The American spy agency monitored telephone calls made to and from the clerical residence in Rome where the then Archbishop Jorge Mario Bergoglio stayed during the conclave, the secret election at which cardinals chose him as pontiff. The claims were made by Panorama, an Italian weekly news magazine, which said that the NSA monitored the telephone calls of many bishops and cardinals at the Vatican in the lead-up to the conclave, held in the Sistine Chapel. The information gleaned was then reportedly divided into four categories – “leadership intentions”, “threats to financial system”, “foreign policy objectives” and “human rights”.
A prominent Bridgeport businessman who wore a wire for the feds, helping convict a former Cook County commissioner and a former Chicago alderman, was found dead of an apparent suicide in his plumbing business, authorities said. Michael DiFoggio, 58, was found with a single gunshot wound to the head around 10 p.m. Tuesday at his family business, DiFoggio Plumbing in the 3200 block of South Shields Avenue, according to the Cook County medical examiner´s office. An autopsy is scheduled for today, but police said there was no sign of foul play and the death was an apparent suicide. DiFoggio´s wife
Rep. Mike Rogers (R-MI) tore into HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius for putting millions of Americans’ personal data at risk via Healthcare.gov’s lack of end-to-end security testing prior to its launch. [Video]Rogers detailed Healthcare.gov’s security problems: “So let me tell you what you did. You allowed the system to go forward with no encryption on back-up systems. They had no encryption on certain boundary crossings. You accepted a risk on behalf of every user of this computer that put their personal financial information at risk because you did not even have the most basic end-to-end test on security of this system.
The Federal Communications Commission is planning a broad probe of political speech across media platforms, an unprecedented move that raises serious First Amendment concerns. The FCC’s proposed “Multi-Market Study of Critical Information Needs,” which is set to begin a field test in a single market with an eye toward a comprehensive study in 2014, would collect a remarkably wide range of information on demographics, point of view, news topic selection, management style and other factors in news organizations both in and out of the FCC’s traditional purview. The airwaves regulator would also subject news producers in all media to invasive
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius strongly apologized for the botched launch of the government´s Obamacare website before a congressional panel Wednesday. She promised that a "vast majority" of consumers will be able to shop online for health insurance under Obamacare by the end of November without the problems currently being reported, even as the website was down once again. "In these early weeks, access to HealthCare.gov has been a miserably frustrating experience for way too many Americans, including many who have waited years, in some cases their entire lives, for the security of health insurance," Sebelius said before
Kathleen Sebelius had an exasperated response for the congressional committee today, when pressed as to whether President Obama is ultimately responsible for problems facing Obamacare. “Whatever, yes — he is the president, he is responsible for government programs,” she said at Wednesday’s hearing, after first rejecting Republican representative Gregg Harper’s claims that the president can be held accountable for the health-care law’s implementation.
