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Monthly Archives: March 2017


Is there anyone in the Trump Administration who knows what they are talking about or can tell the truth? His surrogates shoot from the lip pretty much like their boss and continue to lie as if it’s the truth. This is exactly what Pre world war II Hitler did to convince ordinary Germans that he was doing good things for them-until the bombs rained down on them and they were shown the concentration camps. Unfortunately too many Trump supporters are too angry to see the truth and will be shocked when the wall goes up and the jobs still do not come back. Then there’s health care and taxes, once these are addressed (or not) and more people do not have or can’t afford healthcare, the administration will blame someone else. As much as I would like to talk about something positive coming out of the Whitehouse, there is not much there. Jeff “the knife” Sessions is moving ahead like the racist he is, Steve “the hammer” Bannon is pulling the strings behind the scenes and Reince “figurehead” Priebus appears to be missing. The cost to secure this President rises daily with his children being everywhere, his trips to Mar A Lago along with the cost to scramble the Air force if a private aircraft appears in the no fly zone near the President(resident?). The Governing of the United States is not supposed to play out in the media yet this appears to be the situation the country is in. Many of the people who voted for Trump now have reservations but we are in this until at least 2018 unless the President does something worse than he is doing now. The Congress seems to be rudderless after all of the negative rhetoric about the previous administration and with a blank check attitude have confirmed unsuitable people for the cabinet. The President makes a big show of signing executive orders yet seems to have no idea what these executive orders will affect. I am of the opinion that our TOTUS is not well versed in the details (the real details) of his executive order rollback. It appears that he gets snapshots and acts on those. This is not governing, this is playing in the sand box without paying attention to the lumps. It is my opinion that we as voters should prepare for the worst as it is still coming and we will receive no help from our neer do well Congress.

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Does it bother anyone that we are in the grip of government (our) employees who don’t give a damn about us? All of the high tone and blustery rhetoric is just that. The ongoing attempt to deregulate, deconstruct and repeal are the talking points from people whose sole mission is to take care of them selves while shoveling out homilies, half truths and outright lies. These outpourings do not take into account the long range effects of their actions. The lies put out have served to divide us racially, morally and ethnically. At this point I feel that we can expect nothing good from this administration. This one lie is particularly bad: The lie about EPA regulations causing job loss in the coal industry while the real truth is automation and the increased availability of cheap natural gas were and are still  a factor. Getting the public fired up with this type of misinformation is irresponsible and dangerous. What we have is a classic divide and conquer tactic that does nothing to fix our issues. The selections  made to aid the President were suspect initially but now are extremely troubling as the lie factory is running at full speed. It is apparent to me that the next several years will bring a substantial backwards leap for all of us while providing boosts for the worst of us.

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Donald Trump has promised to make America Great Again, this statement resonated with enough people to get him elected. Since that time he has tweeted himself in a corner that we will certainly suffer because of. Taking one major campaign promise: ” The Great Wall”. Estimated cost of the wall is 326 Million to a Billion(?) dollars. Would this amount of money be better used for infrastructure? Clearly the border security is necessary however infrastructure (roads, bridges, dams and levees) is a much higher priority. The wall would provide jobs for a short period of time and would not significantly affect the economy in the long term(except for possible trade issues with Mexico). The security issue is not as awful as Mr. Trump would have us believe but having good relations with Mexico would certainly help with that. If the money for the wall was used for infrastructure then you gain jobs (long term), save lives as the effects of natural disasters would be  reduced, traffic accidents would be reduced. What is involved in infrastructure repair? You have to have the following: Engineers, architects, construction companies, material suppliers and finally workers. All of these jobs and carriers require education and training. The additional benefit is the health and safety of Americans using these roads and bridges. It will take many more years to address the infrastructure repairs and building than it will take to build the “Great Wall” which will possibly be more of an eyesore and eventually a non factor in immigration. Taking a look at the Health care fiasco, the proposed AHCA (Ryancare or TrumpCare) failed due to the lack of support within the Dupublican party, not because of  the Scamocrats blocking it. This tall tale and others will continue to play out while our neer do well Congress continues on a path of destruction which will affect the voters and not the Elected pimps in Congress. If as voters you think your elected representatives are working for you then I challenge you to investigate what they are actually doing rather than what they tell you they are doing. We are in a situation now where the misinformation mills are running at full capacity and our (the voters) ability to tell truth from fiction is strained. This misinformation is why Mr. Trump was elected. The Dupublicans are not happy with him but they are using him to further their own anti-American agenda. Rallies and high sounding speeches are not how governing is done, the quicker we understand that, the better we will be able to try to elect the right people for the job of representing us correctly.

