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Are we headed to a recession? A look at the warning signs

Are we headed to a recession? A look at the warning signs. American business is increasingly global; thus subject to greater global economic impact whether or not a given business is involved in international commerce.

The extreme disparity among developed and emerging markets and the many economies included inherently increases volatility. Political turmoil, acts of terrorism along with several significant humanitarian crises create further global economic instability.

And, governments, expected to stabilize economies during difficult times have instead contributed to declining economic conditions. Faulty spending priorities, excessive austerity, and failing to act in a timely manner are pushing business leaders and investors away.

Key Global Factors and Indicators

Given the large number of issues capable of triggering substantial worldwide impact, identifying and quantifying a huge number of risk factors can be overwhelming. However, several factors span countries and continents. Examples include:

1) Geopolitical uncertainty
2) Exchange rate volatility
3) Global economy instability
4) Key industry volatility (e.g. energy)
5) Central banks’ failure to drive positive economic impacts

6) Zero inflation – with deflation fears
7) Governments unwilling or unable to stimulate growth
8) Global competition
9) Weak productivity growth

10) China – Blunders in financial markets drove massive ‘capital flight’ ($159 billion in December 2015), swiftly increasing debt, ongoing lack of transparency leading to distrust of China’s reported growth and financial stability.

International Monetary Fund (IMF)

IMF Managing Director, Christine Lagarde’s February speech to the “Group of 20” (G-20) requested “coordinated effort… to ramp up spending and accelerate delivery of long-promised economic overhauls.”

IMF leadership has repeatedly warned that although the global economy is still growing, we’re at a critical juncture; risk of ‘derailment’ is high.

European Central Bank – E.C.B.

The E.C.B. has boldly entered uncharted territory. Examples: Paying commercial banks to borrow money from them. If banks agree to lend these funds to consumers and businesses their interest rate over a four-year loan is negative.

Lowered their deposit rate (commercial banks’ interest rate) to -4% from -3% to persuade banks to lend rather than hold cash. Increasing purchases of government and corporate bonds to pump money into economies.

The E.C. B’s December 2015 forecast for 2016 inflation was 1.5%; it’s now .1%. For over a year 19 Eurozone countries’ inflation has been at or below zero.

Substantial Economic Difficulties Don’t Mean a Recession is Imminent

Leading global economies are in a major slowdown. What’s unknown is whether another recession is looming. Economic predictions are notoriously wrong. The Economist’s January 2016 issue reviewed their analysis of IMF forecasts from 1999 to 2014.

An economy grew one year, then shrunk the next in 220 instances. Throughout this period IMF forecasts NEVER predicted the coming economic contraction in the following year.

United States

The U.S. appears to be in better shape than most countries. Even so, there is enough uncertainty to temper business’ appetite for investing in their businesses. Business leaders’ optimism for the 2016 economy has fallen to its lowest level in three years per the Q1 American Institute of CPA’s “Economic Outlook Survey.”

Only 28% of top-level execs were “optimistic” or “very optimistic” about 2016 U.S. economy’s prospects – down 17 points from 2015 Q4, and 40 points from 2015 Q1. Another 34% were “pessimistic” or “very pessimistic.”

Business leaders can’t count on governmental support. Instead, Washington’s gridlock, anti-deficit fever resulting in radical spending cuts – particularly in key pro-growth areas like R&D and infrastructure – and the looming presidential election magnify instability.

Federal level ambivalence: A senior Treasury official was recently quoted downplaying economic conditions as “not a crisis… not warranting a crisis response.” The Federal Reserve recently described the outlook as “unclear.”

Looking Forward

All business leaders must consider how the global economy impacts their businesses. Direct impacts, such as fuel availability and pricing, interest rates, U.S. governmental gridlock and the outcome of the presidential election are obvious.

Less obvious is how the confidence level of current and/or prospective customers – businesses or consumers – affects their purchase intent. As well, decisions made by you, your competitors and those in your supply chain may drive quite different scenarios.

Those who monitor relevant indicators, and create internal agility will be well-positioned to weather an economic storm.

Action Items

Along with your leadership team, evaluate varying types of risks with the objective of identifying those most likely to create issues for your organization.

Prioritize these risks and assign teams to evaluate each risk, likelihood of occurrence, probable triggers, size of potential costs (time, direct and indirect costs, and disruption/distraction) and present summary to the leadership team.

Using the outcomes from the risk assessment exercise above, identify potential triggers and other prospective indicators. Assign a task force to create an ongoing monitoring program designed to identify and evaluate risk likelihood, along with key steps to take to avoid, mitigate or manage each risk.

Create an internal, cross-functional team with the assignment of identifying and recommending opportunities for the organization to become more agile in responding to external factors/events. Evaluate opportunities quarterly and implement plans as appropriate.


You're in for a treat with these dueling piano siblings

Talented brother and sister play the catchy songs from Frozen... all the while showing amazing talent. Thanks to both of you, your fun play is most refreshing!

Watch the video:



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 August 26th... 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... 08/26/2016


Upcoming election in real danger of voter fraud

The 2016 presidential election is a little more than two months away, and America may now be facing the greatest voter-fraud threat in recent history. 

