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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

ART KELLY

Nude Iranian movie star ignites firestorm

Nude Iranian movie star ignites firestormA photo and video of a famous Iranian actress baring her breasts have gone viral this week, igniting a fiery debate among Iranians.
Golshifteh Farahani appears topless, cupping her breasts, in a photo in the French magazine Madame Le Figaro. Also, a video apparently made by a French film academy, features the actress looking directly into a camera as she disrobes. She stands with her breasts uncovered. Soon after the images hit the Web, reaction was swift inside Iran, where Farahani gained fame in state-sponsored movies that forbid the mere touching of hands.
"The fate of an actress, who left her own country and joined Hollywood, has been nothing but immorality," the semi-official Fars News Agency wrote this week. "The actress who once played the role of caring and decent mothers of Iran has now auctioned off her modesty and honor in front of the Western cameras."
Farahani reportedly moved to France shortly after making history in the Iranian film industry by being the first Iranian to star in a Western film. In 2008, she played a nurse in "Body of Lies" with Leonardo DiCaprio.
It's unclear if the actress currently lives in France. Her agency in Paris declined a CNN interview request as Facebook, Twitter and blogs lit up with incendiary remarks about her. Some say Farahani has betrayed Islam and Iran for revealing her body. Other posters are supportive. They cheer her boldness and defend her right to self-expression.
Several Facebook pages have popped up in recent days with notes encouraging visitors to re-post the photo and video. A wall post Thursday appeared on a Facebook page that appears to belong to the actress. The message, carrying Farahani's name, says, "We have to open our mind!!"
Among other comments on Facebook:
"She is really brave, and I am proud of her. She shows what she believes in and it has nothing to do with others."
"Along with me and all my friends, we are really proud of you."
"I'm ashamed to call you an Iranian."
"Good for you Golshifteh dear! For once an Iranian with guts has come out to show we are just like anyone else in this world. You can model and do whatever you like, just like every woman from Los Angeles to Tokyo."
CNN reached Iranians inside the country Thursday night.
None wanted their last name published, saying they feared government reprisal for speaking to Western media. Yasmin, a 22-year-old student from Tehran, called Farahani "irresponsible" for posing nude.
"What did she think? She could pose topless in Paris, and then come back to Tehran, cover up again, and everything will be fine?" Yasmin said. "She should have thought about that before she did it. I understand she is an actress and artist, but she also has an Iranian passport."
Daroush, a 32-year-old English teacher in Shiraz, said he suspects the photo and video were purely publicity stunts to further Farahani's film career. "As an Iranian inside Iran, I knew who Golshifteh Farahani was, but did Americans or Brits?" he asked. "Probably not, but now they know. Smart woman."

Florida troopers reopened I-75 shortly before deadly crashes


 Florida authorities had reopened a section of Interstate 75 barely half an hour before a pileup on the smoke-shrouded highway that killed 10 people over the weekend, a state Highway Patrol spokesman said Monday.
The interstate was closed for about three hours early Sunday, after a pair of late-Saturday crashes on I-75 and nearby U.S. 441, just south of Gainesville, Lt. Patrick Riordan told reporters Monday afternoon. Troopers, state Department of Transportation officials and local sheriff's deputies reopened the road after determining that conditions were improving, he said.
Riordan said the interstate reopened at 3:26 a.m. Thirty-three minutes later, callers began to report chain-reaction crashes in both the north and southbound lanes of I-75.
"I can't see anything. It's so dense -- the fog is so dense -- and we just hit a guardrail, and I think there was another accident behind us," the first caller told an Alachua County sheriff's dispatcher.
The bangs of several subsequent crashes could be heard in the background of nearly 13 minutes of 911 recordings released Monday. The voices on the calls reflected the fear and confusion of the predawn scene.
"Here comes another one. He's coming too fast. Here comes another one. Oh, yep -- see, there he goes ... that one was a bad one," one woman told dispatchers.
In the end, at least 12 passenger cars and seven semis were involved in the crashes. Subsequent fires burned three of the 10 dead "to a point where positive ID has been a hurdle for us," Riordan said. He said state troopers "did their due diligence" before reopening the road, but, "Sometime after the roadway was reopened, the conditions changed quickly."
In the wake of the crashes, he said the Highway Patrol would "review this situation and determine if our process needs to be changed."
"Certainly, we're open to that," he said. But he added, "All drivers need to be prepared to change their driving based on the roadway conditions."
Florida Gov. Rick Scott said he has asked the state Department of Law Enforcement to investigate the circumstances behind the crash, promising to make "any and all resources" available for the investigation.
"We will also fully cooperate with any federal investigation which may occur," Scott said in a written statement. "During this tragic time, our thoughts and prayers should be with the victims and their families."
Steven Camps, one of the survivors, told CNN that all he could hear after the crashes stopped was the sound of crying. The air, heavy with smoke, shone red from vehicle fires.
"It was just so crazy," he said. "We were just sitting in the car, and all of this came out of nowhere."
Camps said he was returning to Gainesville from Micanopy, about 12 miles away, with a friend early Sunday when traffic came to a stop on the interstate in what looked like heavy fog. He was a passenger in the car, and said they were talking to a man in a stopped car in the next lane about the low visibility when they began hearing crashes from behind them.
The car next to them "literally almost went under (a) semi-truck," he said. "We saw that guy die after talking to him before we could even react."
He said the car he was riding in was then struck twice. He was not hurt badly, but his friend could "barely even move," he said. Camps pulled his friend from their car, which wound up wedged between two tractor-trailers, to the median, where they prayed that another car would not leave the roadway and hit them.
"As it was happening on the northbound side, it was happening on the southbound side as well," he said. "There was nowhere to go. It was just cars hitting cars and cars."
The Miami-to-Michigan interstate was open again Monday, but the National Weather Services said patches of smoke were likely to hang over the area into Tuesday.
The smoke is from a brush fire at the nearby Paynes Prairie Preserve State Park. The blaze, called the Boardwalk Fire, was 100% contained but was not considered controlled, Ludie Bond, wildfire mitigation specialist for the Gainesville area, said Monday.
While fire lines were in place, active smoke could linger for weeks to months, she said.
Camps said he received stitches in his leg and was released from a hospital. He said his friend was still hospitalized but may be released soon. He said he was "blessed" -- "If you saw the car, you'd be like, 'How did you live?' "
Shands Hospital at the University of Florida received a total of 18 patients, six with serious injuries, said Dr. Timothy Flynn, the hospital's chief medical officer. Eight of the remaining 12 were treated and released, he said.
The Florida Highway Patrol said Monday that a total of 21 people were taken to hospitals

Iran Turns US/EU Oil Embargo Tables: India, China, Russia, Declare War On The US Dollar - Video

Iran is the fifth largest producers of oil in the world.
Iran is the fifth largest producers of oil in the world. In what is likely a long overdue move, Iran has finally decided to give Europe a harsh lesson in game theory. Instead of letting Euro-area politicians score brownie points at its expense by threatening to halt imports and cut off the Iranian economy, the Iranian government will instead propose a bill calling for an immediate halt to oil deliveries to Europe. The move, with most reports citing the Iranian news agency Mehr, has come about in response to the EU agreement to impose sanctions against Iran, which were announced earlier this week. And why not? After all if Europe is indeed serious, sooner or later Iran will be cut off but in the meantime experience significant policy uncertainty, which is precisely what the flipflops on the ground need. The one thing that Europe, however is forgetting, is that all that whopping 0.8 Mb/d in imports will simply find a new buyer.Quickly.

