Feb 12, 2017


Q&A

Welcome To Life At The Beach
Updated 01/17
 

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 About These Blogs

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“Perspective gives us the ability to accurately contrast the large with the small, and the important with the less important. Without it we are lost in a world where all ideas, news, and information look the same. We cannot differentiate, we cannot prioritize, and we cannot make good choices. “ -John Sununu 

Today there are so many talking heads who daily bombard the airwaves, magazines and periodicals with their version of events and issues that affect our lives and the world. And with so many jabbers reporting what is taking place at home and abroad, often it becomes difficult to distinguish what’s accurate and what’s not. Thus, it’s up to each of us to dig below the headlines to distinguish fact from fiction in order to make a near clean conscience decision as to what the truth might be.

These Blogs are filled with articles and opinions that is not necessarily headlines or openly discussed. It's also filled with an accumulation of insightful information for a bit more clarity of the issues, including pictures and videos for your entertainment.

It's my hope that these blogs will be an open window for a better understanding of the world around us, and through this understanding try and make life better for all. There is no one perfect way, but hopefully with eyes open we can rise above the hype and find mutual awareness that will, hopefully, resolve our differences. It’s also a place where readers, like you, can contribute to the conversation.

Blogs

Life At The Beach is strictly about opinions and information seldom included into headline news. It attempts to point beyond the headlines to allow you the reader to understand what the issues might truly be, ugly or otherwise.

Faith is pretty much a mirror of Life At The Beach. The difference, Faith Blog is spiritual without the “religion”. It’s not about converting, but solely to enlighten, as well as challenge our faith. Since faith is a personal journey it’s important to be knowledgeable of the facts in order to avoid being manipulated by a system that is prtty much void of the truth.

Odeum is all about videos, entertainment news, reviews and more. You should be aware that some content posted may be to controversial for some.

Journal and My Dezigns are my own. My Journal is filled with post from my own journey through life, and, My Dezigns, is a display of my art and crafts which is available for purchase.

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Always remember, Knowledge is Power. The more you search to understand, life can be a journey filled with enlightened confidence and positive choices.

Enjoy your visit.

Love Trumps Hate - Happy Valentine's Day


Westlife - In This Life

Jan 29, 2017

The Cult Of Ignorance In The United States

by Ray Williams

There is a growing and disturbing trend of anti-intellectual elitism in American culture. It's the dismissal of science, the arts, and humanities and their replacement by entertainment, self-righteousness, ignorance, and deliberate gullibility.

Susan Jacoby, author of The Age of American Unreason, says in an article in the Washington Post, "Dumbness, to paraphrase the late senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, has been steadily defined downward for several decades, by a combination of heretofore irresistible forces. These include the triumph of video culture over print culture; a disjunction between Americans' rising level of formal education and their shaky grasp of basic geography, science and history; and the fusion of anti-rationalism with anti-intellectualism."

There has been a long tradition of anti-intellectualism in America, unlike most other Western countries. Richard Hofstadter, who won a Pulitzer Prize in 1964 for his book, Anti-Intellectualism In American Life, describes how the vast underlying foundations of anti-elite, anti-reason and anti-science have been infused into America's political and social fabric. Famous science fiction writer Isaac Asimov once said:

    "There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."

Mark Bauerlein, in his book, The Dumbest Generation, reveals how a whole generation of youth is being dumbed down by their aversion to reading anything of substance and their addiction to digital "crap" via social media.

Journalist Charles Pierce, author of Idiot America, adds another perspective:

    "The rise of idiot America today represents - for profit mainly, but also and more cynically, for political advantage in the pursuit of power - the breakdown of a consensus that the pursuit of knowledge is a good. It also represents the ascendancy of the notion that the people whom we should trust the least are the people who best know what they are talking about. In the new media age, everybody is an expert."

    "There's a pervasive suspicion of rights, privileges, knowledge and specialization," says Catherine Liu, the author of American Idyll: Academic Antielitism as Cultural Critique and a film and media studies professor at University of California. The very mission of universities has changed, argues Liu. "We don't educate people anymore. We train them to get jobs."

