Presidential Proclamation — Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month, 2014

obama-pride“As we mark 45 years since the patrons of the Stonewall Inn defied an unjust policy and awakened a nascent movement, let us honor every brave leader who stood up, sat in, and came out, as well as the allies who supported them along the way,” said Obama, in this, the sixth consecutive year he has issued the proclamation.
Presidential Proclamation — Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month, 2014
As progress spreads from State to State, as justice is delivered in the courtroom, and as more of our fellow Americans are treated with dignity and respect — our Nation becomes not only more accepting, but more equal as well. During Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) Pride Month, we celebrate victories that have affirmed freedom and fairness, and we recommit ourselves to completing the work that remains.
Last year, supporters of equality celebrated the Supreme Court’s decision to strike down a key provision of the Defense of Marriage Act, a ruling which, at long last, gave loving, committed families the respect and legal protections they deserve. In keeping with this decision, my Administration is extending family and spousal benefits — fromimmigration benefits to military family benefits — to legally married same-sex couples.
My Administration proudly stands alongside all those who fight for LGBT rights. Here at home, we have strengthened laws against violence toward LGBT Americans, taken action to prevent bullying and harassment, and prohibited discrimination in housing and hospitals. Despite this progress, LGBT workers in too many States can be fired just because of their sexual orientation or gender identity; I continue to call on the Congress to correct this injustice by passing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. And in the years ahead, we will remain dedicated to addressing health disparities within the LGBT community by implementing the Affordable Care Act and the National HIV/AIDS Strategy — which focuses on improving care while decreasing HIV transmission rates among communities most at risk.
Our commitment to advancing equality for the LGBT community extends far beyond our borders. In many places around the globe, LGBT people face persecution, arrest, or even state-sponsored execution. This is unacceptable. The United States calls on every nation to join us in defending the universal human rights of our LGBT brothers and sisters.
This month, as we mark 45 years since the patrons of the Stonewall Inn defied an unjust policy and awakened a nascent movement, let us honor every brave leader who stood up, sat in, and came out, as well as the allies who supported them along the way. Following their example, let each of us speak for tolerance, justice, and dignity — because if hearts and minds continue to change over time, laws will too.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim June 2014 as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month. I call upon the people of the United States to eliminate prejudice everywhere it exists, and to celebrate the great diversity of the American people.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this thirtieth day of May, in the year of our Lord two thousand fourteen, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-eighth.
Obama has issued the Pride Month proclamation every year since taking office in 2009. Prior his administration, President Bill Clinton was the last president to issue such a proclamation, first doing so in 1999 and then in 2000 before he left office. President George W. Bush never issued a proclamation commemorating LGBT pride.

Wisconsin Club for Growth Scared Gov. Scott Walker Will Flip On Them

In a letter sent Wednesday, the Washington, D.C., attorney representing the Wisconsin Club for Growth and one of its directors questioned whether a special prosecutor in the case is negotiating with the GOP governor's campaign to seek concessions that the club might oppose.
"Let me be perfectly clear: a settlement that seeks, in any fashion, to further the John Doe investigation by violating Mr. O'Keefe's or the Club's speech or associational rights would be a blatant violation of the preliminary injunction," Rivkin wrote to Randall Crocker, Schmitz's attorney. "Your client cannot, via settlement or other maneuvers, attempt to circumvent the injunction — at least, he cannot do so without seriously risking a judgment of contempt."
In other words, they're afraid that Walker will throw them under the bus to save his own hide.

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Examining a Constitutional Amendment to Restore Democracy to the American People

The Senate Judiciary Committee will hold hearings on June 3rd 2014 entitled, "Examining a Constitutional Amendment to Restore Democracy to the American People". This historic hearing will take testimony from constitutional scholars and experts on the need to amend the Constitution to overturn cases like Citizens United v. FEC, McCutcheon v. FEC, and related cases. The hearings will be chaired by Senator Leahy and will be a "full committee" hearing, featuring senators who strongly support, and those who strongly oppose, the amendment strategy.

