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  • The One Fascinating Statistic That May Explain Why TheBlaze TV Isn’t on Your Cable System…Yet
    Posted January 21, 2014 at 10:19 am by Erica Ritz

    Comments (229)

    If you are one of the roughly 24 million people who visit TheBlaze.com or enjoy programming on TheBlaze TV, you may be wondering why the network isn’t yet carried by many conventional cable networks.

    As part of its ongoing “Get TheBlaze” campaign, the network said Tuesday that while there are countless channels available, a mere nine television distributors control 91 percent of channel lineups. More than that, just six companies control roughly 80 percent of all the programming you see on television.

    Here is an image further explaining the situation:

    TheBlaze TV Explains How a Few Major Networks Control the Television Industry

    While it may seem like the consumer has countless more choices than in the past — when the only channels available for many were ABC, NBC and CBS — a handful of companies still control most of the major programming.

    And since those few companies already have such a strong grip on the industry, there is little incentive for them to make room for other networks.

    The only way to break through is for the voice of the consumer to be heard clearly and unequivocally.

    On Tuesday, a designated “day of action” in the “Get TheBlaze” campaign, the network is asking Americans nationwide to call, email and take to social media using the hashtag “#IWantTheBlaze,” asking their cable providers to carry the TheBlaze TV.

    “It’s all up to you,” Glenn Beck wrote in an open letter to the American people. “Many … are willing to let others decide which media companies are going to set the agenda in America. I’ve literally bet everything I have that you are not one of them.”

    “Please contact your TV provider today and tell them you want TheBlaze,” he added.

  • More Than 200 Million People Were Jobless in 2013, World Report Says
    Posted January 21, 2014 at 9:41 am by Becket Adams

    Comments (37)

    GENEVA (TheBlaze/AP) — The number of unemployed people around the world rose above 200 million last year as job opportunities failed to grow at the same pace as the global workforce, according to a new report from the International Labor Organization.

    More than 200 Million Jobless in 2013: U.N. Report

    A protester wears a T-shirt reading “public health care system” and “no to financial cuts” during a demonstration against the government’s plans to partially privatize the regional health care system in Madrid, Spain, Sunday, Jan. 19, 2014 (AP)

    The ILO said Monday that an estimated 201.8 million people were unemployed in 2013.

    This is up 5 million from the year before. The increases were seen mostly in the East Asia and South Asia regions, the report noted. These two regions were followed closely by Europe.

    “If current trends continue, global unemployment is set to worsen further, albeit gradually, reaching more than 215 million jobseekers by 2018,” the organization said. “The global unemployment rate would remain broadly constant during the next five years, at half a percentage point higher than before the crisis.”

    Further, the report claimed an additional 23 million workers became discouraged and stopped looking for work, dropping out of the labor market altogether.

    “The global labor market situation remains uneven and fragile.” Raymond Torres, director of the ILO Research Department, said of the report. “True, there are encouraging signs of economic recovery in those advanced economies most affected by the global financial crisis which erupted in 2008 … [but] the report finds that those economic improvements will not be sufficient to absorb the major labor market imbalances that built up in recent years.”

    The agency puts last year’s global unemployment rate at 6 percent, unchanged from 2012. It says it expects little improvement this year, projecting that the jobless rate will edge up to 6.1 percent and the number of unemployed will rise another 4.2 million.

    The United Nations said in a separate report that the “global employment situation remains dire.”

    The world economy had “subdued growth” of a mere 2.1 percent in 2013, the U.N. report claimed.

    Still, if it’s any consolation, the same report estimated a gain of 3 percent growth in 2014, which should push the world economy to 3.3 percent in 2015.

    Follow Becket Adams (@BecketAdams) on Twitter

  • Louie Gohmert: I Don’t Have Insurance Right Now Because of Obamacare
    Posted January 21, 2014 at 9:06 am by Madeleine Morgenstern

    Comments (126)

    Rep. Louie Gohmert says he’s dropped his health coverage because it’s too expensive under Obamacare.

    Louie Gohmert: I Dont Have Health Insurance Right Now Because of Obamacare

    AP

    “Other people are going to see what I did when I looked into health insurance for my wife and me: that the deductible rate, it doubled, about $3,000 to $6,000, and our policy was going to go from about $300 to about $1,500 a month,” the Texas Republican said in a local radio interview Sunday, The Dallas Morning News reported. “I actually don’t have insurance right now, so thank you very much, Obamacare.”

    Gohmert, an outspoken opponent of President Barack Obama’s signature health care law, told the Morning News he couldn’t afford to pay more than quadruple what he had been paying before.

    “I lost my health care. I liked it OK, but I didn’t get to keep it,” Gohmert said. “I couldn’t afford to go up four or five times what I was paying and double my deductible, and so I’m better off with just setting money aside for health care and paying the penalty.”

    But as the Morning News noted, Gohmert is eligible for a nearly $950 monthly subsidy as a member of Congress, which he and other lawmakers have previously denounced as special treatment and which Gohmert vowed not to accept.

    As the newspaper also reported, Gohmert is eligible for free outpatient care at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center as a U.S. representative, though pays full price for in-patient treatment. He can also receive routine exams and certain tests at the U.S. Capitol’s physician’s office for a flat yearly fee. His wife is not eligible.

  • Palestinian Foreign Minister: We Will ‘Never’ Accept Israel as the Jewish State
    Posted January 21, 2014 at 8:53 am by Sharona Schwartz

    Comments (164)

    The foreign minister for the Palestinian Authority says Palestinians will “never accept under any circumstances” the idea that Israel is a Jewish state, negating the 3,000 year Jewish connection with the Holy Land.

    Foreign Minister Riad Malki, in an interview with the London-based Arabic newspaper Asharq Al-Awsat characterized the Israeli government demand that the Palestinians recognize Israel as a Jewish state as the most intractable issue facing the current round of peace talks sponsored by Secretary of State John Kerry.

    Palestinian Foreign Minister: We Will ‘Never’ Accept Israel as the Jewish State

    Palestinian Authority Foreign Minister Riad Malki (File Photo: United Nations)

    “This is a sharply contentious issue. It would be dangerous to recognize this because this would mean our acceptance of the dissolution of our own history and ties and our historic right to Palestine,” Malki said.

