Ted Web: A Hat Tip To You…

BACKLASH! CONN. BOYCOTTS INDIANA

Move Bars Gov’t-Funded Travel To Hoosier State Over ‘Religious Freedom’ Bill… Major Companies Condemn Law… Twitter Bashes… Wilco Cancels Concert… Duke ‘Deplores’… Thousands Of Businesses Stand Up For Diversity… Indiana Corporate Leaders ‘Deeply Concerned’… 
State GOP Leaders: Discrimination? What Discrimination?…

Thanks Ted Web…

My Family Outing That I Just HAD to Share…

private-dining-4

(This is NOT an advertisement or endorsement.  It’s a review because I was REALLY impressed.)

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My daughters are constantly on the go.  They take  a couple of cruises every year,  give cook-outs, take trips to their timeshare, etc.   According to them, their motto is “work hard, play harder.”  So, in that sense we are polar opposites.   I, on the other-hand  prefer quiet, relaxed times at home with music, TV or researching things on the internet.

Last Saturday they planned go to a place called The Carolina Kitchen in Hyattsville, MD. and asked me to join them. My daughters described the food as extraordinary  soul-food cuisine.   I love soul food and I hadn’t been out with them since I arrived a month ago, so I decided to visit this place they raved so much about.

Let me start by saying we were told there’d be an hour wait, to be seated.  It took two hours.  Yes, we stayed because my family insisted upon it. In that last hour my daughter sought out the manager or one of the owners (we weren’t sure which) and asked why it was taking so long to be seated.  After checking with the hostess he told us that there was a huge birthday party winding down and that the six seats we requested would be ready shortly.

Well, “shortly” finally came and we were seated.

Before I complete this story let be back up a bit.  The character and atmosphere of the place was impressive.  This was a relatively high-end dining atmosphere with personable hosts.   The menu was extensive and the food listed was quite appealing.

Our party of six (my daughters, my grands and myself) had a wonderful time.  My first experience definitely made me want to return at a later date.

Once again, the manager, Mr. Walter Wilmer was attentive to our needs and made sure we were doing okay on several occasions. for the rest of the evening.

All in all, needless to say we enjoyed the outing and plan to go back for my birthday in June.

So shout-out to Mr. Walter Wilmer for making sure we were given the finest service and for always checking to see if we needed anything and to the impressive college student clientele and wait staff who served us.

My family and I went home quite satisfied.

One Restaurant Already Celebrated ‘Religious Liberty’ By Turning Away Gays

Gay Marriage

CREDIT: AP PHOTO/CHARLES REX ARBOGAST

Think Progress

An Indiana business owner went on a local radio station and said that he had discriminated against gay or lesbian couples even before Gov. Mike Pence (R) signed a law on Thursday protecting business owners who decide to discriminate for “religious liberty” reasons. He then defended the practice and suggested he would do it again.

The business owner, who would not give his name or the name of his business, said he had told some LGBT “people” that equipment was broken in his restaurant and he couldn’t serve them even though it wasn’t and other people were already eating at the tables. “So, yes, I have discriminated,” he told RadioNOW 100.9 hosts. The hosts were surprised the owner said he was okay with discriminating.

“Well, I feel okay with it because it’s my place of business, I pay the rent, I’ve built it with all my money and my doing. It’s my place; I can do whatever I want with it,” he said. “They can have their lifestyle and do their own thing in their own place or with people that want to be with them.”

The law has been highly controversial in the state, with many businesses — including the Indiana Chamber of Commerce and Apple — saying they were disappointed in the law’s passage and some entities saying they would ban travel or future business in the state thanks to the law’s enactment.

Pence himself has tried to defend the law as not a means of discriminating but rather protecting religious freedom, but these claims run counter to text of the legislation, and in fact how this anonymous business owner seems to interpret it. The governor signed the law in a private ceremony on Thursday, and wouldn’t say who attended the signing ceremony.

Other states are considering following Indiana’s lead. A similar bill is currently being debated in Georgia. Nineteen other states, including nearby Kentucky and Illinois, have adopted religious liberty laws.

