Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Marijuana update


Recently I posted a couple of blogs concerning the legalization of marijuana.  The first was in January and can be found here.

The second was in February and can be found here.

I’m not a pot user and I really don’t condone its use but I’m really not obsessed with the legalization question one way or the other except for these three points.
1…It should be kept out of the hands of minors and there should be serious consequences for those who don’t.
2…Driving under the influence of pot should of course also be a serious offence.
3…With the two above listed exceptions, Pot should be a STATE issue not a federal one.

My reason for writing this update is that there have been a lot of interesting news reports coming out of Colorado recently on the subject.  As you may know, in 2012, Colorado was one of the few states to have pot legalization on the ballot as a voter initiative. The initiative passed, and pot is no longer banned there.  (Except for federal laws which aren’t being enforced)

One of the largest group of proponents of marijuana legalization are those who claim to be Libertarians looking out for the economy, when really they just want the freedom to smoke a joint when and where they want.  Their not very convincing argument is that pot should be legal, taxed and regulated.

A study at Colorado State University’s Colorado Futures Center estimates that Colorado potheads consume about 150,000 pounds of the drug per year. This is further estimated to generate $130 million in tax revenues for the state.

But if their estimates are true—and they do admit their estimates may be on the conservative side—then the professed basis for marijuana legalization, at least in Colorado, is a broken one; the $130 million that the legalization is supposed to generate for the state doesn’t even cover the cost of legalization and regulation in the first place. What Colorado has managed to do, in other words, is to create a law that’s supposed to help pay for things and yet cannot even pay for itself. It’s completely redundant.

I am something of a constitutionalist and I do support the Tenth Amendment, so when the federal government noses in on something that was not in the Constitution as ratified by the states, it irks me.
When individual states handle these issues on their own, like they’re supposed to do, even if I don’t agree with the decision the states come to, I won’t put up much fuss. The recreational use of drugs does bother me, but I recognize it as a state issue. Who am I to say that individual states aren’t allowed to dig themselves into a hole?

Even more ridiculous than the economic arguments for legal pot, are the medical ones.  It’s only real proven medical uses, that I am aware of are the relief of certain types of pain, and prevention of nausea. Especially nausea caused by chemotherapy and the drug sometimes prescribed for glaucoma.  But pot doesn’t actually cure anything.  

So unless glaucoma and back problems in young twenty-somethings is a new epidemic in America, “medicinal marijuana” is a hoax in the majority of cases.  Be that as it may, it’s still a state issue and not a federal.  At least according to the constitution.

Here is a recent headline from Colorado.

Marijuana Repeal Considered In Colorado.  http://denver.cbslocal.com/2013/04/26/marijuana-repeal-considered-in-colorado-2/

Anyone reading this who owns a firearm, and also uses marijuana should pay particular attention to the remaining section of this post.

The website for the Office of National Drug Policy includes this warning: “Marijuana and other illicit drugs are addictive and unsafe especially for use by young people. … Marijuana contains chemicals that can change how the brain works. And the science, though still evolving in terms of long-term consequences of marijuana use, is clear: marijuana use is associated with addiction, respiratory and mental illness, poor motor performance, and cognitive impairment, among other negative effects.”

Why, then, hasn’t the Obama administration launched legal action against Colorado and Washington, where voters last fall voted to “legalize” marijuana under their state laws – even though federal law doesn’t allow that?

After all, the White House has been more than emphatic that state laws exempting people from the federal Obamacare law are invalid, and when Arizona took it upon itself to adopt a state law to enforce federal immigration restrictions, Washington went after those renegades immediately in the courts.

Is there something about the idea of legalizing marijuana that Washington LIKES?
That seemingly strange idea may have been borne out just days ago when the Congressional Research Service released its report on the “State Legalization of Recreational Marijuana: Selected Legal Issues.”

As attorneys Todd Garvey and Brian Yeh wrote in the report, Washington has flexibility regarding drug prosecution, stating, “The extent to which federal authorities will actually seek to prosecute individuals who are engaged in marijuana-related activities in Colorado and Washington remains uncertain. President Obama himself has suggested the prosecuting simple possession is not a priority, while the Department of Justice has said only that ‘growing, selling or possession any amount of marijuana remains illegal under federal law.’”

What is more certain, they wrote, is that federal firearms regulators will be aggressive about banning anyone who uses marijuana from buying – or possessing – a weapon.

“With the legalization of marijuana for recreational purposes in Colorado and Washington, it seems likely the ATF will … consider a recreational user of marijuana to be a prohibited possessor of firearms regardless of whether the use is lawful under state provisions,” they wrote.

The attorneys said the ATF specifically has stated, “any person who uses or is addicted to marijuana, regardless of whether his or her state has passed legislation authorizing marijuana use for medicinal purposes, is an unlawful user of or addicted to a controlled substance, and is prohibited by federal law from possessing firearms or ammunition.”

They further wrote, “These individuals are to answer ‘yes’ when asked on the firearms transfer form if they are unlawful users of a controlled substance.”

Answering falsely, of course, is also a felony.

According to the Denver Post, the CRS report was touted by U.S. Rep. Jared Polis, D-Colo., an advocate of legalized marijuana, for saying that while “the federal government may use its power of the purse to encourage states to adopt certain criminal laws … it … is limited in its ability to directly influence state policy by the Tenth Amendment.”

Polis told the Post, “I’ve long believed that Colorado, Washington and other states that have decriminalized or legalized marijuana for personal or medical use have acted within the legal bounds of the law.”

But Obama attacked a state decision to enforce federal immigration standards, so why, as the Post reports, are “Colorado, Washington and 17 other jurisdictions … still holding out for any word from the Department of Justice on whether marijuana possession and distribution – which is illegal under federal law – will be enforced, despite the legalization within local borders.”

