Tea Party Leaders Seek To Define Goals Ahead Of Elections

Tea Party leaders seek to define goals ahead of elections Amid the widespread protest of the Tea Party movement during Tax Day week, its leaders sought to define its goals, and in the process unveiled a list of friends and foes.

Richard A. Viguerie, chairman of ConservativeHQ.com, who spoke at an April 15th rally at Yowell Meadow Park in Culpeper, Virginia told activists their efforts could help restore the Founding Fathers’ vision for America.

"The Tea Parties are an unfettered new force of the middle class tapping into the anger and disappointment felt not only towards Republicans and Democrats, but most major American institutions," he said, listing Wall Street, education, Hollywood, the media and big labor as those who have "betrayed their public trust."

"This new force, unlike most conservative leaders, is unfettered by old relationships and ties," Viguerie stressed.

In a similar vein, leaders of the Tea Party Express marked Tax Day by revealing their list of "heroes" and "targets" ahead of the midterm elections in November.

Among the "heroes" was Sharron Angle, a former Republican member of the Nevada Assembly who is running against Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on an anti-tax platform; California State Assemblyman Chuck DeVore, who is vying with former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina for a Senate seat and Former Florida House Speaker Marco Rubio, who is facing off against Governor Charlie Crist for the GOP nomination.

Meanwhile, the list of "enemies" includes Senators Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Arlen Specter (D-Pa.) and Representative Barney Frank (D-Mass.).

Arizona Passes Tough Anti-immigration Bill

Arizona passes tough anti-immigration billFrustrated by Washington’s apparent inability to deal with the growing immigration crisis, the Arizona State House voted 35-21 to pass Support Our Law Enforcement and the Safe Neighborhood Act in an effort to protect state residents from a wave of illegal immigration.

SB 1070 will make it a state misdemeanor to fail to comply with federal law requiring that foreign nationals register and carry their documents with them. It also requires police officers, if they have a "reasonable suspicion" that someone is an illegal immigrant during a lawful stop, to determine that person’s immigration status and, if necessary, transfer them into federal custody.

The bill furthermore prohibits state and local agencies from adopting "sanctuary" policies that prevent police from inquiring about immigration status.

"[This] is a no-nonsense, common-sense example of a state acting where the federal government is failing," said Dan Stein, president of the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR).

However, the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC), has expressed its disappointment with the law, saying it will jeopardize the safety of Arizona communities and result in the racial profiling of Latinos.

USHCC has called on Governor Jan Brewer to veto the bill, something commentators say she is unlikely to do. ADNFCR-1961-ID-19729354-ADNFCR

Eating Vitamin B-rich Foods May Help Stave Off Heart Disease

Eating vitamin B-rich foods may help stave off heart disease According to a new study published in the most recent issue of the journal Stroke, people who consume foods rich in B vitamins may be less likely to die from cardiovascular disease.

For the study, a team of Japanese researchers analyzed the dietary questionnaires of 23,119 men and 35,611 women between the ages of 40 and 79 who took part in the nation’s Collaborative Cohort Study.

After an average of 14 years of follow-up, the team found that 424 people had died from heart disease, a total of 986 from stroke and 2,087 from other conditions associated with the cardiovascular system.

The investigators discovered that men with the highest blood levels of folate and vitamin B6 suffered significantly fewer deaths from heart failure compared to men with the lowest levels of the nutrient. Meanwhile, women who consumed a diet rich in B vitamins had a decreased risk of dying from stroke, heart disease and other cardiovascular-related events.

Health Day News reports that fish, meats, liver and whole grains are the best sources of vitamin B6, while fruits, beans, legumes and fortified cereals are well-known sources of folate.

Piriformis Syndrome Followup: Four Ways To Release The Lower Back

Last week’s article on piriformis syndrome, Your Lower Back Pain Or Sciatica Might Actually Be Piriformis Syndrome, created quite a bit of interest from readers wanting to know more. Indeed, it seems many people who think they are suffering sciatica or other lower back pain ailments are actually feeling the side effects of a tightened piriformis muscle. And while many physicians are quick to throw drugs and surgery at such problems, many times the answer is as simple as releasing lower back muscular constriction, which is in large part due to piriformis syndrome.

Today’s article is a response to the many queries we received on this syndrome and exercises that will help. Below I would like to share with you four sets of therapeutic corrective exercises you can do on your own.

If you can manage to perform these three times per day, in just a few days you will begin to feel lasting relief. After just a few weeks the body will self-correct and imbalances in posture due to muscular-skeletal issues related to piriformis syndrome should be corrected. Let’s look at each exercise now.

1. Pelvic Tilting
Pelvic Tilting

The purpose of this exercise is to warm up the area of the lower back by bringing heat and blood into the lumbar and sacral areas. Begin by sitting on a firm chair, toward the front with feet planted firmly on the ground (fig. 1). Allow your body to slouch slowly by titling your pelvis forward. Allow around three seconds to tilt to full slouch then hold that position for three seconds (fig. 2). Next, tilt your pelvis backward, swaying your low back to lift your upper body upward. Allow three seconds to reach full height then hold that position for three seconds (fig. 3). Repeat this slouch-and-sway movement set continuously for a total of 30 repetitions.