An NBC investigative internet story that has upended the administration’s oft-repeated promise that Americans will be able to keep their health care plan under Obamacare was largely ignored on the network’s premier TV shows, NBC Nightly News and Today, according to a media watchdog group. While conservative outlets like the Drudge Report led with the story-- “Obama admin. knew millions could not keep their health insurance” -- the Nightly News gave the story by senior investigative correspondent Lisa Myers just 21 seconds. Today ignored it altogether, though found time to discuss New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s Halloween costume. Competing networks CBS and
President Obama may praise Mitt Romney´s health care plan in Massachusetts on Wednesday, but Romney is not returning the favor when it comes to Obamacare nationally. "In the years since the Massachusetts health care law went into effect nothing has changed my view that a plan crafted to fit the unique circumstances of a single state should not be grafted onto the entire country," Romney writes in a Facebook posting. (snip)"Had President Obama actually learned the lessons of Massachusetts health care, millions of Americans would not lose the insurance they were promised they could keep, millions more would not see their premiums
CAIRO -- Egyptian security forces arrested a key Muslim Brotherhood figure in a raid early Wednesday morning, a man on the run since the July coup that toppled the country´s Islamist president, the Interior Ministry said. The arrest of Essam el-Erian, the deputy leader of the Brotherhood´s political arm, the Freedom and Justice party, was the latest in a wide-ranging crackdown of both the Islamist group´s leaders and its rank-and-file members since the ouster of President Mohammed Morsi, who also hails from the Brotherhood. Morsi, himself in detention, has been held at an undisclosed military location since the July 3 coup. He
With the disastrous HealthCare.gov rollout, you would think that if President Obama had not fired Kathleen Sebelius by now, he would have at least seriously considered it. And you´d think she might have readied a resignation letter or even offered to quit. But those close to the White House and Sebelius say there has been no such come-to-Jesus moment between the two and they don´t see one happening anytime soon. In short, Sebelius is staying. Speculation has swirled since the sputtering start of Obamacare that the Health and Human Services secretary would take the fall—and that the only reason the
In case you missed it, a Fargo, N.D., woman called a local radio station Tuesday and said she was going to hand out letters to overweight children on Halloween instead of candy. In the letter -- which was sent to station Y-94 -- the anonymous woman tells parents that the child is "moderately obese" and shouldn´t be out gathering free candy "to the extent of some children." Fargo news outlet Valley Live News quotes a professor of clinical psychology in saying the letter could topple some kids over the edge and straight into an eating disorder: If the child is
The latest parlor game in Washington D.C. is whether or not President Obama knowingly misled us when he repeatedly assured the American people that, in his words, “If you like your healthcare plan, you’ll be able to keep your healthcare plan, period. No one will take it away, no matter what.” By now we all know that claim was completely false–and thanks to a report by NBC News, we know the Obama administration knew it was false years ago. (So did Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer.) But what about the president? Did he know what he was saying was untrue? I certainly think
High quality global journalism requires investment. Please share this article with others using the link below, do not cut & paste the article. See our Ts&Cs and Copyright Policy for more detail. Email email@example.com to buy additional rights. http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/80a818f6-415b-11e3-b064-00144feabdc0.html#ixzz2jDeyrpwH Former US vice-president Al Gore has today backed a white paper highlighting the risks to investors of owning carbon-intensive assets. Mr Gore, who served under Bill Clinton, has stressed the need for investors to consider the carbon risks inherent in their investment portfolios, suggesting that investors “divest from carbon-intensive fossil fuel assets”. High quality global journalism requires investment. Please share this article with others
President Obama promised elite Silicon Valley talent to fix Healthcare.gov, but so far his "tech surge" appears to consist of a handful of White House fellows assigned to the main contractor that designed the troubled website. “If there were tech experts that were flown in from Silicon Valley, they did not land at our facility,” said a knowledgeable official who spoke on condition of anonymity. “There was not a Learjet that unloaded the Mark Zuckerbergs of the world,” the official said. Zuckerberg is the 29-year-old co-founder, chairman and CEO of Facebook. A second official in a key position, who also spoke on condition
Murder charges have been filed in the shooting death of a 15-year-old boy blocks from President Barack Obama´s Hyde Park home earlier this year. Kevin Culverson, 20, is accused of shooting Cornelius German in the back as the boy ran for cover following a dice game in the backyard of a home in the 5000 block of South Evans Avenue on April 22, police said. Culverson is charged with first-degree murder and is due in court today. Culverson lives in the 700 block of East 50th Place, about a block from the shooting. Cornelius had called his parents that night and asked
More thug tactics from a White House that is no stranger to them, as CNN reports insurance companies have been warned to dummy up about the ObamaCare disaster if they know what’s good for them: “What is going on is a behind-the-scenes attempt by the White House to at least keep insurers from publicly criticizing what is happening on this Affordable Care Act rollout,” reports Andrew Griffin of CNN. ”Basically, if you speak out, if you are quoted, you’re going to get a call from the White House, pressure to be quiet.”