The president of Judicial Watch, Tom Fitton, explains why in Chapter Four (“Voter Fraud; Stealing Elections - The Danger of Voter Fraud and the Fight for Election Integrity”) of his new book, Clean House; Exposing Our Government's Secrets and Lies:

“We have all heard about voter fraud and the attempts by liberal media organs such as the New York Times and Ivory Tower academics to dismiss it as a nonexistent problem. President Obama himself (as if we can trust him?) has cited misleading statistics to convey the notion that voter fraud is overplayed by critics and nothing to worry about.   

“The fact is, voter fraud is real. It is widespread. And, it is substantial to the point that it can decide elections.  It also drives honest citizens out of the democratic process and breeds distrust of our government.

The danger lies not only in the results of the fraud itself but also in the reality that voters who fear their legitimate votes will be outweighed by fraudulent ballots are likely to feel disenfranchised and may not even show up at the polls to vote. 

“The sad truth is that our nation’s recent history consists of far too many elections that have been called into question due to voter fraud [including the 2008 presidential election].

And, it’s taking its toll on voter confidence in the electoral system: According to a Rasmussen poll from August 2013, ‘only 39 percent of Americans believe elections are fair.’” 

Fitton takes on a sacred cow of American politics when he challenges the assumed integrity of our elections. He cites President Obama himself as proffering misleading statistics to perpetuate the myth that voter fraud is rare and non-threatening.

And, Fitton lays much of the blame for the voter-fraud crisis “directly at the feet of President Barack Obama and his Justice Department… which “has demonstrated a marked lack of interest in preventing, investigating and prosecuting voter fraud, and it has gone to extreme lengths to obstruct state efforts to do so.”  

Many elections, particularly local elections, are decided by very slim margins, and therefore even “modest” voter fraud can be decisive. For example, according to statistics released by Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted in January 2014, thirty-five local races and eight local ballot issues were decided in the Buckeye State in 2013 by fraud.  

In 2007, Project Vote - an affiliate of the notorious ACORN, infamous for its get-out-the-vote efforts that produced thousands of fraudulent voter registrations - published a paper, authored by Barnard College professor of political science Lorraine C. Minnite, that illustrates how the facts are twisted and spun to dispel fears of voter fraud. 

Don’t forget, Barack Obama used to work for Project Vote, and Judicial Watch uncovered a partnership between the Justice Department and ACORN-connected Project Vote to use the National Voting Rights Act (NVRA) to register more individuals on public assistance, widely considered a key voting demographic for the Democrats. 

The study states one of its key findings this way: "Voter fraud is extremely rare. At the federal level, records show that  only 24 people were convicted of or pleaded guilty to illegal voting between 2002 and 2005, an average of eight people a year...

The available state-level evidence of voter fraud, culled from interviews, reviews of newspaper coverage and court proceedings, while not definitive, is also negligible.” 

Judicial Watch Senior Counsel, Robert Popper - former Deputy Chief of Voting Section of the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Justice - explains why such statistics, frequently cited by President Obama on voter fraud, are calculated to mislead and minimize the problem:

“Judging voter fraud by counting criminal proceedings is misguided. For any crime, including voter fraud, convictions are a fraction of prosecutions, which are a fraction of investigations, which are a fraction of known offenses, which are, in turn, a fraction of committed crimes.

This is even more likely to be true of voter fraud, which is often a low enforcement priority… Voter fraud may be all but impossible to investigate or prove if it is carried out successfully.” 

So, here we are again on the eve of a presidential election with the threat of voter fraud staring us in the face - a problem that, as Fitton reminds us, is real, widespread and decisive in a significant number of elections, including at least one recent presidential election (2008).

And the nature of the voter fraud in that election, the fraud that very well may have gotten Barack Obama elected president the first time, is particularly disconcerting because it involved the votes of aliens - both legal and illegal - who are prohibited from voting under federal law.  

Did alien voters steal the 2008 presidential election for Obama?  There is troubling evidence that they may have. 

A disturbing 2014 study published by political scientists at Old Dominion University showed that a significant percentage of foreign nationals residing in the United States, whether lawfully or unlawfully present, were registered to vote in U.S. elections...

And that a significant number of them actually have voted in recent years - 6.4 percent in 2008 and 2.2 percent in 2010. As the authors point out, that is enough to have swayed election outcomes in some states.

The study states: “There is reason to believe non-citizen voting changed one state’s Electoral College votes in 2008, delivering North Carolina to Obama...

And that non-citizen votes have also led to Democratic victories in congressional races including a critical 2008 Senate race in Minnesota that delivered for Democrats a 60-vote, filibuster-proof majority in the U.S. Senate.”

Fitton puts this so-called, one-state aberration into perspective: “If this study’s results are accurate, the implications are startling: Obama became president as the result of election fraud. We have Obamacare because of election fraud...

We have the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act because of election fraud.  We have Solyndra - the alternative energy company that collapsed leaving taxpayers liable for $535 million in federal loan guarantees - because of election fraud.