2. Piriformis & Hip Flexor Stretches
Piriformis & Hip Flexor Stretches

This next set of stretches works on releasing tightness in the piriformis and gluteus muscles in an effort to release compression on the sciatic nerve. Begin by sitting on a firm chair, toward the front with feet planted firmly on the ground (fig. 4). Place the ankle of your right foot over the knee of your left foot. Many of you will have very tight hips and using your hands to hold the leg in place will help here (fig. 5). Allow your hips to relax in this position for 10 seconds before pulling your knee toward your chest with both hands (fig. 6). Hold this stretch position for 10 seconds then release the knee slowly to its former position. Next, press your right hand down on your right knee, holding for a count of 10 seconds (fig. 7). Release and relax for 10 seconds, then press again this time counter-pressing your right knee into your right palm for 10 seconds (fig. 8). Release the contraction and relax in position for 10 seconds. Lastly, rest your forearms on the thighs of their respective sides and bed forward from the waist (fig. 9). Hold the forward position for 10 seconds then slowly return to the starting position (fig. 4). Perform this sequence, slowly and steadily, for a total of three repetitions.

Remember to repeat with the opposite leg.

3. Balanced Squats
Balanced Squats

Now that the previous exercises have warmed up the body and loosened the hips, we can continue with these squats. Stand up straight with feet a shoulder’s-width apart, toes pointing forward and holding onto a steady chair or counter for balance (fig. 10). Slowly and steadily bend your knees and flex your hips to lower your buttocks toward the floor (fig. 11). It is important to keep your knees behind your toes while lowering for balance and also to avoid straining the knees (fig. 12). Hold the lowest position to can maintain without using the chair as a crutch (it is for balance, not resting on). Hold this lower position for five to 10 seconds (fig. 13), then slowly and steadily rise to the starting position (fig. 10). Relax in the upright position for 10 seconds then repeat the squat for a total of three to six times, as your ability allows.

4. Gravity Leg Hanging
Gravity Leg Hang

Now that the muscles and tendons are looser and blood is moving we can move on to the final “stretch” exercise in this series. Begin by lying on your left side close to the edge of the sofa, with a pillow under your head for support (fig. 14). Create an X-shape by reaching back with your right hand to grab the cushions (or bed sheets) for balance. Slowly slide your right leg off the sofa, stretching the quadratus lumboratum (fig. 15). Allow the leg to drop as it will—do not strain—and allow gravity to work. Because this is a “passive” stretch, the muscles in the lower back will release quickly as your body will sense little threat to the position. Hold for one minute before slowly returning to the starting posture. Next, lie with your back facing out, grabbing a cushion (or sheets) for balance (fig. 16). Slowly allow your right leg to slide backward off the sofa, stretching the psoas muscles to balance the frontal stretch (fig. 17). Again, allow gravity to do its things as you relax in this position for one minute. Do this only once then change sides and repeat with the left leg.

As a rule, even though pain is felt in a specific area or a diagnosis for something has been given; other areas are also responsible for the imbalance. With regard to sciatica and lower back pain, piriformis syndrome is often the likely candidate.

However, stretching only the piriformis muscles will not in itself be the answer to the problem. Other muscles like the tensor fascia latte, quadratus lumboratum, gluteus medius and maximus and the psoas also play a role in creating imbalances. While it is the piriformis muscle that compresses the sciatic nerve, it does not become tight or in spasm on its own. The other muscles must also be released from spasm and returned to normal resting position to allow the piriformis to also relax. By taking 10-15 minutes to do the above simple stretches at least once, but ideally three times per day, you will feel relief in no time; without drugs and without surgery.

— Dr. Mark Wiley

Herbal Tea Can Help To Lower Blood Pressure

An herbal tea containing hibiscus can help lower your blood pressure, according to Tufts University in Boston. Study patients who drank hibiscus tea blends for six weeks lowered their systolic blood pressure—the top number—by an average of seven points. Overall, this can help you avoid the risk of stroke or heart attack. The good news is most commercial brands of herbal tea already contain this amazing ingredient.

Tea Party Crasher Placed On Leave During Ethics Probe

Tea Party crasher placed on leave during ethics probeAn Oregon middle school teacher who attempted to organize efforts to "infiltrate" and "dismantle" Tea Party demonstrations has been placed on paid administrative leave while state officials investigate whether he used school time and resources to develop his website, CrashTheTeaParty.org.

Jason Levin, who indicated earlier in the week that he and his colleagues would work to make the conservative organization’s members look racist, ignorant and homophobic during their tax day protests, professed his innocence on Friday, stating that the charges are without merit.

"The fact that teachers are held to a higher standard when exercising their right to free speech (in their private lives) is patently unfair," Levin told TalkingPointsMemo.com.

Over the last few days, the Beaverton School District has been inundated with calls and emails from local residents who are outraged with the school teacher’s behavior and who are asking for him to be terminated.

Conservative radio host Lars Larson explained on his show on Wednesday that it is not a matter of free speech, but rather an issue of trusting someone to work with children who furthers their political goals "by lying, stealing and damaging somebody else’s reputation."