Part of the reason for the rising anti-intellectualism can be found in the declining state of education in the U.S. compared to other advanced countries:

  • After leading the world for decades in 25-34 year olds with university degrees, the U.S. is now in 12th place. The World Economic Forum ranked the U.S. at 52nd among 139 nations in the quality of its university math and science instruction in 2010. Nearly 50% of all graduate students in the sciences in the U.S. are foreigners, most of whom are returning to their home countries;
  • The Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs commissioned a civic education poll among public school students. A surprising 77% didn't know that George Washington was the first President; couldn't name Thomas Jefferson as the author of the Declaration of Independence; and only 2.8% of the students actually passed the citizenship test. Along similar lines, the Goldwater Institute of Phoenix did the same survey and only 3.5% of students passed the civics test;
  • According to the National Research Council report, only 28% of high school science teachers consistently follow the National Research Council guidelines on teaching evolution, and 13% of those teachers explicitly advocate creationism or "intelligent design;"
  • 18% of Americans still believe that the sun revolves around the earth, according to a Gallup poll;
  • The American Association of State Colleges and Universities report on education shows that the U.S. ranks second among all nations in the proportion of the population aged 35-64 with a college degree, but 19th in the percentage of those aged 25-34 with an associate or high school diploma, which means that for the first time, the educational attainment of young people will be lower than their parents;
  • 74% of Republicans in the U.S. Senate and 53% in the House of Representatives deny the validity of climate change despite the findings of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and every other significant scientific organization in the world;
  • According to the 2009 National Assessment of Educational Progress, 68% of public school children in the U.S. do not read proficiently by the time they finish third grade. And the U.S. News & World reported that barely 50% of students are ready for college level reading when they graduate;
  • According to a 2006 survey by National Geographic-Roper, nearly half of Americans between ages 18 and 24 do not think it necessary to know the location of other countries in which important news is being made. More than a third consider it "not at all important" to know a foreign language, and only 14 percent consider it "very important;"
  • According to the National Endowment for the Arts report in 1982, 82% of college graduates read novels or poems for pleasure; two decades later only 67% did. And more than 40% of Americans under 44 did not read a single book--fiction or nonfiction--over the course of a year. The proportion of 17 year olds who read nothing (unless required by school ) has doubled between 1984-2004;
  • Gallup released a poll indicating 42 percent of Americans still believe God created human beings in their present form less than 10,000 years ago;
  • A 2008 University of Texas study found that 25 percent of public school biology teachers believe that humans and dinosaurs inhabited the earth simultaneously.
In American schools, the culture exalts the athlete and good-looking cheerleader. Well-educated and intellectual students are commonly referred to in public schools and the media as "nerds," "dweebs," "dorks," and "geeks," and are relentlessly harassed and even assaulted by the more popular "jocks" for openly displaying any intellect. These anti-intellectual attitudes are not reflected in students in most European or Asian countries, whose educational levels have now equaled and and will surpass that of the U.S. And most TV shows or movies such as The Big Bang Theory depict intellectuals as being geeks if not effeminate.

John W. Traphagan, Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Texas, argues the problem is that Asian countries have core cultural values that are more akin to a cult of intelligence and education than a cult of ignorance and anti-intellectualism. In Japan, for example, teachers are held in high esteem and normally viewed as among the most important members of a community. There is suspicion and even disdain for the work of teachers that occurs in the U.S. Teachers in Japan typically are paid significantly more than their peers in the U.S. The profession of teaching is one that is seen as being of central value in Japanese society and those who choose that profession are well compensated in terms of salary, pension, and respect for their knowledge and their efforts on behalf of children.

In addition, we do not see in Japan significant numbers of the types of religious schools that are designed to shield children from knowledge about basic tenets of science and accepted understandings of history - such as evolutionary theory or the religious views of the Founding Fathers, who were largely deists - which are essential to having a fundamental understanding of the world, Traphagan contends. The reason for this is because in general Japanese value education, value the work of intellectuals, and see a well-educated public with a basic common knowledge in areas of scientific fact, math, history, literature, etc. as being an essential foundation to a successful democracy.

We're creating a world of dummies. Angry dummies who feel they have the right, the authority and the need not only to comment on everything, but to make sure their voice is heard above the rest, and to drag down any opposing views through personal attacks, loud repetition and confrontation.

Bill Keller, writing in the New York Times argues that the anti-intellectual elitism is not an elitism of wisdom, education, experience or knowledge. The new elite are the angry social media posters, those who can shout loudest and more often, a clique of bullies and malcontents baying together like dogs cornering a fox. Too often it's a combined elite of the anti-intellectuals and the conspiracy followers - not those who can voice the most cogent, most coherent response. Together they foment a rabid culture of anti-rationalism where every fact is suspect; every shadow holds a secret conspiracy. Rational thought is the enemy. Critical thinking is the devil's tool.

Keller also notes that the herd mentality takes over online; the anti-intellectuals become the metaphorical equivalent of an angry lynch mob when anyone either challenges one of the mob beliefs or posts anything outside the mob's self-limiting set of values.

