Monthly Archives: September 2009

Cass Sunstein Is Certifiable; Absolutism, First Amendment New Deal & More Executive Power

Cass Sunstein is one of the scarier of Obama’s czars and the fact that he was confirmed by the Senate makes it 10x worse!  Sunstein may be a very nice man, but when it comes to ideology, theory, ideas, and his views on the constitution, it makes me want to pull my hair out and scream.  I’m not sure what it is about the world of academia and the absolute detachment from reality that many hold, but it’s time for America to get past the status  of holding ivy league degrees; the superficial, and vote for people with real world experience.  Teachers do live in the real world, but my question would be whether not they have actually worked in a job or a place where they have implemented these ideas first to see if they actually work and help people, not hurt.

Besides, Cass Sunstein’s idea of Internet regulation, whereby a panel or individual of some sort would decide what is inaccurate or false and ban content via their own opinion (more detail on this can be found in his book entitled On Rumors), he has also argued that animals should be able to have a lawyer and sue humans, and guns and hunting should be banned.  There is much more to Cass Sunstein and his regulatory ideas in Nudge, another book penned by the newly approved czar.

More information about Sunstein is slowly but surely beginning to trickle out as time passes.  Cass Sunstein is a proponent of absolutism which really is a sick, twisted theory of “no liberty without dependency”:

You owe your life — and everything else — to the sovereign. The rights of subjects are not natural rights, but merely grants from the sovereign. There is no right even to complain about the actions of the sovereign, except insofar as the sovereign allows the subject to complain. These are the principles of unlimited, arbitrary, and absolute power, the principles of such rulers as Louis XIV. Intellectuals have assiduously promoted them; think of Jean Bodin and Thomas Hobbes.

A new intellectual champion of absolutism has now emerged. Mild-mannered University of Chicago law professor Cass Sunstein has been advancing the radical notion that all rights — including rights usually held to be “against” the state, such as the right to freedom of speech and the right not to be arbitrarily imprisoned or tortured — are grants from the state. In a book co-authored with Stephen Holmes, The Cost of Rights, he argued that “all legal rights are, or aspire to be, welfare rights,” that is, positive grants from the state. There is no difference in kind between the right not to be tortured and the right to taxpayer-subsidized dental care.
In his new book, The Second Bill of Rights, Sunstein seeks to give constitutional status to welfare rights. The title comes from Franklin Roosevelt’s 1944 State of the Union address, in which he proclaimed that “necessitous men are not free men” and proposed a “second Bill of Rights under which a new basis of security and prosperity can be established for all.” Among the rights FDR proposed were the rights to “a useful and remunerative job,” “a decent home,” “adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health,” “adequate protection from the economic fears of old age, sickness, accident, and unemployment,” and “a good education.”

To further understand the radical nature of Sunstein’s theories, it’s imperative that we also take a look at his proposed First Amendment New Deal which would act as a new Fairness Doctrine, following the same lines of his Internet regulation ideas.

President Obama’s newly confirmed regulatory czar, Cass Sunstein, drew up a “First Amendment New Deal,” a new “Fairness Doctrine” that would include the establishment of a panel of “nonpartisan experts” to ensure “diversity of view” on the airwaves.

Sunstein compared the need for the government to regulate broadcasting to the moral obligation of the U.S. to impose new rules that outlawed segregation.

Until now, Sunstein’s radical proposal, set forth in his 1993 book “The Partial Constitution,” received no news media attention and scant scrutiny.

In the book – Sunstein outwardly favors and promotes the “fairness doctrine,” the abolished FCC policy that required holders of broadcast licenses to present controversial issues of public importance in a manner the government deemed was “equitable and balanced.”

Sunstein introduces what he terms his “First Amendment New Deal” to regulate broadcasting in the U.S.

It appears that Sunstein and Lloyd are two peas in a pod.  Both of these men believe that commercial broadcasting companies should fund strictly public broadcasting.  He also proposes more “democratic” means of control like “compulsory public-affairs programming, right of reply, content review by nonpartisan experts or guidelines to encourage attention to public issues and diversity of view.”

Believe it or not, that’s not the worst to come out of Sunstein’s mouth or from his pen lately.  Sunstein actually believes that Obama and those working as part of his administration should interpret federal laws, not the federal courts.

