Wasserman Schultz Statement on the Trump Shutdown



. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-23) released the following statement on Congressional Republicans and President Trump shutting down the federal government:

“The Trump Shutdown is a reckless refusal to responsibly govern by a Republican party that controls both Houses of Congress and the White House, and fittingly arrives on the one year anniversary of Trump’s inauguration, putting his destructive and chaotic lack of leadership in sharp focus. This total budget failure threatens public health, stymies our economy, wastes military resources and blocks basic investments in research and services in our communities. It’s no surprise that a party focused on tax breaks for corporations and the wealthy produces an irresponsible month-to-month budget that neglects broad Americans priorities, such as children’s health care, pension protection and defending DREAMers. Governing by dividing doesn’t work. Let’s end this Trump Shutdown, work together and focus on bipartisan progress. Americans deserve much better than this.”

Michael Wolff Insinuates to Bill Maher Trump’s Currently Having an Affair




So Michael Wolff went ahead and made a pretty explosive insinuation to Bill Maher tonight.
Maher asked the Fire and Fury author if there’s something in his book that people haven’t picked up on yet. Wolff coyly said there is, “but I can’t tell you what it is.”
Wolff, who has previously stated “if it rings true it is true” and has been criticized for inaccuracies in his book, told Maher, “There is something in the book that I was absolutely sure of, but it was so incendiary that I just didn’t have the ultimate proof.”
Maher asked if it’s a “woman thing.” Wolff said, “It is.”
Maher followed up, “It’s somebody he’s fucking now.”
Wolff responded, “It is.”
Watch above, via HBO.




Hillary Clinton Could Still Become President: Expert


Hillary Clinton Could Still Become President: Expert

Nearly a year after President Donald Trump’s inauguration, a Harvard University professor says 2016 presidential candidate Hillary Clinton could still become commander in chief. Lawrence Lessig, the Roy L.

Why Ron DeSantis should never become Governor of Florida



DeSantis in August became the first lawmaker to propose a measure that would end Mueller’s investigation, which DeSantis has called a“fishing expedition.” It would have eliminated funding for the probe six months after the amendment’s passage, and prohibited Mueller from looking into matters that occurred prior to the June 2015 launch of Trump’s presidential campaign.
At the same time, DeSantis, who is running for governor of Florida, has argued that the dossier—which was initially funded by the Washington Free Beacon before the Democratic National Committee and Clinton campaign took over—proved “without a shadow of a doubt” that the Democratic Party and Hillary Clinton colluded with Russia.

Rep. Deutch Introduces Bipartisan Bill to Strengthen Congressional Sexual Harassment Policies



Bill introduced by bipartisan group including Ethics Committee Ranking Member Deutch and Chairwoman Susan Brooks, House Administration Committee Chairman Gregg Harper and Ranking Member Bob Brady, and Reps. Jackie Speier, Bradley Byrne, and others.

 Congressman Ted Deutch (D-FL), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Ethics, joined a bipartisan group of Members including Committee on Ethics Chairwoman Susan Brooks (R-IN), Committee on House Administration Chairman Gregg Harper (R-MS) and Ranking Member Bob Brady (D-PA), and Representatives Jackie Speier (D-CA), Bradley Byrne (R-AL), and others to 
introduce the bipartisan "Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 Reform Act." This bill will improve workplace protections in Congress and strengthen responses to sexual harassment cases.

fact sheet on the bill can be accessed here. Congressman Deutch issued the following statement:

“At a moment when women around the country are standing up to sexual harassment, Congress is finally taking action to strengthen our antiquated workplace protections. The Congressional Accountability Act passed almost a quarter of a century ago, and victims of sexual harassment in Congress have encountered a system with no transparency, little respect for the abused, and too many hurdles to seeking justice.

“Everyone – from Congressional interns to Members of Congress – deserves a safe workplace environment free from harassment or abuse. This bill will make it easier for victims to speak out, ensure that legal resources are available to them, and most importantly offer them a way to seek justice without fear of retribution. And when Members of Congress pay for their bad behavior, taxpayers will no longer foot the bill.”

