• Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Today, 02:11 AM
    Sessions sounded downright giddy when he defended adoptive seizures: “I love that program. We had so much fun doing that, taking drug dealers’ money and passing it out to people trying to put drug dealers in jail.”
    1 replies | 17 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Today, 02:05 AM
    Multiple bills currently pending on the Hill would defund or eliminate many federal civil forfeiture programs. This notorious power enables law enforcement to permanently confiscate cash, cars, real estate and other valuable property without ever charging the owner with a crime. In a Kafkaesque twist, the property is the defendant in civil forfeiture cases, while owners must prove their innocence to recover what was taken. On Wednesday, Reps. Ted Lieu (D-CA) and Justin Amash (R-MI) re-introduced HR 4816, the “Stop Civil Asset Forfeiture Funding for Marijuana Suppression Act.” As its name suggests, the bill would ban the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) from using any federal forfeiture funds to support its Domestic Cannabis Eradication/Suppression Program. “Civil asset forfeiture is an unconstitutional practice whereby the government takes people’s property without due process,” Rep. Amash said in a statement. “The DEA’s use of proceeds acquired through civil asset forfeiture to expand marijuana enforcement—a state-level issue—makes the already unacceptable practice even worse.” Over the past five years, the DEA’s program has been responsible for nearly 30,000 arrests, the eradication of 21.6 million marijuana plants, and the seizure of more than $165 million worth of property nationwide. Controversially, the DEA has even funded law enforcement agencies to suppress marijuana in states that legalized the plant for medicinal or recreational use. “The DEA’s Domestic Cannabis Eradication/Suppression Program is a waste of time and money and runs contrary to the will of the people,” noted Rep. Lieu. Congressmen Lieu and Amash’s bill is just the latest example of Democrats and Republicans crossing the aisle to protect Americans’ constitutional rights from civil forfeiture. In September, as part of a massive appropriations bill, the House of Representatives unanimously adopted three amendments that would cut off funds for an immensely unpopular forfeiture program revitalized by Attorney General Jeff Sessions. More at: https://www.forbes.com/sites/instituteforjustice/2018/01/19/bipartisan-bills-in-congress-would-defund-federal-civil-forfeiture-dea-marijuana-seizures/#4a757d9842fc
    1 replies | 17 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Today, 01:58 AM
    The U.S. Supreme Court on Thursday blocked a lower court’s order for North Carolina to rework its congressional map because Republicans violated the Constitution by drawing electoral districts intended to maximize their party’s chances of winning. The conservative-majority court granted a bid by Republican legislators in North Carolina to suspend the Jan. 9 order by a federal court panel in Greensboro that gave the Republican-controlled General Assembly until Jan. 24 to come up with a new map for U.S. House of Representatives districts. Two liberal justices, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Sonia Sotomayor, objected to the high court’s action. The Supreme Court’s decision to stay the order reduces the chance that the current district lines will be altered ahead of the November mid-term congressional elections. The court offered no reason for its decision. More at: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-court-election/supreme-court-blocks-redrawing-of-north-carolina-congressional-maps-idUSKBN1F73C1
    0 replies | 10 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Today, 01:43 AM
    Snoop Dogg announces plans to relocate to Uganda http://nairobinews.nation.co.ke/chillax/snoop-dogg-visit-uganda-meet-bobbi-wine/ We need more celebrities to do this and start a real trend.:)
    16 replies | 342 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Today, 01:15 AM
    At least he is officially a felon now, the state charges are a joke. It's still not anywhere near enough, Rand needs to take everything he owns in a civil suit and get a lifetime restraining order.
    11 replies | 173 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Today, 01:11 AM
    My thoughts exactly.
    11 replies | 173 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Today, 12:27 AM
    Trump should veto anything they pass, there is 0 possibility that it will be anything good unless this shutdown lasts for quite some time.
    23 replies | 397 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Today, 12:13 AM
