Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Manchester’s Morrisey has the will to call it like it is

Celebrating my birthday in Manchester as news of the Manchester Arena bomb broke. The anger is monumental.
For what…

Posted by Morrissey Official on Tuesday, May 23, 2017

And because I continue to ride out my Facebook ban of 45 days. I cannot voice my own support on the Morrisey Facebook Fan Page. However, many of the well-known conservative twitter army has made it possible for me to vent my appreciation.

Tuesday Group Chairman MacArthur Resigns Over Healthcare Fallout

Rep. Tom MacArthur on Tuesday resigned as chair of the Tuesday Group — moderate Republicans — over fallout from the healthcare legislation that bore his name, The Hill reported.

House Republicans passed the MacArthur amendment of the American Health Care Act, crafted by the New Jersey Republican along with the chairman of the conservative Freedom Caucus, Rep. Mark Meadows.

Moderate Republicans were not thrilled. Come Tuesday, MacArthur had had enough.

“While some embraced my efforts as co-chairman, others have bristled. Clearly, our group is divided. Many in the Tuesday Group are eager to live up to our ideal of being problem-solvers, while others seem unwilling to compromise. The recent healthcare debate was illustrative,” The Hill quoted MacArthur on Tuesday.

“It’s clear that some in the Tuesday Group have different objectives and a different sense of governing than I do,” MacArthur said.

Source: newsmax – Tuesday Group Chairman MacArthur Resigns Over Healthcare Fallout

California's Single-Payer Healthcare Would Cost $400 Billion

A single-payer healthcare system in California would cost approximately $400 billion annually, according to a legislative analysis released ahead of the proposal’s hearing in a key fiscal committee, the Los Angeles Times reported on Tuesday.

Questions about the cost have been up to now one of the largest and most important unanswered questions about the plan to overhaul the state’s healthcare coverage.

The bill would get rid of health insurance companies, include coverage for those in the country illegally and have no out-of-pocket costs for residents, the Washington Examiner reported.

The analysis found that although the price tag is $400 billion per year, the new costs would be less, in the range of between $50 billion and $100 billion annually.

This is so because some $200 billion of existing funds would be repurposed to go towards the new system and projections estimate that universal healthcare would also reduce spending by employers and employees statewide, according to the Times.

The extra funds needed for the system could be raised by a new 15 percent payroll tax on employers, the analysis proposed.

But for that to happen, two-thirds of California’s Assembly and Senate must approve it. However, even if the bill was signed into law in the state, President Donald Trump would also have to approve the waivers, because Medicare and Medicaid would be expected to pay for about half the program.

The Examiner pointed out that attempts by other states at a single-payer system have failed because of concerns about costs, such as in Colorado and Vermont.

Source: newsmax – California’s Single-Payer Healthcare Would Cost 0 Billion

Rep. McCaul: Muslims Must 'Step Up to the Plate' in Fight Against Terrorism

Rep. Michael McCaul, R-Texas, said Tuesday, in response to the attack in Manchester, U.K. Monday night, that Muslims must do more to fight against radical terrorists.

Moderate Muslims “have to step up to the plate and clean up their own religion, which has been perverted by this radical Islamist terror,” McCaul said on Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom,” pointing to President Donald Trump’s Sunday speech in which he urged Middle Eastern countries to wipe out “Islamic extremism” in the region and framing it as a “battle between good and evil,” rather than between Islam and the West.

“A better future is only possible if your nations drive out the terrorists and extremists. Drive them out,” Trump said. “Drive them out of your places of worship. Drive them out of your communities. Drive them out of your holy land. And drive them out of this Earth.”

The president addressed the attack on Tuesday, calling the perpetrators “losers” while in Bethlehem, according to CNN.

“So many young beautiful innocent people living and enjoying their lives murdered by evil losers in life. I won’t call them monsters because they would like that term. They would think that’s a great name. I will call them from now on losers because that’s what they are,” he said. “They’re losers, and we’ll have more of them, but they’re losers, just remember that.”

McCaul said that despite Trump’s attempts to build bridges between Muslims, Christians and Jews, that “This ideology’s way too strong. And we’re going to see more of these attacks in the future.”

Source: newsmax – Rep. McCaul: Muslims Must ‘Step Up to the Plate’ in Fight Against Terrorism

The Daily Beast Compares Japan PM Abe to Hitler

A new report compares Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s administration to that of Nazi Germany’s dating back to World War II.

The Daily Beast outlines its case by listing several reasons that it believes draw comparisons between Abe and Adolf Hitler. Among those are:

Abe will replace Japan’s Democratic Constitution instituted after the war with one that takes pages from Nazi Germany’s.

Abe’s party will pass a surveillance bill this week that the Daily Beast says could punish people for speaking out against the government. A similar policy was in place from 1925-1945 during Japan’s imperial days.

Abe has brought what the Daily Beast reports were racists into his administration.

Abe’s Cabinet ministers support bringing the “Imperial Rescript on Education” back to classrooms across the country, which was used as a reason to deploy kamikaze pilots during World War II.

“The administration has demonstrated repeatedly its inclination to be more like the Nazis, at least in certain respects,” The Daily Beast’s Jake Adelstein and Mari Yamamoto wrote. “In fact, sometimes the party manifesto seems like one big throwback to those imperialist days when the superior Yamato race, descendants of the gods, ruled over Asia and used lesser Asian men for slave labor, and the women for pleasuring the soldiers.”

Japan’s new Constitution would, in part, grant the federal government the power to institute a state of emergency. That, the Beast reports, would allow Abe’s administration to circumvent certain laws and avoid having to receive Parliament approval to take certain actions.

Critics of the aforementioned surveillance bill claim it will give Japan’s government too much power.

“Abe and the [ruling Liberal Democratic Party] want to dramatically change the balance between protecting individual rights and police powers,” said Lawrence Repeta, an expert on Japan’s legal system.

Reuters contributed to this report.

Source: newsmax – The Daily Beast Compares Japan PM Abe to Hitler

NY Attorney General: $18.5 Million Settlement With Target

Target Corp. has reached an $18.5 million settlement over a massive data breach that occurred before Christmas in 2013, New York’s attorney general announced Tuesday.

The agreement involving 47 states and the District of Columbia is the largest multistate data breach settlement to date, Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman’s office said. The settlement, which stipulates some security measures the retailer must adhere to, resolves the states’ probe into the breach.

Target spokeswoman Jenna Reck said in a statement that the company has been working with state authorities for several years to address claims related to the breach.

“We’re pleased to bring this issue to a resolution for everyone involved,” she said.

Target had announced the breach on Dec. 19, 2013, saying it had occurred between Nov. 27 and Dec. 15 of that year. It affected more than 41 million customer payment card accounts and exposed contact information for more than 60 million customers.

The breach forced Target to overhaul its security system and the company offered free credit reports for potentially affected shoppers. Target’s sales, profit and stock price all suffered months after the disclosure as shoppers were nervous about their security of their credit cards. The breach also contributed to the departure of Target’s then-CEO, chairman and president Gregg Steinhafel, who resigned in May 2014.