Keller blames this in part to the online universe that "skews young, educated and attentive to fashions." Fashion, entertainment, spectacle, voyeurism - we're directed towards trivia, towards the inconsequential, towards unquestioning and blatant consumerism. This results in intellectual complacency. People accept without questioning, believe without weighing the choices, join the pack because in a culture where convenience rules, real individualism is too hard work. Thinking takes too much time: it gets in the way of the immediacy of the online experience.

Reality TV and pop culture presented in magazines and online sites claim to provide useful information about the importance of The Housewives of [you name the city] that can somehow enrich our lives. After all, how else can one explain the insipid and pointless stories that tout divorces, cheating and weight gain? How else can we explain how the Kardashians, or Paris Hilton are known for being famous without actually contributing anything worth discussion? The artificial events of their lives become the mainstay of populist media to distract people from the real issues and concerns facing us.

The current trend of increasing anti-intellectualism now establishing itself in politics and business leadership, and supported by a declining education system should be a cause for concern for leaders and the general population, one that needs to be addressed now. –SOTT

Why Do Some Of Us Get Déjà Vu More Often Than Others?

by Jordan Lewis

Here's what we know about who's most likely to experience it.

Many of us know the feeling: You'll be going about your day, minding your own business, folding some laundry—nothing out of the ordinary, when suddenly a sensation of familiarity washes over you, and you're completely aware that it's happening: I've been here before.

Except you haven't. Or have you?

You might try to think back and pinpoint when you'd experienced this moment before. But just as quickly as the feeling hits you, it's gone.

Did you predict the future? Were you seeing something from a past life? What is déjà vu, anyway?

The phenomenon of déjà vu (French for "already seen") is, scientifically, pretty poorly understood, but there are a few theories:
  • Déjà vu may be the result of some sort of "mismatch" in how we're simultaneously sensing and perceiving the world around us. Perhaps we smell something familiar, for example, and our mind is instantly transported to the first time we smelled it. (It's a vague theory, though, and doesn't explain why most déjà vu episodes don't reflect true past events.)
  • Déjà vu may be a fleeting malfunctioning between the long- and short-term circuits in the brain. The information our brain takes in about its surroundings may "shortcut" its way straight to long-term memory, bypassing typical storage transfer mechanisms, so when we have a moment of déjà vu, it feels as though we're experiencing something from our distant past.   
  • A region of the brain called the rhinal cortex, involved in detecting familiarity, may be inexplicably activated without actually activating memory (hippocampal) circuits. That may explain why déjà vu episodes feel so non-specific when we try to figure out where and when we had previously experienced a particular moment. In fact, some patients with epilepsy reliably experience déjà vu at the beginning of a seizure. For these individuals, experimental stimulation of the rhinal cortex — and not so much the hippocampus itself — induces déjà vu.
Déjà vu is estimated to occur in 60-70% of us, most commonly in those between the ages of 15 and 25. Why? We have no idea. Interestingly, though, I had previously written about déjà vu years ago out of my own curiosity on the matter, having experienced it fairly frequently. I'm now 26, though, and can't remember the last time I had an episode.

Are any of these theories correct? We may never know. After all, since episodes of déjà vu are completely unexpected—not to mention, for most of us, extremely rare—real empirical research on the topic is next to impossible. –Psychology Today

A German's View Of Fanaticism

by Emanuel Tanya

Pre-World War II, very few people in my native Germany were true Nazis but many were too busy to care. I was one of those who thought the Nazis were a bunch of fools while the majority just sat back and let it all happen. Before we knew it, the Nazis owned us, and we had lost control, and the end of our former German world had come.
My family lost everything. My family's various businesses & factories were destroyed, and I ended in a Nazi concentration camp.

Today, we are told again and again by experts and talking heads that Islam is a religion of peace and that the vast majority of Muslims just want to live in peace. Although this unqualified assertion may be true, it is entirely irrelevant. It is meaningless fluff meant to make us feel better, and meant to somehow diminish the specter of fanatics rampaging across the globe in the name of Islam.

The fact is that the fanatics rule Islam at this moment in history.
  • It is the Islamic fanatics who march.
  • It is the Islamic fanatics who wage any one of 50 shooting wars worldwide.
  • It is the Islamic fanatics who systematically slaughter Christian or tribal groups throughout Africa and are gradually taking over the entire African continent in an Islamic wave.
  • It is the Islamic fanatics who bomb, behead, murder, and honor-kill.
  • It is the Islamic fanatics who take over mosque after mosque.
  • It is the Islamic fanatics who zealously spread the stoning and hanging of rape victims and homosexuals.
  • It is the Islamic fanatics who teach their young to kill and to become suicide bombers.
  • The hard, quantifiable fact is that the peaceful majority, the so-called 'Silent Majority', is cowed and extraneous.
Let us remember that:

Communist Russia was comprised of Russians who just wanted to live in peace, yet the Russian Communists were responsible for the murder of about 20 million people. The peaceful majority were irrelevant.

