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GOP Draft Platform: A Time Warp Back To 1956

Republican National Convention 2016

With the Republican party convention starting on Monday, July 18, the draft platform has been reported and it’s like the GOP exist in 1956; not 2016 and features a number of constitutional issues.

Of course, being the religious right conservative party in the US; Republicans want to reverse the Supreme Court’s decision to allow same sex couples to marry. It gets worse; they also want to allow parents to force their LGBT children into “conversion therapy“; to force the gayness out, like being gay is a choice. Finally, the Republicans want bible study to be part of public school education, albeit an elective class.

I don’t follow any religion and identify as agnostic so I believe all of the above to be outrageous. Religion has no place in schools; however, if individuals decide to pursue religious studies extracurricularly, that’s their choice. In my view, this is in breach of the first amendment; which states “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof…”

If the Christian bible is to be taught under the guise of a historical document; then all other religious texts should be taught as well. This is why I say that teaching kids about the bible is unconstitutional. It’s not freedom of religion when only Christian beliefs are being pushed with the Quran is being ignored. The fact remains that not all Americans are Christian, so why should Christianity be forced upon our kids?

Being agnostic, I get bashed over the head with “America was founded as a Christian nation”. So I have researched it and although some of the founding fathers had Christian beliefs; the constitution was not based upon any religion. It wasn’t until the 19th century that Christianity started to exert it’s dominance. CNN has a rather interesting article on the question of “Was America founded as a Christian nation?“.

I don’t believe it’s wise for Republicans to push the anti-gay platform as the majority of Americans support same sex marriage. And propagating the idea that being gay is a choice and therapy can drive the gay out of people is ludicrous. By that reckoning, therapy can also drive being heterosexual out of people.

We continue with the anti-gay rhetoric; the platform says that a traditional male and female household is healthier for children and aims to stop same sex couples from adopting. This of course has zero basis in reality, a UCLA study suggests that being raised by same sex couples makes no difference whatsoever.

Now we come to the big one; PORNOGRAPHY is a “public health crisis”. I didn’t know this; but 25% of all web requests are to porn websites, some of which I am responsible for; I’m married, not dead :)

Not a single mention of gun reform and/or regulation; something that kills over 30,000 Americans every year. But porn, which as far as I know has caused nothing more than a slight wrist strain, is EVIL!

There are also plans to abolish the national park system and hand them back to the states where they are located, which is easier said than done as they span multiple states. Which reading between the lines means that these federal lands will be sold off for profit and to hell with the wildlife, plants and geology.

It seems like the Republicans want to go back to the 1950s with this sort of platform. But this is not the world we live in right now, the US is much more progressive than the GOP want to believe it would seem.

The issue is that there is a two party system in the US; the Republicans (the regressive party) and the Democrats (the no change party). When we need a truly progressive party, a party that represents Generation Y, otherwise know as Millennials. The under 40s are the people who will take the country into the future with progressive, inclusive ideas, which ironically is headed up by a 74 year old white man!

Finally, the GOP website says “Paychecks should not be wasted on poorly run government programs” under a list of what it means to be Republican. Then, by that reckoning, we should close down the house and senate as they have done NOTHING for the people in the past four years. I would describe both the senate and house as poorly run, let’s defund these useless idiots on both sides of the political divide.


Formula 1 British Grand Prix 2016

Lewis Hamilton Crowdsurfs After British GP Victory

Mercedes driver, Lewis Hamilton closed to within one point of team mate and championship leader, Nico Rosberg taking a dominant victory at Silverstone on a typical British afternoon. Max Verstappen took the chequered flag in third place after a valiant, but futile defense of second place against Rosberg; but those positions were switched post race due to Mercedes’ infringement of radio communication rules.

The race started behind the safety car; which is disappointing, F1 is supposed to be the pinnacle of motorsport; I don’t think so. Back in the day, it was rare to have a race start under safety car conditions. Now there seems to be an automatic safety car if there is more than a sprinkle of water on the track.