So with China, India and Russia already having bilateral agreements with Iran in place, we are confident that said buyer will have a contract signed, sealed and delivered within an hour of the proposed bill's passage. Furthermore, as SocGen speculated, the fact that Europe will be even more bottlenecked in its crude supplies (good luck Saudi Arabia with that imaginary excess capacity), and which just may force the IEA to release some more of that strategic petroleum reserve (and thus give JPM some more free money on the replenishment arbitrage) will send Brent to $125-150 - something which Iran will be delighted by. That is of course unless some "experts" discover that Iran may or may not have a complete arsenal of shark with fricking nuclear warheads attached to their heads (despite what Paneta has already said) which gives the US the green light for a full blown incursion, which in turn will send oil over $200, and the world economy into a global coordinated re-depression"If this bill is passed, the government will be forced to stop selling oil to Europe before the actual implementation of their sanctions," said Emad Hosseini, spokesman for the Iranian parliament's energy commission, reportedly said. The bill is set to become law on Sunday.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=6u7KnXyrKmQ
The EU sanctions allow for oil deliveries from Iran until July 1. Any pre-empting of this timescale by Tehran could prove problematic for countries like Italy, Greece and Spain, who would need to urgently find new suppliers.

China, meanwhile, a major importer of Iranian oil, has also criticized the EU sanctions. The Xinhua news agency quoted the Chinese Foreign Ministry on Thursday as saying: "To blindly pressure and impose sanctions on Iran are not constructive approaches."

Many members of the EU are now heavily dependent on Iranian oil. Some 500,000 barrels arrive in Europe every day from Iran, with southern European countries consuming most of it. Greece is the most exposed, receiving a third of all its oil imports from Iran, but Italy too depends on Iran for 13 percent of its oil needs. If this source were to dry up abruptly, the economic conditions in the two struggling countries could become even worseAlready on Wednesday, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) warned of the economic consequences of the EU's planned embargo. Stopping deliveries from the world's fifth largest producer could drive up the price of oil by 20 to 30 percent.
Perhaps instead of doing its best at crippling the world energy markets, and crushing the global economy, Europe should stick to bailing itself out, and other activities in which it has extensive experience

Monday, January 30, 2012

FAITHFUL AMERICA

Exploiting Religion to Call for the President's Death is Unacceptable


You might be surprised to hear that Mike O'Neal, the Republican Speaker of the Kansas State House, is praying for President Obama.
Unfortunately, he's praying for the President's death. And he's exploiting the Bible to do so, circulating an email that cites Psalm 109: "Let his days be few; and let another take his office. May his children be fatherless and his wife a widow." O'Neal said of the violent Psalm "At last -- I can honestly voice a Biblical prayer for our president."
Sadly, it's not unusual for Republican politicians to use vile and hate-filled rhetoric when speaking about President Obama. But when they exploit religion to do so, people of faith have a moral responsibility to condemn it.

Sign our petition below demanding that Speaker O'Neal resign immediately!
As people of faith, we believe that scripture should never be used to justify praying for the death of anyone. Speaker O'Neal's hateful abuse of scripture is unacceptable and a disgrace to his office, and he should immediately resign.
Optional Member Code


This petition has a goal of 30000 signatures
1-25 of 35127 signatures
NumberDateName
35127Mon Jan 30 02:39:34 EST 2012Janet Drew
35126Mon Jan 30 02:38:08 EST 2012Mustafa Shaheen
35125Mon Jan 30 02:36:21 EST 2012Nicholas Sondhi
35124Mon Jan 30 02:28:23 EST 2012Tom BoughanSatanic prayers do not a Christian make.
35123Mon Jan 30 02:28:18 EST 2012Nina UtigaardWhat an absolutely hypocritical act. Mr. O'Neal and I must be praying to different gods. The god I know would not support this activity.
35122Mon Jan 30 02:25:44 EST 2012Melah SkollI will pray for you, Mr. O' Neal. Everything we think, speak and pray for another - it comes back to us. Because in that place within the heart where Jesus lives - so does every heart. I will pray that More....
35121Mon Jan 30 02:23:53 EST 2012Gaynell McQuillanJust plain ignorant and stupid.
35120Mon Jan 30 02:23:08 EST 2012craig hymsonMike O'Neal is a disgrace.
35119Mon Jan 30 02:22:47 EST 2012Rene Nourie
35118Mon Jan 30 02:19:06 EST 2012Marjorie GrayYour hatred is appaling! I am astonished that you think you are a Christian, and voice such evil. You are not fit to serve in public office.
35117Mon Jan 30 02:18:40 EST 2012Brendan Dulohery
35116Mon Jan 30 02:14:17 EST 2012Timothy MartinTimothy Martin
35115Mon Jan 30 02:12:15 EST 2012Cheryl Estrada
35114Mon Jan 30 02:09:29 EST 2012Adam Cohen
35113Mon Jan 30 02:05:44 EST 2012Jessica Avalos
35112Mon Jan 30 02:05:37 EST 2012Harry Patsch
35111Mon Jan 30 02:03:19 EST 2012Audria Small
35110Mon Jan 30 02:03:19 EST 2012Betsy Goodman
35109Mon Jan 30 02:01:24 EST 2012Vanessa ButlerO'neal, you must go. You are a hypocrite, a disgrace and don't deserve to be in office. To use God's Word to show your hatred is despicable. God is love, NOT hate. You have shown yourself to be full of More....
35108Mon Jan 30 02:01:14 EST 2012Aileen KirkMister Speaker,
This sort of absurd thinking says to me that you might need some psychological re-evaluation. It's unacceptable to be a leader of any of our nation's people while feeling such deranged More....
35107Mon Jan 30 01:56:00 EST 2012Roderic Walton
35106Mon Jan 30 01:52:55 EST 2012Cecil DoyleOutrageous actions deserve their outcome, Speaker O'Neal. Say goodbye........
35105Mon Jan 30 01:49:48 EST 2012Brett Gelman
35104Mon Jan 30 01:49:30 EST 2012Carrie Reisser
35103Mon Jan 30 01:48:01 EST 2012Megan` Murphy
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Obama Administration’s Achievements (Thus Far)

