Hawaii, D.C. Give Obama Top Ratings In ’12

PRINCETON, N.J., (UPI) —  Hawaii and the District of Columbia were the most likely to approve of President Obama in 2012 while Utah and Wyoming were least likely, Gallup said.

This year’s top approval rankings saw Rhode Island move into the top 10 states plus the District, and Illinois drop out, Gallup’s analysis of its Daily tracking for last year, released Monday, indicated. Among the bottom 11 states, Kentucky and South Dakota dropped out, replaced by Alabama and Nebraska.

Obama received majority approval in 14 states and the District of Columbia, compared with the 26 states and the District of Columbia he won in the 2012 presidential election, the Princeton, N.J., polling agency said.

Gallup said the two lists of states wouldn’t necessarily align because approval data are based on opinions of all adults in a state, while the election results are based on voters. Also, election results are from October and early November, when Obama’s overall approval rating was above 50 percent while the approval data is based on the entire year year.

With 82.4 percent, Obama had the highest approval rating in the District of Columbia, followed by Hawaii, Vermont, Maryland, New York, Rhode Island, Delaware, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey and California.

Obama earned 27.9 percent approval in Utah, which was last, preceded by Wyoming, Alaska, West Virginia, North Dakota, Idaho, Oklahoma, Alabama, Nebraska, Arkansas and Montana.

Results are based on nationwide telephone interviews conducted with 165,427 adults as part of Gallup Daily tracking Jan. 1-Dec 31. The margin of error is 1 percentage point.

Senators Agree On Immigration Overhaul

WASHINGTON, (UPI) —  A bipartisan group of U.S. senators say they have agreed on an immigration plan that could be the basis for overhauling the system this year.

The Senate proposal, drafted behind closed doors for several weeks by leading senators from both parties, would grant legal status to most of the approximately 11 million illegal immigrants in the United States, the Los Angeles Times reported Sunday. The Times received a copy of the proposal.

The eight senators involved in developing the plan said they intend to release their proposal Monday.

The Senate plan is more conservative than the proposal President Obama intends to reveal Tuesday, the Times said, but its language for legalizing millions of illegal immigrants goes beyond measures that didn’t advance in Congress in previous years.

The Senate proposal would allow most of the undocumented immigrants in the country to obtain probationary legal status immediately by paying a fine and back taxes, as well as passing a background check, the Times said. Probationary legal status would make them eligible to work and live in the United States, and even earn a green card — permanent residency — after the government certifies the U.S.-Mexican border has become secure. Those eligible under this scenario might face a lengthy citizenship process.

Obama is expected to seek a faster citizenship process not tied to border security standards being met first, the Times said. Other, less controversial provisions would tighten requirements on employer verification of new workers’ immigration status; increase the number of visas for high skilled jobs; automatically provide green cards to people earning master’s degrees or doctorates in science, technology or math at U.S. universities, and create an agricultural guest-worker program.

The senators involved said they hope to begin voting in committee on an immigration proposal as soon as March.

Latino activists and other advocates for immigration reform have pushed for quick action in the Senate, saying they hope a bipartisan vote for a bill that includes a path to citizenship would pressure the House where many members of the Republican majority represent districts in which such proposals are unpopular. However, many Republicans also are concerned about political fallout if the party is blamed for blocking immigration reform.

Obama, Clinton Have Joint Interview

WASHINGTON, (UPI) —  President Obama and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, rivals-cum-allies, say their friendship developed because of some tough decisions that had to be made.

“I consider Hillary a strong friend,” Obama said during an interview with CBS’ “60 Minutes” that aired Sunday.

“Very warm, close,” said Clinton, who will be leaving her post soon.

They brushed off the tough primary battles their campaigns waged five years ago as the result of  trying to draw differences between them when there really wasn’t any, they said during the interview taped last week.

“Despite our hard-fought primary, we had such agreement on what needed to be done for our country,” Clinton said.

“Made for tough debates, by the way,” Obama said, “because we could never figure out what we were different on.”

The campaign rivalry was set aside, however, when Obama nominated Clinton as his top diplomat, changing the dynamics between the two.

“What did evolve was a friendship, as opposed to just a professional relationship,” Obama said. “Friendships involve a sense of trust and being in the foxhole together. And that emerged during the course of months when we were making some very tough decisions.”

Obama defended himself against comments that he has been passive on the world stage, noting his intervention in Libya, where a revolution aided by NATO air support led to the death of the country’s longtime dictator, Moammar Gadhafi.

“Moammar Gadhafi probably does not agree with that assessment,” Obama said, “or at least if he was around, he wouldn’t agree with that assessment.”

Obama and Clinton discouraged reading anything into the interview about the 2016 presidential election, when many Democrats expect Clinton to seek the nomination again.

“You guys in the press are incorrigible,” Obama said during the “60 Minutes” interview. “I was literally inaugurated four days ago, and you’re talking about elections four years from now.”

“I am still secretary of state,” Clinton said, “so I’m out of politics. And I’m forbidden from even hearing these questions.”