Dave Workman, senior editor at TheGunMag.com, a spokesman with the Second Amendment Foundation and a former member of the NRA board of directors wrote about the possible solution last fall as the votes in Washington and Colorado were approaching.

“A source with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in Washington, D.C. … confirmed what had been explained in a Sept. 21, 2011, letter from Arthur Herbert, assistant director for enforcement programs and services to firearms retailers…

“Washington state gun owners need to know they cannot get stoned and head for the gun range or hunting camp,” he wrote.

A letter from Herbert, at the time, blew out of the water the option for the libertarian concept of unrestricted guns and unrestricted marijuana.

“There are no exceptions in federal law for marijuana purportedly used for medicinal purposes, even if such is sanctioned by state law,” he wrote. Even selling a gun to someone can catch an owner outside the law.

“An inference of current use may be drawn from evidence of a recent use or possession of a controlled substance or a pattern of use or possession that reasonably covers the present time,” Herbert wrote.

Workman told WND his assumption is that the Obama administration is hesitant to step on the toes of marijuana users who may support the left-leaning administration.

At the same time, with Obama’s agenda for gun rules, regulations, restrictions and requirements looming large, anything that has the potential to trip up a gun owner couldn’t be all bad.

Impacts from strategies such as this are not unknown. There are millions of Americans whose ability to obtain a firearm could be challenged under the position that they are taking a variety of mood-altering psychiatric drugs carrying the FDA’s “suicidality” warning label. An increasingly  high percentage of Americans are taking these meds, which have demonstrated an alarmingly high correlation with school shooters.


The Tsarnaev family, including the suspected terrorists and their parents, benefited from more than $100,000 in taxpayer-funded assistance.
A bonanza ranging from cash and food stamps to Section 8 housing



Sunday, April 28, 2013


Why Does DHS Need More Bullets Per Officer Than the Army?

From Investor's Business Daily…  Posted 04/26/2013

Federal Power: Homeland Security's procurement officer is grilled in Congress on why federal agents who rarely fire weapons need several times more bullets annually than an Army officer. Who or what are they shooting at?

Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz on Thursday asked Nick Nayak, DHS' chief procurement officer, a question we and others have been asking: Why has the Department of Homeland Security been buying so much ammunition?

Dismissed as a concern only of right-wing conspiracy theorists, the reported amounts as high as 2 billion rounds have varied and been explained not as a one-time purchase but a bulk buy over five years to reduce costs. It's one of the rare instances, apparently, a government agency has actually cared about such a thing.

Nayak appeared before Chaffetz's House oversight subcommittee to do what Obama administration officials are loath to do the actual math. Chaffetz has, and his number-crunching raises more questions than DHS has answered to date.

Chaffetz noted that the department currently has more than 260 million rounds in stock. He said the department bought more than 103 million rounds in 2012 and used 116 million that same year among roughly 70,000 agents.

Comparing that with the small-arms purchases by the U.S. Army, he said the DHS is churning through between 1,300 and 1,600 rounds per officer per year, while the Army goes through roughly 350 per officer.

Nayak, acknowledging that the five-tear potential bullet buy could be as high as 750 million rounds, did not contest Chaffetz's math and said the massive buys were needed for training. DHS has procured "approximately 120 million rounds of ammunition per year of all calibers and types and fired approximately the same number of rounds per year, almost exclusively for training purposes," according to Nayak's testimony.

"What does not make sense in the information you provided is that Customs and Border Control used (around 14 million) rounds for operational purposes when they rarely fire their guns," a skeptical Chaffetz said, citing just one example of a particular allocation.

Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), which falls under DHS's jurisdiction, fired "less than 100 rounds" during 15 shooting incidents last year, according to Humberto Medina, assistant director of ICE's' National Firearm and Tactical Training Unit. By this criterion, the DHS stockpile should last a very long time.

Jonathan L. Lasher, the Social Security Administration's assistant inspector general for external relations, has previously explained the purchase of 174,000 hollow-point bullets by saying they were for the Social Security inspector general's office.

Its 295 agents investigate Social Security fraud and other crimes. When they say they are cracking down on waste, fraud and abuse, they apparently mean it.

Another question is why so many hollow-point bullets are being purchased?

As former Marine Richard Mason recently told reporters with WHPTV News in Pennsylvania, hollow-points (which make up the bulk of the DHS purchases) are not used for training because they are more expensive than standard firing-range rounds. "We never trained with hollow points. We didn't even see hollow points my entire 4-1/2 (years) in the Marine Corps," Mason said.

We'd like to think this is just another example of government waste. Some have suggested these massive ammunition buys are an attempt to dry up supply as part of the administration's push for gun control.

We have asked if this has anything to do with then-candidate Obama's proposal for a national security force as powerful as the U.S. Army.

In a July 2, 2008 speech in Colorado Springs, candidate Obama said: "We cannot continue to rely on our military in order to achieve the national security objectives that we've set. We've got to have a civilian national security force that's just as powerful, just as strong, just as well-funded."

The government that would limit law-abiding citizens to some seven bullets to defend their families and their homes still has some explaining to do.

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Saturday, April 27, 2013


Concealed Carry Permit Holder Uses Gun to Stop Stabbings

On Thursday, 34 year old Vietnamese man named Kiet Than Ly entered a Smith’s store in Salt Lake City, Utah.  He purchased a knife and started to leave the store.  As he reached the parking lot, he pulled out the knife and began stabbing other customers and shouting:
“You killed my people!  You killed my people!”

One person was stabbed in the stomach and another was stabbed in the head and arms as they tried to defend themselves.  As Ly looked for a third victim, a 47 year old man with a conceal carry permit saw what was happening.  He pulled out his gun and told LY to drop the weapon or he would shoot him.  Ly complied and dropped the knife and was subdued by Smith employees.  They held him in custody until the police arrived.

