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Hometown: Leon County, Florida
Member since: Tue Feb 12, 2008, 10:18 PM
Number of posts: 32,007

Journal Archives

Dozens of Florida political committees being fueled by millions in dark money

Dozens of Florida political committees being fueled by millions in ‘dark money’
Posted December 10, 2016 06:01 pm - Updated December 10, 2016 09:44 pm
By Tia Mitchell


State campaign finance rules require political committees to provide basic information about their missions, the candidates they are backing and issues they support or oppose. Often that information is too general or too vague to provide a clear understanding of the committee’s focus. Place holder information like “to be determined” is accepted by the state and never updated despite a requirement in law that once a change is necessary new documents should be filed within 10 days.

A Times-Union analysis of the nearly 1,000 political committees active in Florida found that one out of every seven committees are operating in the shadows. Even after combing through public records, various state databases and internet search results, it’s difficult to pinpoint why these committees were created or whom they are intended to benefit. While their income and expenses are reported, the details of those expenditures are not. Also left unclear is who exactly is calling the shots.

In federal political campaigns, increasing amounts of money are being donated and spent without any public disclosure. Dubbed dark money, this spending originates from nonprofit and corporate entities that by law do not have to disclose their political contributions.


Florida’s biggest dark money committees are frequently interrelated, passing money to each other in ways that make the elections process here even murkier. Of the 10 dark money committees in Florida that raised the most money from 2014 to November 2016, the most recent election cycle, eight have financial connections to one another and the Republican Party. In that time, at least $2.2 million flowed between them.

More: http://jacksonville.com/news/2016-12-10/dozens-florida-political-committees-being-fueled-millions-dark-money

Why I Will Not Cast My Electoral Vote for Donald Trump

Why I Will Not Cast My Electoral Vote for Donald Trump


DALLAS — I am a Republican presidential elector, one of the 538 people asked to choose officially the president of the United States. Since the election, people have asked me to change my vote based on policy disagreements with Donald J. Trump. In some cases, they cite the popular vote difference. I do not think presidents-elect should be disqualified for policy disagreements. I do not think they should be disqualified because they won the Electoral College instead of the popular vote. However, now I am asked to cast a vote on Dec. 19 for someone who shows daily he is not qualified for the office.


Mr. Trump lacks the foreign policy experience and demeanor needed to be commander in chief. During the campaign more than 50 Republican former national security officials and foreign policy experts co-signed a letter opposing him. In their words, “he would be a dangerous president.” During the campaign Mr. Trump even said Russia should hack Hillary Clinton’s emails. This encouragement of an illegal act has troubled many members of Congress and troubles me.

Hamilton also reminded us that a president cannot be a demagogue. Mr. Trump urged violence against protesters at his rallies during the campaign. He speaks of retribution against his critics. He has surrounded himself with advisers such as Stephen K. Bannon, who claims to be a Leninist and lauds villains and their thirst for power, including Darth Vader. “Rogue One,” the latest “Star Wars” installment, arrives later this month. I am not taking my children to see it to celebrate evil, but to show them that light can overcome it.

More: http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/05/opinion/why-i-will-not-cast-my-electoral-vote-for-donald-trump.html

No to ExxonMobils Tillerson for Secretary of State

Pam McVety, My View 11:07 a.m. EST December 8, 2016

History and past actions don’t seem to matter to President-elect Donald Trump, but they matter to most of us. Investigative reporters, NGOs and more than a dozen Attorneys General believe that ExxonMobil Corporation may have obstructed and delayed action to address climate change for decades. Now Donald Trump is considering rewarding its CEO, Rex Tillerson, by appointing him Secretary of State.

The Dec. 8 New York Review of Books article “The Rockefeller Family Fund (RFF) vs. Exxon,” by David Kaiser and Lee Wasserman, explains why ExxonMobil has not been a good corporate citizen when it comes to climate change, based on findings from a RFF funded investigation by a team of independent reporters from the Columbia School of Journalism to determine what Exxon really knew about climate science and when.

The findings of the reporters were published in the Los Angeles Times in the fall of 2015. They found that Exxon’s own scientists warned the company repeatedly as early as the 1970s and into the 1980s about the seriousness of climate change and that the burning of fossil fuels caused it. Knowing this, Exxon had a choice: It could join the growing scientific consensus that action was needed to curb carbon emissions or it could fight it. It chose to fight – although Exxon denies this.

A quote from the article: “For decades it published frequent ‘advertorials’ on the editorial page of The New York Times, questioning the reality of climate change or its human cause, or arguing that predictions about global warming were too unreliable to justify efforts to prevent it.”

