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It's hard to imagine the level of outright despise Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin must have for states that allow same sex marriages.   Today, Oklahoma took the bold step and reversed course on all benefits extended to National Guard members who were legally married in other states.

In a policy reversal, the Oklahoma National Guard will no longer process benefit requests from same-sex couples after being notified by Gov. Mary Fallin's office that doing so violates state law banning gay marriage.

Initially, the Oklahoma National Guard said as long as a soldier seeking benefits for their same-sex partner presented a marriage certificate or license, the claim would be treated as it would for any other soldier. The guard processed two same-sex requests before being notified by Gov. Fallin's general counsel Sept. 6 that the state constitution prohibited such actions.

“Because of that legal prohibition, Oklahoma National Guard soldiers and airmen will not process requests for same-sex benefits,” Guard spokesman Col. Max Moss said Tuesday. The guard has received no requests since being notified of the policy change.

It'd be easy to just say this is one of those flukey things if other states were not taking similar action.
Officials in Texas, Mississippi and Louisiana, also citing state laws banning gay marriage, also have said they won't issue applications from state-owned offices, but instead are directing guard members to federal installations. Officials in 11 other states that ban gay marriage have said they will follow federal law and process all couples seeking benefits the same, according to the Associated Press.
Making sure it will be challenged in court.
It's also an example of why Oklahoma's constitutional provision banning gay marriage violates the U.S Constitution's equal protection and due process clauses, Redman said.

“You have two lawfully married couples being treated differently,” Redman said. “I strongly encourage Gov. Fallin and other leaders to look at that disparity in treatment in these policies and justify that disparity when the Supreme Court says it's unequal and not appropriate.”

The real decision being made here is that statehouses are willing to spend incredible amounts of state resources, legal bills and long fights through courthouses rather then spend to do the right thing.   This has nothing to do with saying "we don't want to spend the money on.."  it has everything to do with a antiquated idea that you can force a religious philosophy down someone's throat and call it government.

The fact that state tax dollars are being used to wage this kind of war against a class of people is despicable, and hopefully Governor Fallin wakes up to at least the waste of money and resources.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (122+ / 0-)

    Gandhi's Seven Sins: Wealth without work; Pleasure without conscience; Knowledge without character; Commerce without morality; Science without humanity; Worship without sacrifice; Politics without principle

    by Chris Reeves on Tue Sep 17, 2013 at 09:56:59 PM PDT

  •  To add insult to injury... (68+ / 0-)

    ...the Army and Air National Guard are frequently the first of our military forces to deploy in support of the nation's objectives--never mind their crucial roles in dealing with domestic disasters.  As a veteran of 25 years on active duty, and having served alongside the national guard on many occasions I can say they epitomize professionalism.  It pains me to see some elected civilian take such petty action against those who are on the front line of everything from tornado recovery to humanitarian airlift.  Asshole.

    "First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win". Mohandas K. Gandhi

    by DaveinBremerton on Tue Sep 17, 2013 at 10:20:12 PM PDT

  •  spineless and shameless (nt) (6+ / 0-)

    (The above was probably snark, for the snark challenged) (The below was actually said by George W Bush in a press conference) I'm kind of stalling for time here...They told me what to say. George W Bush, 03-21-2006 10:00 EST Press Conference

    by Tamifah on Tue Sep 17, 2013 at 11:50:27 PM PDT

  •  Whatever happened to "Full Faith and Credit"? (21+ / 0-)

    Seems to me like the right wingers only obey the constitution when it suits them. Then again, that's not exactly a break in habit, is it? Lest you point out to them that this sort of behavior is blatantly unconstitutional, they'll wrap themselves in the flag and talk about the virtuousness of 'one man and one woman'.

    I think it's fair to say that any opposition to same sex marriage is not based on anything scientific, or even defensible to a reasonable person. Any opposition to same sex marriage is based upon bigotry and religion, period.

    •  I agree that FF&C guarantees a State loss. (0+ / 0-)

      Public office holders who pursue costly legal battles when it is clear from the outset that they will lose before the Supreme Court should be barred permanently from public office and forced to make restitution to their governments.  This is malfeasance defined.  Unfortunately, their constituents seldom seem to have the good sense to remove them from office.

