Media Ignoring Gosnell Trial Because It Puts Abortion Issue ‘Starkly Into Relief’

Family Security Matters posted this video of Charles Krauthammer stating that the media is ignoring the Dr. Kermit Gosnell (pictured above) trial because it puts the abortion issue ‘Starkly Into Relief’.

PHILADELPHIA (TheBlaze/AP) — An unlicensed doctor fled out the back the night the FBI raided a Philadelphia medical clinic in 2010, a witness testified Thursday as a murder trial centered on the unorthodox facility. It is just the latest horrific revelation to surface in the trial.”

Abortion provider Kermit Gosnell, 72, is charged with killing a woman patient and seven babies allegedly born alive, and with performing illegal, late-term abortions at his thriving inner-city clinic. Co-defendant Eileen O’Neill, 56, of Phoenixville, is charged with billing as a doctor and participating in a corrupt organization.”

Eight former employees have pleaded guilty, some to third-degree murder, and have testified this month about nightmarish, often-chaotic practices at the clinic.”

Ashley Baldwin spoke Thursday of starting there at age 15 through a high school training program, and soon assisting with abortions and administering intravenous drugs. Baldwin, now 22, said she worked nearly 50-hour weeks, often well past midnight, when abortions were routinely performed.”

At least twice, she saw aborted babies move after the procedure, only to have Gosnell explain that it an involuntary response. In one case, she said, “the chest was moving.””>At least twice, she saw aborted babies move after the procedure, only to have Gosnell explain that it an involuntary response. In one case, she said, “the chest was moving.”

Her mother, Tina Baldwin, had started at the clinic in 2002, referred by a business school where she had studied to be a medical assistant. She mostly worked at the front desk, where her duties included giving patients medicine to start their contractions.”

Her mother, Tina Baldwin, had started at the clinic in 2002, referred by a business school where she had studied to be a medical assistant. She mostly worked at the front desk, where her duties included giving patients medicine to start their contractions.”

Read more.

RELATED VIDEO:

RELATED COLUMNS:

Pay Attention to the Gosnell Trial – The Daily Beast

Four Reasons Why Media Isn’t Covering Gosnell Mass Murder Trial …

NBC Won’t Cover Gosnell Trial, Tweets News From Another Source …

Kermit Gosnell Trial

Why Is the Media Not Reporting on the Philly Abortion Clinic Doctor Trial?

Bring it on! Let’s talk fairness in tax policy (+ video)

April is National Tax Burden Month. As part of the WDW – Florida campaign to educate you, the taxpayer, on issues surrounding the tax debate we provide this column on “tax fairness”.

What does fairness mean when applied to federal, state and local tax policy?

President Obama and those in the Occupy Wall Street movement have focused on “fairness” in federal tax policy. Fairness is a word with many meanings and was used to raise taxes on those making more than $450,000. But what is fair?

Recently AFP Foundation Director of Policy, James Valvo, had the opportunity to sit down with Arthur Brooks, President of the American Enterprise Institute. Dr. Brooks shared his insight and research on the moral argument of fairness, and why economic freedom and earned success is the most “fair” concept of all.

In the video below, Dr. Brooks demonstrates what a powerful impact taxpayers can have in framing the debate on tax fairness.

Dr. Brooks uses a human research test to determine fairness as a counter to the current class-warfare rhetoric.  He argues that based on research Americans believe in a system where hard work is valued and rewarded, and that this message can have a tremendous impact if presented in this “real fairness” light.

Watch the video interview with Dr.  Brooks from AEI:

ABOUT AMERICANS FOR PROSPERITY:

Americans for Prosperity (AFP) is committed to educating citizens about economic policy and mobilizing those citizens as advocates in the public policy process. AFP is an organization of grassroots leaders who engage citizens in the name of limited government and free markets on the local, state, and federal levels. AFP grassroots activists advocate for public policies that champion the principles of entrepreneurship and fiscal and regulatory restraint. To that end, AFP supports:

  • Cutting taxes and government spending in order to halt the encroachment of government in the economic lives of citizens by fighting proposed tax increases and pointing out evidence of waste, fraud, and abuse.
  • Removing unnecessary barriers to entrepreneurship and opportunity by sparking citizen involvement early in the regulatory process in order to reduce red tape.
  • Restoring fairness to our judicial system.

Read more: http://americansforprosperity.org/about/#ixzz2QF1dLBD2

ABOUT AMERICAN ENTERPRISE INSTITUTE:

The American Enterprise Institute is a community of scholars and supporters committed to expanding liberty, increasing individual opportunity and strengthening free enterprise. AEI pursues these unchanging ideals through independent thinking, open debate, reasoned argument, facts and the highest standards of research and exposition. Without regard for politics or prevailing fashion, we dedicate our work to a more prosperous, safer and more democratic nation and world.

AEI is a private, nonpartisan, not-for-profit institution dedicated to research and education on issues of government, politics, economics and social welfare. Founded in 1938, AEI is home to some of America’s most accomplished public policy experts.

Read more: http://www.aei.org/about/

Is the Anti-Bullying movement hurting kids? (+ video)

Below is a statement issued by the ACLU, emphasizing the limits of political activism during instructional time:

“You DO have a right to participate in Day of Silence and other expressions of your opinion at a public school during non-instructional time: the breaks between classes, before and after the school day, lunchtime, and any other free times during your day.

“You do NOT have a right to remain silent during class time if a teacher asks you to speak.”

The Day of Silence is part of the anti-bulling campaign sponsored by the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network (GLSEN). The day of silence this year it will take place in some Florida public schools on April 19, 2013.

According to Florida Family Association, “On April 19th, thousands of public high schools and increasing numbers of middle schools will allow students to remain silent throughout an entire day – even during instructional time – to promote GLSEN’s socio-political goals and its controversial, unproven, and destructive theories on the nature and morality of homosexuality.”

But are anti-bullying campaigns like the day of silence doing more harm than good?

Susan Porter, author of Bully Nation: Why America’s Approach to Childhood Aggression is Bad for Everyone believes so. Porter sat down with Reason TV’s Tracy Oppenheimer to discuss the anti-bully movement and how laws, labeling and the media are only agitating the problem. She says that kids are actually suffering because of these anti-bully efforts.

