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We really appreciate your visits! Every Friday, our goal is to provide you with a few laughs, some inspiring stories and some food for thought. We look forward to your visiting with us again next Friday! Y'all come on back now... ya hear!






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Customer acquisition vs retention. The winner is…

In business, just as in real life, good relationships matter. It’s a simple truth that a lot of business people tend to forget. Many place a high premium on networking and fail to give proper care to the relationships that they have already created.

While networking can certainly help build awareness and make new sales, the success of your business should not be measured by the number of names in your contact list. No matter whether your business is customer-driven or client-driven, its success or failure is ultimately defined by the quality of the relationships that you have with your “consumers”.

When the question comes to customer acquisition vs. retention, the winner is obvious. Customer profitability tends to increase over the life of a retained customer, and acquiring new customers can cost as much as five times more than satisfying and retaining current customers...

As pointed out by Emmet C. Murphy, Ph.D., and Mark Murphy in their book ‘Leading on the Edge of Chaos: Positive Leadership in a Volatile Economy’. The cost of acquisition is high, so once a relationship is established, it is much more profitable to nurture it, than to just move on to the next one.

Relationship maintenance is crucial in business because like our social relationships, business relationships can weaken over time if neglected.



Think about it; if a friend whom you haven’t seen in years calls on you asking for a big favor, how likely will you be to agree to donate your time or money to this person? The same holds true in business: You cannot leave a business relationship unattended for a time and expect your customers to come running to you next time you need to make a sale.

Customers who don’t feel valued and cared for are not likely to remain loyal. According to 1st Financial Training Services, 96% of unhappy customers don’t complain; however, 91% of those simply leave and never come back.

It’s very easy to lose a customer, and there are multiple ways in which both business owners and sales people can sabotage themselves – showing no customer appreciation, pushing a sale on a prospect regardless of whether they need it or not, and betraying customers’ trust are just a few of them.

Although salespeople get a bad reputation for exactly those things, a good salesman would never do anything of the sort. In fact, successful salespeople would tell you that sustainable or “good” sales practice is all about client retention and relationship building...

Getting to know your prospects and working with them as colleagues and collaborators is far more important than just making the sale and moving on. A number of business benefits can be achieved through “good” selling and proper customer relationship management:

• Customer loyalty
• Positive word of mouth (WOM)
• New clientele
• Desirable image
• Long-lasting success



So what do savvy business people do in order to forge strong and lasting relationships with their prospects and clients? The answer is really simple, although it might come as a surprise to some – they treat their customers as they would treat their friends, or themselves for that matter. “Good” selling is all about:

Prioritizing quality over quantity, because not every new relationship is going to be equally promising. No, you don’t need everyone to be your customer; you need your relationships to reflect your values and beliefs, and to reinforce the image that you have created for yourself and your business.

Relationships that you choose to maintain will require much of your time and attention, so make sure that you are able to devote yourself 100% to them even after the sale.

Establishing a dialog, because relationships are a two-way street. People don’t like to feel that they are being forced into doing things, so pushing a sale on a customer will do no good to your relationship. Instead of making an impression on your prospects with a strong sales pitch, opt for a softer approach that is less likely to make them feel pressured to buy something from you.

Talk to them, make them feel welcomed and relaxed, and find out what they need: what problem they are trying to solve, and what is the best way to help them. If you are able to have an open dialog with your prospects, there is a greater chance of their becoming your customers in the future, as well as more room for the relationship to grow.

Maintaining patience, because trusting relationships don’t happen overnight. By rushing your prospects or putting pressure on them, you will not achieve the quality relationship that you desire. In order to win people’s trust, you need to prove your loyalty to them first – and this may take time.



Building trust, because without it relationships fail quickly and customer loyalty is impossible to achieve. The more personalized you make your relationships, the more likely you are to win your customers’ trust. Honesty and openness are key, as even a suspicion of deception or manipulation can ruin the relationship.

If you are not sincere with your customers, they will find out eventually – and with the proliferation of social media these days it is easier than ever – and then you will never make another sale to them again. Definitely not worth it.

Practicing empathy to gain insight into the customers’ perspective and serve them better. Empathy is about relating to the other person’s situation and feelings, as if they were your own. Once you have that understanding, it is easier to build deeper and stronger relationships with people.

Customers who can see that you understand their needs and genuinely want to help them solve their problems will invest more into the relationship, and they are going to be less likely to abandon it if a problem occurs.

Managing expectations to avoid disappointing customers. This happens when you over-promise and then under-deliver. Be realistic with your prospects and clients; although it might yield less than desirable results in the beginning, it will pay off in a long run.

Adding value, because relationships carry on even after the sale is made. Staying in touch and continuing to show interest in your customers is absolutely necessary to ensure repeat business and referrals.

This means that you need to always keep their interests in the back of your head; be available and generous with your time; be prepared to aid your customers as needed; and be proactive and help them take advantage of opportunities, create other beneficial relationships, etc.



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How to make a healthier version of Buffalo wings

EatingWell's Jessie Price shows how to make boneless buffalo hot wings healthy for the Super Bowl.

She cuts calories and fat by using lean chicken tenders, pan-frying instead of deep-frying and making a lighter blue cheese sauce. Get tips for how to make buffalo hot wings healthier.

Watch the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tdOwE0CgJCY



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How to get a good night’s sleep

According to sleep researchers, a night's sleep is divided into five continually shifting stages, defined by types of brain waves that reflect either lighter or deeper sleep. Toward morning, there is an increase in rapid eye movement, or REM sleep, when the muscles are relaxed and dreaming occurs, and recent memories may be consolidated in the brain.

The experts say that hitting a snooze alarm over and over again to wake up is not the best way to feel rested. “The restorative value of rest is diminished, especially when the increments are short,” said psychologist Edward Stepanski, PhD who has studied sleep fragmentation at the Rush University Medical Center in Chicago.

This on and off again effect of dozing and waking causes shifts in the brain-wave patterns. Sleep-deprived snooze-button addicts are likely to shorten their quota of REM sleep, impairing their mental functioning during the day. (New York Times, October 12, 2004)

Certain therapies, like cognitive behavioral therapy teach people how to recognize and change patterns of thought and behavior to solve their problems. Recently this type of therapy has been shown to be very effective in getting people to fall asleep and conquer insomnia.



