Daily Commentary – Tuesday, July 22, 2014 – Ex Whitehouse Press Secretary Jay Carney Possible New Job
- Rumor is Apple in talks with Jay Carney for a public relations position with the company
If you thought Shiloh Brew & Chew was a Honkey-tonk, redneck bar that served up beer, Bourbon, sold chewing tobacco and had spittoons at every table, you would be wrong and a judgmental liberal. Welcome to one of Eastern Tennessee’s most safe restaurant.
In Fact ‘Shiloh Brew and Chew’ is a family restaurant in Maryville, Tennessee where the “Brew” stands for their coffee and the “Chew” for their food menu from burgers to steak to pizza and the owner, Sharma Floyd, believes in the Second Amendment with a sign posted outside that says, ”Guns are Welcome on Premises”. The owner of this Eastern Tennessee eatery put up the sign after she read an article about a store in North Carolina that put up a sign that said no weapons allowed and was robbed two days later. Sharma says that the patrons response has been far more positive than the lone negative one.
SCOTUS Decision Day on Hobby Lobby Challenging ObamaCare’s Contraception Mandate … Major Decision Just Hours Away (Update: Hobby Lobby Wins 5-4 Over Obamacare)
1st Amendment and Freedom of Religion at stake this morning at the SCOTUS …
It is decision day for The Supreme Court of the United States on the issue before them of Holly Lobby challenging the Obamacare contraception mandate. Holly Lobby, the for-profit businesses is challenging the requirement in the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) that employers cover contraception for women at no extra charge among a range of preventive benefits in employee health plans. As the National Journal reports, SCOTUS won’t strike down Obamacare’s contraception mandate completely because that is not what the two companies, Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties, have asked of the Court. They haven’t asked the justices to ax the entire policy; however, a ruling for the law’s challengers could still render the policy toothless for millions of women.
The court meets for a final time Monday to release decisions in its two remaining cases before the justices take off for the summer.
The most contentious is that brought by Oklahoma City-based Hobby Lobby and a furniture maker in Pennsylvania. The for-profit businesses have challenged the requirement in the Affordable Care Act that employers cover contraception for women at no extra charge among a range of preventive benefits in employee health plans. It is the first major challenge to ObamaCare to come before the court since the justices upheld the law’s individual requirement to buy health insurance two years ago.
Supporters of Hobby Lobby cite a few factors potentially leaning in their favor, including the tone of oral arguments in March and a unanimous decision last week finding President Obama overreached in making recess appointments to a labor board.
“Absolutely, we win — we are very confident after oral argument in March that we will prevail in this case,” Hannah Smith, senior counsel for The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which represents Hobby Lobby, told Fox News. She suggested this, too, is a case of government “overreach.”
CNN – Jonathan Turley, Professor of Law at George Washington University discusses the ramification of today’s SCOTUS decision.
I predict 6-3 in favor of Hobby Lobby. Then again, this SCOTUS has disappointed me before.
Justice Samuel Alito wrote the major opinion and said, it was difficult to distinguish between closely held corporations and the people who own them. The religious liberty law was not intended to discriminate “against men and women who wish to run their businesses as for-profit corporations in the manner required by their religious beliefs.”
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday ruled that owners of private companies can object on religious grounds to a provision of President Barack Obama’s healthcare law that requires employers to provide insurance covering birth control for women.
The decision, which applies only to a small number of family or other closely-held companies, means an estimated several thousand women whose health insurance comes via such companies may have to obtain certain forms of birth control coverage elsewhere.
In a 5-4 vote along ideological lines, the justices said the companies can seek an exemption from the so-called birth control mandate of the law known as Obamacare. The companies in the case said they did not object to all birth control but certain methods they said were tantamount to abortion, which they oppose for religious reasons.
In their last decision of the nine-month term, the justices ruled for the first time that for-profit companies can make claims under a 1993 federal law called the Religious Freedom Restoration Act that was enacted to protect religious liberty.
Democrats go mental over the decision and threaten to respond to SCOTUS decision. But wait, isn’t it now law of the land? Isn’t that what Democrats, including Obama, say when the GOP tries to end Obamacare?
