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Monthly Archives: March 2018


The Resident has reached a new high in trying to achieve his agenda and as usual uses any misinformation he is told. His favorite target is still President Obama. The recent stretch is regarding 100 plus Judicial vacancies. These vacancies are primarily the fault of the Congressional majority and its leader Bitch McConnell, McConnell if we recall stated publicly that “this President (Obama) will be a one term President and to that end not much legislation submitted by President Obama got passed few Judicial appointments were approved. This is the party of President Trump. As a voter the actions of the current majority party and it Titular heads should enrage you. The current administration and the Congressional leaders have their own agendas and we as voters are not part of it. It is wise to remember that for many years most of our “representatives” on both sides have become increasingly self-indulgent and lie to us when election time comes. We now have the ultimate punishment :Donald Trump as President (in his mind Emperor). The effects of this Presidency will be chaos for a number of years and if we do not oust the current Congressional leaders we will fare no better. Forget the rhetoric, the tweets and finger-pointing. Pay attention to the actual facts, get these facts by reading a variety of publications because that’s where the truth lies. The entertainment “news” is merely the unilateral opinions of people who do not share your interests and are seeking ratings rather than the truth. If we ignore the activities of this administration and the long serving Congress we are doomed to have the same poor Governance we have now.

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If this is an example of the Evangelicals or Religious folks who support Totus, then many of us are going to “Hell in a Handbasket” . This rant by a “man of the Cloth” is clear that aside from a possible self proclaimed Ministerial cloak, Pastor Locke appears to be no more than an attention seeking Trumpian: I have included the Pastor’s FB information so you can decide what or who he is:

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Launched on November 5, 2014

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Preaching, Cycling, Mountain Biking, Reading, Missions, Church Planting, Stewardship, Homeless Ministry, Leadership, Vision Casting, Generosity

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@pastorlocke

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Affiliation
Global Vision Bible Church

About
The Official Facebook page for Pastor Greg Locke. He’s the Lead Pastor @ Global Vision Bible Church in Mt. Juliet, TN and a sought after conference speaker

Biography
Since 1992, Pastor Greg Locke has travelled around the world preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ. In 2006 he became the Founding and Lead Pastor of Global Vision Church

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Gillian Edevane
Newsweek•March 27, 2018

Pastor Says If Jesus Supported ‘Demon Possessed Traitor,’ Evangelicals Can Support Trump
Prominent Pro-Trump evangelicals have sounded off on the Stormy Daniels controversy in recent days, with many vowing to continue supporting the president despite an alleged affair with the adult film star.
Tennessee pastor Greg Locke, who made headlines last year for a viral rant against gay people, shared his rationalization for supporting the blustery business mogul with his 30,000 followers and 1.5 million Facebook followers.
“People are like ‘If you support Trump you can’t be a Christian,'” Locke tweeted.
“Do y’all listen when you talk? Jesus hired a demon possessed traitor to handle his money for 3 years. He can use the President if He so desires. Take a seat people.”

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 The ongoing Trump influence again shows no pretense of correctness even in areas that “like” him.MA

Newsweek

Nicole Goodkind

2 hrs ago 

President Donald Trump won Republican-friendly Texas by nine points in 2016, securing his path to the White House and the GOP’s hold over Washington. But now this ruby red state, with its mélange of arid landscapes, oversized steaks and cosmopolitan cities brimming with people from around the world, could lose representation in Congress and billions of federal dollars because of a Trump administration decision to add a question about citizenship status to the U.S. Census in 2020.

The change, instated by Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross Monday night, would bring back a question last seen in the 1950s. Ross claims the citizenship question will be used to increase data and prevent voter discrimination. But detractors argue the shift is intended to scare immigrants and prevent them from participating, and it’s the voters in Texas, many of whom backed Trump, who could be among the hardest hit.

Once the new federal survey lands, Texas, a state that already exceeds the national average for low Census response scores, could face new obstacles in accurately representing its population, a figure that determines Congressional representation and federal funding. A vocal group of bipartisan critics say that questions about citizenship would dissuade a large percentage of legal and undocumented Texas residents from answering the Census, which is used to calculate the state’s official population. There are nearly five million immigrants living in Texas, and more than half of them are undocumented or live with someone who is. 

An undercount of Texas’s immigrant population could lead to underrepresentation in Congress, less federal funding for citizens still recovering from Hurricane Harvey and fewer Congressional districts, which could stymie the so-called blue wave of Democrats winning office in the typically Republican state.