“There is no reason to believe that in the face of statutory ambiguity, the meaning of federal law should be settled by the inclinations and predispositions of federal judges. The outcome should instead depend on the commitments and beliefs of the President and those who operate under him,” argued Sunstein.

This statement was the central thesis of Sunstein’s 2006 Yale Law School paper, “Beyond Marbury: The Executive’s Power to Say What the Law Is.” The paper, in which he argues the president and his advisers should be the ones to interpret federal laws.

See why I’m pulling my hair out and screaming? This is sheer insanity and the man still argues that this is all constitutional!

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Filed under Big Brother, Constitution, Czars, Establishment, Fairness Doctrine, FCC, Media, Net Neutrality, Obama Administration, Progressivism, Radicals, Sunstein

Al Qaeda Operative Found With $50K Worth of Unsecured Loans From Bailout Banks

Najibullah Zazi, the man captured and being questioned for the terrorist raid in New York was found to have $50K in unsecured loans in the form of unsecured credit cards from the banks that were bailed out by the government.  So far the only mentions of this come from the Jawa Report, Market Ticker, and the NY Daily news.  This is a HUGE story – where is the media and the outrage of the American public? Oh that’s right, the media is still too busy talking about the continuing aftermath of Jackson’s death and now Teddy Kennedy’s.  Journalism is dead! 

The New York Daily News stated the following:

Between 2005 and 2008, he opened credit card accounts with Bank of America, Chase, Capital One, Discover and Citibank and ran up a debt of more than $50,000.
 
When he filed for bankruptcy, Zazi said he hadn’t worked in two months.

Denniger from Market Ticker puts it bluntly:

HOW IN THE HELL DO OUR BANKING REGULATORS ALLOW THIS SORT OF OUTRIGHT FRAUDULENT GRANTING OF CREDIT? $50,000 IN UNSECURED CREDIT LINES TO A FREAKING DELIVERY DRIVER WHO APPEARS TO BE A FOREIGN NATIONAL WITH NO ASSETS IN THE UNITED STATES AGAINST WHICH TO SECURE THE LOAN?

THE BANKS THAT WE BAILED OUT FAILED TO STOP THIS CRAP ALL THE WAY UP TO MARCH OF THIS YEAR AT LEAST (WHEN THIS GUY FILED BANKRUPTCY) AND PROBABLY STILL ARE DOING IT!

This is an OUTRAGE. Not only did this guy effectively stick the US Taxpayer with the $50,000 in debt it appears he may have been using the freaking money to plot some sort of terrorist attack as part of an Al-Qaida cell INSIDE THE UNITED STATES?

TO PUT THIS IN ONE SENTENCE: BANKS THAT WE BAILED OUT WITH TAXPAYER MONEY ARE FUNDING TERRORISTS INSIDE THE US?!

I’m sure more government regulation will really help thwart all of the corruption and criminal activity – especially when it comes to our own country funding terrorist plots on our own soil.

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Filed under Corruption, Illegal Aliens, Media, National Security, Stimulus, Terrorism

FCC Implementing Net Nuetrality Rule (Monday)

Tomorrow, the FCC will make an announcement that it proposes to implement a new net neutrality rule for the Internet. We had been warned previously that rather than a new Fairness Doctrine, other rules/laws would be passed that could potentially affect content of the Internet and over the airwaves. 

Julius Genachowski, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, plans to propose a new so-called net neutrality rule Monday that could prevent telecommunications, cable and wireless companies from blocking Internet applications, according to sources at the agency.

Genachowski will discuss the rules Monday during a keynote speech at The Brookings Institute. He isn’t expected to drill into many details, but the proposal will specifically be for an additional guideline on how operators like AT&T, Verizon, and Comcast can control what goes on their networks. That additional guideline would prevent the operators from discriminating, or act as gatekeepers, of Web content and services.

The guidelines in place today have been criticized by applications developers like Google and public interest groups for not going far enough to clarify what is defined as discriminatory behavior. Comcast is fighting in federal court an FCC ruling that it violated the guidelines by blocking a video application last year. AT&T and Verizon have said existing rules are sufficient, and more regulation is unnecessary. However, they have also said they wouldn’t fight against an additional guideline that focuses on discriminatory behavior.