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The current White House resident and associates have mastered the art of the spiel. The press crops (hand-picked) has had to endure a continual stream of non facts and “alternative” information. There appears to be no shame in producing a stream of outright lies with a straight face. Now with the recent visit from Germany Leader Angela Merkel we have seen that we no longer have a Presidency. What we now have is an entertainer  in the form of  a Government head. Unfortunately or predictably the Dupublican majority has done nothing to assist or curtail the descent of the Presidency into a Reality show. The only good thing is that the American people (and the rest of the world) see that the government is not as stable as they (Congress) would have us believe. The seemingly unending  stream of lies and “alternative” facts coming from the Whitehouse is distracting and acting as a cover for the misdeeds being perpetrated on the citizens. This type of activity is not new but now more open due to the ascent of an adoration seeker as President. The President’s primary focus is completing his campaign promise agenda at whatever cost it requires. This push for completion comes with no backup information that would lead one to believe these ideas were well thought out considering the pros and cons as well as the long range effect. Now the “repeal and replace” has  failed and the Teflon Don takes no responsibility thereby hanging the failure on everyone else including Scamocrats who had no power to stop it had the entire Dupublican Congress agreed. This is not a new idea from the Don since he will walk away from situations  no matter what the cost if he is not happy with the deal. What we can expect in the time he has in office is more of the same as he is a professional knee jerker who cannot apparently read anything longer than a paragraph. We need to pay attention to what our Congress does as they seem to have no problem with hurting us and attempting to make us like it.

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Given the recent rush to repeal and replace the ACA with the AHCA, it has become apparent that this was an ill conceived project which is based more in political theater than any improvement for the participants. The proposed changes are all things that could have been resolved 7 years ago when the ACA dubbed  Obamacare by the Dupublicans. Their new version is not an improvement but a lessening of the existing benefits. Consider his: why are people we elected who have a very nice healthcare plan seeking to reduce the medical care we have and need? All of the talk about cost and saving money does not seem to apply to their salaries and benefits. With the inability to enact the new coverage due to in fighting, disagreement  and outright poor legislation we have TOTUS who after trying to persuade, then threaten action decided to just forget about it. This appears to be his style so what can we expect going forward? We can expect to be met with more of the same rhetoric via twitter and no substantial material information. Looking at the cabinet selections: there was no real “vetting” since these choices were made almost in secret. It seems that the President is unable  or unwilling to read or discuss anything beyond snippets of information. What we have is a disjointed administration where one hand does not know what the other is doing, this includes the Presidents staff and certainly his “party” members. The way the government is supposed to work (ideally) is the separate factions look at proposed legislation and come to a compromise that works the best for their constituents (voters). There is no perfect legislation but there is always good legislation. Speaking in superlatives does not equal governing nor does tweeting but that is what we are experiencing at this time.

Remember the following:
1. Do not trust some who has to tell you to “trust them”
2. Be cautious when some one constantly tells you how good everything will be in superlative terms.
3. Beware of a “troll” who comments with no facts on important issues.
4. The Presidency is not a 40 hour week.

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Trump: taxes, executive orders, tweets or town halls? This Presidency has all of prerequisites for disaster. Beginning with the cabinet choices, spokespersons and the seemingly never-ending stream of lies (or alternate facts). This Presidency appears to be more of a circus act with more clowns than real acts even though it is entertaining. The right, alt right and seemingly in power GOP all appear to working in disconcert with their stated goals. The GOP appears to be on track to scuttle this administration and themselves. Given the broad support they once had , there are signs of their base weakening in the face of their leader’s constant stream of tweets that they cannot stop. The tweets not only undermine their “core” values but highlight their being out of touch with the people they purport to help (the working middle class and poor). The neediest of us all will suffer the most as these seat fillers have lost touch ( or maybe never had it) with what they campaigned on. What this amounts to is politics taking over and ignoring what is really needed to move the country in a good direction. No administration is or will ever be perfect but with the right people in Congress it could be an achievable goal. The solution lies with the voters being well informed. The sound bites and buzzwords do not make good government only the election of  quality representatives in Congress can achieve that, unlike the glory hounds we now have. This constant barrage of misinformation put out as truth is distracting and  designed to do just that, is not in the best (or any) interest of the voters. We as voters are more the victims of an entertainer and bully backed up by a group of self serving seat fillers who are using the headliner as a shield for their own purposes. I am still a bit surprised at some of the comments still coming from Trump supporters who apparently cannot see beyond their own biases (based on misinformation). The United States has had too many years of Racial inequity and injustice to continue down the same path leading to potential harm to all of us. Where to start?: Read beyond your comfort zone, do not assume anything is correct or wrong  without proof that you have found yourself, remember your elected officials are not necessarily your friends no matter what comes out of their mouths. “Telling like it is” good in theory but in reality it cause problems beyond our borders and emboldens the worst elements in our society and in the countries of our allies (that affects us too). Change comes from the voters but good change comes from well informed voters.

