The Pronk Pops Show 1246, April 29, 2019, Story 1: Make America Healthy Again — Only You Can Prevent Obesity, Poverty and Ignorance — Killing Me Softly with His Song — Videos — Story 2: Consumer Spending Surging — U.S. Stock Market Hits New Record Highs — Videos — Story 3: U.S Recession or Boom in 2020? Flip A Coin — Videos — Story 4: Wait Until 2021 At Earliest For Any Trade Agreement To Be Passed By House of Representatives — Videos

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The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 1246 April 29, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1245 April 26, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1244 April 25, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1243 April 24, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1242 April 23, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1241 April 18, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1240 April 16, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1239 April 15, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1238 April 11, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1237 April 10, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1236 April 9, 201

Pronk Pops Show 1235 April 8, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1234 April 5, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1233 April 4, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1232 April 1, 2019 Part 2

Pronk Pops Show 1232 March 29, 2019 Part 1

Pronk Pops Show 1231 March 28, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1230 March 27, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1229 March 26, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1228 March 25, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1227 March 21, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1226 March 20, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1225 March 19, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1224 March 18, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1223 March 8, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1222 March 7, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1221 March 6, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1220 March 5, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1219 March 4, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1218 March 1, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1217 February 27, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1216 February 26, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1215 February 25, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1214 February 22, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1213 February 21, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1212 February 20, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1211 February 19, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1210 February 18, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1209 February 15, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1208 February 14, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1207 February 13, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1206 February 12, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1205 February 11, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1204 February 8, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1203 February 7, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1202 February 6, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1201 February 4, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1200 February 1, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1199 January 31, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1198 January 25, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1197 January 23, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1196 January 22, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1195 January 17, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1194 January 10, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1193 January 9, 2019

Pronk Pops Show 1192 January 8, 2019

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Story 1: Make America Healthy Again — Only You Can Prevent Obesity, Poverty and Ignorance — Killing Me Softly with His Song — Videos

Trump physical shows he’s in ‘very good health overall’ but clinically obese

President Trump goes on a diet

This Is What The President Eats

This Is Why Trump Really Eats So Much Fast Food

Trump Is Conveniently One Pound Under Obese

What Fast Food Can You Eat on Keto?

The 10 FATTEST STATES in AMERICA

Obesity in America Rising

How The U.S. Is Exporting Obesity | AJ+

The Weight of the Nation: Part 1 – Consequences (HBO Docs)

The Weight of the Nation: Part 2 – Choices (HBO Docs)

The Weight of the Nation: Part 3 – Children in Crisis (HBO Docs)

Mayo Clinic Minute: Why losing weight can slow your metabolism

How to Fix a Slow Metabolism: MUST WATCH!

What Are The 4 Body Types?

Dr. Berg’s Body Type Seminar

What to Eat for Your Body Type?

What the Metabolic Diet Is and Why It Works for Anyone

How To Fix Your Adrenal Body Type

Why It’s Hard to Turn Stress (Cortisol) Off

Dr. Berg’s Anti-Aging Seminar

Dr. Berg hosts a webinar on Anti-Aging and food

Identifying Nutritional Deficiencies Through Nails, Skin & Hair

How Dr. Berg Met His Wife Karen: Interesting Story

The Medical Model vs. Holistic Medicine (Common Sense Medicine)

‘Biggest Loser’ Contestants Open Up About Continuing Weight Battles

What The Winners Of The Biggest Loser Look Like Now

The 4 Things I Did to Lose 200 Pounds

]

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Donald Trump
President Donald Trump’s doctor, Sean Conley, recorded Trump’s height as 6’3″ and his weight as 243 pounds. | Win McNamee/Getty Images

WHITE HOUSE

Trump technically obese, despite doctor’s clean bill of health

A four-pound weight gain over the last year makes the president obese under the official definition of the term.

President Donald Trump gained four pounds over the last year, according to a new assessment from his doctor, a weight increase that makes him technically obese.

But Trump’s doctor, Sean Conley, nonetheless determined that the president “remains in very good health overall” in a memorandum released by the White House on Thursday.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that a body mass index of 30.0 or higher falls into the obese range. Based on his current height and weight, Trump’s body mass index is 30.4, putting him across the obesity threshold. Obese people are at increased risk of a slew of health problems, including diabetes, heart disease and stroke.

The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment about the president’s weight.

Jackson recommended last year that the president lose 10-15 pounds and put him on a diet and exercise plan. The White House acknowledged last week that the president has not followed the plan closely.

Trump, the oldest U.S. president in history, has a reputation for guzzling diet coke and eating steak and fried food. His diet is a contrast from that of former President Barack Obama, who exercised regularly and promoted healthy eating habits with his wife, former First Lady Michelle Obama.

The president underwent a four-hour physical exam last week at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. Conley declared Trump was in “very good health” after the exam, which included assessments from 11 specialists. But the White House did not release any results until Thursday.

Some Trump critics wondered why it took so long, but it often takes days to receive medical test results. The White House nonetheless released the memo on a busy day, shortly after news broke that the president planned to sign a government funding deal and issue a national emergency to ensure the construction of his border wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

In his memo, Conley recorded Trump’s LDL cholesterol, commonly referred to as “bad” cholesterol, at 122 milligrams per deciliter. The CDC recommends that a person’s LDL cholesterol be under 100. Trump has struggled with high cholesterol in the past, and Conley said he had increased the president’s dosage of cholesterol medicine. Trump’s blood pressure is considered normal, though, at 118/80 mmHg. Conley’s measurement is at the high end of the CDC’s recommended range.

Conley said Trump’s, liver, kidney and thyroid functions, as well as his electrolytes and blood counts, were all normal.

https://www.politico.com/story/2019/02/14/trump-technically-obese-doctors-health-1170438

 

President Trump is now obese. He has a lot of company.

President Trump is now obese. He has a lot of company.

PABLO MARTINEZ MONSIVAIS / AP

President Donald Trump weighed 243 pounds at his physical on Feb. 8, meaning he is now considered obese.

He has gained four pounds since his previous official checkup 13 months ago, giving him a body mass index of 30.4. A person with a BMI of 30 or above is defined as obese.

Obesity, which affects more than 90 million U.S. adults, is associated with a higher risk of heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

That does not mean Trump is suddenly at much higher risk for those conditions. They also are associated with being overweight, which he was at his previous checkup in January 2018. The president’s BMI then was 29.9, at the upper end of being considered overweight for a man of his height, listed at 6 feet 3 inches.

The president was examined by physician Sean P. Conley this month at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, the White House said Thursday. Conley, a Navy commander, said he was assisted by a panel of 11 board-certified specialists.

“After taking into account all the laboratory results, examinations and specialist recommendations, it is my determination that the president remains in very good health overall,” Conley said, in a memo released by the White House.

The president’s blood pressure was measured at 118 over 80. The lower of those two numbers, called diastolic blood pressure, is considered borderline high, according to the most recent guidelines from the American Heart Association. Conley described the president’s liver, kidney, and thyroid function as normal.

During his physical, Trump received the Shingrix vaccine, which protects against the debilitating disease of shingles. He also got the Pneumovax 23 vaccine, which reduces a person’s risk of pneumococcal infection and is recommended by the CDC for all adults age 65 or older.

Killing Me Softly with His Song

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Killing Me Softly with His Song” is a song composed by Charles Fox with lyrics by Norman Gimbel.

The song was written in collaboration with Lori Lieberman, who recorded the song in late 1971. In 1973 it became a number-one hit in the United States and Canada for Roberta Flack, also reaching number six in the UK Singles Chart. The song has been covered by many artists; the version by the Fugees won the 1997 Grammy for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal.

Contents

Lori Lieberman version and disputed origins

According to Lori Lieberman, who performed the original recording in 1971, the song was born of a poem she wrote after experiencing a strong reaction to the Don McLean song “Empty Chairs“,[1][2] writing some poetic ideas on a napkin at the Troubadour Club after seeing him perform the song,[3] and then relating this information to Norman Gimbel, who took her feelings and converted them into song lyrics. Gimbel passed his lyrics to Charles Fox, who set them to music.[4]

According to Gimbel, he was introduced to the Argentinian-born composer Lalo Schifrin (then of Mission: Impossible fame) and began writing songs to a number of Schifrin’s films.[5] Both Gimbel and Schifrin made a suggestion to write a Broadway musical together, and Schifrin gave Gimbel an Argentinean novel—Hopscotch by Julio Cortázar—to read as a possible idea. The book was never made into a musical, but in chapter two, the narrator describes himself as sitting in a bar listening to an American pianist friend “kill us softly with some blues“.[5][6] Gimbel put the phrase in his “idea book” for use at a future time with a parenthesis around the word “blues” and substituted the word “song” instead.[7]

Don McLean said he had not known that the song described his singing and, when asked about it, said “I’m absolutely amazed. I’ve heard both Lori’s and Roberta’s version and I must say I’m very humbled about the whole thing. You can’t help but feel that way about a song written and performed as well as this one is.”[8]

Nevertheless, Fox repudiated Lieberman’s role in the song’s creation, saying: “We [Gimbel and Fox] wrote the song and [Lieberman] heard it and said it reminded her of how she felt at [a Don McLean] concert. Don McLean didn’t inspire Norman or me to write the song but even Don McLean thinks he’s the inspiration for the song.”[9]

McLean supported Lieberman, both on his website and from the stage of a concert which he invited her to attend in 2010 and in an April 5, 1973 article in the New York Daily News, Norman Gimbel was quoted as agreeing with Lieberman: “She [Lori Lieberman] told us about this strong experience she had listening to McLean (‘I felt all flushed with fever / Embarrassed by the crowd / I felt he had found my letters / And read each one out loud / I prayed that he would finish / But he just kept right on’). I had a notion this might make a good song so the three of us discussed it. We talked it over several times, just as we did for the rest of the numbers we wrote for this album and we all felt it had possibilities.”[10]

When Dan MacIntosh (Songfacts) spoke with Charles Fox in 2010, he refuted this story: “I think it’s called an urban legend. It really didn’t happen that way. Norman Gimbel and I wrote that song for a young artist whose name was Lori Lieberman. Norman had a book that he would put titles of songs, song ideas and lyrics or something that struck him at different times. And he pulled out the book and he was looking through it, and he says, ‘Hey, what about a song title, ‘Killing Me Softly With His Blues’?’ Well, the ‘killing me softly’ part sounded very interesting, ‘with his blues’ sounded old fashioned in 1972 when we wrote it. So he thought for a while and he said, ‘What about ‘killing me softly with his song’? That has a unique twist to it.’ So we discussed what it could be, and obviously it’s about a song – listening to the song and being moved by the words. It’s like the words are speaking to what that person’s life is. Anyway, Norman went home and wrote an extraordinary lyric and called me later in the afternoon. I jotted it down over the phone. I sat down and the music just flowed right along with the words. And we got together the next morning and made a couple of adjustments with it and we played it for Lori, and she loved it, she said it reminds her of being at a Don McLean concert. So in her act, when she would appear, she would say that. And somehow the words got changed around so that we wrote it based on Don McLean, and even Don McLean I think has it on his Web site. But he doesn’t know. You know, he only knows what the legend is.”[11] In the New York Daily News article [8], Patricia O’Haire asked Lori Lieberman about how the song came about – what or more specifically who was the inspiration for it:

“Don McLean,” she said simply. “I saw him at the Troubadour in LA last year. (“And there he was this young boy / A stranger to my eyes”) I had heard about him from some friends but up to then all I knew about him really was what others had told me. But I was moved by his performance, by the way he developed his numbers, he got right through to me. (“Strumming my pain with his fingers / Killing me softly with his song/ Telling my whole life with his words.”)

Norman Gimbel picked up the story. “Lori is only 20 and she really is a very private person,” he said. “She told us about this strong experience she had listening to McLean” (“I felt all flushed with fever / Embarassed by the crowd / I felt he had found my letters / And read each one out loud / I prayed that he would finish / But he kept just right on…”) “I had a notion this might make a good song so the three of us discussed it. We talked it over several times, just as we did with the rest of the numbers we wrote for the album and we all felt it had possibilities.” “Norman had a phrase he liked, ‘killing me softly with his blues’”, Lori went on to explain. “But I didn’t feel the word “blues” was quite what the effect was. It wasn’t contemporary enough, somehow. We talked about it a while and finally decided on the word “song” instead. It seemed right then when we did it.”

Roberta Flack version

“Killing Me Softly with His Song”
Killing Me Softly with His Song by Roberta Flack US vinyl.png

One of A-side labels of U.S. vinyl single
Single by Roberta Flack
from the album Killing Me Softly
B-side “Just Like a Woman”
Released January 21, 1973
Format 7-inch single
Recorded November 17, 1972
Studio Atlantic, New York City[12]
Genre Soul
Length 4:46
Label Atlantic
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s) Joel Dorn
Roberta Flack singles chronology
Where Is the Love
(1972)
Killing Me Softly with His Song
(1973)
“Jesse”
(1973)
Alternative release
German single picture sleeve

German single picture sleeve
Audio
“Killing Me Softly with His Song” on YouTube

Lieberman was the first to record the song in late 1971, releasing it in early 1972.[13] Helen Reddy has said she was sent the song, but “the demo… sat on my turntable for months without being played because I didn’t like the title”.[14]

Roberta Flack first heard the song on an airline, when the Lieberman original was featured on the in-flight audio program. After scanning the listing of available audio selections, Flack would recall: “The title, of course, smacked me in the face. I immediately pulled out some scratch paper, made musical staves [then] play[ed] the song at least eight to ten times jotting down the melody that I heard. When I landed, I immediately called Quincy [Jones] at his house and asked him how to meet Charles Fox. Two days later I had the music.” Shortly afterwards Flack rehearsed the song with her band in the Tuff Gong Studios in Kingston, Jamaica, but did not then record it.[15]

In September 1972, Flack was opening for Marvin Gaye at the Greek Theater; after performing her prepared encore song, Flack was advised by Gaye to sing an additional song. Flack later said, “I said well, I got this song I’ve been working on called ‘Killing Me Softly…’ and he said ‘Do it, baby.’ And I did it and the audience went crazy, and he walked over to me and put his arm around me and said, ‘Baby, don’t ever do that song again live until you record it.'”[16]

Released in January 1973, Flack’s version spent a total of five non-consecutive weeks at #1 in February and March, more weeks than any other record in 1973, being bumped to number 2 by The O’Jays‘ “Love Train” after four straight weeks atop the Billboard Hot 100Billboard ranked it as the No. 3 song for 1973.[17] In April of 1973, Canadian singer Anne Murray included her version of “Killing Me Softly” on her album titled Danny’s Song.

Charles Fox suggested that Flack’s version was more successful than Lieberman’s because Flack’s “version was faster and she gave it a strong backbeat that wasn’t in the original”.[9] According to Flack: “My classicalbackground made it possible for me to try a number of things with [the song’s arrangement]. I changed parts of the chord structure and chose to end on a major chord. [The song] wasn’t written that way.”.[18] In actual fact the only chord changed by Flack was the chorus chord under “Fingers” which was changed from Major to Minor. Flack plays electric piano on the track. The bass is played by Ron Carter, the guitar by Hugh McCracken and the drums by Ray Lucas.[citation needed] The single appeared as the opening track of the album of the same name, issued in August 1973.

Flack won the 1973 Grammy Award for Record of the Year and Best Pop Vocal Performance, Female, for the single, with Gimbel and Fox earning the Song of the Year Grammy.

In 1996 a house remix of Flack’s version went to number one on the US dance chart.[19]

In 1999 Flack’s version was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.[20] It ranked number 360 on Rolling Stones list of The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time and number 82 on Billboards greatest songs of all time.[21]

Charts

Chart (1973) Peak
position
Australia (Kent Music Report)[22] 1
Austria (Ö3 Austria Top 40)[23] 19
Canada (RPM)[24] 1
Ireland (IRMA) 10
Netherlands (Dutch Top 40)[25] 3
Norway (VG-lista)[26] 4
Switzerland (Schweizer Hitparade)[27] 32
UK Singles (The Official Charts Company)[28] 6
US Billboard Hot 100[29] 1
US Hot R&B Singles[30] 2
US Easy Listening[30] 2
West Germany (Official German Charts)[31] 30

Fugees version

“Killing Me Softly”
Kmsoftlyfugees.jpg
Single by Fugees
from the album The Score
Released May 31, 1998
Format CD single
Recorded 1998
Genre
Length
  • 4:58 (album version)
  • 4:16 (radio edit)
  • 4:00 (radio edit: without intro)
Label Ruffhouse
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s) Fugees
Fugees singles chronology
Fu-Gee-La
(1998)
Killing Me Softly
(1998)
Ready or Not
(1998)
Audio
“Killing Me Softly” (audio) on YouTube

Hip hop group Fugees covered the Flack version of the song (as “Killing Me Softly“) on their album The Score (1998), with Lauryn Hill singing the lead vocals. Their version became a hit, reaching number two on the U.S. airplay chart. The song topped the charts in the United Kingdom, where it became the country’s biggest-selling single of 1998. It has since sold 1.36 million copies in Britain.[32] The Fugees recording won the 1997 Grammy for Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocal[33] and their video earned the MTV Video Music Award for Best R&B Video.[34]

This version sampled the 90’s song “Bonita Applebum” by A Tribe Called Quest (ATCQ) from their debut album People’s Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm. ATCQ themselves had sampled the riff from the song “Memory Band” from psychedelic soul band Rotary Connection‘s 1967 eponymous debut album. The Fugees single was so successful that the track was “deleted” and thus no longer supplied to retailers whilst the track was still in the top 20 so that attention could be drawn to the next single, “Ready or Not“. Propelled by the success of the Fugees track, the 1972 recording by Roberta Flack was remixed in 1998 with the vocalist adding some new vocal flourishes: this version topped the Hot Dance Club Play chart. Flack and the Fugees have performed the song together since then.[35] In 2008, “Killing Me Softly” was ranked number 25 on VH1‘s 100 Greatest Songs of Hip Hop and number 44 on its list of the “100 Greatest Songs of the ’90s”.

Background

“Killing Me Softly” was the last song the Fugees recorded for The Score, after member Pras Michael made the suggestion to cover it. They wanted to “see how we can create break beats. And of course, we all love A Tribe Called Quest and we went in like ‘Okay, let’s cut that sample.'” They then added a bass reggae drop.[36] Initially, the Fugees wanted to change the lyrics of the song to make it anti-drugs and anti-poverty but the songwriters, Norman Gimbel and Charles Fox, refused.[37]

Composition

The Fugees’ version features “percussive rhythms” with “a synth sitar sound, Wyclef’s blurted chants, Hill’s vocal melisma on the scatted bridge, and a bombastic drum-loop track”.[38]

Critical reception

In January 1997, Spin called the song “an instant classic, pumped out of every passing car from coast to coast, with Lauryn Hill’s timeless voice never losing its poignant kick”.[39] Celebrating the album’s 20th anniversary in February 2016, Billboard reviewed the song, saying: “It’s a lovely cover that maintains the spirit of the original while taking the material in new directions.”[40]

Music video

The video, directed by Aswad Ayinde[41] and based on Lauryn Hill’s ideas, never came out commercially in America.[42] It features Roberta Flack.[38][43]

Bounty Killer remix

The Fugees recorded a dancehall version with Bounty Killer rapping and Hill singing a rewritten chorus. However, they did not receive permission to release it on The Score.[35]

Track listing

UK CD1

  1. “Killing Me Softly” (Album Version W/Out Intro) – 4:03
  2. “Killing Me Softly” (Album Instrumental) – 4:03
  3. “Cowboys” (Album Version) – 3:35
  4. Nappy Heads” (Remix) – 3:49

UK CD2

  1. “Killing Me Softly” (Album Version With Intro) – 4:16
  2. “Fu-Gee-La” (Refugee Camp Global Mix) – 4:15
  3. Vocab” (Refugees Hip Hop Mix) – 4:07
  4. “Vocab” (Salaam’s Acoustic Remix) – 5:54

Charts and certifications

Other cover versions

 
Artist Album Year Released
Perry Como And I Love You So 1973
Vicki Lawrence The Night the Lights Went Out in Georgia 1973
Eric Gale Forecast 1973
The Jacksons 5 1974
The Undisputed Truth Law of the Land 1973
Dottie West If It’s All Right With You / Just What I’ve Been Looking For 1973
Johnny Mathis Killing Me Softly with Her Song 1973
Lynn Anderson Top of the World 1973
Bobby Goldsboro Summer (The First Time) 1973
Rusty Bryant For the Good Times 1973
Vikki Carr Ms. America 1973
Sergio Mendes & Brasil ’77 Love Music 1973
The Ventures Only Hits! 1973
Ellen Freckles 1973
John Holt 1000 Volts of Holt 1973
Anne Murray Danny’s Song 1973
Tim Weisberg Dreamspeaker 1973
Maynard Parker Midnight Rider 1973
The Hiltonaires Made in England 6 1973
Shirley Bassey Never, Never, Never 1973
Ray Conniff and The Singers You Are the Sunshine of My Life 1973
Clint Holmes Playground in My Mind 1973
Elaine Delmar Elaine Delmar 1973
New World Believe in Music 1973
Gianni Oddi Oddi 1973
Perry Como And I Love You So 1973
Andy Williams The Way We Were 1974
Petula Clark Come on Home 1974
Charlie Byrd Byrd by the Sea 1974
Janice Hoyte I’m a Winner 1974
Ed Kilbourne Missionary 1974
Joy Fleming Live 1974
Frances Yip Frances Scores Hits 1974
Engelbert Humperdinck My Love 1974
Ohashi Junko Feeling Now 1974
Lena Martell That Wonderful Sound of Lena Martell 1974
Piet Noordijk Prototype 1974
Swingle II Words and Music 1974
Aura Oh, My Love 1974
Jr. Walker & The All Stars Jr. Walker & The All Stars 1974
Bobby Vinton The Bobby Vinton Show 1975
The Les Humphries Singers The Les Humphries Singers Live 1975
Peters & Lee Favorites 1975
The Geoff Love Singers Close to You 1975
Vince Hill Mandy 1975
The Singers Unlimited A Capella II 1975
Tuxen Smilin’ Steel 1975
Therapy Bringing the House Down 1975
Peter North Saxomania 1975
Sandra Reemer Trust In Me 1976
Cleo Laine & John Williams Best Friends 1976
The Brothers Four New 1976
Brenda Lee Just for You – Something Nice 1976
Val Doonican Some of My Best Friends Are Songs 1977
Rita Remington Magical, Musical, Memories 1978
Hampton Hawes At the Piano 1978
Howard Carpendale Und so geh’n wir unsere Wege 1978
Precious Wilson On the Race Track 1980
Roberta Flack & Peabo Bryson Live & More 1980
Kimiko Kasai Love Talk 1984
The Eddy Starr Singers 28 Golden Love Songs 1984
Mina Finalmente ho conosciuto il conte Dracula vol. 1 1985
Al B. Sure! In Effect Mode 1988
Casal Histeria 1989
Samurai & Hardbartle SynTronic MegaHits 1990
Linda Imperial Killing Me Softly (Single) 1991
Pandora Matandome Suavemente 1992
Des’ree Why Should I Love You? 1992
Päivi Mäkinen & Mökö Rakkaudesta elämään 1993
Amii Stewart Lady to Ladies 1994
Curiosity Back to Front 1994
Ron Sanfilippo Now and Then 1994
Luther Vandross Songs 1994
Extempo Channel 32 1995
Cassandra Wilson Spirit of ’73 – Rock for Choice 1995
Fugees The Score 1996
Michelle Avex Reggae System Vol. 7 1996
Destroy All Monsters Silver Wedding Anniversary 1996
The Spades Killing Me Softly (Single) 1996
Georgetown Phantoms Spank Your Eardrum 1997
Siiri, Boris Björn Bagger & the International Acoustic Band 1st Acoustic Grafitti 1997
Gitte Hænning My Favorite Songs 1998
Victoria Abril Enciende mi pasión 1998
Nils Landgren Ballads 1999
The BB Band That Soul Sound of the 70’s 1999
Cindy Scott Red Hot – Cindy Scott Captured Live in England 2002
Susan Wong Close to You 2002
Marianna Leporace Pop Acústico 2002
Chenoa Mis canciones favoritas – En concierto acústico 2003
Kimberly Caldwell American Idol Season 2 – All-Time Classic American Love Songs 2003
Cheryl Bentyne The Lights Still Burn 2003
Captain Smartypants Undercover 2004
Coco d’Or Coco d’Or 2 2006
Perpetuum Jazzile Čudna Noč 2006
Don Latarski and Marilyn Keller Nightingale 2006
Michael Sagmeister Soul Ticket 2006
The Mardi Gras Band Requests 2007
Georgeana Bonow Pop Bossa – When Pop Goes Bossa 2008
Deborah Sasson Pop Classics 2008
Layla Zoe Live at Errington Hall 2008
Starburkes & The Tea Leaf Acoustic Coffee House 2009
Colbie Caillat iTunes Session 2010
Shanti Snyder Born to Sing 2010
Chelsey Forrest, Kirk Smart Talk to Me Nice 2010
Soul Kitchen-Band feat. Gail Anderson 15 Years Soul Kitchen – The Band 2011
Virginia Belles Good Morning Mr. Jefferson 2011
Afro Blue The Sing-Off Season 3 Episode 6 – Hip Hop (Album) 2011
Harvard Opportunes Out Loud 2011
Joanie Samra – Jesse Green Serendipity 2011
Ruth Jacott Simply the Best – One Woman Show 2012
Katrina Parker The Voice – Killing Me Softly with His Song (Single) 2012
Sussan Kameron Romantic Nights 2012
Keiko Lee Keiko Lee Sings Super Standards 2 2012
Connie Evingson Sweet Happy Life 2012
Sydney Claire Rocks in My Bed 2012
Gary Brown Generations 2012
The Dear Abbeys Proclamation 2012
Miss Murphy The Voice [AU] – Killing Me Softly (Single) 2013
Keaira LaShae The Voice – Killing Me Softly with His Song (Single) 2013
Nancy Sinatra Shifting Gears 2013
Lulu Roman At Last 2013
Ale Vanzella Indie Bossa II 2015
Norah Benatia IDOL 2016 Topp 3 (EP) 2016
Joseph Vincent Killing Me Softly (Single) 2016
Scott & Ben Scott & Ben – Acoustic Cover Sessions Volume 2 2016
Meg Birch Acoustic Covers Pop 2017
Scary Pockets feat. India Carney Nu Funk 2017
Alyssa Bernal Killing Me Softly (Single) 2017
Nicole Cross Shapeshifter 2018

See also

References …

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Killing_Me_Softly_with_His_Song

Don McLean – Empty Chairs

Don McLean – Empty Chairs (for Lori Lieberman / August 2011)

Lori Lieberman sings “Killing Me Softly” on Mike Douglas Show, 1973

Lori Lieberman comes to terms with Killing Me Softly

Roberta Flack – Killing me softly with his song 1973 Original MV stereo)

[Chorus]
Strumming my pain with his fingers
Singing my life with his words
Killing me softly with his song
Killing me softly with his song
Telling my whole life with his words
Killing me softly with his song

[Verse 1]
I heard he sang a good song
I heard he had a style
And so I came to see him
To listen for a while
And there he was this young boy
A stranger to my eyes

[Chorus]
Strumming my pain with his fingers
Singing my life with his words
Killing me softly with his song
Killing me softly with his song
Telling my whole life with his words
Killing me softly with his song

[Verse 2]
I felt all flushed with fever
Embarassed by the crowd
I felt he found my letters
And read each one out loud
I prayed that he would finish
But he just kept right on

[Chorus]
Strumming my pain with his fingers
Singing my life with his words
Killing me softly with his song
Killing me softly with his song
Telling my whole life with his words
Killing me softly with his song

[Verse 4]
He sang as if he knew me
In all my dark despair
And then he looked right through me
As if I wasn’t there
And he just kept on singing
Singing clear and strong

[Chorus]
Strumming my pain with his fingers
Singing my life with his words
Killing me softly with his song
Killing me softly with his song
Telling my whole life with his words
Killing me softly with his song

[Bridge]
Ohhhh ohhhh ohhhh
Ohh ohh ohh ohh ohh ohh ohh
La la la, la la la
Ohh ohh ohh, ohh ohh ohh
La ahh ahhhhhh haaaaaaaaaaaaaa
Ha ahh ahh, ahh ahh ahh ahh

[Chorus]
Strumming my pain with his fingers
Singing my life with his words
Killing me softly with his song
Killing me softly with his song
Telling my whole life with his words
Killing me (softly)

[Outro]
He was strumming my pain
Yeah, he was singing my life
Killing me softly with his song
Killing me softly with his song
Telling my whole life with his words
Killing me softly
With his song

Story 2: Consumer Spending Surging — U.S. Stock Market Hits New Record Highs — Videos

See the source image

U.S. Consumer Spending Makes A Come-back

Americans Release Pent-Up Shopping, Healthcare Demand

Record High For S&P 500

S&P 500 and Nasdaq with new highs

U.S. consumer spending roars back, but inflation tame

 U.S. consumer spending increased by the most in more than 9-1/2 years in March as households stepped up purchases of motor vehicles, but price pressures remained muted, with a key inflation measure posting its smallest annual gain in 14 months.

