So far in the Syrian charade, Bashar Assad has won de facto permission to be a legitimate ruler negotiating with superpowers, while promising to kill thousands more by blowing them up, shelling them, and shooting them without “obscene” chemical weapons. Vladimir Putin controls the tempo of the crisis. He now issues new initiatives, now delays for consultations and retrospection — as he steps up profitable arms shipments to the Syrians and Iranians. In short, he is in the short-term “saving” Obama from himself, while in the long term insidiously destroying presidential credibility, influence, and respect by the sheer force of his
Most of my social acquaintance are hard left-wingers. It is my lot to listen to them expound about rights. "We have the right to tax the rich... to reproductive rights... the Jews have no right to Israel." If I were to dispute these assertions on a political or historical basis I would be treated to withering condescension. But most of my friends fancy themselves thinkers, and they will listen to philosophical notions. So I challenge their political beliefs obliquely, through a model about the difference between rights of human identity, which are directly given by God, and claims to tangible
CHICAGO —Olive Garden, purveyor of the Never Ending Pasta Bowl, has discovered portion control. In an effort to attract millennials and boost flagging sales, Darden Restaurants Inc.´s Italian restaurant chain is introducing small plates, including Parmesan asparagus and grilled-chicken tapas. This amounts to a 180 degree turn for a chain that has long sold big portions to eaters who like a deal. The challenge for Olive Garden will be encouraging diners in their 20s and 30s, many of whom shun chain restaurants, to drop by for nibbles without alienating loyal customers who convene for regular family feasts. For millennials, "social
My weekend column is about Putin’s urge to kick a man when he’s down. Having initially misread his New York Times piece, Peggy Noonan now gets the point: He is telling the world he knows how to correct America, tell it off, criticize it for its conceit. And he does it right to their faces, not in a Moscow interview or a St. Petersburg speech. He is rubbing America’s nose in it for the delectation of its friends, occasional friends, foes and occasional foes. All those friends and foes around the planet get it, too. Time magazine publishes four global editions: The
ACAPULCO, Mexico- Flooding and landslides unleashed by Hurricane Ingrid and Tropical Storm Manuel have claimed at least a dozen lives in Mexico and sparked the evacuations of thousands of people even before the weather systems had made landfall on the country´s east and west coasts. In the southern Pacific Coast state of Guerrero, rains unleashed by Manuel resulted in the deaths of six people when their SUV lost control on a highway headed for the tourist resort of Acapulco. Another five people died in landslides in Guerrero and Puebla states, while the collapse of a fence killed another person in
After a year and seven months of bueracutric difficulties, the Interior Ministry recognized two biological fathers of child for the first time, Ynet learned on Sunday. The story of the Yuval and Matan Topper-Erez received wide media coverage when Yuval became the first Israeli transgender man to get pregnant and give birth. In December 2011, the groundbreaking journey of Yuval and his partner came to a successful end when Yuval gave birth to their eldest son and the two became happy parents. However, the Interior Ministry refused to be impressed by the occassion, and would not recognize Matan as the
This year is on track to be the worst for measles in more than a decade, according to new numbers released Thursday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And people who refuse to vaccinate their children are behind the increasing number of outbreaks, health officials say. Measles cases in the United States numbered in the hundreds of thousands before the advent of vaccination, and dropped dramatically throughout the 1960s. The disease was thought to have been eradicated in 2000, but the numbers have recently crept back up, (Snip)Nearly two-thirds of the reported cases happened in three outbreaks
Joe Flacco did something Sunday that will generate plenty of discussion, as the Ravens quarterback started Sunday´s game against the Browns despite his wife giving birth his son on Sunday morning. The Ravens tweeted at 12:29 p.m. ET that Flacco´s wife gave birth to their second child about "30 minutes ago" and noted that Flacco would start. We assume, then, that Flacco wasn´t present for the birth of his second child since he likely had to be at the stadium warming up for Sunday´s home opener against Cleveland. And we found out shortly after that it was a boy
Paris - French President Francois Hollande called on Sunday for a U.N. resolution on Syria backed by the threat of punitive action to be voted by the end of this week. Speaking on French prime-time television, Hollande added that while a political and diplomatic solution to the wider Syrian conflict was possible, the option of military strikes must remain on the table. Hollande called the Russia-U.S. deal this weekend on removing Syria´s chemical weapons an "important step" towards a possible political solution to its civil war. He said the foreign ministers of France, Britain and the United States would already
By Jake Miller / CBS News/ September 15, 2013, 4:17 PM U.S. politicians wonder if Obama was outfoxed on Syria chemical weapons Play CBS News Video There is no shortage of skeptics among the American political class regarding the tentative agreement between the United States and Russia to secure and destroy Syria´s chemical weapons that was announced on Saturday.(Snip)Even those who hailed the deal as a breakthrough concede that many potential pitfalls could jeopardize U.S. interests on the road to a complete disarmament of Syria´s chemical stockpile. "I think it´s a loser," Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., said of the deal Sunday on NBC´s "Meet the Press."
In the middle of the night this past Friday, the price of gold quickly dropped on a report in the Japanese business newspaper Nikkei that the White House had decided to appoint Larry Summers as the next Fed chair and that the announcement would likely be made next week. The White House later denied the report, but the implication of the market´s reaction is clear: Larry Summers is viewed as the "hawkish," tight-money alternative to Janet Yellen, and as such, that should mean a strong dollar and weak gold. But this hawkish vs. dovish dichotomy is not really that useful.
