Hobby Lobby

The decision, written by Justice Alito, is beyond disturbing. It essentially grants for-profit corporations a free pass not to follow laws by invoking their “religious rights” under RFRA. While Alito and his buddies said their ruling was narrow, nothing could … Continue reading

The decision, written by Justice Alito, is beyond disturbing. It essentially grants for-profit corporations a free pass not to follow laws by invoking their “religious rights” under RFRA.

While Alito and his buddies said their ruling was narrow, nothing could be further from the truth. The door is now wide open for corporations to run to court saying they can discriminate in a variety of ways.

Some key points about Hobby Lobby:

As Justice Ginsberg noted in her dissent, “‘Closely held’ is not synonymous with ‘small.’” America’s five largest “closely held” corporations alone employ more than 436,000 people — one of those companies being the $115 billion, 60,000-employee Koch Industries. And the Washington Post reported that, according to a 2000 study, “closely held” is a term that covers as much as 90 percent (or more) of all businesses, and studies from Columbia University and New York University showed that closely held corporations employed 52 percent of the American workforce.
The duplicitousness of pretending that limiting the ruling to “closely held” corporations really limits it substantially in scope goes beyond just the size and number of “closely held” corporations. In providing no actual reasoning as to why only “closely held” corporations would be afforded religious rights under RFRA, Justice Alito’s Hobby Lobby decision certainly could pave the way for all corporations — even publicly traded ones — to claim these rights.
Many on the Religious Right are already asserting employers’ right to discriminate against LGBT people. While Hobby Lobby states that employers cannot claim religious objections in order to discriminate based on race, it says nothing about sex or sexual orientation.

The Supreme Court ponders the contraceptive mandate

ON March 25th the Affordable Care Act, better known as “Obamacare”, was back before the Supreme Court. Two years ago the justices upheld most of the law. This week they heard oral arguments in Sebelius v Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. and Conestoga Wood Specialties Corp. v Sebelius. These two consolidated cases concern Obamacare’s “contraceptive mandate”—the requirement that businesses offering their employees health insurance must provide plans that cover all federally-approved contraception methods at no extra cost to their employees.

The legal merits of these cases revolve around the concept of  Corporate personhood


Corporations are NOT people. While it is true that what guides them is the human activity of their executives, boards of directors, managers and employees, all the human emotional factors of the people in the corporation pass through a “filter” created by the two basic rules:

  1. Maximize profit
  2. Do whatever is necessary to continue the business.

(Rule number 1 should be modified when it conflicts with rule 2)

It is a slippery road to give personal rights to corporations. The corporation is an amoral entity, i.e., not governed by human moral values. It lacks guilt for what it does, or empathy for those it harms. What’s worse, this “sociopathic” entity is given the rights of a human being, but not similar responsibilities. A corporation is particularly dangerous because of its great concentration of money, power, and political influence–which it uses freely to reach its goals.

To give a concrete example of the dangers of giving too much power to corporations to allow corporations to participate directly on political campaigns is a very serious threat to democracy.

Campaign finance law in the United States changed drastically in the wake of two 2010 judicial opinions: the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United v. FEC and the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals decision in SpeechNow.org v. FEC.[42] According to a 2011 Congressional Research Service report, these two decisions constitute “the most fundamental changes to campaign finance law in decades.” [43]

Citizens United struck down, on free speech grounds, the limits on the ability of organizations that accepted corporate or union money from running electioneering communications. The Court reasoned that the restrictions permitted by Buckley were justified based on avoiding corruption or the appearance of corruption, and that this rationale did not apply to corporate donations to independent organizations. Citizens United overruled the 1990 case Austin v. Michigan Chamber of Commerce, in which the Supreme Court upheld the Michigan Campaign Finance Act, which prohibited corporations from using treasury money to support or oppose candidates in elections.

Two months later, a unanimous nine-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit decided SpeechNow, which relied on Citizens United to hold that Congress could not limit donations to organizations that only made independent expenditures, that is, expenditures that were “uncoordinated” with a candidate’s campaign. These decisions led to the rise of “independent-expenditure only” PACs, commonly known as “Super PACs.” Super PACs, under Citizens United and SpeechNow, can raise unlimited funds from individual and corporate donors and use those funds for electioneering advertisements, provided that the Super PAC does not coordinate with a candidate.

