PRESIDENT SIGNED INTO LAW…

ANOTHER GOOD THING PRES. TRUMP HAS DONE:

WE HAVE AN OPIOID EPIDEMIC.. I EXPECT EVERYONE KNOWS THAT BY NOW?

HOW ARE OFFICIALS RESPONDING TO THE CRISIS? According to an article by AARP Mag. The Dept of Health and Human Services is administering nearly a billion dollars in grants over the next two years to states and territories for prevention programs, treatment and training for health professionals. Meanwhile, 46 states now have caps on the quantity of opioid drugs that a Medicaid patient can receive, and 42 states have established medical criteria that a person must meet before getting a prescription through Medicaid. (Hopefully some of these grants will be used to help working and retired persons that make and pay the taxes in the country(my thought). PRESIDENT TRUMP HAS CREATED A COMMISSION ON DRUG ADDICTION, HEADED BY NEW JERSEY GOV. CHRIS CHRISTIE, TO STUDY THE ISSUE. AND CONGRESS PASSED LEGISLATION IN 2016 TO AID THOSE STRUGGLING WITH PAIN AND ADDICTION.

WHAT ARE OPIOIDS? Opioids are powerful drugs that act on the nervous system to relieve pain. Traditionally these drugs have been used by people who are recovering from surgery or coping with highly painful diseases or injuries. Opioids are narcotics, meaning they affect your mood or behavior and can cause drowsiness.  They work by attaching to receptors in the brain and other areas of the body, inhibiting the transmission of pain signals. Opioids can also create a sense of euphoria, and they are highly addictive.  Opioids are related to opium, Modern factory produced opioids are only slightly different in chemical makeup from the opiates derived from opium poppy flowers. The mood-altering effects of opium have been know for centuries.

WHY IS THIS AN EPIDEMIC?

Prescription opioids were initially administered primarily for short term bouts of pain. But starting in the 1990’s doctors began to prescribe them more to treat chronic pain. Long-term use led to higher levels of addiction and overdoses among wide swaths of the population. Since 1999 the number of overdose deaths that were attributed to opioid misuse has quadrupled. About half of those deaths in 2015 were from prescription opioid drugs.

NOTE: according to this article, BECAUSE people over 50 tend to have more pain, they seem to be more susceptible to opioid drug overdoses.  In 2015, 22,598 Americans dies from prescription opioid overdoses, according to data collected by the Kaiser Family Foundation. Maine rated 6th in the list of states that had the highest rates of death per 100,000 residents with 16.3%.  1. W. VA 28.9; 2 New Hamp. 28.0; 3 Rhode Isl. 19.8; 4.Mass. 17.0; 5 Ohio 16.4;  6 Maine 16.3; 7 Kentucky 15.3; 8 Utah 15.1; 9. Tenn. 13.1; 10. Maryland 12.2.

In my opinion it is high time doctors fine non-addictive drugs to alleviate pain. Also, the doctors and the adds need to stop telling us we can live pain free. The fact is pain is part of life.  We can offer pain up to God for other suffering people or for people in Purgatory When I was growing up adults used to tell us when we complained about minor things, “offer it up”. Perhaps we should get back to that?

 

 

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MARY, MOTHER FOR LIFE

O Mary, Mother of the Life Within, all life we entrust to You: the life of every expectant mother and the child within her womb, the life of every human body, the life of every human soul, the life of every newborn child and the life of all grown olf. You held the Lord to Your own Heart and drew Him so close in. So draw us now in all our needs, O Mother of the Life Within.

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PRAYER TO OUR LADY OF HOPE

O Blessed virgin Mary, mother of grace, hope of the world. Hear us, your children, who cry to you.

Oh Mother of Mercy, have pity on me in my distress. You are all-powerful with your divine Son. He can refuse no request of your immaculate heart. Show yourself at true mother to me by being my advocate before His throne.