    Thirty-six-year-old Chinese engineer Pingzhi Liu went missing almost a month ago. It took Pakistani authorities three weeks to classify Mr. Liu’s disappearance as a likely kidnapping that could have significant political and economic consequences. Identifying the mysterious disappearance as a kidnapping is not only embarrassing because Mr. Liu was one of thousands of Chinese nationals working in Pakistan that are guarded by a specially created 15,000-man Pakistani military unit. It is also awkward because it coincides with apparent Chinese questioning of aspects of the $56-billion China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC), a crown jewel of China’s Belt and Road initiative, and increasingly strained relations between Pakistan and the United States. Mr. Liu was accorded military protection even though his project, the Karot Hydropower Plant, located near the Pakistani capital of Islamabad, is not part of CPEC. Karot was the first project financed by China’s state-owned $40 billion Silk Road Fund, established in 2014 by President Xi Jinping to foster increased investment in Eurasia. Mr. Liu went missing on December 20 while on night duty. He was last seen walking out of a tunnel at around 3.30am while talking on his phone. No claim for his potential kidnapping or ransom has been made. The fact that Mr. Liu was working on a project in Punjab rather than Balochistan, a troubled region with a history of attacks on Chinese personnel, has set alarm bells off. China last month warned its nationals in Pakistan, a country plagued by religious and ethnic militancy, of plans for a series of imminent terrorist attacks on Chinese targets “It is understood that terrorists plan in the near term to launch a series of attacks against Chinese organisations and personnel in Pakistan,” the Chinese embassy in Pakistan said in a statement on its website. The embassy warned all “Chinese-invested organisations and Chinese citizens to increase security awareness, strengthen internal precautions, reduce trips outside as much as possible, and avoid crowded public spaces”. Police have twice detained for interrogation Chinese and Pakistani workers associated with the Karot project. They are also introducing security and vetting measures for Pakistani nationals working with Chinese personnel.
    3 replies | 51 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 11:52 PM
    New forecasts from the International Energy Agency say the United States is on track to overtake Saudi Arabia as the second-largest oil producer in the world, just behind Russia, according to the organization’s report on Friday. More at: https://oilprice.com/Latest-Energy-News/World-News/US-On-Track-To-Unseat-Saudi-Arabia-AsNo2-Oil-Producer-In-the-World.html
    319 replies | 7395 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 11:50 PM
    I will be interested to see about a number of people on this forum.
    23 replies | 397 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 11:45 PM
    They begin to think and act like feudal lords and forget that even if they were we the people are their liege, most if not all join some power faction and think of it as their liege, their whole outlook becomes one focused on increasing the wealth and power of themselves or their faction.
    13 replies | 322 view(s)
  • Raginfridus's Avatar
    Yesterday, 10:20 PM
    Good guys have nothing to hide from data miners anyway.
    34 replies | 392 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 07:12 PM
    Russia's sovereign wealth reserves, once bloated by years of abundant petroleum revenue, are today just shadows of their former selves. And on Feb. 1, the country's Reserve Fund, designed to help the government balance its budget, will officially disappear as it is legally recombined with the National Wealth Fund, a separate pot of money that backs up Russia's pensions. But the merger is a move in name only. It will come after the country's Finance Ministry appears already to have drained the Reserve Fund's remaining $17 billion in cash to plug a looming budget hole. With Russia's financial security blanket wearing thin, the question as national elections approach will become whether its people will continue to trust the current administration to manage the country's increasingly shaky finances. The Russian economy officially pulled out of recession in 2017, and it was expected to settle into a period of stagnation for the foreseeable future. But there are danger signs on the horizon and some indications that the country may have slipped back into recession at the end of last year, despite an oil price rebound brought on by the OPEC production cut and increasing global demand. While the Finance Ministry says the country's gross domestic product (GDP) grew by 1.7 percent last year — an increase over 2016 — statistics for the economic fourth quarter have not been made public yet. A report issued Jan. 11 by JPMorgan Chase, however, says that the economy contracted during each of the last two quarters of the year, technically putting the country back in recession. Several additional developments will add strain to the Russian financial picture. It does not appear that the sanctions