According to a study published in the October 2004 issue of The Archives of Internal Medicine, cognitive behavior therapy is more effective and lasts longer than a widely used sleeping pill, Ambien, in reducing insomnia.

The study involved 63 healthy people with insomnia who were randomly assigned to receive Ambien, the cognitive behavior therapy, both or a placebo. The patients in the therapy group received five 30-minute sessions over six weeks.

They were given daily exercises to “recognize, challenge and change stress-inducing” thoughts and were taught techniques, like delaying bedtime or getting up to read if they were unable to fall asleep after 20 minutes. The patients taking Ambien were on a full dose for a month and then were weaned off the drug.

At three weeks, 44 percent of the patients receiving the therapy and those receiving the combination therapy and pills fell asleep faster compared to 29 percent of the patients taking only the sleeping pills.

Two weeks after all the treatment was over, the patients receiving the therapy fell asleep in half the time it took before the study and only 17 percent of the patients taking the sleeping pills fell asleep in half the time. (New York Times, October 5, 2004)



According to leading sleep researchers, there are techniques to combat common sleep problems:

• Keep a regular sleep/wake schedule.

• Don’t drink or eat caffeine four to six hours before bed and minimize daytime use.

• Don’t smoke, especially near bedtime or if you awake in the night.

• Avoid alcohol and heavy meals before sleep.

• Get regular exercise.

• Minimize noise, light and excessive hot and cold temperatures where you sleep.

• Develop a regular bed time and go to bed at the same time each night.

• Try and wake up without an alarm clock.

• Attempt to go to bed earlier every night for certain period; this will ensure that you’re getting enough sleep.



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In case you haven't heard, or you are oblivious to the news of the day... America's 'Debt Limit' is now again the latest fabricated crisis in Washington.

Today is April 29th... and your taxes are still going up... and our country is virtually bankrupt. The U.S. government spends $10.5 billion dollars per day - of which $4.5 billion dollars is borrowed! That means we are going $4.5 billion dollars deeper in the hole - each and every day. Yet Obama pretends all is well. Obama's debt comes right out of your pocket... 

Our nation-state is no model of fiscal responsibility. When Barack Obama took office, the national debt was already an impressive $10 trillion. Today it is $18.5 trillion. The national debt is still growing at a rate of more than $50 million an hour. 

Here's Obama's "bull crap" for the week... 04/29/2016



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Obama presidency has been a disgusting failure right from the beginning... List of Obama failures

The Obama administration has been marred by debt, scandals, foreign policy failures, and an overall fragmentation of this country. He has plunged the United States into an abyss of economic debt that will create generations of American servitude paying off his wayward spending endeavors.

The Red, White and Blue’s epitaph will read like a litany of failures perpetrated on both the American people and the world by this president:

Scandals:

IRS instructed to target Obama’s enemies.
Obama Clinton Butcher
's of Benghazi.
Spying on the news media
and reporters.
The ATF “Fast and Furious” scheme.
Sebelius mismanagment of Obamacare
.

The Pigford Agriculture Department Scandal.
The G
SA Las Vegas Spending Spree.
Veterans Affairs neglecting vets.
Solyndra sol
ar scandal - $850 million dollar fraud.
New Black Panthers Voter Intimidation.

The hacking of Sharyl Attkisson’s computer.
Obama’s LIES about the Affordable Care Act.
“I’ll Pass My Own Laws”.
NSA Spying on American People.



Foreign Policy Failures

Lack of solidarity with Israel.
Disaster with the Arab Spring.
Crimeaignorance and inaction.
Leaving Iraq too soon and letting ISIS take over.
Handling of Syrian Red Line.

Naively calling ISIS “JV team”.
Failing to Recognize ISIS as a Radical (or Devout) Muslim Movement.
Returning the bust of Churchill to the Brits.
Lack of Confidence by NATO nations.
Signing a Disastrous Nuclear Deal with the Mullahs of Ira.

Paid $5 Billion & Released 5 Taliban Prisoners For Deserter Bergdahl.
Waging war by attacking Libya without Congressional approval.

Domestic Policy Failure

Failure to secure the
border.
Illegals bringing guns, drug and diseases through the southern border.
Bowe Bergdahl swap for five ISIS terr
orists.
Passing on the keystone pipeline.
$9 Trillion dollars more in debt.



Vast expansion of government.
Racial Division at all-time high.
Inviting Bomb Boy Ahmed to White House.
Disrespect and attacks on
police.
Failed and wasteful economic stimulus plan.

Constant disregard for the Constitution and tyrannical rule.
China overtook America as world’s largest economy.
Double Downgrade of America's credit rating.
Housing policies failed to stop foreclosures.
Price of healthcare has drastically risen.

Mismanagement of disastrous Gulf Oil Spill.
Highest percentage of Americans on Food Stamps and Medicaid.
Record 92,898,000 Americans over 16 years not working.
Lowest Labor Force participation rate of 62.7%.
Denying the notion of American Exceptionalism.

Failure to secure
the Olympics for Chicago in 2016.
Naming numerous Communists/Socialists/Progressives to Czar Positions.
Mismanagement and cover up of Terrorist shootings in San Bernardino, California.
Education schemes failed to curb college costs.
Disastrous Vetting Process of “Immigrants” from Muslim Nations.




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The rhetoric of socialism may seem inspiring... but its actual record of death and destruction is dismal

Countries which for centuries exported food have suddenly found themselves forced to import food to stave off starvation, after agriculture was socialized. This has happened all over the world, among people of every race.

Anyone who saw the contrast between East Berlin and West Berlin, back in the days when half the city was controlled by the Communists, can have no doubts as to which system produces more economic benefits for ordinary people.

Even though the people in both parts of the city were of the same race, culture and history, those living under the Communists were painfully poorer, in addition to having less freedom.

Much the same story could be told in Africa, where Ghana relied on socialistic programs and the Ivory Coast relied more on the marketplace, after both countries became independent back in the 1960s. Ghana started off with all the advantages.



Its per capita income was double that of the Ivory Coast. But, after a couple of decades under different economic systems, the bottom 20% of people in the Ivory Coast had higher incomes than 60% of the people in Ghana.