An investigation by the states found that in November 2013, scammers got access to Target’s server through credentials stolen from a third-party vendor. They used those credentials to take advantage of holes in Target’s systems, accessing a customer service database and installing malware that was used to capture data, including full customer names, telephone numbers, email and mailing addresses, credit card numbers, expiration dates and encrypted debit PINs.

The settlement requires Target to maintain appropriate encryption policies and take other security steps. Reck said the costs of the settlement are already reflected in the reserves that Target has previously disclosed.

Source: newsmax – NY Attorney General: .5 Million Settlement With Target

Justice Department Sues Fiat Chrysler Over Pollution Controls

The U.S. government has filed a civil lawsuit accusing Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV of using software to bypass emission controls in diesel vehicles, the Environmental Protection Agency said on Tuesday.

The U.S. Justice Department suit is a procedural step that may ramp up pressure on Fiat Chrysler. The suit could ultimately help lead to a settlement, as in an earlier probe of rival Volkswagen AG that will cost VW up to $25 billion, but which affected a much larger number of vehicles.

VW admitted to intentionally cheating while Fiat Chrysler denies wrongdoing. It did not immediately comment on Tuesday.

Fiat Chrysler shares fell 3 percent in the minutes after Reuters’ report of the suit and were last down 2.4 percent at $10.50 in midday U.S. trading.

The lawsuit says the Italian-American automaker placed undeclared “defeat devices,” or auxiliary emissions controls, in 2014-2016 Fiat Chrysler diesel vehicles.

In January, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and California accused Fiat Chrysler of illegally using undisclosed software to allow excess diesel emissions in 104,000 U.S. 2014-2016 Jeep Grand Cherokees and Dodge Ram 1500 trucks.

EPA said in January the maximum fine is about $4.6 billion.

Fiat Chrysler said on Friday it plans to update software that it expects will resolve the concerns of U.S. regulators about excess emissions in those vehicles.

The January notice was the result of regulators’ investigation of rival Volkswagen’s excess emissions, which prompted the government to review emissions from all other passenger diesel vehicles.

Volkswagen admitted in September 2015 to installing secret software allowing its cars to emit up to 40 times legally-allowed pollution levels.

In total, VW has agreed to spend up to $25 billion in the United States to address claims from owners, environmental regulators, states and dealers and offered to buy back about 500,000 polluting U.S. vehicles.

Fiat Chrysler has applied for certification to sell 2017 diesel models from U.S. and California regulators and said it was in talks to win approval for a software update to address regulators’ concerns about emissions in vehicles on the road.

The software update would begin rolling out once the EPA and California Air Resources Board approved it, Fiat Chrysler said Friday. The company said it does not anticipate any impact on performance or fuel efficiency.

Reuters reported on May 17 that the Justice Department was preparing to file a civil lawsuit against the automaker.

A federal judge in California set a Wednesday hearing on a series of lawsuits filed by owners of vehicles and some dealers against Fiat Chrysler.

A “defeat device” is any motor vehicle hardware, software, or design that interferes with or disables emissions controls under real-world driving conditions, even if the vehicle passes formal emissions testing.

Automakers around the world are facing diesel scrutiny.

German prosecutors searched Daimler AG sites on Tuesday as part of a fraud probe related to false advertising and the possible manipulation of exhaust-gas after-treatment in diesel cars, the German carmaker said in a statement.

Earlier this month, the German automaker dropped plans to seek U.S. approval to sell 2017 Mercedes-Benz diesel models.

Source: newsmax – Justice Department Sues Fiat Chrysler Over Pollution Controls

Ed Klein: The Democrats' Evil Twin

John Podesta, the chairman of Hillary Clinton’s losing presidential campaign, is notorious for his hot temper. When he blows his fuse, people in Washington say he turns into his Evil Twin Skippy.

Skippy surfaced the other day.

In an interview with Politico, he dumped all over Donald Trump. He called the president “absolutely crazy,” and “incapable of doing his job.”

Trump, he said, is worse than Nixon. “Nixon, for all his flaws…was serious.”

Skippy is like most Democrats. They can’t stand the idea that Donald Trump is in the White House. It drives them crazy and warps their judgment.

When Skippy sounded off the other day, it reminded us that the Democrats have an alter ego, too— their Evil Twin Dippy.

Dippy doesn’t act like a serious political party. Dippy doesn’t have an idea in its head.

The only thing Dippy has going for itself is the hope that Trump will be impeached.

But for that to happen, Dippy has to take back control of the House of Representatives in the 2018 midterm elections.

According to the Constitution, the House initiates impeachment proceedings.

That’s what’s motivating Dippy these day.

Until then, Dippy will continue banging on Trump, coming up with conspiracy theories, obstructing Trump’s political agenda, and acting in an asinine and harebrained way.

Source: newsmax – Ed Klein: The Democrats’ Evil Twin

Poll: Most Say Saudis Not Tough Enough in Fight Against Islamic Terror

Despite President Donald Trump’s glowing praise of Saudi Arabia during his visit there over the weekend, only 9 percent of likely U.S. voters say the Saudi government has been aggressive enough in its efforts to fight radical Islamic terrorism, according to a Rasmussen Reports poll released on Tuesday.

Seventy percent of those polled said the Saudis have not been aggressive enough in combating radical Islamic terrorism, which is up from 63 percent two years ago. Twenty-one percent said they are not sure.

Other results from the survey include:

  • Only 21 percent of likely U.S. voters view the country as an ally of the United States That compares to 17 percent who considered Riyadh an ally in January 2016 and 26 percent in January 2015.
  • Eleven percent of likely U.S. voters consider the Saudis an enemy, which is down from the 29 percent of Americans who felt that way six years ago. Fifty-nine percent say the Saudis are somewhere in between an enemy and an ally.
  • Even among those who consider Saudi Arabia an ally, only 18 percent said they are doing enough to fight radical Islam.

In a breakdown among parties, 77 percent of Republicans say Riyadh is not aggressive enough in combatting Islamic terrorism, while 65 percent of Democrats and 67 percent of unaffiliates say the same thing.

Eighty percent of those polled consider radical Islam a serious threat to the United States.

The survey of 1,000 likely voters was conducted on May 21-22. The margin of sampling error is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95 percent level of confidence.

Source: newsmax – Poll: Most Say Saudis Not Tough Enough in Fight Against Islamic Terror

Report: Dem Aide Suspected of Major Security Breach Leaves for Pakistan

A former aide to several House Democrats currently under criminal investigation for breaching security has left the United States for Pakistan, The Daily Caller reports.

Hina Alvi and her husband, Imran Awan, and his brothers Abid and Jamal, worked as IT support staffers for multiple Democratic members of Congress.

Most recently Alvi worked for Rep. Gregory Meeks of New York and Awan for Rep. Marcia Fudge of Ohio, though they were fired at the beginning of May after they were accused of stealing computer equipment and data theft, according to Politico

Unnamed sources told The Daily Caller News Foundation’s Investigative Group that the family have abruptly left for Pakistan, where Alvi’s family hold “significant assets and VIP-level protection.”

