Lawmakers Call for Investigation of Millionaires Enrolling in Medicaid

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Melissa Quinn writes in the Daily Signal: Conservative lawmakers say Congress should investigate the number of millionaires who qualify for and enroll in government-sponsored health insurance under Obamacare, a trend exposed in a Daily Signal report earlier this week. At the monthly Capitol Hill event Conversations with Conservatives, lawmakers in attendance discussed a recent Daily Signal report involving people with high net worths who legally enroll in Medicaid, and Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., suggested the “loophole” should receive further congressional scrutiny. “This is what happens. You open the door. You don’t do your verification. You don’t know who is coming into the program, and yes, you’re going to see a program like this balloon and get out of control quickly,” Blackburn said when asked if Congress should investigate the findings. “Is it an issue? Yes. It was an issue for TennCare, it will be an issue for Obamacare.” Similarly, Darin Miller, spokesman for Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, told The Daily Signal the congressman would be “open to investigating the [Medicaid] expansions that allow this sort of thing to happen.” “This is just another reason why Obamacare needs to be repealed,” he said. You can read the rest of the story
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Debate Moderators Squeeze Dr. Ben Carson For Time

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GREENVILLE, South Carolina — In the past two GOP presidential debates, Dr. Ben Carson has received less questions—therefore less time on primetime highly-watched television to lay out his policy vision for America—than his opponents in what’s a disturbingly high trend. At the last debate before the Iowa caucuses, moderated by the Fox News Channel, Carson was asked just five questions according to an analysis of the last two debates his campaign provided to Breitbart News. He had no rebuttals, and zero follow-up questions from moderators. Compare that with Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), the winner of the caucuses, who got six questions, five rebuttals, and two follow-up questions from moderators. Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL), who finished in third place but was polling worse than that, got seven questions from moderators, five rebuttals, and three follow-up questions from moderators. Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush—who finished worse than Carson in the caucuses back in sixth place to Carson’s fourth place—got seven questions and two rebuttals, compared with zero follow-up questions from moderators. Donald Trump, the billionaire and national frontrunner who finished second in Iowa, skipped the debate before the caucuses. It’s also worth noting that even though Carson was polling in fourth in
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Clinton Spox: Fmr Obama DIA Head Flynn’s Clinton Denunciations ‘Silly’

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Clinton Campaign National Spokesperson Brian Fallon argued that the former head of the DIA under President Obama, retired U.S. Army Lt. General Michael Flynn’s denunciations of Clinton were “silly” and the investigation should “be allowed to continue without political interference and without side commentary from people that don’t have an understanding of the fundamental facts” on Friday’s broadcast of CNN’s “The Lead with Jake Tapper.” Fallon said, “Well, that’s just silly. I respect the general, but that’s not going to happen. Look, this investigation, this review into the security of the emails, should be allowed to continue without political interference and without side commentary from people that don’t have an understanding of the fundamental facts. And just last week, you saw the same situation unfurl with former Secretary Colin Powell, as well as former aides to Secretary Condoleezza Rice. In both of those two cases, you now have the same agency looking at their emails, personal emails ,and saying that there is information that, in retrospect, they think should be treated as classified. The exact same situation playing out in the two previous secretaries before Secretary Clinton. So I think that tells you everything about the relative seriousness of this.
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How Decentralized Applications Could Bring the Blockchain to New Industries

This is a guest post by Michael Gord and the opinions represented are those of the author.

From socializing to hailing a cab to finding our way around, there’s an app to help. Now, there is a new and improved model that is revolutionizing the way we build scalable applications called a DApp, or decentralized application.

David Johnston, CEO of the DApp Fund, predicts in his white paper that “decentralized applications will someday surpass the world’s largest software corporations in utility, user-base, and network valuation due to their superior incentivization structure, flexibility, transparency, resiliency and distributed nature.”

What Is a DApp?

A DApp has four characteristics. It must be open source, with all changes made by a majority consensus of the user base. Data must be stored on a public blockchain to avoid a central point of failure. There must be a cryptographic token, referred to as an App Coin, to access the application, and these tokens must be issued according to a standard cryptographic algorithm acting as a proof of the value to nodes that contribute to the application.