These laws try to codify some of what was established when the Supreme Court ruled in the Hobby Lobby case last year, in which a craft store chain objected to covering certain types of birth control for its female employees on religious grounds even though the Affordable Care Act mandated that women must receive birth control coverage without a co-pay as part of its minimum standards of care.

The Supreme Court later established religious objections could apply to any type of birth control and now states are using this ruling to justify such religious liberty bills that aim to protect owners who refuse to serve people based on their religious beliefs.

Corporation Literally Served Inmates Trash

shutterstock_145645000

Credit: Shutterstock

This is about a contractor that got caught.  How many other prison contractors around the country use the same despicable practice?

Think Progress

Two weeks ago Progress Michigan uncovered emails revealing that a prison food provider served cakes nibbled on by rats to inmates. They’ve now discovered that employees from this same food vendor, Aramark, served inmates at another facility an equally unsavory meal: garbage.
In an email exchange between the company’s general manager, Sigfried Linder, and the state’s Department of Corrections, Linder admitted that prisoners at Saginaw Correctional Facility were served food that was previously thrown in the trash. “Mr. Chisolm discarded the left-overs from the line before the last half unit was in the chow hall. He then realized that there were more inmates to serve so he rinsed them off, reheated them in the oven and instructed the inmates to serve them,” read one email. “They refused, so he and Miss Gibson proceeded to serve them to the remaining inmates.”

The privately contracted food vendor, which services “healthcare institutions, universities and school districts, stadiums and arenas, and businesses in 22 countries around the world,” has come under fire for serving contaminated food and engaging in gross misconduct in prison facilities statewide. After maggots and fly larvae were found near a meal-serving line, at least 150 inmates were quarantined for symptoms characteristic of the flu. One inmate sued the company for serving spoiled meat and moldy bread. In other instances, the company breached contract by simply failing to provide enough food.

Detroit Free Press also discovered that one-fifth of Aramark employees were fired for unsanctioned sexual encounters with inmates, tried to sneak in drugs, and showed up to work inebriated.

“The fact that inmates refused to serve this food, and yet an Aramark employee felt comfortable doing so, speaks volumes about the company’s corporate culture,” Progress Michigan’s executive director, Lonnie Scott, explained. “This is just the latest — and one of the most disgusting — examples of Aramark’s incompetency in our state. The public has a right to know what is really going on with this contract and it shouldn’t take thousands of dollars and FOIA’ed documents to get the truth.”
But the company, which has fed inmates dog food, worms, and scraps of food from old meals, maintains a stronghold on correctional food service in Michigan. Despite threats to terminate its contract, Gov. Rick Snyder (R)  won’t let go of the company, which claims it will save taxpayers $12-16 million. Prior to hiring Aramark, Michigan refused to partner with private food vendors that could not realistically save the state money in the long-run.

(Emphasis are mine: ks)

Poll: Republicans Think Obama Is A Greater Threat Than Putin, Assad

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AP Photo / Olivier Douliery

This speaks volumes about the Republican Party generally, as well as their negative messaging to constituents regarding the President of the United States.   Therefore, I’m not surprised…just saddened by the fact that in 2015 prejudice and ignorance still reign supreme in the United States of America.

TPM LiveWire

Republicans also said they saw Democrats as a threat. Twenty-seven percent of Republicans said that the Democratic party was a an imminent threat to the U.S., and 22 percent of Democrats said they felt the Republican party was an imminent threat to the U.S.

Reuters/Ipsos surveyed 2,809 Americans, including 1,083 Democrats and 1,059 Republicans, online March 16-24 with a margin of error plus or minus 2.1 percentage points.

10 things you need to know today: March 30, 2015

(AP Photo/The New York Times, Nancy Borowick, Pool)

The Week

1.Iran backs away from shipping uranium abroad as nuclear deadline looms
Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Abbas Araqchi told Iranian media on Sundaythat Tehran would not ship its enriched uranium abroad for conversion to rods incapable of fueling atomic weapons. Western diplomats noted that there are other ways of rendering Iran’s nuclear fuel unusable in weapons, such as diluting it or turning it into pellets inside Iran. Outside experts disagree on how much of a setback this is for the talks with a Tuesday deadline looming.