The couple recently pulled their children out of school and listed their homes in Lorton and Springfield, Virginia for sale.

“I came to know from one of their relatives that Hina Alvi and her daughters are moved to Pakistan, Hina Alvi saying ‘we have moved here in Pakistan permanently,'” Samina Gilani, the Anwans’ stepmother, told The Daily Caller.

When moving out of their Lorton home, Imran Awan told his neighbor that they were moving into the home of his father, who died in January.

“They lived there nine years,” the neighbor told The Daily Caller. “I saw a moving truck a month ago, and he said he was moving to his dad’s house.”

According to Gilani, Imran moved into his father’s house with Abid’s family, but a third family already rents a portion of the 2,400 square foot house.

One tenant who rents property from Hina Alvi said she’s been unreachable lately.

“All contact with her turned off,” the tenant told the Daily Caller. “The switch off [to dealing with Imran instead] was odd.”

Source: newsmax – Report: Dem Aide Suspected of Major Security Breach Leaves for Pakistan

Trump Budget to Include $1.6 Billion for 'Bricks and Mortar for a Wall'

President Donald Trump’s budget proposal includes $2.6 billion for border security, of which $1.6 billion is for “bricks and mortar for a wall,” according to Mick Mulvaney, Office of Management and Budget director.

The money would cover a few dozen miles of the border wall between the U.S. and Mexico, a source familiar with the budget justification said in a Tuesday CNN report.

In addition to money for the wall, another $1 billion would pay for aircraft, weapons, roads, and equipment for communications, surveillance, and inspections, according to budget documents, the CNN report said.

The budget proposal would only support 500 new Border Patrol agents and 1,000 new Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers, the report said. The president had asked for 5,000 new Border Patrol agents and 10,000 new immigration officers.

Mulvaney said in a Tuesday briefing with reporters that the budget shows that the Trump administration’s priorities are more money for defense and border security.

On Monday, Mulvaney said the budget is focused on taxpayers.

“This is, I think, the first time in a long time that an administration has written a budget through the eyes of the people who are actually paying the taxes,” Mulvaney said, according to The Atlantic.

Source: newsmax – Trump Budget to Include .6 Billion for ‘Bricks and Mortar for a Wall’

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Time: US Caught Russian Spy Boasting of Election Meddling

U.S. intelligence officers intercepted a conversation last May of a Russian spy bragging Moscow “was getting ready to pay [Hillary] Clinton back” by meddling in the November election, according to news reports Thursday.

“In May 2016, a Russian military intelligence officer bragged to a colleague that his organization, known as the GRU, was getting ready to pay Clinton back for what President Vladimir Putin believed was an influence operation she had run against him five years earlier as secretary of state,” Time magazine reported.

“The GRU, he said, was going to cause chaos in the upcoming U.S. election.

“What the officer didn’t know, senior intelligence officials tell Time, was that “U.S. spies were listening,” Time reported, quoting top U.S. intelligence officials.

“They wrote up the conversation and sent it back to analysts at headquarters, who turned it from raw intelligence into an official report and circulated it.

“But if the officer’s boast seems like a red flag now, at the time U.S. officials didn’t know what to make of it,” the magazine said.

“We didn’t really understand the context of it until much later,” the senior intelligence official said.

The boast is now considered “the first indication U.S. spies had from their sources that Russia wasn’t just hacking email accounts to collect intelligence but was also considering interfering in the vote,” Time reported.

In 2011, Putin publicly accused Clinton and the State Department of fueling protests in 70 cities that threatened his re-election bid.

The demonstrations were organized on social media by a popular blogger named Alexei Navalny.

The State Department retorted it only financed pro-democracy organizations.

According to Time, a Russian soldier in Ukraine “successfully infiltrated a U.S. social media group by pretending to be a 42-year-old American housewife and weighing in on political debates with specially tailored messages.”

Moscow also created a Facebook profile to spread stories on specific issues that sought to influence particular reporters, the U.S. officials said.

Source: newsmax – Time: US Caught Russian Spy Boasting of Election Meddling

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Author: Trump Pressured Flynn to Be National Security Adviser

A historian and political analyst who cowrote a book about battlefield intelligence with Michael Flynn said Flynn was reluctant to join the Trump administration, but that the president “insisted” he serve as national security adviser, reports say.

President Donald Trump’s pressure on Flynn came even as Trump’s transition team was warned that the retired lieutenant general was under investigation, The Daily Beast reported.

“He did not want to be national security adviser,” Michael Ledeen, who co-authored the book “The Field of Flight” last year with Flynn, told The Daily Beast. “He didn’t want to be in the government. He wanted to go back to private life. But Trump insisted on it.”

“He likes him, he trusted him, he was comfortable with him,” Leeden said.

According to the New York Times, Flynn told Trump’s transition team weeks before the inauguration that he was under federal investigation for secretly working as a paid lobbyist for Turkey during the campaign. And despite the warning, Trump picked Flynn for the national security post.

Ledeen told ABC News that Flynn is “a very talented man” who made major contributions to military intelligence.

“He revolutionized U.S. military battlefield intelligence and was attempting to do the same thing at [the Defense Intelligence Agency] when he was fired for telling the truth under oath,” Ledeen told ABC News.

Source: newsmax – Author: Trump Pressured Flynn to Be National Security Adviser

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Chelsea Manning Photo Shows Freshly Freed Whistleblower

Chelsea Manning has posted the first photo of herself on social media a day after leaving prison, where she served seven years for releasing 75,000 documents to WikiLeaks.

“Okay, so here I am everyone!!” the photo was captioned Thursday, showing Manning wearing makeup and and low-cut top.

When she entered the U.S. Disciplinary Barracks at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas in 2010, Manning was a 22-year-old Army Private named Bradley Manning, convicted by a military tribunal under the Espionage and Computer Fraud Abuse Acts and sentenced to 35 years in prison. Manning came out as transgender just after her sentencing in August 2013.

Although the military at first refused to provide any accommodations for her gender dysphoria, a settlement was reached after she filed a lawsuit in 2014, and Manning received hormone therapy and grooming items provided to women in custody.

Manning had her sentence commuted by President Barack Obama three days before he left office. Still, she served more time than any other whistleblower in U.S. history.

Manning is still on active duty while she appeals her 2013 conviction and is subject to the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

“After so many years of government control over her body and gender, I know she is eager to grow her hair, express her gender and negotiate decisions on her own terms,” ACLU attorney Chase Strangio said, NBC News reported.

Manning, who seems to be quickly acclimating to social media, also tweeted a few other photos celebrating her release and a new start.

Source: newsmax – Chelsea Manning Photo Shows Freshly Freed Whistleblower

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Ruddy: Ailes 'Loved America,' Helped Trump

Newsmax founder and CEO Chris Ruddy lauded Roger Ailes for not just changing the face of cable and television news, but also for impacting America’s “political transformation.”

