Feature: Seven Worst American Presidents

opinion-page-of-newspaper-503227-mHere at Grassroots America, we like to lighten the load of political discourse with the occasional playful feature. This short article takes a look at the worst leaders America has ever known.

Our reader-poll results are in, and this is how the various heads of state fared… [...]

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The Conservation Movement: What You Need To Know

green-leaf-1428358-mOne of the key issues that dominates political discourse today is that of the environment. Alongside terrorism and global poverty, it presents one of the most pressing topics in the political sphere. One of the single most potent factors in this debate is that of the Conservation Movement, the social movement that seeks to protect natural resources, including plant and animal life. This article is a short introduction to nature conservation with some tips about how you too can get involved. [...]

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Is “Let’s Move” Moving?

The first lady, Michelle O, has been on a mission to get American children active and healthy. “Let’s Move”, the campaign with the initiative to resolve childhood obesity within one generation, aims to educate children on how to take care of their bodies, as well as how to eat properly. Michelle started Let’s Move back in 2010 to tackle the problems she could see facing the country’s population.

Childhood Obesity

In 2010, one in three children under the age of 20 was overweight, with one in five being considered ‘obese’. These numbers are not promising, as a growing body requires many calories just to stay the same weight and to promote growth. As these kids reach adulthood they generally give up certain physical activities that they might have been partaking in as part of school sports or extra curricular exercise in order to focus on their studies and work, so essentially these numbers will continue to grow into adulthood. Michelle looked at the implications behind these numbers and knew that something had to be done.

There are two parts to the ‘Let’s Move’ initiative, nutrition and physical activity.

Eating Habits:

It’s said that up to 90% of weight issues can be resolved with proper nutrition. School cafeterias in America have been known to serve some of the unhealthiest foods compared to the rest of the developed world.

One of the first things the first lady did was start the Chefs Move to Schools program. This has seen over 2000 chefs volunteer to teach school children how to prepare healthy foods, and get them involved in preparing meals and educating them on the benefits of a balanced diet.

While the intention of Chefs Move to Schools is undoubtedly good, the benefits are still up in the air, as the results are hard to track and largely opinion based.

Physical Activity:

The second part to staying fit is about physical activity. Let’s Move has emphasized that children get at least 60 minutes of exercise per day. The program itself has implemented new activities during school time, but has also put effort into encouraging families to get exercise together.

School time exercise has included a series of fitness videos that are produced by students, for students. These videos focus on aerobic exercise through dance moves intended to be ‘fun’ for the children. The videos have had mixed feedback from both students and teachers and the benefit is also up the air, as results are hard to track.

At home exercise has been encouraged also. Sports, gymnastics, dance, and swimming are all recommended and the Let’s Move campaign has implemented a tax rebate for families enrolling their children in eligible after-school programs. Family activities like hiking, Frisbee, or tossing a ball around can all be found on the website for activities encouraged by Let’s Move.

While Michelle continues to tour the country promoting childhood health and keeping the nation fit, the long term results from Let’s Move will be some years off. Obviously the most important factor is educating children of the benefits of healthy habits on their bodies and brains and life.

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A Few Awesome Trends that Show Women in Politics are Here to Stay

The flux of women in American politics in recent years has been incredible. It very much seems like women in domestic politics are here to stay. In many instances they are ruling the platform, and they are looking good doing it.

A lot of female politicians are working wonders in Washington. They are leading the brigade on many issues ranging from fiscal matters to immigration to gun rights.

Although many of these ladies are on different sides of the isle, they are all looking equally extravagant. The key I think in a lot of ways is they all look incredible while they age. If you look at Michelle Bachman or Sarah Palin, or even Nancy Polosi, it’s very easy to see they are aging very well, and they still look gorgeous while they are ruling the political stage.

A lot of this comes down to makeup. They keep their makeup application, especially mascara, clean and classy, they use it only as a method of complimenting their accents, not over applying it to try to look younger.

