Asylum seekers at off-shore detention centres asked doctors for breast enlargements, IVF treatments, Botox and cosmetic dentistry, the director of health services has said. Dr Ling Yoong, who was director of health on Christmas Island, Nauru and Manus Island, revealed the odd requests to the Medical Observer this week. She also said she refused the requests. "We give [the asylum seekers] the health services they need, we do not give them the services they want," Dr Yoong said. A spokesman for Immigration Minister Scott Morrison reiterated that "those seeking to come illegally by boat won´t receive such lavish treatments". An
Comments: Read the comments for more on what is going on here. Many of these people who go to Australia on boats are refugees the way Mexicans who cross the border here are refugees. But they are entitled to all kinds of benefits if they get in. The new prime minister promised to put a stop to it.
The audacity and mendacity with which the Obama administration defends its illegal contraception mandate is standard fare for politics. What´s distinctively Obamian in this fight is the insidious corporatism underlying it all. Look at the contraception mandate from almost any angle, and you see the corporatism. Sometimes it´s on the surface, and sometimes it´s implicit in the arguments. The contraception mandate is nakedly a huge subsidy to the industry that most firmly supported Obamacare: the drugmakers. The drug industry has spent more on lobbying under Obama than any other industry. Top lobbyists at the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) in 2009
American life gives individuals the chance to make two kinds of personal choices. Structural choices are the big decisions that configure the course of life and involve significant risk and responsibility -- when to marry, how to support oneself and dependents, where to live. They tend to be made after conscious consideration of alternatives. Functional choices are the everyday decisions such as what words to speak, how to behave towards others, what to eat, and wear. Functional choices tend to be made more or less unconsciously, according to tastes and preferences, without deep consideration of alternatives. Since the founding of America,
MILWAUKEE In 2011, thousands of government employees and others, enraged by Gov. Scott Walker’s determination to break the ruinously expensive and paralyzing grip that government workers’ unions had on Wisconsin, took over the capitol building in Madison. With chanting, screaming and singing supplemented by bullhorns, bagpipes and drum circles, their cacophony shook the building that the squalor of their occupation made malodorous. They spat on Republican legislators and urinated on Walker’s office door. They shouted, “This is what democracy looks like!” When they and Democratic legislators failed to prevent passage of Act 10, they tried to defeat — with a
What happens when you find out that the life you´ve lived could have been better — much better? That´s what a 60-year-old Japanese truck driver had to grapple with when he discovered he was switched at birth after being born to a rich family. The man, who has chosen to remain anonymous, was raised by a single mother in a 100-square-foot apartment. A court ruled Tuesday that a social welfare organization that ran the hospital where the mix-up occurred must pay him about $317,000 for causing "mental distress by depriving him of an opportunity to gain a higher education."
Teddy Roosevelt busted Standard Oil. The Obama administration? It´s making the world safe from rapacious piano teachers. Every month, it seems, brings a new story of this presidency leveling the intimidating powers of the federal government against some law-abiding citizen. Now comes a terrifying tale of how the Federal Trade Commission, a governmental Goliath, crushes an average David—because it can. In March of this year, a small nonprofit in Cincinnati—the Music Teachers National Association—received a letter from the FTC. The agency was investigating whether the association was engaged in, uh, anticompetitive practices. This was bizarre, given that the MTNA has existed since
Chanukah, the eight-day Festival of Lights, starts this year on Wednesday evening, the only time it has ever just about coincided with Thanksgiving. Chanukah, which celebrates the triumph of the few over the many, of light over darkness, goes back over two millennia to a time when Judea was under the rule of the Seleucid Empire. In 198 BCE the Seleucid King Antiochus III ousted the Egyptian ruler Ptolemy V from Judea. Antiochus III was a tolerant ruler who wanted the Jews to practice their religion as they saw fit. His son and successor Antiochus IV, however, was a different story.