Reps. Deutch, Ros-Lehtinen Introduce Resolution Honoring Alberto Nisman



Today, on the anniversary of Argentinian prosecutor Alberto Nisman’s death, Congressman Ted Deutch (FL-22) and Congresswoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (FL-27), the Ranking Member and Chairman respectively of the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on the Middle East and North Africa, introduced a resolution honoring his work and calling for a full and just investigation into his death.

Nisman was the Special Prosecutor overseeing the investigation into the 1994 bombing of the Buenos Aires AMIA (Asociaci├│n Mutual Israelita Argentina) building.

“Alberto Nisman committed himself to uncovering the truth of the horrific AMIA bombing that killed 85 and injured hundreds of others,” said Congressman Deutch. “He refused to let Iran or Hezbollah get away with this act of terrorism, and he refused to let corrupt officials cover up the facts and wash their hands of this horrible attack. His hard work was not in vain, and this resolution honors his legacy and urges full transparency on the circumstances of his death and the AMIA bombing investigation.” 

“Murdered three years ago for investigating Iran and its proxy Hezbollah’s role in the AMIA terror attack, Alberto Nisman was fearless in his fight against corruption and terrorism in Argentina," said Congresswoman Ros-Lehtinen. "Despite constant threats, Alberto relentlessly pursued those responsible for the deadly attack in order to bring them to justice. As he continued gathering evidence that pointed toward Hezbollah, I met with him several times in Washington, DC to talk about his findings and how to protect our hemisphere from the Iranian threat. With this resolution, we seek to continue Alberto’s vital work, urge transparency in the investigation of both Alberto’s murder and the AMIA bombing, and finally, once and for all, hold Iran accountable for its senseless and despicable crimes against Buenos Aires’ Jewish community.” 

In December 2017, a federal judge in Argentina indicted former President Cristina Fern├índez de Kirchner for treason for covering up Iran’s involvement in the AMIA bombing.

U.S. Senators Bob Menendez (D-NJ) and Marco Rubio (R-FL) introduced a companion resolution in the Senate (S.Res. 354)

Rep. Ted Deutch Move Bipartisan Bill to protect Veterans to the floor


Two Florida congressmen have gotten their proposal to protect veterans against fraud back to the House floor. 
Back in 2016, U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney, R-Fla., and U.S. Rep. Ted Deutch, D-Fla., brought out the “Preventing Crimes Against Veterans Act” with then U.S. Rep. David Jolly, R-Fla., as a co-sponsor of the bill. The House passed the bill in a 411-0 vote later that year but the Senate version, which was sponsored by U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., did not pass before the start of the new Congress.  
The bill proposes increasing penalties on conmen targeting veterans by charging illegal fees for help in appealing a claim with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. If the bill becomes law, violators would face fines and prison sentences up to five years. 
On Wednesday, the U.S. House Judiciary Committee passed the bill without opposition, sending it to the House floor. 
“Anyone who seeks to financially exploit the men and women who have served our country and cheat them out of their hard-earned VA benefits should have to face a harsh punishment for their criminal actions,” Rooney said. “Frankly it’s appalling that there are individuals out there who are targeting veterans, especially those in low-income housing or who are elderly, with these schemes. This commonsense legislation will help give prosecutors the tools they need to protect our veterans and go after these criminals. I commend my colleagues on the Judiciary Committee for their decision to move this bill forward and advance it to the House floor.”
"Pension poaching is not only illegal, it's a despicable and immoral practice," said Deutch. "These scammers are getting more and more sophisticated in how they identify and deceive vulnerable veterans with lofty promises to help them with their pensions while charging outrageous fees. Congressman Rooney and I have received overwhelming support from our Congressional colleagues to close this loophole, and we look forward to voting on this on the House floor."
Three other congressmen from Florida--Republicans Carlos Curbelo and Mario Diaz-Balart and Democrat Darren Soto--are also cosponsoring the bill. 
Rubio is sponsoring the Senate version again with U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., as a cosponsor. 