Economic inefficiency is by no means the worst aspect of socialistic government. Trying to reduce economic inequality by increasing political inequality, which is essentially what Marxism is all about, has cost the lives of millions of innocent people under Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot, and others.

Politicians cannot be trusted with a monopoly of power over other people’s lives. Thousands of years of history have demonstrated this again and again.

While my desires for a better life for ordinary people have not changed from the days of my youthful Marxism, experience has taught the bitter lesson that the way to get there is the opposite of what I once thought.



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The phony instigator and father of global warming admits: "It used to be hotter than it is now!"

Global warming activist James Hansen is arrested outside the White House in 2011 during a climate change demonstration. But his bigger offense is unnecessarily alarming the public about warming.

Science: To listen to the climate change alarmist community, one would think that Earth has never been so warm as it is now. But it’s been warmer, and sea levels have been higher, facts that the leader of the movement acknowledges.

James Hansen, the famed NASA scientist who stirred the climate scare when in 1988 he told a Senate committee that “global warming” - yes, he used those words - “is already happening now,” has never backed off his claims, despite the fact that he’s been demonstrably wrong.

No one this side of Al Gore has had a larger impact on trafficking in fear and trying so hard to sow panic.

The narrative since that day in 1988 is that Earth is entering a dangerous warm era created by man’s carbon dioxide emissions. Every heat wave, cold snap, drought, hurricane, heavy snow, torrential rain, and change in sea level has been supposedly caused by man. And all are allegedly unprecedented events.

Except they’re not. It’s been warmer, and extreme weather has visited us before, all in a time long before man began to drive cars and operate power plants that helped move him from an almost primitive existence to a modern one.
Hansen has even admitted this.



“The last interglacial period, 120,000 years ago, that’s the last time it was warmer than today, sea level was 6 to 9 meters higher,” he said in an interview with online magazine Yale Environment 360.
So it has been warmer, and sea levels have been higher. And those conditions were entirely natural.

Yet the alarmists want us to believe that they predicted warmth of today - which has yet to occur - is man-caused. How do they know? And why do they never mention that we are leaving the Little Ice Age and entering another interglacial period, an era that should be warmer as we gain distance from the cold period?

The Watts Up With That blog points out another hole in the narrative:

While implying that we’re headed for another 6-to-9-meters increase in sea level in the coming - or just-arrived - interglacial period, “Hansen failed to say” that “paleo-climatological studies have indicated that it took a number of millennia for sea levels to rise those 6 to 9 meters - when temperatures were warmer than today.”

Yet we’ve been told until the alarmists have no more hot air to exhale that we are running out of time to act, and maybe already have.
The Hansens of our world will never give in, though.



He told  Yale Environment 360 that “we conclude... that the timescale for ice-sheet disintegration is probably a lot shorter than has been assumed in the intergovernmental discussions.”

Watts Up With That blogger Bob Tisdale says nuts to that: 

“Even proponents of the hypothesis of human-induced global warming found the recent Hansen study (Ice melt, sea-level rise and superstorms: evidence from paleoclimate data, climate modeling, and modern observations that 2°C global warming could be dangerous) to be nonsense. Even the title of the paper includes the oft-used weasel words ‘could be.’ ”

Meanwhile, Anthony Watts himself says that Hansen “seems interested in promoting alarmism at all costs. There’s been a whiff of this throughout his entire career, but this latest paper is just too much to take seriously.”

Perhaps the best analysis, though, is from science blogger David Appell, who says that the canonization of the Hansen study is just more barnyard droppings, and the paper itself “goes out on a limb that the science can’t necessarily support.”

Hansen has been out on that skinny limb for almost 30 years, and it keeps breaking. He just hopes no one is noticing the duct tape and paper clips he’s rigged up to hide the damage.




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Cool Photos



Justin Nelzen, in red vest, joins others as they work to rescue up to 70 horses near Humble along Cypress Creek, on April 18, 2016, in Houston. More than a foot of rain fell Monday in parts of Houston, submerging scores of subdivisions and several major interstate highways, forcing the closure of schools and knocking out power to thousands of residents who were urged to shelter in place.




Paul Bolton and Philipp Scholz compete on the first day of the Red Bull Minas Riders endurance race in Belo Horizonte, Brazil, on April 17.




Frankie Dettori celebrates after riding So Mi Dar to win The Investec Derby Trial at the Epsom racecourse on April 20 in Epsom, England.




Competitors climb in front of the Matterhorn as they start the 20th edition of the Glacier Patrol race in Zermatt, Switzerland, April 19. In the race, highly-experienced hiker-skiers trek across the Haute Route along the Swiss-Italian border from Zermatt to Verbier, covering 33 miles by foot and ski.




A man climbs out of a crack after taking some pictures of a section of highway that collapsed in Chacras, Ecuador, on April 19. The strongest earthquake to hit Ecuador in decades flattened buildings and buckled highways along its Pacific coast, sending the Andean nation into a state of emergency.




Britain's Prince William and his wife Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge, pose as they sit in front of the Taj Mahal in Agra, India, on April 16. William and Kate sat side by side on the same bench where his late mother was photographed on a solitary visit in 1992.




A firefighter responds to a fire at an auto wrecking yard in the Sun Valley section of Los Angeles as a huge plume of thick, black smoke rises over them on April 17. The fire department said the blaze at Self Service Auto Recycler in Sun Valley engulfed at least 15 vehicles.




A child kisses the hand of Pope Francis during a visit at the Moria refugee camp on the island of Lesbos, Greece. Pope Francis implored Europe on Saturday to respond to the migrant crisis on its shores "in a way that is worthy of our common humanity," during an emotional and provocative trip to Greece.




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Friday-funnies...

Apparently I have an attitude. Who knew?

People like you... are the reason we have middle fingers.

The difference between school and life? School teaches you lessons and then gives you a test. Life gives you a test and you learn the lessons.

"Never love anybody who treats you like you're ordinary." -- Oscar Wilde

Prayer is the key to Heaven... but Faith unlocks the door.



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The trooper should have given the offenders a choice... A ticket... Or some Godly words.

Is the government trying to silence Christian cops?

The Indiana State Police said Thursday it had let go a trooper who had been sued twice in the past 18 months for allegedly preaching to citizens after stopping them for traffic violations. 