Source: The New York Times, Los Angeles Times

2.Two bodies found in rubble from Manhattan apartment building collapse
Search crews recovered two bodies on Sunday from the smoldering rubble where a gas explosion destroyed four New York City apartment buildings last week. Twenty-two other people were injured. Authorities were trying to confirm that the bodies found were those of two people unaccounted for after the explosion and fire — Moises Lucon, age 27 or 28, and Nicholas Figueroa, 23. The disaster drove 144 people out of homes in 11 buildings.

Source: Reuters

3.Duke and Michigan State win to round out Final Four
Duke and Michigan State won the final two Elite Eight games of the NCAA men’s basketball tournament on Sunday, rounding out a Final Four that also includes Wisconsin and a dominant Kentucky team that has the longest undefeated season in history. Duke, a regional No. 1 seed, beat No. 2 seed Gonzaga 66-52 to put coach Mike Krzyzewski in his 12th Final Four. Michigan State, a No. 7 seed, took the East Region championship with a 76-70 overtime victory over No. 4 seed Louisville.

Source: USA Today

4.British parliament dissolved, starting election campaign
Queen Elizabeth II dissolved the British parliament on Monday, officially launching a 40-day campaign ahead of May 7 elections. The move marked the symbolic end of a five-year coalition government between incumbent Prime Minister David Cameron’s Conservatives and the center-left Liberal Democrats. Cameron is promising a 2017 referendum on staying in the European Union if he wins, but the Conservatives are locked in an unusually tight race with opposition Labour as the campaign begins.

Source: The Globe and Mail, The Christian Science Monitor

5.Olmert convicted in bribery retrial
A Jerusalem court on Monday found Ehud Olmert guilty of accepting money from a U.S. supporter before becoming Israel’s prime minister in 2006. Olmert was forced to resign in 2009 over corruption allegations. He was acquitted in this case, then retried after a former aide produced recordings of Olmert discussing bribes. When Olmert left office he said he was on the verge of a Palestinian peace deal with the Palestinians. His departure set up elections won by hard-liner Benjamin Netanyahu.

Source: The New York Times

6.Apple’s Tim Cook slams so-called religious freedom laws as anti-gay
Apple CEO Tim Cook wrote a Washington Post opinion piece condemning Indiana’s controversial Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which critics say promotes discrimination against gays and lesbians. Cook, who publicly announced last year that he is gay, said the Indiana law and similar ones in 20 states are part of a “very dangerous” wave of laws that “rationalize injustice” by protecting businesses that deny services to gays citing religious beliefs. Indiana Gov. Mike Pence blamed critics’ “shameless rhetoric” for the controversy.

Source: The Washington Post, NBC News

7.Cockpit recording shows Germanwings captain desperately tried to get back into cockpit
The captain of Germanwings Flight 9525 can be heard on the cockpit voice recorder shouting, “Open the damn door!” shortly before the airliner crashed into the French Alps last week, killing all 150 people on board, the German magazine Bild reported Sunday. The captain, Patrick Sondheimer, had told co-pilot Andreas Lubitz, that he needed to go to the bathroom because he had not had the opportunity before the plane left Barcelona for Dusseldorf. Sondheimer tried for eight minutes to get back into the cockpit after Lubitz locked him out.

Source: Los Angeles Times

8.Medicare spending on hepatitis C treatment skyrockets
Medicare spent $4.5 billion in 2014 on new drugs to treat the liver disease hepatitis C, according to newly disclosed federal records. The total expense last year was 15 times greater than the amount spent the previous year on older forms of treatment. The new drugs can cost more than $1,000 a day. The increase costs will be borne largely by taxpayers, but some of the burden will fall on patients in the form of higher deductibles and maximum out-of-pocket costs for Medicare’s 39 million seniors and disabled enrollees.

Source: The Dallas Morning News

9. Ex-HP chief executive Carly Fiorina says presidential bid very likely
Former Hewlett Packard CEO Carly Fiorina said Sunday that the probability she would run for president was “higher than 90 percent.” Fiorina ran HP for six years before resigning under pressure in 2005 after the computer maker’s stock price fell sharply. She then served as an advisor to 2008 Republican nominee John McCain. Fiorina said she would make a final decision on whether to seek the GOP nomination depending on how much support and financial backing she could line up.

