"Think for a moment about the term ´Redskins,´" NBC Sports commentator Bob Costas exhorted viewers during his halftime tirade of Sunday´s Cowboys-Redskins game. (Snip) Words are magical things, routinely defying the sort of logic-chopping on display in Costas´ tirade. Their euphony can be a siren calling us to dangerous shores. Logophillic pundit William Safire, an unreconstructed paronomasiac, could be so seduced by clever puns, he often crashed whole columns into them. My former boss, William F. Buckley, was often in the dock on charges of aggravated sesquipedalianism,
Ötzi the Iceman has at least 19 living male relatives in the Austrian Tirol, according to a genetic study into the origins of the people who now inhabit the region. Scientists from the Institute of Legal Medicine at Innsbruck Medical University analyzed DNA samples taken from 3,700 blood donors in the Tyrol region of Austria. During their study, they discovered that 19 individuals share a particular genetic mutation with the 5,300-year-old mummy, whose full genome was published last year. “These men and the Iceman had the same ancestors,” Walther Parson, the forensic scientist who carried out the study, told the Austrian
The Obama administration has made headway against an online bottleneck that jammed enrollment for the president´s healthcare reform, but new technical problems greeted users on Monday, showing how difficult it will be to get consumers registered in time for insurance coverage to start January 1. (Snip) "Today was the first day that we got all the way to the last screen. But then an error screen popped up saying the site would be down for 72 hours," Zahran said. Healthcare.gov saw 14.6 million unique visits in its first 10 days, a larger-than-expected public response that raised hopes Obamacare would meet
Some conservatives and Republicans are arguing that opponents of Obamacare have blown a big opportunity to draw public attention to its calamitous rollout. I don’t think this is something that conservatives should be too concerned about. Either the administration is going to be able to fix these problems by the fall of next year, healthy people are going to sign up for coverage, and people will be happy with their premiums — or not. If the administration’s preferred scenario comes about, then the early problems will be mostly forgotten — and would have been mostly forgotten even if the press
MILWAUKEE — The son of a slain Sikh temple president plans to challenge U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan in next year’s congressional election, in a Wisconsin district where support for the 2012 Republican vice presidential nominee has been strong but slipping. Amar Kaleka, 35, told The Associated Press he’ll file paperwork Wednesday to form an exploratory congressional committee. He plans to formally announce his candidacy as a Democrat next month. Kaleka said he wants to bring accountability and transparency back to Washington. He blamed the government shutdown on Ryan, who’s the House Budget Committee chairman, and his GOP colleagues. He said
In his Monday column Politico´s Roger Simon unleashed an anti-GOP rant where he accused the Republican Party of letting "racism out of the closet," accused it of waging "a war against babies" and wished death on two of its leaders Ted Cruz and John Boehner. In his column headlined "Government shutdown unleashes racism" Simon wasted no time in attacking Republicans by putting his twist on old anti-lawyer joke: "Question: If Ted Cruz and John Boehner were both on a sinking ship, who would be saved? Answer: America." Simon then went on to accuse Cruz of "making a war against babies,"
For years, they’ve existed only in science fiction and the archives of the New Jersey Legislature: handguns that fire only in the grip of an authorized user. And yet these so-called smart guns soon could be the only kind sold legally in New Jersey under a state law that has languished on the books for a decade. The law, which requires the state’s gun dealers to exclusively sell smart guns within three years after the first one hits the market, has been largely forgotten since the Legislature adopted it in 2002. But it could be dusted off as early as this
Former Gov. Bill Richardson says it’s his fault that his relationship with former President Bill Clinton is broken beyond repair. Richardson made his remarks about his former benefactor in an interview on CBS to promote his latest book, How to Sweet-Talk a Shark: Strategies and Stories from a Master Negotiator, released this week. “I made the mistake of accepting him coming to Santa Fe to talk to me and watch the  Super Bowl,” said Richardson, who served as a United Nations ambassador and Department of Energy secretary in Clinton’s second term. “He wanted an endorsement for Hillary Clinton.