An All-of-the-Above Energy Strategy as a Path to Sustainable Economic Growth

The White House released a report, An All-of-the-Above Energy Strategy as a Path to Sustainable Economic Growth,” detailing the President’s all-of-the-above energy strategy and the profound transformation in the domestic energy sector since the President took office.  Thanks to this dramatic transformation and the President’s bold, aggressive plan, the United States has seen significant economic and national security benefits, and we are tackling the challenges posed by climate change. 

President Barack Obama waves as he walks from the Marine One helicopter to the Oval Office of the White House, in Washington,  Wednesday, May 28, 2014, as he returns from delivering the commencement address at the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York. Photo: Carolyn Kaster, AP / APThe President has set out an aggressive All-of-the-Above energy strategy recognizing that no single energy source alone can accomplish all that is required to face our challenges and meet our goals. Instead, the President continues to push on multiple fronts to strike the right balance of energy sources that will power our economy forward. The President’s plan is three-pronged: to support economic growth and job creation, to enhance energy security, and to lay the foundation for—and take critical steps towards—a low-carbon energy future.

Historic Transformation
·         Decades-long trends in energy use are being reversed. Natural gas consumption has risen 18 percent since 2005. In addition, total energy obtained from wind, solar, and geothermal energy have more than doubled since 2009.

·         Many of these changes are largely unforeseen. Only eight years ago, baseline projections showed steadily increasing petroleum consumption well into the future. But the Energy Information Administration (EIA) now projects petroleum consumption to decline starting after 2019. In fact, since its peak in 2007, U.S. gasoline consumption has fallen by 5.5 percent, or half a million barrels per day.

Economic Growth
·         The energy sector has provided key support to the recovery from the Great Recession: Rising domestic energy production has made an appreciable contribution to GDP growth and job creation. The oil and natural gas sector alone contributed more than 0.2 percentage point to real GDP growth in both 2012 and 2013, and employment in these sectors increased by 133,000 between 2010 and 2013. Tens of thousands more jobs have been created in the solar and wind industries.

·         Excluding the crisis-affected year of 2009, the U.S. trade deficit as a percent of GDP is the lowest in more than a decade and more than a fifth of the narrowing of the trade deficit as a percent of GDP since its 2006 peak can be directly attributed to a shrinking trade deficit in petroleum products, as rising domestic production and declining domestic consumption have combined to cut oil imports.

Energy Security
·         The resilience of the economy to international supply shocks – macroeconomic energy security – is enhanced by reducing spending on net petroleum imports and by reducing oil dependence. The factors that have reduced net oil imports – decreased domestic petroleum demand, increased domestic oil production, more efficient vehicles, and increased use of biofuels – reduce the vulnerability of the U.S. economy to sudden rises in oil prices. Although international oil supply shocks and oil price volatility will always present risks, empirical evidence presented in this report suggests that further reductions in net petroleum imports will reduce those risks.

·         The United States has emerged as the world’s leading producer of petroleum and natural as. In 2013, combined production of petroleum, natural gas, and other liquid fuels in the United States exceeded that of Saudi Arabia and Russia. The United States leads in natural gas and is predicted by the International Energy Agency to lead in oil as well in a few years.

A Low-Carbon Future
·         The United States has reduced its total carbon pollution since 2005 more than any other nation on Earth. However, much work remains. Recent projections suggest that emissions could begin to increase again, and more work remains to address this critical imperative.

·         While the President’s strategy embraces natural gas as a transition fuel and includes steps to ensure natural gas development is done responsibly, the plan also supports and is making progress on renewables, nuclear, and other zero-carbon energy sources through research and development, and invests in energy efficiency.

Solar Gas Pumps Coming To America

This breakthrough fuel could reduce or even eliminate dangerous fracking in our backyards. Even better, it could make early investors extremely rich by the end of 2014!
Researchers have found a way to overcome the one problem that's plagued solar power for the last 30 years ... the ability to store and transport this energy over great distances. 
In short, they've discovered a way to harvest the sun's energy and turn it into a powerful liquid fuel.
At the Sandia National Laboratories, they call the process "Sunshine to Petrol..."
" ... Liquid Solar Fuel is the end product," according to the engineers.
Sun Gas is a combustible fuel, just like the original natural gas – but here’s the important thing: if you burn it, you get around 25% more energy than there was in the original natural gas. This extra energ y is the ‘solar upgrade’. For example, if you were to use SolarGas in your gas stove to boil five eggs for breakfast, it’d be as if you were cooking one of those eggs with pure solar power. This may be a great way of storing solar energy by piggybacking it onto natural gas or other methane gas sources.
Solar Gas technology was developed by Australia’s national science agency, the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation(CSIRO).