FBI and SEC Probe into Insider Trading Investigation of Carl Icahn, Billy Walters & PGA’s Phil Mickelson
Investor, Bettor, and Golfer Investigated for Insider Trading, Oh My!!!
The NY Times is reporting that federal authorities are investigating a series of well-timed trades made by PGA golfer Phil Mickelson and the gambler William T. Walters, focusing on trading in two different stocks from 2011 and 2012. The Feds are looking into whether Mickelson and Walters may have traded illegally on private information provided by billionaire investor Carl Icahn about his investments in public corporations. The stock trades in question are with Clorox in 2011 and Dean Foods in 2012. As reported at the Business Insider Mickelson stated, “I have done absolutely nothing wrong. I have cooperated with the government in this investigation and will continue to do so.”
Federal authorities are examining a series of well-timed trades made by the golfer Phil Mickelson and the gambler William T. Walters, people briefed on the investigation said, focusing on trading in two different stocks. The authorities are also questioning what role, if any, the investor Carl C. Icahn may have had in sharing information about one of the stocks: the consumer products company Clorox.
Mr. Mickelson, a three-time winner of the Masters golf tournament and one of the country’s highest-earning athletes, placed his Clorox trade in 2011, the people briefed on the investigation said. Mr. Walters, an owner of golf courses who is often considered the most successful sports bettor in the country, made a similar trade about that time, the people added.
Mr. Icahn, a 78-year-old billionaire and one of the best-known investors in the world, was mounting a takeover bid for Clorox around the time that Mr. Mickelson and Mr. Walters placed their trades.
The F.B.I. and Securities and Exchange Commission, which are leading the inquiry along with federal prosecutors in Manhattan, are examining whether Mr. Icahn leaked details of his Clorox bid to Mr. Walters, the people briefed on the investigation said. One theory, the people said, is that Mr. Walters might have passed that information to Mr. Mickelson.
GOOD GRIEF … Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer Wins Bidding War for NBA’s LA Clippers with $2 Billion Offer (Update: Donald Sterling Vows to Sue)
REALLY … 2 BILLION DOLLARS!!!
Steve Ballmer, the former CEO of Microsoft, has won the bidding war for the Los Angeles Clippers at a reported offer of $2 billion. That is if you can call paying $2 billion for the Clippers a win. The 58 year old Ballmer is worth a reported $20 billion, well make that $18 now if the deal is approved by the NBA commissioner Donald Sterling and three-fourths of the 30 NBA owners. Ballmer has reaffirmed his promise o keep the team in Los Angeles and not move it to home in Seattle. The sale price is almost four times the highest previous NBA franchise sale price, the $550 million paid earlier this month for the Milwaukee Bucks.
Sorry, Steve Ballmer is not the winner … the real winner is Clippers co-owner Shelly Sterling.
Well folks, don’t ask for things they might just come true. The next round of complaints will be that it is unfair for banished from the NBA for making racist comments, Clippers owner Donald Sterling, make such an amazing profit on the sale of the Clippers. Sterling paid $12 million in 1981. OUCH, from $12 million to $2 billion, that is quite the investment. Look for cries of foul that Sterling made money for racist comments. But I don’t see any complaints from Obama about income inequality when it comes to Ballmer and the other richest sports owners.
Steve Ballmer and Dr. Evil … Separated at birth.
Former Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer has won a frenetic bidding war for ownership of the Los Angeles Clippers, with a $2-billion offer that would set a record price for an NBA team.
Ballmer bid higher than competitors that included Los Angeles-based investors Tony Ressler and Bruce Karsh and a group that included David Geffen and executives from the Guggenheim Group, the Chicago-based owner of the Los Angeles Dodgers.
he Geffen group offered $1.6 billion and the Ressler-Karsh group $1.2 billion. People familiar with both those offers said they were rejected.
Ballmer and Clippers co-owner Shelly Sterling concluded a deal late Thursday afternoon. But Bobby Samini, an attorney for Donald Sterling, said as he left the team co-owner’s home: “There’s been no sale. There can be no sale without Donald’s signature.”
