Saturday, December 8, 2007

Antibacterial Chemical Disrupts Hormone Activities, Study Finds

Our mothers insisted that we wash our hands before eating, and often we did. That was when bar soap was essentially rendered lard and some perfume. Today's hand soap and other body cleansers have anti-bacterial agents in them to zap those nasty microbes.

As usual these days, all is not well with new technology. According to an article in ScienceDaily, "A new UC Davis study shows that a common antibacterial chemical added to bath soaps can alter hormonal activity in rats and in human cells in the laboratory--and does so by a previously unreported mechanism." Rats!

The article reports that some studies 'are revealing that some synthetic chemicals in household products can cause health problems by interfering with normal hormone action.'

The reports goes on:

"Called endocrine disruptors, or endocrine disrupting substances (EDS), such chemicals have been linked in animal studies to a variety of problems, including cancer, reproductive failure and developmental anomalies.

"This is the first endocrine study to investigate the hormone effects of the antibacterial compound triclocarban (also known as TCC or 3,4,4'-trichlorocarbanilide), which is widely used in household and personal care products including bar soaps, body washes, cleansing lotions, wipes and detergents."
Triclocarban is also called TCC, Cutisan, and Solubacter. On another site I found our that 'Triclocarban resembles triclosan in structure and function.' Triclosan is found in my hand sanitizer as the 'active ingredient.'

Apparently we ought to read the labels of those bars of soap and body washes to see if the dreaded 'TCC' appears in them. I guess we ought to go back to good old Ivory Soap, 99 44/100 % pure.

Defense Sec. Gates Forced to Play Bush-Cheney Game

The photo reveals it all. Behind the kowtow-ed U.S. Defense Secretary are the Muslim representatives of the nations in the Persian Gulf area. Gates is already corrupted by the Bush/Cheney junta when he mouthed the words that Cheney wrote for him about a month ago- the ones about Congress' delay of the newest $x billion and how the Pentagon would have to begin layoffs.

This morning he had to do it again. He told the assortment of folks at the meeting that the Persian Gulf nations must demand that Iran come clean about its past nuclear ambitions and openly vow to not develop such weapons in the future.

"Everywhere you turn, it is the policy of Iran to foment instability and chaos, no matter the strategic value or cost in the blood of innocents..." he said.

Right, Mr. Gates.

I wonder, as those words were being received in the headsets of the Arabs actually living there, how many of them said to themselves, 'And the U.S. government hasn't?'

The photo captures the 2007 version of another Anglo-Christian whose armed forces have arrived on their soil to exploit the resources of the people there. No doubt, we history-illiterate Americans do not see the irony in this man lecturing the natives of the Persian Gulf. Many Americans, in fact, believe that it is our oil under their sand. Fools like this help propel naive presidents into international debacles such as the one we are now experiencing.

Sorry that you have sold your soul to 'El Diablo' Mr. Gates. The fact is:the Bush/Cheney virus is virulent and deadly.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Rep. Henry Waxman Exposes Another Blackwater Shill in the State Department

update below

A video clip of the congressional hearing with an introduction to the procedure can be found at this link.

The Washington Post report of this incident and the exposure of the Blackwater shill is here:

Howard J. Krongard, the State Department's inspector general, has repeatedly thwarted investigations into contracting fraud in Iraq and Afghanistan, including construction of the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, and censored reports that might prove politically embarrassing to the Bush administration, the chairman of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform charged yesterday in a 13-page letter.

The letter, addressed to Krongard and signed by the committee chairman, Henry A. Waxman (D-Calif.), who released it yesterday, said the allegations were based on the testimony of seven current and former officials on Krongard's staff, including two former senior officials who allowed their names to be used, and private e-mail exchanges obtained by the committee. The letter said the allegations concerned all three major divisions of Krongard's office -- investigations, audits and inspections.

'Howard J. Krongard, the State Department\'s inspector general, has repeatedly thwarted investigations into contracting fraud in Iraq and Afghanistan, including construction of the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad, and censored reports that might prove politically embarrassing to the Bush administration,Waxman demanded documents and testimony for a hearing next month into Krongard's conduct. A copy of the letter was sent to the committee's top Republican, Rep. Thomas M. Davis III (Va.).