Senior Trooper Brian Hamilton, 40, was a 14-year veteran of the agency, Fox 59 reported. His firing was announced two days after the American Civil Liberties Union of Indiana filed suit on behalf of driver Wendy Pyle, who claimed her rights were violated after Hamilton pulled her over in January.

"While all of us - citizen and police officer - enjoy the right to freedom of religion and freedom of speech," State Police Superintendent Doug Carter said in a statement, "there are appropriate and proper restrictions placed on agents of the State related to their actions while engaged in their official duties."



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Trump wins ALL counties - in ALL five northeast states! Cruz and Kasich keep pretending they are viable?

Trump completes sweep of ALL five northeast states... "I consider myself the presumptive nominee," Trump declares

Donald Trump went five-for-five in sweeping a set of northeastern primaries Tuesday and declared himself the "presumptive" Republican nominee for president in the face of allied opposition from rivals Ted Cruz and John Kasich."

As far as I'm concerned, it's over," Trump said in claiming easy victories in Pennsylvania, Maryland, Connecticut, Rhode Island and Delaware. He said, "this is a far bigger win than we even expected - all five!

"Citing a large number of delegates and votes in the face of Republican establishment opposition, the maverick businessman said "the best way to beat the system" is to have evenings like this.

Cruz and Kasich, who have formed a loose alliance to try to block Trump in some future contests, are hoping to pick up some delegates after Tuesday's primaries, but their totals will likely be minimal in the wake of Trump's landslide wins.

While his rivals argue that Trump would lose the fall election to Democrat Hillary Clinton, Trump said during his victory rally that he would beat the Democrat easily, and that the only thing she has going for her is "the women's card ... If Hillary Clinton were a man, I don't think she'd get 5% of the vote.



"The GOP front-runner also said that Cruz and Kasich are hurting themselves with their "faulty deal," and both should exit the Republican race because they "have no path - zero path - to victory." Cruz, headed for a third-place finish behind Kasich in many of Tuesday's contests, pretended to dismiss the results even before they were announced.

The Texas senator scant hopes that his campaign now "moves back to more favorable terrain," starting next week in Indiana and ending June 7 in California. Trump also vowed to take Indiana, calling it "a great state" where he has "many, many friends. Trump is now leading in Indiana.

"Both Trump and Clinton, who also scored primary wins Tuesday, began turning toward each other over the prospect of a fall election battle. Clinton said Trump is dividing the nation, while Trump said "Crooked Hillary" would be a weak president.

The Republican front-runner also said the Democratic Party has treated Clinton opponent Bernie Sanders badly, and the Vermont senator should run in the fall as an independent.

Coming off a big win a week ago in his home state of New York, Trump seemed poised to move within striking distance of the 1,237 delegates he needs for a first-ballot victory at the Republican convention in July.



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Career politicians fix nothing... we need an outsider

When our government was set up, the founding fathers had a great idea. Now here it is the year 2016 and it is still a great idea.

I do think however our founding fathers, with their wisdom and foresight could not foresee career politicians. They could see someone who got elected to office, made a difference after serving one or two terms, then return home.

Now we have career politicians who serve a lifetime and never made a difference?

Politics and greed go hand in hand. A love of country, a love of fellow Americans is no longer in the political arena. Sadly, contempt and greed along with a self-loathing of America - is now the norm.



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Felons for Hillary

Hillary Clinton is in for a tough election, and she needs all the help she can get. Luckily her longtime pal, Terry McAuliffe is here to provide it. His plan? To restore voting rights to 206,000 ex-felons:

Gov. Terry McAuliffe signed an executive order Friday restoring the voting rights of 206,000 ex-felons, a sweeping action the governor said was aimed largely at rectifying Virginia’s “long and sad history” of suppressing African-American voting power.

The move, coming in a presidential election year, outraged Republicans who accused McAuliffe of abusing his power to help longtime ally Hillary Clinton win a battleground state by putting more likely Democratic voters on the books.

The governor’s order applies to all violent and nonviolent felons who had finished their sentence and supervised release as of Friday, even those who have not applied for a restoration of rights. Previous Virginia governors have restored rights on an individual basis, but none has done it for an entire category of offenders with one pen stroke.

This is an absolutely outrageous move. Virginia voters should let Democrats know they won't stand for this. In the meantime, perhaps Republicans can file some sort of injunction in hopes of preventing McAullife hand the state of Virginia to Hillary.



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Help girl Scouts send cookies to our military

Girl Scouts Western Pennsylvania (GSWPA) aims to send 45,000 boxes of the brand’s iconic cookies to men and women serving our country overseas in the U.S. Military and community veterans’ groups

Donations to the program – called Operation: Sweet Appreciation – will be collected online now through Memorial Day, Monday, May 30, at gswpa.org/military.

Anyone who donates online to Operation: Sweet Appreciation can choose a specific Girl Scout troop or individually registered girl (also known as Indie Girls) to benefit from the donation, just as they would through the traditional Cookie Program.

“Every year, Girl Scouts make military men and women a priority by sending care packages of Girl Scout Cookies, much-needed personal items and letters to U.S. servicemen and women around the globe,” said Patricia A. Burkart, CEO of GSWPA. “Operation: Sweet Appreciation helps amplify their efforts and sends tens of thousands of cookies to active-duty soldiers overseas as well as veterans right here at home.”

In 2015, more than 38,000 boxes of cookies were donated through Operation: Sweet Appreciation. By the end of booth sales on March 20, more than 40,000 boxes were already donated.

Website: http://www.gssef.org/invest/cookies-for-the-military/



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Severina Vučković ... "ITALIANA"

Severina Vučković born on April 21, 1972; best known by her stage name Severina) is a Croatian pop-folk singer and one of the most popular singers in Croatia and the Balkans.

In 2006, Nacional weekly listed her among the 100 most influential Croats, calling her "the only bona fide Croatian celebrity". In 2015, she was the most googled person in Croatia and Slovenia.

Watch the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hii4p4Ypyzw



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6 insane structures that will be awesome when finished

If there's one those of us who live on the internet can agree on, it's that outside sucks. It's nothing but roads, buildings, sprawling forests, breathtaking vistas - you know, lame stuff like that. But outside used to be so much fun, didn't it?