The sale price would be almost four times the previous NBA franchise high: the $550 million paid earlier this month for the Milwaukee Bucks. It is the second highest price ever paid for a sports team in North America. The Dodgers sold in 2012 for $2.1 billion.
Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling does not have the authority to stop a $2 billion sale of his team because he has been determined to be mentally unfit to make decisions related to the family trust, a person familiar with the situation told USA TODAY Sports.
The Sterling Family Trust owns the team, with Donald and his wife Shelly each owning a 50% share. The trust spells out provisions and procedures related to the mental capacity of the trustees, and Donald Sterling did not meet the standard in a determination by experts, giving his wife sole decision-making power for the trust, the person said.
The NBA confirmed on Friday that the Los Angeles Clippers have been sold to former Microsoft (MSFT) CEO Steve Ballmer for $2 billion, the largest ever for an NBA franchise.
The NBA’s statement said:
The NBA, Shelly Sterling and the Sterling Family Trust today resolved their dispute over the ownership of the Los Angeles Clippers. Under the agreement, the Clippers will be sold to Steve Ballmer, pending approval by the NBA Board of Governors, and the NBA will withdraw its pending charge to terminate the Sterlings’ ownership of the team. Because of the binding agreement to sell the team, the NBA termination hearing that had been scheduled for June 3 in New York City has now been cancelled. Mrs. Sterling and the Trust also agreed not to sue the NBA and to indemnify the NBA against lawsuits from others, including from Donald Sterling.
UPDATE III: Donald Sterling Vows To Sue
The statement came as NPR’s Tom Goldman received word from Sterling’s attorney that his client would sue the NBA for $1 billion in damages for terminating his ownership of the the team.
Tom says: “I communicated with Donald Sterling’s attorney Max Blecher via email. He confirms there will be a lawsuit filed in federal court in Los Angeles.”
The lawsuit is “based on multiple counts, including antitrust violations, invasion of constitutional rights, breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty,” Tom says.
“This is a lawsuit against the NBA and Commissioner Adam Silver, who of course banned Sterling for life, fined him $2.5 million and is in the process of trying to remove Donald Sterling from the ownership of the Clippers,” he says.
Daily Commentary – Monday, April 14, 2014 – Couple Clipped by FedEx Truck Claims it Was on Fire Prior to Bus Collision
- However, NTSB says it was not on fire and also says there were no skidmarks before the FedEx Truck slammed into the bus carrying high school students
Daily Commentary – Monday, April 14, 2014 Download
Bill Maher Actually Makes a Valid Point as People Laugh: “There Is A Gay Mafia, If You Cross Them, You Do Get Whacked” … The Intollerance of the Gay Rights Activists
Liberal comedian Bill Maher proves even a blind squirrel finds an acorn every so often …
During the online-only “Overtime” portion of HBO’s ‘Real Time’ with Bill Maher, the liberal comedian weighed in on the Mozilla controversy, and his comments may actually surprise you. Maher seemed to disagree with gay rights activists for targeting Mozilla CEO Brendan Eich because of a 2008 $1000 donation to support a ballot initiative, proposition 8, that would ban same-sex marriage in California. Not only did the gay right activists target Brendan Eich, they successfully got him removed from Mozilla for simply applying his First Amendment rights of free speech. Bill Maher said, “There is a Gay Mafia, if you cross them, you do get whacked.”
Gay Rights activists just crossed a line that they will wish one day they did not. Paybacks are as they say, a bitch.
MAHER: What do you think about the Mozilla CEO having to step down over his donation to a pro-Proposition 8 group.
The Mozilla — which I’m wearing right now, by the way. I didn’t know what Mozilla was. I saw it on my computer, but — it’s Firefix, right? It’s the browser.
So this guy apparently does not want gay people to get married and he had to step down. What do you think of that, the question asks.
FMR. REP. TOM DAVIS (R-VA): Because he gave $1,000 eight years ago and it’s come back to haunt him.
CARRIE SHEFFIELD, FORBES: Well, and he gave it when President Obama was still against gay marriage. So, I don’t think it’s very fair.
