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marble falls

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Name: had to remove
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Hometown: marble falls, tx
Member since: Thu Feb 23, 2012, 04:49 AM
Number of posts: 16,551

About Me

Hand dyer mainly to the quilters market, doll maker, oil painter and teacher, anti-fas, cat owner, anti nuke, ex navy, reasonably good cook, father of three happy successful kids and three happy grand kids. Life is good.

Journal Archives

Trump seems confused about military pay, claims troops received no raises for a decade

Trump seems confused about military pay, claims troops received no raises for a decade

By: Leo Shane III   2 days ago


President Donald Trump speaks during a cabinet meeting at the White House, Wednesday, May 9, 2018, in Washington. Later in the day, the president claimed that troops have not seen a military pay raise in 10 years. (Evan Vucci/AP)

WASHINGTON — Speaking to a crowd of military spouses on Wednesday, President Donald Trump incorrectly claimed that his administration gave service members their first pay raise in 10 years, a moment he was “proud” to oversee.

In fact, troops have seen a pay raise of at least 1 percent every year for more than 30 years. The 2018 military pay raise — which was 2.4 percent — was the largest for the armed forces in eight years.

On Wednesday, at the signing of an executive order to increase military spouse hiring among federal agencies, Trump called the raise this January the “first time in 10 years” that troops had seen a paycheck boost.

President Trump earlier this month called for a 2.6 percent pay increase for fiscal 2019 as part of his budget request to Congress.
By: Ken Chamberlain

“Today, I’m here to tell you that my administration is totally committed to every family that serves in the United States armed forces,” Trump said. “That is why, earlier this year, I was proud to sign that big pay raise that I’ve already spoken about. And I am proud of it.

“And I guess there will be others, too. Would you like one sooner, or do you want to wait another 10 years? I don’t know.”

White House officials did not respond to questions seeking clarification on the remarks. Trump’s comments came as House Armed Services Committee members debated their annual defense authorization legislation, which includes the 2019 military pay raise provisions.

In recent months, Trump and Republican congressional officials have repeatedly referenced both the 2018 and proposed 2019 military pay hike (which is 2.6 percent) as evidence that their party is working to recognize the sacrifices of service members.

In March, in a speech in front of troops in California, Trump received a loud ovation when he spoke about the recently passed budget that “includes the largest pay raise you have received in more than eight years.”

Trump’s comments on Wednesday drew laughter from the crowd but confusion from military advocates who have pushed for consistent military pay raises each year.

At the event, Trump said that moves like the pay hikes and improving employment opportunities for military spouses are critical to keeping military families safe and stable.

“When you are strong, your families are strong, and America thrives,” he said.

About Leo Shane III

Leo covers Congress, Veterans Affairs and the White House for Military Times. He has covered Washington, D.C. since 2004, focusing on military personnel and veterans policies.

Failed West Virginia Candidate Don Blankenship Attacks Trump in Pathetic Open Letter

Failed West Virginia Candidate Don Blankenship Attacks Trump in Pathetic Open Letter
He claimed that he has been be the victim of false charges all trumped up by his enemies and the fake news media.
By Sarah Burris / Raw Story
May 9, 2018, 7:57 PM GMT


In a Wednesday evening open-letter, failed West Virginia senate candidate and convicted coal CEO Don Blankenship went into full attack mode against President Donald Trump.

After a humiliating defeat in the GOP primary, Blankenship took to Facebook to compare himself to Trump for being under attack for decades.

"You have rightfully complained about fake news and the corrupt Obama-era Department of Justice (DOJ)," Blankenship wrote. "However, you seem unaware of the fact that you are not the only one under attack."
Don't let big tech control what news you see. Get more stories like this in your inbox, every day.

He claimed that he has been be the victim of false charges all trumped up by his enemies and the fake news media. He then blamed Trump for spreading fake news against him.

"You, yourself, also spread fake news against me. Your interference in the West Virginia election displayed a lack of understanding of the likely outcome of the upcoming general election," he continued. "Patrick Morrisey will likely lose the general election. It’s too late to change that, but it’s not helpful to do to me what others are doing to you."

3 Americans Are Released From North Korea Image

Source: Nyt

By Choe Sang-Hun
May 9, 2018


SEOUL, South Korea — In a diplomatic victory for President Trump, North Korea freed three American prisoners on Wednesday, removing a bitterly emotional obstacle ahead of a planned meeting between him and the young leader of the nuclear-armed nation.

The release of the three prisoners, all citizens of Korean descent, was in some ways the most tangible gesture of sincerity shown by North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong-un, to improve relations with the United States after nearly seven decades of mutual antagonism.

