Category Archives: Obama

Home ownership increasingly out of reach for U.S. middle class

Home ownership is increasingly out of reach for America’s middle class.

In just one year, the percentage of all homes for sale considered affordable for the middle class has fallen from 62% in 2013 to 59% in 2014.

That’s the finding of a new report by Trulia, an online residential real estate site for home buyers, sellers, renters and real estate professionals.

U.S. home ownership

Mail Online reports, Nov. 21, 2014, that Trulia defines an affordable city as one in which the “total monthly payment, including mortgage, insurance, and property taxes, is less than 31% of the metro area’s median household income.”

By that definition, owning a home is increasingly hard to do for most middle class families.

Other findings in the Trulia report:

  • Most of America’s most affordable cities are around the Great Lakes.
  • Ohio is the state with three cities in the top ten most affordable cities.
  • The two cities where a middle class income is most likely to find you a home are Dayton, Ohio, followed by Rochestor, New York.
  • The least affordable cities tend to be on the coasts, with six on that list being in California.

Trulia economist Jed Kolko said the dream of owning a home is falling out of reach of many Americans: “Homeownership is getting less affordable for the middle class. Unless incomes increase substantially, home ownership will slip further beyond the reach of many households.”

elections have consequences

I’ve been meaning to ask this question to those who had reelected Obama to the presidency in 2012, in particular voters who are in business or in the military or are Christians:

Do you honestly think that if the pro-business and business-experienced, pro-military and military-supported, and Mormon Mitt Romney — who is not perfect — had been elected president, America’s economy, military, and Christianity would be in the sorry state they are today?

And do you honestly think that a President Romney would now be enmeshed in one scandal after another — IRSgate, Grubergate, Benghazigate, VA hospital-gate, Amnestygate, ad nauseum?

Stop being blindly partisan. Try and be honest, for once in your life.

See:

~Eowyn

Wiccan warlock gave invocation at Alabama city council

Huntsville, a historically Christian city in Alabama, with a population of 180,105, has gone Wiccan.

On November 6, 2014, the City Council of Huntsville, Alabama, had a warlock — a Wiccan priest named Blake Kirk — give the invocation at the start of its public meeting.

Warlock Blake Kirk gave invocation at Huntsville City Council meeting

Warlock Blake Kirk gave invocation at Huntsville City Council meeting

Brian Fraga reports for Aleteia that Kirk approached the podium to offer this prayer:

“O gentle goddess and loving god, we thank you for the beauties and the wonders of the day that you have given to us, and for the opportunity we have this evening to assemble here and work together to make Huntsville a better city for all its residents.”

The Huntsville City Council originally had asked warlock Kirk to give an invocation earlier in the summer, but rescinded the invitation after City Call received phone calls from alarmed citizens. Then, the city council changed course and re-invited the warlock because to exclude him would be “discriminatory.”

Although Huntsville, Alabama, historically has been a majority Christian town, like the rest of America, Huntsville residents are becoming less Christian. Recent surveys show that 25% of its residents adhere to non-Christian faiths, including paganism, or no religion.

Beginning in 2012, the the Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) threatend to sue Huntsville if its City Council continued to have invocations that were predominantly given by Christian clergy. FFRF attorney Andrew Seidel said the U.S. Supreme Court has authorized public prayer at government meetings as long as they are open to members of all faiths – “That means they can’t deny atheists the right to come give a message, or satanists. They can’t deny a Wiccan to come give a prayer. Those are important things to us.”

So the Huntsville City Council, in order to ward off accusations of discrimination, asked the local Interfaith Mission Service (IMS) to assemble a rotating schedule of invocation speakers that include Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, even pagans and atheists.

Since when is atheism a religion?

Jeannie Robison, an Episcopal deacon and executive minister of the IMS, said the Huntsville City Council “asked IMS because we are a cooperative of congregations and individuals, and we keep tabs on the community’s religious landscape.”

See also “U.S. Episcopal Church is vicious toward its orthodox believers” and “What those Muslims were chanting at Washington National Cathedral” on America’s premier Episcopal church inviting Muslims to desecrate the Washington National Cathedral.