    •  Full Faith and Credit (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      BeninSC

      The exception to "full faith and credit" is if congress grants a specific exception (that is the next clause in that part of the Constitution) which congress did when it passed Section 2 of the Defense of Marriage Act which is still in effect (only Section 3 of DOMA was overturned this past June).  

      However, Section 2 of DOMA will be overturned soon because it violates the equal protection clause of the 14th Amendment.  (It also violates the 9th Amendment although, sadly, the 9th Amendment will probably not be used in the successful argument which will overturn Section 2.)  

      Oddly enough, it is rabidly anti-gay Justice Scalia who stated that if Section 3 were overturn then there is no logical argument to sustain Section 2.  (Scalia stated this in his dissenting argument against the majority opinion.)  I think Scalia is correct.  Scalia also said that we might see that case as soon as the next session of the Supreme Court.  I hope he is correct because overturning Section 2 cannot come too soon!

  •  Oklahoma has now set itself up to discover that (18+ / 0-)

    there is a difference between not providing a service (the registration of private contracts such as marriage, adoption, partnerships) and taking a service away. The latter is a property right and, at least in this instance, it is useful that property rights trump human rights.
    For some reason, Cons are under the impression that all actions are simply reversible -- that give and take are the same, depending only on who does it. That give is a matter of initiative and take is a response doesn't seem to register with people who don't perceive function at all. Subtraction is not simply the opposite of addition.

    Expending energy on the insult that's being perpetrated is largely a waste of time. The affected couples in Oklahoma need to hie themselves to a lawyer real quick and seek to enjoin the proposed deprivation of rights under cover of law.

  •  Btw, dollars are dollars, regardless of whose (6+ / 0-)

    hands they pass through. They are all nothing more than certified IOUs, an official record of obligations rendered tangible so the obligated won't forget.
    One of the problems Cons have is that they seem incapable of perceiving obligations, regardless of what they are called. They hate debts because on some level they sense that debt requires them to carry out some service and they really don't know how.
    I suspect they have the same reaction to "care." Cons don't know how to care, either for themselves or anyone else. I think it's because they are not self-aware. That people can be self-centered without being self-aware seems surprising, until you think of a top spinning on its axis.
    Cons are as clueless as a spinning top. I think we put them into public office because they look fun to play with. Wind them up and then watch them turn and twist until they drop.

  •  Hmm (18+ / 0-)

    Wouldn't it be a hoot if her action is what brings the house of cards down?  The court may just say it is all unconstitutional after all because of interference with the military.  That would be a hoot. Mary would be remembered as causing marriage equality to com to OK and all states.  Just thinking...

  •  Politically tone deaf to boot... (12+ / 0-)

    Even in dark red Oklahoma, you're not going to win brownie points from anyone for pissing on the National Guard.

    The Guard has bailed out Oklahoma time and again in crisis after crisis. The are first responders to devastating tornados, pulling people and pets from the rubble and getting them medical attention. They evacuate flood victims. And God bless them, they even come to the aid of those in man made disasters like overstuffed chemical dumps that explode in part due to lax regulation.

    And this doesn't just play poorly in Oklahoma. Poor Prince Reibus is about to embark on year 2 of the "national rebranding" of the GOP. How's that going, anyway?

  •  She won't be able to make it stick (11+ / 0-)

    NATIONAL Guard---that means that even though they are deployed from this state, they still have to be deployed for National problems, and as some pointed out--even overseas.

    The Governor is just going to cost the state lots and lots of money that could have been spent on Storm Shelters for children in Public Schools.

    She is trying to play political kissy face with her base, but really is only cutting her nose to spite her face, FOR the whole freaken state.

    Too the GLBT out there--Not everyone in Oklahoma feels that way about you. I didn't vote for this woman, I wish Brad Henry had not stepped down.

    Remember this is also the state that hates women and likes to use Rape By Instrumentation to discourage abortion.