China 's huge population was peaceful as well, but Chinese Communists managed to kill a staggering 70 million people.’

The average Japanese individual prior to World War II was not a warmongering sadist. Yet, Japan murdered and slaughtered its way across South East Asia in an orgy of killing that included the systematic murder of 12 million Chinese civilians; most killed by sword, shovel, and bayonet.

Rwanda which collapsed into butchery! Could it not be said that the majority of Rwandans were 'peace loving'? 

History lessons are often incredibly simple and blunt, yet for all our powers of reason, we often miss the most basic and uncomplicated of points: peace-loving Muslims have been made irrelevant by their silence. Peace-loving Muslims will become our enemy if they don't speak up, because like my friends in Germany before WW II, they will awaken one day and find that the fanatics own them, and the end of their world will have begun.

Peace-loving Germans, Japanese, Chinese, Russians, Rwandans, Serbs, Afghans, Iraqis, Palestinians, Somalis, Nigerians, Algerians, and many others have died because the peaceful Silent Majority did not speak up until it was too late.

Now Islamic prayers have been introduced in Toronto and other public schools in Ontario , and, yes, in Ottawa ,too, while the Lord's Prayer has been banned because it is offensive(?). The Islamic way may be peaceful for the time being in our country until the fanatics move in.

In many, if not all, countries around the world today, many of the most commonly consumed food items have the halal emblem on them. Just look at the back of some of the most popular chocolate bars, and at other food items in your local supermarket, the halal emblem is stamped on them. Airlines serve halal food to appease the privileged Islamic fanatical minority who are now rapidly expanding in every shore.

In the United Kingdom, the Muslim communities now refuse to integrate and there are now dozens of "no-go" zones within major cities across the country that the police force dare not intrude upon, and Shari'a law prevails there because the Muslim community in those areas refuse to acknowledge British law. 

As for us who watch it all unfold, we must pay attention to the only group that counts - the fanatics who threaten our way of life.’

Anyone who doubts that the issue is serious is contributing to the passiveness that allows the problems to expand. 

Let us hope that today's Silent Majority world-wide read and think seriously about the fast spreading fanaticism of a relative few before it's too late, and we are silenced because we were complacent and chose to be silent.

About the article's author. . .Emanuel Tanya is a German Jew and a psychiatrist. His family owned several businesses before the Nazis took over Germany; all of the family's businesses and factories were destroyed during World War II.

-Contributed by Ralph

The Most Anti-American Thing There Is

by Rika Christensen

What’s the most anti-American thing someone can do besides vote for Donald Trump in November? Apparently, right-wing freak Ted Nugent has the answer to that question, and it’s something every American should hear. Speaking with conservative radio host Joe Pags, he tells us:

    “There is nothing more anti-American than the freaks that hate me, and when MoveOn.org, Media Matters, Southern Poverty Law Center, Rachel Maddow and MSNBC lie and spew their hate towards me, it’s because I stand with the best families in America.”

The man certainly thinks a lot of himself, doesn’t he? One might have thought there was no more room in this country for egos, what with Donald Trump’s ego growing miles by the minute after officially locking up the GOP nomination, but one would be wrong. It takes a lot of ego and chutzpah for Ted Nugent to say that the most anti-American thing imaginable is hating him.

He says that the NRA is not a gun lobby during this interview, too. What is it, then? Nugent says it’s “mom-and-pop family America, and is standing up for the most fundamental instinct and God-given individual right” that self-defense (i.e. owning guns) is good. Har de har har. Only Nugent can fit this much nonsense into one interview.

He also rages against Hillary Clinton and Bernie “Mao Tse Tung” Sanders about wanting to push gun owners down, and he talks about how he’s right all the time if so many people have to hate on him so much. Listen to him toss a major word salad below:

[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/266047509″ params=”color=ff5500″ width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]

Let’s look at Nugent for a moment. He’s incredibly ammosexual – in fact, he was just re-elected as a board member of the NRA, despite the fact that many of the NRA’s members aren’t nearly as crazy as Nugent is. Nugent thinks that anybody who even criticizes the NRA just wants to help criminals.

Before President Obama was elected, he said that he would either be dead or imprisoned within two weeks of winning the election. That hasn’t happened yet, but the Secret Service took it as a threat against Obama and investigated it. He also referred to a lawmaker of mixed-race heritage as a “subhuman mongrel.”