“They are becoming less resilient,” says Porter, “if you’re now a victim, and you think of yourself as a victim, you are much more apt to get victimized.”

Watch this six minute video interview with Susan Porter:

A group of over thirty organizations is asking parents to walk out with their children on the day of silence. The groups created a website Walk Out DOS. According to the website, “Parents must actively oppose this hijacking of the classroom for political purposes… Help de-politicize the learning environment by calling your child out of school if your child’s school allows students and/or teachers to refuse to speak during instructional time on the Day of Silence.”

The Washington Blade reports, “Lambda Legal on Tuesday [February 26, 2013] filed a lawsuit in federal court on behalf of a lesbian teenager who said school officials punished her for taking part in an anti-LGBT bullying event. Amber Hatcher, 16, planned to observe the National Day of Silence last April. DeSoto County High School Principal Shannon Fusco and DeSoto County School Superintendent Adrian Cline reportedly discouraged her from taking part in the annual event.”

The Pacific Justice Institute has launched a new website designed to counter two legislative bills that threaten the existence of the Boy Scouts in California and would mandate some of the most aggressive invasions of privacy, freedom of association and religious freedom ever proposed in the name of LGBT rights. In in a 5-2 vote, the California Senate Governance and Finance Committee passed SB 323—a bill aimed at forcing the Boy Scouts and other youth organizations to embrace homosexuality and “gender identity.” The bill now heads to the Senate where it is one-step closer to becoming law.

The new site, GenderInsanity.com, spotlights the two bills pending in the California legislature. Senate Bill (SB) 323 threatens to revoke tax exemptions from the Boy Scouts and many other non-profits, including religious schools and Little League that do not affirm transgender or homosexual lifestyles.

Infants Born Alive Bill passes unanimously out of Florida Senate Health Policy Committee

Today, Gov. Rick Scott released the following statement regarding the Infants Born Alive Bill (SB1636) passing unanimously out of Florida Senate Health Policy Committee:

“The Infants Born Alive bill, SB 1636 – and its House companion, HB 1129 – ensure common sense measures to help care for the babies who survive abortion procedures. It is essential that we protect the weakest among us, and I am grateful for the Senators and Representatives in both parties who are supporting care for these babies.”

There is a growing trend among states to restrict abortions.

According to Remapping Debate, “Though the Supreme Court’s landmark decision in Roe v. Wade affirming a woman’s right to choose to have an abortion remains the law of the land, states enacted more restrictions on abortion in 2011 and 2012 than in any other years since Roe was decided four decades ago.” This trend appears to be continuing with the advancement of SB1636.

Elizabeth Nash from the Guttmacher Institute, a research group in Washington, D.C. and New York, stated, “What we’ve seen over time is a wholesale change in the abortion landscape. Particularly in the last two years, we have just seen a tidal wave of restrictions rolling across the country.”

According to Nash, 92 new restrictions were enacted in 2011 and 43 were enacted in 2012, the highest and second-highest number of annual restrictions ever.

Nash said, many states have recently passed laws requiring physicians to be in the physical presence of the patient when prescribing mifespristone — a pharmaceutical drug that induces an abortion at a very early stage of pregnancy — effectively prohibiting doctors from prescribing the medication over the telephone and reducing access to abortion in rural areas. Onerous regulatory restrictions placed specifically on abortion providers (TRAP laws), bans on the coverage of abortion by health insurance policies that will be offered through state exchanges beginning next year as part of the Affordable Care Act, and laws requiring abortion providers to perform ultrasounds and show the image of the fetus to their patients before the procedure have also been common in the last two years.”

To view a chart showing the extent of your states efforts to restrict abortion click here.

RELATED COLUMN: 

Planned Parenthood calls for killing babies born after botched abortion (+ video)

Rubio: Obama’s budget is a blueprint for a recession

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) issued the following statement regarding President Obama’s budget:

“President Obama’s budget is a blueprint for a recession. Filled to the brim with middle class tax hikes and debt spending, the recycled liberal ideas in his budget have failed time and again to create real vibrant economic growth for the American people. Our nation needs a plan that reflects the principles of limited government, free enterprise and a strong national defense.

“President Obama’s plan taxes and punishes American success, and it encourages long-term dependency on government. The President already got $600 billion in tax increases from the fiscal cliff deal struck in January, which I opposed. Now he wants over $1 trillion more in taxes on retirement savings, small businesses and job creators who can’t afford to hire because they’re burdened with new costs as they scramble to figure out just what’s in ObamaCare. It will never even come close to balancing our budget in the next ten years, leaving it up to future generations to figure out how to stop Washington from spending more money than it takes in.

“While the President’s budget attempts to address some of the defense cuts imposed by sequestration, I am concerned that it does nothing to reverse the damaging impact that cuts have already had on our military readiness. America is becoming less capable of projecting power and deterring conflict wherever it arises. For example, despite almost daily evidence of the increasing threat to the United States posed by rogue states with ballistic missiles, the President’s budget cuts spending on missile defense.

“A solid budget proposal – like the one House Republicans submitted last month – would develop American energy projects like the Keystone XL pipeline, fundamentally reform the tax code, eliminate job-crushing regulations, cut wasteful spending, and ensure we have the military needed to keep Americans safe. We need to enact policy that allows for income mobility and empowers economic opportunity. The Obama budget fails to do all of this. On the bright side, after arriving 65 days late, the budget proposal is useless considering the House and Senate have already proposed and passed budget resolutions.”

The Heritage Foundation analyzed President Obama’s budget and published “Five key things to know about President Obama’s budget“:

1. It hikes taxes by $1.1 trillion.

Heritage’s Curtis Dubay says: “There was little doubt that President Obama would propose a huge tax hike in his budget. It is a bit surprising, however, that the total tax increase he proposes is almost double what he claims it to be.”

Dubay explains where all the tax increases come from—including the “Buffett Rule,” capping tax deductions, and hiking the cigarette tax and the death tax.

