Atlanta has always been a major hub for this bullshit

60 arrested in Georgia in FBI-led child sex trafficking operation

http://www.ajc.com/news/crime–law/arrested-georgia-fbi-led-child-sex-trafficking-operation/KUH0ch0ixwmEe22tFBOE2K/

Steve Burns The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
3:15 p.m Wednesday, Oct. 18, 2017

The FBI arrested 60 people in Georgia in a recent child sex trafficking crackdown.

Nationally, 120 people were arrested in Operation Cross Country, the FBI said.

Four children were recovered in Georgia and 84 in the U.S.

Sixty people were arrested and four children were recovered in Georgia during an FBI-led operation that focused on child sex trafficking, the agency announced Wednesday morning.

Nationally, 120 suspected traffickers were arrested and 84 minors were recovered in the 11th run of Operation Cross Country from Thursday through Sunday, the FBI said in a news release.

“We at the FBI have no greater mission than to protect our nation’s children from harm. Unfortunately, the number of traffickers arrested — and the number of children recovered — reinforces why we need to continue to do this important work,” FBI Director Christopher Wray said in the release.
Finding 4 needles in a haystack: our work on carbon capture technology.

“This operation isn’t just about taking traffickers off the street. It’s about making sure we offer help and a way out to these young victims who find themselves caught in a vicious cycle of abuse.”

The youngest victim recovered during this year’s operation was 3 months old, and the average age of victims recovered was 15, according to the FBI.

Minors recovered during the operations are offered assistance from state protective services and the FBI.

RELATED: More than 1,000 arrested in sex trafficking sting
RELATED: Facebook posts about child sex trafficking can do more harm than good, experts say

FBI agents and task force officers staged operations on websites and street corners as well as in truck stops, hotels and casinos, according to the release.

“The many men and women of law enforcement working on this operation are keenly aware of the importance of recovering these vulnerable young victims,” said David J. LeValley, special agent in charge of the FBI’s Atlanta office. “I commend every one of them for their hard work and dedication in the recovery and the apprehension of those responsible for their exploitation.”

The National Center for Missing & Exploited Children worked with the FBI on the initiative, as did many metro Atlanta police departments.

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Georgia’s Supreme Court Fails Again

It never ceases to amaze me. How do Supreme Courts decide which petitions for certiorari they will grant?

Georgia’s Supreme Court this year, passed to Court of Appeals, almost all of the last kind of cases that you could directly appeal to Georgia Supreme Court. I have no idea what they do now. Sure, they still take death penalty cases, some criminal cases, but other than that, who knows what they do.

There was a Petition for Certiorari filed due to the fact that Judge Hunter in DeKalb County Superior Court, had ruled that service of process at the Courthouse was proper service. That only goes totally against all rulings ever since that law was put into place. The man, was at the Courthouse to testify, the process server came up to him, right outside of the courtroom where he was to testify. The process server threw the papers down at the man’s feet, laughed and said “Now Your Served!” and ran off. DeKalb County Superior Court’s Judge Hunter, said that that had been proper service.

In Georgia, like in most other states, when you are at the Courthouse, to give testimony, of any kind, you are 100% privileged from service. No if’s and’s or but’s.

Ga. Process And Service § 4:2
Georgia Process and Service with Forms
Database updated November 2015
Philip Weltner II
Part II. SERVICE
Chapter 4. Service In General
§ 4:2. Privilege from service
Even if a defendant is served with process in accordance with the mandated procedures, that service may nonetheless be invalid if the defendant is privileged from service. The Judiciary Act of 1799 stated that “all witnesses going to, attending on, and returning from any of the said courts, shall be free from arrest or any civil process.” While this provision is declaratory of the common law privilege, it is not exhaustive of all the exemptions from service recognized in this state.1
Any witness going to, attending, or returning from an appearance in court is privileged from service of process, even if he appeared voluntarily and not pursuant to a subpoena.2  The privilege applies to all aspects of the judicial proceeding.   Thus, a nonresident who is a party to a suit pending in another state and who comes into Georgia under stipulation of counsel solely for a deposition is immune from service.3
This privilege does not apply to a resident defendant in a criminal case.4  A nonresident criminal defendant, however, is immune from civil process in two situations. First, a nonresident who is in Georgia under extradition proceedings is not subject to service in a civil action until he is convicted or, if acquitted, given a reasonable opportunity to return to the state from which he was extradited.5 Second, a nonresident who voluntarily appears in a criminal proceeding in this state, and thus saves the state the expense, delay and uncertainty of an extradition hearing and thereby promotes the orderly, expeditious and unobstructed administration of justice, is given immunity.6
A nonresident witness does not waive his immunity by availing himself of the Georgia courts. The use of the courts does not constitute a waiver.7

1    Ewing v. Elliott, 51 Ga. App. 565, 181 S. E. 123 (1935).

2    O.C.G.A. § 24-13-1; Fidelity & Cas. Co. v. Everett, 97 Ga. 787, 25 S.E. 734 (1896).

3    Ewing v. Elliott, 51 Ga. App. 565, 181 S. E. 123 (1935).
Husband did not waive service of an ex parte family violence protective order when he appeared in court to answer petition, as he had not been served with a copy of the petition itself. Attempts to serve him in court and afterwards in the court parking lot were inadequate. Husband argued the long-standing rule that a suitor or witness in attendance upon the trial of any case in court is privileged from arrest under any civil process, and is exempted from the service of any writ or summons upon him or them while in attendance upon such court, or in going to or returning therefrom. See Steelman v. Fowler, 234 Ga. 706, 217 S.E.2d 285 (1975). The later judicially-created exception from this rule for nonresidents who are in the state temporarily for some purpose other than to appear in court as a party or witness does not apply here, even though Husband was a nonresident in the state to appear in court as a party, because the rule is intended to insulate a party in attendance from service in a new action, and although the action had previously proceeded ex parte, the action was new to Husband, who appeared solely to contest the initial service. Loiten v. Loiten, 288 Ga. App. 638, 655 S.E.2d 265 (2007).

4    Warren v. Hiers, 105 Ga. App. 202, 124 S. E. 2d 445 (1962). This rule had been based on the law that a defendant could not be a witness in his own case. Now, however, pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 17-7-28 (GCA § 27-405), a defendant can be sworn and testify in his own case just like any other witness. Accordingly, resident criminal defendants, even though they now may be sworn as witnesses in their own cases, are not immune from service of process while in court. Payton v. Green, 179 Ga. App. 438, 346 S. E. 2d 884 (1986).

5 Uniform Criminal Extradition Act, O.C.G.A. § 17-13-45 (GCA § 44-425).

6    White v. Henry, 232 Ga. 64, 205 S. E. 2d 206 (1974).
The term “nonresident” refers only to nonresidents of Georgia, not nonresidents of the county in which the trial of the criminal defendant is proceeding. Payton v. Green, 179 Ga. App. 438, 346 S. E. 2d 884 (1986).

7     Word v. Word, 236 Ga. 100, 222 S. E. 2d 382 (1976); Steelman v. Fowler, 234 Ga. 706, 217 S. E. 2d 285 (1975); Couture v. Couture, 242 Ga. 11, 247 S. E. 2d 751 (1978).

End of Document
© 2016 Thomson Reuters. No claim to original U.S. Government Works.