Swinging around the jungle gym and roller-blading down the street were the best part of your day. It was only a matter of time before someone got their heads together to make all that boring stuff fun again. To that end...






#6. The US Bank Building Is Installing A Slide ... On The Outside

One thing Silicon Valley has made clear is something everyone secretly already knew: Every adult wants their office to be Chuck E. Cheese. Not to be outdone by their wimpy neighbors to the north, the owners of LA's US Bank Tower have symbolically thrown Facebook's ping-pong balls right back at them and declared "Oh yeah?

We're putting in a frickin slide." The SkySlide, which will extend from the 70th to the 69th floor, will have a glass bottom so you can fully appreciate being anywhere other than on the streets of Downtown Los Angeles, capturing that surprisingly large demographic of people old enough to have conquered their fear of heights who still giggle at the number 69.

The clearly superior alternative to elevators is just one part of the biggest makeover the building's had since Independence Day. Those two floors are being entirely converted into what they're calling the SkySpace, which will include a bar on the 70th floor and an observation deck on the 69th (hee).

So you can get drunk, whiz down the slide, and take in the stunning views of the San Fernando Valley. It's like a fancier version of your regular Thursday night at the local elementary school.








#5. The Tallest Skyscraper In Orlando Will Have A Roller Coaster Wrapped Around It


If putting a slide on a skyscraper seems a little extreme, how about a roller coaster?

The rather unimaginatively-named Skyscraper will be the tallest roller coaster in the world when it opens in 2018, as well as the tallest structure in Orlando, quite literally towering over the Suntrust Center (a puny, embarrassing 400 feet).

You can virtually experience it firsthand in this video, which shows passengers dangling sideways and upside-down 570 feet above Orlando, testing even the stupidest child's trust in theme park engineers and fear of gravity.

Okay, so it's not really a skyscraper - there's nothing inside except the Skyfall, the world's tallest drop ride, which looks like what your subconscious would do with your memory of riding the Frog Hopper in the middle of a nightmare. It's all part of the SkyPlex, the result of Orlando deciding they didn't have enough theme parks.

The aerial entertainment center will also include the SkyPlaza, an open-air promenade of restaurants and shops. After that, they ran out of things they could put "Sky" in front of.

Watch the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1gK5MWQ__Ns&feature=youtu.be







#4. A Hairy Skyscraper

Renewable energy is great and all, but wind turbines are just super ugly, you guys. Can't we save the planet and have nice things?

Maybe we can if a Swedish architecture firm succeeds in its crazy plans for a vertical wind turbine. With just a few small adjustments, they insist they can make existing buildings double as wind power plants, "opening up possibilities of how buildings can produce energy."

Oh, and also make them look like a Dr. Seuss creation. Renewable energy is great and all, but wind turbines are just super ugly, you guys. Can't we save the planet and have nice things? Maybe we can if a Swedish architecture firm succeeds in its crazy plans for a vertical wind turbine.







#3. A Boring Mountaintop Turned Into Fun Park


The Matterhorn and other mountain-themed rides are always popular theme park attractions, but when all's said and done, they're still only fake mountains. It kinda takes you out of your Cool Runnings fantasy, you know?

But the Dolni Morava resort in the Czech Republic is an adventure park built on top of an actual mountain, featuring real bobsled runs, a water park, and an "adrenaline park" with 40-foot swings and climbing towers. The Czech are hardcore, you guys. The crowning jewel of Dolni Morava, however, is the SkyWalk.

Hey SkyPlex, there's one you didn't think of! Perched atop the mountain, the wooden walkway twists and turns almost 200 feet up into the air like a literal stairway to heaven. It took nearly an entire year to build, mostly because - no joke - the workers kept getting enveloped in friendly little clouds.

Once you get to the top, there is, of course, a slide that will take you all the way around the structure to the ground ... and back up, and back down, and back up, and back down, until your mom needs to carry you home and you fall asleep in her arms.







#2. The Freeway For Ice Skaters (Freezeway)

A funny thing happens to our brains over the summer: No matter how reliably the winter is going to suck, people will forget how to drive in it. The result is thousands of grandmas going 10 mph, determined to keep you from getting to work on time.

Which is arguably better than the alternative (i.e. a fiery death via car crash). Your mileage may vary, of course. You'll be less affected if you live in, say, Southern California than you would in Canada. An Edmonton city councilor once joked "Why don't we just crack the fire hydrants open, flood the streets, and let people skate to work in the winter?"

Because Canada is a magical place, decades later, his question has been answered with a resounding "Heck yes." A 400-meter path has transformed the Victoria Park area into a Charlie Brown strip. It makes perfect sense, really. If people can walk and bike to work, why can't they skate?

The "Freezeway" - so named because it would be downright un-Canadian not to call it something adorable - may even expand along an 11-kilometer stretch of land currently being used by cyclists and pedestrians.

Not everyone is getting into the spirit, however. Councilor Mike Nickel called it "the stupidest idea I've heard," arguing that the money could be better spent improving the city's infrastructure or something lame like that. It was hard to tell; he sounded an awful lot like a muffled trombone.







#1. An Underwater Tennis Court

The Las Vegas of the United Arab Emirates, otherwise known as Dubai, is already home to a number of outlandish attractions, boasting the world's tallest tennis court and plans for an underwater hotel.

Apparently, in a bid to out-ridiculous the ridiculous capital of the world, but somewhat lacking their creativity, one dude looked around and thought, "Got it - underwater tennis court."

That guy is Polish architect Krzysztof Kotala, whose plans include a seven-court arena under an enormous glass dome under a man-made coral reef (to attract the maximum amount of nature to flip off, of course). It's a long way from reality, unfortunately.

There are a few teensy problems to overcome with any underwater structure, like where the hell to put it and how to make sure its inhabitants aren't doomed to the fanciest of watery graves. This has made raising the exorbitant funds needed for the project a bit difficult.

According to the latest reports, however, Kotala insists he's in talks with investors, adding his detractors to the list of wildlife he intends to conquer.



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God is calling


I reflected on how God was moving in me. New truths about my values, and my passion had pointed me to a new way of being that ushered in a fresh feeling of freedom and contentment.

What are your values?

God created each of us with our own God-given design. These values are the foundation upon which we build our lives. Things like, living with integrity, honesty, respect and loyalty are the basis of a value system that serves to empower us to steward our lives well.