Ryan: GOP Has To ‘Expand Our Appeal’

WASHINGTON, (UPI) —  U.S. Rep Paul Ryan, R-Wis., the Republican U.S. vice presidential nominee in 2012, said Sunday the election outcome suggests his party must “expand our appeal.”

In an appearance on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” his first Sunday talk show interview since the November election, Ryan said raising federal revenues is “behind us” and expressed doubt President Barack Obama “thinks we actually have a fiscal crisis.”

He said “I think we would have fixed this fiscal mess by now” if former President Bill Clinton and former Clinton Chief of Staff Erskine Bowles were in the White House.

Asked what he thought was the major lesson for Republicans after losing the presidential election and losing House and Senate seats, Ryan said: “Well, we obviously have to expand our appeal. We have to expand our appeal to more people and somehow how we’ll take the country’s founding principles and apply them to the problems of the deal to offer solutions to fix our problems.”

While stopping short of saying he opposes any new federal revenue from tax reform, Ryan said Obama “got his additional revenues. So that’s behind us.”

Ryan — chairman of the House Budget Committee — said Washington needs “to focus on getting spending down” but he said the president seems less focused on the debt and more interested in “political ends, you know [the 2014 election] versus actually moving to the middle.”

“Well, I don’t think that the president thinks we actually have a fiscal crisis,” Ryan said.

He said if the United States “had a Clinton presidency, if we had Erskine Bowles, chief staff of the White House or president of the United States, I think we would have fixed this fiscal mess by now. That’s not the kind of presidency we’re dealing with right now.”

Ryan conceded “both parties got us to the mess we are in, this fiscal crisis.” and both parties need to solve it.

Utah Court Restores Baby To Natural Dad

SALT LAKE CITY,  (UPI) —  The Utah Supreme Court returned a child whose mother had put her up for adoption without her father’s consent, to her Army drill sergeant father.

Mark Wiser, the father’s lawyer, said it was the first time in the state’s history that the Supreme Court in Salt Lake City took a child from the adoptive parents home and returned the child to the legal father. He said the case represents a victory for equal parental rights, meaning one parent may not put up a child for adoption without the other’s permission, ABC News reported Sunday.

Tira Bland gave birth in Utah on March 21, 2011 while her husband, Terry Achane, 31, was stationed in South Carolina. Bland gave the baby girl, Teleah, up for adoption two days later. ABC News reported.

Achane at first thought Bland had followed through on an abortion threat. He discovered the Utah adoption several weeks after the baby was born, ABC reported.

Wiser said Achane contacted the adoption agency, which denied Achane information when he said he had not  consented to the adoption.

The baby had been adopted by Jared and Kristi Frei of Utah, who in December had secured a stay of the initial court order to return the baby to Achane.

The original trial judge, in a transfer hearing Friday, said the Freis decided to proceed with the adoption even though they knew that the baby’s father had never been consulted.

Monday Morning News Roundup 1-28-2013

Here is a collection of some of the stories that Personal Liberty staffers will be keeping an eye on throughout the day. Click the links for the full stories.

  • President Barack Obama doesn’t want gun rights advocates to worry about his overhaul of gun control laws. Rest assured, the President said in a recent speech that he goes shooting “all the time” at Camp David and has “profound respect” for hunting. He also loves to hunt with murderous drones in nations we aren’t at war with.
  • Because Congress evidently has nothing better to do, Senator Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) wants Beyonce to apologize for lip synching “The Star Spangled Banner.”
  • A Milwaukee sheriff is urging residents in his area to buy a gun because sometimes dialing 911 isn’t enough. In the ad, Sheriff David Clark says, “Simply calling 911 and waiting is no longer your best option. You could beg for mercy from a violent criminal, hide under the bed, or you can fight back. But are you prepared?”

Check back for updates, news and analysis throughout the day. Like us on Facebook.

How To Avoid The Obamacare Death Trap

We are less than one year out from healthcare tyranny under the oligarchy-endorsed Obamacare.

It’s very deceptive to call Obamacare socialized medicine. The law has nothing to do with healthcare. It’s just the opposite. It’s sickness care. The Nazis had their gas chambers and America has “medical care,” which is the most sophisticated killing machine that demented minds can create.

Americans are mentally dependent on the “medical” brainwash. When our dumbed-down people hear the trigger word “medical care,” they go blind and hyperventilate. They do not know a scam from a sham. They will go unanimous for anything with the term “healthcare” in it.

Obamacare is not healthcare. It has absolutely nothing to do with healthcare. It’s a great transfer of wealth and population control with a ticket to the death panels when we are no longer considered productive citizens.

As the paper money regime collapses, the money creators are speeding up the printing presses in a desperate ploy to transfer the wealth of the American people before it becomes worthless anyway. It is disguised warfare against the American people.

It reminds one of the last days of the Nazi regime. As the cities were reduced to rubble, German citizens were being shot for “treason.” In the last days of any regime, the process of oppression of citizens is intensified.

In the United States, stepped-up oppression is being done under the cloak of benevolence (healthcare). It is not an issue of so-called healthcare. If it achieves anything related to Americans’ health, it should be called sickness care.