On Sept. 25, Kelly McCauley, a Huntsville resident and atheist who serves as a board member of the North Alabama Freethought Association, opened the Huntsville City Council’s meeting – the first atheist-led invocation at a government meeting in Alabama. McCauley quoted Thomas Jefferson and highlighted the virtues of wisdom, courage, justice and moderation. Despite his high-minded words, McCauley prefers that public prayers and invocations be done away with altogether: “My belief is that it doesn’t do any good. It doesn’t actually improve anything. And it does actually introduce a sense of divisiveness in the community.”

Seidel echoed McCauley’s position: “We think prayers are entirely unnecessary and divisive at city council chambers. There is absolutely no need for government to be engaging in these prayers.”

In recent months, the Freedom From Religion Foundation has called upon congressional leaders to withdraw their invitation to Pope Francis to address Congress when the Pope visits the United States in 2015. The foundation has also asked two mayors to cancel public plans to welcome the Pontiff, and has requested that congressional leaders hold public hearings into severing the United States’ ambassadorial ties with the Holy See.

Seidel actually mis-cited the U.S. Supreme Court. The court’s decisions on prayer at public government meetings did not impose mandatory diversity schemes where municipalities have to abide by quotas of Christian and non-Christian prayers as the Huntsville City Council is doing.

Brett Harvey, an attorney with the Christian public interest law firm Alliance Defending Freedom, explains: “The government identifies a neutral selection process, and the chips then fall where they fall. If you live in a community dominated by a particular religious perspective, the fact that most prayers would be consistent with that perspective doesn’t indicate that the town is favoring one over anybody else. It just reflects the demographics of the community.”

Harvey was a member of the legal team that defended the town of Greece, N.Y., against a lawsuit from two women who objected to the town’s practice of beginning legislative sessions with Christian prayers.  The case reached the U.S. Supreme Court, which ruled 5-4 in May 2014 that the public prayers did not violate the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment. Justice Anthony Kennedy said the prayers did not coerce participation by nonadherents, “By inviting ministers to serve as chaplains for the month, and welcoming them to the front of the room alongside civic leaders, the town is acknowledging the central place that religion, and religious institutions, hold in the lives of those present.”

Harvey also points to the fact that the courts have recognized the centuries-long tradition in the United States of invoking God at public government meetings. Congress has had a chaplain open its legislative sessions for more than 230 years. God is also invoked when the Supreme Court is called to order.

“It’s part of the tradition because it’s proven to be a benefit for public leaders to humble themselves and ask for divine guidance because they recognize that they may not have all the answers themselves,” said Harvey, who accused groups like the Freedom From Religion Foundation, Americans United for the Separation of Church and State, and the American Civil Liberties Union of waging a campaign to silence public prayers. “If they can’t do that, then they want to impose some sort of obligation to censor public prayer,” Harvey said, adding that the Supreme Court’s rulings prohibit government leaders from censoring prayers or forcing people to give invocations from a perspective apart from their own religious understanding. “So the demands that prayers be purged of any sort of Christian content, or the argument that the government has an obligation to open up meetings to allow anyone and everyone the opportunity to take over the microphone, is simply not true. The Constitution nowhere requires that in any context.

John Buhler, the director of Mission Huntsville, a collaboration of local evangelical churches, said that whether people feel included or not can be a consideration when choosing who will give the invocation. He argued that the issue is not a constitutional matter in that that the Constitution does not require government bodies to seek out all possible religious perspectives for invocations. “If the Council believes it would be best to invite the wisdom, help and blessing of God, it has the right to include an invocation to whomever or whatever the Council believes can provide such. So for me the bigger issue here, and across the land, is whether what has led to this is really the Council’s choice, or if they have been forced to do this by some who say this is what’s required to be constitutional, which is absolutely not the case,” Buhler said.

Here’s contact info for the Huntsville City Council:

256-427-5011 Tel
256-427-5024 FAX

Address:
308 Fountain Circle
7th Floor
Huntsville, Alabama 35801
Pearlie.Stamper@huntsvilleal.gov

Members:
District 1Richard Showers, Sr.
District 2Mark Russell, President
District 3Dr. Jennie Robinson
District 4Bill Kling, Jr.
District 5Will Culver

So when will the Huntsville City Council invite a satanist to give the invocation? Isn’t satanism a religion too?