"[This Technology] could replace all the petroleum consumed today in the United States." — J. Davidson Engineering Professor, University Of Minnesota

Fast facts

  • SolarGas™ contains more power than natural gas and embodies around 25 per cent solar energy in the form of chemical bonds
  • SolarGas™ can be used as a feedstock to make liquid fuels such as diesel, methanol and gasoline
  • This versatile fuel can be used for power generation, transport (fuel cell or hybrid natural gas – hydrogen powered vehicles) and gas appliances

Germany is already pumping Solar Gas

Sen. Orrin Hatch Gay Marriage Here To Stay

Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch conceded Wednesday it's only a matter of time before gay marriage is legal across the country, even though he doesn't think that's the right way to go.
Hatch said people who can't see what's happening aren't living in the real world. He made the remarks during an appearance on KSL-Radio's Doug Wright Show.
"Let's face it: anybody who does not believe that gay marriage is going to be the law of the land just hasn't been observing what's going on," said Hatch, a seven-term Republican senator who has been a proponent of keeping marriage exclusively between a man and a woman.

He said he doesn't agree with the string of pro-gay marriage rulings, but defended two Utah judges who issued such decisions. Hatch said Robert Shelby and Dale Kimball are both excellent federal judges. Hatch recommended both for the bench — Shelby in 2011 and Kimball in 1997.

Neil deGrasse Tyson Destroys Climate Deniers

For 11 episodes now, the groundbreaking Fox and National Geographic Channel series Cosmos has been exploring the universe, outraging creationists, and giving science teachers across the nation something to show in class every Monday. In the process, the show has been drawing more than 3 million viewers every Sunday night, a respectable number for a science-focused show that is, after all, a major departure from what primetime audiences are used to.
Cosmos certainly hasn't shied from controversy; it has taken on evolution and industry-funded science denial, and it has been devoting an increasing amount of attention to the subject of climate change. And apparently that was just the beginning. This coming Sunday, Cosmos will devote an entire episode to the topic. Here's the episode description from National Geographic:

Fox News Lost over 25 Percent of it viewers because of Benghazi Benghazi

Benghazi was supposed to replace Obamacare as the new rallying cry for Republicans in 2014, 
Fox news has revved up the GOP base to take advantage and help the GOP raise funds on the lives of four, dead Americans

Fox News was down 27% in total day viewers and 25% in younger viewers compared to May 2013. Fox News was also down 26% in total viewers and 28% with younger viewers in prime time. In both daytime and prime time, Fox News delivered their lowest ratings with younger viewers since August 2001.

According to TVNewser,  “All the network’s prime time shows are down double-digits year-over-year. “The O’Reilly Factor” is down -28% in total viewers and -30% in the A 25-54 demo. “The Kelly File” is down -17% in total viewers and -27% in the demo compared to the 9pm ET hour last year and “Hannity” is down -30% and -23%, respectively, compared to the 10pm ET hour last year.”

Bill Clinton Responds To The Death Of His 'Beloved Friend' Maya Angelou

"With Maya Angelou's passing, America has lost a national treasure; and Hillary and I, a beloved friend," Clinton said. "The poems and stories she wrote and read to us in her commanding voice were gifts of wisdom and wit, courage and grace."

Angelou read the inaugural poem when Clinton was sworn in for his first term in 1993. In his statement,  Clinton described the experience as "electrifying" and said it was followed by "years of friendship."

"I will always be grateful for her electrifying reading of 'On the Pulse of Morning' at my first inaugural, and even more for all the years of friendship that followed," said Clinton. "Now she sings the songs the Creator gave to her when the river "and the tree and the stone were one." President Bill Clinton

Angelou clinton