Recognizing the values He instills within us allows us to live with clarity and purpose. Knowing our values gives us the ability to partner with the promise ofJeremiah 29:1, “For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

By trusting in this promise and standing firmly upon our values, we can release ourselves from the world’s expectations of being someone we are not and instead believe the truth of who we are in Christ.

What is your passion?

Discovering our passion begins with God and it’s through this relationship that we can become a person of influence. Operating in our passion makes everything bright, meaningful and filled with purpose. Passion is what gives us the energy to dream the impossible, believing it is possible.

My passion is to encourage others to be who God intended, helping others to fulfill their potential for greatness. This passion was placed in my heart by God, just like your passion is waiting to be unlocked.



Ask yourself, “Who is God calling me to serve?” And then ask God to break through the lie that says you can’t do it and instead embrace the truth Philippians 4:1that states so clearly that “We can do all things through Christ who gives us strength.”

A new way of being…

It takes courage to admit when we aren’t content and it feels risky to appeal to God for a new way of being. At the beginning of my own transformation I was anything but happy and desperately wanted change.

I was counseled, coached, mentored and studied the word searching for the truth of who I was and who God intended me to be. I discovered that Christ calls each of us to seek Him because He wants to be our new way of being.

Scripture says2 Corinthians 5:1, “Anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun.”

Now, the words “You’re different,” are words that fill me with the affirming truth of being in a transformational relationship with Jesus. The old has gone, the new has come. Will you let Him transform you?

Can God change your life?

God has made it possible for you to know Him and experience an amazing change in your own life. Discover how you can find peace with God.



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Why can't coffee shops spell correctly?

When asked for his name by the coffee shop clerk, my brother-in-law answered, “Marc, with a C.” Minutes later, he was handed his coffee with his name written on the side: "Cark".







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A teacher in Arkansas is in trouble for giving alcohol to underage students. But to be fair, just because you’re in fifth grade in Arkansas, it doesn’t necessarily mean you’re under 21. -- Conan O’Brien

In order to block Donald Trump’s path to the Republican nomination, John Kasich is pulling his campaign out of Indiana. Indiana should notice sometime in 2018. -- Conan O’Brien

Hillary Clinton said Pennsylvania is where she learned to shoot a gun. Meanwhile, Bernie Sanders said Pennsylvania is where he learned to load a musket. -- Conan O’Brien

A restaurant in Pennsylvania has unveiled a pizza inspired by Hillary Clinton. Apparently, the pizza is not that fresh or tasty, but it sticks around your stomach until all the other food has given up. -- Conan O’Brien

A woman who looks exactly like a female Ted Cruz has been asked to star in a porn movie. So finally, a cure for your porn addiction. -- Conan O’Brien





It's the sequel to Super Tuesday 3. There were primaries in five states. I feel like we've had primaries in some of these states — didn't we do Connecticut already? I was interested to find out who won, but what I'm more interested in is to see what new way the losers will explain why they still have a chance tomorrow. -- Jimmy Kimmel

The polls said Donald Trump was going to steam-roll his rivals in Pennsylvania, and he did. Next, he's going to build a hotel on top of them. -- Jimmy Kimmel

Ted Cruz and John Kasich made a pact so they would each have a better chance of stopping Donald Trump from getting the delegates he needs. It’s a halfhearted alliance between two guys who don't like each other. Somehow Donald Trump has turned this into an episode of “The Apprentice.” This is exactly what Gary Busey and Meatloaf would do. -- Jimmy Kimmel

According to a new study, people with several plants around their homes often live longer. Willie Nelson was like, “Oh hell yeah!” -- Seth Meyers

A new Swiss airplane called Solar Impulse 2 crossed the Pacific Ocean this weekend using only solar energy. Said the pilot right before takeoff, "Wait, Solar Impulse 2?" -- Seth Meyers




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Hilarious! Trump sounds off on John Kasich's eating habits... explains how Kasich eats pancakes

I have never seen a human being eat in such a disgusting fashion,” Donald Trump said in Rhode Island yesterday at a campaign event, referring to his campaign opponent John Kasich and his eating habits.

“This guy takes a pancake and he’s shoving it in his mouth. It is disgusting,” he continued. “Do you want that for your president? I don’t think so, I don’t think so. Honestly it’s disgusting.”

Trump was referring to Kasich’s on camera interview Monday morning while he was eating pancakes in a Philadelphia diner.

The presidential trail is peppered with visits to restaurants, diners, cafes, and bars, but Kasich has a reputation for diving into campaign food with gusto!

Trump is hilarious describing Kasich stuffing his pie hole!

Watch the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KqPp4z-Dm5w

Dennis Miller on O'Reilly adds to the comic comments!

Watch the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R92OWEwK19A



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There is now no difference between the political Left and Right ... "Donald Trump is going to change that bigtime!"

They are, from an outsider's perspective, basically the same beast. But since they still think of themselves as different, we'll play along. Conservatives claim they want small government, but are OK with an enormously wasteful and endlessly destructive military.

They lambaste the Democrats for supporting welfare, but then fail to see any irony in the fact that they, too, suckle the teet of the Welfare State.

At the tippy-top of the pyramid, for example, they embrace it through vast amounts of corporate welfare. And, of course, at the bottom, they protect their Social Security welfare ponzi-scheme like it's their only job.

We do have to give props to the Left. Because unlike the Right, the Left is at least honest about its love for abusing State power.

But the abuse is only acceptable, of course, as long as "the good guys" are doing it. (Meaning, as long as "their guy" is at the plate.)
Which is why, in case you ever find yourself at a stuffy dinner party, here's some Champagne Leftist etiquette. (Hey, you never know.)



Trigger Warning: Some of the content in this short guide will be offensive to those disconnected with reality.]

OK. First rule: Be the person who can dance on eggshells. Meaning, always keep the conversation light as a feather and stiff as a board. 

For example, it's not polite to bring up that Obama personally initiated a secret kill list, of which he closely oversees.
That might deeply offend someone.

Never imply that Obama started new wars in Iraq, Somalia, Nigeria and Libya. And if it happens to slip out, definitely don't bring up that he did it all without congressional approval. While it's all true, it's never going to be relevant to the conversation.

It would be considered impolite to point out that Obama started a covert drone war in Yemen. Because while everyone in the room will clearly have compassion for the poor souls of Yemen, Obama did what he had to do.

Don't say, either, that he escalated the CIA drone war in Pakistan. And, oh yeah, in Afghanistan, too. And, finally, don't tell anyone that Obama deployed Special Ops missions to a befuddling 134 countries - more than twice as many as Bush's 60.



Instead, talk about how many refugees we should let into the United States. And there, you'll see the hypocrisy: The Left's hypocrisy, among many others, is that it speaks up for the refugees, but utters few words for the victims of the bombings.

It wants to help defend Muslims, but only from harsh words from the mouths of Trump and the Republicans. Not from the missiles being dropped on their villages.

And what's the Right's biggest hypocrisy? Well, they like war. Soo... they dislike the Democrats because. uhh. the Dems want to expand the role of government? (Are we getting this right?) If we're being honest, Obama did precisely the same thing nearly all Republican candidates would've done in his shoes.

They would've, no doubt, let the Deep State carry them right into an ongoing - and nonstop - conflict in the Middle East, financing it all through debt, further impoverishing the country. And, of course, they would let the Fed maintain the wheel of the economic war machine. And the State would grow and grow.

Which is the same path the Crazy Train was already headed in. War, you see, was necessary. As mentioned yesterday, the formula is simple: "War is the Health of the State."

So. Left vs. Right?

Please.

You're all a bunch of [expletive deleted] hypocrites.



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Trump make great foreign policy speech... examples of how he's going to change all these Washington schemes bigtime!

Here's a perfect example. Trump gave an excellent foreign policy speech in Washington DC on Wednesday, 04/27/2016. Here's a good example of what Trump will bring to the presidency. Check it out.

Political pundit Ann Coulter, a staunch supporter of Trump, also called the speech "magnificent."


Trump on Wednesday called for the country to move toward an "America first" model of foreign policy and outlined how his administration would operate.“Americans must know that we’re putting the American people first again,” Trump said.

"On trade, on immigration, on foreign policy, the jobs, incomes and security of the American worker will always be my first priority. Both our friends and our enemies put their countries above ours, and we - while being fair to them - must start doing the same," he added.


He said his foreign policy would replace "randomness - with purpose" and "ideology and chaos - with strategy and peace."

Watch the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XW8RqLN3Qao



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Eat like a Roman


Archeologists in Italy have proven the health benefits of the same primal diet I’ve been recommending to my patients for years.


It turns out that after conducting CAT scans on 30 men, women, and children buried in ash and rock from the volcanic eruption at Pompeii in 79 AD, the archeologists discovered these ancient Romans had stronger teeth and bones than most people today.

Even though they didn’t have toothbrushes or toothpaste, the inhabitants of Pompeii all had strong, well-formed teeth. And they suffered far fewer cavities than most Americans and modern Europeans.


And their bones were discovered to be dense, heavy and strong - despite the evidence of damage from the high concentration of fluoride in their water and soil that’s common in populations who live in volcanic areas.

The reason for their excellent bone and teeth health: Their diet was primal, and there was a distinct absence of refined sugar.


Today, we live in a world where we eat enough to fill our bellies, but what we eat is so deprived of nutrients that our bodies don’t get enough to even reach a lowest level of what we need for basic nutrition.




And our modern diet is utterly overloaded with sugar, and the result is a worldwide epidemic of diabetics and other chronic diseases.


We’re full, yet starving.


Let me explain…


One of my greatest inspirations in medical school was the nutritional anthropologist and dentist, Dr. Weston A. Price.

Back in the 1930s, he made a nutritional discovery similar to the Italian anthropologist while visiting dozens of indigenous communities around the world.


Dr. Price’s investigations answered a simple but profound question: Why do isolated, traditional cultures have no tooth decay (without any dental care) - as well as less arthritis, diabetes, cancer and heart disease than people living in industrialized nations?


His unique observation was that people were healthier when they ate traditional diets handed down by their ancestors. Each of the communities he studied had diets that were rich in animal fats — and there was a complete lack of refined sugar.



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FBI arrests man for practicing Yoga on plane

Honolulu: A Japan-bound airplane returned to Hawaii because of a violent passenger who wanted to do yoga instead of sit in his seat, the FBI said.

The pilot of the March 26 United Airlines flight from Honolulu International Airport to Narita International Airport turned the plane around after hearing that Hyongtae Pae was yelling at crew members and shoving his wife, the FBI said in a criminal complaint.

Pae told the FBI he didn't want to sit in his seat during the meal service, so he went to the back of the plane to do yoga and meditate. He became angry when his wife and flight attendants told him to return to his seat. "Pae pushed his wife because she was trying to make him stop," the complaint said. "He felt that she was siding with the flight crew."

He tried to head-butt and bite Marines who were passengers on the flight and tried to force him back to his seat, Assistant US Attorney Darren Ching said at Pae's detention hearing today.

According to the complaint, he threatened to kill passengers and was yelling that there is no god. Pae went into a rage because he felt the flight crew was ordering him around, Ching said.

Chang denied Kim's request to allow Pae to return home to Korea, because that would involve getting on a plane again. Outside of court, Kim said his client is a 72-year-old retired farmer who traveled from South Korea to celebrate his 40th wedding anniversary with a Hawaii vacation.

It was the couple's first trip to Hawaii. Pae only recently took up yoga to help with anxiety, Kim said, adding that he was sleep-deprived during the vacation. Pae told the FBI he hadn't been able to sleep in 11 days.




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Chris Tarrant Extreme Railways... world's bounciest train

Chris Tarrant embarks on his first train in Myanamar (aka Burma) en route to Mandalay.

With limited funds the Myanamar government has tried to improve the vast railway network that was built by the British in the days of the Raj. Unfortunately upgrades to this stretch of line have gone horribly wrong.

Watch the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0vIyS4aGkOE




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Thought for the day...




Welfare before the Welfare State

When Welfare Was Taboo: It wasn't that long ago when government assistance carried great stigma.

The Rise of Mutual Aid in America: A voluntary, cooperative and. yes, mutual... way to give and receive help within a community. When Adult Humans Acted Like Human Adults: Today, Obama and Clinton bicker like high school rivals. Back then, they would've helped one another out.