Arts and Culture      

  1. Increased funding for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) to the highest level since 1992. ref, ref, ref
  2. Created an artist corps for public schools. ref
  3. Championed the importance of arts education. ref
  4. Promoted cultural diplomacy. ref
  5. Section curator: ^pash
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Established the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform. ref
  3. Established President’s Advisory Council on Financial Capability to assist in financial education for all Americans. ref, ref , ref
  4. Restoring American Financial Stability Act of 2010. ref, ref
  5. Dodd-Frank (DF) Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, the biggest financial reform law since the Great Depression. ref
  6. Managed the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) ref
  7. Assigned a Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program Act of 2009. ref
  8. Pension relief Act of 2010. ref
  9. Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act. ref, ref
  10. Played a lead role in G-20 Summit re: financial crisis. ref
  11. Reformed deferral rules to curb tax advantages for investing overseas. ref
  12. Established new offshore investment policy that promotes in-sourcing. ref, ref
  13. FUNDING:
  14. Cut salaries for 65 bailout executives (Pay Czar). ref
  15. Banks have repaid 75% of TARP funds, bringing the cost down to $89B as of June 2010. ref
  16. Closed offshore tax safe havens, tax credit loopholes. ref , ref , ref
  17. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  18. Created the Financial Stability Oversight Council to monitor stability of the financial system and individual firms (DF). ref
  19. New requirements for reporting financial data (DF). ref
  20. Created self-funded Office of Financial Research (OFR) to collect information from financial firms (DF). ref
  21. OFR employees must wait a year before working for certain financial firms. ref
  22. Provided for orderly liquidation of financial companies (DF). ref
  23. Limited trading activities of banks (Volcker Rule) beginning 2 yrs after passage (DF). ref
  24. Swaps Pushout Rule prevented federal assistance to swaps (including derivatives) traders (DF). ref
  25. Derivatives must be traded transparently through a clearing house (DF). ref
  26. Defined the amount and nature of assets required to meet capital requirements (DF). ref
  27. Originators of asset-backed securities must retain 5% ownership/risk (DF). ref
  28. Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (DF). ref
  29. Stronger client fiduciary duty for broker-dealers (DF). ref
  30. Higher standards for securities advertising and disclosures (DF). ref
  31. Expanded “insider loans” (DF). ref
  32. Higher standards for sytemically important ($50 billion assets+) institutions, including annual stress tests and restrictions on bank acquisitions (DF). ref
  33. Executive compensation must be determined by an independent committee (DF). ref
  34. Issued compensation guidelines for bank executive salary and bonuses. ref , ref
  35. Financial agencies must establish Offices of Women and Minorities to promote more diverse hiring (DF). ref
  36. Credit Card Accountability, Responsibility and Disclosure Act. ref, ref
  37. Credit CARD Technical Corrections Act of 2009. ref
  38. Established a credit card bill of rights. ref
  39. Reformed credit card swipe fees. ref
  40. Created new criminal penalties for mortgage fraud. ref
  41. Congress pursued Goldman Sachs for securities violations. ref
  42. Permanently extended Research and Experimentation Tax Credit for domestic investments. ref
  43. RESULTS:
  44. (Treasury) Sold 1.5 billion shares of Citigroup at a profit. ref
  45. G-20 summit produced a $1.1 trillion deal to combat the global financial crisis. ref
  46. Negotiated deal with Swiss banks to permit US government to gain access to records of tax evaders and criminals. ref
  47. Financial reform has ‘strongest consumer financial protections in history.’ ref
  48. Section curator: ^dellalee
  1. FUNDING:
  2. Provided $12.2 billion in new funding for the Individuals with Disabilities Act though the American Recovery and investment Act. ref
  3. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  4. Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act; Instituted equal pay for women. ref, ref, ref
  5. Presidential Memorandum extending benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees. ref , ref , ref , ref
  6. Presidential Memorandum protecting gay and lesbian partners’ visitation/healthcare decision-making rights (4/15/2010). ref
  7. Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act to include gender, sexual orientation and disability. ref
  8. Supported the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell (DADT). ref
  9. Ryan White HIV/AIDS Treatment Extension Act. ref
  10. Established White House Council on Women and Girls (Executive Order 13506 ). ref
  11. Financial agencies must establish Offices of Women and Minorities to promote more diverse hiring.
  12. Increased minority access to capital. ref
  13. Pushing through settlement in the black farmers lawsuit against USDA. ref, ref
  14. Signed the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. ref
  15. Increased Federal Employment of Individuals with Disabilities (Exec Order)(celebrating 20th anniversary of the ADA). ref, ref
  16. Section curator: ^roytoric
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Promoted internet freedom as part of U.S. foreign policy. ref, ref , ref
  3. Webcaster Settlement Act of 2009. ref
  4. Satellite Television Extension Act of 2010. ref
  5. FUNDING:
  6. Expanded loan programs for small businesses. ref
  7. TARGETED ACTION:
  8. Small Business Act. ref
  9. Small Business Investment Act. ref
  10. Proposed tougher meat industry antitrust rules. ref , ref
  11. Denied federal contracts to tax delinquents. ref
  12. Appointed the nation’s first Chief Technology Officer. ref
  13. Established Federal IT Dashboard. ref
  14. Modernized the USA.gov portal to connect people to the services they require. ref
  15. Launched the National Export Initiative, with the goal of doubling US exports by 2015. ref , ref
  16. Provided National Export Initiative/Progress report and named President’s Export Council. ref, ref
  17. Launched piracy crackdown. ref
  18. Section curators: ^dellalee
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Morris K. Udall Scholarship and Excellence in National Environmental Policy Amendments Act of 2009. ref
  3. Omnibus Public Land Management Act of 2009. ref
  4. North American Wetlands Conservation Act. ref
  5. Stewardship of the Ocean (established National Ocean Council ), our Coasts and the Great Lakes (Executive Order). ref
  6. Federal Leadership in Environmental, Energy and Economic Performance (Executive Order). ref, ref
  7. Established partnerships to share environmental technology with other countries. ref
  8. FUNDING:
  9. Increased funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund. ref
  10. Increased funding for national parks and forests. ref
  11. $175 million of ARRA allocated for water conservation, $135 million of that in the West. ref
  12. TARGETED AREAS:
  13. Reengaged in the treaties/agreements to protect the Antarctic. ref, ref
  14. Expanded access to places to hunt and fish. ref
  15. Chesapeake Bay Protection and Restoration (Executive Order). ref, ref
  16. Led effort to phase out whaling. ref
  17. Pursued a wildfire management plan. ref
  18. Encouraged more controlled burns to reduce wildfires. ref
  19. Ordered removal of more brush, small trees and vegetation that fuel wildfires. ref
  20. Section curator: ^pash
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA): a $789 billion economic stimulus plan. ref
  3. US auto industry rescue plan. ref, ref
