BAGRAM AIR FIELD, Afghanistan—In fictional Gotham City, Batman protects citizens from crime. Here, at the largest U.S. base in Afghanistan, another Dark Knight is on a different kind of crusade: making sure soldiers carry their rifles and don´t get run over at night. "Bagram Batman" is the star of a recent series of public-service announcements broadcast to troops deployed in and around Afghanistan. The camouflaged superhero—and his catchphrase, "SWEAR TO ME!"— have become an unlikely hit, winning a cult following among soldiers, and going viral on the Internet. "He acts just as well as Adam West did,"
An estimated four in 10 business owners farm out management of their payrolls. But many, including Kerry Koletar of Baltimore, are coming face to face with a downside of that strategy. The 44-year-old bookkeeper, whose family opened its flower shop five decades ago, figured the Internal Revenue Service had made a mistake when it informed her last year that the business owed $22,000 in unpaid employment taxes. She says she shrugged it off because the contractor that handled paychecks for the shop´s 13 employees had reliably collected and paid the shop´s taxes for more than a decade.
Nearly 50 congressional members have signed on to legislation that would put a stop to the government’s free phone program, known loosely as “Obama-phone.” The program is formally called Lifeline and started under the Ronald Reagan administration as a means of providing landline phone service to poor people in case of emergency. It’s grown to the point the Federal Communications Commission under President Obama now admits it’s rife with waste and fraud. The Wall Street Journal recently reported that 41 percent of the program’s 6 million participants couldn’t provide requested information that proved their eligibility.
The White House accused Republicans of a political distraction Wednesday after House committee chairmen asked President Obama to release a State Department cable that they said would prove Hillary Rodham Clinton, as secretary off state, signed off on security cuts at the diplomatic post in Benghazi ahead of the attack Sept. 11. According to the committee chairmen, the April 2012 Clinton cable denies the U.S. Embassy in Libya’s request for more security. Five months later, the outpost in Benghazi was attacked and four Americans were killed, including Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens.
Adam Carolla is no stranger to the P.C. police. He simply refuses to hold his hands out so they can slap the cuffs on him. Carolla offered some advice to his fellow comedians during a recent podcast on how to handle the inevitable bruised feelings from pointed punch lines. Don´t give in. Naturally, Carolla leaned on a colorful metaphor or two to hammer home his argument. "These paper tigers who try to knock you down and make you apologize ... they put pressure on you," he said. "What you need to do is not negotiate with terrorists."
The new George W. Bush Presidential Center is being dedicated this week. This seems like a good time to bust a longstanding myth about our former President, my former boss. I teach a class at Stanford Business School titled “Financial Crises in the U.S. and Europe.” During one class session while explaining the events of September 2008, I kept referring to the efforts of the threesome of Hank Paulson, Ben Bernanke, and Tim Geithner, who were joined at the hip in dealing with firm-specific problems as they arose.
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., had a warm meeting with Obama for America Organizing for Action volunteers in Arizona, as the senator and the members of President Obama’s former campaign apparatus thanked each other for their alliance in support of Obama’s desired gun legislation. “The speakers commended Senator McCain for showing leadership on this issue, and made it clear that we’re still hopeful that, with his help and support, we will get a bipartisan law to protect our country and our local community,” OFA’s Erin Kelly wrote in a blog post today.
Abu Dhabi - US Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel on Thursday said the US intelligence community believes the Syrian government has used sarin gas on a small scale against rebels trying to overthrow the government of Bashar Assad. "This morning the White House delivered a letter to several members of Congress on the topic of chemical weapons use in Syria. The letter ... states that the US intelligence community assesses with some degree of varying confidence that the Syrian regime has used chemical weapons on a small scale in Syria," Hagel told reporters traveling with him.