    “This is something that we will never accept under any circumstances. Acceptance of this would also raise fears about the fate of the 1.8 million Palestinians living in Israel. They are already second-class citizens, so how will they be affected by the Judaization of the state? This also raises questions about the [Palestinian] refugees and the right of return. So this is something that we absolutely cannot accept,” he added.

    A key cornerstone of the Palestinian narrative, one accepted at face value in most diplomatic circles, is that they were present in the Holy Land before the Jews, and therefore have a greater moral right to the territory as part of a future independent state. Supporters of the Palestinian position often compare the Palestinians to “indigenous” peoples like Native Americans and call Israel a “colonizer.”

    The pro-Israel blogger Elder of Ziyon (EOZ) wrote of Malki’s interview, “Isn’t that interesting? The Palestinian position is that if there is any Jewish history in Israel, then Palestinian Arab history goes *poof*. So they must deny history in order to maintain their bogus claims!”

    EOZ frequently posts documents, newspaper clippings, stamps and coins to provide historical testimony about the continuous Jewish presence in the Holy Land over millennia.

    “Now, it is true – there is no particularly Palestinian Arab history to speak of before the 20th century. No one identified themselves as Palestinian, there was no particularly Palestinian cuisine or dress or culture (although some towns did have their own specific costumes and crafts.) But this answer betrays how flimsy Palestinian Arab ties to the land are (as a people),” EOZ wrote.

    “Imagine if a US official said that he or she could not recognize Native Americans as being their own peoples – because to do that would be to deny American history,” EOZ added in response to the Palestinian foreign minister’s comments.

    Palestinian Media Watch (PMW), which monitors the official Palestinian media, also addressed the zero sum game over land ownership.

    PMW wrote in a fact sheet, “Rewriting the history of the Land of Israel in order to deny Israel’s right to exist is central to Palestinian Authority (PA) policy. Long before it started the PA terror campaign (the “Intifada,” 2000-2005), the PA was fighting a history war – erasing Jewish history and replacing it with a fabricated Palestinian history.”

    “This rewriting has two central goals: 1- Erase the Jewish nation’s 3,000 year history in the Land of Israel; 2- Invent ancient Palestinian, Muslim and Arab histories in the land,” PMW added.

    Another revelation in Foreign Minister Malki’s interview hints that Kerry may also accept the narrative that the West Bank (Judea and Samaria) belongs to the Palestinians.

    “What we have explicitly and clearly heard from the Americans is that the territory of the West Bank will be returned to the Palestinians, as it was before, and the Palestinians will not receive less than this,” Malki said. “We will have the entire territory of the West Bank: that is the principle. As for how it will be implemented, we have yet to study this.”

    Despite the alleged American guarantee regarding the land handover, Malki remains deeply pessimistic about the outcome of the negotiations.

    “I cannot say that we have achieved any progress whatsoever,” he said.

    (H/T: Elder of Ziyon)

  • This Graph Speaks Volumes About Abstinence and Abortion
    Posted January 21, 2014 at 8:48 am by Billy Hallowell

    Comments (141)

    Research released this week from the conservative Family Research Council found that women who abstain from sex until the age of 20 and get pregnant are far less likely to ever have an abortion than those who are sexually active and get pregnant earlier in their teens.

    Released by the Family Research Council’s Marriage and Religion Research Institute, the research is based on data from the 2006-2010 National Survey of Family Growth, a U.S. government research initiative.

    The study found that only 6.2 percent of women who wait until they are 20 or older to have sex and get pregnant will ever have an abortion in their lifetime.

    Women who become sexually active at age 14, though, and get pregnant have a significantly higher chance of having an abortion sometime in their life, LifeNews.com reported. In fact, 37.9 percent of these women will have one or more abortions, the research found.

    The below chart shows how sexual activity at an early age relates to abortion:

    Study Finds Just How Big of an Impact Abstinence Has on Abortion Rates

    Image source: Family Research Council’s Marriage and Religion Research Institute

    Age is clearly a major factor when discussing who is having abortions.

    A summary from the Marriage and Religion Research Institute explains that “nearly 50 percent of first abortions are to those 20 years of age and younger, and 80 percent are to those 24 or younger.”

    Another metric examined in the study is the number of sexual partners a woman has had. While only 6.4 percent of women who have aborted have only had one male sexual partner in their lives, 89 percent of women who reported having one or more abortions had three or more sexual partners.

    Read the entire study here.

     

  • It’s a Mystery: Unusual Item Found in Dog’s Collar
    Posted January 21, 2014 at 8:27 am by Liz Klimas

    Comments (95)

    A dog now named Soldier sits at the Greenville County Pet Rescue in South Carolina. Though wearing a collar, Soldier didn’t have tags. He did, however, have an old photo.

    The photo tucked into the dog’s collar is black and white and wrinkled. It appears to show a man in an old-fashioned jump suit, the kind mechanics or military pilots might where. Fans of the shelter’s Facebook page have taken to speculating about the contents of the photo.

    soldier photo in collar

    This photo was found tucked inside this dog’s collar. (Image source: Greenville County Pet Rescue/Facebook)

    Some say it appears the man is holding a knife, while others say it might be a wrinkle or shadow on his jump suit. Some say it looks like he’s holding an animal, while others counter that he’s actually leaning along a fence with the part some think is the body of an animal really being the man’s leg propped on the railing.

    At this point, WFSB-TV reported that no further information has come out about the man in the photo since it was posted on the rescue’s Facebook page Saturday. The Greenville County Pet Rescue is now focused on finding the dog’s owner or a good home for the 2-year-old pit bull mix.

    The organization said the dog, which was brought in as a stray, is of a healthy weight and friendly with people.

  • Iran Moves Group of Warships to Atlantic Ocean
    Posted January 21, 2014 at 7:45 am by Sharona Schwartz

    Comments (141)

    Iran is moving a group of warships to the Atlantic Ocean for the first time in the country’s history, as its navy held a ceremony on Tuesday in honor of the launch, Iranian media are reporting.

    The semi-official Fars News Agency reported that Iranian Navy Deputy Commander Rear Admiral Seyed Mahmoud Moussavi told the sailors gathered in southern Iran that the flotilla bears a message of peace and friendship to the world and aims to demonstrate the Islamic Republic’s defensive power.

