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Can Muslim lands learn
to tolerate Christianity?
Washington Post, by Michael Gerson    Original Article
Posted By: mitzi- 12/27/2013 5:52:14 PM     Post Reply
In some parts of the world, Herod’s massacre of the innocents is a living tradition. On Christmas Day in Iraq, 37 people were killed in bomb attacks in Christian districts of Baghdad. Radical Islamists mark — and stain — the season with brutality and intolerance. Across North Africa and the greater Middle East, anti-Christian pressure has grown during the past few decades, sometimes subtle, sometimes overt. This persecution has gained recent attention from the archbishop of Canterbury and the pope. “We won’t resign ourselves,” says Pope Francis, “to a Middle East without Christians.” The violence, of course, is not restricted

A&E Welcomes Phil Robertson
Back to ´Duck Dynasty´
Hollywood Reporter, by Michael O´Connell    Original Article
Posted By: mitzi- 12/27/2013 5:39:20 PM     Post Reply
Less than two weeks after his anti-gay remarks prompted an "indefinite hiatus" for the reality patriarch — and a strong fan backlash — the network says he will remain on the series. Phil Robertson, the patriarch of A&E´s Duck Dynasty clan who was suspended from his hit reality series on Dec. 18 following some incendiary comments about gay people, won´t be put on hiatus after all. The network and the Robertson family announced Friday that Phil will still be part of the series -- and since he didn´t miss any filming, his temporary suspension will have no effect on the

´Duck Dynasty´ to resume filming
with Phil Robertson, A&E announces
Fox News, by Staff    Original Article
Posted By: KarenJ1- 12/27/2013 5:34:16 PM     Post Reply
The A&E Network announced Friday it would resume filming “Duck Dynasty” with Phil Robertson and the rest of his family next spring. Robertson had been indefinitely suspended by the network for comments he made about homosexuality in an interview with GQ Magazine. In a statement released late Friday afternoon, A&E said, “While Phil´s comments made in the interview reflect his personal views based on his own beliefs, and his own personal journey, he and his family have publicly stated they regret the "coarse language" he used and the misinterpretation of his core beliefs based only on the article. He also



Phil Robertson to Return to
‘Duck Dynasty’ in 2014
Variety, by Stuart Oldham    Original Article
Posted By: JoniTx- 12/27/2013 5:30:38 PM     Post Reply
After a brief suspension following his remarks in GQ magazine, Phil Robertson will return to the “Duck Dynasty” show in 2014, A&E announced Friday. “After discussions with the Robertson family, as well as consulting with numerous advocacy groups, A&E has decided to resume filming Duck Dynasty later this spring with the entire Robertson family,” the network said in a statement. “We at A+E Networks expressed our disappointment with his statements in the article, and reiterate that they are not views we hold. But Duck Dynasty is not a show about one man’s views. It resonates with a large audience because

The DOJ’s Curious Foray
into the ‘Knockout Game’ Fray
Canada Free Press, by Arnold Ahlert    Original Article
Posted By: snowcloud- 12/27/2013 5:29:38 PM     Post Reply
Twenty-seven-year-old Conrad Barrett of Katy, Texas, has been charged with a hate crime by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) for allegedly targeting a 79-year-old black man as his “knockout game” victim. The victim suffered two jaw fractures in the November 24 assault. “Suspected crimes of this nature will simply not be tolerated,” said Kenneth Magidson, the U.S. attorney for the southern district of Texas. “Evidence of hate crimes will be vigorously investigated and prosecuted with the assistance of all our partners to the fullest extent of the law.” According to the complaint filed by the DOJ, Barrett recorded a cell phone

Augusta man upset with Dunkin’
Donuts decision gets more toilets
Morning Sentinel [Waterville, ME], by Michael Shepherd    Original Article
Posted By: BaseballFan- 12/27/2013 4:58:50 PM     Post Reply
Agusta - The toilets behind David Labbe’s home on the city’s east side were snow-filled last week, icicles hanging from their tanks. Mad over Augusta officials’ decision to reject a zoning change that would have enabled a Dunkin’ Donuts developer to buy his 1 Davenport St. property, Labbe, a plumber, got national headlines earlier this year by putting commodes behind his home to protest his neighbors’ opposition to the plan. The Kennebec Journal broke his story in October: Then, Labbe had a sign alongside five toilets saying he wanted between 60 and 70 more. In an interview then, he told a reporter he thought he could put 100 toilets on

Room with a view: NASA releases
the best photos of Earth taken
from space this year
Daily Mail (UK), by Staff    Original Article
Posted By: JoniTx- 12/27/2013 4:50:21 PM     Post Reply
When it comes to a room with a view, one several hundred miles above earth is hard to beat. Satellites orbiting the planet and astronauts aboard the International Space Station often take pictures of volcano eruptions, hurricanes and other examples of nature’s fury. And now NASA has rounded up the most spectacular images taken from space all year. The images also include some of the most beautiful sights our planet has to offer – from Princess Charlotte Bay, in Australia, to the surprising beauty of Reno, Nevada’s city lights set against the mountains that surround it.