One should not confuse the individuals working within a corporation with the corporation proper. To elaborate and clarify the point of freedom of speech and corporations let’s consider the case of Media corporations, those whose actual activity revolves around disseminating information and opinion. While journalist, writers, news anchors, and the like have 1st amendment rights, the corporations that they work for do not. This might be a subtle point but it is crucial. When corporations do have positions on some issues, and they always have an agenda, this is NOT freedom of speech, it is censorship. This censorship is exercised trough the firing or ostracizing of staff or source that go astray of the corporate line. Thus, to give corporations freedom of speech rights is actually antithetical of the spirit of the first amendment.

Corporations as such do not have national loyalties. Just as an example, Standard Oil supplied the German government during WW II as Coca Cola did.

The Standard Oil group of companies, in which the Rockefeller family owned a one-quarter (and controlling) interest,1 was of critical assistance in helping Nazi Germany prepare for World War II. This assistance in military preparation came about because Germany’s relatively insignificant supplies of crude petroleum were quite insufficient for modern mechanized warfare; in 1934 for instance about 85 percent of German finished petroleum products were imported. The solution adopted by Nazi Germany was to manufacture synthetic gasoline from its plentiful domestic coal supplies. It was the hydrogenation process of producing synthetic gasoline and iso-octane properties in gasoline that enabled Germany to go to war in 1940 — and this hydrogenation process was developed and financed by the Standard Oil laboratories in the United States in partnership with I.G. Farben.

Evidence presented to the Truman, Bone, and Kilgore Committees after World War II confirmed that Standard Oil had at the same time “seriously imperiled the war preparations of the United States.”2Documentary evidence was presented to all three Congressional committees that before World War II Standard Oil had agreed with I.G. Farben, in the so-called Jasco agreement, that synthetic rubber was within Farben’s sphere of influence, while Standard Oil was to have an absolute monopoly in the U.S. only if and when Farben allowed development of synthetic rubber to take place in the U.S.

Fanta is a global brand of fruit-flavored carbonated soft drinks created by The Coca-Cola Company. There are over 100 flavors worldwide. The drink originated in Germany in 1941.

Fanta originated as a result of difficulties importing Coca-Cola syrup into Nazi Germany during World War II due to a trade embargo.[2] To circumvent this, Max Keith, the head of Coca-Cola Deutschland (Coca-Cola GmbH) during the Second World War, decided to create a new product for the German market, using only ingredients available in Germany at the time, including whey and pomace – the “leftovers of leftovers”, as Keith later recalled.[2][3] The name was the result of a brief brainstorming session, which started with Keith exhorting his team to “use their imagination” (“Fantasie” in German), to which one of his salesmen, Joe Knipp, immediately retorted “Fanta!”[3]

While the plant was effectively cut off from Coca Cola headquarters during the war, plant management did not join the Nazi Party. After the war, the Coca Cola corporation regained control of the plant, formula and the trademarks to the new Fanta product — as well as the plant profits made during the war

The U.S. Federal tax system also helps corporations operate in this amoral way by allowing them to deduct from their profits, with some limitations, the cost of public relations campaigns to cover for the damage they cause, the compensation to victims, the cleanup operations, the cost of legal defense, legal damage awards, and the cost of lobbying to change the laws in their favor or gain exemptions from the law. In other words, if they are caught, corporations pay the costs of their destructive, illegal activities with tax-free money. (Tax free for one corporation = somebody else pays more taxes.)

In their current form, corporations are the most dangerous things on earth–because they threaten the survival of humankind and the entire planetary ecosystem.

Birth control does not mean abortion I am not in favor of abortion but I am against using this kind of complicated issues for political ends. How do one balance in black and white gun ownership and the statement that murder is wrong? In the same way that gun advocates justify killing a human being outside the womb (to themselves) by redefining murder according to the circumstances, others justify killing a human being inside the womb (to themselves) by redefining abortion according to the circumstances.

Tea Party types do believe that killing is proper under some conditions and are against governments interfering with the freedoms of people, so why be in favor of government regulations of any kind? Criminalizing behaviors is not a solution for social problems.

Republican Jodie Laubenberg, who co-authored Texas strict anti-abortion laws in 2013, (because she says she believes that “life begins at conception”) also opposed healthcare for newly developing fetuses. Laubenberg testified that the unborn should not be entitled to health care, because “they aren’t born yet.