Source: Business Standard

10.Woods set to drop out of golf’s top 100 for first time since 1996
Tiger Woods is set to fall out of professional golf’s top 100 ranked players for the first time since 1996, when he broke into the elite group with his first PGA tour victory. The once dominant Woods recorded the highest round of his career last month when he shot an 82 at a tournament in Phoenix. Woods, who has been plagued by back problems and his short game, fell to No. 96 last week and could sink to No. 102 after the latest results are calculated into new rankings.

Source: The Independent

The Path We Are On: Barack Obama and the Nobel Peace Prize

attribution: none

 

The People’s View

Informed Citizenry, Progressive Analysis, Commentary and Rants

Spandan has given me the opportunity to share some of my thoughts and ideas. I spend a lot of time in thought and something that I have given a lot of thought to is the human condition. Due to the human condition we have basic human needs and I understand one of those needs as being the need to feel safe.

As an infant it is vitally important to be provided with a sense of safety in order to develop into becoming a healthy adult. When you feel safe you feel at ease and are therefore in a better position to be at your best. When you don’t feel safe you are tense and are likely to feel the need to defend yourself from that which you perceive has caused you to feel unsafe.

Humanity as a group has created a world in which it is impossible to feel safe. We have created a world in which we have to compete for access to basic human needs. If you are a winner in this competition it’s possible to have access to way more than you need and if you are a loser in this competition it’s possible you won’t survive.

The inequity and disparity that is the outcome of existing in a world of competition creates a great tension which has the potential of exploding into a war between those who have nothing and who are therefore fighting for survival and those who want to protect themselves from those who they believe want to take away that which they have in excess.

If a war were to break out that war has the potential to grow and become a major war and due to the technology of today that war could become a nuclear war and a nuclear war would destroy all live on planet earth for millions of years.

We are headed down a path and when you are headed down a path it’s a good idea to be aware of where that path is leading otherwise you might end up somewhere you would not prefer to be. Right now humanity as a group is headed down the path of self destruction.

Early in President Obama’s first term he was given the Nobel Peace Prize. The expected reaction to this took place with most people saying he didn’t deserve it yet and probably would never deserve it. So why did the committee award him this prize? Was it because he wasn’t GWB? Was it because they hoped he would work towards peace? Was it because of his work in the senate? I guess only the committee knows why they gave him the award.

A short time ago I got an email from Dennis Kucinich saying that I should contact my representatives and tell them not to give the president any more war powers as we have had enough war. I would agree that we have had enough war but that’s not the question. The question is how can we end war. The idea Mr. Kucinich has seems to me to be like what would happen if you tried to lose weight by going on a starvation diet. You might lose weight but you’re likely to get sick and then put it all back on because it’s not a healthy balanced approach. You aren’t helping if by trying to solve one problem you create another.

Creating peace in a world that is at war is difficult and requires someone to have an understanding of many issues in order to make it possible to do more good than harm. From my perspective President Obama is a man who possess a great deal of understanding of a vast range of issues and he has the awareness of the vital need  to move in the direction of peace.

The path that humanity as a group is on at this time is the path towards self destruction so it’s clear that we need to take a different path. On the path that we have been on we have seen ourselves as separate competing against each other for survival. In order to get on a different path we are going to have to change our fundamental understanding of ourselves. We are going to have to understand ourselves as One which is the reality.

We are profoundly interwoven, interconnected and interdependent. You can understand this if you observe a tree. If you pull the tree from the ground it will die. It is only able to thrive as a tree through it’s connection to the whole of life. The reality of this tree helps to prove that we are One. When you look into the eyes of “the other” you are looking into your own eyes because we are One. Therefore when anyone hurts the whole of humanity hurts because we are One.

It’s possible to not realize that or feel that because we have cut ourselves off and separated ourselves through creating a world in which we need to compete for survival therefore we have been creating a world in which no one can feel safe.

