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  • Oct 05, 2021 11:09 AM
    Last: 2mo

    The Forbes 400 or 400 Richest Americans is a list published by Forbes magazine of the wealthiest 400 American citizens who own assets in the U.S., ranked by net worth. The 400 was started by Malcolm Forbes in 1982 and the list is published annually around September.[2] Peter W. Bernstein and Annalyn Swan describe the Forbes 400 as capturing "a period of extraordinary individual and entrepreneurial energy, a time unlike the extended postwar years, from 1945 to 1982, when American society emphasized the power of corporations." Bernstein and Swan also describe it as representing "a powerful argument – and sometimes a dream – about the social value of wealth in contemporary America."[3]

    Inherited wealth may help explain why many Americans who have become rich may have had a "substantial head start".[4][5] In September 2012, according to the Institute for Policy Studies, "over 60 percent" of the Forbes richest 400 Americans "grew up in substantial privilege".[6]

    In April 2018, an ex-Forbes reporter Jonathan Greenberg alleged that Donald Trump had inflated his actual wealth in order to be included on the Forbes 400 listing. Greenberg provided original audio recordings of his 1984 exchange with "John Barron", one of the pseudonyms of Donald Trump, and eventually included Trump at the end of the Forbes 400 list at $100 million, one fifth of the $500 million which "Barron" was claiming as Donald Trump's net worth. This figure was later corrected and, following civil proceedings years later, Trump admitted the name was fabricated


    Trump was subsequently removed from the list, but eventually got back on.

    When Trump filed his financial disclosure information as he started his run for president, he listed his net worth as $10 billion, which was roughly twice what his net worth was at that point in time.

    Forbes just released their most recent list. For the first time since 1996, Trump's name is not on the list. Since he started his term in office, his net worth has shrunk by $600 million, due to the fact that the bulk of his properties are hospitality-related, a category that was his especially hard by the pandemic. His new net worth of $2.5 billion is $400 million short of the amount that is needed to be included on the list. According to Forbes, he had a chance to sell his properties when he started his term in office, but did no do so. As a result, he has no one to blame except himself for his diminished status.


  • Feb 28, 2018 10:06 AM
    Last: 10d

    Today, the Biden administration just reversed another one of Trump's bad ideas.

    The Biden administration on Monday revoked a Trump-era rule that became a flash point in the abortion wars by forbidding clinics that receive federal family planning aid from advising people about ending their pregnancies.

    The new rule for the half-century-old family planning program known as Title X will allow health centers to receive the federal funds even if they refer patients for abortions. It takes effect Nov. 8.

    The rule reverses a move initiated in 2018 by former president Donald Trump to appeal to the social conservatives crucial to his political base, siding with them in a long-running battle with the Planned Parenthood Federation of America and other family planning groups.

    Rather than heeding the restrictions, affiliates of Planned Parenthood, which serve about four in 10 of the program’s patients, as well as other health centers, forfeited the Title X funds that had been a main support of their work.

    An estimated 981 clinics — about one in four that received Title X money — dropped out in 2019, and a half-dozen states no longer had any health centers in the program, according to the Guttmacher Institute, a reproductive rights research and policy organization.

    Title X has been an ideological lightning rod since shortly after it was created in 1970 under former president Richard Nixon as part of federal public health law. It is intended mainly to help poor or uninsured women.

    Biden also said at the time his administration’s policies would “support women’s and girls’ sexual and reproductive health and rights in the United States as well as globally.” As part of the memo, the president lifted what is known as the “Mexico City Policy,” which has seesawed back and forth for nearly three decades, depending on whether Republicans or Democrats have been in the White House.

    Texas has been sued over their "heartbeat" bill. Although the Supreme Court did not act to prevent it, it's still possible that another strategy can be used to reverse it. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court is scheduled to review a bill a restrictive bill in Mississippi.


  • Oct 04, 2021 02:45 PM
    Last: 2mo

    When our son was a teenage, he shared a Guns 'N Roses cassette that one of his friends had been listening to. I listened to it long enough to have my hair curl, and I refused to give it back to him unless his parents picked it up.

    Rap music, in particular, can be especially crude and violent, but should it be banned?

    In the 1970's, a group called Parents Music Resource Center tried to get warning labels put on cassettes. The group asked John Denver to testify in Congress, since he was the most wholesome singer they could think of.

    It did not go well.


    Charlton Heston also was not a fan of "racy" lyrics.

    At a Time Warner shareholder meeting in July of 1992, he read the lyrics to ICE-T's "Body Count" album to a stunned audience. To hear those lyrics being spoken in his rich melodious voice had to be quite an experience.


    In the end, free speech still won out.

  • Feb 22, 2020 05:02 PM
    Last: 2mo

    Trump is not the only one who is crazy.

    The Daily Kos reminded us this morning that Rudy Giuliani is a few tacos short of a combination plate.


  • Sep 19, 2021 02:20 PM
    Last: 2mo

    The classic example of a snake oil salesmen are the televangelist preachers who milk money from their supporters.

    It was on this day in 1988 that one of them "went down in flames".


    Jim Bakker was indicted on federal charges of mail and wire fraud and of conspiring to defraud the public. The indictment also helped to shine a spotlight on the fact that Bakker had had sex with a former church secretary named Jessica Hahn in a Florida hotel room. Just like Trump did with Stormy Daniels, he paid Ms. Hahn a large sum of money to keep silent about the affair.