"If you ran a Klan website on your own time, do you think you would be excused?" Larson asked. "If you ran a porno website, which is also legal, do you think you would be excused in that kind of job?"

Meanwhile, Levin told the news source that he is now looking to sell his website to anyone who is interested.

Gun-rights Activists Score Victory In Colorado In The Shadow Of Virginia Tech Massacre Anniversary

Gun-rights activists score victory in Colorado in the shadow of Virginia Tech massacre anniversaryThe third anniversary of the Virginia Tech (VT) massacre has once again brought calls from anti-gun advocates for more stringent control to be imposed on the sale of weapons in the United States.

On April 16, 2007, VT student Seung-Hui Cho killed 32 people in the worst school shooting spree in U.S. history, and today the university planned to cancel classes to commemorate those who died.

Campaign to Keep Guns Off Campus has also marked the anniversary by blasting the gun lobby’s push to permit the carrying of loaded handguns on college campuses.

"The gun lobby is not interested in the safety of students, faculty and staff," said Andy Pelosi, director of the campaign.

"They are using the tragic shooting at Virginia Tech as cover for their real agenda to push guns into every nook and cranny of society," he added.

He also urged colleges and universities to join in the effort to oppose guns on college campuses, saying that to date, the American Association of State Colleges and Universities and more than 130 individual colleges and universities in 31 states have joined the campaign.

However, proponents of guns on campuses scored a significant victory just one day before the anniversary, when the Colorado Court of Appeals ruled in favor of students seeking the right to carry concealed weapons on campus.

The appeals court reversed an earlier ruling by El Paso County District Judge David Miller who dismissed a lawsuit filed in 2008 by Students for Concealed Carry on Campus, seeking to overturn the University of Colorado’s gun ban, according to Denver Daily News.ADNFCR-1961-ID-19726946-ADNFCR

Sarah Palin Tells Boston To ‘Stand Up And Speak Out’ Against Obama

Sarah Palin tells Boston to 'stand up and speak out' against Obama Sarah Palin rallied huge crowds against the Barack Obama administration’s policies last week, urging Americans to “vote them out” this November. She was touring with the Tea Party Express which travelled across the country. The events culminated with a Tax Day Tea Party in Washington, D.C., on April 15.

On April 14, as a crowd of several thousand gathered on the Boston Common, Palin urged the audience to fight the Democrats’ policies and take back the government, according to media reports.

"Boston, it’s your turn to stand up and speak out!" she said, before proceeding to criticize President Obama for his healthcare overhaul, his foreign policy which she said was "alienating our allies," and his timid approach to energy independence by allowing only limited oil drilling.

However, in a development that drew attention of many political commentators, Senator Scott Brown (R-Mass.)—whose election last January to the late Senator Ted Kennedy’s seat took most country by surprise—turned down the invitation to attend the event, although his office said he wished the rally success, according to CNN.

Meanwhile, a national poll released on April 14 by CNN/Opinion Research Corp found that some 10 percent of Americans have actively supported the Tea Party movement, and that they are older, better educated and more religious than the general public. ADNFCR-1961-ID-19724112-ADNFCR

Vitamin D Deficiency Linked To Increased Risk Of Rheumatoid Arthritis In Women

Vitamin D deficiency linked to increased risk of rheumatoid arthritis in womenA new Boston University study has found that women living in the Northeast are more likely to develop rheumatoid arthritis (RA) due to a lack of exposure to sunlight, suggesting a possible link between the condition and vitamin D deficiency.

For the study, Veronica Vieira, associate professor of environmental health, and her colleagues compared the medical data of 461 women suffering from RA to a control group of 9,220 healthy participants.

They were surprised to discover that women residing in states like Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont were at a significantly increased risk of developing the autoimmune disease than were those from sunnier climates who could absorb vitamin D naturally.

"The results were unexpected," Vieira said. "Prior to the analysis, we were more interested in the relationship with air pollution. I hadn’t given latitudes much thought."

She added that decreased solar exposure and vitamin D deficiencies have also been linked to several other autoimmune diseases, including multiple sclerosis and Crohn’s disease.

Good sources of the vitamin D include fish such as salmon, tuna and mackerel. The nutrient is also available as a dietary supplement.

Passenger Rights Group Blasts Airline Fee Announcement

Passenger rights group blasts airline fee announcement As airlines are trying to limit their financial losses by imposing new fees, consumer advocates are loudly criticizing these ideas as examples of these businesses trampling on travelers’ rights.

Earlier this month, discount carrier Spirit Airlines stirred controversy by announcing that it would charge passengers for carry-on luggage stowed in overhead bins. This caused the organization called FlyersRights.org to demand that Congress ban such practices permanently.

Its president and founder, Kate Hanni, has sought to expose airlines’ motivations behind such decisions by saying that the United States has become known as the "Land of the Fee" when it comes to air travel. She added that this is because fees are treated differently than other revenue in terms of the taxes airlines have to pay to fund the national aviation system.

"So not only do these latest gimmicks harm passengers, they are shortchanging all of us by skirting [the airlines’] responsibility to help maintain and upgrade our nation’s aviation infrastructure," Hanni stressed.