Both victims are reported to be in the hospital which lists their condition as critical but stable.
No one knows what Ly’s motive for the stabbings was, but they do know that he has an extensive criminal record.  He has convictions of sexual battery, lewdness, theft, drugs and assault of a police officer.  He had just been released from jail earlier in the week.

Salt Lake City police praised the man with conceal carry permit for getting involved and using his gun to disarm and apprehend Ly.  Without the man’s involvement, who knows how many more people would have been wounded or killed?

If President Barack Obama and the liberal Democrats had their way, there would be no conceal carry permits which means that there would have been no one there to stop Ly from stabbing more people.  They don’t care about the countless times someone uses a gun to save themselves or others as that would only hinder their agenda of disarming the American people.


How is abortion – which is not even mentioned in the Constitution -- considered a constitutional right, but criticism of abortion -- grounded in the First Amendment's protection of speech and religion -- something that can be banned? 



News that is likely to cause a stir usually comes out on a Friday afternoon or evening, when fewer people are paying attention. Washington uses this trick, and they’ve also upped the sneakiness factor by issuing decisions and signing legislation on holidays, or during major news events. 

That is why on December 31, 2011, Barack Obama signed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), declaring the entire United States a “battlefield” and giving the U.S. government the right to detain an American citizen indefinitely and even assassinate them, if they are suspected of terrorism—without due process.  

The NDAA is an otherwise mundane document that outlines the budget and expenditures for the Department of Defense; every year, Congress works on the numbers and submits it to the President for approval. As with other bills, however, the NDAA contains various other provisions that get crammed in without public knowledge and sometimes even without debate.

The current NDAA is making news online among those concerned about liberty because it eliminates the Posse Comitatus Act of 1878, which prohibits the use of Armed Forces in localized law enforcement; it eliminates habeas corpus, which requires that people under arrest be brought before a judge; and possibly even more shocking, it allows for the assassination of American citizens without a trial.

Our Constitutional freedoms were wiped out with Obama’s signature on New Year’s Eve a little over a year ago. Congress signed off on it and sent it to the President, willingly including the language to allow for assassinations of American citizens. 

Obama actually asked that assassination powers be given to him, and then acted as though this was a worrisome inclusion. He signed it, of course, and then gave a statement about how he never “intends” to use that clause.

The reality now is, if the government says you are a terrorist—or if they say you are associated with terrorists—your Constitutional protections are null and void. This is a concern because the Department of Homeland Security funded a study, which hardly mentions Islam at all, yet labels terrorists as including:
·       Americans who are suspicious of centralized federal authority;
·       Americans who believe their way of life is under attack;
·       People opposed to abortion;
·       Americans who are reverent of individual liberty 

We want to catch the radical Islamists and others who want to kill us … but America cannot accept the government eliminating our Bill of Rights protections and having full, unchecked authority while doing it. 

We know Congress is fumbling around with what to do, because last year S. 2175 and H.R. 5936 were introduced, which would have repealed the mandatory military detention requirement and banned indefinite detention and military commissions from the United States. However, both bills died. 

Additionally, the Feinstein-Lee amendment was added, which states: "An authorization to use military force, a declaration of war, or any similar authority shall not authorize the detention without charge or trial of a citizen or lawful permanent resident of the United States apprehended in the United States, unless an Act of Congress expressly authorizes such detention." 

But that language was replaced without explanation on December 18, 2012, and critics say it does nothing to change the fact that American citizens now have no legal recourse if the Obama administration claims they are suspected of terrorism. A group of journalists and activists are suing the government over the NDAA, and lawyer Scott Higgins says the new language is actually worse because, “detained U.S. citizens currently have no way to gain access to lawyers, family or the court itself once they are detained within the military…under the guise of supposedly adding protection to Americans, the new statute actually expands the AUMF (Authorization for Use of Military Force) to civilians in the U.S." 

This is but one more way for Obama to create a police state in America. And he pretends it is nothing for American citizens to be worried about. 

While we've been liberating the citizens of Iraq and Afghanistan, it's ironic that our very own protections afforded to us from our Bill of Rights and Constitution have just been eradicated before our very eyes.  We are now positioned to go down a very dangerous path, as a country and "WE THE PEOPLE" need to get engaged before it's too late.  In essence, our public servants just trashed our 4th, 5th, 6th, 8th, and 14th Amendments…this was done in the back rooms between a small group of individuals and voted upon by the Senate and House without ever reading the text.”
Our job is to remain watchful of our rights. Obama is unraveling of hundreds of years of guaranteed and protected freedoms—and Congress is allowing it. We are the last line of defense against tyranny. It is not okay for our government to lock up American citizens without charges or due process.
The NDAA is not constitutional, it is vague, and it needs to be reviewed in its entirety—and possibly repealed. 

Have you written, or faxed, or called, or emailed our Congressman and/or Senators about this yet?  If not, then WHY THE HELL NOT?  I told you all about it in January; you’ve had plenty of time.
Remember: those who don’t get involved in their government deserve the government they get.

Friday, April 26, 2013


If you spent all the money in your bank account, and you didn't plan to put any more money into it, would you close the account?
How about if the bank charged you a fee to keep that empty account open? You'd definitely close it then, right?  That’s just common sense.

Well, get this: the federal government is paying fees on 13,712 empty bank accounts. That's according to the Washington Post this week. And instead of closing the accounts, the federal government is paying $890,000 in fees for . . . nothing. 

My friends, that $890,000 comes from our taxes.

It's time for the government to make that popping sound.
What popping you ask?   
That would the popping sound it will make if then EVER pull their heads out of their collective butts.