The new Census question “will scare away millions of people in our country from participating, skewing the results and costing Texas billions of dollars in federal funds over the next 10 years,” said U.S. Representative Joaquín Castro, a Democrat representing parts of San Antonio and Austin, in email to Newsweek.

Texas is one of a handful states slated to gain seats in Congress after the 2020 Census count, in part because of its growing immigrant community. In 2010, the state added four new seats fueled largely by a 42 percent growth in its Hispanic population.

“Texas was supposed to pick up three seats in Congress after the next Census and this decision could cost us one of those,” said Castro.

Funding and representation often go hand-in-hand, and an undercount could limit both. The Census is used by the federal government to allocate more than $675 billion in federal funds annually for health, welfare, infrastructure and other federal services. Nearly 600,000 undocumented immigrants reside in Houston alone.

“While our immigrant communities include both documented and undocumented, today’s anti-immigrant rhetoric can only suppress an accurate Census count–in Houston and across our country,” Margaret Wallace Brown, deputy director for the Houston Planning and Development Department, told the U.S. Conference of Mayors in January. Brown expressed concern about “the diaspora of Houstonians flooded out of their homes and businesses due to Hurricane Harvey. The interruption of established social and community networks will further complicate an accurate count.”

An undercount could mean “a loss of millions in resources for health care, public education, infrastructure and transportation, disaster relief and preparedness, and the distribution of billions in federal funds critical to projects in Texas,” said U.S. Representative Beto O’Rourke, a Democrat from El Paso running for the Senate against incumbent Ted Cruz, in email to Newsweek.

Cruz, who was born in Canada and maintains hardline anti-immigration views, was part of a group that recommended the additional Census question to the Department of Commerce. The senator called the question a “reasonable, common-sense addition” to the Census in a group statement with Republican Senators Tom Cotton, of Arkansas, and Jim Inhofe, of Oklahoma Monday night. “It is imperative that the data gathered in the Census is reliable, given the wide-ranging impacts it will have on U.S. policy,” Cruz added.

Democrats argue that the citizenship question would undermine a growing left-leaning populace that Democrats are hoping can turn Texas from a deeply red to purple state. In Texas’s three largest counties, Democratic primary voters outnumbered Republicans in 2018, a significant change from 2014 when the opposite was true.

“This change is purely political,” said Ryan Robinson, Austin City demographer who has worked through four decennial Censuses, to Newsweek. “There’s nothing we’re going to gain from an efficiency standpoint. This is all about Democrats versus Republicans.”

Immigrants tend to congregate in cities, which largely vote Democratic in Texas. But having fewer Congressional districts representing these population centers, “will slow the march toward purple; this will be a step or two backwards,” said Robinson.

Democrats also fear that Texas Republicans will use the new data to redraw Congressional districts to limit the power of immigrant voters, who tend to lean left.

“Beyond decade-long impacts on Texas families, it will also work in tandem with gerrymandering to erode the voting rights of those in our state and threaten our representation in the Federal government,” said O’Rourke.

Outrage around the issue, however, could work in Democrats’ favor ahead of the November midterm elections. American Bridge, a progressive group that supports Democratic candidates, says the change would fuel voter turnout among Latino and other immigrant groups. “This cowardly attack on the Constitution and the democratic process is an attempt by Donald Trump to sell Texas and a host of other states short, denying them the federal dollars that they deserve,” said spokesperson Andrew Bates to Newsweek. “Keeping this bigoted dog whistle of a question from being part of the 2020 Census is yet another reason the American public will vote for a Democratic Congress in November.”

Ross defended the addition of the question, saying that the value of the data would outweigh any underrepresentation. “Secretary Ross carefully considered the argument that the reinstatement of the citizenship question on the decennial Census would depress response rate,” a Department of Commerce spokesperson told Newsweek. “Secretary Ross found that the need for accurate citizenship data and the limited burden that the reinstatement of the citizenship question would impose outweigh fears about a potentially lower response rate.”

But a letter circulated internally at the U.S. Census bureau in September showed that the government workers had found that asking about citizenship caused fear and could possibly reduce the response rate of immigrants. There had been a “recent increase in respondents spontaneously expressing concerns about confidentiality in some of our pretesting studies conducted in 2017,” the memo said, referring to the American Community Survey, an ongoing Census survey that already collects data about citizenship status.