Julius is not somebody who is non-partisan either.  As any appointees, they have connections to a political party and ideology.  Julius was Obama’s communications and Internet campaign manager during the 2008 election.  As we have discovered with Mark Lloyd and Cass Sunstein, Genachowski is probably no different. 

After reading various comments and arguments for this rule, I can understand how people believe net neutrality would be a good thing.  Most people who are unaware think that more regulation will actually help the consumer, and if that truly is the case, I would be all the more for it.  However, cable, phone, Internet, and wireless companies are some of the most highly regulated companies in the United States, but people still despise them.  Since there is already so much government interference wouldn’t it be safe to say that the government would inevitably make things worse rather than better? 

One issue at play is that enterprises like AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint, etc. use “public” airwaves but they pay billions of dollars in licensing fees for the privilege of using the AIR! The government is already regulating that “air” and the argument has to do with the amount of regulation that already exists. To force mobile carriers to treat all internet traffic the same is ridiculous because this kind of free for all will crash many of the major carriers’ networks! There is a natural free market revolution going on which is allowing these private companies to upgrade their networks to meet the demands of their customers. Government intervention is not the answer. AT&T is responding to anger in NYC and SF by adding tons of capacity to meet the needs of its users before they leave AT&T for another carrier. If the government forces net neutrality on wireless carriers, all iPhone and smart phone users will take all of the bandwidth in order to watch streaming video and music, which sounds fine if you are an iPhone user but think about the downside and unintended consequences. If these major wireless carriers are forced to treat all traffic the same there will be no more unlimited data packages for $35/month. They will start to charge per MB in order to ensure their networks dont crash for all of their users. There were no wireless data networks to speak of 10 years ago and now we have 3G and 4G LTE coming everywhere within the next 18 months. The free market is doing this not a govt mandate, unfortunately, what a lot of people have failed to recognize is the reality and universality of the “law of unintended consequences”.

Which brings to the forefront, the second issue: at face value, net neutrality sounds like a great idea. Unfortunately, nearly everything the government does ultimately warps the motives of companies and individuals in a bad way.  The presumption by most is that the government actually has the ability to “make things better”. In my experience, that is almost never the case.  The slippery slope argument is not fear-mongering, when one merely needs to look back through history to see plenty of laws that were intended for the right purpose, which were used for something incredibly distorted and wrong. The content originally regulated would most likely be something routine and mundane – very basic data, however, it could suddenly change to ideological content.  Mark Lloyd has been talking about diversity on the Internet and over the airwaves, as well as anti-discrimination.  Sunstein, the newly appointed regulation czar feels the same way and would like to regulate the Internet based on any perceived falsehoods – who decides what is false and what is not – there is too much room for political bias. 

If this is implemented officially, I want to hear what those lauding it say after 5 years, and after majorities switch hands to the other party.  I better not hear any outcry from the liberals if Republicans come into power and continue to use net neutrality…

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Filed under Big Brother, Constitution, Czars, Fairness Doctrine, FCC, MSM, Net Neutrality, Obama Administration, Progressivism

Big Labor = Big Corruption; Jimmy Hoffa Would Be So Proud

It’s time to clean house!  I’d like to see a sweeping investigation into any and all big labor unions, “non-partisan” taxpayer funded groups, lobbyists, and major corporations that donate to politicians. 

Union bosses are still acting much like mafia characters, and some would argue that’s what they in fact are.  A union boss is admitting to using/exploiting his union members as political activists.   

An interesting admission by James A. Williams, president of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades in Philadelphia, can be seen in an interview he did with the Philly Inquirer. It is an admission that confirms one of the things that anti-union folks have been saying for years, but one union officials are loath to admit.

While discussing the hard economic times, the Philly Inquirer asked how the recession was affecting the union. In his answer President Wilson admitted that his union uses out-of-work members for “political events.” Wilson mentioned that they lower dues to $1 a month after a member has been out of work for more than six months, but that isn’t just the kind hearted union looking out for its members. No, the union expects something in return for that lowering of dues. 