Food Stamps for ILLEGAL ALIENS

Judicial Watch Uncovers USDA Records Sponsoring U.S. Food Stamp Program for Illegal Aliens




Officials found guilty in Obama, Clinton ballot petition fraud


Union Violence Exposed

Thursday, April 25, 2013


Russian Calls Out Barack Obama As A Communist

He ain't telling us nothing that MOST of us don’t already know.
It’s just that a lot of people refuse to admit it.  It’s an ego thing. They deny it because they voted for the Commie.

Barack Obama is called a pure Communist by the Russian Press and many in Russia are making that statement. Maybe that is why the Boston Bombers could get away with what they did. It seems that Russia knew that the older brother was one to watch and they informed our intelligence community of it, yet the FBI once again failed because they “did not want to inflame people with Jihad connections or ideology!” Obama has declared that the United States will not “attack” those who hate the United States and instead, Obama wants to try to appease the situation in the terrorists’ favor. One individual, a man named Xavier Lerma, who wrote many articles about Obama and what he has done, along with calling the people of the United States stupid and ignorant for putting him in office has openly called Obama a Communist! His article, “Obama’s Soviet Mistake,” discusses why what Obama is doing now has been done before in Russia and it failed.

Mr. Lerma stated:
“Putin in 2009 outlined his strategy for economic success. Alas, poor Obama did the opposite but nevertheless was re-elected. Bye, bye Miss American Pie. The Communists have won in America with Obama but failed miserably in Russia with Zyuganov who only received 17% of the vote. Vladimir Putin was re-elected as President keeping the NWO order out of Russia while America continues to repeat the Soviet mistake.”

This was in the first paragraph of his article where he made the statement about President Obama, “Well, any normal individual understands that as true but liberalism is a psychosis . O’bomber even keeps the war going along the Mexican border with projects like “fast and furious” and there is still no sign of ending it. He is a Communist without question promoting the Communist Manifesto without calling it so. How shrewd he is in America. His cult of personality mesmerizes those who cannot go beyond their ignorance. They will continue to follow him like those fools who still praise Lenin and Stalin in Russia. Obama’s fools and Stalin’s fools share the same drink of illusion.”

How many times have the Obama Supporters been called the “Kool Aid Kids?” Yet,Obama still gets his way by making taxes on purchases of anything on the internet. There is no doubt that new internet sales tax legislation will simply be another tax that will be used by Obama to do as he wishes to do! Yep, the United Socialists States of America has tasted the drink of illusion and they will dance in the fire should Obama tell them to do so!

Lerma continued:
“Russia lost its’ civil war with the Reds and millions suffered torture and death for almost 75 years under the tyranny of the United Soviet Socialist Republic. Russians survived with a new and stronger faith in God and ever growing Christian Church. The question is how long will the once “Land of the Free” remain the United Socialist States of America? Their suffering has only begun. Bye bye Miss American Pie! You know the song you hippies. Sing it! Don’t you remember? The 1971 hit song by American song writer Don McLean:
“And, as I watched him on the stage my hands were clenched in fists of rage.
No angel born in Hell could break that Satan’s spell
And, as the flames climbed high into the night to light the sacrificial rite, I saw…
Satan laughing with delight the day the music died
He was singing, bye bye Miss American Pie
Drove my Chevy to the levee, but the levee was dry
Them good ol’ boys were drinking whiskey and rye, singing…
This’ll be the day that I die.

How long will America suffer and to what depths?”
We must wonder just how long will people be dragged along with Obama over the cliff of failure? Obama has lied so much that he has to go back to video to make sure he keeps the lie going. Here we get a small insight into what the Russian people are told about Obama and the United States! Could this be why Obama has not had a very good relation with Russia, because Putin does not like Obama and considers him a fool? In another article by Mr. Lerma he discusses the current gun control measures that Obama has finally pushed while he had the very idea early when he was a Senator, Obama kept it silent until he was re-elected so he could continue on his agenda to destroy the United States. The worst part of this is that if a Russian man can see this, why have no reporters in the United States seen this? It just does not make sense unless they have a part in the forced failure of the United States.

Mr. Lerma wrote about President Obama, the NRA and many other ideas that reporters in the United States just seem to not see in his article:
“The NRA is right, Obama is an “Elitist Hypocrite” but he is actually worse than that. He is a liar and a murderer causing chaos in America and the world. Obama’s sins multiply more than Dorian Gray’s but people still think he looks good. Looking good is all that matters in America, right? The list goes on: he raised taxes on everyone when he said he would not; killing innocent people with drones; executive privilege in “Fast and Furious“; the so called “Arab Spring“; promoting abortions; lying to Russia and pointing missiles at us; paying off his communist buddies to hire Russians to protest against Putin; no effort to lower the US debt by even one penny, etc.. Yet, most people still love him in the US. Those against him stand firm. Obama and those who own him cannot force Americans to give up their guns now, but he will eventually.”

Why is it that the so-called reporters within the United States cannot see what people outside the United States can see? Come on people wake up and inform those who do not know!

5 Jihadists Have Reached Their U.S. Targets Obama

Congressman Cotton Says: 'Five Jihadists Have Reached Their Targets in the United States Under Barack Obama'

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


Did the FBI Know About the Boston Bombings?

I have been wondering about that every since I posted this:

Well, apparently I’m not the only one.  Here is a very interesting post on Godfather Politics.

W T F . I didn't make this up.

This Administration is paying people to Recruit people to go on food stamps

In Florida, a food-stamp recruiter deals with wrenching choices

From The Washington Post  -  By , Published: April 23

FORT PIERCE, Fla. — A good recruiter needs to be liked, so Dillie Nerios filled gift bags with dog toys for the dog people and cat food for the cat people. She packed crates of cookies, croissants, vegetables and fresh fruit. She curled her hair and painted her nails fluorescent pink. “A happy, it’s-all-good look,” she said, checking her reflection in the rearview mirror. Then she drove along the Florida coast to sign people up for food stamps.