The surge in consumer spending reported by the Commerce Department on Monday sets a stronger base for growth in consumption heading into the second quarter after it slowed sharply in the first three months of the year.

It further allayed concerns about the economy’s health, which had been brought to the fore by a temporary inversion of the U.S. Treasury yield curve last month. Tame inflation, however, supported the Federal Reserve’s recent decision to suspend further interest rate increases this year.

Fed officials are scheduled to meet on Tuesday and Wednesday to assess the economy and deliberate on the future course of monetary policy. The U.S. central bank in March dropped forecasts for any interest rate increases this year, halting a three-year policy tightening campaign. The Fed raised borrowing costs four times in 2018.

“The economy is in a sweet spot for now with not enough inflation to cause the Fed to raise rates, and with inflation not low enough to worry Fed officials that economic demand is weakening, which could require rate cuts,” said Chris Rupkey, chief economist at MUFG in New York.

Consumer spending, which accounts for more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity, surged 0.9 percent. That was the biggest rise since August 2009 and was also driven by increased healthcare expenditures. Spending rose 0.1 percent in February.

Data for January was revised up to show consumer spending rising 0.3 percent instead of the previously reported 0.1 percent gain. The release of the February spending data was delayed by a five-week partial shutdown of the federal government that ended on Jan. 25. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast consumer spending jumping 0.7 percent in March.

When adjusted for inflation, consumer spending increased 0.7 percent in March. This so-called real consumer spending was unchanged in February. The data was included in last Friday’s first-quarter gross domestic product report.

 

March’s surge in real consumer spending suggested an acceleration in consumption was likely in the second quarter. Consumer spending increased at a 1.2 percent annualized rate in the first quarter, the slowest in a year. The overall economy grew at a 3.2 percent rate last quarter.

The dollar was little changed against a basket of currencies, while U.S. Treasury prices fell. Stocks on wall Street rose, lifting the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite to record highs.

INFLATION BELOW TARGET

In March, spending on goods rebounded 1.7 percent, with outlays on long-lasting manufactured goods such as cars shooting up 2.3 percent. Spending on goods fell 0.5 percent in February. Outlays on services increased 0.5 percent last month, driven by healthcare spending, after rising 0.4 percent in February.

Inflation was benign, with the personal consumption expenditures (PCE) price index excluding the volatile food and energy components unchanged in March after edging up 0.1 percent in February. That lowered the year-on-year increase in the so-called core PCE price index to 1.6 percent, the smallest increase since January 2018, from 1.7 percent in February.

The core PCE index is the Fed’s preferred inflation measure. It hit the central bank’s 2 percent inflation target in March last year for the first time since April 2012.

The low inflation readings caught the attention of the White House, where President Donald Trump has railed against the Fed for tightening monetary policy. Trump has called for rate cuts, tweeting earlier this month that there was “almost no inflation.” The Trump administration blamed the economy’s stumble at the turn of the year on the rate hikes.

On Monday, White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow said slowing inflation opened the door for possible rate cuts. Economists, however, are not convinced.

 

“These below-target rates of inflation will likely be acknowledged by the Fed at this week’s meeting, but we still think it unlikely that the Fed would be prompted into rate cuts by weak inflation readings alone,” said Jesse Edgerton, an economist at JPMorgan in New York.

With personal income ticking up 0.1 percent in March after rising 0.2 percent in February, there are concerns that the current pace of consumer spending might be unsustainable. Incomes have been almost flat since surging last December.

But a strong labor market and still very high savings are seen underpinning spending. Wages rose 0.4 percent in March after advancing 0.3 percent in the prior month. Savings fell to $1.03 trillion in March from $1.16 trillion in February.

S&P 500 hits intraday record as Wall Street braces for big week of earnings and economic data

  

The S&P reached an all-time high on Monday, adding to last week’s gains, as investors braced for a busy week including a flurry of corporate earnings reports, economic data and an announcement from the Federal Reserve.

The broad index gained 0.3% to break above 2,940.91, the previous record high set in September. Financials led the gains in the S&P 500, climbing 1.3%. Bank of New York Mellon, Citigroup and Bank of America were the best performers in the sector, rising more than 2% each.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite also hit an all-time high, rising 0.2%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded 33 points higher as Goldman Sachs outperformed.

“This may be the busiest week of everything in terms of catalysts,” said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at National Securities. “It makes sense for us to be sideways heading into that at best.”

About 150 S&P 500 companies are scheduled to release their quarterly results this week, including Apple, General Electric and Qualcomm. Alphabet and Western Digital will release their first-quarter numbers after the bell on Monday.

Earlier on Monday, Restaurant Brands reported weaker-than-expected earnings after a surprise drop in Tim Hortons sales, sending its shares down 22%. Spotify Technology posted a bigger-than-forecast loss, offsetting news that it reached 100 million subscribers for its premium service. Shares of Spotify fell 0.8%.

Through Monday morning, 231 companies in the S&P 500 have reported quarterly results. Of those companies, 77.5% have topped analyst expectations, according to data from FactSet. The reported earnings growth rate, meanwhile, is around 1%, well above the expected 4.2% drop.

“Everyone has forgotten the term earnings recession,” Hogan of National Securities said. “It was a bad case of premature extrapolation to think we were going to have an earnings recession.”

Strong corporate reports helped push the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite to record closing highs last week. The two indexes rose 0.9% and 1.9%, respectively, last week.

“From a technical perspective, the SPX is back in record high territory after closing above its September ’18 high,” Craig Johnson, chief market technician at Piper Jaffray, said in a note. “However, for a record high week, volume was lackluster and only a relatively small percentage of constituents registered new highs.”

“Improving fundamentals and FOMO sentiment have pushed stocks back into record high territory,” Johnson said. “Overbought conditions have now developed and market breadth has not confirmed the recent breakout. We believe some consolidation is likely and advise investors to consider realizing some gains at this juncture.”

On the data front, April’s nonfarm payrolls report is scheduled for release Friday along with international trade numbers. Factory orders, construction spending and consumer confidence data are all due for release this week.

The core personal consumption expenditures index — the Federal Reserve’s preferred measure of inflation — remained unchanged in March, data released Monday showed. Economists polled by Refinitiv expected a gain of 1.7%.

The Federal Reserve is also set to hold a monetary policy meeting this week. Investors will be looking for clues about the central bank’s plan for its balance sheet moving forward, as well as hints on where Fed officials think the economy is headed.

Market expectations for a Fed rate hike are zero, while expectations for no change in the overnight rate are at 97%, according to the CME Group’s FedWatch tool.

https://www.cnbc.com/2019/04/29/stock-market-earnings-data-and-us-china-trade-talks.html

Story 3: U.S Recession or Boom in 2020? Flip A Coin — Videos

What Will Cause The Next Recession – Robert Shiller On Human Behavior

What Will Cause The Next Recession – Mark Zandi Says Corporate Debt

Steve Keen Says U.S. Heading for 2020 Recession

Warren Buffet’s Financial Crisis Warning (HBO)

Why Warren Buffett Said No to Lehman and AIG in 2008

Keiser Report: Germans Stacking Gold (E1376)

Keiser Report: Will Interest Rates Ever Rise Again? (E1373)

When is a recession coming? By 2021, most economists predict in new survey.

Taylor TelfordWashington Post

Most business economists predict the U.S. will fall into a recession within the next two years, a new survey finds.

About half of the 280 business economists polled said they expect a downturn by the end of next year. Roughly 75 percent say it will happen by 2021. Only 11 percent anticipate the U.S. avoiding a recession during that two-year window, according to a February survey from the National Association for Business Economics released Monday.

The U.S. is deep into an economic expansion, which began in summer 2009, after the financial crisis. If the expansion lasts until June, it would be the nation’s longest. Though the economy has been robust — marked by strong consumer spending, climbing markets and the lowest unemployment rates in decades — signs of a slowdown have surfaced. Recent months have seen dizzying volatility in the markets and a sudden drop-off in consumer confidence. Trade tensions between the U.S. and China have taken a toll on economic growth in the U.S. and abroad.

Shadows of a slowdown have put pressure on the Federal Reserve as it tries to price out interest rate increases. In January, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said the economy has “good momentum” and that he didn’t foresee a recession in 2019. But he signaled the Fed would be “patient” about raising rates, as economic growth is expected to fall from the roughly 3 percent of last year to 2.3 percent this year. The Fed raised rates four times in 2018.

https://www.chicagotribune.com/business/ct-biz-recession-economists-survey-20190225-story.html

Story 4: Wait Until 2021 At Earliest For Any Trade Agreement To Be Passed By House of Representatives — Videos

rump’s New Nafta Faces Mounting Resistance in Democratic House

Pelosi and other leaders signal they won’t allow a vote without certain changes to labor rules

Soybeans were unloaded last fall onto a truck in Illinois. Farm crops are among myriad products covered by the new trade agreement involving the U.S., Mexico and Canada. PHOTO: DANIEL ACKER/BLOOMBERG NEWS

WASHINGTON—President Trump’s push to revamp North America’s trade rules is hitting a roadblock in Washington as Democrats and labor groups demand changes, dimming its chances of passage before next year’s presidential election.

As Congress returns from recess this week with a full plate of priorities, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) and other prominent Democrats have signaled they won’t allow a vote on the administration’s new agreement with Canada and Mexico without certain changes.

Democrats said they want to make it easier to enforce new rules designed to strengthen labor rights in Mexico, saying a lack of worker protections there is hurting wages and job prospects for U.S. workers. Trump administration officials said these concerns can be handled in follow-up legislation that would implement the U.S.-Mexico-Canada-Agreement, or USMCA.

The deal must still be ratified by all three countries, and there is no deadline for that to happen. But with the U.S. election season approaching, some Republicans and trade experts said Democrats may be seeking in part to deny Mr. Trump a political win—or at least to exact a heavy price for advancing the deal.

“There are always political motives,” with lawmakers focused on who will get credit or blame on such a comprehensive trade overhaul, said Phil Cox, former executive director of the Republican Governors Association and current co-chairman of a bipartisan group seeking to build national support for USMCA.

How could the Democrats and the Trump administration resolve their differences over labor protections in the new Nafta? Join the conversation below.

The agreement has yet to get through the ratification process in Canada and Mexico, but it is the prospect of resistance in the U.S. that now stands as the biggest question mark, according to people following the talks.

In an interview with Canada’s Global Television Network on Sunday, Bank of Canada Gov. Stephen Poloz said business confidence in that country remains uncertain.

“We were watching for signs that people would react positively to the signing of USMCA. That seems to have fallen off a little bit lately because [of] the issue of ratification,” Mr. Poloz said.

Mr. Trump, a Republican, made revising the North American Free Trade Agreement, or Nafta, a central plank of his 2016 campaign. In the past, he has threatened to pull the U.S. out of the original deal, and some trade experts said he could renew those threats. For now, however, the administration appears focused on promoting the benefits of the new Nafta, which Vice President Mike Pence pushed at appearances in the auto industry stronghold of Michigan last week.

“The USMCA will actually impact more than two million American manufacturing jobs that depend on exports to Canada and Mexico,” Mr. Pence said. “It’s absolutely essential because the USMCA will finally give workers the level playing field and be able to compete and win on a global stage as never before.”

Mrs. Pelosi and other Democrats who voted for Nafta in 1993 believe its labor provisions weren’t effective and they want to make sure the U.S. has special tools to ensure enforcement under USMCA, congressional aides said.

USMCA includes provisions that labor unions requested, such as a rule requiring an increased share of automotive content to be produced in high-wage factories. But some Democrats said the agreement doesn’t give the U.S. the needed enforcement tools.

Democrats said they have long been focused on raising labor standards in Mexico, meant to raise wages for workers there and reduce the incentive for U.S. firms to move production to Mexico.

“Reflecting on the history of our concerns with Nafta, we question whether there is reason to believe that the new agreement will lead to meaningful change and real improvements for labor standards in Mexico,” House Democrats, led by Rep. Richard Neal of Massachusetts, chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, wrote in a letter to U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer this month.

Some Republicans, meanwhile, are pushing for the removal of steel and aluminum tariffsimposed on Canada and Mexico. In an opinion article published in The Wall Street Journalon Sunday, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R., Iowa) said those tariffs are a “significant roadblock” to approval of USMCA.

The White House had hoped to reach a deal on the revised Nafta and push it through Congress in 2017, when the Senate and House were both under Republican control. But Mr. Lighthizer wasn’t able to strike a deal with both Mexico and Canada until a few weeks before the 2018 elections, which shifted House control to the Democrats. Free-trade agreements require majority support in the House and Senate.

In recent weeks, Sens. Ron Wyden of Oregon and Sherrod Brown of Ohio, both Democrats, have made a labor-enforcement proposal that has been welcomed by House Democrats, aides said. U.S. and Mexican officials would together audit and inspect facilities suspected of breaching labor standards in USMCA, and the U.S. would be allowed to reinstate tariffs on goods from factories in violation.

Mexican Ambassador Martha Bárcena said last week that she discussed the proposal with Mr. Brown but would insist any labor changes works the same way for all three countries. “I said, ‘Perfect, senator, we agree: Will assume the U.S. will receive a team of labor inspectors from Mexico to see if tomato farmers in Florida are complying.’ ”

Why New Nafta's Approval Faces Long Odds

Why New Nafta’s Approval Faces Long Odds
Vice President Mike Pence was in Michigan on Wednesday to sell the virtues of the new Nafta, or the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement. But is Congress ever going to approve the agreement? WSJ’s Gerald F. Seib explains. Photo: Getty

A spokeswoman for Mr. Brown said he is “absolutely open to the provision being bilateral, and he looks forward to continued work with both administrations.”

In general, Mexico is reluctant to reopen USMCA to changes, fearing a “Pandora’s box” of demands from businesses and interest groups in all three countries, Ms. Bárcena said at a Georgetown University Law Center conference.

The Trump administration also has sought to avoid changes to USMCA. Instead, Trump officials have told Congress the U.S. could use domestic law—including the tariff provision known as Section 301—to penalize Mexico for any labor violations.

A spokesman for Mr. Lighthizer declined to comment on the push to make changes on labor enforcement.

Labor leaders and allied Democrats worry the changes won’t be effective unless they have the agreement of Canada and Mexico. Asked by The Wall Street Journal about USMCA’s prospects in Congress this year, AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka said he could guarantee it won’t pass without changes to the underlying international deal.

The 2020 presidential election could further drive Democratic opposition to the trade deal. In 2016, opposition from candidates and party activists was so strong that Hillary Clinton dropped her support for the Trans-Pacific Partnership deal that President Obama had negotiated.

Democratic presidential candidates Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Bernie Sanders of Vermont, who are also sitting senators, have said they would oppose the deal unless it is renegotiated with stronger environmental protections and with changes to intellectual-property rules that, they said, are too favorable to the pharmaceutical industry.

Mr. Trump has strong support in the business community and farm groups for USMCA. A report from the bipartisan U.S. International Trade Commission said USMCA would result in 29,700 new U.S. jobs in engine and transmission production, while car-assembly jobs would likely fall slightly. Detroit auto makers back passage of the deal and expect assembly jobs to increase.

Meanwhile, Mexico is working to pass a labor-law overhaul mandated by USMCA. That move could assuage some Democratic concerns as the U.S. Congress returns this week from a recess and looks toward holding hearings on USMCA.

Is Trump's New Nafta in Trouble?

Is Trump’s New Nafta in Trouble?
The Trump administration negotiated the USMCA trade deal as a replacement to Nafta. Will President Trump’s new deal be ratified in the near future, or are there roadblocks ahead? WSJ’s Gerald F. Seib explains. Photo: Getty

Under trade law known as “fast track,” Mr. Trump could submit USMCA to the House and Senate for an up-or-down vote with no amendments allowed. Still, in 2008 Mrs. Pelosi changed House rules to prevent such a vote on a free-trade agreement with Colombia, and aides said she likely would do that again if the Trump administration doesn’t address Democratic concerns on USMCA.

Threats by Mr. Trump to withdraw from Nafta could lead to a deal on USMCA with the Democrats, former officials say, but such tactics could also threaten the very existence of North America’s free-trade zone.

“I take the president at his word,” said Mr. Cox, the Republican political operative. “He said he’ll tear it up.”

Write to William Mauldin at william.mauldin@wsj.com

Appeared in the April 29, 2019, print edition as ‘New Nafta Accord Hits Democratic Resistance.’

https://www.wsj.com/articles/trumps-new-nafta-faces-mounting-resistance-in-democratic-house-11556493604

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The Pronk Pops Show 1201, February 4, 2019, Story 1: Patriots Win Super Bowl and Brooklyn Dodger Fans Cheer — Champions of The World — OK — Videos — Story 2: Soaking The Rich With 70% Tax Rate Is Not The Answer — Replacing All Federal Taxes With A Single Broad Based Consumption Tax Like The Fair Tax Is The Answer Together With Downsizing The Federal Government Which Is The Problem — Beware of Fake Polls — Videos — Story 3: Trump’s State of The Union Address — United We Stand Divided We Fall — Never Ever Give Up — Video

Posted on February 4, 2019. Filed under: Addiction, American History, Banking System, Blogroll, Books, Breaking News, Bribery, Bribes, Budgetary Policy, Business, Communications, Congress, Corruption, Countries, Crime, Culture, Currencies, Deep State, Defense Spending, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald Trump, Economics, Education, Elections, Empires, Employment, Extortion, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Federal Government, First Amendment, Fiscal Policy, Free Trade, Freedom of Speech, Games, Government, Government Dependency, Government Spending, Health, Health Care, Health Care Insurance, History, House of Representatives, Human, Human Behavior, Illegal Drugs, Illegal Immigration, Immigration, Independence, Investments, Labor Economics, Law, Legal Immigration, Life, Lying, Media, Monetary Policy, National Interest, Obesity, Overweight, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Polls, Progressives, Public Corruption, Radio, Raymond Thomas Pronk, Rule of Law, Scandals, Security, Senate, Social Networking, Sport, Spying, Success, Surveillance/Spying, Tax Fraud, Tax Policy, Taxation, Taxes, Technology, Terror, Terrorism, Trade Policy, Treason, Trump Surveillance/Spying, United States Constitution, United States of America, United States Supreme Court, Videos, Violence, Wall Street Journal, War, Wealth, Weapons, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

 

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Story 1: Patriots Win Superbowl and Brooklyn Dodger Fans Cheer — Champions of The World — OK — Videos —

Patriots vs. Rams | Super Bowl LIII Game Highlights

Super Bowl LIII Highlights | Patriots vs. Rams | NFL

Super Bowl 2019: Patriots beat Rams in historic win

“NFL 2019” — A Bad Lip Reading of The NFL

7 Super Bowl LIII Commercials Worth Watching Again | Inc.

TOP 10 FUNNIEST SUPER BOWL ADS 2019 – Best Ten Superbowl LIII Commercials

Top 10 Worst Superbowl 53 Commercials (2019)

Top 15 LEAKED Super Bowl 53 Commercials (2019 Super Bowl LIII)

Brooklyn faithful can tell you how St. Louis feels watching Rams

Brooklyn Dodgers – The Ghosts of Flatbush

Dodgers’ Brooklyn 1955 Win, LA Move & More: Ex-Broadcaster Vin Scully Remembers | Sports Illustrated

The Brooklyn Dodgers: the original America’s team

LA vs NY Kids – Who’s Smarter?

 

Throwback night: Pats win Super Bowl the old-fashioned way

New England Patriots’ Tom Brady holds his daughter, Vivian, after the NFL Super Bowl 53 football game against the Los Angeles Rams, Sunday, Feb. 3, 2019, in Atlanta. The Patriots won 13-3. (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

Graying but still gritty, Tom Brady, Bill Belichick and the Patriots came to the Super Bowl intending to stave off, for at least one more game, the inevitable onslaught of the NFL’s future.

Job well done.

Pro football never looked flatter, older and more stuck in the days of the VCR than it did Sunday.

In a Super Bowl only New England could love, the Patriots won their sixth title by lumbering their way to a 13-3 victory over the Los Angeles Rams — that young, brash, high-flying team with the 33-year-old coach and the 24-year-old quarterback who were, we thought, changing football before our very eyes.

If only we could’ve kept them open.

Among the Super Bowl records set: Fewest points by both teams (16); fewest points by the winning team (13); fewest combined points through three quarters (6); most consecutive drives ending with a punt (8 by the Rams); longest punt (65 yards).

The halftime show with Maroon 5 offered no relief — roundly ripped, including by an Associated Press reviewer who called it “Empty. Boring. Basic. Sleepy.”

He could have said the same about the game. But give credit where it’s due.

The defense designed by Belichick turned Rams quarterback Jared Goff into a jittery mess. He completed 19 of 38 passes for 229 yards, with an assortment of rushed throws, misread coverages and, in the tiny windows in which LA showed any sign of life, a pair of terrible passes.

One, trailing 3-0 in the third quarter, was late and high to wide-open Brandin Cooks in the end zone; the other, trailing 10-3 with 4:17 left in the fourth quarter, was high under pressure for an easy interception by Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore that essentially ended the game.

“I know I definitely have a lot to learn from this one,” said Rams coach Sean McVay, who, at 33, is exactly half the age of Belichick.

McVay has been the flavor of the month in the copycat NFL. Other teams have hired away three of his assistant coaches over the last two years, as the league tries to catch up with his newfangled offense that cracked 30 points in 13 games this season.

On Sunday, it managed one 53-yard field goal from Greg Zuerlein and didn’t take a snap inside the New England 20.

Gilmore’s interception came minutes after Brady engineered the game’s lone touchdown drive.

It was five plays and included four straight completions: 18 yards to Rob Gronkowski, 13 yards to Julian Edelman, seven yards to backup running back Rex Burkhead, then a 29-yard teardrop placed perfectly into the arms of Gronkowski, who was double-covered. Sony Michel ran it in from 2 yards for the touchdown with 7 minutes left.

“We couldn’t get points on the board for one reason or another,” Brady said, “but in the end, it feels a lot better than last year, when we did get some points on the board.”

Last year, the Patriots fell 41-33 to Philly in a back-and-forth thriller that essentially featured one good defensive play: a sack and strip on Brady by Eagles defensive end Brandon Graham with the clock running down.

The year before, the Patriots scored 31 points in the second half and overtime for a riveting 34-28 comeback win over Atlanta and title No. 5.

Then, this.

New England’s road to a sixth Lombardi Trophy — tied with Pittsburgh for the most — was never easy this season. The Patriots lost five times, didn’t have home-field advantage through the playoffs and, after every loss, were beset by questions over whether the 41-year-old Brady and his 66-year-old coach might be winding down.

Through it all, though, they could score. New England averaged 27.2 points a game. And in the run through the playoffs, the offense scored 10 touchdowns and Brady barely got touched, and never got sacked.

They were not clicking like that Sunday at the $1.5 billion Mercedes-Benz Stadium, where 70,081 fans — most of them cheering for New England — watched the game.

Other than Edelman, whose 10 catches for 141 yards won him MVP honors and made him look like a combination of Michael Irvin and Jerry Rice considering everything happening around him, the Patriots were out of sync.

Brady’s first pass got intercepted. He went 21 for 35 for 262 yards and a passer rating of 71.4 — more than 26 points lower than he averaged this season.

New England outgained Los Angeles 195-57 in the first half, but settled for two field goal attempts — one miss and one make — for a 3-0 lead at the break.

It was 3-3 heading into the fourth quarter — the fewest points through the first 45 minutes of any playoff game since a 1980 barnburner between the Bucs and Rams that LA won 9-0.

Maybe the biggest irony of all: The New England dynasty’s five previous Super Bowl victories came by 3, 3, 3, 4 and 6. Two were decided on the last play. The other three came down to the final minutes.

Compared to that, this was a veritable runaway.

On a day when New England held LA running back Todd Gurley to 35 yards, when LA couldn’t muster a drive longer than five plays for nearly three quarters, and when LA’s Johnny Hekker (eight punts, 46.3 yard average) was his team’s most effective player, a 10-point lead at the end felt like a million.

“It’s a beautiful thing, man,” said New England cornerback Jason McCourty.

And a game only the Patriots could love.

https://apnews.com/cf0c0abdfc584bde84422d3bed2d524c

FairTax: Fire Up Our Economic Engine (Official HD)

The FairTax: It’s Time

Mike Huckabee – What is the “Fair Tax?”

Freedom from the IRS! – FairTax Explained in Detail

The FairTax for Dummies – Simple to Understand

What’s the difference between the Fair Tax and the Income Tax?

