and any unintended loss of communication links.”

  These conditions don’t exactly lend themselves to Amazon using drones very soon to help with the one-hour delivery to Amazon Prime customers the company announced recently. But they put Amazon in position to be among the very first commercial drone operators in the US once the FAA gives approval for full integration of unmanned aircraft into the national airspace. “

 

Thanks to Sean Gallagher at ArsTechnica

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Study: Fast-Food Curb Did Not Cut Obesity Rate In South LA

 

 

 

 

 

 

” A much-hailed law that restricted the opening of new stand-alone fast-food restaurants in one of the poorest sections of Los Angeles did not curb obesity or improve diets, a new study found.

  City lawmakers passed the zoning ordinance in 2008 that limited the opening or expansion of fast-food outlets in a 32-square-mile area south of Interstate 10 that struggles with high obesity rates and other health problems.

  The law, believed to be the first effort of its kind by a major city to improve public health, did not ban new eateries in strip malls.

  The research by the Rand Corp. think tank found that obesity rates in South Los Angeles continued to rise after passage of the law.

It had no meaningful effect,” Rand senior economist Roland Sturm said. “There’s no evidence that diets have improved more in South LA. Obesity and overweight rates have not fallen.” “

 

The money quote:

 

Before the fast-food ordinance, 63 percent of South Los Angeles residents reported being overweight or obese compared to 57 percent in other parts of the county. Three years after the ordinance went into effect, 75 percent of South Los Angeles residents reported being overweight or obese compared to 58 percent in other parts of the county.”

 

 

 

 

  Yet another piece of feel-good legislation impinging on the people’s right to choose proves a failure , read the rest

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Backyard Burger And Wiener Roasts Targeted By EPA

 

 

 

 

” The Environmental Protection Agency has its eyes on pollution from backyard barbecues.

  The agency announced that it is funding a University of California project to limit emissions resulting in grease drippings with a special tray to catch them and a “catalytic” filtration system.

  The $15,000 project has the “potential for global application,” said the school.

  The school said that the technology they will study with the EPA grant is intended to reduce air pollution and cut the health hazards to BBQ “pit masters” from propane-fueled cookers.

  Charged with keeping America’s air, water and soil clean, the EPA has been increasingly looking at homeowners, especially their use of pollution emitting tools like lawn mowers.

  The school is proposing two fixes to reduce emissions from barbecues. First, they want to cut back on grease flare-ups. The idea: “A slotted and corrugated tray is inserted immediately prior to meat flipping, and removed immediately after. This short contact time prevents the tray from over-heating and volatilizing the collected grease. This collected grease will then drip off into a collection tray and can be used at the pit master’s discretion.” “

 

 

Thanks to Paul Bedard and The Washington Examiner

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Americans Name Government As No. 1 U.S. Problem

 

Trends in Top "Most Important" U.S. Problems, March 2014-March 2015

 

 

 

” Americans continue to name the government (18%) as the most important U.S. problem, a distinction it has had for the past four months. Americans’ mentions of the economy as the top problem (11%) dropped this month, leaving it tied with jobs (10%) for second place.

  Though issues such as terrorism, healthcare, race relations and immigration have emerged among the top problems in recent polls, government, the economy and unemployment have been the dominant problems listed by Americans for more than a year.

  The latest results are from a March 5-8 Gallup poll of 1,025 American adults.

  While the ranking of the top two problems is similar to what Gallup found in February, mentions of the economy dropped from 16% to the current 11%. In a separate measure, Americans’ confidence in the economy had been dipping further into negative territory in late February and early March, but has been improving in recent days. “

 

 

    Read it all and rejoice as the truth finally begins to dawn on the general public …

 

“A government big enough to give you everything you want, is a government big enough to take away everything that you have.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The FAA Says You Can’t Post Drone Videos On YouTube

 

 

 

 

 

 

” If you fly a drone and post footage on YouTube, you could end up with a letter from the Federal Aviation Administration.

  Earlier this week, the agency sent a legal notice to Jayson Hanes, a Tampa-based drone hobbyist who has been posting drone-shot videos online for roughly the last year. 

  The FAA said that, because there are ads on YouTube, Hanes’s flights constituted a commercial use of the technology subject to stricter regulations and enforcement action from the agency. It said that if he did not stop flying “commercially,” he could be subject to fines or sanctions.