    Iran Moves Flotilla of Warships to Atlantic Ocean

    An Iranian warship takes part in a naval show in 2006. (Photo: AP)

    “The flotilla, which is the first dispatched to the Atlantic, but the 29th one dispatched to the international waters, consists of Khark logistic and helicopter-carrier warship and Sabalan destroyer. The warships should sail 25,000 nautical kilometers in the next three months,” Fars reported on Tuesday.

    The ships will also carry some 30 navy academy cadets in training, according to the Associated Press, which quoted Iranian television.

    The Iranian news service says that this is the first flotilla of warships heading to the Atlantic, though Iran has long expressed a desire to make its naval mark in the western hemisphere.

    Neither Fars nor Iranian TV said if the ships would be docking in any countries on the Atlantic shores.

    The AP noted that “Iran aims to demonstrate the ability to project its military power across the Middle East and beyond” and that the recent surge of Iranian naval missions is a response to the the U.S. naval deployment near Iran’s coast in the Persian Gulf.

    TheBlaze reported over the weekend about concerted efforts by Iran to improve ties with U.S. adversaries in Latin America including Cuba, Venezuela and Bolivia.

    In 2011, Iran raised the possibility of deploying warships close to the U.S. coast. The official IRNA news agency then quoted Iranian naval chief Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayyari saying, “Like the arrogant powers that are present near our marine borders, we will also have a powerful presence close to American marine borders.”

    Iran has previously deployed ships to the Gulf of Aden, the Mediterranean and through the Suez Canal.

    At the end of last year, Iranian commanders voiced the intention to deploy warships to the Atlantic Ocean.

    In November, Sayyari said that Iran’s next flotilla would have a mission of protecting Iranian cargo ships and oil tankers from piracy. An Iranian sea vessel fell victim to Somali pirates off the coast of Yemen in 2008.

    “The Navy’s next flotilla will be dispatched to either the Pacific Ocean or the Atlantic on January 21-Feb 20,” he said, adding that the ships would pass through the Mediterranean en route to the Atlantic Ocean.

  • Hannity’s Major Announcement After NY Gov. Cuomo’s Controversial Remarks
    Posted January 21, 2014 at 7:38 am by Billy Hallowell

    Comments (399)

    Popular television and radio host Sean Hannity delivered a hard hitting response to Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s claim that if “extreme conservatives” are “right-to-life, pro-assault-weapon, anti-gay,” then “they have no place in the state of New York, because that’s not who New Yorkers are.”

    Pledging to eventually vacate the state, Hannity delivered a pointed message on his radio show Monday, saying, “Gov. Cuomo, I’m going to leave and I’m taking all of my money with me — every single solitary penny.”

    Sean Hannitys Hard Hitting Response to Gov. Cuomo: Im Going to Leave and Im Taking All of My Money With Me

    Radio and television host Sean Hannity (Image Source: Shutterstock.com)

    Hannity went on to remind the governor that there are numerous employees who work for his radio and television programs and that these individuals will be out of a job if he decides to move out of the state.

    “I guess maybe some of them will be out of work, governor. I’m sure you’ll take care of them,” Hannity quipped.

    Earlier, the host explained that he was born and raised in New York, but that he can’t wait “to get out of here.”

    “I don’t want to pay their 10-percent state tax anymore. I live in the second-highest property taxed county in the entire country in Nassau County,” Hannity explained. “I can’t wait to sell my house to somebody that wants it. I can’t wait to pay no state income tax down in Florida or Texas. I haven’t decided yet, but I’m leaning Florida because I like the water and I like to fish.”

    As for Cuomo’s initial claim — one that has also drawn the ire of Glenn Beck, among many others — Hannity noted that the governor’s definition of “extreme conservatives” would fit the ideological perspective of the vast majority of clergy in the Catholic faith, among others theological constructs.

    Listen to Hannity’s commentary below:

    Cuomo released a statement yesterday claiming that his comments were taken out of context.

    (H/T: Breitbart)

    For more analysis on this story, watch today’s BlazeCast:

    Featured image via Shutterstock.com

     

  • You’ll Never Guess What Hackers Used in a Complex Cyber Attack
    Posted January 21, 2014 at 2:15 am by Elizabeth Kreft

    Comments (11)

    In the world of cyber hacking, even a refrigerator can now be an accomplice.

    Computer security researchers say they discovered a large “botnet” which infected internet-connected home appliances and then delivered more than 750,000 malicious emails, the Syndey Morning Herald reports.

    Cyber criminals use refrigerator to carry out ‘Internet of Things’ attack

    A smart refrigerator was used, among other household appliances, in a recent e-mail phishing cyber scam. Computer scientists theorized about hackers using an “Internet of Things” attack, but this may be the first recorded attack of its kind. (Credit: Samsung).

    Proofpoint, a California computer security firm, said this could likely be the first proven “Internet of Things”-based cyber attack involving “smart” appliances.

    Hackers managed to penetrate home-networking routers, connected multimedia centers, televisions and at least one refrigerator to implement their IoT attack. They created a botnet – a cyber attack that uses an unprotected platform to deliver malicious spam or phishing emails from a connected device (typically without the owner’s knowledge).

    Until now, security experts weren’t sure IoT attacks were possible.

    These attacks bear a significant problem for end users; many internet-connected appliances don’t have malware protection. In this instance, the hackers incorporated more than 100,000 devices between December 23 and January 6, including routers, multimedia centers, televisions and at least one refrigerator, CNET reports.

    Proofpoint said the case “has significant security implications for device owners and enterprise targets” because of massive growth expected in the use of smart and connected devices, from clothing to appliances. Hackers commandeer smart appliances and transform them into ‘thingbots’ to carry out the same kind of attack normally associated with personal computers.

    The Internet of Things concept implies a world of devices and gadgets that connect to the internet, which build a giant sensor network to exchanges data – ideally – making like more efficient. CNET explains:

    For example, home appliances that can talk to each other. Not only in your own home, but, perhaps, even in your local area, so as to be more efficient on the power grid, effectively lowering your electricity costs and being friendlier to the environment. Sensors that automatically alert you to when things go wrong when you’re not at home, like when someone breaks through a window in your house, if something is using too much electricity or when a pipe has burst and you’re suddenly expending hundreds of liters of water. Plants that not only know when they need water, but can also do something about it.

