Friday, September 30, 2011

New Orleans Residents Object to Anti-Obama Signs

Glenn Beck's The Blaze illustrates once again how thin-skinned President Obama and his groupies are (click to enlarge).

Anwar al-Awlaki Killed in Yemen

American-born Anwar al-Awlaki, who held a high leadership position in al-Qaeda, was killed by a U.S. missile, according to Glenn Beck's The Blaze. He was the man behind the "underwear bomber" and the Times Square bombing attempt, and influenced Maj. Nidal Hasan to become the alleged shooter in the Fort Hood massacre.

Medical Marijuana Patients to Be Treated Like Convicted Felons

FOX News has the story which affects people in states such as Arizona and Colorado, which allow patients to use marijuana products with a doctor's prescription:

While some citizens may have won the right to use medical marijuana, winning one right may come at the expense of another.

In a letter to firearms dealers across the country, federal authorities are being clear that firearms should not be sold to medical marijuana users.

The Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms agency (ATF) is sending a letter to gun dealers warning them it is illegal to sell the weapons to people who admit smoking medical marijuana and have a medical marijuana card -- something the card holders are unimpressed about.

"I'm a medical marijuana patient and I own a gun," says Arizona resident Sunny Singh, who fears his right to carry a firearm will be affected.

"A lot of these people who really need medical marijuana as a medicine shouldn't be targeted or have their rights taken away...."

Thursday, September 29, 2011

A Hanging Offense in Iran

A CNS News article reports that Iranian Pastor Youcef Nadarkhani has been convicted of "apostasy," and faces the gallows unless he renounces Christianity. The White House, Christian organizations, human rights groups and governments have called for his release, fearing that he could be executed within a few days.

Last July State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland issued a statement on the case expressing dismay over reports that Nadarkhani had been given the choice of renouncing his faith or being hanged.

“If carried out, it would be the first execution for apostasy in Iran since 1990,” she said.

“He is just one of thousands who face persecution for their religious beliefs in Iran, including the seven leaders of the Baha’i community whose imprisonment was increased to 20 years for practicing their faith and hundreds of Sufis who have been flogged in public because of their beliefs,” Nuland said. “While Iran’s leaders hypocritically claim to promote tolerance, they continue to detain, imprison, harass, and abuse those who simply wish to worship the faith of their choosing....”

Health of Chavez Takes a Turn for the Worse

Part of an ABC News article: That’s what a Miami newspaper [also the Telegraph (U.K.), which added the detail of kidney failure] reported today. El Nuevo Herald quoted sources in Caracas as saying he was admitted to a military hospital in the city on Tuesday.

Not true, says Chavez. He appeared in front of the cameras today to dismiss the reports in his own inimitable way.

Quoting from the newspaper report, the Venezuelan leader said, “The sources, who spoke under condition of anonymity’ – Ha! How original – ‘indicated that the governor [correction: president of Venezuela] was admitted on Tuesday morning to the military hospital after suffering a general disequilibrium in his physical state.’”

Laughing, he continued: “Another source saw me leaving here. In a bad state, heading for the hospital. It’s like a novel, this.”

Chavez has recently undergone several rounds of chemotherapy in Havana....

Enemies of Democracy Outing Themselves

NewsBusters has a story about Gov. Beverly Perdue (D-NC), who said with a straight face on Tuesday that "I think we ought to suspend, perhaps, elections for Congress for two years and just tell them we won't hold it against them, whatever decisions they make, to just let them help this country recover." Some of her henchmen claim she was only joking, but there are certain things one does not joke about. Even Nazi Germany and the United States during the Civil War did not suspend elections.

The Economist
has this memorable quote by ex-OMB director Peter Orszag: [We need to rely] "more on automatic policies and depoliticized commissions for certain policy decisions. In other words, radical as it sounds, we need to counter the gridlock of our political institutions by making them a bit less democratic."

Lachlan Markay at the Heritage Foundation describes five instances of executive overreach, in which either President Barack Hussein Obama or the federal bureaucracy unilaterally bypass the will of the Congress.

Not Enough to Cover Legal Expenses

A Politico article reports that Joe McGinniss’s latest hatchet job “The Rogue: Searching for the Real Sarah Palin” sold 6,034 copies in its first six days, according to Nielsen Bookscan.

The book did best in the Pacific geographic area, which includes Alaska, selling more than 1,500 copies, while “The Rogue” sold fewer than 500 copies in the Northeast, which includes New York, according to the International Business Tribune. BookScan tracks sales for about 75 percent of books sold in the United States.

The book, which has been both panned by critics and seen excerpts go viral on the Internet, currently ranks 116th on Amazon’s Best Sellers, and according to IBT was the 16th best-selling new hardcover last week....

The Case of the Exploding Toilets

We don't link to the Washington Post very often, but this hot toilet news item is irresistible.

The toilets exploded in the General Services Administration headquarters in Washington, DC. Two employees were injured by flying porcelain shards, and one of them had to be taken to the hospital.

The rare accident, which started in a water tank on the roof of the agency’s capital region headquarters Monday morning, quickly became representative of Washington’s ills — from the bureaucratic response to the venom it released against the government and its employees.

“How many $1,200 toilet seats has the government bought, and here we have a toilet going boom!” mused Chuck White, vice president of technical and code services for the Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors Association. “I’m sure people think this is just one more example of our government in action.”

By the time his wife in Indiana found his expert-weighs-in quotes in the Huffington Post on Tuesday night — in a story under “Weird News” with a video of a plumber checking toilet pressure — the tale of the exploding toilet had gone viral.

“A new way to get government employees off their butts,” a reader wrote in one of the tamer comments. “Now we need to install the same equipment in the halls of Congress....”

Later it was explained that water in a multi-story building had to flow at a higher pressure to reach the upper floors. A malfunction in the storage tank resulted in excessive water pressure, which caused the toilets to explode.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Bambi Versus Godzilla, 2011 Version

CNN reports that Iran will project its sea power - off the eastern coast of the United States.

"The Navy of the Iranian Army will have a powerful presence near the United States borders," read the headline of the story, in Farsi.

"Commander of the Navy of the Army of the Islamic Republic of Iran broke the news about the plans for the presence of this force in the Atlantic Ocean and said that the same way that the world arrogant power is present near our marine borders, we, with the help of our sailors who follow the concept of the supreme jurisprudence, shall also establish a powerful presence near the marine borders of the United States," the story said. The reference to the "world arrogant power" was presumably intended to refer to the United States.

IRNA cited the force's website as saying that the announcement was made by Adm. Habibollah Sayari on the 31st anniversary of the Iran-Iraq war....

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Another Cherished Stereotype Goes Down in Flames

Ann Marlowe at the Wall Street Journal asserts that the people who serve in the U.S. military are not there because they are the dregs of society with no other career options.

"In 2008, using data provided by the Defense Department, the Heritage Foundation found that only 11% of enlisted military recruits in 2007 came from the poorest one-fifth, or quintile, of American neighborhoods (as of the 2000 Census), while 25% came from the wealthiest quintile. Heritage reported that 'these trends are even more pronounced in the Army Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) program, in which 40% of enrollees come from the wealthiest neighborhoods, a number that has increased substantially over the past four years.'

