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Rich Hooper, PhD, PE: Robotics Engineer

Posted: October 25, 2016 at 7:41 am

76. Dear Rich Hooper, I am an electrical engineering student at Bucknell University working with a design team to improve the control interface for a professor’s micromanipulator. Do you have any suggestions for us? We are currently using an “RC style” joystick with the twist controlling z-axis motion and up-down/back-forth controlling x and y. It springs back to neutral when no force is applied.

Dear Student: I would call what you are working on a Human Machine Interface (HMI). I bet there’s a visual component (computer screen, VR goggles, etc.) along with the hand controller part. The hand controller part is also often called the manual controller. Frankly, if you only need to control X, Y and Z it’s going to be tough to beat a traditional joystick like you already have. My experience is that humans are most precise using the small muscles of their hands and fingers, and that’s the scale of a traditional joystick. Some force feedback might be helpful. You could experiment with that, but I don’t recommend a manual controller that is at the scale of whole arm or body motion to control a micro manipulator.

If you are going to try to design a force feedback manual controller, it needs to be very high bandwidth. The structure needs to be very light, there needs to be no backlash and the actuators need to be backdrivable. The Phantom haptic device http://www.dentsable.com/haptic-phantom-omni.htm is a good example of a design that follows these principles and is at the scale of small movements of the hands and fingers. You could look at this design and learn from it.

Good luck with the project,


1. What are some of the advancements in robotics?

The biggest advancements have been in the precision, speed and strength of robots. Learning and artificial intelligence algorithms have probably been the biggest disappointments. I dont think we will see robots even remotely approaching human intelligence by 2050.

2. What defines artificial intelligence?

Artificial means not occurring in nature. Intelligence is the capacity to acquire and apply knowledge.

3. What is the closest to artificial intelligence that mankind has created thus far?

Probably some computer algorithm.

4. Is it possible robots will surpass human intelligence?

It is possible, but I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting.

5. Besides creating a neural network, are there any other ways of creating artificial intelligence?

Learning algorithms and expert systems are two examples.

6. About how much does it cost to build a humanoid robot?

Im sure Honda has spent tens of millions of dollars on their Asimo.

7. If a completely self sustaining robot is created is it possible that Hollywood movies like The Terminator and I Robot could become reality?

It is possible, but more likely the people that made the robots would just turn them off before it got that out-of-control.

8. With spying becoming a greater problem, will creating surveillance robots add to an already growing threat?

Surveillance robots do make excellent spies.

9. Do you think that the field of robotics engineers will grow in the future or shrink?

I think the field will grow. Do some research on the number of robots deployed world-wide today and compare it with the numbers from ten years ago and then see what you think. You might also like to read Marshall Brains Robotic Nation and see what he thinks.

10. Robots like the Mini Andros III are used to dispose of explosive ordinance devices. Are there any other robots that help in a similar manner like firefighting?

I’m sure there are. Do some research and please let me know what you find. I think the BEAR robot could make an excellent fire fighter.

11. AIBO is able to learn and is capable of simulating emotions. Is there a possibility of AIBO turning on its owners?

Nope. I just read that Sony is discontinuing Aibo.

12. Im about to graduate high school. How do I find a job in robotics?

You really have two choices. The first is to go to traditional college and the second is to go to a technical college. If you decide to go the traditional college route, then you should probably study science or engineering, though there may be opportunities for folks with humanities degrees to work in the robotics field one of these days. Dr. Susan Calvin was a robot psychologist. If you go to a technical college, then you will have a chance to learn about robot programming and robot applications. A job doing those things would be very interesting.

13. Im about to graduate college with an engineering degree. How do I find a job in robotics?

When you first graduate college, you will be a very junior engineer. Robots are often the most complex systems a company will make. You will need to first focus on a subsystem, such as the mechanical, electrical, computing or software systems. Once you have become an accomplished engineer in one of those fields, you can consider moving to a systems engineering roles.

14. What sort of classes did you take to prepare for your college career, or what classes did you participate in your freshman year of college?

I didn’t take calculus or any AP classes in high school. I did participate in student government, spent several semesters in metal shop and was on a sports team every year. Hopefully some Universities still appreciate varied experience. College had the typical freshman-engineering curriculum – calculus, physics and chemistry.

15. Did you always wish to be involved with robotics, if so what started your interests in robotics? If not, how did you come into being involved?

I’ve been interested in robotics for as long as I can remember. I’m not sure what started it. I do remember making a robotic hand in my garage when I was about 16.

16. What sort of company or group do you work for, and what is required of you by your employer (in terms of hours, job expectations, etc)?

I work for a company that does custom engineering of computer-controlled machines. We bid on projects in the 1 to 10 million-dollar range primarily. The projects usually last a year or less. We have about 70 engineers and about 15 work in my group. I work about 53 hours a week and try not to make too many big $$$ mistakes.

17. Within your job, what do you enjoy the most and what do you enjoy the least? Why?

I like most aspects of my job. The hardest part is dealing with employees that don’t try hard enough or make a lot of mistakes.

18. I was wondering what colleges or universities are good for majoring in robotics.

Any college or university with an engineering program can put you on the path towards a career in robotics. Talk to (or email) someone on the faculty and tell them you are interested in robotics. See what they think.

19. Does your employer offer you benefits?

My employer offers benefits that are typical for a company that employs engineers health, life & disability insurance, 401k, standard holidays, a cube : )

20. Did you like the college you chose? if not why?

I went to Rice University for my undergraduate degree. The choice was good for me. I recommend looking for a University committed to nurturing its undergraduate students. I know its hard to believe, but an 18-year-old living away from home for the first time can use some guidance from time to time.

21. What are the educational requirements for becoming a robotics engineer?

The educational requirements are pretty much the same as the educational requirements for becoming any kind of engineer. That would be an engineering degree from a four-year college. Ive also seen folks with physics degrees and other science degrees working as engineers. There is also plenty of room for technical college degrees in the robotics field. These would be for the folks that would like to work on the “ground floor” with robots. They are deploying robots and teaching them to do their tasks.

22. What is the typical job function?

See below for a description of what I do on a typical day.

23. What do you do on a typical workday?

I generally get to work at 8:00 AM. Then Ill:

Spend two or three hours designing electrical circuits or mechanical systems and helping younger engineers learn about these circuits and systems. These engineers also help me by creating drawings and schematics.

An hour or two working on Bills Of Materials (BOMs) The BOM is very important to engineers. This is a list of all the materials in the system. It includes wires, resistors, integrated circuits, nuts, bolts and processors, etc. The manufacturing department uses the BOMs and the drawings to build the systems.

An hour or two in meetings or conference calls

An hour or two writing emails

An hour or two in the lab conducting experiments or trying to understand why the systems I designed are not working the way I thought the would.

Ill take a 30-minute lunch at noon and go home around 6:30. I usually sneak in a few hours working early in the morning on weekends (I’m writing the answer to this question at 2:40 AM). I typically work 53-hour weeks.

24. My son is 13 and is very interested in robotics, he attends West Hill School in Stalybridge Cheshire. He is to take his options for next year, can you suggest which would be the right direction for him to choose. Will he need A levels? and which University would you recommend he attend. He has been asked for Homework, what he would need in terms of qualifications to do this job. I hope you can help. Your website is very interesting, Brilliant and very informative. Thanks in advance.:

I’m happy to hear you enjoyed looking at the learnaboutrobots site. Robotics is such a broad field that your son could study almost any discipline and end up working with robots. There are robots in art, music and entertainment. The “star” of Isaac Asimov’s “I Robot” books is a robot psychologist. I don’t know how it is in Stalybridge Cheshire, but here in Austin public school is crammed with reading, writing and arithmetic – at the expense of music, arts and physical education. I have a 13 year old son too. I encourage him to study what he enjoys. I also insist that he participates in at least one cultural extracurricular activity (like playing piano) and one physical (he’s on swim team right now) every semester. Tell your son I said hello.

25. Give a brief description of your field of engineering.

Systems engineering – The design of systems with mechanical components, electrical components, computing machinery and software.

26. Do you design you own work, or produce someone else’s designs?

Engineers design their own work. Junior engineers get more supervision and senior engineers can make bigger mistakes.

27. What advice would you give a high school student (myself) who is thinking of going into robotics engineering?

The same advice I’d give a middle school student and an undergraduate student. Take the classes that seem interesting to you. See 24 above.

28. If you had to do it all over again, what (if anything) would you do differently?

Take more vacation time…

29. I’m not really good in mathematics, but I’m pretty average. Do you think I have what it takes to become a robotic engineer?

You can definitely work in robotics without being strong in mathematics. You might find getting an undergraduate degree in engineering pretty tough. Most engineering curricula have a lot of math. I’m sure you can do it, though you might need to spend a little more time on your homework.

30. I understand that you are a very busy man, but I need just a moment of your time. I am sure you get this question a lot. Do you know of any specific colleges I could attend in Indiana to get a degree in mechanical engineering? I believe a degree in mechanical engineering could help me become a robotics engineer. Please write back to me as soon as you can. Thank you in advance for your time.

Not a day goes by when someone doesn’t ask me about mechanical engineering programs in Indiana : ) I’m not familiar with colleges in Indiana, but I bet there are plenty that have good programs in mechanical engineering. An undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering would be a great way to get on the path to becoming a robotics professional..

31. My friend and I were brain storming last night till about 4am about a simple robot that could play simple games. The games would involve timing so it would only involve one or two robotic fingers to fire corresponding with the timing.

You might consider servo center by Yost engineering and a couple of RC servos from the hobby shop. That would get you going for about $100. You could also buy a Robot magazine http://www.botmag.com/. There are lots of ads in that magazine for different robot building kits. Good luck!

32. I know that there are different disciplines in engineering such as robotics. But are there disciplines in Robotics Engineering? What is the correct term? What I am trying to say is that, Are their different fields such as Android engineering, Robotic Toys, Robotic Vehicles, Robotic Tools etc.? How many and what are the names of those different robotics fields?

I would call them branches of robotics. The branches I can think of along the lines you suggest would be mobile robotics, robotics tooling, robot vision, toys and entertainment. The disciplines that shape robotics include controls, mechanisms, dynamics, kinematics, computing hardware and software.

33. I am an academic coach assisting a high school student with the task of selecting the right college to fit his needs, wants, grades and temperament, that is a smaller school versus a huge 30,000 student factory. He is very interested in mechanical engineering and robotics.

You hit the nail on the head with the needs, wants, grades and temperament part. Take care of those and the rest will take care of themselves. I went to a very small 3,000-student school for undergrad and a huge 50,000-student school for grad. I learned a lot at both places. There are many schools of all sizes around the country where you can study robotics. Find some you are interested in and talk to (or email) someone on the faculty. Tell them you are interested in mechanical engineering and robotics. See what they think. Good luck to you and your student.

34. I am currently a junior in high school. I am really interested in the field of robotics and I would like to know how to get involved in this field. On your site, you talked about making a robot hand in your garage. how?? Did your house have these materials just lying around? Does experimenting with different things at home require any special equipment? I would love to try and make different things at home and I need to also…my mom is starting to get mad about all of the electronic stuff I take apart all throughout the house.

All of my early work was made from electronic stuff I took apart around the house. Our garage had a drill press and a vice, but no precision tools. Tell your Mom not to be mad, you’re learning to be an engineer.

There are kits for making robots that you can buy so you don’t have to scrounge as many parts. Take a look at the ads in Robot magazine (botmag.com). You can buy decent servos at the hobby store for about $10 each and hook them to your computer with something like Servocenter from Yost engineering.

35. I am 42 and in the accounting field. I don’t have a degree currently. I am very interested in consumer robotics, but am unsure if it is feasible for me to consider this. Any info you could provide would be appreciated.

I’m sure it’s feasible, but I think the monetary penalty would be pretty high. You would lose at least a few years of salary while getting a degree and then you would be starting as a very junior engineer and would have a pretty low salary. Then you would be looking at 10 – 20 more years before you would have enough engineering experience to be a lead engineer on a robotics project. If you really wanted to do it, you could; but you would have to really want to.

36. I am a interested in robotics but am cautious about getting into the field and it being to crowded. I am a mechanical engineering major that plans to graduate in 2009. Do you think the robotics field will get to the point where there is more qualified workers than there is work?

There will be more demand than supply of good engineers that understand computer-controlled electro-mechanical systems for as far into the future as I can see.

37. My idols are Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein (I know the theory of relativity) and The Wright Brothers. I want to either become an engineer or a physicist. I’m only 12 years old, turning thirteen next year. So, let’s get to the point. What kind of engineering do you think I should do? What kind of job do you think would suit me?

You asked me questions that only you can answer. Study and work on what you find most interesting.

38. I see you have P.E. after your name. What is a P.E.?

A Professional Engineer (P.E.) is a person who by reason of their knowledge of mathematics, the physical sciences and the principles of engineering, acquired by professional education and practical experience, is qualified to engage in the practice of professional engineering. To lawfully use that title a person must pass a series of exams, have multiple years of engineering experience, at least five positive references from other professional engineers and maintain a license from the state in which they practice.

39. Do you feel your pay is comparable to the amount of years you spent in college?

The money I earn is fine, but the real pay is the value I place on education.

40. What are some tools that you use regularly in your job?

The tools I use most often are an oscilloscope a Digital Multi Meter (DMM) and a computer.

41. Do you get vacation time from your job? How much?

I get two or three weeks vacation a year. As long as I am getting my job done, no one pays much attention to how much vacation time I take.

42. Do you ever travel for your job?

I generally travel two or three days a month.

43. If you get sick, can you work from home?

I could do some work from home, but a lot of my job duties require me to be at the office.

44. My son is 8. He wants to be a robotics engineer, but my husband is freaking out because he wants him to be a doctor.

He’s only 8. By the time he grows up half of all surgeries will probably be performed by doctors controlling robots. The Da Vinci robot is already being used for gall bladder, prostate and even heart surgery. Do a search on Da Vinci robot and you will find lots of information. Maybe you could use his interest in robotics to expose him to medicine?