MAHER: Good point. Also, I think there is a gay mafia. I think if you cross them, you do get whacked.
So you thought you could hide from Obamacare, this insidious law will eventually affect every American one was or another … Resistance is Futile.
Possibly coming to a restaurant you frequent, customers asked to help foot the bill for Obamacare healthcare increases and the not-so Affordable Healthcare Act … Gator’s Dockside, a Florida restaurant chain, is adding a 1% ACA surcharge to all of their patron’s bills in order to help pay for their increase in healthcare charges for their full time employees. Just curious, if it is so affordable, why do businesses need to further place a burden on their patrons to pay more, while receiving nothing more in return? Signs welcoming customers at the door read “The costs associated with ACA compliance could ultimately close our doors.”
click on pic to enlarge
Several restaurants in a Florida chain are asking customers to help foot the bill for Obamacare.
Diners at eight Gator’s Dockside casual eateries are finding a 1% Affordable Care Act surcharge on their tabs, which comes to 15 cents on a typical $15 lunch tab. Signs on the door and at tables alert diners to the fee, which is also listed separately on the bill.
The Gator Group’s full-time hourly employees won’t actually receive health insurance until December. But the company said it implemented the surcharge now because of the compliance costs it’s facing ahead of the Affordable Care Act’s employer mandate kicking in in 2015.
“The costs associated with ACA compliance could ultimately close our doors,” the sign reads. “Instead of raising prices on our products to generate the additional revenue needed to cover the costs of ACA compliance, certain Gator’s Dockside locations have implemented a 1% surcharge on all food and beverage purchases only.”
The Borg Obamacare … Resistance is Futile
We are reminded by the Heritage Foundation that other restaurants in California have done the same and added ACA surcharges to their bills.
What do you think happens when a new tax is forced upon a business by the feds, it gets passed on to the customer. Remember, the SCOTUS deemed Obamacare constitutional because it was a tax, even though Obama originally said to the American people that it was not. What is going to happen in the future when we find out that Obamacare is more costly than previously projected? Restaurants will have a much greater surcharge than 1%.
FCC Cancels Media Survey Amid Allegations of Trying to Regulate The News and Trample First Amendment Freedom of the Press Rights
Hero of the Week … whistler-blower FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai.
The FCC blinked and has canceled the media survey and plans to evaluate the coverage of media outlets in the Obama’s administration to attempt to violate the First Amendment and Freedom of the Press. As stated at the Washington Examiner, the First Amendment says “Congress shall make no law … abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press …” However, under the Obama administration, the Federal Communications Commission was planning to send government contractors into the nation’s newsrooms to determine whether journalists are producing articles, television reports, Internet content, and commentary that meets the public’s “critical information needs.” As per The Obama Administration, of course. The very agency that controls the licensing for the media was now going to inspect them for content and whether they were telling the correct stories. UNREAL. The now canceled study was known at the FCC as “the CIN Study” was never put to an FCC vote, it was just announced. Imagine that. Why does this reek of IRS-gate? Or AP-gate? But in an act of conscience and bravery, FCC commissioner Ajit Pai came forward and brought the story to the public’s attention in a Wall Street Journal column last week.
First FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai brings the scheme to light and the FCC removed some of the controversial questions
The Federal Communications Commission cancelled a plan to evaluate the coverage of major media outlets Friday after a tidal wave of media criticism alleged the agency was attempting to influence and regulate the news media industry.
“In the course of FCC review and public comment, concerns were raised that some of the questions may not have been appropriate,” the agency said in a statement Friday. “Chairman Wheeler agreed that survey questions in the study directed toward media outlet managers, news directors, and reporters overstepped the bounds of what is required.”
However, despite the fact that the FCC had to pull the plug on this survey because of the negative attention and anti-First Amendment look of this attempt by the government to regulate the media, FCC Chair Wheeler said that it was not an attempt to do so. Sure it wasn’t, so then why cancel the study … hmm? Who backs of an attempt to limit the media unless you were caught red-handed? But instead, they continue to dent what their real intentions were. America needs to wake up … the Obama administration is as lawless as it gets.