State Obamacare exchanges halt payments for
´substandard, messed-up´ websites – built by the
same contractor that botched healthcare.gov
Daily Mail [UK], by David Martosko    Original Article
Posted By: Attercliffe- 12/27/2013 4:48:24 PM     Post Reply
Several Obamacare exchanges in states that didn´t participate in the healthcare.gov fiasco are now having so much trouble with their own health insurance websites that they´re withholding payments to their biggest IT contractor--and it´s the same company that botched the federal government´s insurance portal. CGI Group, the Montreal company behind the White House´s error-prone, $677 million online white elephant, is under fire in Massachusetts, Vermont and Hawaii after those states´ Affordable Care Act websites suffered from some of the same problems that first made Obamacare a late-night punchline in October. The Commonwealth Health Connector has paid just $11 million to CGI

The perfect thank you
requires a special gift
Telegraph [UK], by Stephen Bayley    Original Article
Posted By: Attercliffe- 12/27/2013 4:42:34 PM     Post Reply
Electrons are not friends of courtesy. The familiar response to email is “Delete”. The familiar response to a hand-written envelope, though, is delight for it suggests the deliciousness of real human contact. [Snip] It is difficult to argue that civilisation has been advanced by the instantaneous communication of intrusive and aggressively targeted friends’n’family trivia. If someone has not bothered to contact me for the past 51 weeks, why on December 24 would I want to see a picture of an owl in his tree or his car in a snowdrift? But come late December there is, together with owls and

Ohio woman stabs sister during
Christmas fight over apple fritters
NBC News, by Miranda Leitsinger    Original Article
Posted By: BaseballFan- 12/27/2013 4:33:34 PM     Post Reply
A fight over apple fritters among sisters on Christmas night led one of the siblings to allegedly stab another in the chest in Akron, Ohio, police said Friday. Contisha Hayes, 21, and Tamara Delaney, also, 21, were play fighting over the fried sweets when it became more serious and one pulled the other’s hair, according to a third sister at the scene who was making the fritters, police said. Hayes, of Callis Oval, then allegedly stabbed Delaney in the chest, officials said. Delaney was treated for non life-threatening injuries at a local hospital. Hayes was charged with felonious assault, police said.

Saudis lament, ´we have been
stabbed in the back by Obama´
Fox News, by Richard Miniter    Original Article
Posted By: mitzi- 12/27/2013 4:26:39 PM     Post Reply
Arabs don’t trust Obama either. As 2013 ends, President Obama has lost credibility with many people who trusted him at the start of the year. Thanks to the Healthcare.gov debacle, polls find support for the president among women and independents has dropped to the lowest ebb of his presidency. Obama´s words -- promising Americans they could keep their doctors under his health care plan -- didn’t match his deeds. Surprisingly, the same thing is happening on the other side of the world among Arabs in the Middle East and for the same reason.



Wintour of discontent
Telegraph [UK], by Editorial    Original Article
Posted By: Attercliffe- 12/27/2013 4:26:27 PM     Post Reply
In the fashion world, Anna Wintour is a woman of extraordinary power. It is her raised eyebrow or approving nod that will determine whether orange becomes the new mauve, jeggings the new culottes. But there is one area, we suspect, where her diktats will go ignored. In removing the Christmas tree from the family home, on account of how messy it makes the room look, she ignores the whole point of Christmas. By this stage of the festive season, many homes--if not most--are defined by their mess, from fragments of wrapping paper to discarded pine needles, from toys eagerly seized

Texas Judge Strikes Down
Obamacare Abortion Mandate
WOAI-AM [San Antonio, TX], by Jim Forsyth    Original Article
Posted By: Write2Right- 12/27/2013 4:12:33 PM     Post Reply
A federal judge in Huston ruled today that two Texas Baptist institutions, East Texas Baptist University and Houston Baptist University, are not required to provide abortion-causing drugs to their employees under Obamacare, 1200 WOAI news reports. The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, which represented the institutions, says it has now won 9 out of 12 cases which have come before the federal courts challenging the so called ´Obamacare mandate,´ that employer-provided health care provide access to abortion drugs and contraceptives. The Administration has provided exclusions to the mandate to churches and church institutions,