Why is the FairTax better than a flat income tax?

What will the transition be like from the income tax to the FairTax?

Bill Gates: Don’t tax my income, tax my consumption

Taxes: States With Lowest Taxes Growing Fastest

Income Tax vs. Consumption Tax

Is America’s Tax System Fair?

Is Capitalism Moral?

Soak the rich? Americans say go for it

Surveys are showing overwhelming support for raising taxes on top earners.

The prospect of 70 percent tax rates for multimillionaires and special levies on the super-rich draw howls about creeping socialism and warnings of economic disaster in much of Washington.

But polling suggests that when it comes to soaking the rich, the American public is increasingly on board.

Surveys are showing overwhelming support for raising taxes on top earners, including a new POLITICO/Morning Consult poll released Monday that found 76 percent of registered voters believe the wealthiest Americans should pay more in taxes. A recent Fox News survey showed that 70 percent of Americans favor raising taxes on those earning over $10 million — including 54 percent of Republicans.

The numbers suggest the political ground upon which the 2020 presidential campaign will be fought is shifting in dramatic ways, reflecting the rise in inequality in the United States and growing concerns in the electorate about the fairness of the American system.

“There is a deep wellspring in terms of perception of unfairness in the economy that’s been tapped into here that either didn’t exist five years ago or existed and had not had a chance to be expressed,” said Michael Cembalest, chairman of market and investment strategy at JPMorgan Asset Management who has studied the latest tax proposals. “This is quite a moment in American economic history where all of a sudden in a matter of months this thing has kind of exploded like this.”

Even proposals that sound radical poll well.

A plan from first-term Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) to slap a 70 percent marginal rate on income earned over $10 million clocked in at 59 percent support in a recent Hill/HarrisX poll.

The new POLITICO/Morning Consult poll, conducted Feb. 1-2, found that 61 percent favor a proposal like the “wealth tax” recently laid out by Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) that would levy a 2 percent tax on those with a net worth over $50 million and 3 percent on those worth over $1 billion. Just 20 percent opposed the idea. The poll surveyed 1,993 registered voters and carries a margin of error of plus or minus 2 percent.

It showed 45 percent favored a plan like that laid out by Ocasio-Cortez while 32 percent opposed it.

Democrats are facing some backlash from conservatives, corporate America and moderates like former Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz over their embrace of higher tax rates on the rich and corporations. Shultz recently called Warren’s wealth tax “ridiculous.” Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, a potential moderate Democratic candidate in 2020, likened it to policies in socialist Venezuela.

But Republicans who think they can use the proposals as a political weapon in 2020 to paint Democrats as wild-eyed, tax-and-spend liberals — a winning strategy since Walter Mondale called for higher taxes in 1984 and got crushed — may find it challenging.

“There is certainly an appetite for more taxes on the rich, though the threshold matters,” said Karlyn Bowman, a polling expert at the American Enterprise Institute. “There is also some support for redistributing income.”

Historical trend data from Gallup show that the percentage of people describing their taxes as too high peaked around 1970 at 69 percent when the top marginal rate was around 70 percent, though the effective rate after deductions and other tax-avoidance strategies was much lower.

https://www.politico.com/story/2019/02/04/democrats-taxes-economy-policy-2020-1144874

Story 3: Trump’s State of The Union Address — United We Stand Divided We Fall — Never Ever Give Up — Video

Trump talks race, football, foreign policy and more ahead of the Super Bowl

Trump: Impeachment is the “only way” Democrats can win in 2020

#QAnon Never Ever Give Up !

Winston Churchill – “Never Give In” Speech

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The Pronk Pops Show 1126, August 16, 2018, Story 1: Aretha Franklin, The Queen of Soul, Passes Away at 76 — Respect — Think — I Say A Little Prayer — (You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman — Videos — Story 2: The Press Strikes Back At President Trump’s Fake News Enemy of The People Charge — American People Do Not Trust Big Lie Media (Television News and City Newspapers) Progressive Propaganda — Videos 

Posted on August 17, 2018. Filed under: Addiction, American History, Blogroll, Breaking News, Center for Disease Control, Communications, Corruption, Countries, Culture, Deep State, Defense Spending, Diet, Diseases, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald Trump, Donald Trump, Drugs, Eating, Education, Elections, Exercise, Federal Government, First Amendment, Food, Food, Freedom of Speech, Gangs, Government, Government Dependency, Government Spending, Hate Speech, Health, Health Care, History, Human, Human Behavior, Independence, Language, Law, Legal Drugs, Life, Lying, Media, Medicare, Music, National Interest, Networking, News, Nutrition, Obama, Obesity, Overweight, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Polls, President Trump, Radio, Raymond Thomas Pronk, Rule of Law, Scandals, Second Amendment, Social Networking, Socials Security, Spying, Success, Surveillance and Spying On American People, Surveillance/Spying, United States of America, Videos, Wealth, Weather, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

 

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Pronk Pops Show 1118, August 1, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1117, July 31, 2018

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Story 1: Aretha Franklin, The Queen of Soul, Passes Away at 76 — Respect — I Say A Little Prayer — Videos —

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Aretha Franklin Respect 1967 HD YouTube

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Aretha Franklin – I Say A Little Prayer: her very best performance!

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Aretha Franklin dies at 76: Detroit star transformed American music

Aretha Franklin dies at 76

Aretha Franklin, whose impassioned, riveting voice made her a titan of American music, has died, her niece, Sabrina Owens, confirmed to the Free Press. She was 76.

She died at 9:50 a.m. surrounded by family at her home in Detroit.

A family statement released by her publicist Gwendolyn Quinn said “Franklin’s official cause of death was due to advance pancreatic cancer of the neuroendocrine type, which was confirmed by Franklin’s oncologist, Dr. Philip Phillip of Karmanos Cancer Institute” in Detroit.

The family added: “In one of the darkest moments of our lives, we are not able to find the appropriate words to express the pain in our heart. We have lost the matriarch and rock of our family.”

Also read: 

Franklin was the loftiest name in the rich history of Detroit music and one of the transcendent cultural figures of the 20th Century. Raised on an eclectic musical diet of gospel, R&B, classical and jazz, she blossomed out of her father’s Detroit church to become the most distinguished black female artist of all time, breaking boundaries while placing nearly 100 hits on Billboard’s R&B chart — 20 of them reaching No. 1.

The Queen of Soul, as she was coronated in the 1960s, leaves a sprawling legacy of classic songs that includes “Respect,” “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman,” “Chain of Fools,” “Baby I Love You,” “Angel,” “Think,” “Rock Steady,” “Bridge Over Troubled Water” and “Freeway of Love,” along with a bestselling gospel catalog.

Her death follows several years of painstakingly concealed medical issues, which led to regular show cancellations and extended absences from the public eye.

Visibly feeble but still summoning magic from her voice, Franklin played her final Detroit show in June 2017, an emotion-packed concert for thousands at an outdoor festival downtown.

She ended the performance with a then-cryptic appeal to the hometown crowd: “Please keep me in your prayers.”

Read more:

The Queen of Soul sang for presidents and royalty, and befriended high-profile leaders such as the Revs. Martin Luther King Jr. and Jesse Jackson. Amid the global glitter and acclaim, she remained loyal to her home region, living in the Detroit area for decades, including the Bloomfield Hills house where she moved in the late 1980s. She moved back to Detroit in summer 2017, buying an apartment at Riverfront Towers outside downtown.

“My roots are there. The church is there. My family is there,” she told the Free Press in 2011. “I like the camaraderie in Detroit, how we’ll rally behind something that’s really worthy and come to each other’s assistance.”

Franklin’s voice was a singular force, earning her a multitude of laurels through the decades, including 18 Grammy Awards, the Presidential Medal of Freedom and honorary doctorates from a host of institutions. In 1987, she became the first female artist inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame,and seven years later, at age 52, the youngest recipient of a Kennedy Center Honor.

Franklin topped Rolling Stone magazine’s 100 Greatest Singers of All Time list, and her signature hit, “Respect,” ranked No. 4 on “Songs of the Century,” a 1999 project by the National Endowment for the Arts. She performed at the inaugurations of U.S. presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, garnering global attention at the latter for her big felt hat with its crystal-studded bow — a piece of wardrobe now in the Smithsonian Institution.

Franklin’s influence is vast and indelible. It’s most obviously heard in the myriad voices that followed her, from Mary J. Blige to Adele, and even male singers like Luther Vandross.

But just as important is Franklin’s broader social impact: She embodied American black culture, emphatically and without apology, and through sheer force of talent, thrust it onto the global stage.

Franklin revolutionized black music and the way it was absorbed and perceived, helping create a world where we take for granted that a Beyoncé can reign atop mainstream popular culture.

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Franklin was emotionally complex, a woman who relished her diva status but whose vulnerabilities and insecurities always seemed to lurk just beneath. Her public success masked a private life of turbulence and loss, making for an intriguing character driven by conflicting forces: Franklin was sassy but naturally shy, urbane but down-home, confident but reckless.

That deep, complicated humanity imbued her music with authenticity. Franklin’s singing, soaked in feeling and executed with virtuoso skill, moved seamlessly among styles: gospel, soul, pop, blues, R&B, jazz, even opera. She belted, purred, seduced, testified. Even as the propulsive power left her voice in later years, she remained as expressive as ever, and her live performances continued to earn critical acclaim.

“I must do what is real in me in all ways,” she told Ebony magazine in 1967, the year when a string of hit singles — “Respect,” “Baby I Love You,” “Chain of Fools” — gave Franklin her first major crossover success.

Franklin’s early life

Born in Memphis on March 25, 1942, Franklin moved at age 4 to Detroit when her father, the Rev. C.L. Franklin, took over duties at New Bethel Baptist Church.

Turmoil set in early: Her mother left Detroit for Buffalo, N.Y., when Aretha was 6, and died four years later.

Still, Franklin grew up in an environment ideal for nurturing her skills. Her charismatic father was a preacher and singer with a national reputation, with sermons that became top-selling records and a gospel revue that toured the country. That brought important musical figures into the young singer’s orbit, including household guests such as James Cleveland, Mahalia Jackson, B.B. King and Sam Cooke. Growing up on Detroit’s northwest side, she was a childhood friend of Smokey Robinson.

She became a singing prodigy at New Bethel, and her sisters, Carolyn and Erma, also honed their gospel skills. But it was Aretha who steadily emerged as the standout, and by age 14 she was accompanying her father on his gospel travels.

Gospel was the main focus, but the Franklin household was teeming with all manner of music.

“I heard classical music from the beginning. It was always in our home,” she told the Free Press in 2011. “As a teenager I took more to the R&B, but I always loved classical.”

R&B music, frowned upon by many in the traditional gospel world, was also welcome in the house. The Rev. Franklin, progressive in politics and disposition, put up little resistance to the secular sounds exemplified by artists such as Cooke.

The young Aretha absorbed the emotional power of music in its many forms, whether in the throes of an ecstatic congregation or the intimacy of close listening.

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“(My older sister) Erma was a big fan of ‘Be My Love’ by Mario Lanza,” she recalled. “How many times did we hear that in our house?! Sylvia Robinson, Smokey’s sister, used to visit Erma and play ‘Be My Love,’ pressing their ears against the speakers, just crying.

“I was quite young at the time, and I thought it was very funny that these girls were crying with their ears against the speaker. I didn’t do that with the artists I heard (then) — Frankie Lymon, the Clovers, LaVern Baker, Ray Charles. As an adult I began to perfectly understand it. When I heard someone knocking me out, I thought, ‘OK, so this is what that was about.’”

In 1960, at age 18, Franklin spurned a hometown offer from Berry Gordy’s fledgling Motown label and opted to sign with New York’s Columbia Records, where her demo tape had caught the ear of iconic talent scout John Hammond. A year later — shortly after Franklin married her manager, Ted White — her Columbia debut was released.

That record set the tone for her five-year, nine-album tenure at Columbia, where she was groomed as an interpreter of jazz and pop standards, presented as a chanteuse at the piano.

Franklin was quietly masterful at the keyboard. Throughout her career, it was a skill overshadowed by her voice — although she played piano on most of the work for which she’s now remembered.

The Columbia period proved fruitful but frustrating for the young singer, helping expand her talent while sticking a bridle on the gospel-honed voice behind it. Even as her critical reputation and live draw grew, she managed only a handful of minor hits.

“It’s a fast track to the top if you’ve really got it going on. But I like the way I came up in the industry,” she told the Free Press in 2014. “It wasn’t too fast. It wasn’t overnight, but (rather) little by little. And gradually I grew in the industry. I like that more than the overnight sensation, as one might put it. I was able to learn along the way and grow at a very, very nice pace. My pace, really. I wasn’t thrust into anything I wasn’t ready for.”

Real success blossomed in 1967, when the 24-year-old Franklin declined to renew her Columbia contract and signed with Atlantic Records, where executives Ahmet Ertegun and Jerry Wexler saw a chance to unleash the raw power of Franklin’s vocals. Her first Atlantic single — “I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You)” — was cut at the burgeoning soul-music hotbed FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals, Ala.

Within weeks it was Franklin’s first No. 1 on Billboard’s R&B chart, cracking the pop Top 10 as well. She was on her way to mainstream success.

As with so much of her coming work, the performance on “I Never Loved a Man” was fueled by a deep intensity but with an intimate, welcoming feel that helped Franklin connect with listeners across the board.

“She has never learned how to be pretentious enough to build a false image, and deeply identifies with people on all levels,” Ebony wrote that year, going on to quote Franklin:

“Everybody who’s living has problems and desires just as I do,” she told the magazine. “When the fellow on the corner has somethin’ botherin’ him, he feels the same way I do. When we cry, we all gonna cry tears, and when we laugh, we all have to smile.”

‘Respect’ and the ascension to fame

Franklin’s career quickly skyrocketed: With Wexler overseeing sessions and many of the Muscle Shoals players recruited to Atlantic’s New York studio, Franklin recorded a flurry of hits in the ensuing months, all of them enduring for decades as staples of her repertoire: “Respect,” “Baby I Love You,” “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman,” “Chain of Fools, “Ain’t No Way.” She was backed on many by sisters Carolyn and Erma, who enjoyed modest solo success of their own.

Franklin was no one’s puppet in the studio: Even in her earliest years, she was assertive during record sessions, crafting arrangements and dictating commands to seasoned musicians many decades her senior.

By ’68, Franklin was an iconic figure in the African-American community — “the Queen of Soul,” as she was christened by the black press. She was now inescapably important: Franklin’s status was seconded by mainstream America that summer when she graced the cover of Time magazine.

While Franklin was not often explicitly political in public, she embraced her anointed role just as the black pride movement was flowering. “Respect,” in particular, took on anthem-like stature, hailed as a bold feminist and civil-rights statement — though Franklin long insisted she had no grand designs when she recorded the Otis Redding tune about household relationships.

On Feb. 16, 1968 — declared “Aretha Franklin Day” by Detroit Mayor Jerome P. Cavanagh — she performed a celebratory hometown show for 12,000 at Cobo Arena. In attendance was the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., two months before his assassination, and he took the stage to present Franklin with an award on behalf of his Southern Christian Leadership Council.

As would become typical of Franklin’s story, the outward success masked drama behind the scenes. The marriage to White, in particular, had become fraught, marked by domestic violence. By 1969, they were divorced. She would go on to wed actor Glynn Turman in 1978, a marriage that lasted six years.

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The hits continued to pile up. By the end of the 1960s she had placed 28 songs in the R&B Top 40, a mix of original material and eclectic cover songs, including work by the Beatles (“Eleanor Rigby”) and the Band (“The Weight”). The momentum carried into the following decade, with a string of hit records and a 1972 gospel album, “Amazing Grace,” that became one of the genre’s all-time best sellers.

Success on the R&B side continued in the ’70s even as the pop hits tapered off, though 1976’s “Sparkle” soundtrack produced one of Franklin’s abiding crossover classics, the Curtis Mayfield-penned “Something He Can Feel.” A scene-stealing appearance in the 1980 comedy “The Blues Brothers,” where Franklin performed as a waitress belting out “Think,” was a colorful introduction for a younger generation.

That same year, searching for a new musical direction, Franklin signed with Arista Records, where mogul Clive Davis helped groom a fresh career path for the singer, now approaching 40.

After several tries, the 1985 album “Who’s Zoomin’ Who” became the mainstream smash they sought, producing the hit “Freeway of Love” and placing Franklin in front of the MTV audience. A duet with George Michael, “I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me),” topped the global charts two years later.

Franklin, who had spent much of the 1970s in Los Angeles, was now permanently resettled in metro Detroit, with several area properties including the Bloomfield Hills residence that would remain her primary home for the next three decades. Her reverend father had died in 1984 after a five-year coma; he’d been shot during an attempted robbery at his Detroit home.

The 1990s saw Franklin growing into the role of elder soul stateswoman, satisfied with her status as one of pop history’s greats and playing up the diva role that had become an integral facet of her persona. While the studio pace slowed — she released just five albums from 1998 through her death — her latter-day music was generally well received, with Grammy nominations for “A Rose Is Still a Rose” (1998) and “So Damn Happy” (2003).

“I’m comfortable in my own skin, and my six-inch heels,” she told the Free Press in 2011.

Though Franklin still performed regularly in the ’90s and ’00s, her touring work was hampered by her fear of flying, which had set in after a frightening small plane trip in the early ‘80s. She insisted on bus travel, trekking across the U.S. to play for adoring crowds at theaters and summer amphitheaters.

“I’ve definitely evolved to a greater maturity onstage, a savoir faire, I think,” she told the Free Press. “It’s just about relaxing more, really, and having fun with it. That comes with time, to evolve to that level and find that it’s really very simple … that it’s really about having fun and communicating with your audience.”

Franklin was long dogged by weight issues and struggled with alcohol abuse in the late 1960s. But the first glaring sign of health problems came in 2010, when she canceled six months of concert commitments while hospitalized for undisclosed reasons.

She reemerged the next summer visibly slimmer and seemingly healthy, returning with a glowing show at the Chicago Theatre: “Six months after the world was braced for the worst, Aretha Franklin gave it her best,” as the Free Press reported at the time.

“Her voice was velvety and potent as she rolled into her set, still finding new curves and corners in the notes of songs such as ‘Think,’ ‘Sparkle’ and ‘Baby I Love You,’ ” read the review.

Nevertheless, Franklin’s concert activity became hit-and-miss during her final years, and show cancellations became par for the course, often chalked up to unnamed health problems. She increasingly spoke of winding things down, performing fewer shows by the year, and in February 2017 finally raised the prospect of retirement, saying she was recording a final album.

Two missions loomed large during the final decade of Franklin’s life, and both were still in the works when she died: She was in ongoing talks to produce a biographical film about her life, frequently talking up potential lead actresses such as Jennifer Hudson, Halle Berry and Audra McDonald. And she was enchanted by the idea of opening a soul food restaurant in downtown Detroit.

Reclusive by nature, Franklin liked being at home and enjoying “the small things,” as she said in 2011 — polishing the silver, buying a tea set, washing and ironing. She was a reader drawn to biographies and an avid media consumer who looked forward to her daily newspapers.

“I enjoy the comfort of home very much,” she said. “I’m very domestic when I’m at home. I can stay in the house for the longest kind of time and not get out.”

From Obama to Pavarotti, always grand

It was always BIGwith Aretha Franklin. The public situations skewed to the larger-than-life, the supersized, the majestic. She was an immense presence, physically and psychologically, and could take over rooms simply by sweeping into them.

She had a knack for finding herself at the center of grand moments, whether stealing the show at the Obama inaugural or filling in for the ailing Luciano Pavarotti with an impromptu “Nessun Dorma” at the 1998 Grammys.

“She could get a U.S. president on the phone with two calls,” said Brian Pastoria, who co-engineered some of Franklin’s studio work.

Indeed, it was the little stuff that seemed to vex Franklin most. She struggled with personal finances, and was frequently forced into small-claims court by mom-and-pop operations around metro Detroit — limo services, caterers, contractors. Her home was often cluttered and unkempt, and while experts on creative genius might say that comes with the territory, it was enough to frustrate neighbors and leave visitors puzzled why she had so little help around her.

For years Franklin talked about plans to tackle her flying phobia, but never followed through. It kept her grounded for the final 35 years of her life, plausibly costing her millions in touring revenue.

Franklin was scrupulously private. Even in Detroit music circles, the ’Ree ’Ree rumor mill churned slowly; her personal life was shielded by a tight cadre of family members and friends. When writer Mark Bego set out to pen the first authorized Aretha Franklin biography, 1989’s “The Queen of Soul,” he was struck by the array of unknowns that still surrounded her — basic details about her two marriages and divorces, her upbringing, even her musical inspirations.

“I felt as if I had just encountered one of the great unsolved mysteries of the show-business world,” he wrote.

Franklin cautiously traipsed into some of those topics with her 1999 autobiography, “Aretha: From These Roots.” But she remained elusive enough that her handpicked co-author, David Ritz, was compelled to write his own uninhibited Franklin biography 15 years later.

That book provoked the singer’s wrath — the sort of eruption familiar to those in Aretha’s world. Franklin continually churned through support staff, hiring and firing lawyers, publicists and producers. She feuded with other female singers and knew how to hold a grudge, including a beef with Dionne Warwick that became public only when Franklin alerted the press out of the blue — five years after it happened.

But when it came to the music, few were more disciplined than Franklin. She was serious about her voice and exacting about her concert conditions: big on honey and hot tea before a show and insistent on rooms without air conditioning, aware it could dry out her throat.

Many who worked closely with her also glimpsed the humanity at the heart of the superstar singer who came up in the church.

“She (was) very compassionate,” the late Darryl Houston said in 2010. Houston was Franklin’s accompanying pianist for more than two decades. “When I was dealing with the sickness and eventual death of my father in Mississippi, she was very encouraging in thought and deed. I remember a few times I would get a call from a travel agent saying: ‘When do you want to go see your dad? Ms. Franklin has taken care of the ticket.’ “

Brian Pastoria was part of a studio team that worked with Franklin in the 1990s and 2000s, including recording sessions at her home.

“Before the vocal sessions, she’d be in the kitchen making chili. After recording a couple of hours, she’d say, ‘OK, time to eat!’ ” Pastoria recalled. “Even though she was the greatest of all time, the Muhammad Ali of vocals, it was still always her calling on the phone for business, not her lawyer. You’d hear, ‘Hi, honey, how are you!’ It was nice. It was real. You never felt like you were dealing with a major superstar.”

For all the public gowns, glitz and diva references — she was famously portrayed in a Snickers commercial as a crabby prima donna — Franklin was a homegirl at heart. She was a connoisseur of old school Southern soul food, proud of her knack with homemade dishes like fried chicken and ham with black-eyed peas.

“I think I rank with the best when it comes to the stove,” she told the Free Press in 1996.

That sort of organic realness coursed through her work.

“She paints a picture with a song,” said Houston. “Outside of being vocally astute, you can feel what she’s singing. You can tell when someone is just singing a song, and when the song is a part of their inner being. With Aretha, what leaves the heart reaches the heart.”

“It seems she never, ever forgot those roots of the church, and she really believed that we need to look above the things of this world, to a more spiritual level,” said social activist Rocky Twyman. “You felt like she wanted to bless humanity with her music.”

Franklin was a frequent visitor at New Bethel well into her final years, hosting gospel concerts and holiday celebrations at the church whose original site hosted the recording of her first album.

“I’ve known many of the most dynamic singers on the planet,” said Detroit poet and musician Jessica Care Moore. “There’s still no voice like Aretha Franklin. She embodied the idea of what soul music was and would become. She opens her mouth and everything stands still.”

As a young woman growing up in the city, Moore said, it was easy to be inspired by Franklin — an “honor and blessing” to be in the presence of a Detroit great.

“She absolutely is the sound of Detroit,” said Moore. “She lifted up the city and represented it in a global way.”

In November, Franklin sang in public for the last time, performing a nine-song set at an Elton John AIDS Foundation benefit in New York.

Franklin had made her final hometown appearance on June 10, 2017, headlining the Detroit Music Weekend festival for thousands gathered in the streets. Down the block two days earlier, tears had streamed down her face as she was honored by the city with the unveiling of Aretha Franklin Way, a ceremonial renaming of Madison Street.

On the festival stage that weekend, Franklin was backed by a setting sun and the nearby marquee of the Fox Theatre, her favorite local venue since she was a young girl. For nearly two hours, she performed a spirited, feisty set while clearly struggling through pain, at one point singing from a plush chair.

Franklin did it her way that night, foregoing many of her biggest hits for a deeper dive into her catalog and a stirring, 11-minute gospel workout of “Precious Memories.”

The old soaring power may have been missing, but the passion was intact. For one last time on a Detroit stage, there was Aretha Franklin, and there was that voice.

That voice — still captivating, but now comforting in its decades-long familiarity. A sound still melding urban vitality with the warmth of Southern soul. Still joy, pain, ecstasy, liberation. Still strength and femininity. And still offering, as it always will, the promise of transcendence.

https://www.freep.com/story/entertainment/music/2018/08/16/aretha-franklin-dies/309137002/

How Aretha Franklin made ‘Respect’ a feminist anthem

Fiachra GIBBONS, Anthony LUCAS

,

AFP

It may be the most rousing feminist anthem ever, but “Respect” — the song that made Aretha Franklin the “Queen of Soul” — was actually written about a man demanding a break from his wife.

Franklin’s genius was to turn the song — and the traditional values it espoused — on their head by some deft changes to the lyrics and by adding the stirring “R – E – S – P – E – C – T” chorus.

In so doing, she made Otis Redding’s 1965 lament of an exhausted working man demanding some slack from his woman into a rallying call for downtrodden African American women.

Rolling Stone magazine put her version in the top five greatest songs of all time, saying Franklin was a “woman calling an end to the exhaustion and sacrifice of a raw deal with scorching sexual authority.”

And even Redding — who wrote other such timeless classics like “Dock of the Bay” and “Try a Little Tenderness” — acknowledged within months of Franklin’s recording that the song belonged to her.

His biographer Mark Ribowsky said that at the 1967 Monterey Pop Festival in California, Redding joked to the crowd, saying: “This next song is a song that a girl took away from me.”

Five months later, the “King of Soul” died in a plane crash aged just 26.

Franklin was an almost unknown gospel singer from Detroit when she went into the studio to record “Respect” with her sisters Erma and Carolyn.

She speeded the song up and cooked up the provocative high-tempo “Sock it to me” refrain, producer Jerry Wexler later recalled in his autobiography, “Rhythm and the Blues: A Life in American Music.”

“The fervour in Aretha’s voice demanded that respect,” he wrote.

But American musicologist Professor Victoria Malawey told AFP that Franklin’s take on the song was far more than a jazzed up cover version.

– A new soul –

She insisted that Franklin changed “the song so radically… that I would argue she re-authored it.