More: http://www.tallahassee.com/story/opinion/2016/12/08/mcvety-exxonmobils-tillerson-secretary-state/95139802/

I'm very proud to say that I know Ms McVety!

OMG - I HATE insurance companies!

I wrote last week about my husband's health problem. Well, first off he's doing much better. But he ruptured his appendix on Thanksgiving morning and didn't realize it. Last Wednesday I took him to our regular GP's office, got a CT scan, and he was sent to a surgeon on Thursday. Friday morning he got a CT scan with an interventionist radiologist who put in three drains in some of the abscesses he had from the crud out of the appendix.

He spent Friday through Monday at the hospital then they sent him home with supplies to flush the drains. Problem is, they didn't add up the amount of supplies right and I am almost out of the saline needed.

I figured, no problem, it's saline and while I didn't expect our regular pharmacy to have it, I thought I could get it at a surgical supply place. When I called, I was told they had to have prior approval from the insurance company. I called them and was told the doctor had to get the approval and it would take 24 hours. 24 hours is too long - that would mean we'd skip several of the prescribed flushes and take a chance on the drains clogging, maybe causing more infection.

I went off on the insurance company woman and basically told her that if my husband ends up back in the hospital it will be her fault and the insurance company would have to pay through the nose for his care.

FOUR hours later I am still waiting to hear from the doctor's office about where they got approval to get the saline.

It's fucking SALINE, for fuck's sake! It's not as if we are trying to get a controlled substance or an antibiotic that could be misused. It's sterile water and SALT.

Add to my frustration is that I needed a shower this morning but I have been making calls or waiting on call backs all damn day. So when I do find out where to go to get the saline, I will have to go with greasy hair and stinky body.

We need SANE healthcare in this country. I've used more time of the people at the pharmacies, insurance company, and doctor's office that it would cost to go out and buy on fucking bottle of saline solution. Add in my time and the total amount of time wasted cost more than several cases of saline solution.

Clinton allies plot anti-Trump movement

Clinton allies plot anti-Trump movement

‘We’re going to throw everything at him that he threw at us,’ said one longtime Democratic operative.

By Glenn Thrush and Nolan D. McCaskill
12/02/16 07:50 AM EST Updated 12/02/16 03:16 PM EST

After most campaigns the combatants share cocktails and swap war stories — but the bitter 2016 battle for the White House is turning into a forever war with Hillary Clinton’s tormented team vowing a four-year insurgency against Donald Trump.

There are no consolation prizes from a loss as humbling and catastrophic as the heavily-favored Clinton suffered on Nov. 8. But for her aides, there is a measure of liberation, freedom from the constraints of having to defend their flawed, awkward front-runner and adopt the hell-to-pay role of insurgents.


And Clinton’s vast network of supporters, staffers and operatives is now looking for a way to fight back — without their standard-bearer — modeled on the resistance movement organized by the GOP in the wake of President Barack Obama’s victory in 2008, the Republicans’ “Party of No” period.

Clinton allies like David Brock have been actively recruiting Democratic donors to fund an anti-Trump movement modeled on the armada of organizations that sued, flacked, opposition-researched and insulted Clinton into a 55 percent disapproval rating. Trump is already there, but Brock and other Democratic operatives are contemplating a Freedom of Information Act barrage against the president-elect comparable to the one undertaken against Clinton by the conservative group Judicial Watch. Other left-leaning groups, including the Center for American Progress, are looking into ways of holding Trump accountable for his job-creating campaign promises — possibly by disseminating reports on the president’s record directly to voters and media into swing states like Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan that swung surprisingly to Trump.


UPDATE _ GOOD NEWS! Need medical information - NOT advice

My husband has been diagnosed with a bowel infarction. He's scheduled to see a surgeon this afternoon and will probably have to have surgery in the next few days.

I've read the basic facts on the internet at sites like WebMD but that doesn't give me much information about prognosis, recovery and long term treatment. I know much of this cannot be determined until they actually get inside him and see how much of his intestine is involved.

Does anyone here have any experience with this kind of surgery/illness?

I'm not asking for advice, just some real life experience information. Thank you!

UPDATE - we saw the surgeon this afternoon. It is NOT a bowel infarction. It is either an appendix or a diverticulum abscess. He still has to have a procedure but not an operation. They will put in a tube to drain the abscess and he'll have to spend a couple of days in the hospital but they should not have to open him up or cut sections out of his intestines. What a relief!