Homeowners losing money in legal snarls surrounding non-judicial foreclosures

Although this article is about Hawaii, Georgia too, is a non-judicial foreclosure state.  The state of Georgia has bent over backwards to see that the bank and their attorneys, who lie at every instance, never loses.  We have been aiding in the battle against “the Bank with the most homes in the end wins”.

Very interesting outlook in this article.

Homeowners losing money in legal snarls surrounding non-judicial foreclosures

A previous version of this story listed that an interview subject, Lynn Noffsinger had purchased his title insurance policy from Fidelity National Title Insurance Company. He actually bought his policy from First American Title Company Inc. It is the policy of West Hawaii Today to correct promptly any incorrect information.

KAILUA-KONA — Foreclosed properties bought at auction often afford buyers a chance at a lucrative deal.

But if you’ve purchased a property anywhere in Hawaii that’s been through a non-judicial foreclosure, you may have acquired considerably less than you bargained for — or potentially nothing at all.

That’s because of several class action and individual action lawsuits that have been filed across every county in the state. The lawsuits allege the banks that administered mass foreclosures during and after the 2008 housing crisis using the non-judicial foreclosure process — meaning without the supervision of the court — did so without following proper procedure.

If a judge rules that a lender didn’t follow the highly specific power of sale outlined in the mortgage contract and supplemented by Hawaii’s non-judicial foreclosure statute part 1, then the sale is void and the property is returned to its original owner.

Such a determination by a judge doesn’t necessarily leave the current title holder on the street absent compensation, particularly if he or she holds title insurance. But it does place on the title company the burden of reimbursing the current holder the monetary value of the property outlined in the title insurance policy.

Because the number of lawsuits challenging the legitimacy of non-judicial foreclosures conducted in Hawaii over the last several years has recently skyrocketed and yet continues to climb, title insurers are wary of insuring future sales of any property that’s gone through the process, whether it was bought firsthand from the bank or secondhand from a private citizen.

When they are willing to insure, it’s not necessarily at fair market value.

“If the sale is void, that means when the bank sold the property to the new owner, the new owner got nothing,” said James Bickerton, an Oahu attorney who to date has filed nearly 60 lawsuits against financial institutions contesting the legitimacy of their foreclosure procedures. “So there are dozens and dozens of people sitting on property they thought was good because they bought it from a bank. That’s where the title insurance comes in. Title insurance companies have to step up and take care of it.”

Losing value on non-judicial foreclosures

Gretchen Osgood, principal broker and owner of Hawaiian Isle Real Estate, found out about the amended policies of title companies the hard way earlier this year. Her husband, Randy, purchased a unit at Kona Mansions from Bank of New York in 2013, as well as title insurance from Fidelity National Title and Escrow. The property had been through a non-judicial foreclosure in 2008.

More than three years after Randy purchased the unit for $72,000 and spent more than $10,000 to upgrade it, Osgood said the property’s face value has risen to around $160,000. The long-term plan has been to sell the unit for profit after utilizing it for several years as a rental — a typical tactic of real estate investors.

But when examining the process of sale, Osgood discovered no title company would offer to insure the property for any future buyer for more than $69,000 — the same amount Randy received on the policy he purchased in 2013 and nearly $100,000 short of the unit’s current market value.

“The reason you buy title insurance is to validate the title as valid so you can resell it. That’s why you pay for title insurance, and that’s why lenders require you to buy them title insurance as well,” Osgood explained. “Now, we don’t have the ability to get title insurance re-issued for this property for the face value of what we would sell it at. No buyer in their right mind would buy a property unless you can get title insurance for it, otherwise you could end up with a property you can’t resell, as we have now.”

Osgood added they could sell the property for $69,000 and lose part of their investment along with their equity. So the unit is technically re-sellable, but not at a price anywhere near what it would command on the open market.

Suzanne Patterson, who works at Kona Resort Properties, said word has been circulating within the real estate community about the concern since this summer, when issues arose for several brokers across the industry almost simultaneously.

One couple in Kona was served a lawsuit as they left their home one afternoon with their daughter on the way to her wedding.

“We were aghast by the fact this even happened,” Patterson said. “It’s a bad situation. These are local people, not cash buyers, but people getting loans. They are real people.”

One real estate agent who requested anonymity said the circumstances surrounding non-judicial foreclosures and the inability to insure them have created a major public relations crisis for the industry, as both title insurers and real estate agents are concerned about how these developments will affect buyer perception of the market.

For people with substantial portions of their finances tied up in one or several of these properties, the situation could become dire, especially if any issues arise demanding a sale of property to create cash flow.

“Lots of people won’t care,” Osgood said. “But for some, it will be catastrophic.”

Comparing judicial, non-judicial foreclosures in Hawaii

The differences between judicial and non-judicial foreclosures are stark, starting with the presence of a court authority in the process.

“In a judicial foreclosure, you have judicial supervision of how the transaction or foreclosure is being conducted,” said Robert Triantos, administrative partner in the Kona Office of the law firm Carlsmith Ball. “In a non-judicial foreclosure, it’s just the attorney going out there, publishing in the newspaper, holding the auction, sometimes extending the dates, maybe following the letter of the law, maybe not.”

Non-judicial foreclosures are not permitted in every state but have always been a staple of the real estate industry in Hawaii, said Bruce Graham, an attorney at Ashford & Wriston in Honolulu who also teaches a transactional property/real estate class at University of Hawaii at Manoa’s William S. Richardson School of Law.

The process of non-judicial foreclosure, which Graham characterized as essentially a reversion to the foreclosure process of 17th century England, became popular in the immediate aftermath of the housing crisis as financial institutions were foreclosing on a massive scale.

“Non-judicial foreclosures were more expeditious and less expensive than judicial foreclosures,” said Stephen Whittaker, Big Island real estate attorney and broker.

Triantos explained, however, that is no longer the case. The law in Hawaii was changed approximately two years ago, he said, making the judicial method considerably less expensive. The development has spurred a migration back to the judicial process, especially considering the position of title companies.

Triantos added it’s been roughly a year since most title insurance companies decided it wasn’t worth the hassle or the financial risk to insure properties that have been through non-judicial foreclosures in Hawaii.

“The title insurance companies are essentially saying they are not going to go back and investigate whether everything was done correctly,” Triantos said. “They are making a business decision. Whether that renders (the properties) unsellable — it probably does. But I’m not going to say it’s the title insurance companies that have put the properties in those positions.”

The only recourse for those who’d like to sell is to scour the industry for a title company that might be willing to insure a sale, sell at a substantial markdown or simply sit on the property until the statute of limitations to challenge the title expires.

Bickerton said the applicable statute is the same as the one dealing with the recovery of a property someone is occupying. While that issue is currently under legal review, he said one judge has already agreed with him on his interpretation.

If Bickerton is correct, the applicable statue of limitations to contest title is 20 years.

The catalyst for change

The Honolulu law firm Bickerton Dang has been the most prominent filer of lawsuits contributing to the change in title company policy.

As of Monday, the firm had filed 51 individual actions against banks challenging the legitimacy of foreclosures, at least 15 of which originated on Hawaii Island. Bickerton’s firm is also behind seven class action suits naming Bank of America, U.S. Bank, Wells Fargo and Deutsche Bank as defendants.

The class action suits don’t directly involve title insurers, Bickerton said, as his clients in those cases are simply seeking damages against the banks.

The individual actions do involve title companies because the current owners of the properties are also named in the lawsuits, as the plaintiffs are asking for the return of their former properties.