The Senate reportedly is close to a deal that would reopen the government until January 15, 2014 and raise the debt ceiling until February 14. Under this deal, there would be bicameral budget negotiations through December 15 of this year to try to reach a broad bargain. On the Obamacare front, HHS Secretary Sebelius would have to certify that individuals receiving Obamacare subsidies meet the income levels required by law. The Department’s inspector general would later have to conduct an audit on the matter. Pushing the government to enforce the law isn’t much of a figleaf for Republicans, but apparently
The potential framework that has emerged to end the government shut down and raise the debt ceiling would be a major loss for the GOP, Charles Krauthammer said Monday night. “[The proposed deal] can work, and it would be a big defeat for the Republicans,” Krauthammer said. Speaking during his appearance on Special Report, Krauthammer charged that Republicans would be trading away the sequester for “a few curlicues on Obamacare, which will have no effect on… the law itself.” Instead, Krauthammer said that Republicans should pass a clean, six-week extension of the debt ceiling and a clean continuing resolution to
As Senate leaders hammer out a deal to end the partial government shutdown and lift the nation´s debt ceiling, sources on Capitol Hill tell Breitbart News that labor unions are poised to win a significant delay in an ObamaCare tax. The delay in the tax, which has long been a goal of Big Labor, is expected to be part of a spending agreement brokered by Sens. Reid and McConnell. At issue is a "reinsurance" tax levied against all group health plans. The funds raised would be used to compensate insurance companies for providing coverage to extremely sick individuals. Labor unions
Michelle Obama´s White House garden has become a weedy, overgrown mess because of the government shutdown. Gardeners are not allowed to harvest the crops, and vegetables are rotting on the vine, according to Obama Foodorama, a popular White House food blog. Weeds are taking over, and leaves from the falling trees are littering the garden, which sits on 1,500 square feet in the lower part of the south lawn. The blog reports local wildlife, including a fox and squirrels, are having a field day eating the unpicked produce. An aide to the first lady’s office said maintenance of the garden
New barricades were set up at the World War II memorial in Washington, D.C., on Monday, a day after protesting veterans tore down the previously positioned obstacles and delivered them to the White House. The new barricades were double-wired together, featuring new signs informing tourists that the park was closed except for First Amendment activities. The scene at the World War II memorial was busy Monday morning as a group of more than 90 World War II veterans from Montana visited the site. Sens. John Tester and Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., were present at the site delivering speeches to the
Manila — A major 7.2 magnitude earthquake struck near one of the Philippines key tourist hubs on Tuesday, the United States Geological Survey reported. The quake struck at 08:12 local time (0012 GMT) some five kilometres (three miles) east of Balilihan, in the Bohol region of the archipelago, at a depth of 56 kilometres, the agency said. The town lies across the Cebu Strait from the popular tourist destination of Cebu City, the country´s fifth most populous city, about 60 kilometres (37 miles) away. USGS issued a yellow warning, after the quake saying "some casualties and damage are possible and the
You’ve seen this movie before, Iowa. Stoking another round of what-if and what-could-be, Sarah Palin is planning a return to the state where presidential dreams are fevered even this far out from the next contest. The Iowa Faith and Freedom Coalition, a conservative and evangelical group, announced that the former Alaska governor and 2008 vice presidential nominee will speak at its 13thannual banquet on Nov. 9. The announcement of the planned Des Moines speech comes at a time Palin has again raised her political profile. Over the weekend, she campaigned in New Jersey for long-shot Republican Senate candidate Steve Lonegan, who
I magine a world where everyone held hands and shared equally in the income amassed by a few. Barack Obama is able to imagine such a world. He articulated his vision of it in July 2011, when he expressed his loathing for being “able to keep hundreds of thousands of dollars in additional income that I don’t need, while a parent out there who is struggling to figure out how to send their [sic] kid to college suddenly finds that they’ve [sic] got a couple thousand dollars less in grants or student loans.” He never enlarged upon the novel concept