It’s all very simple: The medical cartel needs sick people like military machines need human cannon fodder; no difference. The military industrial complex promotes war under the pretext of patriotism. The medical establishment promotes sickness under the pretext of healthcare.

If you readers grasp the esoteric (hidden) agenda in Obamacare, your thinking runs deep. You should survive the coming crash. Obamacare is a symptom of collapse of the social order. We have no economic order.

As the last days of this system nears total collapse, there will be more and more political calls for synthetic social and medical benefits. Recognize it for what it is: a camouflage for stealing.

Once again for emphasis, Obamacare is not about the healthcare of the American people. It is not about the cost. It is about the stepped-up transfer of the wealth of the American people to the global elite.

Obamacare would be impossible under the gold standard as the medical cartel would not exist, and most of the politicians would be in jail.

Despite denials by the elites, a government-run healthcare system will quickly bankrupt the U.S. Treasury. What’s more, it will condemn millions of elderly and disabled Americans to substandard care and perhaps even to fatal rationing of medical resources.

The New York Times’ resident nincompoop, former Enron adviser Paul Krugman, famously said: “In Britain, the government itself runs the hospitals and employs the doctors. We’ve all heard scare stories about how that works in practice; these stories are false.”

Yes. Sarah Palin was right. Krugman, as was the case in his advice to Enron and in most of his Keynesian screeds, was wrong. There will be death panels. The State cannot justify expending resources on the non-productive. Ask Taro Aso, the finance minister of Japan, who said last week that the elderly should be allowed to “hurry up and die” to relive pressure on the state to pay for medical care.

“I would wake up feeling increasingly bad knowing that [treatment] was all being paid for by the government,” he said during a meeting of the national council on social security reforms. “The problem won’t be solved unless you let them hurry up and die.”

Death panels will become acceptable to the public by dehumanizing the elderly and infirmed. They won’t be classified as people. They will become units or incompetents or, as Aso referred to them, “tube people.” Propaganda to dehumanize “the enemy” has been used throughout history.

“I see people aged 67 or 68 at class reunions who dodder around and are constantly going to the doctor,” he said at a meeting of economists. “Why should I have to pay for people who just eat and drink and make no effort? I walk every day and do other things, but I’m paying more in taxes.”

Government bureaucrats in Canada, the U.K. and Europe routinely deny healthcare based on abstract determinations of “quality of life,” rather than of medical necessity.

I know assurances were given by the elites that Palin was off her rocker and the death panels were merely “end of life counseling.” Similar panels in the U.K. are now the equivalent of euthanasia. Professor Patrick Pullicino says pressure on beds and difficulty with nursing confused or difficult-to-manage elderly patients have resulted in patients in the system’s controversial “death pathway” being put into the equivalent of euthanasia for the elderly.

How is the British deathcare system? You might ask Peter Thompson, 41. But he’s dead. He was left dying on the corridor floor unattended for 10 hours while nurses stepped over him. When it was finally discovered he was dead, his body was dragged away in a manner his family likened to “dragging a dead animal.” The scenes were caught on closed circuit cameras and played during an inquiry.

Of course, none of this could ever happen in America. Ask Steven Rattner, an Obama and Democrat insider who wrote in an op-ed for The Times: “WE need death panels. Well, maybe not death panels exactly, but unless we start allocating healthcare resources more prudently — rationing, by its proper name — the exploding cost of Medicare will swamp the federal budget.”

Yes. Hurry up and die rather than be a drain on the all-important state. Money is needed to rain bombs down on the children of other countries. It’s for the good of democracy and for the safety of the children.

We can have our health if we avoid the system. Get off the sickness diet that is the standard American diet (SAD) and get on the “Go Green” or nutritarian diet.

What you will be doing is getting rid of the SAD, which is very high calories and very low nutrition, in exchange for the tasty green diet, which is very low in calories and very high in nutrition.

Lower calories make for longer life. This is a proven scientific fact. You can find details in the DVD “Forks Over Knives” and Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s lectures on cancer, heart disease and diabetes. Google them.

What will we gain?

  • Guaranteed better health.
  • A way to avoid cancer, heart disease and diabetes.
  • A very big percentage of us can grow what we eat in a very small home garden.
  • Americans can, for the first time in 100 years, stamp out the oppression of the medical mafia. This is the subversive cartel that has deceived us into believing that drugs will take the place of food in healing and health.
  • We will increase our years on this Earth by reducing our calories.
  • We will re-train our taste for the right nutritious foods.
  • We will not be hungry. The green diet is completely satisfying and we can eat to fill our stomachs.

We can kill Obamacare in its tracks by becoming healthy. This can all happen in just one year.

The commercial food empire (junk food) will be cut in half. America has been deceived into bad health through bad diet. Hippocrates said, “Let your food be your medicine.” Who profits from the SAD?

  • The commercial food manufacturers.
  • Most of the medical profession. Doctors need sick people.
  • The pharmaceutical cartel and drug monopoly.
  • Medical equipment manufacturing companies.
  • Representatives and Senators who hold hands with the pharmaceutical monopoly under the table.
  • The U.S. Department of Agriculture which has a silent, but all-powerful, vested interest in promoting and expanding the SAD.

