London — A 16-year-old Jew of working-class Polish descent flees Nazi-occupied Belgium at the last minute and, arriving in May 1940, finds refuge in Britain. He joins the Royal Navy and serves for three years, fighting to defeat Hitler and save stranded relatives, several of whom die in the Holocaust. A lifelong socialist — he had joined a socialist-Zionist youth group in Belgium before fleeing with his father — this young man goes on to a distinguished career as a writer and teacher, including a spell as a professor at Brandeis University. But he remains based in North London, deeply
We now know where we stand. Janet Yellen is to take over the US Federal Reserve, the world´s monetary hegemon, the master of all our lives. The Fed will be looser for longer. The FOMC will continue to print money until the US economy creates enough jobs to reignite wage pressures and inflation, regardless of asset bubbles, or collateral damage along the way. No Fed chief in history has been better qualified. She is a glaring contrast to Alan Greenspan, a political speech writer for Richard Nixon, who never earned a real PhD (it was honorary) or penned an economic
An NYPD undercover detective has now been arrested in connection with an attack on a family in an SUV by a group of motorcyclists, reports CBS News´ John Miller. The officer is expected to be charged with criminal mischief for allegedly banging on and breaking the rear window of the SUV. The detective waited four days before coming forward to the NYPD and he allegedly made false statements about his involvement, reports Miller. The AP identified the officer as Wojciech Braszczok, and said he turned himself in to face riot and criminal mischief charges. He was expected to make a court appearance
America has learned a lot about itself during the shutdown. For one, it´s discovered that certain words have lost their meaning. Barack Obama said yesterday that he will compromise but he won´t negotiate, that he´s prepared to discuss the budget but won´t actually talk about it with the GOP. [Snip] Boehner was so confused that at his press conference he slurred a few of his words and swayed from side to side. Someone should buy the guy a beer. Another thing that Americans have found is that even when government has been shutdown it´s still too darn big. The shutdown
On Sept. 30, the day before the shutdown, the Weekly Standard´s great reporter-pundit John McCormack made a short yet complicated argument against Republican intransigence. The party, he wrote, could expect Obamacare to collapse under its own weight. But it shouldn´t distract from the system´s failures by causing the rest of the political system to sputter. "Republicans will have a good shot at passing real reform—so long as they avoid blundering into a government shutdown that will not stop Obamacare but will only lend credence to false Democratic claims that the problem with Obamacare isn’t the law itself but rather GOP
You know, on one level the government shutdown is the strangest story. Congressional Republicans didn’t want a shutdown—they wanted to ding ObamaCare without having one. Democrats did want a shutdown—they thought it would reveal the Republicans as crazy, irresponsible, at the mercy of their radical wing. That’s not what they said in public, but it’s how they thought things would play out. The shutdown came. Republicans scrambled for a strategy: pass bill after bill to fund federal agencies and departments that have been closed. Keep those monuments open! They would get a shutdown without a shutdown, make their point while not
The leak of thousands of GCHQ files by CIA spy Edward Snowden was welcomed by Barack Obama, the Guardian has claimed, just a day after the head of MI5 warned the exposure was a ´gift´ to terrorists. [Snip] In August, Mr Obama said the leaking of the files had "put people at risk" and he had called for a "thorough review" of the operations before the leaks were made public in June. He admitted the leaks had prompted "a much more rapid and passionate response" than if he had just declared a review of the policies. But he insisted: "We
Back in March, at an insurance industry conference in Washington, the problems were apparent. Henry Chao, chief information officers at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services openly fretted that the exchanges wouldn’t be ready by October. “I’m pretty nervous—I don’t know about you,” he told the crowd. “Let’s just make sure it’s not a third-world experience.” At the time, Chao’s comment seemed like an attempt at dark humor. One week into the launch of Obamacare, however, it’s not a joke: it’s literally easier to blog from the Kenyan border than to sign up for insurance on Obamacare’s federal exchange.
Appearing on Andrea Mitchell´s MSNBC 1 p.m. ET hour show on Tuesday, Wisconsin Congressman Sean Duffy slammed the press for not doing its job in pointing out the hypocrisy of ObamaCare being delayed for certain groups but not for all Americans: "...the media won´t even ask the question about, ´Why are you [the Obama administration] treating families different than big businesses?´...That´s how pathetic, I think, news reporting has become, when we won´t ask tough questions to the administration.
