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Samsung has added a new entry to its growing catalog of smartwatches with the debut of its Gear S. The Mega Millions jackpot for February 26 is $125 million — match all five white balls and the red Mega Ball and you will be celebrating your windfall all weekend. If there is no winner tonight, lottery players can expect to see the Mega Millions jackpot to increase to at least $135 million for the next drawing on Tuesday, March 1. That's considered the "annuitized amount." In other words, you would have to get your money paid out over time via a 30-year annuity. Uncle Sam will take 25 percent for federal taxes ($20,375,000) and, if you live in a state that taxes lottery winnings, a percentage will be withheld based on your state's tax. Apple maintains a tight ship and has strict policies on what apps are allowed to do, but sometimes a few slip through the cracks. Unlike its previous smartwatches, however, this one packs its own 3G data connection, which means it doesn’t have to be tied to your smartphone at all times. I had just written a piece that attempted to scrutinize how the American public could stand idly by while heavily armed mercenary thugs viciously crushed the Occupy encampments across the country in a Department of Homeland Security coordinated attack at the behest of the ruling oligarchy. Watch the drawing live on WRAL or get instant results on your iPhone or Android mobile device by downloading the free LotteryHub app. That equates to 30 annual payments of approximately $4,166,667 each before federal and state taxes. Your cash payout will likely be in the high to mid-50 million dollar range if you have to pay state tax.
Comfortably Numb made a case that the political and economic systems of the United States have been captured by a few evil men and they use their wealth and power to control the message hammered into the psyches of an apathetic, distracted, vincibly ignorant public.
I started to tackle the question of why Americans could stand by as the new Greatest Generation was being abandoned, derided, scorned, beaten, tear gassed, and arrested for having the courage and audacity to stand up to a powerful corrupt unholy alliance between Wall Street psychopaths, corporate fascist barbarians, and Washington DC power hungry jackals.
But I became overwhelmed with a feeling of disillusionment and hopelessness and was unable to write anything for about a month.
I found myself questioning whether it was worth fighting such a powerful foe after seeing how easily they crushed the opposition put forth by OWS. Day by day we draw ever closer to a showdown with the traitors who have sold this country into debt slavery. I had been trying to wrap my head around what happened with the Occupy Movement since the Department of Homeland Security coordinated destruction of most of the encampments around the country in November. The corporate mainstream media immediately moved onto more pressing issues like the Kim Kardashian divorce and Jessica Simpson’s weight gain.
The American public has been instructed by the media the Occupy story is history, just like the BP oil spill, the Fukushima nuclear meltdown, and the Egyptian revolution.
The credulous American populace dutifully turned their attention to Black Friday and whipping out one of their 15 credit cards to purchase remote control pillows, 3D 72 inch HDTVs, a see through tank top from the Snooki line of slutware, or thousands of other ludicrous Chinese crap churned out by slave labor in factories built to support the “efficiency” efforts of U.S. Unless you have been sitting in line at a Wal-Mart for the last two months to get a $3 waffle-maker, you saw young people across the country tear gassed, shot with rubber bullets, maced, bludgeoned, and brutalized by the paid thugs of the ruling oligarchy on a daily basis. The outrage at the continued looting by the psychopathic Wall Street aristocracy and the horrific police brutality against young people exercising their Constitutional right to free speech and assembly should have ignited widespread anger and mass protest.
They include economic self interest, the power of propaganda to condition the masses, fear of opposing authority, and the perception of a reality that allows you to sleep at night. The Upton Sinclair quote above hit home for me a few weeks ago and explains much of the disdain for the Occupy movement. I was in a high level meeting at my University and during the course of the meeting the Occupy Movement was brought up. The person who made the comment has spent his entire life educating students who end up with jobs at Wall Street financial institutions and with America’s largest corporations.
It is a natural response for someone whose whole life is reliant upon the existing financial system to psychologically overlook the obvious criminality of the Wall Street fat cats and corporate executives who validate his entire existence and life’s work.
He chooses to not understand the message of these protestors because to truthfully comprehend their message would nullify his thirty years of academic efforts. My non-response to the comment about the Occupy Movement was also based upon self-interest and reliance on a paycheck to make a living.

I had learned my lesson the hard way during a previous career stop.It appears older generations have a considerably more negative view of young people protesting the capture of our political and economic system than younger generations. This also makes sense because they have the most to lose and cannot visualize a society other than the one they have created. To acknowledge the validity of the Occupy Movement and the justice of their positions would be to admit their own guilt in the creation of a society that has allowed a chosen few to enrich themselves at the expense of the many. Instead of making a budgetary choice between guns and butter, the Boomers chose guns, butter, education, universal healthcare, the right to own a home, the right to a 72 inch HDTV, and zero percent financing on their Cadillac Escalade from government motors. His ground breaking work with William Strauss on generational theory has proven to be uncannily accurate, as their 1997 assessment of what dynamics would drive the course of history over the coming decades have materialized exactly as they presumed.