Adding a question to the Census less than two years before 2020 is irresponsible, said Lloyd Potter, former Texas state demographer and director of the Texas State Data Center at the University of Texas San Antonio. “We’ve been working on these questions for a decade and to all of a sudden put a question out there that hasn’t been tested is unprecedented,” he told Newsweek. The Census typically needs about five years to accurately test the impacts and validity of a question, he said.

“The Census is a huge logistic problem and the bureau is very good at systematically developing methods and testing them, and to throw something so rushed into this very structured and well-regulated process is my biggest concern,” said Potter.

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By Susan McFarland | March 27, 2018 at 12:20 PM

March 27 (UPI) — Former Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens weighed in on gun violence in the United States Tuesday, by calling for the end of the Second Amendment — the guaranteed right to bear arms.
In an op-ed published in The New York Times, Stevens said the students and demonstrators who demonstrated over the weekend should seek a repeal of the controversial constitutional amendment.
“That simple but dramatic action would move Saturday’s marchers closer to their objective than any other possible reform,” Stevens wrote. “It would eliminate the only legal rule that protects sellers of firearms in the United States — unlike every other market in the world. It would make our schoolchildren safer than they have been since 2008 and honor the memories of the many, indeed far too many, victims of recent gun violence.”
The former justice said the Second Amendment has been misinterpreted for decades and extended beyond its original intent, which was to enable citizens to form militias in the face of potential government tyranny. He said repealing the provision would reduce gun violence.
Stevens — a Republican appointed to the bench by President Gerald Ford who served from 1975 until his retirement in 2010 — referred to his dissent with the high court’s opinion in District of Columbia v. Heller, a 2008 case that ultimately upheld an individual’s right to possess a firearm for home self-defense.
“That decision — which I remain convinced was wrong and certainly was debatable — has provided the [National Rifle Association] with a propaganda weapon of immense power,” Stevens wrote.
The former justice has received some pushback over his controversial viewpoint.
“You may have been a Supreme Court Justice and I may just be a small voice for freedom but you sir should be ashamed of yourself,” NRA television host Grant Stinchfield said. “Your words and ultimate wish list is a disgrace to America.”
“Stevens has a right to express his views even though wrong,” Senator John Cornyn, R-Texas, tweeted.
Adam Winkler, a UCLA law professor, argued that such a repeal would do little to change U.S. gun laws, especially in states that are resistant to gun control.
“The Second Amendment is not a barrier to enacting good gun laws,” he wrote. “The NRA is. It’s the politics of guns that control our gun laws, not the law of the Second Amendment.”
Earlier this month, the Department of Justice announced a series of actions intended to support President Donald Trump’s plan to prevent school shootings.
The package of directives focuses on enforcing laws already in place and asks states and other federal agencies to help strengthen the firearm purchase background check system.

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Here it is again!: Mitch McConnell is getting himself or his GOP set for re-election or election this year. He is pushing for Marijuana legalization to pose as more liberal than he is. His MO is always the same: look our Mitch! He advocated for coal with lies about Obama killing coal jobs which were already dead and gone, he has purposely kept quiet on his part in passing the tax reform(?) and the recent spending bill. He and Paul (miscreant) Ryan have conspired to do their dirty work by allowing the “Resident” to rant and rave about anything he wants without comment. They allowed certain Democratic add ons in the spending bill to cover themselves. Essentially they are still the same old neer do wells they have always been. It is time to put your voting power to work and get new people elected no matter what party as long as they are moderate (which means they will work with the other side.MA