Report: Lis Smith May Have Lost
Job in de Blasio Admin by Dating Spitzer
Breitbart´s Big Government, by Tony Lee    Original Article
Posted By: mitzi- 12/27/2013 4:04:26 PM     Post Reply
Lis Smith, the former Obama campaign aide who is dating disgraced former New York Governor Eliot Spitzer, may have cost herself a job in New York City Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio´s administration because of her new beau. Smith is a spokeswoman for de Blasio´s transition and was reportedly the frontrunner to land the permanent gig once de Blasio was sworn in. Now, according to a report in the New York Post, de Blasio is looking for a replacement, in part because de Blasio has rebuked Spitzer, calling him a "child of the elite" and saying Spitzer´s solicitation of prostitutes as

Civil War ship found at bottom
of Houston Ship Channel yields
trove of artifacts
Houston Chronicle, by Heather Alexander    Original Article
Posted By: JoniTx- 12/27/2013 3:56:03 PM     Post Reply
A 150-year-old Civil War ship and its contents is on it´s way to Texas City after being excavated from the bottom of the Houston Ship Channel and restored in a five-year project. The USS Westfield, which sank in the Battle of Galveston in 1863, was brought to the surface in 2009 in what was the largest maritime archaeological rescue project ever undertaken in Texas. Once up, conservationists discovered hundreds of artifacts including belt buckles from the crew, boiler and engine parts as well as live ammunition. The star of the find is a 12-foot-long cannon, which could have fired projectiles over



Pastor John Hagee to atheists:
Get out of U.S.
San Antonio Express-News [TX], by Elizabeth Zavala    Original Article
Posted By: JoniTx- 12/27/2013 3:52:04 PM     Post Reply
(Video) SAN ANTONIO — A San Antonio pastor has a message to atheists and people who don´t celebrate Christmas: “Leave the country” or “Take your Walkman and stuff it into your ears.” Pastor John Hagee told members of his flock Sunday at Cornerstone Church that “Christmas is under attack in America” because workers who run government offices now greet people with “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas.” He said that any non-Christians and atheists who didn´t believe in Jesus Christ should just leave the country, as the United States was built upon a Christian foundation. “Planes are leaving every hour

Would you try world´s hottest pepper?
USA Today, by Kate Seamons    Original Article
Posted By: JoniTx- 12/27/2013 3:45:21 PM     Post Reply
The Carolina Reaper has taken the title of world´s hottest pepper, after a four-year quest to do just that. The Guinness Book of World Records in November handed the honor to Ed Currie, who grows the fire-engine red peppers in South Carolina. The move followed 2012 testing at Winthrop University to determine where Currie´s peppers fell in terms of Scoville Heat Units, which measure what it sounds like they should: a pepper´s heat. For comparison´s sake, a jalapeno clocks in at about 5,000 to 8,000 Scoville Units. Currie´s record-setting batch (code name HP22B for "Higher Power, Pot No. 22, Plant

Texas Baptist universities win lawsuit
against controversal HHS mandate
Your Houston News [The Woodlands, TX], by Staff    Original Article
Posted By: mitzi- 12/27/2013 3:41:05 PM     Post Reply
WASHINGTON, D.C. – A Houston federal court delivered a major blow to the controversial HHS mandate ruling in favor of East Texas Baptist University and Houston Baptist University. In a 46-page opinion, the court ruled that the federal mandate requiring employers to provide employees with abortion-causing drugs and devices violates federal civil rights laws, and issued an injunction against the mandate. Religious plaintiffs have now won injunctions in 9 out of 12 such cases involving non-profit entities challenging the mandate. “The government doesn’t have the right to decide what religious beliefs are legitimate and which ones

Obamacare´s Pajama Boy:
´I am a liberal f***´
Daily Caller, by Patick Howley    Original Article
Posted By: Calvinesq- 12/27/2013 3:30:04 PM     Post Reply
Ethan Krupp, the little man who played “Pajama Boy” in a widely mocked Obamacare ad, once characterized himself as a “liberal f[***].” Krupp, an Organizing for Action (OFA) content writer who became the face of progressive America while wearing a onesie pajama suit, also remarked that gays “are all liberal f[***]s” and criticized a “conservative gay p[****]” on his now-deleted WordPress blog, entitled “Not Being Creative.”