“It was not just her altering of the lyrics, or changing the point of view of the song from a male one to that of a woman, she also gave it an entirely new energy and soul,” the pop music specialist added.

Malawey, chair of music at Macalester College in Minneapolis-Saint Paul, credits Franklin with turning the song into an anthem for both the feminist and civil rights movement in the late 1960s.

“Not only did she add the R-E-S-P-E-C-T chorus, but her remaking of the song gives it a whole different empowerment message, both sexually and politically.

“In my opinion, the extent of her re-authoring grants her status as owner of the song, and makes it a whole new sonic experience. That is why multiple social movements have claimed Franklin’s ‘Respect’ as theirs” over the past half-century, she said.

The hit won Franklin the first two of her 18 Grammy awards, and went on to feature in more than 30 major films including “Platoon”, “The Blues Brothers”, “Mystic Pizza” and “Forrest Gump”.

Malawey said that Franklin, the daughter of a Baptist minister, always denied that there were sexual overtones to the lyrics she added.

– Sexual empowerment –

But Wexler begged to differ. “More respect also involved sexual attention of the highest order. What else would ‘Sock it to me’ mean?” he said.

Others who knew her said she was drawing from her tumultuous marriage at the time.

“Whatever the intention, people have taken a definite female sexual empowerment message from the song,” Malawey said.

“There is a long tradition of black female performers allowing for a variety of meanings from their lyrics to assert their sexuality. You see this right down to Beyonce.”

But Malawey said it was Franklin’s “voice, and the power and soul she gives the song, which has inspired and empowered so many people.

“It is something beyond lyrics or the melody that really moves us and that is all to do with Aretha Franklin’s own vocal delivery. That is what has made the song so powerful, so lasting and so relevant today.”

https://www.yahoo.com/news/aretha-franklin-made-respect-feminist-anthem-143229602.html%5D

 

Aretha Franklin

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Aretha Franklin
Aretha Franklin 1968.jpg

Franklin in 1968
Born Aretha Louise Franklin
March 25, 1942
Memphis, Tennessee, U.S.
Died August 16, 2018 (aged 76)
Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
Occupation
  • Singer
  • songwriter
  • pianist
Years active 1956–2017
Home town Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
Spouse(s)
Ted White
(m. 1961; div. 1969)
Glynn Turman
(m. 1978; div. 1984)
Children 4
Parent(s) Clarence LaVaughn Franklin
Barbara Siggers Franklin
Relatives Erma Franklin (sister)
Carolyn Franklin (sister)
Awards Aretha Franklin awards
Musical career
Genres
Instruments
  • Vocals
  • piano
Labels
Associated acts
Website arethafranklin.net

Aretha Louise Franklin (March 25, 1942 – August 16, 2018) was an American singer, songwriter and pianist.[1] She began her career as a child singing gospel at New Bethel Baptist Church in Detroit, where her father, C. L. Franklin, was minister. In 1960, at the age of 18, she embarked on a secular career, recording for Columbia Records but achieving only modest success. After signing to Atlantic Records in 1967, Franklin achieved commercial acclaim and success with songs such as “Respect“, “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman“, “Spanish Harlem” and “Think“.

By the end of the 1960s she was being called “the Queen of Soul“. Franklin recorded acclaimed albums such as I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You (1967), Lady Soul (1968), Young, Gifted and Black (1972) and Amazing Grace (1972) before experiencing problems with her record company by the mid-1970s. After her father was shot in 1979, Franklin left Atlantic and signed with Arista Records, finding success with the albums Jump to It (1982) and Who’s Zoomin’ Who? (1985), and her part in the 1980 film The Blues Brothers.

In 1998, Franklin received international acclaim for singing the opera aria “Nessun dorma” at the Grammy Awards that year, replacing Luciano Pavarotti. Later that year, she scored her final Top 40 song with “A Rose Is Still a Rose“.

Franklin recorded 112 charted singles on Billboard, including 77 Hot 100 entries, 17 top ten pop singles, 100 R&B entries and 20 number-one R&B singles, becoming the most charted female artist in the chart’s history. Franklin’s other well-known hits include “Rock Steady“, “Jump to It“, “Freeway of Love“, “Who’s Zoomin’ Who“, “Chain of Fools“, “Until You Come Back to Me (That’s What I’m Gonna Do)“, “Something He Can Feel“, “I Knew You Were Waiting (For Me)” (with George Michael), and a remake of The Rolling Stones song “Jumpin’ Jack Flash“.

She won 18 Grammy Awards, including the first eight awards given for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance from 1968 through 1975, and is one of the best-selling musical artists of all time, having sold over 75 million records worldwide.[2]

Franklin received numerous honors throughout her career including a 1987 induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, in which she became the first female performer to be inducted. She was inducted to the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2005. In August 2012, Franklin was inducted into the GMA Gospel Music Hall of Fame.[3] Franklin is listed in at least two all-time lists on Rolling Stone magazine, including the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time, and the 100 Greatest Singers of All Time.[4]

Early life

Franklin’s birthplace, 406 Lucy Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee.[5]

Aretha Louise Franklin was born at 406 Lucy Avenue, Memphis, Tennessee, to Barbara (née Siggers) and Clarence LaVaughn “C. L.” Franklin. Her father was an itinerant preacher originally from Shelby, Mississippi, while her mother was an accomplished piano player and vocalist.[6] Her parents had three other children, and both C. L. and Barbara had children from outside their marriage. The family relocated to Buffalo, New York, when Aretha was two. Before her fifth birthday, C. L. Franklin permanently relocated the family to DetroitMichigan where he took over the pastorship of New Bethel Baptist Church. Aretha’s parents had a troubled marriage due to stories of her father’s philandering and in 1948, the couple separated, with Barbara relocating back to Buffalo with her son, Vaughn, from a previous relationship.[7]

Contrary to popular belief, her mother did not abandon her children; not only did Aretha recall seeing her mother in Buffalo during the summer, but Barbara also frequently visited her children in Detroit.[8] Aretha’s mother died on March 7, 1952, before Aretha’s tenth birthday. Several women, including Aretha’s grandmother, Rachel, and Mahalia Jackson took turns helping with the children at the Franklin home.[9]During this time, Aretha learned how to play piano by ear.[10] Aretha’s father’s emotionally driven sermons resulted in his being known as the man with the “million-dollar voice” and earning thousands of dollars for sermons in various churches across the country.[11][12] His celebrity status led to his home being visited by various celebrities, among them gospel musicians Clara WardJames Cleveland and early Caravans members Albertina Walker and Inez Andrews as well as Martin Luther King Jr.Jackie Wilson and Sam Cooke.[13][14] Aretha attended Northern High School[15] but later dropped out during her sophomore year.[16][17]

Music career

Beginnings (1952–1960)

Just after her mother’s death, Franklin began singing solos at New Bethel, debuting with the hymn, “Jesus, Be a Fence Around Me.”[9][18] Four years later, when Franklin was 14, her father began managing her, bringing her on the road with him during his so-called “gospel caravan” tours for her to perform in various churches.[19] He helped his daughter sign her first recording deal with J.V.B. Records, where her first album, Songs of Faith, was issued in 1956. Franklin sometimes traveled with The Soul Stirrers during this time.[20] At the age of 16, Franklin went on tour with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and in 1968 sang at his funeral.[21]

After turning 18, Franklin confided to her father that she aspired to follow Sam Cooke in recording pop music, and moved to New York.[14] Serving as her manager, C. L. agreed to the move and helped to produce a two-song demo that soon was brought to the attention of Columbia Records, who agreed to sign her in 1960. Franklin was signed as a “five-percent artist”.[22] During this period, Franklin would be coached by choreographer Cholly Atkins to prepare for her pop performances. Before signing with Columbia, Sam Cooke tried to persuade Franklin’s father to have his label, RCA, sign Franklin. He had also been courted by local record label owner Berry Gordy to sign Franklin and her elder sister Erma to his Tamla label. Franklin’s father felt the label was not established enough yet. Franklin’s first Columbia single, “Today I Sing the Blues“,[23] was issued in September 1960 and later reached the top ten of the Hot Rhythm & Blues Sellers chart.[24]

Initial success (1961–1966)

In January 1961, Columbia issued Franklin’s first secular album, Aretha: With The Ray Bryant Combo. The album featured her first single to chart the Billboard Hot 100, “Won’t Be Long“, which also peaked at number 7 on the R&B chart. Mostly produced by Clyde Otis, Franklin’s Columbia recordings saw her recording in diverse genres such as standardsvocal jazzbluesdoo-wop and rhythm and blues. Before the year was out, Franklin scored her first top 40 single with her rendition of the standard, “Rock-a-Bye Your Baby with a Dixie Melody“, which also included the R&B hit, “Operation Heartbreak“, on its b-side. “Rock-a-Bye” became her first international hit, reaching the top 40 in Australia and Canada. By the end of 1961, Franklin was named as a “new-star female vocalist” in DownBeatmagazine.[25] In 1962, Columbia issued two more albums, The Electrifying Aretha Franklin and The Tender, the Moving, the Swinging Aretha Franklin,[26][27] the latter of which reached No. 69 on the Billboard chart.[28]

By 1964, Franklin began recording more pop music, reaching the top ten on the R&B chart with the ballad, “Runnin’ Out of Fools” in early 1965. She had two R&B charted singles in 1965 and 1966 with the songs “One Step Ahead” and “Cry Like a Baby” while also reaching the Easy Listening charts with the ballads “You Made Me Love You” and “(No, No) I’m Losing You”. By the mid-1960s, Franklin was netting $100,000 from countless performances in nightclubs and theaters.[29] Also during that period, Franklin appeared on rock and roll shows such as Hollywood A Go-Go and Shindig!. However, Franklin struggled with commercial success while at Columbia. Label executive John H. Hammond later said he felt Columbia did not understand Franklin’s early gospel background and failed to bring that aspect out further during her period there.[23]

Commercial success (1967–1979)

Aretha Franklin in 1967

In November 1966, after 6 years with Columbia, Franklin chose not to renew her contract with the company and signed to Atlantic Records.[30] In January 1967, she traveled to Muscle Shoals, Alabama to record at FAME Studios and recorded the song, “I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You)” in front of the musicians of the famed Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section.[23] The song was later issued that February and reached number one on the R&B chart, while also peaking at number nine on the Billboard Hot 100, giving Franklin her first top ten pop single. The song’s b-side, “Do Right Woman, Do Right Man“, reached the R&B top 40, peaking at number 37. In April, Atlantic issued her frenetic version of Otis Redding‘s “Respect“, which shot to number one on both the R&B and pop charts. “Respect” became her signature song and was later hailed as a civil rights and feminist anthem.[23]

Franklin’s debut Atlantic album, I Never Loved a Man the Way I Love You, also became commercially successful, later going gold. Franklin scored two more top ten singles in 1967 including “Baby I Love You” and “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman“. Franklin’s rapport with producer Jerry Wexler helped in the creation of the majority of Franklin’s peak recordings with Atlantic. In 1968, she issued the top-selling albums, Lady Soul and Aretha Now, which included some of Franklin’s most popular hit singles, including “Chain of Fools“, “Ain’t No Way“, “Think” and “I Say a Little Prayer“. In February 1968, Franklin earned the first two of her Grammys, including the debut category for Best Female R&B Vocal Performance.[31] On February 16, 1968, Franklin was honored with a day in her honor and was greeted by longtime friend Martin Luther King Jr. who gave her the SCLC Drum Beat Award for Musicians just two months before his death.[32][33][34] In June 1968, she appeared on the cover of Time magazine.[35]

Franklin’s success expanded during the early 1970s in which she recorded top ten singles such as “Spanish Harlem“, “Rock Steady” and “Day Dreaming” as well as the acclaimed albums Spirit in the DarkYoung, Gifted and Black, and her gospel album, Amazing Grace, which sold over two million copies. In 1971, Franklin became the first R&B performer to headline Fillmore West, later releasing the live album Aretha Live at Fillmore West.[36] Franklin’s career began to experience problems while recording the album, Hey Now Hey, which featured production from Quincy Jones. Despite the success of the single “Angel“, the album bombed upon its release in 1973. Franklin continued having R&B success with songs such as “Until You Come Back to Me” and “I’m in Love“, but by 1975 her albums and songs were no longer top sellers. After Jerry Wexler left Atlantic for Warner Bros. Records in 1976, Franklin worked on the soundtrack to the film Sparkle with Curtis Mayfield. The album yielded Franklin’s final top 40 hit of the decade, “Something He Can Feel“, which also peaked at number one on the R&B chart. Franklin’s follow-up albums for Atlantic, including Sweet PassionAlmighty Fire and La Diva, bombed on the charts, and in 1979 Franklin opted to leave the company.[37]

Later years (1980–2018)

Franklin performing on April 21, 2007, at the Nokia Theater in Dallas, Texas

In 1980, after leaving Atlantic Records,[38] Franklin signed with Clive Davis‘ Arista Records and that same year gave a command performance at the Royal Albert Hall in front of Queen Elizabeth. Franklin also made an acclaimed guest role as a waitress in the comedy musical, The Blues Brothers. Franklin’s first Arista album, Aretha, featured the No. 3 R&B hit, “United Together” and her Grammy-nominated cover of Otis Redding‘s “I Can’t Turn You Loose“. The follow-up, 1981’s Love All the Hurt Away, included her famed duet of the title track with George Benson while the album also included her Grammy-winning cover of Sam & Dave‘s “Hold On, I’m Comin’“. Franklin achieved a gold record—for the first time in seven years—with the album Jump to It. Its title track was her first top 40 single on the pop charts in six years.[39]

In 1985, inspired by a desire to have a “younger sound” in her music, Who’s Zoomin’ Who? became her first Arista album to be certified platinum. The album sold well over a million copies thanks to the hits, “Freeway of Love“, the title track, and “Another Night”.[40] The following year’s Aretha album nearly matched this success with the hit singles “Jumpin’ Jack Flash“, “Jimmy Lee” and “I Knew You Were Waiting for Me“, her international number-one duet with George Michael. During that period, Franklin provided vocals to the theme songs of the TV shows A Different World and Together.[41] In 1987, she issued her third gospel album, One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism, which was recorded at her late father’s New Bethel church, followed by Through the Storm in 1989. Franklin’s 1991 album, What You See is What You Sweat, flopped on the charts. Franklin returned to the charts in 1993 with the dance song “A Deeper Love” and returned to the top 40 with the song “Willing to Forgive” in 1994.[42]

In 1998, Franklin returned to the top 40 with the Lauryn Hill-produced song “A Rose Is Still a Rose“, later issuing the album of the same name, which went gold. That same year, Franklin earned international acclaim for her performance of “Nessun Dorma” at the Grammy Awards.[43] Her final Arista album, So Damn Happy, was released in 2003 and featured the Grammy-winning song, “Wonderful”. In 2004, Franklin announced that she was leaving Arista after over 20 years with the label.[44] To complete her Arista obligations, Franklin issued the duets compilation album, Jewels in the Crown: All-Star Duets with the Queen, in 2007.[45] The following year, she issued the holiday album, This Christmas, Aretha, on DMI Records.[46]

Franklin singing at the 2009 inauguration of President Obama

Franklin performed The Star-Spangled Banner with Aaron Neville and Dr. John for Super Bowl XL, held in her hometown of Detroit in February 2006. She later made international headlines for performing “My Country, ‘Tis of Thee” at President Barack Obama‘s inaugural ceremony with her church hat becoming a popular topic online. In 2010, Franklin accepted an honorary degree from Yale University.[47] In 2011, under her own label, Aretha’s Records, she issued the album, Aretha: A Woman Falling Out of Love.

In 2014, Franklin was signed under RCA Records, controller of the Arista catalog and a sister label to Columbia via Sony Music Entertainment, and was working with Clive Davis. An album was planned with producers Babyface and Danger Mouse.[48] On September 29, 2014, Franklin performed to a standing ovation, with Cissy Houston as backup, a compilation of Adele‘s “Rolling in the Deep” and “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” on the Late Show with David Letterman.[49] Franklin’s cover of “Rolling in the Deep” was featured among nine other songs in her first RCA release, Aretha Franklin Sings the Great Diva Classics, released in October 2014.[50] In doing so, she became the first woman to have 100 songs on Billboard’s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs chart with the success of her cover of Adele‘s “Rolling in the Deep“, which debuted at number 47 on the chart.[51]

Franklin, waiting to perform at the White House in 2015

In December 2015, Franklin gave an acclaimed performance of “(You Make Me Feel Like) A Natural Woman” at the 2015 Kennedy Center Honors during the section for honoree Carole King, who co-wrote the song.[52][53][54][55] During the bridge of the song, Ms. Franklin dropped her fur coat to the stage, for which the audience rewarded her with a mid-performance standing ovation.[56] She returned to Detroit’s Ford Field on Thanksgiving Day 2016 to once again perform the national anthem before the game between the Minnesota Vikings and Detroit Lions. Seated behind the piano in a black fur coat and Lions stocking cap, this rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner” lasted over four minutes and featured a host of improvisations by Franklin.[57]

Franklin released the album A Brand New Me in November 2017 with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, which uses archived recordings from her past. It peaked at number 5 on the Billboard Top Classical Albums chart.[58]

Music style and image

According to Richie Unterberger, Franklin was “one of the giants of soul music, and indeed of American pop as a whole. More than any other performer, she epitomized soul at its most gospel-charged.”[59] She had often been described as a great singer and musician due to “vocal flexibility, interpretive intelligence, skillful piano-playing, her ear, her experience”.[60] Franklin’s voice was described as being a “powerful mezzo-soprano voice”. She was praised for her arrangements and interpretations of other artists’ hit songs.[61] Of describing Franklin’s voice as a youngster on her first album, Songs of Faith, released when she was just fourteen, Jerry Wexler explained that Franklin’s voice “was not that of a child but rather of an ecstatic hierophant“.[62]

Personal life

Aretha Franklin and William Wilkerson watching Roger Federer at the 2011 US Open.

After being raised in Detroit, Franklin relocated to New York City in the 1960s, where she lived until moving to Los Angeles in the mid-1970s. She eventually settled in Encino, Los Angeles where she lived until 1982. She then returned to the Detroit suburb of Bloomfield Hills, Michigan to be close to her ailing father and siblings. Franklin maintained a residence there until her death. Following an incident in 1984, she had cited a fear of flying that prevented her from traveling overseas; she performed only in North America afterwards.[63]

Franklin was the mother of four sons. She first became pregnant at the age of 12 and gave birth to her first child, named Clarence after her father, on January 28, 1955. According to the news site Inquisitr, “The father of the child was Donald Burk, a boy she knew from school.”[64] On January 22, 1957, then aged 14, Franklin had a second child, named Edward after his father Edward Jordan.[16]

Both of her children took her family name. While Franklin was pursuing her career and “hanging out with [friends]”, Franklin’s grandmother Rachel and sister Erma took turns raising the children.[65] Franklin’s third child, Ted White Jr., was born in February 1964[66] and is known professionally as Teddy Richards. He has provided guitar backing for his mother’s band during live concerts.[67] Her youngest son, Kecalf Cunningham was born in 1970 and is the child of her road manager Ken Cunningham.[68]

Franklin was married twice. Her first husband was Theodore “Ted” White, whom she married in 1961 at age 19.[69][70] After a contentious marriage that involved domestic violence, Franklin separated from White in 1968, divorcing him in 1969.[71] Franklin then married her second husband, actor Glynn Turman, on April 11, 1978 at her father’s church. By marrying Turman, Franklin became stepmother of Turman’s three children from a previous marriage. Franklin and Turman separated in 1982 after Franklin returned to Michigan from California, and they divorced in 1984. At one point, Franklin had plans to marry her longtime companion Willie Wilkerson.[72] Franklin and Wilkerson had had two previous engagements stretching back to 1988. Franklin eventually called the 2012 engagement off.[73]

Franklin’s sisters, Erma and Carolyn, were professional musicians as well and spent years performing background vocals on Franklin’s recordings. Following Franklin’s divorce from Ted White, her brother Cecil became her manager, and maintained that position until his death from lung cancer on December 26, 1989. Sister Carolyn died the previous year in April 1988 from breast cancer, while eldest sister Erma died from throat cancer in September 2002. Franklin’s half-brother Vaughn died two months after Erma in late 2002.[74]

Her half-sister, Carl Kelley (née Jennings; born 1940) is C. L. Franklin’s daughter by Mildred Jennings, a then 12-year-old congregant of New Salem Baptist Church in Memphis, where C. L. was pastor.[74]

Franklin was performing at the Aladdin Hotel in Las Vegas, on June 10, 1979, when her father, C. L., was shot twice at point blank range in his Detroit home.[75] After six months at Henry Ford Hospital, still in a state of coma, C.L. was moved back to his home with 24-hour nursing care. Aretha moved back to Detroit in late 1982 to assist with the care of her father, who died at Detroit’s New Light Nursing Home on July 27, 1984.[76]

Some of her music business friends have included Dionne WarwickMavis Staples, and Cissy Houston, who began singing with Franklin as members of the Sweet Inspirations. Cissy sang background on Franklin’s hit “Ain’t No Way”.[77] Franklin first met Cissy’s daughter, Whitney, in the early 1970s. She was made Whitney’s honorary aunt, not a godmother as has been occasionally misreported, and Whitney often referred to her as “Auntie Ree”.[78]

Whitney Houston died on February 11, 2012.[79] Franklin said she was surprised by her death.[79] She had initially planned to perform at Houston’s memorial service on February 18, but her representative claimed that Franklin suffered a leg spasm and was unable to attend. In response to criticism of her non-attendance, she stated, “God knows I wanted to be there, but I couldn’t.”[80]

Franklin was a registered Democrat.[81] In 2014, she was granted the honorary degree of Doctor of Arts from Harvard University for her contributions to music.[82]

Health problems

Franklin dealt with weight issues for years. In 1974, she dropped 40 pounds (18 kg) during a crash diet[83] and maintained her new weight until the end of the decade.[84] Franklin again lost the weight in the early 1990s before gaining some back.[85] A former chain smoker who struggled with alcoholism, she quit smoking in 1992.[86] Franklin admitted in 1994 that her smoking was “messing with my voice”,[87] but after quitting smoking she said later, in 2003, that her weight “ballooned”.[88]

In 2010, Franklin canceled a number of concerts after she decided to have surgery for an undisclosed tumor.[85] Discussing the surgery in 2011, she quoted her doctor as saying it would “add 15 to 20 years” to her life. She denied that the ailment had anything to do with pancreatic cancer, as it was rumored.[89] On May 19, 2011, Franklin had her comeback show in the Chicago theatre.[90] In May 2013, Franklin canceled two performances to deal with an undisclosed medical treatment.[91] Later in the same month, Franklin canceled three more concerts in June and planned to return to perform in July.[92] A show scheduled for July 27 in Clarkston, Michigan was canceled due to continued medical treatment.[93] In addition, she canceled an appearance at a Major League Baseball luncheon in Chicago honoring her commitment to civil rights on August 24.[94] She also canceled a performance of September 21 in Atlanta due to her health recovery.[95]

During a phone interview with Associated Press in late August 2013, Franklin stated that she had a “miraculous” recovery from her undisclosed illness but had to cancel shows and appearances until she was at 100% health, estimating she was about “85% healed”.[96]

Franklin later returned to live performing, including a 2013 Christmas concert at Detroit’s MotorCity Casino Hotel. She launched a multi-city tour beginning in mid-2014, starting with a performance of June 14 in New York at the Radio City Music Hall.[97]

In 2017, Franklin canceled a series of concerts due to health reasons. During an outdoors Detroit show, Franklin told the audience to “keep me in your prayers”.[98] In July 2017, Franklin reemerged, appearing to lose more weight before a performance at the Wolf Trap in Virginia.[99] In 2018, Franklin also canceled a series of shows citing doctor’s orders. Franklin’s final performance was at the Cathedral of Saint John the Divine in New York City during Elton John‘s 25th anniversary gala for the Elton John AIDS Foundation on November 7, 2017.[100]

Final illness and death

On August 13, 2018, Franklin was reported to be gravely ill at her home in Riverfront TowersDetroit.[101] She was reported to be under hospice care and surrounded by friends and family. Stevie WonderJesse Jackson, and ex-husband Glynn Turman, among others, had visited her at her home a few days before her death.[102] Franklin died at home on August 16, 2018, aged 76.[103] The cause was reported to be advanced pancreatic cancer.[104][105]

Legacy

Franklin wipes a tear after being given the Presidential Medal of Freedom on November 9, 2005, at the White House. She is seated between fellow recipients Robert Conquest (left) and Alan Greenspan.

Franklin received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 1979, had her voice declared a Michigan “natural resource” in 1985,[106] and became the first woman inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987.[107]

The National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences awarded her a Grammy Legend Award in 1991, then the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1994. Franklin was a Kennedy Center Honoree in 1994, recipient of the National Medal of Arts in 1999, and was bestowed the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2005.[14] She was inducted into the Michigan Rock and Roll Legends Hall of Fame in 2005.[108]

Franklin became the second woman inducted to the UK Music Hall of Fame in 2005. She was the 2008 MusiCares Person of the Year, performing at the Grammys days later. Following news of Franklin’s surgery and recovery in February 2011, the Grammys ceremony paid tribute to the singer with a medley of her classics performed by Christina AguileraFlorence WelchJennifer HudsonMartina McBride, and Yolanda Adams.[109] That same year she was ranked 19th among the Billboard Hot 100 All-Time top artists,[110] and ranked first on the Rolling Stone list of Greatest Singers of All Time.[111] Later in 2013, she was again ranked first in Rolling Stone magazine’s “100 Greatest Singers” list.[112]

Inducted to the GMA Gospel Music Hall of Fame in 2012, Franklin was described as “the voice of the civil rights movement, the voice of black America” and a “symbol of black equality”.[113][114] Asteroid 249516 Aretha was named in her honor in 2014.[115]

“American history wells up when Aretha sings”, president Obama explained in response to her performance of “A Natural Woman” at the 2015 Kennedy Center Honors. “Nobody embodies more fully the connection between the African-American spiritual, the blues, R&B, rock and roll—the way that hardship and sorrow were transformed into something full of beauty and vitality and hope”.[116] On June 8, 2017, the City of Detroit honored Franklin’s legacy by renaming a portion of Madison Street, between Brush and Witherell Streets, “Aretha Franklin Way”.[117]

On January 29, 2018, the Oakland Press‘s correspondent Gary Graff confirmed that the American Idol runner-up Jennifer Hudson will take the role to play Franklin in her coming biopic.[118] The news was announced by the the film’s executive producer Clive Davis, who made public their decision on the choice of actors casting in the film two days before Graff’s article was published.