We had a fascinating two hour discussion about various topics impacting the world today and I found that we were in agreement on just about everything, except for the Occupy protests.
I expected him to be impressed by the courage and fortitude of the Millenials leading this protest against Wall Street gluttony and audacious criminality.
This is the new GI Generation and I anticipated him perceiving these protests as a prelude to greater feats ahead by this generation. Instead he described them as naive adolescents being led down a phony path by anarchist Boomers. As an example he referenced the fact that many of the protestors were wearing Guy Fawkes masks, the most famous anarchist in history. My interpretation of the Guy Fawkes masks was more in line with the movie V For Vendetta and the theme of a corrupt evil government keeping the public living in perpetual fear.“Because while the truncheon may be used in lieu of conversation, words will always retain their power. And where once you had the freedom to object, to think and speak as you saw fit, you now have censors and systems of surveillance coercing your conformity and soliciting your submission. Well certainly there are those more responsible than others, and they will be held accountable, but again truth be told, if you’re looking for the guilty, you need only look into a mirror.
There were a myriad of problems which conspired to corrupt your reason and rob you of your common sense. Fear got the best of you, and in your panic you turned to the now high chancellor, Adam Sutler. He promised you order, he promised you peace, and all he demanded in return was your silent, obedient consent.” – V For VendettaNeil Howe’s impression of the movie centered on the terroristic aspects of blowing up Parliament, not on the symbolism of citizens rising up and casting off the yoke of a malevolent oligarchy that has used propaganda, fear and intimidation to manipulate and control the population. We are each viewing the Occupy Movement through the prism of our life experiences and perceptions about the intentions of these protestors.
As a cynical Xer with no allegiance to a corrupt government, a crony capitalist economic system or a greedy self centered society, I see these young revolutionaries as our last great hope. He became so instrumental he was invited to accompany Wilson to the Paris peace conference. And all the crises and reforms (real reforms, too) so occupied the people that they did not see the slow motion underneath, of the whole process of government growing remoter and remoter.“To live in this process is absolutely not to be able to notice it—please try to believe me—unless one has a much greater degree of political awareness, acuity, than most of us had ever had occasion to develop.
Each step was so small, so inconsequential, so well explained or, on occasion, ‘regretted,’ that, unless one were detached from the whole process from the beginning, unless one understood what the whole thing was in principle, what all these ‘little measures’ that no ‘patriotic German’ could resent must someday lead to, one no more saw it developing from day to day than a farmer in his field sees the corn growing. One day it is over his head.”Bernays was a master of using psychological techniques to mask the motives of his clients, as part of a calculated strategy aimed at keeping the public unaware of the forces that were working to mold their psyches. Bernays died in 1995, but his techniques have been taken to a new level as our government, media and financial elite use any means at their disposal to keep the masses sedated and content while they are fleeced and herded towards the slaughterhouse. The Big Lie perpetrated upon the masses is the fallacy of America being a democratic society.
The anti-democratic and treacherous corporate public relations Madison Avenue maggots manage and manipulate the opinions of the many in order to make sure a true democratic system doesn’t threaten the privileges and supremacy of the governing elite.I wonder if it was coincidental the creation of the Federal Reserve, implementation of the personal income tax, and virtually non-stop war coincided with the rise of an industry designed to manipulate and control the thoughts and opinions of an easily influenced and willfully unaware populace. Critical thinking and taking personal responsibility for your life and your society requires hard work, sacrifice, honesty, and self restraint.
Simply believing storylines supplied by authority figures and media pundits allow the masses to continue living lives of debt delusion and hope, occasionally stirred into a frenzy of fear and loathing towards the foreign bogeyman of the moment, chosen by the governing elite. Convincing women they would look like a gorgeous model if they used a company’s cosmetics or convincing a man he’d be admired by his neighbors if he drove a certain car was small potatoes. In the last few decades the misinformation and outright lies fed to the American public by oligarchy of governing elite has become more manifest and repugnant. From the introduction of the show Lifestyles of the Rich & Famous in the early 1980s, wealth, materialism, and consumerism became the motivating force in America.
Consumption accounted for only 63% of GDP in 1980, with capital investment accounting for 17%.
Keeping up with the Kardashians is the mantra of our times.The utter failure of our government controlled educational system in teaching our children how to think critically or question the validity of government created data has allowed the elite to paper over the fact the average American worker has not had any real income gains in at least four decades. The insidious nature of Federal Reserve created inflation (up 600% since 1970) is incomprehensible to a public that finds math boring and not essential in their lives. Once the manipulators convinced the masses they needed a 4,000 sq ft McMansion, two brand new stylish cars, four big screen HDTVs, three computers, stainless steel appliances, granite countertops, a Rolex, Armani suits, an in-ground pool, an ATV, and house at the shore, there was only one thing left to do – loan them the money to live the faux American dream. It seems the purveyors of debt on Wall Street have been the only beneficiaries of the apparition of an American dream sold to a willingly duped American populace. The dream of home ownership was used by politicians of both parties to further their agendas, egged on by the Wall Street elite and the National Association of Realtors – two of the largest contributors to politicians.