  4. Start-Up activity now higher than it was during the dotcom boom. ref
  5. Created task force to fight deficit. ref
  6. Worker, Homeownership, and Business Assistance Act of 2009. ref
  7. Temporary extension of programs under the Small Business Act and the Small Business Investment Act of 1958. ref
  8. FUNDING:
  9. Increased minority access to capital. ref
  10. $26 billion aid to states package (Aug 2010). ref
  11. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  12. Raised the small business investment limit to $250,000 through the end of 2009. ref
  13. Created an Advanced Manufacturing Fund to invest in peer-reviewed manufacturing processes. ref
  14. Improper Payments Elimination and Recovery Act – establishes a Federal “Do Not Pay” list. ref
  15. Extended and indexed the 2007 Alternative Minimum Tax patch. ref
  16. Adopted Economic Substance tax doctrine. ref
  17. Extended unemployment insurance benefits and temporarily suspend taxes on these benefits. ref ref
  18. Economy grew 5.9% in 4th quarter. ref
  19. U.S. Economy: Manufacturing grew by most since 2004. ref
  20. U.S. GDP up 3.2% in first quarter. ref
  21. Consumer spending showed biggest rise in 3 years. ref
  22. Orders for most durable goods rose. ref
  23. Wholesale inventories and sales rose in March. ref
  24. $26 billion state aid bill triggered a surge of private municipal investment. ref
  25. EXHIBITS – THE STIMULUS ONE YEAR LATER:
  26. Success of the stimulus–how do you illustrate ‘could have been worse’? ref
  27. Distribution of ARRA funds by year. ref
  28. Need for financial education: Investors who act on their own do worse than T-bills; market timers earn negative returns. ref
  29. Consumer debt patterns (revolving and non-revolving) through end of 2009. ref
  30. Growth of the national debt from 2000-2009. ref
  31. Bar chart showing increases in national debt by President (since Carter). ref
  32. Pie chart: 2009 annual deficit contrasting large Bush tax cuts and relatively small ARRA. ref
  33. THE LEGACY: AUGUST 2010
  34. The Economy Has Been Growing – seasonally adjusted change in GDP by quarter 2007-2010. ref
  35. The Private Sector Has Begun to Add Jobs – Monthly change in nonfarm employment 2008-2010. ref
  36. GDP would have been lower without the Recovery Act (2007-2013 projection) (scroll down to Part III to see chart). ref
  37. Unemployment would have been higher without ARRA (2008-2010). ref
  38. The gap between actual and full-employment GDP would have been much larger without TARP and ARRA (2008-2010). ref
  39. MISCELLANEOUS EXHIBITS:
  40. Public Sector Lost 316,000 jobs October 09-July 10 (state aid negotiated out of ARRA by GOP). ref
  41. Section curator ^roytoric
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Enacted largest reform of student aid in 40 years. ref, ref
  3. Health Care and Education Affordability Reconciliation Act of 2010. ref
  4. Established President’s Advisory Council on Financial Capability to assist in financial education for all Americans. ref, ref, ref
  5. FUNDING:
  6. Increased funding for land-grant college. ref
  7. Provided means for students struggling to make college loan payments to refinance. ref
  8. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  9. Expanded Pell grants for low-income students. ref
  10. Expanded Pell grant pool by eliminating private lender subsidies for student loans. ref
  11. Section curators: ^ejoyce ^Kroth
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Created the Race to the Top Fund ($4.35 billion) to reward States that create comprehensive education reform plans. ref
  3. Children’s Health Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2009 . ref
  4. FUNDING:
  5. Provided funding for high-speed, broadband Internet access to K-12 schools. ref
  6. Established State Equalization Fund; new funds for school construction (ARRA). ref
  7. Provided $77 Billion for reforms to to strengthen Elementary and Secondary education. ref
  8. Fully funded the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG). ref
  9. Provided $12.2 billion in new funding for the Individuals with Disabilities Act through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. ref
  10. $26 billion state aid package saved 160,000 teacher jobs (Aug 2010) ref
  11. Provided over $2.3 billion in additional funding to Head Start and Early Head Start programs in 2009. ref
  12. Provided $5 billion dollars for Early Learning Programs under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. ref
  13. Roughly doubled the amount available in Federal Child Care Block Grants. ref
  14. Established “Promise Neighborhood” Grants (modeled after the Harlem Children’s Zone). ref , ref
  15. Eliminated abstinence-only funding in budget. ref, ref
  16. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  17. Helped rebuild schools in New Orleans. ref
  18. Established school programs to highlight space and science achievements. ref
  19. Recruited math and science degree graduates to the teaching profession. ref
  20. Expanded the Nurse-Family Partnership to all low-income, first-time mothers . ref
  21. Provided affordable, high-quality child care. ref
  22. Unveiled initiatives to help men be better fathers. ref
  23. Section curators: ^ejoyce ^Kroth
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Jobs for Main Street Act (2010). ref
  3. American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes Act of 2010. ref
  4. National Export Initiative ref
  5. FUNDING:
  6. (DOL) Dedicated $100 million in Energy Training Partnership green jobs training grants. ref
  7. (DOL) Dedicated $150 million for Pathways Out of Poverty green jobs training grants. ref
  8. $33 billion-dollar jobs package (March 2010). ref , ref
  9. $26 billion aid to states package (Aug 2010). ref
  10. $5,000 tax credit for every new worker. ref
  11. New Health IT Workforce Grants (ARRA). ref
  12. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  13. Job training programs in clean technologies for displaced workers. ref
  14. Green Vet Initiative to promote environmental jobs for veterans. ref
  15. Financial agencies must establish Offices of Women and Minorities to promote more diverse hiring (DF).
  16. Recruited math and science degree graduates to the teaching profession. ref
  17. Initiated a new policy to promote federal hiring of military spouses. ref, ref
  18. Required new hires to sign a form affirming their hiring was not due to political affiliations or contributions. ref, ref
  19. RESULTS:
  20. CBO found 3.7 Million jobs created by stimulus (May 2010). ref
  21. Job loss exploded under Bush, improves under Obama. ref
  22. 682,370 jobs created under the Recovery Act Between January 1 — March 31,2010. ref, ref, ref
  23. New jobless claims tumble. ref
  24. March payrolls surge by 162,000 US says . ref
  25. March jobs data showed biggest growth in three years .ref
  26. U.S. economy added 90000 jobs in April . ref
  27. Jobless rates dropped in 34 states and DC (AP). ref
  28. Section curator: ^roytoric
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Established an Energy Partnership for the Americas. ref
  3. Established the Biofuels Working Group to develop a comprehensive approach to alternative fuels. ref
  4. Additional measures to advance clean energy/solar investments and job creation (ARRA). ref
  5. Launched new Climate Service. ref
  6. Worked toward deploying a global climate change research and monitoring system. ref
  7. Implemented renewable fuels mandate of 36 billion gallons by 2022. ref
  8. FUNDING:
  9. More than doubled federal spending for research on clean fuels. ref
  10. $60 billion in spending and tax incentives for renewable and clean energy. ref
  11. Invested in all types of alternative energy. ref
  12. Increased funding for the Environmental Protection Agency. ref
  13. Invested $2 billion in solar power, hailed new jobs. ref, ref, ref
