The views and opinions expressed below are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the position of the GCN Live newsroom. A guest editorial follows.
The views and opinions expressed below are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the position of the GCN Live newsroom. A guest editorial follows.
God grants liberty only to those who love it, and are always ready to guard and defend it. – Daniel Webster 1834
This past week, I received an email from a radio show listener in response to what President Donald Trump promised that he would do and what it is that he has actually done. This listener simply was telling me not to “bear false witness” with the President’s accomplishments, which in fact, have not been fulfilled.
I thought that Americans were raised to know that actions speak a lot louder than words (1 John 3:18).
If you remember right, President Donald Trump promised on the campaign trail to bring forth the “rule of law,” as well as promised to ask his Attorney General to appoint a special prosecutor to look into Hillary Clinton’s long list of crimes.
However, immediately after winning the White House, he tells the American people that they owe Hillary Clinton a major debt of gratitude for her service to this country. That is the opposite of what he promised to do if he were to win office.
We continue to watch the crimes of the Clinton crime family come to the surface (Luke 12:2).
Mr. “It is going to be soooo easy” acts as if he does not have the power to enforce the law?
Now, the neutered President is acting as if he did not have the power to prosecute corruption when it comes to the Clintons, or any other corrupt politician. He recently stated:
“Hillary Clinton can illegally get the questions to the debate and delete 33,000 emails, but my son is being scorned by the Fake News media?”
Here is the kicker. The second part of this email that was sent to me stated that secularist and radio show host Mark Levin said last week on his show that President Trump cannot force the DOJ to prosecute Hillary.
Isn’t it interesting that they want to believe that they can, at will, send your boys over to fight unconstitutional wars on their behalf, to clean out some “monstrous dictator” in some third world country who is filling the coffers of the military industrial complex, but the President cannot deal with corruption within? These actors are simply protecting their own, period!
I’m humored at the willful ignorance of the American people that forsake their own mercies (Jonah 2:4) by straining at the gnat and swallowing the big camel.
It reminds me of Marcus Cicero who said,
“Do not blame Caesar, blame the people of Rome who have rejoiced in their loss of freedom who hail him when he speaks in the Forum of more security, more living fatly at the expense of the industrious.”
Our Forefathers countered this ignorance with statements like:
“If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude greater than the animating contest for freedom, go home from us in peace. We seek not your counsel, nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you. May your chains set lightly upon you; and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen.” – Samuel Adams
Maybe Mark Levin just happened to overlook The United States Constitution where it clearly states:
Article 2, Section 4
The President, Vice President and ALL civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.
Or maybe Mark Levin didn’t take the time to seek out the definition of the word treason?
TREASON is the highest crime of a civil nature of which a man can be guilty. Its signification is different in different countries. In general, it is the offense of attempting to overthrow the government of the state to which the offender owes allegiance, or of betraying the state into the hands of a foreign power. -Webster’s 1828 Dictionary
When you look again to the founding documents, namely the Constitution, you will find that treason is a highlighted crime.
Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort.
Some might say that the good thing is, we still have Trey Gowdy, Jason Chaffetz and Daryl Issa!
They are doing such a good job prosecuting corruption within their own ranks that we still have Harry Reid, Barrack Hussein Obama, Eric Holder, Diane Feinstein, Loretta Lynch, Maxine Waters, Susan Rice, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Huma Abedin, Hillary Clinton and list goes on and on and on and on (Exodus 23:8).
The definition of insanity is doing the same things over and over again expecting to reap a different result (Galatians 6:7).
Don’t forget that the likes of Mark Levin, Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, etc. feed the unconstitutional narrative of the liberals vs. conservatives, left vs. the right, the Democrats vs. Republicans. The way they get away with this and hang on to their jobs is to simply omit reference to God, His moral Law and the Constitution of the United States (Mark 3:25).
Instead of taking responsibility and educating the American people, they simply play the self-elevated professors of Herod’s corrupt governmental indoctrination (Mark 8:15).
