Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley made national news last year when he fought to pass and signed a tax bill that levied a tax on Marylanders, businesses and churches for the amount of “impervious surface” they have on their property.
Though the O’Malley administration calls it a “fee,” it is commonly called the “rain tax” throughout the state. It is wildly unpopular and the promise to fight to repeal the tax was a large factor in Maryland electing Republican Larry Hogan governor this month.
Last night, I’m sure many hardworking privacy activists in the US poured a stiff drink after the Senate voted not to advance the USA Freedom Act, a bill intended to to reform some aspects of the US surveillance state. Personally, I was relieved.
Democrats are desperately distancing themselves from Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber. He “never worked on our staff,” President Obama said this weekend in Brisbane, Australia, (even though Gruber was paid almost $400,000 by his administration, is the intellectual author of the individual mandate and met in the Oval Office with Obama and the head of the Congressional Budget Office to pore over the bill). “I don’t know who he is,” Nancy Pelosi declared on Capitol Hill (even though she repeatedly cited him by name during the Obamacare debate).
Reports of missing persons have increased sixfold in the past 25 years, from roughly 150,000 in 1980 to about 900,000 this year.
An astounding 2,300 Americans are reported missing every day, including both adults and children.
The federal government counted 840,279 missing persons cases in 2001. All but about 50,000 were juveniles, classified as anyone younger than 18.
The prevalence of child sexual abuse is difficult to determine because it is often not reported. Experts agree that the incidences are far greater than what is reported to authorities.
The White House released a new fear-filled National Climate Assessment this week, offering the usual horrifying speculation instead of actual data.
Heck, if the worst-case scenarios in the climate computer models that have been consistently wrong for the past 30 years pan out, John F. Kennedy and LaGuardia airports could be under water. There could be more hurricanes. Our food will be less nutritious. And it’s all your fault, you evil, air conditioner-using, carbon-spewing, capitalism-loving Americans.
Secret U.S. missile and electro-optics technology was transferred to China recently by Israel, prompting anger from the U.S. and causing a senior Israeli defense official to resign.
The head of defense exports for the Israeli Defense Ministry resigned after a U.S. investigation concluded that technology, including a miniature refrigeration system manufactured by Ricor and used for missiles and in electro-optic equipment, was sent to China, according to the Israeli newspaper Maariv.
The ClimateGate files shed further light into the problems with CRU data, but media coverage of the scandal didn’t. The three broadcast networks ignored the breaking news for a full 13 days in November 2009. Since then, the networks have mentioned it just nine stories (the most recent was in May 2010) and never mentioned the Harry Read Me file, according to Nexis searches. Later the networks sought to “exonerate” accused scientists. One of the most disturbing files was a more than 200-page document called HARRY_READ_ME.txt.