Additionally, picking out glasses is huge. They pick out frames that are minimal and modern. This allow them to keep their professional look without looking too old. A lot of consolidating power in politics is looking good. Constituents tend to want their representative to look classy and good looking while still maintaining  a simple look. Also, they don’t want them to look too old and out of touch, and they also don’t want them to look too young and inexperienced. Part of the magic these ladies possess is capturing a perfect mixture of all of that.

Their political positions aside, these women have also found a way to connect with most of their constituents without exploiting their gender. They don’t look for handouts or a pity party because of their gender. Instead they actually connect with constituents on a more personal level. They can do this partly through looks and partly through their ability to communicate and connect.

Last but certainly not least, they are incredibly smart, no matter how the media wants to paint the picture of them. They are the product of women being able to obtain real educations and actually getting something out of the process. These women are educated, and in many cases they are seriously educated. These women have law degrees in most cases, and have built a record as a successful lawyer. This takes brains. It doesn’t just take the sort of brains that it takes to find a career, learn everything about it, then get good at it. They have to have comprehensive knowledge about everything and the ability to apply it to anything.

Thanks for reading! I really hope you have enjoyed this article. We think women are here to stay in politics, and it’s very exciting. If you have any thing you would like to add in via a comment, question, or concern, please feel free to leave us a comment below and we will try to respond as soon as we can!

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The Minnesota Warehouse Tax: What You Should Know

Slated to take effect last April 1, 2014, the Minnesota warehouse tax covers sales and use tax of all Minnesota warehouses and storage facilities. The bill is supposed to cover the storage of tangible personal property, which is defined as items that can be seen, touched, felt, measured and weighed.
Proposed by Gov. Mark Dayton, the Minnesota warehouse law aims to increase business-to-business sales tax. A projected $200 million is said to be obtained from the tax, which the government will use for local purchases and the exemption of capital equipment. If it will be implemented, the state will be the only place in the United States where warehouse taxation will be applied.

Storage and Warehousing: A Background
Minnesota warehouses and storage facilities are responsible for keeping items safe and secure. These industries do not sell the items stored within, however, they are responsible for the logistics or the distribution of the said materials.
Logistics also includes the following processes:

  • Labeling
  • Breakdown of bulk products into smaller items
  • Control and management of inventory
  • Light assembly
  • Order entry and fulfillment
  • Packaging
  • Storage and repacking of products
  • Price ticking and marking
  • Transportation arrangement

Scope of the Minnesota Warehouse Tax
As it has been mentioned, the Minnesota warehouse tax covers all tangible personal property. They include:

  • Liquor
  • Coal
  • Document
  • Foreign Trade
  • Lumber
  • Hazardous waste
  • Construction supplies/machineries

Apart from the following services, logistics are also levied tax when applicable.
More than just the warehouse tax, local sales duties also apply, depending on the location of the warehouse.

Although tangible personal properties stored in warehouses will be taxed, there are several products which are exempted from the law. They are:

  • Agricultural produce – Defined as a product in a raw state, resulting from agricultural production. Untaxable agricultural produce should not have been packed from user consumption (final sale.) Transporting of agricultural products and the selling of such merchandise while it is in the warehouse are exempted from the sales tax as well.
  • Electronic data – Data stored in devices such as hard drives, flash drives and DVDs.
  • Refrigerated storage – Examples include cold warehouses and frozen food/food lockers.
  • Self-storage items such as boats, motor and recreational automobiles which cannot be deducted as a business expense in the owner’s income tax return.
  • Petroleum products moved throughout the state as part of interstate commerce. Storage of such petroleum products are exempted from taxes as well.

According to owners, the profit margin for the warehouse business only ranges from 3-5 percent. As such, the levy of 6.875% will be passed to the consumer, which means heftier fees for individuals and industries who utilize warehouse and storage facilities.
Apart from additional expenses on the customer’s part, the Minnesota warehouse tax can jeopardize the state’s economy as well. In fact, some warehousing businesses are thinking of moving to nearby Wisconsin, where there is no such sales tax. This would adversely affect the tax base as well as warehouse positions in the state.