BudgetGuide_Snippet_V2

See an extended version of this infographic

2. It underfunds defense.

Heritage’s Patrick Louis Knudsen explains that “While boosting domestic spending, the President remains indifferent to national security needs. His proposed defense spending, though somewhat higher than sequestration levels, remains inadequate.” Baker Spring says, “The result is going to be a defense posture that is too small in terms of both personnel and force structure, does not include modern weapons and equipment, and does not provide adequate levels of training and maintenance.”

3. It doubles down on Obamacare.

The Obama budget actually expands parts of Obamacare and even includes new changes to Medicare that create two sneaky new “taxes” on seniors. Obamacare’s “malignant new entitlements—its health insurance subsidies and Medicaid expansions—start in this 2014 budget,” Knudsen reminds us.

With their implementation, the misnamed Affordable Care Act will add a distinctly unaffordable $1.8 trillion in federal spendingthrough 2023. Equally important, Obamacare commandeers the health care sector with a massive program that further distorts the market, intrudes on the doctor-patient relationship, and dismisses personal and religious liberty.

4. It doesn’t balance and never will.

As Knudsen says, “Because the budget never balances—it doesn’t even try—debt remains at dangerously elevated levels.” See how Obama’s non-balancing budget compares to the plansin the House and Senate, as well as Heritage’s Saving the American Dream plan.

5. It’s irrelevant.

The President’s budget is more than two months late. The House and Senate have already passed their own budgets, and the next step is for the two chambers to come together to see if they can hash out a budget that both chambers can pass. At this point, why is the President bothering?

Red Dawn? They have nukes!

The following commentary on events on the Korean peninsula are from the Heritage Foundation:

North Korea on the Edge

Yesterday, North Korean officials warned foreigners in South Korea to leave that country. Today, the foreign ministers of the Group of Eight (G8) countries—the United States, Britain, Russia, Japan, Canada, France, Germany, and Italy—are meeting in London to discuss North Korea’s threats.

Americans are taking notice. CNN reports that “more than four in 10” Americans in a new poll say “they see the reclusive nation as an immediate threat to the United States…That’s up 13 percentage points in less than a month.”

Heritage’s experts have been following the threats closely—in fact, senior research fellow Bruce Klingner, formerly the CIA branch chief for Korea, warned of the growing risk of a clashin late March.

VIDEO: Watch North Korea experts explain where these threats are coming from

Klingner says in his latest paper this week that the escalating threats are new and “more dangerous”:

Perhaps most worrisome is that the regime’s threat du jour is occurring so rapidly. In the past, Pyongyang would issue a threat and then allow Washington and its allies time to respond, preferably by offering benefits to buy its way back to the status quo ante. The current rapid-fire threats conflict with previous North Korean behavior and reduce the potential for de-escalating the crisis.

A few things to note:

North Korea is capable of firing missiles. 

Heritage’s Michaela Dodge warns that “North Korea can already hit Hawaii, parts of Alaska, and California. It can also hit U.S. forward-deployed troops in South Korea, Japan, and Guam…While the Obama Administration does not believe that North Korea is capable of hitting the U.S. with a nuclear weapon, the U.S. has a history of underestimating North Korea’s ballistic missile and nuclear weapons programs.”

The U.S. has already responded to the threats—but more commitment to missile defense is needed.

The United States has sent nuclear-capable B-2 and B-52 bombers, F-22 fighters, and Aegis destroyers to South Korea. The Obama Administration reversed just a few of its harmful cuts to missile defense, now that the President realizes those defenses might be needed. But at the same time, the Administration has cut half a billion dollars from missile defense. This is the wrong direction to take.

Diplomacy doesn’t work with Kim Jong-un. 

Klingner recommends tough sanctions against North Korea and others violating U.N. resolutions. The U.S. should “resist the siren song” of engaging North Korea in talks, while backing up our allies with a sustained show of force.

We can’t afford to be wrong. As Klingner says:

North Korea is easy to ridicule…Its leader could well play the villain in a James Bond or Austin Powers movie. Self-appointed ambassador Dennis Rodman’s visit affirmed the image of the reclusive regime as the ultimate reality show. As such, the tendency has been to dismiss all North Korean threats as bluster. That would be a mistake.

Read the Morning Bell and more en español every day at Heritage Libertad.

UPDATE: They have nukes!

FIRST TARGET: JAPAN

Sarasota County Republican Party Resolution calls for US to withdraw support for UN

The Republican Party of Sarasota County will consider at its next regular meeting a resolution asking Congress to withdraw from the United Nations.

The resolution reads in part:

WHEREAS, the United States of America (USA) was set up as a sovereign Union of sovereign States with system of government created for a self-governing people; and WHEREAS, the USA, in becoming a member of the Untied Nations, entered into a Treaty, which now threatens to destroy our national sovereignty, self-government and our Freedom to practice the Rights secured by our U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights through continuing UN
encroachments, such as:

1. the INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT (subjecting Americans to jurisdiction of a UN court, where they are not protected by U.S. Constitutional Rights); the WTO ‘free trade’ agreements (subjecting our commercial laws to an alien trade committee); and the UNCED Environmental and Development Treaties (i.e., Agenda 21, Biodiversity, and Climate Change Treaties, etc., subjecting our national forest, wetlands and border areas to UN control) are examples of our growing loss sovereignty and self-government under our U.S. Constitution;

2. the INTERNATIONAL COVENANT ON CIVIL AND POLITICAL RIGHTS wherein all Rights are subject to Orwellian restriction by law (alienable) and there is no 2nd Amendment Right; and

3. U.S. State Dept. Document 7277 (total disarmament in deference to a UN army);

There is growing concern that the United States is headed toward a one world form of governance. This concern is based upon statements from Vice-President Joe Biden, who declared, “The affirmative task we have now is to actually create a new world order…” Watch the below video:

Chriss Streete from the CotoBuzz Journal wrote, “It is amusing that the United States, as the world’s number one arms smuggler to friendly places like Libya and Syria, would lead the effort to pass the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty (“ATT”) regulating and controlling the export of weaponry.”

“Advocates contend ATT regulate the sale of assault weapons, such as tanks, combat vehicles, aircraft, attack helicopters and ammunition for such weapons to dangerous rogue countries who may pose a terrorist threat. But ATT only prohibits export of weapons to nation-states; it does not prohibit export to terrorists. What ATT does do is internationally define regulated weapons to include small arms and the ammunition for “such weapons”. ATT compliance will require national gun micro-stamping and registry,” reports Streete.