    Gentlemen, congratulations. You're everything we've come to expect from years of government training (Zed, MIB).

    by GreenMother on Wed Sep 18, 2013 at 05:42:14 AM PDT

  •  As a gay, disabled Vietnam veteran (14+ / 0-)

    who served honorably,  I cannot tell you how pathetic and insane this move by the Oklahoma governor is - and how sad it is that there are people in power in the US who defy constitutional protections and SCOTUS decisions.  This is a clear violation of everything the US stands for.  The constitution protects gay and lesbian partners, husbands and wives just as it protects straight persons/parters/married couples.  

    Repulsive actions.  Repulsive persons in power in Oklahoma and elsewhere across the US.

    god help us all.  The US is in a terribly sad state, thanks to right wing conservative nutcases who have infiltrated all levels of government across this country.

  •  Fallin will not "wake up" (8+ / 0-)

    She will ride the now-spiked wave of ignorance and hate all the way to re-election.

    Then she will lose the case in court, and Oklahoma will go back to wondering why it has no money to repair roads and bridges, or educate its children.

    Oklahoma: birthplace of Kate Barnard, W. Rogers, W. Guthrie, Bill Moyers & Eliz. Warren. Home to proud progressive agitators since before statehood. Current political climate a mere passing dust cloud; we're waiting it out & planning for clearer days.

    by peacearena on Wed Sep 18, 2013 at 07:05:56 AM PDT

  •  I have long predicted Civil War II (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PSzymeczek

    over this issue if it ever got to the federal level, and it has.  Open nullification of federal laws is how civil wars start.  I anticipate that it will start out in Texas, although OK is close enough...

    It will happen, my liberal friends in liberal communities.  Teh hate for teh gay is stronger than you see around you on a daily basis...

    •  Bring it on! (0+ / 0-)

      That way we can correct the mistake that was made after the first Civil War. no person who owned a slave, or served in the Confederate military or government should have ever allowed to vote or hold office for the rest of their life. Nor should we have allowed any statues to be erected to traitors.

      The mistake that was made at the start of the war was not letting them go.

      Workers of the world, unite! You have nothing to lose but your shackles. It is by the picket line and direct action that true freedom will be won, not by electing people who promise to screw us less than the other guy.

      by rhonan on Wed Sep 18, 2013 at 11:23:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Not to put too fine a point on it, (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tmservo433, DarthMeow504

        but that sort of punitive scorched earth retribution is what led Germany back into dreams of world domination after WWI.  

        It's the complete elimination of religion from the public sphere (no advertising, no religious programminig on broadcast media, no trace of the divine inscribed on anything related to the government, no teaching of such mythology in public education, etc.,) that will ultimately - after several more generations mind you - will take care of such fear and loathing in the redneck mindset.  And I say this as the most devout of Episcopalians.

        Although, the redneck mindset is also pretty full to the brim of the "proper" definitions of masculinity and femininity, gay panic, and the heirarchy of oppression (they have to have someone to look down on after all)...

        •  Funny (0+ / 0-)

          I'm describing exactly what was done in Germany after WWII. We saw what happened after our own Civil War, and we made sure the German Constitution prevented the surviving Nazis from doing the same. You don't see swastikas in Germany at all. much less on government buildings or as part of German state flags. You don't see memorials to Hitler and his generals. You certainly don't have German politicians threatening to revive the Third Reich if Germany doesn't get its way in the EU.

          Workers of the world, unite! You have nothing to lose but your shackles. It is by the picket line and direct action that true freedom will be won, not by electing people who promise to screw us less than the other guy.

          by rhonan on Thu Sep 19, 2013 at 10:13:54 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  My Lord in Heaven, (0+ / 0-)

            do we really welcome another Civil War?  It tore the nation apart, so many deaths, such destruction.  Did we really come out better on the other side?  I consider the Reconstruction era a low point in American history for a host of reasons...

            •  We are in it right now. (0+ / 0-)

              And Southern Republicans are clearly trying to either take over the country, or destroy it in the process. I have no problem with a second civil war, so long as this time rebels are treated like the traitors they are. The Reconstruction was a failure because the lands and property of everyone connected to the Confederacy were not seized for treason, and given to the freed slaves as reparations, with the abundant convict labor of the defeated Confederacy to help rebuild.