BRUCE SCHREINER,

Associated Press 16 minutes ago

Wisconsin taking applications to grow industrial hemp
FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — The U.S. Senate’s top leader said Monday he wants to bring hemp production back into the mainstream by removing it from the controlled substances list that now associates it with its cousin — marijuana.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told hemp advocates in his home state of Kentucky that he will introduce legislation to legalize the crop as an agricultural commodity. The versatile crop has been grown on an experimental basis in a number of states in recent years.
“It’s now time to take the final step and make this a legal crop,” McConnell said.
Kentucky has been at the forefront of hemp’s comeback. Kentucky agriculture officials recently approved more than 12,000 acres (4,856 hectares) to be grown in the state this year, and 57 Kentucky processors are helping turn the raw product into a multitude of products.
Growing hemp without a federal permit has long been banned due to its classification as a controlled substance related to marijuana. Hemp and marijuana are the same species, but hemp has a negligible amount of THC, the psychoactive compound that gives marijuana users a high.
Hemp got a limited reprieve with the 2014 federal Farm Bill, which allows state agriculture departments to designate hemp projects for research and development. So far, 34 states have authorized hemp research, while actual production occurred in 19 states last year, said Eric Steenstra, president of the advocacy group Vote Hemp. Hemp production totaled 25,541 acres (10,336 hectares) in 2017, more than double the 2016 output, he said.
The crop, which once thrived in Kentucky, was historically used for rope but has many other uses, including clothing and mulch from the fiber, hemp milk and cooking oil from the seeds, and soap and lotions. Other uses include building materials, animal bedding and biofuels.
Hemp advocates fighting for years to restore the crop’s legitimacy hailed McConnell’s decision to put his political influence behind the effort to make it a legal crop again.
“This is a huge development for the hemp industry,” Steenstra said. “Sen. McConnell’s support is critical to helping us move hemp from research and pilot programs to full commercial production.”
Brian Furnish, an eighth-generation tobacco farmer in Kentucky, has started making the switch to hemp production. His family will grow about 300 acres (120 hectares) of hemp this year in Harrison County. He’s also part owner of a company that turns hemp into food, fiber and dietary supplements.
Furnish said hemp has the potential to rival or surpass what tobacco production once meant to Kentucky.
“All we’ve got to do is the government get out of the way and let us grow,” he told reporters.
McConnell acknowledged there was “some queasiness” about hemp in 2014 when federal lawmakers cleared the way for states to regulate it for research and pilot programs. There’s much broader understanding now that hemp is a “totally different” plant than its illicit cousin, he said.
“I think we’ve worked our way through the education process of making sure everybody understands this is really a different plant,” the Republican leader said.
McConnell said he plans to have those discussions with Attorney General Jeff Sessions to emphasize the differences between the plants. The Trump administration has taken a tougher stance on marijuana.
The Department of Justice’s press office did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment.
McConnell said his bill will attract a bipartisan group of co-sponsors. He said the measure would allow states to have primary regulatory oversight of hemp production if they submit plans to federal agriculture officials outlining how they would monitor production.
“We’re going to give it everything we’ve got to pull it off,” he said.
In Kentucky, current or ex-tobacco farmers could easily make the conversion to hemp production, Furnish said. Equipment and barns used for tobacco can be used to produce hemp, he said. Tobacco production dropped sharply in Kentucky amid declining smoking rates.
Furnish said his family has reaped profits of about $2,000 per acre for hemp grown for dietary supplements, better than what they’ve made from tobacco, he said.
Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles, whose great-grandfather grew hemp for rope to support the war effort in the 1940s, said he hopes hemp’s legalization can “open the floodgates and we can see the true potential of this crop.”
“We hope to position Kentucky to maximize the benefit of this crop once legalized, so the economic activity stays right here,” he said.

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Michelle Obama Just Perfectly Summed Up the Hypocrisy of the GOP
March 25, 2018 by Lisa Peterson
First Published: September 22, 2017
If anyone is going to expertly shred the current administration without so much as a single mention of our president’s name, you can bet that it’s going to be Michelle Obama.
Speaking at a Sept. 22 tech conference in Utah, the former first lady answered questions in an hour-long moderated conversation that shed light on her true feelings about the current state of American politics. As initially reported by the Salt Lake City Tribune, Mrs. Obama took the opportunity to address the flaws she sees in the nationalist, “America-first” rhetoric that’s played a central role in Donald Trump’s rise to power. “We live in a big country and a big world,” she said before noting that her husband’s White House was one built on hope while the current administration is one built on fear.
Obama also expertly called out the hypocrisy that often surrounds the conservative discourse on health care. “You can’t just want to help someone in a hurricane and not make sure they can go to the doctor when they’re sick,” she said to an audience over 1,000 people. But while it’s refreshing to hear Michelle Obama’s take on our current political climate, she also made it very clear that she’s not interested in a run for office anytime soon. When a member of the crowd shouted out that Obama should run for president, she was quick to shut it down. “That’s still shocking. Like, what?” Obama said, adding, “Are you kidding me? No”
Even if Michelle Obama isn’t ready to run for president yet, we can only hope that she throws her wit and sass into helping to get one of these highly qualified women into office in 2020.