A statement released by Krongard's office said he had just completed a visit to Afghanistan and was "en route to Baghdad for the remainder of September." In the statement, he described the allegations as "replete with inaccuracies including those made by persons with their own agendas" and said he looks forward to the opportunity to respond fully to the committee. White House spokeswoman Dana Perino referred questions to the State Department, where spokesman Sean McCormack said he had not yet seen Waxman's letter.

The letter alleges that Krongard "interfered with ongoing investigations to protect the State Department and the White House from political embarrassment." It said that "your strong affinity with State Department leadership and your partisan political ties have led you to halt investigations, censor reports and refuse to cooperate with law enforcement agencies."

update 4:40 PM Friday

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - State Department Inspector General Howard Krongard, under scrutiny for his brother's link to the Blackwater security firm, has decided to resign, U.S. officials said on Friday.

Ronmey's Speech: Quite the Duplicity of a Slick politician

In his speech yesterday, covered gratis by all of the TV networks, Mitt Romney argued that Mormonism was 'merely a different brand of Christianity and that to pick at the differences between Mormons and other faiths was incompatible with America's history of religious tolerance.' He said, "Religious tolerance would be a shallow principle, indeed, if it were reserved only for faiths with which we agree."

Yet in the next breath he claimed that religion is 'essential to freedom,' without pointing to any specific faith. "Freedom requires religion, just as religion requires freedom. Freedom opens the windows of the soul so that man can discover his most profound beliefs and commune with God. Freedom and religion endure together, or perish alone," Romney said.


It reminds me of that famous '50's pop tune, "First you say you do, then you don't, then you say you will, then you won't..."

I'll coin a phrase: duplicit dualism. Romney wants no test of faith, but he requires faith. As he tried to recreate the John Kennedy moment, we might parody the elder's famous inaugural speech this way: 'As not what my religion is, ask what religion can do for your country.'

More crudely, this all boils down to sucking up to the Bible-thumpers. Clearly, the GOP is becoming the political wing of the Christian Right. The important question is this: does America need a religious political party? To find the answer we need not search too far for examples of nations run by a religious sect: Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan.

Sure, Mr. Romney, freedom needs religion.

Military Families Now Reject the Bush War But Americans Still Gullible

A Bloomberg/Los Angeles Times poll shows a "growing disenchantment within the broader military community, long a bastion of support for the Bush administration and Republicans. Among active-duty military, veterans and their families, only 36 percent say it was worth going to war in Iraq. This compares with an Annenberg survey taken in 2004, one year after the invasion, which showed that 64 percent of service members and their families supported the war. The views of veterans and their families are now closer in line with overall public sentiment. The poll shows that 32 percent of the general population supports the war."

The loyalty to the Commander-in-chief is strong, but, apparently not completely blind. The military clearly have been the scapegoats for the madness of the aggressive Bush-Cheney foreign policy. I was wondering just how long they would kowtow to continuing this useless war in Iraq. Apparently 4,000 deaths and 50,000 wounded does matter even though the right-wing talking heads and their captive audience, sitting in their easy chairs at home, often try to downplay these 'minor losses' and compare them to WWII. The fools.

One other sad fact about the American mind-set and its still-apparent gullibility and malleability is reported at the end of this story. The article says:

Separately, the poll also finds that almost half of Americans would support some form of military action against Iran over its nuclear program. The survey was conducted before the Bush administration released an intelligence assessment this week that concluded Iran halted nuclear-weapons development in 2003.

Isn't that amazing? And frightening! After all of the lies and spin over the WMD's in Iraq, still half of the American citizens were so brainwashed, so propagandized, that they were willing to do it all over again. That is scary, absolutely scary.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Religious Purification, Romney and the Taliban

NYT columnist Thomas Friedman wrote an op ed pretending to be the Iran intelligence report on the United States. Not only is it a clever idea, but a highly instructive one as well. In the spoof, Iranian intelligence reports this about America: a time when America’s bridges, roads, airports and Internet bandwidth have fallen behind other industrial powers, including China, we believe that the U.S. opposition to higher taxes — and the fact that the primary campaigns have focused largely on gay marriage, flag-burning and whether the Christian Bible is the literal truth — means it is “highly unlikely” that America will arrest its decline.

