Y‘all may regret that decision, ladies.
From Entertainment Weekly: Women who worked with Al Franken on Saturday Night Live are stepping out to support him — 36 “SNL Women,” to be exact.
The comic-turned-senator, who spent a total of 15 years on the series as a writer and performer, faced sexual misconduct accusations by KABC radio anchor Leeann Tweeden last week, who claimed Franken groped her and kissed her without consent during a USO tour in 2006, and even released a photo of Franken appearing to be grabbing her breasts while she was sleeping. Franken has since apologized and Tweeden accepted it, and now, his former colleagues are speaking out in solidarity with him.
“We feel compelled to stand up for Al Franken, whom we have all had the pleasure of working with over the years on Saturday Night Live (SNL),” begins a statement signed by the 36 women, including Not Ready for Prime Time Players Jane Curtin and Laraine Newman. “What Al did was stupid and foolish, and we think it was appropriate for him to apologize to Ms. Tweeden, and to the public. In our experience, we know Al as a devoted and dedicated family man, a wonderful comedic performer, and an honorable public servant. That is why we are moved to quickly and directly affirm that after years of working with him, we would like to acknowledge that not one of us ever experienced any inappropriate behavior; and mention our sincere appreciation that he treated each of us with the utmost respect and regard.”
Last weekend’s episode of Saturday Night Live didn’t exactly go easy on Franken. “Now, I know this photo looks bad, but remember — it also is bad,” Colin Jost quipped during Weekend Update, later adding, “Sure, this was taken before Franken ran for public office, but it was also taken after he was a sophomore in high school. It’s pretty hard to be like, ‘Oh, come on, he didn’t know anything — he was only 55.’”
I believe the womyn supporting Franken wrote this letter before pictures surfaced of Franken groping Arianna Huffington during a photo shoot. Oops…
AFP Photo / Justin Sullivan
The 11 largest drug companies have made $711 billion in profits in just a decade, largely due to overcharging Medicare, which does not seek out competitive prices and uses taxpayer funds to support Big Pharma.
Since Medicare is prohibited from purchasing drugs based on their cost, its prescription drug program has been making large payouts to drug companies that have overcharged the program for years, according to an analysis by Health Care for America Now (HCAN).
“There is nothing wrong with a company making profits – that’s what their supposed to do. But the drug industry’s profits are excessive as a result of overcharging American consumers and taxpayers,” writes Ethan Rome, executive director of HCAN, for the Huffington Post. “We pay significantly more than any other country for the exact same drugs.”
Rome notes that per capita drug spending in the US is 40 percent higher than in Canada, 75 percent greater than in Japan, and nearly 300 percent greater than Denmark.
The 11 largest global prescription drug companies have skyrocketed since the Medicare Part D prescription drug program was launched in 2006. The government health program enables seniors and the disabled to buy taxpayer-subsidized coverage for many of the most widely disseminated medicines. But Medicare is prohibited from negotiating prices with pharmaceutical companies or seeking out more cost-effective drugs, thereby costing seniors, the disabled and American taxpayers billions of dollars more than some argue the drugs are worth.
Some lawmakers have recently urged Congress to consider changing the law, for the sake of cutting unnecessarily high costs. Wisconsin Democratic State Senator Jon Erpenbach told Wisconsin Public Radio that his state could save $1.2 billion over ten years if Congress were to allow Medicare to partake in prescription drug negotiations.
“I understand that pharmaceutical companies are for-profit companies,” he told the station last week. “I understand there’s a lot of research and development that goes into the products that they produce. All of that being said, it shouldn’t cost us more to get that kind of pharmaceuticals we need to have.”
But according to the HCAN analysis, Big Pharma spends very little on research and development. Even though pharmaceuticals cite research as a costly part of its operations, the money spent on this is exaggerated, Rome claims. Drug companies spend 19 times more on marketing than on research and development – another reason why the industry reaps so much in profits each year, he adds.
US President Barack Obama has long promised to repeal the prohibition on Medicare negotiations with drug companies, but has so far failed to do so. The Veterans Administration currently negotiates drug prices, and manufacturers argue that letting Medicare take over the negotiations would make no difference to the industry. Supporters of drug manufacturers also continue to emphasize the high costs of research and development.
But the Congressional Budget Office found that if Medicare were to receive the same bulk-purchasing discounts on prescription drugs that state Medicaid programs receive, the federal government would cut its spending by $137 billion over 10 years.
