Scarborough, Maine — More than a month after appeals began on 44 property tax assessments from 2012 at Higgins Beach and Pine Point, continued arguments consumed five hours Monday night. What remained elusive was a decision by the four-member Board of Assessment Review. The hearing was adjourned, and will continue at least two more times, at 7 p.m. Oct. 8 and 6 p.m. Oct. 15. The Oct. 8 hearing will be limited to an appeal of Nancy Strong’s Shipwreck Road property in Higgins Beach. On Oct. 15, 43 assessments will be heard as one appeal, with Portland attorney John Shumadine presenting the
Abdul Haji, 38, was in a meeting at Yaya Centre when he received an SMS from his elder brother. “Stuck in Westgate. I think it’s a terrorist attack. Pray for me,” it read. It was a moment he had been dreading for two weeks after a local television station exposed his brother, an undercover counter-terrorism officer, in an investigative programme. Since then, the family of Senator Yusuf Haji has been receiving threats and warnings from people believed to represent the Somali-based Al-Shabaab Islamist group. (Snip) “My instinct was that they had come for my brother and that they would later
AUSTIN — Sen. Wendy Davis´ widely-telegraphed political plans debuted a week ahead of schedule Thursday when sources reported that, as expected, she will run for governor. The Fort Worth senator has told large donors and elected officials that she will seek the office, said a Democrat familiar with her decision. Two additional Democrats said they had received telephone calls from Davis saying she´ll announce for governor. She said her analysis showed the race was winnable, said one.
Someone´s had the bright idea of turning American Psycho into a musical, which creates quite an image ("the hills are alive with the sound of screaming…"). I know it´s only a book but sometimes when I reopen it and read of Patrick Bateman knocking off his irritating workmates to the tune of Hootie and the Blowfish, I think, "There but for the grace of God go I." Let´s be honest, we´ve all wondered if we´ve got what it takes to be a serial killer. When the 8.15 to Charing Cross is delayed because of a hungover train driver, who hasn´t contemplated
In rolling the dice on Iran, Syria and Middle East peace, President Barack Obama has made Secretary of State John Kerry the chief executor of his foreign policy legacy -- a role denied to Hillary Clinton. Intriguing comparisons between Obama´s first and second term top diplomats broadened Thursday, when Kerry took charge of nuclear talks with Iran. He already had a heavy load, marshaling peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians and thrashing out a deal with Russia on Syria´s chemical weapons arsenal. Should his long odds bets pay off, Kerry, 69, could be remembered as one of the great modern
Today, 72 congressmen sent a letter to House Speaker Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio) urging him to insert language ending abortion funding and religious discrimination in Obamacare into any funding or debt ceiling legislation. "[T]he Obama administration has committed unprecedented attacks against the unborn and the religious freedom guaranteed in the Constitution, all under the guise of ´access to health care,´" the letter tells Boehner. The letter letter implores Boehner to "incorporate H.R. 940, the Health Care Conscience Rights Act, along with a cessation of federal dollars for abortions into the continuing resolution or on legislation addressing the debt ceiling." Americans morally opposed to
As the clock ticks down toward a possible government shutdown, Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, isn´t holding back. On the Senate floor before 10 a.m. Friday, the senator gave a speech describing how American politics have reached the level at which "a small group of willful men and women who have a certain ideology"—read: the tea party and Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas—have been able to take over the congressional budget debate in the last week. "Since they can´t get their way," Harkin said, "they´re going to create this confusion and discourse and hope that the public will be so mixed up in
The number of Americans giving up their citizenship has rocketed this year - partly, it´s thought, because of a new tax law that is frustrating many expats. Goodbye, US passport. That´s not a concept that Americans contemplate lightly. But it´s one that many of them seem to be considering - and acting on. The number of expatriates renouncing their US citizenship surged in the second quarter of 2013, compared with the same period the year before - 1,131 cases to 189 in 2012. It´s still a small proportion of the estimated six million Americans abroad, but it´s a significant rise. The list is compiled