Bickerton said that Fidelity National Title Insurance Company and First American Title Company Inc. are the most commonly named title institutions in his clients’ lawsuits.

He explained that title insurers haven’t done anything expressly wrong, but asserted the banks had no legal right to sell the foreclosed properties and title companies were an integral part of those sale processes.

Steve Gottheim, senior counsel for the American Land Title Association, explained Bickerton’s approach from a title company’s point of view.

“Plaintiffs’ attorneys try to basically name everybody they can possibly think of that has ever been connected to the mortgage in some way,” Gottheim said of lawsuits like those being headed by Bickerton’s firm. “The tactic from those attorneys is to name everyone and every company they can think of, make it as painful as possible, and see if any or all of them are willing to come to the table and pay the client(s) something to go away.”

How homeowners can be hurt at foreclosure auctions

The grounds for Bickerton’s filings are that lenders performed non-judicial foreclosures improperly, a claim that can be made for several reasons.

The most prominent reason, present in almost all 58 of Bickerton’s cases, is that lawyers enlisted by banks to handle foreclosures didn’t provide proper notice of the date and time of auctions.

When Bickerton’s clients granted power of sale to lenders in the initial contracts, the mortgages specified that if lenders reclaimed the properties by way of foreclosure, they were required to publish the date and time of auctions in general circulation news outlets in the counties where the auctions were to be held.

Bickerton said lawyers would regularly put up the initial notice, then postpone the auction and never republish the specific details.

He added a typical example involved an auction being slated for December. Then, at the auction, the bank’s lawyer announced the proceedings would be postponed until a later date but never published a circulated notice containing the new, pertinent information.

Bickerton said he is working on multiple cases where auctions were continued in that fashion as many as 12 or 13 times. He and his clients want to know why.

“The banks may have had other reasons, but it looks like it’s a possibility they were doing it to reduce the amount of buyer interest to (acquire the properties) for themselves,” Bickerton said. “You can see the temptation for the mortgagee to under-publicize a sale. They don’t have to let someone else get it if it’s a deal. Instead of selling it at a fire sale auction price, they can retail it and extract more value.”

Osgood explained that banks are allowed a credit up to the face value of what is still owed on the mortgage, plus penalties and interest for non-payment. That typically allows banks a credit large enough to claim the property at auction, particularly if they’re only bidding against themselves with what Osgood characterized as “monopoly money.”

This can create a problem for borrowers who defaulted because it tends to drive auction prices down. In judicial foreclosures, those which are overseen by a court of law, lenders can often seek a deficiency judgment if the amount the property sells for is less than the amount the bank is owed.

At first glance, that wouldn’t appear an issue for a non-judicial foreclosure, because generally the security, or the reclaimed property itself, satisfies the debt. Plus, there’s no legal entity to render a deficiency judgment because there was no court presiding over the process.

Even in such cases where there were no monetary consequences for a borrower due to an unfairly low auction price, the foreclosure may still be voided simply because proper protocol wasn’t observed, creating grounds for a lawsuit.

But Bickerton explained there tend to be actual monetary damages for many of his clients despite going through non-judicial foreclosures because they took out second mortgages on properties the initial lenders later reclaimed.

“I’ve got a lot of clients where the second mortgagee went after them for the deficiency because that lender is not getting paid,” Bickerton said. “The first bank is the only one that bid on the property because the auction date was not publicized. The bank bid what it was owed, acquired the property, and then the second bank says, ‘What about me?’ The junior bank then turns around and goes after borrower. They are allowed to do that because the debt hasn’t been paid.”

Bickerton said the notion that auctioneers must publish postponements as well as initial auction details is being challenged currently in the Hawaii Supreme Court based on a case argued last year. The seven class action lawsuits his firm has filed are on hold until that ruling is handed down.

More potential pitfalls

But there remain other methods lenders used that Bickerton claims didn’t fit the specifications outlined in both Hawaii law and the specific mortgages, so all individual actions his firm is handling are moving forward.

One such issue is providing sufficient notice of a foreclosure and the subsequent proceedings. The law states a physical notice must be posted on the property at least three weeks before its sale, and the language of the mortgage may require more notice and in a different form.

Bickerton mentioned one case on Hawaii Island he recently took up in which the final public notice was published on Nov. 2 for a Nov. 3 auction. Final publication notice is supposed to be published at least two weeks prior to the date of auction.

The physical notification of the borrower, which was supposed to be posted on the property three weeks prior to any auction, wasn’t posted there until Nov. 10, a week after the auction had concluded.

“That’s quite common, that sort of sloppiness,” Bickerton said. “Banks just treated people very, very poorly, not really recognizing that these are contractual powers that people have granted them that they have to honor. Banks need to step up and solve this problem they created.”

Another potential issue can be holding an auction for a property in a separate county from the one in which the property is located, because this can also produce the effect of driving down the price at auction.

Business strategy for the title companies

The alleged missteps of lenders during non-judicial foreclosures and the resulting lawsuits have combined to create hesitance on the part of title insurance companies to insure the resale of properties that have been through the process.

First and foremost, it’s a financial risk. Title insurers not only pay out claims if a title is successfully challenged by a former title holder, but also pay to represent the current title holder in legal proceedings.

“In title insurance, about 80 percent of your dollar is spent upfront so the title company can review the title, understand what some of the risks are and try to fix those risks before you even buy the property,” Gottheim, senior counsel for the American Land Title Association, said. “So only a smaller portion of the dollar is really available to cover claims.

“When you have the increased potential risk of somebody coming back and challenging the ownership of the home because of a foreclosure that there wasn’t a good view into, it can create some challenges on the pricing dynamic and the economics of that policy.”

Gottheim explained the better the title insurer’s understanding of the foreclosure process, the more effectively it will be able to represent a policy holder in any potential legal challenges.

Acquiring a good view into a foreclosure proceeding can be riskier and more difficult to accomplish if the process wasn’t overseen by the courts.

People who challenge title based on improper foreclosure proceedings rarely win their properties back, Gottheim said. But even if the title company never has to pay out a claim, just the process of defending title in court can be pricey.

“The easier it is for a title company to know what happened in that foreclosure, the easier it is to get lawsuit kicked out early at a lower cost,” Gottheim said. “The less we know about that process, the more expensive it becomes.”

The result of these risks, as Triantos explained, has been title companies making the business decision over the last year not to insure such properties — or not to do so at more than the value of the policies currently held, which may be substantially less than the properties would command on the open market.

But such practices may have existed even before the last year. While going through a purchase process for a condo at Kona Bali Kai six years ago, Lynn Noffsinger noticed something curious in the fine print on his First American title insurance policy. His agent at the time, Osgood, negotiated its removal from the contract.

“He was reviewing title policy offered to him during escrow. In the exclusions section, the company listed a foreclosure as an exclusion,” Osgood said. “It was in about eight-point type in the generic template part of the title policy. His diligence is how we discovered it.”

Marcus Ginnaty, media relations manager for First American, said his company “evaluates non-judicial foreclosures on a case-by-case basis in order to consider the unique circumstances of each foreclosure when considering whether or not to offer a title insurance policy.”

Fidelity representatives did not return a request for comment on their current title policies in regards to properties that have been subject to non-judicial foreclosures.

As for those who hold title to properties that have been through non-judicial foreclosures, and who wish to alleviate themselves of potential litigation as well as the anxiety surrounding whether their title may one day be contested, Gottheim explained they are simply in a tough spot with limited recourse.