In a related development, European carrier Ryanair said it will begin charging passengers for in-flight bathroom use, and FlyersRights.org also urged Congress to prohibit U.S. carriers from doing this same.ADNFCR-1961-ID-19726941-ADNFCR

Democrats And The Politics Of Envy

(Part one of a two-part series)

Democrats have long practiced the politics of envy. They preach that their policies help the working man (or woman) whereas the Republicans are the party of the rich.

They like to try and pit the poor against the rich. They promote the notion that if someone earns more than whatever Democrats consider a “living wage” (a despicable term) then that person is somehow evil. And many Americans have fallen for it.

Well, truth be told, both parties have done much more to benefit the rich than the poor. Some of the reasons for that are outlined here.

But how Democrats have managed to maintain the myth that their policies are beneficial to Average Working-class Joe (or Jane) is one of the great mysteries of all time—ranking up there with quasars and how Joe Besser ever became one of the Three Stooges. For Democrat big-government policies have been devastating to the “working” man.

Consider the actions of the 28th President of the United States, Woodrow Wilson. With the help of a Democrat-controlled Congress, Wilson established the Federal Reserve in 1913 and instituted an income tax which necessitated the establishment of the Bureau of Internal Revenue—the precursor to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

These agencies began the stealth system of “legal” theft from the American people and put us on a fiat paper money dollar system. This means that all who earn dollars and save dollars have depreciating currency with depreciating assets.

This system hurts the poor more than it does the rich. How? As the Federal Reserve prints more and more money, the currency depreciates. Depreciating currency (inflation of prices) slowly reduces the value of their savings and their standard of living. The poor—and the middle class—who often find themselves living hand-to-mouth see a rise in the prices of the things they buy. Since a greater portion of their wealth is spent on living expenses, inflation affects the poor and middle class far more than the rich.

The purpose of fiat paper money is a tax on the population which doesn’t have to be collected or enforced. The state simply has to inflate the currency by printing more paper money. The people are slow to realize the sinister purpose of inflating the currency.

Inflation or depreciation of the currency is a monetary plague that attacks the spenders and the savers. Your wealth is taken without a gun to your head.

Writing in his book, End the Fed, Ron Paul quotes from data from the Federal Reserve of St. Louis that shows how money has depreciated:

“One only needs to reflect on the dramatic decline in the value of the dollar that has taken place since the Fed was established in 1913. The goods and services you could buy for $1.00 in 1913 now cost nearly $21.00. Another way to look at this is from the perspective of the purchasing power of the dollar itself. It has fallen to less than $0.05 of its 1913 value. We might say that the government and its banking cartel have together stolen $0.95 of every dollar as they have pursued a relentlessly inflationary policy.”

That’s the tax that doesn’t have to be collected. The one that is collected is just as insidious.

According to U.S. Census data, the average annual income in 1915 was $687. That year—as in 1913 when the income tax was enacted—there were just seven income tax brackets. The marginal tax rate was 1 percent for people making up to $20,000. The highest rate was 7 percent on income above $500,000.

In 2008, according to Leslie Carbone in her book, Slaying Leviathan, The Moral Case for Tax Reform, a married couple filing jointly paid 10 percent on the first $16,050 of their taxable income, 15 percent on the remainder up to $65,100, 25 percent on the remainder up to $131,450, 28 percent on the remainder up to $200,300, 33 percent on the remainder up to $357,700, and 35 percent on the rest.

That means that if you work and you are one of the 53 percent of Americans who actually pay income taxes, you spend somewhere between one to three hours each day working to pay your tax burden.

The Great Depression And The New Deal
The Roaring ‘20s were arguably the most prosperous decade in American history, writes Robert P. Murphy, Ph.D., in his book, The Politically Incorrect Guide™ to The Great Depression and The New Deal. It wasn’t just that people grew richer. Their lives changed with the growth in the automobile and the spread of electricity and invention of gadgets and appliances that ran off it.

Meanwhile, the Fed was flooding the credit markets with cheap money which led to a speculative bubble that burst in 1929, according to Murphy. On Oct. 28, 1929, the stock market lost almost 13 percent of its value. The next day saw a drop of almost 12 percent. The Great Depression was on.

Unemployment soared, surpassing 28 percent in March 1933. Annual production dropped 27 percent. Republican President Herbert Hoover’s policies didn’t help. Murphy writes:

“The shocking unemployment rates of the Hoover years were a direct, if unintended consequence of his high-wage policy. Hoover urged businesses to maintain wage rates, even though profits were plummeting and prices in general were dropping. With firms desperately trying to cut costs to stay afloat during the Depression, Hoover insisted that the relative price of labor increase. It is no wonder then that this period witnessed the sharpest pullback in demand for workers in American history. FDR continued these policies.” [Emphasis in original text]

Democrat Franklin Delano Roosevelt, like Hoover before him, thought the Depression was caused by underconsumption, according to Murphy. So he sought to raise wage rates (rather than put a floor under them) and he pushed industrial and labor policies through Congress that limited competition and raised labor bargaining power.