We must acknowledge, however, that Ted Nugent is a patriot among patriots – a word that’s been usurped and twisted by the far right to only apply to white supremacists who love guns, fetuses and the Bible. They hate the poor, along with starving children and anyone who thinks helping others is a good thing. He’s a true patriot, except for that time he dodged the Vietnam draft by pooping in his pants every day. Or so he said.

But to say that the most anti-American thing out there is to hate Ted Nugent is over the top, even for him. This man suffers from delusions of grandeur that we don’t even see in Donald Trump for the most part. –Addicting Info

World's 10 Most Mysterious Pictures Ever Taken

How Much Time Do Couples Spend When They Have Sex?

by Brendan Zietsch

If you’re a non-scientist, you might have once asked yourself, propped against the bedhead after disappointingly quick intercourse, how long does sex “normally” last?

A scientist, though, would phrase the same question in an almost comically obscure way: What is the mean intravaginal ejaculation latency time?

I know there’s a lot more to sex than putting the penis into the vagina and ejaculating, but the rest is not always easy to define (kissing? Rubbing? Grinding?). To keep things simple and specific, we’ll just focus on the time to ejaculation.

Measuring an average time to ejaculation is not a straightforward matter. What about just asking people how long they take, you say? Well, there are two main problems with this. One is that people are likely to be biased upwards in their time estimates, because it’s socially desirable to say you go long into the night.

The other problem is that people don’t necessarily know how long they go for. Sex isn’t something people normally do while monitoring the bedside clock, and unassisted time estimation may be difficult during a transportative session of love-making.

What does the research say?

The best study we have estimating the average time to ejaculation in the general population involved 500 couples from around the world timing themselves having sex over a four-week period—using a stopwatch.

That is as practically awkward as it sounds: participants pressed “start” at penile penetration and “stop” at ejaculation. You may note this could affect the mood somewhat, and might perhaps not exactly reflect the natural flow of things. But—science is rarely perfect, and this is the best we’ve got.

So what did the researchers find? The most striking result is that there was a huge amount of variation. The average time for each couple (that is, averaged across all the times they had sex) ranged from 33 seconds to 44 minutes. That’s an 80-fold difference.

So it’s clear there’s no one “normal” amount of time to have sex. The average (median, technically) across all couples, though, was 5.4 minutes. This means that if you line up the 500 couples from shortest sex to longest sex, the middle couple goes for an average of 5.4 minutes each time they do it.

There were some interesting secondary results, too. For example, condom use didn’t seem to affect the time, and neither did men’s being circumcised or not, which challenges some conventional wisdom regarding penile sensitivity and its relationship to staying power in the sack.

It didn’t much matter which country the couples came from either—unless they came from Turkey, in which case their sex tended to be significantly shorter (3.7 minutes) than couples from other countries (Netherlands, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States). Another surprising finding was that the older the couple, the shorter the sex, contrary to the prevailing wisdom (probably peddled by older men).

Why do we have sex for so long?

As an evolutionary researcher, all this talk of how long sex lasts make me wonder: Why does it last any time at all? All sex really needs to achieve, it seems, is to put sperm into the vagina. Why all the thrusting and bumping? Instead of sliding the penis in and out many hundreds of times per sexual session, why not just put it in once, ejaculate, and then go have a lemonade and get on with the rest of the day?

Before you say, Because it’s fun to go in and out!, remember evolution doesn’t care about fun per se—it generally only “designs” things to be enjoyable if they helped our ancestors pass on their genes to future generations. For example, even though we like eating food, we don’t chew each mouthful of it for five minutes just to make the enjoyment last longer. That would be inefficient, and so we’ve evolved to find it gross.

Why we last so long is a pretty complicated question with no clear answer, but a clue may be in the way the penis is shaped. In 2003, researchers showed—using artificial vaginas, artificial penises, and artificial sperm (corn syrup)—that the ridge around the head of the penis actually scoops out pre-existing syrup from the vagina.

What this suggests is that men’s repeated thrusting might function to displace other men’s semen before ejaculating, ensuring their own swimmers have a better chance of reaching the egg first. Incidentally, this could explain why it becomes painful for a man to continue thrusting after ejaculating, since that would risk scooping out his own semen as well.

So what to do with this information? My advice would be to try not to think about it during the throes of passion. –Alternet

Pan-Roasted Sea Bass With Citrus And Avocado Oil

Recipe by Amelia Saltsman

Ingredients (Serves 4):

2 oranges
2 pink grapefruits
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
4 6-ounce skinless fillets white or Mexican sea bass or grouper (about 1' thick)
1 tablespoon grapeseed oil
1 avocado, halved, pitted, peeled, cut into wedges
4 tablespoons avocado oil

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 450°. Using a small sharp knife, cut off all peel and white pith from fruit. Working over a medium bowl, cut between membranes to release segments into bowl. Squeeze in juices from membranes; discard membranes. Drain fruit, reserving 1/2 cup juices. Return segments and juices to bowl. Season with salt and pepper.