  14. Established consumer tax credit for plug-in hybrid cars. ref, ref
  15. Provided grants to encourage energy-efficient building codes. ref
  16. Doubled funding for bicycling, walking projects ref, ref
  17. (DOL) Dedicated $100 million in Energy Training Partnership green jobs training grants. ref
  18. (DOL) Dedicated $150 million for Pathways Out of Poverty green jobs training grants. ref
  19. $8 billion combined public/pvt funding committed to develop Smart Power Grid (part of ARRA). ref
  20. Incentivized farmers to use more renewable energy and be more energy efficient. ref
  21. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  22. Purchased fuel efficient American-made fleet for the federal government. ref
  23. Ordered 5,000 hybrids for federal fleet. ref
  24. (NIST) Completed first release of Smart Grid framework. ref
  25. Created job training programs in clean technologies for displaced workers. ref
  26. Created Green Vet Initiative to promote environmental jobs for veterans. ref
  27. Established program to convert manufacturing centers into clean technology leaders. ref
  28. RESULTS:
  29. First President to create detailed vision for clean energy economy. ref
  30. Wind power growth up 39% due to government stimulus. ref
  31. Study: Almost 5 million charging stations by 2015. ref
  32. Section curator: ^pash
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Ended the previous policy of not regulating and labeling carbon dioxide emissions. ref
  3. Created Interagency Task Force on Carbon Capture and Storage. ref
  4. Set national standards for fuel economy and first ever greenhouse gas emission levels for passenger cars and light trucks. ref
  5. Set smog limit: new strict proposal to replace Bush-era rule (EPA). ref ref
  6. Regulated greenhouse gases for large industrial sources (EPA). ref
  7. Raised fuel economy standards. ref
  8. Required states to provide incentives for utilities to reduce energy consumption. ref
  9. Allowed states to enact tougher fuel efficiency standards than federal standards. ref
  10. Established Blue Ribbon Commission on America’s Nuclear Future. ref
  11. FUNDING:
  12. Pledged more than $8 billion for new nuclear reactors. ref
  13. Tax breaks to promote public transit. ref
  14. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  15. Dismantled the Minerals Management Service, cutting ties between industry and government. ref , ref
  16. Reengaged in global warming and greenhouse gas emissions talks. ref, ref
  17. Offered 17% U.S. emissions cuts at climate summit. ref
  18. Pledged 28% cut in federal greenhouse gas emissions by 2020. ref
  19. Expanded greenhouse gas reduction targets for Federal operations -13% reduction from indirect sources by 2020. ref
  20. (FTC) Toughened anti-greenwashing rules. ref
  21. Instituted “Cash for Clunkers” to spur auto sales and promote fuel efficiency . ref, ref
  22. Ordered inspections of mines with poor safety records. ref
  23. Closed loophole that allowed drilling in Rockies without environmental review. ref
  24. (EPA) Sharply limited mountaintop mining. ref
  25. (EPA) Announced historic plans to regulate coal ash. ref
  26. Required electric utilities to produce 20% of their electricity demand from renewable energy sources by 2020. ref
  27. (EPA) Limited mercury emissions. ref ref
  28. Section curator: ^pash
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Introduced Oil Spill Recovery Bill to remove oil company liability cap. ref ref
  3. Created offshore drilling safety review board. ref
  4. Created new drilling agency with investigative arm. ref
  5. Ended previous practice of having White House aides rewrite scientific and environmental rules, regulations and reports. ref
  6. FUNDING:
  7. Ordered $20 billion escrow fund by BP to reimburse lost incomes in Gulf. ref
  8. Ordered $100 million to compensate those hurt by drilling moratorium. ref
  9. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  10. Dismantled the Minerals Management Service, cutting ties between industry and government. ref , ref
  11. Mandated new safety rules for offshore drilling. ref
  12. Opened civil and criminal investigations into Gulf oil spill. ref, ref
  13. (Congress) Launched investigation into gas drilling practices. ref
  14. Established the National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling. ref
  15. Amended Oil Pollution Act of 1990 authorizing advances from Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund for the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. ref
  16. Expanded oil rig workers’ families abilities to sue and recover. ref
  17. Fined BP subsidiary $5.2 million for false reporting. ref
  18. (EPA) Barred Texas’ authority to issue refinery operating permits. ref
  19. Section curator: ^pash
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Re-established the United States standing in the world. ref, ref, ref
  3. Poll: World’s opinion of U.S. has “improved sharply” under Obama. ref
  4. 47 nations rise to Obama’s challenge at US nuke summit and agree to four years of non-proliferation efforts. ref
  5. Visited more countries and world leaders than any first year president. ref
  6. G-20 Summit produced a $1.1 trillion deal to combat the global financial crisis. ref
  7. Launched an international Add Value to Agriculture initiative (AVTA). ref
  8. Created a rapid response fund for emerging democracies. ref
  9. Bolstered the military’s ability to speak different languages. ref
  10. BY REGION:
  11. West Hem: Returned the rights of Americans to visit and assist their families in Cuba. ref , ref , ref
  12. Middle East: Appointed envoys to the Middle East and AFPAK affirming the power of American diplomacy. ref
  13. Middle East: Renewed loan guarantees for Israel. ref
  14. Middle East: Pledged $400 million in aid to Gaza civillians. ref
  15. Middle East: Pressured Israel to end Gaza blockade. ref
  16. Middle East: Refused to give Israel a “green light” to strike Iran, augmenting Mid-East stability. ref
  17. Middle East: Iran Sanctions Act. ref
  18. Asia: Authorized President Bill Clinton’s mission to secure the release of two Americans held in North Korea. ref
  19. Asia: Authorized discussions with Myanmar and mission by Sen. Jim Webb to secure the release of an American held captive. ref
  20. Asia: Renewed import restrictions under Burmese Freedom and Democracy Act of 2003. ref
  21. Asia: Nuclear arms agreements with India (5/4/2010). ref
  22. Africa: Lord’s Resistance Army Disarmament and Northern Uganda Recovery Act of 2009. ref
  23. Africa: Helped stabilize Somalia (Exec Order). ref
  24. Aus: Nuclear arms agreements with Australia (5/5/2010). ref
  25. Europe: Nuclear arms agreement with Russia. ref , ref, ref, ref
  26. Europe: Agreed with Switzerland to bolster tax information exchange ref, ref
  27. Section curators: ^arrghPaine
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Established the President’s Management Advisory Board. ref
  3. Streamlined and modernized government to save taxpayer dollars. ref
  4. Ended previous practice of having White House aides rewrite scientific and environmental rules, regulations and reports. ref
  5. SPECIFIC CUTS:
  6. Cut salaries of senior White House aides. ref
  7. Made $20 Billion in budget cuts. ref
  8. Provided that Members of Congress shall not receive a cost of living adjustment in pay during fiscal year 2011. ref, ref, ref
  9. Eliminated F-22 fighter jet program after lobbying Senate vote to strip financing for more jets from a defense funding authorization bill. ref, ref, ref
  10. Canceled contract for new Presidential helicopter fleet (28 helicopters, $11.2 billion). ref
  11. OTHER TARGETED ACTIONS:
  12. Enhanced payment accuracy through a “Do Not Pay” list. ref
  13. Cracked down on tax cheats (Exec Order). ref