According to the U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) the single most important factor for a healthy pregnancy is a healthy mother. This means that every woman who is of child-bearing age should have regular health screenings, as well as access to services and medications which can help diagnose, prevent, treat or cure chronic or temporary health conditions.

According to the CDC (the only agency in the United States that has the ability to monitor and track abortion rates) in 2009 there were 15.1 abortions for every 1,000 live births. Of those abortion 91.7 percent were performed earlier than 13th week of pregnancy, and of those the majority, almost 70 percent, were performed prior to the 8th week of pregnancy. Additionally, statistics show that many of the abortions that occur later in pregnancy are performed for medical reasons.

In this highly informative article published on Patheos.com, the author explains the many reasons she lost faith in the right wing’s pro-life movement.

“Highly restrictive abortion laws are not associated with lower abortion rates. For example, the abortion rate is 29 per 1,000 women of childbearing age in Africa and 32 per 1,000 in Latin America—regions in which abortion is illegal under most circumstances in the majority of countries. The rate is 12 per 1,000 in Western Europe, where abortion is generally permitted on broad grounds.”

There’s a circus of political shows with no other end that entertain and distract. Like for example that speech of a democrat meant to be an attack on Republican policies when Reagan had just passed an immigration amnesty, and now it is used for opposite purposes. Life is not as simple as good conservatives on the shadow of God against evil liberal lefties doing the devil’s work.


money supply

Published on Apr 23, 2013 Thanks to Grey for his help on this video:http://www.youtube.com/user/CGPGrey Thanks to Jack for helping with the intro:http://www.youtube.com/user/jackvslife LINKS AND SOURCES TO LEARN MORE BELOW. music by http://www.youtube.com/JakeChudnow GlobalRichList.com: http://www.globalrichlist.com/ Type currency symbols: http://currencies.typeit.org/ money changing hands [PDF]: http://www.swiftinstitute.org/sites/d… murder … Continue reading

Published on Apr 23, 2013

Thanks to Grey for his help on this video:http://www.youtube.com/user/CGPGrey
Thanks to Jack for helping with the intro:http://www.youtube.com/user/jackvslife
LINKS AND SOURCES TO LEARN MORE BELOW.

music by http://www.youtube.com/JakeChudnow

GlobalRichList.com: http://www.globalrichlist.com/

Type currency symbols: http://currencies.typeit.org/

money changing hands [PDF]: http://www.swiftinstitute.org/sites/d…

murder states in the US: http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/…

Bank robbery average [PDF]: http://www.cops.usdoj.gov/files/ric/p…

currency left laying around:

http://www.moneyweb.co.za/moneyweb-ec…
http://highstreetmoney.co.uk/2012/11/…
http://www.nhscleveland.org/blog/post…

cost of Arrested Development on Netflix (one season):http://www.wired.com/underwire/2013/0…

Money supply articles:

http://dollardaze.org/blog/
http://www.straightdope.com/columns/r…

Money Supply on wikipedia:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Money_su…
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fraction…

amazing fake US money (SUPER DOLLARS):https://blog.hypovereinsbank.de/schoe…

is burning money illegal? http://www.nbcnews.com/id/7148966/ns/…

KLF burns a million quid [videos]:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p5mNzO…
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i6q4n5…

KLF burns a million quid [articles]:

http://blog.fxcc.com/the-klf-were-lig…
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/K_Found…

money burning on wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Money_bu…

burn money the Steve Spangler way:http://www.stevespanglerscience.com/e…

Tyga eats money : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7eaaTQ…

Dirty Money:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contamin…
http://www.scientificamerican.com/art…

court case about drugs on money: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-9th-cir…

termite eat money: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/artic…

“money” on wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Money

fiat money:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/pascalemm…
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fiat_money

“fiat” etymology: http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?s…

monopoly money color comparrison to US currency:http://25.media.tumblr.com/927603e8c4…

tinkerbell effect:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tinkerbe…
http://www.reddit.com/r/RedditDayOf/c…
http://www.robbieparks.com/2011/08/26…

RELATED “Thomas Theorem”:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_t…

REVERSE tinkerbell effect:

http://www.volokh.com/2003_01_26_volo…
http://www.volokh.com/2009/03/11/tink…

 