Bitcoin is an example of a DApp, as it is an open-source token and uses the blockchain, a peer-to-peer and public distributed ledger, to form a trustless system. In fact, Bitcoin is the most popular DApp, as it simplifies many aspects of the traditional financial system, such as transferring money across the world.

Another application of a DApp is something built as a protocol that uses another blockchain and its own token to function. An example is the Omni Protocol, which “is a protocol built as a layer over Bitcoin that allows you to generate, send, trade, redeem, pay dividends to and make bets with tokens representing any kind of asset,” said Patrick Dugan, who’s a board member of the project, in an interview with Bitcoin.com.

Alternatively, a DApp can be built as an extension to the program. For example the SAFE Network, a peer-to-peer storage network, uses the Omni Protocol to issue “safecoins,” which operate the network. With the SAFE Network, decentralized applications are ensured complete data security, and there are projects such as SAFEpress, similar to WordPress, for the SAFE Network, to help people develop on the Network.

Imagine a DApp becoming the computer operating system (OSX or Windows), the programs used on the system (Photoshop, Dropbox), or specialized software that uses the programs, such as a blog that integrates Dropbox. Bitcoin is only the tip of the iceberg of what is possible with this new type of application.

Can App Coins Have Value?

David Johnston and team define App Coins in another white paper as “tokens that are native to Decentralized applications that have a digital token associated with their use or monetization.”

Tokens can also be developed to behave in a way that Bitcoin cannot, at least for the time being. A Javascript-based programming library called Solidity and another Python-based library called Serpent allow decentralized applications to be built on Ethereum.

In addition, networks can choose to operate exclusively with their network’s coin, such as the safecoin that powers the SAFE Network. Doing anything on the SAFE Network requires safecoins, and developing on the SAFE Network provides additional value to developers.

“I want to host my apps on SAFE and not have to worry about servers,” said Francis Brunelle to Bitcoin Magazine. Brunelle is an app developer and enthusiastic community member who predicts that “safecoins will be valuable because it will be the only way to buy storage space on the SAFE Network.”

A strong user base on an application can be reinforced through a successful integration of App Coins. An application that rewards contributing developers and lead users with tokens that have a monetary value has an intrinsic advantage over one that does not. Furthermore, a large user base that uses an App Coin presents a barrier to exiting to a competing service with a less popular coin.

Finally, App Coins provide monetary choice as an alternative to both fiat currency and to Bitcoin. People have different opinions on monetary policies, especially with the rise of digital currencies. App Coins can adopt any number of monetary viewpoints and allow everyone a vote to their preferred economic policy.

The Consumer Future

DApps will likely soon become “consumer apps,” as there are already many in development. The Safe Network decentralizes Internet services and guarantees privacy to all Internet users. Ethereum provides a decentralized application layer and programming language for DApps to be developed.

Factom is a scalable data layer that simplifies big data management record-keeping. Augur is a decentralized prediction market that allows people to forecast events and be rewarded.

As Johnston says in Johnston’s Law: “Everything that can be decentralized, will be decentralized.”

The post How Decentralized Applications Could Bring the Blockchain to New Industries appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.


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Former Defense Intel Head Flynn: Hillary Should Drop Out — I’d ‘Be in Jail’ Had I Done Same

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Friday on CNN’s “The Lead,” retired U.S. Army Lt. General Michael Flynn, the former head of the Defense Intelligence Agency, discussed his call for Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton to drop out of the race because she is under investigation by the FBI for how classified materiel was handled on her private email system. Partial transcript as follows: FLYNN: The nation would allow itself to back down a little bit and let this investigation run its course with her not in the limelight and making this such a big, big deal, I really do believe that the severity and the number of resources that are applied, despite what the outcome is, I just think the lack of accountability frankly in a person who should have been much more responsible in her actions as the secretary of state of the United States of America, this is not — TAPPER: No, I get this. FLYNN: If it were me, I would have been out the door and probably in jail. TAPPER: But she and her supporters say this is an issue of overclassification. FLYNN: No. TAPPER: These are things that are classified now but were not at the time or, and you
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