As politicians tried to outdo themselves creating programs to get poor people into homes, Federal Reserve Chairman Greenspan urged the masses to use creative new adjustable rate mortgage products.
With a wink and nod from Greenspan and no fear of any regulation whatsoever, the Wall Street elite created liar loans, negative amortization loans, subprime loans, Alt-A loans and a myriad of other products to induce fraud in the housing market. Appraisers did their part by overstating the values of homes and Wall Street colluded with the rating agencies to package the toxic mortgages and sell them to clueless dupes around the globe with a AAA rating stamped on them.
At the absolute peak in 2005, with prices two standard deviations above the long term average, Ben Bernanke declared the housing market strong and the NAR proclaimed it the best time to buy.
As the coup de grace, Wall Street urged home owners to unlock that equity in their homes and borrow $3 trillion to spend on gadgets, home upgrades, automobiles, facelifts, new boobs, and exotic vacations.
Not only have the governing elite lured the masses into debt slavery, but they’ve convinced them to love their slavery. The governing elite have done a fantastic job of using their media mouthpieces to deflect criticism away from their pillaging and looting of the national wealth.
They’ve successfully persuaded the slaves the extreme income inequality is beneficial to the country because the 1% are the job creators and have earned their way to the top through our free market capitalism system.
Convincing the middle class to blame the poor for their three decade decline is a tribute to the effectiveness of their propaganda crusade.
Jesse gives accolades to the father of propaganda as the moneyed interests have won:“The moneyed interests have done quite a successful PR job in refocusing the national discussion on priorities involving social issues, and the reform of the support systems for the weak, the unfortunate, and the elderly. Turning one group against another, and objectifying your intended victims through slogans and stereotypes, has always been an effective method of bending the herd to your will. Score one for Edward Bernays.” The Social Security System is an example of propaganda and misinformation on a grand scale.
A modest (1% tax) insurance program designed to help widows and orphans during the Great Depression, which should have been treated much like term life insurance, morphed into a massive retirement plan at the behest of politicians over the last eight decades. Millions are now totally dependent upon the monthly pittance they receive, as the promise of a Social Security pension deterred them from saving for their old age. The truth is the politicians raided the lockbox and took every dime to spend on wars of choice, aid to dictators, paying off their corporate masters, and leaving only IOUs. It could be made viable with a gradual rise in the retirement age and a simple means test that would eliminate payouts to those who do not need it. Instead politicians use it as a means to control their constituents and obscure the simple truths. Americans choose to remain ignorant of the facts based on their perceptions of a false reality. Another storyline propagated by politicians of a liberal bent is that Medicare is a successful Federal government program.
Only someone from the governing elite would declare a program that is $90 trillion underfunded, racked by fraud and abuse totaling almost $100 billion per year, despised by doctors across the land for its insane bureaucracy, and allows corporate insurance, drug and hospital conglomerates to dictate the costs, a success. The entire government run sickcare industry is a scam designed to enrich the corporations that contribute to the campaigns of the politicians writing the rules and regulations. The pricing mechanism between doctor and patient is broken, with neither having any say in the decisions.With the unleashing of a torrent of inflation during the 1970s the governing elite needed to resort to obfuscation and manipulation of inflation figures to create the illusion of price stability and positive GDP, while screwing seniors citizens out of their Social Security benefits and convincing the middle class their annual 3% wage increases were getting them ahead in life.
The government drones at the BLS do the dirty work for their masters by reporting unemployment of 8.6% when the real level exceeds 20%, Great Depression levels. The corporate media just does the bidding of the corporate fascist state by unflinchingly reporting the bogus figures. Reporting the truth would be detrimental to the political and financial elites, so propaganda is rationalized as being beneficial to the country.
By conducting focus groups and testing words, master manipulators like Frank Lutz have been able to convince the masses to support repeal of the estate tax even though it does not affect 99.7% of American taxpayers. By renaming it a Death Tax, the public was convinced that this horrible abuse of the tax code should be repealed.
Their corporate media legions pound home the storyline of 50% of Americans not paying their fair share because they pay no Federal income tax. It sure sounds like these weasels must be doing something dishonest to avoid paying Federal taxes. What is not mentioned by the media mouthpieces is 50% of Americans make less than $25,000 per year. What is also conveniently forgotten is these people pay payroll taxes, local income taxes, state income taxes, real estate taxes, sales taxes, tolls and a multitude of other taxes, fees and charges to their utility, cable, and phone providers. In the real world, the total effective tax rate for someone making $50,000 per year exceeds the total effective tax rates of Mitt Romney, Lloyd Blankfein and Warren Buffett.

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