Cat Found Covered in Purple Has Grown Back His Glorious Gray Coat

He also found a best buddy and a forever home for both of them!

A while back someone here bought an induction hot plate

I think it was the NuWave deal with two hot plates and some pans for around $100. (http://www.nuwavepic.com/)

How do you like the induction plate? Are the hot plates well made? How about the pans in the deal?

I thought about buying the set and giving my Mom one of the hot plates. Her stove top quit and her caretakers are using cheap regular hot plates my sister found at thrift shops - but sometimes they get left on or plugged in and Mom is not reliable around any of the cooking devices.

Crowdsourcing effort to raise money for photo rights for a book

Project aim

To acquire 18 photographs to illustrate Will Sutton: The Forgotten Trail Breaker of Vancouver Island.

After three years of intensive research and writing I have just completed this biography. In 1933 Will Sutton's sister in law donated a photograph album containing 57 of his photographs to the Royal British Columbia Archive. I need to access 18 photographs from the archive, many from this album, to illustrate the biography. But it costs $50 to get a copy of one photograph and another $50 for the licence fee, so that is $100 per photograph (it is $70 for photographs which have already been digitised). I am a pensioner and only have a state pension - I cannot afford to buy these photographs myself.

Book Synopsis

Curious to know who the role model for Heathcliff might be? Want to know how Sutton Pass, Sutton Boulders, Lost Shoe Creek, Sutton Rock and Sutton Limestones on Vancouver Island, and Sutton Park, Sutton Street, William Street and Williamsburgh in Kincardine, Ontario got their names? Interested in early lumbering on Vancouver Island? Or who procured many of the skulls for Franz Boas? Or that an Emily Carr painting in the Art Gallery of Ontario was wrongly labelled? These questions and more are answered in this fascinating, well researched, biography of Will Sutton, The Forgotten Trail Breaker of Vancouver Island.

Will’s story is brought to life with many of his photographs until now hidden in the bowels of British Columbia Archives. We go on a journey from 19th century Dent in Yorkshire to Ontario to meet the first sheriff of Bruce County who was sacked after 25 years of service, to Vancouver Island to learn about the adventures of Will, a Timberman, Geologist, Assayer, Grave Robber, Surveyor, Lecturer, Explorer, Pioneer, Scientist and Promoter of Vancouver Island, whose mineral collection can be found at the Pacific Museum of Earth.

The lady writing the book has been very helpful to me. The history she is exploring overlaps part of my family history and she has sent me parts of her draft that includes my ancestors. I sent her high quality scans of photos from my family records that helped round out some of her information.

She needs some photo rights for pictures in the Royal British Columbia Archive but it is expensive to acquire those rights so she is trying to raise the money to get them.

Having read a chapter of her book, I would very much like to read the entire work. I'll be sending her a contribution but I thought I would post a link to her crowdfunder page in case anyone here is interested in helping her: http://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/book-2

Notes from Central Florida and our first day in Virginia

Last Friday I drove to Central Florida with my husband to spend a few days wih my 95 year old mother. Just a few notes: Mom voted for Hillary Clinton! Her caretakers were a mix - the older lady who was rised in rural West Virginia and who has lived i Central Florida for decades also voted for Hillary. she finds Trump disgusting and doesn't understand how he got so far in this race.

The other caretaker doesn't vote - as a Jehovah Witness it is against her religion. But we talked about the election because she is concerned about how the winner could affect reiligions like hers. One of her main worries was the claim that Trump made about abortion being allowed "one day before the baby would be born." I explained the situations under which late term abortions are performed - when it endangers the life of the mother, when the fetus is not viable or when the fetus is already dead. While I know that discussion will not affect her vote, it could help her explain to others who don't understand the issues that pro-choice advocates believe in. I also made the point that how can some one be "pro-life" but push for the death penalty and for wars.

Yesterday we got on Amtrak and took 20 hours to get from Lakeland, Florida, to Alexandria, Virginia. Since our hotel did not have a shuttle bus from the Amtrak station, we took a cab. We passed a polling location and I asked the driver if he had voted. He said not yet but he was going to get it done - his wife told him he has to vote. He asked who I was voting for and I said, "NOT Trump!" He laughed and talked about how he couldn't vote for someone who so disrespeced women. He also said his wife told him he has to vote for Hillary. He also talked about how in his country people like Trump killed others who didn't believe the same. He loves the US because of the freedom of speech. My husband asked where he was from and he was from Ethiopia. He doesn't want to see this country turn into a place like that.

Not a lot of people, but to hear such strong resistence to Trump is refreshing!
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