An all-star tribute concert to Franklin, celebrating her music, is scheduled for November 14, 2018 at Madison Square Garden in New York City.[119]

Honorary degrees

Franklin received an honorary degree from Harvard University in 2014,[120] as well as honorary doctorates in music from Princeton University, 2012; Yale University, 2010; Brown University, 2009; Berklee College of Music, 2006; New England Conservatory of Music, 1995; and University of Michigan, 1987.[citation needed]

Franklin was awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters by Wayne State University in 1990 and an honorary Doctor of Law by Bethune–Cookman University in 1975.[121]

Discography

Studio albums

List of number-one R&B singles

Filmography

See also

References …

Sources

External links

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aretha_Franklin

 

Story 2: The Press Strikes Back At President Trump’s Fake News Enemy of The People Charge — American People Do Not Trust Big Lie Media (Television News and City Newspapers) Progressive Propaganda — Videos

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Newspapers speak up about Trump’s repeated attacks

Newspapers across the country call out Trump for press attacks – Daily Mail

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Hundreds of US newspapers hit back at Trump, defend free press

Rob Lever

,

AFP

More than 200 US news organizations have joined a campiagn led by the Boston Globe to counter President Donald Trump’s contention that the media is the “enemy of the people”

More than 200 US news organizations have joined a campiagn led by the Boston Globe to counter President Donald Trump’s contention that the media is the “enemy of the people” (AFP Photo/Joseph PREZIOSO)

Washington (AFP) – US newspapers big and small hit back Thursday at Donald Trump’s attacks on the news media with a coordinated campaign of editorials, triggering a fresh tirade from the president on Twitter.

Leading the charge was The Boston Globe, which had called for the drive highlighting the importance of a free press, accompanied by the hashtag #EnemyOfNone.

More than 300 newspapers around the country joined the effort.

“Today in the United States we have a president who has created a mantra that members of the media who do not blatantly support the policies of the current US administration are the ‘enemy of the people,'” the Globe editorial said.

“This is one of the many lies that have been thrown out by this president, much like an old-time charlatan threw out ‘magic’ dust or water on a hopeful crowd,” it added in a piece entitled “Journalists are not the Enemy.”

The effort comes amid Trump’s persistent claims that mainstream media outlets that publish articles critical of him are churning out “fake news.”

The New York Times, a frequent target of Trump’s criticism, ran a seven-paragraph editorial under a giant headline with all capital letters that read “A FREE PRESS NEEDS YOU.”

“Insisting that truths you don’t like are ‘fake news’ is dangerous to the lifeblood of democracy. And calling journalists the ‘enemy of the people’ is dangerous, period,” the Times wrote.

Trump fired back on Twitter by repeating his contention that the “fake” news media is “the opposition party” and claiming the Boston Globe was “in collusion” against him with other media.

“There is nothing that I would want more for our Country than true FREEDOM OF THE PRESS,” he tweeted.

“The fact is that the Press is FREE to write and say anything it wants, but much of what it says is FAKE NEWS, pushing a political agenda or just plain trying to hurt people.”

The US Senate meanwhile countered the White House by unanimously passing a resolution citing the “indispensable role of the free press” and warning that efforts to undermine the media were “an attack on our democratic institutions.”

Other newspapers joining the campaign said Trump’s attacks diminish the importance of journalists in their communities.

“For more than two centuries.. the press has served as a check on power, informing the American people about corruption and greed, triumphs and tragedies, grave mistakes and misdeeds and even ineptitude and dysfunction,” wrote the Albuquerque Journal in New Mexico.

Iowa’s Des Moines Register said, “The true enemies of the people — and democracy — are those who try to suffocate truth by vilifying and demonizing the messenger.”

– Cannot sit back –

Free press advocates argue that Trump’s attacks imperil the constitutional First Amendment guarantee of freedom of the press.

“I don’t think the press can just sit back and take it, they need to make their case when the most powerful man in the world tries to undercut the First Amendment,” said Ken Paulson, a former editor-in-chief of USA Today who is dean of communications at Middle Tennessee State University.

But Paulson questioned whether editorials would be effective.

“The people who read editorials don’t need to be convinced,” he said. “They are not the ones trying to shout you down at presidential rallies.”

The campaign also faced the potential for galvanizing supporters of the president around the notion that the media is out to get him.

The San Francisco Chronicle said it would not join the effort because “it plays into Trump’s narrative that the media are aligned against him.”

But the newspaper said it would “continue to speak out against this president’s war on the free press,” doing it “in our own way, on our own timetable.”

– Stakes too high –

But media rights advocates say the stakes are too high to allow the president’s claims to go unchecked.

Some say Trump’s comments have incited threats against journalists covering his events, and may have created a climate of hostility that opened the door to violent attacks like a deadly one in June against the Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Maryland.

“Trump’s references to us as the ‘enemy of the American People’ are no less dangerous because they happen to be strategic,” the Kansas City Star wrote. “That is what Nazis called Jews. It’s how Joseph Stalin’s critics were marked for execution.”

Trump’s actions are also encouraging strongmen such as Vladimir Putin of Russia and Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Turkey to treat journalists like enemies, some newspapers said.

“The messages in today’s newspapers are best read not as a drift toward war footing, but rather as a reminder that journalism is important work,” wrote Pete Vernon in the Columbia Journalism Review.

https://www.yahoo.com/news/us-newspapers-hit-back-trump-defend-free-press-153154562.htm

Trump flames ‘the fake news media’ on morning 350 newspapers across the country accuse him of a war on press freedom

  • The president launched yet another of his attacks on the press on Twitter 
  • He called the ‘fake news’ the ‘opposition party’
  • His tweet came on a day hundreds of papers coordinated op-eds defending the press
  • ‘Journalists are not the enemy,’ wrote the Boston Globe 
  • ‘Journalists are not the enemy of the people; we’re advocating for the people,’ wrote the New York Post, Trump’s favored paper

President Donald Trump once again attacked the ‘fake news’ media on a day 350 newspapers across the country defended journalists and a free press – then tore into the newspaper that organized the public show of solidarity.

The president went after the Boston Globe, which organized papers around the country to editorialize in favor of free press, for its financial struggles and even accused it of ‘COLLUSION’ with other newspapers – a term normally associated with the Russia probe of Trump associates.

‘The Boston Globe, which was sold to the the Failing New York Times for 1.3 BILLION DOLLARS (plus 800 million dollars in losses & investment), or 2.1 BILLION DOLLARS, was then sold by the Times for 1 DOLLAR. Now the Globe is in COLLUSION with other papers on free press. PROVE IT!’ Trump wrote, singling out the paper that reached out to other newspapers across the country.

President Donald Trump once again went after the media as 'fake news' as 350 papers blasted his attacks on the press

President Donald Trump once again went after the media as ‘fake news’ as 350 papers blasted his attacks on the press

Video playing bottom right…

The president’s slams, in the form of tweets, were the latest in a series of attacks that he has volleyed online, at campaign rallies, and even at official events held at military bases as he did at Fort Drum in New York.

‘THE FAKE NEWS MEDIA IS THE OPPOSITION PARTY. It is very bad for our Great Country….BUT WE ARE WINNING!’ Trump wrote.

He responded to the criticism in yet another tweet.

‘There is nothing that I would want more for our Country than true FREEDOM OF THE PRESS. The fact is that the Press is FREE to write and say anything it wants, but much of what it says is FAKE NEWS, pushing a political agenda or just plain trying to hurt people. HONESTY WINS!’ the president wrote.

His missives came on a day more than 350 newspapers, in an effort coordinated by the Boston Globe, defended press freedoms and faulted the president for labeling the press the ‘enemy of the people’ – a term with dark connotations of an era of Soviet repression.

Trump blasted the 'FAKE NEWS MEDIA' as 350 papers defended press freedoms

Trump blasted the ‘FAKE NEWS MEDIA’ as 350 papers defended press freedoms

Trump accused the Boston Globe, which coordinated the effort, of 'COLLUSION'

Trump defended his views on Twitter Thursday amid the barrage of editorials

Trump defended his views on Twitter Thursday amid the barrage of editorials

It also came hours after he stunned the White House press by yanking the security clearance of one of his foremost online critics and a person who helped set in motion the Russia probe, former CIA chief John Brennan. Brennan blasted the move as an effort to crack down on dissent and punish political rivals.

‘Replacing a free media with a state-run media has always been a first order of business for any corrupt regime taking over a country,’ wrote the Globe in an op-ed splashed across their online site.

‘Today in the United States we have a president who has created a mantra that members of the media who do not blatantly support the policies of the current U.S. administration are the ‘enemy of the people.’ This is one of the many lies that have been thrown out by this president much like an old-time charlatan threw out ‘magic’ dust or water on a hopeful crowd,’ the paper wrote.

PUSHBACK: The Boston Globe coordinated a campaign where editorial boards around the country defended press freedom

PUSHBACK: The Boston Globe coordinated a campaign where editorial boards around the country defended press freedom

It then quoted hometown patriot John Adams who wrote: ‘The liberty of the press is essential to the security of freedom.’

Trump’s favorite paper, the Rupert Murdoch-owned New York Post, joined the effort.

‘We support a free and vibrant press, a nation where the powerful are held to account by the Fourth Estate. Journalists are not the enemy of the people; we’re advocating for the people. We stand with our colleagues,’ according to the Post editorial.

The Trump-despised New York Times also joined in. ‘Insisting that truths you don’t like are “fake news” is dangerous to the lifeblood of democracy. And calling journalists the “enemy of the people” is dangerous, period,’ the Grey Lady wrote.

Many of the rebukes came from papers in swing states Trump needs to carry to win reelection.

Wrote the Tampa Bay Times: ‘In such a toxic environment, Trump’s declarations undermine not just journalists and news organizations but the communities and democracy we endeavor to serve.’

Newspapers from Maine to Hawaii pushed back against Trump’s attacks on ‘fake news’ Thursday with a coordinated series of editorials speaking up for a free and vigorous press.

The Globe, which set the campaign in motion by urging the unified voice, had estimated that some 350 newspapers would participate.

They did across the breadth of the country. The Portland (Maine) Press-Herald said a free and independent press is the best defense against tyranny, while the Honolulu Star-Advertiser emphasized democracy’s need for a free press.

‘The true enemies of the people – and democracy – are those who try to suffocate truth by vilifying and demonizing the messenger,’ wrote the Des Moines Register in Iowa.

In St. Louis, the Post-Dispatch called journalists ‘the truest of patriots.’ The Chicago Sun-Times said it believed most Americans know that Trump is talking nonsense.

The Hartford Courant was among papers joining the effort

The Hartford Courant was among papers joining the effort

Smaller papers like the Ferndale Enterprise of California took part

Smaller papers like the Ferndale Enterprise of California took part

The San Diego Union-Tribune brought up Trump's attacks on the FBI

The San Diego Union-Tribune brought up Trump’s attacks on the FBI

'We are not the enemy,' wrote the San Jose Mercury News and East Bay Times

‘We are not the enemy,’ wrote the San Jose Mercury News and East Bay Times

The Fayetteville Observer said it hoped Trump would stop, ‘but we’re not holding our breath.’

‘Rather, we hope all the president’s supporters will recognize what he’s doing – manipulating reality to get what he wants,’ the North Carolina newspaper said.

On Thursday morning, Trump again took to Twitter to denounce ‘fake news.’ He wrote: ‘THE FAKE NEWS MEDIA IS THE OPPOSITION PARTY. It is very bad for our Great Country….BUT WE ARE WINNING!’

The Morning News of Savannah, Georgia, said it was a confidant, not an enemy, to the people.

‘Like any true friend, we don’t always tell you want you want to hear,’ the Morning News said. ‘Our news team presents the happenings and issues in this community through the lens of objectivity. And like any true friend, we refuse to mislead you. Our reporters and editors strive for fairness.’

Some newspapers used history lessons to state their case. The Elizabethtown Advocate in Pennsylvania, for instance, compared free press in the United States to such rights promised but not delivered in the former Soviet Union.

The New York Times added a pitch.

‘If you haven’t already, please subscribe to your local papers,’ said the Times, whose opinion section also summarized other editorials across the country. ‘Praise them when you think they’ve done a good job and criticize them when you think they could do better. We’re all in this together.’

The coordinated hit came amid repeated attacks by Trump on 'fake news'

The coordinated hit came amid repeated attacks by Trump on ‘fake news’

The editorial by the Press-Enterprise in southern California came with an ad for a gun show

The editorial by the Press-Enterprise in southern California came with an ad for a gun show

Magazines like the Atlantic joined in on the effortMagazines like the Atlantic joined in on the effort
Trump's favorite hometown paper, the New York Post, said journalists are 'not the enemy of hte people'

Trump’s favorite hometown paper, the New York Post, said journalists are ‘not the enemy of hte people’

That last sentiment made some journalists skittish. Some newspapers, including the Wall Street Journal and the San Francisco Chronicle, wrote editorials explaining why they weren’t joining the Globe’s effort. The Chronicle wrote that one of its most important values is independence, and going along with the crowd went against that. Both the Chronicle and Baltimore Sun said that it plays into the hands of Trump and his supporters who think the media is out to get him.

Nolan Finley, columnist and editorial page editor of The Detroit News, spoke up for the press but added a scolding. He said too many journalists are slipping opinion into their news reports, adding commentary and calling it context.

‘Donald Trump is not responsible for the eroding trust in the media,’ Finley wrote. ‘He lacks the credibility to pull that off. The damage to our standing is self-inflicted.’

The Radio Television Digital News Association, which represents more than 1,200 broadcasters and web sites, is also asking its members to point out that journalists are friends and neighbors doing important work holding government accountable.

‘I want to make sure that it is positive,’ said Dan Shelley, the group’s executive director. ‘We’re shooting ourselves in the foot if we make this about attacking the president or attacking his supporters.’

It remains unclear how much sway the effort will have. Newspaper editorial boards overwhelmingly opposed Trump’s election in 2016. Polls show Republicans have grown more negative toward the news media in recent years: Pew Research Center said 85 percent of Republicans and Republican-leaning independents said in June 2017 that the news media has a negative effect on the country, up from 68 percent in 2010.

Poll: 6 in 10 Americans think traditional news outlets report fake news

A majority of Americans believe traditional media outlets publish fake news reports, and Republicans are more likely to believe that fake news is being pushed to advance an agenda, according to a Monmouth University poll released Wednesday.

The poll, which was conducted by phone during the first week of March, found that 80 percent of respondents believed online news sources reported fake news either regularly or occasionally. Fifty-four percent of respondents, including a majority of Republicans, independents and Democrats, said that fake news reports online were published on purpose in order to advance a specific agenda,

Respondents had only slightly more trust in traditional news outlets, with 60 percent of respondents believing that traditional news outlets reported fake news either regularly or occasionally and 40 percent saying that they believed traditional news outlets reported fake news on purpose to push an agenda.

Seventeen percent of respondents said they believed fake news was reported on by traditional outlets by accident or because of poor fact-checking, and about a third of respondents said they did not believe that major outlets reported fake news.

Across the board, self-identified Republican respondents were more suspicious of the motivations behind the publication of fake news in traditional media and online. Fifty-five percent of Republican respondents believed that fake news was reported on intentionally by traditional news outlets to advance a specific agenda, compared to 41 percent of independents and 24 percent of Democrats.

A plurality of respondents said that they trusted news from ABC News, Fox News and MSNBC more than they trusted news from President Donald Trump. Republicans were far more likely to trust Trump over ABC News and MSNBC, and about 44 percent of Republican respondents said they trusted Trump and Fox News equally.

More than 80 percent of respondents said Trump had a worse relationship with the news media than previous administrations, and 58 percent said that the relationship Trump had with the news media is hurting his image. Thirty-two percent of respondents said that Trump’s relationship with the news media did not affect his image, and 7 percent said that it helped his image. Conversely, 51 percent of respondents said the news media’s image was negatively impacted by its relationship with Trump. Thirty-nine percent said the news media’s image was not affected by its relationship with Trump, and 6 percent said that its image had improved.

https://www.politico.com/story/2017/03/fake-news-monmouth-poll-media-236639

Enemy of the people

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The term enemy of the people is a designation for the political or class opponents of the subgroup in power within a larger group. The term implies that by opposing the ruling subgroup, the “enemies” in question are acting against the larger group, for example against society as a whole. It is similar to the notion of “enemy of the state“. The term originated in Roman times as Latinhostis publicus, typically translated into English as the “public enemy“. The term in its “enemy of the people” form has been used for centuries in literature (see An Enemy of the People, the play by Henrik Ibsen, 1882; or Coriolanus, the play by William Shakespeare, c. 1605). Currently this form is mostly used as a reference to Soviet phraseology.[1]

Origins of the expression

The expression dates back to Roman times.[2] The Senate declared emperor Nero a hostis publicus in AD 68.[3]

The words “ennemi du peuple” were extensively used during the French revolution. On 25 December 1793 Robespierre stated: “The revolutionary government owes to the good citizen all the protection of the nation; it owes nothing to the Enemies of the People but death”.[4] The Law of 22 Prairial in 1794 extended the remit of the Revolutionary Tribunal to punish “enemies of the people”, with some political crimes punishable by death, including “spreading false news to divide or trouble the people”.[5]

Marxist–Leninist states

Soviet Union

The Soviet Union made extensive use of the term (Russian languageвраг народа“vrag naroda”), as it fit well with the idea that the people were in control. The term was used by Vladimir Lenin after coming to power, as early as in the decree of 28 November 1917:

all leaders of the Constitutional Democratic Party, a party filled with enemies of the people, are hereby to be considered outlaws, and are to be arrested immediately and brought before the revolutionary court.[6]

Other similar terms were in use as well:

  • enemy of the labourers (враг трудящихся, vrag trudyashchikhsya)
  • enemy of the proletariat (враг пролетариата, vrag proletariata)
  • class enemy (классовый враг, klassovyi vrag), etc.

In particular, the term “enemy of the workers” was formalized in the Article 58 (RSFSR Penal Code),[7] and similar articles in the codes of the other Soviet Republics.

At various times these terms were applied, in particular, to Tsar Nicholas II and the Imperial family, aristocrats, the bourgeoisieclericsbusiness entrepreneursanarchistskulaksmonarchistsMensheviksEsersBundistsTrotskyistsBukharinists, the “old Bolsheviks“, the army and police, emigrantssaboteurswreckers (вредители, “vrediteli”), “social parasites” (тунеядцы, “tuneyadtsy”), Kavezhedists (people who administered and serviced the KVZhD (China Far East Railway), particularly the Russian population of HarbinChina), those considered bourgeois nationalists (notably RussianUkrainianBelarusianArmenianLithuanianLatvianEstonian nationalists, ZionistsBasmachi).[8]

An “enemy of the people” could be imprisoned, expelled or executed, and lose their property to confiscation. Close relatives of enemies of the people were labeled as “traitor of Motherland family members” and prosecuted. They could be sent to Gulag, punished by the involuntary settlement in unpopulated areas, or stripped of citizen’s rights. Being a friend of an enemy of the people automatically placed the person under suspicion.

A significant fraction of the enemies of the people were given this label not because of their hostile actions against the workers’ and peasants’ state, but simply because of their social origin or profession before the revolution: those who used hired labor, high-ranking clergy, former policemen, merchants, etc. Some of them were commonly known as lishentsy (лишенцы, derived from Russian word лишение, deprivation), because by the Soviet Constitution they were deprived of the right of voting. This automatically translated into a deprivation of various social benefits; some of them, e.g., rationing, were at times critical for survival.

Since 1927, Article 20 of the Common Part of the penal code that listed possible “measures of social defence” had the following item 20a: “declaration to be an enemy of the workers with deprivation of the union republic citizenship and hence of the USSR citizenship, with obligatory expulsion from its territory”. Nevertheless, most “enemies of the people” suffered labor camps, rather than expulsion.

In his 1956 speech denouncing Stalin’s cult of personality, Stalin’s successor Nikita Khrushchev called for an end to the use of the term, stating “the formula ‘enemy of the people’ was specifically introduced for the purpose of physically annihilating such individuals” who disagreed with Stalin.[5] For decades afterwards, “It was so omnipresent, freighted and devastating in its use under Stalin that nobody [in Russia] wanted to touch it. … except in reference to history and in jokes”, according to an author of a biography of Khrushchev, William Taubman.[5]

The term returned to Russian public discourse in the late 2000s with a number of nationalist and pro-government politicians (most notably Ramzan Kadyrov) calling for restoration of the Soviet approach to the “enemies of the people” defined as all non-system opposition.[9][10][11]

China

In Mao Zedong‘s 1957 speech On the Correct Handling of Contradictions Among the People, he comments that “At the present stage, the period of building socialism, the classes, strata and social groups which favour, support and work for the cause of socialist construction all come within the category of the people, while the social forces and groups which resist the socialist revolution and are hostile to or sabotage socialist construction are all enemies of the people.”[12] (According to Philip Short, an author of biographies of Mao and Cambodia’s Khmer Rouge leader Pol Pot, in domestic political struggles Chinese and Cambodian communists rarely if ever used the phrase “enemy of the people” as they were very nationalistic, and saw it as an alien import.)[5]

Nazi Germany

Regarding the Nazi plan to relocate all Jews to Madagascar, the Nazi tabloid Der Stürmer wrote that “The Jews don’t want to go to Madagascar – They cannot bear the climate. Jews are pests and disseminators of diseases. In whatever country they settle and spread themselves out, they produce the same effects as are produced in the human body by germs. … In former times sane people and sane leaders of the peoples made short shrift of enemies of the people. They had them either expelled or killed.”[13]

United States in the 1960s

In the United States during the 1960s leftist organizations such as the Black Panther Party[14][15][16] and Students for a Democratic Society[17] were known to use the term. In one inter-party dispute in February 1971, for example, Black Panther leader Huey P. Newtondenounced two other Panthers as “enemies of the people” for allegedly putting party leaders and members in jeopardy.[15]

Recent usage

United Kingdom

During the aftermath of the referendum on membership of the European Union, the Daily Mail was criticized for a headline describing the judges which ruled (in the Miller case) as “Enemies of the People” for ruling that the process for leaving the European Union (i.e. the triggering of Article 50) would require the consent of the British Parliament. The May administration had hoped to use the powers of the royal prerogative to bypass parliamentary approval.[18] The paper issued character assassinations of all the judges involved in the ruling (Lord Chief Justice Lord Thomas, Sir Terence Etherton, and Lord Justice Sales), and received more than 1,000 complaints to the Independent Press Standards Organisation.[19][20] The Secretary of State for JusticeLiz Truss issued a three line statement defending the independence and impartiality of the judiciary, which some saw as inadequate due to the delayed response and failure to condemn the attacks.[21][22]

United States

On February 17, 2017, President Donald Trump said on Twitter,

The FAKE NEWS media (failing New York TimesNBC NewsABCCBSCNN) is not my enemy, it is the enemy of the American People!

Trump declared these news organizations “fake news” and an enemy of the people.[23][24] Trump repeated the assertion on February 24 at the Conservative Political Action Conference, saying “A few days ago I called the fake news the enemy of the people and they are. They are the enemy of the people.”[25][5] At a June 25, 2018 rally in South Carolina, Trump singled out journalists as “fake newsers” and again called them “the enemy of the people.”[26][27] Some commentators linked these comments to a mass shooting at the offices of a newspaper publisher in Annapolis, Maryland, that took place only days later, on June 28.[28][29][30] On July 19, 2018, following the critical reaction to his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin on July 15, 2018 in Helsinki, Finland, Trump tweeted “The Summit with Russia was a great success, except with the real enemy of the people, the Fake News Media.”[31] The New York Times noted Trump’s use of this phrase during his “moments of peak criticism”, and the use of the term by Nazi and Soviet propaganda[32]

On August 2, 2018, after Trump tweeted “FAKE NEWS media… is the enemy of the American People”,[33][34][35] Acosta asked White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders if she would distance herself from that statement. She did not decline nor support the statement. Instead, she argued over her own treatment by the media from a prepared statement she brought to the podium. Acosta’s question came in a wider context of critics by multiple entities (the United Nations and the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights, IACHR) for attacks by President Trump on the free press.[36]

See also

References

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enemy_of_the_people

Review

Obesity and pancreatic cancer

Abstract

Background

Pancreatic cancer is an invariably fatal malignancy. Cigarette smoking and diabetes are established risk factors, but over the last two decades studies have shown that excess adiposity is an additional independent risk factor with 30–50% of cases thought to be attributed to nutritional factors. The aim of this narrative review is to analyze all the epidemiological evidence on the topic and possible pathophysiology.

Methods

We searched PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Library and Medline, and all available evidence was included. We firstly analyze meta- and pooled analysis. Then we discuss individual studies to identify sources of discrepancies between studies and attempt to delineate pathophysiology.

Results

It is estimated that obese individuals have a relative risk (RR) ranging between 1.19 and 1.47, when compared with those of normal weight, regardless of diabetes or smoking status. No significant differences were found between gender.

Conclusion

There is a measurable increased risk of developing pancreatic cancer in obese individuals, and excess adiposity is related to the condition with a “dose–response” curve.

Hyperinsulinemia and possibly hyperestrogenism secondary to a metabolic syndrome, and independently from diabetes status, appear to be the key elements of the pathogenesis in pancreatic cancer secondary to excess body fat. Increased efforts should therefore be made in tackling the epidemic levels of obesity in the Western world countries.

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0960740414000085

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The Pronk Pops Show 1119, August 2, 2018, Story 1: President Trump Rising In Polls Hits 50 Percent Approval for Job Performance — Party Affiliation of Voters — Independents 41 Percent — Democrats 30 Percent and Republican 26 Percent — Videos — Story 2: Third Quarter 2018 Real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) Could Hit 5 Percent — Advance Estimate Released on October 26 — Videos — Story 3: Number of Americans on Food Stamps or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Declining As Budgets Decline –Food in A Box — Less Money More Food — Videos — Story 4: Obesity Expanding In America — Fat Ass Americans — Pandemic — Keeping America Fat — Promises Kept — Videos

Posted on August 3, 2018. Filed under: American History, Animal, Banking System, Beef, Blogroll, Bread, Breaking News, Budgetary Policy, Business, Cartoons, Cereal, Clinton Obama Democrat Criminal Conspiracy, Communications, Congress, Corruption, Countries, Crime, Culture, Diet, Diets, Disasters, Donald J. Trump, Donald J. Trump, Donald Trump, Eating, Economics, Empires, Employment, Exercise, Fiscal Policy, Food, Food, Government Dependency, Government Spending, Health, Health Care, Health Care Insurance, History, House of Representatives, Human, Human Behavior, Independence, Investments, IRS, Labor Economics, Life, Media, Medical, Milk, Monetary Policy, National Interest, Networking, News, Nutrition, Obesity, Overweight, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Polls, President Trump, Progressives, Radio, Raymond Thomas Pronk, Robert S. Mueller III, Rule of Law, Scandals, Science, Security, Senate, Spying, Success, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP_, Surveillance and Spying On American People, Surveillance/Spying, Tax Policy, Taxation, Taxes, Technology, Trade Policy, United States of America, Videos, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

 

 

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The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 1119, August 2, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1118, August 1, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1117, July 31, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1116, July 30, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1115, July 26, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1114, July 25, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1113, July 24, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1112, July 23, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1111, July 19, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1110, July 18, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1109, July 17, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1108, July 16, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1107, July 12, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1106, July 11, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1105, July 10, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1104, July 9, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1103, July 5, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1102, JUly 3, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1101, July 2, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1100, June 28, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1099, June 26, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1098, June 25, 2018 

Pronk Pops Show 1097, June 21, 2018

Pronk Pops Show 1096, June 20, 2018

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Pronk Pops Show 1070, May 3, 2018

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Story 1: President Trump Rising In Polls Hits 50 Percent Approval for Job Performance — Party Affiliation of Voters: Independents 41 Percent — Democrats 30 Percent and Republican 26 Percent — Videos —

 

Daily Presidential Tracking Poll

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Thursday shows that 50% of Likely U.S. Voters approve of President Trump’s job performance. Forty-nine percent (49%) disapprove.