In order to understand and experience ourselves as One it is necessary to have an open heart. When you live in a predatory world that we experience today it is very difficult to live with an open heart as that is seen as as sign of weakness by those who are looking to exploit those who they perceive as weak.

United we stand and divided we fall is not just a nice slogan or idea, it represents one of the basic laws of life. In Oneness we thrive and in separation we self destruct. This is the reality that we must face in a sober way. President Obama is working on earning that Nobel Peace Prize although in observing the man winning that prize is not what is important. My sense is that he is looking towards the day that the Nobel Peace Prize would be given to humanity as a group because we have decided to take a path that is different than the path we are on today.

 

A comment worth noting from the above article:

mwm341 a day ago

Barack Obama won the Prize for his international relations work, with special emphasis on nuclear weapons reduction BEFORE he was elected.

The timing of both his nomination – 12 days after his taking office, and, the award of the Prize a few months later confused a lot of people – and brought out a lot of people who were happy to insist that there was no good reason for the prize.

Too many of these people – many on the Left! have insisted on keeping that myth alive, and maintain that President Obama must earn the Prize in a way that lets them decide that he deserves it.

I find it disconcerting that these people still believe that a Black man should have to achieve twice as much to receive grudging recognition, and am even more disappointed that this sentiment is expressed by people who count themselves as members of the progressive community.

Indiana Religious Freedom Law Unwittingly Ushers In First Church Of Cannabis For Weed Worshipers

Gov. Mike Pence (R-Indiana) | Reuters

Addicting Info

Oops. Indiana Governor Mike Pence is probably facepalming right about now.

Due to Republicans and their discriminatory “Religious Freedom” law, marijuana users will now be able to build a mid-west sanctuary where they can light up all the joints they desire without fear of harassment by the police. And there isn’t a thing the police can do about it because they would be violating the religious beliefs of a group of people, which is now protected by the law.

Bill Levin is the founder of the First Church of Cannabis and he filed paperwork with the Indiana Secretary of State to open the church before the ink from Pence’s signature was even dry on the RFRA he signed on Thursday. And it was a Mary Jane miracle as he received approval from the state, which he immediately announced on his Facebook page.

Folks…. I have GOOD NEWS. Together we will Pray as CANNATAERIANS.
WELCOME TO MY CHURCH!
THE FIRST CHURCH OF CANNABIS INC. – Status: Approved by Secretary of State of Indiana – “Congratulations your registration has been approved!”
Now we begin to accomplish our goals of Love,Understanding and Good Health.

Levin also added,

Our first goal is to lease a building to pray in. Creating THE CHURCH.
Ultimately I see a HOUSE OF HEMP built with Love by Hoosiers for all to participate in. We will offer family services to help those in need. We will reach our hands out to those that need it. We will love, honor and respect each other.
We will celebrate “ONE UNIVERSAL LOVE” in our daily lives.
LOVE is the cornerstones of this church. ALL WELCOMED!

So while conservative Christians are having a field day with their hate, Levin and his new church are welcoming everyone and anyone to participate.

And it’s all legal according to attorney Abdul-Hakim Shabazz.

“I would argue that under RFRA, as long as you can show that reefer is part of your religious practices, you got a pretty good shot of getting off scot-free,” Shabazz wrote.

“What ‘compelling interest’ would the state of Indiana have to prohibit me from using marijuana as part of my religious practice? I would argue marijuana is less dangerous than alcohol and wine used in religious ceremonies. Marijuana isn’t anymore ‘addictive’ than alcohol and wine is used in some religious ceremonies. And marijuana isn’t any more of a ‘gateway’ drug than the wine used in a religious ceremony will make you go out any buy hard liquor. (At least not on Sunday.)”

In addition, Shabazz pretty much dared Indiana officials to wage war in court, writing that he wants a front seat to watch them make fools out of themselves thanks to the law they enacted.

“I want a front row seat at the trial that we all know is going to happen when all this goes down.”

And there you have it. By passing the RFRA, Indiana inadvertently rolled out the welcome mat for tokers. March Madness may be coming to Indiana, but so is reefer madness and the weed worshipers are ready to start rolling.