They are simply getting you to ask the wrong questions without giving you the right answers, making void the commandments of God through the tradition of carnal and reprobate men (Mark 7:13).
Maybe those who have not taken the time to look to history need to start looking and understanding that Republics (Rule of Law not of men or of the opinions of men) have been destroyed for the lack of impeachment and consequence within when it comes to representatives in their governments.
Do not separate text from historical background. If you do, you will have perverted and subverted the Constitution, which can only end in a distorted, bastardized form of illegitimate government. – James Madison
With that said, how did our Forefathers deal with corruption within?
Benedict Arnold was thought to be a patriot. Yet, when exposed, he was found to be a man that committed high treason against his own country.
In July 1780, Arnold sought and obtained command of the fort at West Point. He had already begun a year-long correspondence with General Henry Clinton (of all the names) in New York through Major Andre and was closely involved with Beverley Robinson, a prominent loyalist (Loyal to the British crown) in command of a loyalist regiment. Arnold offered to hand the fort over to the British for close to $3 million dollars in 2017 dollars and a brigadier’s commission.
He chose West Point for its strategic importance. The Americans had been using its position to prevent British ships from moving Northward from New York City up the Hudson and connecting British forces in Canada-a move that would have split the north from the south. His plans were thwarted when Andre was captured September 23, 1780 with a pass signed by Arnold. Andre was carrying documents that disclosed the plot and which incriminated Arnold. Andre was later hanged as a spy.
America, do as The Lord commands!
“Hate the evil, and love the good, and establish judgment in the gate:” -Amos 5:15
If Americans truly want their country back, they are going to have to teach evil people to fear the consequences of their actions!
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GenCon. Sixty thousand attendees. Several thousand unique role playing games, table top board games and PC and console computer games. Several hundred vendors & dealers from all over the world running free demos of their games and selling more bloody games than you can shake a stick at. GenCon is the largest tabletop game convention in the world and this year marks its fiftieth anniversary.
But it wasn’t always the behemoth game convention it is today. In fact, Gen Con’s origin story is quite humble. And it all starts with the father of Dungeons and Dragons himself -- Mr. Gary Gygax.
Gen Con 0 - 1967 - Location: The home of Gary Gygax, Lake Geneva, WI. Approx. Attendance: 12
Gary Gygax is the co-creator of the well known role playing game, Dungeons and Dragons but a few years before he helped write D&D, he was known in the small, but fierce, miniature tactical war gaming scene. I don’t want to get bogged down detailing too much Gygax history, instead I want to focus more on the history of GenCon. But they do intertwine. Here is an excellent piece detailing Gygax’s life and the history of D&D -- Wired’s, Dungeon Master: The Life and Legacy of Gary Gygax.
GenCon, was named after Lake Geneva, where Gygax lived. To my understanding there are no known pictures of GenCon O where Gygax invited some friends over to his pad, and they played miniature tactical war-games. For those unfamiliar with the idea -- a game involving two six sided dice and a whole bunch of miniature soldiers. Players took turns moving the miniatures closer to the opposing player and then using dice rolls to determine if a soldier “hit” or “missed” with its attack. This process repeats until one side has no soldiers left.
The following year Gygax decided to shell out fifty bucks and rent a room in his hometown’s Horticultural Hall, charging folks $1 to attend. The first official GenCon was born! Gygax made just enough money from attendance to cover the cost of renting the hall.
(GenCon 1, 1968)
From then on GenCon increased in attendance -- almost every year. There was a dip in attendance here and there but for the most part, a steady incline. Through word of mouth, people came from all over WI and then from near by states -- to game. For almost the entire first decade of GenCon it was at the Horticultural Hall in Lake Geneva, but once or twice was held elsewhere.