"Indeed, the Heritage report showed that 'low-income families are underrepresented in the military and high-income families are overrepresented. Individuals from the bottom household income quintile make up 20.0 percent of Americans who are age 18-24 years old but only 10.6 percent of the 2006 recruits and 10.7 percent of the 2007 recruits. Individuals in the top two quintiles make up 40.0 percent of the population, but 49.3 percent of the recruits in both years.'

"What about the charge that our Army is disproportionately black? This too is false, as is clear from data for fiscal 2010 available on the Army's website: Whereas blacks comprise 17% of Americans ages 18-39 with high school degrees, they represent only a slightly larger proportion of enlisted soldiers, at 21%...."

The article goes on to say that these assumptions survive because the educated elites have little or no personal contact with the military.

Obama Fundraising Falls Short of Goals

Keith Koffler, whose White House Dossier blog provides an insider's view of the Executive Branch, quotes a New York Times article stating that his re-election campaign will be raising $55 million in the quarter ending 30 September, as opposed to $80 million in the previous quarter.

"The campaign attributes part of the decline to the need for Obama to stay in Washington address budget battles with Republicans. That is – sorry for the inconvenience – the need to be president.

"But a separate Times article Saturday that said many small donors are hesitant to start giving to Obama again. And it’s no secret that even for Democrats, the thrill is gone...."

However, he still has a following in Hollywood. On his latest visit to California, he raked in $7 million, according to the Washington Times.

EDITORIAL NOTE: Meanwhile, Republican presidential candidates have been approaching Wall Street and major corporations getting nervous over Obama's demagoguery, union bosses are complaining not because the current President hasn't been generous to them but because they want more, and his liberal base finds it increasingly difficult to explain away the massive corruption, extravagance, thuggery, racism, and incompetence that are the trademarks of his administration. One little-known (and ironic) fact: Republicans rely more on small donors than Democrats - get enough of them interested in your cause, and the money will add up fairly quickly.

Hallmark Releases Sympathy Cards for Unemployed

A CNN article reports that greeting card publisher Hallmark has started to distribute cards for commiserating with unemployed people.

"With unemployment sitting at 9%, the ongoing layoffs across the country have persuaded the greeting card giant to begin rolling out a line of sympathy cards with words of encouragement for people who have lost their jobs in the tough economy.

"The development of cards that deal with the various hardships of the times is nothing new to Hallmark. The company also produced cards aimed at individuals who struggled through events such as the Great Depression, the military draft, and losing loved ones on September 11, 2001...."

About as Tasteless as Telling Someone with Depression "Snap Out of It!"'s The Cutline reports the inevitable fallout from President Obama's speech to the Congressional Black Caucus last Saturday.

By most accounts, President Obama gave a fiery speech at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation's annual awards dinner in Washington, D.C., on Saturday, telling blacks to "quit crying and complaining" and support him in the fight for jobs, according to the Associated Press. But was the AP transcription of Obama's remarks racist?

That's the subject currently being debated after the issue was raised on Chris Hayes' MSNBC show on Sunday.

On MSNBC, the African-American author Karen Hunter complained the news service transcribed Obama's speech without cleaning it up as other outlets did--specifically including the "dropped g's...."

Monday, September 26, 2011

Now You Can See the Dead Sea Scrolls Online

An AP/Deseret News announces the availability of the Dead Sea Scrolls owned by the Israel Museum's Shrine of the Book. If the text has been translated into English (example: Book of Isaiah), you only need to place the cursor on the verse in Hebrew and click once on the left mouse button. Clicking twice enlarges the text.

A Far Cry from the Lincoln-Douglas Debates

When Abraham Lincoln challenged Stephen Douglas for a U.S. Senate seat from Illinois in 1858, people waited outside of newspaper offices to buy the latest exciting installment. Sadly, this level of interest has not been repeated in recent years.

Star Parker in the Washington Examiner bemoans the lack of substance in contemporary presidential debates.

Technology doesn't take the place of substance. YouTube and real-time polling are not substitutes for thoughtful, provocative questioning.

Can it really be, after all the heat he has taken on Social Security, that Rick Perry was not pushed on how specifically how he would reform it?

Can it be, as expert after expert has laid out the long list of failures of Romneycare in Massachusetts and its unquestionable similarities to Obamacare, that Mitt Romney was not called out on his sidestepping and denials?

Can it be that, on a day where the stock market in our country dropped 3.5 percent and in China by 5 percent, that candidates were not asked what they think is wrong with the global economy?

Can it be that, when many experts agree that government meddling in housing and mortgages was central to the recent financial collapse, there has not been a single question on why Fannie and Freddie are still standing, propped up by government, and untouched?

Why, when everyone knows that Rick Santorum is a social conservative, would the question on "don't ask, don't tell" policy in the military be directed at him? His answer was a surprise to no one. Why wasn't Romney the one questioned on this?

Theory of the Orphan Planet

Mother Nature Network has an intriguing article about David Nesvorny from Colorado’s Southwest Research Institute, who did a mathematical analysis of the formation of our solar system. After running 6,000 computer simulations, he reached the conclusion that a fifth gas giant prevented Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune from destroying one another, then was hurtled into space by Jupiter's gravitational field, joining other free-floating planets in interstellar space.

Hinderaker Fact Checks the "Fact Checker"

John Hinderaker has written a series at the Power Line blog which brings up the point that Glenn Kessler of the Washington Post is not as impartial as he professes to be.

Click to read:

Part 1

Part 2, entitled "Fact vs. Opinion: Does the Washington Post Know the Difference?"

Part 3

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Hell Freezes Over: Saudi Women Granted Limited Voting Rights

The Daily Mail (U.K.) reports that King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz will allow women to vote in local elections, run for municipal offices, and occupy seats in the Shura (advisory council) by the year 2015.

Herman Cain Shocks Rivals in Florida Straw Poll

CNS News has an article about how the former CEO of Godfather's Pizza beat Perry and Romney by a 2-to-1 margin in the Florida straw poll, which is considered a good predictor of Republican nominees for President.

Here are the results: Cain won 37.4 percent of the 2,657 votes cast at the event held in Orlando, Fla., with Perry placing second at 15.4 percent and Romney placing third at 14 percent. Former Sen. Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania finished fourth with 10.9 percent, followed by Rep. Ron Paul of Texas at 10.4 percent, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich of Georgia at 8.4 percent, former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman with 2.3 percent, and Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota with 1.5 percent.

UPDATE: William Kristol at the Weekly Standard interprets this turn of events as a vote of no confidence in the current front-runners Perry and Romney.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Six-Ton Satellite Falls to Earth

An AP/MSNBC article reports that a much-heralded event has come to pass: the UARS (Upper Atmosphere Research Satellite) went down in flames somewhere over the Pacific Ocean. It happened somewhere between 11:23 p.m. Friday and 1:09 a.m. Saturday (EDT). It was launched 20 years ago by space shuttle Discovery.

