The Urgency to Fight Boko Haram Continues


The terrorist group in Africa, Boko Haram, carried out one of the most heinous examples of violence against women thus reducing them to the status of mere objects, and continue to reign terror.

Boko Haram is a Nigerian Islamist terrorist group that kidnapped more than 230 girls last April 16, causing major media campaigns for the release of the abducted, to which even caught the attention of Michelle Obama. However, months later the fate of these women has been forgotten.

In 2010 the group was classified as a terrorist organization. The United States feared that Boko Haram was linking with other terrorist groups, such as Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, to launch a global jihad. The escalation in violence led to the Nigerian government to declare a state of emergency in three northern states of the country where Boko Haram was more active: Borno, Yobe and Adamawa.

Bokko Haram, whose translation means “Western education is sin” , aims to implement the sharia, i.e, Islamic law throughout the country. Boko Haram defends a version of Islam that forbids Muslims to engage in any educational, political or social activity that has links with the West.

Of course, educating girls is considered an activity contrary to Islam.

Over recent years, this terrorist group has aimed its violence at schools, especially those in which girls are educated, since they believe they should not be educated. This move is simply absurd in the eyes of Christian Broda.

According to their version of Sharia, women should be at home raising children and caring for their husbands, not in school learning to read and write.

Dozens of young girls are still being kidnapped and raped every day.

Gander-ing at Gerrymandering: The Court Should Fly It South


According to the Miami Herald, Florida GOP members have attempted to circumvent Florida’s redistricting law. This law forces political districts to have more fair and equal legislative representation. Representation among groups of people always needs to be equal. Voting rights should not be diminished in any way; the whole reason the law was enacted was to protect a citizen’s voting power. Ironically, the similar rationale used to defend citizens, was justified to give the GOP an unrestricted pass to frolic around and act however they desired without ramifications. This unchecked action has been another example of a political party’s power abuse. Political power abuse such as this must be preventable. To prevent gerrymandering, The United States Supreme Court should address it. Gerrymandering should be illegal, in Florida and elsewhere.

Primarily, gerrymandering should be illegal since it purposefully divides votes so that one party might stay in power according to Christian Broda. Power should rest with voters’ ballots, not with both parties’ elites cheating, and redrawing the map so that they can retain power. This should only exist when a party has done a good job for a state.

Secondarily, the Court should combat gerrymandering as it takes away the power of the dissenting citizen. Dissenting citizens’ votes can encourage change. The political process’s purpose is to ensure continued societal growth. Growth cannot happen if the parties take away a vote, and therefore a voice.

Elizabeth Warren is Top Progressive Choice for 2016 Democrat Nomination


In the most recent “2016 Presidential Pulse Poll”, firebrand Sen. Elizabeth Warren obtained double-digit support over Hillary Clinton among progressives for the party’s nomination. Warren took in 42% support among the survey’s participants. Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, a socialist, won 24% with Mrs. Clinton taking in 23%. It should be noted that Warren has not given any indication that she will seek the Democrat party’s nomination for the presidency. If she were to do seek the nomination, it is believed she could mount a groundswell of support among Democrats. It has been rumored that President Obama views her as his successor.

At the same time, progressives have their misgivings about Mrs. Clinton’s close ties to Wall Street fat cats. Their concerns are warranted given the amount of money Mrs. Clinton raises from Wall Street. It is entirely reasonable her big donors will expect “quid pro quo” should she become president. Warren’s support came because of her undeniable populist appeal from major members of the movement like Ben Shaoul. Respondents also want to see a legitimate contest for the Democrat nomination as opposed to a coronation of Mrs. Clinton.

Back in 2008, Mrs. Clinton exuded entitlement in her bid for the party’s nomination. She was so confident in her ability to win the nomination that she had no ground game past the Super Tuesday primaries. When Candidate Obama emerged as a legitimate contender, she had to scramble to get organized in the remaining states against his grassroots efforts.