In an interview with Newsmax TV‘s “America Talks Live” host Miranda Khan, Ruddy recounted a personal relationship with Ailes that spanned two decades. The former Fox News CEO died Thursday at 77.

“Roger loved America,” Ruddy said. “He was a guy that really loved the country; he had a passion for America. I think he dedicated his life to helping America.”

“Whether that was in politics as a Republican strategist or doing the Fox network, I think he really wanted to champion these things,” Ruddy said.

“If Roger hadn’t created Fox News with the help of Rupert Murdoch and [the] $1 billion check that Murdoch provided, I think that Donald Trump would never have been elected.”

And though Ailes “once told me he had never worked for a campaign that lost,” it was his creation of Fox News that was his proudest accomplishment, Ruddy said.

“He changed the face of cable news and television news,” Ruddy said. “Before that, we had ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN all doing the establishment line, Roger came in and said, ‘Hey, there’s millions of people in the heartland of America that don’t like the news they’re getting, they’re underserved, they’re not served at all in some cases. Let’s create a network that represents them in Washington, New York, and Hollywood.'”

Not only was his idea prescient, Fox “became the No. 1 ratings juggernaut,” Ruddy said.

“Fox does about $2.4 billion in revenue,” he noted. “It’s a huge audience out there that wants news that they’re not getting from the mainstream media. I think Roger showed that.”

“Roger Ailes has impacted the political transformation we’re seeing in America,” Ruddy said, adding Ailes remained a “driving force” at Fox for his entire career.

“He didn’t really have aback bench of lieutenants that you would need normally to run a business like that, or run a network,” he said. “It was Roger, he was the mastermind, he was pulling all the strings so to speak . . .”

“One of the things he always told me was that if he left Fox, the place would fall apart,” Ruddy recalled.

Ruddy said he believes “Newsmax is going to be a continuation of some of the things that Roger was trying to start.”

“It’s a huge audience out there that wants news that they’re not getting from the mainstream media,” Ruddy said. “I think Roger showed that, and Newsmax has done very well as a digital media company . . .”

Ruddy said he once tried “to work with Roger to bring him over to Newsmax.”

“He was interested for a while, and then he renewed with Fox, but I think we certainly are carrying the legacy of having more fairness and balance in the media, which is the important thing,” he said.

Source: newsmax – Ruddy: Ailes ‘Loved America,’ Helped Trump

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Time Magazine Cover Illustrates Russia Overtaking White House

Time magazine’s latest cover shows Russian onion domes taking over the White House in a reference to yet unproven ties between President Donald Trump and Russian leadership.

The cover is being seen as an attack against Trump for having close ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin, and possibly a reference to recent accusations that Trump disclosed classified information to Putin during a recent meeting.

Trump has denied revealing any classified information; the accusation came from an unnamed source and has not been substantiated.

Furthermore, Russian foreign officials have also denied that classified information was revealed.

The U.S. Justice Department has now appointed a special counsel, Robert Mueller, to investigate whether there was any interference by Russia in the 2016 U.S. election or collusion between Trump’s campaign and Russia. While Trump called the appointment part of “the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history” on Twitter, he also said in a statement on Wednesday that “a thorough investigation will confirm what we already know — there was no collusion between my campaign and any foreign entity.”

In Trump’s first few months as president, Time has featured several politically focused covers critical of him; on the other hand, it also named him its 2016 Person of the Year. Trump reportedly keeps a stack of Time magazines featuring him on the cover on his desk in Trump Tower, according to CNN Politics.

MAD Magazine weighed in with a side-by-side photo showing a Dec. 12, 2016 cover of their magazine remarkably similar to the Time cover, with onion domes covering the top of the White House, and accused Time of stealing their material.

Twitter has been skeptical of the magazine’s objectivity in light of the new cover, with some pointing out the apparent bias of the magazine and the fact that no proof has been given of the allegations so far. Another challenged journalists to ask Trump about the illustration.

Trump may get the last laugh in the end, though.

Source: newsmax – Time Magazine Cover Illustrates Russia Overtaking White House

The post Time Magazine Cover Illustrates Russia Overtaking White House appeared first on @tonygreene113.

France's Le Pen to Run for Parliament with Party in Disarray

PARIS (AP) — Emerging from her crushing defeat in France’s presidential contest, far-right leader Marine Le Pen said Thursday she will run for a parliamentary seat in June elections and that her National Front party has “an essential role” in a new political landscape.

Le Pen will run for a seat in a district in her northern stronghold of Henin-Beaumont, a hardscrabble former mining region where she lost a similar bid in 2012. A new failure could jinx her bid to unite the National Front and to make it France’s leading opposition party.

“I cannot imagine not being at the head of my troops in a battle I consider fundamental,” Le Pen said in an interview on the TF1 television station, her first public appearance since her May 7 loss to centrist Emmanuel Macron.

Le Pen announced her candidacy while facing forces of division that could frustrate her new goals. Her popular niece is leaving politics, her disruptive father is back in the ring and her party is in disarray.

At the same time, Macron has upset the political equation, drawing from the left and right to win the presidency and to create his government. The new president now is looking across the political spectrum to obtain a parliamentary majority to support his agenda.

“We are in reality the only opposition movement,” Le Pen said.

“We will have an essential role to play (and) a role in the recomposing of political life,” she said, reiterating her contention that the left-right divide has been replaced by “globalists, Europeanists and nationalists” like herself.

Le Pen is counting on the 10.6 million votes she received as a presidential candidate to propel her anti-immigration party into parliament in the June 11 and June 18 elections.

The party also hopes to pick up votes from “electoral orphans” unsatisfied with Macron and feeling betrayed by the mainstream right, National Front Secretary-General Nicolas Bay said this week.

The National Front plans to field candidates for each of France’s 577 electoral districts, hoping to block Macron’s movement from obtaining a majority of seats and to secure a strong bloc of its own to counter his new government.

Le Pen dismissed the notion that there were links between her loss and a series of events widely seen as potentially weakening the National Front.

The party recently lost a rising star who served as a unifier on its conservative southern flank. One of the National Front’s two current lawmakers — Le Pen’s niece, Marion Marechal-Le Pen — announced last week that she was leaving politics, at least temporarily.

Enter Jean-Marie Le Pen, who likened his granddaughter’s exit from politics to a “desertion.”

The elder Le Pen, who was expelled from the party he co-founded because of his penchant for making anti-Semitic comments, is backing up to 200 parliamentary candidates through an ultra-conservative alliance, the Union of Patriots.

Some of the five parties represented in the alliance are headed by former National Front militants who, like Jean-Marie Le Pen, were expelled by his daughter in her bid to scrub up the party’s image for the presidential contest.

His own Jeanne Committees will present some 35 of the 200 candidates. The decision smacks of revenge, but the elder Le Pen’s aide denied that was the case.

“This is not meant to cause trouble for the National Front. It is to defend the values that the National Front no longer defends,” the aide, Lorrain de Saint Affrique, said.