With the state’s rigid warehouse taxation rules, warehouse owners, through the Minnesota Warehouse Association, have campaigned for the repeal of the said law.
Given the many consequences of the business-to-business tax passed by Gov. Dayton, he had repealed the said law with the signing of the $616 million tax relief bill. It revoked the enactment of the warehouse tax, which would place levies on public warehousing services.
Because of the repeal, the state will review the individual tax returns that have been filed. Consequently, the state will contact taxpayers who are entitled to refunds and fee adjustments.

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Government Spending To Increase Pizza Consumption

The U.S department of agriculture (USDA) report in early 2014 indicates that 13 percent of American citizens eat pizza in a day. Well, someone may find this normal simply because pizza is delicious. But this is not the case. Pizza business does not operate on a free market structure. Instead, the government of the United States invests millions of money to attract more people into eating pizza. Of course their aim is not just to make pizza a famous snack and leave it at that. Not really. They target the revenue raised to farmers and other industries through sale of pizza ingredients such as dairy. The more the American adults and children eating pizza in a day therefore, the higher the demand for the commodity; hence the ingredients that make it.

How the program works

Pizza preparation makes use of diverse ingredients that are produced by various sectors in the US. These are meat, dairy products such as milk and cheese, vegetables and fruits. The USDA therefore helps pizza producers in advertising them, increasing the quality of the pizza and variety availed to the consumers. They have several check-off programs through which they invest on pizza producers to boost sales of these products: the beef check-off program, the dairy check–off program and the fruits check off program. At the end of the day, the farmer benefits multiples. In fact for every dollar spent on making the pizza eating culture in America stronger, the farmer earns back approximately 4 dollars.

They use the check-off program to fund several farmers associations which in return partners or works with pizza producers to promote the pizza business. A good example is one of the beneficiaries; the Dairy management incorporation. In 2009, they partnered with Dominos, with an aim of enhancing pizza consumption. Through the check-off system, they invested 35 million dollars in the following year. This helped Dominos increase their variety and quality of pizzas in their line of pizza and increase their advertising. In that year, the use of cheese in pizza production increased rapidly and this spread even to the competing pizza producers who wanted to still increase their varieties and stay relevant in business. This would otherwise not have been the case if the check-off system did not initially trigger it by funding the daily corporation.

This has not come along without critics. That is definitely expected. Reason being that this program focuses more attention and dollar investment on meat and dairy products. The vegetables and fruits producers have therefore been left out in the program and they only benefit indirectly. Though they will benefit at the end of the end they feel that they have been out-weighed in the check-off system leading to a great imbalance.

Someone may be lured into making assumptions that this is wastage of taxpayers’ money. No it isn’t. The same farmers’ dollars are the ones that are invested to improve their produce returns and in return increase the government tax. And therefore it is a good deal, as long as its purpose is achieved.

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The scale of the debt crisis

It feels like all we ever hear on the news these days is a lot of talk about the money crisis, the debt crisis; debt, debt, debt. It got me thinking, do any of us actually know what the so-called debt crisis is? What is the scale of the crisis? How badly is the country, and most of the world actually in debt?

There are some things to consider. These are:
- In 1970, the world’s most poor countries where $25 billion in debt
- This then grew in 2002 to $523 billion
- Africa alone made up over half of this statistic, owing $295

World leaders often make several promises which they simply cannot keep with regards to the amount of debt that their country is in. The poorest countries who are simply unable to pay any money back will likely to have to be bailed out by the ‘richer’ countries that can afford to contribute. Even these countries are in so much debt it will take them an extortionate amount of time to pay back any debt owed.

Leaders have often promised to write off the debt of those desperately poor countries, empty promises that have more often than not, not been kept. They will take their time after the promises they make in the hope that they will be forgotten, or pay off far less than initially promised, putting a spin on the situation for the public to see.

What about third world debt?
The rich countries pretty much pick on the poor ones, and make them sacrifice health and education spending, in favour of them paying back debts first. The rich also protect their agricultural markets whilst forcing poor countries to open theirs. This means that these countries get used for dumping waste, which in turn drives people out of their businesses and neighbourhoods.

