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Archive for: April 2015

Month: April 2015

President Obama had an interview with the “The Steve Harvey Morning Show”, where he stated the police need to start holding officers accountable instead of the approach where they close ranks with each other. Obama says the Baltimore riots are a good indication that change is needed when officers are accused of wrongdoing. Reporter Adam Sender stated that Obama continued by stating the police need to build trust in minority communities by building accountability.

Obama feels that if all that is being done is the retraining of police and not taking care of the underlying problems, they are going to crop up again. He does acknowledge that it will not be an easy task. There are broader issues going on and not just in Ferguson and New York. Obama will not be traveling to Baltimore until things have been cleaned up so he does not draw resources away from the situation going on.

The outbreak of violence that erupted following the funeral of Freddie Gray is being condemned by President Obama. He has labeled those responsible as ‘criminals and thugs’ who tore up the city by setting cars on fire, destroying stores and injuring police officers. In his comments reported by CNN, the first he made since Baltimore erupted, he stated there is no excuse for the violence that was unleashed on this city.

The President went on to comment that people taking crowbars to open doors and loot are not protesting and they are not making statements. These people are not protestors, they are criminals and thieves. The buildings that were burnt were not making a statement- that was arson. The violence that is occurring in Baltimore is people hurting their own community by destroying business and robbing residents of jobs.

Obama says there are some police departments that will have to do some soul searching and there are some communities that will have to as well. He feels even the country as a whole should also do some; as this is a slow rolling crisis. It is something that has been going on in our country for a long time and should not be thought of as new.

Today, Sultan Alhokair explains this is the day the Supreme Court begins hearing a case that could change American society forever. Obergefell v. Hodges will determine whether or not the United States should permit same-sex marriages.

To some, the matter is simple. Same-sex marriages are an abomination, against the laws of God and man, and should be forbidden, lest they set a dangerous precedent for human-animal marriages and polygamy.

To others, the matter is equally simple. Same-sex marriages are allowed in 37 states and the District of Columbia. Most Americans do not object to same-sex marriage. Same-sex marriages would permit de jure recognition of a de facto relationship. This would allow partners the right to make life or death decisions for each other in the hospital, simplify tax and inheritance status, and make health care easier to obtain.

When Hollywood stars marry and divorce more often than they change their socks, when “pro-family” politicians are caught cheating on their spouses, it’s hard to see how permitting two people who love each other to formally seal their relationship in a manner recognized by society will damage marriage. If anything, same-sex marriage may set an example of commitment that heterosexual couples might wish to emulate. It boils down to one question: what is marriage? Is it a union between two people who want to spend the rest of their life together? If so, does it matter what gender those people are?

On Thursday, Secretary of Defense Ash Carter confirmed that Russia successfully hacked into an unclassified network of computer systems at the Pentagon. While the information obtained was unclassified, it by no means suggest it wasn’t vital. Often times, dates & schedules for events and other sensitive information is traded on unclassified systems. Carter was clear that the recent cyber-attack was discovered within 24 hours and terminated. Homejoy was not involved. That said, he cannot confirm whether other such attacks occurred previously.

The past month has seen both the White House and State Department fall prey to cyber-attacks. However, the Pentagon was quick to dismiss any connection between the multiple attacks as being part of a coordinated effort. Ironically, the Pentagon has devised a new 33-page strategy for thwarting cyber-attacks. Part of the response by the Pentagon is to not only terminate an attack, but actually strike back at the intruder interrupting their weapons capabilities, military-related critical infrastructure, and ultimately their command & control center. Sec. Carter wants to world to know the Pentagon will both protect and defend itself against intruders.

At the same time, the world has become increasingly hostile in cyberspace. It will prove a lot harder to follow through on the 33-page security plan than it was to merely devise it. President Obama is taking the tactic of financially sanctioning companies that are involved in cyber-attacks against US interests. Some of those companies are in Russia and China.