The risk that other far-right parties would challenge the National Front “has existed since the National Front decided to exclude Jean-Marie Le Pen,” De Saint Affrique said. “They should have thought of that then.”

The competition from all but obscure parties is not a substantial threat to Le Pen, but mirrors frustrations roiling the National Front, some of which became public following Le Pen’s defeat.

More menacing, her top lieutenant, Florian Philippot suggested after Le Pen’s loss to Macron that he would leave the party if it decided to do away with the goal of leaving the euro currency — a divisive proposal but at the top of Le Pen’s presidential platform.

“I’m not there to keep a post at any price and defend the reverse of my deep convictions,” he said last week on RMC radio.

Le Pen conceded Thursday that the subject of the euro “considerably worried the French” and would be discussed after the parliamentary elections. “We will have to take this into account, reflect,” she said.

She welcomed Philippot’s launching this week of an association, called The Patriots, which could be seen as the budding of a potential rival, like the movement Macron started 13 months ago, En Marche (On the Move).

“The more ideas the better,” she said.

Source: newsmax – France’s Le Pen to Run for Parliament with Party in Disarray

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FCC Vote Kicks off a Battle Over Regulation of the Internet

A federal agency voted to kick off the repeal of “net neutrality” rules designed to keep broadband providers like AT&T, Verizon and Comcast from interfering with the internet.

It’s the latest change that the Federal Communications Commission has made to ease regulation of the phone, broadcast and cable industries.

Undoing the net neutrality rules — which, for instance, block providers from favoring their own apps and services over those of competitors like Netflix — may be the biggest battle yet triggered by FCC Chairman Ajit Pai. The tech industry, which sees net neutrality as necessary to innovation, is already pushing back by lobbying politicians, sending letters of protest to the agency and starting to rally supporters.

The FCC’s three commissioners voted 2-1, with the lone Democrat opposed, to start a process aimed at unwinding the net neutrality rules. It will be months before final rules are up for a vote.


Pai often argues that net neutrality rules are heavy handed and discourage broadband investment. His goal, he says, is to encourage companies to build out their wired and wireless broadband networks and draw more Americans online.

For support, Pai turns to a study by Hal Singer, a net-neutrality critic and economist who has worked as a telecom-industry consultant. Singer found that such infrastructure investment by network companies has declined 5.6 percent in 2016 from 2014. The telecom trade group USTelecom likewise says broadband investment is falling in the aftermath of the net neutrality rules.

Free Press, an advocacy group that supports net neutrality, has its own competing study showing broadband companies’ infrastructure spending rose, and says USTelecom is wrong to exclude some spending by AT&T and Sprint. Pai on Thursday defended the analysis he relied on, saying it’s the more accurate measure of investment in the U.S.

Industry analysts, however, say it’s so far hard to say, and note that other factors also affect investment.

In June 2015, the Obama-era FCC decided to regulate broadband as a “Title II” service — putting it, like phone service, under stricter government oversight. That gave the FCC authority to enforce net neutrality rules. Companies worried that regime would make it easier to regulate the prices they charged for broadband.

“From where we sit, the overall level of investment in the business is still pretty strong,” said Moody’s Mark Stodden, who analyzes telecom companies like Verizon and AT&T. “I hear companies complaining about net neutrality and Title II, but I think it’s a cop-out. I don’t think they’re actually spending less. They don’t like it so they complain about it.”


Some net-neutrality supporters have already started to push back against the repeal effort. The Firefox browser has a call to action that goads users to “tell the FCC that you heart the open web!” and links to a site collecting signatures for a letter to Pai.

John Oliver, the HBO comedy-news host whose 2014 segment helped popularize net neutrality as an issue (nearly 4 million comments filed back in 2015), got into the mix again with another segment on May 7, urging viewers to tell the FCC to keep the net neutrality rules.

But the vitriol often unleashed by the internet is already leaking into this inter-industry tech-policy battle. The chairman and his staff have complained about mean or racist comments directed at Pai, who is Indian-American. Oliver even begged supporters to be civil in an online video posted Sunday.

There are also reports that many of the 2 million comments already filed to the FCC are fake. And the FCC said its site was attacked the night of Oliver’s first segment, making it hard to leave a comment.

FCC officials have said, however, that it’s not a numbers game, and they pay more attention the know-how of the person or group making the comment rather than how many are filed on each side.


A preliminary version of Pai’s proposals, released last month, raised concerns that the FCC would only repeal, but not replace, net neutrality protections. Thursday’s proposal asked whether it’s still necessary to bar internet providers from blocking or slowing down certain websites or apps, or from charging services like Netflix extra for access to consumers. (Pai said Thursday these sections are still in the proposal.)

Big broadband companies say they can be trusted to do what’s right for their customers. Net-neutrality advocates cry foul; Free Press has a list of what it calls net-neutrality violations going back more than a decade.

“An open internet means that we do not block, throttle or otherwise impair your online activity,” said a Wednesday ad in the Washington Post placed by the cable lobby, NCTA. “We firmly stand by that commitment because it is good for our customers and good for our business.”

“Verizon supports net neutrality. Our customers demand it and our business depends on it,” wrote Craig Silliman, Verizon’s general counsel, in a post on LinkedIn. He also called for net-neutrality legislation from Congress.

In an April blog post, AT&T says it “has always supported our customers’ right to an open internet — and the right to access the content, applications and devices of their choosing.”

AT&T and industry trade groups sued the FCC over the 2015 rules; a federal appeals court upheld them in 2016 . Verizon sued over a previous attempt that was spiked in 2014 by a federal appeals court.

Source: newsmax – FCC Vote Kicks off a Battle Over Regulation of the Internet

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Chaffetz's June 30 Resignation Opens Oversight Chairmanship

Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, announced Thursday he is resigning from Congress effective June 30 – reportedly triggering a Republican scramble for the chairmanship of one of the key congressional committees investigating Russian interference in the 2016 election.

In a letter to constituents, Chaffetz, who chairs the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, said he “never for a moment . . . thought that I was indispensable. I know others can and should serve.”

Chaffetz had previously said he would leave Congress before the end of his term, but did not provide a timeline. With his quick departure now known, the question of a successor will have Republicans scrambling to fill his chairmanship, USA Today reported.

Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, one of the most senior committee members, “has signaled his interest in succeeding Chaffetz,” USA Today reported. Jordan is a co-founder of the conservative House Freedom Caucus and has frequently clashed with GOP leadership, the newspaper noted.

Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., is also interested, USA Today reported.

“Rep. Gowdy is talking to members in the conference about the qualities they believe are most important for the next Chairman to possess,” Gowdy spokeswoman Amanda Gonzalez told USA Today.

Source: newsmax – Chaffetz’s June 30 Resignation Opens Oversight Chairmanship

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Trump Meets Rep. McCarthy After Putin Remark Made Public

President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence made a last-minute appearance in a White House meeting that included a leading Republican who last summer accused Trump of accepting money from Russia.

It was reported Wednesday that House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., told some of his colleagues last summer he was convinced Russian President Vladimir Putin was paying Trump and Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, R-Calif.