The world has not become safer since the creation of the United Nations after WWII. The dream of peace on earth has become a nightmare with the spread of radical Islam, wars in Iraq and ongoing in Afghanistan and threats of nuclear attack from North Korea.

National sovereignty is gaining globally, one world governance is losing, just look at the European Union in turmoil.

Rubio introduces “Refund Act” to empower states to help pay down the national debt

U.S. Senator Marco Rubio today introduced the Returned Exclusively For Unpaid National Debt (REFUND) Act. This legislation would allow states to identify and return unwanted federal funds to the federal treasury in order to help pay down the $16.7 trillion national debt. The REFUND Act has 16 original cosponsors in the Senate and a companion bill, H.R.282, has already been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Representative Chuck Fleischmann (TN-3).

“Excessive spending is fueling our growing debt, yet states have little say in what happens to federal money if they choose not to spend it,” said Rubio. “The REFUND ACT can help end the ‘use-it-or-lose-it’ mentality which encourages states to take debt-financed money from Washington. Instead it will empower them with a way to help slow the steady rise of the national debt.”

“Many state officials and leaders realize the national debt is an increasing burden to our children and grandchildren and want to help stop Washington’s spending spree to help alleviate that burden. The REFUND Act will give states an opportunity to end the practice of spending money we don’t have and serve as an incentive for them to help pay down the debt and re-embark on a path toward economic growth and opportunity.”

The REFUND Act would allow any state to designate federal funds as “unwanted” through a resolution from the state legislature, which would then be allocated towards debt reduction at the Treasury Department. The REFUND Act would require that an annual report be submitted to Congress each year detailing the amount deposited by each state. The REFUND Act has been endorsed by the Council for Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) and the National Taxpayers Union (NTU).

Original cosponsors of the REFUND Act are Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN), John Barrasso (R-WY), Roy Blunt (R-MO), Saxby Chambliss, (R-GA), Dan Coats (R-IN), Tom Coburn (R-OK), John Cornyn (R-TX), Mike Enzi (R-WY), Jim Inhofe (R-OK), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Mike Johanns (R-NE), Ron Johnson (R-WI), Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Rand Paul (R-KY), Jim Risch (R-ID) and David Vitter (R-LA).

The question is will the states put the best interests of the American people first? Or will they keep the money.

Many times state political leaders argue that if we don’t take the money it will go to another state. Now, that excuse could become invalid. Let’s see if this gets passed in a divided Washington, where two thirds of the politicians want more taxes and more spending.

Miami, FL: Good guy with a gun, stops bad guy with a gun

This story is courtesy of Michael Dorstewitz from BizPac Review:

National Rifle Association spokesman Wayne LaPierre recently remarked, “The only thing that will stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun,” Florida man made this point crystal clear over the weekend.

At a Burger King on Miami’s Biscayne Blvd., a robber walked in, displayed his gun and demanded that a family turn over its valuables, according to NBC-6 News Miami.

What the robber didn’t consider is that Floridians respect the Constitution, including the Second Amendment right to bear arms.

The father pulled out his own firearm and shot the robber in the leg.

Read more.

View more videos at: http://nbcmiami.com.

Taxes in Florida Explained

April is National Tax Burden Month. WDW – Florida is providing information on taxes in Florida. The following information is from the Florida portal on taxation:

For decades, Florida has had one of the lowest tax burdens in the country, according to the independent research organization Tax Foundation. For 2013, Florida will place the fifth-lowest tax burden on its residents and businesses. But not all taxes are created equal, and the state collects in a variety of ways that residents need to be aware of.

Income Tax

The strength of Florida’s low tax burden comes from its lack of an income tax, making them one of seven such states in the U.S. The state constitution prohibits such a tax, though Floridians still have to pay federal income taxes.

Estate Tax

Florida also does not assess an estate tax, or an inheritance tax. No portion of what is willed to an individual goes to the state.

Intangibles Tax

Floridians no longer need to pay taxes to the state on intangible goods, such as investments. The law requiring that tax was repealed in 2007.

Sales Tax

The state charges a 6% tax rate on the sale or rental of goods, with some exceptions such as groceries and medicine. Additionally, counties are able to levy local taxes on top of the state amount, and most do—55 of the 67 Florida counties added local sales tax to the state tax in 2012. The highest amount added to the sales tax was 1.5% by 7 counties in 2012, bringing the total sales tax to 7.5% in those counties; that will increase to 8 counties in 2013. For a complete list of the additional sales tax rates by county, visit the Florida Department of Revenue: http://dor.myflorida.com/dor/forms/2013/dr15dss.pdf

Use Tax

State sales tax needs to be paid for internet or other out-of-state purchases, even if no tax was charged at the time of purchase, or were charged at a rate less than the Florida sales and use tax rate. While this includes taxable items bought in Florida, it mostly applies to items bough outside of the state which were brought in or delivered. Florida residents are required to report these sales and pay the use tax on them personally.

Property Tax

Though the state government does not collect any property taxes, local governments receive much of their funding through these taxes. These rates are assessed at the local level and can vary by county, and they are based on the value of the property. Property taxes in Florida are some of the highest in the country, although there are several exemptions to try to lighten the load on some Floridians.

Property Tax Exemptions

Homestead Exemptions are available on primary residences in Florida. These exemptions can be available up to $50,000. However, only the first $25,000 of this exemption applies to all taxes. The remaining $25,000 only applies to non-school taxes.

Widow(er) Exemptions of $500 are available to widows and widowers who have not remarried. If you were divorced at the time of your ex-spouse’s death, you do not qualify for this exemption.

Senior Citizen Exemptions are available in http://dor.myflorida.com/dor/property/taxpayers/pdf/FLsrhx.pdfcertain counties and cities only. They are valued up to $50,000 for residents 65 years old and older who have gross income below $20,000 in 2001 dollars, adjusted for inflation. This exemption is in addition to the Homestead Exemption.

Blind Person Exemptions of $500 are available to Floridians who are legally blind.

