In Rose City, Michigan, a middle school teacher named Neal Erickson molested one of his male students. When caught, Erickson, upstanding citizen that he is, pleaded guilty to child rape to spare the young man further pain, and was sentenced to 15-30 years in prison. The reaction of Mr. Erickson´s wife and fellow colleagues to his sentence exposes some of the insanity residing inside the American public school system. (snip) a small sample of West Branch Rose City teachers´ letters of leniency on behalf of Mr. Erickson elucidates more than an outrageous defense of a child molester.
Following the Egyptian example, a group of activists has launched a Palestinian version of the Tamarod (rebellion) Campaign to remove Hamas from power in the Gaza Strip. Tamarod is the name of the grassroots movement in Egypt that led the campaign to oust President Mohamed Morsi. The Palestinian group on Monday shared a video announcing a series of anti-Hamas activities as of November 11. "Repression and tyranny have arched their peak and we can no longer remain silent," the group said in the video. "The time has come to reject death under Hamas´s security club."
President Obama has overseen a dramatic expansion of the regulatory state that will outlast his time in the White House. The reach of the executive branch has advanced steadily on his watch, further solidifying the power of bureaucrats who churn out regulations that touch nearly every aspect of American life and business. Experts debate whether federal rule-making has accelerated under Obama, but few dispute that Washington, for better or worse, is reaching deeper than ever before into the workings of society. “It would be difficult for anyone to pretend that this isn’t a high-water mark in terms of regulation,” said
Wisconsin’s Republican Gov. Scott Walker says modern Republicanism is the “tale of two parties.” On a federal level, Republicans are known as the “party of no,” but on a state level Walker says Republicans are a party of optimism, relevance, and courage. “We’re more optimistic than our friends in Washington. We’re not just against something, we’re laying out a plan, laying out a vision,” Walker said. “That’s how you lead.” Walker’s name has been floated as a potential 2016 contender—that is, if he can raise his national profile and stand out in a world of shutdown-happy Tea Partiers.
The attack on Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) has begun. Fearful of Cruz as a prospective Republican presidential nominee in 2016, the media is now digging into his past, all the way back to birth. The Daily Beast ran a profile on Monday with this headline: “Ted Cruz at Princeton: Creepy, Sometimes Well Liked, and Exactly the Same.” The hit piece questions whether “master debater who wore a paisley bathrobe to creepily stroll by the women’s wing of the dorm [can] be the next president.” The piece quotes one of Cruz’s former classmates, Craig Mazin, stating, “I remember very specifically that
Tinton Falls — A forensic video analysis of red-light traffic cameras in New Jersey has found what many motorists ticketed by the automated traffic cops have long contended: The yellow lights are too quick. Working with an expert in video timing, state Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon (R-Monmouth) said he found yellow light times are shorter than what is required by law, causing innocent drivers to be ticketed illegally. (Snip) The analysis studied intersections with red-light cameras in Newark, Jersey City, Union Township and Roselle Park, among others. All of the more than 30 intersections studied showed yellow lights that were
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) released his birth certificate Sunday amid questions about whether he is eligible to run for president. Cruz was born in Canada in 1970, to an American mother and Cuban father. By virtue of his mother’s status, Cruz instantly became a U.S. citizen. He released his birth certificate to the Dallas Morning News, verifying what he has previously asserted. Since Cruz has stoked presidential speculation by traveling to early nominating states, questions about whether he would be eligible for a White House bid have received widespread attention. The question is whether he’s a “natural-born citizen,” as the14th Amendment requires
Most decisions in life are the result of a cost-benefit analysis. When residents in Connecticut consider getting a job, they assume they would be better off having a job than not. They’d be wrong. Because in Connecticut, it pays not to work. Next Monday, the Cato Institute will release a new study looking at the state-by-state value of welfare. Nationwide, our study found that the value of benefits for a typical recipient family ranged from a high of $49,175 in Hawaii to a low of $16,984 in Mississippi.