If America spends more than any nation on Earth on “healthcare” yet ranks 17th in the world on healthcare, aren’t we naive to not believe there is an economic and commercial motivation in the shadows?

The nutritarian diet can restore the Constitution and human liberty in America. How? This seems like such a simplistic solution to such a vast empire of control, deception and crime euphemistically called American democracy.

It will work because the charlatan politicians and bureaucrats can’t profit from the nutritarian diet. The vast trillion-dollar beef and pork industry will collapse. The huge dairy industry will collapse. The pharmaceutical cartel will be cut to 20 percent or less of its present size. The USDA and the Food and Drug mafia (aka Food and Drug Administration) will collapse to a midget size.

Most of all, the health of Americans will awaken in the Garden of Eden. All the “incurable diseases” will begin to vanish.

Good diet will be accessible to all and Americans will be less dependent on the ominous fascism that has taken over America.

You should order the DVD “Forks Over Knives” and Fuhrman’s “Immersion Excursion” series from Amazon.com or whoever. It is an investment of less than $200. It will change your life beyond anything you can imagine.

This will save your health and restore America.

Editor’s note: In order to encourage a thoughtful and meaningful dialogue, comments to this column will be strictly monitored. The moderator has been instructed to remove all comments that contain ad hominem attacks on the author or other commenters. Make your case in a civil manner. Be respectful of other opinions. Do not disparage others if you want your comments to remain. Understand that the comment policy will be strictly enforced. – BL

Obamacare Will Cost Aging Smokers Big Bucks

A little-discussed provision of President Barack Obama’s healthcare bill could allow insurers to charge American smokers premiums up to 50 percent higher than those paid by nonsmokers.

According to The Associated Press, beginning Jan. 1, insurers will have the option of charging older smokers additional insurance fees that would add thousands to their yearly health insurance costs. A 50-year-old smoker would likely pay nearly $4,250 in additional fees each year. At 60, the cost would rise to $5,100.

Younger smokers would also be subject to the additional costs but face less harsh penalties.

Workers who are covered under an employer health plan could avoid the penalties. But those who must purchase health insurance because of Obama’s individual mandate would be subject to the abusive penalties from insurers.

Obamacare disallows insurance companies to turn away people for being obese or having previously existing health problems. Some watchdog groups say that the high premiums for smokers will lead to many people in need of health insurance the most opting out because of budget constraints.

“If you are an insurer and there is a group of smokers you don’t want in your pool, the ones you really don’t want are the ones who have been smoking for 20 or 30 years,” Karen Pollitz, an expert on individual health insurance markets with the Kaiser Family Foundation told AP. “You would have the flexibility to discourage them.”

Some States are working on legislation to limit how much insurers are allowed to penalize aging smokers.

How To Add 10 Extra Years To Your Life

When I was a young girl, my grandma taught me many things. When she was a young mother, she raised her children during the Great Depression. My grandfather worked for $5 a day and their mortgage was $25 a month. My grandma was very frugal; she used up everything she had. Nothing went to waste.

Fresh, homemade yogurt was always brewing on the counter near Grandma’s stove in her warm kitchen. When my mother would take us for a visit, Grandma would tell us that if we ate yogurt every day it would help us to live 10 years longer. I believed her and never questioned my yogurt consumption.

If any of us grandchildren got cut, had a sunburn or a burn of any kind or even an upset stomach, Grandma gave us yogurt to eat. She even plastered it on us like salve. It felt so good on the sunburn and soothed the pain right away. I am following in my grandma’s footsteps by making my own fresh homemade yogurt.

Yogurt & BerriesI found out with a little research that my grandma was right on. Yogurt lowers cholesterol, boosts the immune system, helps with lactose intolerance and is rich in calcium and protein. If we have friendly flora in our intestinal tract, it boosts the immune system and helps fight infections, which help us avoid getting those nasty flu bugs that are going around. Yogurt returns friendly flora to our bodies that are killed by antibiotics. Eating yogurt boosts the immune system without any side effects. Eating yogurt can spare many trips to the doctor and, like my grandma said, add 10 extra years to life.

Yogurt Is A Natural Antibiotic

Yogurt is just fermented milk. You can make it by adding the active cultures Streptococcus thermophilus and Lactobacillus delbrueckii ssp. bulgaricus (L. bulgaricus) to heated milk. This produces lactic acid, which gives yogurt its strong tart flavor and its thick consistency.

Yogurt is not just a breakfast food anymore. Some cultures use yogurt in their everyday cooking. My grandma put yogurt on top of warm rice with fresh fruit cut up into small pieces on top. It was delicious. I like to make a dessert out of yogurt. I put frozen strawberries, peaches or apples chopped up on top of a bowl of yogurt, and then I sprinkle homemade granola on top of the fruit. This is the best dessert for me because I am diabetic and I can still enjoy dessert without all the sugar. Yum, yum!

Yogurt Starter

A yogurt starter is a must. You can purchase a plain unflavored yogurt with a live culture at any supermarket. You must read the label to make sure it has the active culture in it. Believe it or not, there are some yogurts in the supermarket that do not have the cultures added. They are loaded with sugar and are not that healthy or good for you.