Trump’s director of social media posted an image of Thursday’s meeting on his Twitter account:

The meeting was in regards to senior adviser to the president Jared Kushner’s innovation initiative, according to The Hill.

McCarthy acknowledged he made the remark last summer but called it a joke.

Source: newsmax – Trump Meets Rep. McCarthy After Putin Remark Made Public

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3-30 afternoon wind blowing in hard over the pool

pools for swimming are aesome

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Saturday, May 13, 2017

Former FBI Agent Warns Bin Laden's Son Is Out for Revenge

The son of late al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden wants to carry on his father’s terror legacy in part to revenge his death at the hands of American commandos, a new report says.

Former FBI agent Ali Soufan, who led the bureau’s al-Qaida investigation after the September 11 terror attacks, told “60 Minutes” in an interview slated to air Sunday Hamza bin Laden was the subject of several letters that were discovered during the 2011 raid that resulted in his father’s death.

In one letter that’s since been declassified, “[Hamza] tells [his father] that … he remembers every look … every smile you gave me, every word you told me,” Soufan said. Hamza bin Laden was 22 at the time that letter was written and is now 28.

According to Soufan, the letter continued: “I consider myself to be forged in steel … The path of jihad for the sake of God is what we live.”

Hamza bin Laden has released four audio messages in the last two years, and Soufan said he has the potential to inspire other would-be terrorists.

“His recent message that came out, he delivered the speech as if it’s his father … using sentences, terminology that was used by Osama bin Laden,” the former agent said.

The U.S. added Hamza bin Laden to the list of Specially Designated Global Terrorists earlier this year.

It was reported in January that Osama bin Laden was fearful that Iran would implant tracking devices into his sons.

Source: newsmax – Former FBI Agent Warns Bin Laden’s Son Is Out for Revenge

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FedEx Impacted by Worldwide Cyberattack

FedEx Corp. is confirming that it is suffering a malware attack.

A statement from the delivery company Friday said its Windows-based systems were “experiencing interference” due to malware and that it was trying to fix the issue as quickly as possible.

It gave no further details.

Computer systems at companies and hospitals in dozens of countries were hit Friday, apparently part of a huge extortion plot.

The so-called ransomware attack appears to exploit a weakness that was purportedly identified by the U.S. National Security Agency and leaked to the internet. It encrypts data on infected computers and demands payment before the information is unencrypted.

Source: newsmax – FedEx Impacted by Worldwide Cyberattack

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Woman Who Lived in Church Allowed to Stay in US for 2 Years

A woman who lived in Denver churches for three months to avoid immigration authorities and another Mexican immigrant arrested last month are among 30 immigrants who are being allowed to stay in the United States for two years as they fight to get legal status after getting help from members of Congress.

Jeanette Vizguerra left the First Baptist Church near the state Capitol on Friday surrounded by her children and supporters after winning the deportation delay following the intervention of U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet.

Bennet filed bills to help her and Arturo Hernandez remain in the United States under a process that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement recently announced would be scaled back.

ICE has traditionally granted delays of deportation when a bill is introduced in Congress on behalf of individual immigrants. Those delays have sometimes extended for years as lawmakers reintroduced the measures. Few of the so-called private bills ever become law.

In a May 5 letter to lawmakers, ICE acting director Thomas Homan said the agency will now only consider holding off deporting immigrants with legislation pending on their behalf for up to six months with the possibility of one 90-day extension. The requests must now also have the approval of judiciary committee leaders.

Vizguerra and Hernandez were among 30 people who had bills introduced before May 5 and are being granted two-year deportation delays, ICE spokesman Carl Rusnok said in a statement Friday.

Bennet, who said Vizguerra and Hernandez should never have been targeted for deportation, criticized the change. “It is disappointing that the Department of Homeland Security has taken unilateral action to change the process for an already few number of private bills that are introduced,” he said.

Hernandez’s lawyer, Laura Lichter, said she thinks the 30 grandfathered people could be the last to get extensions under the new process, a last resort for immigrants facing deportation.

Speaking to the crowd while holding her daughter’s hand, Vizguerra said she is happy to be with her family for Mother’s Day. But she is sad that another immigrant, Ingrid Encalada Latorre, is still living in a Quaker meeting house in Denver because she’s facing removal from the United States.

“My energy will be to fight for her,” Vizguerra said in Spanish through an interpreter.

She first moved into the basement of the First Unitarian Church after skipping a check-in with immigration officials Feb. 15 out of fear they would deport her after previously granting delays as she pursued a visa given to crime victims. She later moved to the Baptist church.

Hernandez took refuge in a Denver church in 2014 and 2015 after coming to the attention of immigration agents for an assault charge he was eventually acquitted of. He left the church after ICE assured him he would no longer be a priority for deportation.

He was arrested by immigration agents on April 24, but later released after Bennet intervened. Hernandez was initially given a 30-day deportation delay before winning the two-year delay.

Source: newsmax – Woman Who Lived in Church Allowed to Stay in US for 2 Years

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US Prepares to Ban Laptops on Flights From Europe

The U.S. is expected to broaden its ban on in-flight laptops and tablets to include planes from the European Union, a move that would create logistical chaos on the world’s busiest corridor of air travel.

Alarmed at the proposal, which airline officials say is merely a matter of timing, European governments held urgent talks on Friday with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

The ban would affect trans-Atlantic routes that carry as many as 65 million people a year on over 400 daily flights, many of them business travelers who rely on their electronics to work during the flight.

The ban would dwarf in size the current one, which was put in place in March and affects about 50 flights per day from 10 cities, mostly in the Middle East.

Chief among the concerns are whether any new threat prompted the proposal and the relative safety of keeping in the cargo area a large number of electronics with lithium batteries, which have been known to catch fire. American officials were invited to Brussels next week to discuss the proposed ban, the EU said.

European Commission spokeswoman Anna-Kaisa Itkonen said the EU had no new information about a specific security concern.

U.S. officials have said the decision in March to bar laptops and tablets from the cabins of some international flights wasn’t based on any specific threat but on longstanding concerns about extremists targeting jetliners.

Experts say a bomb in the cabin would be easier to make and require less explosive force than one in the cargo hold. Baggage in cargo usually goes through a more sophisticated screening process than carry-on bags.

Jeffrey Price, an aviation-security expert at Metropolitan State University of Denver, said the original ban focused on certain countries because their equipment to screen carry-on bags is not as effective as machines in the U.S.

A French official who was briefed about Friday’s meeting said the Americans announced they wanted to extend the ban, and the Europeans planned to formulate a response in coming days. The official said the primary questions revolved around when and how — and not whether — the ban would be imposed.

The official spoke only on condition of anonymity to discuss the plan.

Jenny Burke, a Homeland Security spokeswoman, said no final decision has been made on expanding the restriction.

But Homeland Security officials met Thursday with high-ranking executives of the three leading U.S. airlines — American, Delta and United — and the industry’s leading U.S. trade group, Airlines for America, to discuss expanding the laptop policy to flights arriving from Europe.