The great American road trip has long been seen as a rite of passage, immortalized in novel´s such as ´On The Road´ and the movie ´Easy Rider´. The image of the dusty highway tapering off into the sweltering horizon is as much a trope as a reality of American life, but one photographer has decided to alter that perception slightly and take his photographs at night. Interested in the abandoned and the yesteryear of the road-trip, Noel Kerns photographs gas stations, diners, motels and toll booths and using a light-painting technique highlights the available colors visible as the sun
Gallup´s latest Presidential tracking poll finds that only 41% of Americans approve of the job Obama is doing. A solid majority, 53%, disapprove of the job he is doing. Obama´s poll numbers are approaching the lowest of his Presidency, reached in October 2011, in the aftermath of the last debt ceiling debate. Gallup´s latest numbers also show a dramatic drop in Obama´s approval since immediately before the partial government shutdown. Obama´s lowest approval ratings in the Gallup survey were in October, 2011. Just 38% of Americans approved of his job performance, while 54% disapproved. The results reported Monday are well
The National Security Agency is harvesting hundreds of millions of contact lists from personal e-mail and instant messaging accounts around the world, many of them belonging to Americans, according to senior intelligence officials and top secret documents provided by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden. The collection program, which has not been disclosed before, intercepts e-mail address books and “buddy lists” from instant messaging services as they move across global data links. Online services often transmit those contacts when a user logs on, composes a message, or synchronizes a computer or mobile device with information stored on remote servers.
Dissent: U.S. veterans take to the barricades after the White House tries to deny them their right to gather, a mere week after the administration lets a pro-illegal immigration rally take place. Our rights are under siege. Richard M. Nixon, when faced with massive demonstrations during the Vietnam War, at least had the courage to leave the White House and speak with the assembled young demonstrators. And, contrary to his image, he didn´t sic the police on them. Not so President Barack H. Obama. Thousands of vets stormed the World War II Memorial on the National Mall Sunday — tearing down the barricades
Like most caring, nurturing souls who believe in a cleaner, better, happier world I´m keen for the 30 Greenpeace activists currently being held on piracy charges by the Russians to be released from prison as soon as possible. [Snip] It featured an interview with Paul Simonon, formerly guitarist with the Clash, about his experiences in 2011 when--after getting involved in a similar Arctic rig protest with Greenpeace--he found himself arrested by the Norwegians. The way Emily Maitlis´s brow furrowed sympathetically during the interview, you´d think he´d been banged up for a year in the punishment block of Black Beach prison
Labor unions are poised to score the delay of an ObamaCare tax in the bipartisan budget deal emerging in the Senate. The bargain under negotiation would make small adjustments to the healthcare law, including delaying the law´s reinsurance fee for one year. The three-year tax is meant to generate revenue that will stabilize premiums on the individual market as sick patients enter the risk pool. The tax applies to all group health plans, but unions argue it will raise their healthcare costs while providing them no benefit. The reinsurance tax figured prominently in discussions at a recent AFL-CIO convention, where
Last week, CNN´s Wolf Blitzer made waves when he opined that the ongoing problems with ObamaCare might be reason to delay the program. "They had three years to get this ready," he said. "If they weren´t fully ready, they should accept the advice Republicans are giving them, delay it for a year, get it ready and make sure it works." Blitzer later said he was only referring to the ObamaCare exchange website. But as the rollout continues, there´s increasing evidence that an across-the-board delay would make sense — even to supporters of the law. Ongoing glitches, for example, could make
Leadership: Iran´s back to chanting "death to America," China´s calling for a "de-Americanized" world, Russia kicks us to the curb in the Mideast and Venezuela hauls off five of our sailors. And what does the White House say? The sharp rise in anti-American incidents from antagonistic regimes stands in stark contrast to the environment three decades ago, when Ronald Reagan was president. As Beltway intelligentsia derided the Gipper as an "amiable dunce," the world´s leading troublemakers saw the U.S. president entirely differently: as someone they´d rather not tangle with. That´s why Iran´s ayatollahs dropped the U.S. diplomatic hostages they´d been holding for 444