The race got started in anger on lap 6 when a third of the field immediately went into the pits for intermediate tires. Then on lap 7 the second third pitted for intermediate tires. Finally on lap 8 the leaders came in for intermediate tires under virtual safety car conditions due to Pascal Wehrlein beaching his Manor in the gravel trap. After the shakeup; Hamilton led Rosberg in 2nd and Verstappen in 3rd.

If you’re a person who likes cars spinning and sliding on and off the track, you’d give this race a “10”, but I would say that for a mixed weather conditions race it was actually reasonably dull. Even Fernando Alonso took a trip across the gravel and managed to recover back to the track. Only the two Manor drivers crashed out while four more drivers had miscellaneous technical failures during the course of the race.

Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo finished where he started the race; in fourth place, you’d have to say he was somewhat disadvantaged by pitting a lap earlier than Verstappen; not benefiting from the VSC like his team mate and the Mercedes duo. Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen finished in fifth place; again where he started while team mate Sebastian Vettel could only manage 9th place after a race filled with incidents.

Force India’s Sergio Perez had a solid race; although you have to say he lucked into sixth place by virtue of pitting under the VSC like the three leaders. Nico Hulkenberg who didn’t pit under the VSC ended up behind Perez in seventh place despite starting three places ahead of his Force India team mate.

STR’s Carlos Sainz had a reasonable race finishing in eighth place; but was running in sixth place earlier in the race before spinning on lap 25 allowing Raikkonen and Hulkenberg to pass. The Spaniard never really recovered from losing those two positions. The final points scorer was Danill Kvyat, who has struggled with bad luck ever since his demotion from the senior Red Bull team after the Russian GP.

OK, time to address the elephant in the room; Mercedes actions in regards to breaking radio communications rules. I have already heard the conspiracy theorists talking about how Mercedes deliberately screwed Rosberg; but I feel it was just a terrible judgement call by his race engineer.

I do, however believe that Rosberg was fortunate to only receive a 10 second time penalty, it could have been a lot worse for the German, the FIA stewards have the option of excluding him from the race.

On the flip side of that, I still think this radio communication ban is stupid, F1 is supposedly a team sport, yet the driver has to be “unaided and alone”. I simply believe that a race driver traveling at speeds in excess of 200mph shouldn’t be fiddling with controls on the steering wheel, either make it simpler or relax the radio ban to allow teams to pass on information about car issues and how to fix those issues.


Two More Black Men Needlessly Killed By Police

Scene In Baton Rouge After Alton Sterling Killing

Over the last two days, there has been two seemingly needless killings of black men over 1,100 miles apart. Alton Sterling was shot between 4 and 6 times while being restrained on the ground by law enforcement in Baton Rouge, LA. Just one day later, Philando Castile was shot and killed in his car by an officer while reaching for his drivers license as requested by the officer in Falcon Heights, MN.

Now, I am not going to go on a tirade like many people online have; calling the police (as a generality) murderers, killers, racists etc, there are plenty of good officers that take their oath to “protect and serve” very seriously. But there seems to be an issue within law enforcement when it comes to race in the USA.

The Baton Rouge incident could possibly be justified; there was a 911 call saying that Sterling was waving a gun at people passing. We don’t know for sure what happened prior to the start of the damning videos. But, the multiple videos online seem to suggest that Sterling was relatively subdued, when the officer yells “GUN”, then fires off three shots, followed by a pause and another three shots were discharged.

Sterling is a known felon who allegedly owned a firearm, illegally but his rap sheet does not justify the actions of the officer. We cannot continue to justify these kind of slayings using the victims past record and reputation. These men and woman have already been charged and often served their debt to society.

The incident in Falcon Heights is inexcusable; Philando Castile was in a car with his girlfriend and child, fully complying with the officer’s instructions. Despite his compliance, Castile was shot repeatedly by the officer while reaching for his drivers license. Castile also informed the officer that he was armed with a permit. Of course, this is the account of Castile’s girlfriend, which we have no reason to disbelieve.

Now, I come to issues with race, clearly there are issues with racial profiling. There are stark differences in the handling of white people in similar situations to that of Sterling and Castile and the handling of black individuals. Is there such distrust of black men by law enforcement throughout the country that officers tend have their hand on their gun ready to draw, just in case? In many shootings of black men, there was little time between arriving on scene and drawing and/or discharging their weapon, often multiple times.