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Rich Hooper, PhD, PE: Robotics Engineer

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The Bahamas – Wikipedia

Posted: October 20, 2016 at 11:38 pm

Coordinates: 2415N 7600W / 24.250N 76.000W / 24.250; -76.000

The Bahamas (i), officially the Commonwealth of the Bahamas, is an archipelagic state of the Lucayan Archipelago consisting of more than 700 islands, cays, and islets in the Atlantic Ocean; north of Cuba and Hispaniola (Haiti and the Dominican Republic); northwest of the Turks and Caicos Islands; southeast of the US state of Florida and east of the Florida Keys. Its capital is Nassau on the island of New Providence. The designation of “The Bahamas” can refer to either the country or the larger island chain that it shares with the Turks and Caicos Islands. As stated in the mandate/manifesto of the Royal Bahamas Defence Force, the Bahamas territory encompasses 470,000km2 (180,000sqmi) of ocean space.

The Bahamas were the site of Columbus’ first landfall in the New World in 1492. At that time, the islands were inhabited by the Lucayan, a branch of the Arawakan-speaking Taino people. Although the Spanish never colonised the Bahamas, they shipped the native Lucayans to slavery in Hispaniola. The islands were mostly deserted from 1513 until 1648, when English colonists from Bermuda settled on the island of Eleuthera.

The Bahamas became a British Crown colony in 1718, when the British clamped down on piracy. After the American War of Independence, the Crown resettled thousands of American Loyalists in the Bahamas; they brought their slaves with them and established plantations on land grants. Africans constituted the majority of the population from this period. The Bahamas became a haven for freed African slaves: the Royal Navy resettled Africans here liberated from illegal slave ships; American slaves and Seminoles escaped here from Florida; and the government freed American slaves carried on United States domestic ships that had reached the Bahamas due to weather. Slavery in the Bahamas was abolished in 1834. Today the descendants of slaves and free Africans make up nearly 90% of the population; issues related to the slavery years are part of society.

The Bahamas became an independent Commonwealth realm in 1973, retaining Queen Elizabeth II as its monarch. In terms of gross domestic product per capita, the Bahamas is one of the richest countries in the Americas (following the United States and Canada), with an economy based on tourism and finance.[9]

The name Bahamas is derived from either the Taino ba ha ma (“big upper middle land”), which was a term for the region used by the indigenous Amerindians,[10] while other theories suggest it derives from the Spanish baja mar (“shallow water or sea” or “low tide”) reflecting the shallow waters of the area. Alternatively it may originate from Guanahani, a local name of unclear meaning.[11] In English, the Bahamas is one of only two countries whose self-standing short name begins with the word “the”, along with The Gambia.[12]

Taino people moved into the uninhabited southern Bahamas from Hispaniola and Cuba around the 11th century, having migrated there from South America. They came to be known as the Lucayan people. An estimated 30,000 Lucayan inhabited the Bahamas at the time of Christopher Columbus’ arrival in 1492.

Columbus’s first landfall in the New World was on an island he named San Salvador (known to the Lucayan as Guanahani). Some researchers believe this site to be present-day San Salvador Island (formerly known as Watling’s Island), situated in the southeastern Bahamas. An alternative theory holds that Columbus landed to the southeast on Samana Cay, according to calculations made in 1986 by National Geographic writer and editor Joseph Judge, based on Columbus’s log. Evidence in support of this remains inconclusive. On the landfall island, Columbus made first contact with the Lucayan and exchanged goods with them.

The Spanish forced much of the Lucayan population to Hispaniola for use as forced labour. The slaves suffered from harsh conditions and most died from contracting diseases to which they had no immunity; half of the Taino died from smallpox alone.[14] The population of the Bahamas was severely diminished.[15]

In 1648, the Eleutherian Adventurers, led by William Sayle, migrated from Bermuda. These English Puritans established the first permanent European settlement on an island which they named Eleutherathe name derives from the Greek word for freedom. They later settled New Providence, naming it Sayle’s Island after one of their leaders. To survive, the settlers salvaged goods from wrecks.

In 1670 King Charles II granted the islands to the Lords Proprietors of the Carolinas in North America. They rented the islands from the king with rights of trading, tax, appointing governors, and administering the country.[16] In 1684 Spanish corsair Juan de Alcon raided the capital, Charles Town (later renamed Nassau). In 1703 a joint Franco-Spanish expedition briefly occupied the Bahamian capital during the War of the Spanish Succession.

During proprietary rule, the Bahamas became a haven for pirates, including the infamous Blackbeard (c.16801718). To put an end to the ‘Pirates’ republic’ and restore orderly government, Britain made the Bahamas a crown colony in 1718 under the royal governorship of Woodes Rogers. After a difficult struggle, he succeeded in suppressing piracy.[17] In 1720, Rogers led local militia to drive off a Spanish attack.

During the American War of Independence in the late 18th century, the islands became a target for American naval forces under the command of Commodore Esek Hopkins. US Marines occupied the capital of Nassau for a fortnight.

In 1782, following the British defeat at Yorktown, a Spanish fleet appeared off the coast of Nassau. The city surrendered without a fight. Spain returned possession of the Bahamas to Britain the following year, under the terms of the Treaty of Paris. Before the news was received, however, the islands were recaptured by a small British force led by Andrew Deveaux.

After American independence, the British resettled some 7,300 Loyalists with their slaves in the Bahamas, and granted land to the planters to help compensate for losses on the continent. These Loyalists, who included Deveaux, established plantations on several islands and became a political force in the capital. European Americans were outnumbered by the African-American slaves they brought with them, and ethnic Europeans remained a minority in the territory.

In 1807, the British abolished the slave trade, followed by the United States the next year. During the following decades, the Royal Navy intercepted the trade; they resettled in the Bahamas thousands of Africans liberated from slave ships.

In the 1820s during the period of the Seminole Wars in Florida, hundreds of American slaves and African Seminoles escaped from Cape Florida to the Bahamas. They settled mostly on northwest Andros Island, where they developed the village of Red Bays. From eyewitness accounts, 300 escaped in a mass flight in 1823, aided by Bahamians in 27 sloops, with others using canoes for the journey. This was commemorated in 2004 by a large sign at Bill Baggs Cape Florida State Park.[18][19] Some of their descendants in Red Bays continue African Seminole traditions in basket making and grave marking.[20]

The United States’ National Park Service, which administers the National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom, is working with the African Bahamian Museum and Research Center (ABAC) in Nassau on development to identify Red Bays as a site related to American slaves’ search for freedom. The museum has researched and documented the African Seminoles’ escape from southern Florida. It plans to develop interpretive programs at historical sites in Red Bay associated with the period of their settlement in the Bahamas.[21]

In 1818,[22] the Home Office in London had ruled that “any slave brought to the Bahamas from outside the British West Indies would be manumitted.” This led to a total of nearly 300 slaves owned by US nationals being freed from 1830 to 1835.[23] The American slave ships Comet and Encomium used in the United States domestic coastwise slave trade, were wrecked off Abaco Island in December 1830 and February 1834, respectively. When wreckers took the masters, passengers and slaves into Nassau, customs officers seized the slaves and British colonial officials freed them, over the protests of the Americans. There were 165 slaves on the Comet and 48 on the Encomium. Britain finally paid an indemnity to the United States in those two cases in 1855, under the Treaty of Claims of 1853, which settled several compensation cases between the two nations.[24][25]

Slavery was abolished in the British Empire on 1 August 1834. After that British colonial officials freed 78 American slaves from the Enterprise, which went into Bermuda in 1835; and 38 from the Hermosa, which wrecked off Abaco Island in 1840.[26] The most notable case was that of the Creole in 1841: as a result of a slave revolt on board, the leaders ordered the American brig to Nassau. It was carrying 135 slaves from Virginia destined for sale in New Orleans. The Bahamian officials freed the 128 slaves who chose to stay in the islands. The Creole case has been described as the “most successful slave revolt in U.S. history”.[27]

These incidents, in which a total of 447 slaves belonging to US nationals were freed from 1830 to 1842, increased tension between the United States and Great Britain. They had been co-operating in patrols to suppress the international slave trade. But, worried about the stability of its large domestic slave trade and its value, the United States argued that Britain should not treat its domestic ships that came to its colonial ports under duress, as part of the international trade. The United States worried that the success of the Creole slaves in gaining freedom would encourage more slave revolts on merchant ships.

In August 1940, after his abdication of the British throne, the Duke of Windsor was installed as Governor of the Bahamas, arriving with his wife, the Duchess. Although disheartened at the condition of Government House, they “tried to make the best of a bad situation”.[28] He did not enjoy the position, and referred to the islands as “a third-class British colony”.[29]

He opened the small local parliament on 29 October 1940. The couple visited the “Out Islands” that November, on Axel Wenner-Gren’s yacht, which caused controversy;[30] the British Foreign Office strenuously objected because they had been advised (mistakenly) by United States intelligence that Wenner-Gren was a close friend of the Luftwaffe commander Hermann Gring of Nazi Germany.[30][31]

The Duke was praised at the time for his efforts to combat poverty on the islands. A 1991 biography by Philip Ziegler, however, described him as contemptuous of the Bahamians and other non-white peoples of the Empire. He was praised for his resolution of civil unrest over low wages in Nassau in June 1942, when there was a “full-scale riot.”[32] Ziegler said that the Duke blamed the trouble on “mischief makers communists” and “men of Central European Jewish descent, who had secured jobs as a pretext for obtaining a deferment of draft”.[33]

The Duke resigned the post on 16 March 1945.[34][35]

Modern political development began after the Second World War. The first political parties were formed in the 1950s. The British Parliament authorised the islands as internally self-governing in 1964, with Sir Roland Symonette, of the United Bahamian Party, as the first Premier.

A new constitution granting the Bahamas internal autonomy went into effect on 7 January 1964.[36] In 1967, Lynden Pindling of the Progressive Liberal Party, became the first black Premier of the majority-black colony; in 1968 the title of the position was changed to Prime Minister. In 1968, Pindling announced that the Bahamas would seek full independence.[37] A new constitution giving the Bahamas increased control over its own affairs was adopted in 1968.[38]

The British House of Lords voted to give the Bahamas its independence on 22 June 1973.[39]Prince Charles delivered the official documents to Prime Minister Lynden Pindling, officially declaring the Bahamas a fully independent nation on 10 July 1973.[40] It joined the Commonwealth of Nations on the same day.[41]Sir Milo Butler was appointed the first Governor-General of the Bahamas (the official representative of Queen Elizabeth II) shortly after independence. The Bahamas joined the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank on 22 August 1973,[42] and it joined the United Nations on 18 September 1973.[43]

Based on the twin pillars of tourism and offshore finance, the Bahamian economy has prospered since the 1950s. Significant challenges in areas such as education, health care, housing, international narcotics trafficking and illegal immigration from Haiti continue to be issues.

The College of the Bahamas is the national higher education/tertiary system. Offering baccalaureate, masters and associate degrees, COB has three campuses, and teaching and research centres throughout the Bahamas. COB is on track to become the national “University of The Bahamas” (UOB) in 2015.

The country lies between latitudes 20 and 28N, and longitudes 72 and 80W.

In 1864, the Governor of the Bahamas reported that there were 29 islands, 661 cays, and 2,387 rocks in the colony.[44]

The closest island to the United States is Bimini, which is also known as the gateway to the Bahamas. The island of Abaco is to the east of Grand Bahama. The southeasternmost island is Inagua. The largest island is Andros Island. Other inhabited islands include Eleuthera, Cat Island, Long Island, San Salvador Island, Acklins, Crooked Island, Exuma, Berry Islands and Mayaguana. Nassau, capital city of the Bahamas, lies on the island of New Providence.

All the islands are low and flat, with ridges that usually rise no more than 15 to 20m (49 to 66ft). The highest point in the country is Mount Alvernia (formerly Como Hill) on Cat Island. It has an elevation of 63 metres (207ft).

To the southeast, the Turks and Caicos Islands, and three more extensive submarine features called Mouchoir Bank, Silver Bank and Navidad Bank, are geographically a continuation of the Bahamas.

The climate of the Bahamas is tropical savannah climate or Aw according to Kppen climate classification. As such, there has never been a frost or freeze reported in the Bahamas, although every few decades low temperatures can fall into the 35C (3741F) range for a few hours when a severe cold outbreak comes off the North American landmass. Otherwise, the low latitude, warm tropical Gulf Stream, and low elevation give the Bahamas a warm and winterless climate. There is only an 8C difference between the warmest month and coolest month in most of the Bahama islands. As with most tropical climates, seasonal rainfall follows the sun, and summer is the wettest season. The Bahamas are often sunny and dry for long periods of time, and average more than 3,000 hours or 340 days[45] of sunlight annually.

Tropical storms and hurricanes affect the Bahamas. In 1992, Hurricane Andrew passed over the northern portions of the islands, and Hurricane Floyd passed near the eastern portions of the islands in 1999.













The Bahamas is a parliamentary constitutional monarchy headed by Queen Elizabeth II in her role as Queen of the Bahamas. Political and legal traditions closely follow those of the United Kingdom and the Westminster system. The Bahamas is a member of the Commonwealth of Nations as a Commonwealth realm, retaining the Queen as head of state (represented by a Governor-General).

Legislative power is vested in a bicameral parliament, which consists of a 38-member House of Assembly (the lower house), with members elected from single-member districts, and a 16-member Senate, with members appointed by the Governor-General, including nine on the advice of the Prime Minister, four on the advice of the Leader of Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition, and three on the advice of the Prime Minister after consultation with the Leader of the Opposition. The House of Assembly carries out all major legislative functions. As under the Westminster system, the Prime Minister may dissolve Parliament and call a general election at any time within a five-year term.[48]

The Prime Minister is the head of government and is the leader of the party with the most seats in the House of Assembly. Executive power is exercised by the Cabinet, selected by the Prime Minister and drawn from his supporters in the House of Assembly. The current Governor-General is Dame Marguerite Pindling, and the current Prime Minister is The Rt. Hon. Perry Christie, P.C., M.P..

Constitutional safeguards include freedom of speech, press, worship, movement and association. The judiciary is independent of the executive and the legislature. Jurisprudence is based on English law.