Former White House economic adviser and Treasury secretary Lawrence H. Summers has withdrawn his name as a candidate for Federal Reserve chairman, a person familiar with the matter said Sunday. President Obama had been strongly considering naming Summers to the post after their long experience fighting the financial crisis and recession. The decision may mean that another top candidate, current Federal Reserve vice chairman Janet Yellen, will get the job, or another candidate. In a letter dated Sunday to the president, Summers wrote that he was withdrawing his name. “It has been a privilege to work with you since the
Nearly half the rebel fighters in Syria are now aligned to jihadist or hardline Islamist groups according to a new analysis of factions in the country´s civil war. Opposition forces battling Bashar al-Assad´s regime in Syria now number around 100,000 fighters, but after more than two years of fighting they are fragmented into as many as 1,000 bands. The new study by IHS Jane´s, a defence consultancy, estimates there are around 10,000 jihadists - who would include foreign fighters - fighting for powerful factions linked to al-Qaeda. Another 30,000 to 35,000 are hardline Islamists who share much of the outlook
Yinchuan, -- Top Chinese political advisor Yu Zhengsheng on Sunday called for further expansion of cooperation with Arab countries in energy resources and trade. Yu, chairman of the National Committee of the Chinese People´s Political Consultative Conference, made the remarks at the opening ceremony of the China-Arab States Expo in Yinchuan, capital city of northwest China´s Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region. President Xi Jinping sent a letter of congratulations on the opening of the fair, saying that China was willing to conduct all-round cooperation with Arab states to benefit the people of both sides and contribute to world prosperity.
"The ShamWow guy," Vince Offer, has returned after a sex scandal to clean up his act with a new product, "InVinceable." It isn´t just a six-in-one kitchen cleaner, though. It´s a comeback. Four years after getting into a slugfest with an alleged prostitute — an incident that spawned a cringe-worthy mug shot and headlines like "ShamWow Guy Beats Up Cannibal Hooker" — the infomercial pitchman who became famous as an irreverent version of Billy Mays is launching a new product that’s supposed to scrub persistent stains. Offer says the black mark on his name after the hooker incident had a silver
Zamboanga, Philippines - Philippine forces have killed or captured nearly 100 of the Muslim guerrillas who have held scores of hostages for a week in a southern city, as the government pushes ahead with an offensive to retake rebel-held coastal communities, officials said Sunday. Army troops and police special forces have regained rebel-held grounds and are pressing an assault deeper into communities in the coastal outskirts of Zamboanga city, where more than 100 Moro National Liberation Front guerrillas are holding hostages, military spokesman Lt. Col. Ramon Zagala said. Several hostages have escaped or were freed, but it was unclear how
In case you missed it, last week Funny or Die produced a video in which comedian Sarah Silverman, among others, facetiously advocated for a black NRA. It wasn’t funny, but racist and ignorant, as Katie pointed out. But don’t think the black, gun-owning community let this one slide. NRA commentator Colion Noir and PJTV’s AlfonZo Rachel both took their turn condemning the ‘black NRA’ video—and they’re well worth watching. “Everyone in this video is guilty of promoting the idea that all young black men are criminals to be feared, because God forbid the Second Amendment apply to everyone, that would mean even
On Sunday, President Obama joined ABC’s This Week to discuss the threat of Iranian nuclear development, and emphasized that he had not taken force off the table: “I think what the Iranians understand is that the nuclear issue is a far larger issue for us than the chemical weapons issue, that the threat…against Israel that a nuclear Iran poses is much closer to our core interests. My suspicion is that the Iranians recognize they shouldn’t draw a lesson that we haven’t struck [Syria] to think we won’t strike Iran.” Obama added that Iran should learn from Syria that diplomatic solutions
The president has powers to fight income inequality, President Obama argued in an interview broadcast Sunday, adding that Republicans in Congress have hobbled his efforts to do it. Appearing on ABC´s "This Week" program, Obama acknowledged that the wealthiest Americans have benefited disproportionately from the economic recovery of recent years. But he was quick to add that much of that trend is due to globalization, technology and, not least, the GOP´s opposition to his economic agenda – all factors he suggested are beyond his control. "I think the president can stop it," Obama said, when asked about the growing income
OCALA, Fla.- Charlie Crist hopes that the hug that hurt him becomes the hug that now heals him. Democratic President Barack Obama embraced Crist, then Florida´s Republican governor, at a 2009 rally. Republican Marco Rubio used the image to successfully chase Crist from the GOP and defeat Crist, running as an independent, in the 2010 U.S. Senate race. Now Gov. Rick Scott also is using the hug to attack Crist. The difference is Crist is now a Democrat and embracing the hug. "That hug cost me more than you´ll know with my former party," Crist said at a Marion County
An inferno that gutted more than 30 Jersey Shore boardwalk businesses and took all night to put out appears “suspicious” — and is being investigated by prosecutors, sources said on Friday. Investigators are eyeing arson because the blaze erupted midday with no obvious cause — and it just happened to come at the end of the summer season, the sources told ABC News. The fire is believed to have started under the boardwalk near Kohr’s Custard Stand on Thursday, wiping out six blocks of the boardwalk in Seaside Park. Custard shop owner Bruce Kohr said his workers spotted the flames coming from under
CNN´s "State of the Union" host Candy Crowley asked House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Rogers whether it makes any difference that Vladimir Putin and Russia got the upper hand over the U.S. in the deal struck on Syria´s chemical weapons. (Only copy posted. Video)
Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper said New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg´s foray into two state recall races may have hurt the chances of two Democratic senators. Colorado senate President John Morse and state Sen. Angela Giron lost historic recall battles last week after voting to support new stricter gun control laws in the state. The Democratic lawmakers collected about $3 million in their fight, much of it from outside Colorado, including $350,000 from Bloomberg, a staunch supporter of gun control laws. (Snip) "It’s funny, in Colorado like a lot of western states we´re very self determined. We like to solve our own