    Cyber criminals use refrigerator to carry out ‘Internet of Things’ attack

    Toothbrushes could be next! Kolibree introduced the “worlds first connected electric toothbrush” and the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show, and this brush’s Bluetooth technology would likely make it vulnerable to an “Internet of Things” attack. (Credit: Kolibree).

    Cars and mobile devices that are all connected, so traffic can be automatically rerouted to the most efficient path when accidents happen. Governments that can react more rapidly to the collected data from things like accelerometers, so they know when roads need to be resurfaced; or, via pure device density, can tell when infrastructure or tourism needs to be bolstered.

    Unless your smart device is password protected, it is likely vulnerable to the same kind of IoT attack.

    The interconnectedness of these seemingly innocent appliances create access for hackers where the average homeowner has likely not protected themselves. The International Data Corporation predicts more than 200 million devices will be connected to the internet by the year 2020, creating a world of access for hackers, since these daily use items are not routinely monitored for malicious activity.

    The refrigerator-scheme hackers pushed 25 percent of their data through unconventional means – other than laptops, desktop computers or mobile devices. No more than 10 emails were initiated from any single device, making the attack difficult to block based on location.

  • Anti-Gun Senator Is Being Mocked Relentlessly After He Warned of ’30 Magazine Clips’ in Embarrassing Video
    Posted January 21, 2014 at 12:45 am by Jason Howerton

    Comments (440)

    Anti-gun California State Sen. Kevin de Leon (D-Los Angeles) is being mocked by gun rights advocates after he made a number of inaccurate statements while promoting a bill that would require individuals who manufacturer homemade firearms to undergo background checks.

    “This is a ghost gun,” de Leon begins, holding an unloaded rifle in his hands. “This right here has the ability with a .30-caliber clip to disperse with 30 bullets within half a second. Thirty magazine clip in half a second.”

    Anti Gun Senator Is Being Mocked Relentlessly After He Warned of 30 Magazine Clips in Embarrassing Video

    State Sen. Kevin de Leon, D-Los Angeles, displays a homemade fully automatic rifle, confiscated by the Department of Justice, as he discuss his proposed legislation dealing with “ghost guns,” at the Capitol in Sacramento, Calif., Monday, Jan. 13, 2014. Under de Leon’s measure, SB808 would allow the manufacture or assembly of homemade weapons, known as “ghost guns,”, but require the makers to first apply to the state Department of Justice for a serial number that would be given only after the applicants undergo a background check. De Leon plans to amend the bill to also require that guns contain permanent pieces of metal that could be detected by X-ray machines and metal detectors.(AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

    A “ghost gun” generally refers to a firearm that doesn’t have a serial number or a homemade gun, like one created using a 3D printer.

    For those not familiar with firearms or gun-related terminology, there are a number of issues with de Leon’s argument.

    Firstly, there is no such thing as a “30-caliber clip” in the context of which he is speaking. He clearly is referring to a 30-round magazine. An ammunition magazine is different than a “clip,” but the two are often confused by those not familiar with guns. And though it’s obvious, there is also no such thing as a “30 magazine clip.”

    Secondly, caliber refers the measurement of the width of a bullet or internal diameter of a gun barrel, not magazine capacity.

    According to the Associated Press, the rifle on display in the video is indeed a homemade fully automatic rifle. Still, a rate of fire of 60 rounds per second — or 3,600 rounds per minute — is unlikely with a “homemade” rifle. Fully automatic weapons are also essentially banned already, even if they are homemade. The average rate of fire for a semi-automatic rifle is roughly 120 rounds per minute, depending on the shooter and reload time.

    Now, it’s entirely possible that de Leon got nervous during his public address and mixed up his words and numbers. But it’s also possible that he needs to brush up on his gun knowledge.

    YouTube user David West put together a video pointing out the flaws in de Leon’s remarks. The video, featured below, already has nearly 500,000 views.

    Watch the California lawmaker’s comments in full here:

    (H/T: Weasel Zippers)

  • Former Egyptian Lawmaker Says He Opposes Violence… Days After Saying Americans Would Be ‘Slaughtered in Their Homes’
    Posted January 20, 2014 at 11:59 pm by Sharona Schwartz

    Comments (81)

    A prominent Egyptian editor and former member of parliament on Sunday clarified that he is opposed to violence just days after he threatened Americans would be “slaughtered in their homes” if the life of the country’s military chief was threatened.

    During a debate last week on a popular program on Egypt’s CBC TV, former lawmaker Mustafa Bakri said he was “100 percent sure” that there was a plot being concocted domestically and overseas – led by the U.S. – to assassinate Egypt’s military chief General Abdel Fatah Al-Sisi.

    If it were to be carried out, there would be “a revolution of massacring Americans in the streets,” he said, adding, “[President Barack] Obama personally will be held accountable, and we will slaughter the criminals and the traitors here in their homes.”

    Just Days After Saying that Americans Would be ‘Slaughtered in Their Homes,’ Former Egyptian Lawmaker Now Says He Opposes Violence

    Image source: Egypt’s CBC TV via MEMRI

    According to a transcript of the interview translated by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), Bakri said: “Let this serve as a warning to all. We shall enter their homes and massacre them one by one. We will not allow such a crime to be committed against a man whom we believe has saved this country. This warning is directed to all – from Obama to his lowliest collaborator from the terrorist organization [i.e., the Muslim Brotherhood] here.”

    “We have 90 million ticking bombs,” Bakri said. “If anything happens to General Al-Sisi, no American will be left on the face of the Earth – not in Egypt, nor anywhere else. We shall not keep silent.”

    On Sunday, Bakri took back his strong remarks. The Egyptian government distributed a statement issued by him which read, “I am opposed to any violence, including any violence against US citizens, and I would like to make it clear that we have no enmity with or hostility toward the American people at all.”

    “The intention of my comments was to highlight Egyptian independence, and our adamant refusal to allow any outside party, be that the US or any other party, to interfere in internal Egyptian affairs,” Bakri added.

    The Associated Press noted, “Bakry’s threat is indicative of the widespread belief promoted by Egyptian media that the U.S. government and President Barack Obama are involved in a conspiracy to destabilize Egypt.”

    During the interview, he also accused the U.S. of being behind “the same scenario” which according to him led to the assassination of Pakistan’s Benazir Bhutto.

    Since former President Mohammed Morsi was removed from power in July, “the U.S. government, and Obama have been widely criticized in pro-military media for supporting Morsi and the group from which he hails, the Muslim Brotherhood,” the AP reported.

