An Al-Qaeda front group fighting in Syria on Wednesday overran the northern town of Azaz near the border with Turkey after fierce clashes with rebels, activists told AFP. "The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) has seized complete control of Azaz. They are in control of the town´s entrances," said Abu Ahmad, an activist inside the town. Another activist, a resident of the border town, confirmed the report. "ISIS are in full control. They are detaining people from their homes, and they are manning all the checkpoints," he told AFP via the Internet, speaking on condition of anonymity.
New York’s health exchange slogan is “Today’s the Day.” Minnesota has enlisted Paul Bunyan. Oregon held a music contest, and California stresses the “peace of mind” that will come with insurance. (Snip) State exchange operators say that they are not trying to hide the penalty, but that their market research has taught them that, at least in the initial phase, consumers will be more receptive to soothing messages and appeals to their sense of collective responsibility than to threats of punishment. “We feel that the carrot is better than the stick,” said Larry Hicks, a spokesman for Covered California. “This
Black Friday, my how you’ve grown. Once an event on the day after Thanksgiving — and the traditional start of holiday shopping — this year, you’ve grown into a two-month season of nonstop door buster deals, super sales and early early-bird specials. “It’s not a start or an ending to anything like it used to be,” said Ken Nisch, chairman of JGA, a branding and retail design firm in Southfield. “We’re in a whole new territory.” And while we may complain that Black Friday has no boundaries, holds nothing sacred — not even our Thanksgiving dinner with friends and family
Obamacare = Prenatal and Mammogram Screenings for YOUNG MEN — FINALLY! Hopefully, you now understand why I have devoted about a dozen of my Sunday columns to the train wreck widely known as Obamacare. From the beginning, this mega combination of many poor (and a few good) ideas was destined to be problematic in the real world of a market economy. Herewith my indictments. •Scope: Prior to Obamacare, approximately 15 percent of Americans were either under-insured or lacked health insurance. And there were plenty of proposals around that could have been cobbled together in order to pass a truly bipartisan
WASHINGTON – While President Obama continues his cross country pitch on the merits of his landmark health care law, dismal new data shows only five people in the D.C. area have signed up for the Affordable Care Act – or ObamaCare. The enrollment data from the four health insurance companies participating the D.C. exchange was released Friday by Republicans Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Orrin Hatch of Utah. “A lot of Americans are getting cancellation notices from their current health care plan but they haven’t been able to enroll in a new plan,” Grassley said in a written statement.
To say the October jobs report was a surprise doesn´t begin to scratch the surface. Not only did the headline reading on this most-important economic barometer come in twice as strong as analysts were expecting, but the monthly snapshot of American labor has once again found a way to simultaneously encourage, confuse, anger and confound -- depending on where you look. (Snip) "It´s a weird report" says Zachary Karabell, the head of global strategy at Envestnet and founder of River Twice Research in the attached video. "It´s people tending bar. It´s lower wage retail jobs. It´s lower wage health services
WASHINGTON — Enrollment for health insurance on state-run exchanges has been low in the first month, as officials in various states cite website glitches, a months-away deadline and even the government shutdown as reasons for the low numbers. Officials from 13 of the 15 states with their own exchanges, said 757,000 have registered for the exchanges, but only 139,170 people have bought or enrolled in health insurance plans. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said Wednesday the number of new insurance customers through the federal exchange, HealthCare.gov, will also be
His serial lie exposed by an even more persistent truth, President Obama is now blaming “bad apple” insurance companies for the fact that millions of Americans may lose the very health coverage he repeatedly promised they could keep. (Snip) Those price increases will vary from policy to policy and place to place, but the Manhattan Institute estimates that that Obamacare will increase the cost of new individual policies by an average of 41 percent, with the steepest hikes imposed on the very people the law needs to attract most: the young and healthy. At PHP, those increases could range from