Hardly either intelligence or intelligent. But then, it has become the norm these days in American-style politics. This morning, for example, GOP candidate Mitt Romney must give a speech defending his religion to the primary voters in the Republican Party. Can you imagine the implications of such an act? Think of the hundreds and hundreds of U.S. soldiers who died/are dying in Afghanistan to fight the intolerant religious group, the Taliban, when at the same time we witness in this country the need for religious purification ceremonies.

Is this nation moving backwards in time to the era when a person's religious beliefs could actually imprison him or burn her at the stake? Rather than the Holy Roman Empire are we becoming the Holy Christian empire? Oddly neither the word 'God' nor 'Jesus' appears in the U.S. Constitution, but Freedom of [and from] Religion does.

Note what has happened in Iraq since the downfall of Saddam: more and more women are wearing the Hijab as they go out in public and fewer and fewer are working outside of the home. Our 'good' ally Saudi Arabia does not allow women to drive a car nor vote. Religious reasons, all.

Is this what we want here in America? A morality code based on the Bible? Watch the progress of GOP candidate Mike Huckabee to see just how many 'believers' there are in America. His upward move in the polls is propelled single-handedly by fundamentalists. And fundamentalists have Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan tightly in their grip.

Toledo Blade Gives FirstEnergy a Pass on Deadly Fire

From one business to another, a little pat on the back. In its lead editorial today, The Toledo Blade absolved FirstEnergyCorp of any wrong-doing in the deaths of a mother and her three children last week in Toledo. The paper reported that it received many letters condemning the practice of FirstEnergy of shutting off power to families, especially in winter. The newspaper printed three of them along with their editorial.

The following sentence caught my eye:

Beyond those issues, moreover, there is no evidence we know of that Edison callously or precipitously pulled the plug on the family, which moved to the home at the beginning of October but - for whatever reason - had not had the electric service put in their name.

'Callously' is an interesting legal term; I wonder how that would be defined in a court of law? No doubt FirstEnergy lawyers would point out that there was no malice in their decision to pull the power from the home, and I'm sure that 'malace' played no role in their decision. Profit, yes, malice, no.

The Blade goes on:

Over the course of at least a month and a half, Edison customer service personnel had explained to Ms. Crawford or her fiance the procedure for avoiding a cutoff because of unpaid bills, and the help in paying that is readily available to those in need for medical or economic reasons.

Here's where it becomes murky: how does The Blade know that this is a true statement? No doubt, the PR Department of FirstEnergy told 'their side of the story' to the Blade reporter. I find it interesting that The Blade would swallow the line that FirstEnergy was doing their best to help this family.

Here's why I am such a skeptic of the PR Department: I have posted a concurrent story of another family whose power was shut off here in Toledo and the ball was dropped in restoring the power to this family after the payment was made.

Don't tell me that FirstEnergy is a sweet, well-run utility that looks out for the citizens of Toledo. The Blade may buy that story, but my recent experience indicates the opposite. Here is a quick summary or you may read the detailed version in my previous post here.

Just after I posted a story of the tragic fire that killed the mother and her three children, I received a phone call from a Catholic Sister who told me of a family of 9 [7 children] who had been without electricity for 2 weeks. My wife and I investigated the situation and helped out with some food and flashlights and lanterns because the Sister said the children were using candles to do their homework.

The mother scraped together the money from relatives and paid the bill on FRIDAY afternoon. Power was not restored until 2:30 in the afternoon on TUESDAY. Slip-ups and incompetent employees of FirstEnergy here in Toledo caused this family to be in the cold and dark for FOUR days after the bill had been paid. My wife and I were witnesses to this incompetence as we made several phone calls on her behalf.

While the Toledo Blade may be right in saying that FirstEnergy had no direct role in the fatal fire, it does not get a pass on its incompetence nor on its so-called benevolence. From our personal experience in trying to help this mother and her family, we see FirstEnergyCorp as little more than a greedy Fortune 500 Corporation with profits in the billions and a monopoly business in the city of Toledo.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Would an Atheist Make a Good President?

No doubt our Founding Father are turning over in their graves at the headlines today about religion and politics. They were simple Deists, folks who believed in a supreme being and that's about it. No doctrines, no litmus tests, no churchy stuff: just an acknowledgement of a being who created us and then on with the task of moving the agenda Of the People forward.