              Workers of the world, unite! You have nothing to lose but your shackles. It is by the picket line and direct action that true freedom will be won, not by electing people who promise to screw us less than the other guy.

              by rhonan on Sat Sep 21, 2013 at 11:22:05 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

  •  Here is an article in the OKC paper (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Eddie L, tmservo433, PSzymeczek, myboo

    Mary is getting ripped pretty good by some of the commenters. This same story was published earlier and had a lot more comments. Some were very well written and included links. Most were very unflattering to Mary. The article seems to have been reposted without these previous comments.

    http://newsok.com/...

    Feel free to enter the fray if you want. I think all it takes is a Facebook account, which leaves me out of the picture.

    •  Darn you Kos search engine.. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      hnichols

      I searched Kos on this and checked through the Recommended and didn't see it.  If this was diaried earlier, definitely my apologies.  :)  But at least it's a story that deserves to be heard more then once.

      Gandhi's Seven Sins: Wealth without work; Pleasure without conscience; Knowledge without character; Commerce without morality; Science without humanity; Worship without sacrifice; Politics without principle

      by Chris Reeves on Wed Sep 18, 2013 at 08:03:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm sorry. Poorly worded comment above. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tmservo433, myboo

        Newsok.com is the one who reposted the story, sans comments. Not the diary.

        Did not mean to imply that at all.

        Profuse apologies for bad wording.

        •  Oh no problem.. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          hnichols

          I thought you were saying it was on Kos before, then I felt bad about stealing someone's diary :)  Thanks for the link, good stuff ;)

          Gandhi's Seven Sins: Wealth without work; Pleasure without conscience; Knowledge without character; Commerce without morality; Science without humanity; Worship without sacrifice; Politics without principle

          by Chris Reeves on Wed Sep 18, 2013 at 09:07:04 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  What a pig. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    PSzymeczek

    This nullifcation shit drives me up a wall. Every Republican remembers the sound bite from Dr. King's most famous speech, "not by the color of their skin but by the content of their character," but they never remember from the same speech, spoken of Alabama's Gov. Wallace, "his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification".... because that's what the GOP are today.

    "Much of movement conservatism is a con and the base is the marks." -- Chris Hayes

    by raptavio on Wed Sep 18, 2013 at 07:43:12 AM PDT

  •  Consider the source (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Lennykat, PSzymeczek

    Fallin's stance is not a surprise nor is her hypocrisy.  In same circles she is known as Mattress Mary for her proclivities.

    Unfortunately, this state get crazier and crazier. I could say it is in the water but this used to be a pretty liberal state not so long ago.

    "I want to live in a world where George Zimmerman offered Trayvon Martin a ride home to get him out of the rain that night." Greg Martin, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Central Florida

    by CorinaR on Wed Sep 18, 2013 at 08:04:41 AM PDT

  •  this article not quite right (0+ / 0-)

    As someone noted above, they can go to federal base.
    It's somewhat inconvenient, but it should be a one-time thing. It's not really the same as closing abortion clinics. It just means you have to go to this location to file your paperwork.

    Maybe it makes for a good headline to write "Oklahoma strips benefits".
    But the headline could be "getting benefits becomes more inconvenient. Oklahoma unable to strip benefits however"

    Obama 2012...going to win it with our support!!!

    by mattinjersey on Wed Sep 18, 2013 at 08:17:41 AM PDT

    •  No, not really.. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      myboo

      I know what you are saying, but if Oklahoma removed benefits, it still "stripped benefits" even if you can go elsewhere to get them... it would be the same if say, Blue Cross dropped you and someone said "Sure, but you can go get Coventry".. that's all well and good, but it doesn't mean you weren't stripped out benefits by the one.

      It also means you have a lapse in service as you are now 'dropped' from one and move to another, even if it's brief, and you also have to match with different guidelines/standards in the fed system (to my understanding based on comments in various articles).