It wasn’t until Gygax and Dave Arneson co-create Dungeons & Dragons, that the convention really took off. D&D wasn’t a typical miniature tactical war game. It had a lot of similar aspects - you roll dice to determine specific outcomes and there was a lot of strategy involved in the combat but there was a huge, important distinction between the two -- in D&D you got to create and play -- a character. You could create an elf, or a dwarf or you could become a warrior or a rogue or a magic user. And the more times you played your character, the tougher that character became! This idea of "a character" and the advancement of your character become the core of all role playing games to follow.
Gygax formed Tactical Studies Rules (TSR, inc) to publish the smash hit D&D, modules for D&D, supplemental material and even a magazine about D&D called, "The Dragon" -- later changed to "Dragon." D&D sold out again and again and again. And more people kept coming to Gary Gygax’s GenCon to play D&D. GenCon quickly outgrew the Horticultural Hall and for several years was run at the University of Wisconsin, Parkside. The attendance of the convention had grown to two, sometimes three thousand people. And not just to play D&D, there were other role playing games (RPG) that appeared -- Boot Hill (a western RPG co-created by Gygax), Champions (super hero RPG), Gamma World (post apocalyptic RPG), Star Frontiers (Space opera RPG), Top Secret (spy thriller RPG) and many others. (Yes, I've played them all!).
But D&D was always the largest, the most well know and, sadly, the most targeted. Religious organizations all over the country spoke out against D&D claiming it was the work of the devil and that it taught children how to cast magic spells and consort with demons and / or would possess your child. Fear mongering, religious silliness, all of it.
Dave Arneson, co-creator of D&D had a charming response to the controversy: “Invite parents to play. They’re going to be so bored. They will understand that anything this nerdy can’t possible lead to devil possession.”
Dave Arneson for the win.
But the bad publicity only got more kids interested and in the mid eighties D&D was so popular the number of folks attending the premiere D&D convention in the country, GenCon, doubled.
The University of Wisconsin, Parkside was unable to house so many attendees. A new venue had to be found. STAT!
Gen Con 18 - 1985 - Location: MECCA (Milwaukee Exposition & Convention Center & Arena), Milwaukee, WI. Approx. Attendance: 5000
Throughout its early years GenCon expanded into other states - GenCon South (FL), GenCon East (NJ), GenCon West (CA) and even to other continents but none of them lasted more than a few years. GenCon Midwest kept growing.
Enter MECCA. An actual convention center for a convention that started, figuratively speaking, in Gary Gygax’s basement. Now, with room to expand at the MECCA, attendance rapidly doubled from five to ten thousand.
By 1992, GenCon’s twenty-fifth birthday, I had finally heard about it. I had been gaming since kindergarten -- approx. 1978. I started with D&D, then moved on to the superhero role playing game, Champions, and then later in high school was introduced to the horror themed role playing game, Call of Cthulhu -- based on the writings of H.P. Lovecraft.
By 1993 I was attending GenCon. From that point on, year after year, friends and I would make the drive to beer scented Milwaukee for a week of games. It was glorious. Attendance at the con was now fifteen to twenty thousand strong. Then, in 1997 a company called, Wizard’s of the Coast bought GenCon from TSR.
By then, Gary Gygax was old and very ill and had not been in charge of TSR for a long time. So, he really had nothing more to do with the convention he created.
Wizard’s of the Coast was the company that created the extremely popular customizable card game, Magic: The Gathering. In 1999, Hasbro bought Wizard’s of the Coast. So now the multinational toy and board game company that created the iconic Monopoly board game, owned GenCon. BUT THEN -- in 2002, Peter Adkison, former CEO of Wizard’s of the Coast, buys GenCon from Hasbro. So the convention is back in the hands of a gamer. A very, very rich gamer. (Adkison continues to own GenCon).
The convention continued to grow and by 2002 it was clear that Milwaukee no longer had the hotel capacity to house the twenty-five or thirty thousand attendees.
It was time for GenCon to move. Again.