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a new tax

The Koch Attack on Solar Energy By THE EDITORIAL BOARD NYTimes APRIL 26, 2014 At long last, the Koch brothers and their conservative allies in state government have found a new tax they can support. Naturally it’s a tax on … Continue reading

The Koch Attack on Solar Energy

By THE EDITORIAL BOARD
NYTimes
APRIL 26, 2014


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a new tax

The Koch Attack on Solar Energy By THE EDITORIAL BOARD NYTimes APRIL 26, 2014 At long last, the Koch brothers and their conservative allies in state government have found a new tax they can support. Naturally it’s a tax on … Continue reading

The Koch Attack on Solar Energy

By THE EDITORIAL BOARD
NYTimes
APRIL 26, 2014


Continuar leyendo "a new tax"

Obamacare

Back when Obamacare was being negotiated, Congress could have circumvented the private insurance industry by simply expanding Medicare to cover everybody. Medicare isn’t perfect, of course, but it remains one of the most popular institutions in America because its single-payer … Continue reading

Back when Obamacare was being negotiated, Congress could have circumvented the private insurance industry by simply expanding Medicare to cover everybody. Medicare isn’t perfect, of course, but it remains one of the most popular institutions in America because its single-payer model guarantees access to decent, cost-effective healthcare rather than just meager health insurance. It also does a good job of preventing profit-taking middlemen from getting between patients and their physicians.

Obamacare doesn’t do all that. It certainly includes some important reforms, but it doesn’t do what a single-payer system does—it doesn’t guarantee better healthcare or a more simple health system.


— Oct. 29, 2013 5:08 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — Move over, website woes. Lawmakers confronted the Obama administration Tuesday with a difficult new health care problem — a wave of cancellation notices hitting individuals and small business who buy their own insurance.

At the same time, the federal official closest to the website apologized for its dysfunction in new sign-ups and asserted things are getting better by the day.

Medicare chief Marilyn Tavenner said it’s not the administration but insurers who are responsible for cancellation letters now reaching many of the estimated 14 million people who buy individual policies. And, officials said, people who get cancellation notices will be able to find better replacement plans, in some cases for less.


ahabCOLOR

There’s a reason Republicans have been rushing to try and defund the Affordable Care Act before October 1, when major sections of the law take effect.

Republicans know what polls show — that most Americans don’t know what’s in ObamaCare, but when told what the law actually includes, a strong majority support the law.

Once state health insurance exchanges take effect, and premiums for all Americans go down, Republicans know the law will only become more popular and harder to repeal.

As Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said, “It’s a lot harder to undo something than it is to stop it in the first place.”

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) is already the law of the land: passed by both Houses of Congress in 2010, signed by the President, and upheld by the Supreme Court last year, it cannot be changed unless its opponents capture majorities in both Houses of Congress and the Presidency. Since Obama campaigned on the ACA in 2012, and Romney campaigned against it, and Obama won the presidency by over 5 million votes (and the GOP lost seats in both Houses of Congress), it is clear that the “repeal” of the ACA was rejected by the voters as well. Surely most of the members of Congress, who are typically lawyers and took constitutional law, know this. Instead, we get this farce about “defunding Obamacare.” Never mind that the GOP doesn’t have the votes to do this; never mind the fact that most of the ACA is already in place, or going into effect the day the stalemate started with a stampede of people signing up to join it; never mind  that much of the spending is mandatory and cannot be changed by Congress. As Igor Volsky pointed out:

“Inter-party squabbling aside, defunding Obamacare in the continuing resolution would only target the parts of the law that are subject to annual appropriations. The pillars of reform — Medicaid expansion, the subsidies used to buy insurance — are exempt from this process and are funded through so-called “mandatory” spending and have permanent funding authority. The Department of Health and Human Services, the agency tasked with implementing reform, also “has the ability to fund related provisions without seeking additional appropriations from Congress.”

Given that they’re trying to close the barn door after the horses have run off, either the ACA opponents in Congress display an appalling level of ignorance of the basic functions of their jobs, or they are cynically playing the sheep that follow them with empty promises they know they cannot fulfill. Either way, the entire game of chicken came to an end after 16 disastrous days, when the anger of the American public at the closure of their government finally forced the GOP to cave with nothing to show for it but historically low poll numbers. Meanwhile, $24 billion was wasted with all the side effects of the government shutdown, and the damaging effects on the economy are still not tabulated.