The Ultimate Put-Down

The Daily Mail (U.K.) describes an incident that took place in England:

A grandmother hit a flasher with her handbag and taunted him with the words: ‘If you haven't got anything worth showing, don't show it at all.’

The 45-year-old was on her way to pick her granddaughter up from school when Ryan Briggs emerged from the bushes on a footpath in Dunstable, Bedfordshire and exposed himself to her.

She told a jury at Luton crown court: ‘I was two or three feet away. I noticed his genitalia. He was facing towards me....

After swearing at him, she swung her handbag, hitting the flasher in the face. She went on to the school where she rang the police.

Describing the flasher she said: ‘He was roughly five feet 7 with brown, balding hair. He was stocky and was wearing jeans. He had a pock-marked face - he must have suffered from spots at some stage.’

She later picked out Briggs as the flasher at a video identification parade, the jury of seven men and five women were told.

Mr Briggs, 34, of Benning Avenue, Dunstable, denied one charge of exposure on January 19 this year, but was convicted by a jury today.

Prosecutor Daniel Siong told the jury that the grandmother was ‘minding her own business’ as she walked along Cemetery Lane in Dunstable to collect her granddaughter....

After the police had been warned, PCSOs were sent to the area the next day and saw Briggs who they thought fitted the description.

He was spoken to and arrested on 24 January, four days later. He told the police it was not him and that he had been at home with his dad.

He will be sentenced on October 18.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Subatomic Particles that Move Faster than the Speed of Light!

CBS News has an astonishing account of an experiment at the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland.

Physicists on the team that measured particles traveling faster than light said Friday they were as surprised as their skeptics about the results, which appear to violate the laws of nature as we know them.

Hundreds of scientists packed an auditorium at one of the world's foremost laboratories on the Swiss-French border to hear how a subatomic particle, the neutrino, was found to have outrun light and confounded the theories of Albert Einstein.

"To our great surprise we found an anomaly," said Antonio Ereditato, who participated in the experiment and speaks on behalf of the team....

UPDATE: An article in USA Today says that Einstein's theory has survived challenges before, and that "betting against Einstein and his theory of relativity is a way to go broke."

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Gore Telethon Brings in 8.6 Million [Correction: 17,000] Viewers

There seems to be a slight discrepancy between the numbers claimed by the "inventor of the Internet" for "24 Hours Of ManBearPig" and another estimate by "Charles the Moderator."

The figures refer to the number of "views" for Gore's special "24 Hours Of ManBearPig" which this column helped celebrate the other day. Gore claims that as many as 8.6 million flocked to his thrilling festival of climate fear; but a nasty cruel man called Charles the Moderator at Watts Up With That? has "done the math" and reckons the figure is probably more like 17,000. And that, he believes, is a generous estimate. (H/T John from CA).

So whom are we to trust? An evil climate denying website run by evil climate deniers? Or a loving family man who has selflessly made it his mission to travel the world acquiring as large a carbon footprint as possible in order to spread the word that we should all drastically reduce our carbon footprints?

Read the rest of the story at The Telegraph (U.K.).

McGinniss Book May Be Literary Hoax

Andrew Breitbart wrote that The Rogue: Searching for the Real Sarah Palin, by Joe McGinniss is so over-the-top and excessive that even the usually anti-Palin liberal media panned it.

"After a week of universally scathing pans from the reflexively anti-Palin establishment media, McGinniss now faces the fight of his literary life: the accusation that he seems to have knowingly submitted a book to his publisher, Crown/Random House, that was filled with unproved 'tawdry gossip' and rumors that lacked 'factual evidence....'”

Über-Leaker Accuses Publisher of Leaking Autobiography

How ironic it is to come across this BBC article describing how Julian Assange of WikiLeaks fame is upset that publisher Canongate has released portions of his memoirs without his permission.

Mr. Assange said in a statement: "The events surrounding its unauthorized publication by Canongate are not about freedom of information.

"They are about old-fashioned opportunism and duplicity - screwing people over to make a buck...."

Latest Imagery of North Korean Concentration Camps

Mark Levin at Doug Ross @ Journal has identified the "statist's Utopia." He quotes the following excerpt from an article in the Daily Mail (U.K.), which has many more images than the one presented here:

The North Korean government may deny their existence, but photos taken from space have revealed in unprecedented detail the concentration camps that are used imprison more than 200,000 citizens.

Men, women and children are forced to work seven days a week as slaves and eat 'rats, frogs, snakes, insects' and even feces to battle starvation in the camps.

Previously there have been blurred images taken by satellite but new detailed pictures from South Korea's Unification Ministry allow a closer look at the sites - and also prove they have grown...

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Funny Pictures from Facebook

I swear, both of these are keepers! (click to enlarge)

Celebrity Turns Down Offer to Be a Candidate

No, this is not about former President Bill Clinton deciding not to compete in "Dancing with the Stars." Rather, FOX News confirms that former talk show host Michael Reagan, contrary to rumor, does NOT intend to challenge Sen. Dianne Feinstein.

Reagan added that he doesn't know how that news got reported by The San Francisco Chronicle, which is in Feinstein's hometown.

"I never even spoke to anyone at the Chronicle and I am not running for Senate in California," he said.

Airlines' New Business Model: Make Profits by Charging Fees

As though it weren't bad enough that TSA agents get paid for feeling your body, now the airlines have gone over-the-top in inventing new fees, according to a USA today article.

For an overweight checked bag weighing 71-100 pounds, Continental Airlines is charging $400 on most international flights, and American Airlines is charging $450 on its Asian flights. United Airlines charges $400 for checking bags weighing 71-99.9 pounds on flights to another continent.

Those are the most expensive fees that airlines charge fliers, a new USA TODAY survey of what 13 U.S. carriers charge for services available to coach passengers has found. The survey also found... The airlines claim that "fees keep airfares low, help cover costs and let fliers choose the services they want." Another article in the same source says that U.S. airlines raked in a record $1.38 billion in the first quarter of this year just to check baggage and change reservations.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Port-a-Potty Explosion Proves Fatal to Australian Airman

This is a follow-up to a story we first reported on 27 July. Sgt. Michael “Mick” Dunn, a 27-year veteran of the Royal Australian Air Force, died in an Australian hospital on Tuesday from injuries sustained in a portable toilet explosion, according to an article in the Stars and Stripes newspaper.

“Sergeant Dunn was highly respected and well-liked by his colleagues,” Chief of Air Force Air Marshal Geoff Brown said in the [news] release. “Those who visited Mick since the accident were all affected by the courage and determination that he showed during his treatment and are extremely saddened by his passing. Our thoughts are with the family, friends and colleagues of Sergeant Dunn.”

The incident occurred at Rockhampton Airport, some 300 miles north of the Queensland state capital of Brisbane. Talisman Sabre [an international military/humanitarian exercise] wrapped up at the end of July....