Total and Permanent Disability Exemptions are available for homeowners who have a total and permanent disability. Quadriplegics who use their property as a homestead are exempt from all property taxes. Others who must use a wheelchair for mobility or are legally blind and have a gross income below $14,500 in 1991 dollars, adjusted for inflation, can be exempt from all property taxes as well.

Veterans Exemptions exist in a number of different forms.

  • A veteran documented as disabled by 10% or more in war or service-connected events can earn an additional exemption of $5,000 on any owned property.
  • An honorably discharged veteran who is totally and permanently disabled or requires a wheelchair for mobility due to their service can be exempt from all property taxes. In some circumstances, this benefit can be transferred to a surviving spouse.
  • An honorably discharged and disabled veteran who is 65 or older who was a Florida resident when they entered military service may be eligible for an additional exemption. The disability must be permanent and must have been acquired as a result of the military service. The property tax will be discounted based on the percent of the disability.
  • Members of the military deployed during the last calendar year can receive exemptions based on the percent of time during the year they were deployed.

Other Taxes

Florida collects taxes on many other goods and services residents pay for. Documentary Stamp Taxes are assessed on documents that transfer interest in Florida real property, such as warranty deeds and quit claim deeds. Additional taxes are charged for fuels, tobacco products, communications services, and more. For a full of account of taxes charged in Florida, see the website.

Corporate Income Tax

While individuals do not have to pay income taxes, the same is not true for all types of businesses in Florida. Corporations and artificial entities that conduct business, or earn or receive income in Florida, including out-of-state corporations, must file a Florida corporate income tax return unless exempt. They must file a return even if no tax is due. Sole proprietorships, individuals, estates of decedents, and testamentary trusts are exempted and do not have to file a return. S Corporations are usually exempt as well, unless federal income tax is owed. The Florida Corporate Income Tax rate is 5.5%.

For more information about the types of businesses in Florida, click here.

Reemployment Tax (formerly Unemployment Tax)

Eligible businesses must also pay the Reemployment Tax. Formerly called the Unemployment Tax before being renamed in 2012, this tax is used to give partial, temporary income to workers who lose their jobs through no fault of their own, and who are able and available to work.

 

Egyptian Satirist Bassem Youssuf Conducts Choir In Song Mocking Muslim Brotherhood

Following are excerpts from a satirical song, sung by a choir with Egyptian satirist Bassem Yousuf as conductor. The song, which mocks the Muslim Brotherhood and its ties with Qatar, aired on Egypt’s CBC TV on April 5, 2013.

Click here to view this clip on MEMRI TV:

Choir: “My beloved Qatar, my little brother –

“day after day its wealth increases,

“Its investments fill its life,

“my Qatar squanders money ostentatiously.

“My Qatar, my Qatar…”

Singer: “My Qatar, your money has filled my land,

“my Qatar, give me more, and I will be pleased.

“My Qatar, your money has filled my land,

“my Qatar, give me more, and I will be pleased.

“We will end up begging for alms abroad,

“after going bankrupt in the revolution.

“You are so big –

“bigger than the entire Gulf, bigger than history.

“Oh my Qatar…”

Choir: “My beloved Qatar, my little brother –

“day after day its wealth increases,

“Its investments fill its life,

“my Qatar squanders money ostentatiously.

“My Qatar, my Qatar…”

Singer: “My country is a paradise, of which people are envious.

“Soon it will be sold in shop windows.

“My country is a paradise, of which people are envious.

“Soon it will be sold in shop windows.

“My country used to own the [Suez] Canal,

“and now you humiliate it by planning to lease it [to Qatar].

“My country used to own the [Suez] Canal,

“and now you humiliate it by planning to lease it [to Qatar].

“Sell it to the Qataris, and enjoy their bounty.

“Sell them the pyramids, and we’ll build two more.

“Sell it to the Qataris, and enjoy their bounty.

“Sell them the pyramids, and we’ll build two more.

“We are a country that is always good,

“throw us a little money, and we’ll start saving.

“We are doing it all for your sake, my beloved Qatar.”

Choir: “My beloved Qatar, my little brother –

“day after day its wealth increases,

“Its investments fill its life,

“my Qatar squanders money ostentatiously.

“My Qatar, my Qatar…”

Singer: “How sweet of Qatar to fill up our pockets,

“How sweet of this disaster to pull down our flag.

“How sweet of Qatar to fill up our pockets,

“How sweet of this disaster to pull down our flag.

“How sweet is this revival that crushes our people,

“it is the sweetest impaling rod in our lives.

“This is what we’ve got from the Muslim Brotherhood,

“they are selling Egypt wholesale as well as retail.

“This is what we’ve got from the Muslim Brotherhood,

“they are selling Egypt wholesale as well as retail.

“In the Rod El Farag, Dokki, and Shubra neighborhoods [of Cairo],

“the people are ecstatic and grateful.

“The entire Egyptian people is grateful.”

Analysis of the Prop 8 and DOMA “gay marriages” cases before US Supreme Court — what’s going on and what could happen.

The following comprehensive analysis is provided by MassResistance.org:

As most people know, this is a terribly critical time regarding the imposition of “gay marriage” on America.

On Tuesday, March 26, the United States Supreme Court in Washington heard arguments on the lawsuit to overturn the Proposition 8 Constitutional Amendment vote in California. The following day, the Court heard arguments on the lawsuit to overturn the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).

Either of these would be huge wins for the homosexual movement and could change the country similar to the way that the repeal of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” changed the military.

Christian-bashing. Homosexual activist taunts Christians gathered near US
Supreme Court building during “gay marriage” arguments. Expect to see
more of this if any of these cases wins.

Both of these cases were strategically targeted and crafted for maximum success. And they were filed in carefully chosen venues to get the most gay-friendly federal judges. All of that worked out stunningly for the homosexual legal teams. Both cases sailed through the federal courts with barely a hitch. And both, as we shall see, were further aided by less than stellar representation by their opposition.

Both cases have generated mountains of paperwork in their filings, amicus briefs, and rulings, along with the myriad of groups and individuals that have been involved on each side,. It can be quite overwhelming. Our aim here is to explain all this in reasonably simple terms.

Most important to understand is that both of these cases have used the “equal protection under the law” clause of the US Constitution’s 14th Amendment as their primary argument. And in our opinion, this what the pro-family side has largely failed to effectively defend.

