Reuters: Local politicians terrified tax reform will make their residents realize how high local tax

Local politicians terrified tax reform will make their residents realize how high local tax
Here’s something local politicians, regardless of party, would like you not to know: The local taxes they levy are much higher than they seem, because as of now Uncle Sam picks up much of the tab by letting you deduct those taxes from your federal taxable income. That makes it easy for them to sock you for the cost of various local levels of government while making it feel like you’re not paying as much as you really are.

Those local politicians are in a panic now, because the deduction for state and local taxes might be going away in whole or in part. In exchange, you’ll get a much higher standard deduction, which will go equally to everyone regardless of their state and local tax liability. That means that in the future, when local politicians try to raise taxes, their constituents are actually going to feel it.

By Dan Calabrese - Tuesday, November 21, 2017 - Full Story

Unpaid internships: a uniquely American epidemic

Unpaid internships: a uniquely American epidemic, Pay Our Interns
“If America runs on Dunkin’ Donuts, D.C. runs on unpaid internships,” says Carlos Mark Vera, the founder and executive director of Pay Our Interns, a newly minted, bipartisan nonprofit based in Washington, D.C that advocates for paid internships within the public and private sector.

Celebrating its recent one-year anniversary, Pay Our Interns began as a response to an obstacle Vera himself faced during his time in college. As a freshman at American University in Washington, D.C., Vera obtained a coveted “Hill Internship,” interning for a congressman in the U.S. House of Representatives. Detailing his experience, Vera writes:

By BombThrowers -- Chace Paulson- Tuesday, November 21, 2017 - Full Story

Pembroke Hospital grapples with rising electricity bills

TORONTO, ON: Documents obtained by the Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF) reveal that the electricity bills for Pembroke Regional Hospital have faced a steep increase over the last five years.

The documents show bills that are increasing, growing from $677,922 in 2012 to $1,076,565 in 2016, an increase of nearly 59 per cent.

By Canadian Taxpayers Federation -- Christine Van Geyn, CTF Ontario Director- Tuesday, November 21, 2017 - Full Story

Russia Vetoes Extension of Syrian Chemical Weapons Investigation Mandate

Russia Vetoes Extension of Syrian Chemical Weapons Investigation MandateThe mandate of an international expert panel investigating use of chemical weapons in Syria, known as the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons-United Nations Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM), has expired. JIM was established by the United Nations Security Council, unanimously, in 2015 to identify “to the greatest extent feasible” individuals, entities, groups or governments perpetrating, organizing, sponsoring or otherwise involved in the use of chemicals as weapons in Syria. With its mandate about to come to an end if not renewed by another Security Council resolution, Russia killed it with two vetoes late last week. That brings to 11 the number of times that Russia has moved to block a Security Council resolution dealing with Syria since the conflict broke out there six years ago.

The original draft resolution submitted by the United States would have extended the Joint Investigative Mechanism’s mandate by a year and affirmed the methodological and evidentiary standards employed in JIM’s investigations. Russia would have none of that, however. It sought to discredit the JIM panel after it released its report on October 26, 2017 finding that the Syrian regime had been responsible for the release of sarin at Khan Shaykhun on April 4, 2017. The panel had also found that ISIS was responsible for the use of sulfur mustard at Umm Hawsh in September 2016. In order to protect its ally in the future against anything that smacked of accountability for its brutality, Russia vetoed the U.S. draft resolution.

By Joseph A. Klein - Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

Sexual Harassment––Puhleeze!

Sexual Harassment––Puhleeze
I have a vivid memory of putting on my mother’s high heels and covering my head with the veiled hat she wore on special occasions. All decked out, I made my way up The Boulevard in New Haven to our neighbor’s home about four houses away.

And on that sojourn, I have an equally vivid memory of a man sitting on his porch and stopping me in my tracks with his comments. “Well well well, Missy, don’t we look pretty! And where would you be going today looking so beautiful?”

By Joan Swirsky - Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

A plea for VA housing funds - Los Angeles Times

A plea for VA housing funds - Los Angeles Times
A plea for VA housing funds
L.A. County asks feds to reverse decision that may cost veterans program $34 million.