Source Sunshinestatenews.com 

Rep. Ted Deutch Comment On Turmps Haiti comment


Today is the 8th anniversary of the earthquake that devastated Haiti.

Yesterday, the President made repulsive comments about Haiti and other nations that are inexcusable, disrespectful and far below the office he holds.

To our Haitian-American neighbors, coworkers, and friends, please know that most of us don't agree with the President's statements. Wherever you're from, we're glad you're here.







Wasserman Schultz Statement on Trump's Reported Immigration Remarks


Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-23) released the following statement on President Trump's reported comments at a meeting on immigration:

“Trump’s vile comments are outrageous, unacceptable and continue a disturbing pattern of racist remarks. He repeatedly sews seeds of racism which foment horrendous, discriminatory actions. No American can be proud of a President who speaks this way. Trump’s Republican colleagues must denounce his comments and stand up against bigotry and intolerance or be guilty of sanctioning them.”

Democrats Release Fusion GPS Testimony on Trump and Russia

Senate Democrats on Tuesday released the transcripts from a closed-door Senate Judiciary interview with Fusion GPS co-founder Glenn Simpson as part of the committee’s Russia probe. Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA), a Republican, had previously denied multiple Democratic requests to make public the transcripts. Among the highlights from within the transcripts: Simpson claimed that the FBI informed Trump dossier author Christopher Steele that the bureau had a “walk-in” whistleblower “from within the Trump organization or campaign,” possibly on issues related to alleged collusion between the campaign and Russian officials. However, NBC News later reported, “Steele was not told about a walk-in source. That was a mistake. He was referring to [ex-Trump aide George] Papadopoulos [who took a plea deal in Mueller’s probe last year], via the Australian diplomat.” Read the documents below:

Read the full transcript of Oprah Winfrey's speech that fired up the Golden Globes





Oprah Winfrey won the Cecil B. DeMille Award at Sunday's Golden Globes, making history as the first black female recipient. Her fiery acceptance speech will no doubt go down in history too, igniting speculation that maybe she has political aspirations.

Oprah Was Queen of the 2018 Golden Globes





If there was one true winner of the 2018 Golden Globes, it was Oprah Winfrey. It was clear from the first winner that it was going to be her night. "Hi, Oprah,” the awestruck Marvelous Mrs. Maisel star Rachel Brosnahan said when she arrive on stage to accept her award. It was hard not to be…

EQUALITY FLORIDA PAC ENDORSES GEORGE CASTRATARO FOR FORT LAUDERDALE CITY COMMISSION, DISTRICT 2

Inline image 1

Equality Florida Action PAC, the political arm of Equality Florida, has unanimously endorsed George Castrataro for the Fort Lauderdale City Commission in District 2, citing his longstanding work for the LGBT community and his commitment to equality. The endorsement is also a recognition of the importance of ensuring that an LGBT voice remains on the Commission after this election.

“Equality Florida Action PAC is endorsing George Castrataro because he’s been a champion and leader in the LGBT community for years,” said Stratton Pollitzer, Deputy Director of Equality Florida. “He’s used not only his voice but also his professional resources to advance equality for all and to stand up for those who have experienced discrimination. We know George will bring that same commitment, dedication and service to the Fort Lauderdale City Commission.”

Castrataro is known for his work in and for the LGBT community, and is recognized as a “go-to” expert. As an attorney, he’s helmed high profile LGBT cases, and led a precedent-setting marriage equality case that was scheduled first for the Florida Supreme Court and that was likely to pave the way in Florida prior to the US Supreme Court ruling in Obergefell. He authored the Broward Human Rights Initiative, which protects the civil rights of Broward’s LGBT citizens through direct legal representation, and outreach and education programs throughout South Florida. He’s a board member and director at Care Resource, which has evolved from a community health center into a primary health care provider for thousands of patients. And he’s funded and coordinated numerous LGBT candidates, campaigns and causes in Broward County.