DENVER - More than 200,000 Coloradans are losing their health insurance because of the federal overhaul, the state Division of Insurance reported Thursday in a count of lives on health plans canceled by 23 carriers in the wake of new requirements. The Division announced Wednesday that 106,083 people are on plans in the individual market that are getting canceled for reasons connected to the federal law. Another 143,116 people are on canceled plans in the small-group market. They’re being directed to shop for new health insurance on Connect For Health Colorado, the state-run insurance marketplace. In some cases, the insurance
Bill de Blasio’s liberal policies aren’t the only thing on display as he moves onto the national stage as New York’s mayor-elect. His family’s hair is also front and center. For those just tuning in: Wife Chirlane McCray’s long dreadlocks are often pulled into a smart, flowing ponytail. Son Dante’s famously large Afro stands triumphant. His daughter, Chiara, wears her loose, kinky locks framed with a band of roses. For a rare instant in the nation’s electoral history, the African American hair politic is on full display. The hair aesthetic of de Blasio’s family speaks to the political moment and
President Obama´s poll numbers have hit just about the lowest point of his presidency. They started sinking after the Obamacare website´s miserable debut last month. Now, only around 40 percent of Americans think Obama is doing a good job. More thanhalf disapprove of his performance. (A year ago, the numbers were the opposite.) It seems obvious to say that a high approval rating helps a president, while a low approval rating hurts him. But here are five reasons Obama´s numbers might not be as troublesome as they sound. He Was Never Popular With Congress Anyway A high approval rating can
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius predicted Wednesday that the October enrollment figures released next week will likely be “quite low” after consumers have struggled to access the online marketplace for Obamacare. “The enrollment numbers which we will release next week, which will be the first month of enrollment, are likely to be quite low given that struggles people have had getting access to the site and getting information,” Sebelius said at a Senate Finance Committee hearing Wednesday. “I’m hoping that with the site improvement we’ll see more robust numbers, but until the site is fully improved and we
Washington - There was glamorous Jackie, of course. And mother Rose, who nurtured his White House ambitions. And all the others: a movie star, a teenaged intern, a mistress with Mafia ties and more. Without a doubt, John F. Kennedy -- whose assassination 50 years ago this month still looms large in the American consciousness -- had a complicated relationship with women, many women. Either he embraced them as pillars of strength on his journey to the US presidency, or he toyed with them to satisfy a unfathomable libido, in a "Mad Men" era when alpha males called the shots.
WASHINGTON — President Obama was seething. Two weeks after the disastrous launch of HealthCare.gov, Mr. Obama gathered his senior staff members in the Oval Office for what one aide recalled as an “unsparing” dressing-down. The public accepts that technology sometimes fails, the president said, but he had personally trumpeted that HealthCare.gov would be ready on Oct. 1, and it wasn’t. “If I had known,” Mr. Obama said, according to the aide, “we could have delayed the website.” Mr. Obama’s anger, described by a White House that has repeatedly sought to show that the president was
President Obama likes to say he will never again be running for office, but every Democrat knows he will be on the ballot figuratively in 2014, and 2016, as well. Right now they are rightly nervous about that prospect. A month ago, political Washington was transfixed by the errors committed by congressional Republicans. Those missteps led to a partial shutdown of the government, which in turn has brought approval of the GOP to record lows in many public opinion surveys. Nothing about that has changed. But today, it’s Obama in the spotlight. A president famous for his unflappability, he is
McAllen, Tex. — They were already running late for a doctor’s appointment, but first the Salas family hurried into their kitchen for another breakfast paid for by the federal government. The 4-year-old grabbed a bag of cheddar-flavored potato chips and a granola bar. The 9-year-old filled a bowl with sugary cereal and then gulped down chocolate milk. Their mother, Blanca, arrived at the refrigerator and reached into the drawer where she stored the insulin needed to treat her diabetes. She filled a needle with fluid and injected it into her stomach with a practiced jab. “Let’s go,” she told the children,
Marathon talks on a deal to temporarily curb Iran´s nuclear program have broken down after a negotiations between foreign ministers ran into trouble late last night.[Snip] U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and foreign ministers of six other delegations conferred with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in a late-night session which broke up after midnight. The French foreign minister, Laurent Fabius, told France Inter radio yesterday that Paris would not accept a ´sucker´s deal´. They complained the text which was drafted as part of the agreement had been presented a ´fait accompli´ and did not want to be forced
