Here’s a cozy little seasonal story for you. (Snip) Two years ago, as Christmas approached, it was reported that Klara Vogl, the vicar of the Church of Norway parish in Ellingsrud, an outlying and heavily Muslim neighborhood of Oslo, Norway, planned to have schoolchildren read various passages aloud from scripture at a pre-Christmas service that was designed especially for pupils from the Ellingsrud school. One of the excerpts she’d earmarked for the service was the following, about what happened to Mary when she was about to give birth to Jesus: (Snip) They’re from the Koran Snip added by staff.
Shawn Aiken is an American veteran of two tours of combat duty in Iraq and Afghanistan but he met perhaps his most formidable foe back home—the Defense Department’s finance and accounting department. During treatment for a brain injury, PTSD, and other afflictions, the Army stopped paying Aiken. His salary for December 2011 came in at $117.99. He struggled to pay his medical bills, put food on the table for his family, buy gifts for his young children for Christmas. The Defense Department treated him like a bad soldier and couldn’t explain why he wasn’t being paid.
Someone sent me the link to this article, and I could hardly believe what I read. Folks, this is just too crazy for words. Forty-year-old Tawana Brawley was recently celebrated, treated as a rock star at a New Jersey fundraiser. (Snip) Have the event organizers completely lost their minds? Are their brains so infected with the putrid pus of racial hatred that they have lost all sense of a moral compass? For those of you unaware, Tawana Brawley committed an evil hoax which sparked a national racial firestorm in 1987.
Dave Miceli doesn´t know me from a hole in the ground, but he´s my new hero. (Snip) "How dare you accuse, through implication or otherwise, that the need for ´better schools´ is a reason there is so much killing. I have taught in the Baltimore public school system for the past two decades. What we need is better students. They have trashed brand new computers, destroyed exit signs, set multiple fires, destroyed many, many lockers, stolen teachers´ school supplies, written their filth on the tops of classroom desks, defecated in the bathrooms and stairwells, assaulted teachers
In a letter to fellow-Republicans on the Hill today, Senator Jeff Sessions declares with admirable straightforwardness that the GOP establishment’s main argument for the Gang of Eight immigration bill — that “the great lesson of the 2012 election is that the GOP needs to push for immediate amnesty and a drastic surge in low-skill immigration” — is quite simply ”nonsense.” He is, of course, correct. (Snip) Today’s letter from GOP donors and fundraisers — i.e., the GOP establishment — to the House Republicans repeats the same dreary fallacies.
Rep. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., will launch his bid to challenge incumbent Sen. Mark Pryor, D-Ark., next week, Cotton’s office confirmed Wednesday. (Snip) Cotton has long been rumored to be weighing a bid for the Senate seat held by Pryor, a Democrat and the son of a former senator. A Republican operative confirmed earlier this year that two Democratic trackers had been following Cotton in case he decides to run. National Democrats wasted no time attacking Cotton on Wednesday, with one spokesperson for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee saying that Cotton’s decision showed “arrogance.”
Said Thomas Jefferson: “The man who reads nothing at all is better educated than the man who reads nothing but newspapers.” (Snip) For example, TV news programs often illustrate air pollution with a smoke stack emitting water vapor, implying it is pollution when it is anything but. Distortion and deception are accentuated by hyperbole. Television news and documentaries frequently report normal weather as “extreme weather,” implying it is abnormal and caused by human activity.
The question that incessantly tugs at my gut is," when will we say ´enough´?" I have the good fortune to interact with physicians across our nation. (Snip) Nearly everyone echoes the same sentiments. We are downtrodden by the yoke of our loss of social and economic standing combined with an overdose of unnecessary and crippling logistical constraints. Regarding the former, doctors have been subjected to an apparently intentional diminution of stature. Most obviously we are no longer "doctors"; instead, we are a mere segment of the blurred gamut called "healthcare practitioners".
It’s always a little galling (not to mention hilarious) for those of us on the right to reflect that the Democratic Party — the party of slavery, Jim Crow, segregation, and family-destroying social programs — the party of Detroit, New Orleans, Newark, and Baltimore — the party that facilitates a black abortion rate that would bring a smile to the face of Planned Parenthood’s genocidally racist founder — has somehow managed to sell itself to African Americans as the friend of black people! But it’s beginning to be equally galling (and equally comic) to reflect that the Democrats have
The death of Colonel George “Bud” Day, who received the Medal of Honor for his heroism as a prisoner of war in communist North Vietnam, is a moment to reflect on what goes into the making of an American hero. (Snip) It was during Korea that he decided to make the Air Force his career. He eventually volunteered to fly in Vietnam, where his detachment used as its call sign the name of Day’s favorite song, “Misty.” He was using the call sign “Misty 01” when, on August 26, 1967, he was shot down over North Vietnam and parachuted
Peter Robinson at Ricochet directs attention to a study by the Heritage Foundation of military enlistment to population ratios by region. It tells us that, generally speaking, folks from Red States are much more inclined to serve in the military than folks from Blue States. (Snip) The Heritage Foundation study also explodes the myth that military service disproportionately attracts men and women from disadvantaged backgrounds. To the contrary, the study shows that U.S. military service disproportionately attracts enlisted personnel and officers who do not come from disadvantaged backgrounds.
America is a poorer place today, a place whose reservoir of valor and determination has been depleted, because George “Bud” Day passed away over the weekend at the age of 88. He was a synecdoche for heroism, a military man’s military man. At Medal of Honor get-togethers, his fellow recipients, all of whom had accomplished legendary feats of bravery of their own, would pay special attention when Bud Day appeared. Bud was at war on behalf of America most of his life and never called a truce even as age and infirmity slowed him down.