The latest figures include 35% who Strongly Approve of the way Trump is performing and 41% who Strongly Disapprove. This gives him a Presidential Approval Index rating of -6. (see trends).

Regular updates are posted Monday through Friday at 9:30 a.m. Eastern (sign up for free daily email update).

Rasmussen Reports invites you to be a part of our first-ever Citizen-Sourced National Midterm Election Polling Project.Learn more about how you can contribute.

Now that Gallup has quit the field, Rasmussen Reports is the only nationally recognized public opinion firm that still tracks President Trump’s job approval ratings on a daily basis. If your organization is interested in a weekly or longer sponsorship of Rasmussen Reports’ Daily Presidential Tracking Poll, please send e-mail to  beth@rasmussenreports.com .

President Trump in a tweet yesterday reiterated that the Justice Department should end the Special Counsel’s investigation into whether there were “links and/or coordination” between the Russian Government and his 2016 campaign.

Stemming from that investigation, the trial of former Trump campaign manager and business associate Paul Manafort enters its third day in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Virginia. Will the trial lead to criminal charges against the president? We’ll tell you at 10:30 what voters say.

Nearly half of voters don’t believe Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s probe is worth what it has spent (more than $22 million as of July, according to one report) investigating allegations of Russian collusion in the 2016 election, and few believe the outcome will benefit the United States.  

Vice President Mike Pence yesterday led a ceremony in Honolulu to receive the remains of U.S. servicemen killed during the Korean War. Their return resulted from President Trump’s June summit in Singapore with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un.

Voters are only slightly more positive about the president’s dealings with North Korea but are cautiously optimistic about the denuclearization deal Trump and Kim have signed. As is often the case, however, partisan affiliation makes a huge difference in perceptions.

While his daily approval rating is 50% today, President Trump has earned a monthly job approval of 46% in July.

Democrats continue to lead over Republicans on the latest Rasmussen Reports Generic Congressional Ballot.

20-Jan-1729-Mar-1705-Jun-1711-Aug-1718-Oct-1729-Dec-1709-Mar-1816-May-1802-Aug-180%10%20%30%40%50%60%70%80%www.RasmussenReports.comTotal Approve (Trump)Total Approve (Obama)

It has been almost two years since Trump was elected president, but for a third of voters, the 2016 presidential election has had long-lasting negative effects on relationships with family and friends. Most voters also think Americans are less tolerant of each other’s political opinions these days.

Several U.S. Democratic gubernatorial and senatorial candidates have been stumping for single-payer healthcare as part of their 2018 midterm election platforms. Voters are now closely divided on whether the federal government should provide healthcare for everyone even though most believe their personal taxes will increase as a result.

While most voters continue to give the health care they receive a positive rating, few hold the nation’s health care system in high regard.

 

-620-Jan-1729-Mar-1705-Jun-1711-Aug-1718-Oct-1729-Dec-1709-Mar-1816-May-1802-Aug-1810%20%30%40%50%60%www.RasmussenReports.comStrongly DisapproveStrongly Approve

Some readers wonder how we come up with our job approval ratings for the president since they often don’t show as dramatic a change as some other pollsters do. It depends on how you ask the question and whom you ask.

To get a sense of longer-term job approval trends for the president, Rasmussen Reports compiles our tracking data on a full month-by-month basis.

Rasmussen Reports has been a pioneer in the use of automated telephone polling techniques, but many other firms still utilize their own operator-assisted technology (see methodology).

Daily tracking results are collected via telephone surveys of 500 likely voters per night and reported on a three-day rolling average basis. To reach those who have abandoned traditional landline telephones, Rasmussen Reports uses an online survey tool to interview randomly selected participants from a demographically diverse panel. The margin of sampling error for the full sample of 1,500 Likely Voters is +/- 2.5 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Results are also compiled on a full-week basis and crosstabs for full-week results are available for Platinum Members.

 

Trump got a dynamite GDP number last quarter — and early signs point to the next one being even better

trump thumbs upReuters
  • President Donald Trump took a victory lap Friday after second quarter GDP came in at 4.1%, the strongest since the third quarter of 2014.
  • Trump said the GDP reading proved that his policies were working and that the country was on track to fulfill his promise of sustained 4% annual GDP growth.
  • Many economists doubted the strong growth would continue, since transitory factors help boost the second quarter number.
  • But early estimates for third quarter GDP look potentially even stronger.

President Donald Trump took a victory lap Friday after the release of a strong second-quarter GDP number, and early signs point to the celebration continuing in the third quarter.

The 4.1% second-quarter reading was the highest since 2014, as both the White House and GOP pointed to the growth as proof that Trump’s policies were boosting the US economy. The president also touted the number as proof the economy could achieve his promise of annual GDP growth over 4%, a claim of which almost all economists were skeptical .

While Friday’s release was substantial, many economists pointed to short-term factors that could fade in future quarters — like a huge boost in soybean exports ahead of Trump’s tariffs and fiscal stimulus from the federal budget.

But early indications from third-quarter economic data show that Trump may have reason to boast about the third quarter, too.

The Atlanta Federal Reserve’s GDPNow measure, which uses available data to predict the current quarter’s GDP growth, stands at 5% as of Thursday — up slightly from an initial estimate of 4.7%.

The estimate has a strong track record of prediction. But GDPNow isn’t perfect, especially so early in a quarter, and it is subject to updates as more data emerges.

But Neil Dutta, head of US economics at research firm Renaissance Macro, pointed to data that shows the strong initial reading from the Atlanta Fed is likely to hold up.

While Dutta said it’s “unlikely that we’ll get 5% for the third quarter,” the economist noted that the average move for the GDPNow reading over the course of a quarter since its inception is a 0.6-percentage point drop. Given the initial reading, that would put the final third quarter GDPNow estimate at 4.1%, which would be on par second quarter and one of the highest post-recession readings.

Screen Shot 2018 08 02 at 2.23.43 PMRenaissance Macro Research
  • The biggest downward move in the GDPNow’s estimate over the course of a quarter was 2.2 percentage points, per Dutta’s breakdown, which would still leave GDP growth at a respectable 2.5%.
  • On the other end, the largest upward move was 1.5 percentage points, so an equal move from this quarter’s reading would put the third quarter at 6.5%. That would be the highest quarterly GDP print since the third quarter of 2003.

“Anything in that range is consistent with strong, above-trend growth and would be a reasonably solid number coming after a 4% GDP print,” Dutta said.

In the second quarter, the 4.1% GDP reading was also above the Atlanta Fed’s final estimate of 3.8%.

Trump, for his part, is already banking on a big third-quarter reading, which is set to be released October 26.

“I happen to think we’re going to do extraordinarily well in our next report,” Trump said at the press conference Friday.

https://www.businessinsider.com/trump-gdp-growth-q3-third-quarter-strong-2018-8

Story 3: Less Than 40 Million Americans on Food Stamps or Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Declining As U.S. Federal Budget For SNAP Cut — Trump Proposed America’s Harvest Box — Less Money More Food — People Want Choice Not Preselected Boxes of Food –Little Boxes — Walk Off The Earth — Videos

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Little Boxes – Walk off the Earth

The history of food stamps

SNAP, Food Stamps, Obesity, and Behavioral Economics

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

Donald Trump’s Budget Declares War on Hungry Children and Families w/ the ‘American Harvest Box’

Republicans Put Rural Poor SNAP In Crosshairs

How Trump’s ‘food box’ proposal could affect families in Wisconsin

Bay Area families worry about the future of SNAP benefits after President Trump proposes cuts

SNAP EBT Food Stamps CUT! true or not true REPLACED By Food Delivery! DO SOME RESEARCH FOR U

Concerns White House Proposal To Food Stamp Program

Food stamp changes worrying business owner

Food Stamp Cuts Will Affect You Whether You Get Them Or Not

President Donald Trump Wants To Cut SNAP And Give Poor Boxes Of Food | AM Joy | MSNBC

Trump Wants To Replace Food Stamps With Food Boxes

Trump Wants To Send People On SNAP Cheap Food Boxes

Trump To Cut Half Of Food Stamps (SNAP) And Replace Them With “America’s Harvest Box” (REACTION)

Look What Trump Just Did To Food Stamps—Millions Of Freeloaders Enraged

Little Boxes – Walk off the Earth

 

Overview

Last Published: 08/01/2018

The Program Data site provides selected statistical information on activity in all major Food and Nutrition Service Programs (FNS). These include the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP); the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC); Child Nutrition Programs (National School Lunch, School Breakfast, Child and Adult Care, Summer Food Service and Special Milk); and Food Distribution Programs (Schools, Emergency Food Assistance, Indian Reservations, Commodity Supplemental, Nutrition for the Elderly, and Charitable Institutions).

Four types of tables are provided: historical summaries, annual state level data for selected elements, monthly national level data for major programs, and the latest available month for state-level participation in major programs. The summaries begin with 1969, the year that FNS was established to administer the Department of Agriculture’s nutrition assistance programs. Data are provided by federal fiscal year rather than calendar or school year. This includes the months of October through September (prior to FY 1977, it covered July through June). Annual state-level tables include data for the five most recent complete years (2013-2017). The latest month for state-level activity is April 2018. Data are as of July 06, 2018; FY 2017 and 2018 numbers are preliminary and are subject to significant revision.

If you need additional information or have any questions, please e-mail us. The following program area pages provide detailed program explanations and information: SNAPChild NutritionWIC and Food Distribution.

Food Stamp Cuts Could Hurt Thousands of Service Members

Posted By  on Thu, Jul 5, 2018 at 3:02 pm

screen_shot_2018-05-29_at_5.12.17_pm.png

Military service members are among the millions of Americans who would be affected by proposed budget cuts to federal food stamps, also known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

In February, President Donald Trump released a fiscal-year 2019 budget proposal that included a new approach to the program that “combines traditional SNAP benefits with 100-percent American grown foods provided directly to households.” The change would cut SNAP funding by $213 billion dollars over 10 years.

According to a 2016 report from the US Government Accountability Office (GAO), approximately 23,000 active duty military service members were SNAP recipients in 2013.

Brenda Farrell, director of defense capabilities and management at GAO, oversaw development of the report.

“Don’t assume that service members don’t need help,” Farrell said. “We all know that over the years the pay has increased and bonuses have been there to attract the right people, but you still have pockets where the need is still there.”

The San Antonio Food Bank provides food for 58,000 people a week, and one in seven active or former military service members use similar services across the U.S., according to food bank President and CEO Eric Cooper. 

“We know from our work that many active enlisted servicemen and women call our center,” Cooper said. “Sometimes they might not want to share with people they are closest to that they are in need, so they reach out to the food bank as a neutral place so they don’t have to ask for help from those who are closest to them.”

According to Cooper, the House proposal increases some barriers and the program’s cost while cutting some benefits for low-income families.

“Our current farm bill has a strong nutrition title,” Cooper said. “It’s not perfect, but it helps to ensure that 42 million Americans have access to good nutrition. … It just never seems to make sense to me that we would increase cost and bureaucracy while decreasing services and benefits to someone in need.”

The San Antonio Food Bank and its partner agencies have been discussing how to move forward if the budget cuts are approved, Cooper said, but their ability to meet people’s needs is heavily dependent on farmers, donors and food industry partners.

“If the proposed SNAP cuts go through, it will literally take food off the table,” Cooper said. “For that need to be met, we feel that we will see longer lines at our food pantries and the demand for services will be even greater for us at the San Antonio Food Bank.”

Cooper said there are some challenges unique to service members that frequently result in them turning to the food-stamp program. Often they have children and a spouse who’s unable to build a career due to the constant mobility of active-duty life. The military’s Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) benefit can also present a challenge since it can make a person ineligible for food-stamp assistance.

San Antonio’s Director of Military Affairs Juan Ayala said there has been a shift in the people who volunteer for service.

“If you take a look at the average service member that joins today, a lot of them are married and have dependent children,” Ayala said. “That is different than when I came into the Marine Corps in 1976, when almost everybody that came in was single. … Less than one percent of the population in the United States think about joining the military, and a small number actually join so sometimes the pool for recruiting is challenging so sometimes we get older recruits.”

Ayala said lower-ranking service members are the most likely to need food assistance services because they make the lowest salaries, and with a familythey could easily become eligible for SNAP.

Lower ranking troops stationed in high cost areas such as California and Washington D.C. will be the most directly affected by the SNAP budget cuts, according to Ayala.

“It is going to affect those that are in uniform, a lot of those that are deployed and can’t get a second job,” Ayala said. “If you’re in uniform performing a service to the country I think that it should be taken into consideration — for anybody that really deserves [SNAP] and really needs it — but especially for the troops.”

Trump’s ‘Harvest Box’ Isn’t Viable in SNAP Overhaul, Officials Say

Image
People paid for fresh produce using federal assistance at a farmers market in Lake Orion, Mich., in 2013.CreditLauren Abdel-Razzaq/The Detroit News, via Associated Press

WASHINGTON — The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program offers about 46 million low-income Americans both sustenance and economic choice by providing an allowance to buy the fruit, meat, fresh vegetables, soda, ice cream and kind of bread they want to eat.

But on Monday, the Trump administration sprung a surprise: Under a proposal in the president’s budget many participants in the program would be given half their benefits in the form of a “Harvest Box” full of food preselected for nutritional value and economic benefit to American farmers. The cache of cheaper peanut butter, canned goods, pasta, cereal, “shelf stable” milk and other products would now be selected by the federal government, not by the people actually eating it.

The proposal seemed like a radical overhaul of the country’s core food assistance program — once called food stamps but now commonly known as SNAP. The idea was to shave about $21 billion a year from the federal deficit over the next 10 years. But the reaction was immediate, and largely negative.

Democrats claimed the plan shackled the poor while business groups, led by big food retailers, would stand to lose billions of dollars in lost SNAP business. The head of one trade association typically supportive of President Trump’s economic policies accused the administration of reneging on its pledge to cut “red tape and regulations.”

Instead, the idea, according to two administration officials who worked on the proposal, was a political gambit by fiscal hawks in the administration aimed at outraging liberals and stirring up members of the president’s own party working on the latest version of the farm bill. The move, they said, was intended to lay down a marker that the administration is serious about pressing for about $85 billion in other cuts to food assistance programs that will be achieved, in part, by imposing strict new work requirements on recipients.

“I don’t think there’s really any support for their box plan. And, I worry that it’s a distraction from the budget’s proposal to cut SNAP by some 30 percent. That’s the real battle,” said Stacy Dean, vice president for food assistance policy at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a progressive Washington think tank. “The dangers are these other proposals to cut benefits. But all anyone is talking about today are the boxes.”

Senator Debbie Stabenow, the ranking Democrat on the agriculture committee, doubted the motives behind the plan.

“This isn’t a serious proposal and is clearly meant to be a distraction,” Ms. Stabenow said.

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue stealthily pitched the idea over the last few weeks to the White House’s Domestic Policy Council as a novel way to reach the administration’s self-imposed goal of slashing federal food assistance programs by $214 billion over the next decade. It was quickly embraced by Mr. Mulvaney, a fiscal hawk who is seeking to steer a debate increasingly dominated by free-spending Republicans and Mr. Trump, who has insisted on major budget increases for the Pentagon and Homeland Security.

Neither man had any illusions that the plan would be immediately embraced by congressional Republicans, who were not given advance notice of the proposal, the officials said.

That the food-box approach has been tried only in small demonstration projects and never been seriously discussed during dozens of congressional hearings on the SNAP program in recent years did not stop administration officials from putting the force of Mr. Trump’s presidency behind it.

The budget documents released on Monday omitted other important details, including the real costs of creating a nationwide distribution network for the boxes, especially in rural areas hard hit by the economic downturn and the opioid crisis.

“We have had like 25 hearings on SNAP. The witness list was controlled by Republicans and this idea was never, ever broached,” said Representative Jim McGovern of Massachusetts, ranking Democrat on the House subcommittee that oversees federal food assistance programs. “I think it’s dead on arrival — I hope it is — but either way it’s a cruel joke. My God, these people are awful. In addition to being totally misinformed on policy, they are really just not nice people.”

In a statement, Mr. Perdue defended the proposal as humane and cost effective, saying his plan offered the “same level of food value” provided by the SNAP program, which replaced the food stamp program in the late 1990s.

He described the boxes as “a bold, innovative approach to providing nutritious food to people who need assistance feeding themselves and their families — and all of it is grown by American farmers and producers.”

Still, the idea landed with a thud. It was quickly dismissed by two Republican committee chairmen, Senator Pat Roberts of Kansas, who leads the Senate agriculture committee, and his counterpart in the House, Representative K. Michael Conaway of Texas.

 

Mr. Conaway is drafting a farm bill that is expected to slash billions in spending in the SNAP program through the tightening of some eligibility requirements. Mr. Roberts is overseeing an effort to craft a version of the bill that is expected to include fewer cuts in hopes of gaining the bipartisan support needed to push the measure through the Senate.

SNAP, like many other safety net programs, is designed to expand during hard economic times and contract when the economy improves. Nonetheless, the program’s rolls have remained at historically elevated levels, reaching a peak of 47.8 million recipients in 2012 before edging down to 45.6 million last year, according to federal estimates.

Mr. Perdue, in particular, has been outspoken in his call to reduce its rolls, criticizing what he calls a culture of dependency among SNAP recipients.

But Mr. McGovern said the administration was painting “a distorted picture” of the poor and ignoring the fact that most SNAP recipients are employed and more than a quarter are disabled and unable to seek work.

“They have to stop playing to the cheap seats,” he said. “The majority of people in the program are children and seniors and people working in jobs that pay too little to feed their families.”

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

Am I Eligible for SNAP?

Last Published: 06/27/2018

To get SNAP benefits, you must apply in the State in which you currently live and you must meet certain requirements, including resource and income limits, which are described on this page. SNAP income and resource limits are updated annually. The information on this page is for October 1, 2017, through September 30, 2018.

There are special SNAP rules for households with elderly or disabled members.

Frequently Asked Questions

Am I eligible for SNAP?

Your household must meet certain requirements to be eligible for SNAP and receive benefits. If your State agency determines that you are eligible to receive SNAP benefits, you will receive benefits back to the date you submitted your application.

To see if you might be eligible for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, visit our pre-screening tool.

Note: The FNS SNAP pre-screening eligibility tool is an interactive site with general information about eligibility requirements and how benefits are determined. Sharing your information in that form does not mean you filed an application for benefits. You will still need to submit an application through your State SNAP agency or local SNAP office.

How do I apply for SNAP?

You must apply for SNAP in the State where you currently live. Because each State has a different application form and process, a member of your household must contact your State agency directly to apply.

You can contact your State agency by visiting your local SNAP office, visiting your State agency’s website, or calling your State’s toll-free SNAP Information hotline. Some States have online applications that can be completed from the State agency website.

Where can I get my State information?

If you are unable to go to your local SNAP office or do not have access to the internet, you may have another person act as an authorized representative by applying and being interviewed on your behalf. You must designate the authorized representative in writing.

Note: Please contact your SNAP State agency directly to apply and to request information about the status of your application. FNS does not process applications or have access to case information.

What happens when I apply for SNAP?

In most cases, once you submit your application, your State agency or local SNAP office will process it and send you a notice telling you whether or not you are eligible for benefits within 30 days.

During the 30 days, you will need to complete an eligibility interview and give proof (verification) of the information you provided. The interview is typically completed over the telephone or in-person. If you are found eligible, you will receive benefits based on the date you submitted your application.

You may be eligible to receive SNAP benefits within 7 days of your application date if you meet additional requirements. For example, if your household has less than $100 in liquid resources and $150 in monthly gross income, or if your household’s combined monthly gross income and liquid resources are less than what you pay each month for rent or mortgage and utilities expenses. Contact your State agency for additional details.

How do I receive SNAP benefits?

If you are found eligible, you will receive SNAP benefits on an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card, which works like a debit card. Benefits are automatically loaded into your account each month. You can use your EBT card to buy groceries at authorized food stores and retailers.

How long will I receive SNAP?

If you are found eligible, you will receive a notice that tells you how long you will receive SNAP benefits for; this is called your certification period. Before your certification period ends, you will receive another notice that says you must recertify to continue receiving benefits. Your local SNAP office will provide you with information about how to recertify.

Who is in a SNAP household?

Everyone who lives together and purchases and prepares meals together is grouped together as one SNAP household.

Some people who live together, such as spouses and most children under age 22, are included in the same SNAP household, even if they purchase and prepare meals separately.

If a person is 60 years of age or older and unable to purchase and prepare meals separately because of a permanent disability, the person and the person’s spouse may be a separate SNAP household if the others they live with do not have very much income (no more than 165 percent of the poverty level).

Normally you are not eligible for SNAP benefits if an institution gives you most of your meals. There are exceptions for elderly persons and disabled persons.

What resources can I have (and still get SNAP benefits)?

Resources

Households may have $2,250 in countable resources (such as cash or money in a bank account) or $3,500 in countable resources if at least one member of the household is age 60 or older, or is disabled.

However, certain resources are NOT counted when determining eligibility for SNAP:

  • A home and lot;
  • Resources of people who receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI);
  • Resources of people who receive Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF; also known as welfare); and
  • Most retirement and pension plans (withdrawals from these accounts may count as either income or resources depending on how often they occur).

Vehicles

Vehicles count as a resource for SNAP purposes. States determine how vehicles may count toward household resources.

Licensed vehicles are NOT counted if they are:

  • Used for income-producing purposes (e.g., taxi, truck or delivery vehicle);
  • Annually producing income consistent with their fair market value;
  • Needed for long distance travel for work (other than daily commute);
  • Used as the home;
  • Needed to transport a physically disabled household member;
  • Needed to carry most of the household’s fuel or water; or
  • If the sale of the vehicle would result in less than $1500.

For non-excluded licensed vehicles, the fair market value over $4,650 counts as a resource.

Licensed vehicles are also subject to an equity test, which is the fair market value less any amount owed on the vehicle. The following vehicles are excluded from the equity test:

  • One vehicle per adult household member; and
  • Any other vehicle used by a household member under 18 to drive to work, school, job training, or to look for work.

For vehicles with both a fair market value over $4,650 and an equity value, the greater of the two amounts is counted as a resource.

Additionally, the equity value of unlicensed vehicles generally counts as a resource, with some exceptions.

What are the SNAP income limits?

In most cases, your household must meet both the gross and net income limits described below or you are not eligible for SNAP and cannot receive benefits.

Gross income means a household’s total, non-excluded income, before any deductions have been made.

Net income means gross income minus allowable deductions.

A household with an elderly or disabled person only has to meet the net income limit, as described on the elderly and disabled page.

If all members of your household are receiving Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), Supplemental Security Income (SSI), or in some places other general assistance, your household may be deemed “categorically eligible” for SNAP because you have already been determined eligible for another means-tested program.

The information provided in the table below applies to households in the 48 contiguous States and the District of Columbia that apply for SNAP between October 1, 2017, through September 30, 2018.

Table 1: SNAP Income Eligibility Limits – October 1, 2017, through September 30, 2018

Household Size Gross monthly income

(130 percent of poverty)

Net monthly income

(100 percent of poverty)

1 $1,307 $ 1,005
2 $1,760 $1,354
3 $2,213 $1,702
4 $2,665 $2,050
5 $3,118 $2,399
6 $3,571 $2,747
7 $4,024 $3,095
8 $4,477 $3,444
Each additional member +$453 +$349

* SNAP gross and net income limits are higher in Alaska and Hawaii.

What deductions are allowed in SNAP?

The following deductions are allowed for SNAP:

  • A 20-percent deduction from earned income.
  • A standard deduction of $160 for household sizes of 1 to 3 people and $170 for a household size of 4 (higher for some larger households and for households in Alaska, Hawaii, and Guam).
  • A dependent care deduction when needed for work, training, or education.
  • Medical expenses for elderly or disabled members that are more than $35 for the month if they are not paid by insurance or someone else. This is described on the elderly and disabled page.
  • In some States, legally owed child support payments.
  • In some States, a standard shelter deduction for homeless households of $143.
  • Excess shelter costs as described below.

SNAP Excess Shelter Costs Deduction

The shelter deduction is for shelter costs that are more than half of the household’s income after other deductions.

Allowable shelter costs include:

  • Fuel to heat and cook with.
  • Electricity.
  • Water.
  • The basic fee for one telephone.
  • Rent or mortgage payments and interest.
  • Taxes on the home.

Some States allow a set amount for utility costs instead of actual costs.

The amount of the shelter deduction is capped at (or limited to) $535 unless one person in the household is elderly or disabled. The limit is higher in Alaska, Hawaii, and Guam. For a household with an elderly or disabled member all shelter costs over half of the household’s income may be deducted.

Table 2: How to Calculate SNAP Gross Income

Gross Income Calculation Example
Determine household size . . . 4 people with no elderly or disabled members.
Add gross monthly income . . . $1,500 earned income + $550 social security =  $2,050 gross income.
If gross monthly income is less than the limit for household size, determine net income. $2,050 is less than the $2,665 allowed for a 4-person household, so determine net income.

 

Table 3: How to Calculate SNAP Net Income

Net Income Calculation Example
Subtract 20% earned income deduction . . . $2,050 gross income

 

$1,500 earned income x 20% = $300. $2,050 – $300 = $1,750

Subtract standard deduction . . . $1,750 – $170 standard deduction for a 4-person household = $1,580
Subtract dependent care deduction  . . . $1,580 – $361 dependent care = $1,219
Subtract child support deduction . . . 0
Subtract medical costs over $35 for elderly and disabled . . . 0
Excess shelter deduction . . .
Determine half of adjusted income . . . $1,219 adjusted income/2 = $609.50
Determine if shelter costs are more than half of adjusted income . . . $700 total shelter – $609 (half of income) = $90 excess shelter cost
Subtract excess amount, but not more than the limit, from adjusted income . . . $1,219 – $90.50 = $1,128.50 Net monthly income
Apply the net income test . . . Since the net monthly income is less than $2,050 allowed for 4-person household, the household has met the income test.