Back in September, The New York Times promoted Bill de Blasio´s mayoral candidacy with an editorial titled, "Don´t Fear the Squeegee Man." The editorial informed readers that crime wouldn´t get worse under de Blasio because "policing is far better than it used to be, thanks to innovations by Mayor David Dinkins." (Emphasis added -- the Times was not being sarcastic.) Under the policing "innovations" of Mayor Dinkins, the annual murder rate in New York City rose to an all-time high of 2,245 in Dinkins´ first year in office. After four years of hard work, the murder rate had dropped by about
Reprinted with permission from The Limbaugh Letter. So good to speak with a no-holds-barred enemy of the ruinous left, who — having once been the left’s “most important theorist” — knows from the inside out how critical it is to take the fight to them: (Snip) RUSH: Your latest book has an intriguing title, The Black Book of the American Left. If somebody walked up to you on the street and asked about it, how would you explain it? HOROWITZ: It’s kind of my life mission, I guess. It’s my collected writings. I’ve written about a million and a half
Economist Bryan Caplan notes that support for gun control — specifically, banning handguns or pistols — has decreased dramatically since the 1950s and 1960s. Back in 1959 Gallup reported that 60% of Americans favored banning possession of "pistols and revolvers," while now 74% oppose banning "the possession of handguns," except by police. Caplan seems puzzled by this substantial change in opinion. I think it´s explainable by two developments. (1) Violent crime roughly tripled between 1965 and 1975. As Caplan´s graph of Gallup´s results shows, majorities came to oppose handgun bans during this period. Americans saw more need to protect themselves. (2) The success
A number of news outlets have reported that Angola has "banned" Islam and started to dismantle mosques in a bold effort to stem the spread of Muslim extremism. Weekly French-language Moroccan newspaper La Nouvelle Tribune published an article on Friday sourcing "several" Angolan officials, including the Southwest African nation´s minister of culture, Rosa Cruz, who reportedly offered the following remarks, which have been translated from French: "The process of legalization of Islam has not been approved by the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights, their mosques would be closed until further notice." The media reports have not described why exactly Islam apparently
Lady Gaga reportedly spent $25 million on pop art to jazz up her new and apparently underwhelming album. In contrast, Miley Cyrus’ sexual twerking at the MTV video awards earned her more millions by exposing her rather unimpressive anatomy. Both make the once vulgar Madonna seem like June Cleaver, but at least raise an existential question: how much lower can we go? Meanwhile hip-hop artist Kanye West is promoting his own new music video. He seems to be having sex with his girlfriend Kim Kardashian while riding a motorcycle. If you did not know that Kanye West was the singer of
Schumer doesn’t like the “historic” deal with Iran–it doesn’t seem proportional to him–and Menendez insists that new sanctions are on the way. Two Democrats, not notoriously leading neocons, both warning that the agreement may be a hard sell to Congress. But then, Obama may not ask them for approval, so then what? That would give the Iranians multiple coups: –First and foremost, money, which they badly need. According to my sources in Iran, Iranian industry overall is currently at twenty percent of capacity, the regime’s blank check for supporting Assad in Syria has drained the treasury, and the country is down
A Republican strategist is reminding his party that President Reagan is dead. Ford O´Connell, who worked on Sen. John McCain´s (R-Ariz.) 2008 presidential campaign, says if Republicans want to win the White House in 2016, they need to break free of the "obsessive Reagan disorder." Rule #1 of the political analyst´s newly released book, "Hail Mary: The 10-Step Playbook for Republican Recovery," is: "Ronald Reagan is dead. Accept it." Such a sentiment is sure to be tough to digest for a party insistent on using the 40th president´s legacy as a GOP litmus test to prove conservative credentials. "The Reagan fixation is a drag
The hits to President Obama´s popularity, prompted by the botched HealthCare.gov rollout, are simply a natural fluctuation every commander-in-chief faces, Obama told interviewer Barbara Walters in an interview aired Friday. "If you remember, I´ve gone up and down pretty consistently throughout," Obama said in the ABC interview on Friday. "But the good thing about when you´re down is that usually you´ve got nowhere to go but up." "I got re-elected in part because people did think I was trustworthy and they knew I was working on their behalf," Obama said in the network´s exclusive. A CNN Poll of Polls complied
The human species began as the hybrid offspring of a male pig and a female chimpanzee, a leading geneticist has suggested. The startling claim has been made by Eugene McCarthy, of the University of Georgia, who is also one of the worlds leading authorities on hybridisation in animals. He points out that while humans have many features in common with chimps, we also have a large number of distinguishing characteristics not found in any other primates. Dr McCarthy says these divergent characteristics are most likely the result of a hybrid origin at some point far back in human evolutionary history. What´s more, he suggests,