    “Egypt’s flagship state newspaper, al-Ahram, has several times in recent months used its front page to air claims that the US government has joined forces with Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood to divide up Egypt into smaller countries, and to spread chaos within its borders,” wrote Britain’s the Guardian.

    Even as anti-American conspiracy theories abound, Congress approved a spending bill last Tuesday which would restore the $1.5 billion in U.S. aid to Egypt on condition that its government takes steps toward democratic reform.

    Here is an excerpt of Bakri’s interview on CBC TV courtesy of MEMRI:

  • Person Shot at Widener University in Pa., Students Urged to Remain Indoors
    Posted January 20, 2014 at 11:36 pm by Associated Press

    Comments (46)

    CHESTER, Pa. (AP) — Authorities say a student at Widener University in suburban Philadelphia has been shot and it warned students to remain indoors until further notice.

    The school said on its website that the student was shot near the Schwartz Athletic Center on the school’s campus around 9 p.m. Monday. The victim’s condition wasn’t known. The university said the student’s family was with him.

    Widener is a private, co-ed university located in Chester, Pennsylvania located about 15 miles southwest of Philadelphia.

    NeighborhoodScout.com, a real estate website, has ranked Chester as one of the most dangerous cities in the U.S. The university also has three other campuses in Harrisburg, Exton and Wilmington, Delaware.

  • Watch What Happens When Jesse Watters Asks Hollywood Celebs If They Are Disappointed With Obama
    Posted January 20, 2014 at 11:18 pm by Jason Howerton

    Comments (223)

    Representing “The O’Reilly Factor,” correspondent Jesse Watters attended the annual Sundance Film Festival to talk some politics and see if any celebrities would admit they are disappointed with President Barack Obama’s job performance.

    Actress Marisa Tomei walked away when Watters asked her about Obama, saying “yuck” to the simple question. Meanwhile, actor Philip Seymour Hoffman “abruptly ended his smoke break” when he saw him approaching.

    Jesse Watters Asks Hollywood Celebs If They Are Disappointed With Obama

    (Fox News)

    However, a few celebrities agreed to chat with Watters.

    Actor Mark Ruffalo mocked a remark Watters made about Benghazi being a “scandal” and argued it was “B.S.” He argued Republicans cut the budget that would have given the U.S. compound in Libya more security. Shortly after, a woman stepped in and ended the interview.

    Robert De Niro said Obama “means to do the right thing,” but he needs to “pick his battles.”

    “His heart is in the right place,” he added. “He’s not a schemer, he’s not devious.”

    Jesse Watters Asks Hollywood Celebs If They Are Disappointed With Obama

    (Fox News)

    When asked if he was disappointed in Obama at all, actor John Slattery said: “No, not at all. I’m disappointed in Bill O’Reilly.”

    For the most part, Watters says celebrities at the film festival were not very happy to see him. Watch the rest of the interviews via Fox News below:

  • After 16 Years, a Woman Confronts the Teacher Who Allegedly Molested Her – But the Story Doesn’t End There
    Posted January 20, 2014 at 10:31 pm by Jason Howerton

    Comments (138)

    A 28-year-old woman, who identified herself only as “Jamie X,” posted a powerful video on YouTube last Friday containing a phone conversation with a former teacher who allegedly molested her for years, starting when she was just 12.

    In the video’s description, Jamie X writes: “I am 28 years old and have been waiting years to get up enough courage to report a teacher for sexually abusing me for years.”

    Watch a Brave Mother, 28, Confront the Teacher She Says Molested Her at Just 12 Years Old

    The alleged abuse took place at Chemawa Middle School in Riverside, Calif. Up until recently, the woman’s alleged abuser worked at the Alhambra Unified School District as an assistant principal. The district reportedly fired the woman, whose name is not being released by TheBlaze, after the incriminating phone call was posted on YouTube.

    In the phone call, Jamie X tells her alleged abuser that she “brainwashed” and “manipulated her” when she was a child. She then asks if she realizes what she did to her was wrong.

    “Yes,” the alleged attacker replies. “And I regret it.”

    Jamie X went on to tell the woman that she now has children, but the sexual assault she endured ruined her childhood.

    “You know I am completely messed up, that I have so many issues because of you?” Jamie X says in the call.

    To which her former teacher answers: “I just wanted to help you.”

    “How is having a sexual relationship with a 12-year-old student helping?” the woman angrily responds.

    Before ending the call, Jamie X told her alleged abuser that she is “disgusting” and should be ashamed of herself. When she hangs up the phone, the mother shows the number on her phone and reads the number out loud.

    The Alhambra Unified School District confirmed to CBS Los Angeles that the woman, who identified herself on the call, is no longer employed by them.

    And because it took Jamie X 16 years to build enough courage to report her alleged abuser, she says the statute of limitations has expired.

    “[S]he will never have to pay for the things that she did to me,” she said.

    However, the Riverside Police Department has reportedly opened an investigation into the shocking accusations.

    More from CBS Los Angeles:

    (H/T: Daily Mail)

  • Trust in Government Falls Worldwide, Trust in Business Holds Steady: Report
    Posted January 20, 2014 at 10:00 pm by Becket Adams

    Comments (44)

    Trust in government has plunged worldwide as faith in business manages to hold steady, according to a recent survey from the public relations firm Edelman.

    Trust in Government Falls Worldwide, Trust in Business Holds Steady

    Getty Images

    The 2014 Edelman Trust Barometer found that only 44 percent of people with a university education trust government. That’s a sizable decrease from 2011 when roughly 52 percent of university-educated respondents said they trusted government.

    At an astonishing 14 point difference, the 2014 Edelman Trust Barometer revealed the survey’s largest-ever gap between trust in government and trust in business.

    “This is a profound evolution in the landscape of trust from 2009, where business had to partner with government to regain trust,” agency CEO Richard Edelman said.

    The gap between those who trust business and those who trust government didn’t grow because more people trust business. Rather, the Edelman survey noted, the gap grew because of an increase in the number of people who distrust government.

    Declining trust in current government officials could open the door to the election of more radical leaders, the reported warned.

    Of the 27 countries surveyed, nearly half saw a decline of 20 points or more in trust in government. France and the United States, for instance, saw sharp decreases of roughly 17 and 16 percent, respectively.