A nasty email apparently has been landing in mailboxes across America saying that Obama was a Muslim during his youth in Indonesia. Mitt Romney is forced to defend Mormonism as a Christian religion. Baptist minister Mike Huckabee is running a TV spot in Iowa with the words CHRISTIAN LEADER appearing below his photo.

The Atlanta Constitution Journal this morning says this about the issue of politics and religion:

The additional problem for Romney is that the Republican Party is dominated by Christian fundamentalists who have preached for over 25 years that GOP stands for God's Only Party. Their reference to God is not to a generic civil deity but to the Christian God. If the Republican Party belongs to God, then the Republican Party can't be led by one who does not believe in that God, no matter how hard Romney tries to say that Mormonism and Christianity share the same God.

One-third of all GOP caucus members in Iowa identify themselves as Fundamentalist Christians. Romney's numbers there are miserable. Yet in New Hampshire, where Christian fundamentalists make up only 9% of the voters, Romney is in the lead.

The American Prospect today posted a story called The Fundamentalist List. It says:

Randy Brinson, formerly of the Alabama Christian Coalition and now head of Redeem the Vote, has, according to the Post, provided 414,000 contacts for Huckabee in Iowa alone, a full quarter of all expected caucus-goers. Redeem the Vote is a Christian organization devoted to registering young people to vote; it has been hailed as the second coming of the Christian right -- this time in a less divisive package. Huckabee's alliance with Brinson goes back to 2004, when he agreed to serve as the chair of the organization's advisory committee.

We in Ohio understand the power of the Christian Coalition: it was through their overt and covert actions that the Bush/Cheney administration won re-election. Ohio was the key state that cemented the victory.

That brings up an interesting question which I have yet to have answered: why do Christian fundamentalists listen so attentively to those Christian organizations which promote a certain candidate for public office? Are they the proverbial sheep so often mentioned in the Scriptures? Mindless folks following the tails of the one in front of them?

For example: Now that we have 'experienced' the Bush/Cheney administration for the past 7 years, what lessons have we learned from these years? Here's the question that is most apropos for the Christian voter who chose those two over the other two sets of candidates in 2000 and 2004: 'Did the Bush/Cheney Administration mirror the actions of Jesus Christ during their time in office?' Is ask this because, I assume, they voted on the basis of some 'Christian morality' that was suggested to them by the Christian wing of the Republican Party.

If that voter has to stop and think about whether Bush/Cheney mirrored Jesus, then they were clear victims of a scam, duped into voting for people for whom the expectation failed to materialize. Is the depth-of-Christianity of a candidate a valid litmus test for governance?

As I have looked through the history books and stories of the past Presidents of the United States, their religious affiliation may have been a footnote at best. Did George Washington's 'faith' help him steer our flimsy ship of state through those early murky waters? Did Lincoln's Bible beliefs help him through the Civil War and his condemnation of slavery? Were the humanitarian actions of Franklin Roosevelt after the Great Depression motivated by his religion? I think not. Yet today, some of our citizens think it necessary to place a man of deep Christian faith into the highest office of the land, as if because of that fact they will be effective captains of the Ship of State.

For the past decade radical religious fundamentalists have caused havoc throughout the world. Right now 150,000 of our men and women will miss Christmas with their families because they have to referee a religious war in Iraq and Afghanistan. For many, it will be their 2nd, 3rd and 4th missed Christmas with family. Haven't we had enough of religious fundamentalism? Why in the world would we want religious fundamentalists choosing the next leader of our nation?

I do not know that answer.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Cheney: The Prince of Darkness II

It's a tough photo to look at and I should have warned you ahead of time, but, nonetheless, he's our Prince of Darkness. The caption below the photo says:

A National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) on Iran has been held up for more than a year in an effort to force the intelligence community to remove dissenting judgments on the Iranian nuclear program, and thus make the document more supportive of U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney’s militarily aggressive policy toward Iran, according to accounts of the process provided by participants to two former Central Intelligence Agency officers.

I bet he's madder than hell today after the press ridiculed Bush after his news conference. Bush looked the buffoon trying to defend his aggressive stance on Iran after the NIE Report nixed any 'threat' from the non-existent nuclear program.

Chris Matthews said on his show this evening that the NIE Report was the best news he read in many months. "That pending Iran War has just been shelved," he told his audience and guests. Joe Biden, one of the quests, said that American trust in the world is gone, simply non-existent because of this report.