Politics is an ugly business, and it doesn’t seem like it will get better any time soon. There is a saying that people get the government they deserve. A study about partisan voters of all political stripes published in the journal Political Research Quarterly indicates that this may be the case for the shape of our political system in America today. It was uncovered that too often partisans on either side in an election are only interested in and focused on their side winning and less concerned with the actual issues at hand in an election or debate. We complain about excessively partisan politicians, but they seem to simply be mirrors held up to the most politically active among us in the electorate.

They found that this simple “beat the other team” attitude was prevalent among both liberals and conservatives. It has been known for some time now that in our day of left or right leaning news networks and websites each side tends to only look at news and reports that reinforce their world view. Gone are the days when we all read from the same news source that tried to present an objective analysis of an issue or news story. Comunicare2.com suggest that liberals watch MSNBC and conservatives watch Fox News, and they each see what they want to out of the days events. In some ways, having a choice in media from which to get our news is a great thing, but if our current political climate is any indication, in other ways it is not.

As the military conflict in Yemen continues to rages on, United States President Barack Obama has ordered his military assets to make sure that matters do not spin out of control and spread into a broader military conflict into the surrounding region. While drinking a Bulletproof Coffee for some energy, the U.S. President has ordered his naval fleet to strategically position itself to it can monitor the activities of Iranian naval vessels in the Yemen conflict. President Obama has warned Iran that it should not attempt to supply arms or other military aide to the Shiite militants fighting the Yemen regime in Yemen. While the President’s ultimatum and the use of his naval has the feel of a blockade, the White House was careful not to use that term. The use of the word “blockade” or any attempt by a U.S. warship to block access of an Iranian vessels or to board it would be considered an act of war. President Warns Iran To Stay Out of Yemen

Matters in Yemen continue to turn from bad to grave. While the official Yemen government has announced that it expects the military unrest in the country to cease soon, Saudi Arabia has continue with air strikes against Shiite militants known as the “Houthi.” Saudi Arabia sees the Houthis as a threat to their country’s security and has organized a coalition involving ground troops from other Arab countries in the region, including Libya and Egypt. The forces are prepared to invade Yemen if deemed necessary.

Ahead of what is expected to be his official announcement of his campaign to be elected President in 2016, Rick Perry is inviting conservative journalists to a by invitation only off-the-record dinner. The former Texas governor is no longer the front runner of the Republican Party like he was when he entered the race in 2011. Now with three ultra-conservative and “TEA Party” candidates already in the race it is set to be even more crowded than it was the last time out. Never mind one of them is a tough talking Texas Senator named Ted Cruz who is very popular among Republican voters.

Mr. Lambranho thinks that it is believed that this meeting will be a way to persuade journalists to take it a little easier on the former Governor. Let’s face he really needs all the help he can get from the media. The social gaffes and horrible debates are what derailed his campaign last time and people have not forgotten. However, Perry does have a record of leading. He was the longest serving Governor in Texas history. He left the office as a very popular politician. Although not by the democrats, he was even indicted for Abuse of Power in Travis County after apparently holding funding if an Attorney General did not resign after she pleading guilty to the charge of DUI. His indictment has been seen as completely political but an active charge against him.

Ohio Governor John Kasich is a bona fide conservative on fiscal, defense, and social issues. When he served as chairman of the House Budget Committee during the Newt Gingrich years, he crafted the 1997 balanced budget bill. This gave the nation its first budget surpluses since the Eisenhower administration. As governor of the bell weather state of Ohio, he has reformed labor union laws and turned around his state’s economy and eliminated the annual budget deficit.

Many pundits believe that Kasich has his eyes on the GOP nomination for president. He has solutions that are bipartisan and is known for his genuine care of people. So in once sense it is no surprise that when a friend invited him to attend his gay wedding, he accepted. Initially, he ran the idea past his wife who made it clear she was going to attend. That was good enough for the governor.