Maybe, in looking at the example Detroit has set as the first major American city to file for bankruptcuy, the United States government will finally see more clearly what debt can do when politicians avoid reality. Detroit was once America’s queen city of manufacturing. That began going away decades ago, not because of bad calls by government, but because of changes in the national and international economies. The rich moved to surrounding suburbs, the poor stayed put and politicians had to decide what to do. Some of what they came up with was pretty bad.
Colin Powell has admitted to exchanging ´very personal´ emails with a Romanian diplomat but denies having an affair with the much younger woman after a hacker threatened to release their intimate messages. The 76-year-old retired general told the Smoking Gun that he met Corina Cretu, 45, roughly 10 years ago when she was working as an assistant to the president of Romania. She is now a member of the European Parliament. ´After I left the Department of State in January 2005 we stayed in touch via email,´ he told TSG.
CNN has uncovered exclusive new information about what is allegedly happening at the CIA, in the wake of the deadly Benghazi terror attack. Four Americans, including Ambassador Christopher Stevens, were killed in the assault by armed militants last September 11 in eastern Libya. Sources now tell CNN dozens of people working for the CIA were on the ground that night, and that the agency is going to great lengths to make sure whatever it was doing, remains a secret. CNN has learned the CIA is involved in what one source calls an unprecedented attempt to keep the spy
The United States will temporarily shut down its embassies and consulates around the world Sunday, including those in Iraq, Afghanistan and Egypt, as a precautionary measure, the State Department said Thursday. State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf did not say how long the international installations would stay closed -- only that the decision was taken “out of an abundance of caution and care for our employees and others who may be visiting.” Sunday is a normal workday in many Arab and Middle Eastern countries. Embassies in Europe and Latin America would be shuttered that day anyway.
American scientists claim the planet is undergoing one of the largest changes in climate in the past 65 million years. Climatologists at Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment have warned the likely rate of change over the next century will be at least 10 times quicker than any climate shift since the dinosaurs became extinct. If the trend continues at its current rapid pace, it will place significant stress on terrestrial ecosystems around the world, and many species will need to make behavioral, evolutionary or geographic adaptations to survive, they said.
About 400 area retail and fast-food workers, together with colleagues nationally, participated in a strike Thursday to demand raising the minimum wage to $15 an hour. “If not $15, then something. I mean give us something. I work 36 hours a week and barely make enough to pay my rent, gas bill, light bill. It gets to the point where I barely have enough for lunch sometimes,” said Angel Richardson, 21, who works at McDonald’s. “I’m five months pregnant, what am I going to do in four months? I hope something changes.” The minimum wage is $7.25 nationally and $8.25
Executive Director of Mayors Against Illegal Guns Mark Glaze gave some ambiguous and potentially dangerous self defense advice Friday on “Hardball.” Glaze, speaking in opposition to “Stand Your Ground” laws, said in a circumstance where someone “comes at you” with an axe handle one should attempt to either “talk,” “fight with your fists,” “run away,” or “deescalate the situation,” but not shoot the attacker: MARK GLAZE: Very often somebody will come at you. They might want to have a fistfight. They might come at you with an ax handle. CHRIS MATTHEWS: Would you consider the guy with the ax handle armed or not?
The administration has popped the bubble of hope some small business had that switching to part-time staff would let them escape the high costs of Obamacare. The Small Business Administration on Thursday created a website to explain to businesses that the government will simply tally up the number of part-time employees firms have to determine if enough hours have been worked to essentially create a "full-time equivalent." Some smaller businesses had thought that if they could get under the 50 full-time employee cap that activates Obamacare by cutting full-time workers and hiring more part-time workers they would escape
Government workers in the city of Seattle have been advised that the terms "citizen" and "brown bag" are potentially offensive and may no longer be used in official documents and discussions. KOMO-TV reports that the city´s Office of Civil Rights instructed city workers in a recent internal memo to avoid using the words because some may find them offensive. "Luckily, we´ve got options," Elliott Bronstein of the Office for Civil Rights wrote in the memo obtained by the station. "For ´citizens,´ how about ´residents?´"
Citing a potential al Qaeda attack, the State Department on Friday issued a worldwide travel alert and warned American citizens that the terrorist group may be plotting a strike in the Middle East, North Africa or elsewhere. “Current information suggests that al Qaeda and affiliated organizations continue to plan terrorist attacks both in the region and beyond, and that they may focus efforts to conduct attacks in the period between now and the end of August,” reads a portion of the alert, which lasts until the end of the month.
Rep. Charlie Rangel (D-NY) suggested on Friday morning that the tea party movement is comprised of the same types of people who fought against the civil rights movement during the 1960s. Speaking with the Daily Beast, Rangel said of the movement: “It is the same group we faced in the South with those white crackers and the dogs and the police. They didn’t care about how they looked. He added that the tea party movement can be defeated similar to how the civil rights movement eradicated Jim Crow mentality: “It was just fierce indifference to human life that caused
The nation´s most active death penalty state is running out of its execution drug. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice said Thursday that its remaining supply of phenobarbital expires in September and that no alternatives have been found. It wasn´t immediately clear whether two executions scheduled for next month would be delayed. The state has already executed 11 death-row inmates this year, and at least seven more have execution dates in coming months. "We will be unable to use our current supply of phenobarbital after it expires," agency spokesman Jason Clark said. "We are exploring all options at this time."
Congressional investigators this week released emails suggesting that staff at the Federal Election Commission have been engaged in their own conservative targeting, with help from the IRS´s infamous Lois Lerner. This means more than just an expansion of the probe to the FEC. It´s a new link to the Obama team. In May this column noted that the targeting of conservatives started in 2008, when liberals began a coordinated campaign of siccing the federal government on political opponents. The Obama campaign helped pioneer this tactic. In late summer of 2008, Obama lawyer Bob Bauer took