In Latest Attempt to Harm Struggling Families, Trump Urges Lawmakers to Push One Million Americans Off Food Stamp Program

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With both houses of Congress preparing to merge their two versions of the farm bill, President Donald Trump announced his hope on Thursday that lawmakers will reach an agreement that kicks one million Americans off the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), also known as food stamps.

In the House’s version of the farm bill, adults between the ages of 19 and 59 would be required to either work or be enrolled in a job training program 20 hours per week to qualify for assistance.

The Senate did not include work requirements in its bill. Trump’s declaration that the Senate “should go to 51 votes” signaled the White House’s hope that Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) will abandon the filibuster, making it easier for Republicans to pass a farm bill that would cut down on food stamp recipients.

Work requirements for SNAP benefits are expected to reduce government spending by $20 billion over the next decade. Trump is pushing Congress to pass the measure seven months after passing the GOP tax law, which the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) projects will add nearly $2 trillion to the federal deficit within 10 years.

The Republican Party is currently working to expand on its tax legislation, with the Trump administration willing to bypass Congress in order to cut taxes on capital gains, according to the New York Times.

More from Common Dreams

Posted by Libergirl



One Year Later: Memorial Service Scheduled To Honor San Bernardino Shooting Massacre Victims

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Image: CBS Los Angeles

Friday marked the one-year anniversary of a terrorist attack that claimed the lives of 14 people and wounded nearly two dozen others at the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino.

Shortly before 11 a.m., survivors, loved ones and colleagues gathered in front of Building 3, the site of the attack, for a moment of healing and reflection.

“One year after the devastating and tragic terrorist attack in San Bernardino, we remember those who lost their lives and the loved ones they left behind,” Attorney General Kamala D. Harris said in a written statement. “We extend our support to those who were wounded and are working every day to rebuild their lives.”

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State funding church: 93 percent of ‘scholarship program’ vouchers go to religious schools

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In this year alone the state of North Carolina has spent $12 million on what they refer to as Opportunity Scholarships, which exist to help lower income families move their children from public to private schools. Of that $12 million, approximately $11 million has gone to faith-based schools and only $800,000 to secular schools.

More from the Raw Story

Posted by The NON-Conformist

FCC decides to slash prison phone rates — and maybe recidivism

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Federal regulators will vote on capping the cost of phone calls from prison, which are far more expensive than ordinary calls.

Image: Istockphoto via NPR

It costs a lot of money to talk on the phone to someone in jail — so much that those phone bills have drawn the attention of federal regulators. Now the Federal Communications Commission is set to vote Thursday to limit the price of prison phone calls.

“We’re cutting off necessities, just so we can keep this communication going,” says Miguel Saucedo, a Ph.D. student and community activist in Chicago. His brother Luis is in prison in Illinois, where he has been incarcerated since 1996.

For roughly 20 years, Miguel Saucedo and his family have been setting aside money to talk to Luis on the phone — money that could have gone to those necessities. Saucedo doesn’t know exactly how much his family has paid over the years. But he estimates “it would have to be” over $10,000 or $20,000.

For most of us, those phone calls would cost just a few cents per minute. But for inmates and their families, phone rates and fees can be many times higher. It’s common for them to pay $13 for a 15-minute call.

“I see the clearest, most egregious case of market failure ever,” says FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn, who has been working on this issue for several years. “This is a major cost that families pay. And these families are the most economically vulnerable in our nation.”

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Ta-Nehisi Coates Stirs Debate With Treatise On “The Black Family In The Age Of Mass Incarceration”

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The Atlantic’s Ta-Nehisi Coates is back with a probing analysis titled “The Black Family in the Age of Mass Incarceration.”

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How Australia Continues to ‘Breed Out the Color’ of Its Aboriginal Population

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The tape is searing. There is the voice of an infant screaming as he is wrenched from his mother, who pleads: “There is nothing wrong with my baby. Why are you doing this to us? I would’ve been hung years ago, wouldn’t I? Because [as an Australian Aborigine] you’re guilty before you’re found innocent.” The child’s grandmother demands to know why “the stealing of our kids is happening all over again.” A welfare official says, “I’m gonna take him, mate.”

Image: wikipedia

This happened to an Aboriginal family in outback New South Wales. It is happening across Australia in a scandalous and largely unrecognized abuse of human rights that evokes the infamous Stolen Generation of the last century. Up to the 1970s, thousands of mixed race children were stolen from their mothers by welfare officials. The children were given to institutions as cheap or slave labor; many were abused.

Described by a Chief Protector of Aborigines as “breeding out the color”, the policy was known as assimilation. It was influenced by the same eugenics movement that inspired the Nazis. In 1997, a landmark report, “Bringing Them Home”, disclosed that as many 50,000 children and their mothers had endured “the humiliation, the degradation and sheer brutality of the act of forced separation … the product of the deliberate, calculated policies of the state.” The report called this genocide.

More from Alternet

Posted by The NON-Conformsit

North Carolina’s Senate Bill 514

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North Carolina’s Senate Bill 514, The Defense of Marriage Act, has caused quite a bit of a stir as of late. Both sides are arguing and marching to the detriment of what, this bill ,for lack of a better word, is confusing. The main argument is to strengthen the law so activist judges won’t overturn it and to make it so arduous that when/if liberals come into office, it can’t be tampered with. I do believe I hit the proverbial nail on the head.

I’ve looked at both sides of the aisle and I’m still confused. The word redundancy describing the bill has come up, as well as it should. When you look at both sides what is the most compelling argument? I have four.

  1. Religious groups are on the wrong side of the argument. If the bill passes, lawsuits will take it into the federal courts and eventually to the Supreme Court. It takes power from the voter/electorate.
  2.  It takes power from companies that cover same-sex couples.
  3. What will be the effects on same-sex couple who have adopted children?
  4. The bill has too many add-ons that aren’t glaringly clear.

For example, what is the meaning of private party in Section 6? It’s unclear language with too many question marks pertaining to it.

Ministers aren’t helping this issue at all especially the outspoken Raleigh Minister Patrick L. Wooden, the same person that involved himself with the Merry Xmas controversy. I’m still trying to wrap my head around what Christmas has to do with the Bible. He’s on the wrong side of two arguments and doesn’t know it yet. True, we are not the left coast but notice the vote is being taken out of the hands of the people. I don’t want the Supreme Court to have more over-reaching power to make a decision for me. With these people’s continued action that is what’s going to take place.

Government should be challenged. Abraham Lincoln said it best in his famous speech “a government of the people, by the people, for the people.” Government should be continually challenged by the people who politicians do essentially work for: the folk that elect them.

Allow me to say this. I’m not for gay marriage within the Ekklesia(Church), I do however look at history as well as miscegenation laws still being upheld in Tennessee. Intermarrying within the colonies was banned. Why don’t Minister’s argue bigamy or miscegenation laws that are current within states. Marriage is a contract entered into by two consenting adults.

All of this is nothing but a wedge issue for votes and to keep religion in line with the conservatives. Politics and religion should be kept separate but that’s for another day. For a better understanding read my book, God, the Bible and Politics.

We have to remember we are not a theocracy and also we have a document called the Bill of Rights that certain people want to reinterpret to fit their myopic personal view points.

This is but another non-issue, NC doesn’t recognize common law marriage and also already on the books: marriage is between a man and a woman. Is this potential amendment a way to punish people who may differ with you? So come May 8th vote, NO, in order to save what is already on the books, so the Supreme Court doesn’t have to get involved and to save the preacher from their own demise.

The NON-Conformist

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