Without the election fraud that put Obama in office, there’d be no lawless amnesty for illegal aliens, no Operation Fast and Furious, no Obama IRS assault on Americans. Obama’s victory in North Carolina gave him the electoral College votes that were the difference between Obama winning and losing the presidency.

This shows that no American can take his or her vote for granted. There is a real chance that your vote can be cancelled out by an illegal vote cast by legal or illegal aliens.” Clean House is available at bookstores across the country and online at 


I'm a Bernie Backer and refuse to support Hillary

I used to think that the Democrats were the good guys and the Republicans were the bad guys. That's why I've only ever been registered and identified as a Democrat.

The Democratic Party is the party of social justice that looks out for the less fortunate, right? The party of the middle class, advocating for equality and progress, while the Republican Party, is ... well ... stuck in the distant past.

I was correct about the Republican Party. But I was incredibly wrong about the Democratic Party. Yes, I'm a Sen. Bernie Sanders (Vt.) supporter - specifically, I was a California delegate to the national convention. Yes, I'm also a millennial. No, I will not be supporting Hillary Clinton this November.

And also, let me clarify, no, I’m not a man. So don't call me sexist. And now, the question on many progressives' minds: Can Clinton, the Democratic nominee, represent progressive voters and issues important to progressives? No. She can't.
What is so un-progressive about Clinton, you ask?

Where do I even begin?

She won't ban fracking or implement a carbon tax. She formerly enthusiastically pushed the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), once calling it the "gold standard." She is funded by lobbyists for private prisons. She led the charge for violent, deadly and destructive regime change in Libya and Syria and supported the coup in Honduras.

She is against reinstating the Glass-Steagall Act. She is not a transparent politician; if she were, she would have released the transcripts of her speeches that she gave to Wall Street events - which by the way, must have been sheer, utter genius, considering how much she was paid to give those speeches.

She supported the 2008 Wall Street bailout. She supports the former Democratic National Committee (DNC) chair, Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (Fla.).

She is not only pandering to Republicans for their support, but she is seeking the endorsement of President Nixon's former secretary of State, Henry Kissinger. She favors a federal $12 minimum wage, rather than $15.

She is pro-death-penalty. She appointed pro-TPP, pro-fracking former senator, Ken Salazar (Colo.), as chair of her presidential transition team. She is open to constitutional restrictions on abortion. She has deep ties to Wal-Mart, and served on its corporate board during the '90s. Wal-mart has also been a big campaign donor.

She has ties to Monsanto, which has made oh-so generous donations to the Clinton Foundation, and is a supporter of genetically modified organisms.

The list goes on: Her international arms deals as secretary of State. Her campaign finance scheme where some state parties are "essentially ... money laundering conduits," as Politico reported. Her campaign's involvement with the Correct the Record super-PAC.

Her support of the war in Iraq (and let me be very clear: she is a war hawk); her advocacy of a no-fly zone in Syria, and her call for more U.S. special forces there. Her refusal to embrace single-payer universal healthcare and her acceptance of donations from pharmaceutical and health insurance companies.

BEEP. BEEP. BEEP. We interrupt this article to remind you that it seems that the Clinton Foundation gave donors access and influence in the State Department, when Clinton was secretary of State!

Remember when Clinton was against gay marriage until 2013? I know what you must be thinking: "I thought Clinton was a Democrat ... "Ignore the fact that she voted for a barrier between the United States and Mexico (sound familiar?).

And another thing: How can you speak out against income inequality while wearing a $12,495 Giorgio Armani jacket and having a net worth of nearly $110 million? I know what you're thinking, "But, but, but - all her recent speeches and statements seem progressive. Look at her nomination acceptance speech."

I hate to burst your bubble, but Clinton cannot be trusted - from big issues, like lying about emailing classified information from her private server, to small things, like lying about coming under sniper fire.

I mean, why pick a pro-life, pro-offshore-drilling, pro-TPP white male as your vice president if you want to unify with Sanders supporters? It's clear why: Because Clinton cannot represent the progressive vote and, guess what? Neither can the Democratic Party. Not anymore.

Now, maybe you're thinking that it's Clinton and her crony politics that are the problem, not the entire Democratic Party. I'll give you that. It's not the entire party. It's just most of the party - to make staying and fighting not worth it.

It's like a good friend of mine says: It's an abusive relationship. You know it is so unhealthy to stay with this abusive person and that you deserve better. You know in reality that this person are not going to change. Yet, you stay.

Why? Fear is at the core. You stay, that is, until that magical day when enough is enough. Well guess what, my friends? That day has come. Hope can be a beautiful thing. Hope can also be extremely destructive and blinding.

For me, that moment came when the DNC and Wasserman Schultz colluded against Sanders, stacking the deck against him and manipulating the odds in favor of Clinton during the Democratic primary.

That was the moment when enough really became enough. Clinton and the entire Democratic establishment are antithetical to the foundation of the United States and to true progressive values.

Now, don't get me wrong. By all means, support your down-ticket Bernie-crats and progressives. However, I really think it's time that we revolutionaries shift away from the two-party system, because honestly, both parties are just destructive tidal waves of corruption — tidal waves that, this time, climate change is not responsible for.