Would exploitation and quid pro quo be considered commendable by the bleeding heart liberals?  Union leadership has always been in the business of lining their own pockets and achieving their own objectives, no matter who gets stepped on along the way, including their own members.

Obama has long been a union advocate, as are many other Democrats.  Unions became part of the Democrat voting block after FDR focused his efforts on creating certain groups that could be used for votes.  Big labor, since that time, has been a large contributor to the DNC.  Obama has spoken at the UAW, SEIU, and AFL-CIO conventions numerous times and most recently this past week.  The latest push for union control of ports and the fact that Obama supports easing the rules of union organizing should give anyone pause. 

President Obama gave a corker of a campaign speech yesterday at the AFL-CIO convention in Pittsburgh, promising to deliver on his promise to ease the rules for union organizing. If you want to know what this means in action, consider the current Teamsters play to control California ports. 

[…]

The American Trucking Association sued to block the rule, and with good cause. Federal law has long pre-empted state and local regulation of interstate trucking “prices, routes and services,” for the reason that international and interstate trade depend on uniform regulation. The courts have recognized this, and even the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals found that the new port rule had likely violated the Constitution’s Commerce Clause, which led to a court injunction earlier this year. Trial on the merits of the rule has been set for next year. 

[…] 

Unionization would give the Teamsters enormous bargaining leverage over work rules and pay, sharply raising the cost of moving goods, as well the power to shut down ports in a strike. Some 32 trade groups, from farm organizations to the National Retail Federation, signed a recent letter to Mr. Oberstar opposing the legislation. The response of shippers would be to divert cargo to Mexico or Canada, or pass through an expanding Panama Canal for ports on the Gulf or East Coasts. California doesn’t need more reasons for business to flee the state. 

For a group who continues to point their finger at George Bush and the Republicans for the current state of the economy, it sure seems as though they would prefer the economy to stay stagnant and hand it over to big labor and government, two of the causes for our hardships now. 

An example of the sheer lack of morals and utter corruption that has corroded big labor for quite some time is the recent conviction of Jaime Enrique Feliciano, a 50 yr. old man sentenced to 25 years in prison for child molestation, possession of child pornography and the intent to manufacture child pornography.  So who is Feliciano?  He was the former district president of the California SEIU, a proud partner of ACORN.

It’s time to wake up and take control of our country again.  These big labor organizations and large non-profits that are acting as arms to the government, doing their bidding, need to be disbanded and swept clean.  People on both sides should be sick and tired of the corruption, the ponzi schemes, the pay-to-play politics, and the lack of consideration for the people of America.

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Filed under ACORN, Big Labor, Corruption, Democrats, Double Standards, Economy, Establishment, Obama, Unions

King Obama To Head The UN Security Council; He’s Also Scrapping The Missile Shield

When you are an egomaniac, promote yourself.  I learned several years ago that EGO was just an acronym for Easing God Out.  There is no room for faith, spirituality, or another higher power when you believe you are God.  I believe Barack Obama is an egomaniacal narcissist, unfortunately.  His latest power grab comes not in domestic policy but foreign.  He plans on appointing himself the head of the United Nations Security Council, where he also set the agenda for Thursday, September 24.

The council, which next meets Sept. 24, deals with a host of global challenges, including nuclear non-proliferation and nuclear disarmament. The Obama administration hopes to use the month-long appointment to emphasize a departure from the Bush administration’s strategy of pursuing its own unilateral policies through the council.. 

The head of the council is usually assigned to a delegate or the UN Ambassador, not the president of the United States. Many are arguing that this is unprecedented and unconstitutional, however, it technically is only the former and not the latter.

There are valid arguments against heading up such a council, such as, how would this not be a conflict of interest, or cause a divided loyalty issue?  Will Obama side with America or with the UN?  This could also stretch him too thin.  Has anyone seen a manager or supervisor who couldn’t delegate work?  Usually the team and the manager struggle to reach their objectives.  At this juncture in America’s history, there is too much that needs to be focused on, rather than Obama’s apparent goal to run the world.

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The narcissism is just so incredibly absurd that I can only imagine a larger drop in his approval rating once more of the public catches wind of this.  Could you imagine the outcry if Bush did something like this?