In comparison to poor countries, the rich countries debt is pretty minimal, but for the poor countries this debt could be a matter of life and death. UNICEF say that as many as 5,000,000 children and vulnerable adults have lost their lives in sub- Sharan Africa as a result of the debt crunch from the 1980′s alone. Around 11 million children each year die around the world due to poverty and debt. This isn’t just Africa, this is America too. These kind of statistics usually only include children under the age of five. Sad, right?
These figures only scratch the surface of the struggles that these countries around the world face on a daily basis. Some of these countries were told by the IMF and the World Bank to pay around 20 to 25 percent of their export earning towards paying off their debts. Yet, no European country has been given the same treatment and are repaying their loans at a rate of around 4%.

Why should the African countries, who are the poorest have to do this. When countries like Britain, France and Spain who aren’t as poor get let off? The corrupt system is something that needs to be addressed and changed for any of the world’s debt problems to be fixed.

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How Much of Government Debt Am I Paying From My Wallet?

Very far from what should be, the cry of government debt seem not to concern us as individuals. The fact however, is that irrespective of how we see it, when the government has huge debt resting on its shoulders, it becomes a burden for all to bear. Directly or indirectly, big government debt affects our wallets in so many important ways.

This should be a lot concern as America approaches its debt limit of 14.294 trillion USD. Raising the debt ceiling further becomes an option but not without several impacts on the populace. Raising the debt ceiling causes buyers of treasury bonds who have always trusted in America’s ability to refund her debt and this results in increased interest rate which amounts to more tax. Yes! The taxes we pay are connected to the debt ceiling as well as the interest on America’s debt. America’s inability to borrow more money also means that some services which the government provides for people has to stop or at least be reduced. Apart from cutting services, this also implies that the government has to reduce its payroll and / or fix our taxes on the shortfall. Now, tell me how this does not come to affect you and me.

As America approaches this debt limit, bond rates are beginning to increase, likewise the interest rates on our mortgage loans, car loans, credit cards, student loans and many more. This supports the claim that even our personal debts are tied to the bond rates. Let’s even say that interest rates and taxes are not as shocking as we thought, another string that government debt pulls is on the everyday items we use, such as electronics, gas, clothes, and every other thing produced outside the borders of America. The value of the US dollar also decreases if the United States is unable to repay her debts and this weakness in our currency turns out to affect the price of foreign goods. Just as you can predict, foreign goods starts to cost more.

In case you still want to know why this should be so much of a concern to you, let me paint a picture. This huge debt can cause the government to stop in its act of carrying our certain responsibilities such as paying its contractors. If your family member should be working for such a contractor or even for his / her supplier, I guess this becomes close. The same contractor could also be one of the great employers you have around. This is starting to become the problem of many at least, but actually, it’s a problem for all because all parts of the economy are intertwined such that one relies on the other for one thing or the next. Let’s say the contractor decides to suspend the campaign it planned doing, this extends to the advertising company and those working under it. The television channel and newspapers may also begin to feel the pinch. All these result in a caution in spending and people start to spend less to save more. In response to people’s spending, stores also reduce employees’ working hours or even start to reduce the number of employees. Yes! This becomes epidemic.

This is where it affects you and I in our lives and in our wallets. It sounds unbearable, hence, our need to stay on guard and be concerned about how the country’s debt issues is managed.

Most Americans don’t like a big government, and this is one reason why.

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The Growing Epidemic of Diabetes in America

diabetesThe Land of Dreams Has Become the Land of Disease

Diabetes was once a disease contained to a particular group of the population – those who are overweight or those over the age of 50. Well, that has completely changed. The reaches of diabetes has spread to children as young as six, and men and women in their 20s, 30s, 40s, and beyond.

According to the Albert Einstein College of Medicine the United States has the third largest number of confirmed cases of diabetes in the world. There are a total of 26 million children and adults in the United States are diabetic – that is about 9% of the population. On top of that, there are almost 7 million more who are undiagnosed and a staggering 80 million who are prediabetic. These statistics are alarming.