How much could I receive in SNAP benefits?

The total amount of SNAP benefits your household gets each month is called an allotment.

Because SNAP households are expected to spend about 30 percent of their own resources on food, your allotment is calculated by multiplying your household’s net monthly income by 0.3, and subtracting the result from the maximum monthly allotment for your household size.

Table 4: SNAP Maximum Monthly Allotment Based on Household Size

People in Household Maximum Monthly Allotment
1 $   192
2 $   352
3 $   504
4 $   640
5 $   760
6 $   913
7 $ 1,009
8 $ 1,153
Each additional person $ 144

Note: The allotments described here are for households in the 48 contiguous States and the District of Columbia. The allotments are different in Alaska, Hawaii, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Table 5: Example of SNAP Benefit Calculation

Benefit Calculation Example
Multiply net income by 30%…  (Round up) $1,128.50 net monthly income  x 0.3 = 338.55 (round up to $339)
Subtract 30% of net income from the maximum allotment for the household size… $640 maximum allotment for 4-person household – $339 (30% of   net income) = $301, SNAP Allotment for a full month

What are the SNAP work requirements?

In general, people must meet work requirements to be eligible for SNAP. These work requirements include:

  • Registering for work;
  • Not voluntarily quitting a job or reducing hours;
  • Taking a job if offered; and
  • Participating in employment and training programs, if assigned by the State.

Failure to comply with these requirements can result in disqualification from the Program.

In addition, able bodied adults without dependents are required to work or participate in a work program for at least 20 hours per week in order to receive SNAP benefits for more than 3 months in a 36-month period.

Some special groups may not be subject to these requirements including:

  • Children;
  • Seniors;
  • Pregnant women; and
  • People who are exempt for physical or mental health reasons.

Are non-citizens eligible for SNAP?

SNAP eligibility has never been extended to undocumented non-citizens. Specific requirements for non-citizens who may be eligible have changed substantially over the years and become more complicated in certain areas. The Food and Nutrition Act of 2008 limits eligibility for SNAP benefits to U.S. citizens and certain lawfully present non-citizens.

Generally, to qualify for SNAP, non-citizens must meet one of the following criteria:

  • Have lived in the United States for at least 5 years.
  • Be receiving disability-related assistance or benefits.
  • Be children under 18.

Additionally, these individuals must also satisfy other SNAP eligibility requirements such as income and resource limits in order to qualify for benefits.

If certain members of a household are ineligible for SNAP, State agencies must still determine eligibility for SNAP for any remaining household members who are seeking assistance.

For additional information see: SNAP Policy on Non-Citizen Eligibility and SNAP Guidance on Non-Citizen Eligibility.

What if I disagree with a decision made on my SNAP case?

If you disagree with a decision in your case, you may request a fair hearing with an official who is required by law to review the facts of your case in a fair and objective manner.

Note: You must request a fair hearing within 90 days of the day your local SNAP office made the decision in your case that you disagree with.

You can request a fair hearing over the phone, in writing, or in person at the local SNAP office.

Although a fair hearing cannot change the laws or regulations governing SNAP, it can ensure that decisions on your case have been made correctly.

Nondiscrimination in SNAP

SNAP benefits are available to all eligible households regardless of race, sex, religious creed, national origin, or political beliefs.

The USDA prohibits discrimination in all its programs and activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, or marital and family status. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.) Persons with disabilities who require alternative means for communication of program information (Braille, large print, audiotape, etc.) should contact USDA’s TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TDD).

To file a complaint of discrimination, write USDA, Director, Office of Civil Rights, Room 326- W, Whitten Building, 14th and Independence Avenue, SW, Washington, D.C. 20250-9410 or call (202) 720-5964 (voice and TDD). USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

Where can I get additional information about SNAP?

For additional information about SNAP in your State, to file an application for SNAP benefits, or to get information about your SNAP case, you must contact your local SNAP office.  Where Can I Get My State Information?

https://www.fns.usda.gov/snap/eligibility

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program

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SNAP logo

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP),[1] formerly known as the Food Stamp Program, provides food-purchasing assistance for low- and no-income people living in the United States. It is a federal aidprogram, administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, under the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS), though benefits are distributed by each U.S. state‘s Division of Social Services or Children and Family Services.

SNAP benefits cost $70.9 billion in fiscal year 2016 and supplied roughly 44.2 million Americans (14% of the population)[2] with an average of $125.51 for each person per month in food assistance. Beneficiaries and costs increased sharply with the Great Recession, peaked in 2013 and have declined through 2016 as the economy recovered.[3] It is the largest nutrition program of the 15 administered by FNS and is a component of the federal social safety netfor low-income Americans.[4]

The amount of SNAP benefits received by a household depends on the household’s size, income, and expenses. For most of its history, the program used paper-denominated “stamps” or coupons – worth US$1 (brown), $5 (blue), and $10 (green) – bound into booklets of various denominations, to be torn out individually and used in single-use exchange. Because of their 1:1 value ratio with actual currency, the coupons were printed by the Bureau of Engraving and Printing. Their rectangular shape resembled a U.S. dollar bill (although about one-half the size), including intaglio printing on high-quality paper with watermarks. In the late 1990s, the Food Stamp Program was revamped, with some states phasing out actual stamps in favor of a specialized debit card system known as Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT), provided by private contractors. EBT has been implemented in all states since June 2004. Each month, SNAP food stamp benefits are directly deposited into the household’s EBT card account. Households may use EBT to pay for food at supermarkets, convenience stores, and other food retailers, including certain farmers’ markets.[5]

History

First Food Stamp Program (FSP) (May 16, 1939 – Spring 1943)[edit]

An effort to manage agricultural surpluses, the first food stamps came off the presses April 20, 1939.
Orange stamps were good for any grocery item the purchaser chose, except drugs, liquor and items consumed on the premises.
Blue stamps bought only surplus foods—dairy products, eggs, citrus fruits, prunes and fresh vegetables.

The idea for the first food stamp program has been credited to various people, most notably U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Henry Wallace and the program’s first administrator, Milo Perkins.[6] Of the program, Perkins said, “We got a picture of a gorge, with farm surpluses on one cliff and under-nourished city folks with outstretched hands on the other. We set out to find a practical way to build a bridge across that chasm.”[7] The program operated by permitting people on relief to buy orange stamps equal to their normal food expenditures; for every $1 of orange stamps purchased, 50 cents’ worth of blue stamps were received. Orange stamps could be used to buy any food; blue stamps could be used only to buy food determined by the department to be surplus.

Over the course of nearly four years, the first FSP reached approximately 20 million people in nearly half of the counties in the U.S., at a total cost of $262 million. At its peak, the program assisted an estimated four million people. The first recipient was Mabel McFiggin of Rochester, New York; the first retailer to redeem the stamps was Joseph Mutolo; and the first retailer caught violating program rules was Nick Salzano in October 1939. The program ended when the conditions that brought the program into being—unmarketable food surpluses and widespread unemployment—ceased to exist.[8]

Pilot Food Stamp Program (1961–1964)

The 18 years between the end of the first FSP and the inception of the next were filled with studies, reports, and legislative proposals. Prominent U.S. Senators actively associated with attempts to enact a food stamp program during this period included George AikenRobert M. La Follette, Jr.Hubert HumphreyEstes Kefauver, and Stuart Symington. From 1954 on, U.S. Representative Leonor Sullivan strove to pass food-stamp-program legislation.

On September 21, 1959, P.L. 86-341 authorized the Secretary of Agriculture to operate a food-stamp system through January 31, 1962. The Eisenhower Administration never used the authority. However, in fulfillment of a campaign promise made in West Virginia, President John F. Kennedy‘s first Executive Order called for expanded food distribution and, on February 2, 1961, he announced that food stamp pilot programs would be initiated. The pilot programs would retain the requirement that the food stamps be purchased, but eliminated the concept of special stamps for surplus foods. A Department spokesman indicated the emphasis would be on increasing the consumption of perishables.

Of the program, U.S. Representative Leonor K. Sullivan of Missouri asserted, “…the Department of Agriculture seemed bent on outlining a possible food stamp plan of such scope and magnitude, involving some 25 million persons, as to make the whole idea seem ridiculous and tear food stamp plans to smithereens.”[9][10]

Food Stamp Act of 1964

The Food Stamp Act of 1964 appropriated $75 million to 350,000 individuals in 40 counties and three cities. The measure drew overwhelming support from House Democrats, 90 percent from urban areas, 96 percent from the suburbs, and 87 percent from rural areas. Republican lawmakers opposed the initial measure: only 12 percent of urban Republicans, 11 percent from the suburbs, and 5 percent from rural areas voted affirmatively. President Lyndon B. Johnson hailed food stamps as “a realistic and responsible step toward the fuller and wiser use of an agricultural abundance”.[11]

Rooted in congressional logrolling, the act was part of a larger appropriation that raised price supports for cotton and wheat. Rural lawmakers supported the program so that their urban colleagues would not dismantle farm subsidies. Food stamps, along with MedicaidHead Start, and the Job Corps were foremost among the growing anti-poverty programs.

President Johnson called for a permanent food-stamp program on January 31, 1964, as part of his “War on Poverty” platform introduced at the State of the Union a few weeks earlier. Agriculture Secretary Orville Freemansubmitted the legislation on April 17, 1964. The bill eventually passed by Congress was H.R. 10222, introduced by Congresswoman Sullivan. One of the members on the House Committee on Agriculture who voted against the FSP in Committee was then Representative Bob Dole.

As a Senator, Dole became a staunch supporter of the program, after he worked with George McGovern to produce a bipartisan solution to two of the main problems associated with food stamps: cumbersome purchase requirements and lax eligibility standards. Dole told Congress regarding the new provisions, “I am confident that this bill eliminates the greedy and feeds the needy.”[citation needed] The law was intended to strengthen the agricultural economy and provide improved levels of nutrition among low-income households; however, the practical purpose was to bring the pilot FSP under congressional control and to enact the regulations into law.

The major provisions were:

  • The State Plan of Operation requirement and development of eligibility standards by States;
  • They required that the recipients should purchase their food stamps, while paying the average money spent on food then receiving an amount of food stamps representing an opportunity more nearly to obtain a low-cost nutritionally adequate diet;
  • The eligibility for purchase with food stamps of all items intended for human consumption except alcoholic beverages and imported foods (the House version would have prohibited the purchase of soft drinks, luxury foods, and luxury frozen foods);
  • Prohibitions against discrimination on basis of race, religious creed, national origin, or political beliefs;
  • The division of responsibilities between States (certification and issuance) and the Federal Government (funding of benefits and authorization of retailers and wholesalers), with shared responsibility for funding costs of administration; and
  • Appropriations for the first year limited to $75 million; for the second year, to $100 million; and, for the third year, to $200 million.

The Agriculture Department estimated that participation in a national FSP would eventually reach 4 million, at a cost of $360 million annually, far below the actual numbers.

Program expansion: participation milestones in the 1960s and early 1970s

In April 1965, participation topped half a million. (Actual participation was 561,261 people.) Participation topped 1 million in March 1966, 2 million in October 1967, 3 million in February 1969, 4 million in February 1970, 5 million one month later in March 1970, 6 million two months later in May 1970, 10 million in February 1971, and 15 million in October 1974. Rapid increases in participation during this period were primarily due to geographic expansion.

Major legislative changes (early 1970s)

The early 1970s were a period of growth in participation, concern about the cost of providing food stamp benefits, and questions about administration, primarily timely certification. During this time, the issue was framed that would dominate food stamp legislation ever after: how to balance program access with program accountability. Three major pieces of legislation shaped this period, leading up to massive reform to follow:

P.L. 91-671 (January 11, 1971) established uniform national standards of eligibility and work requirements; required that allotments be equivalent to the cost of a nutritionally adequate diet; limited households’ purchase requirements to 30 percent of their income; instituted an outreach requirement; authorized the Agriculture Department to pay 62.5 percent of specific administrative costs incurred by States; expanded the FSP to GuamPuerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands of the United States; and provided $1.75 billion appropriations for Fiscal Year 1971.

Agriculture and Consumer Protection Act of 1973 (P.L. 93-86, August 10, 1973) required States to expand the program to every political jurisdiction before July 1, 1974; expanded the program to drug addicts and alcoholics in treatment and rehabilitation centers; established semi-annual allotment adjustments, bi-monthly issuance, and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) “cash-out” (which gave the option to states to issue Food Stamp benefits to SSI recipients in the form of their estimated cash value consolidated within the SSI grant, in order to reduce administrative costs); introduced statutory complexity in the income definition (by including in-kind payments and providing an accompanying exception); and required the Department to establish temporary eligibility standards for disasters.

P.L. 93-347 (July 12, 1974) authorized the Department to pay 50 percent of all states’ costs for administering the program and established the requirement for efficient and effective administration by the States.

1974 nationwide program

In accordance with P.L. 93-86, the FSP began operating nationwide on July 1, 1974. (The program was not fully implemented in Puerto Rico until November 1, 1974.) Participation for July 1974 was almost 14 million.

Eligible access to Supplemental Security Income beneficiaries[edit]

Once a person is a beneficiary of the Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Program he (or she) may be automatically eligible for Food Stamps depending on his (or her) state’s laws. How much money in food stamps they receive also varies by state. Supplemental Security Income was created in 1974.[12]

Food Stamp Act of 1977

Both the outgoing Republican Administration and the new Democratic Administration offered Congress proposed legislation to reform the FSP in 1977. The Republican bill stressed targeting benefits to the neediest, simplifying administration, and tightening controls on the program; the Democratic bill focused on increasing access to those most in need and simplifying and streamlining a complicated and cumbersome process that delayed benefit delivery as well as reducing errors, and curbing abuse. The chief force for the Democratic Administration was Robert Greenstein, Administrator of the Food and Nutrition Service (FNS).

In Congress, major players were Senators George McGovernJacob Javits, Humphrey, and Dole and Congressmen Foley and Richmond. Amid all the themes, the one that became the rallying cry for FSP reform was “EPR”—eliminate the purchase requirement—because of the barrier to participation the purchase requirement represented.[citation needed] The bill that became the law (S. 275) did eliminate the purchase requirement. It also:[citation needed]

  • eliminated categorical eligibility;
  • established statutory income eligibility guidelines at the poverty line;
  • established 10 categories of excluded income;
  • reduced the number of deductions used to calculate net income and established a standard deduction to take the place of eliminated deductions;
  • raised the general resource limit to $1,750;
  • established the fair market value (FMV) test for evaluating vehicles as resources;
  • penalized households whose heads voluntarily quit jobs;
  • restricted eligibility for students and aliens;
  • eliminated the requirement that households must have cooking facilities;
  • replaced store due bills with cash change up to 99 cents;
  • established the principle that stores must sell a substantial amount of staple foods if they are to be authorized;
  • established the ground rules for Indian Tribal Organization administration of the FSP on reservations; and
  • introduced demonstration project authority.

In addition to EPR, the Food Stamp Act of 1977 included several access provisions:[citation needed]

  • using mail, telephone, or home visits for certification;
  • requirements for outreach, bilingual personnel and materials, and nutrition education materials;
  • recipients’ right to submit applications the first day they attempt to do so;
  • 30-day processing standard and inception of the concept of expedited service;
  • SSI joint processing and coordination with Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC), the major cash welfare program;
  • notice, recertification, and retroactive benefit protections; and
  • a requirement for States to develop a disaster plan.

The integrity provisions of the new program included fraud disqualifications, enhanced Federal funding for States’ anti-fraud activities, and financial incentives for low error rates.

The House Report for the 1977 legislation points out that the changes in the Food Stamp Program are needed without reference to upcoming welfare reform since “the path to welfare reform is, indeed, rocky….”[citation needed]

EPR was implemented January 1, 1979. Participation that month increased 1.5 million over the preceding month.

Cutbacks of the early 1980s[

The large and expensive FSP proved to be a favorite subject of close scrutiny from both the Executive Branch and Congress in the early 1980s. Major legislation in 1981 and 1982 enacted cutbacks including:

  • addition of a gross income eligibility test in addition to the net income test for most households;
  • temporary freeze on adjustments of the shelter deduction cap and the standard deduction and constraints on future adjustments;
  • annual adjustments in food stamp allotments rather than semi-annual;
  • consideration of non-elderly parents who live with their children and non-elderly siblings who live together as one household;
  • required periodic reporting and retrospective budgeting;
  • prohibition against using Federal funds for outreach;
  • replacing the FSP in Puerto Rico with a block grant for nutrition assistance;
  • counting retirement accounts as resources;
  • state option to require job search of applicants as well as participants; and
  • increased disqualification periods for voluntary quitters.

Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) began in ReadingPennsylvania, in 1984.

Mid-to-late 1980s

Recognition of the severe domestic hunger problem in the latter half of the 1980s led to incremental expansions of the FSP in 1985 and 1987, such as elimination of sales tax on food stamp purchases, reinstitution of categorical eligibility, increased resource limit for most households ($2,000), eligibility for the homeless, and expanded nutrition education. The Hunger Prevention Act of 1988 and the Mickey Leland Memorial Domestic Hunger Relief Act in 1990 foretold the improvements that would be coming. The 1988 and 1990 legislation accomplished the following:

  • increasing benefits by applying a multiplication factor to Thrifty Food Plan costs;
  • making outreach an optional activity for States;
  • excluding advance earned income tax credits as income;
  • simplifying procedures for calculating medical deductions;
  • instituting periodic adjustments of the minimum benefit;
  • authorizing nutrition education grants;
  • establishing severe penalties for violations by individuals or participating firms; and
  • establishing EBT as an issuance alternative.

Throughout this era, significant players were principally various committee chairmen: Congressmen Leland, Hall, Foley, Leon Panetta, and, de la Garza and Senator Patrick Leahy.

1993 Mickey Leland Childhood Hunger Relief Act

By 1993, major changes in food stamp benefits had arrived. The final legislation provided for $2.8 billion in benefit increases over Fiscal Years 1984-1988. Leon Panetta, in his new role as OMB Director, played a major role as did Senator Leahy. Substantive changes included:

  • eliminating the shelter deduction cap beginning January 1, 1997;
  • providing a deduction for legally binding child support payments made to nonhousehold members;
  • raising the cap on the dependent care deduction from $160 to $200 for children under 2 years old and $175 for all other dependents;
  • improving employment and training (E&T) dependent care reimbursements;
  • increasing the FMV test for vehicles to $4,550 on September 1, 1994 and $4,600 on October 1, 1995, then annually adjusting the value from $5,000 on October 1, 1996;
  • mandating asset accumulation demonstration projects; and
  • simplifying the household definition.

Later participation milestones

In December 1979, participation finally surpassed 20 million. In March 1994, participation hit a new high of 28 million.

1996 welfare reform and subsequent amendments

The mid-1990s was a period of welfare reform. Prior to 1996, the rules for the cash welfare program, Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC), were waived for many states. With the enactment of the 1996 welfare reform act, called the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA), AFDC, an entitlement program, was replaced that with a new block grant to states called Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF).

Although the Food Stamp Program was reauthorized in the 1996 Farm Bill, the 1996 welfare reform made several changes to the program, including:

  • eliminating eligibility to food stamps of most legal immigrants who had been in the country less than five years;
  • placing a time limit on food stamp receipt of three out of 36 months for Able-bodied Adults Without Dependents (ABAWDs), who are not working at least 20 hours a week or participating in a work program;
  • reducing the maximum allotments to 100 percent of the change in the Thrifty Food Plan (TFP) from 103 percent of the change in the TFP;
  • freezing the standard deduction, the vehicle limit, and the minimum benefit;
  • setting the shelter cap at graduated specified levels up to $300 by fiscal year 2001, and allowing states to mandate the use of the standard utility allowance;
  • revising provisions for disqualification, including comparable disqualification with other means-tested programs; and
  • requiring states to implement EBT before October 1, 2002.

As a result of all these changes, “participation rates plummeted” in the late 1990s, according to Slate online magazine.[13][quantify]

The Balanced Budget Act of 1997 (BBA) and the Agricultural Research, Education and Extension Act of 1998 (AREERA) made some changes to these provisions, most significantly:

  • using additional Employment and Training (E&T) funds to providing work program opportunities for able-bodied adults without dependents;
  • allowing states to exempt up to 15 percent of the able-bodied adults without dependents who would otherwise be ineligible;
  • restoring eligibility for certain elderly, disabled, and minor immigrants who resided in the United States when the 1996 welfare reform act was enacted; and
  • cutting administrative funding for states to account for certain administrative costs that previously had been allocated to the AFDC program and now were required to be allocated to the Food Stamp Program.

The fiscal year 2001 agriculture appropriations bill included two significant changes. The legislation increased the excess shelter cap to $340 in fiscal year 2001 and then indexed the cap to changes in the Consumer Price Index for All Consumers each year beginning in fiscal year 2002. The legislation also allowed states to use the vehicle limit they use in a TANF assistance program, if it would be result in a lower attribution of resources for the household.

Electronic Benefits Transfer

In the late 1990s, the Food Stamp Program was revamped, with some states phasing out actual stamps in favor of a specialized debit card system known as Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT), provided by private contractors. Many states merged the use of the EBT card for public welfare programs as well, such as cash assistance. The move was designed to save the government money by not printing the coupons, make benefits available immediately instead of requiring the recipient to wait for mailing or picking up the booklets in person, and reduce theft and diversion.[5]

Renaming the Food Stamp Program

The 2008 farm bill renamed the Food Stamp Program as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (beginning October 2008) and replaced all references to “stamp” or “coupon” in federal law with “card” or “EBT.”[14][15]

Temporary benefits increase from April 2009 to November 2013

SNAP benefits temporarily increased with the passage of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), a federal stimulus package to help Americans affected by the Great Recession of 2007.[16] Beginning in April 2009 and continuing through the expansion’s expiration on November 1, 2013, the ARRA appropriated $45.2 billion to increase monthly benefit levels to an average of $133.[16][17] This amounted to a 13.6 percent funding increase for SNAP recipients.[17]

This temporary expansion expired on November 1, 2013, resulting in a relative benefit decrease for SNAP households; on average, benefits decreased by 5 percent.[16] According to a Center on Budget and Policy Priorities report, the maximum monthly benefit for a family of four dropped from $668 to $632, while the maximum monthly benefit for an individual dropped from $200 to $189.[16]

Corporate influence and support

In June 2014, Mother Jones reported that “Overall, 18 percent of all food benefits money is spent at Walmart,” and that Walmart had submitted a statement to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission stating,

Our business operations are subject to numerous risks, factors, and uncertainties, domestically and internationally, which are outside our control. These factors include… changes in the amount of payments made under the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Plan and other public assistance plans, [and] changes in the eligibility requirements of public assistance plans.[18]

Companies that have lobbied on behalf of SNAP include PepsiCoCoca-Cola, and the grocery chain KrogerKraft Foods, which receives “One-sixth [of its] revenues … from food stamp purchases” also opposes food stamp cuts.[18]

Eligibility

Because SNAP is a means-tested program, recipients must meet all eligibility criteria in order to receive benefits. There are income and resource requirements for SNAP, as well as specific requirements for immigrants, elderly persons and persons with disabilities.[19][20]

Income requirements

For income, individuals and households may qualify for benefits if they earn a gross monthly income that is 130% (or less) of the federal poverty level for a specific household size. For example: the SNAP-eligible gross monthly income is $1,245 or less for an individual. For a household of 4, the SNAP eligible gross monthly income is $2,552 or less. Gross monthly income is the amount an individual makes each month before any deductions, i.e. taxes, insurance, pensions, etc.[19]

Resource requirements

There is also a resource requirement for SNAP, although eligibility requirements vary slightly from state to state. Generally speaking, households may have up to $2,250 in a bank account or other countable sources. If at least one person is age 60 or older and/or has disabilities, households may have $3,500 in countable resources.[19]

Housing expenditure

The lack of affordable housing in urban areas means that money that could have been spent on food is spent on housing expenses. Housing is generally considered affordable when it costs 30% or less of total household income; rising housing costs have made this ideal difficult to attain.

This is especially true in New York City, where 28% of rent stabilized tenants spend more than half their income on rent.[21] Among lower income families the percentage is much higher. According to an estimate by the Community Service Society, 65% of New York City families living below the federal poverty line are paying more than half of their income toward rent.[22]

The current eligibility criteria attempt to address this, by including a deduction for “excess shelter costs”. This applies only to households that spend more than half of their net income on rent. For the purpose of this calculation, a household’s net income is obtained by subtracting certain deductions from their gross (before deductions) income. If the household’s total expenditures on rent exceed 50% of that net income, then the net income is further reduced by the amount of rent that exceeds 50% of net income. For 2007, this deduction can be no more than $417, except in households that include an elderly or disabled person.[23] Deductions include:

  1. a standard deduction that is subtracted from income for all recipients,
  2. an earned income deduction reflecting taxes and work expenses,
  3. a deduction for dependent care expenses related to work or training (up to certain limits),
  4. a deduction for child support payments,
  5. a deduction for medical expenses above a set amount per month (only available to elderly and disabled recipients), and
  6. a deduction for excessively high shelter expenses.[24]

The adjusted net income, including the deduction for excess shelter costs, is used to determine whether a household is eligible for food stamps.

Immigrant status and eligibility

The 2002 Farm Bill restores SNAP eligibility to most legal immigrants that:

  • Have lived in the country for 5 years; or
  • Are receiving disability-related assistance or benefits; or
  • Have children under 18

Certain non-citizens, such as those admitted for humanitarian reasons and those admitted for permanent residence, may also be eligible for SNAP. Eligible household members can get SNAP benefits even if there are other members of the household that are not eligible.[19]

Applying for SNAP benefits

To apply for SNAP benefits, an applicant must first fill out a program application and return it to the state or local SNAP office. Each state has a different application, which is usually available online. There is more information about various state applications processes, including locations of SNAP offices in various state, displayed on an interactive Outreach Map found on the FNS website.[25] Individuals who believe they may be eligible for SNAP benefits may use the Food and Nutrition Services’ SNAP Screening Tool, which can help gauge eligibility.

Eligible food items under SNAP

As per USDA rules, households can use SNAP benefits to purchase:

  • Foods for the household to eat, such as:
    • fruits and vegetables;
    • breads and cereals;
    • dairy products;
    • meats, fish and;
    • poultry
  • Plants and seeds which are fit for household consumption.

Additionally, restaurants operating in certain areas may be permitted to accept SNAP benefits from eligible candidates like elderly, homeless or disabled people in return for affordable meals.