Her destination on a recent morning was a 55-and-over community in central Florida, where single-wide trailers surround a parched golf course. On the drive, Nerios, 56, reviewed techniques she had learned for connecting with some of Florida’s most desperate senior citizens during two years on the job. Touch a shoulder. Hold eye contact. Listen for as long as it takes. “Some seniors haven’t had anyone to talk to in some time,” one of the state-issued training manuals reads. “Make each person feel like the only one who matters.”

In fact, it is Nerios’s job to enroll at least 150 seniors for food stamps each month, a quota she usually exceeds. Alleviate hunger, lessen poverty: These are the primary goals of her work. But the job also has a second and more controversial purpose for cash-strapped Florida, where increasing food-stamp enrollment has become a means of economic growth, bringing almost $6 billion each year into the state. The money helps to sustain communities, grocery stores and food producers. It also adds to rising federal entitlement spending and the U.S. debt.

Nerios prefers to think of her job in more simple terms: “Help is available,” she tells hundreds of seniors each week. “You deserve it. So, yes or no?”

In Florida and everywhere else, the answer in 2013 is almost always yes. A record 47 million Americans now rely on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), also known as food stamps, available for people with annual incomes below about $15,000. The program grew during the economic collapse because 10 million more Americans dropped into poverty. It has continued to expand four years into the recovery because state governments and their partner organizations have become active promoters, creating official “SNAP outreach plans” and hiring hundreds of recruiters like Nerios.

A decade ago, only about half of eligible Americans chose to sign up for food stamps. Now that number is 75 percent.

Rhode Island hosts SNAP-themed bingo games for the elderly. Alabama hands out fliers that read: “Be a patriot. Bring your food stamp money home.” Three states in the Midwest throw food-stamp parties where new recipients sign up en masse.

On the Treasure Coast of Florida, the official outreach plan is mostly just Nerios, who works for a local food bank that is funded in part by the state. She roams four counties of sandbars and barrier islands in her Ford Escape, with an audio Bible in the CD player and a windshield sticker that reads “Faith, Hope and Love.” She distributes hundreds of fliers each week, giving out her personal cellphone number and helping seniors submit SNAP applications on her laptop.

On this particular morning, Nerios pulled into the Spanish Lakes retirement community near Port St. Lucie, Fla., and set up a display table in front of the senior center. She advertised her visit weeks in advance, but she can never predict how many people will come. Some events draw hundreds; others only a dozen. Her hope was to attract a crowd with giveaways of pet toys and hundreds of pounds of food, which she stacked high on the table. “What person in need doesn’t want food that’s immediate and free?” she said.

She watched as a few golf carts and motorized scooters drove toward her on a road lined with palm trees, passing Spanish Lakes signs that read “We Love Living Here!” and “Great Lifestyle!” The first seniors grabbed giveaway boxes and went home to tell their friends, who told more friends, until a line of 40 people had formed at Nerios’s table.

A husband and wife, just done with nine holes of golf, clubs still on their cart.

An 84-year-old woman on her bicycle, teetering away with one hand on the handlebars and a case of applesauce under her other arm.

A Korean War veteran on oxygen who mostly wanted to talk, so Nerios listened: 32 years in the military, a sergeant major, Germany, Iron Curtain, medals and awards. “A hell of a life,” the veteran said. “So if I signed up, what would I tell my wife?”

“Tell her you’re an American and this is your benefit,” Nerios said, pulling him away from the crowd, so he could write the 26th name of the day on her SNAP sign-up sheet.

She distributed food and SNAP brochures for three hours. “Take what you need,” she said, again and again, until the fruit started to sweat and the vegetables wilted in the late-morning heat. Just as she prepared to leave, a car pulled into the senior center and a man with a gray mustache and a tattered T-shirt opened the driver-side door. He had seen the giveaway boxes earlier in the morning but waited to return until the crowd thinned. He had just moved to Spanish Lakes. He had never taken giveaways. He looked at the boxes but stayed near his car.

“Sir, can I help?” Nerios asked. She brought over some food. She gave him her business card and a few brochures about SNAP.

“I don’t want to be another person depending on the government,” he said.

“How about being another person getting the help you deserve?” she said.
Did he deserve it, though? Lonnie Briglia, 60, drove back to his Spanish Lakes mobile home with the recruiter’s pamphlets and thought about that. He wasn’t so sure.

Wasn’t it his fault that he had flushed 40 years of savings into a bad investment, buying a fleet of delivery trucks just as the economy crashed? Wasn’t it his fault that he and his wife, Celeste, had missed mortgage payments on the house where they raised five kids, forcing the bank to foreclose in 2012? Wasn’t it his fault the only place they could afford was an abandoned mobile home in Spanish Lakes, bought for the entirety of their savings, $750 in cash?

“We made horrible mistakes,” he said. “We dug the hole. We should dig ourselves out.”

Now he walked into their mobile home and set the SNAP brochures on the kitchen table. They had moved in three months before, and it had taken all of that time for them to make the place livable. They patched holes in the ceiling. They fixed the plumbing and rewired the electricity. They gave away most of their belongings to the kids — “like we died and executed the will,” he said. They decorated the walls of the mobile home with memories of a different life: photos of Lonnie in his old New Jersey police officer uniform, or in Germany for a manufacturing job that paid $25 an hour, or on vacation in their old pop-up camper.

A few weeks after they moved in, some of their 11 grandchildren had come over to visit. One of them, a 9-year-old girl, had looked around the mobile home and then turned to her grandparents on the verge of tears: “Grampy, this place is junky,” she had said. He had smiled and told her that it was okay, because Spanish Lakes had a community pool, and now he could go swimming whenever he liked.