The Effect of This Disease is Broad

The healthcare system in America is broken. Rising costs and rising health issues are leading to a burden on the system that just isn’t sustainable. Diabetes is a contributing factor to this issue. In addition the worldwide burden of diabetes is likely to increase dramatically over the next several decades due to an increase in the incidence as well as an improvement in how diabetes is detected.

Diabetes leads to higher healthcare costs. It is a burden on the economy due to decreased productivity and it is a burden on individuals and family who pay more for diabetic health insurance and diabetic life insurance.

The Effect of This Disease is Grows into the Future

One aspect of diabetes are the complications that come up over time due to the negative effect that high blood sugars have on the body. Diabetics with poor blood sugar control or diabetics who go undiagnosed for years often run into serious health issues over time as high glucose levels take its toll on the system.

The most prevalent complications that occur 5, 10, 20, 30 or more years down the line are heart disease, increased risk for stroke, neuropathy, retinopathy, kidney failure. Two of these complications can lead to even further problems. Neuropathy often ends up in limb amputation and retinopathy can very well lead to blindness.

When you take these long term complications into account, I think we are only beginning to feel the effects that diabetes has on the economy and healthcare system.

The American Lifestyle is a Contributing Factor

Let’s face it – Americans have a reputation for being lazy. We are known for immediate gratification, hence the popularity of fast food, and we are also known for wanting all the benefits without the work. So there is this mindset that we can eat anything we want and not have to deal with the consequences. Or we think there will be a magic pill that will solve all of our problems. This leads into a bigger issue – many people who are diagnosed with diabetes begin treatment and then remain stagnant with that diagnosis. They pop a pill and keep on eating and going on with life in the same manner. This is alarming when you consider that type 2 diabetes is completely preventable and reversible with changes to your diet and exercise.

Is There A Solution?

Diabetes is not an easy fix, but this trend of increased diagnosis’, increased costs and burden on the system, and other long term effects can be reversed if there is more attention and effort put into the real issue. Diabetes is not an issue of finding a better oral medication or a faster acting insulin or more accurate ways to test blood sugar.

No, a big part of solving the diabetes epidemic in America is addressing the mindset of a people who are accustomed to a lazy way of thinking and living, coupled with educating people about a proper diet. We live in a country where profits are more important than health and unhealthy foods are disguised in healthy packages. People don’t stand a chance.

It takes someone who is truly adamant about monitoring what goes in their body and someone who is willing to put in a little work to get their heart pumping in order to take care of their overall system.

Visit www.insurance4diabetics.com for more information about insurance related topics for diabetics and tips and articles on how to lower your A1C.

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Decongesting The City Roads

The roads in our cities are always congested with traffic jams and gridlocks that never seem to end. Most people would like to point fingers at the government and blame it for poor planning and management of traffic in cities but the sad news is that we are all to blame. Everyone has their own piece of the pie and it is high time that we changed things from the grassroots upwards. If we keep complaining and do nothing, nothing will ever change. Read on because below are a number of possibly provocative things that everyone can do to ease the cluttering on our city roads.

Eliminate Roadside Parking

Have you ever realized the amount of space that is occupied by the vehiclesparking on the side of the road? In most cases, there are parking spaces on both sides meaning there could be two new lanes on that road. There should be parking facilities that drivers can use to park their vehicles at a far distance and access the city through public transportion. This is more on the government part since it is required to initiate the programs that will see the end of roadside parking in the city.