You members of the City Council make me ill. svomit_100-121

~Eowyn

Who Is Hillary Clinton? by Dick Morris

image

AN ANALYSIS WORTH READING: (and to think about when it is election time….)

by Dick Morris, former political advisor to President Bill Clinton, January, 2014

If you happen to see the Bill Clinton five minute TV ad for Hillary in which he introduces the commercial by saying … he wants to share some things we may not know about Hillary’s background. Beware as I was there for most of their presidency and know them better than just about anyone, I offer a few corrections;

Bill says: “In law school Hillary worked on legal services for the poor.”

The facts are: Hillary’s main extra-curricular activity in law school was helping the Black Panthers, on trial in Connecticut for torturing and killing a federal agent. She went to court every day as part of a law student monitoring committed to trying to spot civil rights violations and develop grounds for appeal.

Bill says: “Hillary spent a year after graduation working on a children’s rights project for poor kids.”

The facts are: Hillary interned with Bob Truehaft, the head of the California Communist Party. She met Bob when he represented the Panthers and traveled all the way to San Francisco to take an internship with him.

Bill says:”Hillary could have written her own job ticket, but she turned down all the lucrative job offers.”

The facts are: She flunked the DC bar exam, yes, flunked, it is a matter of record, and only passed the Arkansas bar.  She had no job offers in Arkansas , none, and only got hired by the University of Arkansas Law School at Fayetteville because Bill was already teaching there. She did not join the prestigious Rose Law Firm until Bill became Arkansas Attorney General and was made a partner only after he was elected Arkansas Governor.

Bill says: “President Carter appointed Hillary to the Legal Services Board of Directors and she became its chairman.”

The facts are: The appointment was in exchange for Bill’s support for Carter in his 1980 primary against Ted Kennedy. Hillary then became chairman in a coup in which she won a majority away from Carter’s choice to be chairman.

Bill says: “She served on the board of the Arkansas Children’s Hospital.”

The facts are: Yes she did. But her main board activity, not mentioned by Bill, was to sit on the Wal-Mart board of directors, for a substantial fee. She was silent about their labor and health care practices.

Bill says: “Hillary didn’t succeed at getting health care for all Americans in 1994 but she kept working at it and helped to create the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) that provides five million children with health insurance.”

The facts are: Hillary had nothing to do with creating CHIP. It was included in the budget deal between Clinton and Republican Majority Leader Senator Trent Lott. I know; I helped to negotiate the deal. The money came half from the budget deal and half from the Attorney Generals’ tobacco settlement. Hillary had nothing to do with either source of funds.

Bill says: “Hillary was the face of America all over the world.”

The facts are: Her visits were part of a program to get her out of town so that Bill would not appear weak by feeding stories that Hillary was running the White House.   Her visits abroad were entirely touristic and symbolic and there was no substantive diplomacy on any of them.

Bill says: “Hillary was an excellent Senator who kept fighting for children’s and women’s issues.”

The facts are: Other than totally meaningless legislation like changing the names on courthouses and post offices, she has passed only four substantive pieces of legislation.

One set up a national park in Puerto Rico . A second provided respite care for family members helping their relatives through Alzheimer’s or other conditions. And two were routine bills to aid 911 victims and responders which were sponsored by the entire NY delegation. Presently she is trying to have the US memorialize the Woodstock fiasco of 40 years ago.

Here is what bothers me more than anything else about Hillary Clinton.

She has done everything possible to weaken the President and our country (that’s you and me!) when it comes to the war on terror.

1. She wants to close GITMO and move the combatants to the USA where they would have access to our legal system.

2. She wants to eliminate the monitoring of suspected Al Qaeda phone calls to/from the USA .

3. She wants to grant constitutional rights to enemy combatants captured on the battlefield.

4. She wants to eliminate the monitoring of money transfers between suspected Al Qaeda cells and supporters in the USA

5. She wants to eliminate the type of interrogation tactics used by the military & CIA where coercion might be used when questioning known terrorists even though such tactics might save American lives.