Mr. Trump said the three were freed following an unannounced visit to North Korea by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who was in Pyongyang, the North’s capital, for more discussions with North Korean officials about the expected meeting between Mr. Kim and Mr. Trump.

I am pleased to inform you that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is in the air and on his way back from North Korea with the 3 wonderful gentlemen that everyone is looking so forward to meeting. They seem to be in good health. Also, good meeting with Kim Jong Un. Date & Place set.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 9, 2018


Read more: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/09/world/asia/north-korea-americans-detainees-released.html?action=Click&contentCollection=BreakingNews&contentID=66948685&pgtype=Homepage
Posted by marble falls | Wed May 9, 2018, 08:44 AM (5 replies)

The five universal laws of human stupidity

The five universal laws of human stupidity


A reveller is tossed by a wild cow after the last running of the bulls at the San Fermin festival in Pamplona, northern Spain, July 14, 2016.
Not just a danger to themselves. (Reuters/Susana Vera)

Written by
Corinne Purtill
April 29, 2017



Stupid people, Carlo M. Cipolla explained, share several identifying traits: they are abundant, they are irrational, and they cause problems for others without apparent benefit to themselves, thereby lowering society’s total well-being. There are no defenses against stupidity, argued the Italian-born professor, who died in 2000. The only way a society can avoid being crushed by the burden of its idiots is if the non-stupid work even harder to offset the losses of their stupid brethren.


Law 1: Always and inevitably everyone underestimates the number of stupid individuals in circulation.

No matter how many idiots you suspect yourself surrounded by, Cipolla wrote, you are invariably lowballing the total. This problem is compounded by biased assumptions that certain people are intelligent based on superficial factors like their job, education level, or other traits we believe to be exclusive of stupidity. They aren’t. Which takes us to:

Law 2: The probability that a certain person be stupid is independent of any other characteristic of that person.

Cipolla posits stupidity is a variable that remains constant across all populations. Every category one can imagine—gender, race, nationality, education level, income—possesses a fixed percentage of stupid people. There are stupid college professors. There are stupid people at Davos and at the UN General Assembly. There are stupid people in every nation on earth. How numerous are the stupid amongst us? It’s impossible to say. And any guess would almost certainly violate the first law, anyway.

Law 3. A stupid person is a person who causes losses to another person or to a group of persons while himself deriving no gain and even possibly incurring losses.

Cipolla called this one the Golden Law of stupidity. A stupid person, according to the economist, is one who causes problems for others without any clear benefit to himself.


However, consistent stupidity is the only consistent thing about the stupid. This is what makes stupid people so dangerous. Cipolla explains:


Law 4: Non-stupid people always underestimate the damaging power of stupid individuals. In particular non-stupid people constantly forget that at all times and places and under any circumstances to deal and/or associate with stupid people always turns out to be a costly mistake.

We underestimate the stupid, and we do so at our own peril. This brings us to the fifth and final law:

Law 5: A stupid person is the most dangerous type of person.

And its corollary:

A stupid person is more dangerous than a bandit.

Posted by marble falls | Tue May 8, 2018, 11:05 PM (4 replies)

Passengers 'Lashing Out' At Scott Pruitt Justify First-Class Travel, New EPA Memo Says

Passengers ‘Lashing Out’ At Scott Pruitt Justify First-Class Travel, New EPA Memo Says

Thousands of newly released EPA documents show the agency went to great lengths to shield the embattled administrator from encounters with the public.

By Nick Visser


Newly released Environmental Protection Agency documents attempt to justify administrator Scott Pruitt’s frequent use of first-class and business-class travel with a claim that fellow passengers were “lashing out” at him.

The 87-word memo, dated May 1, 2017, was drafted by Pasquale Perrotta, who recently quit as head of Pruitt’s personal security detail. Perrotta wrote that he had noticed “lashing out from passengers which occurs while the Administrator is seated in coach with [his security detail] not easily accessible to him due to uncontrolled full flights.”

“We believe that the continued use of coach seats for the Administrator would endanger his life and therefore respectfully ask that he be placed in either business and or first class accommodations,” the memo concludes.


BuzzFeed notes that three investigations have been launched this year involving Pruitt, but all have been closed due to lack of evidence that the administrator faced serious harm. One such incident, closed due to a lack of an “overt” threat, involved a Newsweek magazine cover that someone drew a mustache on and taped to an EPA elevator.


