A bitter wind blows off the Arctic Ocean but the mother polar bear and her two cubs standing just 50ft in front of me are in their element. For more than an hour I watch from a boat just offshore, transfixed and oblivious to the below-freezing temperatures, as the four-month-old twins gambol across the snow. For years polar bears have been the poster boys of global warming--routinely reported to be threatened with extinction due to melting ice-packs and rising sea temperatures. Indeed, when they were put on the US Endangered Species list in 2008, they were the first to be
Al-Qaeda´s Twitter account has now been suspended. After going live Tuesday under the guise of its Shamukh al-Islam website, the official website of the terror organization, the @shomokhalislam account was suspended Sunday after just under 50 tweets. The account’s suspension came only hours after a report critical of Twitter remaining silent as to why it was allowed to remain online for so long. First reported Friday by the Washington Free Beacon, the terror group´s account was open less than a week before Twitter pulled the plug. The decision to take down Shamukh al-Islam´s Twitter came
"What we´re not for is negotiating with people with a bomb strapped to their chest—we´re not going to do that," White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer recently told CNN´s Jake Tapper. "I believe the House Republicans are entirely responsible." “One hundred percent?” Tapper asked incredulously. “Yes,” Pfeiffer responded. “Absolutely.” It’s hard to say which is worse: that so many prominent Democrats believe they aren’t responsible for any of Washington’s gridlock—or that they’d say these things anyway. Not all that long ago, a presidential spokesman using this language would be talking about murderers who hijacked airplanes or drove explosive-laden trucks into the
Why do Republicans never seem to come out ahead politically when they go toe-to-toe with the Democrats? Part of the reason, at least, is that the press, to a greater extent than at any time in our history, is monolithically Democrat. The most important news organ is the Associated Press, whose articles appear in hundreds, or possibly thousands, of newspapers around the country. The AP pretends to be a neutral, just-the-facts information source, but it is nothing of the kind. While there are some good reporters at the AP, the overwhelming majority function, as to issues that are politically controversial,
Come 2014, the government´s damaged brand will reflect poorly on president and his party. So last week, while most of the country was talking about football or fears of a government shutdown, Rasmussen released a poll that should worry everyone -- but especially incumbent Democrats in Congress. According to Rasmussen´s survey, most Americans think the IRS broke the law by targeting Tea Party groups for harassment, but few expect it to be punished. Fifty-three percent think the IRS broke the law by targeting the Tea Party and other conservative groups like the voter-integrity outfit True The Vote; only 24% disagreed.
Understanding the independent voter is the white whale of politics. Strategists in both parties spend inordinate amounts of time trying to grasp why these fence-sitters feel the way they feel — and what message makes them vote Democratic or Republican on Election Day. How can independent voters who supported Democratic House candidates by 18 points in 2006 turn around and back Republicans running for the House by 19 points just four years later? And what does that movement tell us about where independents might end up in the 2014 midterms and, eventually, the 2016 presidential election? Those are the questions
(Boone County, KY) For Marie LePage, words have been a way of life. She loves the sound of them, the feel of forming them in her mouth, the power of using them, the joy of collecting them. The best part of her job in children’s programming at the Boone County Public Library is settling a 3-year-old in her lap and reading a great story. She is wickedly good at repartee with her husband of 18 years and her teenage daughters. And before she stands before her congregation to read scripture as a lector at St. Anthony Catholic Church in Madisonville,
One afternoon last winter, a man with a shaved head walked into Twisters, a burrito joint in Albuquerque. He was wearing a yellow helmet and Hazmat suit and carrying a gas mask. He put on the mask, struck various poses throughout the restaurant and then sidled up to the counter to buy a burrito topped with French fries, one of the restaurant’s specialties. At a different fast-food restaurant, the manager might have been alarmed. But this particular one had doubled as Los Pollos Hermanos, the chicken joint owned by a ruthless leader of a methamphetamine cartel in “Breaking Bad,”
LOS ANGELES — Two weeks ago, when Southern California Athletic Director Pat Haden was asked about the status of his embattled football coach, Lane Kiffin, he said, “We support all our coaches 100 percent until they’re not our coaches.” (Snip) Haden fired Kiffin hours after the game, when the team arrived back in Los Angeles at 3 a.m. Kiffin was called off the team bus that was preparing to head to campus from Los Angeles International Airport and taken to a small room inside the terminal where Haden told Kiffin he was being dismissed.