That is why, this November, I will reject the lesser of two evils and I will fight for the greater good. I will support GOP nominee Donald Trump, because he's a true champion of American values.

Remember, votes are earned, not owed.



Cool Photos

Jamaica's Usain Bolt takes selfie photos as he celebrates with fans after winning the Men's 200m Final at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro on August 18, 2016.

Flamingos move around in a pen in the Odiel marshes, in Huelva, southwestern Spain, on August 13, 2016, during a tagging and control operation of flamingo chicks to monitor the evolution of the species.

Men dressed as French soldiers re-enact a battle on August 13, 2016 in the castle park of Austerlitz. Hundreds of people in period uniforms of the Napoleonic troops met at the Castle of Austerlitz, Czech Republic to commemorate the birth of Napoleon Bonaparte.

A man takes pictures at night of the annual Perseid meteor shower in the Aleve wood in Pontechianale, near Cuneo, in the Monte viso Alps, Italy, on August 13, 2016.

Guram Ustiashvili of Georgia, 22, pulls four vehicles with a towing cable in his teeth, in an attempt to break a Guinness World Record in Tbilisi on August 16, 2016.

An owner takes a picture of her dog as it climbs up on a glass panel while swimming at a pool for dogs in Chengdu, Sichuan Province, China, on August 16, 2016.

A Virgin Mary statue is seen in front of a flooded home on August 18, 2016 in St. Amant, Louisiana.

A visitor wears a virtual reality glasses (Sony Morpheus) at the Gamescom 2016 gaming trade fair during the media day on August 17, 2016, in Cologne, Germany.





I was Irish, before it was Cool!

Whatever’s good for your soul… do that!

Don't get too deep, it leads to over thinking... and over-thinking leads to problems that don't even exist in the first place.

Don’t let yesterday take up too much of today.

Prayer… the world’s greatest wireless connection!



National polls: Trump shrinks Clinton lead to 3pts (margin of error)

Is Hillary Clinton squashing Donald Trump into oblivion in the polls? Or is her lead over him perilously shrinking? One thing we know is: there are countless ways to spin a poll. Consider the case of selective reporting on the most recent Bloomberg national poll.

On Aug. 10, Bloomberg reported “Clinton up 6 on Trump in Two Way Race.” But looking at the actual poll, Trump has moved so close to Clinton, the results are within the margin of error. Notably, in five months, Clinton’s lead over Trump in the Bloomberg poll has shrunk from 18-points to within the margin of error.

In March of 2016, when likely voters were asked to choose between Clinton and Trump “if the election were held today,” Clinton bested Trump 54%-36% (18 percentage points). In June, with Libertarian Gary Johnson thrown into the mix, Clinton’s lead over Trump was 5 percentage points smaller: 48% to 35% (13 percentage points).

In the most recent poll, the spread between Clinton and Trump in a two-person race was down to just 3 percentage points, Clinton at 45% and Trump at 42%. That’s within the margin of error. When Libertarian and Green Party candidates are put in the mix, it’s Clinton 42% and Trump 40% – again within the margin of error.

Clinton Trump Bloomberg polls:
March 2016: 18 points? ...  June 2016: 13 points? ...  August 2016: 3 points!

But this notable trend isn’t reflected in the Bloomberg write-up? Instead, the reporter chose to use the poll numbers that look better for Clinton: ones that added in “leaners.”

What are leaners? Respondents who were first asked who they’d vote for, then answered they didn’t plan to vote or didn’t know who they’d vote for, and then were pressed to pick a candidate they were leaning toward, anyway. This is how Bloomberg got to the 6-point spread cited in its headline… double the actual spread of 3%.

In fact, the Bloomberg poll shows Trump improved in eight categories when it comes to being associated with positive phrases, while Clinton is down in eight categories.

Trump improved his ratings in:

• Is trustworthy.
• Would fight hard for the middle class.
• Would rein in the power of Wall Street.
• Has the right temperament to be president.

• Is ready to lead our country on day one in office.
• Could get things done in Washington.
• Would be a good role model for children.
• Possesses the skills needed to conduct foreign policy.

All national polls favor Hillary Clinton because all national polls are skewed by biased liberal in the mix.

This isn’t to suggest reporting on this poll should have favored Trump; ideally, it should reflect general positives and negatives for each candidate, if they exist, and include relevant trends for context and perspective.

It’s simply another reminder... that what you read in the news, often comes through a filter.


Hillary's ties to Radical Islam Exposed

Hillary’s ties to Radical Islam Exposed! As if being a bag lady for a pay for play scam wasn't enough, it appears that Crooked Hillary's top lieutenant, Huma Abedin, also worked as an editor for a radical Islamic journal. As the New York Post notes:

Hillary Clinton’s top campaign aide, and the woman who might be the future White House chief of staff to the first female US president, for a decade edited a radical Muslim publication that opposed women’s rights and blamed the US for 9/11.

One of Clinton’s phony claimed accomplishments listed on her campaign website is her support for the UN women’s conference in Bejing in 1995, when she declared, “Women’s rights are human rights.” Her speech has emerged as a focal point of her campaign.