Only later, alone with Celeste, had he said what he really thought: “A damn sky dive. That’s our life. How does anyone fall this far, this fast?”

And now SNAP brochures were next to him on the table — one more step down, he thought, reading over the bold type on the brochure. “Applying is easy.” “Eat right!” “Every $5 in SNAP generates $9.20 for the local economy.”

He sat in a sweltering home with no air conditioning and a refrigerator bought on layaway, which was mostly empty except for the “experienced” vegetables they sometimes bought at a discount grocery store to cook down and freeze for later. He had known a handful of people who depended on the government: former co-workers who exaggerated injuries to get temporary disability; homeless people in the Fort Pierce park where he had taken the kids each week when they were young to hand out homemade peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwiches, even though he suspected some of those homeless were drug addicts who spent their Social Security payments on crack.

“Makers and takers,” Lonnie had told the kids then, explaining that the world divided into two categories. The Briglias were makers.

Now three of those kids worked in law enforcement and two were in management. One of them, the oldest, was on his way to visit Spanish Lakes, driving down at this very moment from Valdosta, Ga., with his wife and two kids. Lonnie placed the SNAP brochures in a drawer and turned on a fan to cool the mobile home.

His son arrived, and they went out to dinner. Lonnie tried to pay with a credit card, but his son wouldn’t let him. Then, before leaving for Valdosta, the son gave his parents an air conditioner, bought for $400. Lonnie started to protest.

“Please,” his son said. “You need it. It’s okay to take a little help.”
The offer of more help came early the next morning. Nerios reached Lonnie on his cellphone to check on his interest in SNAP.

“Can I help sign you up?” she asked.

“I’m still not sure,” he said. “We have a lot of frozen vegetables in the freezer.”

“Don’t wait until you’re out,” she said.

She was on her way to another outreach event, but she told Lonnie she had plenty of time to talk. She had always preferred working with what her colleagues called the Silent Generation, even though seniors were historically the least likely to enroll in SNAP. Only about 38 percent of eligible seniors choose to participate in the program, half the rate of the general population. In Florida, that means about 300,000 people over 60 are not getting their benefits, and at least $381 million in available federal money isn’t coming into the state. To help enroll more seniors, the government has published an outreach guide that blends compassion with sales techniques, generating some protests in Congress. The guide teaches recruiters how to “overcome the word ‘no,’ ” suggesting answers for likely hesitations.

Welfare stigma: “You worked hard and the taxes you paid helped create SNAP.”

Embarrassment: “Everyone needs help now and then.”

Sense of failure: “Lots of people, young and old, are having financial difficulties.”

Nerios prefers a subtler touch. “It’s about patience, empathy,” she said. While she makes a middle-class salary and had never been on food stamps herself, she knows the emotional exhaustion that comes at the end of each month, after a few hundred conversations about money that didn’t exist. Nowhere had the SNAP program grown as it has in Florida, where enrollment had risen from 1.45 million people in 2008 to 3.35 million last year. And no place in Florida had been reshaped by the recession quite like the Treasure Coast, where middle-class retirees lost their savings in the housing collapse, forcing them to live on less than they expected for longer than they expected. Sometimes, Nerios believes it is more important to protect a client’s sense of self-worth than to meet her quota.

“I’m not going to push you,” she told Lonnie now. “This is your decision.”

“I have high blood pressure, so it’s true that diet is important to us,” he said, which sounded to her like a man arguing with himself.

“I can meet with you today, or tomorrow, or anytime you’d like,” she said.

“I don’t know,” he said. “I’m really sorry.”

“You don’t have to be,” she said. “Please, just think about it.”
She hung up the phone and began setting up her giveaway table at another event.

He hung up the phone and drove a few miles down the highway to his wife’s small knitting store. They had stayed married 41 years because they made decisions together. She was an optimist and he was a realist; they leveled each other out. During the failures of the past three years, they had developed a code language that allowed them to acknowledge their misery without really talking about it.

“How you doing?” he asked.

“Just peachy,” she said, which meant to him that in fact she was exhausted, depressed, barely hanging on.

She opened the knitting store three years earlier, but it turned out her only customers were retirees on fixed incomes, seniors with little money to spend who just wanted an air-conditioned place to spend the day. So Celeste started giving them secondhand yarn and inviting customers to knit with her for charity in the shop. Together they had made 176 hats and scarves for poor families in the last year.

The store, meanwhile, had barely made its overhead. Lonnie wanted her to close it, but it was the last place where she could pretend her life had turned out as she’d hoped, knitting to classical music at a wooden table in the center of the store.

Now Lonnie joined her at that table and started to tell her about his week: how he had been driving by the community center and seen boxes of food; how he had decided to take some, grabbing tomatoes and onions that looked fresher than anything they’d had in weeks; how a woman had touched his shoulder and offered to help, leaving him with brochures and a business card.

He pulled the card from his pocket and showed it to Celeste. She leaned in to read the small print. “SNAP Outreach,” it read.

“I think we qualify,” Lonnie said.

There was a pause.
“Might be a good idea,” Celeste said.

“It’s hard to accept,” he said.

Another pause.

“We have to take help when we need it,” she said.