” This office has received a complaint regarding your use of an unmanned aerial vehicle (aka drone) for commercial purposes referencing your video on the website youtube.com as evidence,” the letter reads. “After a review of your website, it does appear that the complaint is valid.” “

  The hobby use of drones and other model aircraft has never been regulated by the FAA, but the agency has been adamant about making a distinction between hobby and commercial use, which has led to much confusion over the last couple years.

  Where, exactly, does commercial use begin and hobby use end, for instance? If you fly for fun, but happen to sell your footage later, were you flying for a “commercial purpose?” What if you give it to a news organization that runs it on a television station that has ads on it? What if you upload it to YouTube and Google happens to put an ad on it? What if you decide to put an ad on it?

  The letter makes clear that at least some in the FAA (this one was sent by Michael Singleton, an aviation safety inspector in the FAA’s Tampa office) take a very wide view of what is “commercial.” “

 

Read the rest at Motherboard

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here Are All 400 Pages Of The FCC’s Net Neutrality Rules

 

 

 

” The Federal Communications Commission has finally published its full net neutrality rules on its Web site. And they’re not for the faint of heart. Together with the dissents from the agency’s Republican commissioners, the document adds up to 400 pages.

  The release of the rules comes two weeks after the FCC voted to approve them in a historic, polarized vote at the commission. Now begins the next chapter in the story. Expect Internet providers to comb through the publication, probing the rules for legal weaknesses they can take to court.”

 

    The above Washington Post article is surprisingly short on details but the Daily Caller is more forthcoming on which group was cited dozens of times :

 

” New internet regulations finally released by the Federal Communications Commission make 46 references to a group funded by billionaire George Soros and co-founded by a neo-Marxist.

  The FCC received more than 4 million public comments as it was weighing the net neutrality initiative, but Free Press and other activist groups have received the most attention by pressuring the FCC and the White House on behalf of their cause.

  One argument made against the FCC’s regulatory push is that the general public is largely happy with its internet service. Support for net neutrality was seen as the domain of special interest groups like Free Press.

  The activist group has big money behinds its effort. It has received $2.2 million in donations from progressive billionaire George Soros’ Open Society Foundations and $3.9 million from the Ford Foundation.”

 

   If you only have time to read one article then choose the Caller’s as you will learn a lot more than you will from the Post .

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Obamacare Exchange Customers Set For Significant Premium Spikes, CBO Predicts

 

 

 

 

” Obamacare exchange customers are about to see spikes in their premiums, the Congressional Budget Office predicted Monday, saying insurers that offer plans are facing twin pressures from the government and the marketplace that will mean hikes of more than 8 percent a year through 2018.

  Now in the second year of full operation, the exchanges are critical to the success of the law. The government is using tax subsidies to attract more customers to help offset costs for the rest of the system.

  Nearly 11.7 million Americans bought plans on the exchange in the second enrollment period, Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell announced Monday afternoon, hours after the CBO’s analysis was released.

  The CBO said premiums for the key “benchmark” exchange plans will rise an average of 8.5 percent per year from 2016 to 2018, faster than the rest of the health care market.”

Washington Times

Paris Drones: New Wave Of Alerts

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ten more drones have been spotted flying over Paris and reports say police are searching for four men after a chase in the east of the city.

  The latest drones were seen hovering near the Eiffel Tower and several other areas further away from the centre.

  Some 60 drones have been sighted since October, over nuclear installations and central Paris, the government says.”

 

 

 

 

 

” The most recent have all been over Paris, prompting security fears after the murders of 17 people last month.

  Security at key sites in Paris was tightened last month after the killings by Islamist gunmen at Charlie Hebdo magazine, in Montrouge and a kosher supermarket.

  Flying drones over the capital is banned without a license and no night flights are allowed over the city at all. The heightened security presence was thought to be one of the reasons why the unmanned aerial vehicles were spotted.”

 

 

Read more on the Paris drone wars at the BBC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

French Factory Decline Even Worse Than Greece

 

 

French Manufacturing

 

 

 

” The economic divide between Europe’s largest economies widened in February, as a closely-watched survey showed manufacturing output in France contracted at a faster rate than Greece, despite the weakening euro.

  Output at French factories fell for a ninth consecutive month in February, as new orders dried up and overseas demand fell. This led to a further fall in employment, Markit said, as it described general demand in France as “lacklustre”.