The Bahamas has a two-party system dominated by the centre-left Progressive Liberal Party and the centre-right Free National Movement. A handful of splinter parties have been unable to win election to parliament. These parties have included the Bahamas Democratic Movement, the Coalition for Democratic Reform, Bahamian Nationalist Party and the Democratic National Alliance.

The Bahamas has strong bilateral relationships with the United States and the United Kingdom, represented by an ambassador in Washington and High Commissioner in London. The Bahamas also associates closely with other nations of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).

Its military is the Royal Bahamas Defence Force (the RBDF), the navy of the Bahamas which includes a land unit called Commando Squadron (Regiment) and an Air Wing (Air Force). Under the Defence Act, the RBDF has been mandated, in the name of the Queen, to defend the Bahamas, protect its territorial integrity, patrol its waters, provide assistance and relief in times of disaster, maintain order in conjunction with the law enforcement agencies of the Bahamas, and carry out any such duties as determined by the National Security Council. The Defence Force is also a member of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM)’s Regional Security Task Force.

The RBDF came into existence on 31 March 1980. Their duties include defending the Bahamas, stopping drug smuggling, illegal immigration and poaching, and providing assistance to mariners. The Defence Force has a fleet of 26 coastal and inshore patrol craft along with 3 aircraft and over 1,100 personnel including 65 officers and 74 women.

The districts of the Bahamas provide a system of local government everywhere except New Providence (which holds 70% of the national population), whose affairs are handled directly by the central government. In 1996, the Bahamian Parliament passed the “Local Government Act” to facilitate the establishment of Family Island Administrators, Local Government Districts, Local District Councillors and Local Town Committees for the various island communities. The overall goal of this act is to allow the various elected leaders to govern and oversee the affairs of their respective districts without the interference of Central Government. In total, there are 32 districts, with elections being held every five years. There are 110 Councillors and 281 Town Committee members are elected to represent the various districts.[49]

Each Councillor or Town Committee member is responsible for the proper use of public funds for the maintenance and development of their constituency.

The Bahamas uses drive-on-the-Left traffic rules throughout the Commonwealth.

The districts other than New Providence are:

The colours embodied in the design of the Bahamian flag symbolise the image and aspirations of the people of the Bahamas; the design reflects aspects of the natural environment (sun, sand and sea) and the economic and social development. The flag is a black equilateral triangle against the mast, superimposed on a horizontal background made up of two colours on three equal stripes of aquamarine, gold and aquamarine.

The symbolism of the flag is as follows: Black, a strong colour, represents the vigour and force of a united people, the triangle pointing towards the body of the flag represents the enterprise and determination of the Bahamian people to develop and possess the rich resources of sun and sea symbolised by gold and aquamarine respectively. In reference to the representation of the people with the colour black, some white Bahamians have joked that they are represented in the thread which “holds it all together.”[50]

There are rules on how to use the flag for certain events. For a funeral the national flag should be draped over the coffin covering the top completely but not covering the bearers. The black triangle on the flag should be placed over the head of the deceased in the coffin. The flag will remain on the coffin throughout the whole service and removed right before lowered into the grave. Upon removal of the flag it should be folded with dignity and put away. The black triangle should never be displayed pointing upwards or from the viewer’s right. This would be a sign of distress.[51]

The coat of arms of the Bahamas contains a shield with the national symbols as its focal point. The shield is supported by a marlin and a flamingo, which are the national animals of the Bahamas. The flamingo is located on the land, and the marlin on the sea, indicating the geography of the islands.

On top of the shield is a conch shell, which represents the varied marine life of the island chain. The conch shell rests on a helmet. Below this is the actual shield, the main symbol of which is a ship representing the Santa Mara of Christopher Columbus, shown sailing beneath the sun. Along the bottom, below the shield appears a banner upon which is the national motto:[52]

“Forward, Upward, Onward Together.”

The yellow elder was chosen as the national flower of the Bahamas because it is native to the Bahama islands, and it blooms throughout the year.

Selection of the yellow elder over many other flowers was made through the combined popular vote of members of all four of New Providence’s garden clubs of the 1970sthe Nassau Garden Club, the Carver Garden Club, the International Garden Club and the Y.W.C.A. Garden Club.

They reasoned that other flowers grown theresuch as the bougainvillea, hibiscus and poincianahad already been chosen as the national flowers of other countries. The yellow elder, on the other hand, was unclaimed by other countries (although it is now also the national flower of the United States Virgin Islands) and also the yellow elder is native to the family islands.[53]

By the terms of GDP per capita, the Bahamas is one of the richest countries in the Americas.[54]

The Bahamas relies on tourism to generate most of its economic activity. Tourism as an industry not only accounts for over 60% of the Bahamian GDP, but provides jobs for more than half the country’s workforce.[55] The Bahamas attracted 5.8 million visitors in 2012, more than 70% of which were cruise visitors.

After tourism, the next most important economic sector is banking and international financial services, accounting for some 15% of GDP.

The government has adopted incentives to encourage foreign financial business, and further banking and finance reforms are in progress. The government plans to merge the regulatory functions of key financial institutions, including the Central Bank of the Bahamas (CBB) and the Securities and Exchange Commission.[citation needed] The Central Bank administers restrictions and controls on capital and money market instruments. The Bahamas International Securities Exchange consists of 19 listed public companies. Reflecting the relative soundness of the banking system (mostly populated by Canadian banks), the impact of the global financial crisis on the financial sector has been limited.[citation needed]

The economy has a very competitive tax regime. The government derives its revenue from import tariffs, VAT, licence fees, property and stamp taxes, but there is no income tax, corporate tax, capital gains tax, or wealth tax. Payroll taxes fund social insurance benefits and amount to 3.9% paid by the employee and 5.9% paid by the employer.[56] In 2010, overall tax revenue as a percentage of GDP was 17.2%.[5]

Agriculture is the third largest sector of the Bahamian economy, representing 57% of total GDP. An estimated 80% of the Bahamian food supply is imported. Major crops include onions, okra, and tomatoes, oranges, grapefruit, cucumbers, sugar cane, lemons, limes and sweet potatoes.

The Bahamas has an estimated population of 392,718, of which 25.9% are under 14, 67.2% 15 to 64 and 6.9% over 65. It has a population growth rate of 0.925% (2010), with a birth rate of 17.81/1,000 population, death rate of 9.35/1,000, and net migration rate of 2.13 migrant(s)/1,000 population.[57] The infant mortality rate is 23.21 deaths/1,000 live births. Residents have a life expectancy at birth of 69.87 years: 73.49 years for females, 66.32 years for males. The total fertility rate is 2.0 children born/woman (2010).[5]

The most populous islands are New Providence, where Nassau, the capital and largest city, is located;[58] and Grand Bahama, home to the second largest city of Freeport.[59]

According to the 99% response rate obtained from the race question on the 2010 Census questionnaire, 91% of the population identified themselves as being Africans or Afro-Bahamian, 5% Europeans or Euro-Bahamian and 2% of a mixed race (African and European). Three centuries prior, in 1722 when the first official census of The Bahamas was taken, 74% of the population was White and 26% Black.[60]

Afro-Bahamians are Bahamian nationals whose primary ancestry was based in West Africa. The first Africans to arrive to the Bahamas were freed slaves from Bermuda; they arrived with the Eleutheran Adventurers looking for new lives.

Since the colonial era of plantations, Africans or Afro-Bahamians have been the largest ethnic group in the Bahamas; in the 21st century, they account for some 91% of the country’s population.[60] The Haitian community is also largely of African descent and numbers about 80,000. Because of an extremely high immigration of Haitians to the Bahamas, the Bahamian government started deporting illegal Haitian immigrants to their homeland in late 2014.[61]

16,598 (5%) of the total population are descendants of Europeans or European Bahamians at the 2010 census.[1]European Bahamians, or Bahamians of European and mixed European descent form the largest minority, and are mainly the descendants of the English Puritans looking to flee religious persecution in England and American Loyalists escaping the American Revolution who arrived in 1649 and 1783, respectively.[62] Many Southern Loyalists went to the Abaco Islands, which has an about 50% European population as of 1985.[63] A small portion of the Euro Bahamian population is descended from Greek labourers who came to help develop the sponging industry in the 1900s. They make up less than 1% of the nation’s population, but have still preserved their distinct Greek Bahamian culture.

The official language of the Bahamas is English. Many residents speak the Bahamian dialect.[64] According to 1995 estimates 98.2% of the adult population is literate.

According to International Religious Freedom Report 2008 prepared by United States Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, the islands’ population is predominantly Christian. Protestant denominations are widespread with Baptists representing 35% of the population, Anglicans 15%, Pentecostals 8%, Church of God 5%, Seventh-day Adventists 5% and Methodists 4%, but there is also a significant Roman Catholic community accounting for about 14%.[65] There are also smaller communities of Jews, Muslims, Baha’is, Hindus, Rastafarians and practitioners of Obeah.

In the less developed outer islands (or Family Islands), handicrafts include basketry made from palm fronds. This material, commonly called “straw”, is plaited into hats and bags that are popular tourist items. Another use is for so-called “Voodoo dolls”, even though such dolls are the result of the American imagination and not based on historic fact.[66]

A form of folk magic (obeah) is practiced by some Bahamians, mainly in the Family Islands (out-islands) of the Bahamas.[67] The practice of obeah is illegal in the Bahamas and punishable by law.[68]

Junkanoo is a traditional Afro-Bahamian street parade of ‘rushing’, music, dance and art held in Nassau (and a few other settlements) every Boxing Day and New Year’s Day. Junkanoo is also used to celebrate other holidays and events such as Emancipation Day.

Regattas are important social events in many family island settlements. They usually feature one or more days of sailing by old-fashioned work boats, as well as an onshore festival.

Many dishes are associated with Bahamian cuisine, which reflects Caribbean, African and European influences. Some settlements have festivals associated with the traditional crop or food of that area, such as the “Pineapple Fest” in Gregory Town, Eleuthera or the “Crab Fest” on Andros. Other significant traditions include story telling.

Bahamians have created a rich literature of poetry, short stories, plays and short fictional works. Common themes in these works are (1) an awareness of change, (2) a striving for sophistication, (3) a search for identity, (4) nostalgia for the old ways and (5) an appreciation of beauty. Some contributing writers are Susan Wallace, Percival Miller, Robert Johnson, Raymond Brown, O.M. Smith, William Johnson, Eddie Minnis and Winston Saunders.[69][70]

Bahamas culture is rich with beliefs, traditions, folklore and legend. The most well-known folklore and legends in the Bahamas includes Lusca in Andros Bahamas, Pretty Molly on Exuma Bahamas, the Chickcharnies of Andro Bahamas, and the Lost City of Atlantis on Bimini Bahamas.

Sport is a significant part of Bahamian culture. The national sport is Cricket. Cricket has been played in the Bahamas from 1846.[71] It is the oldest sport being played in the country today. The Bahamas Cricket Association was formed in 1936 as an organised body. From the 1940s to the 1970s, cricket was played amongst many Bahamians. Bahamas is not a part of the West Indies Board, so players are not eligible to play for the West Indies cricket team. The late 1970s saw the game begin to decline in the country as teachers, who had previously come from the United Kingdom with a passion for cricket were replaced by teachers who had been trained in the United States. The Bahamian Physical education teachers had no knowledge of the game and instead taught track & field, basketball, baseball, softball,[72]volleyball[73] and football[74] where primary and high schools compete against each other. Today cricket is still enjoyed by a few locals and immigrants in the country usually from Jamaica, Guyana, Haiti and Barbados. Cricket is played on Saturdays and Sundays at Windsor Park and Haynes Oval.

The only other sporting event that began before cricket was horse racing, which started in 1796. The most popular spectator sports are those imported from United States such as basketball,[75]American football[76] and baseball[77] rather than Great Britain due to the country’s close proximity to the United States. Unlike their other Caribbean counterparts, cricket has proven to be more popular.

Dexter Cambridge, Rick Fox and Ian Lockhart are a few Bahamians who joined Bahamian Mychal Thompson of the Los Angeles Lakers in the NBA ranks,[78] and Buddy Hield is expected to join this group in 2016.[79] Over the years American football has become much more popular than association football, though not implemented in the high school system yet. Leagues for teens and adults have been developed by the Bahamas American Football Federation.[80] However association football, commonly known as ‘soccer’ in the country, is still a very popular sport amongst high school pupils. Leagues are governed by the Bahamas Football Association. Recently the Bahamian government has been working closely with Tottenham Hotspur of London to promote the sport in the country as well as promoting the Bahamas in the European market. In 2013 ‘Spurs’ became the first Premier League club to play an exhibition match in the Bahamas to face the Jamaica national football team. Joe Lewis the owner of the Tottenham Hotspur club is based in the Bahamas.[81]

Other popular sports are swimming,[82]tennis[83] and boxing[84] where Bahamians have enjoyed some level of success at the international level. Other sports such as golf,[85]rugby league,[86]rugby union[87] and beach soccer[88] are considered growing sports. Athletics commonly known as track and field in the country is the most successful sport by far amongst Bahamians. Bahamians have a strong tradition in the sprints and jumps. Track and field is probably the most popular spectator sport in the country next to basketball due to their success over the years. Triathlons are gaining popularity in Nassau and the Family Islands.

Bahamians have gone on to win numerous track and field medals at the Olympic Games, IAAF World Championships in Athletics, Commonwealth Games and Pan American Games. Frank Rutherford is the first athletics olympic medalist for the country. He won a bronze medal for triple jump during the 1992 Summer Olympics.[89]Pauline Davis-Thompson, Debbie Ferguson, Chandra Sturrup, Savatheda Fynes and Eldece Clarke-Lewis teamed up for the first athletics Olympic Gold medal for the country when they won the 4 100 m relay at the 2000 Summer Olympics. They are affectionately known as the “Golden Girls”.[90]Tonique Williams-Darling became the first athletics individual Olympic gold medalist when she won the 400m sprint in 2004 Summer Olympics.[91] In 2007, with the disqualification of Marion Jones, Pauline Davis-Thompson was advanced to the gold medal position in the 200 metres at the 2000 Olympics, predating William-Darling.