Murphy writes:

“One of these policies was the National Industrial Recovery Act (NIRA) (1933-35). This act created the National Recovery Administration (NRA), which provided a vehicle for the major players in each industry to create a so-called ‘Code of Fair Competition.’ In reality, these codes were anti-competitive rules that forbade industries from lowering prices. In short, the NRA worked by fostering giant cartels, which made products artificially expensive and punished small businesses trying to compete against big businesses. As a condition for being allowed to form such a cartel, Roosevelt insisted that each participating ‘industry [raise] wages and [accept] collective bargaining with an independent union.’ By 1934, over 500 industries had adopted such codes, covering almost 80 percent of private, nonfarm employment. With these ‘voluntary’ codes in place, big producers could raise prices without fear of losing market share, because the federal government itself would punish any ‘unpatriotic’ upstarts who dared try to undersell large firms.” [Emphasis in original text]

With small businesses unable to set their own prices lower, not only were they unable to compete with larger business, but poor and middle-class citizens were unable to shop around for a good price or purchase as much as they needed.

In 1935 the Supreme Court threw out the NIRA as unconstitutional so Roosevelt used the National Labor Relations Act (NLRA) to achieve his goals, according to Murphy. The NLRA granted unions incredible bargaining power by forcing businesses to accept collective bargaining. As a result, union membership more than doubled and the number of “strike days” doubled in one year—from 14 million in 1936 to 28 million in 1937. This surge in union strength—and the high wages it brought—was an important factor in the persistently high unemployment rates of the 1930s. In other words, FDR’s pro-union policies helped prevent people from finding jobs.

Other “highlights” of FDR’s policies that hurt the poor and middle class*:

  • The four-day banking holiday closed all banks—even those that were sound—denying depositors access to their own money. It was mostly small regional banks that failed and they did so mostly because of government intervention in the banking system. The “solution” did not correct the fundamental problems with the banks, but instead took away bank clients’ incentives to monitor bank solvency by saddling taxpayers with losses.
  • The executive order requiring American citizens to surrender all gold certificates and gold, except for rare gold coins, in exchange for Federal Reserve Notes was outright theft. The government compounded the problem when it tied the dollar back to gold—changing the exchange rate from $20.67 per ounce to $35 per ounce (a 40 percent depreciation).
  • Under government coercion, sellers destroyed food in order to raise prices (as depicted in scenes from John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath). While hundreds of thousands of poor and unemployed people went hungry, farmers were plowing their crops under, or leaving them to rot in the field, and slaughtering livestock to comply with the Agriculture Adjustment Act. “[While Agriculture Secretary Henry A.] Wallace was paying out hundreds of millions to kill hogs, burn oats, plow under cotton, the Department of Agriculture issued a bulletin telling the nation that the great problems of our time was our failure to produce enough food.”
  • The Works Process Administration (WPA) hampered the economic recovery. By giving the unemployed an option that paid well enough, the WPA siphoned workers away from truly productive tasks that would have restored the economy to a long-run sustainable condition. In other words, the government paid them not to find a job.

There are many New Deal programs that still exist to this day, though few of them really help the “working man.” One of the worst is Social Security. In Slaying Leviathan, Carbone writes:

“Former Social Security Commissioner Stanford Ross criticized the founders of Social Security for generating public support by advancing the fictitious belief that a worker ‘pays for’ benefits with ‘contributions’ rather than taxes, and has an ‘earned right’ to particular benefits. Ross advised Americans to reject the ‘myth’ that Social Security is a pension plan and accept it as a tax on workers to provide for the ‘vulnerable in our society’.

“Senator Patrick Moynihan went further, calling Social Security taxes ‘outright thievery’ from young working people.”

All in all, Democrat policies during the first half of the 20th Century did much more to hurt the working poor or middle class than to help. This is not to absolve Republicans of responsibility. They were complicit in that they didn’t do enough to try and stop the practices before they were implemented, nor have they done much to try and repeal them. Republicans like big government as much as the Democrats.

The fallacy is that either party, the Democrats in particular, have been able to position themselves as the party of the “working” man.

* From The Politically Incorrect Guide™ to The Great Depression and the New Deal, by Robert P. Murphy, Ph.D.

(Editor’s Note: This is the first of a two-part series on Democrat big government policies and how they hurt the people they are supposed to help. Next week will focus on Lyndon Baines Johnson’s Great Society and the policies of Barack Hussein Obama, including Obamacare and the coming value-added tax.)

Poll: Ron Paul Even With Obama In Hypothetical 2012 Presidential Election Race

Poll: Ron Paul even with Obama in hypothetical 2012 presidential election raceAlthough he garnered just 10 percent of the vote in the presidential primary in 2008, Representative Ron Paul (R-Texas) may give Barack Obama a run for his money if the two are matched up in the 2012 presidential election race, a Rasmussen Reports poll has found.

In the hypothetical election, a total of 42 percent of respondents said they would cast their vote for Obama, compared to 41 percent who indicated that they would support the Libertarian congressman.

While Obama earned nearly 80 percent of the Democratic vote, Paul—an outspoken critic of his own party’s leadership and direction—received just 66 percent of the GOP votes, according to Newsmax. However, respondents who were not affiliated with either party overwhelmingly supported the Texas representative, handing him a 47 percent to 28 percent edge over the president.