One cannot think of a single bill Hillary has introduced or a single comment she has made that would tend to strengthen our country in the War on Terror.

But, one can think of a lot of comments she has made that weaken our country and makes it a more dangerous situation for all of us.

Bottom line:

She goes hand in hand with the ACLU on far too many issues where common sense is abandoned.

See also:

http://fellowshipoftheminds.com/2014/11/21/arkansas-state-trooper-bill-and-hillary-clinton-are-swingers/

Prominent homosexual rights activist and democratic fundraiser Terry Bean indicted in 2013 case involving a 15-year-old boy

Bean and Obama

Bean and Obama

Oregon Live: Detectives from the Portland police Sex Crimes Unit arrested Portland developer Terrence Patrick Bean on Wednesday on a Lane County indictment stemming from alleged sex abuse involving a teenage boy in 2013.

Bean, 66, a prominent gay rights activist and major Democratic Party fundraiser, was arrested at his home in Southwest Portland and booked into the Multnomah County Detention Center at 10:12 a.m. The indictment charges Bean with two counts of third-degree sodomy, a felony, and one count of third-degree sex abuse, a misdemeanor, police said. Bean, who bailed out of jail by late Wednesday afternoon, will be arraigned on the indictment in Lane County.

Detectives in Portland’s Sex Crime Unit are the lead investigators in the case and have been working closely with the Clackamas County and Lane County district attorneys’ offices.

The alleged incident involved a sexual encounter in Eugene with a 15-year-old boy. Another person alleged to have been involved in that encounter is also expected to face arrest as part of the indictment.

“The investigation began in Portland, but the criminal episode occurred in Lane County,” said police spokesman Sgt. Pete Simpson. Lane County Chief Deputy District Attorney Patricia Perlow declined to release any information about the case or the indictment.

Bean (c) with prominent sodomite Dan Savage (l)

Bean (c) with prominent sodomite Dan Savage (l)

Bean has been one of the state’s biggest Democratic donors and an influential figure in gay rights circles in the state. He helped found two major national political groups, the Human Rights Campaign and the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund, and has been a major contributor for several Democratic presidential candidates, including Barack Obama. He’s also a close friend of former Gov. Barbara Roberts.

Bean’s lawyer, Kristen Winemiller, said in a statement that Bean has cooperated with the investigation, adding that it’s her client who was the “victim of an extortion ring” by several men. Winemiller released this statement: “Terry Bean is a highly respected community leader who has devoted his life to bettering our community. Over the course of several months in 2013-2014 Terry was the victim of an extortion ring led by several men known to law enforcement. This current arrest is connected to the ongoing investigation of that case in which Mr. Bean has fully cooperated. No allegations against Terry Bean should be taken at face value. We look forward to the opportunity to clear his name.”

The Willamette Week did a cover story in June on Bean about a “love affair gone wrong,” and allegations that he had videotaped his encounters with former boyfriends.

Bean’s Flickr account shows him talking with Obama at several events, posing with first lady Michelle Obama and numerous other political figures, including former President Bill Clinton.  A blog post from his sister, Sue Surdam Bean, detailed her brother’s work on a July 24, 2012 Obama fundraiser in PortlandShe included three photos of Terry Bean’s ride on Air Force One with Obama to a subsequent event in Seattle.

Bean (l) with Barney Frank (r) and his homosexual lover Ready (c)

Bean (l) with Barney Frank (r) and his homosexual lover Ready (c)

At 4:22 p.m., Bean bailed out of the downtown Portland jail, posting 10 percent, or $5,000 of his $50,000 bail, according to jail records.

Turns out that Bean’s (age 66) former boyfriend (age 25) was also arrested:

Bean (l) and former boyfriend Lawson (r)

Bean (l) and former boyfriend Lawson (r)

The former boyfriend of Terrence P. Bean was arrested early Thursday on sex abuse charges stemming from the same alleged 2013 encounter with a 15-year-old boy at a hotel in Eugene.

Kiah Loy Lawson, 25, was arrested at 1:15 a.m. at the Portland Police Bureau’s Central Precinct and booked into the Multnomah County Detention Center shortly after 2 a.m. He’s accused of third-degree sodomy and third-degree sexual abuse.