    Meanwhile, the gap between trust in business and government grew in the United States by 21 points, in India by 26 points and by 36 points in Brazil.

    “Trust in business has stabilized at 58 percent due to the perception that it has made demonstrable change in the form of better products and new leadership,” Edelman said in a statement.

    True, overall trust in business held steady at 58 percent, the report added, but business leaders aren’t out of the woods yet.

    “It has typically fallen to government to create the context for change but it is either incapable or unwilling to do it,” Edelman said. “People trust business to innovate, unite and deliver across borders in a way that government can’t. That trust comes with the expectation and responsibility to maintain it. Therefore, CEOs must become chief engagement officers in order to educate the public about the economic, societal, political and environmental context in which their business operates.”

    The report said only government officials are trusted less than business CEOS, signalling that business still has some ways to go before it can be fully trusted.   In fact, both groups have one thing in common: They are both distrusted by a majority of respondents.

    The groups most trusted, however, were technical experts, regular employees and academics.

    Roughly 84 percent of the survey’s respondents said they believe it’s possible for businesses to pursue its own interests while remaining a responsible component of society.

    Trust in business was driven by “four key factors,” the report explained: Industry sector, enterprise type, CEO trust and country of origin.

    Technology (79 percent) and automotive (70 percent) were the most trusted industry sectors, while banks (51 percent) were least trusted,” the report added.

    Europe’s trust in banks was particularly low, with Spain falling to 16 percent, Italy to 23 percent, the U.K. to 32 percent, Germany to 33 percent and France 38 percent.

    Follow Becket Adams (@BecketAdams) on Twitter

  • 10-Year-Old Boy Responds to Terminal Cancer in the Most Amazing Way
    Posted January 20, 2014 at 9:30 pm by Liz Klimas

    Comments (36)

    Keegan Keppner, a 10-year-old from Eugene, Ore., was diagnosed with cancer in 2005. His family would later learn that it’s terminal. He’s focusing these days not on himself, but others in need, specifically those homeless in his community.

    “I just feel bad for the people becoming homeless,” Keppner told KVAL-TV. “I don’t want anyone to become homeless.”

    keegan keppner

    Keegan Keppner and his stepfather showed up to a homeless camp in Oregon over the weekend to give food to the hungry. It was something Keegan, who has a terminal case of cancer, wanted to do. (Image source: KVAL-TV)

    To help ease their burdens, Keppner and his stepdad brought breakfast to a local homeless camp Saturday morning.

    “We got breakfast for you guys,” Keppner’s stepfather said as they arrived at an area called Whoville camp, which recently had an eviction sign posted by the authorities. The pair had a pot of hot rice and beans and bread to offer.

    “[It was] very, very beautiful,” one of those grateful for the warm meal told KVAL.

    keegan keppner

    Keppner explained to the news station that feeding the hungry was something that made him feel good and something that he intended on doing again. (Image source: KVAL-TV)

    “You made a lot of people’s day,” the boy’s stepdad said.

    Keppner’s cancer is terminal Glioma, a type affecting his brain and spine. Despite dealing with an extremely difficult diagnosis, Keppner said it’s not stopping him from doing “what makes me feel good,” which in this case is feeding the hungry.

    Watch KVAL-TV’s report:

    The father-son team plan to go back to the homeless community Tuesday with a pot of chili.

  • NFL Considering Major Rule Change to Eliminate a Play That’s Always Been Part of the Game
    Posted January 20, 2014 at 8:58 pm by Jason Howerton

    Comments (156)

    NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said on Monday that the league is considering a proposal to do away with extra points. Though the extra point is almost automatic and relatively unexciting, the rule change would alter a play that’s always been part of the game.

    NFL Is Considering Eliminating Extra Points

    SEATTLE, WA – JANUARY 19: NFL commissioner Roger Goodell on the field before the Seattle Seahawks take on the San Francisco 49ers in the 2014 NFC Championship at CenturyLink Field on January 19, 2014 in Seattle, Washington. Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    “The extra point is almost automatic. I believe we had five missed extra points this year out of 1,200 some odd,” Goodell told NFL.com. “So it’s a very small fraction of the play, and you want to add excitement with every play.”

    So what instead would happen after a touchdown is scored?

    “There’s one proposal in particular that I’ve heard about. It’s automatic that you get seven points when you score a touchdown, but you could potentially go for an eighth point, either by running or passing the ball, so if you fail, you go back to six,” Goodell said.

    As CBS Sports notes, sometimes extra points result in really exciting plays — even if it’s rare.

    “In a 2003 game, New Orleans was trailing Jacksonville 20-13 with seven seconds left. The Saints scored on an improbable 75-yard, three-lateral pass play to cut the Jaguars lead to 20-19, but kicker John Carney missed the extra point to give Jacksonville the win,” the report adds.

    Let us know what you think by taking our poll below:

    Featured image via AP

  • MSNBC Host Claims MLK Wanted Guaranteed Income and Occupation For All
    Posted January 20, 2014 at 8:45 pm by Becket Adams

    Comments (109)

    Martin Luther King Jr. in his final days wanted the United States government to guarantee an income and occupation for all, MSNBC host Toure claimed Monday.

    The cable news segment began with footage of Dr. King noting in a speech that many white people were receiving federal farming subsidies despite the fact that they were not actually farmers.

    Dr. King fought for an “economic bill of rights that would provide a guaranteed income that would make sure that every American had a concrete amount to spend each year,” Toure said.

    “He meant for government to ensure every American a reasonable income that would be linked to inflation,” the cable news pundit added. “Government would also have a responsibility to create jobs.”

    Toure noted that before Dr. King’s untimely death, the civil rights leader was “drafting a multi-racial army of the poor to dramatize their plight.”

    “And children who grow up with access to food stamps grow up healthier and more likely to finish school than kids without food stamps,” Toure said. “Intergenerational class mobility is nearly impossible in modern America.”

    “The rich are, of course, their own safety net. The poor are set up to fail,” he added.

    (H/T: Mediaite)

    Follow Becket Adams (@BecketAdams) on Twitter

  • Olympic Legend Accuses Chris Christie of Political Bullying
    Posted January 20, 2014 at 8:21 pm by Associated Press

    Comments (77)

    TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — Nine-time Olympic gold medalist Carl Lewis says Republican New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie dropped a plan to appoint him the state’s first physical fitness ambassador when he launched a political campaign against a Christie friend.