Shift To Public Transportation

It is just amazing to look at traffic and realize how many private cars are stuck in the jam with only one person in them. Look at it this way, a line of 30 cars is long enough to cause a mini traffic jam; on the other hand, all the drivers of these vehicles can fit in one bus, thus significantly reducing the space covered by the cars. People have continuously ignored facts such as high fuel costs, pollution and traffic jams all of which are caused by driving individual cars into the city. Taking public transport can cut traffic jams by more than 50% and this would also reduce the carbon dioxide emissions.


boys and girls bikes

Riding a bike is a healthy way to get to your destination. While most people live only a short distance from their workplace, they opt to take the car which at the end of the day, costs them a lot in fuel and wastes time in traffic jams. Riding a bike will give you access to routes that will get you to your destination faster and more efficiently. Unlike vehicles, bikes do not occupy large spaces in parking and they are generally cheap in both purchasing and maintenance. The good thing is that everyone is taken care of since there are both boys and girls bikes available.

What Should The Government Do?

The government should be in the forefront to create awareness and encourage people to use public transportation. There should be measures to improve the public transportation sector and make the terminals more accessible. On matters related to bike riding there should also be encouragement to ride bikes for short distances instead of driving. In terms of infrastructure, there should be more bike paths that will provide a safe route for cyclists. These measures combined with others can greatly help in the reduction of congestions on city roads and improve the status of our cities.

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Being Healthy at the Workplace – is Salary More Important than Health?

For years, there has been a constant battle in the workplace between finding a balance between health and salary. Many employees have different perspectives in this regard. Some employees strongly propose that health is tantamount to their survival within the workplace. On the other hand, others are adamant that salary is their ‘bread and butter’ and they’d take a pay raise anytime, without giving much thought to their health.  Since workforce diversity does matter to an organization, different individuals are respected for their disposition. The reality is, while there are contradicting views about this subject, both health and salary is important for the development of employees.

Health is Wealth

Health is the state of being free from injuries or sickness. Many employees consider a simple allergic reaction as unhealthy and will use that opportunity to dodge work because their health is of utmost importance. Despite this, there are some organizations with a reputation for prioritizing profits over employee wellness. This type of business environment deters many well-qualified candidates. Whether you’re a business administrator or a human resources manager, health should be a priority. In fact, these well-qualified people believe that their health is the key to their success and earning a higher salary. This is taken from the notion that if they’re not sick then they’re able to work and be more productive. However, if they are sick then they won’t be able to work which would inevitably cause them and their company money.

More Money

Many employees prefer to earn significantly more money at the sacrifice of their health. In fact, some live by this principle. If you want your employees to work hard, give them more money or heavily compensate them and you’ll have them giving it their all.

For example, the average business administration salary in the United States is about $90,000 a year. You can’t expect the business administrator to give it their all if you’re compensating them the average salary. Pay wages above the average and you can expect your employees to work considerably harder.

Individuals in this group are more than willing to sacrifice their health, among other things, to earn a higher income. While this can be great in terms of productivity while they’re at work, they are more prone to getting sick due to lack of self-care.

So which is More Important?

In some regards, salary and health works hand-in-hand. If an individual is handsomely paid, they’re more likely to be happier than the average person who’s not able to make ends meet and has to work two jobs. When an employee is not able to adequately provide for his or her family, they’re subjected to stress which in turn makes them vulnerable to various health issues. On the other hand, if an individual is in a healthy environment, they’re more incentivized to work harder knowing that their employer actually cares about them. So which is more important and better off for everyone? It seems pretty clear.

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Pregnancy and Politics of Women’s Bodies

While standing in line at a local café, I wondered if I would get some unsolicited advice. I’m pregnant and I’ve heard plenty of stories from other pregnant friends about getting yelled at by strangers for ordering coffee. One friend said that she was questioned at the gym while running on the treadmill during her pregnancy. Still, these annoying moments barely touch the core of a grave problem in this country. Women’s bodies are under control by the government.

While the rights of pregnant women are declining in the country, forced caps on the number of children a woman can have if they are on welfare continues to dictate of how a family grows. Lawmakers are playing a dangerous game if they can decide how many children a couple can have and which women can get pregnant. They should be ensuring that every woman can make her own decisions about what’s best for her family.