So where do we go from here; current police training tells officers to shoot first, ask questions later. We should be training officers to assess and deescalate the situation. To use better community policing in neighborhoods to head off issues before they get to the tipping point. The Police also need to stop the racial profiling and enforce equal justice for all, blacks are targeted massively disproportionately; this has been an issue for multiple decades; we just hear about it more in the instant social media age.

I honestly fear for my wife, who is African American and my mixed race kids; a routine traffic stop should never end with someone being shot and killed in their own car. With these cases coming to light due to social media video, I fear that African Americans will start carrying guns and using them on, more than likely good officers who don’t have their hand on their gun, while the bad apples go unchecked.

From a personal perspective, it broke my heart to see Alton Sterling’s 15 year old son distraught while his mother gave a statement to the press, if that does not tug on your heartstrings, there is something wrong with you. Between the mass shootings and police killings, I truly despair about the direction in which the USA is heading. I question whether the people in power want to change the direction or whether the lawmakers actively ignore the problem, it seems to me that the issue is getting worse, not better.

Update [Jul, 8 2016, 11:01]: Sadly, my prophecy about black men taking up arms and shooting white officers has come true in Dallas, TX. Five police officers have been killed by a black man, Micah Xavier Johnson, who was angry at the killings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile in recent days. I hope that this will be a wake up call for everyone. Change needs to happen, better community policing, allay those fears on both sides, stop the senseless killings on both sides, remember the police’s motto is “protect and serve”, so many don’t feel that is the case, especially in the African American community.


Formula 1 Austrian Grand Prix 2016

Hamilton & Rosberg Crash On Final Lap, Austrian GP 2016

Lewis Hamilton took victory at the Red Bull Ring in Austria despite team mate Nico Rosberg, who the Briton was overtaking on the outside going into turn 2 on the final lap clattering into him. Rosberg appeared to make very little effort to make the corner, keeping the wheel straight and then only put on 45-50% steering angle to avoid the collision, only after the collision does Rosberg turn the wheel to full lock. Secondarily, Rosberg, despite carrying damage didn’t give Hamilton room to rejoin the track.

Rosberg can protest his innocence all he likes; but the video evidence appears to suggest otherwise. Hamilton says that Rosberg was in his blind spot and expected the German to take a tighter angle into the corner as he turned in. Which is a fair assumption as Rosberg had at least two car widths between his car and the apex to his right. Anyway, it doesn’t matter what I think, the stewards decided it was Rosberg’s fault and gave him a token 10 second time penalty, which didn’t change the final result of the race.

Rosberg still finished in fourth place despite the time penalty as he had already been passed by Max Verstappen and Kimi Raikkonen on track. I do feel the penalty was lenient, but given that he had effectively lost three places already because of the collision, I guess the stewards took this into account.

Toto Wolff and Niki Lauda both said that their drivers were marginal on brakes which could explain why Rosberg went so deep. Again Mercedes cited the radio ban as part of the cause as they could not tell their drivers about the brake issues. Although earlier in the race, Mercedes did tell Hamilton that Rosberg was on a softer compound than him, which I believe does also breach the radio communication rules.

Ferrari also had a mixed day; Sebastian Vettel suffered a huge right rear super-soft tire blowout on lap 27 while attempting a one stop strategy. Which did not help Rosberg’s cause as he was showered in rubber, damaging his Mercedes. TV commentators repeatedly pointed out the extreme tire wear, but the German continued to circulate. Vettel was quick to intimate, if not directly blame Pirelli for the tire failure.

Raikkonen brought his Ferrari home in third place, but was beaten by Verstappen to second place thanks to Rosberg’s collision with his team mate. Ferrari will be disappointed to finish behind the Red Bull in the race after being ahead in the early stages. Red Bull themselves only expected a low top 10 finish.

The second Red Bull of Daniel Ricciardo crossed the line in fifth place followed by Jenson Button, which is the Britons best finish of the season so far, decent performance from McLaren Honda to start third and finish sixth given then power unit disadvantage compared to the likes of Ferrari, Mercedes and Renault.

