These are the dates of weekly memos provided by National Drug Intelligence Center Director Michael Walther to Attorney General Eric Holder. Each was a short document that included information on Operation Fast and Furious, including descriptions of the operation as a multi-agency task force targeting a gun trafficking ring headed by Manuel Celis-Acosta that had purchased “1,500 firearms that were then supplied to Mexican drug trafficking cartels.”
The release of these documents from mid-2010 — and supporting documents from Department of Justice insiders discussing “gunwalking” — has led House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-TX) to ask President Obama to appoint a special prosecutor. The special prosecutor would investigate whether or not Attorney General Holder committed perjury when he stated in sworn testimony in March: “[I] probably heard about Fast and Furious for the first time over the last few weeks.”
With the increased attention on the case — including coverage from johnny-come-lately ABC that needed to add a backstory section to get their readers up to speed — the White House and Department of Justice are fighting back, alleging that the growing scandal is nothing but a game of “gotcha” being played by Republicans:
“Here they go again. Chairman Issa and Senator Grassley can re-package and re-release the same documents every other day and it won’t change the facts: the attorney general’s testimony to both the House and Senate committees has been consistent and truthful,” the department said.
The department said the “brief” passages were “buried in a few written reports” and did not detail the full extent of the operation.
“Instead of peddling selectively edited transcripts and distorting questions and answers in some distracting political game of gotcha, these congressional leaders should be focusing their attention on the underlying public safety problem we confront as a nation — that too many guns are being illegally trafficked to Mexico,” the statement said.
It is worth noting: the documents being released are new; the information was not buried, but featured bullet points of weekly summary reports; and there were no “selectively edited” transcripts or “distorted questions.” The DOJ pushback seems rooted in political firefighting, not facts.
Even left-leaning NPR — which seems to doubt Holder’s truthfulness — reported the details of the key question and answer accurately:
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Saturday, October 8, 2011
As the value of scrap metal — including copper and steel — increases, thieves have been becoming more daring and less respectful of institutions such as churches and schools.
But one group of thieves might have set the standard last week by stealing a 50-foot-long bridge. State police said the bridge was stolen between Sept. 27 and Wednesday in North Beaver Township. The theft was discovered shortly after 9 a.m. Wednesday.
The bridge, around 20 feet wide, was in a wooded area along a railroad line in the township’s Covert’s Crossing region.
Whiskey Myers "Ballad of a Southern Man"
Congressman Ron Paul, R-Tex., comes on top in the 2012 GOP presidential straw poll conducted at the Family Research Council's "Values Voter Summit" in Washington, DC.
Paul led the pack with 37%, trailed by Herman Cain at 23% and former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum at 16%. Tex. Gov. Rick Perry and Minn. Rep. Michele Bachmann with each getting 8%. Former Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney followed with 4% and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich scored 3%. Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman scored zero.
Obama Response on Solyndra 'Disgusting'
Taxpayers are unlikely ever to see any of the $535 million lost when solar panel firm Solyndra went bust amid accusations of fraud, Rep. Cory Gardner, a member of the House Energy Committee tells Newsmax.TV in an exclusive interview.
And Jonathan Silver, who quit on Thursday as head of the agency which approved the loan, is likely to be only the first of many heads to roll as House Republicans widen their investigation into the scandal, he added.
“Right now it’s not looking good,” said the Colorado Congressman when asked if there was any chance of the money getting returned to the public coffers. “What’s so disgusting about this is to hear the president say, ‘we didn’t have a crystal ball.’ Yet his administration had warning flags all over the place about the fact the taxpayers could very well lose half a billion dollars. That’s exactly what happened.”
Emails Expose Fresh West Wing Cronyism
An Obama administration appointee at the Energy Department pressed White House analysts to sign off on a $535 million loan to Solyndra even though his wife worked for the failed solar panel maker's law firm.
The revelation, contained in a new batch of internal emails released Friday, adds new drama to a heated political battle over government backing for Solyndra, which has filed for bankruptcy and has been raided by the FBI.
The emails show frequent inquiries from Steven Spinner, who was an adviser to the Energy Department on its use of economic stimulus funding to spur clean energy technology, on the Solyndra loan, according to a report in the New York Times.