If the National Spy Agency (NSA), which spies on all—citizenry and foreign nations alike—and therefore knows all, then why is it necessary for the emergency drill planned to take place across North America on November 13-14 “to test the resiliency of the U.S. power grid to withstand major damage caused by a natural disaster or deliberate attack?” “GridEx 2” is coming soon to a town near you. “That is why thousands of utility workers, business executives, National Guard officers, F.B.I. antiterrorism experts and officials from government agencies in the United States, Canada and Mexico are preparing for an emergency drill in November
It’s an update on the old Watergate question about Richard Nixon’s state of knowledge, and it pretty much sums up the emerging media narrative about Barack Obama. Conservatives must be rubbing their hands with glee as the good ol’ MSM, long suspected of being in the tank for the president, are suddenly submerged in a sea of anti-Obama news. Perhaps this is the kind of rough patch that all presidents pass through. But I have the sense that we are at a turning point in the way that the president is perceived—by journalists, at least, if not by the general
Too bad congressional hearings don’t work like “The Apprentice.” Officially, Health Secretary Kathleen Sebelius goes before a House committee Wednesday to speak to the “implementation failures” of the ObamaCare Web site that functions as though it were designed by a Tea Party saboteur. But the real question on everyone’s mind is the one that won’t be asked: Why this woman hasn’t yet heard Donald Trump’s trademark phrase: “You’re fired”? Here’s what we do know. The rollout of ObamaCare and especially its Web site, HealthCare.gov, has been a
Social Security benefits for nearly 58 million people will increase by 1.5 percent next year, the government announced Wednesday. The increase is among the smallest since automatic adjustments were adopted in 1975. It is small because consumer prices haven´t gone up much in the past year. The annual cost-of-living adjustment, or COLA, is based on a government measure of inflation that was released Wednesday morning. The COLA affects benefits for more than one-fifth of the country. In addition to Social Security payments, it affects benefits for millions of disabled veterans, federal retirees and people who get Supplemental Security Income, the
Heritage Action, the conservative group that orchestrated the defund-Obamacare campaign, emerged from the recent shutdown with few legislative victories. But it didn’t walk away empty-handed; it won influence, especially among activists, who view the group as the operational muscle behind Senator Ted Cruz. How Heritage Action wields its newfound authority (and its Cruz ties) in the coming months will say much about its place in the conservative firmament — and its ability to shape the GOP’s strategy. To get a better sense of its agenda, National Review sat down with Mike Needham, Heritage Action’s 31-year-old CEO, at a Capitol Hill coffee shop.
Just minutes before Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius was set to testify on Capitol Hill, the Healthcare.gov site crashed. Spot checks verified that the State of North Carolina, Virginia, Utah, California, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Nevada, Colorado, New Mexico, New York, Maryland, Vermont, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Hawaii, Kentucky, Minnesota, and New Hampshire are all down - which likely means the entire federal site is down.
Conan: Obama says Americans who are having trouble signing up on the broken ObamaCare website should call 1-800-We-Didn’t-Think-This-Through. Fallon: The economy gained 148,000 jobs last month. Of course, they were all hired to fix Obama´s ObamaCare website. Conan: The other day many people were unable to update their Facebook status for a few hours. For those few hours we were actually competitive with China.
Thanks to ObamaCare, New Yorkers can now get health insurance with rainbow sprinkles. In yet another bungle for the botched government insurance rollout, the state Health Department has mistakenly listed numerous non-health-related business as enrollment sites — including a Brooklyn cupcake shop that has been besieged by callers. “I have nothing to do with this,” said Carmen Rodriguez owner of Brooklyn Cupcake in Williamsburg. “I run a very busy establishment, and I’m like, what is going on?”
An agitated President Obama has expressed frustration to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius about the faulty ObamaCare enrollment website. A visibly annoyed Obama behind closed doors has made clear to Sebelius that it’s her responsibility to fix what has become an unwanted second-term blunder, according to senior administration officials. White House officials say the strong words from Obama don’t mean Sebelius is necessarily in the doghouse but that she’s responsible for fixing the problem. In the words of one senior administration official, “She’s in a tough spot. She’s on the hook.” Sebelius is scheduled to appear before the