TAMPA — Thursday, game weeks, was traditionally when Josh Freeman spoke with media, on a podium, behind a lectern. So much for tradition. Thursday, media swept into the locker room looking for the Bucs´ new backup quarterback. Freeman saw them. He was half-dressed. He finished with his pants, grabbed his shoes and vamoosed, out the door, off limits. He hadn´t even put on a shirt. First came Shoeless Joe. Now there´s Shirtless Josh. Say it ain´t so. Say something, anything. Maybe Freeman was taking the high road. Or perhaps he was in a hurry to give street directions to the
Greenville, N.C. — A man who shot four people near a Greenville Wal-Mart in June picked out his victims because they were white, according to several indictments handed down against him. Lakim Faust had more than 100 rounds of ammunition when he started shooting at people who were standing outside at a law firm and a shopping center in June, authorities said. A grand jury indicted Faust on 14 charges Monday, including four counts of attempted first-degree murder. Faust, who is black, picked out his victims based on their race, according to the indictments. The documents didn’t specify why Faust wanted to shoot
The world misses the old America, the one before the crash—the crashes—of the past dozen years. That is the takeaway from conversations the past week in New York, where world leaders gathered for the annual U.N. General Assembly session. Our friends, and we have many, speak almost poignantly of the dynamism, excellence, exuberance and leadership of the nation they had, for so many years, judged themselves against, been inspired by, attempted to emulate, resented. As for those who are not America´s friends, some seem still confused, even concussed, by the new power shift. What is their exact place in it?
A former marine emerged as a hero of the Nairobi siege yesterday after he was credited with saving up to 100 lives. The ex soldier was having coffee at the Westgate mall when it was attacked by Islamists on Saturday. With a gun tucked into his waistband, he was pictured helping two women from the complex. His story emerged as sporadic gunfire continued to ring out from inside the mall early today as Kenyan security forces battled Al Qaeda-linked terrorists into a fourth day
A Somali Muslim has been hailed a hero after rescuing a mother and her three daughters from the Nairobi shopping mall as gunmen threw grenades and sprayed bullets yards away. Katherine Walton feared she and her children would not get out alive after becoming trapped under a table outside a supermarket in the Westgate complex. But they were saved by Abdul Haji, the son of a former Kenyan security minister, who bravely ushered them to safety as he fired back at the terrorists with a handgun. His identity has now been revealed after his story was immortalised in an iconic
Not too long ago, I spent a few days at an oceanfront resort hotel. While I was there, an Islamic group of about a hundred people checked in for a few days. My stay at the beach provided an unforeseen opportunity to observe their psychosocial process. I got to watch a group of jeans-clad teenagers plot to escape their parents. I watched a father grab and swat his son, who was running up and down a broad, carpeted staircase (good luck keeping that one down on the farm). One evening, a woman in a full black burqa walked into the lobby. At
Faced with a long afternoon trapped in the house with her five children last Saturday, Katherine Walton decided on a quick excursion – a trip to Nairobi´s popular Westgate Mall. On arriving together, her two teenage boys briefly went ahead with Mrs Walton following with her three daughters including four-year-old Portia. Four hours later, the family lay pinned to the ground opposite the supermarket where they did their weekly shop as gunmen hurled grenades and sprayed bullets just yards from them. "We were just going to meet my two older boys in the supermarket when we heard an explosion," said
Scientists can now say with extreme confidence that human activity is the dominant cause of the global warming observed since the 1950s, a new report by an international scientific group said Friday. Calling man-made warming “extremely likely,” the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change used the strongest words yet on the issue as it adopted its assessment on the state of the climate system.