On Sept 29, the Energy Department had posted a "fact check" on Spinner's involvement in the Solyndra case on its website, explaining that he started his job after the company received conditional approval for its loan application.
The department said Spinner "was recused from engaging in any discussions on decisions affecting specific loan applications in which his spouse's law firm was involved out of concern for the appearance of a conflict of interest."
Allison Spinner is a partner at law firm Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, which represented Solyndra.
Energy Department spokesman Damien LaVera said on Friday that the department's ethics officer had cleared Spinner to "oversee and monitor the progress of applications," although he was not allowed to make decisions on loans or their terms.
LaVera noted that Allison Spinner had "agreed not to participate in or receive any financial compensation from her law firm's work on behalf of any loan program applicant."
Zogby has just released a poll that is sure to stun many: Herman Cain is not only the frontrunner for the GOP nomination, he’s leading Mitt Romney by 20 percentage points. But there’s more: he’s also beating President Obama 46%-44%.
Zogby has the numbers:
Cain’s share of the GOP primary has jumped 10 percentage points since Sept. 26 and is now at 38%. Mitt Romney is second with 18%, followed by both Rick Perry and Ron Paul, at 12% each.
The Oct. 3-5 IBOPE Zogby interactive poll also matches Cain, Romney and Perry against Obama. Cain led Obama, 46%-44%, while Obama is one-point ahead of Romney, 41%-40%, and leads Perry, 45%-40%.
And here’s how it breaks down visually:
........the end of gun control is not politically or culturally driven, but was a historical inevitability that was written into the book of destiny by 1810, when Joseph Jacquard started using punched cards to control weaving patterns on his looms and when the practice of chucking rotary cutters into lathe headstocks was adopted en masse at water powered factories in Western Massachusetts in response to British attempts to confiscate American civilian-owned firearms.
OK, if I’m going to do an impression of James Burke, let me do it right. Hold a moment while I put on a thick set of glasses and hammer myself in the mouth with a mallet. …and…MMFGH! .. Ah, yes, now I look more like a product of British government-run dentistry. < spits teeth ; makes appointment for follow-up care with NHS sometime in late 2017 >
So, how does weaving in France tie in to British seizure of civilian owned weapons, BITNET, and the Homebrew Computer Club, and lead us to the death of gun control in the 21st century?
People ascribe the invention of punched cards to Herman Hollerith in the late 1800s, but in fact they dated back 150 years earlier, where they were created as an easier-to-file version of the ancient concept of the tally stick (Pliny the Elder documents these before the birth of Christ, but it turns out that we can push the date back 20,000 years before that).
So we’ve got people recording data on punched cards in the early 1700s, and a few decades after that we’ve got Basile Bouchon using them to half-assedly control textile mills in France, and a few decades after that Jacquard drastically improved the mechanism.
(Hint: the end of the week quiz will cover this specific point, and in your response to the essay question you could do worse than to note the parallel between ‘using stored information to create physical items’ in 17-aught-mumble and 20-aught-mumble).
So, we’ve established that information can be amplified into a nearly finished product by clever arrangements of spinning bits, moving bits, and stationary bits.
Let’s take a quick digression into metal working.
....the other day that "What Wall Street did was immoral, but it wasn't illegal" in response to a question about why nobody had gone to jail.
Really Mr. President? None of the following is illegal?
- Laundering drug money. Wachovia admitted to doing it in court. They got a "deferred prosecution agreement" and not only did nobody go to jail nobody other than a few bloggers like myself raised hell about it until days before that agreement expired. Then, magically, it got news coverage. This is a clear black-letter felony; where are the handcuffs?
- The former chief risk officer for Citifinancial testified under oath before the FCIC that the company knowingly sold loans on to investors that did not meet their quality guidelines and published claims. In fact, he testified that by 2007 80 percent of those loans were defective. This is functionally identical to selling you a car and rolling back the odometer, peddling tainted medicine or selling melamine-laced baby formula. There is nothing complicated about this and there is under-oath testimony establishing that it was not an accident or an "error in judgment" as it continued for more than a year after it became known and was the subject of internal memos to corporate officers. This is not my conjecture or analysis, it is factual sworn testimony before a government body. Where are the damned handcuffs?