However, the USDA clearly mentions that households cannot use SNAP benefits to purchase the following:

  • Wine, beer, liquor, cigarettes or tobacco
  • Certain nonfood items like:
    • soaps, paper products, deodorant
    • household supplies, and
    • pet foods
  • Hot foods
  • Food items that are consumable in the store
  • Vitamins and medicines[26]

Soft drinks, candy, cookies, snack crackers, and ice cream are classified as food items and are therefore eligible items. Seafood, steak, and bakery cakes are also food items and are therefore eligible items.[26]

Energy drinks which have a nutrition facts label are eligible foods, but energy drinks which have a supplement facts label are classified by the FDA as supplements, and are therefore not eligible.[26]

Live animals and birds may not be purchased; but live fish and shellfish are eligible foods.[26] Pumpkins are eligible, but inedible gourds and solely ornamental pumpkins are not.[26]

Gift baskets containing both food and non-food items “are not eligible for purchase with SNAP benefits if the value of the non-food items exceeds 50 percent of the purchase price. Items such as birthday and other special occasion cakes are eligible as long as the value of non-edible decorations does not exceed 50 percent of the price.”[26]

State options

States are allowed under federal law to administer SNAP in different ways. As of April 2015, the USDA had published eleven periodic State Options Reports outlining variations in how states have administered the program.[27] The USDA’s most recent State Options Report, published in April 2015, summarizes:

SNAP’s statutes, regulations, and waivers provide State agencies with various policy options. State agencies use this flexibility to adapt their programs to meet the needs of eligible, low‐income people in their States. Modernization and technology have provided States with new opportunities and options in administering the program. Certain options may facilitate program design goals, such as removing or reducing barriers to access for low-income families and individuals, or providing better support for those working or looking for work. This flexibility helps States better target benefits to those most in need, streamline program administration and field operations, and coordinate SNAP activities with those of other programs.[28]

Some areas of differences among states include: when and how frequently SNAP recipients must report household circumstances; on whether the state agency acts on all reported changes or only some changes; whether the state uses a simplified method for determining the cost of doing business in cases where an applicant is self-employed; and whether legally obligated child support payments made to non-household members are counted as an income exclusion rather than a deduction.[28]

State agencies also have an option to call their program SNAP; whether to continue to refer to their program under its former name, the Food Stamp Program; or whether to choose an alternate name.[28] Among the 50 states plus the District of Columbia, 32 call their program SNAP; five continue to call the program the Food Stamp Program; and 16 have adopted their own name.[28] For example, California calls its SNAP implementation “CalFresh“, while Arizona calls its program “Nutrition Assistance”.[28]

States and counties with highest use of SNAP per capita

According to January 2015 figures reported by the Census Bureau and USDA and compiled by USA Today, the states and district with the most food stamp recipients per capita are:[29]

State % of population
receiving
SNAP benefits
District of Columbia 22%
Mississippi 21%
New Mexico 22%
West Virginia 20%
Oregon 20%
Tennessee 20%
Louisiana 19%

According to June 2009 figures reported by the state agencies, the USDA, and Census Bureau, and compiled by the New York Times, the individual counties with the highest levels of SNAP usage were:

County (or equivalent) % of population
receiving
SNAP benefits
Kusilvak Census Area, Alaska 49%
Owsley County, Kentucky 49%
Oglala Lakota County, South Dakota 49%
Pemiscot County, Missouri 47%
Todd County, South Dakota 46%
Sioux County, North Dakota 45%
Dunklin County, Missouri 44%
East Carroll Parish, Louisiana 43%
Humphreys County, Mississippi 43%
Wolfe County, Kentucky 42%
Perry County, Alabama 41%
Phillips County, Arkansas 39%
Rolette County, North Dakota 39%
Ripley County, Missouri 39%
Ziebach County, South Dakota 39%

Impact

During the recession of 2008, SNAP participation hit an all-time high. Arguing in support for SNAP, the Food Research and Action Center argued that “putting more resources quickly into the hands of the people most likely to turn around and spend it can both boost the economy and cushion the hardships on vulnerable people who face a constant struggle against hunger.[30] Researchers have found that every $1 that is spent from SNAP results in $1.73 of economic activity. In California, the cost-benefit ratio is even higher: for every $1 spent from SNAP between $3.67 to $8.34 is saved in health care costs.[31][32][33] The Congressional Budget Office also rated an increase in SNAP benefits as one of the two most cost-effective of all spending and tax options it examined for boosting growth and jobs in a weak economy.[33]

Participants

A summary statistical report indicated that an average of 44.2 million people used the program in FY 2016, down from 45.8 million in 2015 and below the 2013 peak of 47.6 million.[34] SNAP is able to support 75% of those eligible for the program. Nearly 72 percent of SNAP participants are in families with children; more than one-quarter of participants are in households with seniors or people with disabilities.[35]

As of 2013, more than 15% of the U.S. population receive food assistance, and more than 20% in GeorgiaKentuckyLouisianaNew MexicoOregon and Tennessee. Washington D.C. was the highest share of the population to receive food assistance at over 23%.[36]

Average number of persons participating in the SNAP, 2000–2016. The number of participants increased due to the Great Recession, peaking in 2013, and has since fallen.

According to the United States Department of Agriculture (based on a study of data gathered in Fiscal Year 2010), statistics for the food stamp program are as follows:[37]

  • 49% of all participant households have children (17 or younger), and 55% of those are single-parent households.
  • 15% of all participant households have elderly (age 60 or over) members.
  • 20% of all participant households have non-elderly disabled members.
  • The average gross monthly income per food stamp household is $731; The average net income is $336.
  • 37% of participants are White, 22% are African-American, 10% are Hispanic, 2% are Asian, 4% are Native American, and 19% are of unknown race or ethnicity.[37]

Costs

Total program costs from 2000 to 2016. The amount increased sharply after 2008 due to the Great Recession, and has fallen since 2013 as the economy recovers.

SNAP benefits cost since the 1960s

Amounts paid to program beneficiaries rose from $28.6 billion in 2005 to $76.1 billion in 2013, falling back to $66.6 billion by 2016. This increase was due to the high unemployment rate (leading to higher SNAP participation) and the increased benefit per person with the passing of ARRA. SNAP average monthly benefits increased from $96.18 per person to $133.08 per person. Other program costs, which include the Federal share of State administrative expenses, Nutrition Education, and Employment and Training, amounted to roughly $3.7 million in 2013.[5] There were cuts into the program’s budget introduced in 2014 that were estimated to save $8.6 billion over 10 years. Some of the states are looking for measures within the states to balance the cuts, so they would not affect the recipients of the federal aid program.[38]

Food security and insecurity

While SNAP participants and other low-income nonparticipants spend similar amounts on food spending, SNAP participants tend to still experience greater food insecurity than nonparticipants. This is believed to be a reflection of the welfare of individuals who take the time to apply for SNAP benefits rather than the shortcomings of SNAP. Households facing the greatest hardships are the most likely to bear the burden of applying for program benefits.[39]Therefore, SNAP participants tend to be, on average, less food secure than other low-income nonparticipants.[39]

Self-selection by more food-needy households into SNAP makes it difficult to observe positive effects on food security from survey data.[40] Statistical models that control for this endogeneity suggest that SNAP receipt reduces the likelihood of being food insecure and very food insecure by roughly 30 percent and 20 percent, respectively.[41]

Poverty

Because SNAP is a means-tested entitlement program, participation rates are closely related to the number of individuals living in poverty in a given period. In periods of economic recession, SNAP enrollment tends to increase and in periods of prosperity, SNAP participation tends to be lower.[39] Unemployment is therefore also related to SNAP participation. However, ERS data shows that poverty and SNAP participation levels have continued to rise following the 2008 recession, even though unemployment rates have leveled off. Poverty levels are the strongest correlates for program participation.

A 2016 study found that SNAP benefits lead to greater expenditures on housing, transportation, and education by beneficiaries.[42]

SNAP is closely related to poverty and unemployment

Income maintenance

The purpose of the Food Stamp Program as laid out in its implementation was to assist low-income households in obtaining adequate and nutritious diets. According to Peter H. Rossi, a sociologist whose work involved evaluation of social programs, “the program rests on the assumption that households with restricted incomes may skimp on food purchases and live on diets that are inadequate in quantity and quality, or, alternatively skimp on other necessities to maintain an adequate diet”.[43] Food stamps, as many like Rossi, MacDonald, and Eisinger contend, are used not only for increasing food but also as income maintenance. Income maintenance is money that households are able to spend on other things because they no longer have to spend it on food. According to various studies shown by Rossi, because of income maintenance only about $0.17–$0.47 more is being spent on food for every food stamp dollar than was spent prior to individuals receiving food stamps.[44]

Diet quality

Studies are inconclusive as to whether SNAP has a direct effect on the nutritional quality of food choices made by participants. Unlike other federal programs that provide food subsidies, i.e. the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), SNAP does not have nutritional standards for purchases. Critics of the program suggest that this lack of structure represents a missed opportunity for public health advancement and cost containment.[45][46] In April 2013, the USDA research body, the Economic Research Service (ERS), published a study that examined diet quality in SNAP participants compared to low-income nonparticipants. The study revealed a difference in diet quality between SNAP participants and low-income nonparticipants, finding that SNAP participants score slightly lower on the Healthy Eating Index[47] (HEI) than nonparticipants. The study also concluded that SNAP increases the likelihood that participants will consume whole fruit by 23 percentage points. However, the analysis also suggests that SNAP participation decreases participants’ intake of dark green and orange vegetables by a modest amount.[48]

A 2016 study found no evidence that SNAP increased expenditures on tobacco by beneficiaries.[42]

Macroeconomic effect

The USDA’s Economic Research Service explains: “SNAP is a counter-cyclical government assistance program—it provides assistance to more low-income households during an economic downturn or recession and to fewer households during an economic expansion. The rise in SNAP participation during an economic downturn results in greater SNAP expenditures which, in turn, stimulate the economy.”[49]

In 2011, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack gave a statement regarding SNAP benefits: “Every dollar of SNAP benefits generates $1.84 in the economy in terms of economic activity.”[50] Vilsack’s estimate was based on a 2002 USDA study which found that “ultimately, the additional $5 billion of FSP (Food Stamp Program) expenditures triggered an increase in total economic activity (production, sales, and value of shipments) of $9.2 billion and an increase in jobs of 82,100,” or $1.84 stimulus for every dollar spent.[51]

A January 2008 report by Moody’s Analytics chief economist Mark Zandi analyzed measures of the Economic Stimulus Act of 2008 and found that in a weak economy, every $1 in SNAP expenditures generates $1.73 in real GDP increase, making it the most effective stimulus among all the provisions of the act, including both tax cuts and spending increases.[52][53]

A 2010 report by Kenneth Hanson published by the USDA’s Economic Research Service estimated that a $1 billion increase in SNAP expenditures increases economic activity (GDP) by $1.79 billion (i.e., the GDP multiplier is 1.79).[54] The same report also estimated that the “preferred jobs impact … are the 8,900 full-time equivalent jobs plus self-employed or the 9,800 full-time and part-time jobs plus self-employed from $1 billion of SNAP benefits.”[54]

Local economic effects

In March 2013, the Washington Post reported that one-third of Woonsocket, Rhode Island‘s population used food stamps, putting local merchants on a “boom or bust” cycle each month when EBT payments were deposited. The Post stated that “a federal program that began as a last resort for a few million hungry people has grown into an economic lifeline for entire towns.”[55] And this growth “has been especially swift in once-prosperous places hit by the housing bust”.[56]

In addition to local town merchants, national retailers are starting to take in an increasing large percentage of SNAP benefits. For example, “Walmart estimates it takes in about 18% of total U.S. outlays on food stamps.”[57]

Fraud and abuse

In March 2012, the USDA published its fifth report in a series of periodic analyses to estimate the extent of trafficking in SNAP; that is, selling or otherwise converting SNAP benefits for cash payouts. Although trafficking does not directly increase costs to the Federal Government,[58][59][60] it diverts benefits from their intended purpose of helping low-income families access a nutritious diet. Also trafficking may indirectly increase costs by encouraging participants to stay in the program longer than intended, or by incentivizing new participants seeking to profit from trafficking. The FNS aggressively acts to control trafficking by using SNAP purchase data to identify suspicious transaction patterns, conducting undercover investigations, and collaborating with other investigative agencies.

Trafficking diverted an estimated one cent of each SNAP dollar ($330 million annually) from SNAP benefits between 2006 and 2008. Trafficking has declined over time from nearly 4 percent in the 1990s. About 8.2 percent of all stores trafficked from 2006 to 2008 compared to the 10.5 percent of SNAP authorized stores involved in trafficking in 2011.[61] A variety of store characteristics and settings were related to the level of trafficking. Although large stores accounted for 87.3 percent of all SNAP redemptions, they only accounted for about 5.4 percent of trafficking redemptions. Trafficking was much less likely to occur among publicly owned than privately owned stores and was much less likely among stores in areas with less poverty rather than more. The total annual value of trafficked benefits increased at about the same rate as overall program growth. The current estimate of total SNAP dollars trafficked is higher than observed in the previous 2002–2005 period. This increase is consistent, however, with the almost 37 percent growths in average annual SNAP benefits from the 2002–2005 study periods to the most recent one. The methodology used to generate these estimates has known limitations. However, given variable data and resources, it is the most practical approach available to FNS. Further improvements to SNAP trafficking estimates would require new resources to assess the prevalence of trafficking among a random sample of stores.[62]

The USDA report released in August 2013 says the dollar value of trafficking increased to 1.3 percent, up from 1 percent in the USDA’s 2006–2008 survey,[61] and “About 18 percent of those stores classified as convenience stores or small groceries were estimated to have trafficked. For larger stores (supermarkets and large groceries), only 0.32 percent were estimated to have trafficked. In terms of redemptions, about 17 percent of small groceries redemptions and 14 percent of convenience store redemptions were estimated to have been trafficked. This compares with a rate of 0.2 percent for large stores.”[63]

The USDA, in December 2011, announced new policies to attempt to curb waste, fraud, and abuse. These changes will include stiffer penalties for retailers who are caught participating in illegal or fraudulent activities.[64] “The department is proposing increasing penalties for retailers and providing states with access to large federal databases they would be required to use to verify information from applicants. SNAP benefit fraud, generally in the form of store employees buying EBT cards from recipients is widespread in urban areas, with one in seven corner stores engaging in such behavior, according to a recent government estimate. There are in excess of 200,000 stores, and we have 100 agents spread across the country. Some do undercover work, but the principal way we track fraud is through analyzing electronic transactions” for suspicious patterns, USDA Under Secretary Kevin Concannon told The Washington Times.[65] Also, states will be given additional guidance that will help develop a tighter policy for those seeking to effectively investigate fraud and clarifying the definition of trafficking.

According to the Government Accountability Office, at a 2009 count, there was a payment error rate of 4.36% of SNAP benefits down from 9.86% in 1999.[66] A 2003 analysis found that two-thirds of all improper payments were the fault of the caseworker, not the participant.[66] There are also instances of fraud involving exchange of SNAP benefits for cash and/or for items not eligible for purchase with EBT cards.[67] In 2011, the Michigan program raised eligibility requirements for full-time college students, to save taxpayer money and to end student use of monthly SNAP benefits.[68]

In Maine, incidents of recycling fraud have occurred in the past where individuals once committed fraud by using their EBT cards to buy canned or bottled beverages (requiring a deposit to be paid at the point of purchase for each beverage container), dump the contents out so the empty beverage container could be returned for deposit redemption, and thereby, allowed these individuals to eventually purchase non-EBT authorized products with cash from the beverage container deposits.[69]

The State of Utah developed a system called “eFind” to monitor, evaluate and cross-examine qualifying and reporting data of recipients assets. Utah’s eFind system is a “back end”, web-based system that gathers, filters, and organizes information from various federal, state, and local databases. The data in eFind is used to help state eligibility workers determine applicants’ eligibility for public assistance programs, including Medicaid, CHIP, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), and child care assistance.[70] When information is changed in one database, the reported changes become available to other departments utilizing the system. This system was developed with federal funds and it is available to other states free of charge.

The USDA only reports direct fraud and trafficking in benefits, which was officially estimated at $858 million in 2012. The Cato Institute reports that there was another $2.2 billion in erroneous payouts in 2009.[citation needed] Cato also reported that the erroneous payout rate dropped significantly from 5.6 percent in 2007 to 3.8 percent in 2011.[citation needed]

Role of SNAP in healthy diets

Background[edit]

The 2008 Farm Bill authorized $20 million to be spent on pilot projects to determine whether incentives provided to SNAP recipients at the point-of-sale would increase the purchase of fruits, vegetables, or other healthful foods.[71] Fifteen states expressed interest in having the pilot program and, ultimately, five states submitted applications to be considered for HIP. Hampden County, Massachusetts was selected as the Healthy Incentives Pilot (HIP) site. HIP is designed to take place from August 2010 to April 2013 with the actual operation phase of the pilot program scheduled to last 15 months, from November 2011 to January 2013.[72]

HIP offers select SNAP recipients a 30% subsidy on produce, which is credited to the participant’s EBT card, for 15 months. 7,500 households will participate HIP and an equal number will not; the differences between the two groups will be analyzed to see the effects of the program.[73] Produce, under the HIP, is defined as fresh, frozen, canned, or dried fruits and vegetables that do not have any added sugar, salt, fat, or oil.

Administrative responsibility[edit]

The Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA) is the state agency responsible for SNAP. DTA has recruited retailers to take part in HIP and sell more produce, planned for the EBT system change with the state EBT vendor, and hired six new staff members dedicated to HIP. DTA has agreed to provide FNS with monthly reports, data collection and evaluation.

Proposals to restrict “junk food” or “luxury items”

Periodically, proposals have been raised to restrict SNAP benefits from being used to purchase various categories or types of food which have been criticized as “junk food” or “luxury items”. However, Congress and the Department of Agriculture have repeatedly rejected such proposals on both administrative burden and personal freedom grounds. The Food and Nutrition Service noted in 2007 that no federal standards exist to determine which foods should be considered “healthy” or not, that “vegetables, fruits, grain products, meat and meat alternatives account for nearly three-quarters of the money value of food used by food stamp households” and that “food stamp recipients are no more likely to consume soft drinks than are higher-income individuals, and are less likely to consume sweets and salty snacks.”[74] Thomas Farley and Russell Sykes argued that the USDA should reconsider the possibility of restricting “junk food” purchases with SNAP in order to encourage healthy eating, along with incentivizing the purchase of healthy items through a credit or rebate program that makes foods such as fresh vegetables and meats cheaper. They also noted that many urban food stores do a poor job of stocking healthy foods and instead favor high-profit processed items.[75]

See also

General:

References

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supplemental_Nutrition_Assistance_Program

Story 4: Obesity Expanding In America — Fat Ass Americans — Pandemic — Keeping America Fat — Promises Kept — Videos

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The Complete Skinny on Obesity

Adult Obesity Facts

Obesity is common, serious and costly

  • The prevalence of obesity was 39.8% and affected about 93.3 million of U.S. adults in 2015-2016. [Read CDC National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) data brief PDF-603KB]
  • Obesity-related conditions include heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer, some of the leading causes of preventable death. [Read guidelines]
  • The estimated annual medical cost of obesity in the U.S. was $147 billion in 2008 U.S. dollars; the medical cost for people who have obesity was $1,429 higher than those of normal weight. [Read paper]

Obesity affects some groups more than others

[Read CDC National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) data brief [PDF-603KB]]

  • Hispanics (47.0%) and non-Hispanic blacks (46.8%) had the highest age-adjusted prevalence of obesity, followed by non-Hispanic whites (37.9%) and non-Hispanic Asians (12.7%).
  • The prevalence of obesity was 35.7% among young adults age 20–39 years, 42.8% among middle-aged adults age 40-59 years, and 41.0% among older adults age 60 and over.

Obesity and socioeconomic status

[Read the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR)]

The association between obesity and income or educational level is complex and differs by sex, and race/ethnicity.

  • Overall, men and women with college degrees had lower obesity prevalence compared with those with less education.
  • By race/ethnicity, the same obesity and education pattern was seen among non-Hispanic white, non-Hispanic black, and Hispanic women, and also among non-Hispanic white men, although the differences were not all statistically significant. Although the difference was not statistically significant among non-Hispanic black men, obesity prevalence increased with educational attainment. Among non-Hispanic Asian women and men and Hispanic men there were no differences in obesity prevalence by education level.
  • Among men, obesity prevalence was lower in the lowest and highest income groups compared with the middle income group. This pattern was seen among non-Hispanic white and Hispanic men. Obesity prevalence was higher in the highest income group than in the lowest income group among non-Hispanic black men.
  • Among women, obesity prevalence was lower in the highest income group than in the middle and lowest income groups. This pattern was observed among non-Hispanic white, non-Hispanic Asian, and Hispanic women. Among non-Hispanic black women, there was no difference in obesity prevalence by income.

Top of Page

Related Links

  • Obesity Prevalence Maps
    State-specific data on adult obesity prevalence using self-reported information from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) shows that obesity prevalence remains high in the United States.

https://www.cdc.gov/obesity/data/adult.html

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Gary Taubes on How Big Government Made Us Fat

The Complete Skinny on Obesity

Sweet Revenge Turning the Tables on Processed Food (no vegetarian/vegan propaganda)

My Big Fat Body Full Documentary YouTube

The Weight of the Nation: Poverty and Obesity (HBO Docs)

The Weight of the Nation: Part 1 – Consequences (HBO Docs)

The Weight of the Nation: Part 2 – Choices (HBO Docs)

The Weight of the Nation: Part 3 – Children in Crisis (HBO Docs)

 

Our Fat Pets

Sixty percent of cats tip the scales at unhealthy weights, slightly more than the 56 percent of dogs. It’s not good for them.

Image
CreditiStock

By Susan Jenks

Like most cats, Max had a swagger in his walk. But because he was slightly overweight, the 15-year-old Maine coon began having trouble “jumping up on things,” his owner says, the extra pounds worsening his arthritis.

So his owner, Jaime Wilson, decided her pet needed to go on a diet — barely two tablespoons of dry food in the morning and again at night, along with a larger portion of canned wet food once a day and a supervised exercise program that included treadmill work and running through stationary poles.

“He was ravenous all the time,” his owner concedes. But after six months, “he’s very sleek and thin,” says Mrs. Wilson, who works at the University of Florida’s Small Animal Hospital in Gainesville, Fla. “Not having the extra pounds has been great for his joints.”

The Association for Pet Obesity Prevention estimates that in the United States, veterinarians now classify more than 100 million dogs and cats as overweight or obese, up from 80 million five years ago. Sixty percent of cats tip the scales at unhealthy weights, slightly more than the 56 percent of dogs.

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Worse yet, many pet owners fail to recognize the potential severity of the problem, finding their pets’ weight gain of little concern or even “cute,” says Dr. Justin Schmalberg, service chief of integrative medicine at the University of Florida’s College of Veterinary Medicine in Gainesville. And show animals, often held up as exemplary models, he says, sometimes tend toward the pudgy side.

“In part, it’s an issue of perception,” Dr. Schmalberg says. “Generally, the public is more tolerant of obese animals than they are of thin ones. There’s not as much stigma with animals being overweight as with people.”

Obesity and the inflammatory effects of excess fat can bring a host of health problems. Max’s six-month journey to a healthier weight reduced his risk for insulin-dependent diabetes, the most common health problem veterinarians see in overweight or obese cats. Overweight dogs rarely develop this form of diabetes, veterinarians say, though large breeds often face joint injuries from excess weight, while smaller ones can have breathing difficulties if airways collapse.

Along with diabetes and arthritis, extra heft puts pets at increased risk for liver and kidney diseases, high blood pressure, heart failure and even some cancers. And at least one widely cited study in Labrador retrievers found that even moderately overweight dogs have shorter life spans than their lean counterparts.

Veterinarians assess a pet’s overall body health using a system similar to the body mass index, or B.M.I., used in people. Emaciated dogs or cats get the lowest score on a nine-point scale, obese ones the highest, with a desirable weight usually in the four to five range, says Dr. Deborah Linder, head of Tufts University’s obesity clinic for animals in Boston. An animal at six is considered clinically overweight, with a score of seven or more, obese.

Veterinarians also complete a physical exam to assess obesity, feeling over the rib cage by the animal’s armpit, “where tissue should be no thicker than the back of your hand,” Dr. Linder says. Another sign of healthy girth, she says, is a tuck in the belly, similar to an “hourglass figure.”

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Although some pets are genetically vulnerable to unwanted pounds, others may have diseases like hyperthyroidism or Cushing’s disease, in which the adrenal glands pump out too much of a stress hormone, stimulating appetite. Once these conditions are ruled out, veterinarians say, aging itself poses an ongoing risk as metabolism slows — the pet version of middle-age spread.

Neutering or spaying also decreases an animal’s energy needs by a third, Dr. Schmalberg says, so “calories in, calories out,” takes on greater importance in maintaining a pet’s proper weight.

Researchers have recently identified another risk factor for pet obesity: rapid growth in early life, though the reasons for this remain poorly understood. “Dogs and cats that grow quickly are highly likely to become obese later in life,” says Dr. Alex German, a professor at the University of Liverpool in England.

But veterinarians single out overfeeding as the greatest contributor to pet obesity. Giving pets easy access to food around the house, or “free feeding,” can quickly add unwanted pounds, they say, as can an overindulgence in high-calorie treats. Throw small children into the household mix with “sneak feeding” and the situation becomes worse, says Dr. Sarah Nord, a staff veterinarian at Trupanion, a Seattle-based pet insurer. “It’s definitely not uncommon,” she says with a laugh.

Whether pets, like some owners, “stress eat” is difficult to measure. “In my experience, when animals are stressed, they tend to go off feeding,” Dr. Nord says. “But we don’t know.”

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/02/well/fat-pets-dog-cat-health.html

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The Pronk Pops 1046, March 19, 2018, Story 1: Obese Trump’s War on Opioids: U.S. Government’s War on Drugs Like War on Poverty Is A Failure — Obesity Is The Number One Killer of Americans — Government Obesity — Making Americans Healthy Again — Videos

Posted on March 19, 2018. Filed under: American History, Beef, Blogroll, Breaking News, Bribery, Bribes, Budgetary Policy, Business, Communications, Congress, Corruption, Countries, Crime, Culture, Currencies, Diets, Donald J. Trump, Donald Trump, Drugs, Economics, Education, Elections, Empires, Employment, Environment, Eugenics, Fiscal Policy, Food, Government, Government Spending, Health Care, Health Care Insurance, History, House of Representatives, Housing, Human, Illegal Drugs, Insurance, Investments, Law, Legal Drugs, Life, Media, Medicare, News, Nutrition, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Polls, Progressives, Raymond Thomas Pronk, Regulation, Scandals, Senate, Social Networking, Tax Policy, United States of America, War, Wealth, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

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The Pronk Pops 1046, March 19, 2018, Story 1: Obese Trump’s War on Opioids: U.S. Government’s War on Drugs Like War on Poverty Is A Failure — Obesity Is The Number One Killer of Americans — Government Obesity — Making Americans Healthy Again — Videos

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Listen To Pronk Pops Podcast or Download Shows 108-111

Listen To Pronk Pops Podcast or Download Shows 106-108

Listen To Pronk Pops Podcast or Download Sho