In the past decade, many laws have been passed with the goal of making it harder to have an abortion by closing clinics and increasing costs. Many of these laws get plenty of attention such as Virginia’s mandatory ultrasound law but there are hundreds of other laws that do not get the attention they deserve.
Politicians that are against abortion try to pass bans that deny healthcare coverage of abortions to make it unaffordable to women who need one or want one. At the federal level, politicians have made the coverage obsolete for women on Medicaid or Medicare or women who work for the government as well as Native American women and women in prison.

This is just as bad, or maybe worse, than the state laws that limit insurance coverage. At the moment, 20 states deny abortion coverage for plans offered through state health insurance exchanges established in 2014. Eight states ban coverage in private insurance plans as well. Eighteen states cut abortion coverage for insurance plans for public employees while thirty-five states deny women coverage through the state Medicaid program.

The numbers don’t tell the entire story about how many women are affected by these laws. The main point is that these laws are unjust obstacles for low-income women who can’t afford a child and already face significant barriers to health care.

They are working overtime trying to make ends meet and can’t pull together any extra money for their own medical expenses, let alone expenses for a pregnancy, a birth and eventually a child. I know I don’t want to live in a country that restricts access to abortions for women who need them.

I also don’t agree that the government should be deciding who can or can’t have a baby. It is simply not the place of the government to be involved in our personal lives. These laws being passed are not just intrusive but also dangerous and insulting. They punish women and push a right wing agenda that not everyone agrees with.

Instead of making decisions for women, we should be committing to improve healthcare options for pregnant women and provide education women so they can make their own decisions about their future. We need laws that respect women and give them health coverage for an entire range of pregnancy related care including birth control, fertility, pregnancy tests, maternity, abortion and prenatal care. This will give women the power and ability to protect their families and raise their children in a healthy and nurturing environment.

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Have a Blog? Here’s How You Can Help Start a Grassroots Movement

blogThe decision to enter the world of politics is a big one because it is going to involve a lot of work, and everyone in the world is going to want to know about your personal business. While anyone wanting to make the world a better place should be considered a hero, the fact is that a dream of becoming a politician will be a short lived on without the proper kind of support from people who have the same goals that you do. The best way to get political support, and the help of people around you, is to develop a grassroots movement that will bring you all the help you need.

The Grassroots Movement Step-By-Step Instructions:

• Step one setting a clear goal: often times, we set ambitious goals in life. When presented with a discomfort or discontent, we create a vision to escape or move to a more positive place. On a personal note, I was a huge car love growing up (and I still am). After years of owning my red Chevy Cavalier, my family and friends’ complaints were SO loud that it was time to get an upgrade. However, rather than just give up and give in, which is what everyone was telling me to do, I created the vision to restore and refurbish the car top to bottom.

To upgrade the car, I wrote down clear ideas of what I wanted out of a new look and why I wanted it. I took my Cav to a professional mechanic, who was not both an expert on a car’s engine and transmission, but also an expert on the car’s look and style. Along with tuning up my baby, he suggested pain recommendations where to buy car rims, a whole new stereo system, and other things that turned my boring old jalopy into a hip stylish car that will be the envy of everyone on the road.

Though a grassroots political movement is not the same thing as refurbishing a car with a new paint job and shiny new wheels, I still had a crystal clear goal in mind before taking my car to the shop. In order to begin any political campaign, you have to have a clear goal in mind, and that goal is what you will be talking to people about that you want to join your campaign.

• With that goal in mind, the next thing to do is gain public support. In order to get people on your side, you have to make speeches all over your local city and state. Any successful grassroots movement campaign needs people, and in order to get them, you are going to have to convince people to join your campaign. If you just happen to be shy, or have a problem with public speaking, you need to get over it because you will need to have excellent communication skills in order to inspire people to get involved with politics. Furthermore, once you are elected, you will be regularly appearing in public and speaking to large crowds (on second thought, if you have a fear of public speaking, politics problem isn’t for you!) Politicians have to speak all of the time, and you better get used to it now.

The Internet Is Your Friend When It Comes To Getting Your Message Out:

You are not going to be alone in your quest for a certain political office, and what is going to make the difference between your campaign, and the other candidates running, is the fact that you are embracing all aspects of media — including the Internet. With the help of the Internet, you will have a personal platform to outline your entire campaign, and also a means to communicate your stance on all of the very important issues that your constituency cares about.