Above all I pray, O dearest mother, that through your most powerful intercession my heart may be filled with holy hope, so that in life’s darkest hour I may never fail to trust in God my Savior, but by walking in the way of His commandments I may be united with Him, and with you in the eternal joys of heaven.

Mary, our hope, have pity on us. Hope of the hopeless, pray for us.   (from the Novena to Our Lady of Hope.)

GOD BLESS YOU ALL, PRAY FOR OUR PREGNANT MOTHERS AND THEIR UNBORN CHILDREN, THAT THEY MAY IGNORE THE WORLD, SEEK HELP, AND BRING GOD’S BEAUTIFUL CHILDREN INTO THE WORLD.

 

 

WHY AMERICA MUST REGAIN ITS MILITARY STRENGTH

AM C article on KEEPING AMERICA SAFE: by Gene Barrett

“WITHOUT A RESPECTABLE NAVY, ALAS AMERICA!” Captain John Paul Jones, 17 Oct. 1776

The Earth is covered with 196.9 square miles of water, so why would a tiny strait of water matter much to anyone? Because that little stretch of water is knows as the “Strait of Hormuz” and is one of the most strategically important waterways in the world today.

The Strait of Hormuz is extremely important geographically because it is considered one of the world’s foremost chokepoints. A chokepoint is a narrow channel (in this case a strait) that is used as a sea route for the shipment of goods. The main type of good passing through the Strait of Hormuz is oil from the Middle East and, as a result, is one of the world’s most important chokepoints. It is the only sea route where oil from Iraq, Iran, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, and much of the United Arab Emirates can be transported. The majority of the world’s oil reserves today resides in the Arabian Gulf region, with few options for exporting this oil out of the region besides the straits.

Iran and Iraq’s anti-western regimes oppose the United States presence within the Persian Gulf and the security that the US provides for many of the Gulf States, 15% of the world’s commerce is routed through Hormuz. Should war break out in this region, any aggression by Iran or any other nation would disrupt a large portion of the world’s economy.

Two countries lay claim to the territorial waters in the strait, Oman and Iran. While Oman has been a relatively benign landlord, Iran has on several occasions threatened to shut the strait down with a naval blockade.

The U.S. Navy has been protecting trade and commerce as early as 1801, when U.S. leaders decided to take action against Barbary pirates who constantly kidnapped the crew of American ships and held them from ransom in the Mediterranean.

A strong U.S. Navy is just as important today as it was when Thomas Jefferson took on the Barbary Coast Pirates. SADLY, OVER THE LAST EIGHT YEARS UNDER THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION, OUR NAVAL FORCES have been dramatically reduced. TAKING ADVANTAGE OF THIS PERCEIVED WEAKNESS, IRAN was emboldened to seize a U.S.Naval vessel and hold 10 American sailors captive. Meanwhile China continues to build a military base on an artificial island in the South China Sea.

THE FOLLOWING IS A BREAKDOWN OF NAVAL STRENGTHS BY COUNTRY:

NORTH KOREA: 967;  CHINA: 714; UNITED STATES: 415; IRAN: 398; RUSSIA: 352

These are the top five Navies in the world as of 2016, although sheer numbers don’t always tell the tale of the tape, as the U.S. still possesses an advantage in war technology.

Despite that, a Chinese warship recently seized an underwater drone deployed by a U.S. oceanographic vessel in the South China Sea.

U.S. Navy Secretary Ray Mabus cited a “growing China” as one of the reasons that the Navy needed to expand its fleet to 355 ships, including 12 carriers, 104 large surface combatants, 38 amphibious ships and 66 submarines. The seizure of our underwater drone added to concerns about China’s increased military presence and aggressive posture in the disputed South China Sea, including its militarization of maritime outposts.

One of Ronald Reagan’s campaign platforms was to re-build our Navy into a 600 ship Navy. It peaked in 1987 at 594 ships before a sharp and steady decline into our 415 ships currently active today. Having a strong Navy will always be a strategic necessity of the United States. This is the only way to ensure a strong presence overseas, which provides the ability to forward deploy combat ready troops, aircraft  and armor  that can be ready to act, if needed.