Two airline officials who were briefed on the discussions said Homeland Security gave no timetable for an announcement, but they were resigned to its inevitability. They spoke only on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the meeting publicly.

The U.S. airlines still hope to have a say in how the policy is put into effect at airports to minimize inconvenience to passengers. The initial ban on passengers bringing large electronics devices into the cabin hit hardest at Middle Eastern airlines.

Emirates, the Middle East’s largest airline, this week cited the ban on electronics as one of the reasons for an 80 percent drop in profits last year. It said the ban had a direct impact on demand for air travel into the U.S. and it faced rising costs from introducing complimentary laptop loans to some passengers.

Alain Bauer, president of the CNAPS, a French regulator of private-sector security agents, including those checking baggage and passengers in France’s airports, predicted “chaotic” scenes initially if the ban was instituted.

“Imagine the number of people who carry their laptops and tablets onto planes — not just adults, but also children,” he told the AP.

He said it would slow passage through security checks as people try to negotiate a way of keeping their laptops.

“It’s not like losing your water bottle or your scissors. It will take more time to negotiate,” he said.

“You need a lot of time to inform them and a lot of time for it to enter people’s heads until it becomes a habit,” he said. “After a week of quite big difficulties, 95 percent of people will understand the practicalities.”

The head of the International Air Transport Association said recently that the electronics ban is not an acceptable or effective long-term solution to security threats, and said the commercial impact is severe.

An industry-backed group, the Airline Passenger Experience Association, said the U.S. government should consider alternatives. That could include routinely testing laptops for chemical residues associated with bombs, requiring owners to turn on their devices, and letting frequent travelers keep their electronics with them.

The group’s CEO, Joe Leader, noted that airlines have reduced service by more than 1 million long-haul seats in the 10 Middle Eastern and North African cities affected by the March policy. If it spreads to Europe, “it’s simply a matter of time” before laptops are banned in the cabins of domestic U.S. flights, he said.

At the Delta area of the Cincinnati airport, a sign warned passengers that beginning Friday on flights returning to the U.S. any electronic devices other than a cellphone would have to be placed in checked baggage. The airline flies between Cincinnati and Paris.

A Delta spokesman said the sign was posted in error by an employee at the airport. Asked if Delta had anticipated that the in-cabin ban on larger electronics would go into effect this week, the spokesman declined to comment.

Source: newsmax – US Prepares to Ban Laptops on Flights From Europe

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Pentagon: US Approves Sale of $2B in Missiles to UAE

The U.S. State Department has approved the possible sale of 160 missiles to the United Arab Emirates for an estimated $2.0 billion, the Pentagon said on Thursday.

The UAE government has requested the possible sale of 60 Patriot missiles with canisters and 100 Patriot guidance enhanced missiles, among other military equipment, according to a Department of Defense statement.

“This proposed sale will contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the United States by improving the security of an important ally which has been, and continues to be, a force for political stability and economic progress in the Middle East,” it said.

Source: newsmax – Pentagon: US Approves Sale of B in Missiles to UAE

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Judicial Watch's Tom Fitton: Hillary Still in 'Legal Jeopardy' Over Emails

Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said that a new FBI director should revisit Hillary Clinton’s private email use in light of James Comey’s firing by President Donald Trump.

“It needs to be reevaluated not only under a new FBI director but under the new leadership of the Justice Department,” Fitton told Tucker Carlson Thursday on Fox News. “Comey misdirected the investigation by suggesting they needed to prove intent when, in fact, common sense tells you that they mishandled it and knew what they were doing was wrong which is enough for a prosecution.

“It’s gross negligence under the law.” Fitton said. “The [Obama] Justice Department never wanted to have a serious investigation.”

He added that “I still think she faces legal jeopardy.

“If the system is working, she still faces legal jeopardy,” Fitton said. “The Justice Department under President Obama protected her.

“The FBI director repeatedly misstated the law suggesting they needed intent,” he added. “They had plenty of intent.”

Source: newsmax – Judicial Watch’s Tom Fitton: Hillary Still in ‘Legal Jeopardy’ Over Emails

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Michelle Obama Criticizes Trump School Lunch Decision

Michelle Obama on Friday criticized a Trump administration decision to delay federal rules aimed at making school lunch healthier, saying kids will end up “eating crap” instead.

Mrs. Obama told an annual health conference in Washington that more nutritionally sound school lunches are needed since millions of kids eat federally subsidized breakfast and lunch at school. Without mentioning President Donald Trump by name, she urged parents to think about the government’s decision and “look at motives.”

“You have to stop and think, ‘Why don’t you want our kids to have good food at school? What is wrong with you and why is that a partisan issue?” Mrs. Obama said. “Why would that be political?”

“Moms, think about this. I don’t care what state you live in, take me out of the equation, like me, don’t like me, but think about why someone is OK with your kids eating crap,” she said.

In one of his first major acts, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced earlier this month that the department will delay an upcoming requirement to reduce the amount of sodium in meals. Purdue said he also planned to keep issuing waivers to a regulation requiring that more whole grains be served at schools.

The move partially rolls back rules the former first lady supported as part of her “Let’s Move” anti-childhood obesity initiative.

She said parents shouldn’t sit idly by and allow that to happen.

“Because here’s the secret: If somebody is doing that, they don’t care about your kid and we need to demand everyone to care deeply about our kids,” Mrs. Obama said.

Source: newsmax – Michelle Obama Criticizes Trump School Lunch Decision

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Caitlyn's Popularity as Baby Name Drops After Jenner Transition

The popularity of Caitlyn and other spellings of the name have all dropped a year after Caitlyn Jenner made her new name and gender public.

The annual Social Security Administration list of 2016’s 1,000 most popular baby names was released Friday. Emma took the top spot for girls for the third year in a row, followed by Olivia, Ava, Sophia, and Isabella.

Four variations of Kaitlyn, Katelyn, Caitlin, and Caitlyn fell off the top 1,000 list, with Kaitlyn (197) and Katelyn (239) falling furthest.

BabynameWizard.com founder Laura Wattenberg told The Associated Press the trend was “inevitable,” since the name Caitlyn was already becoming less popular, and most parents avoid controversial names for their babies.

“Even parents who are huge Donald Trump supporters are unlikely to name their child Donald,” Wattenberg added. “In part, we just want to avoid controversy in picking names.”

Donald fell 45 places down the list for 2016, and Hillary fell off the top 1,000 in 2009 and hasn’t made a comeback, the AP noted.

The list has gotten more diverse in recent years, with more parents choosing creative names and fewer choosing the same names, the AP reported. In 1966, 80,000 parents named their child Michael, the most popular boys name for that year, while only 19,000 were named Noah in 2016, even though Noah was the most popular name for boys in 2016.

“Once parents see that a name is super popular, they are going to start avoiding it,” Babynames.com’s Jennifer Moss told the AP.

The name Kylo for boys, after “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” villain Kylo Ren, jumped the most in popularity, though it was only No. 901, up from 3,269 last year.