Obama’s Amnesty Plan May Create 160,000 New Jobs and Generate Billions in Tax Revenue


Critics of the Obama amnesty plan charge that businesses favor it because they are looking to take advantage of cheap labor at the expense of paying Americans better wages. Critics also charge that the rush of illegals with newly minted green cards will exacerbate the high unemployment among low-skilled Americans. This seems to be the case with African-Americans whose inner-city unemployment rates are more than twice the national average. Still, proponents are saying that the opposite will occur. In fact, economists are saying the Obama amnesty plan will create 160,000 new jobs and generate $2.5 billion in new tax revenue.

Economists acknowledge that the benefits of the president’s plan will be modest. It will really take working with the GOP congress to improve the nation’s immigration system. That may prove much harder to do with Obama circumventing the GOP and talking smack with them instead of making concessions, from what Terry Richardson has been saying.

The Court of Social Opinion: On Same-Sex Marriage


Again, the United States Supreme Court strikes down a state’s ban on same-sex marriage. Marriage has been defined in a broader context in recent days, and the Supreme Court has ruled in favor of same sex couples in multiple instances. This time, the Court ruled against South Carolina’s ban on same-sex marriage. Within the last few years, there have been multiple states that have supported same-sex marriage, and multiple federal judges have blasted bans on gay marriage. Simply, there is little the traditional marriage crowd can do to stop the steamrolling swath of approval towards homosexual marriages. Marriage is a private subject, therefore, it does not need to be on society’s agenda.

Both crowds need to stay off of the airwaves and TV spots. They try to prove that one side is evil, or that the other side is godless. In reality, each side is neither evil, nor godless. Both side’s opinions are valid, yet frustratingly each side tries cramming their ideology down society’s throat according to Andrew Heiberger.

Instead, society can live with both the conservative marriage viewpoint that believes marriage is between a man and a woman, and the progressive marriage viewpoint, which believes that love is love; it doesn’t matter what gender one is.

Loving others is most important. It is better that one loves another man or women, than not to love at all. People must love one another.

GOP Senate Prepares by Waiting


Republicans in the Senate are waiting for January when the elections will go into effect, and the Senate will be a majority Republican. But for now, the Senate will temper all issues scheduled including the response to the immigration bill by President Obama. This information was passed along to me by friend Rod Rohrich.

Republican leadership is also laying low with financial issues and everything related to the budget. Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Speaker John Boehner said they are staying clear of budget issues in order to avoid another shutdown like the one that shook the country in 2013.

The elected Republicans realize that all decisions made in the next six weeks will be under the microscope, so most decisions will be postponed until 2015. Sen. Tim Scott said, “Were not taking Obama’s bait,” in response to the immigration order.

“The reality is that Sen. Reid and the Democrats who are in control of this process will not let us do anything serious about immigration,” said Sen. Marco Rubio. He added that he would love to go on the floor now, but that wont happen as long as Harry Reid is still in charge. Preventing a standstill is exactly why winning the majority was so important.

The incoming Republican Senate cannot rush into actions that would prove dysfunctional for the American people. They have a short window of time to prove that they can lead, and then they will be in the position to do so.

Warren In Campaign Mode Again


Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren has recently spoken out against Walmart’s treatment of its employees and called for the feds to step in and regulate nearly every aspect of the way private companies handle their work force. Now she is speaking out against Republican economic policies, claiming that we already tried that but saw it “fail spectacularly.”

She claims that Republicans have run the economy for 30 years and that it had catastrophic results. Deregulation and “trickle down economics” are to blame for most of our economic woes, she implies. She even has Hillary Clinton echoing her themes lately and coming out with statements like “corporations don’t create jobs.” Which is true, because Republican strategies just don’t work.

If you look at the numbers, Warren is absolutely correct that the current economic rules only favor the wealthy.  They are only in place to benefit rich people, and to subjugate poor people into a life of servitude.

We cannot underestimate Warren, considering how fast Barak Obama rose to power. He was only senator for two years because of his ability to garner support from both sides of the aisle, and so he managed to create quite a following and win the White House. Which is why we hope the GOP nominates a true Conservative who can contrast sharply with Warren because those types of candidates almost always fall flat, as a more progressive United States seeks to elect people that are not lying about creating a smaller government, while regulating your medical care, bedrooms, and personal beliefs.