With your grassroots movement, many of your supporters (particularly younger folks) will be computer-savvy, so they can take care of the internet marketing aspect of your campaign. Some candidates may be afraid of the Internet because they do not get it, but you can surround yourself with people that can help you understand it and take full advantage of its power.

Grassroots movements are an important part of politics, and the politician or business that uses this movement to further their cause has not only gotten in touch with his or her supporters, but has also set up a foundation of people that will continue to support that politician as they go up the political ladder. To see a great example of this in action, check out Tesla Motors’ appeal of government regulations on their company blog.

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Why Did the FDA Ban Some Pre-workout Supplements Lately?

Nowadays, a large percentage of people take a pre-workout supplement or drink a pre-workout energy drink, a few minutes before starting their workout routine to increase their energy levels and maximize their training results. Many of these pre-workout supplements contain creatine, arginine, taurine and/or caffeine. These preworkout ingredients are stimulatory bioactive compounds that can promote energy production. However, lately the FDA has prohibited the use of many ingredients found in most of pre-workout supplements including methylhexanamine, which is also referred to as DMAA.

DMAA was recently proven to have some potentially harmful effects on the heart and blood vessels. It can increase the heart rate, constrict the blood vessels and increase the blood pressure to disastrous levels that could precipitate heart attacks. The FDA has received more than 100 reports that linked the sudden deaths of young athletes to the consumption of some pre-workout supplements and drinks. Moreover, there is evidence that DMAA can increase the risk of developing abnormal nervous symptoms and psychiatric disorders.

Pre-workout supplements and bodybuilding products containing DMAA were pulled off the shelves in December. DMAA has been under heightened scrutiny since DMAA was detected in the blood of two soldiers who died from heart attacks at a US military base. The list of DMAA containing supplements that were banned by the FDA includes:

- OxyELITE Pro by UPSlabs
- Jack3d by USPlabs
- Muscle Spike
- HydroxyStim by MuscleTech
- Matador Extreme Energy
- NOX Pump by Dorian Yates Nutrition

Although the FDA ordered all DMAA containing pre-workout supplements to be pulled off the shelves, you can still find some of these supplements sold here and there, so you have to be careful and read the ingredients’ label well, before deciding to take any supplement. You have to know that DMAA and its derivatives have numerous terms. Some of the most common DMAA synonyms include methylhexaneamine or MHA, 1,3 dimethylamine, dimethylpentylamine or DMP, geranamine, 4 methylhexan 2 amine and geranium oil, stems, leaves and extract. The following is a list of all the terms that are used to describe DMAA, so always check that your pre-workout supplement doesn’t contain any of them:

- synthetic geranium
- Pentylamine
- Pelargonium (various)
- Methylhexaneamine (MHA)
- Methylhexanamine
- Methexaminum
- Metexaminum
- Geranium stems and leaves
- Geranium oil extract
- Geranium oil
- Geranium flower extract
- Geranium extract
- GeranaX
- Geranamine (Proviant™)
- Fouramin
- Forthane
- Forthan
- Floradrene
- dimethylpentylamine (DMP)
- dimethylamylamine (DMAA)
- CAS 105-41-9
- C7H17N (chemical formula)
- 4-methylhexan-2-amine (IUPAC)
- 4-methyl-2-hexylamine
- 4-methyl-2-hexanamine
- 2-hexanamine,4-methyl-(9Cl)
- 2-amino-4-methylhexane
- 1,3-dimethylpentylamine
- 1,3-dimethylamylamine

If you are looking for an option that does not contain DMAA, that you might want to try Cellucor C4. Although the idea of taking a pre-workout supplement that can boost your energy and increase your performance at the gym is quite appealing, the recently discovered lethal side effects of some of these supplements are rather disappointing. However, sleeping well before your training session and eating a healthy diet can help increase your energy levels during training and maximize results without having to take such potentially dangerous supplements.

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