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Pretty much SOP for the incumbent when the opposition candidates can't get their ducks in a row.

I believe the US right is too deeply divided to agree on a viable candidate for many years to come. The McCain/Palin ticket was probably better than anything they will come up with this election.


The bottom line, of course, is that Obama isn't as bad as the corporate media try make him out.

Even the worse thing I've heard some of our Republicans say about him is that he uses a Teleprompter. B)


Finally when the GOP has decided their candidate, Obama just needs to rerun the Rep's own attack ads against their fellow party members, as dirty as the ads already were and will be.doah.gif

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F*cking Banks!!



New bank fees to watch for in 2012


Already, a checking-account customer may be charged as many as 49 different fees — and that’s just the median number of fees, according to a study by the Pew Institute of 250 types of checking accounts offered by the 10 largest U.S. banks. See an infographic of the Pew's study results here.


Many new or higher fees are designed to offset revenue losses from the 2009 Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act and other new regulations, or simply to help banks reduce their costs by, for instance, encouraging you to use the Internet.


“New fees that you’ve never heard of before, such as those for getting paper statements, will be coming,†said Pam Banks, senior policy counsel for Consumers Union. Read more: Your bank wants to be your new best friend



Overdraft fees


It’s painful when you’re hit with an overdraft fee, but Banks says they’re likely to get worse, going as high as $40 or $45, depending on your bank. That’s up from an average of $27.50 last year, according to Moebs Services, and higher than what credit unions generally charge.


Monthly minimums


Monthly fees on some checking accounts can run about $14 a month or almost $170 a year, according to BankRate.com, but new requirements are on the horizon.


“We’ve already seen fees kick in in December that might continue into this year — stealth fees like increasing the monthly minimum balance requirements to avoid maintenance fees,†Matjanec said.


Citibank’s EZ checking, no longer available to new customers, requires a balance of $6,000 to avoid the $15 monthly fee, rising from a minimum of $1,500 to avoid $7.50.


Wiring money


Looking to send money the same day? You should watch out for new fees here, too, especially if you’re a frequent user. Some banks are already starting to increase wire transfer fees or even charge for incoming wire transfers that previously were free. TD Bank, for example, is now charging $15 for an incoming wire, up from zero.


Card replacement


Lost a card? Too bad there’s not a GPS tracker for your cards! The fees to replace them are going up and we’re likely to see more.


Bank of America, for instance, now charges $5, up from $2 previously. If you need your card within 24 hours, it’ll run $20 (in part to pay for the overnight delivery).

Other fees


In an effort to reduce costs related to hired help and to mailing paper statements, banks will also provide more incentives to do it yourself, online. PNC and BBVA Compass are now charging $3 and $5, respectively, to have funds transferred with the help of a phone rep, although you can do it free online.


And those paper statements? Yes, they’re a real cost and banks may start charging you for them, too, or reducing other fees for going electronic.


TD Bank, for example, will reduce your monthly maintenance fees by $1 if you choose electronic statements over paper. You may also see monthly statement fees with some banks.


Banks like USA Bank and PNC now charge $25 for closing your account within 180 days. Chase tested the concept but opted not to roll it out, Matjanec said.


They were fee-ing us to death while they were making money, get bailed out and now increase it over money they lost themselves. You can't make it up. There should have been some stipulations in that bailout about fees and such. Our tax money gave them money to screw us over even more.

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Can Obama’s plan for ‘insourcing’ help revive U.S. manufacturing?


"Right now we have an excellent opportunity to bring manufacturing back -- but we have to seize it," Obama said. The president praised Master Lock during his State of the Union Address last month for bringing back to its Milwaukee plant around 100 jobs that previously had been moved to China.

At an 'Insourcing American Jobs' forum held last month, Obama urged a reorientation of the economy toward manufacturing. "I don't want America to be a nation that's primarily known for financial speculation and racking up debt buying stuff from other nations," he said. "I want us to be known for making and selling products all over the world stamped with three proud words: 'Made in America.' "


Don't see how we're going to do this. Yeah, we'll get some manufacturing jobs but from what I can see the econmics just aren't there. First and foremost is the cost of labor. Just don't see it.


To encourage the trend, the Obama administration wants to scrap tax deductions for shipping jobs overseas, and offer new incentives for returning them to the United States. The administration is also pushing for a $2 billion per year tax credit to encourage manufacturers to invest in struggling communities, among other measures.


That's a start. I've been advocating cutting corporate welfare for companies doing business overseas for a while. They don't need it.

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It should certainly be applied if the US company closes in the US and takes it's manufacturing division overseas to take advantage of the $2 a day wages in Indonesia.

When are these idiots going to realise that eventually no one in the US will be able to afford $200 for a pair of shoes.

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It should certainly be applied if the US company closes in the US and takes it's manufacturing division overseas to take advantage of the $2 a day wages in Indonesia.

When are these idiots going to realise that eventually no one in the US will be able to afford $200 for a pair of shoes.


The occupy movement forced this fact into the mainstream media. For politicians and the connected businesses were able to play this down...




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Interracial marriage in US hits new high: 1 in 12



WASHINGTON (AP) — Interracial marriages in the U.S. have climbed to 4.8 million — a record 1 in 12 — as a steady flow of new Asian and Hispanic immigrants expands the pool of prospective spouses. Black Americans are now substantially more likely than before to marry whites.