Despite a response letter from FCC Chair Tom Wheeler saying the study was not an attempt to force news organizations into changing their coverage, the agency conceded the battle and Wheeler called for the removal of the questions entirely.
“Any suggestion that the FCC intends to regulate the speech of news media or plans to put monitors in America’s newsrooms is false,” the statement said. “The FCC looks forward to fulfilling its obligation to Congress to report on barriers to entry into the communications marketplace, and is currently revising its proposed study to achieve that goal.”
Click here to watch VIDEO – screen grab from Fox News, ‘On the Record’
GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: Does President Obama really think no one at FOX will see a government spy in our newsroom? Tonight, an FCC commissioner goes ON THE RECORD and blows the whistle on a plan to install spies in newsroom. They call it something else, like a monitor. But no one is that stupid. We know what they are trying to do.
The FCC commissioner who blew the whistle is here to go ON THE RECORD. Commissioner Ajit Pai joins us.
Nice to see you, sir.
AJIT PAI, FCC COMMISSIONER: Thanks for having me.
VAN SUSTEREN: So your op-ed blew the whistle on this. What is it the FCC wants to do and why you wrote your op-ed?
PAI: The FCC is proposing to do what it is calling a Critical Information Needs, or CIN, study. They will send researchers into newsrooms across the country, television and broadcast and newspapers, to try to figure out why they cover the stories they do. They have identified eight categories of news they think news people should be covering. Some of the questions they ask were highly technical. They are asking reporters, for example, have you ever wanted to cover a story and were told you can’t do so. As I looked into the study design, I got concerned about what it implicated for our First Amendment values. That’s why I wrote it in the “Wall Street Journal.”
VAN SUSTEREN: What’s been the response by the other members of the FCC?
PAI: I haven’t talked to all my colleagues, but I am pleased to report, tonight, the chairman of the FCC, Tom Wheeler, instructed the contractor, who will be doing the study, to remove questions from the study relating to news philosophy and editorial judgment. That’s a positive step but the devil is in the details when it comes to the actual study as implemented
ABBA Admit Outrageous Outfits Were Worn To Avoid Taxes, Not Just Because of Pop Glamour Culture of the Late 70′s and Early 80′s
Who knew, wearing outrageous clothing was a tax loophole?
As reported in The Guardian, a new book, ‘The Official Photo Book,’ published to mark 40 years since ABBA won Eurovision with Waterloo, the band’s style may have been influenced by Swedish tax laws that allowed the cost of outfits to be a tax deduction, just as much as the pop culture fashion style of the late 1970′s and early 1980′s. The Swedish tax law stated that the cost of outfits could be deducted, so long as the costumes were so outrageous they could not possibly be worn on the street. Hmm, I don’t know, their outfits would have to be really over the line as people wore some pretty outrageous clothing in the 70′s. Although, I believe if anyone was caught wearing these outfits that ABBA is wearing in this rendition of Waterloo (VIDEO) in the street, they have have been strapped in a white coat.
No matter what the reason, ABBA is legendary and I hope that they can make their 40 year reunion happen.
ABBA – Waterloo Eurovision 1974
The glittering hotpants, sequined jumpsuits and platform heels that Abba wore at the peak of their fame were designed not just for the four band members to stand out – but also for tax efficiency, according to claims over the weekend.
Reflecting on the group’s sartorial record in a new book, Björn Ulvaeus said: “In my honest opinion we looked like nuts in those years. Nobody can have been as badly dressed on stage as we were.”
And the reason for their bold fashion choices lay not just in the pop glamour of the late 70s and early 80s, but also in the Swedish tax code.
What, you mean no one was wearing clothes like this in the late 70′s?
The Daily Mail: Abba admit they only wore those ridiculous outfits to avoid tax!
He said: ‘Nobody can have been as badly dressed on stage as we were. In my honest opinion we looked like nuts in those years.
But we figured people would remember us even if we finished ninth.’
Colleague Benny Andersson added: ‘I’ve never regretted any picture?.?.?. just grin and bear it.’