“It can become a challenge. There’s not a lot of good options for them at that point,” he said. “If they’re not able to get title insurance up to the amount that would cover (the property’s) worth, a lot of times what becomes difficult is thinking about their next steps.”

Home Loans for Poor Leave Some Feeling Misled By Michael Kanell The Atlanta Journal-Constitution


Home Loans for Poor Leave Some Feeling Misled
By Michael Kanell
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
August 2, 2016

Al Butts and his wife thought they were becoming homeowners when, in 2011, they moved into their Decatur, Ga., residence.

“It sounded too good to be true, because it was such an achievement for me,” Butts said. “They said, ‘This is your house.’ ”

The too-good-to-be-true part could be right.

The Butts didn’t have a mortgage loan on the home but rather something called a “land contract,” a little-known form of lending marketed to people who can’t get regular financing.

People with a land contract put money down, make regular payments plus interest, and pay taxes and insurance. If they make payments all the way to the end of the contract, they will own the home. If they don’t they can be evicted and lose everything they put into it.

That’s what could happen to Butts and his wife, who this summer got an eviction threat after some late payments.

“It’s a 30-year contract. You could make payments every month and lose it in year 29,” said Kristin Tullos of Decatur Legal Aid, which is representing the couple as they try to stay in the home.

Georgia, like most states, does not regulate land contracts, which are also known as “contract for deed.” Critics generally do not argue that they are illegal. But they say companies offering them target credit-starved, minority neighborhoods and deceive consumers. The deals typically carry interest rates well above those for mortgages.

Fueled by housing crisis

The practice was fueled by the housing crisis, which put millions of homes on the market at huge discounts while also savaging consumers’ credit ratings.

No one has recent numbers, but 3.5 million people bought a home through a land contract in 2009, according to the U.S. Census. “Evidence suggests that land contracts are making a resurgence in the wake of the foreclosure crisis,” a recent report from the National Consumer Law Center said.

Equity firms and real estate companies bought thousands of depressed properties as investments, renting them until the market made a resale lucrative.

A small group of companies have added “contract for deed” deals as a profitable variation aimed at minorities, according to the group’s report.

Dallas-based Harbour Portfolio Advisors — the name on the Butts’ deed — is one of the largest with an estimated 6,700 properties in five states.

Calls from the AJC to Harbour over the past several weeks were not returned, but earlier this year, a lawyer for Harbour told the New York Times that the company’s business model is “to purchase unproductive residential properties and sell them to other people who will make them productive again.”

Local attorneys say there’s no indication Harbour set out to exploit minorities. But in choosing low-income, foreclosure-afflicted areas and appealing to people who cannot get traditional mortgages, Harbour ends up with a clientele that is largely black.

In metro Atlanta, Harbour had 94 properties, in Fulton, DeKalb, Cobb, Gwinnett, Clayton and Rockdale counties, the report said. “The common theme is that land contracts were being sold predominantly to borrowers of color.”

Shut out of mortgages

From the 1930s to 1950s, when blacks were shut out of many mortgage programs, land contracts were often the most common form of home-buying. But the contracts did not fulfill their promise then — and still don’t, the Law Center report concluded.

“Then, as now, homeownership through these deals was often a mirage, and buyers lost their homes, their down payments, their sweat equity, and the money they paid for repairs, maintenance, insurance, and interest,” the report said.

For depressed areas, the impact is not all bad — it puts people into houses that might otherwise be vacant, said Deirdre Oakley, sociology professor and housing expert at Georgia State University.

But for people who aspire to own a home, it isn’t a good deal due to the risk and interest charged, she said.

A big motive for buying a home is to build equity — to gain wealth as the property value rises. With a contract for deed, the consumer only gains if he or she completes the full payment schedule and becomes the owner.

“They are basically like renters but also paying interest and insurance and taxes and paying for repairs,” Oakley said. “You are giving them a chance to own a home, but you are not giving them much of a chance.”

For the deal to be at all fair, customers need to know exactly what they are getting into, said Svenja Gudell, chief economist at Zillow, a national real estate research firm.

“They target people who are less informed. They are often taken advantage of,” she said.

Al Butts doesn’t claim to be blameless, but he feels misled.

‘Flim-flam from the git-go’

“I told them right up front I was on a fixed income, and I have made up every payment I’ve been late on,” he said. “The way I think of it, it was a flim-flam from the git-go. It was like we were their cash-cow.”

Irene Cole and her husband thought they were buying an East Point home from Harbour in 2013 for $49,000. They put $1,500 down, agreed to a 9.9 interest rate on the rest and started paying $605.92 a month.

“We were told that the house was ours,” Cole said.

Their land contract was sold, however, and they dealt with a series of other companies. They had a disagreement with one about which bank account the company was taking money from — when it came from the wrong account, there wasn’t enough money.

Later, they missed some payments but say they weren’t sure who to send a check to.

Now, they’ve received notice that their house is scheduled for a foreclosure hearing. They are working with attorneys at Legal Aid to fight the foreclosure.

They first sought to refinance through Home Safe Georgia, a state program aimed at helping people avoid foreclosure.

“But when we went to Home Safe Georgia,” Cole said, “they said we can’t help you because you don’t own the property.”
© 2016 The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency

From Scientific American: Nuclear Reactor Approved in U.S. for First Time Since 1978