Farmers Jittery as World's Deadliest Volcano Rumbles

An AP/Yahoo article describes how increased activity at Mt. Tambora in Indonesia has caused farmers to start evacuating the area. This was the site of an eruption several times as powerful as the better-known eruption of Krakatoa. It wiped out 90,000 people and caused "the year without a summer" in the United States and Europe. Volcanologists say that it will take more than two centuries for the mountain to build up enough pressure to match the 1815 eruption, but that is small comfort to the people who live there and feel the earthquakes.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Tom Wilson, Sr., Creator of "Ziggy," Dies at 80

Cartoonist Tom Wilson, Sr., who created the lovable loser Ziggy in 1969, has died of pneumonia in Cincinnati, Ohio, according to an Associated Press article in FOX News.

His son, Tom Wilson, Jr., who took over the comic in 1987, remarked, "He was a passionate and charismatic man, it came out in everything he did. "He loved ideas and he loved creating — that was really what drove him. He wasn't a loser in that sense because his passion just came out and inspired everyone around him."

What Fuels a Militant Atheist? [Rhetorical Question]

Dave Blount at Right Wing News provides a possible answer in "Atheist Calls for Eradication of Christianity":

Al Stefanelli, Georgia State Director of American Atheists, Inc. — the same outfit that has been raising a stink about a cross at Ground Zero — helpfully explains why it’s okay for militantly devout atheists to be such bigots. When they use our leftist courts to suppress Christianity, they are only being intolerant of intolerance:

"Intolerance toward beliefs and doctrines that serve only to promote hatred, bigotry and discrimination should be lauded, as should extremist points of view toward the eradication of these beliefs and doctrines....

Further down in his screed SATANELLI equates Christians with Muslims:

"The fact is that fundamentalist Christians and radical Muslims are not interested in coexisting or getting along. They have no desire for peace. They do not want to sit down with us in diplomatic efforts to iron out our differences and come to an agreement on developing an integrated society.

"They want us to die.

"Their interpretation of the Bible and Koran are such that there is no other course of action but to kill the infidel, and if anyone believes otherwise they are only fooling themselves...."

Some food for thought at the end of Dave's article: As difficult as it is to take idiots like this seriously, we need to try. Militantly atheistic regimes managed to eradicate well over 100,000,000 of their own subjects in the course of the 20th Century.

Yarr! It's That Time Again!!!

It's the 19th of September, International Talk Like a Pirate Day.

Basic pirate words & phrases:

Ahoy! - “Hello!”
Arrr! – This one is often confused with arrrgh, which is of course the sound you make when you sit on a belaying pin. “Arrr!” can mean, variously, “yes,” “I agree,” “I’m happy,” “I’m enjoying this beer,” “My team is going to win it all,” “I saw that television show, it sucked!” and “That was a clever remark you or I just made.” And those are just a few of the myriad possibilities of Arrr!
Avast! - Stop and give attention. It can be used in a sense of surprise, “Whoa! Get a load of that!” which today makes it more of a “Check it out” or “No way!” or “Get off!”
Aye! - “Why yes, I agree most heartily with everything you just said or did.”
Aye aye! - “I’ll get right on that sir, as soon as my break is over.”
Beauty – The best possible pirate address for a woman. Always preceded by “me,” as in, “C’mere, me beauty,” or even, “me buxom beauty,” to one particularly well endowed. You’ll be surprised how effective this is.
Bilge rat – The bilge is the lowest level of the ship. It’s loaded with ballast and slimy, reeking water. A bilge rat, then, is a rat that lives in the worst place on the ship.
Grog – An alcoholic drink, usually rum diluted with water, but in this context you could use it to refer to any alcoholic beverage other than beer, and we aren’t prepared to be picky about that, either. Call your beer grog if you want. We won’t stop you! Water aboard ship was stored for long periods in slimy wooden barrels, so you can see why rum was added to each sailor’s water ration – to kill the rancid taste.
Lubber – (or land lubber) This is the seaman’s version of land lover, mangled by typical pirate disregard for elocution. A lubber is someone who does not go to sea, who stays on the land.

UPDATE: After President Obama launched another tax-the-rich scheme today, a Republican congressman had some choice words for an article in

Thanks to a couple of obscure fellows named Mark and John who decided using pirate lingo made playing racquetball more fun — and even more thanks to humor columnist Dave Barry who made their antics national news, Sept. 19 (that’s today!) has been “International Talk Like a Pirate Day” since 2002.

No doubt Dave Barry himself would be pleased Barry Obama decided to play along and announce a spectacular tax plan on Sept. 19, of all dates. But so far, the only person who seems to have caught the irony is Republican Rep. Dennis Ross of Florida who today suggested maybe the president doesn’t quite understand the holiday, even though it looks as though he’s captured the spirit of it.

“Perhaps the Pres misunderstood,” Ross tweeted. “It is TALK like a pirate day…not ACT like one. Watch ye purses & bury yr loot, the taxman cometh.” Then, just to be sure followers knew he meant it good-naturedly, he added the hashtag #humor....

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Wisdom of Crowds Illustrated - With an Online Game

An MSNBC article provides a fascinating account of how a collaborative online game, Foldit, has in less than 10 days helped scientists to solve a puzzle that had stumped them for years.

The riddle centered around identifying the structure of a protein-cutting enzyme from a virus found in rhesus monkeys that is similar to AIDS. It is believed that pursuing this line of research could lead to medications that can block viruses and prevent them from harming the patient.

"Foldit shows that a game can turn novices into domain experts capable of producing first-class scientific discoveries," Zoran Popovic, director of University of Washington's Center for Game Science, said in today's news release. "We are currently applying the same approach to change the way math and science are taught in school...."

The Lebanon Effect Redux

This isn't rocket science. On 25 June 2008, I wrote the following comment on an article about Hauser's Law:

"Thank you for this most informative article about "Hauser's Law." Money is like a great river that flows around the world at not less than one revolution per day, sometimes faster, nourishing whatever it touches. But certain policies can affect that flow. If you have a command economy like North Korea, the channel will flow around your entire country, leaving it high and dry. If war breaks out (as during the civil war in Lebanon), money can flee at an awesome rate, and the country that used to be the 'Switzerland of the Middle East' suddenly became poor and struggling. If taxes are too high, tax evasion becomes an art form (as in Italy), and much of that river of money plunges into underground channels. The underground economy of this country may already be larger than the total GDP of entire nations, and it will be expected to grow if the Democrats have their way and raise our taxes again. Rich Democrats who push for higher taxes don't expect it to apply to them - that's why they have lawyers, legislators, and accountants on their payroll to create and exploit loopholes."

History is about to repeat itself, as President Obama makes plans to "raise taxes on the rich."

Problem Bank List reports that many wealthy Europeans are in panic mode and have transferred $1.2 TRILLION dollars into the U.S. banking system. Uncertainty about the future of the euro has made them very nervous.

Darwin Central declares that this proposed legislation may as well be named the "Moving Capital to Singapore Act."