The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) needs to immediately start building new, permanent, supportive-housing on VA property in Los Angeles (not rehabbing old, vacant rat-infested buildings by so-called non-profits who get 70-year leases essentially rent free), and stop warehousing our war-injured Veterans with welfare checks (VASH-HUD vouchers) with cheap, ramshackle apartments in seedy neighborhoods run by slumlords.

By Robert L. Rosebrock - Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

There is no such thing as ‘social justice’

There is no such thing as 'social justice'
The AP recently published an awful story in which an obviously secular writer told us the sorrow of supposedly Christian anthem-kneelers who are upset other Christians don’t support their protests. The piece is filled with theological vapidness and unfounded assumptions, but the basic gist of it is that these players who claim Christ think it’s the Christian thing to do to support Colin Kaepernick’s “social justice” movement.

Let’s consider that, and let’s start with the most fundamental question: Is there even such a thing as “social justice”? What does the term mean, and does it make any sense whatsoever?

By Dan Calabrese - Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

Israel, Jordan and PLO apprehensive about Trump peace plan

Israel, Jordan and PLO apprehensive about Trump peace plan
President Trump has appeared to dampen expectations that his “ultimate deal” to resolve the Arab-Jewish conflict will shortly emerge.

The only clue given so far is this statement from the White House:

By David Singer - Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

Hillary in ‘16: Questioning election legitimacy horrifying; Hillary now: Election was illegitimate!

Hillary in '16: Questioning election legitimacy is horrifying; Hillary now: Election outcome was illegitimate!
I know it will shock you to learn that Hillary Clinton will say anything if she thinks it’s in her best interests, and then will totally abandon or contradict what she said if she no longer thinks it serves her interests. It’s not news for me to tell you that.

What seems like news in this case is just how brazen she is in being this shameless about it. Yet is it really that remarkable? Hillary has done this her entire adult life, and she’s rarely if ever been called on it. When you’ve always done something and always gotten away with it, what’s it to you that your behavior is obvious couldn’t fool a five-year-old?

By Dan Calabrese - Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

No, you’re not being paranoid. Sites really are watching your every move

If you have the uncomfortable sense someone is looking over your shoulder as you surf the Web, you’re not being paranoid. A new study finds hundreds of sites—including microsoft.com, adobe.com, and godaddy.com—employ scripts that record visitors’ keystrokes, mouse movements, and scrolling behavior in real time, even before the input is submitted or is later deleted.

Session replay scripts are provided by third-party analytics services that are designed to help site operators better understand how visitors interact with their Web properties and identify specific pages that are confusing or broken. As their name implies, the scripts allow the operators to re-enact individual browsing sessions. Each click, input, and scroll can be recorded and later played back.—More…

By News on the Net -- ArsTechnica- Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

Watch: Off-duty policeman shoots dead two gunmen as they rob a pharmacy by blasting his pistol with

Shocking video has emerged of an off-duty police officer shoot and kill two suspects during a raid on a pharmacy while holding his baby boy under one arm.

Sergeant Rafael Souza entered Bifarma in the centre of Campo Limpo Paulista in Brazil with his wife and their young son to buy medicine on Saturday afternoon when armed gunmen rushed in.—http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5099681/Off-duty-police-shoots-two-gunmen-clutching-baby.html” rel=“nofollow”>More…

By News on the Net - Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

MSM Hype Notwithstanding, Clinton/Obama and Their Resistance Falling Apart

MSM Hype Notwithstanding, Clinton/Obama and Their Resistance Falling Apart
This holiday season makes for the perfect time to Count Your Blessings.

Best blessing of Thanksgiving 2017 to count first: Hillary Clinton never made it as president.

The caterwauling of that stunning loss continues over a year later.  But Clinton, who acts as if she really won the presidency, is now down to carping at the voting world from the none-too-stable Clinton Foundation, or whatever is left of it.

By Judi McLeod - Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

Lois Lerner wants IRS testimony sealed forever, fearing death threats

‘True the Vote’ President Catherine Engelbrecht on IRS officals’ fears over testifying in a tea-party lawsuit.

Former IRS official Lois Lerner and her deputy are asking a federal court to keep their testimonies in the Tea Party targeting case private forever, over fear of death threats and potential harm to their families if the documents go public.—More…

Lerner and her deputy Holly Paz filed a motion last Thursday to keep the materials—including tapes and transcripts of their depositions—sealed due to threats they have received in the past.