I wonder how it will play in Iowa? Matthews revealed that Bush has an 80% positive rating there among Republicans. No kidding. Apparently Iowans are some of the most easily manipulated people in America. Glad I don't live there.

What about the GOP candidates now? suggested Matthews. Their whole game, said Matthews, plan was to hype the Iran problem to take America's mind off of Iraq. I have a feeling that they will still use Iran to scare the people, just like we have been scared for most of the Bush-Cheney years.

Thugs. Just like the Mafia. Nothing but thugs.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Toledo Edison Fails to Turn Electricity On for Family of Nine

updates below

I received a phone call on Friday morning, the day I posted about the fire that killed a mother and her three children who were using candles because Toledo Edison [FirstEnergy] cut their power off. The call was from a Catholic sister who runs a 'community' center in the inner city of Toledo, the Padua Center. She told me of a family nearby whose children come to the center [a former church rectory]. They told her that they have no electricity and no heat in their house and are using candles for light.

My wife and I found out that she was denied any help from Lucas County Children Services, even though she pleaded her case to them. We called some people to get the ball rolling and brought some food and flashlights to them on Saturday. They have one kerosene heater for all 9 people living there. Seven children, their mother and grandmother have been without electricity and their furnace for two weeks. The mother borrowed the money and paid the bill on Friday but Toledo Edison cannot get there until Tuesday, a spokesman for the company told the mother.

A phone call from ABLE/LAWCO could not move Toledo Edison to restore their power in this 30 degree weather. Today's wind-chill is 20 degrees. The family has a small kerosene heater kept in the dining room, sheets attached to the walls to keep that room warm.

What a disgrace this is for FirstEnergy and Toledo Edison.

Where is humanity in the corporate world? Absent, for sure.

update 11:15 AM Tuesday

My wife just talked with the mother and she reports that they are still without electricity. When asked how she was, the mother said. "Cold, very cold!" My wife said that her voice was raspy. I wonder how it was for the children getting off to school this morning, having spent yet another night in a cold, dark house?

update 12:20 PM Tuesday

The story becomes more and more incredible as the hours go by. Both my wife and I were on the phone to Toledo Edison, playing the run-around game. It is not easy to speak to a live person but my wife finally connected with a gentleman who told her that the power was 'on.' She immediately called the mother who said, "No it isn't." Another call back to Toledo Edison, through all of the prompts, to a man named Julius. He said it is 'on' and the mother needs to check for a clear or gray tag on her meter and also to check her circuit breakers. A call to the mother: she checked and found no tag on the meter. My wife handed the phone to me- "Your turn!"

I called the 800 number, through the prompts, got a person and asked for 'Julius.' Music played, I waited and 'Tom' answered. "I was waiting for a representative named Julius, is he there?" "No, he stepped out." "Well, perhaps you could help," I began, "my wife and I have..." "Oh, what was that address?" He checked, "It looks like Julius put in a 'connect' order." "When?" I asked. "About 5 minutes ago," he replied.

I said to Tom, "Listen, Toledo Edison and FirstEnergy Corp already has one burned home and four children on the record and you are playing games with another one and nine people." Not waiting for a reply from him, I told him that I was going to call The Blade and report this to them.

Shortly after that I rang up Laren Weber at The Blade, she is the one who wrote the story of the fire on Lyman Street. I gave her the story and she assured me that she was going to make some phone calls.

What is so incredible about this entire story are the many hurdles that a person like this mother has to jump in trying to resolve the issue. How could she hope to solve this problem herself? It has taken a law department, two fairly-well connected adults and a Blade reporter to move this process, hopefully, forward.

I am going to the home now and will report back later this afternoon.

update 3 PM Tuesday

I met the oldest boy of the family at the Padua Center, a block from his home. He was roaming the halls and his mother had to grab him by the hand to lead him back to the room where is younger siblings, mother, and grandmother were. Apparently he is mentally unstable and although 14-years-old, he would not talk. I, too, grabbed his hand to lead him back and it was as cold as a dead-man's hand. The nun was heating some pizza for them while they warmed up. His mother tried to keep him seated, but the boy yanked free, got up, and walked around as in a daze. Only the pizza led him back to his seat.