    The scandal put an end to Praise the Lord Ministries, and Bakker was sentenced to 45 years in prison. The sentence was later reduced to 8 years.

    "Make up queen" Tammy Fay Bakker divorced him when he was in prison,

    Not surprisingly, his fellow snake oil salesmen" were quick to condemn him.

    One of those was Jimmy Swaggart, However, after Swaggart got caught with prostitutes on two separate occasions, the Assemblies of God church defrocked him. His ministry is still active today, but in a much reduced state.

    One piece of trivia that you might find interesting is that he is a cousin to Jerry Lee Lewis, who also has had many scandals in his life. Both men are now 86 years old.

    Great balls of fire!


  • Sep 30, 2021 08:40 AM
    Last: 2mo


    Speaking of camel dung ...

    Birth control and abortion are well documented in Ancient Egypt. The Ebers Papyrus from 1550 BC and the Kahun Papyrus from 1850 BC have within them some of the earliest documented descriptions of birth control, the use of honey, acacia leaves and lint to be placed in the vagina to block sperm.[5][6] Another early document explicitly referring to birth control methods is the Kahun Gynecological Papyrus from about 1850 BC. It describes various contraceptive pessaries, including acacia gum, which recent research has confirmed to have spermatocidal qualities and is still used in contraceptive jellies. Other birth control methods mentioned in the papyrus include the application of gummy substances to cover the "mouth of the womb" (i.e. the cervix), a mixture of honey and sodium carbonate applied to the inside of the vagina, and a pessary made from crocodile dung. Lactation (breast-feeding) of up to three years was also used for birth control purposes in ancient Egypt.


  • Sep 06, 2019 12:08 PM
    Last: 2mo


    Initially, I was reluctant to pay money for online subscriptions, but started with the New York Times about 10 years ago.

    Eventually, I added the Arizona Republic which used to be less than $20 a month, but is now around $50

    Then, the Washington Post beckoned. A year later, I added the Boston Globe.

    These 4 papers cost me about $100 a month - but I don't regret the cost at all.

    In addition, I've been a long time subscriber to TIME magazine, and in the last couple of years, I've added the Atlantic and The Nation.

    My wife spends far too much money on books, but I rarely complain.

    To be an educated person, you simply need to spend a little money.

    I've never had a problem with security issues.

  • Sep 05, 2021 08:47 AM
    Last: 3mo

    The nationwide driver shortage is hitting many industries - including education.

    In Massachusetts, Governor Baker activated the Massachusetts National Guard Monday to assist with school transportation, starting in four cities.

    Up to 250 personnel will be available, with 90 Guard members slated to begin training on Tuesday to help with transportation in Chelsea, Lawrence, Lowell, and Lynn, according to a statement from the state’s Executive Office of Public Safety and Security. The members will drive school transport vans known as 7D vehicles.

  • Jan 26, 2020 12:43 AM
    Last: 1mo

    Despite the mound of evidence that shows that getting vaccinated and wearing a mask are the best ways to avoid getting COVID, there are still far too many people who are not convinced.

    When I bought my lotto tickets this morning, the car below was parked outside. From these pictures, I can draw a number of conclusions:

    1)The owner is not wealthy (he just bought a 14 year old car)

    2) The owner is not smart (as evidenced by the writing on the windows

    3) the owner is not a Democrat (same as above)

    4) There is a strong likelihood that the owner watch the FOX channel (same )

    5) you just can't fix stupid

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  • Sep 13, 2021 01:42 PM
    Last: 3mo

    Family Research Council was founded in 1981 by James Dobson.

    Family Research Council is an American fundamentalist Protestant activist group, with an affiliated lobbying organization. FRC promotes what it considers to be family values by advocating and lobbying for policies in government. FRC was formed in the United States in 1981 by James Dobson and incorporated in 1983

    Dobson also founded Focus on the Family, which he started in 1977. and led until 2010. In addition to a variety of radio programs, he also has published 28 books as sole author, and 8 more as co-author.

    The current leader of the Family Research Council is Tony Perkins, who is trying to promote right-wing takeovers of school boards.

    This is what he said:

    You see, when public schools were forced to go virtual, parents got a front-row seat to the radical anti-faith, anti-family, anti-America indoctrination being force fed to their children.

    From gender identity ideology to Critical Race Theory (CRT) and the revisionist 1619 Project branding America as systemically racist from its founding until today, parents realized their local public schools were filling their children’s minds with lies, hatred, and division…

    and they were horrified!

    FRC Action, Perkins said, is “focusing our national expertise on key local elections by providing, at no charge, much needed resources to help replace radical school board members with Christian and conservative parents and other qualified candidates.”

    Because homicide is still illegal in Arizona, I will never attend a school board meeting in Arizona, but hope that a few brave souls can attend in my attendance in order to keep the crazy people in check.


    Tony Perkins also has some help from Charlie Kirk (remember him?.

    Turning Point USA, an organization that trains and mobilizes right-wing college students, launched a project targeting public school boards on August 15, the Documented newsletter reported. TPUSA’s “School Board Watchlist” urges right-wing activists to submit anonymous tips about “radical and false ideologies endorsed by school boards and pushed in the classroom.”