The Things We Did Right, After 9/11

There is no lack of commentary bemoaning all the wrong turns we took after the terrorist attacks of 11 September 2001, and few that dwell on the positives. Erika Johnsen at has an article, "Afterburner: What We Did Right After 9/11," that brings up analyses by Bill Whittle and Ed Morrissey. Here's how she sums up Bill Whittle:

-The problem with waiting for a smoking gun is that people have already died

-Every major intelligence agency thought Saddam Hussein had WMD - yes, people died, but Bush did not lie

-Enhanced interrogation techniques' were never used to determine guilt or innocence; they were used to gain information from people who proudly and willfully admitted to having hurt Americans

-Because of our hardworking military and intelligence units, we have foiled at least eleven major terror attacks since 9/11

As Mr. Whittle says, Osama bin Laden was killed, not as the magnificent caliph living in the glorious palace he envisioned, but as a hunted coward, and he probably had time to realize that Americans are made of a far different stuff than what he had thought.

The Zombie Curse: Ex-President Carter Praises Gov. Romney

A Politico column by Alexander Burns delivers the bad news:

From the department of unhelpful praise, former President Jimmy Carter tells Rachel Maddow he's a-ok with the idea of Mitt Romney as the GOP presidential nominee.

"I'm not taking a position, but I would be very pleased to see him win the Republican nomination," Carter told the MSNBC host, according to advance interview excerpts.

Carter also said he was grateful to another Republican candidate, Michele Bachmann, for her volunteer work on his own presidential campaign.

"I appreciate that she helped me out," he said.

Carter's kind words for the GOP only go so far, and the Georgia Democrat also said he doesn't think "anybody's going to beat Obama."

But this isn't the first time Carter has given generous quotes about one of Obama's challengers. Back in May, he said in a CNN interview that Jon Huntsman was "very attractive to me personally" as a White House contender.

Colorado Embarrassed by Pair Re-Enacting "Weekend at Bernie's"

My Way News recounts the strange adventures of Robert Young, 43, and Mark Rubinson, 25, of Denver, who found their friend Jeffrey Jarrett dead at his home and decided to load his lifeless body into Robinson's SUV. They went to a nightclub and a restaurant with Jarrett in the vehicle, returned to his house and put him in bed. They used Jarrett's bank card "without his permission" to buy drinks, gasoline, food, and to withdraw $400 in cash from an ATM at Shotgun Willie's strip club.

"As the men left the Shotgun Willie's parking lot, one told the valet and a police officer standing nearby that 'they were driving around with a dead guy and they didn't know what to do with it and they were just going to go home really fast,' general manager Matthew Dunafon said.

"Police went to Jarrett's home and found the body.

"Police say Young told them Jarrett was obviously dead while they were at the first stop of the night...."

The pair has been charged with abusing a corpse, identity theft and criminal impersonation. Young posted a $2,500 bond and Rubinson a $3,500 bond.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Gaddafi Loyalists Make a Stand in Sirte

FOX News reports that rebel forces are encountering stiff resistance from die-hard Gaddafi supporters in his hometown, Sirte. Block-by-block fighting has proceeded slowly because of a constant barrage of gunfire, rockets, and mortars. Civilians who have been able to flee from the city report there is no electricity, and that supplies of food and medicine are running low. The fact that the rebels suffered a humiliating defeat Friday when Gaddafi loyalists foiled their effort to take Bani Walid, 150 miles (250 kilometers) east of Sirte adds a note of urgency to this battle.

What Not to Feed Your Dog or Cat has an informative article on foods that are harmful to dogs and cats. I knew that a dog's digestive system cannot break down the theobromine in chocolate, but wasn't aware that common foods such as onions or avocados should not be given to your household pet.

Evidence that Gulf War Syndrome Affects the Brain

The Raw Story has an article that supports the claims of Desert Storm veterans.

For the last twenty years, veterans of the Persian Gulf War of 1991 have been complaining of a range of ailments, including pain, fatigue, and problems with memory and concentration. And for just as long, the causes have remained uncertain and there has been a tendency by the military to attribute the complaints to post-traumatic stress disorder.

Now a long-term study at the University of Texas in Dallas has used a new technique to measure blood flow in the brains of sufferers and has detected "marked abnormalities" in brain function that can probably be attributed to low levels of exposure to sarin nerve gas. This abnormal blood flow has persisted or even worsened over the eleven years of the study.

"The findings mark a significant advancement in our understanding of the syndrome, which was for years written off by the Defense Department and the Department of Veterans Affairs as a form of combat stress rather than an objectively diagnosable injury," reports the Dallas Observer....

Friday, September 16, 2011

Plane Crashes at Air Show in Reno, NV

A World War II-vintage P-51 Mustang fighter plane participating in a race went out of control and crashed at a Reno air show, killing at least 3 people, injuring 56 others (15 critically), and horrifying thousands of spectators in the audience. News coverage is provided by:

FOX News

ABC News

Reno Gazette-Journal

UPDATE1: CNN reports that the death toll has risen to nine, and the pilot, 74-year-old Jimmy Leeward, like any good aviator, struggled mightily to avoid the bleachers, but couldn't pull up enough to avoid crashing into the ground.

UPDATE2: The Reno Gazette-Journal has an update: One more person has died (raising the death toll to 10), and some of the names of the fatalities have been released. The Daily Mail (U.K.) adds that modifications to the airplane increased speed but not safety, and the absence of the pilot's head in frames taken immediately before impact suggests that Jimmy Leeward may have blacked out.

Obama's "Attack Watch" Web Site Backfires

FOX News reports:

Attack Watch, website started by President Obama's campaign organization, was intended to be a repository for supporters to report "attacks" on Obama's record and get the facts. But its rollout has been met with scathing mockery by conservatives, who call it a second-rate version of previous Big Brother sites created by Team Obama.

The onslaught of hilarity was fed first by a brutal parody created by an outfit called Misfit Politics. The mock ad repeats the name "Attack Watch" in a voice mimicking the Budweiser "Whassup" ad of Super Bowl yore and then goes on to offer examples of the types of misinformation readers can report....

General Says He Was Pressured by White House on Testimony

As though the Obama administration didn't have enough problems with scandals, here's another one, courtesy of FOX News:

Gen. William Shelton, head of the Air Force Space Command, told House members in a classified briefing earlier this month that he was pressured to change prepared congressional testimony in a way that would favor a large company funded by Philip Falcone, a major Democratic donor, congressional sources told Fox News.
Republicans have raised questions about whether the project pursued by the company, LightSquared, is being unduly expedited by the Obama administration, which has pushed for national wireless network upgrades.

The Virginia-based satellite and broadband communications company has plans to build a nationwide, next-generation, 4G phone network that many, including Shelton, think would seriously hinder the effectiveness of high-precision GPS receiver systems, a product used most commonly by the United States military....

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Best. Picture. Ever. (of Obama's Speech to a Joint Session of Congress)

Explanation from Brussels Journal: "Vice President Joe Biden appears to temporarily lose his mind during President Obama's jobs speech on 9-8-11. This is not an altered photo, but a well-timed freeze-frame from a video recording made by Russ Allison Loar."

Confederate Flying Machine Design to Be Auctioned

We all grew up reading that the only example of air warfare during the American Civil War was hot-air balloons performing aerial reconnaissance. But an Innovation News Daily article chronicles the efforts of R. Finley Hunt, a dentist turned aircraft designer, who drew sketches of a steam-powered bomber. Engineers of his day said his rotary steam engine could not generate enough power to get his flying machine off the ground. Despite the endorsement of Confederate president Jefferson Davis, Hunt was not able to raise enough money to build and fly his aircraft.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Mr. Turner Beats the Odds in Congressional Election

Looks like the Obama administration's anti-Israel and anti-Jewish biases (along with the Weiner scandal) has consequences in a heavily Democratic district with a high percentage of Jews. The Daily Caller describes the triumph of Bob Turner in yesterday's special election.