    Olympic Legend Carl Lewis Accuses Chris Christie of Political Bullying

    shutterstock.com

    Lewis said Monday the governor called to dissuade him from running as a Democrat for state Senate in 2011 against Republican Sen. Dawn Addiego (ah-dee-AY’-goh). Lewis says he was told the fitness program they’d been developing wouldn’t materialize if he ran. Lewis says the governor felt the post “was a carrot he could pull away.”

    Lewis withdrew from the Senate race after a court ruled he didn’t meet a residency requirement. He now lives in Houston.

    Democrats have said recent scandals involving traffic jams and Superstorm Sandy aid are more evidence Christie is a bully.

    Christie’s administration hasn’t returned an email seeking comment.

  • Why This Man Isn’t Too Worried About His Head Being in a Grizzly Bear’s Mouth
    Posted January 20, 2014 at 8:00 pm by Liz Klimas

    Comments (59)

    If your head is inside a grizzly bear’s mouth, a row of long, sharp teeth is likely the last thing you’ll ever see. That is unless you’re Doug Seus, a renowned bear trainer.

    doug seus and bear

    Most would think the man on the ground is a goner, he’s actually a professional bear trainer. (Image source: YouTube)

    In this case, the bear trainer lives to see another day and the bear gets words of affirmation — a “good boy.”

    Though Seus wouldn’t necessarily consider what he does with his three bears tricks — he told Barcoft TV it’s more “getting into the heart and soul of the bear” — Seus is able to interact with the thousand-pound animals in ways that would terrify many.

    doug seus and bear

    Seus’ trained bears have appeared on TV and film. (Image source: YouTube)

    Seus demonstrated how he let’s one of his bears, Bart 2, put his entire mouth over the trainer’s head. At one point, Bart 2 rolled over and gave a high-five, similar to how a trained dog would.

    “My passion for bears started in hiking and being out in the wild with them,” the 71-year-old trainer said in the Barcroft TV feature.

    doug seus and bear

    Image source: YouTube

    Even when the bear started to exert its strength to much, say putting its clawed paw a little too heavily on Seus’ back, a quick word of admonition had the animal backing off.

    “Bart, off.” That’s all it took for Seus to say and the animal was letting him go.

    Seus’ bears, which are trained in Utah where he lives with his wife, have worked in films with celebrities like Brad Pitt and Morgan Freeman and also recently appeared in the HBO series “Game of Thrones.”

    Watch Seus and Bart 2 interact:

    Due to their close relationship with bears and unique understanding of the creatures, Seus and his wife started the Vital Ground foundation to help protect wild bears and their habitats.

    (H/T: Nine MSN)

  • Are American Evangelicals Fracturing When It Comes to Support for Israel?
    Posted January 20, 2014 at 7:30 pm by Billy Hallowell

    Comments (200)

    American evangelicals have traditionally had a close and friendly relationship with Israel. While this dynamic continues, there appears to be a splintering of sorts going on, as some factions are becoming increasingly critical of the Jewish state.

    Are American Evangelicals Fracturing When It Comes to Supporting Israel?

    Image source: Shutterstock.com

    BuzzFeed’s McKay Coppins recently covered the issue, noting that some figures who have traditionally been aligned with conservative Christianity have been working in a quiet manner to form alliances that would push “evangelical Christians away from decades of growing loyalty to Israel and toward increased solidarity with the Palestinians.”

    With these activists and organizations coming together to push for what they call a more fair-minded discussion, some conservatives are warning that the Pro-Israel, Pro-Palestinian approach to the Middle East crisis is haphazard.

    Pastor John Hagee, senior preacher at Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, Texas, and David Brog, executive director of Christians United for Israel, appeared on Glenn Beck’s television show Monday to discuss the complex issue. Both Hagee and Brog, strong defenders of the Jewish state, argue that it is essential for Christians to continue supporting Israel.

    Brog also recently told Coppins that Palestinian Christians have become well-versed in using language that resonates with American evangelicals — language that is helping combat the traditional view among right-of-center evangelicals that Palestinians deserve sympathy and support.

    He’s hoping that those who support Israel will correct the record, specifically before more young evangelicals begin embracing ideals that cast the Jewish state in a more negative light.

    “This effort is being led by Palestinian Christians who, while not always evangelicals, are quite adept at using evangelical language and imagery in their effort to blame Israel and Israel alone for Palestinian suffering,” Brog said. “The movement has gotten louder because they have more money to spend. So we’re seeing more anti-Israel Christian films, speakers, and conferences. It’s very much grasstops, not grassroots.”

    Hagee shares these views. In his latest book “Four Blood Moons,” he argued that there are numerous reasons why believers must support the Middle Eastern country.

    First, he noted that the Bible says that those who bless Israel will also be blessed by God. Genesis 12:3 reads, “I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.”

    And in Psalm 122:6, believers are also instructed to “pray for the peace of Jerusalem.” Additionally, Isaiah 62:1,6 references being “watchmen on the walls of Jerusalem.”

    These arguments among others, though, obviously aren’t shared by progressive evangelicals and critics who argue that Israel has played a detrimental role in the Middle Eastern crisis and that support must also be given to Palestinians who, in these critics’ view, have been victims, to some degree, of Israeli aggression.

    Critics like Gabe Lyons, founder of Q, a Christian group that facilitates speeches and discussions on faith issues, believes that there needs to be an honest discussion about Iranian-Palestinian affairs.

    “The evangelical community has only heard one narrative on this issue. Part of the responsibility we have is to make sure they hear the rest of it,” he told Coppins.

    And Lyons isn’t alone. Many others are asking for Christians to take a more fair-minded look at both sides of the debate.

    Consider Lynne Hybels co-founded Willow Creek Church in Illinois with her husband Bill. As First Things noted last month, Hybels has made the case that evangelical Christians should be supportive of both the Israeli and Palestinian people.

    “I believe it is possible to be truly pro-Israeli and pro-Palestinian at the same time,” she recently wrote on her blog, though critics like Institute on Religion & Democracy President Mark Tooley note that Hybels and others like her are well-intentioned, yet naive in how they plan to find a solution to the matter.

    In the end, regardless of the debate, Pew found in October that the vast majority of Protestants — 64 percent to be exact — still believe “God gave the land of Israel to the Jewish people.” So regardless of any split in ideals, the majority of Protestant Christians still see Israel in an elevated and important spiritual light.