IN ORDER FOR AMERICA TO REGAIN ITS MILITARY STRENGTH, PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP will have to find potentially tens of billions of dollars a year for new ships, amid falling federal revenues, something Trump and his political allies in Congress agree on.

Strategic chokepoints around the globe must be able to be kept open fy force, if needed. We conduct forward naval operations both to ensure unimpeded use of the seas and to project American influence and power into the littoral areas of the world. We must have a strong Navy to be able to continue those operations.

SEQUESTRATION IS HARMING OUR MILITARY, from the CHIFR BRIAN DUFFY, VFW, MAGAZINES.

This articles was about what the 114th Congress approved for the VA and how much they approved for the VA.  But it was also about what is happening to our Military because of the BUDGET CONTROL ACT OF 2011 WHICH calls for a $487 billion reduction in Pentagon spending over a 10 yeaar period. Sequestration doubles that amount. The Dept. of Defense, which accounts for nearly half of the federal budget’s discretionary funding, has not been so fortunate.

The nation’s military has taken the brunt of sequestration’s withering cuts. The Air Force, for example, is experiencing a pilot shortage of between 700 and 1,000. News reports last year estimated that the service also was short 4,00 airmen-along with spare parts-to maintain its fleet.

Overall, since the end of 1991’s Persian Gulf War, the Air Force has 30 percent fewer airmen, 40 percent fewer aircraft and 60 percent fewer fighter squadrons. In 1991, the force had 134 fighter squadrons; today, only 55.

IT’S NO DIFFERENT FOR THE OTHER SERVICES. “For the Army, our No. 1 readiness risk is sequestration.” Gen. Daniel B. Allyn, the Army’s vice chief of staff, told the Senate Armed Services Committee last March.

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According to the VFW, Ending sequestration is a top VFW objective.

This shows exactly what Pres. Trump has been saying all along. Hopefully we will back him 100% when he does what necessary to protect this country. THIS IS THE GOVERNMENTS NO.1 JOB.  A strong military sends a message to the world:  WE ARE PREPARED, SO DON’T TREAD ON US.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE TEAM TRUMP COUNTS ON TO KEEP AMERICA SAFE

I know we are in the middle of confirmation hearings, but I wanted to print the background of these members he wants on his team.

MEMBERS OF PRESIDENT-ELECT TRUMP’S NATIONAL SECURITY TEAM REFLECT A COMMON  THEME: smart, tough, loyal, and not afraid to disrupt the bureaucratic status quo. His appointments strongly suggest that Trump seeks a major overhaul in the fields of defense, intelligence, and security.

NATIONAL SECURITY ADVISER: Ret. Gen. Mike Flynn, 58

Resume: Former director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, former assistant director of National Intelligence, U.S. Army lieutenant general. Flynn, a Democrat, was forced out of the Obama administration after he repeatedly warned that ISIS was for real and trying to topple Bashar al-Assad in Syria would fuel rampant chaos. LITTLE KNOW FACT: The national security adviser is a member of the president’s personal staff, which means the controversial Flynn will not need to undergo Senate confirmation.

U.S ATTORNEY GENERAL: Sen. Jeff Sessions, 70

Resume: Sessions was the U>S> attorney for Alabama for 12 years before being elected the attorney general of Alabama in 1994: he was elected to the U>S>Senate in 1996. He was the first sitting senator to endorse Trump’s presidential bid, and will be called upon to fix a Justice Department and FBI that have become embroiled in Beltway politics.  LITTLE KNOWN FACT: Like Trump, Sessions is a climate change skeptic. He once remarked in a hearing that carbon dioxide “is really not a pollutant, that’s a plant food, and it doesn’t harm anybody.”