(Photo Courtesy of Southern Co.)
Sustainability
Nuclear Reactor Approved in U.S. for First Time Since 1978
http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/first-new-nuclear-reactor-in-us-since-1978-approved/
But no nuclear renaissance appears to be imminent, despite the go-ahead to build and operate two new reactors in Georgia
By David Biello on February 9, 2012 73
Years of shifting and smoothing Georgia red clay paid off today, as the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) voted to allow construction of two new nuclear reactors (pdf) at the Plant Vogtle nuclear power station near Augusta. Atlanta–based utility giant Southern Co. will soon have permission to complete construction and operate two AP1000 type nuclear reactors designed by Westinghouse.
But what were initially lauded as the first reactors of a nuclear renaissance when proposed are more likely to be the exceptions that prove the rule of no new nuclear construction in the U.S. Only this twin set of reactors in Georgia, another pair in South Carolina and the completion of an old reactor in Tennessee are likely to be built in the U.S. for at least the next decade. “We won’t build large numbers of new nuclear plants in the U.S. in the near term,” says Marvin Fertel, president of the Nuclear Energy Institute, a lobbying group for the nuclear industry.
The problem is twofold: electricity demand in the U.S. is not growing and natural gas, which can be burned to generate electricity, is cheap. As a result, utilities are building more natural gas–burning turbines rather than more expensive nuclear power plants.
“Today, you ought to build gas,” Fertel admits. But “you don’t want to build only gas.”
That may become even truer as old coal-fired power plants are forced to retire by new pollution rules and/or natural gas prices rebound. Given the long lead times required to gain permits and actually build a nuclear power plant, however, five new reactors may be as many as the U.S. will see erected during this decade. “If they are built, I suspect all of them are post-2020,” says Fertel of other reactor applications awaiting NRC review.
In fact, the only reason utilities in Georgia and South Carolina are building the new reactors is because the governments in those states have allowed them to pre-charge customers for their cost. Southern Co. is already charging customers $3.73 per month for the reactors’ construction, expected to cost roughly $14 billion, and may receive a more than $8-billion loan guarantee from the federal government. In the absence of a national government policy that puts a premium on electricity generation that results in fewer emissions of greenhouse gases, there is little incentive to build nuclear power plants in the U.S. “If we get back to the carbon discussion, that will have an effect on new plants that are built,” argues Bill Johnson, CEO of Progress Energy, one of the utilities filing for a construction license but with no plans to actually build a nuclear power plant in the near future. “Nuclear can’t compete today.
Other than the Watts Bar unit No. 2 in Tennessee, which will simply be the completion of a reactor that started construction in the 1970s, the four new plants will all employ a novel design—the AP1000. They will be the first to employ so-called passive safety features, or technology that kicks in with or without human intervention. In the case of the AP1000 that means cooling water sits above the reactor core and, in the event of a meltdown like the ones at Fukushima Daiichi, will flow via gravity into the core to cool it with the automatic opening of a heat-sensitive valve.
Furthermore, although the thick steel vessel containing the nuclear reactor is encased in a shell of 1.2-meter-thick concrete, that shell is itself surrounded by a building that is open to the sky. Should the concrete containment vessel begin to heat up during a meltdown, natural convection would pull cooling air inside.
The NRC initially rejected that open-air building for a lack of structural strength. The U.S. regulator argued that it would not withstand a severe shock such as an earthquake or airplane impact because it was initially planned to be built from prefabricated concrete and steel modules to save money.
The NRC approved a modified design (pdf) in December that employs more steel reinforcement, among other changes. Nevertheless, NRC Chairman Gregory Jaczko voted against approving the license for the two reactors at Vogtle today unless they incorporated a “binding obligation that these plants will have implemented the lessons learned from the Fukushima accident before they operate.” The commission also required more inspection and testing of the explosive-opened valves that would allow venting in case of an accident.
Already, the Shaw Group facility in Lake Charles, La., a nuclear equipment supplier, has begun churning out gear for the new nuclear power plants. A “mini skyscraper,” in the words of Westinghouse CEO Aris Candris, has been built at Vogtle to allow for final assembly of the modules that will reach the site by truck or rail. “Both sites are as ready as you can be,” he adds. “Rebar is sitting outside the hole ready to go.”
A global revival of interest in nuclear power technology remains underway, despite the April 2011 meltdowns at Fukushima Daiichi in Japan. China is already building four AP1000s and more than 20 other reactors currently—and many other countries are considering new plant construction, from the Czech Republic to India.
But in the U.S., even just to maintain the current fleet of 104 reactors, which provide 20 percent of the nation’s electricity supply, would require building as many replacement reactors by 2030. In fact, nuclear power production may shrink in the U.S. before it grows. Aging reactors, even with life extensions of another two decades, will begin to drop off the grid in coming years. “Twenty years is the blink of an eye for 100 gigawatts. The time is now to begin to deploy new nuclear,” says David Christian, CEO of Virginia-based utility Dominion Generation, although his company has no plans to do so before the end of the decade. “We’re in danger of missing that window.”

The epitomy of stupidity and embaressment for Georgians who know better. Plus, we have to help pay for it. They call it investment! I don’t invest in my own death. How fucking stupid are these people? Every nuke plant in this country is failing, or will soon be. The life has expired, and all ours’ with it. Mankind will be extinct.

Amazing What You Can Dig Up On the Web. The web.archive.org website has some really cool stuff to read!

Pages tagged “georgia”

https://web.archive.org/web/20150220025509/http://www.stateintegrity.org/tags/georgia?page=2

Opinion: Ethics enforcement is not a partisan issue
POSTED ON STATE INTEGRITY IN THE NEWS · MAY 02, 2012 10:06 AM

State integrity news for Georgia, from the Atlanta Journal Constitution:

On Wednesday, the Senate Rules Committee will meet to consider evidence that state Sen. Don Balfour, Republican chairman of the Senate Rules Committee and one of the most powerful people in the Legislature, has also filed repeated false claims for travel reimbursements and committee-related pay.

Ethics reform and ethics enforcement is not and should not be a partisan issue. And while neither party is immune, it is the party that holds power that is more likely to be seduced and tempted, and also more likely to feel more or less immune by virtue of the authority that they wield.

Read the rest of the story at the Atlanta Journal Constitution.
——————————————————————
Georgia Gov. Deal signs new open records law
POSTED ON STATE INTEGRITY IN THE NEWS · APRIL 18, 2012 9:32 AM
State integrity news for Georgia, from the Athens Banner-Herald:

Gov. Nathan Deal on Tuesday signed into law a sweeping overhaul of the state’s open-records rules, touting the measure as among several legislative successes from this year’s General Assembly session.

The measure, which takes effect July 1, reduces the cost of obtaining public documents and stiffens penalties for illegally withholding public information. But it narrows the period of time when the public can scrutinize university president candidates.

Read the rest of the story at the Athens-Banner Herald.
————————————————————————
Georgia legislators got $867,000 worth of gifts from lobbyists
POSTED ON STATE INTEGRITY IN THE NEWS · APRIL 09, 2012 10:54 AM

State integrity news for Georgia, from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s analysis of lobbyist disclosures for the legislative session just ended finds that lobbyists spent $866,747 — the equivalent of $9,525 per day — on gifts for lawmakers from Jan. 1 through March 31.

This rain of meals, tickets, trips and golf outings fell even as a statewide coalition called the Georgia Alliance for Ethics Reform pressed lawmakers to limit lobbyists’ gifts to $100 per event.

Read the rest of the story at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
——————————————————————-
Georgia ethics bill “gutted” by legislature
POSTED ON STATE INTEGRITY IN THE NEWS · MARCH 29, 2012 10:18 AM


State integrity news for Georgia, from the Atlanta Journal Constitution:

When this newspaper noted last week that a new report judged Georgia to have the weakest anti-corruption laws in the nation, state Sen. Josh McKoon, R-Columbus, pushed out a photo of the front page headline via Twitter. On Tuesday, the Senate Rules Committee gutted a measure sponsored by McKoon that merely paired a few lawmakers with citizens interested in tougher ethics laws to form a study committee.

The civilians were stripped from the committee, and membership reshuffled to eliminate McKoon – a member of Common Cause at home.

Read the rest of the story at the Atlanta Journal Constitution.
———————————————————————–
Georgia Ranks Dead Last in State-by-State Ethics Study: The View from Both Sides
POSTED ON STATE INTEGRITY IN THE NEWS · MARCH 20, 2012 3:59 PM · 1 REACTION


State Integrity news from Georgia from WABE:

On March 19th, the Center for Public Integrity released a state-by-state ranking of ethics laws and enforcement. The report was a joint project of CPI, Public Radio International, and Global Integrity. WABE’s Denis O’Hayer got in-depth reviews of the report from both sides: Jim Walls, the Atlanta-based journalist who compiled the Georgia report, and Rick Thompson, a former executive secretary of the State Ethics Commission.

Hear the discussion from WABE – Atlanta.
——————————————————————-
Georgia ranks last in corruption prevention
POSTED ON STATE INTEGRITY IN THE NEWS · MARCH 19, 2012 9:41 PM


State integrity news for Georgia, from the Atlanta Journal Constitution:

A new report measuring states on the strength of their laws on public corruption and government openness ranks Georgia last in the nation, a grade state officials dismissed as a biased hit job.

Georgia scored at or near the bottom in a number of categories in the study, including conflict-of-interest laws for civil servants, enforcement of ethics rules and government procurement laws.