Many political pundits believe that Paul’s resurgence into the national spotlight is, in part, due to the Tea Party movement, which continues to gain momentum. The news source reports that nearly one-fourth of voters consider themselves supporters of the conservative group’s ideals.

Omega-3 Deficiency May Result In Temporary Male Infertility

Omega-3 deficiency may result in temporary male infertilityAccording to a recent University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign study, consuming foods high in omega-3 fatty acids may help treat temporary male infertility.

In the study, a group of investigators led Manabu Nakamura, an associate professor of food science and human nutrition at the university, used a mouse model to examine the role that omega-3 docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) plays in male fertility.

After depriving the subjects of DHA by shutting off a gene responsible for the creation of the enzyme, the researchers found that mice produced fewer sperm.

"We looked at sperm count, shape, and motility and tested the breeding success rate, and the mice lacking DHA simply were not able to breed," said Manuel Roqueta-Rivera, a doctoral student who also worked on the study.

However, once the mice were fed a diet high in omega-3 fatty acids, their fertility was quickly restored.

Dietary sources of omega-3 fatty acids include vegetable oil, canola oil, flaxseed and English walnuts. They are also available in certain fatty fish, such as salmon, tuna and sardines.

New Fair-taxation Challenger To McCain Springs Up In Arizona

New fair-taxation challenger to McCain springs up in Arizona John McCain’s reelection plans are facing a growing challenge from both the right and the left, and now a "third way" proponent has announce his candidacy for the Senate.

Jerry Joslyn, a small business owner who recently join the Green Party, said that both Democrats and Republicans have created a tax system that is too complicated and unfair to middle-class Americans.

"Today the richest Americans enjoy a lower tax rate than the middle class," he said, and to back up his claim he cited the statement from Warren Buffet, one of the richest people in the world, who said that while he earned $46 million in 2007, he paid only 17.7 percent tax. Meanwhile, Buffet’s secretary, who earned $60,000, paid 30 percent.

Among his proposals to remedy the situation is the elimination of the payroll tax.

"The payroll tax is a direct tax on jobs. Eliminating it would lower the cost of labor and increase the number of jobs," the candidate explained, adding that small businesses provide over two-thirds of Arizona jobs.

According to Rasmussen Reports, the incumbent John McCain now leads conservative challenger J.D. Hayworth for the Republican nomination by just seven points (48 to 41 percent). The Arizona Republican primary is set for Aug. 24. ADNFCR-1961-ID-19724152-ADNFCR

Bernanke Warns Congress To Minimize Budget Deficits

Bernanke warns Congress to minimize budget deficits Testifying before Congress’ Joint Economic Committee, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said on April 14 that he is cautiously optimistic that the moderate economic recovery will continue, although the job market may sputter in the coming months.

Bernanke also urged lawmakers to recommend further budget cuts to help minimize the record federal deficit and help improve the nation’s long-term economic health, the Associated Press (AP) reports.

"Addressing the country’s fiscal problems will require difficult choices, but postponing them will only make them more difficult," he warned the committee.

The Fed chairman pointed to several signs of economic improvement, including the 1.6 percent increase in retail sales in March and the minimal inflation boost during that time. Bernanke also reiterated his pledge to keep interest rates low for an "extended period" to support the recovery.

During the meeting, Bernanke admitted to some mistakes regarding the Fed’s unclear role concerning consumer protection, The Economic Times reports.

"I can understand why some advocates would want to have a purely independent agency," he said. "While we have acknowledged being late on these issues, I do believe we should receive some credit forr a much better performance in recent years."

Omega-6 Fatty Acids May Help Temper Dermatitis

Omega-6 fatty acids may help temper dermatitisAccording to a recent University of Illinois study, consuming a diet containing high levels of omega-6 fatty acids may help maintain healthy skin and avoid chronic issues such as dermatitis.

Using a mouse model, the research team discovered that low blood levels of arachidonic acid caused the subjects to develop severe ulcerative dermatitis, a condition characterized by redness of the skin, inflammation and bleeding sores.

After feeding the mice diets that were rich in the compound, lead author Manabu Nakamura, associate professor of food science and human nutrition at the university, and his colleagues found that the condition subsided and the itching symptoms dissipated.

"This new understanding may have implications for treating the flaky, itchy skin that sometimes develops without an attributable cause in infants," said Nakamura. "This new knowledge is a starting point in understanding the mechanisms that are involved, and we need to do more research at the cellular level."

Common dietary sources for omega-6 fatty acids include vegetable oil, soybean oil, acai berries and a variety of nuts. The nutrient may also be taken as a dietary supplement.

The Worst President Ever

A delightful experience over the weekend led to a discussion that prompted the headline for this week’s Straight Talk. Let me tell you about it.

My wife and I had flown to Washington, D.C., to spend the weekend with her youngest son and his glowingly pregnant wife. This will be their first child and everyone (most emphatically including grandma) is excited beyond words.