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The Bahamas – Wikipedia

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Debate: Freedom of Speech | Debate.org

Posted: October 15, 2016 at 5:23 am

To begin, I am greatly happy that you, Mdal, joined my debate. It appears that your arguments appeals to logic, which is, in my opinion the most persuasive type of argument. I will primarily be appealing to logic, however will also touch on the ideals of value, as it is one of the main moral reasons I support this idea. I have also adapted the format of my arguments to suit your style.

Voltaire, an enlightenment thinker, regarded with as intuitive and influential a mind as Montesquieu, Rousseau, and Locke. All influential people who host beliefs that influenced the framers of the Constitution, and all of which created ideals that support, and influence my own belief on restricting the rights of the first amendment to hate group’s gathering in public areas.

I agree with your definition of what the constitution is advancing us towards, “a stable, liberty driven, peaceful, prosperous state” and would in turn like to define hate groups as any groups that gather with the intentions of breeding fear, terror, hate, or violence towards any particular group of people (defined as a group of similar races, religion, or belief [such as sexual orientation].) More specifically, I will be focusing on, and discussing the two groups you mentioned, the Ku Klux Klan, and the Aryan Brotherhood.

Now, before I begin my own arguments, I will answer your question: “who gets to say what is ok and what isn’t?”

I have long meditated in search of a proper way for our nation to adapt to such a monumental change as I have proposed. The only way that I could think of was to add a fourth branch to our current system of checks and balances. This branch would be in charge of adapting the constitution to better suit the nation as it evolves (including any exceptions the members of this branch deem necessary to create.) They would have equal power to the executive, legislative and judicial branches, and would their adjustments would be checked by both the legislative branch (requiring a majority vote as opposed to the current two thirds vote necessary to create an amendment) and the judicial branch to make sure that any and all changes and exceptions created by this new branch follow the main ideals that are upheld within our nation, and do not violate the main intentions of the framers ideals. I realize that this is also a very controversial topic, and would love to hear any and all concerns you have regarding this issue; however, I do not want this to distract us from the main topic of our debate.

Rebuttal #1: In response to the “slippery-slope” argument Logic: The system of checks and balances was created in order to stop one particular group from gaining power. Adapting this system by creating another branch should quite any worries you had about the “slippery-slope” that may occur, as the extent of the branches power will be modified by two other branches, the Legislative and the Judicial. Therefore, the new branch will not be able to abuse this power, and they, because of these restrictions, would not be able to quiet the entire, “market place of ideas.”

Rebuttal #2: In response to the argument that this will limit the market place of ideas Logic: You brought up the argument that if we allow bad ideas to mix with good ideas, then the good ideas will “rise to the top.” In response to this, I would like to bring up the case of Osama Bin Laden, a terrorist who has, what are commonly assumed to be “bad ideas.” Because of Bin Laden’s influential abilities, his bad ideas were able to rise above the good ideas, and eventually led to a great influx of new members into terrorist beliefs, and further led to the tragic destruction of the World Trade Center in 2001.

I am in no way saying that the KKK or the Aryan Brotherhood has equal power to Terrorists, but I am instead proposing that they have similar bad ideas focused on fear and hatred towards a group of people. If the KKK were to gain an influential leader (horrendous, but influential none-the-less) as Osama Bin Laden, who’s to say whether or not our current small national terrorist group the KKK would turn into a world-wide terrorist organization such as that created by Osama Bin Laden?

It is better to regulate the public meetings of these organizations now, as opposed to later when their power may exceed that of the government they are encompassed by.

Rebuttal #3: In response to the argument that Free speech keeps our government accountable. Logic: As the government is not a group of people regulated by race, religion, or belief (refer to definition of groups of people). And the branch will only have the power to regulate hate groups from publicly discussing (note I am not restricting their right to gather in privacy, purely in public) their ideas, the proposition will have no effect on those who wish to speak out against the government.

Now onto my main argument:

Argument: We are currently not fully acknowledging people’s natural rights Logic: According to the natural rights originally proposed, and supported by enlightenment thinkers such as Locke, Montesquieu, and Rousseau all people are born with the right to live his/her life any way he/she likes without causing physical harm to another individual, directly or indirectly.

What I question within this right is the restriction, “without causing physical harm to another individual, directly or indirectly.” I concede that I am working under the assumption that hate groups gather with a common goal to assert their superiority (through violence or terror) over a different group of people. I also concede that I work under the assumption that mental harm can become so intense that it can eventually harm a person physically (I only state this because this was not common knowledge around the time of the enlightenment, and therefore was not included in their right.) I believe that these are fairly common assumptions, and therefore will continue with my argument. If we allow groups that have a goal of asserting superiority over a specific group of people, whether they currently act upon this goal, or whether they plan on accomplishing this goal in the future, they either directly or indirectly threaten the safety of others.

I also could go on, however do not wish to state all of my arguments in the first round of our five round discussion.

Thank you again for accepting this debate, so far it proves to be quite promising.

I will first respond to tsmart’s rebuttals to my 3 opening arguments, from there I will counter tsmart’s single argument, finally I must respond to the possible creation of a 4th branch of government as the actor created by tsmart in this case. Though I too do not want this debate dramatically side tracked by a debate about the actor who will create the proposed new laws set forth by tsmart. However as he uses this new 4th branch as an answer to my 3rd argument it has become very important to the core of this debate and will thus be discussed when answering Tsmart’s first rebuttal.

With this signposting finished, lets get to some arguments.

Rebuttal #1: Tsmart’s Rebuttal assures us that through the creation of the 4th branch of government who’s sole job is two interpret freedom of speech, and decide what is and what is not allowable under our new laws which limit certain types of speech. Tsmart’s exact quote of what the 4th branch of government would be is: “This branch would be in charge of adapting the constitution to better suit the nation as it evolves (including any exceptions the members of this branch deem necessary to create.) They would have equal power to the executive, legislative and judicial branches, and would their adjustments would be checked by both the legislative branch (requiring a majority vote as opposed to the current two thirds vote necessary to create an amendment) and the judicial branch to make sure that any and all changes and exceptions created by this new branch follow the main ideals that are upheld within our nation, and do not violate the main intentions of the framers ideals.”

My response: Whooooooo eeee! Where to start on this one?

To begin with it seems at first blush that the 4th branch is going to usurp what has been the power of the Supreme Court, namely interpreting the constitution. However upon closer examination it seems that Tsmart actually has created a body whose job is much more than merely interpreting the constitution, it is actually a body whose job is to CHANGE the constitution. So basically this new body is invented to abridge and thus destroy the power of the 1st amendment (one of the most important amendments in our constitution, one who has been upheld through countless court cases) take the power of the states and congress (the governmental structures who usually keep all of the checks and balances on the creation of new amendments)and given it all to this new 4th branch. Basically we have reorganized the very makeup of American government for the express reason of censoring people. *****In a cost benefit analysis the cost of destabilizing the government by shifting around the powers set in our government by our founding fathers to a new, strange, and untested power structure for the possibly non-existent benefit of censoring hate groups seems dramatically unbalanced. Under this cost benefit analysis it seems as if any marginal benefits we might get from censorship are DRAMATICALLY outweighed by the dangers of the radical upsetting of our governmental structure and thus shows that the CON’s proposed solutions just aren’t worth the trouble.

Rebuttal #2: In response to my argument for an open Market Place of Ideas (something we have now but will lose if we lose Freedom of Speech) Tsmart brings up the example of Osoma Bin Laden and how his ideas have risen to the top in some places and beat out better ideas, so we should instead keep these sort of ideas out of the public’s purview.

My Response: Tsmart actually just proved my point by using the example of Osoma Bin Laden, tell me readers (and Tsmart) have you been convinced by listening to Bin Laden on our television? It wasn’t hidden from us. Everyone in the US is allowed to listen to what Bin Laden has to say, yet HERE in the US where the market place of ideas flourishes Bin Laden’s brand of extremism hasn’t gained a foothold. The places where he is much more popular don’t have the myriad of view points like we have the capacity of getting here in the States, instead in places like Iran, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, Pakistan and other nations in the Middle East we find a correlation between the free-er the speech, the less extremist the views in the country. This is because when the market place of ideas is allowed to work, people are able to make well informed decisions and that usually leads them away from extremist views and towards the center ground when considering an issue. Thus we can see how Tsmart’s example just proves exactly how important the market place of ideas really is and how important it is to keep from abridging the first amendment which is SO key to keeping the market place of ideas viable.

Rebuttal #3: I stated that freedom of speech is a huge check on the government. Tsmart says: “…the branch will only have the power to regulate hate groups from publicly discussing (note I am not restricting their right to gather in privacy, purely in public) their ideas, the proposition will have no effect on those who wish to speak out against the government.” My Response: What about the hate groups Tsmart? What happens if an incredibly racist, cruel, mean, hate filled Neo Nazi has a well conceived critique of the the government, but wants to express this brilliant critique in hate filled language? His speech, though offensive to you and me, will also give a benefit to the society because he will point out something about the government which needs to be looked at. Re-reading your quote you say that the hate group will be unable to discuss their ideas in public, what if their ideas have to do with the government? Is this a new exception? Are Hate groups allowed to talk about the government? You see how restricting even a small part of Freedom of Speech has huge ramifications for everyone in our society? Rather than risk the benefit of one of the best checks on our government (freedom of speech) we should play it safe and not try to silence people we don’t agree with.

On to Tsmart’s argument of expanded natural rights, His claim is that if people are railed against in public by hate groups they may be harmed mentally and that may eventually lead to physical harm. Thus we should protect these minorities and targeted groups from the hate groups.

Response to Tsmart’s Argument: Tsmart, it seems as though you have come to an overreaching understanding of what the government is supposed to do in situations like this. Your solution is to take preemptive action by taking away freedoms from people who might threaten others. However it seems as though the goal you are trying to accomplish is to make certain that the targeted minority groups ARE safe as well as help them FEEL safe. This goal can be met much better by an investment in anti-hate laws which will increase the punishment for hate crimes, or better yet you could increase the capabilities of the police and thus keep extremist groups like the hate organizations in line. However abridging freedom of speech is not the best, or even a decent, way of defending targeted minority groups.

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Debate: Freedom of Speech | Debate.org

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Freedom Resource Center – Ascension_151#151

Posted: October 11, 2016 at 12:54 am

Select One 1 ARCTURIANS ~ Sacred Healing Masters

ARCTURIANS ~ Sacred Healing Masters

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Arcturians: Sacred Healing Masters

In this Webinar, you will learn the key role the Arcturians play in our understanding of time and its role in releasing the divine plan to this galaxy. Integral to their sacred essence is the art of healing, as they enlighten us in the ways of harmony and the reciprocal joys of compassion.http://sable.madmimi.com

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Arcturian Solar System,Description of Home Worlds Arcturians: Physical Description Arcturian Ships Arcturus Role in Creating an Expanded Galactic Federation Arcturians: CreatorsGalactic Federation’s Revised Medical Team Program. Special Arcturian Update on Our Ascension Symptoms What the Arcturians Teach Us Divine Comfort,Divine Nurturing Their role with Gaia and our Galactic Future

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Old Post Cards

While being a “Helicopter Crew Chief Instructor” there, I’d go to WashingtonDC, with a few buddies almost every weekend. We’d do the Smithsonian andall.On the way back to Ft Eustis (125 miles), we’d often stop for something toeat.One time, it was getting late. We landed in Falls Church, VA.We saw an oldgeneral store that was still open. We walked around on the old creaky floorslooking for Frito’s or something? I came across, an old wire frame post cardholder. It was full of WWII post cards…penny a piece !I asked the guy, “How much do you want for the Post Cards?”He said, “Apenny. They have been here ever since I was a kid.”I counted them…300 plus.I gave him $4.00, and I got the rack, too.In San Diego, I sold a bunch for $1.00 each. I still have a bunch to handdown.I know some of you are too young to recall these posters and WWII, but theywere a part of my life and others who are now “older than dirt”. These aregreat. Pass them along, especially to your older e-mail friends.I wonder whatever happened to this kind of thinking.I got a lump in my throat when I read this. I “grew up” thinking:patriotism, it is the AMERICAN way! I am glad to see that somebody savedthem. The statement at the end says it all! These were our parents.What in God’s name have we let happen ?I guess we are the last generation to see, or even remember anything likethese!Whatever happened?

70 years of “progressive” education happened!

Political correctness (or “re-education”) happened, Lack of God’s name happened, Lack of personal responsibility happened, Lack of personal integrity and honesty happened, Lack of respect and loyalty to our country happened, Lack of being an American happened.

Did all of these things die along with common sense ? I for one am still proud to be an American! If you are too…. Pass this along, so others can show their pride.

In English please! – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – “The difference between genius and stupidity is that genius has itslimits.”~Albert Einstein

Daily Quote – August 09, 2016


We cannot focus upon the weaknesses of one another and evoke strengths. Youcannot focus upon the things that you think they are doing wrong, and evokethings that will make you feel better. You’ve got to beat the drum thatmakes you feel good when you beat it. And when you do, you’ll be a strongsignal of influence that will help them to reconnect with who they are. —Abraham

Excerpted from: Washington, DC on October 16, 2004

Our Love, Esther (and Abraham and Jerry)

Upcoming Abraham Workshops

Los Angeles, CA – August 13 Long Beach, CA – August 20

San Diego, CA – August 27 San Diego, CA – August 28

To register for a workshop or see the complete workshop list,Abraham-hicks.us4.list-manage.comclick here.

FOUR Simple questions from an attorney

…are there ANY logical answers ?

You be the judge……

Here’s what I would like to know. If the TRUTH ever comes out and itis decided that Obama was never eligible to be president, what happens toall the laws he signed into being and all the executive orders?

Should they all be null and void?

These simple questions from a reputable attorney…This reallyshould get your “gray matter” to churning, even if you are an Obamafan.For all you “anti-Fox News” folks, none of this information came fromFox. All of it can be verified from legitimate sources (Wikipedia, theKapiolani hospital website itself, and a good history book, as notedherein). It is very easy for someone to check out.

1. Back in 1961 people of color were called ‘Negroes’. So how can theObama ‘birth certificate’ state he is “African-American” when the termwasn’t even used at that time ?