How Government Killed Mutual Aid: It began with blacklisting doctors. Then came the Welfare State. During the 18th and early 19th centuries, accepting government aid or private charity was stigmatized. (Eh. Come again?)

That's right. Government assistance, dear LFT reader, was considered taboo. And that was well before the government started to militarize its police force, blow up people all over the world and spy on its own citizens.

Imagine that. Mutual aid, on the other hand, didn't carry the same humiliation. Why? Because it was a voluntary, cooperative and. yes, mutual... way to give and receive help within a community.

"A mutual aid society," Jassmin Poyaoan writes on the Resilience blog, "is an organization formed to provide mutual aid, benefit, and/or insurance among its members.

"Some of the first mutual aid societies in the U.S.," Poyaoan goes on, "were formed out of necessity by groups with limited access to mainstream services and support." In 1787, for example, the Free African Society was formed to provide help to newly freed blacks.



Later, in the late 19th to early 20th centuries, immigrants created mutual aid societies to serve as social support groups, "extending financial support to each member during illness and unemployment," says Poyaoan, "as well as emotional support during times of loss."

These mutual aid societies became so popular that, by 1909 in New York City, Joshua Fulton writes in Mises Daily, "40 percent of families earning less than $1,000 a year, little more than the 'living wage,' had members who were in mutual-aid societies."

In fact, these societies had grown large enough that mutual aid nearly completely dominated the health insurance industry. 'Lodge doctors' were employed by many of the societies for those who could not afford or access conventional medical care. In the South, where African Americans were routinely denied care by conventional doctors, this was crucial.

"A large number of African-American societies," Fulton goes on, "also created their own hospitals. In the early 20th century, it was not a given that African-Americans would be admitted into many hospitals.

If they were, they frequently had to face such indignities as being forced to bring their own eating utensils, sheets, and toothbrushes and to pay for a black nurse if none was on staff.

When the Knights and Daughters of Tabor in Mississippi, a black fraternal society with a reach across only a few counties, opened Taborian Hospital in 1942, membership nearly doubled in three years to 47,000." More than hospitals, these societies built orphanages, job exchanges, homes for the elderly, and created scholarship programs.



Unlike bureaucrats who think they can fix everything by simply throwing money at it, mutual aid societies also taught the values and virtues of hard work, leadership, independence and self-reliance.

"In the early part of the twentieth century," Paul Mastin writes in The Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics, "fraternal orders advocating values such as self-reliance were an integral part of American society."

The societies dedicated themselves to advancing mutualism, self-reliance, business training, thrift, leadership skills, self-government, self-control, and good moral character. And, "If self-reliance and thrift were fraternal watchwords," author David Beito writes on the Heritage Foundation's blog, "so too was individualism.

"These values, which can fit under the rubric of social capital, reflected a kind of fraternal consensus that cut across such seemingly intractable divisions as race, sex, and income."

Best part: Unlike Obama and Clinton, who bicker like they're part of rival high school football teams, the societies saw the foolishness in allowing politics to get in the way of their humanity. "Nonpartisanship was another component of the fraternal value consensus," says Beito.

"The Ladies of the Maccabees was typical in its rule that the organization be 'non-sectarian' and 'non-political.' Societies favored nonpartisanship to achieve harmony and to widen the applicant pool. "It was standard practice for aspiring Republican and Democratic politicians to join all the leading lodges in their community.

Individuals who were bitter rivals politically could co-exist under a common fraternal banner. The Loyal Order of Moose was not unique when it signed up prominent politicians from both parties - William Jennings Bryan, Theodore Roosevelt, and Champ Clark.



"Although the Ladies of the Maccabees required that members eschew politics, this rule did not preclude support for feminist causes. Many of its leaders played prominent roles in suffrage and temperance organizations, such as Woman's Christian Temperance Union, the National American Woman Suffrage Association, and the League of Women Voters."

Yes, it is possible for adults to. wait for it. act like adults, work together and help one another. Even if they disagree. (Gasp!) Alas, the societies began to fall apart when the government's great tentacles began to grow. First, in the 1910s, when the medical profession, with the government's help, blacklisted any doctor who signed contracts with lodges.

"By 1914," Beito writes, "Dr. Robert Allen in the Journal of the American Medical Association could state, with slight exaggeration, that 'there is scarcely a city in the country in which medical societies have not issued edicts against members who accept contracts for lodge practice.'

"Some societies, such as the Security Benefit Association, responded to this pressure by building self-contained hospitals. They too, however, often ran afoul of medical society pressure as well as a federal tax code that discriminated in favor of third-party insurance."

Forcing Americans into conventional hospitals was the first of many blows to mutual aid societies. The final blow, though, came with the rise of the Welfare State. "The first three decades of the 20th century," says Beito, "brought a rapid and unprecedented expansion in the government's social welfare role.

The two leading sources of growth were mothers' pensions and workers' compensation. In 1910, no state had either program; by 1931, both were nearly universal. During the 1920s, the number of individuals on the mothers' pension rolls almost doubled.

"Certainly, there were more than a few leaders of fraternal societies who predicted that this rising welfare state would eventually undermine mutual aid. "As the magazine of the Fraternal Order of Eagles put in 1915, 'the State is doing or planning to do for the wage-earner what our Order was a pioneer in doing eighteen years ago.



All this is lessening the popular appeal of our beneficial features. With that appeal weakened or gone, we shall have lost a strong argument for joining the Order; for no fraternity can depend entirely on its recreational features to attract members.'

"The shift from mutual aid and self-help to the welfare state," Beito goes on, "was not just a simple bookkeeping transfer of service provisions from one set of institutions to another.

"As many of the leaders of fraternal societies had feared, much was lost in an exchange that transcended monetary calculations. The old relationships of voluntary reciprocity and autonomy have slowly given way to paternalistic dependency.

"Instead of mutual aid, the dominant social-welfare arrangements of Americans have increasingly become characterized by impersonal bureaucracies controlled by outsiders."

And look at us now! Not to worry. Soft versions of these mutual aid societies are already beginning to crop up again. In the digital age, it's easier than ever to create societies where individuals are able to help individuals flourish.

And this trend will only continue until, hopefully just as rapidly, it's the Welfare State that takes a beating this time. In fact, there are already even ways for you to "do good by doing good" today.





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