      Gandhi's Seven Sins: Wealth without work; Pleasure without conscience; Knowledge without character; Commerce without morality; Science without humanity; Worship without sacrifice; Politics without principle

      by Chris Reeves on Wed Sep 18, 2013 at 08:20:36 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Far as I know they've only got Altus (0+ / 0-)

      as a Fed base in OK, right?

      LBJ, Van Cliburn, Ike, Wendy Davis, Lady Bird, Ann Richards, Barbara Jordan, Molly Ivins, Sully Sullenburger, Drew Brees: Texas is NO Bush League!

      by BlackSheep1 on Wed Sep 18, 2013 at 10:10:00 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  A lawsuit should be filed immediately... (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    myboo

    And here is why..

    The soldiers that process those benefits are paid by the federal government, not the state of Oklahoma.  ACTIVE GUARD personnel do NOT fall under the authority of the Governor of ANY STATE.   That is why ACTIVE GUARD personnel cannot be called up and used by the state during emergencies.  This is a massive over reach by the states of OK and TX and should be slapped down HARD by both the DOD and President Obama.  Actually there doesn't even need to be a lawsuit, the President only has to direct that Federally paid technicians and active guard personnel WILL PROCESS CLAIMS period.

    What you allow, is what will continue.

    by Nebraskablue on Wed Sep 18, 2013 at 09:02:59 AM PDT

    •  A Correction. . . (0+ / 0-)

      Actually, members of the National Guard CAN be called into service by the governor of a state in the event of an emergency, such as a natural disaster or (as in the case of the deadly urban riots of the 1960s) a total breakdown of law and order.

      That said, no state can contravene federal law with respect to the use of the National Guard - a lesson that Arkansas Gov. Orvil Faubus learned the hard way in 1957 when President Dwight Eisenhower overruled Faubus' order that the Guard keep nine black students out of Little Rock Central High School.

      •  You are WAY wrong, here's why. (0+ / 0-)

        This ain't my first rodeo on this subject, I lived this crap for 20 years.  OK first off.  EVERY LAST pay technician regardless if they are a FEDERAL technician (Read federal civil service employee) or an ACTIVE GUARD member (AGR) they receive, their paycheck from and take orders from the Federal government, that being NATIONAL GUARD BUREAU in DC or the Office Of Personnel Management (OPM).  When someone is hired in either of those types of positions under US CFR title 32 the ultimate decision rests with folks in DC. NOT the Governor of the state who has ZERO to do with hiring, directing or firing any of them.  AGR's are flat out NOT EVER ALLOWED to be called up and mobilized by ANY governor period... end of story.  It has happened in the past thru folks not paying attention and always causes a big problem when DC finds out about it.  Precisely because it is specifically FORBIDDEN for that to happen in CFR title 32.  Yes a Governor can call up traditional M day soldiers and airmen, and even dual status technicians to state active duty, and then the state has to pay them.  99.9% of the time all costs associated with the call ups end up being reimbursed to the state afterward by FEMA, or some other agency up to and including the DOD.

        Title 32 AGR's NEVER get called up for state emergency missions and are NEVER under the control of the State Guard ever, doesn't happen not in all my years in the guard, not unless someone screws the pooch and will have to answer for it afterward, it is a BIG NO NO!!!!

        The ability to call up ANYONE and EVERYONE in the State Guard to Federal control rests with the President of the US as put forth under CFR Title 10, and is done at the Presidents discretion,  state leaders be damned.

        The real truth of the matter is Obama has bigger fish to fry so no one on his team is making a big deal about this because they damn sure could and they have an air tight lock stock and smoking barrel case to stick this issue in the States ass over this if they cared to do so.  The simply fact is this damn near EVERY building in the State Army and Air National Guard system in every state is built with and maintained with Federal money EXCEPT State Armories (which are under pure state control), and NOT ONE person from the Governor on down in the states bureaucracy has one ounce of say over what happens inside those buildings legally period.  Specifically STATE regulations passed down from the state military departments are always specifically made to reference their proper relationship with, and the authority of FEDERAL regulations from either OPM, Guard Bureau or the DOD.  If Obama wanted to slap these retard GOPers down all he would have to do is send a sternly worded letter reminding them that they have ZERO authority over what happens inside Federally funded buildings in the work day of federally funded and managed personnel, and tell them that unless they cease this crap he will have their funding for title 32 AGR's and technicians removed from the budget which he could do with one phone call to the Director of Guard Bureau.  The individual states are by NO MEANS guaranteed a given slice of the national ARNG / ANG budget and money can be yanked in ten seconds (and has been in the past when the state leaders pissed off the DOD of ARNG HQ).