Pruitt has since said he would start flying coach.
Posted by marble falls | Tue May 8, 2018, 09:21 PM (5 replies)

When Southern Newspapers Justified Lynching

When Southern Newspapers Justified Lynching
Brent Staples

By Brent Staples

Mr. Staples is a member of the editorial board.
May 5, 20



Historians have paid scant attention to the role that the white Southern press played in the racial terrorism of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, which saw thousands of African-Americans hanged, burned, drowned or beaten to death by white mobs. This issue surfaced in dramatic fashion recently when the nearly two-centuries-old Montgomery Advertiser printed a front-page editorial apologizing for lynching coverage that dehumanized black victims. The apology coincided with the recent opening in Montgomery, Ala., of a memorial to lynching victims, and it sets the stage for a timely discussion of a deeply dishonorable period in Southern press history.

The bloody celebration at which 500 jeering spectators saw Henry Lowery burned to ashes was held at Nodena, Ark., on Jan. 26, 1921. Among those in attendance was a reporter for The Memphis Press whose story — under the headline “Kill Negro by Inches” — validated the barbaric proceedings and cataloged the victim’s suffering in lurid detail, noting that Lowery remained stoically silent “even after the flesh had dropped away from his legs and the flames were leaping toward his face.”


Newspapers even bragged about the roles they had played in arranging particularly spectacular lynchings. But the real damage was done in terse, workaday stories that justified lynching by casting its victims as “fiends,” “brutes,” “born criminals” or, that catchall favorite, “troublesome Negroes.” The narrative that tied blackness inextricably to criminality — and to the death penalty — survived the lynching era and lives on to this day.

The Montgomery Advertiser was historically opposed to lynching. Nevertheless, when its current staff scrutinized the paper’s lynching-era coverage, they concluded that it had conveniently opposed lynching in the abstract while responding with indifference to its bloody, real-world consequences. The editors found that the paper too often presumed without proof that lynching victims were guilty and that, in doing so, it advanced the aims of white supremacist rule.


The newspaper editor Ira Harkey, who was white, incurred outrage in 1949 when he abandoned the Southern journalistic practice of automatically labeling black people by race in stories and began cautiously extending the courtesy title Mrs. in the pages of The Pascagoula Chronicle-Star “to certain carefully selected Negro women such as teachers and nurses.” Harkey was reviled — and shot at — by racists in Mississippi for championing civil rights. He wrote bitterly of his earlier years at The New Orleans Times-Picayune, where there was “a flat rule that Negroes were not to appear in photographs”; it was required that they be airbrushed out of crowd scenes.


Bro Krift, now the paper’s 41-year-old executive editor, was well aware of this history when he greeted the opening of the lynching memorial by devoting the Advertiser’s front page to the names of victims alongside its bluntly worded editorial acknowledging the paper’s complicity. Speaking of the memorial in a recent telephone interview, Mr. Krift said: “I realized, holy Moses, this could change the narrative for the rest of time in America. This could be the physical representation of the conversation we need to have in America.”
Posted by marble falls | Sun May 6, 2018, 08:29 PM (4 replies)

Michelle Obama Explains Why People Shouldn't Look To Her To Run For Office

Michelle Obama Explains Why People Shouldn’t Look To Her To Run For Office
“It is not finding the one right person that we think can save us from ourselves. It’s us.”

By Doha Madani



The former first lady talked with actress Tracee Ellis Ross at the United State Of Women Summit on Saturday, covering a range of topics. Obama didn’t mince words when the discussion turned to politics and a voice from the crowd interrupted to ask why she wouldn’t seek an elected post.

“Stop that,” said Obama, who since her husband’s presidential term ended early last year has frequently said she has no plans to run for anything herself.

She told her audience that society has yet to understand her husband’s famed campaign slogan, “Yes, We Can.” Obama spoke about the need for women to come together as a community before looking to one individual woman to solve their problems, and said in that sense she is no different than Hillary Clinton.

“When I hear people say, ‘You run,’ it’s part of the problem,” she said. “We’ve got a lot of work to do before we’re focused on ‘the who.’ Because we’re ‘the who.’”

“We are the answer,” she continued. “All of us here in the room are the answer to our own problems ― it is not finding the one right person that we think can save us from ourselves. It’s us. It’s us.”


She made a veiled reference to President Donald Trump and his defeat of Clinton in 2016, saying, “In light of the last election, I’m concerned about us as women. What is going on in our heads that we let that happen? What are girls dreaming about when the most qualified person running was a woman and look what we did?


Complete video of the interview at link.
Posted by marble falls | Sun May 6, 2018, 06:11 PM (9 replies)

My quote was, "....USUALLY are a chickenshit form of the death penalty."