imposed by the West will be lifted this year, and in fact, the United States will likely expand its sanctions regime, cutting off lending to Russia's major economic sectors and the government, and stripping the country's oligarchs of their assets abroad. Furthermore, Russia's regional governments are drowning in debt and will need $50 billion to $150 billion over the next three years to stay afloat. Russia's banking sector is also in crisis. With one-third of its institutions forced to close over the past three years and a further third likely to fail, merge or need bailouts in the coming years, the banking industry will require $50 billion to $100 billion to cover bailouts and restructuring. Meanwhile, a manufacturing slowdown in Russia's defense industry, a major contributor to its economy, will require another bailout this year. Last week, oligarch-owned Alfa Bank (Russia's seventh-largest) said it would steer away from funding orders by the defense sector, because it expects sanctions to further hamper the industries' finances. This will leave the state to foot most of the bill. Russia also is continuing to expand its footprint throughout the world and fund operations in Syria, Ukraine and North Korea — a strategy that does not come cheap. If the price of oil, which topped $70 per barrel in January, levels out or continues to rise, it would give the government some breathing room. The national budget was set with the assumption that oil would remain near $40 per barrel, and any revenue beyond that could flow into its currency reserves and National Wealth Fund. This could flush a relatively large amount of cash into the Kremlin's hands. The country's large energy firms — in particular, oil giant Rosneft — are pushing back on the Kremlin's grab for revenue, because they would prefer to increase their own revenues instead. Rosneft could keep its expanded oil profits abroad to circumvent the Kremlin, but that maneuver would intensify the political struggle between Putin and Rosneft's chief, Igor Sechin — arguably Russia's second-most powerful man. The Kremlin is also looking to international markets in a bid to raise about $18 billion in sovereign debt, but the United States is seeking to ...
    319 replies | 7395 view(s)
  • Raginfridus's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:57 PM
    No doubt, and they gave 0 you-know-what's what the guilds and academies thought. They were one of the last production studios doing things like in the old, old days of film from the 20s. Better or worse. I forget their names, the guys at Cannon, they were brothers. Had a lot of bad stuff said about them, some of it true (they would make a vertical slice, or whatever it's called, of their next movie like it was already in production, then launder cash from loans for that non-existent movie for one they had in production. Something like that... They made some legendary movies though. I'd say it was worth it:D And if Death Wish was a book... yet another going in the list.
    40 replies | 968 view(s)
  • Raginfridus's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:37 PM
    Well, that's another in the to-read list. The Civil Rights movement was no exception. Malcolm X saw the hypocrisy and hated it plenty: Beautiful stuff.
    65 replies | 816 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:36 PM
    How it should have ended How it did Or was it this?
    34 replies | 392 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:24 PM
    A team of researchers reported that the cell walls in a moss species called Funaria hygrometrica absorb a significant portion of their weight in lead, a heavy and toxic element that can contaminate drinking water. The plant is a common type of cord moss in North America and, according to the RIKEN Center for Sustainable Resource Science, it has been noted for flourishing in places that have been contaminated by lead and other toxic metals like copper and zinc. When the researchers tested the moss’ ability to absorb lead from water, they found that it had picked up almost three-quarters of its weight in the metal, according to the study, published in the journal PLOS One. The cell walls accounted for the majority of that absorption, about 85 percent. The cell walls continued to absorb lead even when they were removed from the moss. “This means that there is something special about the cell walls of this species of moss that allows them to thrive in environments that are toxic to other plants,” RIKEN said. It turned out that something special was polygalacturonic acid, also known as pectic acid. Although the moss absorbed lead the most out of the heavy metals tested, it also efficiently picked up tin, gold and platinum. More at: http://www.ibtimes.com/humans-can-use-moss-clean-lead-contaminated-water-scientists-find-2643129
    0 replies | 42 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:11 PM
    They will do that even after they ban homeschooling.
    3 replies | 98 view(s)