Samantha Lewthwaite was a shy 11-year-old schoolgirl growing up in the Britain´s Home Counties when she first developed a crush on a Muslim boy. The boy, who was several years older, was apparently uninterested and so nothing came of it, but the brief summer holiday infatuation in Buckinghamshire perhaps foreshadowed her conversion to Islam, marriage to a suicide bomber and eventual emergence as one of the world´s most wanted terrorism suspects. Lewthwaite, now 29, was at first portrayed as another victim of the July 7 London bombings when her 19-year-old husband, Germaine Lindsay, killed himself and 26 passengers on a Tube train
Christians in the Middle East and Africa are being slaughtered, tortured, raped, kidnapped, beheaded, and forced to flee the birthplace of Christianity. One would think this horror might be consuming the pulpits and pews of American churches. Not so. The silence has been nearly deafening. As Egypt’s Copts have battled the worst attacks on the Christian minority since the 14th century, the bad news for Christians in the region keeps coming. On Sunday, Taliban suicide bombers killed at least 85 worshippers at All Saints’ church, which has stood since 1883 in the city of Peshawar, Pakistan. Christians were also the target
Struggling to keep a discredited global warming crisis afloat, United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) chair Raj Pachauri this week denied the well-documented plateau in temperatures during the past 15-plus years. Pachauri’s denialism contradicted his own admission earlier this year that there has been a 17-year plateau in global temperatures. The IPCC is in full damage-control mode after it leaked advance copies of an upcoming Summary for Policymakers to what it assumed would be friendly journalists. The journalists, however, quickly realized the IPCC Summary for Policymakers contained several embarrassing walk-backs from alarmist statements in prior IPCC reports.
“Why do you assume the labor market is inelastic?” read a recent tweet from the official account of CrossFit, the popular-but-controversial fitness regimen. The tweet was related to an article by the free-market Cato Institute, which the fitness company sent out to its 115,000-plus Twitter followers. The article argues that minimum wage regulations can drive up unemployment. It wasn’t a hack or some mistake. A deep libertarian ethos runs through the entire CrossFit organization, which has for some time been deliberately promoting polarizing articles and quotes. Earlier this month, CrossFit quoted Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, questioning the wisdom of military strikes in Syria;
A spat has broken out over whether the media demonstrated liberal bias in their coverage of Senator Ted Cruz’s marathon anti-Obamacare speech. Conservatives are contrasting the heckling and slurs leveled against Cruz with the overwhelmingly positive reaction won by his fellow Texan Wendy Davis for her ultimately unsuccessful filibuster of a bill in the Texas state senate restricting abortions performed after 20 weeks. Liberals who reject the bias charge make two main points. First, they say, the most negative commentary against Cruz came from opinion writers, not news reporters. Second, they add, Davis’s 13-hour physically grueling feat constituted a genuine filibuster
Ted Cruz has been a bad boy, and deserves a good spanking. That’s the message his colleagues in the Senate, particularly his Republican colleagues, have been sending to him. They just couldn’t find anyone big enough to deliver the spanking, and now they never can. His marathon speech — argument persists over whether it was a filibuster or merely filibluster — has established him as a force of nature in Washington, a star in a way that other senators only dream of. “The Cruz performance was great political theater,” says John Podhoretz of The New York Post. “If there had been
House Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp (R-Mich.) is pressing the IRS over whether conservative donors have been singled out for extra scrutiny. The IRS acknowledged months ago that it had inappropriately asked for donor lists from some of the conservative organizations that it targeted. But Steven Miller, the former acting IRS commissioner, also said those lists had been destroyed, and that the agency hadn’t used them to scrutinize Tea Party groups. Camp said Wednesday that the IRS had handed over donor lists as part of the congressional investigation into the agency’s targeting, including as recently as last week. “The agency testified that donor
Jacksonville, Fla. – The winless Jacksonville Jaguars have released their own strategy to increase ticket attendance to this week’s game and prevent a blackout: free beer. The NFL club is entering its fourth week against the Indianapolis Colts, and in an effort to draw fans to EverBank field they have taken to Twitter to announce: “2 free drinks for next 2 hrs” with a ticket to this Sunday’s game. Using the Twitter hashtag “DrinksOnUs,” Jaguars fans and morning tailgaters may have the
Apparently, people are not signing up for Obamacare at anywhere near the levels necessary to sustain the illusion of public acceptance. We know this not because any data has been released, but rather by the self-evident desperation of the sales effort. Just as a desperate drowning man flails his arms about, seeking to hold onto something that can save him, so has the Obamacare marketing team seized upon the cheapest of cheap tricks. Behold: (snip)If there ever were a campaign targeted at low information, emotionally-swayed people, this is it. The only question is: what happens when this doesn´t work? There are