Congressional Republicans are trumpeting Republican Bob Turner’s stunning victory in Tuesday’s special election in New York’s 9th Congressional District as a referendum on the President Barack Obama’s agenda and, specifically, his policies on Israel.

National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Pete Sessions called Turner’s victory a “clear rebuke of President Obama’s policies” and said that it “delivers a blow to Democrats’ goal of making Nancy Pelosi the Speaker again....”

Meanwhile, in Nevada's 2nd congressional district, Republican Mark Amodei defeated Democrat Kate Marshall, according to CNN.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Gulf Oil Spill Coming Back to Haunt BP

Who would have guessed that the U.S. branch of al-Jazeera would be among the first to report that oil slicks had been spotted near the site of the most devastating environmental disaster in the Gulf of Mexico?

"Fifteen months after BP's crippled Macondo Well in the Gulf of Mexico caused one of the worst environmental disasters in US history, oil and oil sheen covering several square kilometers of water are surfacing not far from BP's well.

"Al Jazeera flew to the area on Sunday, September 11, and spotted a swath of silvery oil sheen, approximately 7 km long and 10 to 50 meters wide, at a location roughly 19 km northeast of the now-capped Macondo 252 well...."

CBS News has turned out more evidence of evasiveness on the part of BP officials: they failed to tell government investigators that the knew of flammable gas that complicated the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

CBS Delivers Some Good News, for a Change

We are pleased to report that bystanders in Ogden, Utah were able to save the life of a motorcycle rider trapped under a flaming BMW by lifting the vehicle just long enough for him to be pulled out to safety. CBS News has the details and a video.

Iran Says: You Can Bail Out Those Two Prisoners - for $1 Million!

CNN reports that the two American hikers, Josh Fattal and Shane Bauer, can be released from prison if their families raise $500,000 for each of them. These two men have been imprisoned for more than two years, while their friend, Sarah Shourd, was allowed to return to the United States for "medical reasons." In a recent interview, President Ahmadinejad suggested that the American government should release Iranians held in U.S. jails.

Now That Perry's in the Lead, Everyone Else Is Gunning for Him

It comes as no surprise that Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who is currently the leading Republican presidential candidate, was roundly criticized by Gov. Mitt Romney and Rep. Michele Bachmann in last night's CNN/Tea Party debate in Tampa, FL. Romney said that Gov. Perry had some built-in advantages that spelled prosperity for Texas: no income tax, plenty of oil, and a Republican-dominated legislature. "If you're dealt four aces, that doesn't necessarily make you a great poker player." Ms. Bachmann pushed aggressively on Perry's controversial human papillomavirus vaccination order and the Texas DREAM Act of 2001. Congressman Ron Paul got some boos from the audience for his arguments in favor of slashing military spending.

For more details, see articles in:

Daily Mail (U.K.)

FOX News

Human Events

Monday, September 12, 2011

He Could Have Simply Asked for "10 Sliders to Go"

The New York Post has run another lawsuits-gone-wild story:

A devoted, 290-pound White Castle fan is steaming mad at the fast-food chain, which he says repeatedly broke promises to make the booths in his local eatery bigger.

All stockbroker Martin Kessman wants is a place at the table. But when the 64-year-old walked into the White Castle in Nanuet back in April 2009 for his usual No. 2 combo meal, he got an unpleasant surprise.

“They’re stationary booths,” he told The Post. “I’m not humongous, [but] I’m a big guy. I could not wedge myself in....”

The Rockland County man says the chain’s uncomfortable booths violate the civil rights of fat people.

The Americans with Disabilities Act is “applicable, not only to me, but to pregnant women and to handicapped people,” he said.

“I just want to sit down like a normal person,” said Kessman, who is suing for bigger chairs and unspecified damages.

Kessman could have approached a store manager and asked for a regular chair, said White Castle spokeswoman Jamie Richardson, who had no timetable for the expected renovation of the Nanuet store.

MUST READ:: FBI Releases Image of Man Wanted For 911 Threats (SHARE WIDELY):

This is believed to be one of the men counter terrorism chiefs say are plotting a terrorist attack in America on the 10th anniversary of the 9/11.

An image of American-born 22-year-old Jude Kenan Mohammad has been posted on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted list.

He has been linked to what officials have called a credible but unconfirmed al-Qaeda threat to set off a car bomb on bridges or tunnels in New York City or Washington.

Mohammad is among three al-Qaeda leaders that investigators believe pose a particular threat because they have lived in the U.S.

Should that mission prove impossible, the attackers have been told to simply cause as much destruction as they can.

Mohammad, who was born in Florida, dropped out of North Carolina’s Fuquay-Varina High School in 2006 and left the U.S. two years later to visit Pakistan, his father’s homeland.

A federal grand jury in North Carolina indicted him and seven other men in 2009 on charges that they conspired to carry out terrorist activities around the world. Two of the men have pleaded guilty, and the trial of four others is set for September 19 in New Bern.

Federal authorities have never arrested Mohammad in the case, saying that they believe he has been in Pakistan since the indictment was issued.

Date(s) of Birth Used: November 4, 1988
Place of Birth: Florida
Height: 5'6" (172.5 cm)
Weight: 160 pounds (72.5 kg)
NCIC: W256934876
Occupation: Unknown
Hair: Brown
Eyes: Dark
Complexion: Medium
Sex: Male
Nationality: American
Scars and Marks: None known
Remarks: Mohammad speaks English and very limited Pashtun. Mohammad is believed to be in Pakistan. Should be considered armed and dangerous.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

New York Times Falls into Habit of Blaming the Victim

Leo Rennert at American Thinker brings up the unsurprising revelation that the New York Times has blamed Israel for the mob in Egypt that attacked the Israeli embassy and drove the ambassador, his family, and staff out of the country. Their Jerusalem bureau chief, Ethan Bronner, placed himself squarely on the side of the minority in Israel calling for appeasement of its demonstrably implacable enemies.

Another chapter in the decline and fall of the Newspaper of Record: On the same day America was honoring the 10th anniversary of the September 11th terrorist attacks, NewsBusters reported the sickeningly hateful ad hominem attacks of columnist Paul Krugman, who wrote, "Fake heroes like Bernie Kerik, Rudy Giuliani, and, yes, George W. Bush raced to cash in on the horror. And then the attack was used to justify an unrelated war the neocons wanted to fight, for all the wrong reasons...." He conveniently ignored the fact that these atrocities were interpreted by millions, including President Bush and majorities in both houses of Congress, as ACTS OF WAR!

Ten Years Later, and We Will Not Forget!