Romain Grosjean claimed seventh place for HAAS F1 followed by Carlos Sainz in eighth place after fighting back from near the back of the grid. Valteri Bottas finished in a lowly ninth place in the normally fast Williams around the Red Bull Ring and Pascal Wehrlein claimed a single point for perennial underdogs Manor F1, who are much improved now they have the Mercedes power unit in the back of their car.

Sadly, this is another race where the controversy overshadowed the race, the major talking point will be the Mercedes duo colliding for a second time in a little over a month. Then, there is Vettel’s intimation that Pirelli were to blame for his blowout. Pirelli have yet to find the cause of the failure just saying the failure was “an isolated incident”. And finally, the radio ban raises it’s ugly head again with Toto Wolff’s comments about how his race engineers could not pass on information about brakes being marginal.


Have AMD f**ked Up With The RX-480?

Radeon RX-480 Closeup

There has understandably been a lot of hype about the new AMD RX-480 with it’s GTX-970 like performance for just $200 for the 4GB version and $240 for the 8GB version. With me being a long time AMD fan; I really was looking forward to the company’s first new GPU in three years. But after the NDA expired on June, 29, 2016; many tech reviewers have found that AMD’s new card is drawing more power than 75 watts from the PCI-E slot, which puts the card out of spec with the PCI-E standard.

Many of you might think what’s the issue? and in many cases, you would be right. But older and budget motherboards might suffer reliability issues if too much power is being drawn from the PCI-E slot. The issue is the single six pin power, which can only provide 75w. This added to the 75w from the PCI-E slot provides a total of 150w. In select games at 4k, the RX-480 is pulling upto 155w from PCI-E slot alone.

The simplest solution would be to have installed a 8 pin power connector which could provide upto 150w instead of 75w. This would mean the PCI-E slot itself would have to provide less power, keeping the card within the certified spec. Honestly, it seems that AMD have screwed up with their 75w+75w design when 150w is clearly not enough power. We now await AMD’s response to these findings on power usage.

I’m no expert on these things, but it seems like a bad mistake for AMD to make. Claiming just a 150w total TDP and only providing 6 pin power when it clearly requires more juice. Was this a deliberate misrepresentation or did AMD just not test thoroughly enough? I don’t know the answer; but 150w TDP is clearly a myth under full gaming load for this card using the 1266mhz boost clock speed.

I will be holding off on purchasing the RX-480 until these issues have been resolved. I do run and older budget motherboard, the Asus M5A97 LE R2.0, so I am concerned about the out of spec power draw from the PCI-E interface. I’m not willing to risk damaging my motherboard and I’m not willing to buy a newer, more expensive board. I don’t overclock and the M5A97 LE has served me well for almost 4 years; I won’t pay $150 for a newer motherboard for a $240 GPU; that’s silly for the 4 year old FX8350 CPU installed.


England Knocked Out Of Euro 2016 By Iceland, Hodgson Resigns!

Iceland Victorious Over England In Euro 2016

England have been knocked out of the Euro 2016 tournament by a country that has more volcanoes than professional football players. It was definitely a shock victory by the Icelandic national team, but I think they were well worth the win; they contained the English and defended their lead like warriors.

In the immediate aftermath of the defeat in Nice, France; England manager Roy Hodgson tendered his resignation. I guess Hodgson chose to walk before he was pushed, his position was untenable after the defeat by the Icelandic national team and was sure to be fired as soon as he landed back in England.

So the performance, it was lackluster at best, England’s only goal came from the penalty spot after a silly mistake from Iceland’s goalkeeper, Hannes Halldórsson. Iceland, almost immediately equalized and frankly caught England napping, I said before the match England will be punished if they underestimate the Icelandic team. Then a calamitous fumble from Joe Hart gave the lead to Iceland in the 18th minute.

England never really looked like scoring an equalizer; Iceland looked comfortable in defence of their lead. Infact Iceland looked more likely to score a third or even fourth goal than England equalizing, but England keeper Joe Hart redeemed himself somewhat making a couple of impressive saves to deny Iceland.