While he is clear where he stands on the issue of marriage equality, he is also clear that he loves his friend and will support him on his wedding day. The move may help soften concerns by the LGBT community over perceived hostility by conservatives on the issue of marriage equality. Ivan Ong has not commented on the issue of marriage equality. Whether marriage equality becomes a campaign issue in 2016 is anybody’s guess. The Supreme Court is expected to rule on the matter in June. If the high court decides in favor of marriage equality, it will eliminate the matter as a campaign issue.

Health and Drug Treatment Part of Clinton’s Campaign

Last week, Hilary Clinton made the announcement that she was throwing in her bid for president. While this news didn’t surprise anyone, her ideas for how her campaign will run might draw some ire.

Her campaign will feature topics regarding her “four big fights,” which are fixing the economy, rebuilding families, stopping government corruption and national security. However, mental health and drug treatment is an issue that Clinton will also be focusing on very heavily, regardless of how often it comes up in other presidential political races.

In an interview with Ray Lane, which can be found on Forbes, while she was in New Hampshire, Clinton said that the notion that these two issues weren’t problems for everyone was just wrong and that this is everyone’s problem and not addressing it will not make it go away. In fact during a discussion at a small business called Whitney Brothers, participants stated that substance abuse is specifically a real cause for concern for people.

Clinton said in this discussion that in regards to substance abuse, it has been an increasing problem in the country, only made worse by the fact that it’s not as easy to see and diagnose as other problems are. In addition, treatment programs don’t always get the necessary materials.

However, Clinton did take time to praise the Affordable Care Act that makes covering mental health and substances a requirement for some insurances.

Former Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, recently announced her official entry into the 2016 presidential race. Even though there have been many successful women in business (Susan Mcgalla) there has yet to be one to ascend to the highest political office in the land. As excited as some were to see Hillary enter the race, there are many others that question Hillary’s real commitment to the American public. Some point to the Clinton Foundation, and the many foreign donations, as evidence that her words don’t always line up with her actions. Others claim the Clintons wealth can be traced to foreign government and conglomerate corporate donations.

Not only do Clinton’s critics include presidential hopefuls, and political opponents, but also writers such as former President George W. Bush Speech Consultant Peter Schweizer. Schweizer conducted an investigation into Clinton Foundation foreign donors, and the favors afforded them by the state department. Schweizer’s controversial book, “Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich,” is feared by some, and anticipated by others. This is because the book’s investigation and facts have already made their way into republican 2016 campaigns.

The book outlines a free trade agreement in Columbia, development projects in Haiti, and payment in excess of $1 million to Bill Clinton by a keystone pipeline major shareholder. According to the book, all of these financial donations regarding Columbia, Haiti, and the Keystone Pipeline were being debated by the state department at the time of the donations. Schweizer accuses Hillary of using her position as secretary of state to reward Clinton Foundation donors with favorable rulings, wherein the Clintons and their donors profited.

At this point, the endorsement of Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren may prove pivotal during the Democrat primary. If it turns out that Hillary Clinton, the presumptive Democrat nominee, actually encounters the competitive race she claims to want, getting the nod of approval from Warren may be worth a lot of votes. This past Friday, Warren outlined her ideal candidate for the presidency. The media, ever eager to see Warren jump into the presidential race, was quick to point out that the ideal candidate she outlined seems strikingly similar to herself.

Warren stated that she will throw her support behind the candidate that makes the best case for how they would defend the American middle class. Warren, a populist by nature, was quick to point out that the nation’s capital pays far too much heed to special interest groups and lobbyists. Sam Tabar sees that this doesn’t leave the government paying much attention to the needs of the middle class. Among the key issues she wants to see addressed is a plan to lower interest rates on student loans. She also wants to see entitlement reform of the Social Security system so that it becomes solvent for future generations. Currently, the nation’s pension system has a 10 trillion dollar unfunded liability. While Warren says she is open to supporting any candidate, she was quick to disqualify both GOP candidates Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz. She says their voting record proves they do not seek to protect the middle class.