Facing another conservative rebellion, House Republican leaders Wednesday scratched votes on a bill that would have cut one part of President Obama’s health care law in order to prop up another section providing coverage for those with pre-existing conditions. GOP leaders wanted to take $3.6 billion from the health care law’s prevention funds and send it to another fund that assists people with pre-existing conditions — a section of the bill Republicans say is acceptable. But conservative groups rallied against the bill, saying the Republicans shouldn’t be in the business of
When is a tax not a tax? Why, when it promotes "fairness," when it creates a "level playing field," when it enjoys "bipartisan support." So is everybody on board with the Marketplace Fairness Act of 2013, which will force everyone who buys on the Internet to pay sales tax? Here's what the New York Times has to say: "Lawmakers from both parties are poised to steamroll opponents and greatly broaden the imposition of sales taxes on the Internet." Uh oh, "steamroll." That's pretty harsh language, coming from the NY Times.
The paradox of American gun control got deeper Wednesday. Or, at least it appeared to. On the surface, the poll released by The Washington Post and Pew Research Center made no sense. Only 47 percent of respondents said they were "disappointed" or "angry" that the Senate last week failed to advance a bill to expand background checks to gun shows and online sales. Yet in February, a Pew poll found that 83 percent of respondents supported an expansion of background checks to cover gun shows and all private sales – measures that would actually be stricter than what the Senate rejected.
At a Friday congressional hearing, the House Foreign Affairs Committee will begin what’s sure to be the lengthy process of lawmakers diving into the Islamic terror threat from Chechnya and Dagestan. But disturbing ties between the U.S. and Islamic radicals in the Caucasus region were known to authorities long before Tamerlan Tsarnaev was referred to the FBI by Russia and let go for what was deemed a lack of proof that he posed a threat to America. The FBI’s Operation Blackbear back in 2001 identified people in the U.S. who were funding Islamists in Chechnya, including three individuals
Muslim rail-plotter Chiheb Esseghaier just wants a little Sharia law. It’s why he plotted to attack a train. So it figures that the lack of a Thou Shalt Not Kill Infidels clause in the Koran figures prominently in his defense. Chiheb Esseghaier, 30, on Wednesday ignored Justice of the Peace Susan Hilton’s caution to “be careful what you say,” because his words could be used against him in future proceedings. Instead of remaining silent, Esseghaier, listed as living at no fixed address in Montreal, embarked on a two-minute tirade on the Criminal Code and the serious charges he faces.
Despite the many differences I had with former President George W. Bush on a range of public policy issues, or as he called them, "decision points," I found common ground with him in one area, simply because we decided to put aside partisanship and do something good. Hurricane Katrina´s devastation and the bungled rescue efforts are seared in the national memory. Bush´s "heckuva job" remark turned into a byword for government incompetence and public distrust. The shallowness of it coming at such a terrible and low point left deep wounds that are still healing. That was what it was.
Open-borders bedfellows. ?MT @mikescotto Rubio, Schumer & Norquist. Not a trio you often see standing together. pic.twitter.com/VTpusiTlfK Gee, maybe now someone will listen. For years, I’ve warned about the GOP’s Grover Norquist problem. Just last week, he was front and center at the Gang of 8´s amnesty press conference — despite longtime concerns expressed on this blog and by national security advocates and activists about his dangerous Islamist alliances and progressive proclivities. Now we learn that Norquist’s convicted terrorist pal and former funder, Abdurahman Alamoudi, was the first president of the radical mosque attended by the
We are witnessing one of the biggest government cover-ups since Watergate. A cover-up that involves murder, arms trafficking, and lies by high ranking officials under oath. It involves the murderous attacks in Benghazi, and congressional investigators just released a 46-page interim progress report that at least exposes Hillary Rodham Clinton and the White House lying under oath. Where’s the accountability? Where’s the outrage? Where’s the media? A 46-page interim progress report of an ongoing investigation across five House Committees by the U.S. House of Representatives was released on Tuesday,
The Obama administration and liberal policies look awfully bad in the face of the facts emerging about the Tsarnaev family´s insertion into the United States. The Boston Herald yesterday broke the story of the family having received welfare, after inquiries with the state government (snip)You can tell they are worried because Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick yesterday clamped down on further release of information on the Tsarnaevs´ helping themselves to money other people had to pay taxes for.