Pat fish dry. Season with salt and pepper. Heat a large heavy ovenproof skillet over high heat. Add grapeseed oil. Add fish; cook without moving, occasionally pressing fish gently with a spatula to keep all of surface in contact with pan, until fish is golden brown and releases easily from pan, 4–5 minutes.

Turn fish, transfer to oven, and roast until just opaque in the center, 3–5 minutes.

Place fruit and avocado on plates. Top with fillets. Spoon 2 Tbsp. citrus juices over fruit on each plate. Drizzle 1 Tbsp. avocado oil over fish and fruit.

-bon appetit

Dec 18, 2016

Nov 6, 2016

I cannot stress it enough, November 8th. ... Vote, vote, vote, vote!
But don't waste your vote on crack pots and haters.
It's our future. Turning back is not an option.

Putin Recruited Trump To Be A Double Agent

by Oliver Willis

Former CIA Director Michael J. Morell has written a devastating op-ed in the New York Times. In it, he makes it very clear that he believes the safety of America is at significant risk if the American people elect Donald Trump to the presidency.

In the course of that essay, Morell also points out the far-too-cozy relationship Trump has with Russian president Vladimir Putin.

    The dangers that flow from Mr. Trump’s character are not just risks that would emerge if he became president. It is already damaging our national security.

    President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia was a career intelligence officer, trained to identify vulnerabilities in an individual and to exploit them. That is exactly what he did early in the primaries. Mr. Putin played upon Mr. Trump’s vulnerabilities by complimenting him. He responded just as Mr. Putin had calculated.

    In the intelligence business, we would say that Mr. Putin had recruited Mr. Trump as an unwitting agent of the Russian Federation.

Morell also notes that Trump “undermined security with his call for barring Muslims from entering the country” and that his bigotry “plays into the hands of the jihadist narrative that our fight against terrorism is a war between religions.”

The former official points out that Muslims have key roles in defending America, including the man who ran the C.I.A.’s Counterterrorism Center for nearly a decade.

He also heaps praise on Hillary Clinton, while making clear that he served under Presidents of both parties – three Democrats and three Republicans. On Clinton Morell says:

    “I found her to be prepared, detail-oriented, thoughtful, inquisitive and willing to change her mind if presented with a compelling argument.”

The essay comes as Trump has begun to collapse in national polls and polls in swing states. They reflect a post-Convention surge in popularity for Clinton, but also reflect disgust over Trump’s repeated attacks on the family of a fallen U.S. Army captain. –Addicting Info

Nevada Voter Says She Supports Trump And Opposes 'The Homosexuals'

Scholars Steeped In Dead Politicians Take On A Live One

by Jim Dwyer

No one could mistake the voice of David McCullough, either in the books that have made him one of the most influential United States historians of his era, or in the documentaries he has narrated for the “American Experience” television series.

Authoritative and measured, Mr. McCullough typically strikes a tone of determined neutrality. In public appearances, he said, he deliberately avoids commentary on contemporary politics.

“Very often, during question-and-answer sessions, people ask me some question about the president or other would-be candidates,” he said in an interview this week. “I’ve always said, ‘My specialty is dead politicians.’ In that way, I could sidestep the question without getting myself involved.

“But this time around, I don’t feel that way any more.”

Now Mr. McCullough and Ken Burns, the filmmaker and author, have assembled a group of distinguished American historians to speak about the candidacy of Donald J. Trump, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, in videos being posted to a Facebook page, Historians on Donald Trump.

It is a diverse, honored group — including, among others, Robert A. Caro, Ron Chernow, David Levering Lewis, William E. Leuchtenburg, Vicki Lynn Ruiz — that speaks with alarm about Mr. Trump’s candidacy and his place in the march of American history.

Mr. McCullough, raised in a Republican home and now aligned with no party, said the prospect of a Trump presidency so distressed him that he felt he could not remain publicly detached. “When you think of how far we have come, and at what cost, and with what faith, to just turn it all over to this monstrous clown with a monstrous ego, with no experience, never served his country in any way — it’s just crazy,” he said. “We can’t stand by and let it happen. The Republican Party shouldn’t stand by and let it happen.”

“I should say, I’m a registered independent,” he added. “I’m strongly in favor of a number of Republicans both past and in our own time. It’s not as though I’m doing this from lifelong ideology against Republicans. By no means.”