DIRECTOR, CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE AGENCY: Rep. Mike Pompeo, 53

Resume: A strong pro-lifer who identifies with the tea party movement and a successful entrepreneur. Pompeo was first elected in 2010 to represent Kansas in the House of Representatives. He’s been a harsh critic of the administration’s handling of the Benghazi attacks, of the Iran nuclear deal, and of attempts to shutter the Guantanamo Bay detention facility.  LITTLE KNOWN FACT: A brilliant student, Pompeo graduated first in his class at West Point and later became editor of the Harvard Law Review.

SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: Ret. Marine Corps General James N. Mattis, 66

Resume: President Obama reportedly force Mattis into retirement after 41 years of service because he asked too many probing questions about Iran. MILITARY TIMES described Mattis as the most beloved Marine Corps general officer in a generation. LITTLE KNOWN FACT: Nicknamed “the warrior monk” for his single-minded dedication to military life and strategy, Mattis has never married and has no children.

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I will leave you to draw your own conclusions. However, I know military people want Mattis in that position because they trust his common sense. The fact that Obama didn’t want him, is a very good sign.

Flynn is a Democrat, and was fired by Obama because he asked too many question, and Obama didn’t want anyone to question his highness. Since he is on the President’s personal staff, the Congress can’t touch him. It would also seem to point out that Trump is willing to work with both sides to get things done.

Sessions has years of experience and won’t be dragged into Beltway politics. We need him to clean up the Justice Dept and FBI and put an end to political interference. Perhaps, laws on Immigration and other areas will now be enforced.

Pompeo, Pro-life is good, he won’t be targeting Pro life organizations. He is brilliant, graduated first in his class at West Point, editor of the Harvard Law Review. You can’t beat that time of intelligence.

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This would seem to point out that Trump is looking for the best of the best. God bless him and all who works with and for him.

 

 

 

Obama’s Presidency Sputters to an End

(THIS WAS TOO GOOD AN ARTICLE TO PASS UP FOLKS.)

By Timothy H. Lee

Barack Obama’s tumultuous presidency has now come and gone, which merits assessment of his performance and likely place in history.

Eight years ago, Obama’s raison d’être was “Hope and Change.”  So how did that all turn out?  How much hope did his presidency offer?  After nearly a decade in office, what change did he bring?

According to the American public he was elected to serve, a grim response arrived this week in the form of a comprehensive Gallup public opinion survey.

As it did eight years ago as the Bush Administration concluded, Gallup asked respondents whether the nation gained ground or lost ground on nineteen separate policy domains.  In what must surely come as a jarring corrective to any Obama loyalist, Americans believe that we lost ground under Obama on fully fourteen of those nineteen measures, held steady on one and gained ground on only five.

In descending degree of severity, the American electorate believes that we’ve regressed under Obama in terms of the federal debt, crime, income inequality, race relations, the situation in Iraq, terrorism, America’s position in the world, immigration, the situation in Afghanistan, taxes, national defense, education, the situation for blacks and trade relations.  Only in the situation for gays and lesbians, energy, climate change and by a slight margin the economy do Americans believe we’ve gained ground.  Notably, we’ve treaded water on healthcare, which was Obama’s signature focus.

“At the moment,” Gallup summarized, “Americans are more negative than positive on the progress made on the majority of issues tested.”

That’s hardly the “hope and change” that Obama promised, and quantifiable realities support Americans’ negative assessment.

Perhaps most alarmingly, Obama stands alone as the worst deficit spender in U.S. history, and it’s not even close.  The man who once labeled Bush’s comparatively tiny deficits “unpatriotic” averaged deficits of approximately $900 billion during his presidency, compared to Bush’s $250 billion average.  The largest deficit in U.S. history prior to 2009 was $450 billion, but Obama oversaw four consecutive deficits over $1 trillion.  Over his eight years, Obama added as much federal debt as every one of his predecessors combined.

On that measure alone, Obama instantly enters discussion of the worst presidents in U.S. history.