The Proposition 8 Case

Since 1998, 30 states have passed constitutional amendments to ban same-sex “marriage.” An additional state, Hawaii, passed an amendment to allow the legislature to decide. Nine states currently allow same-sex “marriage.”

The homosexual movement calculated that it could undo all of this by getting a federal court to declare such an amendment unconstitutional. They decided to target the California amendment, known as “Proposition 8”, which was passed in 2008.

Tolerance? During Proposition 8 campaign in California, two lesbians parked this car in front of home of parents and 5 children who supported Proposition 8.

There were good reasons for this choice. California is in the very liberal 9th Circuit federal court district. But in addition, they were able to arrange for Judge Vaughn Walker to preside over the case. Walker, who later publicly acknowledged he was homosexual, struck down the amendment. (However, he did order a stay of enforcement until it worked its way through the legal system. This stay was challenged in court by the homosexual legal team but in this they were not successful.)

The gist of the case, as mentioned above, is that under the “equal protection under the law” clause of the US Constitution, homosexuals who want to marry were being treated differently from heterosexuals who want to marry. Instead, California allows them to enter into civil unions. Such discrimination is unconstitutional, they argue. Homosexual couples should have the same rights to marry as heterosexuals, because they as citizens have the same basic civil rights. The federal judge and the appeals judges all agreed with that reasoning.

The counter-argument was that the same laws on marriage apply to everybody — i.e., everyone can marry someone of the opposite sex — therefore, there’s no “equal protection” problem. But that was rejected by the judges. The fact that the lawyers on our side accepted California’s civil union law as a legitimate compromise made that argument difficult to defend. (That was another strategic reason for choosing California as the target.)

But beyond that, the pro-family handling of that case was widely criticized as a “perfect storm” of incompetence and non-aggression. See the MassResistance report from 2010 on this.

It’s always appeared to us that the only effective way to discredit the “equal protection” argument would be to discredit homosexual behavior itself. It should be easy. There’s certainly an enormous amount of material to do that. But the pro-family lawyers have almost completely avoided that approach.

Thus, during the US Supreme Court arguments, when the right made a brief foray into some stronger points, it didn’t go well. Here’s how (the far-left pro-gay) Mother Jones magazine reported on pro-family lawyer Charles J. Cooper’s interchange with the justices:

When Cooper argued that California was justified in enacting the ban because of “society’s interest in responsible procreation,” Justice Elena Kagan asked if it would be constitutional to ban marriages between infertile couples. When Cooper argued that it’s possible that same-sex marriage harms children, Justice Anthony Kennedy pointed out that there were already more than 40,000 children being raised by same-sex couples in California. Asked by Kennedy and Kagan how same-sex marriage could have a negative effect on “traditional” marriages, Cooper couldn’t offer any examples.

According to reports, throughout all the court hearings the pro-family lawyers were trying craft arguments that would fit the predicted the temperament of Justice Kennedy, the assumed “swing vote,” rather than on the strict legal aspects of the case. It’s an interesting type of calculated risk.

If the Supreme Court ultimately agrees with the lower courts, what does that mean? The answer: It’s devastating. 

It would effectively strike down all laws and state constitutional amendments in the US against same-sex “marriage.” This is the holy grail of the entire homosexual movement. It will basically undo all the work that’s been done in defending marriage, and in one stroke will completely redefine the family unit for the entire country. Like the 1973 abortion ruling, it would be a sweeping mandate by judicial fiat with no possibility of fighting back by the citizens.

The Defense of Marriage (DOMA) case

DOMA was passed in 1996 by huge majorities in Congress and was signed into law by President Bill Clinton. The law (1) bars the federal government from recognizing same-sex “marriages” in any of its laws, programs, benefits, etc. It also (2) gives individual states the legal option not to recognize them, even if other states allow them.

The homosexual movement’s strategy here was to file several cases and hope that at least one was successful. In 2009 and 2010 four separate federal lawsuits seeking to overturn DOMA were filed: two in Massachusetts, one in Connecticut, and one in New York. All four were filed in “pro-gay” federal court venues with relatively gay-friendly judges presiding.
July 9, 2010: The DOMA ruling in Boston Federal Court was celebrated in the mainstream press as a great civil rights victory.

July 9, 2010: The DOMA ruling in Boston Federal Court was celebrated in the mainstream press as a great civil rights victory.

But the “equal protection” clause was the primary argument they used, but one of the Massachusetts lawsuits also invoked the 10th Amendment “states’ rights” argument. (Ironically, the “states’ rights” argument has also been used — more persuasively — by lawyers on our side of this case. They argue on the rights of states NOT to recognize “gay marriage” on a federal level.)

MassResistance had followed the two lawsuits in Massachusetts, one filed by Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley and the other by Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders (GLAD) legal group, as they went through the federal court in Boston. Read our analysis published in 2010.

VIDEO: Telling it like it is. After the Boston Federal Court ruling, Brian Camenker of MassResistance was interviewed by CNN.(Also see video of local TV interview.)

All four anti-DOMA lawsuits won in the federal courts. A contributing factor was the weak-kneed defense of DOMA by the Obama Administration’s justice department. The DOJ’s reluctance to be aggressive was admitted to in a statement in February, 2011.

From these, the US Supreme Court selected the New York case, Windsor v United States, to hear. But after seeing how poorly the Obama Administration defended the DOMA case in the lower courts, the House of Representatives sued and won the right to hire its own legal counsel to defend it before the Supreme Court. They hired former Solicitor General Paul Clement.

After Clement accepted case, his high-profile firm, King and Spaulding in Atlanta, caved in to pressure from homosexual activists and withdrew the firm it! So Clement resigned from the firm and has continued defending DOMA.

The DOMA lawsuit targets particular part of the law (Section 3 in the statute) which states:

In determining the meaning of any Act of Congress, or of any ruling, regulation, or interpretation of the various administrative bureaus and agencies of the United States, the word “marriage” means only a legal union between one man and one woman as husband and wife, and the word “spouse” refers only to a person of the opposite sex who is a husband or a wife.’

