Failed Carson campaign spent heavily in April and May, routed funds to former staffers | OpenSecrets Blog

Former presidential candidate Ben Carson’s campaign committee, Carson America, spent nearly $1 million in the months of April and May, including payments to a number of former Carson staffers for “political strategy” consulting.

Carson suspended his campaign on March 4 and has since stumped for presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump, whom he endorsed on March 11.

During April and May, Carson America spent $907,498, of which $272,831 went to political strategy consultants and their travel; that includes $69,080 in May alone. The campaign laid out an additional $123,627 for other forms of consulting — legal, financial, compliance, and digital — for a grand total of $396,458 spent on consulting over the two months.

Click here to read the full article.

Source: Failed Carson campaign spent heavily in April and May, routed funds to former staffers | OpenSecrets Blog

Why the Brexit Campaign Is Obsessed With Nazis and Hates Facts

Although the war ended seven decades ago, British politicians who want to leave the European Union keep bringing up Nazi Germany.

Robert Mackey examines the undercurrents of anger that ran through the successful Brexit campaign to leave the European Union, culminating in the tone-deaf victory speech of Leave leader Nigel Farage. Mackey also looks at the “disparity of outcomes across the kingdom’s four nations” and the likelihood that, the regret of some Leave voters aside, Brexit may usher in the end of the U.K. as we know it — or maybe Britain will find a way to stay in the EU on different terms.

Source: Why the Brexit Campaign Is Obsessed With Nazis and Hates Facts

Let’s Talk About Voter Suppression (w/ math!)

Let’s Talk About Voter Suppression (w/ math!)
by John Laurits
Let’s Talk About Voter-Suppression Greetings, my sisters & brothers & others — I hope that you are all in good spirits & doing well, when this article finds you. I wasn’t planning on writing an article today — but, after having a conversation with a Clinton-Supporter, I was inspired to write one. Before I begin, I’d like […]

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Final Update on the Oregon Results

The Final Results

Anyway, the Board of Elections recently certified it’s Oregon results and I’m happy to see that their totals agree with my totals from the county-level data. The final tally rests at:

Bernie Sanders | 57.2% ←correct
360,829 votes ←good number
Hillary Clinton | 42.8% ←correct
269,846 votes ←also correct

Total Democratic Ballots Cast: 641,595 ←good
Votes for Sanders & Clinton: 630,675 ←good

Meanwhile, the Associated Press can’t be bothered to update their total and they’re still broadcasting the same thing that they were broadcasting on May 18th:

Bernie Sanders | 56% ←wrong
320,746 votes ←stupid & wrong
Hillary Clinton | 44% ←no, bad
251,739 votes ←still bad

Total Democratic Ballots Cast: 572,485 ←silly number

Now, I’d like to quickly shine a spotlight on how terrible the AP is at reporting things…

Proof That the Associated Press
Just Reports Whatever They Want To

“News” websites across the internet have been broadcasting the AP’s incorrect numbers for Oregon since May 18th (despite the fact that all of them could’ve gotten the right numbers from an obscure Oregonian poet who found them & posted them for free). But it wasn’t just the AP’s totals that were incorrect — their “projected” (made-up) percent-reporting was way off, too!

They said that Oregon was “96% reporting.” Well, their total of 572,485 votes ended up being a mere 89.2% of the actual total. And Oregon isn’t the only state — the AP is still ignoring about a half-of-a-million votes in New York, Maryland, Ohio, Arizona, & Illinois, alone! If you add California to that list, the AP’s ignoring well over a million votes — and that’s not even the end! *see note

My question is this, my friends — what exactly is the AP being paid for, again?

Why I am #BernieOrBust (& Why You Should Be, Too) | the writing of john laurits

The Third Evil

We’ve probably all heard some talk about voting he lesser of two evils,” lately — but I’d like to shine a light on the third evil, which is often ignored, though it is far greater than the other two.

The third evil is that evil which is asking us to choose 
between what it holds in it’s right hand & it’s left hand.

Choose,” it says — yet, in your gut, you know this is not choosing. In truth, even as the third evil asks you to choose, it is destroying the very possibility of choice. I have watched as it terrified the people with one hand and comforted them with the other — but both hands belong to the same body and each are reaching for the same thing: your compliance.

I watched my parents vote for the lesser of two evils — and where has it gotten us?
Has the lesser evil ever reversed climate-change?
It has not — the earth continues to suffer beneath us.
Has the lesser evil ever helped the millions of humans in our prisons? 
It has not — our prison populations are growing as I write this.
Has the lesser evil ever protected us from the financial institutions that prey on us?
It has not — in fact, it has protected them from us.
Has the lesser evil ever stopped the seemingly endless wars?
It has not — in fact, since leaving Vietnam, in 1975, we’ve only had 5 years of peace.
Has the lesser evil ever reversed our increasing income-inequality?
It has not — every year, income inequality only grows larger.