Celeste looked down at her knitting, and Lonnie sat with her in the quiet shop and thought about what happened when he opened a barbershop a few years earlier, as another effort of last resort. His dad, an Italian immigrant, had been a barber in New Jersey, and Lonnie decided to try it for himself after a dozen manufacturing job applications went unanswered in 2010. He enrolled in a local beauty school, graduated with a few dozen teenaged girls, took over the lease for a shop in Port St. Lucie and named it Man Cave. He had gone to work with his scissors and his clippers every day, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturdays and Sundays, standing on the curb and waving a handmade sign to advertise haircuts for $5. He had done a total of 11 cuts in three months. But what tore him up inside had nothing to do with the lonely echo of his feet on the linoleum floor or the empty cash register or the weeks that went by without a single customer. No, what convinced him to close the shop — the memory that stuck with him even now — were the weeks when old friends had come in to get their hair cut twice. He couldn’t stand the idea of being pitied. He hated that his problems had become a burden to anyone else.

He wondered: Sixty years old now, and who was he? A maker? A taker?

“I’m not ready to sign up for this yet,” he said.

“Soon we might have to,” she said.

He tucked Nerios’s business card into his back pocket.
“I know,” he said. “I’m keeping it.”



The purpose, or goal of immigration policy should be first and foremost to benefit existing American citizens, not people who are in this country illegally.
That being said, we must ask ourselves “what exactly is the purpose of the new “Gang of Eight Comprehensive Bill?”  Simply stated, its purpose is to give the Democrats a permanent majority.
But, that’s not the only problem be any means.  I will do my best to cover all the problems I am aware of, but I’m sure there are many I haven’t thought of.

To began, you must understand that this legislation was crafted behind closed doors with big business, big unions, and groups representing illegal aliens, groups with their own interests, and groups that stand to make millions from this legislation.  Anyone with a significantly different opinion on immigration reform was prohibited by the Gang of Eight from having input."

MY FIRST PROBLEM WITH IT: Our current system allowed two individuals to immigrate to the United States from the Chechen Republic in Russia, an area known as a hotbed of Islamic extremism, who then committed acts of terrorism?  It is becoming increasingly apparent that the Boston bombers rejected, rather than embraced, American values so much so that they sought to terrorize the Nation by killing and crippling women and children. Were there any safeguards? Could this have been prevented?  The immigration reform bill does NOTHING to address this problem.   To the contrary, The Gang of Eight’s 844-page immigration reform legislation makes it easier for asylum seekers to come to America.

SECOND PROBLEM: What about the so called “Birthright Citizenship”?  There is no mention of stopping Birthright Citizenship in this bill.  If you are unfamiliar with the term, it was originally intended to guarantee citizenship to the children of slaves.  It is now being misinterpreted to grant automatic citizenship to all persons born in this country, even if the parents are her illegally. 
THIRD PROBLEM: They say it does not grant amnesty.  That’s a lie, this bill grants amnesty.
It creates a framework for legalization for the estimated 11 million people unlawfully present in the United States.  Anyone who was present in the U.S. before 2012 qualifies, but there is too much opportunity for fraud—since there is no proof required that applicants have been here for several years.

FOURTH PROBLEM:  This plan does not account for the government benefits, especially welfare and entitlement benefits that would be paid to those who are legalized.  The additional costs to taxpayers would be enormous.  Some argue that amnesty would bring economic gains, but these would actually be captured by the formerly unlawful immigrants themselves. Legalization brings little, if any economic benefit to the rest of us.  The bill is a Trojan horse for government spending, and in some cases, it appears the funding is unrestricted or ill-defined. Just one example is a $6.5 billion “Comprehensive Immigration Reform Trust,” which includes a $2 billion “slush fund” for border security.

Our federal government currently spends $1 trillion more per year than it takes in, so adding on a new, unlimited spending commitment makes no sense at all. The entire cost of implementing the bill has yet to be determined. Further, the bill trashes fiscal discipline, exploiting “a loophole in the Budget Control Act (BCA) that allows Congress to spend more than allowed under the spending caps adopted in 2011.”

FIFTH PROBLEM:  Every past amnesty program that I can remember guaranteed better border security so there would never have to be another such program.  We all know that border security never happened, and it won’t this time.

The bill does require certification of “border triggers” for stemming the tide of illegal border crossings before additional steps in the legalization process can proceed.  But the Department of Homeland Security has been trying unsuccessfully to define credible metrics for border security since 2004.  Even if it had effective “triggers,” that does not guarantee a secure border.  Border crossing conditions constantly change. Even if the goal is achieved, there is no guarantee it will stay that way.
Amnesty creates an incentive for illegal border crossings and overstays. Thus, the strategy laid out would drive up the cost of securing the border. Just throwing money at the border does not make sense. The policies adopted on both sides of the border are more important.

For example, the Coast Guard is significantly under-funded and unprepared. America’s coastlines are already seeing a significant increase in illegal entry by sea, a trend that has been growing since 2007.

SUMMERY:  The bill does make an attempt to “modernize” lawful immigration and non-immigration visas.  These modernizations include substantially lowering “chain” migration; abolishing the diversity lottery; expanding the visa waiver; increasing high-skill migration; and expanding temporary worker programs.

Reforming the legal immigration system—in principle—sounds like a really good idea. But trying to craft precise measures in a massive bill like this is difficult.  For example, though it sounds harmless enough, one provision in the legislation could lead to big problems.  The legislation allows documents “issued by a federally recognized Indian tribe” to be used for identity and employment purposes.  Numerous Indian tribes exist along the southern border, including the Texas Kickapoo, the Ysleta Del Sur, and, the largest, the Tohona O’Odham.  Indian reservations already serve as drug pipelines and have been cited as weak links in border security.  Given these issues, does it really make sense to add this exemption to legislation aimed at minimizing identification fraud?

Once we get it right, there will be very strong bipartisan support that modernizing lawful immigration ought to be a priority.  Congress should put its effort into accomplishing that aim—moving forward on an area of strong agreement, while allowing time to debate issues where there is not strong consensus.

We deserve better—all of us.  Employers deserve better than having to sift through falsified credentials or risk breaking the law.  Families in communities burdened by the impacts of illegal immigration deserve better.  In fact, all who cherish a society that is committed to keeping America both a nation of immigrants and a country that respects its laws deserve better.  The key is to begin by working on the solutions on which we can all agree, rather than insisting on a comprehensive approach that divides us.

Here’s an update on the National Security issues by Michelle Malkin posted on 1/26 20133

UPDATE#2  Bill Clinton’s Part in America’s Immigration Nightmare

In 1994, Bill Clinton made an adjustment to the Immigration and Nationality Act. Its specific purpose was to change the status of those residing in the United States illegally. Prior to October 1994, only legal non-residents were permitted to avail themselves of a status modification, and only if a visa became available. Clinton’s “adjustment” changed all that.

Now, illegals had the practice extended to them . . . without requiring them to leave the country and wait for visa approval. It also required each applicant to pay a $1,000 fee. The law also included those who had entered the United States but committed visa violations during their stay. A provision that later benefited Tamerlan Tsarnaev of recent Boston Marathon bombing infamy.

In 1997, Clinton’s Congress passed NACARA, the Nicaraguan Adjustment and Central American Relief Act, which granted legal status to people from Guatemala, El Salvador, Cuba, Nicaragua, and nationals of the former Soviet bloc. This law also provided some protection from deportation. Castro emptied the Cuban prisons into America on the strength of NACARA.

Not satisfied with his previous fine tuning, in December 2000 Clinton signed the Legal Immigration Family Equity (LIFE) Act which allowed those in the United States illegally to apply for and receive a green card even if they wouldn’t normally be eligible to receive one. Regardless of how the individual had entered the country, whether working illegally in the country or if the individual failed to “maintain lawful status” since his/her arrival in the United States, legitimacy was now assured.
Knowing that the next presidential election would be a tight race, Clinton initiated the not-so-clandestine Clinton/Gore “Project 500,000.” Gore was put in charge of boosting immigration, legal or not, in order to augment Democrat voting rolls by an additional 500,000 voters. Among other things, Gore ordered adjudicators to abstain from criminal background checks, told immigration officials to ignore the requirement of English for interviews, and waived the $1,000 application fee. Many thousands of foreign criminals received citizenship this way.

Transformation of United States immigration policy was not yet complete; but the changes to the system effectively changed America’s fundamental structure.  When legal immigration to America was no longer a requirement, the bar was again forced down.  Three revolutionary changes occurred as a result. The first was that uneducated, non-English-speaking, third-world transplants to America were given resettlement priority.

The second was that those given U.S. entry no longer found it necessary to want to be American. Many did; but many didn’t have to. There was no expectation or demand made for the price of their freedom and welfare.

Third, the destruction of the black family, begun by Lyndon Johnson in 1965 and compounded by Ted Kennedy’s immigration “reform,” were given additional drive by Clinton’s actions. The ability for American citizens on the lower rungs of society to climb upwards was further curtailed; unrestrained immigration, legal and illegal, was noticeably eroding the jobs base that would lead to better jobs for American citizens.

These changes would increase a population ever more dependent on government.

Immigration modifications shifted the focus of relocation to the United States from the individual’s desire for a better life to that of a political expedient. Cloaking the changes to America’s immigration policy in multi-cultural, politically correct dogma didn’t change the fact that America’s transformation was well underway.


Obama Deportation Program Likely to Be Blocked, Judge Says

By Andrew Harris on April 23, 2013
A court challenge by federal immigration agents seeking to block President Barack Obama’s deferred-deportation initiative will probably succeed, a judge said.

U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor in Dallas today put off his own decision on whether to grant the request for a preliminary injunction by 10 U.S. Immigration and Customs agents. He asked both sides to file additional arguments no later than May 6.

Announced by Obama and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano last year, the directive gives agents the ability to defer action on people unlawfully in the U.S. if they came to the country under the age of 16, are in school or have obtained a high school diploma, haven’t been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor or multiple misdemeanors, and aren’t a threat to public safety or national security.

“The court finds that DHS does not have discretion to refuse to initiate removal proceedings” when the requirements for deportation under a federal statute are met, O’Connor said today in a 38-page decision, referring to the Department of Homeland Security. 

Still, the judge said he can’t decide the case based on the arguments he’s heard so far.
“Accordingly, the court hereby defers ruling on the plaintiffs’ application for preliminary injunction until the parties have submitted additional briefing,” O’Connor said.

Border Security

The administration’s “Deferred Action” initiative, announced in June, was created with the intent of shifting immigration agency focus toward border security and the removal of dangerous people.
“This is not amnesty, this is not immunity,” Obama said at the time. “This is not a path to citizenship, it’s not a permanent fix.” Deferral, if conferred, is valid for two years, during which the person may obtain authorization for employment, and can be renewed, according to the ICE website.

The case was filed by attorney Kris Kobach, who also serves as Kansas Secretary of State and is a national Republican Party adviser. Lead plaintiff Christopher L. Crane is president of the National Immigration and Customs Enforcement Council, a 7,600- member federal immigration agents’ union.
“Officers are applying the directive to people detained in jails, not kids in school,” Crane testified at the April 8 hearing. “It is now the story in the jails for aliens to use to avoid arrest and deportation.”
Adam Kirschner, a lawyer for the Justice Department, told O’Connor at the hearing the case was, in reality, an employment dispute and that the agents can’t demonstrate they’ve been harmed. “These agents do not like the way the agency has prioritized the use of its resources,” he said.

“The executive cannot remove 11 million people,” Kirchner said of the branch of the U.S. government led by Obama. “The executive has authority to exercise its discretion.”

The case is Crane v. Napolitano, 3:12-cv-03247, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Texas (Dallas).

To contact the reporter on this story: Andrew Harris in the Chicago federal courthouse at
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net