The plaintiffs have argued that the federal government must treat “gay marriages” the same as regular marriages throughout all its laws, regulations, etc., because “gay people” have the same rights as everyone else and “gay marriages” are still marriages. Otherwise, “gay people” are not being treated equally under the law. And it’s the right of the states to determine that.

Unfortunately, in our opinion, Clement’s oral arguments before the Supreme Court and in his briefs were only moderately better than the pro-family Proposition 8 lawyers. He didn’t aggressively take on the heart of the matter regarding “equal protection” — the issue of homosexuality and homosexual behavior. Instead, he mostly stuck to the states’ rights argument and the traditional purposes and reasons for the institution of marriage.

Interestingly, it was Justice Kagan who brought out the fact that DOMA was originally passed because of the widespread disgust over homosexuality in America. As Politico reported:

Kagan read aloud from the House Judiciary Committee report on DOMA which described the statute as a way to resist the immorality of homosexuality. “I’m going to quote from the House report here….’Congress decided to reflect an honor of collective moral judgment and to express moral disapproval of homosexuality,'” she said.

How important are these points? No one can really tell.

If the Supreme Court upholds the lower court ruling and overturns the key Section 3 of DOMA, the homosexual movement can accomplish the following:

  • It would require the federal government (funded by taxpayers in all 50 states) to include homosexual “marriages” in all federal benefits. This includes Social Security, federal pensions, Medicare, Medicaid, Veteran’s benefits, and everything else involving marriage, including filing jointly on Federal income taxes.
  • It also includes access to federal programs and other things run or controlled by the federal government, such as housing, federal loans, passports, health insurance, military housing, burial in military cemeteries, etc. Thus, the federal government would recognize homosexual behavior as equal to regular marriage throughout the range of all its activities.

  • But even more frightening: Given the wording of the decision it would also likely extend to any activities that receive federal funding, such as state programs, college programs, and virtually anything else involving federal money, such as federal contracts. We believe that the Obama administration would use this as a lever to accelerate the forced equalization of homosexuality with heterosexuality in all federal activities or anything connected to federal money — similar to the way it did in the military with the repeal of “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell.”

Also going on: Massive nationwide PR assault

The two Supreme Court cases are the homosexual movement’s “ground war.” There is also the “air war” going on.

Most people, even pro-family activists, don’t realize that for the last few months America has been under what’s likely the largest and most expensive public relations campaign in the history of the homosexual movement.

All of those politicians (including some Republicans) who are suddenly very publicly “coming around” on the “gay marriage” issue isn’t a coincidence but clearly the result of a very intense lobbying effort — targeted for the time when the Supreme Court would be considering the “gay marriage” cases.

The same goes for the huge news generated when Sen. Portman’s “gay” son conveniently persuaded them to change his mind at just the right time. And how does it happen to get into all the right media in the right way? It goes on and on. There are the full-page ads in major newspapers listing the major corporations supporting “gay marriage.” The influx of gay-marriage and gay-relationship issues on this season’s TV shows. The magazine stories, including TIME with the homosexual kisses. Even the flood of Internet ads (even on conservative sites) on gay marriage. And of course, the phony polls on major networks showing a huge national support for gay marriage. We’ve even seen “gay rights” sidewalk canvassers in some cities.

“Gay” ads flood the Internet. And we meaneverywhere! Actual screenshot of National Review Online website, Feb. 13, 2013 with two prominent ads for Human Rights Campaign, radical homosexual group. Ads say: “Take a stand against fear, hate-mongering, and bigotry. Make a monthly gift.”

Most of the money for this seems to be flowing from established groups like Human Rights Campaign, GLAAD, and National Gay and Lesbian Task Force. But there are obviously other vehicles that are less visible at work.

It a D-Day-like effort to persuade the nation — and especially the Supreme Court — that “gay marriage” is inevitable and that trying to fight it is fruitless.

A tale of two marriage rallies: DC and Boston

The two “gay marriage” rallies that took place the first day of the first Supreme Court “gay marriage” oral arguments said a lot about the nature of this battle.

On Tuesday, March 26, thousands of regular pro-family people made the trip to Washington DC and marched outside the Supreme Court building, easily outnumbering the homosexual activists gathered there. The speakers were various pro-family activists, group leaders, and a few politicians.

That same day in downtown Boston it was the elites: The homosexual lobby and the liberal establishment held its own rally celebrating the DOMA lawsuit which was first filed in Boston. It attracted a few hundred activists and press. But the speakers were an impressive gathering of at least a dozen prominent city, state, and federal politicians, including the Mayor of Boston, Congressman Ed Markey, along with major homosexual activist leaders. (There was one Republican, US Senate candidate and current state rep. Dan Winslow, who gave a rousing pro-gay speech.)

VIDEO: What it was like. Scenes from the two marriage rallies: Washington DC the Boston.

How will the Supreme Court rule?

As the battle continues across the country, over the next few months the Justices and their staffs will digest the oral arguments and the large number of amicus briefs submitted by both sides, and also discuss the cases among themselves. It’s generally predicted that they will release their decision in the latter part of June, just before this year’s session ends at the end of June.

If this were decided strictly on the rule of law, we think that both cases would lose. Applying “equal protection under the law” to homosexual behavior is absurd by any rational application. And the states’ rights argument is far-fetched, despite the liberal Boston judge’s ruling; DOMA was written to protect states’ rights. But unfortunately, there’s a long history of the courts ignoring the obvious constitutional law.

The conventional wisdom is that Anthony Kennedy will be the deciding vote on this. So most of the national focus has been on him. Scalia, Thomas, Roberts, and Alito are considered safe traditionalists expected to decide against both cases, and Ginsberg, Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan are seen as left-wing on just about everything and will support both. (The fact that Sotomayor and Kagan, the Obama nominees with documented radical pasts, are even on the Supreme Court is a testament to the cowardice of the Republican Party for not blocking them when they should have.)

Many commentators have also read in their tea leaves that Kennedy is not eager to have the courts mandate national “gay marriage” by fiat the way the court did with the much-maligned and contentions 1972 abortion ruling. But it’s hard to believe that they would leave the homosexual movement with nothing at all.

Our prediction is that Kennedy will not overturn Proposition 8 and mandate gay marriage everywhere. But he’s likely to strike down DOMA to at least some degree, and force it throughout the federal government.