Read the rest of the story at the Atlanta Journal Constitution.
——————————————
Survey: Georgia last in U.S. ethics laws enforcement
POSTED ON STATE INTEGRITY IN THE NEWS · MARCH 19, 2012 2:10 PM · 1 REACTION
State Integrity news for Georgia from WABE:

Georgia ranks dead last in a major new state-by-state survey of ethics laws and enforcement. The State Integrity Investigation is a joint project of the Center for Public Integrity, Public Radio International, and Global Integrity.

The Georgia report was compiled by Jim Walls, a former editor of the Atlanta-Journal Constitution’s investigative team, who now writes his own blog, Atlanta Unfiltered. Walls sharply criticized the enforcement of the State’s ethics laws, including the 2010 measure written by Republican House Speaker David Ralston.

Hear more from WABE – Atlanta.
——————————————————–
Paying for accountability: Founding and funding a new ethics commission in Georgia
POSTED ON STATE INTEGRITY BLOG · FEBRUARY 08, 2012 3:02 PM
In 2011, the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission assessed $7 million worth of fines for campaign finance violations. But because the commission, formerly known as the Georgia State Ethics Commission, couldn’t afford to send out notices by certified mail, fines against politicians, officials, and parties were cut to a total of around $1 million.

The inability of the commission to pay for a service essential to its duties is, to Georgia Senator Doug Stoner (D-Smyrna), indicative of a larger issue. The disgust was obvious in Stoner’s voice as he explained how the state of Georgia gave up $6 million in revenue. “The fact that the ethics commission could not send out certified mail should tell you that we have a problem,” Stoner said.

In response, Stoner is proposing an overhaul package that would mean a dramatic upgrade in how the state polices its political spending.
——————————————————————–
Read more
Georgia bill would reward government whistleblowers
POSTED ON STATE INTEGRITY IN THE NEWS · FEBRUARY 01, 2012 11:22 AM
Corruption news for Georgia, from the Atlanta Journal Constitution:

The Most Intriguing Bill of the Day award goes to HB 822, a hand-crafted, bipartisan bill that would give informers a financial incentive to rat out government fraud, whether in the state Medicaid program or in your local city hall.

Penalties would be “a civil penalty of not less than $5,500 and not more than $11,000 for each false statement or fraudulent claim, plus three times the amount of damages which the state or local government sustains.” Plus attorney fees. A private citizen – presumably not part of the fraud — can file an action, and if successful would “receive at least 15 percent but not more than 25 percent of the proceeds of the civil action or settlement of the claim.”

Read the rest of the story at the Atlanta Journal Constitution.
———————————————————–
Georgia judge Amanda Williams resigns to avoid ethics charges

POSTED ON STATE INTEGRITY IN THE NEWS · DECEMBER 20, 2011 2:09 PM
Corruption news for Georgia, from This American Life:

Judge Amanda Williams, who was the subject of our episode “Very Tough Love” has announced that she’ll resign from the bench as of January 2nd. Because she’s stepping down, ethics charges brought against her by the state’s Judicial Qualifications Commission will be dropped.

Earlier this month, the Commission added two charges to the original 12 counts it filed in November. One of those counts accused Judge Williams (pictured, right) of allowing her lawyer in the case, John Ossick, to represent litigants in cases she was still presiding over from the bench. The other accused her of putting a man into drug court even though there were no drug charges against him, because he was the nephew of attorney Jim Bishop.

Read the rest of the story at This American Life.
————————————————————

Atlanta Attorneys Are On a Roll For Disciplinary Action, Bout Time Some Get Caught Up in Their Crimes!

Two Lawyers Hit With Default Judgment in Suits by Clients

Greg Land, Daily Report

Robert Thompson JR Vert 201412121516
Atlanta Attorney Robert Thompson Jr.
John Disney/Staff

Two Georgia attorneys—both under suspension by the State Bar of Georgia—have defaulted on a 2013 suit filed by a Douglas County couple who say they paid the lawyers thousands of dollars to forestall foreclosure proceedings only to lose their home when neither lawyer performed any services.

One of the defendants is attorney Robert Thompson Jr., who was suspended earlier this year after failing to respond to an ongoing investigation by the bar’s disciplinary committee. Thompson also was arrested in February and charged with misappropriating $37,440 of a client’s funds; his then-attorney told the Daily Report he had paid back more than $30,000 of the money.

A criminal charge of theft by conversion is pending against Thompson in Fulton County Superior Court. The phone number for his firm, the Thompson Law Group, has been disconnected.

The other attorney, Rodd Walton, has no disciplinary record with the bar but is under suspension for nonpayment of dues. Walton was arrested in 2009 when he attempted to enter the Cobb County Courthouse with a loaded handgun on the day he was to attend a hearing concerning a motion for reconsideration after being ordered to pay a former client $43,000 in restitution and attorney fees.

When his 2009 arrest was reported in this newspaper, a website for Walton’s Legacy Law Group said he was a former deputy counsel for Glock Inc., the maker of the gun he was carrying when he was arrested. On Thursday there was no immediate response to a message left on Legacy’s phone system, and no email is listed for Walton with the bar.

In the Fulton County suit, Michael and Cindy Bentley’s pro se complaint said they fell behind on their mortgage and in October 2011 paid Walton $3,000 to fight foreclosure proceedings. Walton “did absolutely nothing” on their behalf, it said, and when they requested information on their case he demanded another $3,500.

The Bentleys refused and demanded their $3,000 back. Walton first agreed, then told them he would refund nothing, it said.

In March 2012, they retained Thompson for $5,750. He “did nothing for a full year,” then demanded $500 to file a complaint. Thompson filed the complaint but failed to respond to the mortgage bank’s motion to dismiss or to inform the Bentleys that it had been filed, according to their complaint.

The bank’s motion went unanswered, and the court granted it by default. The Bentleys’ house was foreclosed.

Neither lawyer responded to the Bentleys’ suit, and they too moved for a default judgment. According to an order entered Thursday by State Court Judge Patsy Porter, Thompson appeared at an Oct. 15 hearing on the default motion and said that he had filed an answer with the clerk but that it had not been uploaded to the court’s e-filing system.

Porter instructed Thompson to upload a copy of his answer, but he failed to do so, she wrote.

Flights of Ebola Patients Coming Into US, Kept Secret From Citizens!

Weekly there are numerous flights, using two different aircraft, secretly bringing Ebola patients into US. In fact, I set it up so that I get an email alert, every time a flight path has been recorded. You would be amazed at how many flights these two planes have made. The planes come from Georgia, and go out numerous times each week. It never makes the news.

I guess that if you have a patent on both Ebola, as well as the “vaccine”, you have to ensure that you get enough Ebola to make the patents worth your while. It is absolutely ludicrous! You won’t hear about it on the local news, the national news, or much of any news… But, some of us are watching, recording, making notes.