However, soon after that 1995 event, as Clinton recently described it, her top aide Huma Abedin published articles in a Saudi journal taking Clinton’s feminist platform apart, piece by piece.

At the time, Abedin was assistant editor of the Journal of Muslim Minority Affairs working under her mother, who remains editor-in-chief. She was also working in the White House as an intern for then-first lady Clinton.

Headlined “Women’s Rights Are Islamic Rights,” a 1996 article argues that single moms, working moms and gay couples with children should not be recognized as families.

It also states that more revealing dress ushered in by women’s liberation “directly translates into unwanted results of sexual promiscuity and irresponsibility and indirectly promote violence against women.” In other words, sexually liberated women are just asking to be raped.

“A conjugal family established through a marriage contract between a man and a woman, and extended through procreation is the only definition of family a Muslim can accept,” the author, a Saudi official with the Muslim World League, asserted, while warning of “the dangers of alternative lifestyles.”

(Abedin’s journal was founded and funded by the former head of the Muslim World League.)

Hillary's top lieutenant worked for a radical Islamic journal and negotiated pay for play scams for her boss while she was Secretary of State. Unsurprisingly, the intelligence community has taken notice. As the Daily Caller's excellent Jonah Bennett notes:

A leaked Army operational security brief appears to show Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and former CIA Director David Petraeus listed as two key examples of potential insider threats.

Admins of the Facebook page “U.S. Army W.T.F! moments” told The Daily Caller News Foundation this is the second time they’ve received a picture of this particular slide in the last six months. They posted the slide to their page Sunday. Admins said the picture came from a service-member stationed at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri.



Great Britain wasn't an island until fairly recently

You probably remember from various science classes that all of the continents used to be connected, but slowly drifted apart over the course of millions and millions of years.

Still, we assume the world map looked pretty much as it does now for all of human history at the very least - geology takes its time.

The Reality: Britain may have recently voted to leave the European Union, but that's not the first time they've rage-quit on the continent. And the last time was even more chaotic and confusing than Brexit, because not too many thousand years ago, Britain was physically torn away from Europe.

During the tail end of the last ice age 12,000 years ago, what we know now as the island of Great Britain formed the upper corner of the European mainland.

The massive chunk of land connecting Britain and Europe was called Doggerland, because sometimes we name land masses after a child's attempt to explain where their golden retriever came from.

This wasn't some random icy wasteland, either; we know that Doggerland was populated. Modern fishermen occasionally haul up spears and mammoth bones, and archaeologists recently acquired technology that allows them to explore the presumably magic kingdom that's hidden under the English Channel and the North Sea.

Scientists are trying to create a 3D map of the lost landmass using seabed-mapping technology, and they even plan to pull up DNA samples to see exactly who the Doggerland people were.

Ultimately, Doggerland had an insurmountable problem: It was all lowlands. Once the ice sheets began to melt and the seas started to rise, Doggerland pulled an Atlantis. In 7500 BC, a giant landslide off the coast of Norway created a tsunami that tore through the region.

By 6000 BC, the people still clinging to the vanishing surface started moving to the higher grounds of what would become the Netherlands and the British Isles.

Doggerland disappeared completely by 5000 BC, and up until the last moment, there were probably lots of people there insisting that the news of the disaster was all an alarmist hoax.



"Cake by the Ocean" ... DNCE

I can never get enough of this song.... I can never get enough of this song.

Watch the video:



Smart sprinkler system stops fires without soaking homes

Fire sprinklers can soak a building, causing incidental damage. London-based startup Plumis has come up with a solution: when its Automist Smartscan heat sensor detects a blaze, a jet releases a burst of targeted high-pressure mist, using 90 per cent less water than traditional sprinklers.

"Mist is just as effective to control fire," says Plumis founder Yusuf Muhammad.

Ceiling-mounted sensors in the £2,000 Smartscan, which launched in January and has picked up a Red Dot Design Award, detect when the temperature in a room reaches 57°C – a clear indicator that a fire is starting – and trigger a scanning infrared pyrometer.

A mobile infrared sensor, located in a 50mm deep wall-box, scans the room to locate its hottest point, then a pump in a slit in the unit releases the mist. This vertical blade of water can cover 32 square metres at a rate of 5.6 litres per minute.

Mist droplets can also put out pan fires and reach a room's tricky-to-find nooks. The system's ability to reduce heat during a fire – water mist reduces the oxygen concentration in a fire zone – allows people in danger to navigate burning rooms more safely.

Automist Smartscan builds on seven years of R&D. It began as Muhammad's group project at the Royal College of Art; his company's first version of the spray, a tap-mounted device, won the 2009 James Dyson Award. Previous Automist devices have been installed in more than 3,000 UK homes.

As well as saving your life and possessions, the Smartscan has another benefit: Muhammad says it will keep your insurer happy. "As you won't suffer as much consequential water damage after a fire, it's even exciting insurance companies."


Watch video:


In God We Trust

This past January, a Sacramento-based emergency-room doctor filed a federal lawsuit seeking to remove all references to God from U.S. currency.

In his lawsuit, Michael Newdow argues that the motto “In God We Trust” places a “substantial burden” on atheists. In a statement that might seem ironic, Newdow argues that it is burdensome for atheists “to personally bear a religious message that is the antithesis of what they consider to be religious truth.”