Radio talk show host Glenn Beck is continuing to investigate Abdul Rahman Alharbi, the Saudi national initially identified as a “person of interest” in the Boston Marathon bombing atrocity. And while many on the left are ridiculing Beck’s efforts, it is difficult to dismiss the possibility that some kind of deception is being perpetrated by the Obama administration. As the rest of the media remain silent, Beck continues to release almost daily a slew of troubling revelations backed by solid evidence. On Monday night, the radio host made no bones about where he stands. “You want to know why we
In his 1831 book celebrating America, Alexis de Tocqueville warned, “In democratic societies, there exists an urge to do something even when the goal is not precise, a sort of permanent fever that turns to innovations, … (which) are always costly.” After a spate of traumatic tragedies that impact the gun and immigration debates, feverish politicians are rushing to innovate complex legislation without thoroughly and publicly examining the underlying problems and before “we the people” consent to their solutions. Lawmakers should Think Again, considering that only 4 percent of Americans currently “mention guns or immigration as the most important problems
Yesterday, "Rights Views" reported that the home-goods retailer, Williams-Sonoma pulled pressure cookers from shelves in some of their stores "out of respect" for the victims of the Boston Marathon bombing. In response to this report Pat Connolly, a Williams-Sonoma spokesperson, has released a statement regarding the decision, including an apology to anyone that was offended: "Pressure cookers are available at all our stores nationwide. "In the days immediately following the tragic bombings in Boston a local decision was made to remove pressure cookers from the sales floor of the stores near where the bombing occurred.
The Red Hook Middle School in New York uses the buzz word ‘anti-bullying’ to demoralize and indoctrinate the children with homosexual behavior lessons. As if approaching adolescence isn’t confusing and difficult enough for young students, the school has decided to rob them of their innocence and pervert their understanding of something this private. Amazingly, people have a problem with this lesson plan… who would have thunk? CBN News reports the following: Parents of children attending a Red Hook, New York, middle school are outraged after a recent anti-bullying presentation at Linden Avenue Middle School. [...]
It´s the film role that all of Hollywood is talking about, with everyone from Ryan Gosling to Zac Efron rumoured to be in the running. But it seems that British actor Alex Pettyfer could currently be the frontrunner to play the sought after part of Christian Grey in the film adaptation of E.L James´s best-selling erotic novel. The 23-year-old has filmed a sex scene as the character for a Fifty Shades Of Grey test film directed by acclaimed director Gus Van Sant, in a bid to impress producers.
So, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg believes that the public’s interpretation of the Constitution must evolve in the face of terror attacks such as the one in Boston. “You’re going to have to have a level of security greater than you did back in the olden days,” the man explained, “and our laws and our interpretation of the Constitution, I think, have to change.” Of course he thinks they do. That’s why we have constitutions — so they can be changed in tumultuous times. As Bloomberg sees it, the first obligation of government is to keep your “children safe.”
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said he can’t understand why the tea party remains popular, given its similarity to the anarchist movement and its steadfast opposition to the “inherently good” government. Mr. Reid, Nevada Democrat, made the statements during floor remarks in the Senate earlier this week, expressing dismay over legislation stalled because of tea party opposition, Breitbart reported. “We have a situation where this country has been driven by the tea party for the last number of years,” he said, adding that he learned about anarchists in high school. And though “they were different than the tea party
I am a general surgeon with more than three decades in private clinical practice. And I am fed up. Since the late 1970s, I have witnessed remarkable technological revolutions in medicine, from CT scans to robot-assisted surgery. But I have also watched as medicine slowly evolved into the domain of technicians, bookkeepers, and clerks. Government interventions over the past four decades have yielded a cascade of perverse incentives, bureaucratic diktats, and economic pressures that together are forcing doctors to sacrifice their independent professional medical judgment, and their integrity. The consequence is clear:
The Israeli Air Force shot down a drone over the Mediterranean Sea on Thursday off the coast of Haifa which had flown south from Lebanon. Shortly after 1 p.m. on Thursday the Israeli Air Force identifid a drone flying in Lebanese airspace south towards Israel. The drone was flying along the coast line. A squadron of F-16s and IAF helicopters were scrambled to engage the drone. IDF spokesman Brig-Gen Yoav Mordechai said that after the Air Force ensured that the aircraft was hostile, the commander of the IAF gave the order to shoot it down.