  14. Returned taxpayer monies for refurbishment of White House offices and living quarters. ref , ref
  15. Established the USA.gov portal connecting people to the services they require. ref
  16. Section curator: ^roytoric
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Established HealthCare.gov, a web portal for determining and comparing all consumer health insurance and health care options ref, ref
  3. Established an independent health institute to provide accurate and objective information. ref
  4. Established the National Prevention, Health Promotion, and Public Health Council . ref, ref
  5. Established President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition. ref
  6. Ended previous policy of cutting the FDA and circumventing FDA rules. ref
  7. Implemented a National HIV/AIDS Strategy 7/13/10 ref
  8. FUNDING:
  9. Provided $20 billion increase for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. ref
  10. Provided $500 million in expanded funding for Health Professions Training Programs. ref, ref
  11. Provided funding to strengthen hospital preparedness and emergency response ref
  12. Expanded funding to train primary care providers and public health practitioners. ref
  13. Increased funding to expand community based prevention prog: rams. ref
  14. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  15. First Lady Michelle Obama kicked off anti-obesity effort. ref
  16. Established a New Patient’s Bill of Rights. ref
  17. Established Patient Safety and Medical Liability Demonstration Projects. ref , ref
  18. Questioned Prestigious Hospitals in Electronic Health Records Probe (DHHS). ref
  19. Established Standards For Accessible Medical Diagnostic Equipment ref
  20. Expanded vaccination programs. ref , ref
  21. Signed the Ryan White HIV/AIDS Treatment Extension Act of 2009. ref
  22. Engaged global efforts on HIV/AIDS issues. ref
  23. (FDA) Now regulating tobacco. ref, ref
  24. Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act. ref
  25. (FDA) Ordered Tobacco Companies to Disclose Cigarette Ingredients. ref , ref , ref
  26. Banned sale of “light” cigarettes. ref
  27. Increased Federal Employment of Individuals with Disabilities (Exec Order)(celebrating 20th anniversary of the ADA). ref, ref
  28. (FDA) to discuss stricter guidelines for tanning beds due to skin cancer. ref
  29. (FDA) Issued new guidance limiting antibiotic use in cattle to preserve efficacy in humans (6/28/2010). ref
  30. FDA) Reconsidered safety of Bisphenol A, initiates study. ref
  31. Section curator: ^roytoric
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act // Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010 (March 2010). ref , ref
  3. Required large employers to contribute to a national health plan. ref
  4. Required insurance companies to cover pre-existing conditions. ref , ref
  5. Required health plans to disclose how much of the premium goes to patient care. ref
  6. Established an independent health institute to provide accurate and objective information. ref
  7. Provided minimum essential health care coverage by Veteran’s Affairs. ref
  8. Expanded eligibility for State Children’s Health Insurance Fund (SCHIP). ref, ref
  9. Prevented children from being refused health insurance coverage. ref
  10. Established Early Retiree Reinsurance Program. ref
  11. Increased regulation of drug manufacturers. ref, ref
  12. Cut prescription drug costs for Medicare recipients by 50% and began eliminating the plan’s gap (“donut hole”) in coverage. ref
  13. TRICARE Affirmation Act. ref
  14. Extended COBRA (Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act) to provide for a continuation of health care. ref, ref, ref
  15. Medicare Physician Payment Reform Act of 2009. ref , ref , ref, ref
  16. Section curator: ^roytoric
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Unveiled $275 billion dollar housing plan ref
  3. Established “Opening Doors” – a federal strategic plan to prevent and end homelessness. ref , ref
  4. FUNDING:
  5. Provided $510 Million for the rehabilitation of Native American housing. ref
  6. Provided $2 billion for Neighborhood Stabilization Program . ref
  7. Provided $5 billion for Weatherization Assistance Program for low income families. ref
  8. Provided grants to encourage energy-efficient building codes. Ref
  9. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  10. Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act. ref
  11. Helping Families Save Their Homes Act, helping millions avoid foreclosure . ref, ref
  12. Established the Making Home Affordable Plan, which will provide for the refinance or loan modification for 9 Million homeowners. ref
  13. RESULTS:
  14. New-home sales saw biggest jump in 47 years. ref, ref
  15. Foreclosures fall 2%. ref
  16. Section curators: ^roytoric
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Supported the repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell (DADT). ref
  3. Civil Rights History Project Act of 2009. ref, ref
  4. FUNDING:
  5. Accelerated tax benefits for charitable cash contributions for Haiti earthquake relief. ref
  6. Made Haiti donations tax deductible for 2009. ref
  7. $60 million for flood victims in Pakistan (8/19/10).
  8. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  9. The Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act; instituted equal pay for women. ref, ref, ref
  10. Presidential Memorandum extending benefits to same-sex partners of federal employees. ref, ref, ref, ref
  11. Increased federal employment of individuals with disabilities (Exec Order)(celebrating 20th anniversary of the ADA). ref ref
  12. Presidential Memorandum extending benefits to Same-Sex Partners of Federal Employees. ref, ref, ref, ref
  13. Presidential Memorandum protecting gay and lesbian partners’ visitation/healthcare decision-making rights (4/15/2010). ref
  14. The Ryan White HIV/AIDS Treatment Extension Act. ref
  15. Awarded the Presidential Medal of freedom to Harvey Milk and Billie Jean King. ref
  16. The Daniel Pearl Freedom of the Press Act, advancing press freedom and safety for journalists. ref, ref,
  17. The Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act to include gender, sexual orientation and disability. ref
  18. Established White House Council on Women and Girls (Executive Order 13506 ). ref
  19. Awarded 2009 Nobel Peace Prize. ref
  20. Signed the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. ref
  21. The Native American Heritage Day Act of 2009. ref
  22. Appointed an American Indian policy adviser. ref
  23. (EPA) Reversed Controversial “Human Guinea Pig” Rule. ref
  24. Section curators: ^rmuse
  1. Requested emergency funding of $600 million for Border Security. ref
  2. Deployed more drones on Mexico border (Homeland Security). ref
  3. Deported higher numbers of Illegal Immigrants. ref
  4. Section curators: ^roytoric
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Introduced plan to expand broadband Internet across U.S. ref, ref
  3. FUNDING:
  4. $8 billion combined public/private funding committed to develop Smart Power Grid (ARRA.) ref
  5. $800 million to fund rapid rollout of rural broadband expansion (7/2010). ref
  6. Provided funding for high-speed, broadband Internet access to K-12 schools. ref
  7. Increased infrastructure spending (roads, bridges, power plants) after years of neglect. ref
  8. $290 million in funding for 53 grants to “fund new streetcars, buses, and transit facilities.” ref ref
  9. Invested $13 Billion (ARRA: $8B + $1B 5-year federal budget) in high speed rail projects in 13 major corridors ref, ref, ref
  10. Provided grants to encourage energy-efficient building codes. ref
  11. Created a social investment fund network. ref
  12. Funded a major expansion of AmeriCorps. ref
  13. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  14. (NIST) Completed first release of Smart Grid framework. ref