This isn’t Newdow’s first foray into religious freedom legislation. In 2004 he gained notoriety for his attempt to remove the phrase “under God” from the Pledge of Allegiance. It’s not even his first attempt to alter U.S. currency: 10 years ago he unsuccessfully argued in front of a federal judge that its use amounts to a religious affirmation.

The use of the phrase “In God We Trust” in U.S. currency first appeared in 1864. Salmon P. Chase, Lincoln’s Secretary of the Treasury in the middle of the Civil War, received a letter from a Pennsylvanian minister requesting some recognition of God in a national motto.

The phrase found its way onto all U.S. currency in the thick of the Cold War (around the same time, and for the same reasons, that “under God” was added to the Pledge of Allegiance). As part of the cultural war on godless communism, a 1955 congressional vote elected to place the motto on all U.S. money.

If removing religious affiliations from U.S. currency is the goal, you have to wonder if Newdow has missed the 100-pound truncated pyramid in the room. The fairly innocuous phrase “In God We Trust” is far less specific than the occult imagery that currently adorns the common one dollar bill.

The most prominent iconography on the $1 are the eagle and the pyramid, which together constitute the Great Seal of the United States. The pyramid is a throwback to ancient Egypt, but is in many ways a much tamer version of the seal that Franklin and Jefferson envisioned.

Noted Egyptophiles, the version that they initially supported included an Egyptian pharaoh, seated on a chariot and passing through the parted waters of the Red Sea. The motto they preferred was “rebellion to tyrants is obedience to God.”

Anyone familiar with the biblical story of the parting of the Red Sea can hear the thinly veiled threat. Pharaoh doesn’t stay atop that chariot for long. Franklin loved his version of the seal so much that he adopted it as his personal motto. And today the conservative right is fond of invoking Franklin’s motto in political debates.

The final design for the Great Seal, which was accepted by Congress in 1782, was presented by Charles Thomson, a Philadelphia merchant, who finalized the design by combining the ideas of three separate committees.

Thomson said that the pyramid symbolized “strength and duration” and that the Latin inscription “Novus Ordo Seclorum” (A New Order of the Ages) referred to a new form of government and “the beginning of the new American Era.”

The disembodied eye that floats atop the pyramid, he added, with the inscriptions “Annuit Coeptis,” refers to the ways in which Providence favored the American cause.

It’s easy to see why people argue that U.S. currency is replete with esoteric religious symbolism. And yet, oddly, atheists are not seeking to remove the eye and pyramid on the basis that they are either Freemason or ancient Egyptian symbols.

Of course the use of religious imagery and slogans is nothing new. Greek and Roman coins routinely included portraits or emblems of everyone from Cupid to Jupiter. Major cities like Athens would mint coins with their city’s favored deity (here, of course, Athena) on them. Many coins even had images of temples on them.

It was precisely because Roman currency depicted the emperor as a quasi-deity that Jews prohibited its use in the Temple. The use of religious imagery continued throughout the Byzantine and Roman periods, when crosses regular appeared on coins produced all over Europe. There’s nothing new about religious beliefs on your coinage.

A similar kind of ambiguity surrounds the use of “In God We Trust.” It became ubiquitous only during the Cold War and could almost be considered nationalistic propaganda. It was on the basis that “In God We Trust” is more secular than religious that a federal judge threw out Newdow’s case 10 years ago.

Those concerned about the religious messaging (either mainstream or occult) of U.S. currency have options. Perhaps they should stick to credit cards or Apple Pay. The cult of Apple may be idolatrous, but it’s not religious. Not yet, anyway.

Celebrate the 60th Anniversary of Our National Motto
Join US: In God We Trust



Primary School

The following took place in a primary school.
Teacher: Ok class put your hand up if you know anything about police officers???
Students raise their their hands...

Teacher: You only have to put one hand up Todd.


Jennifer Lawrence was just named the world’s highest paid actress, bringing in $46 million last year before taxes. Yep, she narrowly beat out the world’s second highest paid actress: Hillary Clinton. -- Jimmy Kimmel

NASA announced they have re-established contact with a spacecraft that had been missing for two years. The spacecraft went missing again when it was told who the Democrat nominee is. -- Conan O’Brien

It’s been reported that after winning three gold medals in Rio, Usain Bolt was caught cheating on his girlfriend. More impressive, he was also found with another woman just 14 seconds later. -- Conan O’Brien

According to Hillary Clinton’s newly-released medical records, she suffers from seasonal allergies. But she just takes some Benadryl and they’re all deleted. -- Conan O’Brien

Experts say Hillary Clinton’s campaign strategy is to ignore the controversies, and just run out the clock. By the way, that also happens to be Hillary Clinton’s marital strategy. -- Conan O’Brien

In California, the state senate yesterday rejected a bill that would abolish daylight saving time. Some lawmakers want to get rid of it because they can't figure out how to program their microwaves and they've had enough. -- Jimmy Kimmel

Hillary Clinton held fundraisers today in Silicon Valley. Said Hillary, “It’s so great to be back here in the town where I was built.” -- Seth Meyers

