When President Obama spoke out forcefully against Michigan’s right-to-work law, it was a rare example of the president putting on public display his support of organized labor. “What they’re really talking about is giving you the right to work for less money,” Mr. Obama told union workers, reciting labor’s talking points as faithfully as if his speech had been written by the United Auto Workers. Big Labor hopes it’s a sign that Mr. Obama will step into the fray on behalf of union workers more openly during his second term, whether it’s stopping an expansion of right-to-work
Washington played the Grinch that stole Christmas this year as the partisan impasse over the budget deficit instilled fear that the nation will fall over the “fiscal cliff,” dashing consumer holiday spirits and spending. The holiday shopping season started out with a bang, with sales hitting records over Thanksgiving weekend, but it ended with a whimper as consumers increasingly withdrew from the malls this month amid the din of discord and finger-pointing over whether to extend all or just some of the $600 billion in tax cuts and spending programs due to end next week.
The rapid collapse of a U.S. diplomatic compound in Libya exposed the vulnerabilities of State Department facilities overseas. But the CIA’s ability to fend off a second attack that same night provided a glimpse of a key element in the agency’s defensive arsenal: a secret security force created after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. Two of the Americans killed in Libya were members of the CIA’s Global Response Staff, an innocuously named organization that has recruited hundreds of former U.S. Special Forces operatives to serve as armed guards for the agency’s spies.
If the wireless Internet connection during your holiday flight seems more reliable than it used to, you could have the humble potato to thank. While major airlines offer in-flight Wi-Fi on many flights, the signal strength can be spotty. (Snip) Engineers at Chicago-based Boeing used sacks of potatoes as stand-ins for passengers as they worked to eliminate weak spots in in-flight wireless signals. They needed full planes to get accurate results during signal testing, but they couldn’t ask people to sit motionless for days while data was gathered. “That’s where potatoes come into the picture,” Boeing spokesman
Toyota Motor Co. has announced an agreement worth more than $1 billion to settle a lawsuit involving unintended acceleration in some of its vehicles. Under terms of the settlement, filed Wednesday in federal court in Santa Ana, Toyota will install a brake-override system in an estimated 3.25 million vehicles and compensate car owners for the alleged reduced value of the vehicles, among other terms. According to attorneys for the plaintiffs, the estimated value of the settlement makes it the largest of its kind, although there have been larger non-auto industry class settlements in recent years.
The Supreme Court on Wednesday refused to block the Obama administration´s contraception mandate from taking effect. Justice Sonia Sotomayor rejected a request for an emergency injunction that would have shielded employers from the mandate. The request was filed by Hobby Lobby, an arts-and-crafts chain. The company´s Catholic owners say the contraception mandate violates their religious freedom. Hobby Lobby might eventually win on that point, Sotomayor said, but the company didn´t meet the standard for an injunction blocking the mandate from taking effect.
LOS ANGELES- Los Angeles could become the first major U.S. city to ban elephant acts in circuses if it passes a measure backers say will eventually be adopted "universally." The city council is expected to vote early in the new year on an ordinance that could force the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus either to drop its annual stop in the country´s second-largest city or pull one of its most popular acts, , The New York Times reported. Paul Koretz, the councilman who sponsored the ordinance banning elephants, predicted other big cities will follow suit
Piers Morgan is facing another petition regarding his controversial views on gun control, but this time, it’s in support of him staying in the United States. Why do the so-far 69 signers want Morgan to stay? It’s primarily because “no one in the UK wants him back.” There are two other stated reasons: “The first amendment,” and angering Americans for comic value. [Petition] Yesterday, we reported that the deportation petition had reached over 68,000 signatures requiring White House action. As of this morning, the White House has not responded. Morgan, for his part, maintains his good will,
In response to Gannett´s Jounal News headquartered in White Plains, New York publishing an interactive map containing the names and addresses of all pistol permit holders in Westchester and Rockland Counties (previous related posts are here and here), blogger Robert Cox at NewRochelleTalk.com (HT Instapundit) has produced an interactive map at a post entitled "Where are the Journal News employees in your neighborhood?" It contains names, addresses, and various forms of Internet presence. Some of his narrative follows the jump:The map indicates the addresses of all Journal News Employees in the New York Tri-State area.