2. The birth certificate that the White House released lists Obama’sbirth as August 4, 1961 and Lists Barack Hussein Obama as his father.No big deal, Right? At the time of Obama’s birth, it also shows thathis father is aged 25 years old, and that Obama’s father was born in “Kenya,East Africa”.

This wouldn’t seem like anything of concern, except the fact thatKenya did not even exist until 1963, two whole years after Obama’sbirth, and 27 years after his father’s birth. How could Obama’s fatherhave been born in a country that did not yet Exist ?

Up and until Kenya was formed in 1963, it was known as the “BritishEast Africa Protectorate”. (check it below)


3. On the Birth Certificate released by the White House, the listedplace of birth is “Kapi’olani Maternity & Gynecological Hospital”.This cannot be, because the hospital(s) in question in 1961 werecalled “KauiKeolani Children’s Hospital” and “Kapi’olani MaternityHome”, respectively.

The name did not change to Kapi’olani Maternity & GynecologicalHospital until 1978, when these two hospitals merged. How can thisparticular name of the hospital be on a birth certificate dated 1961if this name had not yet been applied to it until 1978?



Why hasn’t this been discussed in the major media?

4. Perhaps a clue comes from Obama’s book on his father. He states how proudhe is of his father fighting in WW II. I’m not a math genius, so I may needsome help from you. Barack Obama’s “birth certificate” says his father was25 years old in 1961 when Obama was born. That should have put his father’sdate of birth approximately 1936 – if my math holds (Honest! I did thatwithout a calculator!) Now we need a non-revised history book-one thathasn’t been altered to satisfy the author’s goals-to verify that WW II wasbasically between 1939 and 1945.Just how many 3 year olds fight in Wars? Even in the latest stages of WW IIhis father wouldn’t have been no more than 9 years old.Does that mean that Mr. Obama is a liar, or simply chooses to alterthe facts to satisfy his imagination or political purposes ?

Very truly yours,

RICHARD R. SILVERLIEB Attorney at Law 354 Eisenhower Parkway Livingston, NJ 07039

“A pen in the hand of this president is far more dangerous than a gun in thehands of 200 million law-abiding citizens.Send this to as many Patriots as you can! Ask your Republicanfriends/representatives in Washington D.C. If they have a backbone … Whyin the hell can’t they use it and get media coverage to explode this acrossour country?

New Republic & GCR

Compiled on 13 Aug. 2016 by Judy Byington, MSW, LCSW, ret, Author, “Twenty Two Faces,” CEO, Child Abuse Recovery. http://www.22faces.com http://www.ChildAbuseRecovery.com

1. The BRICS system of CIPS has been in force since July 5 2016 with two new satellites in the air. Among other mandates CIPS was designed to process currency exchanges of the Global Currency Reset through AIIB, Bank of China, HSBC, Wells Fargo, TD Bank, Royal Bank of Canada, Scotia Bank and in Mexico by HSBC. Rate categories were defined as: International, Market, Contract and Sovereign. The Sovereign Rate, now referred to as the Negotiated Rate, was actually a bond rate designed to be used for Humanitarian Projects.

2. As of July 28 2016 the Paris Climate Treaty had been finalized with the GCR currency exchange hidden in the treaty. There were now 208 countries that recognized the Republic of the United States. A new US Treasury Note would phase out the Petrodollar.

3. On July 31 2016 in Reno certain codes were sent out and test protocols started for the GCR. The next day Aug.1 2016 tests were sucessfully completed around 1 pm. Some SKRs and groups had been made liquid. Call Link

4. Also on Aug 1 2016 and according to The Big Call, Iraqi citizens were said to recieve by mail their new Smart Cards, charged up and ready to go. Last time they were paid on back pay the Dinar rate was $5.31, a possible International Rate. The Iraqi Olympic team of 150-160 plus their support group were said to be on route to Brazil with their Smart cards charged up.

5. Special codes were sent out Aug. 2 afternoon for a GCR GO on Aug. 3 2016. Intel provider Jerzy said that the Chinese Elders released some cash accts which were for reconstruction projects, including projects in the US.

6. On Aug. 3 2016 Typhoon Nadia put a stop to it all even though the RV was considered done. Meetings were held and the RV was rescheduled for the next week. By then major transactions in the quadrillion range had been exchanged at a nominal 1:1 ratio, a practice that would continue for weeks. The public RV was scheduled to follow in an estimated 30 days or less.

7. On that same Aug. 3 2016 the Iraqi Dinar was considered international at a rate of $5.32, although it would fluctuate in value and could not be redeemed in some countries including the US until the full reset took place. Iraqi citizens inside and outside of the country were using their Q cards with various new Dinar rates on them. Initiation of the Dinar on the ISX had been scheduled for the next day on Aug. 4, though didn’t make the deadline.

8. By that same Aug. 3 2016 the new US note was accounted for by the new Department of the Treasury: http://inteldinarchronicles.blogspot.com/2016/08/excerpt-of-sheldan-nidles-update-for.html

9. The next day on Aug. 4 2016 the new US Republic was said to be restored in a Situation Report submitted at 5:49 pm EST by DC to Dinar Chronicles (DC is Dinar Chronicles, just to clarify that. ~ DC). Thursday, August 4, 2016. It was reported that USA Inc. publiclysurrenderedat the Pentagon. This was the public announcementneeded for the RV to be solidified. After banks close their doors on Friday on the West Coast, 800#s were expected to be released automatically. “New USN Currency/US Republic Restored” – Anonymous Intel – 8.4.16 “New USN Currency/US Republic Restored” – Anonymous Intel – 8.4.16.

10. On that same Aug. 4 a precursor to the 1987 crash happened on the stock market: http://finance.yahoo.com/news/stock-markets-recent-losing-streak-144956860.html

11. Also on that Aug. 4 2016 Bruce’s The Big Call, The Big Call, it was reported that all Paymasters recieved their funds to do exchanges, the Tier 3 group was bond redemption, starting the night before 50,000 SKRs become liquid and by that evening all SKRs should be done. Some of the Tier 4 groups had begun to exchange while a few Dinar calls and websites were being shut down in preparation for the RV.

12. The Aug. 4 2016 Situation Report reported on Recaps.: “The RV has begun in earnest and with actual liquidity payouts here in the United States and Canada! USN wires are arriving to real USN accounts, for spendable usage in real USN currency anywhere in the free world via the new CIPS delivery mechanism. Tier Three paymasters (bonds, SKRs) have been given access codes direct to master hydration accounts at HSBC-Wells Fargo which have been temporarily assigned / provided by the Elders for layout purposes. Since early Wed morning Aug. 3, T3 paymasters have been actively executing master list submitted wire transfers by fulfilling their existing SKR lists–and actually liquidating gold backed funds into pre-existing USA domiciled gold backed bank accounts, with a client’s ability to spend gold backed currency. Over 60,000+ T3 SKRs were being liquidated, with an expected completion date of Fri. Aug. 5 2016 sometime before US banks close on the West Coast, or 6pm PDT. Currently we understand paymasters are 25% through their SKR lists as of midnight Thurs. Once the T3 paymaster process achieves a to 95% completion percentage, T4 paymaster (groups including the Internet group) liquidation automatically begins which includes all revalued first basket currency redemptions (IQD, VND, ZIM, AFA, IDR). Meaning, after US banks close their doors on the West Coast, toll free numbers will automatically be released across North America and appear for appointment setting purposes and immediate currency retrieval and conversion. END OF REPORT.”

13. The Dinar Chronicles Intel Report of Aug. 5 2016 11:42 am EDT: “Completed Tonight, Released Monday. Right now an important individual is on the way to Reno from Wells Fargo Headquarters in San Francisco.” US Note electronic wire transfers began. Major transactions in the quadrillion range began exchanging at a nominal 1:1 ratio. Classified Page – New Intel Added 8-5-16

14. Aug. 5 2016 GCR Update CapnGriff: “Several well known intel providers, websites and chatrooms went dark yesterday morning. The only plausible reason was they were told by those in power that the RV is in progress. SKRs are safe keeping receipts given to highly placed individuals who had traded in their currencies at a certain rate. Their accounts could not be accessed for spending, until yesterday. The estimate was there were 60,000+ such Tier 3 accounts. All were hydrated by the end of the banking day on the west coast yesterday.” (Hawaii lags behind us, so their time may have been the actual cutoff.) Update on the RV/GCR as of 2AM MDT by CapnGriff

15. A conference call held Aug. 5 2016 at 11:11 pm EST: Last Night’s Conference Call w/ Tank, Bewdah and Yosef 8-5-16

A. The new US Republic began on Aug.4 2016 when China released gold to the new US Treasury. This is about restoring of the US Constitution.

B. Pentagon Chief of Staff and US Republic President Joseph Dunford met with Obama to lay out how this was going to work: they took away Obama’s authority.

C. Congress voted to amend the Constitution to eliminate the power of the US Inc. over the Republic of the US.

D. The House returned the US back to a gold standard. Congress has the right to determine what constitutes the value of our money.

E. A great deal of SKRs have been funded. T2 paymasters have concluded their work and are now on to T4 payouts.

16. On Aug. 6 2016 Philip Tilton said a Wells Fargo contact reported that Tier 4 funds went liquid 6:30 pm EST on Aug.6 2016. Philip Tilton – The Problems are being Made Right as of Today

17. On Aug. 6 2016 there were rumors that arrests were made of three Iraqi individuals (1 banker, 2 politicians) thought to be interfering with installation of the new financial system. They were released with a citation and will be charged with treason if they interfere again. Mass arrests may be completed before Aug. 8.

18. On Aug. 7 2017 in Baghdad the Department of Pension Affairs and Social Security dispersed workers their salaries for the months of July and Aug. 2016 in cash and on their Smart Cards.

19. Iraqi bond sales and CBI currency auctions attended by the banks continued to reduce the money supply – that in turn increased the value of the Dinar. They were ridding the US dollar on the streets of Iraq and working to make the Dinar stronger. The new customs and tariff laws were in effect. There had to be an increase in the value of the Dinar in order to compensate for the increase.

20. On Monday Aug. 8 2016 ZAP in Dinar Chronicles stated: “We are entering a significant moment today as the Chinese and Europe royals finalize the major releases for construction projects and shore up the US dollar to ensure stability. The global checkbook opened today.”

21. On the Aug. 9 2016 WingIt Call with Gerry Maguire, Art, IKO: Wingit: “It was felt that the RV had to happen soon because Bond markets have crashed, banks are in big trouble and international trading has slowed to a trickle. The only way out would be the Global Currency Reset to gold and asset backed currency. The bonds have been paid. The SKRs are done. Some of the groups have exchanged. Iraqi Dinar shows on the cards at a $3.71 international rate.”

22. Also on that Aug. 9 Philip Tilton reported: Philip Tilton – The Waiting Game is Ending, The RV Taking Place

1. The Admiral is at the bank right now & suspected to be obtaining Humanitarian funds.

2. Bankers are renegotiating some contracts – promisary gold notes to other countries.

3. Last night Bloomberg articles said various country’s currencies will be revalued.

4. Gold coins will be available for sale this week.

5. Last Thurs. Dong showed 4 cents, some people traded it and made a profit

6. The new rates are appearing on bank screens again.

7. Dinar cards showing $2 – $3.71

8. Rupiah rates have gone up and down this weekend.

9. An individual receiving payments from a Trust would pay taxes on that income.

10. US Treasury bonds going negative – a good sign for us that puts banks under pressure.

11. Allegedly the RV release is on an automatic timer.

23. Bruce’s The Big Call on Aug. 9 2016 reported: The Big Call

1. Bruce said that we are there.

2. The new Iraqi stock exchange was rumored to open around 4 EST today, with 3.2 million trades processed on this Day One.

3. The opening of the Iraqi stock exchange confirmed that the Dinar was international with a rate that rose from $3.71 to over $5.00.

4. Individuals (thought to be the Admirals Group) completed their exchange in Reno today.

5. A number of exchanges have taken place starting yesterday with appointments taking them through Sunday night. These are pre-arranged exchange appointments that had pre-negotiated rates (that are thought to be lower rates than what we could be offered).

24. On Aug. 10 2016 DC sent a Situation Report to Dinar Chronicles:

1. Fact: RV performance is an absolute and immanent forthcoming event. Thus it’s wise to take some time today to absorb this truth so that you can properly prepare emotionally for a massive change in your life / consciousness.

2. RV related things that appear as “delayed” are not nearly as dramatic or intense for currency holders as they might feel.

3. All banking technical aspects are completed. In fact, private clients within the US, actual currency holders, have been exchanging domestically into USN liquidation via Wells Fargo off site redemption centers since last Sunday–per the approval of the Chinese Elders.

4. However, the US Republic has decided to leverage the Elders own desire to begin on Aug. 8 2016, and are attempting to renegotiate some geopolitical security policy issues between still hostile sovereign nation actors. This list would include sovereign nations such as Israel, Turkey, Ukraine, Syria and Saudi Arabia.

5. It also includes the now defaulted and imploding 4th shadow branch of the old USA Inc government. This negotiation is playing out publicly via the current presidential election.

6. In fact, the US election already has a private resolution that is just waiting to be revealed publicly. Meaning behind the scenes, there’s literally no significant drama who is going to run let alone win. Crazy yes, but 100% true as reported months earlier from key sources serving the newly restored Republic government. There’s been a meaningful and permanent regime change within our own US government structure.

See the original post here:

Freedom Resource Center – Ascension_151#151

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Hurricane Matthew kills 269; tears through Haiti, Bahamas …

Posted: October 8, 2016 at 10:32 pm

At least 276 people have been killed so far in Haiti, the Dominican Republic and St. Vincent and the Grenadines, officials said, with the death toll expected to rise.

As the death toll rises and crucial infrastructure crumbles, hundreds of thousands have been displaced.

Mourad Wahba, the UN secretary-general’s deputy special representative for Haiti, described Matthew as the “largest humanitarian event” since the earthquake.

Four people died in the Dominican Republic, the country’s government said. Authorities there did not provide details about how they died.

In St. Vincent and the Grenadines, a teenage boy died in a landslide as he was cleaning a drain behind his house, the National Emergency Management Office said. He died Wednesday after storms from Matthew passed.