“Our politicians give all kinds of tax breaks and subsidies to big corporations that don’t need them: Big Oil. Wall Street. Companies that ship our jobs overseas,” Rome writes. “Every gift to a special interest, including allowing Big Pharma to overcharge Medicare, is an expenditure of scarce tax dollars. That’s called wasteful spending.”
Patriot Update is sending an e-mail alert that the United Nations Security Council has scheduled next Tuesday, July 26, in New York, for open “debate” about whether or not they will seize Israeli land in September, and divide Jerusalem by establishing a Palestinian state, without negotiation or approval from Israel.
[H/t beloved fellow Tina!]
The same alert is also posted on many blogs, such as Traditional Values Coalition.
According to the e-mail, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had feared just such a “surprise” move after the Quartet on the Middle East (UN, EU, USA, and Russia) met on July 11 in Washington, DC, to endorse Obama’s plan (in his speech of May 19) to enforce Israel’s 1967 borders and divide Jerusalem.
But I cannot find verification of this on the web. Instead, the Seattle PI reports on July 12, 2011, that the Quartet meeting was a bust:
The “highly-anticipated gathering hosted Monday by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and attended by U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, EU top diplomat Catherine Ashton and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov failed to produce a unified statement on the way ahead.”
So I went onto the United Nations’ website to find confirmation of the July 26 Security Council meeting. I found a “Programme of Meetings and Agendas” in the Journal of the United Nations. On page 2 of the pdf document is this:
The Security Council will hold an open debate on Tuesday, 26 July 2011, in the Security Council Chamber Room GA-TSC-01, in connection with the agenda item “The situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question”.
Member states wishing to inscribe their names on the list of speakers should contact the Secretariat….
Here’s a screenshot I took of that announcement:
Then I went looking for the agenda item and found this document: A “Statement” made on January 19, 2011, by Mr. Md. Nojibur Rahman, Minister (Economic) and Charge d’Affaires of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh to the United Nations at the Security Council Open Debate on the agenda item “The situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question”.
On behalf of Bangladesh, a Muslim country, Rahman said the following:
“In order to achieve a lasting solution in the Middle East, it is very important to address the key issue, which is prolong and illegal occupation of the Arab territories by Israel…. My delegation believes that direct negotiations will only be successful if there is sustained regional and international support for…Palestinian State-building…which guarantee Israel’s withdrawal from all occupied Arab and Palestinian territories back to June 4, 1967 line…. In conclusion, let me reiterate Bangladesh’s long-standing position that the continued illegal occupation of Palestine over the past six decades is the root cause of violence, unrest and destabilization in the region.“
Territories held by Israel before and after the Six Day War of 1967
All of which means that returning Israel to its 1967 borders would mean that Israel not only loses the West Bank (and with that Israel’s defense strategic depth), Israel — and the Christian world — will also lose Jerusalem to the new Palestinian Muslim state.
It should be said that the United Nations is decidedly partial on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and regularly condemns Israel for this or that. But…
Even if the UN Security Council’s “open debate” next Tuesday concludes with their demand that Israel returns to its pre-1967 borders, that demand doesn’t mean squat because it’s unenforceable — so long as the UN hasn’t morphed into a One World Government & Military.
If wishes were horses, beggars would ride…. ~Eowyn
I am a successful small businessman and a patriot who loves America and always sees its greatness. I am also an optimistic, positive thinker who always sees the glass half full.
But not this time.
I predicted doom if Obama was elected. Sadly the results are far worse than imagined. The economy is in shambles. America is staring at economic disaster — Armageddon. Even me, the eternal optimist is scared at what the future holds. We are the Titanic, headed straight for the iceberg.
America has always been a land of boom and bust. It’s just part of business cycle. But Obama and his socialist cabal have channeled Hoover and FDR, who turned an ordinary bust into The Great Depression with a toxic strategy of more government, more spending, more debt, more rules and regulations strangling business, higher minimum wages, more power to unions, more entitlements, higher taxes, more printing of money by Fed, and trade tariffs. This is the Obama blueprint squared.
The question this time is, is Obama doing it because he understands nothing about business? Or does he understand exactly what he’s doing? Is Obama’s goal to overwhelm the system, incite crisis, sow doubt about capitalism, and force the citizens to beg for government to save them, thereby opening the door to Socialism? Is Obama’s plan to redistribute the wealth, and at the same time to bankrupt the people with wealth and power, thereby crippling his political opposition?
Does it really matter?
Here’s where the story gets downright frightening. This time the results are going to be dramatically worse than 1929. This time we are facing The Greatest Depression ever.
Why? Because The Great Depression had NONE of problems and obligations we are now facing:
In 1929 America was not $100 trillion in debt and unfunded liabilities.
In 1929, most of our states were not bankrupt, insolvent and dependent on the federal government to survive.
In 1929, we had far fewer government employees living off taxpayers. Today 1 out of 5 federal employees earn over $100,000. California lifeguards and Las Vegas firemen earn $200,000. 77,000 federal employees earn more than the Governors of their states. Government employees retire at age 50 with $100,000 pensions for life. The postal service – without competition- loses $8 billion annually. Protected by their unions and the politicians they elect, government employees are bankrupting America. Even FDR said he could not imagine allowing public employees to unionize.
In 1929, Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid didn’t exist. The federal government had no such obligations threatening to consume the entire federal budget within a few years.
In 1929, there was no such thing as welfare, food stamps, aid to dependent children, or English as a second language programs. American’s didn’t consider it the responsibility of government to pay for breakfast and lunch for school students – let alone illegal immigrants.
In 1929, we didn’t have millions of illegal immigrants and their children collecting billions of dollars in entitlements from U.S. taxpayers.
In 1929, legal immigrants wanted only to work. My grandparents from Russia and Germany received no government benefits. They worked day and night to provide for their family and become American citizens. It was sink or swim.
In 1929, we had 150 million citizens with a strong work ethic- all motivated to earn the American Dream for their children and grandchildren. Americans were hungry in 1929. Today the hungry, motivated citizens and entrepreneurs are in China and India.
In 1929, we had an education system that was the envy of the world. Today our public schools are in shambles. We spend the most in the world, and get among the worst results. The difference today? Teachers unions are in charge, instead of parents
Our students are taught socialism and the great benefits of big government. They graduate with few skills, qualified only for low paying manufacturing jobs that no longer exist- they’ve been shipped to China and India. What will this workforce do for the rest of their lives? Live off the government dole? Who will pay for it?
In 1929 children had hope for the future. Today they are hopeless, helpless, and clueless – an entire generation that only knows drugs, gangs, rappers, government handouts, teen pregnancy- and it goes downhill from there.
In 1929 taxes were much lower. Forget the tax rates- they were meaningless. In those days we had a cash economy, so most businesses paid little or no taxes. Sales and FICA taxes didn’t exist. Today the combined local, state, property, gas, sales, FICA and federal taxes are the highest burden in history. This stifles entrepreneurship and hinders the financial risk-taking necessary to create jobs and get out of a Great Depression.
Do you get the picture? Disaster looms. We are staring at the Greatest Depression ever.
Still doubt me? Did you read the recent news report of 80 teen girls all pregnant in one Memphis high school? That’s 80…eighty…in one high school. This is happening all over the USA. Who will pay the bills?
We are in deep, deep trouble. There is no easy way out. The noose is tightening. The economy is crumbling. The situation is turning more hopeless by the hour. The more government gets involved, the worse it gets. Coincidence?
The solution is simple- cut government, cut spending, cut entitlements, cut taxes, stop the wars, end the Fed, term limit politicians, and back the dollar with a gold standard. Or, like so many other great empires of history, America may never recover from this Greatest of All Depressions that Obama is driving us directly toward. We are living in scary times, more than likely the endtimes. All we can do now is pray, pray for an end to this madness and an end to this dictatorship. Tom in NC
For a guy who was touted as the “smartest man in the world,” with a J.D. from Harvard U. Law School, Obama not only can’t pronounce simple words like “Corps” and “corpsmen,” he’s also embarrassingly ignorant about history.
On September 21, 2010, pandering to the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute, Obama said: “Mexicans were here long before America was even an idea.”
Here are the relevant dates in history. You be the judge!: 1521: Spain conquered and colonized the Mesoamerica — the territory that would eventually become Mexico. Spain called the new colony “New Spain.” July 1776: Second Continental Congress of the 13 American colonies issued the Declaration of Independence.
October 1781: The American Revolutionary War ended with effective American victory. 1783: Treaty of Paris – formal British abandonment of any claims to the United States of America. 1821: New Spain gained independence from Spain. 1910: Mexican Revolution 1917: Promulgation of Mexican Constitution and emergence of a new federal constitutional republic with the formal name of the United Mexican States.
[Sources: HERE and HERE] ~Eowyn