Last year, according to a Washington Post/ABC News survey, 68 percent of Democrats supported Obamacare. By July 23, however, only 58 percent of Obama’s fellow donkeys backed his chief initiative. Liberal Democrats’ approval of this law rose from 74 percent in 2010 to 78 in July.But moderate and conservative Democrats have fled on health care. In 2010, as Obamacare careened through a Democratic Congress, 76 percent of center-right Democrats cheered, while 20 percent hissed. By last July 23, only 47 percent of those Democrats endorsed Obamacare; 46 percent disapproved. So, among middle-of-the-road Democrats (57 percent of those surveyed), net support
If only we could find a couch big enough to fit the entire human species, we could talk through what within our minds is preventing us from acting more aggressively on global warming. Buried within fights over the science, economy, environment, extreme weather, politics, and lobbying is a debate about how psychological traits ingrained in the basic human condition are preventing people from supporting more action on global warming, despite the fact that most scientists agree it’s only going to get worse unless humankind makes a concerted effort to take major action soon. Indeed, a United Nations report released Friday confirms
They spent Sunday checking their bank balances. They talked with loved ones about which bills could be paid late. And they wondered whether working for the government was still a stable job. For federal workers across the country, it was an anxiety-ridden weekend as the government came closer to a partial shutdown at midnight Monday. The threat of an extended loss of pay is hitting a workforce already battered by a three-year wage freeze, months of furloughs forced by the budget cuts known as sequestration and a dimmed perception of government work among many Americans.
A Sipsey Valley High School senior who rallied a tremendous amount of support from family, friends and many strangers died Sunday at a Tuscaloosa hospital. Olivia Mills died at DCH exactly one week after she was severely injured in a car crash, hospital spokesman Brad Fisher confirmed . Thousands have followed the story of the 17-year-old through updates on the Facebook page Pray for Olivia Mills, which has more than 42,000 likes.
Not all scientists are panicking about global warming — one of them finds the alarmism “hilarious.” A top climate scientist from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology lambasted a new report by the UN’s climate bureaucracy that blamed mankind as the main cause of global warming and whitewashed the fact that there has been a hiatus in warming for the last 15 years. “I think that the latest IPCC report has truly sunk to level of hilarious incoherence,” Dr. Richard Lindzen told Climate Depot, a global warming skeptic news site. “They are proclaiming increased confidence in their models
UPDATE: Here’s a statement from Abbott spokesman Matt Hirsch: “It’s telling that Wendy Davis’ economic development platform includes giving drivers licenses to people here illegally. This is the typical Obama-style approach that Texans can expect from Wendy Davis. Attorney General Abbott supports current Texas law that requires a person to prove their legal status to be issued an original license or a personal ID card.” ORIGINAL POST: Sen. Wendy Davis walked a careful line at a Sunday forum, answering questions about statewide issues without confirming she’ll soon be a formal statewide candidate. The Fort Worth Democrat, who is due to
Former President Bill Clinton—who was impeached by the U.S. House of Representatives for perjury and obstruction of justice and held in contempt of court by U.S. District Judge Susan Webber Wright for giving “intentionally false” testimony—claimed to his former staffer George Stephanopoulos on ABC News’s “This Week With George Stephanopoulos” on Sunday that Sen. Ted Cruz made multiple false statements during his filibuster on the Senate floor last week. “I listened to some of Sen. Cruz’s filibuster on the health-care bill and he just kept making all these claims that just aren’t so and everybody knows they’re not,” Clinton told
As advertised, Hassan Rouhani was the star of the week at the Great UN Circus. He knew it, and he treated his American hosts with arrogance and contempt, and was duly hailed as a peace-seeker. He spent hours and hours with diplomats (just not American ones), journalists, academic apologists such as Gary Sick, and anti-American rabble rousers like Louis Farrakhan, but he didn’t have time for President Obama. No matter. When the Iranians told the White House that Rouhani could squeeze in a few words on the phone, Obama eagerly called him up, thereby giving the journalists and apologists the opportunity