Saudi Arabia said on Monday that Arab and Islamic countries will step in to help Egypt if Western nations cut aid packages to Cairo over its deadly crackdown on Islamist protesters. "To those who have announced they are cutting their aid to Egypt, or threatening to do that, (we say that) Arab and Muslim nations are rich... and will not hesitate to help Egypt," Foreign Minister Prince Saud al-Faisal said in a statement carried by the kingdom´s SPA state news agency. (Snip) At stake is nearly five billion euros ($6.7 billion) in loans and grants promised by the world´s top
Ladar Levison was not yet 20 years old when Congress passed the Patriot Act after the Sept. 11 terror attacks. It gave him a start-up idea: an e-mail service for what he thought of as “a tech-savvy crowd” that cared about privacy. His start-up thrived for nearly 10 years until Thursday, when he abruptly shut it down, leaving little more than an ominous note on the site. He said he did not want to be “complicit in crimes against the American people” and hinted, obliquely, at a government search that he believed to be unconstitutional . . .
Kim M. Catullo does not like giving interviews or getting behind a microphone. At political events, she tends to hover in the background, so much so that she is sometimes mistaken for a member of her wife’s security detail. But with the primary just weeks away, Ms. Catullo, the wife of Christine C. Quinn, is edging out of her comfort zone to take on a more visible role in Ms. Quinn’s campaign for mayor of New York City. Showing off spouses can be an important way for candidates, particularly for gay candidates, to soften their images,
Britain´s anti-terrorist legislation watchdog has called on the Home Office and Metropolitan police to explain why anti-terror laws were used to detain the partner of the Guardian journalist Glenn Greenwald for nine hours at Heathrow airport. Amid mounting concern across the political spectrum over the treatment of David Miranda, David Anderson QC said the detention of Greenwald´s partner on Sunday appeared to be "unusual". Miranda said he was questioned by six agents on his "entire life" while held at Heathrow. Arriving at Rio de Janeiro airport on Monday, Miranda said: "I remained in a room. There were six different agents coming and
Texas Senator and potential 2016 candidate for the Republican nomination Ted Cruz released his birth certificate to the Dallas Morning News on Sunday, in an attempt to quell a minor birther movement that has questioned Cruz’s American citizenship and eligibility to be president. The certificate confirms that Cruz was born in Alberta, Canada. As his mother was an American citizen, he is one as well, but as he was born on Canadian soil he also became a Canadian citizen. Cruz maintains citizenship for both nations until he formally renounces one or the other. The dual citizenship allows him to run
Fourteen hours of straight news every day. Hard-hitting documentaries. Correspondents in oft-overlooked corners of the country. And fewer commercials than any other news channel. In actuality, it is Al Jazeera America, the culmination of a long-held dream among the leaders of Qatar, the Middle Eastern emirate that already reaches most of the rest of the world with its Arabic- and English-language news channels.
Switzerland said Monday that it had blocked a deal to sell top-notch ski lifts to North Korea, in a move that could delay what is seen as leader Kim Jong-Un´s pet ski resort project. Swiss company Bartholet Maschinenbau (BMF) had reportedly all but agreed to sell mechanical chair lifts and cable cars to Pyongyang to help fulfill Kim´s vision of a "world class" ski resort, being built as rival South Korea prepares to host the 2018 Winter Olympic Games. But Switzerland´s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) told AFP it had blocked the deal, reportedly worth 7.0 million Swiss francs
In retrospect, we can see that the post-Cold War world ended in 2008, as a result of two events: Russia’s unpunished invasion of Georgia and the financial crisis triggered by the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers, Wall Street’s fourth-largest investment bank. The first marked the end of NATO expansion and the West’s unquestioned dominance: Georgia had recently been backed by the United States for membership; Germany and France had effectively vetoed it. Soon afterward, Russia acted to demonstrate that Georgia, far from joining the West, was still very much in the Russian sphere of influence. The West acquiesced, France with enthusiasm,
Terry Atlas, writing in Bloomberg says that Egypt highlights the disintegration of the US coalition in the Middle East and the collapse of its influence in the region. (Snip) They gave the green light to everybody and whoopee. The pileup caused by Washington is predictably being sold as a feature. “U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has tried to harness polarization among U.S. allies to advance mediation.” Translation: the train wreck is intentional and we’re all just too stupid to understand how brilliant it is. John McCain, who was treated like dirt in Cairo, has fewer illusions. He said the