But “Boots’” arrival (that’s the infant’s temporary nickname) won’t be until October. So, the four of us decided to enjoy a perfect spring day by taking the Metro to the Washington Mall and then strolling down to the Tidal Basin to see the last of the world-famous cherry blossoms. While the ladies relaxed on a park bench, Micah and I walked to one of my favorite sights in the capitol, the Jefferson Memorial.

As you may know, the building is modeled after the Pantheon in Greece, a design that Thomas Jefferson admired very much. Inside, a magnificent 17-foot bronze statue of our third president looks out toward the Washington Monument. On the walls around him are panels containing some of his most famous quotes.

The first panel, naturally enough, quotes the beginning of the Declaration of Independence, including the phrase, “endowed by their Creator…” The second panel starts, “Almighty God hath created the mind free.” The third states that “God who gave us life gave us liberty.”

And surrounding all of this, in letters three feet high, is this: “I have sworn upon the altar of God eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.”

Standing there, reading these words, it is impossible not to be reminded of Jefferson’s reverence and piety. As I read all the references to God and our Creator, I couldn’t help but wonder would it even be possible to construct such a memorial today? Or would the aggressive atheists and their friends in the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) make certain this wonderful edifice would never be built? Or if it had, that it would not have contained any of these heartfelt sentiments by a founding father?

As we turned to go, Micah pointed out the cornerstone of this marvelous memorial. We were both surprised by how high off the ground it was. I think we expected a cornerstone to be in the ground… or even under it.

Then I noticed the message inscribed on it. The stone had been dedicated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1939. I remarked to Micah, “It’s a little ironic, isn’t it, that one of the worst presidents in our history dedicated the memorial to one of the best?”

That led Micah to ask me who else I considered the worst presidents in our history. My reply surprised him, because Barack Obama’s name didn’t make the list. He’s read enough Straight Talks to know how I feel about the current occupant of the White House.

Before we go any further consider for a moment whom you’d put on a list of the five worst presidents of all time. Who would top the pile and why? If you want to join the debate, when you get to the end of this column just click on “reply” and fire away. There will surely be some interesting remarks posted below.

Of course you already know one of my choices. In the first half of the last century, no one did more to promote government growth than FDR. Longtime socialist leader Norman Thomas said FDR implemented more of his policies than he ever could. And let’s not forget the lies and deceit that got us into World War II; all of the things he did to buttress the Soviet Union during the war; or the horrible concessions afterwards that condemned millions of people to a lifetime of slavery under Communist rule. Need I say more?

Then there are the three men during my lifetime who embarrassed and angered me by their conduct and their policies. I consider all of them a disgrace to our nation’s highest office. I was glad when Bill Clinton was impeached; I was only sorry when he wasn’t convicted and removed from office.

Richard Nixon is another of my least favorites. No one did more to prevent our troops from winning in Vietnam. Our soldiers were condemned to fight and die in a no-win war while our country was torn apart at home. Nixon abandoned our allies on Taiwan and opened relations with the vicious murderers who ruled Communist China. He also launched the era of Big Government Republicanism here at home from which we’re still suffering today. No, “Tricky Dick” Nixon is not one of my favorites.

But the man I truly despised was Lyndon Baines Johnson. I doubt if a bigger crook or more dangerous bully has ever occupied the Oval Office. He was not only a nasty and mean-spirited politician; LBJ took arm-twisting and vote fraud to a whole new level. In fact, he may even have sanctioned murder. For a glimpse of the real LBJ, get J. Evetts Haley’s searing study, A Texan Looks at Lyndon.

Who could possibly top such a list? I hereby nominate Woodrow Wilson as the worst of the bunch: In fact, the very worst president of all time.

Just consider the highlights of this man’s despicable record. He won election by promising to keep us out of the war in Europe—all while he was scheming to get us involved. The contrived sinking of the Lusitania gave him the excuse he needed.

Millions of people suffered and died needlessly in Wilson’s war “to make the world safe for democracy.” For that alone he deserves to be rebuked and repudiated by every honest historian. But the dirty misdeeds don’t stop there. Wilson was an early One-Worlder; we have him to thank for the aborted League of Nations, without which there would be no United Nations.

Oh, and let’s not forget the trickery that got Congress to adopt a key plank in the Communist Manifesto—a progressive income tax. The rules had already been rigged so the super-rich could hide their wealth in foundations and family trusts. The income tax would keep most of us from ever hoping to compete with them—while giving government the funds it needed to offer a gullible public all of the bread and circuses it could want.

There are other things I could mention, but this should be enough to persuade you that Woodrow Wilson belongs high on a list of presidents who have betrayed the great trust the public put in them. Should he really be No. 1—the worst of all time? I say “yes.” But you’re certainly entitled to disagree. After all, this is still a free country, isn’t it? No thanks to the five gentlemen I’ve listed above.

After reflection, I’m willing to consider a motion to have Barack Obama replace Bill Clinton in the top five. Bill may have done more to embarrass us than our Teleprompter in Chief. But he wasn’t very successful getting his socialist policies passed. Wish we could say the same thing about Obama.

Until next Friday, keep some powder dry.

