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Gender: Male
Current location: NC
Member since: 2003 before July 6th
Number of posts: 40,307

Journal Archives

Overwhelming Obama Victory Not Just a Mandate for the President, but for Progressives

watch: http://www.democracynow.org/2012/11/8/john_nichols_overwhelming_obama_victory_not

John Nichols: Overwhelming Obama Victory Not Just a Mandate for the President, but for Progressives

With President Obama scoring a decisive re-election and progressive-backed ballot measures and candidates faring generally well nationwide, journalist John Nichols argues that the 2012 election provided not just a mandate for the Obama administration and the Democrats, but for progressive policies. A political writer for The Nation magazine, Nichols’ latest article is "For Obama, a Bigger Win Than for Kennedy, Nixon, Carter or Bush." (Transcript to come. Check back soon.)

Video of 2012 Voting Machine Altering Vote

Romney ‘rented’ Mormon church’s exemption to defer taxes for 15 years


Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney used a loophole to “rent” the Mormon church’s tax exemption status and defer paying taxes for 15 years, according to a new report.

Tax returns obtained by Bloomberg News through a Freedom of Information Act request indicated that Romney set up a charitable remainder unitrust (CRUT) in June 1996 just before Congress cracked down on the loophole in 1997.

“In this instance, Romney used the tax-exempt status of a charity — the Mormon Church, according to a 2007 filing — to defer taxes for more than 15 years,” Bloomberg’s Jesse Drucker explained. “At the same time he is benefitting, the trust will probably leave the church with less than what current law requires.”

Estates lawyer Jonathan Blattmachr told Bloomberg that Romney’s trust benefits from the Mormon church’s exempt status because charities don’t pay capital gains taxes when they make a profit from the sale of assets.

“The main benefit from a charitable remainder trust is the renting from your favorite charity of its exemption from taxation,” Blattmachr said, adding that the charitable contribution “is just a throwaway” and the church would receive little if any financial benefit from the trust.


Global Warming and Sandy: Heating of the Oceans Fuels Record Storm, Leaving Millions Without Power


Eight million people remain without power across 15 states following Hurricane Sandy, one of most devastating storms ever to hit the eastern United States. The storm’s death toll has reached 55 in the United States and is expected to rise. The storm also killed at least 69 people in the Caribbean, 51 in Haiti alone. In New York state, 90 percent of Long Island remains in the dark, as does Lower Manhattan and other parts of the city. As we continue to explore the links between Sandy and climate change, we’re joined by Brenda Ekwurzel, assistant director of climate research and analysis at the Union of Concerned Scientists. Due to technical difficulties, we regret that this interview was cut short. ~includes rush transcript~


Brenda Ekwurzel, assistant director of climate research and analysis at the Union of Concerned Scientists.

Tell blowhard Trump to donate his $5 million to Red Cross hurricane relief efforts!


Romney’s Big Navy Guru Made Millions From Building Ships


Romney’s Big Navy Guru Made Millions From Building Ships

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has vowed to boost the size of the Navy by roughly 15 percent as part of a broader defense buildup. “Our Navy is smaller now than at any time since 1917,” he complained in Monday night’s debate. “That’s unacceptable to me.”

But for one of Romney’s most important advisers on Navy issues, a man who oversaw a massive naval expansion for Pres. Ronald Reagan, there’s more at stake than U.S. national security. John Lehman, an investment banker and former secretary of the Navy, has strong and complex personal financial ties to the naval shipbuilding industry. He has profited hugely from the Navy’s slow growth in recent years — raising the prospect that he could make even more if Romney takes his advice on expanding the fleet.

That doesn’t mean that a bigger or better Navy is necessarily a bad idea. But it does complicate Romney’s claim that a larger Navy would merely be “matched to the interests we need to protect.” A bigger maritime force has the possibility of personally enriching one of the candidate’s top advisers. In fact, it already has.

Lehman is the founder and chairman of J.F. Lehman & Company, a private equity firm. He also sits on several corporate boards.

Lehman invested in a government-backed “Superferry” in Hawaii — a business that ultimately failed, but not before boosting the standing of Austal USA, an Alabama shipbuilder that constructed the ferry service’s ships. Austal USA’s rising fortunes in turn benefited international defense giant BAE Systems, which then bought up shipyards owned by Lehman in order to work more closely with Austal USA.


RSVP: Honor Paul Wellstone. National memories call.


10 years after Paul Wellstone's tragic passing, join his son, his former staff, and the Progressive Change Campaign Committee for a national call of memories.

RSVP on the right. We'll send you these details and a reminder email before the call.

When: Wednesday, October 24 at 9:30pm Eastern / 8:30pm Central

What: National call of memories, honoring Paul Wellstone

Who: Paul's son David Wellstone, Paul's chief of staff Kari Moe, Paul's state director Connie Lewis, and PCCC members

How: Listen and ask questions by phone or online.

Also, continue Paul's legacy by signing up to make calls this Thursday for Elizabeth Warren and Minnesota's Keith Ellison and Rick Nolan.

George McGovern: "When people tell me they don't like liberals..."

Australian ecologist reveals lifelong bullying nightmare


By Elizabeth Batt
Oct 19, 2012

Sydney- When Digital Journal hooked up with ecologist Elissa Sursara for an interview, we were supposed to discuss her upcoming conservation efforts and her forthcoming Antarctic campaign with the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society. It didn't work out that way.

On the surface Elissa's story is one of success. The 24-year-old ecologist has completed partial studies in biomedical engineering and studied environmental biology at the Australian National University. Besides this,
Sursara is a correspondent, a documentary filmmaker and even an occasional actress, having starred in shows and movies such as Touched by an Angel (1994), American Gothic (1996), Boston Public (2001), Marion Bridge (2002), Touch & Go (2003) and Going for Broke (2004).

Recognized for her global conservation efforts, particularly with regard to marine, wildlife and habitat conservation, Elissa is also an ambassador and crew member for Sea Shepherd, and is affiliated with the World
Wildlife Fund (WWF), Earth Hour, the Australia Zoo and Greenpeace Australia Pacific. In 2012, she was named as a nominee for PETA’s Sexiest Celebrity Vegetarian of 2012.

Now you could be forgiven then for thinking that this young female has so far led a charmed life, but in reality, Elissa Sursara has experienced more adversity than most people will ever experience in an entire lifetime.

Read more: http://digitaljournal.com/article/335134#ixzz29ssN2LkX

Amazing machines for the world's poorest farmers!


Our vision is to support the improvement of economic possibilities for people in global communities.

Full Belly is about as small as you can find: Two staff and a gaggle of determined volunteers.

Our BBC World Challenge recognition was like the week-end film makers getting the Oscar nomination. It was a global spotlight on the strange idea that factories can come in cartons and precision machine parts can be made in the backyard of any mud hut. For the world's poorest farmers, efficiency is the ladder to prosperity and we try to make our machines the first step on that ladder. For Full Belly, the nomination was the first step to the possibility of making this happen around the world. We were very honored.


Gravity Pump (see more projects at link)

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