“I thank Equality Florida for this important endorsement of my campaign based on a recognition of the work I’ve done in the LGBT community,” Castrataro said. “We must keep LGBT representation on the Fort Lauderdale Commission, given the size of our community and the work that still needs to be done.

“I also understand that the entire community — all residents of Fort Lauderdale — need the same things from our leaders — a focus on fixing our existing problems, the foresight to plan for the future, and the ability to make our city better for everyone. That’s my commitment to our residents.”

Wasserman Schultz to File Airport ALERT Act in Response to Ft. Lauderdale Mass Shooting




 On MondayCongresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-23) will file legislation that draws on the lessons learned from the deadly mass shooting at the Ft. Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport to help ensure that travelers at America’s major air hubs are kept as safe as possible in such chaotic situations.


One year ago a gunman killed five people at the Ft. Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL), and thanks to a solid law enforcement response that day, a larger loss of life was avoided. However, communication problems in the aftermath of that tragedy caused uncertainty and preventable chaos for many of the civilians and safety officials there. 
Over the past year, Wasserman Schultz (FL-23) convened federal, state and local officials as well as industry experts to discuss those airport security and response issues, and honor the victims of this tragedy. In drafting the Airport Advanced Logistics Emergency Response and Training (ALERT) Act, she also utilized official post-incident after-action reports of the FLL tragedy, as well as similar incidents at other large air travel hubs, to identify legislative improvements that all major airports should adopt.
Rep. Wasserman Schultz’s bill addresses the communication, coordination and training issues that all major airports face. She will be joined by key law enforcement and airport officials, along with bill co-sponsor, Rep. Ted Deutch (FL-22), to discuss the legislation.
Specifically, the bill would expand the Airport Air Transportation Security Programs administered by TSA to enhance training, require planning, improve communications, facilitate continuity of operations, and assist customers and the traveling public in the aftermath of any airport emergency. 
In addition, at the 28 airports in TSA’s highest security level known as Category X, which includes Miami and Fort Lauderdale, the Airport ALERT Act would require an integrated and unified operations center to oversee and direct security operations for the entire airport.  The Miami International Airport (MIA) is already constructing such a center, and it is essential that this best practice is followed nationwide.       
U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-23) 
U.S. Rep. Ted Deutch, (FL-22)
Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel
Mayor Beam Furr – Broward County
Mark Gale – FLL Airport Director

                       City of Sunrise Utilities Administration Building
777 Sawgrass Corporate Parkway
Sunrise, FL 33325

                        Monday, Jan. 8, 2017 at 9:45 a.m.




Peel The Onion Back On Florida's Legislative Session and You Will See Rick Scott Running For Senate

Image result for rick scott with trump
Budget
Technically speaking, the state’s budget is the only piece of legislation required to pass each year, but how Florida spends the money in its budget differs each year.
Gov. Rick Scott has his own ideas about how the state should spend its money -- in November, Scott unveiled an $87.4 billion budget plan, the largest since he took office in 2011. 
Among Scott’s top priorities: a record $12 billion investment in the state’s education system, the “highest ever” in Florida history. The increase in state funding would be a jump of nearly 37 percent for Florida’s K-12 public schools since Scott first took office, with over $21.4 billion going towards Florida’s public schools. All in all, Scott’s funding numbers equate to around $7,500 per student, an increase of around $200 per student, a record for per-pupil spending. 
Scott is also pitching a $220 million investment for Florida environmental programs.
Though Florida leaders have yet to outline their own specific budget proposals, revenue specialists have projected possible budget constraints in 2018 in part due to unexpected costs resulting from Hurricanes Irma and Maria. 
The final budget numbers have yet to be determined.