—Chip Wood

No Flag, Strange Artwork, Soaring Interest And Nutty Psychiatry

*Obama orders our flag taken down. United States military personnel in Haiti have been ordered not to fly the American flag. A spokesman explains that “We are not here as an occupation force, but as an international partner.” Isn’t that absurd? The whole world knows we’re there on a mission of mercy, not conquest. By the way, all of our “international partners,” including Britain, France and Croatia, proudly fly their own flags.

*Why not just eat them? I read that a high school teacher in northern Utah had his students make a 6,400-square-foot replica of Vincent van Gogh’s famous painting, “Starry Night.” The artwork, which covered the floor of the school’s gymnasium, was made from two tons of the colorful Malt-O-Meal breakfast cereal. My only question is, why?

*Buffett is a safer bet than Obama. Hardly anyone noticed, but on the same day that Obamacare passed the House, U.S. government debt lost its “risk-free” status. For the first time in history you would earn less interest loaning money to a private company—Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway—than to the U.S. Government. I’m afraid this is just the beginning of seeing interest rates soar.

*Another great quote. The Wall Street Journal ran a fascinating piece called “Why Psychiatry Needs Therapy” in its Feb. 27-28 weekend edition. In it the author warned, “Patients who seek psychiatric help today for mood disorders stand a good chance of being diagnosed with a disease that doesn’t exist and treated with a medication little more effective than a placebo.” In other words, you’d be nuts to trust a psychiatrist.

—Chip Wood

Journalists Call On FCC To Continue Working For ‘Net Neutrality’

Journalists call on FCC to continue working for 'net neutrality' Last week, a United States court of appeals issued a ruling blocking the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) attempts to prevent internet service providers from restricting access to content, applications and services offered by competitors. Now, a group of journalist is pushing back, urging the FCC to reclaim its right to regulate broadband networks.

UNITY: Journalists of Color—an organization representing more than 8,000 professionals in that field—has called on the commission to reclassify broadband as a "telecommunications service," which would make it a basic utility subject to regulation, and reverse actions taken by previous commissions that favored a deregulatory approach.

"Without the authority to set net neutrality rules, the FCC cannot promote a level playing field," said UNITY president Barbara Ciara.

"[We] oppose any technological, legislative or content strategies to block innovation and free speech on the internet," she added.

The U.S. District Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled that the FCC had overstepped its jurisdiction when it attempted to impose net neutrality rules on Comcast, which had blocked its subscribers from using the file-sharing website BitTorrent.

Analysts say companies such as AT&T and Verizon would also be hit by "net neutrality," but it would benefit applications providers such as Google, Skype and Facebook. ADNFCR-1961-ID-19721643-ADNFCR

At National Press Club Meeting, Activists Denounce Role Of Special Interests In U.S. Politics

At National Press Club meeting, activists denounce role of special interests in U.S. politics On April 13, a forum was held at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., which discussed the influence of corporate special interests and big money on public policy and United States democracy.

The event—in honor of Thomas Jefferson’s 267th birthday—was sponsored by the People’s Lobby Coalition for Public Funding Only of All Elections and the Green Party of Florida. Some of the topics discussed by the attendees included the effect of corporate money on healthcare, energy and the economy. They also analyzed the issue of military expenditures in light of campaign contributions from defense contractors.

"[We talked] about the correlation between the influence of the 13,000 plus special interest lobbyists and our elected officials’ voting trends in relation to these issues," said Jennifer Sullivan, organizer of the event.

She added that the outcome of the event will lead the group to propose "necessary changes to our election system to restore democracy."

Speakers at the event included Dr. Margaret Flowers, congressional Fellow for Physicians for a National Health Program, filmmaker Jesse Johnson, chair of the West Virginia Mountain Party, and Pat LaMarche, weekly columnist for the Bangor Daily News and the 2004 vice-presidential nominee of the Green Party of the United States.

A Terror Trial, Expensive Jobs and the Bomber’s Visa

*Terror trial moved from New York City. After first saying he was okay with holding the trial of confessed al-Qaida terrorist Khalid Sheikh Mohammed in lower Manhattan, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg changed his mind and asked Attorney General Eric Holder to move it. The state’s senior senator, Chuck Schumer, and a lot of other politicos also jumped on the “not in our city” bandwagon. That was enough to convince the Obama Administration to pull the plug on a really bad idea. Officials are now scrambling to come up with a new plan. Here’s one: Let the military handle it. This should never have been moved to a civilian court in the first place.

*Man, those new jobs are expensive. Remember when Barrack Obama promised that if Congress approved his $800 billion “stimulus” package, unemployment wouldn’t go above 8 percent? Well, to quote an old country song, he got the gold mine and we got the shaft. Unemployment is now a minimum of 10 percent. Since people who’ve stopped looking for work and down-sized temps aren’t counted among the unemployed, the real number is undoubtedly much higher. Still, our President claims the stimulus has “saved or created” 2 million jobs. Let’s see, that means each new job cost us taxpayers about $400,000 each. Want to guess how long it will take each new worker to pay that much in taxes?

*Our “too little, too late” State Department. You may have missed the news that back in January the State Department revoked the visa of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the Nigerian wanna-be bomber who tried to bring down a Northwest Airlines flight over Detroit on Christmas Day. Thanks guys, I feel much safer now.

—Chip Wood