FOX News and other major news networks are providing real-time coverage of the dedication ceremony for the September 11 memorial at the site of the former World Trade center, attended by President Obama, former President George W. Bush, and thousands of family members of the victims who perished at Ground Zero. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg made the controversial decision not to invite first responders to this ceremony, so they had a separate ceremony prior to this event. Family members of those who lost their lives 10 years ago on this fateful day read the names of the victims, and people started rubbing names off the memorial wall.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Mystery of the Missing Vans

Digital Journal has information that should heighten vigilance, especially in 2 major American cities. Three rental trucks are reported missing in New York/Jersey City, and 2 more in Washington, DC.

...The theft of the U-Haul was planned with cut lines to phones and surveillance cameras.

This information comes in just days after the White House announced that there is a credible threat from terrorists set for the anniversary of September 11, 2001.

The three stolen vans in NYC have been added to the NYPD database because of the threat, still unconfirmed but credible. There are also two missing U-Haul vans in the Washington D.C. area.

It is thought that two of three suspects have traveled to the United States in the last week. These subjects speak English and have common names.

Police in New York City are on 12-hour shifts and extra personnel have been called in to New York and Washington.

UPDATE1: Major New York & Washington papers have not paid attention to this development, but are emphasizing that terror threats will not stop 9/11 events scheduled for tomorrow.

UPDATE2: It's almost midnight, EDT, and FOX31 News in Denver (KDVR-TV) says that no truck bombs have been found.

Union Mob Keeps Police at Bay

The Columbian ran the following News Release from: Cowlitz Co. Sheriff's Office


Posted: September 9th, 2011 6:01 PM

Kelso, WA - With officers far outnumbered by protesters, Sheriff's deputies, police officers and Washington State Patrol troopers had to back off to a defensive position during Wednesday's ILWU rally due to threats to their safety.

"Our teams of 4 or 5 officers were confronted by baseball bat and axe handle wielding protesters." Said Cowlitz County Sheriff Mark Nelson. "They had their protest signs attached to bats and axe handles. When we attempted to make simple, misdemeanor arrests for trespassing, the officers were rushed by the crowd. Officers were literally holding people back to protect other officers attempting to make lawful arrests." Nelson said. "This is a game changer. We have actively worked with all parties in this situation trying to keep the peace. This is blatant disrespect of the process, the law, and we who are sworn to enforce it." Nelson said.

Due to being seriously outnumbered by violent protesters, additional arrests were not made at that time. However, "This investigation is far from over." Nelson said. "I anticipate that as we review the evidence we have collected, we will be making many more arrests."

Also continuing is the investigation in to the Thursday morning assault and carjacking that took place on the EGT plant site after security was overrun by a mob of ILWU supporters. At around 4:30 a.m., hundreds of supporters tore down fences, smashed windows, cut air hoses to a grain train, and opened the rail cars, spilling grain all over the ground. Several pieces of evidence, including bolt cutters, pipes, ILWU signs and fliers were left lying around the facility.

Also of great concern was the perception of safety by the security personnel on scene. After seeing all the cars and people massing, then pouring through their gates, smashing out the guard shack window with a baseball bat, and causing damage, the officers had no way out. They were blocked from leaving down E. Mill Road, and there was no other open access out of the facility. At some point they felt that their personal safety was at too great a risk, and they ran for a vehicle and headed towards a back gate. They reported that a group tried to block them in, but the lights of approaching law enforcement vehicles stopped the group and the officers were able to flee.

One of the most frightening parts of the incident was when several saboteurs, blocked a Columbia Security officer, (a 48 year old Longview man)dragged him out of his security patrol vehicle, took the vehicle and after recklessly driving it around the EGT facility, crashed it into an embankment. "This is no different than if it had happened on the street, or in the parking lot of any local business." Sheriff Nelson said. "It was a felonious act."

Sheriff Nelson urges anyone with information on this crime, or any portion of it, to contact the Sheriff's Office at 360-577-3092. Anonymous tips can be left on Crime Stoppers, 360-577-1206.

Contact Info: Deputy Rob Stumph, 360-577-3092

(Replies to this message DO go to the originating party. To add or delete addresses for these emails, send info to News Release from: Cowlitz Co. Sheriff's Office SHERIFF GIVES MORE INFO ON PROTEST INCIDENT-CAR JACKING! Posted: September 9th, 2011 6:01 PM Kelso, WA - With officers far outnumbered by protesters, Sheriff's deputies, police officers and Washington State Patrol troopers had to back off to a defensive position during Wednesday's ILWU rally due to threats to their safety. "Our teams of 4 or 5 officers were confronted by baseball bat and axe handle wielding protesters." Said Cowlitz County Sheriff Mark Nelson. "They had their protest signs attached to bats and axe handles. When we attempted to make simple, misdemeanor arrests for trespassing, the officers were rushed by the crowd. Officers were literally holding people back to protect other officers attempting to make lawful arrests." Nelson said. "This is a game changer. We have actively worked with all parties in this situation trying to keep the peace. This is blatant disrespect of the process, the law, and we who are sworn to enforce it." Nelson said. Due to being seriously outnumbered by violent protesters, additional arrests were not made at that time. However, "This investigation is far from over." Nelson said. "I anticipate that as we review the evidence we have collected, we will be making many more arrests." Also continuing is the investigation in to the Thursday morning assault and carjacking that took place on the EGT plant site after security was overrun by a mob of ILWU supporters. At around 4:30 a.m., hundreds of supporters tore down fences, smashed windows, cut air hoses to a grain train, and opened the rail cars, spilling grain all over the ground. Several pieces of evidence, including bolt cutters, pipes, ILWU signs and fliers were left lying around the facility. Also of great concern was the perception of safety by the security personnel on scene. After seeing all the cars and people massing, then pouring through their gates, smashing out the guard shack window with a baseball bat, and causing damage, the officers had no way out. They were blocked from leaving down E. Mill Road, and there was no other open access out of the facility. At some point they felt that their personal safety was at too great a risk, and they ran for a vehicle and headed towards a back gate. They reported that a group tried to block them in, but the lights of approaching law enforcement vehicles stopped the group and the officers were able to flee. One of the most frightening parts of the incident was when several saboteurs, blocked a Columbia Security officer, (a 48 year old Longview man)dragged him out of his security patrol vehicle, took the vehicle and after recklessly driving it around the EGT facility, crashed it into an embankment. "This is no different than if it had happened on the street, or in the parking lot of any local business." Sheriff Nelson said. "It was a felonious act." Sheriff Nelson urges anyone with information on this crime, or any portion of it, to contact the Sheriff's Office at 360-577-3092. Anonymous tips can be left on Crime Stoppers, 360-577-1206. Contact Info: Deputy Rob Stumph, 360-577-3092 (Replies to this message DO go to the originating party. To add or delete addresses for these emails, send info to

Doug Ross @ Journal updates the preceding report.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Remember the Typewriter? has a fascinating slideshow about 10 of the vintage typewriters from the Carl P. Dietz collection, owned by the Milwaukee Public Museum.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Federal Authorities Bracing for Terrorist Threat on 10th Anniversary of 9/11

FOX News describes how the Department of Homeland Security confirmed that it had information about a "specific, credible but unconfirmed threat" of a possible terrorist attack on or about September 11th. This seems in line with captured records that mention that Osama bin Laden had been thinking about planning such an incident shortly before his death. Believing it is better to err on the side of caution, security has been tightened in the cities of New York and Washington.