AS A jihadist commando sowed death and horror inside Westgate mall last week, Nairobi´s Jains became the silent heroes of the days-long emergency effort. The Jain community, whose small Indian religion upholds non-violence as a sacred principle, opened their doors at the onset of the attack on September 21 claimed by Somalia´s Al-Qaeda-linked Shebab group. As the crackle of gunshots filled the air, the Oshwal religious centre just 100 metres away was a haven where survivors, relatives, security forces and journalists were sheltered, treated, counselled and fed. "We have a lot of space and numerous parking places," said Bhupendra Shah, a senior member
BAGHDAD –Suicide bombings tore through a Shiite mosque south of Baghdad and the relatively safe Kurdish area in the north Sunday as a wave of attacks killed at least 46 people across Iraq, officials said. A surge in sectarian violence in recent months has heightened fears that Iraq is becoming a new battlefield, nearly two years after U.S. forces withdrew from the country. A period of calm after the pullout had raised hopes for a measure of normalcy in Iraq, but tensions have spiked amid Sunni anger over perceived mistreatment from the Shiite-led government. More than 4,500 people have been
While Democratic mayoral wanna-be Bill de Blasio has touted a tax hike on the wealthy as the centerpiece of his agenda, Republican rival Joe Lhota said Friday he wants to cut at least six separate taxes. Unveiling the first major policy proposal of the general election, Lhota said his program would create jobs and grow the city’s economy. The 33-point plan calls for cutting taxes on businesses, properties and hotel stays. Lhota also proposed a new “hospitality school” at City University to serve the tourism industry; the creation of manufacturing centers like the Brooklyn Navy Yard in all five boroughs;
Israel’s prime minister and his allies expressed concern that President Barack Obama’s phone call with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani may signal that efforts to halt Iran’s nuclear program will stall. “I will tell the truth in the face of the sweet-talk and onslaught of smiles,” Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told reporters as he boarded his plane for the U.S., where he will meet Obama and speak before the United Nations. Netanyahu landed in New York early today and will visit the White House tomorrow. Staff has split wide headline.
Lane Kiffin, who has coached USC’s football team since 2010, has been relieved of his duties, Athletic Director Pat Haden announced early Sunday. Kiffin was fired hours after the Trojans lost to Arizona State, 62-41, at Tempe, Ariz. The loss dropped the Trojans’ record to 3-2 overall and 0-2 in the Pac-12 Conference. Kiffin, who succeeded Pete Carroll as coach, had been under fire since the end of last season, when the Trojans fell from being ranked No. 1 to finishing with a 7-6 record. USC has lost seven of its last 11 games dating to last season.
Former President Bill Clinton talks about lessons learned from the 2008 campaign, but doesn´t offer any insight to whether Hillary Clinton could run in 2016. "The next one will be better," Clinton said in an interview airing Sunday on ABC´s "This Week." "It´ll be different. Whether she´s in it or not, they´re all different. And the main thing you can´t do, the great trick in any human endeavor, including politics, is you must learn the lessons of your mistakes and your failures without becoming a general who fights the last war, because every new encounter will be shaped by different forces." Clinton
Mortified that the world may be warming up to Iran, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is taking an unpopular message to the White House and the United Nations this week: Don’t be fooled by Tehran’s new leadership.Netanyahu contends Iran is using conciliatory gestures as a smoke screen to conceal an unabated march toward a nuclear bomb.He will deliver those strong words of caution — and fresh intelligence — in an attempt to persuade the U.S. to maintain tough economic sanctions and not allow the Islamic republic to develop a bomb or even move closer to becoming a nuclear threshold state. With
Economic collapse, mass joblessness, uniformed paramilitaries, street violence, political assassinations and, now, a round-up of opposition MPs. Euro-wracked Greece is beginning to feel eerily like Weimar Germany. The beleaguered Athens government has arrested five deputies and 15 other activists from the fascist party Golden Dawn, including the leader, Nikolaos Michaloliakos. The Greek constitution prohibits the outright banning of political parties, but the authorities have got around that by classing Golden Dawn as a criminal organisation and linking it to the murder 11 days ago of a Leftist musician. We use the word “fascist” so loosely these days that it has