  By contrast, a stronger rise in new business helped output at German manufacturers expand for the 22nd consecutive month in February. Markit described the latest rise as “broad-based”, but said growth was “weak by historical standards”. “

 

 

The Telegraph has more on the European socialist market doldrums 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The 15 Most Expensive Places To Live In America

 

 

 

 

 

” After paying your rent or mortgage, transportation, utilities, and any other bills, how much do you have left at the end of the month? The answer probably depends largely on where you live.

  FindTheBest created a cost of living index based on 2013 family budget estimates for housing, taxes, healthcare, childcare, transportation, and “other necessities” (like food) from the Economic Policy Institute to compare, in over 600 counties and metro areas across the US, where your dollar goes the farthest.

  The average overall index for US cities and metro areas is 100, so a city with an index of 120 is 20% more expensive than average, and a city with an index of 80 is 20% cheaper than average.”

 

 

   Welcome to the wonderful northeast , land of high taxes , stifling regulation and home to ten of the fifteen most expensive places to live in America , including four out of the top five  , and the “winner” of the title of most expensive place to live in the US is … drum roll please …

 

 

” 1. Nassau-Suffolk Counties, New York

Nassau-Suffolk index: 155

State index: 120

  Nassau and Suffolk Counties, on Long Island, aren’t the highest in the country in terms of housing, taxes, or healthcare, but they’re up there in each category, and that’s enough to make the area the most expensive place to live in America. Also a major New York City commuting hub, it’s known for high property taxes and pricey real estate, especially in Nassau County. Suffolk is home to the Hamptons, a popular summer spot for the wealthy and the famous.”

 

 

   See about your area at Business Insider . Something to consider as you peruse the map above; which states/areas are producing jobs ? With the exception of the DC area which is awash in record tax receipts , the most expensive areas are also the ones struggling to produce enough growth to meet the local population’s demands . 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Republicans Fear Net Neutrality Plan Could Lead To UN Internet Powers

 

 

 

 

” The U.S. government’s plan to enact strong net neutrality regulations could embolden authoritarian regimes like China and Russia to seize more power over the Internet through the United Nations, a key Senate Republican warned Wednesday.

  Senate Commerce Committee Chairman John Thune of South Dakota argued that by claiming more authority over Internet access for net neutrality, the Federal Communications Commission will undermine the ability of the U.S. to push back against international plots to control the Internet and censor content.

  Countries like Russia already have made it clear that they want the International Telecommunications Union or another United Nations body to have more power over the Internet, Thune said.

” It seems like reclassifying broadband, as the administration is doing, is losing a valuable argument,” Thune said at his panel’s hearing on Internet governance. “How do you prevent ITU involvement when you’re pushing to reclassify the Internet under Title II of the Communications Act, and is everyone aware of that inherent contradiction?”

  On Thursday, the FCC is set to vote on net neutrality regulations that would declare Internet access a “telecommunications service” under Title II. Advocates, including President Obama, argue that the move is the only way the FCC can enact rules that will hold up to legal challenges in court. The rules aim to prevent Internet providers from acting as “gatekeepers” and controlling what content users can access online. 

  David Gross, a partner at the law firm Riley Wein who advises tech and telecom companies, agreed with Thune’s warning.

  The U.S. has consistently argued that the Internet is not a “telecommunication service” and therefore outside of the authority of the International Telecommunications Union, he explained. “If they were to find that Internet service is a telecommunications service, that would undoubtedly make the job of my successors much more complicated,” Gross, a former ambassador to the ITU during the George W. Bush administration, said.

  A top Obama administration official dismissed the comparison between net neutrality and UN control of the Internet.”

   Read the rest at National Journal and see how confident in the Obama administration’s assurances you are . It’s not like they’ve ever lied to us .

 Photos Reveal Just How Meager US Students’ Meals Are Compared To Even The Most Cash-Strapped Of Nations

 

 

What is it? School lunches in the United States stand in stark contrast to the wholesome and in some cases even decadent meals served to kids in other markedly less fortunate nations

Michelle’s American Slop

” Mouthwatering photos of school lunches served around the world reveal even children in Ukraine, Estonia and Greece are treated to delectable meals each day. School children in America, meanwhile, aren’t nearly so lucky.

  Whereas a kid in France might be treated to a juicy steak and a hunk of brie, the richest country in the world’s youths are more likely to receive unidentified meat served alongside little more than a starch like white pasta, fries or a roll.

  The contrasts between America’s school meals and those in far less fortunate economies are stark and suggest Michelle Obama’s push for more healthful lunches nationwide may not be enough.”