Hurricane Matthew made landfall in Haiti on Tuesday but the details of its devastating impact are slowly coming to light.

At least 1,580 homes have been flooded in the country, and about 3,215 families have been affected by the severe storm, the country’s Civil Protection Agency said.

More than 300,000 people are in shelters across the country, the United Nations said.

Aid agencies are finding that the impact has been far greater than expected.

Ariane Quentier, spokeswoman for the UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti, said: “What we are realizing, as we are going further … is that there’s been a lot of devastation and a lot of damage and probably a lot more than what we had initially assessed.”

This means the initial aid already sent to the country’s worst-affecetd areas in the west and south have fallen short of the need. Evacuation centers are overwhelmed and communities and workers have been forces to set up more and more makeshift shelters with what resources they have.

Haitian pastor Louis St. Germain said the storm sheared a wall off his house and tore roofs off many buildings in the area.

“The river has overflowed all around us,” St. Germain said. “It’s terrible … a total disaster.”

Southern Haiti was hit especially hard, where winds of 125 mph (200 kph) destroyed homes, flooded villages and cut off the island from the rest of the country.

National Route 2, which connects Port-au-Prince with Haiti’s southern peninsula, broke apart when the bridge collapsed, the country’s civil protection agency said.

In the wake of the storm, the Electoral Commission postponed the country’s presidential election, which had been scheduled for Sunday. A new date has not been set.

Tim Callaghan, assistance response team leader for the US Agency for International Development in Haiti, told CNN that much of the damage in Haiti’s hardest hit areas — the southwestern cities of Les Cayes and Jeremie — appeared to be structural, and not the result of heavy rainfall.

“The urgent need we’re focusing on right now is food, safe drinking water and … things like plastic sheeting, hygiene kits and so forth,” he said.

“We’re in the most critical phase to support people.”

Dominique Fevry-Gilliand, a spokeswoman for Oxfam Canada, said up to 80% of homes in the most affected areas were destroyed. There was also extensive damage to crops along swaths of southern Haiti.

“Most likely, in the next couple of weeks and months, one of the things they will have to deal with in that region is hunger,” she said.

Haiti was only just beginning the “development” phase to rebuild infrastructure following the 2010 earthquake that destroyed much of the country, said Ines Brill, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies representative for Haiti.

“This is an emergency after an emergency, which makes things more complex than a typical disaster,” she told CNN.

The powerful hurricane passed over the Bahamas capital, Nassau, on Thursday afternoon.

While no injuries had been reported early on Friday morning, houses had suffered flood and wind damage and a number of roads were impassable due to collapsed trees and poles.

The country’s national emergency agency was telling people to stay indoors until an assessment could be made of the damage.

“One of the main roadways in front of Sandals (resort) has been blocked off by debris and fallen trees,” Nassau resident Denzil Sirra told CNN, adding his house had not been damaged.

“A lot of debris and fallen trees and damaged shrubs. No electricity right now. Still have running water.”

Officials said the hurricane caused flooding in southern and eastern coastal communities and structural damage to a number of resorts in Nassau.

CNN meteorologists said storm surges in the Bahamas reached as high as 15 feet, along with intense rains and damaging winds.

Hundreds of people had the roofs blown off their homes as Hurricane Matthew swept across the country, Cuban state media reported, while photos from the seaside town of Baracoa showed devastation in the severe storm’s wake.

More than 30 houses were washed away by the hurricane in the northeastern Cuban town, the site where Christopher Columbus first landed in the Americas, a resident in the town said.

No fatalities were reported as of Thursday evening, local time, as the seafront area of the town had been evacuated ahead of Matthew’s arrival.

“I cannot emphasize enough that everyone in our state must prepare now for a direct hit,” Florida Gov. Rick Scott said. “Having a plan in place could mean the difference between life and death.”

Patrick Oppmann reported from Cuba; Ray Sanchez, Holly Yan and Max Blau reported from Atlanta. CNN’s Deborah Bloom, Alexander Leininger, Alison Daye, Natalie Gallon and journalist Yvetot Gouin contributed.

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Hurricane Matthew kills 269; tears through Haiti, Bahamas …

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Whats Trumps Position on NATO?

Posted: at 10:23 pm

Hillary Clinton went too far when she claimed that Donald Trump said we should pull out of NATO. Trump has said that he would certainly look at pulling the United States out of the international security alliance, because it is obsolete and is costing us a fortune. But the Clinton campaign provided nothing indicating that Trump advocates pulling out now.

Trump, who has nearlyclinched the Republican nomination for president, has been critical of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, which was established in 1949 by the U.S., Canada and 10 Western European nations to defend against the former Soviet Union. Trumps main criticisms of NATO, which now has 28 member nations, are that the alliance no longer serves its founding purpose and that it is too costly to the U.S., which pays about 22 percent of direct spending by NATO, the most of any nation, according to budget information. The U.S. also pays a much larger portion of the organizations indirect costs, NATO says.

During a campaign speech in Milwaukee on March 28, Clinton, the front-runner for the Democratic nomination, said that Trump wants us to pull out of NATO. That was the week after Trump, during campaign events and interviews with the editorial boards of the Washington Post and the New York Timesandothers, talked about the U.S. role in NATO.

In an interview with CBS News John Dickerson that aired May 8, Clinton again claimed that Trump, whom she referred to as a loose cannon, wants out of NATO.

Clinton, May 8: Being a loose cannon is saying we should pull out of NATO, the strongest military alliance in the history of the world and something that we really need to modernize, but not abandon.

While Trump has gone so far as saying that, as president, he would consider pulling the U.S. out of NATO if it is not restructured, weve found no instance of him saying he wants to do so at this point. And the Clinton campaign hasnt been able to point to an example of Trump saying that either.

In fact, it was during the interview with the Post, which initially brought attention to Trumps feelings about NATO, that Trump said that he doesnt want the U.S. to leave the alliance.

Charles Lane, Washington Post, March 21:So, Id like to hear you say very specifically, you know, with respect to NATO, what is your ask of these other countries?Right, youve painted it in very broad terms, but do you have a percent of GDP that they should be spending on defense?Tell me more, because it sounds like you want to just pull the U.S. out.

Trump: No, I dont want to pull it out. NATO was set up at a different time. NATO was set up when we were a richer country. Were not a rich country anymore. Were borrowing, were borrowing all of this money. Were borrowing money from China, which is sort of an amazing situation. But it was a much different thing. NATO is costing us a fortune and yes, were protecting Europe with NATO but were spending a lot of money. Number one, I think the distribution of costs has to be changed. I think NATO as a concept is good, but it is not as good as it was when it first evolved.

Later on March 21, during a CNN town hall event with Wolf Blitzer, Trump said the U.S. should reconsider its role in NATO, especially with concern to how much itspends compared with other nations.

Blitzer: Do you think the United States needs to rethink U.S. involvement in NATO?

Trump: Yes, because its costing us too much money. And frankly they have to put up more money. Theyre going to have to put some up also. Were paying disproportionately. Its too much. And frankly its a different world than it was when we originally conceived of the idea. And everybody got together.

But were taking care of, as an example, the Ukraine. I mean, the countries over there dont seem to be so interested. Were the ones taking the brunt of it. So I think we have to reconsider keep NATO, but maybe we have to pay a lot less toward the NATO itself.

Blitzer: When we say keep NATO, NATO has been around since right after World War II in 1949. Its been a cornerstone of U.S. national security around the world. NATO allies hear you say that, theyre not going to be happy.

Trump: Well, they may not be happy but, you know, they have to help us also. It has to be we are paying disproportionately. And very importantly if you use Ukraine as an example and thats a great example, the country surrounding Ukraine, I mean, they dont seem to care as much about it as we do. So there has to be at least a change in philosophy and there are also has to be a change in the cut out, the money, the spread because its too much.

Blitzer: So youre really suggesting the United States should decrease its role in NATO?

Trump: Not decrease its role but certainly decrease the kind of spending. We are spending a tremendous amount in NATO and other people proportionately less. No good.

Then, on March 25, in an interview with the New YorkTimes editorial board, Trump again said that NATO needed to be changed to deal with costs and other issues, such as terrorism.

Trump, March 25:Ill tell you the problems I have with NATO. Number one, we pay far too much. We are spending you know, in fact, theyre even making it so the percentages are greater. NATO is unfair, economically, to us, to the United States. Because it really helps them more so than the United States, and we pay a disproportionate share. Now, Im a person that you notice I talk about economics quite a bit, in these military situations, because it is about economics, because we dont have money anymore because weve been taking care of so many people in so many different forms that we dont have money and countries, and countries. So NATO is something that at the time was excellent. Today, it has to be changed. It has to be changed to include terror. It has to be changed from the standpoint of cost because the United States bears far too much of the cost of NATO.

It was on March 23, during an interview withBloomberg Politics Mark Halperin and John Heilemann, that Trump, when asked, said he would certainly look at getting rid of NATO because it may be obsolete (16:12 in the video).

Halperin, March 23: Should America be the leader of NATO or not necessarily?

Trump: I think NATO may be obsolete. NATO was set up a long time ago many, many years ago when things were different. Things are different now. We were a rich nation then. We had nothing but money. We had nothing but power. And you know, far more than we have today, in a true sense. And I think NATO you have to really examine NATO. And it doesnt really help us, its helping other countries. And I dont think those other countries appreciate what were doing.

Heilemann: So, just to be clear, you made two slightly different arguments there and I just want to clarify. One of them is that you might want to see the U.S. pay less money into NATO because

Trump: That one definitely. That one definitely.

Heilemann: But its possible that NATO is obsolete and should be gotten rid of?

Trump: Its possible. Its possible. I would certainly look at it. And Id want more help from other people. The one thing definitely were paying too much. As to whether or not its obsolete, Ill make that determination.

Then, at a campaign rally in Milwaukee on April 4, Trump said that he wasnt saying thatNATO should disband during his interview with CNNs Blitzer. Instead, he said he meant that if countries cant pay their bills theyve got to go.

Trump, April 4: And Wolf Blitzer asked me a question on television. He said, let me just ask you about NATO. And he asked me about it. Now, I havent been asked about NATO a lot, but I understand NATO and I understand common sense and Im, like, a smart person, like many of the people in this room, hopefully all of the people in this room.

But he asked me about NATO. I said its obsolete. This is my first thing. And you know what? Im the first one. Guys that study NATO and good people, but they study NATO and they say, I dont believe it, what he just said, I never thought of that. They study it because theyre so into it that they dont realize.

Because it was really put there you had the Soviet Union and now you have Russia, which is different, but Russia is very powerful, so we can sort of say thats a balance, so well leave it. But it doesnt really cover terrorism like its supposed to. It doesnt have the right countries. I mean, many of the countries in there arent, you know, that you associate with terrorism.

And so I said, number one, its obsolete. I said, number two, to the best of my knowledge, the United States pays far too much proportionately, and why are we always paying the bills to protect other people?

And the press, which is so totally dishonest, the press goes headlines the next day Trump doesnt want NATO, wants to disband. Thats not what I said. I said youve got to pay your bills. And you know what? If they cant pay their bills, honestly there should be theyve got to go. Because we cant do this.

And most recently, in his April 27 foreign policy speech, Trump said that theU.S. must be prepared to let these countries defend themselves if they are unwilling to pay more.

Trump, April 27:They look at the United States as weak and forgiving and feel no obligation to honor their agreements with us. In NATO, for instance, only fourof 28 other member countries besides America, are spending the minimum required 2 percent of GDP on defense. We have spent trillions of dollars over time on planes, missiles, ships, equipment, building up our military to provide a strong defense for Europe and Asia. The countries we are defending must pay for the cost of this defense, and if not, the U.S. must be prepared to let these countries defend themselves. We have no choice.

So, Trump has clearly outlined changes he would like to see made to NATO. And he has said that, under a Trump administration, the U.S. might no longer be a part of the alliance if it isnt restructured and other nations dont start to pick up more of the costs. But even that isnt the same thing as saying that we should pull out of NATO, as Clinton claims Trump said.


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Whats Trumps Position on NATO?

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How America Lost the War on Drugs – News | Rolling Stone:

Posted: October 6, 2016 at 3:02 pm

Taibbi on Six Million Adults Who Won’t Influence This Presidential Race

One in 40 Americans can’t vote because of a criminal conviction. But the rules aren’t exactly fair

Lee Daniels Rejoins Jay Z-Produced Richard Pryor Film

Harvey Weinstein offers no details about director’s return to Mike Epps-starring biopic he left in May

Furry Community Shocked After Gory Triple Murder

Members of misunderstood subculture mourn loss, prepare for potential backlash

Jay Z Talks Kalief Browder Doc, Inhumanity of Solitary Confinement

Six-part ‘Time: The Kalief Browder Story’ will premiere early next year

Hear Pusha T, Rivers Cuomo on Soft Rock Zeds Dead Jam ‘Too Young’

Canadian electronic duo will release debut LP this month

Keith Urban to Headline Nashville New Year’s Eve Party

A Thousand Horses and Charlie Worsham also represent country on the all-genre bill

Watch ‘The Warriors’ Reunite to Discuss Cult Film’s Legacy, Fandom

Vermin, Cochise, Swan and more look back on Walter Hill’s 1979 gangland New York classic in exclusive new video

Watch U2 Blast Donald Trump During San Francisco Show

Bono blasts Republican nominee for trying to “run off with the American dream”

See Dolly Parton Play ‘Dollywood Squares’

Icon visits ‘The Talk’ for a humorous game, during which she reminisces about working with Burt Reynolds and writing “Jolene”

Watch Lera Lynn Perform Rumbling ‘What You Done’

Slow-burning accusation is the latest in singer-songwriter’s Live at Resistor Studio series

‘Insecure’ Creator Issa Rae Talks Drake, Maintaining ‘Awkward’-Ness

Comedian on translating her sensibility to small screen: “I didn’t set out to be like ‘I want to tell the black female millennial story'”

Watch Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds’ Mournful ‘Girl in Amber’ Video

Band performs ballad in new clip made from ‘One More Time With Feeling’ footage

Go Behind the Scenes of Metallica’s Raging ‘Moth Into Flame’ Video

Director Tom Kirk talks blending vintage, contemporary styles while James Hetfield plays with warehouse equipment

Flashback: David Bowie Plays a Haunting ‘Heroes’ in 1978

London performance was professionally recorded for a concert movie that has yet to see an official release

D.R.A.M. Announces Debut Album ‘Big Baby D.R.A.M.’

