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Algernon Moncrieff

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Member since: Sun Apr 20, 2014, 12:49 AM
Number of posts: 5,123

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IRS Urges Americans: Come Clean Now, Before We Read Panama Papers

NBC

U.S. officials revealed to NBC News that they have taken part in two global meetings about the Panama Papers to plan how to use the huge trove of leaked documents to catch criminals — and urged Americans to come clean now before illegal activity is discovered.

Last week's discussions in Paris and Washington between IRS and Treasury officials and their counterparts from around the world are the first evidence of U.S. involvement in the growing international coalition eager to analyze and use the data about more than 214,000 offshore companies listed by Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca.

In a statement to NBC News, the IRS acknowledged participating in a "special project meeting" of JITSIC, the Joint International Tax Shelter Information and Collaboration network, about the papers in Paris last week.

The IRS also encouraged any U.S. citizens and companies that may have money in offshore accounts to contact the agency now before any possible illegal activity on their part is identified. According to media reports, the documents contain information on potentially thousands of U.S. citizens and firms that have at least an indirect connection to offshore accounts affiliated with Mossack Fonseca. Many other firms provide similar services, and the Treasury Department estimated last year that more than $300 billion dollars of illicit proceeds are generated in the United States annually, with criminals using such companies here and abroad to launder funds.

Posted by Algernon Moncrieff | Sun Apr 17, 2016, 01:42 PM (20 replies)

I suspect he was half listening to a briefing about what gets conservatives fired up in Pennsylvania

There is a subset of conservative Pennsylvanians that devoutly, fervently believe the following:

1) Joe Paterno was a saint and he knew nothing about what Sandusky was really doing
2) The Freeh report is filled with half-truths and outright lies
3) ESPN led the liberal media in a witchhunt against JoePa
4) Mike McQueary is a shameful opportunist
5) The removal of Paterno's statue from Penn State was a travesty of the highest order.

Trump half listened to some explanation of this, and translated it to "How's Joe Paterno? We gonna bring that back?"
Posted by Algernon Moncrieff | Thu Apr 14, 2016, 07:20 PM (1 replies)

If all things remain unchanged, Barack Obama will complete something that hasn't happened since 1825

The first time three consecutive Presidents were each elected to two terms and completed both terms was 1801-1825 (Jefferson, Madison, Monroe). It has not happened since then. However Bill Clinton, George W. Bush, and Barack Obama will, if all goes well, become the second trio of Presidents to pull this off since the Presidency started in 1789.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Presidents_of_the_United_States
Posted by Algernon Moncrieff | Wed Apr 13, 2016, 12:16 AM (17 replies)

Meet the Law Professor Who's Running for President to Get Ted Cruz Disqualified

MOTHER JONES

Around the country, individual voters have filed complaints with state election officials and lawsuits in federal and state courts to keep Cruz off the presidential ballot. Most of these challenges have gone nowhere. One major obstacle to challenging Cruz's eligibility is that ordinary citizens don't have standing to bring suit over the issue. To have standing to sue, the party bringing the case must have a particular injury that can be remedied by the outcome of the case. Many courts, particularly federal courts, have found that citizens are not sufficiently injured by Cruz appearing on the ballot.

Enter Williams. Though ordinary citizens generally do not have standing, rival candidates might. In two previous cases from 2008, federal courts recognized the theory of "competitive standing," the idea that a competitor could be injured by an ineligible candidate siphoning off votes that could come to the plaintiff. So Williams decided to become a competitor. To do so, he has notified nine states of his intention to run as a write-in candidate.

This won't automatically give him standing. Federal and state courts could decide that a write-in challenger running solely to get standing is more like a citizen than an actual competitor. But Williams has researched the issue and found a smattering of state court cases that treat write-in candidates as genuine opposition. Moreover, he says, some states require write-in candidates to jump through a number of hoops in order to run—signaling, he believes, that they are considered serious candidates. "So that's what I'm hanging my hat on," he says.

The Constitution states that only a "natural born citizen" can be president. Cruz and his lawyers argue that anyone who is a citizen at birth, who does not have to go through a naturalization process in order to become a citizen, is natural born. Under this definition, Cruz, who was a citizen at birth because his mother was a citizen, is natural born. But a handful of scholars believe that natural born status applies only to citizens who are born on US soil, and the Supreme Court has never ruled definitively on the issue.


...back in 2013

In April, Rafael Cruz, the father of Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), spoke to the tea party of Hood County, which is southwest of Fort Worth, and made a bold declaration: The United States is a "Christian nation." The septuagenarian businessman turned evangelical pastor did not choose to use the more inclusive formulation "Judeo-Christian nation." Insisting that the Declaration of Independence and the US Constitution "were signed on the knees of the framers" and were a "divine revelation from God," he went on to say, "yet our president has the gall to tell us that this is not a Christian nation…The United States of America was formed to honor the word of God." Seven months earlier, Rafael Cruz, speaking to the North Texas Tea Party on behalf of his son, who was then running for Senate, called President Barack Obama an "outright Marxist" who "seeks to destroy all concept of God," and he urged the crowd to send Obama "back to Kenya."


Posted by Algernon Moncrieff | Tue Apr 12, 2016, 10:07 PM (2 replies)

In tense meeting, tribal leaders, IHS head talk solutions

See also my post in GD

"Here we are in April and we're still on diversion," Evelyn Espinoza, Rosebud Sioux tribal health administrator, said of the Rosebud emergency room that has been closed for four months. "We have these people losing their lives. We have these children losing their parents."

The Rosebud hospital closed its emergency room in December after CMS reports revealed employees at the facility hand washed surgical instruments for six months while a sterilizer was broken, didn't communicate that a patient had an untreated case of Tuberculosis and failed to monitor a patient who delivered a baby prematurely on a bathroom floor.

Staffing shortages also contributed to the temporary diversion of patients to the nearest emergency departments 45 and 55 miles away.


http://www.argusleader.com/story/news/2016/04/05/tense-meeting-tribal-leaders-ihs-head-talk-solutions/82648032/
Posted by Algernon Moncrieff | Fri Apr 8, 2016, 07:47 PM (0 replies)

Federally Operated Hospitals That Are So Bad, they Are Threatened With A Loss of Federal Funds

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) - A troubled government-run hospital on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation has been given a one-month extension to reach a significant improvement agreement with federal officials to avoid losing its Medicare and Medicaid funds.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services on Friday notified the hospital's administration of the funding cutoff extension.

The hospital administered by the Indian Health Service must reach the agreement by April 29 to enter a last-chance remediation program. If the agencies fail to reach an agreement, the hospital won't be allowed to bill the government for services provided to Medicare- and Medicaid-eligible patients after May 16.


LINK

So let's be clear here: A hospital run by the federal government that serves some of the poorest people in America is going to lose its ability to bill the federally funded Medicare and Medicaid programs.


The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services notified the administration of the hospital on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation about the extension a little more than a month after the hospital on the Rosebud Indian Reservation received the same extension. The latest notification comes days after the top officials at the Indian Health Service, which administers the hospitals, met with tribal leaders and pledged to improve the services provided at the facilities.

Both hospitals have an April 29 deadline to reach an agreement to enter what constitutes a last-chance remediation program. If not, the facilities won't be allowed to bill the government for services provided to Medicare- and Medicaid-eligible patients after May 16.

The purpose of the agreement for the Pine Ridge hospital would be "to effectively safeguard patient health and safety ... and effectively address underlying systemic problems" that have kept the hospital from achieving or sustaining compliance with regulations, according to the letter from CMS addressed to IHS's top leader, Mary Smith, and Sophia Conroy, the hospital's acting administrator.

The funding cutoff warning for the 45-bed Pine Ridge hospital comes after federal inspectors found serious deficiencies during an unannounced visit in October, including records from three of six sampled medical staffers who lacked appropriate permission to practice at that hospital; unlocked cupboards with syringes, needles and other equipment; and unsecured drugs and medical records.


LINK

Optimists and skeptics sat down Tuesday with the new head of the Indian Health Service to hash out plans for improving care for Native Americans in Iowa, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota.

At a tense two-and-a-half-hour meeting, IHS Principal Deputy Director Mary Smith outlined plans for short and long-term changes at IHS hospitals and clinics in the Great Plains region.

The visit follows a federal investigation into IHS hospitals in South Dakota that found poor sanitation and improper record-keeping and lead to the closure of the emergency room in Rosebud.

"Here we are in April and we're still on diversion," Evelyn Espinoza, Rosebud Sioux tribal health administrator, said of the Rosebud emergency room that has been closed for four months. "We have these people losing their lives. We have these children losing their parents."


LINK

To borrow from Shakespeare, if you prick Native Americans, do they not bleed? Are they not human? As bad as things may be at VA hospitals, if they were as bad as these IHS Hospitals, there would be talk of impeachment. If a VA hospital hand washed surgical instruments for six months because a sterilizer was broken, there's be firings -- possibly prosecutions. Ask an Bernie Sanders supporter who has read my posts -- I don't know much; however, I know that cutting federal funds from a failing federal hospital isn't going to improve patient care.
Posted by Algernon Moncrieff | Fri Apr 8, 2016, 07:34 PM (8 replies)

As a progressive, do you watch, listen, or do something typically associated with conservatives?

I confess that I am an avid W.E.B. Griffin fan, and I watch "Blue Bloods."

Do you still enjoy listening to "Cat Scratch Fever?" Watch James Woods, Robert Duval or Ronald Reagan movies? Belong to a country club?
Posted by Algernon Moncrieff | Thu Apr 7, 2016, 12:42 AM (92 replies)

From Al Franken's Facebook Page

It was wonderful to see Hillary in Wisconsin last night. I remember in 2008 when we started realizing how close my election was going to be. Hillary called and said she'd do anything to help. She ripped up her schedule and came to Minnesota in the last few months of the campaign. Twice. She never wavered in her support, and I know as President she won't waver in furthering our progressive values. She stood by me when I ran for the U.S. Senate, and I'm proud to be standing with her today. We need someone who can get the job done, and Hillary Clinton is the woman for the job.



Posted by Algernon Moncrieff | Sun Apr 3, 2016, 03:56 PM (22 replies)

Propaganda Debunking Group - Hamburgers and the Minimum Wage

Omaha Steve posted this in 2015. It continues to make the rounds:

For those fast food employees striking for $15 an hour, let's do some math.

At $15 an hour Johnny Fry-Boy working 40 hours per week would make $30,000
annually.

An E1 (Private) in the military makes $18,378 annually.

An E5 (Sergeant) with 8 years of service only makes $35,067 annually.

So you're telling me, Sally McBurgerflipper, that you deserve as much as
those kids getting shot at, deploying for months in hostile environments,
and putting themselves on the line every day protecting your unskilled
butt!?

Here's the deal Sweetheart Baconator, you are working in a job designed for
a kid in high school who is actually supposed to be learning how to work and
earning enough for gas, movies , and hanging out with their equally goofy
high school pals. If you have chosen this as your life long profession, you
have failed.

If you don't want minimum wage, don't have minimum skills!

If you can read this, thank a teacher.

If it's in English, thank a Veteran.


A somewhat more racist variant

Low military pay was not mentioned in the State Of The Union speech. However, increasing the minimum wage was for those fast food employees striking for $15 an hour. Let's do some math: At $15 an hour Johnny Fry-Boy would make $31,200 annually.

An E1 (Private) in the military makes $18,378. An E5 (Sergeant) with 8 years of service only makes $35,067 annually.

So you're telling me, LaTisha McBurger flipper, that you deserve as much as those kids getting shot at, deploying for months in hostile environments, and putting their collective asses on the line every day protecting your unskilled butt!?

Here's the deal, Baconator, you are working in a job designed for a kid in high school who is learning how to work and earning enough for gas, and hanging out with their equally goofy high school pals. If you have chosen this as your life long profession, you have failed. If you don't want minimum wage, don't have minimum skills.

My Two Cents worth, just saying......


The best rebuttal I've seen is here at MyRightWingDad

This is highly misleading.

It is true that an E-1 base pay is relatively low. However they also receive housing and food, either directly or through a tax free allowance called BAH and BAS. BAH varies by region with the cost of housing. In San Diego, an expensive market that has a high military presence, an unmarried E-1 Marine fresh out of boot camp will receive at BAH of $1713 per month, tax free, plus about $350 a month for food, tax free. That's an additional $25000 a year, tax free, and it goes up every year and every promotion. So the real "pay" for our hypothetical E-1 is closer to $43000 a year, with more than half of that exempt from taxation.

There are other benefits too: full medical and dental, tax free shopping, GI bill for college, etc.

Maybe this is not enough to pay our men and women in uniform. If you think so, ask yourself why it's so low? Answer: because their compensation package must compete with other opportunities, including minimum wage jobs. A low minimum wage means you can pay recruits less (not to mention other private sector workers). Raise the former and the latter will have to rise to be competitive.

There's also a sad (and cliche) helping of class on class warfare in this post, the same attitude that allows things like slavery and Jim Crow to exist. Too many people are happy to get shafted so long as they have someone else they can look down on.
Posted by Algernon Moncrieff | Thu Mar 31, 2016, 03:30 PM (5 replies)

How is Reinhold Reince Priebus keeping his job?

As bad as our primary gets, it's nothing compared to the circus that has emerged over in GOP land.
Posted by Algernon Moncrieff | Wed Mar 30, 2016, 07:36 PM (17 replies)
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