A Pew Research Center study, released Thursday, details a diversifying America where interracial unions and the mixed-race children they produce are challenging typical notions of race.


"The rise in interracial marriage indicates that race relations have improved over the past quarter century," said Daniel Lichter, a sociology professor at Cornell University. "Mixed-race children have blurred America's color line. They often interact with others on either side of the racial divide and frequently serve as brokers between friends and family members of different racial backgrounds," he said. "But America still has a long way to go."


The figures come from previous censuses as well as the 2008-2010 American Community Survey, which surveys 3 million households annually. The figures for "white" refer to those caucasians who are not of Hispanic ethnicity. For purposes of defining interracial marriages, Hispanic is counted as a race by many in the demographic field.


The study finds that 8.4 percent of all current U.S. marriages are interracial, up from 3.2 percent in 1980. While Hispanics and Asians remained the most likely, as in previous decades, to marry someone of a different race, the biggest jump in share since 2008 occurred among blacks, who historically have been the most segregated.


States in the West where Asian and Hispanic immigrants are more numerous, including Hawaii, Nevada, New Mexico and California, were among the most likely to have couples who "marry out" — more than 1 in 5. The West was followed by the South, Northeast and Midwest. By state, mostly white Vermont had the lowest rate of intermarriage, at 4 percent.


In all, more than 15 percent of new marriages in 2010 were interracial.


The numbers also coincide with Pew survey data showing greater public acceptance of mixed marriage, coming nearly half a century after the Supreme Court in 1967 barred race-based restrictions on marriage. (In 2000, Alabama became the last state to lift its unenforceable ban on interracial marriages.) About 83 percent of Americans say it is "all right for blacks and whites to date each other," up from 48 percent in 1987. As a whole, about 63 percent of those surveyed say it "would be fine" if a family member were to marry outside their own race.


Minorities, young adults, the higher educated and those living in Western or Northeast states were more likely to say mixed marriages are a change for the better for society. The figure was 61 percent for 18- to 29-year-olds, for instance, compared to 28 percent for those 65 and older.


Due to increasing interracial marriages, multiracial Americans are a small but fast-growing demographic group, making up about 9 million, or 8 percent of the minority population. Together with blacks, Hispanics and Asians, the Census Bureau estimates they collectively will represent a majority of the U.S. population by mid-century.


"Race is a social construct; race isn't real," said Jonathan Brent, 28. The son of a white father and Japanese-American mother, Brent helped organize multiracial groups in southern California and believes his background helps him understand situations from different perspectives.


Brent, now a lawyer in Charlottesville, Va., says at varying points in his life he has identified with being white, Japanese and more recently as someone of mixed ethnic background. He doesn't feel constrained with whom he socially interacts or dates.


"Race is becoming a personal thing. It is what I feel like I am," he said.


According to the Pew report, more than 25 percent of Hispanics and Asians who married in 2010 had a spouse of a different race. That's compared to 17.1 percent of blacks and 9.4 percent of whites. Of the 275,500 new interracial marriages in 2010, 43 percent were white-Hispanic couples, 14.4 percent were white-Asian, 11.9 percent were white-black, and the remainder were other combinations.


Still, the share of Asians who intermarried has actually declined recently — from 30.5 percent in 2008 to 27.7 percent in 2010. In contrast, blacks who married outside their race increased in share from 15.5 percent to 17.1 percent, due in part to a rising black middle class that has more interaction with other races.


Intermarriage among whites rose in share slightly, while among Hispanics the rate was flat, at roughly 25.7 percent.


"In the past century, intermarriage has evolved from being illegal, to be a taboo and then to be merely unusual. And with each passing year, it becomes less unusual," said Paul Taylor, director of Pew's Social & Demographic Trends project. "That says a lot about the state of race relations. Behaviors have changed and attitudes have changed."


He noted that interracial marriages among Hispanics and Asians may be slowing somewhat as recent immigration and their rapid population growth provide minorities more ethnically similar partners to choose from. But Taylor believes the longer-term trend of intermarriage is likely to continue.


"For younger Americans, racial and ethnic diversity are a part of their lives," he said.


The Pew study also tracks some divorce trends, citing studies using government data that found overall divorce rates higher for interracial couples. One study conducted a decade ago determined that mixed-race couples had a 41 percent chance of separation or divorce, compared to a 31 percent chance for those who married within their race.


Another analysis found divorce rates among mixed-race couples to be more dependent on the specific race combination, with white women who married outside their race more likely to divorce. Mixed marriages involving blacks and whites also were considered least stable, followed by Hispanic-white couples.


Other findings:


—Broken down by gender, black men were more than twice as likely as black women to marry someone outside their race — 24 percent to 9 percent. The reverse held true for Asian men — 17 percent intermarried, compared to 36 percent among Asian women.


—White-Asian couples who married had the highest median income, nearly $71,000. Behind them were the following race combinations: Asian-Asian ($62,000), white-white ($60,000), white-Hispanic ($57,900), white-black ($53,187), black-black ($47,700) and Hispanic-Hispanic (nearly $36,000).


—The top three states for white-black married couples are Virginia, North Carolina and Kansas, all with rates of about 3 percent.


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