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In the last 4 years (at least) we have become aware of the extensive blanket of li’s (lies) presented to the American people (and probably beyond) by the political establishment. Many of us expect to be lied to by salespeople, politicians and other folks attempting to persuade us  in their views. This persuasion takes place daily in the shows we watch on TV, the shows we hear on the radio and in written media. This persuasion has taken a foothold in our electronic transmissions (while taking the fun out of that). It is particularly bothersome to me that too many of us decry the extensive dishonesty in the political sector but we do nothing about it. The opportunity for change is and always has been in our hands. All we need to do is vote! Voting is easy , the hard part is wading through the massive wall of li’s (lies) that our elected officials (local, State and Federal) put up to keep their jobs. It is our job to do the homework (just like school) and understand what these people are doing in our names. The many outlets for news have varying degrees of honesty but taking them as a source of information rather than truth you can determine where the real truth is. We all should understand now that many if not all current office holders have lied to get the job. The primary reason for this is the long serving electeds want the status quo to remain as is so they tend to corrupt or subvert the good intentions of newcomers. It is hard if not impossible to return from the far edge of honesty, truth and the related rewards. To paraphrase a quote “let the LIar beware”

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Very well stated. MA

On the eve of the college basketball spectacle known as March Madness, CNBC sat down with announcer Charles Barkley and discussed the NCAA, politics and everything in between.
True to form, the basketball Hall of Famer didn’t mince his words.
Barkley, who will be part of the broadcast team airing on CBS and Turner, had a good reason for how March Madness can really make a difference in everyday life.

“I love sports because it takes me away from reality and I tell people, no matter how bad your life is, if you are having problems at home, you are having problems at work, that’s the beauty of sports.”
When applying that principle to the current environment, the NBA great was his usual outspoken self: “If it wasn’t for sports we would have to isolate ourselves in just reality and right now reality sucks.”
In the interview Tuesday, Barkley spoke of the political situation in Washington and the aftermath of President Donald Trump’s election. He also didn’t spare either side of the aisle. Currently, both major parties are sparring over just about everything, including health-care reform and Russia’s accused meddling in the U.S. elections.
“What bothers me the most are the Republicans and the Democrats, they act like little kids,” Barkley said. “They are lying to real people out here trying to get through life. … It’s both parties: They disagree on every single issue and it [angers] me … because their job is to work for us.”
He took offense at their usual approach of showing up “on TV yelling and screaming they are fighting each other” rather than what he expects from them. “They are supposed to take care of people and they are not doing that.”
Barkley didn’t stop there. He denounced Trump’s proposed travel ban as “stupid” and “ridiculous” and lashed out at the way the U.S. is treating immigrants. After suffering several decisive legal rebukes last month, Trump’s revised plan restricts travel from six majority-Muslim countries linked to terrorism and imposes new levels of vetting on refugees.
That is “probably bugging me the most right now,” Barkley said, especially the treatment against people “who have been here many years.”
He also railed against the nation’s divide between rich and poor. “My perspective is never gonna change on that. … We’ve got to do a much better job to take care of poor people, because you cannot put all the poor people in bad neighborhoods send them to bad schools and say good luck in life. That’s just not right.”
Barkley, 54, has undertaken his own efforts to make it better, discussed donations he’s made to three schools: Morehouse, Clark Atlanta University, and Alabama A&M. “I wanted to help historically black colleges,” said Barkley, who is from Alabama.
Asked whether he would run for office himself, he said no. His reason was characteristically blunt: “Because I don’t have time to go to work and argue with fools every day,” said the former member of the Philadelphia 76ers, Phoenix Suns and Houston Rockets.