  15. Opened 500 MHz of wireless spectrum over next 10 years to expand wireless/mobile broadband use. ref
  16. Commenced 10,000th road project, Columbus, OH (part of ARRA); June 2010. ref , ref
  17. Airport and Airway Extension Act. ref
  18. Initiated modification to Sanitary Sewer Overflow (SSO) regulations. ref, ref
  19. Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act, which expands the volunteer program. ref, ref ref
  20. RESULTS:
  21. Study: Almost 5 million charging stations by 2015. ref
  22. 10,000th highway project (ARRA). ref
  23. Section curator: ^roytoric
  1. Established POWER Initiative – protects government workers, ensures reemployment, reduces worker’s comp claims and payments. ref
  2. Restored funding to the EEOC and the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs. ref
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Outlined new federal drug control policy. ref ref
  3. Ordered review of mandatory minimum sentences. ref
  4. FUNDING:
  5. Restored funding for the Byrne Justice Assistance Grant (Byrne/JAG) program. ref
  6. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  7. Appointment of first Latina to the Supreme Court. ref, ref
  8. Appointed first black Attorney General, Eric Holder. ref
  9. Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act to include gender, sexual orientation and disability. ref
  10. Established crimes programs for the new Orleans area. ref
  11. Brought greter alignment to sentencing guidelines for powdered versus crack cocaine. ref
  12. Denounced SCOTUS ruling in Citizens United. ref
  13. Pushing through settlement in the Black Farmers Lawsuit against USDA . ref, ref
  14. DTV Delay Act. ref
  15. Criminal History Background Checks Pilot Extension Act of 2009. ref
  16. Tribal Law and Order Act. ref, ref, ref, ref
  17. RESULTS:
  18. U.S. jail population declined for first time in decades. ref
  19. Section curators: ^roytoric
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Established independent commission to make recommendations on slowing the costs of Medicare. ref
  3. Social Security Disability Applicant Access to Professional Representation Act of 2010. ref
  4. FUNDING:
  5. Eliminated higher subsidies to Medicare Advantage plans. ref
  6. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  7. Medicare Physician Payment Reform Act of 2009. ref, ref, ref, ref
  8. Cut prescription drug costs for Medicare recipients by 50% and began eliminating the plan’s gap (“donut hole”) in coverage. ref
  9. Preserved access to care for Medicare beneficiaries ref
  10. Expanded eligibility for Medicaid. ref
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Began restructuring the military to reflect present day threats and technology. ref
  3. Recommitted the U.S. to a policy of “no torture” and full compliance with the Geneva Conventions. ref
  4. All servicepeople receive education in a region’s culture and language before deployment there (a soldier said this on Maddow).
  5. Supported the Repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell (DADT). ref , ref
  6. Ended the previous stop-loss policy that kept soldiers in Iraq/Afghanistan longer than their enlistment date. ref
  7. Established new cyber security office. ref, ref
  8. Defense Production Act Reauthorization of 2009. ref
  9. Weapons Systems Acquisition Reform Act. ref
  10. Nuclear Forensics and Attribution Act. ref
  11. FUNDING:
  12. Cut the missile defense program by $1.4 billion in 2010. ref
  13. Eliminated F-22 fighter jet program after lobbying Senate vote to strip financing for more jets from a defense funding authorization bill. ref, ref, ref
  14. Canceled contract for new Presidential helicopter fleet (28 helicopters, $11.2 billion). ref
  15. $1.1 Billion for improving airport security. ref
  16. Increased pay and benefits for military personnel. ref
  17. BY REGION/THEATER:
  18. AF Changed the failing/status quo military command in Afghanistan. ref, ref
  19. AF Set troop pullout in Afghanistan to begin in summer 2011. ref , ref
  20. AF Established Afghan War policy that limits aerial bombing, prioritizes aid
  21. AF infrastructure, diplomacy, and good government practices. ref
  22. AF Ordered military to withdraw fast food establishments from Afghan bases. ref
  23. IQ Ended combat mission (remaining personnel are nonagressive) 8/18/10
  24. SOM Increased US Navy patrols off Somali coast. ref
  25. SOM Ordered SEAL operation that resulted in killing of three terrorists and the release of US captain held by Somali pirates. ref
  26. Closed secret detention facilities in Eastern Europe and elsewhere. ref , ref
  27. Opened door to space arms treaty. ref, ref
  28. Restarted the nuclear nonproliferation talks, building back up the nuclear inspection infrastructure/protocols. ref
  29. Executive Order Optimizing the Security of Biological Select Agents and Toxins in the US. ref
  30. Caught more Taliban Leaders in one month than Bush/Cheney did in six years. ref
  31. Negotiated nuclear arms agreements with Australia (5/5/2010), India (5/4/2010), and Russia (5/10/2010). ref, ref, ref, ref
  32. New START treaty and protocol with Medvedev. ref
  33. Section curators: ^arrghPaine
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Initiated a new policy to promote federal hiring of military spouses. ref, ref
  3. Improved benefits for veterans. ref, ref, ref, ref
  4. Interagency Task Force on Veterans Small Business Development . ref
  5. Worked to clear the backlog of veterans claims and streamline benefits to those who served. ref
  6. FUNDING:
  7. Provided for the expenses of families of to be at Dover AFB when fallen soldiers arrive.ref
  8. Donated 250K of Nobel prize money to Fisher House. ref
  9. Veterans Health Care Budget Reform and Transparency Act of 2009. ref
  10. Veterans’ Compensation Cost-of-Living Adjustment Act of 2009. ref
  11. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  12. Medal of Honor Commemorative Coin Act of 2009. ref
  13. Promoted a bill to award a Congressional Gold Medal to the Women Airforce Service Pilots (“WASP”). ref
  14. Ended media blackout on war casualties; reporting full information. ref , ref, ref , ref
  15. Military Spouses Residency Relief Act. ref
  16. Improved basic housing allowance for military personnel. ref
  17. Caregivers and Veterans Omnibus Health Services Act of 2010. ref
  18. Provided minimum essential health care coverage by Veteran’s Affairs. ref
  19. Authorized construction/opening of additional health centers to care for veterans. ref
  20. Korean War Veterans Recognition Act. ref
  21. Blinded Veterans Association. ref
  22. Major Charles R. Soltes, Jr., O.D. Department of Veterans Affairs Blind Rehabilitation Center. ref
  23. Improved access for Veterans to receive PTSD treatment. ref
  24. Green Vet Initiative to promote environmental jobs for veterans. ref
  25. Section curators: ^roytoric
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Ordered an extensive review of hurricane and natural disaster preparedness. ref, ref
  3. Memorandum on the Long-Term Gulf Coast Restoration Support Plan ref
  4. FUNDING:
  5. Provided $210 Million for building and upgrading fire stations. ref
  6. Ordered $20 billion escrow fund by BP to reimburse lost incomes in Gulf. ref
  7. Ordered $100 million to compensate those hurt by drilling moratorium. ref
  8. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  9. Haiti Economic Lift Program Act of 2010. ref
  10. Haiti Debt Relief and Earthquake Recovery Act of 2010. ref
  11. Emergency Aid to American Survivors of the Haiti Earthquake Act. ref
  1. The Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act — Expands the national volunteer program. ref ref, ref ref
  2. Created a Social Investment Fund Network. ref
  3. Section curators: ^roytoric
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Removed restrictions and provided support for embryonic stem-cell research and new biomedical research. ref, ref, ref ref