        The only reason Obama hasn't done it so far is there are bigger battles going on for him to deal with, and a lot more dumber Gopers closer to the White House for him to deal with right now. On a slow news day he probably would have had the DOD or ARNG Hq go after this stuff.  I know I would have if I was in his shoes.... I would break their bullshit off in their own asses so fast they would do a backwards somersault. Because once again the retards somehow elected in those deep red states are just making stuff up as they go along and celebrating their personal wet dream of somehow nullifying things they have no legal standing to even be talking about let alone tilting at with stupid ideas based upon hatred of not only their fellow Americans but the complete disrespect for anyone elses authority as properly authorized by US Constitutional law and Federal Regulations other than the their own imaginary  ideas of grandeur and personal wet dreams of some Nonexistent  Christian theocracy in their states.    

        What you allow, is what will continue.

        by Nebraskablue on Mon Sep 23, 2013 at 04:56:33 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  Hopefully she doesn't wake up... (0+ / 0-)

    ...and come election time the residents of that state do the right thing and...who am I kidding?! It's Oklahoma. Nothing will change until the Federal government steps in gets a Federal law that authorizes same sex marriages. If it's one thing that Repugnicans know how to do it's awaken sleeping giants.

  •  Keep it classy OK. (0+ / 0-)

    The nice thing about this is that is just makes it that much more certain that state bans on same-sex marriage will fall next. It creates just the sort of clear equal protection case that prevailed against DOMA.

    Workers of the world, unite! You have nothing to lose but your shackles. It is by the picket line and direct action that true freedom will be won, not by electing people who promise to screw us less than the other guy.

    by rhonan on Wed Sep 18, 2013 at 11:12:34 AM PDT

  •  No State Can Deny FEDERAL Spousal Benefits . . . (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tmservo433

    . . . What Oklahoma has done to the same-sex married members of the National Guard is illegal under federal law.

    Gov. Fallin obvously has forgotten the fact that the members of the National Guard ultimately answer to the commander-in-chief of the armed forces -- the President of the United States. They serve the NATION, not just the state. As such they are entitled to all federal benefits, including federal spousal benefits.

    No state, therefore, can deny federal benefits to our men and women who serve in the uniform of the nation's armed forces. What Gov. Fallin has done is illegal under federal law -- not to mention the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which, as Gov. Fallin surely must know, SUPERSEDES the Oklahoma Constitution.    

  •  It's freaking Oklahoma (0+ / 0-)

    I still say we cut out Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, and Arkansas (maybe part of Texas too, cut straight across) and make it their own little right-wing Jesusstan.Pay to relocate anyone sane living within their borders, and deport the crazies from the rest of the country to there.

    They can use Kansas City as their capital, and have access to the Mississippi / Missouri River for trade with the outside world.

    Seriously, I'm done with these people. Let them have a slice of land to live out their 19th century fantasy forever.

    "Is there anybody listening? Is there anyone who sees what's going on? Read between the lines, criticize the words they're selling. Think for yourself, and feel the walls become sand beneath your feet." --Geoff Tate, Queensryche

    by DarthMeow504 on Wed Sep 18, 2013 at 09:30:58 PM PDT

  •  Who ya gonna call next time you need help Oklahoma (0+ / 0-)

    Better be Ghostbusters because the NG might tell you to fuck off.

  •  Purely political move! (0+ / 0-)

    She wants to primary-proof herself by being the first to get knocked down by the Supreme Court, fulfilling Scalia's prophecy. All aboard, you red-state governors, ride that crazy train into your political sunset!

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