CAIRO — At least 25 policemen were killed Monday when assailants ambushed two minibuses carrying security personnel in Egypt´s north Sinai Peninsula, which shares a border with Israel and the Gaza Strip and has been a restive center for militant activity. The attack is among the deadliest in the peninsula since the 2011 overthrow of former president Hosni Mubarak and part of a larger backlash against the state over what militants view as a slew of injustices. "What I can say about the future is that violence will not disappear anytime soon," said Egypt expert Khalil Al-Anani. "We should expect
Over four years ago, the federal government forced Bank of America to acquire Merrill Lynch. Last week, Bank of America signaled it will dissolve Merrill Lynch. In 2009, Bank of America chief Kenneth Lewis testified that the federal government threatened to strip Bank of America board members if the bank reneged on acquiring Merrill Lynch. "What gave me concern is that they gave that threat to a bank in good standing," said Lewis. Emails between bank employees revealed that Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke warned that "management is gone" if Bank of America failed to go through with the deal
An American hate preacher has called for Al Qaeda terrorists to launch attacks on Western diplomats and praised the murder of the U.S. ambassador to Libya. Adam Gadahn, who was born in California but converted to Islam and became a wanted jihadist, urged wealthy Muslims to dole out rewards for killing other Western ambassadors. The 34-year-old´s chilling message comes after Western embassies across the Muslim world were shut down earlier this month after warnings of an imminent terror attack. Gadahn issued his call for violence in a 39-minute video in Arabic, according to SITE, a group which monitors Islamic extremists. He pointed to
Europe´s high-speed rail network is the latest top target for Al-Qaeda terrorists. Germany´s Bild newspaper reported today how U.S. intelligence services bugged a conference call between leading operatives of the terror group behind the 9/11 outrages as they discussed bringing death and destruction to the European rail network. The group was possibly targeting trains and tunnels, or planning to sabotage railway tracks themselves and the electric cabling serving them. The newspaper said the planned terrorist attacks were a ´central topic´ of a conference call intercepted by the NSA involving high-ranking Al-Qaeda operatives. According to other media reports, Deutsche Bahn - German Rail -
The Huffington Post is reporting that the Center for the Education of Women at the University of Michigan has rescinded an invitation to Alice Walker to attend its 50th anniversary next year. Officials may have been prompted by her past criticism of Israel, says the Pulitizer Prize-winning author. On her blog, Walker posted a letter she said she received from an individual at the school: I’m saddened to write this because I’m a proponent of free speech and have been brought up to allow everyone to have their say. But I also realize that there are other considerations that
Wadi Gaitan, a 24-year-old House Republican staffer who serves as a Spanish-speaking spokesman, TV booker and occasional tutor, was stumped. He was trying to teach a Republican lawmaker how to say “sequester” in Spanish, but the literal translation was proving to be problematic. “That one was tricky at first. I couldn’t figure it out, because in Spanish, ‘secuestrar’ literally means to kidnap someone,” Gaitan said. “I said, let’s not use the literal translation, because we don’t want to say that we’re kidnapping people, or that President Obama is kidnapping people.” Probably a good call. Now Republicans say “recortes automáticos” —
The United States of America was born in revolution. The Declaration of Independence asserted that people have a right of revolution. According to The Declaration, "whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends [such as "life," "liberty," "the pursuit of happiness," and "the consent of the governed"], it is the Right of the People to alter or abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness." The Declaration acknowledged that people should not, and will
RALEIGH, N.C. – After a year and a half behind barbed wire as a prisoner in World War II, 2nd Lt. David C. Cox had just about reached his breaking point. Deliveries of Red Cross parcels to Stalag VII-A had all but ceased, and the U.S. Army bomber co-pilot and his fellow POWs were subsisting on scanty rations of bug-infested soup and bread. Outside the wire, Adolf Hitler´s forces showed no signs of giving up.