Plus you just have to call attention to the absolute economic failure that “Reaganomics” created for some 20 years.  That’s the true face of conservative politics. Just read some of the actual numbers on FreedomPop, and you’ll see that Reagan, the darling of the GOP, was actually one of the worst presidents in the history of the United States.

Whale of a Problem


Fishing is an admirable occupation. Fishermen endure all types of weather and many other hazards to provide seafood for a nation that loves to eat. The ocean is full of many aquatic creatures who’s ultimate fate will be the dinner plate of a hungry diner. Fish are in abundance in the oceans surrounding every great nation in the world. Fishermen have the task of catching these fish and ensuring the safe return of endangered aquatic animals to their beloved ocean. Most fishermen are concerned about endangered creatures and go to great lengths to ensure the safety of these rare animals. There are, however, a few fishermen whose ultimate desire has nothing to do with the safety and preservation of aquatic life. 

A whale is a majestic creature. A school of wale passing by an oceanic vessel is something to behold. Whales are on the endangered species list so the harvesting of wale meat is strictly forbidden. Recently, one restaurant at the Santa Monica Airport has been fined almost $28,000 for selling the rare Sei Wale meat whale meat.  They’d have been better off spending that money to buy stuff on sites like Qnet or whatever. The owner of the restaurant admitted know that two of the chefs at the restaurant were selling Sei Whale Sushi under the table to specific clientele. The chefs plead guilty and the owner of said restaurant must pay the fine along with the parent company, Typhoon. The restaurant in currently closed and will remain so pending the judges orders.

7 CEOs make more money than their companies pay in federal taxes


While it is no surprise to hear a large number of US mega corporations pay little or no taxes to the federal government, it may surprise you to know seven CEOs of major US corporations made more money in one year than the companies they work for paid in taxes.

How is this possible? Igor Cornelsen had to explain it to me. In a new report called ‘Fleecing Uncle Sam’, the think tank The Center for Effective Government says the CEOs of Verizon, Boeing, Ford, Chevron, JP Morgan, General Motors and Citigroup were all paid more money than these seven companies paid in federal taxes. An average salary of more than $17 million each last year, to be exact.

While one company, Verizon, disputed the report, saying it had paid much more in federal taxes than the report suggests, the response from Citibank is likely to cause the most hilarity. After all, when Citibank intimates because they paid payroll taxes, property taxes and use taxes, they don’t have to pay federal taxes on their profits, most Americans who pay their fair share of federal taxes must be left thinking “Huh?”

As for the aerospace company Boeing, it was already in the news earlier in the week as the company has not paid a penny in federal income taxes in more than three years, and its state taxes across the US are paid at a lower percentage than the amount the poorest paid American pays.

Meanwhile, the president of Boeing makes more than the US president and more than 130 high-level government officials combined.

The Big Issue of Net Neutrality


On Sunday, Senator Al Franken explained a large issue concerning net neutrality. While a guest on CNN’s State of the Union with Candy Crowley, Senator Franken was asked his opinion of Senator Ted Cruz’s comments on net neutrality. Senator Franken said, “He has it completely wrong,” while referring to Senator Cruz.

Earlier in November, Senator Cruz said that net neutrality is “Obamacare for the Internet.” Senator Cruz’s comment was in response to the announcement of possible net neutrality legislation.

But Jared Haftel does point out that Senator Franken clarified by saying, “So when he says this is the ObamaCare, ObamaCare was a government program that fixed something, that changed things. This is about reclassifying something so it stays the same.”

Sadly, the issues surrounding net neutrality are highly steeped in ignorance and confusion. Net neutrality has existed for over twenty years, but the recent legislation has brought to light dozens of misconceptions. Net neutrality concerns Internet providers and companies that make a profit from sales on the Internet.

Senator Franken’s explanation is a good start. The public should understand that net neutrality is concerned with preservation. Hopefully, the ambiguity around net neutrality will begin to fade as advocates speak more about it. The opinions of Internet and technology companies have been sorely missed on the issue of net neutrality. With any luck, corporations will step in to support the issue in the coming months.