Why does it take a large event to focus on the failings of our Congress and the current (lack of) administration? We already know we do not have a  national leader in the “normal” sense yet many of us have not turned the corner and understand that our Resident is lost. The packing of his cabinet with supporters and adorers is a huge red flag that should enrage us all. The idea of a cabinet is to have people who hopefully have integrity and an ability to do the work or learn to do the work. The current cabinet is staffed with folks who are not in it for the service but more for themselves and Resident. Unfortunately there appears to be no “public” in their public service. The Resident in under fire for current and past transgressions yet he was elected to lead (?) us. This leadership is steeped in entertainment style activities designed to get ratings instead of accomplishing the work of the people. If the many pronouncements, announcements and campaign (still) meetings are not an indication of the mismanagement of the office and are not offensive to you then perhaps we are not sure. Not one of us will ever be completely satisfied with whatever administration is in but there is usually some rationality in it’s actions. This administration along with a neer do well Congress are not putting their best foot forward. It appears to be more of a foot in the mouth.

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In the Movie: Hunt For Red October, Richard Jordan’s Character NSA director Jeffrey Pelt stated to Jack Ryan: “Listen, I’m a politician which means I’m a cheat and a liar, and when I’m not kissing babies I’m stealing their lollipops. But it also means I keep my options open”. This sums up our own political system at this time or possibly for a long time before now, except this administration keeps no options open. While there will always be some subterfuge and unspoken information from the government (from local to Federal) and I believe most us understand that, whether we like it or not. The above quote seems more resonant now and probably has been the case for the last 20 years, the difference now is that media coverage has put the lies out faster than ever. This being the situation, isn’t it on the shoulders of the citizens to examine the various outlets to garner the truth rather follow one line of thought with impunity and be terribly misinformed? We now have the Resident who has what appears to be a revolving door on the oval office. This “swap out” of personnel  seems to be a quest for the perfect set of folks who will agree with the Resident no matter what he says or does. This is not how Government is run. Our majority Congress appears to be afraid to stand against the obvious actions that could bring us to the brink of war and isolation. Meanwhile the major source for the Resident’s information (Faux News) has become his go to for White House advisors. The Extreme conservative contributors of the same News system are now espousing a trend toward impeachment for the President. This indicates that the extremists on the right are not happy and it begs to wonder  how it will affect the actions of the already volatile Residents actions. This could very well prove to be a watershed years for this administration with the revolving door method of staffing. The world is watching that includes allies and enemies alike while we wait for the other shoe to drop.

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2016 brought significant changes for some wrong reasons. The ascension of TOTUS to the head of our government was part of an unplanned and possibly unwanted event. The promises of “draining the Swamp”, “Make America Great Again” resonated  and created a backlash to the normal abnormalities of a major election. The poor performance perceived and real of the past administrations are merely cover-up’s of the real government problems which are firmly entrenched in the Congress. These are the folks who can and should have for years  kept America Great. These seat fillers have singlehandedly crushed the American productivity by ignoring the issues that needed work just because of Party politics. The current Resident is just a byproduct of our allowing then to do what they please without our approval since they do their dirty business in the back halls of the Congress. The televised activities are just window dressing. If you have ever looked at C-span, you will notice that it is dull and boringly  hard to watch. Some of you may remember when the idea of cameras in the Congressional chambers was debated with enough back and forth to arouse the public, then subsequently allowed. At that point the real trouble started, the real business went underground ( into the back halls) and we heard about the resolution of these issues after they were decided and  “stamped” with our approval without our approval. This election season demands that we as voters pay close attention to the candidates and ignore the now regularly occurring name calling and false statements that appear so regularly in the media. You might do well to remember what the “Citizens United” judgement has allowed in campaign financing. I have inserted a short explanation of that below:      Citizens United v. FEC

“Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission, 558 U.S. 310, is a landmark U.S. constitutional law, campaign finance, and corporate law case dealing with regulation of political campaign spending by organizations. The United States Supreme Court held on January 21, 2010 that the free speech clause of the First Amendment to the Constitution prohibits the government from restricting independent expenditures for communications by nonprofit corporations, for-profit corporations, labor unions, and other associations.”

Simply put this allows organizations to spend millions to elect or keep someone in office.

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Adam Levine-Weinberg, The Motley Fool, Motley Fool 11 hours ago
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