When you argue for a living, you can tell how an argument is going for you. The evidence and my gut both tell me that the liberals have lost control of the gun control narrative. Not for lack of trying – it was almost as if they were poised to leap into action across the political, media and cultural spectrum the second the next semi-human creep shot up another “gun free zone.” This was their big opening to shift the debate and now it’s closing. They’ve lost, and they are going nuts.
If you´re looking for optimism as the world turns toward 2013, stay up late watching paid-for television explaining how to turn wrinkles into miracles. Past that, my own reservoir of uplift is a bit dry this year. A famous and successful American optimist, Ronald Reagan, put his finger closer to the problem when he suggested there was little limit to what people could accomplish if government would get out of the way. As Barack Obama flies from Hawaii´s beaches to Washington´s cliff, there may be four or five liberals who´ve come to agree with the Gipper.
Islamism: Egypt´s new constitution bases itself on oppressive Shariah law. Unfortunately, we can expect Egyptian courts, unlike many in the U.S., to follow the plain meaning of their core governing document. During the "Arab Spring," we heard a lot of complaints about the government of ex-Egyptian President and U.S. ally Hosni Mubarak. Mubarak succeeded the widely extolled Anwar Sadat who won the Nobel Peace Prize with Israel´s Menachem Begin for ending hostilities between their countries. But while Sadat, assassinated by Islamists, was hailed as a hero who restrained his Muslim people´s
Americans are determined that massacres such as happened in Newtown, Conn., never happen again. But how? Many advocate more effective treatment of mentally-ill people or armed protection in so-called gun-free zones. Many others demand stricter control of firearms. We aren´t alone in facing this problem. Great Britain and Australia, for example, suffered mass shootings in the 1980s and 1990s. Both countries had very stringent gun laws when they occurred. Nevertheless, both decided that even stricter control of guns was the answer. Their experiences can be instructive. In 1987,
Accountability: As with Fast and Furious, the designated scapegoats for the deaths of Americans at the hands of administration bungling will merely be switching desks. Only the maker of that irrelevant video is in jail. Reports of the resignation of four State Department officials after the Accountability Review Board´s (ARB) review of State Department actions before during and after the terrorist attack on our consulate in Benghazi, Libya, may have been greatly exaggerated. Eric Boswell, the assistant secretary of state for diplomatic security, has not resigned from the department,
As a candidate for president of the United States, it is incumbent on me to make a statement regarding the Sandy Hook massacre and to explain how my policies would help prevent other such massacres should I become president. As I discuss this sensitive topic, it is also incumbent on me to sound more rational and articulate than the incumbent. That will not be difficult. As president, I plan to attack the issue in two ways. First, I will use the bully pulpit to influence voters and state lawmakers. Second, I will take direct action to influence the federal judiciary.
Families across the country might soon have to start trimming back their monthly budgets, with lawmakers running out of time and ideas for averting a crushing set of tax hikes. President Obama, cutting his family vacation short, was flying out of Hawaii late Wednesday and planned to be back in Washington by Thursday morning. But it´s not clear what he´ll do once he gets there -- as of Wednesday, congressional leaders on all sides reported little to no bipartisan progress, or even conversations, toward a fiscal crisis deal over the Christmas break.
Filling in for Rush Limbaugh on his Wednesday show, National Review columnist Mark Steyn reacted to all the unfolding drama related to CNN’s Piers Morgan and his anti-gun stance including a petition on the White House website wanting to deport the Morgan, saying, “How much longer are Americans going to have to put up with some snooty, hoity-toity foreigner coming on the airwaves and telling them everything that’s wrong with their country?” "Do you know this fellow, Piers Morgan?” Steyn said. “Piers Morgan. He’s one of these, you know, these snotty-voiced foreigners who came to
A top Republican lawmaker chastised the State Department Wednesday following a report that a security chief said to have resigned in the wake of the Libya attack is still on the payroll, calling the response "pathetic." Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla., chairwoman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said she could not independently confirm a New York Post report claiming Eric Boswell, the assistant secretary of state for diplomatic security, remains at the department -- despite a State Department spokeswoman announcing Dec. 19 he was resigning his position. According to the Post,
Arizona’s attorney general wants to arm school principals. Tom Horne says he has found the “golden mean” between allowing all teachers to carry firearms and exposing children to tragedies like the school shooting in Connecticut. He is proposing that only the principal or one other staff member at each school be trained and then allowed to carry a firearm at school. “Some have proposed teachers bringing guns to school, but I think that would create more danger than it would solve,” Horne said. “But if we did nothing, we might regret it if another incident occurs that might have been prevented.”