All credit to Iceland, for a country with just 330,000 people and only a handful of professional footballers, defeating England in such a convincing manner is a testament to their players work ethic and ability. England on the otehr hand, looked like a bunch of amateurs who had no clue of how to attack a team 23 places below them in the world rankings; a truly sad day for English football as a whole.

Where do England go from here? obviously a new manager is needed; we’ve tried foreign managers, we’ve tried English managers, all have failed. Time for an inquest into English football as a whole, the Premier League is the richest league in the world and this performance is what we have to show for it?

Clearly, it’s not just management; the players have been poor, Wayne Rooney could not hit a good cross or pass for shit. Harry Kane looked more likely to hit the corner flag than the goal. The only shining light I could see was Marcus Rashford, who only got to play a few minutes at the end of the game. He actually ran at the Icelandic defence and caused problems; you have to question why he was not on earlier.


My First PC Build In 3 1/2 Years…

My wife has recently qualified as a realtor and she needed her own PC for her new career, which of course also required a desk, chair and space in my home office. So we bought the desk and chair plus ordered parts for me to build a middle of the road PC and this is my experience with the build.

I already had a case, PSU, graphics card, mechanical hard disk and optical drive that was salvaged from older machines, all I needed to purchase was CPU, RAM, motherboard and SSD. I went for the following hardware, Intel Pentium G4400 3.3Ghz CPU, Gigabyte H110M-A (Rev. 1.0) motherboard, 8GB (2x4GB) Kingston HyperX Fury 2133Mhz DDR4 RAM and Kingston HyperX Fury 2.5″ 120GB SATA III SSD.

I started by installing the processor, heatsink/fan, RAM and front panel connectors on the motherboard outside of the case to make my life a little easier. This is the first time I have installed a pinless CPU (with the pins being on the motherboard instead), but it was no harder than installing a traditional CPU. Installation of the included Intel cooler was as simple as pushing the pins down into the motherboard.

After dropping the motherboard into the case and securing it, I was thinking I had a bad motherboard as nothing happened when I hit the power button. I checked the cabling to make sure I didn’t miss something, but I found nothing wrong. Then I moved the case and suddenly it sprang into life. It turns out the power switch on the Sentey G6060 was broken, so I transferred all the components to a second case.

Everything powered up just fine when transferred to the Ultra XBlaster V2, which did come with a power supply, but I did not use it as it doesn’t have long enough cables to reach the 24 pin and 4 pin power connectors on the Gigabyte H110M-A. Instead I used a Thermatake TR2 500w PSU, which has terrible ketchup and mustard cabling, but it doesn’t matter as the XBlaster V2 does not have a side panel window.

Now I knew the system powered on; I installed the AMD Radeon HD 6770 GPU and did some limited cable management, the XBlaster V2 case isn’t the best case for cable management, plugged in the HyperX SSD and 500GB mechanical hard disk and plugged in a monitor and tada; the computer posted.

Now, comes everyone’s favorite part, installing Windows 10; I planned to use a Windows 10 key (upgraded from Windows 8.1) from the same deceased laptop that donated the mechanical hard disk. But that was a no go, I could not get the key validated. Then, I remembered a video from Paul’s Hardware about how to get a legal Windows license for around $30, I paid a little over $31 for Windows 10 Pro.

Once Windows was installed; I did all the required Windows updates, installed a couple of pieces of software, Spybot Anti-Beacon and 10 Apps Manager. The former blocks all Microsoft’s embedded spyware and reapplies protection on boot while the later helps you easily uninstall Windows 10 apps.

Finally, a little about the new tech; the motherboard is a cheap LGA 1151 H110 chipset, it works as advertised, although some people have complained in reviews that it is not Z170 and only has HDMI video out. This baffles me, this information is available on merchants websites. Seriously, do people expect Z170 for $50? They’re complaining because they failed to read the specs before purchase.

Anyway, excuse the mini-rant… the H110M-A is a decent board, does what it says on the box. If I am going to nitpick, I would say that the single chassis fan connector is limiting and if you were not using a discreet graphics card, the HDMI only video out is limiting for many, not all monitors have HDMI inputs.