WASHINGTON — The Libyan government in recent weeks tacitly approved two American commando operations in its country, according to senior American officials, one to capture a senior militant from Al Qaeda and another to seize a militia leader suspected of carrying out the Sept. 11, 2012, attacks on the United States diplomatic mission in Benghazi. The Qaeda leader, Nazih Abdul-Hamed al-Ruqai, was captured by American commandos in Tripoli on Saturday in a raid that the United States had hoped to keep secret, but that leaked out to the news media. The operation has been widely denounced by Libyan officials, who
Frozen fruit and vegetables can be healthier, with higher levels of vitamins and cancer fighting antioxidants, than leafy ‘fresh’ produce. Two independent studies found more beneficial nutrients in everything from frozen broccoli florets and carrots to blueberries. In two out of three cases frozen fruit and vegetables scored better on antioxidant-type compounds--including Vitamin C, polyphenols, anthocyanins, lutein and beta-carotene. Consumption of these anti-oxidant compounds is considered beneficial in preventing cancer and supporting the working of the body, brain, skin and eyes. Produce bought from the supermarket greengrocer section is full of colour and crunch, while many stores even use fine
A Kentucky lawyer made millions off Social Security disability programs, devising a scheme with a judge to approve fraudulent claims at an “assembly-line” rate. A two-year investigation led by Sen. Tom Coburn (R., Okla.), ranking member on the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, revealed a case of coordinated fraud responsible for the approval of billions in claims. Eric Christopher Conn, known as “Mr. Social Security,” made $4.5 million in attorney fees from the Social Security Administration (SSA), gaming the system with discredited doctors signing off on medical conditions and working with a judge to expedite the claims process.
Families of fallen military service members usually receive a "death gratuity" of $100,000 for interment and expenses within days, but not during government shutdown. They paid the ultimate price serving their country — but their government can’t spare a cent to cover their funerals. The stooges on Capitol Hill added insult to tragedy Tuesday when it was revealed that the families of four soldiers and a Marine who were killed in Afghanistan have not received a $100,000 “death gratuity” because of the government shutdown....
Conservative critics of Obamacare want to know how many people have actually purchased insurance through the president’s signature legislation following the glitch-ridden rollout of the Obamacare website last week. Americans for Tax Reform (ATR) launched a website Monday—obamacarecoverup.com—attacking the administration’s refusal to release information about the number of enrollees. “Americans already know that they have a hard time putting information into the Obamacare enrollment system,” ATR’s Grover Norquist said in a press release. “Turns out they can’t get any information out of the system either. The system is broken on both ends. Even a company going bankrupt knows how many widgets it
Negotiating with Republicans has never been in Obama’s playbook. Three days after his inauguration in 2009, President Barack Obama silenced Republican lawmakers who voiced concerned about the enormity of spending in his stimulus bill by uttering two brash words, “I won.” That was his governing philosophy, as he rammed through the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act. But in the fall of 2010. Republicans swept into control of the House of Representatives, and since then Obama’s agenda has been stalled. With little prospect of gaining control of the House in 2014, Obama is resorting to discrediting
While national parks and monuments are closed because of the federal government shutdown, it is business as usual at the Four Corners Monument. The monument remains open because it is solely operated by the Navajo Nation Parks and Recreation Department, which manages six other parks on tribal land. "The tourists really appreciate this park being opened," said a park employee, who declined to give her name.