But who knows? Whatever side of the bed Kennedy gets up on that day could determine the fate of the family structure and morality in America. It’s a terrible situation. The Founding Fathers never intended courts to have this kind of despotic power over the country. But our politicians (and ultimately the citizens) and have allowed it to happen.

On the other hand, there’s still two months to go. Anything can happen. If anything the fight needs to be stepped up.

Department of State moves to strike American citizens’ suit challenging aid to the Palestinians

The United States Department of State has filed a motion seeking to dismiss the claims of 24 American citizens who sued the government over what they contend is its refusal to obey congressional restrictions concerning the funding the US provides to the Palestinian Authority (PA).  The plaintiffs, who all live in Israel, allege that Department of State, including former Secretary Hillary Clinton, had ignored congressional safeguards and transparency requirements attached to US aid to the PA.

In addition, the plaintiffs claim that the White House has not been complying with the regulations and reporting obligations governing presidential waivers which facilitate emergency funding to the Palestinians. As a result of this non-compliance, US funds have been flowing to terror groups like Hamas, the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO), the Popular Front for the Liberation of  Palestine (PFLP) and the Palestine Liberation Front. The terror financing puts the plaintiffs in danger of being killed in terror attacks.

Rather than defend the government’s foreign aid policy on its merits and provide proof that it truly knows where the US funding to the PA is going, the attorneys for the Department of State are trying to have the lawsuit dismissed on legal technicalities!  The government is arguing that the 24 Americans do not have standing to bring a suit as their fear of  being injured by Palestinian terrorism is speculative and that the issue of US funding to the Palestinians is a foreign policy power reserved to the President and cannot be reviewed by the courts.

The Department of State has asked that the District Court in Washington, DC to dismiss the proceeding without investigating the plaintiffs’ claims that US funds are being utilized by the Palestinians illegally for terrorism that could injure Americans and other innocent civilian residents of Israel.

However, as the suit contends, Americans living in proximity to these Palestinian  terror groups are in the class of individuals that Congress sought to protect through the safeguards and regulations that the White House, Department of State and USAID are disregarding. Moreover, the civil action asks the federal court to review the conduct of  the Department of State and the safeguards on funds being distributed by USAID  in its programs to the PA and to the United Nations Refugee Worker’s Administration (UNRWA) and seeks to suspend future American aid to the PA and UNRWA until all the congressionally legislated regulations and reporting requirements are fully complied with.

The lawsuit does not challenge the President and Department of State’s right to conduct foreign policy nor fund the Palestinians if they misguidedly believe they must prop up this outlaw regime economically.

What the plaintiffs instead object to, is the Executive Branch’s funding the PA without complying with the limitations put in place by Congress that were designed to protect American citizens from Palestinian terrorism. This is the reason why there is no political questions being raised, as the Department of State contends, why the requested mandamus jurisdiction is appropriate, why the suit is not about foreign policy powers but rather legitimate objections to statutory interpretation and why the 24 Americans have personally suffered a threatened injury that can be traced to the challenged action of  the government and that their threatened injury would likely be redressed by a favorable decision as the law requires.

To view the Department of State’s memo for its motion to dismiss: http://www.scribd.com/doc/134172980/Bernstein-v-Clinton-MTD-Memo.

To view the Americans’ lawsuit: http://tinyurl.com/chd5oac.

International Topless Jihad Day: ‘Our boobs stronger than their stones’

19-year-old Tunisian activist Amina Tyler

Michael Dorstewitz from BizPac Review reports:

Topless activists across Europe appeared at mosques and Tunisian embassies on Thursday in the first-ever “International Topless Jihad Day.”

The event was organized by Femen, a Kiev-based feminist organization known for staging similar topless, anti-sexism protests throughout Europe.

Thursday’s protest was held in support of 19-year-old Tunisian activist Amina Tyler, who posted two topless photographs of herself on her Facebook page.

The following clip shows one of the demonstrations held in front of a mosque.

Read more.

Rep. Buchanan (FL-13): UN “Inefficient.” “Inconsistent.” “Unpredictable.”

Congressman Vern Buchanan, FL-13

Congressman Vern Buchanan in an email to constituents cited a report calling the United Nations inefficient, inconsistent and unpredictable.”  

Read the full text of his email below:

America is one of 193 member countries of the United Nations, yet it pays nearly 25 percent of the organization’s cost. It would be one thing if we were getting our money’s worth. But a scathing new report exposes gross waste and inefficiency. And who prepared the report? The U.N.’s own internal watchdog — the Joint Inspection Unit.

“Inefficient.” “Inconsistent.” “Unpredictable.”  

These were just a few of the adjectives the watchdog group used to describe the U.N.’s humanitarian aid practices. In its report issued earlier this month, the Inspection Unit cited multiple instances where basic global relief efforts were only “partly met” and where the reporting and monitoring of humanitarian financing remained “somewhat elusive.”

This is unacceptable.

For over 60 years, the United States has been the largest contributor to the U.N., giving a whopping $3.5 billion each year. Over the years, audits and inspections of the U.N. have unveiled repeated cases of waste, fraud and abuse. Few can forget the recent scandal involving the U.N.’s procurement department revealing that over 40 percent of the agency’s peacekeeping contracts were tainted by fraud.

It’s bad enough that the world’s largest and most prominent international organization struggles to manage its own finances. It’s even worse when you consider who is predominantly footing the bill for this mismanagement — the American taxpayer.

At a time when America faces unprecedented fiscal challenges, we simply cannot afford to be wasting tax dollars on ineffective overseas projects that lack full transparency and accountability. That’s why I have voted to cut off spending taxpayer dollars on dues to the United Nations. We need to take care of America first.

As always, please let me know what you think.

Vern

This email comes as the Obama administration is pushing a UN arms control treaty through the US Senate. According  Theodore R. Bromund, Ph.D. from the Heritage Foundation, “One of the most important disputes in the negotiation of the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) at the United Nations is the question of whether the treaty should include a customary international law (CIL) criterion. This is a complex question. It is also one fraught with considerable risks for the United States, which should firmly oppose the introduction of such a criterion into the treaty.”