- Ponzi Schemes generally. Those are all illegal. They locked Charlie up for it (the originator of the name, natch) and more recently Bernie Madoff went to prison. Ok, Mr. President, how about all the stock analysts, the market callers, and pension fund managers along with the real estate industry that have been pumping 8, 10 or 11% annualized returns for the last three decades? These claims are all pyramid schemes and thus by the very definition of such a scheme are illegal. An 8% "annual return" for 45 years, the average working man's period of effort (20 to 65) produces a return of nearly 32 times the original amount invested. The 9% growth rate of medical cost over the last year (close to the premium increases over the last decade in annualized terms) for the person of age 50 that the government claims "will not see their Medicare harmed" has the annual cost of their medical insurance (assuming no increase due to age or greater risk) go from $5,000 a year to $100,000 by the time they're 85! The claims of Realtors that home prices would go up 10% "for the indefinite future" turns a $150,000 house into a $4.21 million house in 35 years. None of this was ever going to actually happen, and it still won't. Why did Charles Ponzi and Bernie Madoff go to prison when your administration, every member of Congress, those on Wall Street and otherwise in the "finance and investment" business community have not for the exact same offense?
- Jefferson County Alabama jailed several politicians and others for bribery and other crimes related to the infamous "sewer bond" nonsense. Why have no bankers gone to prison? It takes two people to commit bribery and similar offenses - someone who offers a bribe, and someone who accepts a bribe. One party went to prison while the other did not. No crimes in this case among the banksters? Pull the other one Mr. President; the damage here remains in that the water bills of these residents remains at ridiculously elevated levels as the financial harm done to the county was not forcibly returned from those banksters.
- Perjury is a felony in most circumstances. Banksters admitted to more than 100,000 instances of it by withdrawing perjured ("robosigned") affidavits. Just as with the testimony under oath in the case of Citifinancial, just as in the Wachovia admission of drug money laundering, in this case the violation of the law is clear. Perjury can only be cured at "no penalty" up until it is clear that the defective statement or filing will be discovered; once you're "caught" you cannot avoid liability by withdrawing the filing. Whether someone was paying their mortgage or not is immaterial as to whether filing a false affidavit is a criminal matter -- it is. Again, where are the damned handcuffs?
- Sarbanes-Oxley criminalized false accounting statements. There have been multiple bank failures by public companies that filed balance sheets under penalty of criminal prosecution were they to be false just weeks before they blew up -- balance sheets that showed perfectly-healthy institutions. The FDIC has documented dozens of bank failures, privately-held and publicly-traded, where those balance sheets were proved factually false, as the losses have been 20, 30, 40% or even more just a few weeks later. It is beyond comprehension that the assets in question could have actually lost 30 or 40% of their value within that period of time. The only rational explanation is that these financial statements were a work of fiction. Sarbanes-Oxley makes this a criminal matter. Again, where are the handcuffs?
I and many other bloggers and "alternative media outlets" have spent four years documenting these outrages and showing through simple mathematical analysis that the claims made by these charlatans, including yourself Mr. President, are mathematically impossible. That's the definition of a pyramid scheme. They're illegal because they cannot, mathematically, work. It is therefore illegal to hawk them to the public because they are by definition abusive; they will ultimately result in those who believe in them losing their money.
Your claim, Mr. President, that these acts were "morally repugnant but not illegal" is a lie. The simple fact of the matter is that your administration is intentionally refusing to enforce long-standing law and by doing so you and your administration have lent official support to an organized effort to defraud and rob the American public.