  3. Extended the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. ref, ref
  4. Supported Landsat Data Continuity Mission to enhance earth mapping. ref
  5. FUNDING:
  6. Provided new federal funding for science and research labs. ref
  7. Provided grants to early-career researchers. ref
  8. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  9. Appointed an assistant to the president for science and technology policy. ref
  10. Optimized the Security of Biological Select Agents and Toxins in the United States ref
  11. Optimized the Security of Biological Select Agents and Toxins in the United States ref
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Worked with international allies on International Space Station ref
  3. Opened door to space arms treaty. ref, ref
  4. Used the private sector to improve spaceflight ref
  5. Supported commercial access to outer space ref
  6. FUNDING:
  7. Increased spending to prepare for longer space missions ref
  8. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  9. Added another Space Shuttle flight ref
  10. Partnered to enhance the potential of the International Space Station ref
  11. Used the International Space Station for fundamental biological and physical research ref
  12. Determined whether International Space Station can operate after 2016 ref
  13. Conducted robust research and development on future space missions ref
  14. DOD opened access to social media sites (Air Force News). ref
  15. DOD will film all interrogations. ref
  16. Cracked down on tax cheats (exec order). ref
  17. Dismantled the Minerals Management Service, cutting ties between industry and government. ref , ref
  18. Established the USA.gov portal connecting people to the services they require ref
  19. Daniel Pearl Freedom of the Press Act. ref, ref
  20. White House voluntary disclosure policy – visitor access records/450,000 records to date ref ref
  21. Section curators: ^roytoric
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Adopted Economic Substance tax doctrine. ref
  3. Cracked down on tax cheats (Exec Order). ref
  4. TARGETED ACTIONS: TAX CREDITS/REDUCTIONS:
  5. Temporarily suspended taxes on unemployment benefits. ref ref
  6. Established consumer tax credit for plug-in hybrid cars. ref, ref
  7. $60 billion in spending and tax incentives for renewable and clean energy. ref
  8. Tax breaks to promote public transit. ref
  9. Extended and indexed the 2007 Alternative Minimum Tax patch. ref
  10. Small business teax credits for the cost of health insurance for employees beginning 1/1/10 (HCR).
  11. 2-year temporary tax credit up to $1 billion to encourage investment in new disease prevention and treatment therapies (HCR).
  12. Income floor for medical expense deductions for individuals age 65 and older (and their spouses) remains at 7.5% through 2016; Raise 7.5% floor to 10% for all others (1/1/13) (HCR) ref
  13. Health insurance premium tax credits and subsidies available for those with income up to 4x the federal poverty level (1/1/14) (HCR) ref ref
  14. Accelerated tax benefits for charitable cash contributions for Haiti earthquake relief. ref
  15. TARGETED ACTIONS: TAX ASSESSMENTS/INCREASES:
  16. Made Haiti donations tax deductible for 2009. ref
  17. ncreased penalty tax of 20% on nonqual distributions from HSA and MSA (1/1/11) (HCR) ref
  18. Income tax rates for the highest earners will change from 35 to 39.6 percent. (1/1/11) (HCR) ref
  19. Capital gains tax for the highest earners will change from 15 to 20 percent. (1/1/11) (HCR) ref
  20. 2.3% excise tax on manufacturers and importers of certain medical devices (1/1/13) (HCR) ref
  21. For high earners the capital gains tax will rise from 20 to 23.8 percent. (1/1/13) (HCR) ref
  22. A 2.35 percent Medicare payroll tax only on wages over the threshold (an increase of 0.9 percent) (1/1/13) (HCR) ref
  23. Tax increase for corporations with assets of at least $1 billion (1/1/14) (HCR) ref
  24. 40% Excise tax on Cadillac health plans (2018) (HCR) ref
  25. TARGETED ACTIONS: TAX ENFORCEMENT AND ADMINISTRATION:
  26. Closed offshore tax safe havens, tax credit loopholes . ref , ref , ref
  27. Employers will report the value of health benefits on W-2s (1/1/11) (HCR) ref
  28. RESULTS:
  29. Tax bills hit lowest level since 1950. ref
  30. Tax refunds up 10 percent due to stimulus. ref
  31. Section curator: ^roytoric
  1. BROAD POLICY:
  2. Mandate to follow the standards of the Freedom of Information Act (exec order). ref
  3. Instructed all federal agencies to promote openness and transparency as much as possible. ref
  4. Unveiled “open government” plans. ref
  5. Federal IT Dashboard, “a website enabling federal agencies & the public to view details of information technology”. ref
  6. TARGETED ACTIONS:
  7. Released presidential records. ref
  8. Imposed limits on lobbyists’ access to the White House. ref ref
  9. Imposed limits on White House aides working for lobbyists after their tenure in the administration. ref
  10. Closed lobbyist loopholes with respect to the Recovery Act ref
  11. Banned lobbyist gifts to executive employees. ref
  12. Provided more town halls and media access than previous administration. ref, ref
  13. Required health plans to disclose how much of the premium goes to patient care. ref
  14. Established an independent health institute to provide accurate and objective information. ref
  15. Required new hires to sign a form affirming their hiring was not due to political affiliations or contributions. ref, ref
  16. Established a uniform standard for declassifying, safeguarding and classifying national security information (12/29/2009). ref
  17. Created a national declassification center. ref
  18. DOD opened access to social media sites (Air Force News). ref
  19. DOD will film all interrogations. ref
  20. Cracked down on tax cheats (exec order). ref
  21. Dismantled the Minerals Management Service, cutting ties between industry and government. ref , ref
  22. Established the USA.gov portal connecting people to the services they require ref
  23. Daniel Pearl Freedom of the Press Act. ref, ref
  24. RESULTS:
  25. White House voluntary disclosure policy – visitor access records/450,000 records to date ref ref
  26. Federal deficit shrank 8% year-on-year.
  27. Financial reform has ‘strongest consumer financial protections in history.’ ref
  28. Wall St reform designed to end taxpayer bailouts. ref
  29. Six-month report card: exports in the first four months of 2010 were 17 percent higher than in the first four months of 2009 . ref
  30. Job loss exploded under Bush, improves under Obama. ref
  31. 682,370 jobs created under the Recovery Act Between January 1 — March 31,2010. ref, ref, ref
  32. New jobless claims tumble. ref
  33. March payrolls surge by 162,000. ref
  34. March jobs data showed biggest growth in three years .ref
  35. U.S. economy added 90,000 jobs in April . ref
  36. Jobless rates dropped in 34 states and DC (AP). ref
  37. New-home sales saw biggest jump in 47 years. ref, ref
  38. Foreclosures fall 2%. ref
  39. U.S. Economy: Manufacturing grew by most since 2004. ref
  40. U.S. GDP up 3.2% in first quarter, consumer spending showed biggest rise in 3 years . ref
  41. Orders for most durable goods rose. ref
  42. Wholesale inventories and sales rose in March. ref
  43. Consumer confidence highest in 2 years. ref
  44. Start-Up activity now higher than it was during the dotcom boom. ref
  45. Study: almost 5 million charging stations by 2015. ref
  46. Wind power growth up 39% due to government stimulus. ref
  47. Poll: world’s opinion of U.S. has “improved sharply” under Obama.ref
  48. 47 nations rise to Obama’s challenge at US nuke summit and agree to four years of non-proliferation efforts. ref
  49. U.S. jail population declined for first time in decades