The Pentium G4400 is fast enough for everyday use; it might chug a little if doing complex tasks like video rendering; but my wife doesn’t do that, so it won’t be a problem. I ran a system stability test and the CPU barely touched 41°C with 1000rpm 120mm Coolermaster fans front and rear of the case. Likewise, the RAM and SSD performed as expected, a big step up from the 5400rpm mechanical drive in the laptop my wife was using. So all in all, I’m more than happy with the effective (new parts) $200 system.


Is It Time To Repeal The Radio Communications Ban In F1?

Lewis Hamilton 2016 Steering Wheel

Last weekend’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix in Baku was such a bore that the only real talking point of the weekend was the radio communications ban after Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg were running in the wrong engine mode causing a drop in performance; while their race engineers on the pit wall were unable to help due to the ban on radio communication that was implemented in 2016.

The interesting thing is that Rosberg had an issue with incorrect engine settings at the Spanish Grand Prix, causing his car to go into harvesting mode which directly caused the crash that took both Mercedes drivers out of the race and nothing was really said about the radio communication ban. Now it affected Hamilton in Azerbaijan, suddenly Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff is calling for a rethink on the radio ban.

As someone that has no horse in this race between Hamilton and Rosberg, I think that Hamilton is being a whiny little bitch, especially after earlier in the weekend branding other drivers as moaners for their complaints about safety in Baku. Hamilton claims not being able to get advice from the pit wall is dangerous as he spent half the lap staring at his steering wheel trying to work out what is set incorrectly.

That aside; I believe the radio communication ban has gone too far; with the new V6 hybrid turbo engines being so complicated that drivers also need to be engineers. A common sense decision would be allow technical advice on engine modes, but not allow coaching, i.e. “take turn 1 in ‘x” gear at ‘x” speed”.

Another option would be to take it out of the drivers hands completely, make the engine control system completely automated, having the ECU control everything about the running of the engine, or have the engine map pre-programmed by the team for whatever strategy they intend to use in the session.

FIA president Jean Todt has brushed off complaints about the radio ban citing that all teams agreed unanimously about the technical and coaching radio ban. So unless all teams agree to change the rules, nothing will change in the immediate future. But, clearly some change is needed, a driver being in the car unaided and alone is silly when there are literally thousands of possible permutations and modes. Either ‘technical’ advice should be permitted or steering wheel controls need to be significantly simplified.


What Will It Take For These Elected Assholes To Take Action On Guns?

Pulse Club Shooting

Over the weekend, there was yet another mass shooting which left 49 innocent victims dead and 53 more injured. The gunman {who I refuse to name}, who is of Afghan descent was involved in a running firefight with off duty police officers working as security as he forced his way into the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, FL before firing an assault rifle indiscriminately inside before calling 911 to pledge allegiance to ISIS.

There has been 182 mass shootings in 2016; there has been six since Sunday’s massacre at the Pulse Club alone. Yet, congress refuses to do anything other than offer “thoughts and prayers” to the victims and their families; thoughts and prayers will not bring back all those innocent lives lost to gun violence.

Presumptive presidential nominee for the Republicans, Donald Trump reiterated his stance that if everyone in the club was armed with guns, it would have been a different story. And I agree, it would be a very different story, it would have been much worse. In a dark, noisy chaotic environment like a nightclub, 200+ alcohol fueled people all pulling guns and firing at perceived threats, what could possible go wrong?

The saddest thing is that it has become so normalized that we get mad for a day or two before moving on and forgetting about the dozens of victims of gun violence. In my home country of the UK; there was one mass shooting at a school in Dunblane, Scotland and public ownership of guns was swiftly restricted.

The issue is that so many members of congress take contributions from the National Rifle Association. Like all money in politics, these “donors” want something in return, Hillary can talk up the myth that money from interests they regulate does not affect their policy positions, but that will never make it true.

Don’t even get me started on the second amendment; which reads “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed”. Let’s start with the first phrase “A well regulated militia”; a bunch of untrained gun owners does not make a militia and it certainly is not organized in any way, shape or form, that’s for sure.

The second part “being necessary to the security of a free State”, just how? SHOULD the government want to take away your “free state”, no amount of guns or assault rifles will stop them. The second amendment is from a bygone age vastly different from today, time for an amendment for the modern age.