- Nashville TN cop was sentenced to 18 years in prison after being convicted for 2nd degree murder in the shooting death of his wife. He claimed she shot herself.  http://t.co/ddNp0Qy1
- 3 Hackensack NJ cops were indicted, one for assaulting a man during arrest and the others for providing false information in an effort to cover it up.  http://t.co/v8uhNhqU
- Bucks County PA sheriff’s sergeant was arrested on multiple charges for hitting a restrained suspect then perjuring himself when he filed false charges against the man in order to cover it up  http://t.co/3hnNbDBJ
- New Jersey state trooper was suspended without pay for 6 months for pepperspraying a handcuffed suspect in the back of his cruiser then lying on his report about the incident.  http://t.co/J1fq7FVV
- A Now-former Los Angeles County CA deputy is claiming that he quit after his supervisor forced him to beat a mentally ill detainee in order to “teach him a lesson”.  http://t.co/PabQI3v2
- Aquia Harbour VA cop sentenced to 20 years in prison for producing child porn by filming sex acts with an unconscious 8-year-old boy.  http://t.co/gnpCifnh
- South Ogden UT cop was sentenced from 5 years to life in prison for aggravated sexual abuse of a child under 14 and forcible sodomy.  http://t.co/1Z8zZDXO
- Los Angeles County CA sheriff’s sergeant with a long history of sexual misconduct complaints was convicted on sexual assault & false imprisonment charges involving a woman he raped while on duty.  http://t.co/5RFsASHc
- Warrensburg IL cop originally charged with the sexual assault of a girl under 12 was sentenced to 10 years in prison on a reduced possession of child porn charge.  http://t.co/1fhZ2INo
- Dallas TX police are being sued by the family of a boy who was 11 when he was accidentally grazed by cop’s bullet during the fatal officer-involved shooting death of an unarmed man at an apartment complex.  http://t.co/iGS6EB6I
- An Orlando FL police report is apparently contradicted by video in an incident where 2 cops broke a woman’s arm during a drunk and disorderly arrest at a theme park.  http://t.co/IPow2uje
- Atlanta GA civil service board is forcing that city to rehire 3 cops who were fired after a judge found that they lied in their testimony about a man’s arrest on a firearm charge.  http://t.co/lafxAkQj
- Newark NJ undercover cop apparently masturbated while fondling a female suspect while conducting a massage parlor sting operation. The chief is blaming their training, or, more specifically, that they weren’t trained not to do that…  http://t.co/tgzX4WVH
- St Louis County MO deputy was arrested on drug and drug paraphernalia charges after caught with heroin while in uniform  http://t.co/EDyiZKpS
- A 3rd Lake Co IN deputy pleads guilty to charges related to the illegal sales of military grade fully automatic weapons over the internet  http://t.co/Lk9r0FjQ
- Pontiac IL cop was arrested on drunk driving charges in Wisconsin after crashing his unmarked cruiser into a ditch  http://t.co/fIzt7JH4
- Miami-Dade FL cop arrested on drunk driving charge after rear-ending another motorist while off-duty  http://t.co/qSfPLl7J
Wednesday, October 12, will mark the 141st anniversary of General Robert E. Lee’s death. He was a giant who epitomized the best that used to distinguish America from the rest of the world.
Robert E. Lee embodied a rare combination of breeding, class, and honor along with a republican spirit, noblesse oblige, and humility. One of history’s greatest military commanders, he abhorred war’s carnage. He balanced courage with prudence and a deep Christian faith with nonparochial humanism. Upon his death, the New York Herald wrote:
Robert Edward Lee was an American, and the great nation which gave him birth would be today unworthy of such a son if she regarded him lightly. Never had mother a nobler son….
Just as he had refused an offer to command the Union Army so he could defend his beloved Virginia, Robert E. Lee would decline lucrative offers after the War Between the States, saying he felt it his duty to live with his people and educate their youth. Six months after the surrender at Appomattox, Lee accepted the presidency of Washington College. He served in that capacity for five years until his death on October 12, 1870.
Washington College is now Washington and Lee University. Its academic programs include such linchpins of Western civilization as Poverty Studies, Women and Gender Studies, Latin American and Caribbean Studies, Gay and Lesbian Life in 20th Century United States, and African-American Studies replete with the obligatory critical race theory. One wonders if the latter includes a post-structuralist, discursive narrative of the transgressive trichotomy in the Afro-American cantata genre known as “Got mah EBT?” rap as evinced here and here.
The main business of this sorry caricature of what academia ought to be is now “diversity” and white mea-culpism. Chanting the magic mantra of “social change and justice” follows the teachings of Sri Barack Ramobama Gurudeva, not General Robert E. Lee, let alone George Washington.“He was a giant who epitomized the best that used to distinguish America from the rest of the world.”
Washington and Lee University has an Office of Diversity & Inclusion brandishing the obligatory mantra of “GLBTQ, Multicultural, Religious, International.” It has a CAIR “discrimination” snitch line, the acronym shared with the controversial Islamic organization but standing in this case for “Confidential and Impartial Resolution Resources.” Said “discrimination” is deemed so crucial that 14 of the most important faculty and administrators on campus are iterated as Investigation and Review Officers.