Gen Con 36 - 2003 - Location: Indiana Convention Center, Indianapolis, IN. Approx. Attendance: 25000.
GenCon moved to Indianapolis. The very same city home of the Indy 500, which boasts one hundred thousand attendees so, of course the city should be easily able to absorb GenCon’s "meager" thirty thousand gamers. And then GenCon expanded. Suddenly it was not only at the Indy Convention Center, it’s was also at all the surrounding hotels and halls and expo centers and every single scrap of open building space within a several block radius of the ICC.
GenCon Indy quickly went from thirty thousand attendees to forty and now sixty. Every August, sixty thousand gamers descend on Indy for one week to hang out with other gamers and play games. Sixty thousand people have put tens of billions of dollars, possibly more, into the Indy economy.
And it’s all because Gary Gygax started GenCon 0 in 1968. In his basement.
Gen Con 50 - 2017 - Location: Indiana Convention Center, Indianapolis, IN. Estimated Attendance: 65000.
Which brings me to the end. I am packing and will be off to GenCon soon. I have games to play. I have friends to see. Friends from other states that I only get to visit with once a year, at GenCon. In fact it’s safe to say that the overwhelming majority of friends I have is because Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson created D&D.
Most of the long term friends I have -- I met at gaming halls, or game conventions, or game days in the basement of a VFW, or in the gaming section at a bookstore or at an actual game store. Perhaps role playing games would have evolved, without Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson. Perhaps they would have evolved another way from other people.
It’s very likely. But, it doesn’t matter because it did evolve from Gary Gygax and Dave Arneson and Dungeons and Dragons. And it's because of those three names that I’m a gamer. And that’s why I’m going to GenCon.
Gary Gygax died in 2008, Mr. Arneson in 2009, both from complications of cancer. I never met either one. But their legacy lives on. D&D is now in its fifth edition. It's published in dozens of languages all over the world. And it will be heavily featured this year at GenCon 50.
And I will be there, at GenCon -- where it will be just me -- and sixty five thousand of my closest friends.
Mr. Gygax, Mr. Arneson -- rest in peace.
And thank you, for the imagination. And the stories. And the memories -- past and future.
Comcast’s cable television, telephone, and internet arm, Xfinity, has entered the mobile phone leasing industry. You can now lease a smartphone from Xfinity Mobile.
The move likely comes as no surprise to Xfinity customers, who provide 16 million public wifi hotspots available to every other Xfinity customer in the United States. And it makes sense for Xfinity to take advantage of its network of public wifi hotspots made available by its customers for their customers.
While there were plenty of complaints from customers whose rented wireless routers were used by the company to broadcast public signals to other Xfinity customers, Xfinity allows customers to disable the public signal, despite how difficult the process might have been in the past. Customers who don’t disable the public signals are basically sharing internet bandwidth for which they pay with their fellow Xfinity customers -- a socialized hotspot network, if you will.
When you connect to a public Xfinity wifi hotspot for the first time, you’ll be asked to enter your Xfinity email and password to verify that you are a member of the Xfinity party. Your mobile device will then connect to every Xfinity wifi hotspot within range automatically (unless you deactivate auto-connect). This helps Xfinity customers use less data and save money, which was exactly what the Xfinity customer service representative echoed.
“Our plans are designed specifically to save you money,” he said. And I believe him because Xfinity Mobile offers a single gigabyte of data for just $12. It’s website states you could save anywhere from $40 per month when you switch from T-Mobile and $90 per month when switching from AT&T with their $12 per gigabyte of data plan.
According to 20SomethingFinance.com’s Jan. 2017 report, only Freedom Pop offers a cheaper mobile data plan (it’s free up to 500 texts, 200 minutes and 500 MB). Republic Wireless plans start at $15 per month for unlimited talk and text but no mobile data. Republic offers 1 GB of mobile data for $20 per month.