Mr. McCullough said he contacted Mr. Burns after seeing him tell this year’s graduating class at Stanford University that despite 40 years of avoiding advocacy in his work, he no longer had “the luxury of neutrality or ‘balance’ or even of bemused disdain.” After a few conversations, Mr. McCullough said, the two men came up with a plan: “Why don’t we see if we can round up some other people who care about the American story, and who have given so much of their life’s work to it, see if they are willing to step out and make themselves heard.”

The videos are mostly homemade, smartphone productions. None of the historians asked to weigh in have declined, Mr. Burns said.

Like many of the others, Mr. Burns said he heard echoes of dangerous populist demagogues in Mr. Trump’s rhetoric. Among the issues that were cited were his calls to ban all Muslims, his characterization of many Mexicans as criminals and his mockery of veterans and people with disabilities. Mr. Trump has said that the country faces crises that require strong action to protect its borders, and that his role as an outsider has cost him the approval of elites and entrenched interests, including in his own party.

In the 1920s, fear of immigrants fueled the rise of the Ku Klux Klan and exclusionary laws aimed at European Catholics and Asians, said Ms. Ruiz, a professor of history at the University of California, Irvine, and past president of the American Historical Association. Also, about one-third of the Mexican population in this country was pushed out, more than half of them United States citizens by birth, she said.

“Playing with hate has had tragic consequences throughout our history,” she said.

Mr. Chernow, a Pulitzer Prize winner whose “Alexander Hamilton” was a principal source for the Broadway musical “Hamilton,” said he had been struck by Mr. Trump’s lack of reference to the founding documents of American history, or to presidents like George Washington, Abraham Lincoln and Franklin D. Roosevelt. “The only historical movement that Mr. Trump alludes to is a shameful one — ‘America First,’” Mr. Chernow said, recalling an isolationist political organization at the time Nazi Germany was taking power across Europe.

Mr. Lewis, a professor at New York University and biographer of W. E. B. DuBois, recalled Wendell Willkie, a presidential candidate with a superficial resemblance to Mr. Trump, in that he was a wealthy businessman who had held no prior electoral office and became a Republican just shortly before the 1940 campaign against Roosevelt. But after the election, Willkie distinguished himself by calling for a loyal opposition, Professor Lewis said. (Willkie served as Roosevelt’s informal emissary to Britain, in a sign of bipartisanship.) “For Donald Trump, Willkie’s loyal opposition concept is surely anathema,” Professor Lewis said.

Mr. Leuchtenburg, a professor emeritus at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a leading scholar of the American presidency, said Mr. Trump was essentially ahistorical. “He has no sense of the American past,” Professor Leuchtenburg said. “He doesn’t understand the achievements of this country.” -NY Times

Bombshell Allegations Against Trump

Exploding World Debt Will Cause Global Financial Meltdown

The McKinsey Global Institute released a new study examining the growing world debt and warns of increased risks to worldwide financial stability.

According to the report, total world debt — including government, household, financial, and corporate — increased to $199 trillion in 2014. This is almost three times the total yearly world output.

Since the Great Recession (beginning in 2007), global debt has increased by $57 trillion, far outpacing the world’s economic growth in composite GDP.

Only 5 countries have lowered their total debt burden: Argentina, Romania, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Israel.

It’s Not Just Governments

While government debt is expanding at the fastest pace worldwide, all sectors have significantly increased their debt burdens.

Probably the most remarkable retreat was from the financial sector, significantly deleveraging after the U.S. mortgage-lending crisis of 2007-2010.

Household debt, according to the report, is a worldwide ticking time bomb. The lessons were not learned from the U.S. financial crisis, and levels of unsustainable debt continue to soar.

Of the industrial nations, only the United States, Ireland, Portugal, Spain, and the United Kingdom have seen significant slowing in the accumulation of household debt.

In particular, the household debts in the Netherlands, South Korea, Canada, Sweden, Australia, Malaysia, and Thailand are seen by analysts as unsustainable and in jeopardy of non-repayment.

Is China Set Up For Its First Widespread Financial Collapse?

In America, we generally see China as a buyer of debt, not as a country accumulating an unsustainable debt burden.

China has had an impressive period of expansion, and too often the delusion of “never-ending growth” becomes contagious.

One-third of the world’s $57 trillion debt increase was from China’s debt explosion, with total debt exceeding 282 percent of GDP (higher than the United States).

Some of this debt seems almost foolish, with municipalities accumulating $1.7 trillion in debt solely on purchasing automobiles for government use.

But two looming risks are the cause of the analyst’s alarm: the level of debt tied to real estate and the rapid increase of shadow banking.

Both of these risks were fundamental causes of the U.S. banking crisis, but China’s leveraging is even worse. Over half of the total debt in China is in debt linked to real estate.