WLU’s “University Statement of Commitment to Diversity” reads in its fanatical zeal like the proclamation of a group of brainwashed, terrorized Chinese kulaks who finally saw the light of the Little Red Book and swear in front of the assembled peasantry eternal fealty to the Great Leader and the Revolution:
Washington and Lee University commits itself to the recruitment and retention of a broad, inclusive student body, faculty and administration who represent a wide range of interests, abilities and cultures—a diverse array of talent. The University will strengthen a curriculum that increases knowledge, awareness and understanding of diversity and inclusiveness….
Diversity, shmadversity—the photo accompanying this gibberish shows 11 black students and three dweeby white ones.
WLU’s “Programming & Awareness”—the Russkis were at least creative enough to call it agitprop—includes a lavish annual celebration of Martin Luther King’s birthday, but you’ll search in vain for a celebration of George Washington’s or Robert E. Lee’s birthday. Ditto relative to WLU’s pushing of Hispanic Heritage Month, GLBT History Month, Black History Month, Women’s History Month, Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month, Hermaphroditic Striped Gerbils’ Heritage Month…no, wait, backtrack on that last one.
What you will not find is commemoration of the people of European origin without whose history, heritage, blood, toil, and sacrifice there would have been no Virginia, United States, Washington, Lee, or Washington and Lee University (and that’s not mentioning science and technology). The madness is cemented in something called Donning of Kente Ceremony that one trained in psychoanalysis can easily identify as a transference ritual in which the draping of African cloth on a meritorious person substitutes for the donning of hair shirts.
If racial sadomasochism is not your racket, you can find a different flavor in WLU’s Socio-Economic Diversity Committee. Or you can stroll over to WLU’s Bonner Leaders Program that aims, innocently,
to provide a unique college experience for a select number of students by empowering them to further the culture of service on campus and in the local community throught [sic] the productive use of service, education and leadership.
But that is an Alinskyite foot massage. What this is about was stated here, before some practitioner of the David Axelrod method of deep shiatsu got to it. It read:
The Bonner Foundation…acknowledges six “common commitments” in which all its campus-based programs invest: social justice, diversity, spiritual development, international perspectives, civic engagement, and community-building.
WLU’s School of Law publishes the Journal of Civil Rights & Social Justice. All you need to know is in that name. The law school’s Lewis Law Center organizes symposia the very names of which attest to the sort of patients that bunk in this asylum:
- Reproductive and Sexual Health and the African Women’s Protocol
- A Queer Definition of Equality
- Race and Class in the 21st Century Through the Lens of Hurricane Katrina
A 2002 WORLD magazine story (.pdf) about American colleges’ “diversity” brainwashing cites Skin Deep, a “racial-awareness” film forced on Washington and Lee University freshmen, in sessions where minority workshop participants lambaste “whiteness” while white students “repent of generational racism.”
On Sept. 9, 2009, WLU’s president Kenneth P. Ruscio gave a Fall Convocation Address in which he babbled about WLU’s “higher aspirations” being reflected in a commitment to diversity. Over a million American Civil War casualties paid the butcher’s bill for the country’s earlier error of “commitment to diversity”: importing African slaves to a white colony. Current phenomena ranging from black crime statistics and predatory flash mobs to the governance of black-dominated cities such as Washington, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Detroit indicate that the paying won’t be over soon.
General Lee, who abhorred slavery and was against Virginia’s secession, saw his honor and duty first in defending his family, second his state, and only third, when not conflicting, the United States. In a famous letter to his sister on April 20, 1861, he wrote:
With all my devotion to the Union and the feeling of loyalty and duty as an American citizen, I have not been able to make up my mind to raise my hand against my relatives, my children, my home. Save in defence of my native State, with the sincere hope that my poor services may never be needed, I hope I may never be called upon to draw my sword.
To put it differently, kin come first. Not mad prattling like Dr. Ruscio’s about “no matter their backgrounds, their race, their gender, their sexual orientation, their ethnicity, or their religious beliefs.” That suicidal formula, basically a blasphemous rejection of the universe’s rules, of reality and nature, is a specialty of the West’s ruling elites alone. It’s the West’s peoples, therefore, who alone are being marched toward the edge of the cliff by their leaders. With much pushing from academic morons who don the mantles of giants such as George Washington, Robert Lee, Benjamin Franklin via University of Pennsylvania’s hopeless Amy Gutmann, or Thomas Jefferson via University of Virginia’s John T. Casteen III.