Education
Florida’s education system has long been a top priority for state lawmakers, and education issues were among the first to make headlines for proposals for the 2018 legislative session.
Some bills tackling education issues: 
SB 4: Permanent Expansion of Bright Futures Scholarships (Sen. Bill Galvano, R-Bradenton)
SB 4, spearheaded by future Senate President Bill Galvano, R-Bradenton, would expand the amount of financial aid and scholarship money Florida students could receive under the Bright Futures program, which began in 1997 and is expected to serve nearly 100,000 students this year. 
Galvano’s proposal would secure full funding for the Academic Scholar award, the top tier of scholarships in the program. Receiving the top award for the scholarship requires students to have at least a 3.5 GPA as well as a score of 1290 on the SAT or a 29 on the ACT. 
 
At least 41,000 students qualified for the top scholarship tier this year. 
 
Funding would also be reinstated for the Bright Futures Medallion Scholar award, which awards 75 percent of tuition and fees for the fall and spring semesters. 
The bill has already seen widespread support and is headed to the Senate floor.

HB 1: “Hope Scholarship” for Victims of Bullying (Rep. Byron Donalds, R-Naples)
Students who are victims of bullying, violence or abuse could get a shot at attending a new school as part of a scholarship program pushed by Florida House GOP members during this year’s upcoming legislative session.
 
Dubbed the “Hope Scholarship,” the new program would give funding to Florida students reporting incidents of violence, allowing them to transfer to public or private schools.
 
The bill has already been heralded as a top priority for House Speaker Richard Corcoran, R-Land O’Lakes, who has thrown his weight behind the measure.
 

Environment
SB 370: Florida Forever Funding (Sen. Rob Bradley, R-Fleming Island)

Sen. Bradley was tapped to take over as Senate Budget Chief in November, and Bradley is prepared to use his powerful position to require extra funding -- to the tune of $100 million -- for the state’s “Florida Forever” program.
 
Florida Forever buys land across the state for conservation purposes and has bought more than 751,000 acres of land with a little over $2.98 billion since the program’s inception in 2001. 
 
Bradley’s bill has already gathered support from groups like the Florida Conservation Voters 
 
“Florida voters have made it clear they want more funding for parks, wildlife corridors, and environmentally important natural areas like wetlands. I hope that SB 370 is the first sign of the Senate’s renewed commitment to continuing Florida’s legacy of acquiring critical natural areas before they are lost forever,” said Florida Conservation Voters Executive Director Aliki Moncrief. 
 
 
Opioid Crisis
HB 21: Opioid Epidemic (Rep. Jim Boyd, R-Bradenton and Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto, R-Fort Myers)
HB 21, sponsored by Rep. Jim Boyd in the House and Sen. Lizbeth Benacquisto in the Senate, would limit opioid prescriptions in Florida to a three-day supply. The limit would apply to patients suffering acute pain rather than chronic pain, which is governed under different standards. 
The bill is largely in line with a proposal Gov. Rick Scott made in September to combat the opioid crisis in Florida, on top of a $50 million investment in his 2018 budget.
“I know how painful substance abuse is for a family and no family in our state should experience the anguish and heartbreak that opioid abuse brings,” Scott said. “We cannot be too cautious when it comes to helping families. Whether it’s recovery from the devastation of Hurricane Irma, fighting against the Zika virus or combatting the opioid epidemic – we will not stop providing Floridians every resource when they need it the most.”


Hurricane Irma Response/Nursing Homes
SB 284/372: Mandatory generator requirement bill (Sen. Lauren Book, D-Plantation, Sen. Rene Garcia, R-Hialeah)
Florida lawmakers have filed a series of bills in response to the untimely deaths of 13 elderly people in a Hollywood nursing home following Hurricane Irma. 
Sen. Lauren Book is pitching a bill, SB 284, to require nursing homes and assisted living facilities to have generators to power up air conditioning should the facilities lose power. Generators would be required to have enough fuel for five days’ worth of power.
Nursing homes and ALFs would be kept under a close watch -- the bill would also require the Agency for Health Care Administration to conduct inspections every 15 months to make sure generators are working. 
A similar bill, SB 372, has been filed by Sen. Rene Garcia, R-Hialeah, which would require generators and a mandatory fuel supply for four days at nursing homes and ALFs.