11/17/2014:
N163PA (GLF3) has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Fulton County (KFTY) at 10:15PM EST Monday heading for Cartersville (KVPC) for an estimated arrival at 10:33PM EST.
For more information visit http://flightaware.com/live/flight/N163PA

11/18/2014:
N163PA (GLF3) has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Cartersville (KVPC) at 05:00AM EST Wednesday heading for Opa-locka Executive (KOPF) for an estimated arrival at 06:45AM EST.
Expected route: J89 OTK SSCOT2

N163PA (GLF3) has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Opa-locka Executive (KOPF) at 08:50AM EST Wednesday heading for Chicago Midway Intl (KMDW) for an estimated arrival at 10:46AM CST.
Expected route: J53 J53 CRG J53 J53 IRQ J99 IIU OKK FISSK3

N163PA has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Chicago Midway Intl (KMDW) at 12:45PM CST Tuesday heading for Opa-locka Executive (KOPF) for an estimated arrival at 06:03PM EST.
Expected route: PXV J73 SZW SSCOT2

11/19/2014:
N163PA (GLF3) has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Opa-locka Executive (KOPF) at 04:15PM EST Wednesday heading for Cartersville (KVPC) for an estimated arrival at 05:55PM EST.
Expected route: WINCO J73 LAL OTK

11/24/2014:
N163PA has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Cartersville (KVPC) at 05:15PM EST Monday heading for Tucson Intl (KTUS) for an estimated arrival at 07:02PM MST.
Expected route: RMG J66 LIT J6 ABQ J18 SJN

11/27/2014:
N163PA (GLF3) has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Incheon Int’l (RKSI/ICN) at 08:00AM KST Friday heading for Adak (PADK) for an estimated arrival at 06:46PM HAST.
Expected route: EGOB1L G597 Y51 Y142 GTC R217 A590 R451 ADK PADK

N163PA (GLF3) has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Adak (PADK) at 07:15PM HAST Thursday heading for Anchorage Intl (PANC) for an estimated arrival at 10:48PM AKST.
Expected route: DUT J115 AKN Q47 AMOTT8

N163PA (GLF3) has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Anchorage Intl (PANC) at 11:30PM AKST Thursday heading for Cartersville (KVPC) for an estimated arrival at 09:56AM EST.
Expected route: ANC6 TED J501 YAK YYD J569 GTF J204 DPR J16 FSD Q19 J45 BNA RMG

12/04/2014:
N173PA (GLF3) has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Bermuda Int’l (TXKF/BDA) at 01:15AM AST Friday heading for Dakar (GOOY/DKR) for an estimated arrival at 11:33AM GMT.
Expected route: 05000W 04000W R976 KILG3A

12/6/2014:
has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Washington Dulles Intl (KIAD) at 08:15PM EST Saturday heading for Cartersville (KVPC) for an estimated arrival at 09:41PM EST.
Expected route: DCA246 MOL J48 ODF AWSON2

12/9/2014:
N163PA has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Bermuda Int’l (TXKF/BDA) at 12:00AM AST Wednesday heading for Dakar (GOOY/DKR) for an estimated arrival at 10:14AM GMT.
Expected route: 05000W 04000W R976 KILG3A GOOY

12/10/2014:
N163PA has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Cartersville (KVPC) at 04:00PM EST Wednesday heading for Bermuda Int’l (TXKF/BDA) for an estimated arrival at 07:32PM AST.
Expected route: EATWO IRQ J4 CAE J47 CHS AR12 JAINS M326 LITTL M326

N163PA has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Bermuda Int’l (TXKF/BDA) at 08:05PM AST Wednesday heading for Dakar (GOOY/DKR) for an estimated arrival at 06:14AM GMT.
Expected route: WINGZ 05000W 04000W R976 KILG3A GOOY

12/11/2014:
N163PA has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Lajes Air Base Int. (LPLA/TER) at 04:00PM AZOT Friday heading for Washington Dulles Intl (KIAD) for an estimated arrival at 05:38PM EST.
Expected route: H123 VFL H131 04000W 05000W 06000W VITOL ACK J62 RBV HYPER5

N163PA has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Washington Dulles Intl (KIAD) at 06:45PM EST Thursday heading for Dekalb-Peachtree (KPDK) for an estimated arrival at 09:39PM EST.
Expected route: FLUKY DCA246 PAUKI MOL J48 ODF AWSON2

Washington Dulles Intl is experiencing arrival flight delays. The avergage delay is 00:25:00 This may affect your tracked flight.

12/12/2014:
N163PA (GLF3) has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Lajes Air Base Int. (LPLA/TER) at 12:19PM AZOT Friday heading for Washington Dulles Intl (KIAD) for an estimated arrival at 02:02PM EST.
Expected route: 06000W ACK J62 RBV HYPER5

N163PA has just filed a flight plan. It is scheduled to depart from Washington Dulles Intl (KIAD) at 06:45PM EST Friday heading for Dekalb-Peachtree (KPDK) for an estimated arrival at 08:11PM EST.
Expected route: FLUKY DCA246 PAUKI MOL J48 ODF AWSON2

Washington Dulles Intl is experiencing arrival flight delays. The average delay is 00:25:00 This may affect your tracked flight.
——————
And those are just the ones that I did not delete before I figured out what I wanted to do with these numerous flights, with Ebola patients being brought to the USA. Believe me, they don’t want you to know what they are doing. So they came up with the lame excuse, that it is violation of a person’s privacy rights, and they therefore had to quit reporting on Ebola period.

Think about, how many times, during the last couple of months, has the news media mentioned the number of Ebola patients that have died, or how many new cases there have been? Ebola, did not just rear its angry head, and go home to cry. Not by a long shot. There is an agenda. World depopulation, and you’d better awaken you inner monsters, cause I for one, don’t plan to disappeared by the govt! So awaken, and awaken the sleepers, the fight is inevitable, and we will not go down without a fight.

HAPPY LIFE - TAKE TWO

"Grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can and the Wisdom to know the difference"