One way to store yogurt culture for an extended period of time is in the powdered, freeze-dried form, which can be purchased from a health food store or a cheesemaking-supply website. The freeze-dried culture is best kept in the freezer or refrigerator.

Making your own yogurt is much less expensive and better for you because you can control what is put into it. You can add fresh fruit and stevia or other healthy sweeteners. Knowing that there are no preservatives or additives will give you true peace of mind.

YogurtMaking Grandma’s Homemade Yogurt From Powdered Milk

Most people have powdered milk in their food storage. This is a way that you can use up your powdered milk and make something yummy from it.

Mix the powdered milk according to the instructions on the package to make half a gallon of milk. If you want to double the yogurt, you can double the recipe. The first time you make yogurt is the only time you will need to purchase fresh yogurt. After that, you can keep it in a jar in the fridge and use 1/2 cup of plain yogurt to make another batch. This is much more economical than purchasing yogurt from the store. Use your own and keep it going like sourdough starter. I like to add fruit to my homemade yogurt. Just mix it into the pint jar and enjoy.

Homemade Yogurt

Ingredients

½ gallon of fresh milk or (Mix powdered milk and water together to make ½ gallon of milk)
1 extra cup powdered milk (to thicken the yogurt)
1-1/2 teaspoons unflavored gelatin or pectin (to thicken the yogurt)
½ cup plain unflavored yogurt (with active cultures)
¼ cup sweetener such as honey and agave or 1 teaspoon of stevia (optional)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)
Clean, sterilized glass pint canning jars
Candy thermometer (optional)

Instructions

  1. Warm the oven on the lowest setting for about 15 minutes. Turn off the oven and keep the door closed so it remains warm. Place the clean glass canning jars on a cookie sheet.
  2. Mix the powdered milk and gelatin into the ½ gallon of milk.
  3. Add the milk to a stainless steel stock-pot and cook on high heat until it barely starts to boil. Get it to 200 degrees but no higher. Keep checking the thermometer. When you see little bubbles on the surface, hold it at 200 degrees for 20 minutes and then remove it from the heat. This is to kill any bacteria in the milk. This is especially important if you are using fresh cow’s milk or goat’s milk that has not been pasteurized. It also allows more time for the milk proteins to denature and bind together better to create a thicker yogurt like the store-bought kind.
  4. Let the milk cool to about 150 degrees (on the candy thermometer) or until you can comfortably place your hand on the side of the pot (or dip your clean finger into the milk) for at least 10 seconds without it being too hot. Placing the pot in a sink with ice will help cool down the pot, and it will chill faster.
  5. Once the milk has cooled down, put the yogurt into a bowl. Scoop out about ½ cup of warm milk and add it to the starter yogurt. Whisk it up until it is mixed well and then return the mixture to the pot with the rest of the milk.
  6. Add the sweetener and vanilla to the mixture. Stir gently two to three times to make sure it’s all mixed well. Then pour (or ladle) the milk and yogurt mixture into clean glass pint jars.
  7. Carefully move the cookie sheet of jars into the oven. Turn the oven light on (very important) and set the timer for four hours.
  8. Remove the jars from the oven and rest them on the counter until they’ve cooled to room temperature. Then, cover the jars with canning lids and rings and store them in the fridge. The yogurt should be set after eight hours in the fridge, where they’ll keep for up to 10 days. You can put the yogurt in an insulated ice chest or cooler with ice in it for the eight hours it takes to set.

Add ION (Stabilized Oxygen) To Yogurt

ION stabilized oxygen keeps the yogurt from going sour. Just add eight drops of ION to each pint of yogurt right after filling the jars with the yogurt and milk mixture. Stir it up and let it set in the fridge for the remaining eight hours while it thickens. ION is very good for the intestinal tract; it kills all harmful bacteria and actually enhances the friendly flora in the body.

Yogurt MakerCommercial Yogurt Makers

There are several commercial yogurt makers on the market if you feel safer doing it that way.  They are inexpensive (usually less than $40). The jars rest on a warming plate that keeps the temperature controlled at the right degrees to grow the yogurt culture and help it set up.

Add Toppings To Your Granola

When eating yogurt, add fresh or dried fruit and granola to the top. I especially love frozen strawberries stirred up into the yogurt, which freezes it and makes it into a frozen dessert. I also like to use yogurt and fruit in smoothies and salad dressings as well as sauces.

Homemade Yogurtsicles

YogurtsiclesI remember as a child we made homemade Popsicles. You can do the same thing if you have Popsicle molds. Just mix the yogurt and berries together and put the mixture into the molds, then pop them in the freezer. I have even made these in the snow. Our weather in Utah gets below 0 degrees F in the winter; these yogurtsicles freeze outside as well.

Cookin' With Powdered MilkFind this recipe and other recipes for making yogurt, several types of cheeses, cottage cheese and buttermilk using powdered milk in my book Cookin’ With Powdered Milk.