HB 655: ‘Granny Cam’ Legislation Prioritizing Power Restoration for Nursing Homes (Rep. Katie Edwards, D-Plantation, and Sen. Gary farmer, D-Fort Lauderdale)
The 2018 “Granny Cam” legislation would prioritize power restoration for certain medical facilities including nursing homes during times of crisis.
 
Public utility companies would also be required to inform facilities administering “essential” medical care if their services are scheduled to be interrupted at any time.
 
The bill would also establish an “undercover” system to watch for abuses and neglect in nursing home, a hot button issue since the Hollywood Hills story broke.
 
If the bill passes, the Office of the State Long-Term Care Ombudsman would keep a much closer eye on assisted living facilities, conducting unannounced quality-of-care investigations of health and long-term care facilities statewide.
 
The office could have employees show up for the review in uniform, or they could go undercover to investigate possible abuses and neglect at nursing homes.
Those found violating state laws could receive civil penalties anywhere from $5,000 to $10,000 per occurrence. 

Public Safety

HB 33: Texting While Driving (Reps. Jackie Toledo, R-Tampa, and Emily Slosberg, D-Boca Raton)
Under HB 33, texting and driving would become a primary offense, which means Floridians could get pulled over if they’re found typing on their phones behind the wheel. 
 
Texting and driving is currently a secondary offense in Florida, which means drivers have to be pulled over for breaking the law in other ways -- like speeding or not wearing their seatbelts -- to be whacked for texting and driving. 
 
If the bill becomes law, Florida would become the 41st state in the country to ban texting and driving. State legislators have tried to pass the measure for years, but without much success. 


Law Enforcement
HB 9: Sanctuary Cities Ban (Rep. Larry Metz, R-Yahala)
HB 9, sponsored by Rep. Larry Metz, R-Yalaha, would prohibit Florida communities from acting as “sanctuary cities” for undocumented immigrants. Law enforcement agencies and local government entities would also be prohibited from adopting sanctuary policies. 
If passed, local officials who refuse to comply with federal authorities could be removed from their jobs. 
Speaker Corcoran has already shown strong support for the bill, which House leaders are pushing as a way to combat “dangerous” policies affecting Floridians in sanctuary cities.
“Sanctuary cities are a threat to the safety of our communities,” tweeted Corcoran on Tuesday. “On week one of the session, the Florida House will pass a bill that will enforce the rule of law.”


The 2018 legislative session begins Tuesday.








Source Sunshinestatenews.com

New Progressive Network Launching


David Bohrman, former Current TV President and former CNN Washington bureau chief and chief innovation officer at CNN Worldwide, is launching a new over-the-top (OTT) video service that will cater to progressive Americans, called the Political Voices Network (PVN).
  • The network will be both advertising and subscription-based, offering $10 membership access to content across platforms, discounts for live events and more.
  • The effort is currently self-funded, but Bohrman is seeking a seed round in the $3-5 million range. He plans to launch the network by the second quarter of this year.
Why it matters: Bohrman argues there has been a vacancy of progressive voices in the video space compared to the right. On the "left" he sees only The Young Turks as being a viable competitor, compared to many more consumer options for video streaming on the right, like Glenn Beck's The Blaze, One American News Network (OANN), Newsmax, Rush Limbaugh, Mark Levin's CRTV, and more.
From a business perspective, more consumers are looking to streaming options for news and sports, two topics that are mostly still watched live. Bohrman says he is interested in expanding to sports in the future.
  • PVN will be available on www.leftisright.com, and on the major platforms of Apple TV, Roku and Amazon Prime, as well as on mobile iOS and Android devices.
  • The network plans to air more than 20 hours each day of live political news and insights.
  • On-air talent includes Stephanie Miller and Bill Press, and more to come.
  • Bohrman plans to hire roughly 18 employees for launch.He plans to keep staffing light and utilizing much of the infrastructure that is already built-in with the existing shows.