There isn’t a single entity on foreign soil—not al-Qaeda, not the KGB, not Kim Jong-il, not the narco cartels—that has wreaked as much costly destruction on the United States as the demented drivel has that’s been pouring out from America’s universities for 40 years now. There is a super-original, quantifiable Ph.D. dissertation in that hypothesis, but it will not see the light of day. Cogitate on that in a silent tribute to Robert E. Lee.
Mike: Did you hear Goldberg jump in there? “Well, Southern spies, Confederate spies were ordered shot on capture.” Oh, just bathe in the blood of the Confederacy, Jonah Goldberg, you hack. I mean, ladies and gentlemen, this is just sick. And Krauthammer, “Well, we mowed down entire armies of Confederate soldiers.” I beg to differ with you, sir. “They never were recognized as citizens....” Recognized by who, that tyrant tinhorn dictator, Abraham Lincoln? You have got to be kidding me. The reason there was an alleged “war” that was started by Mr. Lincoln was because the South separated. Those, you know, this really just pisses me off. The Southern soldiers swore an oath to protect and defend the Confederate Constitution, or the Constitution of their state in the absence of the Confederate Constitution being ratified. I mean, this is beyond-the-pale macabre, here.
So the longing for the Neocon wing of the Republican Party is, look, if you guys don’t go along with us, we’ll be perfectly justified in shooting all of you Tea Party hacks that try and secede again. Oh, yeah, we’ll take you out. Even if you declare yourself citizens of Texas, Obama will be justified, or President Romney will be justified in sending the Army out to kill you. Anything else you’d like to do to me, Charles? Any other deprivation of life and property you’d like to visit upon me while you’re bathing in the war blood of people that have decided they do not want to be governed by you and your idolatry to Abraham Lincoln any longer?
I mean, folks, really, this is the end sum game here, and this is where there is a divide that ought to be talked about, ought to be debated, and ought to be exploited. If the citizens of this country decide – and when I say “country,” I mean those living in a state. If they decide that they have had enough of the federal Leviathan, that they’ve had enough of their fiat currency, that they’ve had enough of their sons and daughters being called into never-ending wars, that they have had enough of the tyrannical EPA, that they’ve had enough of the devaluation of their properties, that they’ve had enough of federal Georges coming into their states and their localities and telling them they can’t pray in public, that they’ve had enough of all the three-and-a-half batrillion kadrillion kajillion things that this federal monster of Mordor on the Potomac River does, and they choose a different form of government, different from what is currently in force here, that is their natural, God-given, human right to do so. But to invoke Lincoln mowing down indiscriminate – well, I shouldn’t say “indiscriminately.” There was a battle, and the South did shoot back, so scratch that. But to invoke Pickett just mowing down Confederate citizens as the justification for this?
You see now that the conservatives in the Republican arm or the DeceptiCon wing of the Republican Party has no problem with the size and the gargantuan nature of the state, ladies and gentlemen. They have no problem with the state exercising and using brutal, lethal force against you or anyone else. “Mike, are you comparing Awlaki to the Confederates?” No, I am not. But the statement is clear. “Look, we have – we taught people what happens if they don’t agree with our government.”
White guys a-marchin’ with “Rebel” flags ain’t news; they’re “all racists” anyhow, as “everybody” knows.
What I Saw at The Circus
What I Saw At The Circus
One in three Americans would be unable to make their mortgage or rent payment beyond one month if they lost their job, according to the results of a national survey taken in mid-September.
Despite being more affluent, the poll found that even those with higher annual household incomes indicate they are not guaranteed to make their next housing payment if they lost their source of income.
Ten percent of survey respondents earning $100K or more a year say they would immediately miss a payment.
The survey was conducted on behalf of a financial consortium comprised of the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Financial Planning Association, Foundation for Financial Planning, and the U.S. Conference of Mayors.
Sixty-one percent of those surveyed said if they were handed a pink slip, they would not be able to continue to make their mortgage or rent payment longer than five months.