“Cha Cha” and “Broccoli” rapper will make solo late-night television debut on ‘Conan’

Watch Norah Jones Unleash Fiery ‘Flipside’ on ‘Fallon’

Musician delivers politically charged cut off new LP ‘Day Breaks’

Dustin Lynch’s Next Album Will Be ‘Very Sexy’

Country singer reports much of the upcoming project is about falling in and out of love

Watch Pixies Prowl for Love in ‘Um Chagga Lagga’ Video

Black Francis makes directorial debut with peculiar new clip

Hear Love and Theft’s Sexy New Song ‘Candyland’

“Angel Eyes” duo releases acoustic performance of lead single from forthcoming album

Hear Tift Merritt’s Blues-Fueled ‘Dusty Old Man’

Singer-songwriter looked to Bonnie Raitt’s first album as inspiration for her bluesy, guitar-driven new tune

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How America Lost the War on Drugs – News | Rolling Stone:

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Space Tourism – National Space Society

Posted: at 2:56 pm

NSS deeply regrets the tragic loss of SpaceShipTwo on October 31 and extends it’s heartfelt sympathy to the families involved and to everyone who worked in this program.

“The process of creating a successful off-world tourism industry will be the key economic and technological driver enabling the human species to evolve into a real Solar System Species.” John Spencer, author of Space Tourism and President and founder of the Space Tourism Society.

“SpaceShipOne [showed that] space travel was no longer just the domain of prohibitively expensive government programs subject to political whim. Now it was just like any other business that could be developed into a thriving industry.” From Rocketeers.

2008: Tourists in Space: A Practical Guide, By Erik Seedhouse. Springer-Praxis. 314 pages. [Review]. [Amazon link]. The bulk of this book goes into considerable detail about what sort of training prospective spaceflight participants should undergo.

2007: Rocketeers: How a Visionary Band of Business Leaders, Engineers, and Pilots Is Boldly Privatizing Space, by Michael Belfiore. Smithsonian Books. 304 pages. [Review]. [Amazon link]. An excellent and exciting read that allows you to meet the major players in the development of privatized space flight.

2007: Destination Space: How Space Tourism Is Making Science Fiction a Reality, by Kenny Kemp. Virgin Books. 262 pages. [Amazon link]. A more accurate title would be The Virgin Galactic Story because that is essentially all that is covered (note that the publisher is Virgin Books).

2005: The Space Tourist’s Handbook, by Eric Anderson and Joshua Piven. Quirk Books. 192 pages. [Review]. [Amazon link]. A more accurate title would be The Space Adventures Story because author Eric Anderson is president of that company the first company to actually fly space tourists.

2004: Space Tourism: Do You Want to Go? by John Spencer. Apogee Books. 224 pages. [Amazon link]. A broad overview of the entire topic of space tourism, written by the founder and president of the Space Tourism Society. Offers unique perspectives not found elsewhere, such as parallels with the yachting and cruise industries. A significant contribution to the literature.

2002: Making Space Happen: Private Space Ventures and the Visionaries Behind Them, by Paula Berinstein. Plexus Publishing. 490 pages. [Amazon link]. A broad overview of space privatization featuring extensive interviews with the movers and shakers that are making it happen.

1998: General Public Space Travel and Tourism: Volume 1, Executive Summary. Joint NASA study concludes that serious national attention should be given to enabling the creation of in-space travel and tourism businesses, and that, in time, this should become a very important part of our country’s overall commercial and civil space business-program structure. 40 pages. [PDF 100K]

1996: Halfway to Anywhere: Achieving America’s Destiny in Space, by G. Harry Stine. M. Evans and Company. 306 pages. [Review]. [Amazon link]. Discusses what is involved in airline-like operations for spacecraft, and provides a history of the first re-usable rocket, the Delta Clipper.

“The sheer beauty of it just brought tears to my eyes. If people can see Earth from up here, see it without those borders, see it without any differences in race or religion, they would have a completely different perspective. Because when you see it from that angle, you cannot think of your home or your country. All you can see is one Earth….”

Anousheh Ansari, Iranian-American space tourist who flew to the International Space Station in September 2006.

“It was amazing. The zero-g part was wonderful. I could have gone on and on space here I come.”

Stephen Hawking, renowned British astrophysicist who was able to leave his wheel chair and experience zero-gravity aboard a parabolic airplane flight on April 26, 2007. Hawking plans to fly on SpaceShipTwo.

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Chicago Tribune endorses Libertarian candidate Gary …

Posted: October 3, 2016 at 1:04 am

As Nov. 8 looms, a dismayed, disconsolate America waits and wonders: What is it about 2016?

How has our country fallen so inescapably into political and policy gridlock? How did pandering to aggrieved niche groups and seducing blocs of angry voters replace working toward solutions as the coin of our governing class? How could the Democratic and Republican parties stagger so far from this nation’s political mainstream?

And the most pressing question: What should tens of millions of voters who yearn for answers do with two major-party candidates they disdain? Polls show an unprecedented number of people saying they wish they had another choice.

This is the moment to look at the candidates on this year’s ballot. This is the moment to see this election as not so much about them as about the American people and where their country is heading. And this is the moment to rebuke the Republican and Democratic parties.

The Republicans have nominated Donald Trump, a man not fit to be president of the United States. We first wrote on March 10 that we would not, could not, endorse him. And in the intervening six-plus months he has splendidly reinforced our verdict: Trump has gone out of his way to anger world leaders, giant swaths of the American public, and people of other lands who aspire to immigrate here legally. He has neither the character nor the prudent disposition for the job.

The mystery and shame of Trump’s rise we have red, white and blue coffee mugs that are more genuinely Republican is the party’s inability or unwillingness to repulse his hostile takeover. We appreciate the disgust for failed career politicians that Trump’s supporters invoke; many of those voters are doubly victimized by economic forces beyond their control, and by the scorn of mocking elitists who look down their noses to see them. He has ridden to the White House gate on the backs of Americans who believe they’ve been robbed of opportunity and respect. But inaugurating a bombastic and self-aggrandizing President Donald Trump isn’t the cure.

The Democrats have nominated Hillary Clinton, who, by contrast, is undeniably capable of leading the United States. Electing her the first woman president would break a barrier that has no reason to be. We see no rough equivalence between Trump and Clinton. Any American who lists their respective shortcomings should be more apoplectic about the litany under his name than the one under hers. He couldn’t do this job. She could.

But for reasons we’ll explain her intent to greatly increase federal spending and taxation, and serious questions about honesty and trust we cannot endorse her.

Clinton’s vision of ever-expanding government is in such denial of our national debt crisis as to be fanciful. Rather than run as a practical-minded Democrat as in 2008, this year she lurched left, pandering to match the Free Stuff agenda of then-rival Bernie Sanders. She has positioned herself so far to the left on spending that her presidency would extend the political schism that has divided America for some 24 years. That is, since the middle of a relatively moderate Clinton presidency. Today’s Hillary Clinton, unlike yesteryear’s, renounces many of Bill Clinton’s priorities freer trade, spending discipline, light regulation and private sector growth to generate jobs and tax revenues.

Hillary Clinton calls for a vast expansion of federal spending, supported by the kinds of tax hikes that were comically impossible even in the years when President Barack Obama’s fellow Democrats dominated both houses of Congress. The nonpartisan Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget calculates that Clinton’s plan would increase spending by $1.65 trillion over a decade, mostly for college education, paid family leave, infrastructure and health-related expenditures. Spending just on debt interest would rise by $50 billion. Personal and business taxation would rise by $1.5 trillion. Sort through all the details and her plan would raise the national debt by $200 billion.

Now as in the primary season, Clinton knows she is proposing orgies of spending, and taxing, that simply will … not … happen. She is promising Americans all manner of things she cannot deliver.

That is but one of the reasons why so many Americans reject Clinton: They don’t trust what she says, how she makes decisions, and her up-to-the-present history of egregiously erasing the truth:

In the wake of a deadly attack on American personnel in Libya, she steered the American public away from the real cause an inconvenient terror attack right before the 2012 election after privately emailing the truth to her daughter. The head of the FBI, while delivering an indictment minus the grand jury paperwork, labeled her “extremely careless” for mishandling emails sensitive to national security. In public she stonewalled, dissembled and repeatedly lied several were astonishing whoppers about her private communications system (“There is no classified material,” “Everything I did was permitted,” and on and on). Her negligence in enforcing conflict-of-interest boundaries allowed her family’s foundation to exploit the U.S. Department of State as a favor factory. Even her command and control of a routine medical issue devolved into a secretive, misleading mission to hide information from Americans.

Time upon time, Clinton’s behavior affirms the perception that she’s a corner-cutter whose ambitions drive her decisions. One telling episode among the countless: Asked by a voter if she was for or against the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada, she replied, “If it’s undecided when I become president, I will answer your question.” As we’ve asked here before, will Hillary Clinton ever get over her consuming fear of straight talk?

Taken together, Trump and Clinton have serious flaws that prevent us from offering our support to either of them. Still, come Nov. 8, tens of millions of Americans willmake a draw that they consider beyond distasteful.

We choose not to do that. We would rather recommend a principled candidate for president regardless of his or her prospects for victory than suggest that voters cast ballots for such disappointing major-party candidates.

With that demand for a principled president paramount, we turn to the candidate we can recommend. One party has two moderate Republicans veteran governors who successfully led Democratic states atop its ticket. Libertarians Gary Johnson of New Mexico and running mate William Weld of Massachusetts are agile, practical and, unlike the major-party candidates, experienced at managing governments. They offer an agenda that appeals not only to the Tribune’s principles but to those of the many Americans who say they are socially tolerant but fiscally responsible. “Most people are Libertarian,” Johnson told the Tribune Editorial Board when he and Weld met with us in July. “It’s just that they don’t know it.”

Theirs is small-L libertarianism, built on individual freedom and convinced that, at both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue, official Washington is clumsy, expensive and demonstrably unable to solve this nation’s problems. They speak of reunifying an America now balkanized into identity and economic groups and of avoiding their opponents’ bullying behavior and sanctimonious lectures. Johnson and Weld are even-keeled provided they aren’t discussing the injustice of trapping young black children in this nation’s worst-performing schools. On that and other galling injustices, they’re animated.

We reject the cliche that a citizen who chooses a principled third-party candidate is squandering his or her vote. Look at the number of fed-up Americans telling pollsters they clamor for alternatives to Trump and Clinton. What we’re recommending will appeal less to people who think tactically than to conscientious Americans so infuriated that they want to send a message about the failings of the major parties and their candidates. Put short:

We offer this endorsement to encourage voters who want to feel comfortable with their choice. Who want to vote for someone they can admire.

Johnson, who built a construction business before entering politics, speaks in terms that appeal to many among us: Expanded global trade and resulting job expansion. Robust economic growth, rather than ever-higher taxation, to raise government revenue. A smaller, and less costly, federal government. Faith in Americans’ ability to parlay economic opportunity into success. While many Democrats and Republicans outdo one another in opposing the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal, or TPP, we’re amused by this oddity: Today the nation’s two most ardent free-traders arguably are Barack Obama and Gary Johnson.

That said, Obama and Johnson are but two of the many candidates we’ve endorsed yet with whom we also can disagree. Johnson’s foreign policy stance approaches isolationism. He is too reluctant to support what we view as necessary interventions overseas. He likely wouldn’t dispatch U.S. forces in situations where Clinton would do so and where Trump … who can reliably predict?

But unless the United States tames a national debt that’s rapidly approaching $20 trillion-with-a-T, Americans face ever tighter constrictions on what this country can afford, at home or overseas. Clinton and Trump are too cowardly even to whisper about entitlement reforms that each of them knows are imperative. Johnson? He wants to raise the retirement age and apply a means test on benefits to the wealthiest.

What’s more, principled third-party candidates can make big contributions even when they lose. In 1992 businessman H. Ross Perot won 19 percent of the popular vote on a thin but sensible platform, much of it constructed around reducing federal deficits. That strong showing by Perot the relative centrist influenced how President Bill Clinton would govern.

We wish the two major parties had not run away from today’s centrist Americans. Just as we wish either of their candidates evoked the principles that a Chicago Tribune now in its 170th year espouses, among them high integrity, free markets, personal responsibility and a limited role for government in the lives of the governed. We hope Johnson does well enough that Republicans and Democrats get the message and that his ideas make progress over time.

This year neither major party presents a good option. So the Chicago Tribune today endorses Libertarian Gary Johnson for president of the United States. Every American who casts a vote for him is standing for principles and can be proud of that vote. Yes, proud of a candidate in 2016.

Join the discussion on Twitter @Trib_Ed_Boardand onFacebook.

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Fascism and American Reactions, 1922 | Libertarianism.org

Posted: at 12:54 am


In the United States, Mussolinis March on Rome (1922) inspired self-reflection and visions for the near future; some mystically hopeful, others soberly scared.

In late October, 1922, Benito Mussolini followed a column of 30,000 Black Shirts into Rome, where he was greeted with an automobile furnished by the King of Italy himself, Victor Emmanuel III. The king refused a petition to declare martial law tendered by the existing government led by Prime Minister Luigi Facta, tacitly recognizing Fascisti rule in the personage of the new movements leader. In the following months, Mussolini and the Fascists terrorized their enemies throughout Italy and consolidated political power; the movement birthed in Mussolinis private circles of veterans only a few years earlier bloomed into an international curiosity, Fascism. In the United States, American opinion-makers exhibited reactions ranging from shocked disbelief to impartial curiosity and what can properly be described as jubilant and mystical support for a nation of people reclaiming their government from leftist radicals and feckless politicians alike. The Kansas City Star identified Mussolinis fascism with the by-then familiar concept of 100 per cent Americanism, while joining a host of other observers in praising the Fascists unmatched anti-communism and supposed returns to individualism, the rule of law, and respect for private control of property. Papers like the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reacted to Mussolinis rise to power with measured unease rooted in fears of another general European war sparked by Italian conquests along the Adriatic. Even many of those who supported his anti-communism feared Mussolinis militaristic rhetoric. Common to these accounts is the certainty that fascist success depended upon appeals to the Italian middle class and veterans of the First World War. As such, many American citizens positively identified with the fascist movement and found the events in Italy useful for interpreting their own more immediate, local world. In the years of its infancy, fascism provided Americans with either an image of what they could achieve as a united, 100 per cent American whole, or a portent of disruption, war, and desolation to come.