Then we have the French school lunch …

Brie, green beans, carrot, rare steak and pudding of kiwi fruit and apples is served in French schools 

” Brie, green beans, carrot, rare steak and pudding of kiwi fruit and apples is served in French schools”

” The first new school lunch standards championed by Michelle Obama have been phased in over the last several school years.

  In addition to whole grain requirements, the rules set fat, calorie, sugar and sodium limits on foods in the lunch line and beyond. While many schools have had success putting the rules in place, others have said they are too restrictive and costly.

  Backlash against the rules have spawned a wave of social media photos along with the tag #thanksMichelleObama. If these pictures are any indication, schools have responded to the rules by cutting down on portions to reduce fat and calories rather than by using potentially more costly ingredients. 

  Meanwhile, the widely different meals from Spain, Ukraine, Greece, South Korea, Brazil, France, Finland and Italy are all fresh and wholesome, with fish, steak and vegetables featuring prominently.”

    Well , you say , France has plenty of money considering their sky high tax rates … This is so but even near bankrupt countries such as Greece feed their children better than the prisoners of our public school system …

Greek school lunches feature baked chicken with orzo, stuffed grape leaves, salad of cucumber and tomatoes, yogurt with pomegranate seeds and two oranges

” Greek school lunches feature baked chicken with orzo, stuffed grape leaves, salad of cucumber and tomatoes, yogurt with pomegranate seeds and two oranges “

Then there is Michelle’s idea of a healthy lunch …

Thanks Michelle Obama? New school lunch rules backed by FLOTUS have students nationwide tweeting '#thanksMichelleObama' along with photos of meals like this

    Skeptics would be well-advised to visit the Daily Mail and see just what the children of the world are fed in such diverse countries as the Ukraine , Brazil , South Korea , Spain , Japan and more … For crying out loud , even Cuban children eat better than American students , look here:

Rice, a chicken croquette, a piece of taro root and yellow pea soup is the school lunch in Old Havana, Cuba

” Rice, a chicken croquette, a piece of taro root and yellow pea soup is the school lunch in Old Havana, Cuba”

    Read it and weep as the foreign menus make your mouth water even as the American cuisine does the same to your eyes … For shame America , for shame …

FCC Chief Pressed To Release Net Neutrality Rules

 

 

 

 

” A key Republican lawmaker in Congress called for Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler to make proposed net neutrality regulations public before a planned Thursday vote on the measure.

  In the latest wrinkle in the Republicans’ battle to quash Wheeler’s proposals, Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, who’s also the chairman of the House Oversight Committee, sent a letter today to Wheeler, questioning whether the FCC has been “independent, fair and transparent” in crafting the rules to protect content on the Internet.

” Although arguably one of the most sweeping new rules in the commission’s history, the process was conducted without using many of the tools at the chairman’s disposal to ensure transparency and public review,” he said.

  Chaffetz urged Wheeler to publicly release the 332-page draft order that was given to the other four commissioners nearly three weeks ago and appear at a House Oversight hearing Wednesday before a vote at the FCC’s monthly meeting Thursday.

  Also today, FCC commissioners Ajit Pai and Michael O’Rielly too asked for Wheeler to release the proposal to the public and postpone the Thursday vote to allow for 30 days of public comment.”

 

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The Economy’s Worst 8-Year Run In 62 Years

 

8yearGDPgrowthPostWW2to2014

 

 

 

” A couple of publications have noted that 2014 was the ninth consecutive year during which the U.S. economy grew by less than 3 percent.

  They’re being too kind. Last year was the eighth year in a row of sub-2.5 percent growth, following four straight years (2003-2006) of higher growth.

  It’s hardly a coincidence that the first year of that awful 2007-2014 streak just so happens to have been the same year that the Democratic Party took legislative control in Washington.

  The nation’s political and media elites were quite pleased with themselves when the November 2006 elections brought about that result, largely because their daily hostility to all things Republican and/or conservative contributed mightily to it. They were absolutely ecstatic when Barack Obama, Mr. Perfectly Creased Pants, won the November 2008 presidential election and took office in January 2009.

  As will be seen shortly, the former event marked the beginning of the U.S. economy’s worst eight-year stretch since 1945-1952. Obama’s presence in the Oval Office until January 2017 virtually ensures that we’ll have at least two more years of the policies which brought on that miserable result.”

 

Read on at PJMedia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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