Unfortunately, however, the move represents one of the most dangerous diplomatic ploys this country has ever seen. The president didn’t just decide to chair a rare council summit; he also set the September 24 agenda — as is the prerogative of the state holding the gavel for the month. His choice, in the words of American UN Ambassador Susan Rice, speaking on September 2 at her first press briefing since the United States assumed the council presidency, is this: “The session will be focused on nuclear nonproliferation and nuclear disarmament broadly, and not on any specific countries.”

This seemingly innocuous language has two profoundly disturbing features. First, UN documents indicate that the Security Council is currently dealing with over 100 issues. While “non-proliferation” is mentioned, “disarmament” is not. Similarly, a UN Secretariat compilation “forecasting the Council’s program of work” for the month of September — based on prior activities and requests — lists non-proliferation specifically in relation to Iran and North Korea and does not list disarmament. But in light of Obama’s wishes, a tailor-made subheading will likely be adopted under the existing entry “maintenance of international peace and security.” The new item will insist on simultaneous consideration of nuclear non-proliferation and nuclear disarmament and make no mention of particular states.

[…] 

Second, Obama’s agenda preference indicates that he is dead-set against chairing a session on the non-proliferation issues already on the council’s plate — those that name Iran and North Korea. This stretches his “beer summit” technique to the global scale. Naming names, or identifying the actual threats to world peace, would evidently interfere with the spectacle of proclaiming affection for world peace in the abstract. The problem is that this feel-good experience will feel best of all to Iran, which has interpreted Obama’s penchant for form over substance to be a critical weakness. As a Tehran newspaper close to the regime snickered in July: “Their strategy consists of begging us to talk with them.”  

To add insult to injury and almost clear up this administration’s intentions, which resemble those of Carter’s, Obama has decided to scrap the missile shield project originally set to be constructed in Poland and the Czech Republic. 

The most “transparent” and humble president in our nation’s history also left the Senate out of this major foreign policy decision.

McCain, ranking Republican on the Senate’s Armed Services Committee, told The Hill the White House never notified his committee and that he was unaware of the decision until he was notified Thursday morning. 

“It was an unfortunate decision, and it was made without consultation with the Czech Republic and the Polish government, and Congress was not briefed,” McCain said. “I think it sends a message to the Russians that could encourage them, and I think it sends a message to our friends and allies not to count on our commitments.”

I don’t think hail to the chief will cut it anymore – time to redo a version of “God Save The Queen” for King Obama.

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Filed under Congress, Obama, Obama Administration, Progressivism

PETA Wants To Turn A Virginia Prison Into A Chicken Museum

A chicken museum? Really? That’s sure to drum up a ton of revenue and visitors – don’t know about you, but I can’t wait to  purchase my tickets.  What type of exhibits do you think they’ll have? Here are some of my suggestions: The advent of the drum stick, a petting farm, a real life experiment of which came first, simulation of a chicken crossing the road, and a bodily function exhibit called That’s Just Fowl.  But seriously, here is a snippet from the article proving that this is really being considered:

An animal rights group wants to rent a prison building the state plans to close and turn it into the nation’s first chicken empathy museum. A People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals official sent a letter Monday to Gov. Tim Kaine asking to rent the Botetourt Correctional Center building in Troutville.

It’s nice to know that PETA has empathy for chickens, but it’s a little tougher to find it for those wretched humans.

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Nuts For The Nutty: The Squirrels Have Come Home To Roost!

Yesterday, the Senate voted to defund ACORN after the unbelievable footage of tax fraud, human trafficking, prostitution, and underage sex surfaced.  The footage proved that the acceptance of such illegal activity is not just one isolated incident, but rather a nationwide, culture of corruption for this organization.  The Senate voted 83-7 in favor of defunding the group from any other housing grants.  The next requirement from Congress will be a vote on the investigation of ACORN’s books, practices, and its management. The disturbing part of the 83-7 vote is that 7 senators actually believed ACORN should still be in business after this scandal broke!  Those Senators are the following: 

Whitehouse (D-RI)

Burris (D-IL)

Durbin (D-MI)

Sanders (D-VT)

Leahy (D-VT)

Casey (D-PA)

Gillibrand (D-NY)

These senators need to be driven out on a rail in 2010 if their seats are up – how morally bankrupt must one be to continue to back another morally bankrupt organization? 