Anthony Comegna

Assistant Editor for Intellectual History

Fascisti Idea to SpreadExiled Russians Would Adopt Plan in Own CountryOne Million Men in Italy are Banded Together to Advance Nationalism and War on Socialists and Communists.

Rome. Aug. 9.


Fascism is not three and a half years old, having been founded in Milan by Sig. Mussolini, editor of Popolo dItalia in April, 1919. The first action took place April 19, immediately after its organization, when only 350 members, all distinguished war veterans, attacked and destroyed the offices of Avanti, a Socialist newspaper. Since then with each attack on anti-national forces, thousands of youths have flocked to Mussolinis banner, just as sixty-two years ago they flocked to the army of Garibaldi, who started the war of redemption for Italy in Sicili with one thousand men and by the time he reached Naples had nearly one hundred thousand followers.

The Fascistis ideals consist of 100 per cent nationalism. They believe in applying patriotism with force; they not only have no patience with 50 per-cent Italianism, but they believe also in clubbing 50 per centers. They have no special theory of government, but want the best government that is obtainable. For the time being they are monarchial, but if tomorrow they should see that a republic would be better for Italy they would be republicans. What they want is the greatest well being and the maximum prosperity for the nation, not by class struggle, but by co-operation among the various classes.


Fascism is not a secret organization like the Ku Klux Klan, for everybody knows its constitution, and its members wear uniforms which everybody can see. They use illegal means because the constitutional powers do not deal with the situation.

Sig. Mussolini is only 38 years old. Until the end of 1914 he was an ardent Socialist and director of Avanti. The world war converted him to nationalism. He founded the Popolo dItalia, fought bravely in the war, was elected a deputy at the last elections and is now considered the most powerful man in Italy. One million men obey him without ever questioning his orders.

Disciplineand Work Aim of Italys Man of Hour and Fascisti Head

By the United News.

Rome. Aug. 20.Benito Mussolini, Italys Man of the hour, is planning for the future, when the Fascisti, which he leads, comes into political power, according to him.

The Fascisti, at a word from Mussolini, have laid down their arms and are organizing as a political party. They came into existence in 1919, since when their chief object has been to combat Socialism and Communism.

Mussolini, who shies from interviewers, answered questions briefly.

What would be the first step you would take if in power?


And then

Discipline for all. That covers everything for a beginning.

And your foreign policy?

Equilibrium and conciliation.

What definite steps would you enforce to put Italy on a firm economic basis?

Work. Discipline and work. Fascism is great because it is a constructive, creative working force. Italy can be the same.

Italys three political parties will be Mussolinis, the Popolari and the Socialists.

Of the last named, Mussolini said:

They have become bourgeois. As soon as they are definitely removed from Bolshevism, need from extreme Fascism will be over.

Referring to the Popolari, or clericals, Mussolini said: Priests should celebrate mass and not mix in politics.

Fascisti Leader Backed by 1,000,000 Armed Men is Now Unchallenged Ruler of Italy

By Paul Scott Mowrer

Paris. Oct. 30.Benito Mussolini, leader of the Fascisti, seems to be the unchallenged dictator of Italy.

Owing to the severe censorship that has been established in Italy the news from that country must be taken with some allowance but it appears that the black shirts and army helmets of Benito Mussolinis nationalist reactionaries are already supreme. The Fascisti, of whom there are said to be 1,000,000, are mobilized. Barracks and armories have been occupied and arms seizedAlready masters of Piedmont and Lombardy fascisti hold Florence, Siena and Pisa. In Rome they occupied the railway stations and public buildings until they were taken over by the army, which is honeycombed with fascism.

Made Feeble Protest.

Before disappearing the Facta government made a faint show of resistance and ordered up a poster accusing the Fascisti of sedition and promising to preserve order at all costs. It also desired to proclaim martial law but the King refused to sign the decree. It is therefore Benito Mussolini who has proclaimed and is executing martial law. All the bourses have been closed and Parliament, which was to have reconvened Nov. 7, will probably be dissolved.

Italian Free Masonry has issued a proclamation recognizing the Fascisti movement and the Pope, through the bishop, has appealed for peace and union. The Fascisti have proclaimed loyalty to the King, who is apparently well disposed toward the Fascisti.

The Fascisti program is frankly nationalist and perhaps even reactionary. The Fascisti proclamation announces that military, political and administrative powers are transferred to a committee of action of four members with dictatorial positions.

The rights of workers of all categories will be respected, according to the proclamation, which adds that the new regime will be generous toward nonmilitant adversaries but inexorable toward others. The aim of the movement is declared to be the safety and grandeur of Italy.

The chief points of the interior program appear to be the exaltation of the army and a strong patriotric union of all Italy and especially of the north and south. Fascism originally sprang from the disgust of the moderate conservative elements at the governments failure to uphold the laws when the workmen seized the factories two years ago and at the apparent powerlessness of the government to repress the communist violence which followed.

Reds Were Fought.

Groups of Fascisti were first formed to combat the reds with their own weaponsassault and riot. They were so successful that communism seems to be effectively rowed in Italy. The army and navy are sympathetic; the organizations of war veterans are on their side and they also claim to have enrolled 800,000 workmen from the labor unions. Their professed desire is to put an end to the undignified feebleness and vaccilation which have marked the Italy policy, not only internal but especially external, ever since the armistice. They promise to insure respect for Italians and Italian interests all over the worldThey will insist on greater recognition of Italys claims in the Mediterranean and especially in the Adriatic. They demand that Jugo Slavia shall free Montenegro and they talk of annexing Dalmatia.

This program, unless modified, seems somewhat ominous for peace with Italys neighbors.

Men and Affairs

Washington, as well as the rest of the United States, has been struggling the past few days to get itself straight on Fascism, the Fascisti and the new Fascist government in Italy. It is not likely, however, that the Fascisti will ever have the vogue in this country that the Bolsheviki had. Americans soon go the idea that the Bolsheviki was somebody against the government, and against everything, so America adopted the word and it is now an indelible part of the English language. It is not so easy to classify or place the Fascisti and Fascist does not roll off the tongue like Bolshevik.

Mussolini, the Fascist premier of Italy, says that Fascism is a purely Italian question that as bolshevism is a purely Russian matter. It is possibly true that bolshevism is a purely Russian matter, but lots of American people have been officially classed by their friends or enemies as Bolsheviks and bolshevicks they will be until they die.

Fascism seems a bit more intricate. It means, as far as can be judged from this distance, Italy for the Italians. The Fascisti in this country call it America first. When it was said of Mr. Wilson that he kept us out of the war, it was a fascist sentiment that said it. When it is said of Mr. Harding that he kept us out of the League of Nations, it is again the fascist sentiment that speaks.

There are plenty of the Fascisti in the United States, it seems, but they have always gone under the proud boast of 100 per cent Americans. The English language appears to grow more and more inelastic. It is pitiful to have to say such awkward compound words as pro-leaguer and anti-leaguer, when in most of the foreign languages an expressive single word would suffice. Of course we have had in this country a faction known as the Wilsonites, but even that is not a pretty word like Fascisti or Bolsheviki.

Some of Premier Mussolinis political opponents recently accused him of flirting with the Germans and possibly with Russians with the idea of forming an international Fascisti, or a sort of reactionary international movement. He denounces this as absurd, the Fascisti are for Italy first, last and all the time, and the rest of the world can go hang. The Democrats say it was the American Fascisti won the election in 1920.

Revolt Against Socialism

Both the accession to power of the fascisti in Italy and the defeat of the labor party in the British municipal elections point the same wayrevolt against socialism and return to individualism as the way to bring cost of government within revenue and to reduce it further in order to reduce taxes

National ownership of railroads, telegraphs and telephones, municipal ownership of public utilities and government monopolies of such commodities as tobacco are common in EuropeFascism began in Italy as a revolt against socialism, and Mussolini evidently intends to go the whole way in restoring the public services and monopolies to private enterprise. That will relieve the government of enormous losses and will remove a horde of people from the public payroll. If the experience of France is an indication, all public services are greatly over-mannedHe evidently sees that hard work and economy from the head of the government down to the humblest workman must be combined with that efficiency that is possible only for private enterprise in order that Italy may pay its way, reduce its debts and regain prosperity.

The deplorable fact about this return to economic sanity is that it is undertaken by a distinctly militarist party. If the fascisti should attempt to make good the claim to all the territory that was once Italian, they will embark their country in wars that will destroy all the fruits of their economic reforms.

Middle Class Takes Fascism to Gain RightsRevolt in Italy Projected by Underpaid White Collar Folk, Says Writer

By J. W. T. Mason. (Written for the United Press)

The Fascisti success in Italy marks Europes turning toward the middle classes. If the young and untried men Premier Mussolini has taken into his cabinet show an ability to handle the technical machinery of government, there will be a full recovery of the economic ground lost by the middle classes during the war.

As Bolshevism was an attack against all classes by the Russian workingmen, so the Fascisti movement is an attack against both the idle rich and overpaid laboring classes by the white collar men.

Alliance Formed.

Mussolini has formed an alliance with various workingmen groups. But, this is for the purpose of using them against the capitalists who crush the middle classes. Mussolini supports the policy of syndicalism. That is to say, he wants the workingmen to have a voice in the management of the factories. By setting workingmen and capitalists thus at odds, Mussolini expects the middle classes to hold the balance of power and acquire more for themselves.

The gravest problem Europe has had to face since the war has been the plight of the white collar classes. The workingmen of Europe have never before had such high wages, measured either by a money standard or by purchasing power. Similarly, the capitalists reaped enormous profits when war prices reigned.

Middle Class Loses.

But, the middle classes have lost ground. Their wages have not kept pace with the increased cost of living. The problem is especially acute in Italy, where middle class technical education has far outrun working class education. Italy in consequence has too many doctors, lawyers and other professional men for the number of inhabitants who have been educated to the point of using their services.

This is the fundamental reason why the middle class revolt against postwar conditions has started in Italy rather than in any other country. There is that additional burden for the middle class Italians to bear. If Mussolini can solve his own middle class problem, therefore, other countries will be incited to taking action themselves, since their own difficulties are not so complicated.

Only Hope of Recovery.

Without a recovery of the European middle classes, it is hopeless to expect the world ever to get to right. The cultural responsibilities of the middle classes will not be assumed by the other classes. The white collar men alone among the Europeans are willing to make sacrifices for social progress as distinct from economic progress.

But, under the financial burdens imposed on them by the war, they have been unable to do much more than keep alive. They are wearing the same old clothes, concealing their poverty as best they can.

They are now reaching the end of their patience. The Fascisti movement represents to them the possibility of successful self-assertion. For that reason, Italy has suddenly become the middle class leader for all Europe.

The Cure for Bolshevism

Five years agoand lessEurope meditated in anguished accents the need of a defensive front against the advance of bolshevism. Today, communism, through its third international, searches fanatically for means to combat the tide of fascism. This is as it should be. The pendulum swings.

So long as communism is only the goal of a fraction of the worlds population it was inevitable that it should flow back to its mean limits. So long as fascism is only the goal of a part of the population, that, too, in time, must flow back to its boundaries. Fascism came into existence as a result of communism, the disease gave birth to the remedy.

Fascism is not far removed from normalcy; it is the existing order reduced to the terms of the small merchant and wage-earner who does not believe in millenniums but clings pathetically to the practical need of three meals a day. Bolshevism in Italy brought starvation and chaos, fascism drove out communism, which is in hiding, and reasserts popular authority. There is only one weapon bolshevism can use to repel advances against it and recapture its superficial influence, and that is to abandon communism. The majority, where not held in subjection as in Russia, inevitably asserts its desires.

Communism, on the fact of the facts, is not one of them.

Letter Tells of Conditions Now in Italy

An interesting letter has been received from Mrs. Gerda Hellberg Castelli of Romewritten of the conditions and especially the Fascisti in Italy, to Mrs. R. D. Campbell of this city. Mrs. Castelli and Captain Castelli will be remembered as residents here some years ago

The letter follows:

Favor Organization.

We, both my husband and I, are great Fascisti and bless Mussolini who swept away the clique of rotten and selfish and incompetent politicians! I do not marvel if the countries abroad do not understand all what this means and have to judge Fascisti, but one who has lived here for long and knows the Italians, feels that such a marvelous movement could not grow up so quick in any other country but Italy. It has been grand to witness, and I was sorry my husband way away at a congress in Bologna just the days of the revolution! Because such it was, but one where not a workman went on strike, not a peasant left off work; it was done before they had time to think and move. Both peasant and workman of the saner type were glad for and desired the change, as it was felt everywhere Italy had no government at all! And chaos cannot last for long. And really it is quite a spiritual movement as well as patriotic, and idealistic, and we needed that badly after all these years of demagogism and party Socialism, and the world everywhere needs a bit of Fascism, it seems to me.

Mussolini is marvelous, so far at least; he speaks in a manner quite new (and more honest) to diplomacy and commands respect just for his fearless outspokenness. It is quite a pleasure to read the papers, now. And to see some sixty thousand young, fine and handsome men between eighteen and thirty years go in cortege in the Corso the 31st of October was a sight not to be forgotten. Half a million young men dead in the war, and yet so many fine ones left! Really, this country is inexhaustible!

Wants G. F. News.

I am looking forward to seeing Ruth Carothers here a hear news about all in Grand Forks which we keep in such a good memory! I wonder if we ever shall come over to the United States again. I would like it very much, I assure you

And here in Rome the sun shines always this autumn; such lovely weather we are having.

Now I must stop, with best wishes for a happy Christmas and good New Year to Dr. Campbell and yourself from us both.

Always yours sincerely,

Gerda Hellberg Castelli.

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