Call it poker, call it brinkmanship, call it a game of chicken, choose whatever analogy you like to describe the US government "shutdown showdown", but it all comes down to the same thing – right now Washington is engaged in a huge game of high-stakes brag. Underlying that game – and the relative sanguinity of the stock markets – is the assumption that there are limits to this particular arms race (sorry, that´s another over-used analogy) and that neither side will, to quote Warren Buffett last week, go "nuclear". The consequences of default, everyone agrees, are simply too awful to
Irony: While President Obama refuses to consider any delay of ObamaCare, his liberal base is waking up to the fact that "free" health care is awfully expensive. And that they´re the ones getting stuck with the bill. This would be funny if it weren´t so hazardous to the country. The news is full of stories of people — many of them ObamaCare supporters — who are only now discovering what Democrats managed to impose on the country. A story in the San Francisco Chronicle, "Health Insurance Shoppers Suffer Sticker Shock," notes how one resident, Shelly Ross, "was looking forward to" ObamaCare "because
As the US government shutdown enters its ninth day the closure is threatening to leave America’s craft brewers nursing a serious hangover. While stores across the country will continue to stock a range of beers and ales on their shelves, the shutdown has closed an obscure agency, which quietly approves new breweries, recipes and labels. Its closure could halt the rapidly growing craft industry in its tracks, creating huge delays for customers who expect a constant supply of inventive and seasonal beers. The federal government shutdown began on October 1 after a group of House Republican lawmakers blocked a budget
Republican opposition to President Barack Obama´s healthcare law is at the heart of the government shutdown in the US. [Snip] Nearly 40% of the generic drugs used in the US now come from India, and industry insiders say sales will grow as the reforms collectively known as Obamacare roll out. Muralidharan Nair of Ernst and Young says Obamacare envisages savings of $150bn (£935m) per year from drug cost reductions. That is also the size of opportunity for people who work in the industry. "Obamacare will be a harbinger of a tectonic change in the way generic consumption is going to
Here´s the BBC news report (above) on the ferocious speech by new MI5 chief Andrew Parker about terrorists taking advantage of the Snowden leaks. It carries the byline of BBC security correspondent Frank Gardner. It begins: MI5 chief Andrew Parker warns of Islamist threat to UK public Thousands of Islamist extremists in the UK see the British public as a legitimate target for attacks, the director general of MI5 has warned. [Snip] Now it´s time for Gardner to mention, as we did in our report this morning, that the Snowden files were published by the Guardian, despite pleas from
If you get into an argument about press regulation this week, as the Privy Council unilaterally decides on the fate of the British press, I guarantee you this: it will be the Lefties among your acquaintances who will most vociferously champion state intrusion into the press, while the voices criticising such intrusion are far more likely to come from your Right-leaning mates. It’s been like this since the Leveson Inquiry was first set up in 2011. The Left not only cheered this modern-day Star Chamber stuffed with the great and the good dictating to the press what its “culture and ethics”
Polygamy is against the law in the U.S. and Canada, and that’s a good thing: the practice devalues women, reducing them to the status of commodities, and stands as an affront to their equality with men as human beings. But now anti-polygamy laws are coming under stealthy and subtle challenge, as both governments bow before the god of multiculturalism and dare not confront the increasing number of Muslims who are practicing polygamy in both countries. The QMI Agency reported on October 1 that “Canadian immigration officials are letting polygamous men into the country as long as they arrive with only
From its earliest days, the Obama Administration has operated from a “community organizer” worldview, characterized by an “us” against “them” perspective. The President has repeatedly and in a variety of circumstances said, “Elections have consequences, and I won” as an excuse for yet another executive order, non-Constitutional decision, or “in-your-face” arrogant action. The President goes through the motions of listening to others: he claims to be bipartisan; he hosts White House confabs and talks about the need for compromise, but he always ends up saying, “I won,” and ends any pretense of discussion or negotiation. He explains that, as President,
At a time when the state of Israel lies under existential threat from jihadist Islam, and under ideological and diplomatic assault in foreign ministries, international organizations, churches, universities, editorial offices, and other circles of advanced Western opinion—and when even some Jews in the Diaspora seem to be growing disenchanted with the Zionist cause—millions of evangelical Christians unabashedly continue their outspoken, wholehearted, stalwart defense of both the Jewish state and the Jewish people. By all rights, this rather stunning fact—the fact of a vibrant Christian Zionism—should encourage a welcoming response from beleaguered Jewish supporters of Israel. Instead, it has caused palpable discomfort,
Distilling a theretofore-untamed talking point into a single sentence, The Atlantic’s Abby Olheiser complained somewhat tenuously on Monday that the National Park Service, which has recently been running around the country doing all sorts of unconscionable things in the name of the federal shutdown, “wouldn’t have to become the next iteration of the Benghazi mantra if a bill — which is sitting in the House of Representatives and would fund the government at sequester levels — were brought up for a vote and passed, ensuring that the government, and the parks, would reopen as soon as possible.” This, suffice it