–Peggy Layton

Dow Nears Record… Yipee

The Dow is nearing its record closing high of 14,164.53 set on Oct. 9, 2007. The recovery of President Barack Obama is well on its way.

Or maybe not. The psychopathic storytellers are claiming the housing market is improving. But in reality housing starts are still bumping along right where they’ve been since 2009.

Graph of New Homes Sold in the United States
(source: St. Louis Fed)

 

And despite (or because of) massive money printing, real gross domestic product (GDP) is lower than it’s ever been in history, as the chart below from the St. Louis Fed shows.


(Source: St. Louis Fed)

 

In truth, we are now in the midst of the worst recovery ever. The Fed’s money printing policies have propped up the market — as they were designed to do — but have not done anything to right the ship of economy. Or, as Tyler Durden of Zerohedge.com writes: “[I]t is only the worst recovery ever for anyone unlucky enough to still rely on such Old Normal concepts as the “economy” to feed, clothe and provide shelter for themselves. For those lucky 1% of the US population whose entire wealth is in financial assets (and who once again managed to avoid a tax hike on carried interest or any actual financial assets), times have almost never been so good.”

Remember, the stock market is not a marker to use to determine a strong economy. The current policies of QE to infinity and deficit spending continue to transfer wealth from the people to the 1 percent.

According to Shadowstats.com, using generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP), the 2012 consolidated financial statements of the U.S. government showed a $6.9 trillion deficit, up from $4.6 trillion in 2011. Total U.S. obligations — including unfunded liabilities like Social Security and Medicare — are about $88 trillion, or nearly six times the total GDP. Real unemployment remains above 14 percent.

Sales of gold and silver tell the real story of the recovery.

Divorce Lasts A Lifetime, So End The War

NEW YORK (UPI) — Marriage may be brief, but divorce lasts a lifetime. A U.S. clinical psychologist says it’s worth the effort to make a friend of an ex-spouse.

Judith Ruskay Rabinor, a clinical psychologist, said she was motivated to write her book Befriending Your Ex After Divorce: Making Life Better for You, Your Kids, and Yes, Your Ex after accepting the losses and realities of her own divorce and becoming good friends with her former husband.

“It requires seeing the big picture — embracing the needs of everyone involved — and taking the high road,” Rabinor said in a statement. “Don’t assume you have to continue feeling and expressing anger to justify your divorce.”

Rabinor’s strategies include:

  • Recognize the need and the benefits to you of befriending your ex.
  • Learn to forgive, including yourself.
  • Let go of the past. Don’t dwell on what went wrong.
  • Create a vision of the kind of positive relationship you want with your ex.
  • Tell your ex it’s never too late to create a better divorce, and you want to start a cordial relationship.
  • Start with small acts of kindness.
  • Continue trying, even if your ex is slow to acknowledge your efforts or reciprocate.
  • Keep the goal in mind; keeping the peace is easier than continuing the war.

Rabinor acknowledges not all of her strategies apply to everyone and an authentic new friendship might not develop if dangerous behaviors don’t change, such as addictions or verbal and physical abuse.

“The only person you can really change is yourself. Do your part and treat your ex kindly, and if he or she refuses to reciprocate, continue to take the high road,” Rabinor said. “You’ll eventually succeed, or at least have the satisfaction of knowing you’re doing the right thing.”

Another Gun Grab Scheme From Newark Mayor

It’s no secret that Newark, N.J., Mayor Corey Booker is a fan of disarming residents of his community with gun buyback gimmicks wherein the city pays desperate people with gas cards and groceries in return for their legal firearms.

Now, the mayor has begun a scheme to hustle jewelry made from shell casings to fund the buybacks. Booker has teamed up with a company called Jewelry With A Cause to produce steel and brass bracelets made with shell casings and guns seized by Newark police officers.

The company promises of the “Caliber Collection” on its website:

The Caliber Collection is made up of metal from 250 guns and bullet casings seized by the Newark Police Department. The result is a series of pieces that embody the gun’s transformation from a destructive weapon to a powerful symbol of renewal. A portion of the proceeds from each sale is used to fund future Gun Buyback Amnesty programs in Newark. It is our hope that this will be a model that we can roll out in other cities across the nation.

Each of the pieces, which range in price from $150 to $375, is stamped with the city’s name as well as the firearm to which it was related.

Don’t Pay ‘Outrageous’ Prices

Dear Bob,

I called National Bullion and Currency Depository on Jan 11th to order some of the $5 gold eagles.  Jason White took my order.  He informed me that they were sold out but I could get the $10 gold eagle for the same price per oz which was $840 for each of the $10 coins.  I then put an order in for 6 of the 1/2 oz coins for a total of $5040 + $20.00 S & H.  I received my order today, but they must have gotten something screwed up.

What I received was:

 

QtyDescriptionAmount
12004 $10 gold eagle proof 701225.00
12006 $25 gold eagle MS 702056.00
2$25 gold eagle – bullion1680.00
Shipping and handling20.00
TOTAL$4981.00

 

I don’t buy numismatic coins but even if I did, their prices are outrageous.  I could buy a 2006 1/2 oz Gold American Eagle MS-70 PCGS (First Strike) from APEMX for $999.90.  I will call Jason tomorrow to cancel the order.  I expect them to arrange to have Fed Ex, UPS or USPS pick this order up from my house and give me full credit of the $4981.00.  I would be willing to keep the two, 1/2 oz bullion coins for $840 each and pay the $20.00 S&H.  Or what would you suggest?  I definitely don’t want the numismatic coins.