After the pizza and the warm-up we walked back to the still-cold house. At 2:30 the Toledo Edison truck pulled up, pulled the meter, threw a switch, and drove off. Power returned to the house after two weeks. What an ordeal. I wonder if the Blade reporter had any influence or if she was just next in line. Only the managers at Edison know that answer. At least tonight, everyone will be warm in their beds at last.

More Bad WMD Intelligence: This Time IRAN

George Bush almost led us into another war based on false and/or flawed intelligence. The Saddam WMD debacle was bad enough, but Mr. Bush was clearly whetting his knife for another preemptive attack on Iran. That other 'axis of evil.'

Hold on, George! Seems that there is now evidence in the news headline, US officials say Iran nuclear weapons program stopped in 2003. The article begins:

Iran halted its nuclear weapons development program in the fall of 2003 under international pressure but is continuing to enrich uranium, which means it may still be able to develop a weapon between 2010 and 2015, senior U.S. intelligence officials said Monday.
That finding is a change from two years ago, when U.S. intelligence agencies believed Iran was determined to develop a nuclear capability and was continuing its weapons development program. It suggests that Iran is susceptible to diplomatic pressure, the official said.

The BUT is always a problem, especially with this warmongering administration. They always look for the loophole. Bush and Cheney love blood-letting, as long as it is someone else's.

We await the spin out of the White House. It ought to be a Dramamine moment for sure.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

The Purge in Iraq is a Success Thanks to George Bush

Not the surge. The purge of Christians from Iraq is nearly complete. CBS' 60 Minutes featured a story on the last Christians left in Iraq. Christians have lived in Iraq since the day that the disciple Thomas brought the 'good news' to them 2000 years ago. Iraqi Christians are being hunted, murdered and forced to flee -- persecuted on a biblical scale in Iraq's religious civil war.

Reverend Canon Andrew White, an Anglican chaplain is determined to save the last Iraqi Christians from the purge.

He holds Sunday services in secret places because churches are either destroyed or unsafe places.

Rev. White was first sent to Baghdad by the Archbishop of Canterbury nine years ago, well before the Christian persecution. "You were here during Saddam’s reign. And now after. Which was better? Which was worse?" Scott Pelley asked. "The situation now is clearly worse” than under Saddam, White said. "There’s no comparison between Iraq now and then," he told Pelley. "Things are the most difficult they have ever been for Christians. Probably ever in history. They’ve never known it like now."

Isn't this an amazing story? Right-wing fundamentalist Muslims have succeeded in driving out the Christians from their homeland with the help of American President George Bush who considers himself a Christian.

Just amazing.

Funny Money

The government of the United States is one of the best when it comes to
sleights of hand and clever distractions to camouflage the real national
debt. Our legislators in D.C. are extremely skilled at using budget tricks
to hide trillions in debt. Democrats and Republicans work in tandem to
pull the wool over our eyes.

For example, take the recent announcement at the closing of the 2007
fiscal year. Both parties crowed that the budget deficit was down to a mere
$162.8 billion. The truth is just the opposite. For fiscal year 2007 the total
federal debt actually increased by $497.1 billion. Funny accounting...Sound
like Enron? Enron? what's dat? Why do Democrats and Republicans continually
hide the true facts. Because true accounting would reveal vastly greater
numbers and implicate both parties. What was that about "not a dimes worth of
difference between the two parties? The $497.1 billion is not reported, rather it
is the $162.8 billion which is reported. Over the last eight years the reported
debt is $1.3 trillion, but the real, actual debt was $3.3 trillion. Funny banking is
great for the politicians. We actually have no cash, no cash on hand. There is
no surplus any where, none. It is exactly as David Walker, Comtroller General,
has been speaking and writing.

The real problem is here. The politicans just raised the national debt ceiling to
$9 trillion. It will be more this next year. Walker's figure is more like $53 trillion.

What do we hear from the presidential candidates? Not this for sure. We hear about
literal biblical interpretation, abortion, gays in the military, who used city money to
finance an adulterous affair, who used illegal immigrants to work at the governor's
mansion, who some one is supporting in the world series, support for the rebel flag,
etc. Perhaps, the one politician who attempts to talk about real issues is effectively
blocked out by the media. Whats the term, marginalized? "The system" is firmly
in control. This country is on the "eve of destruction".

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