CNN: Christie Tops Hillary in 2016 Poll
Breitbart´s Conversation, by John Sexton    Original Article
Posted By: Desert Fox- 12/27/2013 3:23:10 PM     Post Reply
In a poll of registered voters, CNN finds that NJ Governor Chris Christie beats Secretary Hillary Clinton 48-46 in a hypothetical 2016 match-up. It´s still a year before 2016 campaigning begins in earnest but pollsters continue to ask who voters would line up with. Every poll asking this question has shown Clinton and Christie polling at the top of their respective sides, usually neck and neck. For instance, a Quinnipiac poll last month found Christie edging out Clinton 43-42. Keating Holland, CNN´s polling director, says Christie´s strong showing is the result of winning 60 percent of independent voters and doing well with


This Political Cartoon From 20
Years Ago Was Disturbingly Prescient
Slate, by Will Oremus    Original Article
Posted By: mitzi- 12/27/2013 3:08:27 PM     Post Reply
Dan Perkins, aka Tom Tomorrow, penned the cartoon above in 1994 for Spin magazine. At the time, the cartoon might have seemed a little hysterical. Remember, this was pre-warrantless-wiretapping, pre-Guantánamo, pre-Snowden, and pre-Obama-assassinating-American-citizens-with-drones, sans trial. Rather, the context for the cartoon was a new NSA gadget called the “Clipper chip” that would have made it easier for government officials to listen in on phone conversations, provided they had the legal authority to do so. (The technology was never widely adopted, and the NSA soon abandoned it.) Now? Not so hysterical. But hey, at least the third panel isn´t strictly accurate,

DHS insider gives final warning
Canada Free Press, by Doug Hagmann    Original Article
Posted By: SpeedMaster- 12/27/2013 2:52:15 PM     Post Reply
Under the cover and amid the distraction of the Christmas bustle, I had my last “official” contact with a source inside the Department of Homeland Security known as “Rosebud” in my writings. My source is leaving his position, retiring along with numerous others choosing to leave this bureaucratic monstrosity. For this contact, my source took unprecedented measures to be certain that our contact was far off the radar of prying government eyes and ears. I was stunned at the lengths he employed, and even found myself somewhat annoyed by the inconvenience that his cloak-and-dagger approach caused. It was necessary, according to

You’ve got to know the territory
Washington Times, by Wesley Pruden    Original Article
Posted By: Maryland_Patriot- 12/27/2013 2:18:05 PM     Post Reply
The uproar over “Duck Dynasty” should be studied forever in the business schools as a priceless teaching exercise in marketing quackery. Television executives are so highly paid because they’re supposed to be so smart. Rarely have so many smart guys been so out to lunch. The noisy row over the A&E cable network suspending Phil Robertson, the head duck, was mostly not about free speech — the network had a right to suspend him, depending on what was in the contract — but about how low the network wanted to kowtow to the lavender lobby, disrespect for religious belief, and whether

New York Soon to
Trail Florida in Population
New York Times, by Jesse McKinley    Original Article
Posted By: abuela10- 12/27/2013 1:27:07 PM     Post Reply
ALBANY — New York, whose status as the most populous state has long been ceded, will soon fall behind Florida into fourth place, a long-anticipated drop that is rife with symbolism and that could carry potentially serious economic consequences in coming years. When the Census Bureau releases its latest population estimates on Monday, demographers expect that Florida and New York will be narrowly separated — perhaps by as little as a few thousand people — and that if Florida does not pass New York this time, it almost certainly will do so in 2014. The census figures underscore immigration trends, as foreign-born migrants continue to

North Charleston woman accused of
stabbing man with ceramic squirrel
Post & Courier [Charleston, SC], by Christina Elmore    Original Article
Posted By: Attercliffe- 12/27/2013 1:10:46 PM     Post Reply
North Charleston police arrested a woman Christmas morning after she reportedly stabbed a man with a ceramic squirrel in an argument over beer. Helen Williams, 44, of Clifton Street, is charged with criminal domestic violence of a high and aggravated nature, Charleston County jail records show. Police officers were called to Clifton Street shortly after midnight Wednesday concerning the stabbing, an incident report states. [Snip] Officers noticed scratches on the man´s face and a large amount of blood was smeared across his upper body and down his arms. A deep cut marred the man´s shoulder and chest, police said.

Anna Wintour throws out family
Christmas tree because ´too messy´
Telegraph [UK], by Peter Foster    Original Article
Posted By: KarenJ1- 12/27/2013 1:07:51 PM     Post Reply
Covered with tinsel, kitsch baubles and with a frizzy, unkempt hemline that sheds pine-needles everywhere, the humble Christmas tree is just ‘so last year’. That, it seems, is the verdict of Anna Wintour, the Vogue editor-in-chief whose love of sharp lines and clean spaces has caused her to throw out the family Christmas tree this year, even before the festivities had begun. “My mom threw out our tree before Christmas Day because ‘it was too messy’”, wrote her 26-year-old daughter, Bee Shaffer, posting a picture online of a lonely collection of presents piled against a wall where a tree had once stood.

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