    Read more about all facets of the discussion here.

  • Rafael Cruz-Endorsed Congressional Candidate Rips Obama on National Debt in ‘One of the Sassiest Ads Ever’
    Posted January 20, 2014 at 6:56 pm by Jason Howerton

    Comments (112)

    Texas candidate for U.S. Congress Katrina Pierson, who is running against incumbent Rep. Pete Sessions (R-Texas) in the 2014 mid-term elections, blasts President Barack Obama’s record on the national debt in what the Independent Journal Review calls “one of the sassiest ads ever.”

    “President Obama says ‘I wouldn’t let my son play pro football.’ That’s weird. I wouldn’t let my son add $7 trillion to the national debt,” the ad states.

    Katrina Pierson Rips Obama on National Debt in One of the Sassiest Ads Ever

    (Katrinaforcongress.com)

    Pierson has drawn some support from a number of conservative stars, including Michelle Malkin, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Cruz’s father, Rafael Cruz. Cruz reportedly called her “utterly fearless,” though, unlike his father, he has not officially endorsed anyone in the race.

    However, Sessions recently earned the valuable endorsement of the National Rifle Association. The NRA gives Sessions an “A+” rating on guns and recently gave him with the “Defender of Freedom Award.”

    (H/T: IJReview.com)

  • ‘Even He Understood the Realities of Self-Defense’: NRA Commentator Uses Dr. King to Make Passionate Pro-Gun Argument
    Posted January 20, 2014 at 6:30 pm by Oliver Darcy

    Comments (58)

    National Rifle Association (NRA) contributor Colion Noir invoked Martin Luther King Jr.’s application for a gun permit decades ago to deliver a passionate speech contending individuals should be allowed to own and use firearms for self defense.

    “Dr. King was a non-violent man, but even he understood the realities of self-defense and protecting his home and his family in the face of life-threatening violence,” Noir said in the video.

    “…[Dr. King] understood the realities of self-defense and protecting his home and his family…”
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    “This is why he tried to apply for that gun permit when his house where his wife and daughter lived was fire bombed,” he continued. “When Dr. King was denied, he did the next best thing and surrounded himself with people with guns, which was evidenced by one of Dr. King’s advisers describing his home as an arsenal.”

    Noir further suggested that he believes King would advocate today for the rights of families to keep guns in their households for protection.

    “Personally, I’m a believer in Dr. King’s methods of addressing social injustices, which is why I don’t think to ever go to my gun simply because someone cut me off in traffic or called me out of my name,” he said. “But in my heart based on Dr. King’s own actions, I don’t believe that Dr. King would ever advocate leaving a family, or anyone for that matter, defenseless in the face of violent life threatening danger.”

    The suggestion, however, that King was an advocate for gun rights has come under some scrutiny. On Monday, left-leaning Salon published an article arguing that King’s application for a gun-permit does not fully capture his final views on guns.

    Follow Oliver Darcy (@oliverdarcy) on Twitter

  • Deaths Confirmed in Omaha Plant Explosion
    Posted January 20, 2014 at 6:22 pm by Associated Press

    Comments (34)

    OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Omaha authorities confirm two people died and 10 others were seriously hurt in an explosion and partial building collapse at an animal feed processing plant Monday morning.

    Douglas County Attorney Don Kleine says he’s been notified about two deaths in Monday’s explosion.

    2 Deaths Confirmed in Omaha Plant Explosion

    Part of the International Nutrition plant in Omaha Neb., is collapsed Monday Jan. 20, 2014 in Omaha Neb. At least nine people have been hospitalized and others could be trapped after an explosion and partial building collapse at an Omaha animal feed processing plant. (AP Photo/The Omaha World-Herald/Jim Burnett)

    It’s unclear if the death toll will rise as crews sift through the rubble of the International Nutrition plant.

    Interim Omaha Fire Chief Bernie Kanger says the search is progressing slowly because the structure is unsafe.

    Kanger said he doesn’t believe anyone remaining inside is alive.

    But officials haven’t said how many people didn’t make it out.

    Thirty-eight people were working. Officials say two died, 10 were hospitalized and seven were hurt but refused treatment. They have not said how many of the 19 others escaped.

  • Dad Who Tragically Lost His Daughter in Car Crash Absolutely Stunned to Receive This Letter From OfficeMax
    Posted January 20, 2014 at 5:58 pm by Jason Howerton

    Comments (98)

    A Chicago father, who tragically lost his teenage daughter in a car accident last year, was shocked to receive a letter from OfficeMax that included extremely personal — and painful — information.

    The letter was correctly addressed to Mike Seay, however, the line directly under his name read: “Daughter Killed in Car Crash.”

    Dad, Mike Seay, Who Lost Daughter in Car Crash Stunned to Receive OfficeMax Letter

    Credit: NBC Chicago/Jalopnik

    Seay says he thinks about his daughter “10,000 times a day” and the stunning letter only caused more pain.

    “Why would they have that type of information? Why would they need that?” Seay said in an interview with NBC Chicago. “What purpose does it serve anybody to know that? And how much other types of other information do they have if they have that on me, or anyone else? And how do they use that, what do they use that for?”

    The dad’s 17-year-old daughter, Ashley, was reportedly one of two teenagers killed in a 2013 crash after their vehicle slammed into a tree in Antioch, Ill.

    When Seay called the OfficeMax call center to confront the corporation, the manager said “it was impossible” and that “this can’t be happening.”

    Nicole Miller, a corporate spokeswoman, blamed a “third-party provider” in a statement on the unfortunate incident:

    “We are deeply sorry that Mr. Seay and his family received this mailing from us, and we are reaching out to Mr. Seay to convey our sincerest apologies on this unfortunate matter. This mailing is a result of a mailing list rented through a third-party provider. We have reached out to the third-party mailing list provider to research what happened. Based on a preliminary investigation today we believe this to be an inadvertent error; and we are continuing the investigation.” — Nicole Miller

    As gossip website Jalopnik points out, the death of Seay’s daughter is public information as it was widely reported last year. However, the story is a “cruel reminder of how personal information is sold bought and sold for marketing purposes today,” the website alleges.

    Still, it wasn’t entirely clear why the information was inadvertently included or how the company acquired the personal detail about Seay’s life.