Wolf Is My Soul

Odds and ends ~ My Life

THE GOVERNMENT RAG BLOG

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Truth2Freedom's Blog

Faith in Jesus Christ is our response to God's elective purpose in our life. These two truths--God's initiative and man's response--co-exist throughout the Bible. The gospel is "the message of truth" because truth is its predominant characteristic. Salvation was conceived by the God of truth (Ps. 31:5); purchased by the Son, who is the truth (John 14:6); and is applied by the Spirit of truth (John 16:13). To know it is to know the truth that sets men free (John 8:32). Believers are people of the truth (John 18:37), who worship God in spirit and in truth (John 4:24), and who obey the Word of truth (John 17:17). People have rejected, neglected, redefined, and opposed God’s truth for centuries. Some cynically deny that truth even exists or that it can be known by men (John 18:38). Others foolishly think that denying truth will somehow make it go away. Truth determines the validity of one's belief. Believing a lie doesn't make it true. Conversely, failing to believe the truth doesn't make it a lie. The gospel is true because Jesus is true, not simply because Christians believe in Him. His resurrection proved the truth of His claims and constitutes the objective basis of our faith (Rom. 1:4; 1 Pet. 1:3). Truth is our protection and strength (Eph. 6:14). Throughout history, people have tried everything imaginable to gain favor with God. Most turn to religion, but religion apart from Christ is merely a satanic counterfeit of the truth. At the heart of every false religion is the notion that man can come to God by any means he chooses--by meditating, doing good deeds, and so on. But Scripture says, "There is no other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12). That name is Jesus Christ, and we come to Him by confessing and repenting of our sin, trusting in His atoning death on the cross, and affirming His bodily resurrection from the grave (cf. Rom. 10:9-10). There is no other way to God. False religious leaders and teachers talk much about God’s love, but not His wrath and holiness; much about how deprived of good things people are, but not about their depravity; much about God’s universal fatherhood toward everyone, but not much about his unique fatherhood toward all who believe in His Son; much about what God wants to give to us, but nothing about the necessity of obedience to Him; much about health and happiness, but nothing about holiness and sacrifice. Their message is full of gaps, the greatest of which leaves out a biblical worldview of the saving gospel and replaces it with the worldview of postmodernism with its dominant ethical system of relativism. The Bible describes mankind in the end times: “always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (2 Tim. 3:7). Spiritual answers cannot be deduced by human reason alone (1 Cor. 2:14). It’s not that spiritual truth is irrational or illogical, but that human wisdom is defective, because it’s tainted by man’s sinfulness, and unable to perceive the things of God. That is why the Bible is so important. It gives us the answers we can’t find on our own. It is God’s Word to mankind. Scripture is divinely revealed truth that fills the vacuum of spiritual ignorance in all of us. Post-truth is the word of the year for 2016 and also the philosophy of the day, According to the dictionary, “post-truth” means, “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.” Simply put, we now live in a culture that seems to value experience and emotion more than truth. In a “post-truth” world, people make choices based on emotion and experience rather than objective fact. So in a post-truth world, truth is irrelevant. What exactly is a post-truth culture? It’s a culture where truth is no longer an objective reality. It has become subjective. It’s what’s true for me—my beliefs, my opinions, determine my truth. So in our post-truth culture, man determines truth. Man makes himself the ultimate authority. This starting point, which rejects God’s Word and the idea of moral absolutes, makes truth subjective. Truth will never go away no matter how hard one might wish. Christianity is grounded in objective truth. “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:32). Objective truth exists because we have God’s Word. In the Gospel of John, Jesus says, “Sanctify them by Your truth. Thy word is truth” (John 17:17), and Paul and James describe the Bible as “the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15; James 1:18). The Psalmist says, “The entirety of your word is truth” (Psalm 119:160). Jesus Himself said, “For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice” (John 18:37). When Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except by me” (John 14:6), He wasn’t expressing His personal belief or opinion. He was speaking the truth, a fundamental reality that doesn’t change from person to person. It doesn’t matter if our culture thinks all roads lead to God. The truth of the matter is “no one comes to the Father but by [Jesus].” This blogs goal is to, in some small way, put a plug in the broken dam of truth and save as many as possible from the consequences—temporal and eternal. "The further a society drifts from truth, the more it will hate those who speak it." - George Orwell

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Rules?? What Are rules? I don't need no stinking rules!!!

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Logical Quotes

Logical and Inspirational quotes

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riflemaniiijournal.wordpress.com/

"A nation of sheep, begets a government of wolves."

Citizens, not serfs

Re-feudalisation of Western democracies

HAPPY LIFE - TAKE TWO

"Grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change, Courage to change the things I can and the Wisdom to know the difference"

Wolf Is My Soul

Odds and ends ~ My Life

THE GOVERNMENT RAG BLOG

TGR Intelligence Briefing | Sign up for newsletter to receive notifications | Visit us at http://thegovernmentrag.com

Brittius

Honor America

Ace News Services

" This is our daily news that we feel is important & we want to tell people about the truth behind the story "

Sentient Christian

AV_1611 Bible Only. Exposing The Whore of Babylon. Revelation 17 KJV contact@sentientchristian.com

Truth2Freedom's Blog

Faith in Jesus Christ is our response to God's elective purpose in our life. These two truths--God's initiative and man's response--co-exist throughout the Bible. The gospel is "the message of truth" because truth is its predominant characteristic. Salvation was conceived by the God of truth (Ps. 31:5); purchased by the Son, who is the truth (John 14:6); and is applied by the Spirit of truth (John 16:13). To know it is to know the truth that sets men free (John 8:32). Believers are people of the truth (John 18:37), who worship God in spirit and in truth (John 4:24), and who obey the Word of truth (John 17:17). People have rejected, neglected, redefined, and opposed God’s truth for centuries. Some cynically deny that truth even exists or that it can be known by men (John 18:38). Others foolishly think that denying truth will somehow make it go away. Truth determines the validity of one's belief. Believing a lie doesn't make it true. Conversely, failing to believe the truth doesn't make it a lie. The gospel is true because Jesus is true, not simply because Christians believe in Him. His resurrection proved the truth of His claims and constitutes the objective basis of our faith (Rom. 1:4; 1 Pet. 1:3). Truth is our protection and strength (Eph. 6:14). Throughout history, people have tried everything imaginable to gain favor with God. Most turn to religion, but religion apart from Christ is merely a satanic counterfeit of the truth. At the heart of every false religion is the notion that man can come to God by any means he chooses--by meditating, doing good deeds, and so on. But Scripture says, "There is no other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12). That name is Jesus Christ, and we come to Him by confessing and repenting of our sin, trusting in His atoning death on the cross, and affirming His bodily resurrection from the grave (cf. Rom. 10:9-10). There is no other way to God. False religious leaders and teachers talk much about God’s love, but not His wrath and holiness; much about how deprived of good things people are, but not about their depravity; much about God’s universal fatherhood toward everyone, but not much about his unique fatherhood toward all who believe in His Son; much about what God wants to give to us, but nothing about the necessity of obedience to Him; much about health and happiness, but nothing about holiness and sacrifice. Their message is full of gaps, the greatest of which leaves out a biblical worldview of the saving gospel and replaces it with the worldview of postmodernism with its dominant ethical system of relativism. The Bible describes mankind in the end times: “always learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth” (2 Tim. 3:7). Spiritual answers cannot be deduced by human reason alone (1 Cor. 2:14). It’s not that spiritual truth is irrational or illogical, but that human wisdom is defective, because it’s tainted by man’s sinfulness, and unable to perceive the things of God. That is why the Bible is so important. It gives us the answers we can’t find on our own. It is God’s Word to mankind. Scripture is divinely revealed truth that fills the vacuum of spiritual ignorance in all of us. Post-truth is the word of the year for 2016 and also the philosophy of the day, According to the dictionary, “post-truth” means, “relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.” Simply put, we now live in a culture that seems to value experience and emotion more than truth. In a “post-truth” world, people make choices based on emotion and experience rather than objective fact. So in a post-truth world, truth is irrelevant. What exactly is a post-truth culture? It’s a culture where truth is no longer an objective reality. It has become subjective. It’s what’s true for me—my beliefs, my opinions, determine my truth. So in our post-truth culture, man determines truth. Man makes himself the ultimate authority. This starting point, which rejects God’s Word and the idea of moral absolutes, makes truth subjective. Truth will never go away no matter how hard one might wish. Christianity is grounded in objective truth. “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:32). Objective truth exists because we have God’s Word. In the Gospel of John, Jesus says, “Sanctify them by Your truth. Thy word is truth” (John 17:17), and Paul and James describe the Bible as “the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15; James 1:18). The Psalmist says, “The entirety of your word is truth” (Psalm 119:160). Jesus Himself said, “For this cause I was born, and for this cause I have come into the world, that I should bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice” (John 18:37). When Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except by me” (John 14:6), He wasn’t expressing His personal belief or opinion. He was speaking the truth, a fundamental reality that doesn’t change from person to person. It doesn’t matter if our culture thinks all roads lead to God. The truth of the matter is “no one comes to the Father but by [Jesus].” This blogs goal is to, in some small way, put a plug in the broken dam of truth and save as many as possible from the consequences—temporal and eternal. "The further a society drifts from truth, the more it will hate those who speak it." - George Orwell

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