Aegerion Pharmaceuticals just received approval from the Food and Drug Administration for Juxtapid, a pill to lower cholesterol in patients with a rare genetic disease called homozygous familial hypercholesterolemia (HoFH), in which normal mechanisms for clearing cholesterol from the body don’t work, leading to fatty deposits under the skin and a very high risk of heart attacks. The drug’s FDA-approved package insert can be found here. Juxtapid will cost $200,000 and $300,000 per year, according to an Aegerion spokesperson. This is not a medicine that is likely to be used in patients
‘Nobody ever got shot or knocked up in an online school.” That’s the comment offered by a friend when my daughter — in search of more AP classes than her public school offered, and anxious to graduate early — decided to switch to an online high school. (Snip) Mass shootings are extremely rare events, and only a fool would make a drastic policy shift with that in mind. But the larger question of whether it makes sense to warehouse a bunch of kids together, sorted by age, remains. Is it time to rethink traditional public schools? Many think so. As The New York Times recently noted,
Former President George H.W. Bush remains in an intensive care unit at a Houston hospital with a "stubborn fever that is slightly elevated," his spokesman told CNN on Wednesday. He has been in the intensive care unit at Methodist Hospital since Sunday, spokesman Jim McGrath said, and has been hospitalized there for over a month. McGrath said earlier Wednesday that Bush had spent Christmas with members of his family and was in good spirits. Bush was in guarded condition and on a liquid diet that took effect with his transfer to the ICU, but McGrath could not offer more details about
Dallas Cowboys nose tackle Josh Brent has been indicted on one count of intoxication manslaughter for his role in the car accident that claimed the life of teammate Jerry Brown on Dec. 8. Police in Irving, Texas, say Brent was speeding when his vehicle struck a curb and flipped, killing Brown, who was a passenger in the car. Brent´s blood-alcohol limit was 0.18, more than twice the legal limit. Intoxication manslaughter carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison. Brent could be eligible for probation. He is currently out of jail on $100,000 bond.
Opponents of gun rights have often misrepresented the manner in which the Second Amendment has been understood through American history. In fact, the amendment has generally been understood to protect the right of individuals (not just state-organized militias) to own and to carry firearms. Much has been written about this since the Newtown murders; one such commentary that I ran across noted that in the Dred Scott decision, Chief Justice Taney wrote that if Negroes had the rights of citizens, it would entail the ability to bear arms–a frightful prospect to Taney, a loyal Democrat.
These seven simple commonsense steps are adapted from a post I published on my blog after the horrific Newtown massacre. Our hearts ache, but we are not completely helpless or hopeless in the face of evil and the unknown. And we are not alone. This Christmas, cherish life, keep faith, and practice self-empowerment. 7. Teach our kids about the acts of heroes in times of crisis. Tell them about Newtown teacher Vicki Soto’s self-sacrifice and bravery. Tell them about Clackamas-mall shopper Nick Meli, a concealed-carry-permit holder whose quick action may have prevented additional
The holidays are traditionally a time where we renew our optimism about the future. Gatherings with friends and family, festive meals and sparkling decorations are all powerful elixirs to the wear-and-tear of daily life. A new ABC/WaPo poll, however, shows that this year the holiday spirit is powerless to boost the public´s mood. Almost half of Americans, in fact, are fearful about their own lives in the new year. 44% of Americans report they are fearful about what the new year holds in store for their lives. It's the highest recording ever in the poll. At the start of the decade, just 16% of