Jim Capretta saw the Obamacare debacle coming when it was months away. On July 5, the Obama administration released a 600 page regulation announcing a one-year delay in part of Obamacare’s implementation. States would not have to check the income of people applying for subsidies, according to the administration’s guidance. The administration simply would not be ready in time. “This announcement is another indicator—as if we needed one—of the complete fiasco that is Obamacare implementation,” Capretta wrote the following Monday for the Weekly Standard. It wasn’t the first delay, as a few days earlier the administration had let all big businesses off the
Don’t count Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus among those who believe comprehensive immigration reform is dead this Congress. Despite exasperation among reform advocates that the House has refused to vote on any major immigration bill — particularly the Senate-passed legislation — Priebus said that his “gut” feeling is that the House will indeed pass an immigration overhaul in the next 14 months. “Something significant is going to happen because obviously mass deportation is not an option. I don’t think doing nothing is an option. And I believe most people would agree that something significant needs to take place. Now what that
In their new book ”Who’s Bigger: Where Historical Figures Really Rank,” computer scientist Steven Skiena and former Google engineer Charles B. Ward rank the 100 most significant people in world history using an algorithm they created. What goes into the algorithm? It’s complicated. If you really want to know the math behind it, read the book. Or you can learn a little about it here. But click below to see who makes the top 100 — then let us know who the list should and should not have been included in the comment section.
ASHEVILLE, N.C. — Before Ted Cruz burst on the national political scene, there was Sarah Palin. After Ted Cruz, is there still much of a place for her? Sarah Palin, 49, is the original hero of the Tea Party, rallier of the right wing and basher of Barack Obama. But it has been five years since she gained a place in the history books as John McCain´s surprise choice of running mate on the Republican presidential ticket. Four years since she unexpectedly resigned as Alaska governor before her term was up. Two years since she bypassed the chance to jump into the
Sheilah Johnson was a building inspector for the city for 28 years, a college graduate who passed up jobs that paid more because a city job offered stability and the promise of a good pension. But the city´s recent plunge into bankruptcy — overseen by an outside emergency manager answerable to the state government, not the citizens of Detroit — makes her wonder whether she and other African American residents of the impoverished city will be able to stop Wall Street creditors from seizing what´s left of a municipal treasury they paid into for most of their lives. "When my
WASHINGTON — When President Obama travels abroad, his staff packs briefing books, gifts for foreign leaders and something more closely associated with camping than diplomacy: a tent. Even when Mr. Obama travels to allied nations, aides quickly set up the security tent — which has opaque sides and noise-making devices inside — in a room near his hotel suite. When the president needs to read a classified document or have a sensitive conversation, he ducks into the tent to shield himself from secret video cameras and listening devices. American security officials demand that their bosses — not just the president, but
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz) said he has no plans to run again for the White House. Speaking to the Arizona Republic, McCain said he had received "a spate of e-mails and letters and phone calls" urging him to run since the government shutdown. But he said he´s focused on whether to run for a sixth term in the Senate, not for president. “As you know, I’m seriously thinking about running for re-election to the Senate," he said. "But I think, in the words of the late Morris K. Udall, as far as my presidential ambitions are concerned, ‘The people have spoken —
Jeff Fager, the CBS News chairman and executive producer of “60 Minutes,” has said that his team spent “more than a year” reporting the story about the attack on Benghazi that aired on Oct. 27.Yet it wasn’t until Thursday night that they learned first-hand what their principal source, a security contractor named Dylan Davies, had told the Federal Bureau of Investigation about the attack. In conversations with POLITICO, sources familiar with “60 Minutes” reporting said that it was only on Thursday night that “60 Minutes” obtained the official account of events that Davies had given to FBI officials after the