Xfinity Mobile is going to reap the benefits of people pinching pennies due to rising costs for rent, energy and transportation, prescription drugs and health insurance, and cable and internet services. Hell, the newly appointed Republican head of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), Ajit Pai, doesn’t think people need high-speed internet service anymore because mobile data is good enough, making it more expensive for rural America to get online.
Xfinity is attempting to take advantage of a market that’s been underserved -- the poor. Even poor people need to get online, and while many have access to public wifi hotspots made available through their municipality, library or McDonald’s, not all of them have high-speed access to the internet at all times in their own homes. Xfinity Mobile can give them that without a $50-per-month internet bill or $100-per-month cable bill.
I didn’t have much of a choice when it came to internet service providers in my area. Xfinity was the only provider in my area that offered upload and download speeds that would allow me to do what I need to do everyday.
I had a terrible experience having Xfinity internet installed. While I bought my own modem and router, and had the self-installation kit sent to my house, no one bothered to check and see if my cable line was internet ready or capable of receiving a signal. It took weeks to get setup, but Xfinity made it right.
It’s going to be difficult for me to pass up on this deal now that I’m an Xfinity customer. While you can’t bring your own phone to Xfinity Mobile yet, I’m probably due for an upgrade, and since I don’t pay a mobile carrier currently, I’m in the perfect situation to be an early adopter.
I don’t even need to make calls or send texts. There are apps for that. But what I’d really like is to be able to use Google Maps with or without an Xfinity wifi hotspot. Hotspots are hard to come by when you’re driving in traffic at 70 miles per hour, and the last thing I want is for anyone to be fumbling with their phone while driving.
One gigabyte of data per month would be just enough to use my smartphone as a GPS and occasionally check email without wifi. That’s all I need, and I’m willing to pay $144 per year for something that cost me $540 per year with StraightTalk Wireless before I dumped them. I was paying $600 per year with Verizon Wireless before that, so mobile data is becoming more available to low-income Americans thanks to Xfinity Mobile.
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The CDC reports 3.4 million Americans suffer from epilepsy based on their 2015 data. This number rose from 2.3 million in 2010. 470,000 of these cases are children.
According to their website, the CDC reports 1.2% of the population suffers from “active epilepsy.” Active epilepsy is defined in adults as those having one or more seizures in the past year and requiring medication daily to control them. In children it means they currently have a seizure disorder.
The exact explanation for the rise in cases is unclear, however population growth and improved testing has been cited.
A seizure occurs when there is abnormal electrical activity in the brain. If the electricity doesn’t conduct properly, brain function gets disrupted. This could lead to convulsions (involuntary jerking movements), loss of muscle tone, changes in senses such as vision, hearing and smell, loss of bladder control, loss of consciousness and sometimes stroke, brain damage and death.
Epilepsy and seizures can be caused by a multitude of factors including genetics, brain trauma, tumors, infection, damage during birth, and stroke.
Data has been limited linking seizure activity to cell phone use. However, some studies have found a modest link.
In 2016, Kouchaki et al tested mobile phone radiation in mice and concluded “continued and prolonged contact with the mobile phone radiation might increase the risk of seizure attacks and should be limited.”
Also in 2016, a study published in Epilepsy and Behavior by Tatum et al found texting to induce a “new type of brain rhythm.”
In 2013, Cinar et al examined the effects of electromagnetic waves (EMWs) on humans and suggested the following, “acute exposure to EMW may facilitate epileptic seizures, which may be independent of EMW exposure time. This information might be important for patients with epilepsy. Further studies are needed.”
In 2006, Ferreri et al found mobile phone “emissions” to increase human brain excitability, implying this could affect those with epilepsy.
More research therefore needs to be done investigating why epilepsy cases are on the rise and if cell phone radiation plays any role.
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Daliah Wachs, MD, FAAFP is a Board Certified Family Physician. The Dr. Daliah Show , is nationally syndicated M-F from 11:00 am - 2:00 pm and Saturday from Noon-1:00 pm (all central times) at GCN.