I would love to see a complete and total ban on public gun ownership; but that is next to impossible, so the next best thing is tighter control on guns, both in ability to purchase them and how to store them. There has been a number of cases in which children have shot parents because their firearm was not secured and out of reach of their children recently; this is far from responsible gun ownership.

I believe the average person is not responsible enough to own a deadly weapon; with gun ownership comes great responsibility. There are a lot of responsible gun owners, who store their firearm securely and take common sense precautions; but sadly a lot of guns are in the hands of people who seem to lack common sense, c’mon why store your gun in the back seat of your car where your child can get hold of it?

I understand that tighter gun regulation will not solve the problem, but if just one life can be saved because a person could not purchase a gun because of a mental or criminal issue, it’s worthwhile. In the Orlando shooting, the person who murdered 49 people had been investigated twice by the FBI on suspicion of terrorism, yet was still able to walk into a gun store and purchase an assault rifle, wow!

In Kansas, my state of residence, a 2015 change in gun laws means a permit is not required to purchase a firearm, nor is it a requirement to register said firearm. You cannot legally buy a car and drive it without registration, a license and insurance, so why are guns allowed to be sold without this documentation?

Back to congress, you can keep your thought and prayers; they mean absolutely nothing when you have the power to fix the problem; but keep taking the NRA money and do their bidding, never mind the thousands of people that are killed or injured by guns, we’re sick of congress’ do nothing mentality.


What Happened To Honest, Unbiased News Reporting?

Hillary Clinton At CNN Debate

During the 2016 democratic primary season I have learned that it is not at all democratic with 400+ super delegates pledging to vote for Hillary Clinton before a single public ballot was cast. And secondly, to the point of this article; so called news media have been misrepresenting the race from the very start, counting super delegates before they have even voted and are planning to raise Clinton’s hand in victory on Tuesday, June 7 at 8pm EST despite in all likelihood not passing the 2383 pledged delegate mark.

All US news media outlets have consistently included super delegates in the election results, exaggerating Clinton’s lead over Bernie Sanders, giving the impression that Sanders has no chance of winning the nomination; potentially swaying millions of voters who were on the fence towards Hillary’s yard. As I write this, Clinton’s real lead is only 290 pledged delegates, not a 792 delegate lead that the likes of CNN, MSNBC, FOX and AP are reporting. Super delegates don’t vote until the Democratic convention in July.

I am an unashamed Bernie Sanders supporter and I want him to stay in and fight to the bitter end. But I am also a realist; I know he faces a real uphill battle to turn the super delegates he needs to clinch the nomination. As mentioned Sanders is 290 pledged delegates behind; but there are 714 pledged delegates to play for this Tuesday; with a big enough margin, Sanders can, not only stop Clinton from getting the required number of delegates, but could take the lead in the race to be presidential nominee.

Let’s be realistic, the vast majority of super delegates are establishment through and through; they will vote for Hillary Clinton come hell or high water. They really, really don’t want a progressive socialist democrat being their nominee for president, Sanders wants to end their gravy train; end big money influencing our political system, that thing we laughingly call democracy here in the United States.

Do I think Sanders can convince enough super delegates to switch at the convention? No, not a chance in hell, but the movement has started. Thankfully the younger members of society ignore establishment cable news and consume online content instead, which is much more progressive. Thanks to progressive websites like US Uncut, Represent Us and online streaming services like The Young Turks, the large, growing progressive population can get real political information about the current situation.

Any news network proclaiming Hillary Clinton winner of the Democratic nomination for president on Tuesday night should be ashamed of themselves for willfully misleading America; none of these people can legitimately call themselves journalists if they willingly misrepresent the facts. The nomination will happen in Philadelphia on July 25th thru 28th and not before. The establishment media will strengthen the resolve of the Sanders supporters and potentially lead to the US having it’s first orange president.

Bottom line here, the news media is supposed to be there to report the facts, not use their influence to further their chosen candidates agenda. Some CNN political analysts are actually working for companies retained by the Clinton’s for heavens sake. At no point did CNN disclose this to it’s viewers, effectively misleading millions of potential voters. This is not unbiased reporting of the facts, it’s propaganda.