Ryan Lochte is reportedly in talks to join the cast of “Dancing with the Stars.” Wow, I knew he was in legal trouble, but I didn’t know we were already at the sentencing phase. -- Seth Meyers

Marvel announced today that it will be launching a female reboot of Iron Man, starring a character named Ironheart. So, congratulations to my ex-girlfriend. -- Seth Meyers

Next week, former NFL quarterback Tim Tebow will hold a workout in Los Angeles to try and impress scouts from Major League Baseball. Pretty ambitious for a guy who’s never even gotten to second base. -- Seth Meyers


The Obama administration said Wednesday it paid $1.3 billion in interest to Iran in January to resolve a decades-old dispute, two days after allowing $400 million in cash to fly to Tehran. However, the $1.3 billion was moved via wire-transfer - which Obama previously said he couldn't do with the $400 million? Lies on top of lies!

Obama's ransom payment to terrorist Iran revealed

U.S. officials wouldn’t let a plane carrying $400 million take off for Iran until three U.S. prisoners departed Iran in January, the Wall Street Journal reports. The mechanics of the exchange all but confirm accusations that the $400 million in cash was a ransom payment. 

Saeed Abedini, a former Iranian hostage told The Wall Street Journal, Iranian intelligence officials told him his plane could not take off until the movements of a second plane were confirmed. The second plane is like the U.S. cargo plane carrying $400 million in cash.

Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps General Reza Naghdi further confirmed the ransom story in January, telling Iranian state media “Taking this much money back was in return for the release of the American spies.”

Obama administration officials disputed the ransom narrative, claiming the payment was part of a series of scheduled payments and happened to coincide with the hostage release. At the time, President Obama credited “strong American diplomacy,” and touted his deal with Iran for making the negotiations possible.

Barack Hussein Obama admits to multi-million dollar payment to terrorists. Weeks ago Barack Hussein Obama chastised the media for reporting that he may have made a spineless, totally pathetic decision to exchange 400 million dollars for American sailors captured and imprisoned by the Iranians. 

Now the man(?) who makes Jimmy Carter look like Theodore Roosevelt is finally copping to it: The State Department admitted Thursday that the US would not hand over $400 million in cash to Iran until it released four American hostages - two weeks after President Obama insisted the payment was not a “ransom.”

State Department spokesman John Kirby was asked at Thursday’s press briefing: “In basic English, you’re saying you wouldn’t give them $400 million in cash until the prisoners were released, correct?”

“That’s correct,” Kirby replied.

In an August 4th press conference, President Obama said the opposite. Make no mistake: Americans aren't starving for another Middle Eastern regime change adventure.

But we have the most powerful military in the history of the world, and dozens of other ways to throw our considerable weight around. Those who would do America harm should fear us. But they don't.

They understand that America is lead by an ideologically impotent shell of a man - who would rather apologize for America than defend it. Expect more of this if Crooked Hillary is elected.


Clueless CNN pundit defends "Progressive" Sharia Law

Liberal CNN commentator Sally Kohn is apparently a big fan of sharia law.

On Twitter on Tuesday, Kohn wrote (in a tweet addressed to Donald Trump):
"Hey @realDonaldTrump, many *progressive Muslims* - the ones we should support in ideological fight against extremism - believe in Sharia!!”

The message to Trump likely came after the Republican nominee’s statement that he’d like to test Muslims coming to America to make sure they believe in the Constitution as the ultimately law of the land - rather than Islam’s religious Sharia law.

Many states have already taken action, passing laws to make sure that no aspect of Sharia law makes it on the books.

Sharia law covers just about every aspect of life and religion. Some aspects of Sharia law are relatively innocuous - such as guidelines on prayers - but many are much more severe. The harshest interpretations of Sharia law advocate things like stoning adulterers or cutting the hands off thieves.

It’s not entirely clear what Kohn, as an openly gay woman, would find so “progressive” about sharia law.


Money saving tips for National Parks

Celebrate history and nature

Happy 100th birthday to the National Park Service. Famed Yellowstone was the very first national park, recognized by Congress in 1872. But the agency didn't become official until President Woodrow Wilson signed the Organic Act of 1916, in the spirit of conservation and environmental awareness.

The Park Service has since grown to include 412 national parks, monuments, battlefields, recreation areas, and more. The official centennial presents a great opportunity for everyone to plan a trip. Here are 13 tips for saving money on your next visit to a national park.

Take advantage of fee-free day

To commemorate the centennial, the National Park Service is offering 16 opportunities for free entrance to parks across the country in 2016. The remaining dates are Aug. 25 to 28 (for the National Park Service's birthday), Sept. 24 (National Public Lands Day), and Nov. 11 (Veterans Day). It's a savings for visitors to the 127 sites that normally charge entrance fees.

Get creative with transit

Motorists who drive into national parks typically pay an entrance fee of up to $30 a vehicle for seven days, which is generally a good value for families. But individuals who bike or ride a motorcycle through the gates often get reduced rates - by as much as half.