L.J. M.

Dear L.J.M.,

I would send them back, keeping the ½ ounce if they agree. Then I would find a local dealer who is reputable and established and make a purchase from them for the other coins you want. You are correct in that you don’t want numismatics.

Best wishes,

Bob

Older Women Set Pace In Labor Force Gains

WASHINGTON (UPI) — The Census Bureau said Thursday women 65 years old or older made up the fastest growing segment of the U.S. workforce.

From 1990 to 2010, women 65 and older experienced a 4.1 percentage point increase in labor force participation, the bureau said in a news release.

By comparison, women age 16 through 64 experienced a 1.9 percentage point increase, men older than 65 experienced a 3.2 percentage point increase and men age 16 to 64 experienced a 5.2 percentage point decline.

“As with all age groups, the increase in labor force participation of women has been a driving factor for this overall trend,” said Braedyn Kromer, an analyst in the Census Bureau’s Labor Force Statistics Branch.

Overall, the percentage of people 65 years old or older who were in the workforce stood at 12.1 percent in 1990. By 2010, that had increased to 16.1 percent, the bureau said.

Annual New Home Sales Jump 19.9 Percent

WASHINGTON (UPI) — Sales of new single-family homes dropped November to December in 2012, but annual sales topped 2011 substantially, the U.S. Commerce Department said Friday.

In 2011, there was an estimated 306,000 new home sold. In 2012, sales came to 367,000, a 19.9 percent increase, the department said.

Sales in December declined from November, off 7.3 percent.

After rising in November, sales fell to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 369,000 from 398,000 in November, a rate revised sharply upward from 377,000, the number released last month.

Sales also remained ahead of the same month a year earlier. In December 2011, the annual sales rate was estimated at 339,000.

The Commerce Department said the average price for a new home sold in November was $248,900, down from $299,700 in November.

The seasonally adjusted estimate of how many new homes were on the market at the end of the month was 151,000, which represents a 4.9-month supply at the current rate of sales.

Geithner: ‘Not A Chance’ On Fed Job

WASHINGTON (UPI) — Departing U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said Friday he would not accept an invitation to serve as the chairman of the Federal Reserve.

In his last day as the head of the Treasury, Geithner, when asked about the prospect he might replace Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke, said, “Not a chance. I have great respect for the institution, but that will be someone else’s privilege.”

Geithner, who was president of the New York Fed before taking the helm at the Treasury, has been the target of frequent speculation that he would move over to the Federal Reserve, rather than to New York, where his family has already moved to allow his son to complete high school there, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Provided Bernanke leaves as expected at the end of his second term in January 2014, the door is open for Fed Vice Chair Janet Yellen to take his place.

Yellen was formerly the president of the Fed’s San Francisco district bank.

Deputy Treasury Secretary Neal Wolin will run the Treasury until the Senate acts on President Barack Obama’s nomination of outgoing White House Chief of Staff Jacob Lew to succeed Geithner.

Geithner has not announced any professional plans as of yet. His plans to travel with his wife and relax with his family, the Times said.

Lack Of Sleep Leads To Lack Of Gratitude

NEW ORLEANS (UPI) — Sleep deprivation can leave couples “too tired to say thanks,” and lack of gratitude can make partners feel taken for granted, U.S. researchers say.

University of California, Berkeley, psychologist Amie Gordon and lead investigator Berkeley psychologist Serena Chen said the findings shed new light on the emotional interdependence of sleep partners, offering compelling evidence that a bad night’s sleep leaves people less attuned to their partner’s moods and sensitivities. For many couples, nighttime can turn into a battleground due to loud snoring, sheet-tugging or one partner tapping on a laptop while the other tosses and turns, Gordon said.

“You may have slept like a baby, but if your partner didn’t, you’ll probably both end up grouchy,” Gordon said in a statement.

Gordon noted many people claim to be too busy to sleep, even priding themselves on how few hours of slumber they can get by on. The observation inspired her, in part, to study how a lack of sleep might be affecting love lives.

More than 60 couples ages 18-56 participated in each of Gordon’s studies. In one experiment, participants kept a diary of their sleep patterns and how a good or bad night’s rest affected their appreciation of their significant other.

In another experiment, the couples were videotaped engaged in problem-solving tasks. Those who had slept badly the night before showed less appreciation for their partner.

Overall, the results showed poor sleepers had a harder time counting their blessings and valuing their partners, Gordon said.

The findings were presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology in New Orleans.

Sex, Drugs Can Affect PSA Test For Cancer

BERKELEY, Calif., Jan. 24 (UPI) —  Studies don’t all agree, but U.S. researchers say several show a man should avoid sex 48 hours before a prostate-specific antigen test.