DCG

As President Lucifer announces his amnesty plan…

misguided_mercy

…ask yourself, “Is this act of mercy just a bit misguided?”

uac-middleschoolers-2

Oh, and don’t bother calling the White House. They’ve been told not to relay messages to him when he’s golfing.

ms-13_victim

If the “unaccompanied minors” seem a bit displeased with your American prosperity, don’t bother Congress; they’re not listening.

Your best bet is to contact your representatives at:

Jon Gruber who thinks Americans are stupid made nearly $2M from Obamacare

jonathan-gruber

Jonathan Gruber is an MIT economics professor who was the architect of Romneycare in Massachusetts and a key architect of Obamacare, aka the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

But both Gruber and the Obama administration kept his work on Obamacare a secret, and instead portrayed him as merely an independent economist who supports Obamacare. Gruber was frequently quoted by journalists and lawmakers who did not know of his connection to the administration; nor did Gruber disclose his connection when writing opinion articles. To this day, Obama denies Gruber’s role in formulating Obamacare or even that he knows the economist at all. (See “Obama lies again: Jon Gruber never worked for me“)

Thanks to Rich Weinstein, a Philadelphia investment adviser, Gruber has now been exposed, not only for his role in crafting Obamacare, but more importantly for his arrogant and contemptuous declarations — captured on video — that Obamacare INTENTIONALLY was written in a tortured and confusing way so as to conceal the law’s true costs from the American people who are too stupid to understand the law anyway, a stupidity “that was really, really critical to get this thing to pass.” 

Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) told Fox News’s “On the Record” on Nov. 12, 2014, that Gruber was paid almost $400,000 ($392,600 to be exact) by the federal government for his “consulting” work in crafting Obamacare.

But it turns out $400,000 is a gross understatement of Jon Gruber’s earnings from Obamacare. After the bill became law, he made a good deal more — 463% more.

Obamacare exchange

Byron York reports for Washington Examiner, Nov. 16, 2014, that when Obamacare became law, many states had to set up online “exchanges” by which individuals and small businesses can compare policies and purchase the now-mandatory health insurance (with a government subsidy if eligible).

Those exchanges would have to be built from the ground up. Studies would have to be done. And Gruber — who had designed Obamacare to begin with — was just the man to do the job. The Charleston Daily Mail in September 2012 even called Gruber “a policy rock star.”

Below are Jonathan Gruber’s earnings for his work as a consultant on Obamacare, both before and after it became law:

1. In 2009, as Obamacare was moving its way through Senate committees, Gruber was a paid consultant to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on two contracts — one in March for $95,000 to work on the project; and the second in June for $297,600 to continue that work. Altogether, Gruber received a total of $392,600 from HHS. 

2. In 2010, the state of Wisconsin, under Democratic Gov. Jim Doyle, paid Gruber $400,000 to do a study of the impact of healthcare reform. By the time Gruber finished his report, however, Republican Scott Walker had been elected governor and wasn’t much interested in using Gruber’s study.

3. In 2011-2013, the state of Minnesota paid Gruber $329,000 to study how to make its exchange conform with Obamacare requirements.

4. In November 2011, the state of Vermont hired a consulting firm that paid Gruber at least $91,875 to study the state exchange. 

5. In 2012, the state of West Virginia signed a contract for $121,500 with Gruber to study its healthcare system.

6. In 2012, the state of Michigan included Gruber in a multi-firm, $481,050 contract to study its exchange system. It’s not clear how much of that went to Gruber himself.

Altogether, Jon Gruber was paid $1,816,025 from federal and state governments. If we exclude item #6 above, at a minimum, Gruber still made a whopping $1,334,975 for his “consultant” work on Obamacare — a bill that he intentionally designed to be confusing so that those stupid American people wouldn’t know what’s in it, which would enable those stupid Congress critters to pass the bill, many if not all of whom didn’t even bother to read the bill before they passed it into law. And then after the bill became law, Gruber then made even more money — 4.63 times more than what he was paid for crafting Obamacare — for his “consultancy” to state governments on how to make the deliberately-confusing law work.

Obamacare Screw U

But to say that Jonathan Gruber was paid $1,334,975 to $1,816,025 by the federal (HHS) and state governments is really a misnomer.