Eric Chemi
Sr. Editor-at-Large, Data Journalism

Jessica Golden

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The discussion of politics always involves labels of some sort. Each major party has subsets. These subsets can be called anyone of many names i.e. Conservative , moderate, liberal. These are just attributes of the group and the individuals within that group and have nothing to do with Governing. The key to governing is first getting elected. The after of gaining the office is doing what you said if you said something that is possible. To determine what is possible is to research what your goals and the potential outcome will be. It is unfortunate that too many of us are so disenfranchised with the Government for a variety of reasons that we miss the real issues. The real issues are the people we have kept in office too long and thought they had our backs. The reality is that they are ON our backs and will continue that ride until we say stop. If you need a label to cover your belief then I submit that you are depriving yourself of the ability to make rational judgments in elections. Think about the people we elect to Congress: their medical plan is better than most and the ACA has no effect on them (they made sure of that), the economy has no effect on their salary (they made that a law) and they do not have pay for transportation, office help, decorating or supplies. With this in mind-what does a label mean? Its definition in this case is: a short word or phrase descriptive of a person, group, intellectual movement, etc. If you define your beliefs by a label then its possible that you do not really know or understand what you believe. The way I see beliefs as applied to politics is  to disengage from the labels associated with political parties and use your common sense with a healthy dose of skepticism. The skepticism will allow you to stay out the surge of “crowd” thinking and hopefully see the chinks in the armor of   politispeak and rhetoric that sounds good but has no basis in fact. With all of the available information outlets we have access to why would you depend on one or two when you have access to many and thereby have access to a broader view of  the situation. Think of it as watching a football game, the 50 yard line is great but the view is close up so much of the action is unseen. If you are higher up you can see the whole field and get a view of all of the action. The same applies to information you receive.

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The Scammers will never stop trying to get you, so beware of these listed below, rule of thumb: if you do not recognize the number or caller ,let your answering device pick up or do not answer! MA 

10 / 26

Hello Giggles
Gina Florio   16 hrs

There’s nothing more frustrating than eagerly answering a call only to find out it’s a telemarketer or, worse, a scammer. You’d think that as technology gets more and more advanced we could avoid moments like this, but there are plenty of people out there who have found loopholes in the system in order to steal money from innocent people like you. Luckily, there is a way for you to avoid getting roped into these scams. There are some phone calls with certain area codes that you should never pick up under any circumstances.
Joseph Steinberg, CEO of SecureMySocial, lays out some easy guidelines to follow to avoid scammers. First, it’s important to know what their scam game is. These callers essentially call you and either don’t say anything or play disturbing sounds of someone crying for help, all in an attempt to get you to call them back once they hang up. Or they just try to get you to stay on the phone, which will charge you an exorbitant amount of money.
Steinberg says you should never ever call someone back if you happen to pick up this kind of call, but there’s a way to avoid answering the call altogether. And that’s by looking at the area codes of the scam call.
Any phone number that starts with 473 is a surefire sign that the call is a scam. “The name ‘473 scam’ comes from the fact that criminals have been known to use caller IDs with the area code 473–which appears to be domestic, but is actually the area code for the island of Grenada and several other islands outside the United States,” Steinberg writes for Inc.com.
809 is another area code to be wary of, since scammers use this area code from the Caribbean Islands. 900 is another classic one to look out for, since it was one of the first area codes to indicate a suspicious call.
When in doubt, just don’t answer the call and let it go to voicemail. If it’s not a scam and it’s instead someone who needs to speak with you, they’ll leave a message and you can just call them back.
10 signs you’re getting scammed while shopping online
To err on the side of caution, these are the other international area codes with a +1 country code you should avoid.
242 — Bahamas
246 — Barbados
268 — Antigua
284 — British Virgin Islands
345 — Cayman Islands
441 — Bermuda
473 — Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique
649 — Turks and Caicos
664 — Montserrat
721 — Saint Maarten
758 — St. Lucia
767 — Dominica
784 — St. Vincent and Grenadines
809, 829 and 849 — Dominican Republic
868 — Trinidad and Tobago
869 — St. Kitts and Nevis
876 — Jamaica
Remember, it’s always better to be safe than sorry. If you don’t recognize the number, don’t pick it up.

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