Source: Axios.com

Pope Francis Calls 2017 A 'Wasted' Year Of Death, Lies






Pope Francis thought 2017 was a terrible year, too. I n his last public address of this tumultuous year, the pontiff called 2017 a “wasted” year that was filled with death and lies, harming the environment and humanity as a whole. Speaking at an evening vespers service in St. Peter’s Basilica, the Pope said humanity had…

Humans Have Been Making New Year’s Resolutions for Over 4,000 Years

‘A Dance to the Music of Time’ (1634-1635) by Nicolas Poussin.
A Dance to the Music of Time’ (1634-1635) by Nicolas Poussin


Humans Have Been Making New Year’s Resolutions for Over 4,000 Years


New Year’s resolutions are a popular practice. Countless people begin to consider them every year as December 31st rolls around. Although the big plans and ambitious goals can be difficult to follow through with, the idea of making (and breaking) New Year’s resolutions has been a social phenomenon for the past 4,000 years. You can trace this practice back the Babylonians.
Today, New Year’s resolutions are generally personal goals for self-improvement. The ancient Babylonians, on the other hand, made promises to their gods at the beginning of each year to return objects they borrowed and pay off their debts. They were more likely to keep their resolutions than most modern people are because the ancient people of Mesopotamia believed that a kept promise meant the gods would treat them well. However, a broken promise would mean angering the gods and bringing unfortunate situations into your life for the next twelve months.
Unlike the Western tradition of a new year starting in January, the Babylonian year began in mid-March. This made sense as that time of year is springtime; when crops are planted, and the world is refreshed and renewed.
Ancient Romans kept with the tradition of making yearly resolutions. Their god of choice for this act was the two-faced Janus, the deity linked to beginnings and endings. Janus was believed to be capable of simultaneously looking back toward the old year and forward into the new one
By the Medieval era, knights were taking the “peacock vow” (les voeux du paon) at the end of the year. This oath was a promise to keep with their chivalric ways in the coming year. It was also around this time that Christians were reflecting on the mistakes of the past year and resolving to avoid repetition of their errors. Watchnight services have been the space for many Christians to complete this task and pray for the upcoming year.

Medieval knights took the peacock vow as a sort of “New Year’s resolution” for chivalry.

Judaism has a similar idea with a practice which runs from the New Year, Rosh Hashanah, through the High Holidays and up until Yom Kippur (the Day of Atonement). Jewish people use this time to reflect on their mistakes in the past year and offer and seek out forgiveness for any wrongdoings.
As you can see, the general idea of a New Year’s resolution, regardless of one’s religious beliefs, is to reflect on the past and aim for self-improvement. The major difference is that people making resolutions in a non-religious context tend to make their promises to themselves, not a deity. The lack of a “higher power”, which could act cruelly if the resolution is not kept, may be part of the reason why New Year’s resolutions fall through for many people today. Most people believe they are not being held accountable to anyone but themselves if their resolution fails – so the risks of punishment for failure are often seen as lower.

New Year's Day postcard mailed in 1909. (Public Domain) Modern New Year’s resolutions are generally seen as difficult to keep.
New Year's Day postcard mailed in 1909


A 2007 study conducted at the University of Bristol showed 88% of the people who set New Year resolutions failed. The resolutions fell through even though 52% of the study's 3000 participants strongly believed they could complete their goals.
Researchers provide some helpful tricks to improve the odds: men are 22% more likely to achieve their resolution if they engage in goal setting. Women will be 10% more likely to succeed in their New Year’s resolutions if they tell others of their goals and seek support from helpful people in their lives.

Top Image: ‘A Dance to the Music of Time’ (1634-1635) by Nicolas Poussin. Source: Public Domain














Source: ancient-origins.net