Shadow banking is the term that describes nontraditional banking institutions. These entities are often unregulated and uninsured, and frequently take extraordinary risks.

Shadow banking in China is increasing at 36 percent per year, trying to keep up with the ever increasing demand for finance.

While there is nothing inherently wrong with shadow banking (it exists in the United States as well), at these levels it adds unnecessary risk and instability to the entire financial system.

Are We Heading Toward a Worldwide Financial Meltdown?

Consumption always drives the economy — consumption increases business investment by sending signals for firms to hire and produce more products.

But the world is consuming on borrowed money. What happens when the credit runs out?

It’s not hard to see the tailspin; we even created a smaller version during the Great Recession.

As credit runs out, households (the primary consumers) spend less to pay down debt. This, in turn, cools down the economy, businesses layoff workers, and payrolls decrease, which makes it harder to pay down debt or consume.

This is what concerns these analysts. At some point, the world credit supply will run out. And even if it doesn’t, huge portions of GDP will be paid in interest, not in consumption.

Take for instance China’s recent debt explosion. At close to 300 percent of GDP, the total interest on debt (at say 5%) would equal roughly 15 percent of the total GDP.

And there’s the catch-22. We can’t have a sudden retreat from spending with debt. At some point, however, the interest due will consume a huge portion of the total GDP.

We’ve created the perfect storm — and at this point, we’re probably going to have to ride it out when the storm makes landfall. –IVN

Trump Supporters Call For Violent Coup

by John Wright

"We’re Going to Have a Revolution and Take Them Out of Office if That’s What It Takes"

Donald Trump's increasingly inflammatory rhetoric is bringing out the worst in his die-hard supporters, some of whom are now calling for a violent coup if Hillary Clinton becomes president, and pledging to racially profile and intimidate minority voters on Election Day.

The Boston Globe reports that Trump supporters are starting to believe what the GOP presidential nominee has repeatedly told them — that the election will be "rigged" as part of a massive conspiracy to defeat him at the hands of "crooked Hillary." And the impact of Trump's incendiary statements could be felt far beyond Election Day, undermining Americans' faith in democracy and making it difficult to govern — or worse.

“If she’s in office, I hope we can start a coup. She should be in prison or shot. That’s how I feel about it,” Dan Bowman, a 50-year-old contractor, said of Clinton at recent rally in Cincinnati. “We’re going to have a revolution and take them out of office if that’s what it takes. There’s going to be a lot of bloodshed. But that’s what it’s going to take. . . . I would do whatever I can for my country.”

At a rally in North Carolina on Friday, Trump declared: “It’s one big fix. This whole election is being rigged.’’

At the same rally, a Trump supporter attacked a protester, shoving him and putting him in a headlock, as the crowd erupted in chants of "USA, USA!":

Steve Webb, a 61-year-old carpenter, told the Globe he plans to heed Trump's call to "watch your precincts" on Election Day.

“I’ll look for . . . well, it’s called racial profiling. Mexicans. Syrians. People who can’t speak American,” he said. “I’m going to go right up behind them. I’ll do everything legally. I want to see if they are accountable. I’m not going to do anything illegal. I’m going to make them a little bit nervous.” -TNCRM

The New Frontier Of LGBTQ Civil Rights, Explained

Trump Supporters Are The Stupidest

by Jason Easley

A new poll revealed that depth of bigoted stupidity of Republican voters who are supporting Donald Trump.

A new poll revealed that depth of bigoted stupidity of Republican voters who are supporting Donald Trump.

According to a PPP survey of Trump supporters:

    -65% think President Obama is a Muslim, only 13% think he’s a Christian.

    -59% think President Obama was not born in the United States, only 23% think that he was.

    -24% think Antonin Scalia was murdered, just 42% think he died naturally, another 34% are unsure.

The rest of America knows that President Obama is not a Muslim and was born in the United States. Donald Trump has courted the faction within the Republican who after nearly eight years in office and a long form birth certificate still refuses to believe that Barack Obama is a Christian, who was born in the United States.

Trump is leading a revolution of stupid within the Republican Party. The presumptive 2016 nominee represents all of the fear, bigotry, and bias that has been pumped into the Republican Party by conservative media. The Trump supporters are out of touch reality on every level, and they have taken over the Republican Party.

Donald Trump is just a symptom of the conservative movement’s rejection of facts and knowledge. All of the facts say that President Obama is a US born Christian. The facts say that Antonin Scalia was an obese, diabetic, smoker who did not take good care of his health. The majority of Trump supporters want to believe that Obama is a Kenyan-born Muslim. They are open to the possibility that Scalia was murdered by Obama.

Trump’s supporters are some of the dumbest people in America, and they are one election away from winning the White House. –Politic USA