WASHINGTON — As a small coterie of grim-faced advisers shuffled into the Oval Office on the evening of Oct. 15, President Obama’s chief domestic accomplishment was falling apart 24 miles away, at a bustling high-tech data center in suburban Virginia. HealthCare.gov, the $630 million online insurance marketplace, was a disaster after it went live on Oct. 1, with a roster of engineering repairs that would eventually swell to more than 600 items. The private contractors who built it were pointing fingers at one another. And inside the White House, after initially saying too much traffic was to blame, Mr. Obama’s
The Washington Examiner recently reported on an academic study on the 2008 presidential election entitled "The Palin Effect" that examined the effect of then Gov. Palin on the John McCain campaign. Its conclusions run counter to conventional wisdom. The cliché, advanced by the media and the now infamous HBO TV show "Game Change," was that Palin helped to cost McCain the election because of her "controversial" personality. In fact, typical of most vice presidential running mates, Palin had a marginal but largely positive effect on McCain´s standing with the voters. She certainly did not drive away independents and moderates, who along
AUBURN, Ala. — In a season of miracles for Auburn, all it has taken is one mistake to give the Tigers life. No. 1 Alabama made just enough of them Saturday to change the course of history. With no time left on the clock, Auburn cornerback Chris Davis caught a 57-yard field goal attempt by Alabama in the back of the end zone, ran it out down the left sideline and went 109 yards untouched to beat the Crimson Tide, 34-28.
He´s a proud family man already, but President Barack Obama will turn to his children when it comes to life after the White House. Sasha Obama could be the deciding factor in whether the first family stay in Washington once he leaves office in three years. In a taped interview with ABC News, the President said his now 12-year-old daughter ´will have a big vote in where we are´ because she will be a sophomore in high school. When Obama leaves office in January 2017 after two terms, eldest daughter Malia could be off in college. Both girls attend the exclusive Sidwell Friends School
Sen. John McCain is starting to sound like a Tea Party “wacko bird.” In a new fundraising letter for the Republican National Committee released Friday, McCain lashed out at “Barack Obama, Harry Reid and Washington liberals,” who he claimed are destroying the United States. Liberals, he warned, “have taken us down a dark and dangerous path defined by record levels of debt, ever-expanding government, and a lead-from-behind defense strategy. There´s not much time left to turn things around.” McCain’s name carries a lot of weight in fundraising because he was the 2008 GOP nominee and is a leading voice of
President Obama took part in Small Business Saturday by heading over to Politics and Prose, a locally-owned bookstore in Washington, D.C. Wearing a brown leather coat and tan sweater, the president mingled with customers and wished them happy holidays. He brought daughters Malia and Sasha, who occasionally left his side to shop as he chatted with others. At the register, when asked what books he purchased, Obama said, “it is a long list ... books for every age group, from 5 to 52.” In all, Obama purchased 21 titles, including, “All That Is” by James Salter; “Collision Low Crossers:
The time has come to end presidential term limits, because continuing the restrictions on how long one can serve in the country´s highest office is bad for the United States, a university professor argued this week. In an opinion piece published in the Washington Post, Jonathan Zimmerman, a history and education professor at New York University, says deciding whether a president deserves a third, fourth or more terms should be left to the American people, not the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution, which placed a two-term limit on the position. As background, here´s an excerpt from the amendment, ratified in
WASHINGTON — After two months of relentless criticism about the troubled rollout of the new federal health care law, Saturday marks the day when President Barack Obama pledged that the flawed website, HealthCare.gov, would be fixed. White House officials say they expect that vow to be fulfilled, at least for the vast majority of Americans who need to access the website to sign up for health insurance. But anything less than success Saturday probably will be a crippling blow in a second term where Obama faces many tough political challenges, from budget battles to negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program. The HealthCare.gov rollout
It only took five years for the American media to get tired of President Obama´s spoon-fed propaganda -- well, at least one aspect of it. Earlier this month, 38 news organizations, including the Associated Press, ABC News, The Washington Post, and Reuters demanded more photojournalist access to the president. The White House responded with what one reporter described as a middle finger. Now some news organizations are responding by formalizing policies not to publish White House-distributed photographs. Last week the USA Today announced that it will not use “handout photos originating from the White House Press Office, except in very