In the end, it was the American taxpayers who paid Jonathan Gruber nearly $2 million dollars — those same “stupid American people” who are too stupid to understand Gruber’s deliberately-confusing “health care” law.

This is what Obamacare is about, from the beginning. Don’t say we hadn’t warned you.

Who's exempt from Obamacare

~Eowyn

Waiting for Ferguson grand jury, St. Louis buys guns and prepares for worst

People in St. Louis, Missouri, are preparing for the worst as they await the grand jury’s decision in the police shooting death of 300-lb. Michael Brown on August 9, 2014, in Ferguson, a suburb of St. Louis.

The shooting of the black 18-year-old by white officer Darren Wilson had sparked looting and weeks of sometimes-violent protests all through the month of August. Fearing for his life, Officer Wilson has been in hiding on paid leave ever since the shooting.

ferguson-market-looting

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On Monday, Missouri Governor Jay Nixon declared a state of emergency and called out the National Guard in advance of the decision by the grand jury.

Gun shops in the St. Louis area reportedly are selling everything they can get their hands on.

Metro Shooting Supplies, near the city’s main airport, is selling two to three times more weapons than usual in recent weeks — an average of 30 to 50 guns each day. Owner Steven King said, “We’re selling everything that’s not nailed down. Police aren’t going to be able to protect every single individual. If you don’t prepare yourself and get ready for the worst, you have no one to blame but yourself.”

Other gun dealers say their sales spikes are comparable to the increases seen soon after Brown’s death on Aug. 9. County Guns owner Adam Weinstein said, “I’ve probably sold more guns this past month than all of last year.” Last summer, Weinstein had fended off looters with an assault rifle and pistol at his storefront on West Florissant Avenue, the roadway that was the scene of many nightly protests.

Many commenters on the “St. Louis Coptalk” forum expressed fears that demonstrators will take to the streets regardless of the grand jury’s decision. A man who calls himself “A Concerned [Ferguson] Cop” issued a warning to the community to protect their families with firearms:

If you do not have a gun, get one and get one soon. We will not be able to protect you or your family. It will be your responsibility to protect them. Our gutless commanders and politicians have neutered us. I’m serious, get a gun, get more than one, and keep one with you at all times.”

While the commenter’s status as a police officer cannot be confirmed, his warning is neither alarmist nor preposterous. None other than the FBI had released an intelligence bulletin stating a grand jury decision “will likely be exploited by some individuals to justify threats and attacks against law enforcement and critical infrastructure.”

Indeed, the protest group RbG Black Rebels tweeted a stream of violent online posts saying “We are paying $5k cash for location of Ofc. Darren Wilson. Real $, no joke, no crime we just wana get his photo an ask him a few questions,” and boasting of “combat experience,” “stockpiling” ammunition, cleaning out gun stores and being #WarReady. 

RbG Black Rebels tweet
It doesn’t help that Muslims are exploiting the Ferguson unrest by equating Brown’s death to the death of a black radical Islamist, Detroit mosque leader Imam Luqman Ameen Abdullah, who was shot during an FBI raid in 2009.

Luqman Ameen Abdullah, b. Christopher Thomas in 1956

Luqman Ameen Abdullah, b. Christopher Thomas in 1956

Federal prosecutors say Abdullah was a separatist intent on overthrowing the U.S. government. But Dawud Walid, executive director of CAIR’s Michigan Chapter, calls Abdullah a martyr and portrays both Abdullah and Brown as victims of a national security apparatus that had “completely gone wild” and engaged in “demonizing and criminalizing Muslims.” (Michael Brown was not a Muslim. He was buried in August after a memorial service at the Friendly Temple Missionary Baptist Church in St. Louis.)

Kyle Shideler, director of the Washington-based watchdog group Center for Security Policy’s Threat Information Office, says that CAIR and other radical Muslims are “interested in building coalitions with other organizations in order to effect a legislative change to weaken anti-terrorism laws and weaken the ability of law enforcement to engage in counter terrorism.”

Sources: Bearing Arms; CBS St. Louis; New York Times, Daily Mail; Fox News

See also:

~Eowyn