And to what end?  In terms of economic performance, for the first time in American history we’ve gone an entire decade without reaching even 3% growth.  The current cyclical expansion, our 12th since World War II, is the weakest of those 12.  During that 70-year period we’ve averaged 3.3% growth each year, but Obama never even reached that mark, let alone surpassed it.

The nation’s unemployment rate also festered above 8% for the longest stretch since recordkeeping began, and median U.S. incomes actually declined several years into the cyclical recovery, which was unprecedented.

Obama and his defenders routinely credit him with ending the last recession and preventing another Great Depression, but the facts simply don’t support that claim.  The U.S. economy actually bottomed out and began its V-shaped bounceback before Obama entered office, contracting 8.2% in the fourth quarter of 2008 before improving to 5.4% contraction in the first quarter of 2009 and 0.5% contraction in the second quarter of that year.  By June of 2009, just four months after Obama entered office and long before any of his economic policies took effect, the recession had already officially ended.

Thus, it’s simply not true that Obama ended the last recession.  What Obama did do was preside over the most sluggish cyclical recovery in U.S. history.

In terms of notable legislation, ObamaCare will stand alone as Obama’s signature act.  Years later, 27 million Americans remain uninsured, premiums continue to skyrocket and the law has remained unpopular with the American public.  Indeed, Obama’s false promise that, “If you like your healthcare plan, you can keep your healthcare plan” will go down as his most notable rhetorical moment.

In foreign policy, there is not a single significant theater of the world where America stands stronger today than it did on January 20, 2009.  In 2008, Obama labeled himself a “citizen of the world” before a Berlin audience, but today Brexit and other nationalist tendencies have spread like wildfire in rejecting the sort of globalism that Obama holds dear.  His most notable foreign policy pronouncement came when he declared a “red line” against chemical weapon use in Syria, only to abandon it a short time later while hundreds of thousands were slaughtered.  A Russia to whom Obama promised “flexibility” on an open microphone in 2012 continues to openly mock his impotence.  Appeasement of enemies like Iran and Cuba bore no fruit, but maltreatment of allies like Israel and Poland undermined our global standing.

Politically, Obama promised unity but brought record levels of polarization.  He became the first president to win reelection with fewer popular and electoral votes than his initial election.  Whereas Obama openly hoped to “make government cool again” when he entered office, trust in government proceeded to reach record lows while distrust in the federal government reached record highs.

Most humiliatingly and symbolically, Obama’s mismanagement led to record Republican success at the federal, state and local levels.  Today, the GOP holds more federal and state legislative seats than any time since the 1920s.

Indeed, no reality better summarizes Obama’s presidency than the fact that his despised antithesis will take the oath of office to succeed him.  As commentator Larry Elder observed, “Obama’s legacy is Donald Trump.”

From: Center for Individual Freedom (CFIF)article.

THE CASE FOR TRUMP BY CONRAD BLACK

I realize you may have already made up your mind, maybe this will let you know you are making the correct choice.   Here is the article from Trump’s friend, noted financier Conrad Black who says LOOK BEYOND THE BRASH-THE DONALD IS WELL-SUITED TO MAKING DEALS AND BEING A LEADER.  Read on…………….  _____________________________________________________________

The greatest single political problem in the Western world is sclerosis of the imagination. In Congress, on the hustings, and in the media, the U.S. is reduced to two camps.

One side is calling for swinging strokes of a spending scythe on the government with the threat of a shutdown behind it, and the other side is offering more redistributive taxing and, through the quaint and incompletely recycled ex-communist Bernie Sanders, a trillion-dollar bribe in the forgiveness of all student loans.

In the media, we have shrieking heads with very few people saying anything intelligible.

In Canada, there are cries of alarm over the deficit, though it is hardly a surprise and seems to top out at less than a third, as share of gross domestic product, than where the U.S. sat for seven years (1.5 percent against 5-7percent).