  • lilymc's Avatar
    Yesterday, 06:01 PM
    I hate to say this, but the whole thing seems a bit contrived to me. I wouldn't be surprised if we end up hearing that the parents are Christians or anything else that the PTSB want to demonize.
    3 replies | 98 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:46 PM
    Lawmakers and advocacy groups are calling for more oversight of home-schooling after a California couple using this method of education was charged with torturing their 13 children.The number of U.S. children educated at home has doubled to about 1.7 million, or 3 percent of the nation's school-age population, from 1999, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. Even so, most states do not require inspections or in-person testing that could help uncover abusive situations, said the Massachusetts-based Coalition for Responsible Home Education. More than 380 cases of severe or fatal child neglect have occurred since 2000 in families involved in home-schooling, according to the group. "We would not say abuse is more common among home-schoolers, but when it does occur, there are fewer safeguards, less to stop it from spinning out of control," said Executive Director Rachel Coleman. The organization has called for requiring annual contacts by outside officials and background checks for parents who run home schools. Some home-schooling groups oppose these measures. More at: https://www.yahoo.com/news/california-abuse-case-sparks-calls-home-schooling-oversight-150721925.html Never let a scandal go to waste.:mad:
    3 replies | 98 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    17 replies | 430 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:31 PM
    Since you don't know a machete from a tomahawk you must be mad and I have to ask if you know a (toma)hawk from a hand saw. HAMLET: I am but mad north-north-west. When the wind is southerly, I know a hawk from a handsaw.
    25 replies | 280 view(s)
  • lilymc's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:28 PM
    ^ This is exactly what I was going to say. There are a number of things that we (humans) simply can't wrap our finite little minds around. Unfortunately, you have people who are too prideful to realize or admit that, so they come up with ridiculous/wrong ideas in order to try to explain something that none of us were meant to fully comprehend in the first place. Calvinism is a perfect example of that. I'm not going to get into this again though, I'm surprised that anyone is still taking the bait, after the first 50 trillion times. :)
    64 replies | 392 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:25 PM
    Probably the safety snowflakes are freaking out over the real kind.
    18 replies | 174 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:22 PM
    I want you to be correct but nothing ever happened about the Roy Moore voter fraud that was supposed to be some kind of trap set by Sessions.
    49 replies | 800 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:19 PM
    Everything is just fine where I live and where my relative works in the post office and the post office is not affected by the shutdown since it is a quasi-government institution these days.
    18 replies | 174 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    25 replies | 280 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:14 PM
    Dump just made things a little worse than they could have been if he had vetoed it, when we are discussing his presidency in general I will take your view but when discussing this specific action I won't, in this case Dump had a decision to make that nobody else had any power over, he could veto it and the worst that could happen would have been an override that gave us the same outcome but that probably wouldn't have the votes it needed or he could sign it and be responsible for not blocking it. He chose poorly.
    34 replies | 392 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:08 PM
    I will join your enthusiasm when something substantive happens, until then I remain merely open minded and reliant on GOD and his wisdom to decide what is the best outcome that our country deserves.
    49 replies | 800 view(s)
  • Swordsmyth's Avatar
    Yesterday, 05:03 PM
    It could have been HUUUGELY better if he had VETOED IT. HE DIDN'T, THERE IS NO DEFENDING HIM ON THIS.
    34 replies | 392 view(s)
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Never attempt to teach a pig to sing; it wastes your time and annoys the pig.

Robert Heinlein

Give a man an inch and right away he thinks he's a ruler

Groucho Marx

I love mankind…it’s people I can’t stand.

Linus, from the Peanuts comic

You cannot have liberty without morality and morality without faith

Alexis de Torqueville

Those who fail to learn from the past are condemned to repeat it.
Those who learn from the past are condemned to watch everybody else repeat it

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