By Fox News - Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

Lakeridge Health faces steep increases to electricity bills

TORONTO, ON: Documents obtained by the Canadian Taxpayers Federation (CTF) reveal that the electricity bills for Lakeridge Health have faced a steep increase over the last six years.

The documents show bills that are increasing, growing from $3,296,125 in 2011-12 to $4,367,956 in 2016-17, an increase of nearly 33 per cent.

By Canadian Taxpayers Federation - Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

Ryan Bundy’s Brilliant Opening Statement

Ryan Bundy's Brilliant Opening Statement
Bret Whipple is Cliven Bundy’s attorney in the current trial in Las Vegas, Whipple, in an interview with John Lamb, made some observations on Ryan Bundy’s opening statement, that I will paraphrase. He said that he was impressed with Ryan’s statement because it cut to the chase in common language; he had the courage to speak so calmly and so well, with the pressure on him, and in so short an amount of time. He then pointed out that the jury seemed mesmerized and that the entire courtroom was silent for a few minutes after Ryan competed his statement.

Now, I know that sounds awfully over the top, but, then, when I read Ryan’s statement, well, it is seldom that I have tears in my eyes, but this was an exception. And, all I did was read it. I’m sure that those who heard Ryan give this statement, with the eloquence that has been stated by others, that nobody could walk away and be unmoved by what he had to say.

By Gary Hunt - Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

Court Strikes Abortion Buffer Zone Law

NEWARK, NJ - A New Jersey federal court struck down a City of Englewood eight-foot buffer zone that prohibits pro-life speech near abortion facilities. Applying the U.S. Supreme Court’s unanimous 2014 opinion in McCullen v. Coakley, which held unconstitutional an identically worded Massachusetts buffer zone law, the New Jersey court ruled the ordinance violates the First Amendment.

By Liberty Counsel - Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

Manitoba’s environmental performance strong without a carbon tax

Unfortunately for taxpayers, Premier Brian Pallister’s carbon tax doesn’t come with a money-back guarantee if it doesn’t deliver promised results.

We already know Pallister’s carbon tax is costly. He’s proposing a tax of $25 per tonne of carbon next year – much higher than the initial federal requirement of $10 per tonne. That means Manitobans will see fuel prices jump by about 5 cents per litre. In total, it will cost Manitobans $260 million every year.

By Canadian Taxpayers Federation -- Todd MacKay – CTF Prairie Director- Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

EU Carbon Capture Project A Massive Financial Failure

EU Carbon Capture Project A Massive Financial Failure
Ten years ago EU leaders said that a technology called carbon capture and sequestration, also known as carbon capture and storage (CCS) should be deployed with new fossil-fuel power plants by 2020. 1

This technology supposedly would reduce the negative impact the extensive use of energy sources coal, oil and gas have on the earth’s climate.

By Jack Dini - Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

Taxpayers take a bath with Marine Atlantic

Canada’s federal Crown corporations are a motley bunch. A few, like the Bank of Canada, are mostly viewed as indispensable. Most, such as a litany of museums or port authorities, attract little attention because of their benign purpose and relatively small budgets. Some, such as Canada Post, are now seen as increasingly anachronistic in a rapidly changing world.

One Crown corporation most Canadians outside Atlantic Canada have likely never even heard of is Marine Atlantic, which operates cargo and passenger ferry services between Newfoundland and Nova Scotia. Yet, Marine Atlantic’s very existence is a consequence of a constitutional obligation agreed to by the federal government in 1949 as part of the deal that saw Newfoundland join Confederation. Under the terms of the Newfoundland Act, the federal government is required to “maintain… a freight and passenger steamship service between North Sydney and Port aux Basques.”

By Canadian Taxpayers Federation -- Aaron Wudrick, Federal Director- Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story

Another Accuser claims Al Franken groped her - this time while he was a Senator in 2010

Another Accuser claims Al Franken groped her
UPDATE: When you’ve lost Sally Kohn….

Uh-oh.  Looks like things are getting worse for Al Franken.  He’s been hit with another accusation of groping a woman in public place, this time in 2010 - while he was a sitting U.S. Senator.

By Robert Laurie - Monday, November 20, 2017 - Full Story