Donald Trump horrifies Canadians as a caricature of an ugly American of the 1950s vintage: loud, boastful, boorish, ignorant, obscenely materialistic, and illiberal in every respect, as nauseating a personality as he is reassuring to us of our comparative civility, culture, and equability, our inoffensiveness and niceness, if not exactly our style.

There is some reason for this judgment of Trump from what we have generally seen of him in public now for 30 years.

In private, he is charming, solicitous, engaging, and companionable, never pompous, devoid of prejudice, abstemious, and a traditional and conscientious family man. He is a generous civic leader in New York, a quality builder, and a generous employer and philanthropist and friend.

I scarcely recognize the self-obsessed blowhard I see on television, but the fact that he is doing so well must be taken as indicative of the rage of scores of millions of Americans as the work themselves to the bone to stumble from pay check to pay with maxed-out credit cards and loud rumors of recession.

They are angry about rising crime rates, the many thousands of American lives and trillions of dollars that have been squandered in the Middle East to produce an appalling humanitarian crisis, the debasement of the currency and the reduction of their great country to the status of a laughingstock.

If elected, Trump would have a clear mandate to clean up the scandalous quagmire of American political campaign financing that has reduced every candidate, except him and Michael Bloomberg, to Oliver Twist mendicants, with cupped hands and begging bowls, and has brokered most legislation among the special interests that finance members of Congress.

He would have a mandate to dispense with Obamacare, over which the president misled the public about keeping their own doctors and avoiding higher medical costs, an untruth more certainly deliberate and of more relevance to most American families than George W. Bush’s ultimately unfounded claims about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.

Trump would enter the White House with a mandate to define the U.S. national interest in the world, in cooperation with allies, and to enforce it.

He would have a mandate to streamline and decentralize the federal government, bring in bipartisan entitlement reform that would make government affordable, and product tax reform.

He has already defined that reform as meaning no breaks for the billionaires (not like the phony, if entertaining, grandstanding of Warren Buffett).

 

 

 

 

OVER 200,000 DOCTORS QUIT HEALTHCARE EXCHANGES

FROM NEWSMAX:by Kathryn McKenzie:   WILL THE LAST DOCTOR TO LEAVE PLEASE TURN OFF THE LIGHTS?

That could be the headline for a new report that says medical professionals are exiting Obamacare insurance plans in droves.  According to a medical practice trade group, as many as 214,500 doctors will not participate in Affordable Care Act exchange plans in the coming year.  A survey by the Medical Group Management Asso. indicates physicians are opting out for TWO REASONS:  first, concern over low reimbursement rates, and second, a fear they will not be paid at all for some cases if they accept insurance provided by the exchanges.

Part of the problem involves the way the exchanges are regulated.  In March 2012, the Dept. of Health and Human Services set forth the procedures to be followed if patients with an exchange plan stop paying their premiums.  In the private healthcare market, people lose coverage as soon as they miss a premium.

But exchange plans are required to provide their members with a 90-day “grace period” to pay up.  In theory, a patient could join an exchange plan, stop paying the premium, receive extensive medical care, and escape paying completely.  And if the patient doesn’t pay up, the doctor who provided the service could get stiffed.

And by some estimates, for every dollar a private plan pays for a service, Medicare pays $0.80.  The Obamacare exchanges, by comparison, pay about $0.60.  If more physicians and hospitals decline to accept insurance issued through the exchanges, patients may begin to have trouble finding a nearby doctor.

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This hit me close to home the other day, just as I was reading this article.  My Doctor says she is “retiring” in April.  She will then be open to her patients that want to see her on a cash basis.   I will continue to see her, pay cash, and submit my bills to Medicare, but that would not be possible if for some reason I need to see her often. She said that Obamacare is making it just too expensive and complicated to continue as she is.

I have heard that we have a doctor shortage in this country already. Obamacare payments to doctors don’t even pay enough to pay for the nurse that checks a person in. I don’t see that this is going to work very well, or give people even mediocre care.  Contact your Congressmen/women, Obamacare needs to be done away with, or some drastic improvements made.