Many of us knew that something fishy was going on with this group back during the election of 2008.  It’s too bad that we were not made privy of this behavior prior to the election, because ACORN has apparently been working in this manner for years.  Simple curiosity and a desire to actually investigate has brought citizen reporters/activists out of the woodwork since the big named journalists refuse to do their jobs any longer.  Charlie Gibson, who was so pompous and egotistical during the Palin interview, appears to have as much credibility as Alex Trebek who is spoon-fed the answers on note cards.  Gibson was recently on the Don & Roma radio show where he was asked what he thought about the current events regarding ACORN – he had no clue

“I don’t even know about it,” Gibson said, laughing. “So you’ve got me at a loss. … But my goodness, if it’s got everything, including sleaziness in it, we should talk about it in the morning.”

 When one of the radio show’s hosts described it as a “huge issue,” Gibson said ABC had “done some stories about ACORN before, but this one I don’t know about.” 

Elitist media snobs like Katie Couric, Gibson, Brian Williams, Diane Sawyer, Chris Matthews, etc. do not have the intellect to truly understand the issues of the day, just a false sense of self based on their ‘reporting’ position to feel as though they are worldly.  Each one of those “reporters” likes to throw out gotcha questions, which were most likely written by some aide or intern working in a cubicle.  The elitist mentality has sure done our media in, especially now that the public trust of their profession is at an all time low of 29%

In this year’s survey, 63 percent of respondents said news articles were often inaccurate and only 29 percent said the media generally “get the facts straight” — the worst marks Pew has recorded — compared with 53 percent and 39 percent in 2007. 

How sheltered must our media elite be to not report on a huge criminal racket like ACORN?  ACORN is not a partisan issue, anybody concerned with corruption and cleaning house in this country should want organizations like ACORN shut down and barred from receiving anymore taxpayer money.  

The prostitution scandal is not the only illegal activity that Americans should be concerned with.  ACORN has also been involved with partisan politics.  One of the reasons ACORN was able to receive grants and taxpayer funds was due to it’s supposed “non-partisan” status.  Most of us who have seen old video footage from ACORN conferences realize that the group was never in fact non-partisan, but as of a few days ago, the group has been even more outward in its ideological bias.  ACORN has inserted itself into a 2nd Amendment case in the state of New Jersey, and they are attempting to help ban that constitutional right from the public.  I ask why on earth does ACORN think it has any clue about fire arms? Why, if they purport to be neutral, do they get involved in an obvious partisan debate? 

The Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now — a publicly funded national organization linked to voter fraud in several states, is now actively interfering with the exercise of firearm civil rights in New Jersey, and the Second Amendment Foundation is calling for an immediate federal investigation.

One example of ACORN’s gun control activism is when its officials intervened in an unsuccessful attempt to defend Jersey City, New Jersey’s local gun control ordinance, which was struck down by the New Jersey state court as a violation of state law preempting stronger local gun ordinances. 

“ACORN has, since 1998, received an estimated $31 million in government funding,” said SAF founder Alan Gottlieb. “Now they have intervened in a New Jersey gun rights case in defense of an illegal Jersey City one-gun-a-month ordinance that violates the state preemption statute.” 

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There are also the arguments from the higher-ups in ACORN who exclaim that they only have a few rogue employees and cannot be held accountable for the actions of those who are working on their behalf.  I call shenanigans on that one.  Anybody who has gone through orientation at a company or has taken any type of corporate compliance training knows exactly who is liable for the actions of employees: management!  To further drive the nail into the coffin, it was recently discovered that Maryland had issues with ACORN back in 2006, when ACORN, Inc., forfeited their corporate charter.  The ACORN Housing sector of ACORN, Inc. also let their charter lapse in 2008, therefore any ACORN field offices working on behalf of the organization in the state of Maryland would be conducting business illegally.  Please explain to me how this is not a management issue?  That’s what I thought!  

Update: The House has also voted to defund ACORN; 345-75 – I never thought I would see the day!  

75 Democrats voted to continue support of ACORN here’s the roll call vote

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