Destinations popular with cyclists include Crater Lake National Park in Oregon, Redwood National Park in California, and Skyline Drive in Virginia. Public transit also may be a cheaper option for individual visitors or even couples.

In the Yosemite area, bus tickets to Yosemite Valley start at less than $5 (one way) and include park admission. Inside the park, a free shuttle operates all day.

Sign up for an eco-volunteer gig

National Park Service volunteers who complete 250 hours of service receive a free annual pass to all national parks. Through programs such as Wilderness Volunteers, participants pay about $300 for a weeklong mission, including room and board, along with training.

Transportation to the site isn't covered, but the organization runs projects all over the West, so this could be a good deal if you can find something close to home.

Consider an annual pass

For avid travelers or outdoor enthusiasts who plan to visit several sites in the national park system during the year, an America the Beautiful Pass might make financial sense. For $80 a year, the pass provides unlimited access to more than 2,000 national recreation sites, including all 59 national parks.

Pass holders 16 and older can enter any site with up to three other adults (children under 16 are free) at parks that charge per-person fees. At sites that charge per vehicle, the pass covers everyone in the car.


Did you know there's Olympic's Trampoline?

Me neither? In fact there are lots of Olympic events, we never hear about or see. There’s only so much primetime TV available, so the networks show the most popular events. So here you go, Olympic's Trampoline. It’s actually pretty cool! Check it out!

Watch video:


Shop Amazon - Grow Your Garden_______________________________________________________________

Thought for the day...

The government out of control... Part 3

The U.S. has befriended the main backers of Islamic terrorism – and covered up their terrorist activities – because they have a lot of oil and do our government’s dirty work.

In the name of fighting terrorism, the U.S. has been directly supporting Al Qaeda, ISIS and other terrorists and providing them arms, money and logistical support in Syria, Libya, Mali, Bosnia, Chechnya, Iran, and many other countries … both before and after 9/11.

Conservatives like the director of the National Security Agency under Ronald Reagan (Lt. General William Odom) and liberals like Noam Chomsky all say that the American government is the WORLD’S LARGEST purveyor of terrorism.

On the other hand, the government has completely rigged the trials of those accused of conducting terrorism. And the military judge and prosecutor of alleged surviving 9/11 co-conspirators secretly destroyed relevant evidence, without telling defense lawyers.

• When the American government got caught assassinating innocent civilians, it changed its definition of “enemy combatants” to include all young men – between the ages of say 15 and 35 – who happen to be in battle zones.

• When it got busted killing kids with drones, it changed the definition again to include kids as “enemy combatants”
U.S. government officials say that the government has long PROTECTED drug cartels

• $8.5 TRILLION dollars in taxpayer money doled out by Congress to the Pentagon since 1996 has NEVER been accounted for. The military wastes and “loses” trillions of dollars. And Congress pushes expensive boondoggles that our generals say are unnecessary and unhelpful … because it’s pork for their district

• The government lied when it said it doesn’t conduct mass surveillance on Americans, and then lied again when it said that spying was aimed at protecting America against terrorists. The highest-level NSA whistleblower in history says that a recently-passed bill authorizing mass surveillance is “just another example of corruption“.

• Why do the intelligence agencies spy on innocent Americans? Because they rake in the dough when they do. Why do so many in Congress support NSA spying? Because NSA contractors give them money.

• The same Congress members who backed mass surveillance against the American people have only become indignant only when they were spied on by the government.

• The government also lied when it said America doesn’t torture, and then lied once again when it said torture was aimed at protecting Americans.

• The government protects criminal wrongdoing by prosecuting whistleblowers. The Obama administration has sentenced whistleblowers to dozens of times the jail time of all other presidents COMBINED. And the government has framed whistleblowers with false evidence.

• The government treats journalists who report on government corruption as CRIMINALS OR TERRORISTS. And it goes to great lengths to smear them. For example, when USA Today reporters busted the Pentagon for illegally targeting Americans with propaganda, the Pentagon launched a SMEAR CAMPAIGN against the reporters.

• On the other hand, the government pumps out MASSIVE amounts of propaganda to mislead and dis-empower people. And journalists who act as mere cheerleaders for the government who never criticize are protected and rewarded.

• The government has destroyed most of the freedoms and liberties that officials are sworn to protect. The high-level NSA official who designed the NSA’s global surveillance program told Washington’s Blog:

“Our government used to be more careful and secretive in their violations of the constitution; but, now, they are more blatant and arrogant in their violation - as if to dare anyone to try and stop them“.

• The intelligence services BLACKMAIL people in both government and the private sector with evidence of homosexuality, nude pictures and other information that people want to stop from going public.

• Terror attacks such as 9/11, the Boston Marathon bombing and the Texas shooting all happened because of PERVASIVE CORRUPTION in our intelligence agencies.

• “The biggest companies own the D.C. politicians. Indeed, the head of the economics department at George Mason University has pointed out that it is unfair to call politicians “prostitutes”. He says they are in fact pimps … selling out the American people for a price.”

Law, as defined by Bastiat, is “collective organization of the individual right to lawful defense.”

“It is impossible,” he wrote, “to introduce into society a greater change and a greater evil than this: the conversion of the law into an instrument of plunder.”




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