GOP congresswoman gets surprise on Facebook after asking constituents for Obamacare horror stories

Anti-Obamacare image on the 5th anniversary of the Affordable Care Act | attribution: Cathy McMorris Rodgers Facebook page

 Daily Kos

Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers posted an image on her official Facebook page, slamming the Affordable Care Act on the fifth anniversary of President Obama signing it into law. She asked constituents to share their Obamacare nightmare stories and well, the response probably wasn’t what she expected. Below are a small sample of the comments constituents left on her page:

My story is that I once knew 7 people who couldn’t get health insurance. Now they all have it, thanks to the ACA and President Obama, and their plans are as good as the one my employer provides–and they pay less for them. Now, that’s not the kind of story you want to hear. You want to hear made-up horror stories. I don’t know anyone with one of those stories.

I work for cancer care northwest. We actually have more patients with insurance and fewer having to choose treatment over bankruptcy. Cathy, I’m a die hard conservative and I’m asking you to stop just slamming Obamacare. Fix it, change it or come up with a better idea! Thanks

With Obamacare, I saved 300 bucks a month premium.. I have more coverage.. I like ObamaCare and can’t wait til we go to the next step… Medicare for ALL.

And now my daughter, diagnosed with MS at age 22, can have insurance. What do you plan to do with her?

My daughter is fighting for her life with stage 3 breast cancer! We are about to enter a second go round of diagnostic procedures and possibly more treatment after two full years of treatment! So yah! The ACA is more than helping! I resent that our rep thinks the only problems involve her personal story!

My whole family now has coverage. The ACA is the cause for this, I work in health care, I have seen the increase in covered patients first hand. The next step is universal coverage, this will truly lower costs and provide the best care. Cathy, you barely work, spend most of your time catering to special interests so you can be re-elected.. All while receiving a large wage and the best health insurance and care. Stop telling us how it doesn’t work while enjoying your tax payer funded care and life.

Instead of trying to repeal it why don’t you improve it? Our local rural clinics are packed daily with people who have needed healthcare for years!! it is a godsend. It is pitiful this nation does not have healthcare for all and that doesn’t mean the EMERGENCY room!!

Thanks to the ACA, my cousin was able to get affordable insurance despite her preexisting condition. So grateful.

I think we should repeal Obamacare, and replace it … with universal socialized medicine – like the rest of the industrialized nations of the world.

Hello Congresswoman McMorris Rodgers!I work as the facilitator of a task force that is overseeing the implementation of the Affordable Care Act in Washington State. I have learned that the ACA is helping people who did not previously have health insurance get it. It is helping bring down medical costs. It is improving the quality of care. It is improving experiences of both patients and their families.

I work with doctors, nurses, hospital and clinic managers, non-profit service providers, citizens-at-large. Each of them can site an improvement they would like to make to the Act. But whether they are Republican or Democrat, from urban or rural areas, powerful or not, they all say the ACA is working.

Can’t you and your Republican colleagues stop trying to repeal this Act and work to make it even more effective? Please?

Obama Care saved us when my husband was unemployed and we couldn’t afford coverage. We might have been ruined without it. My husband could not have had the eye surgery needed after an accident. So grateful.

We now have patients that can see a doctor in the clinic on time rather than waiting till they are too ill ACA is saving lives and you are too stupid to realize that. Get your political view out of the way and see what is happening in our community because you have shown again and again it is not your community. I see that your son has downs but not everyone in our community has it so get done with this supporting downs to the neglect of everything else.

My plans are intact, premiums have increased as always, but what seems to be a lesser rate, my plan was not cancelled, I did not lose my doctor, I have not experienced reduced work hours, and it’s actually freed me from the chains of employer based being the ONLY path to coverage. #FEARMONGER

Those are just a small sample of the hundreds or even thousands of comments left on her Facebook page. It is damn clear that her constituents are loving the Affordable Care Act. Will she take their comments to heart and abandon attempts to take insurance coverage away from her constituents?

ORIGINALLY POSTED TO SCOUT FINCH ON THU MAR 26, 2015 AT 07:33 AM PDT.

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