Twitter fans understood the dynamics and agreed with the numbers, although some cited transphobia as a likely reason for Caitlyn’s drop in popularity.

Source: newsmax – Caitlyn’s Popularity as Baby Name Drops After Jenner Transition

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100th Anniversary of Fatima Apparition Raises Worries

Catholics and believers worldwide will celebrate Saturday’s 100th anniversary of the first Fatima apparition in which the Virgin Mary is said to have appeared before three shepherd children in the remote village north of Lisbon, Portugal.

Many followers of the miraculous vision will be making a pilgrimage to the holy shrine visited by millions of people each year since the first apparition took place May 13, 1917.

Some even anticipate the possibility of a dramatic event occurring on the date this year.

The Lady of Fatima delivered messages during the visions on the 13th day of each month from May to October 1917 to Lucia dos Santos and her two young cousins, Jacinta and Francisco Marto.

May 13 has marked momentous events in the following years for the Church:

  • An attempt on the life of Pope John Paul II mysteriously coincided with the anniversary of the first Fatima vision on May 13, 1981, in St. Peter’s Square in Rome.
  • The pope visited Fatima exactly a year later and credited his survival to the intervention of Our Lady of Fatima, presenting the shrine with the assassin’s bullet that narrowly missed killing him.
  • On the very day of the first apparition in 1917, Pope Pius XII had been ordained a bishop and later would become pontiff in 1939.
  • Pope Paul VI became the first pope to visit Fatima to celebrate the 50th anniversary on May 13, 1967.

The world was in turmoil during the 1917 apparitions with the ending of World War I and the beginning of the Communist revolution in Russia. The most riveting sign occurred on Oct. 13 when some 60,000 people witnessed the sun appearing to spin and nearly crash toward the ground, according to the Rev. George William Rutler, a Catholic priest, in FaithZette.

The strange apparition was confirmed by a New York Times reporter present at the event.

A three-part secret from Our Lady was revealed to the children on July 13, 1917, during the apparitions. These included a vision of Hell and a prayer to recite, a warning that Russia would bring calamity to the world if people did not convert, and a vision of conflict between clergy and soldiers only disclosed in 2000 by Pope John Paul II.

Lucia was 10 during the apparitions and died a nun at the age of 97 in 2005. Francisco, 9 at the time, and Jacinta, 7, died in 1919 and 1920, respectively, following the global influenza epidemic.

The Fatima incidents are considered among the most spectacular Marian apparitions along with Lourdes, where the Virgin Mary is said to have appeared to a peasant girl, St. Bernadette, in 1858, and Guadalupe, where an appearance occurred several times northwest of Mexico City to St. Juan Diego in 1531.

Source: newsmax – 100th Anniversary of Fatima Apparition Raises Worries

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Bill O'Reilly: My Firing was 'a Hit' by the Far Left

Bill O’Reilly broke his silence Friday in his first interview since being fired by Fox News, saying his dismissal was “a hit” caused by the “destroying voices” of the “far left.”

“This was a hit and in the weeks to come we’re going to be able to explain some of it,” O’Reilly told the “The Glenn Beck Radio Program.”

Last month, Fox News parted ways with O’Reilly after a series of sexual harassment and inappropriate behavior claims leveled against him in recent years. The New York Times had reported that five women received large payments in exchange for not pursuing litigation or speaking about the accusations.

O’Reilly said Fox was pressured by left-wing activists who came in and threatened sponsors unless they stopped running commercials on the highly-rated “O’Reilly Factor.”

He said he and his legal team would soon be naming names of those they believe are behind a plot to get him fired. But he named liberal billionaire businessman George Soros as one of the chief funders against conservative opinion.

“There’s going to be an exposition soon but I can’t tell you when … I was target No. 1, it’s sad for me it’s sad for my family … From now on, when I ‘m attacked I’m going to take action, mostly legal action,” he said.

O’Reilly said he was returning to the United States from a trip to Rome and the Vatican when he learned he had been dismissed by the Fox News Channel.

“My attorneys told me and we were all shocked … I had 20 good years at FNC. We were caught by surprise, but it’s [Fox’s] prerogative,” he told Beck.

“People know that the left wing media hates Fox and hates me … but they don’t know the extent of it… We’re accumulating information and someday it will all be clear.”

O’Reilly also attacked the press, saying some media outlets are as “evil as it gets.” He chastized Beck for believing news reports that he had received a $25 million kiss-off from Fox.

“In American journalism right now, very few are seeking the truth. What they do . . . is come up with this scenario and try to reinforce that,” he said.

Asked about this week’s firing of FBI director James Comey, O’Reilly said there were several reasons President Donald Trump had acted.

“Trump does not trust James Comey … He doesn’t like the fact that Comey is unpredictable [and] … that Comey would not aggressively investigate the leaks that have plagued the Trump administration,” O’Reilly said.

But he also criticized the White House for being too “undisciplined” in its day-to-day management.

“The Trump administration always makes mistakes by being undisciplined … The messaging is always the problem … [White House Press Secretary Sean] Spicer’s just weak,” O’Reilly said.

He said the “straight press, the journalists, the hard news reporters, they now are devoting most of their time to destroying Donald Trump.”

“They hate him, by extension anybody who gives Trump a fair play, anybody, is going to be attacked as well … There’s this monolithic and very powerful industry that’s developed to get Trump out of office,” O’Reilly said.

“On the left you get, ‘We’re going to take him out.’ … That’s what the NY Times wants to do … This dishonesty in the media is harming this country.”

Source: newsmax – Bill O’Reilly: My Firing was ‘a Hit’ by the Far Left

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Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Massive Sway works well for site owners


With May here, it’s officially the season of flowers! massive sway is excited about brightening up our homes with fun decorations and crafts to celebrate the warm weather and beautiful blooms. How do you plan on sprucing up your space this season? While those creative juices are flowing, check out some paid opportunities below.


5 Little Monkeys: The Sleep System Blog Post

Who: Mom influencers with children between the ages of 18 months to 5 years old, who are ready to transition their little ones into a bigger bed.

Ask: Write one engaging blog post with social amplification, focusing on the importance of sleep for children and how this mattress helps with sleep development and transition.

Timing: June 5, 2017 – July 10, 2017

Product: In addition to compensation, selected influencers will receive a complimentary 5 Little Monkeys Sleep System (twin-size mattress / mattress protector / pillow) prior to creating content.

If you are interested in this sponsored opportunity, APPLY HERE.

Iris by Lowe’s Social Media Amplification

Who: Parenting and lifestyle influencers

Ask: Share two updates on Twitter and one update on Facebook on behalf of Iris by Lowe’s, a new home security system

Timing: June 7, 2017 – June 30, 2017

If you are interested in this sponsored opportunity, APPLY HERE.


Warmer weather is the best excuse to kick off the outdoor entertaining season. Gina Michele did a gorgeous patio makeover as part of a sponsored post for Lowe’s. With vibrant colors and fun details, this home project is a great way to spend more time outside with family and friends.


A few articles that we’re loving this week:

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