The Wellness Letter of The University of California, Berkeley, reported several studies showed ejaculation could falsely increase PSA levels somewhat, at least in men 50 and older — the age group most screened — thus misleadingly indicating increased cancer risk.

“Avoiding ejaculation for 48 hours before a PSA test is thus prudent,” the newsletter said. “Otherwise you might need to have the test repeated after abstaining if the result comes out elevated, causing unnecessary worry.”

Prostate specific antigen is a protein produced in the prostate gland and found at high concentration in semen. The PSA test detects how much is spilling into the blood — there should be very little — elevated blood levels may be a sign of cancer, but also of an enlarged prostate or a prostate infection.

However, some drugs used to treat an enlarged prostate could also lower a PSA reading.

“If you are taking finasteride — Proscar or Propecia, the latter used to treat hair loss — or dutasteride, or Avodart, remind your doctor before having a PSA test so this can be taken into consideration in the interpretation of the results,” the newsletter said.

Babies, Seniors Can Get Hypothermia Indoors

ALBANY, N.Y. (UPI) — For infants and seniors, hypothermia can also occur indoors, so the thermostat should be set no lower than 68 degrees, a New York health official says.

Dr. Nirav R. Shah, New York state health commissioner, said everyone should take precautions against extreme cold as freezing temperatures continue.

Hypothermia is the general cooling of the whole body over time and is most common when a person’s core body temperature drops below 95 degrees Fahrenheit. Hypothermia is dangerous and can be fatal if not detected immediately and treated properly, Shah said.

Those most at risk are people age 65 and older, infants, and those who work or play outdoors. The warning signs of hypothermia in adults are shivering, confusion, memory loss, drowsiness, exhaustion, slurred speech, puffy face, shallow breathing, a slow heartbeat and weak pulse. Infants who are suffering from hypothermia may appear to have very low energy and bright red, cold skin, Shah said.

Eating well-balanced meals will help the elderly stay warmer. However, do not drink alcoholic or caffeinated beverages — they cause the body to lose heat more rapidly. Instead, drink warm, sweet beverages or broth to help maintain body temperature.

When outside, take extra precautions to reduce the risk of hypothermia and frostbite. In high wind conditions, cold weather-related health problems are much more likely. Be sure the outer layer of clothing is tightly woven to reduce body-heat loss caused by wind, Shah said

“If you will be spending time outside, do not ignore shivering — it is an important first sign that the body is losing heat and a signal to quickly return indoors,” Shah said in a statement.

“Even otherwise-healthy adults should remember that their bodies are already working overtime just to stay warm and dress appropriately and work slowly when doing heavy outdoor chores.”

Hospice Underuse Due To Enrollment Rules

NEW YORK (UPI) — The enrollment policies of U.S. hospices may contribute to the underuse of the services of the end-of-life care, U.S. researchers say.

Melissa D. Aldridge Carlson of Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York; Colleen L. Barry of The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore; Emily J. Cherlin of Yale University School of Public Health in New Haven, Conn.; Ruth McCorkle of the Yale School of Nursing; and Elizabeth H. Bradley of Yale University, director of the Yale Global Health Initiative, said U.S. hospice is growing, but little is known about barriers that terminally ill patients may face when trying to access hospice care.

This study involves the first national survey of the enrollment policies of 591 U.S. hospices.

The survey revealed 78 percent of hospices had at least one enrollment policy that may restrict access to care for patients with potentially high-cost medical care needs, such as chemotherapy or total parenteral nutrition — feeding a person intravenously. Smaller hospices, for-profit hospices and hospices in certain regions of the country consistently reported more limited enrollment policies, the researchers said.

“We observe that hospice providers’ own enrollment decisions may be an important contributor to previously observed under use of hospice by patients and families,” the researchers said in the study.

“Policy changes that should be considered include increasing the Medicare hospice per diem rate for patients with complex needs, which could enable more hospices to expand enrollment.”

The findings were published in the journal Health Affairs.

Every 40 Seconds, A Stroke Occurs In U.S.

NEW YORK (UPI) — Every 40 seconds a stroke occurs in the United States, but most don’t know what to look for and how to respond, a non-profit group says.

The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association and the Ad Council began a national multimedia public service advertisement campaign to raise awareness about F.A.S.T. — an acronym to recognize and respond to the sudden warning signs of stroke.

F.A.S.T. is designed to help bystanders spot a stroke fast because the quicker a stroke victim receives medical attention, the greater his or her chances of survival and a better recovery.

F.A.S.T. stands for:

— Face Drooping: Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile.

— Arm Weakness: Is one arm weak or numb? Ask the person to raise both arms. Does one arm drift downward?

— Speech Difficulty: Is speech slurred? Are they unable to speak, or are they hard to understand? Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence like: “The sky is blue.” Is the sentence repeated correctly?

— Time to call 9-1-1: If the person shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get them to the hospital immediately.

The American Stroke Association, a division of the American Heart Association, reported the quicker a stroke victim gets to a hospital, the quicker he or she can be assessed for a clot-busting drug that may reduce disability and death from stroke.

The television, radio, print, outdoor and Web PSAs were created pro bono by advertising agency Grey New York.