So I am against the death penalty for three reasons. One, it is unfairly applied. Two. It's murder and there are too many innocent inmates being executed or nearly executed. Three, everyone has the capability to be redeemed and contribute to society.

I am against life sentences at least 75% of the time. Its also unequally applied. Its too often used as a purely an alternative to a death penalty and is is unfairly more likely to be given to black males.

I am against three strike laws and mandated minimum sentencing.

All that crap gives no offender any incentive to straighten up and fly right.

I am totally outraged that there are prisons and jails in the country run and sometimes owned by private companies. I am for job training and education for offenders.

Our nation imprisons and punishes in the league of China and Pakistan. With absolutely no benefits to the crime rate. Its screwed up top to bottom. And HUGELY expensive.

And fuck the policy of hiring contractors/mercenaries fight in our wars.

Don't get me started.
Posted by marble falls | Sat May 5, 2018, 05:13 PM (2 replies)

Sarah Sanders 'Cursed and Yelled' at the White House Counsel in a Heated Episode

Sarah Sanders 'Cursed and Yelled' at the White House Counsel in a Heated Episode over the Administration's Falsehoods: Report
A new report from the Washington Post details the struggles the press secretary undergoes to keep the White House on message.
By Cody Fenwick / AlterNet
May 4, 2018, 2:47 PM GMT


Press secretary Sarah Sanders ended up in a screaming match with White House counsel Don McGahn over the administration's disastrous handling of allegations against staff secretary Rob Porter back in February, according to a new report by the Washington Post. Reporters Ashley Parker, Josh Dawsey, and Philip Rucker found that the press secretary screamed and cursed at McGahn and refused to do her job unless provided with more information about the Porter situation.


The report also notes that Sanders played a part in drafting the White House's statement in defense of Porter, who eventually resigned over allegations that he has abused his two ex-wives. That statement, the Post said, "later became an embarrassment to the administration."


Deeming Sanders a "willing warrior" for President Donald Trump, the Post article shows that the outward struggles the administration has with the truth are reflected in inward tussles over communications strategy. That jostling was never on better display than this week, when Trump's new attorney Rudy Giuliani flatly contradicted the president and press secretary's previous denials that Trump had any knowledge of the hush money payment to the porn star known as Stormy Daniels.

The WaPo article is much ore detailed:


It's not up to Trump whether to talk to Mueller

It’s not up to Trump whether to talk to Mueller
by Jennifer Rubin May 2 at 9:45 AM Email the author

Video at link

Opinion | If President Trump fires the bane of his legal troubles, he could spark a legal and constitutional crisis. (Adriana Usero/The Washington Post)

The Post reports:


(In a tense meeting in early March with the special counsel, President Trump’s lawyers insisted he had no obligation to talk with federal investigators probing Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential campaign.

But special counsel Robert S. Mueller III responded that he had another option if Trump declined: He could issue a subpoena for the president to appear before a grand jury, according to four people familiar with the encounter.)

While this is the first confirmation of such a warning, I have no doubt that Trump’s lawyers have been aware of Mueller’s ability to get a subpoena. If they have hidden that uncomfortable truth from Trump, they will have some explaining to do.

The Post’s report also suggests that the listed questions came from Trump’s side. (“Trump lawyer Jay Sekulow compiled a list of 49 questions that the team believed the president would be asked, according to three of the four people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to talk publicly.”)


Whatever their mind-set, members of Trump’s team surely know three critical facts: Mueller is operating within the jurisdiction granted to him; the ability to investigate and indict for obstruction (or perjury or witness tampering) is inherent in any prosecutor’s mandate (otherwise people would block the investigation); and the Supreme Court in the Nixon case held that the president must comply with a subpoena seeking evidence in criminal matters.


If we get to the point where Trump’s testimony is compelled and he must consider invoking the Fifth Amendment, it is fair to say his presidency will be over. The appearance, fair or not, that he is concealing wrongdoing by taking the Fifth will be hard to shake. Furthermore, invoking the Fifth, which is his personal right, makes clear that he can no longer uphold his office, which is to “take care” that the laws are faithfully executed. A Democratic-led House (a strong likelihood) then would feel compelled to move toward impeachment. (Even Republicans might agree — or plead with Trump to resign.)

But we are getting ahead of ourselves. For now, the proper framing is this: Trump can testify the easy way (not under oath, with his lawyer) or the hard way (alone in front of a grand jury). It’s nearly inconceivable that Mueller would relieve him of that dilemma. The prosecutor’s obligation is to find the truth, from all available sources. Mueller isn’t going to give Trump a pass.
Posted by marble falls | Thu May 3, 2018, 01:41 PM (0 replies)
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