Last Friday a superior court in New Jersey held that a “marriage equality” suit may proceed. The ruling had the effect of partially denying a motion to dismiss filed by New Jersey Attorney General Paula Dow. The complaint against the state was filed by Lambda Legal on behalf of Garden State Equality (GSE), a statewide “gay rights” organization. Joining the suit as co-plaintiffs are seven homosexual couples and their children who all claim to have suffered under various provisions of the Garden State’s current civil union statute.
The complainants have requested that the court declare the civil union law unconstitutional and enjoin enforcement of it. Specifically, the suit argues that as applied to citizens of the state of New Jersey, the law at issue violates the Due Process and Equal Protection clauses of the 14th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, as well as similar provisions of the New Jersey state constitution.
On Tuesday night, GOP presidential hopeful Herman Cain issued a formal response to the sexual harassment allegations levied by Sharon Bialek and his other accusers. During a news conference held in Phoenix, Cain declared the accusations to be “baseless” and in the case of Bialek, motivated by money. Any claims asserted by Bialek, according to Cain, “simply did not happen” because he contends he does not recognize Bialek.
Days ago, Bialek became the fourth woman to come forward and make charges against Cain, and the first to go public. During a New York City press conference on Monday, the Chicago woman claimed that Cain made aggressive sexual advances toward her in July 1997 after she had asked him for help finding employment. The Washington Post reports:
After being let go by the NRA foundation, Bialek, who had met Cain on several occasions during conferences and at a dinner, reached out to Cain to obtain guidance on getting a new job. The NRA confirmed on Monday afternoon that Bialek had worked for its education foundation from December 1996 to June 1997.
According to Bialek, Cain put his hand under her skirt and reached for her genitals. She adds that Cain pushed her head toward his crotch while they were in a car. She claims that she responded to these advances by saying, “This isn’t what I came here for, Mr. Cain.” She claims that his response to her statement was, “You want a job, right?”
Voters in Ohio defeated a law on Tuesday that would have reined in the collective bargaining privileges of government employees, granting a rare victory to “Big Labor” after a series of set-backs in states across the nation.
Union bosses celebrated the news, claiming the win represented a resurgence of organized labor and an important indicator for the 2012 elections. And Democrats, whose campaigns receive significant funding and volunteers from public-worker unions, applauded the outcome as well.
"Hopefully, state legislators and governors across the country will look to Ohio and see that they have galvanized us and we're an organized force that has to be dealt with," said Secretary-Treasurer Lee Saunders of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees union. Big Labor, he added, plans to use the Ohio win "as a springboard to continue into 2012."
The Democratic National Committee — campaign coffers stuffed with government-employee-union dues — issued a statement filled with class-warfare rhetoric. It applauded Ohio’s rejection of a "blatantly partisan attempt to lay the blame for our economy on middle class Americans, while letting the wealthiest and special interests off the hook and not asking them to pay their fair share."
As the U.S. economy suspends in a prolonged, comatose state, high joblessness and uncertainty among young Americans have incited youth discontent with the federal government’s fiscal and economic blunders. A new poll conducted by Generation Opportunity, a non-profit organization that educates young Americans on the nation’s current political and economic affairs, surveyed individuals between the ages of 18 and 29 on issues such as government spending, national security, and Washington leadership.
The latest U.S. jobs report positioned October as the 32nd consecutive month that unemployment has hovered near or above the 9 percent mark. However, the current unemployment rate does not accurately reflect the percentage of young Americans still struggling to find work. For instance, at the end of August, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported a youth unemployment rate (ages 16 to 24) of 18.1 percent, about twice as high as the overall unemployment rate.
"Every day, at a very personal level, young adults are being negatively impacted by the poor economy," said Paul Conway, Generation Opportunity president and former Chief of Staff of the U.S. Labor Department. "The unemployment numbers are particularly concerning when you consider that 43% of young adults are not satisfied with their current level of employment."
Another employee of Dr. Kermit Gosnell’s “House of Horrors” abortion clinic has entered a guilty plea in the murders of babies born alive at the facility. Steven Massof, a 49-year-old medical school graduate who was never issued a license to practice, pleaded guilty to third-degree murder in the deaths of two babies who were killed by having their spinal cords severed with scissors, reported the Associated Press. “Massof testified to a grand jury that he snipped the spines of more than 100 babies after seeing them breathe, move, or show other signs of life,” according to the AP story.
Massof told the grand jury investigating Gosnell and his employees that severing the spinal cords of viable babies outside their mothers’ wombs was “standard procedure.” The report, issued in January of this year, said that “Gosnell encouraged his staff to kill babies born alive….” As previously reported by The New American, in late October, Adrienne Moton, another of Gosnell’s employees, pleaded guilty to killing at least one baby born alive at the clinic, while a third worker, Sherry West, admitted to administering a lethal dose of painkillers and anesthesia to a 41-year-old woman who had come to the clinic for an abortion. A fourth employee, Lynda Williams, has also been charged in the woman’s death.
The recent release of the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature (BEST) study, which showed a worldwide temperature increase of about 1°C since 1950, was heralded by many as proof of global warming. Some skeptics, however, noted that the BEST data also showed that temperatures had remained unchanged for the past decade, suggesting that any warming trend had ended around the turn of the century.