Honestly, has the lesser evil ever made things better? At best, you could say that the lesser evil has occasionally not made things “as worse” as the other evil, perhaps, would have — well, thank god that we didn’t vote for them!

The truth is that there is no lesser evil. There is only one and we do have a choiceWe give up that choice when we fall for the lie that there are only two — don’t let anybody trick you into not using your choice!

Read John’s full blog post at this link:
Why I am #BernieOrBust (& Why You Should Be, Too)

Andrew Cuomo’s BDS Blacklist Is a Clear Violation of the First Amendment | The Nation

Governors have significant authority in issuing executive orders, and in many situations, they do so to circumvent legislative roadblocks. But executive orders cannot wish away the Constitution.

This, however, is precisely what New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo tried to do when he signed Executive Order 157 on June 5. The executive order requires the state to create a blacklist of institutions and companies that engage in or promote boycott, divestment, and sanction (BDS) activities against Israel—and then further requires the state to withdraw or forgo investments in these blacklisted entities. The move has earned well-deserved comparisons to the red-scare tactics of Wisconsin Senator Joseph McCarthy.

It is also unconstitutional.

Read more here: Andrew Cuomo’s BDS Blacklist Is a Clear Violation of the First Amendment | The Nation

Truthdig’s Sonali Kolhatkar writes: Supreme Court’s Male Justices Violate Fourth Amendment Over Sonia Sotomayor’s Devastating Dissent

The U.S. Supreme Court this week in a 5-3 decision issued a major ruling siding with the unethical practices of law enforcement. The court, which (like other branches of government) has historically been dominated by elite white men, built on earlier rulings dating to the 1960s that have supported some police officers’ propensity to target people for the color of their skin, among other characteristics.

This latest ruling, which was starkly split along gender lines—Justices Sonia Sotomayor, Ruth Bader Ginsberg and Elena Kagan were in the minority—adds another layer of legitimacy to bolster police who attempt to obtain evidence via unconstitutional searches and seizures.In the particular case at stake was a Utah man named Edward Strieff, who was found to be in possession of methamphetamines after police arrested and searched him on the pretext of a minor traffic violation.

The court ruled that the evidence obtained was admissible even though the police search was not based on reasonable suspicion of the crime.While the Fourth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is meant to protect Americans from such “unreasonable searches and seizures,” the nation’s highest court has undermined that right through this latest ruling.

Read the full analysis here: Sonali Kolhatkar: Supreme Court’s Male Justices Violate Fourth Amendment Over Sonia Sotomayor’s Devastating Dissent – Sonali Kolhatkar – Truthdig

“ShadowStats Newsletter” by John Williams

ShadowStats Newsletter”John Williams’ Shadow Government Statistics” is an electronic newsletter service that exposes and analyzes flaws in current U.S. government economic data and reporting, as well as in certain private-sector numbers, and provides an assessment of underlying economic and financial conditions, net of financial-market and political hype.

Source: Shadow Government Statistics – Home Page

Bill Blum: Antonin Scalia and the Clear and Present Danger of Second Amendment Fundamentalism – Truthdig

“As former Justice John Paul Stevens noted in his lengthy dissenting opinion in Heller, Scalia’s exegesis not only rendered the opening “militia clause” of the Second Amendment meaningless, but he also distorted and underplayed the importance of the actual debates conducted during the founding era on the amendment’s purpose and meaning.

Those debates, Stevens forcefully argued, focused not on personal gun ownership but on the state militia, which the founders viewed as an antidote to a burdensome and potentially oppressive permanent standing federal army.

The militia were seen as the best means for “providing for the security of a free State” against popular insurrections like Shay’s rebellion, the anti-tax uprising of Massachusetts farmers of 1786-87 that exposed the weaknesses of the fledgling national government as constructed under the Articles of Confederation.

In the end, the Second Amendment was worded as a federalist compromise, with the states retaining their right to organize militia and other provisions of the Constitution (for example, Article II, Section 2), clarifying that ultimate control over the militia would vest in the executive branch of the federal government.

Personal gun ownership rights were left, as they had been during the colonial period, to the police powers of local government.”

Read Bill Blum’s complete essay at this link:

Dramatic House Sit-In on Guns Is Undercut By Focus on Secret, Racist Watchlist

CONGRESSIONAL DEMOCRATS TOOK the unprecedented step of conducting an actual sit-in on the floor of the House of Representatives on Wednesday, demanding that Republican leaders allow votes on gun control legislation.

But this unusually bold and moving tactic was undercut by the fact that its chief goal is a political gimmick that would do little to stop gun violence, while expanding the use of a deeply flawed anti-terror watchlist.

While sit-in participants are also advocating for expanded background checks and an assault weapons ban, their primary call to action is for a vote on a measure that would ban gun sales to people listed on a federal government watchlist – a move clearly designed more for its political potency than for its effectiveness.

Read more here: