ANDERSON, SC (October 25, 2010) – Jane Dyer will continue her “30 Towns in 30 Days” tour this week with more visits throughout the 3rd Congressional District to continue meeting with working families and voters.

Dyer will be visiting the following towns in the final week of the tour: Laurens on October 25, Belton and Honea Path on October 26, McCormick on October 27, North
Augusta and Beech Island on October 28, and finish her “30 Towns” tour with Pelzer on October 29. The details of where Jane will be meeting with voters
this week are below.

These last 24 days have been a great experience and a great way to meet with voters and hear their concerns first hand. We are looking forward to our final week
of the campaign and to victory next Tuesday.

Monday, 10.25.2010 – Laurens

11:30am – 12:15pm Lunch Stop at House of Pizza

1500 W Main St Ste F, Laurens

12:30pm – 1:30pm Lunch Stop at The Clock

24 Fairgrounds Rd, Laurens

Tuesday, 10.26.2010 – Belton and Honea Path

8:30am – 9:30am Breakfast at Grits and Groceries

2440 Due West Highway, Belton

12:00pm – 1:00pm Lunch at Pete’s Family Restaurant

207 N Main Street, Belton

Wednesday, 10.27.2010 – McCormick

11:00am Michelle’s Pizza

11:30am Mexican Restaurant

12:00pm Georgette’s Good Ole Home Cooking

12:30pm China One

1:00pm Little Italy

Thursday, 10.28.2010 – Beech Island and North Augusta

12:00pm – 1:00pm Lunch at S&S Cafeteria

352 E. Martintown Rd, North Augusta

Friday, 10.29.2010

9:15am – 10:15am Candidate “Meet and Greet”

Greenwood Chamber of Commerce,

Greenwood County Library, Auditorium,

S. Main Street, Greenwood

5:30pm – 7:00pm Pelzer / West Pelzer Fall Festival,

Pelzer Ball Field (Beside Pelzer Rescue Squad)

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Obama Convenes Econ Board, Focusing on Job Skills

Reaching out to big business, President Barack Obama is set to announce a new program that links top companies with community colleges in hopes of ramping up America’s job skills.

Click here to find out more!

The partnership plan — called “Skills for America’s Future” — is a key recommendation of the President’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board, which has a meeting scheduled later Monday with Obama at the White House.

A White House official said the plan aims to improve industry partnerships with community colleges and build a nationwide network to maximize workforce development. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the plan had not yet been publicly announced.

The initiative has the backing of Gap Inc., McDonald’s, Accenture and other big-name companies, the official said.

The announcement came on the eve of a White House summit on community colleges, which is being led by Dr. Jill Biden, Vice President Joe Biden’s wife, who is a community college teacher.

The president has said that increasing enrollment and completion rates in two-year colleges will bolster U.S. competitiveness in the world economy, and is a major component in his drive to restore America’s world leadership in the percentage of its population earning college degrees.

The Skills for America’s Future plan projects each state creating at least one high-impact partnership between industry and community colleges, the official said. It also foresees expanded partnerships helping achieve Obama’s goal of an additional 5 million community college degrees and certificates by 2020.

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Continuing Success in Education for All Demands Hard Work and Common Sense

I had the chance to see my high school physics and calculus teacher, Pat Chang, in Easley this week. She was gracious enough to attend a press conference my campaign held on the topic of public education.

Ms. Chang was a great teacher, and the things I learned in her classes have helped me immensely in my career. She provided me with a foundation in science and math that carried over to my education at Clemson University. I majored in engineering and went on to become a pilot.

That’s my dream for all children: To have supportive, talented teachers who support students as they explore exciting opportunities and strive to reach their goals. And I think it can happen. Indeed, there are many public education success stories we need to celebrate.

As a science and math person, I’m particularly excited about the STEM — that stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math — programs we see
taking hold in a number of our school districts. These programs are pushing students to learn about academic and career fields that will boost America’s
vitality in decades to come. And they receive funding from the federal government.

In many ways, education is a local concern. Schools are a reflection of the people they serve, and communities should have say-so in the direction of the schools their children attend. But the federal government has an appropriate role to play, especially when it comes to promoting cutting-edge opportunities for students — like the STEM programs. I’ve read that in China, roughly 40 percent of college students are engineering majors; in the US, it’s only about six percent. The right priorities and incentives can help us boost these numbers.

In addition, public money ought to stay in the public school system. Out-of-state forces have poured money into the campaigns of politicians, including my opponent, who are willing to push for so-called choice. What this has come to mean is giving government money to people who already have their children in private school, as well as other schemes that guarantee nothing to our state’s neediest families. It’s an outrageously costly idea — and it’s not the best way to improve education across-the-board in our communities.

The fact is that there are no easy answers. But hard work and common-sense solutions need to be at the forefront. And with the right leadership, I believe we will see many more innovations and success stories in the years to come. Public schools can be wonderful places to teach and learn — just ask Ms. Chang and the many students she reached over the years.

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U.S. has carried out airstrikes in Yemen

The United States has carried out airstrikes in Yemen, Yemen’s foreign minister told a pan-Arab newspaper in an interview published Thursday, marking that government’s first official confirmation of a U.S. military role in its fight against terrorism.

Foreign Minister Abu Bakr al-Qirbi told the Saudi-owned Al-Hayat newspaper that the air strikes ended in December because the “Yemeni government ascertained they weren’t achieving results.”

Al-Qirbi also told the newspaper that combating al Qaeda “is the responsibility of the security and counterterrorism forces in Yemen.”

Al-Qirbi further said that Yemen would not extradite U.S.-born radical Islamic cleric Anwar al-Awlaki to the United States if he were captured. “The U.S. has requested the extradition of other Yemeni citizens, but we refused to turn them over because our constitution prohibits the extradition of Yemeni citizen to another country — and this would apply to al-Awlaki,” he said.

Al-Qirbi added that al-Awlaki “is in an area where we are conducting operations against al Qaeda, and he is one of the people targeted for capture in those operations.”

Last week, Yemen’s deputy prime minister for defense and security, Rashad al-Alimi, told CNN that the United States and Britain had provided aid to Yemen, but asserted there was no U.S. military presence in Yemen.

The U.S. Defense Department would not confirm the strikes.

“We applaud the efforts of Yemen and other countries in the region for addressing the terror threat within their borders,” said Pentagon spokesman Col. David Lapan. “DoD provides a broad range of support to Yemen to include training and equipment, but the nature of operations there are such that we are not always able to talk about them in detail.”

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Israeli ambassador on a nuclear Iran: ‘No way’

This past weekend, Israel’s 10-month moratorium on West Bank settlement construction ended, jeopardizing the recently resumed peace talks with the Palestinians. Israeli Ambassador Michael Oren discussed the progress of the talks, the nuclear threat from Iran and other issues on Tuesday with USA TODAY’s Editorial Board. The following Q&A is adapted from that session and edited for length and clarity.

Question: With the end of the settlement moratorium, and the threat by Palestinians to walk away from the negotiating table, where do the peace talks stand?

Answer: Everyone’s interested in where we go from here and whether the talks will be resumed next week. It’s a very easy answer: “I don’t know.”

Q: What steps are you taking to try to keep the talks going?

A: We are in close contact with the (Obama) administration, exploring ways in which we could devise things that could keep the Palestinians at the table, through various confidence-building measures. … I personally am optimistic, but I can’t say that my optimism is shared by everybody. I just feel like the process has gained some sort of inexorable momentum and that if we can get over this hurdle, I think we can move swiftly.

Q: If you can get by the dispute over the settlements, then what would happen?

A: The obvious issue would be the border issue (regarding boundaries in a two-state solution). But the border issue is almost a subcategory of the security issue. Our security issues are for the demilitarization of the Palestinian state, that it won’t have missiles that it can fire into our cities. Also, we’re concerned about the ability of the Palestinian state to sign treaties with Iran, treaties with hostile enemies. We want defensible borders, but we also understand the need for a viable Palestinian state.

Q: Do you want that for the West Bank or for Gaza as well?

A: We are proceeding under the assumption that some day Gaza will be part of this deal. Right now, it’s not part of this deal because it’s under Hamas. So when President Obama talks about a contiguous Palestinian state, that has two meanings. One, it means there being no settlement blocks dividing the Palestinian state, but also that there be some kind of connection between West Bank and Gaza.

Q: That’s been the strategy for a while. Do you see any sign that it would cause people in Gaza to dispose of the Hamas government?

A: No, not yet. Hamas has now been reinforced politically by Turkey, it continues to receive immense support from Iran, and Iran is perceived in the region as the country that’s standing up to the West, standing up to Israel. They had a lot of popularity in the Arab street.

Full Story

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Jane Dyer – Education Event In Easley

EASLEY, SC (Sept. 29) As part of an ongoing series of policy talks throughout the Third Congressional District, candidate Jane Dyer spoke on the issue of public education Tuesday outside of Easley High School, her alma mater.

Dyer took the opportunity to praise public school district in the Third Congressional District for what she calls “success stories and innovations.” These included magnet schools in science and technology, mentoring programs for teenage girls, and alternative education settings for at-risk students.

With her high school calculus teacher Pat Chang at her side, Dyer talked about what public education has meant to her life – and what she hopes it will mean to voters this November.

“Public school is one of the cornerstones of our nation,” she said, adding: “Because of public education, I have had great opportunities in my life.”

Dyer majored in engineering at Clemson University. She was also a member of the Air Force ROTC program, becoming Clemson’s first female Air Force pilot.
She is now a pilot with FedEx.

Chang described Dyer as a hard-working and responsible student. “You know she’s going to do what she says she’ll do,” Chang remarked.

Dyer pointed out differences between her views on education and those of her opponent, Jeff Duncan (R-Laurens). Duncan was a co-sponsor in the South
Carolina General Assembly of a bill to push private school choice. The proposal, which did not pass, would have given public money to families who already have their children in public school.

Duncan has also accepted money from groups and individuals associated with Howard Rich, a New York libertarian who has funded pro-voucher candidates in
South Carolina.

Dyer said she supports families’ right to choose private school – but she believes public money should stay in public schools.

Teachers and other public education backers “should watch very closely and make sure they know where candidates stand on the idea of taking money out
of the public system and giving it to private schools,” she said.

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Jane Dyer – South Carolina Progressive Candidate

Jane Dyer is a Democratic Candidate for the South Carolina’s Third Congressional District. The campaign will start in about 40 days, but I want to pay your attention on that woman beforehand. It is a great candidate with a deep understanding of the area’s problems and andvanced approaches of how those problems can be solved. Jane is a a former Air Force Pilot, born and raised in the area and a devoted woman, who knows exactly how to improve the district’s conditions and raise it to a different level. Jane Dyer is taking on Republican Jeff Duncan, who is endorsed by Club for Growth.

Jane Dyer’s easy confidence shows whether she’s speaking to voters or chopping onions as she makes lunch for a team of volunteers. Her daily life reflects her warm, open personality and genuine interest in what you have to say.

This is no surprise, considering her family, where she grew up, where she went to school. What may surprise some is her keen mind and enthusiasm for solving complex problems.

Her clarity may come from her mechanical engineering degree from Clemson. Or from lessons learned flying a USAF jet as a young woman. Or from her captaining flights of a FedEx Airbus 300 as she travels across the US and Europe.

Clearly, Jane is a focused, determined learner and leader, one who sees difficult tasks as challenges to overcome.

“I’ve trained all my life to lead and to help others. I have made a habit out of accomplishing the impossible,” Jane says. “Even though I’ve traveled all over the world and all across America, I can’t imagine living anywhere but here in South Carolina.”

In fact, it’s Jane’s love for the Palmetto State and her vision for its future that helped her make the decision to run for the US Congress.

“We need new energy and action, and everywhere I go, South Carolinians remind me that they expect change now,” she comments. “It is not about being right or following a certain ideology; it is about fixing the problems.”

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McCain And Sick Veterans

The way John McCain tells it, the injuries he suffered at the hands of his captors in Vietnam would have ended his career as a Navy pilot were it not for the help of physical therapist Diane Rauch. And that’s basically true: after months of painful treatment, he was well enough to pass his medical screening. But that leaves out an interesting part of the story. In his biography of McCain, Robert Timberg details the treatment McCain received at two naval hospitals. Navy doctors in Maryland were, in fact, McCain’s first physical therapists, but they offered a bleak prognosis. Fortunately for McCain, the story of his imprisonment and torture was so widely known that strangers from across the country offered assistance. One of those strangers was Rauch, who provided her services at no charge.

As a vignette, it’s charming–a POW, just released from a long and brutal stretch in captivity, finally stumbling upon some good fortune. But it’s hardly a working model for veterans’ health services. Most vets, after all, need government-provided treatment for the rest of their lives–first, like McCain, at military hospitals and then, unlike McCain, at VA facilities.

Thirty-five years after McCain’s return to the United States, the Veterans Health Administration has undergone a sea change. Once a national embarrassment, it is now among the highest-functioning public bureaucracies. In fact, it’s the best health system, public or private, in the country. (Military hospitals are a different story altogether, managed not by the Veterans Administration but by the armed services. To many, the words “military hospital” evoke images of the Soviet-style decay uncovered by journalists at Walter Reed Army Medical Center.)

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Why John Yoo Should Be Fired

John C. Yoo likes the limelight, but it’s causing him some grief. Of the half a dozen lawyers who played important roles in a Bush administration decision to legalize the use of highly coercive interrogation techniques, only Yoo has emerged as the public face — and target — related to the policy.

In 2002 and 2003, Yoo was second in command at the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel and wrote two memos, one for Alberto R. Gonzales and one for the Pentagon, that provided broad legal authority for the use of extreme measures in the questioning of wartime detainees. In one famous phrase, the memo to Gonzales concluded that only techniques “equivalent in intensity to the pain accompanying serious physical injury, such as organ failure, impairment of bodily function or even death,” could be considered torture. The 81-page Pentagon memo, declassified April 1, contained similar language and added fuel to the fire over torture and the White House. Through it all, Yoo has defended his position in the media.

Yoo is now a tenured professor at UC Berkeley’s Boalt Hall. Recently, the National Lawyers Guild launched a campaign to have him fired because of his role in the torture issue. This move has touched off a controversy, especially among legal academics concerned about tenure and academic freedom. Boalt Hall Dean Christopher Edley Jr. posted a response on the school’s website in which he criticized the torture memos but defended Yoo: He was merely a “legal advisor”; real culpability rested with those who directed or implemented the administration’s program, not with Yoo. Edley saw no basis on which Yoo could be charged with a crime. He quoted university guidelines under which the “commission of a criminal act which has led to conviction in a court of law” provides the basis for dismissal of a tenured professor.

It’s easy to understand the concern that academics have. If Yoo were fired on the strength of a public outcry about his ideas on torture, it could send a chill through academia. America’s strengths as a nation include the preservation of an atmosphere in higher education that encourages the free expression of ideas, even radical and highly unpopular ones.

But does academic freedom really sit at the heart of this controversy? It’s not Yoo’s ideas in an academic setting that give rise to his current problems but his conduct as a government lawyer. Yoo says that he was asked his opinion about technical legal issues related to interrogation and detainee treatment during wartime, and he gave it his best shot. He also argues that he strained to give policymakers and actors the greatest possible latitude in which to manage a difficult conflict. But he only advised and theorized; others took the decision to implement the program.

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Image by AP

Over at Democracy Arsenal, Max writes, “No one, not Crocker or Petraeus can describe what success looks like. When asked by Levin, if all went well what would be an optimistic projection of U.S. troops levels at the end of 2008. Petraeus refuses to answer, saying he can’t know. So he won’t make projections of what success will look like. But both Crocker and Petraeus have absolutely no qualms about projecting the future if we withdrawal from Iraq.”

That’s been the striking thread running through these hearings. There are no benchmarks for success, no metrics that control our troop levels or departure. If al Qaeda is strong and sectarian violence is high, we have to stay and fight. If al Qaeda is weak and sectarian violence is low, we have to stay and protect those gains. It’s heads we stay, tails we never leave.

And that’s not even getting into the Iran side of all this, which Lieberman is currently hyping. Look: Iran borders Iraq. They’re always going to be there. Iraq, like Iran, is majority Shiite. The dominant party in Iraq, the one we support, is an Iranian proxy. If we can’t leave until Iran has no influence in Iraq, we can literally never leave. This is like China demanding that we sever our relationship with Canada. Hell, given the weaker nation-states in the Middle East, it’s like China insisting Mississippi sever its relationship with Louisiana. You can insist till you’re blue in the face, but the neighbor will be there long after the invader.

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