Meteorologist and climate-science blogger Anthony Watts has gone those skeptics one better. Having analyzed U.S. temperature data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Climatic Data Center, Watts declared in a column for the Daily Caller: “The trend for the continental United States for the past 10 years is not flat, but cooling.”
Watts broke the data down by winter, summer, and annual temperatures in each of nine designated regions in the continental United States. For wintertime he found that “every region … has a negative temperature trend for the last decade,” ranging from -1.3°F in the Western Region (California and Nevada) to -8.74°F in the East North Central Region (Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin, and Michigan).
Many Wall Street occupiers are echoing the Communist Party USA's call to "Save the nation! Tax corporations! Tax the rich!" There are other Americans, on both the left and the right — for example, President Barack Obama and House Speaker John Boehner — who call for reductions in corporate taxes. But the University of California, Berkeley's pretend economist Robert Reich disagrees, saying, "The economy needs two whopping corporate tax cuts right now as much as someone with a serious heart condition needs Botox." Let's look at corporate taxes and ask, "Who pays them?"
Virginia has a car tax. Does the car pay the tax? In most political jurisdictions, there's a property tax. Does property pay the tax? You say: "Williams, that's lunacy. Neither a car nor property pays taxes. Only flesh-and-blood people pay taxes!" What about a corporation? As it turns out, a corporation is an artificial creation of the legal system and, as such, a legal fiction. A corporation is not a person and therefore cannot pay taxes. When tax is levied on a corporation, who pays it?
There's an entire subject area in economics, known as tax incidence, that investigates who bears the burden of a tax. It turns out that the burden of a tax is not necessarily borne by the party or entity upon whom it is levied. For example, if a sales tax is levied on a cigarette retailer, the retailer does not bear the full burden of the tax. Part of it will be shifted forward to customers in the form of higher product prices. The exact amount of the shifting depends upon market supply and demand conditions.
With Greece’s Prime Minister George Papandreou agreeing to step down in order to secure more bailout funds from the ECB, attention turned immediately to Italy’s financial problems that dwarf those of Greece’s. The Greek PM’s decision now clears the way for an interim government to agree formally to the new austerity measures demanded by the European Union as a condition of receiving additional financing by the end of the month. Those funds are needed to pay Greece’s bills through January 2012.
The bond market shifted its attention to Italy on Monday, driving interest rates on its 10-year bond to a record-high 6.66 percent, the highest since the country entered the union in 1999 and perilously close to the “bailout” levels reached before Ireland and Portugal were forced to ask for help from the European Central Bank. Said David Ader, head of government bond strategy at CRT Capital Group, “We’ve seen one European bank and one U.S. brokerage fail. We know there are strains for French banks. We [were] wondering how long it [would] be before Greek default worries spread to Italy and Spain. In a situation like that, money managers are going to decide simply to take their risk down.” The resulting sell-off in the bond market flowed over to the Euro as well, as it came down from its Greek-euphoria highs of last week by nearly 3 percent, and it could lose 6 percent by the end of the year according to the CEO of Intermarket Strategy in London, Ashraf Laidi.
The Obama Administration, through the testimony of a Department of the Interior official, has expressed its opposition to legislation that would add the prayer offered by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt at the onset of the 1944 D-Day invasion to the World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C.
During House hearings on the World War II Memorial Prayer Act, introduced by Rep. Bill Johnson (R-Ohio), Robert Abbey, director of the Bureau of Land Management, testified that the memorial should not be altered, arguing that the addition of the prayer through a plaque or inscription would “dilute” the memorial’s message.
“It is not a judgment as to the merit of this new commemoration,” explained Abbey, “simply that altering the Memorial in this way, as proposed in HR 2070, will necessarily dilute this elegant memorial’s central message and its ability to clearly convey that message to move, educate, and inspire its many visitors.” He said that the Interior Department “strongly believes that the World War II Memorial, as designed, accomplishes its legislated purpose to honor the members of the Armed Forces who served in World War II and to commemorate the participation of the United States in that conflict.” Abbey argued that federal law actually prohibits such additions, noting that the “Commemorative Works Act specifically states that a new commemorative work shall be located so that it does not encroach upon an existing one.”
The U.S. government is demanding almost $7,000 from the family of jailed Border Patrol agent Jesus “Chito” Diaz, who was prosecuted in what critics called an outrageous miscarriage of justice aimed at placating Mexican officials. But advocates for the family are still fighting back.
Diaz was accused of improperly lifting the handcuffs of an illegal alien caught smuggling drugs across the border, and then lying about it to investigators. The Mexican government filed an official complaint almost immediately.
After being cleared by two investigations, the Obama administration decided to prosecute Diaz anyway. Following a mistrial, he was convicted and sentenced to two years in federal prison and a fine. Of course, he also lost his job, leaving his wife and six children in a tough situation.
Now, making matters worse, the U.S. government is demanding immediate payment of at least $6,870 it claims Diaz owes. In a letter received recently from the Department of Justice obtained by The New American, the Diaz family was urged to pay up now or face the consequences — plus interest and fees.