President Obama Addresses Problem of Mass Unemployment Before a Joint Session of Congress

President Barack Obama addressed a joint session of Congress and a larger audience on national TV with what sounded like one of his better campaign speeches, and even threw in proposals calculated to gain bipartisan support. A transcript of his speech can be found here. It did not take long for Republicans to come up with objections and rebuttals.

National Review ran the following statement by Rep. and presidential candidate Michele Bachmann:

Unfortunately, it seems, every time the President speaks, his policies have cost the American people jobs and future prosperity.

Tonight the President under the veil of one of the most sacred deliberative forums, a joint session of Congress, delivered another political speech where he doubled down on more of the same policies that are killing the economy.

Mr. President, what among your proposals was new? What here hasn’t already been tried and failed before?

While the President’s speech comes on the heels of a trillion dollars of failed stimulus, bailouts, and temporary gimmicks aimed at creating jobs, the President continued to cling to the idea that government is the solution to creating jobs.

My conservative colleagues and I have been fighting over the last two and half years for pro growth policies.

I stand here tonight to say to the President, not only should Congress not pass your plan, I say, “stop; your last plan hasn’t worked, it’s hurting the American economy.” Instead of temporary fixes, do what has proved to work in the past, permanent pro growth policies that are driven by the free market...."

Further down in her statement she lists 9 proposals for jump-starting the economy:

1) Repatriate American business dollars earned from overseas,
2) Massively cut spending and the size of government,
3) Repeal Obamacare, which is the government takeover of America’s healthcare system,
4) Cut taxes, including corporate taxes,
5) Repeal Dodd-Frank,
6) Repeal job killing regulations,
7) Increase exports by finalizing free trade agreements,
8) Spur new investment in America, inspire innovation,
9) Provide job creating energy solutions, including decreased regulations on developing new energy supplies from our abundant domestic energy resources.

The way forward needs to be based on permanent solutions grounded in the private sector. That is how we will once again restore economic prosperity to our country.

God Bless the United States of America.

UPDATE1: Glenn Beck's The Blaze has just run a FOX News video that is either a Freudian slip or a frank admission by presidential press secretary Jay Carney that Obama wants to put "party ahead of country."

UPDATE2: At least Obama's Teleprompter had the sense to stop just a few minutes before a much-anticipated football game between the Green Bay Packers and New Orleans Saints (the Packers won, 42-34).

If You Don't Have Time to Watch President Obama's Speech Tonight...

...the following Ramirez cartoon will sum it up for you.

"In everyday life, when you don't have something to say, you avoid the stage. In our nation's capital, by contrast, the world operates like the one Alice found behind the Looking Glass. That's a world where you have to run as hard as you can just to stay still. Which helps explain why President Obama will this week be addressing a joint session of Congress that doesn't really want to hear from him about a jobs plan that he doesn't really have." --columnist William McGurn

How Not to Win Friends and Influence People

Even a liberal-friendly site such as Politico reports that Democratic members of Congress are tiring of Obama playing the blame game with them.

“It’s a point of great contention with the Democrats in Congress that feel like we’re doing an awful lot to support his agenda,” Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) told POLITICO on Wednesday. “And it’s very discouraging, disheartening and it’s really not fair. He may just want to keep that up, but it doesn’t help his relations with the Democratic members of Congress at all....”

It’s not hard to understand why Obama is attacking Congress as a whole. A recent Gallup Poll found the institution’s approval rating at just 13 percent, while disapproval of Congress stood at an all-time high of 84 percent. This summer’s bitter fight over raising the debt ceiling that nearly caused default — after a battle that nearly shut down the government in April — lowered the public’s opinion of Washington and led to the historic S&P downgrade.

And until Obama has a clear GOP contender in his reelection race, making Congress his opponent allows the president to appear as if he’s not being overtly partisan and gives him the chance to pass the blame to the disliked body.

“I just don’t think it will [work],” said Texas Sen. John Cornyn, chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee. “I think the president owns the economy, and I think he owns the political problems associated with it....”

Governors Romney and Perry Clash at Reagan Library

FOX News reports that the two leading contenders at this time for the Republican presidential nomination, Gov. Rick Perry and former Gov. Mitt Romney, livened up the debate by exchanging zingers about their success at promoting job creation in their respective states. Calling Social Security a "Ponzi scheme" was probably Perry's most provocative statement. Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich's most memorable line was, "I'm frankly not interested in your efforts to get Republicans fighting each other." All of the candidates agreed that Obamacare had to go.

The Daily Mail (U.K.) also covered the debate, declaring that Gov. Perry gave a good account of himself, while Rep. Michele Bachmann "came up short."

In contrast, Jennifer Rubin at the Washington Post was not impressed by Perry's performance in last night's debate, and said that Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum and Michele Bachmann did well.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Caught With Their Pants Down

Mike McDaniel in Pajamas Media describes how the Environmental Protection Agency has been an enabler of environmental lawsuits over the years, even going so far as to pay an environmental group money to write a guide on how to sue the EPA.

USA Today cites the leftist magazine Mother Jones News, which claims to have exclusive audio from the Koch brothers' secret seminar held this June near Vail, CO. Their sources say that the Koch Brothers were instrumental in bankrolling grassroots movements such as the Tea Party.

Major news sources such as NBC and MSNBC have been ignoring the bankruptcy of failed solar company Solyndra, by NewsBusters is awake and alert. This cover-up of an embarrassing reverse for alternative power may be Obama's way of paying back billionaire George Kaiser, who was a major investor in Solyndra and a generous contributor to Obama and the Democratic Party in 2008.

"The Enemy of My Enemy Is My Friend"

Washington Times reports that mockumentary film-maker Michael Moore is so blinded by hatred of the United States that he has applied for permission to travel to Iran to attend Cinema Verite, an Iranian international festival for documentary films.

In a big-headlined story in the Iranian media, Mr. Moore is quoted as saying he wants to visit Iran to do research about the country. In addition, he is an opponent of U.S. government policies, and he wants to show his objection by traveling to Iran....

Mr. Moore should know - he should understand - that Iranian citizens have no rights. Women are subjected to flogging for failing to wear the Islamic hijab; men are beaten for drinking, even in the privacy of their home. People suffer amputation for stealing; they are stoned for adultery; and rape, torture and hanging are common for speaking out against the clerics. Thousands of Iranian girls, boys, poets, writers, activists, teachers, artists and others from every walk of life remain in Iranian prisons without the right to defend themselves. Iranian officials are routinely sanctioned for violating human rights in Iran.

The very cinema festival that Mr. Moore wants to endorse is subjected to extreme censorship by the Guidance Ministry, which decides which films will be shown and which will be banned. Many movies don’t make it to the screen because they promote free thinking or give a hint of what freedom really means. Many directors and actors end up in prison because they try to defend the rights of the people....

Gunman on Rampage Kills 4, Self, in Carson City, NV

FOX News reports that a gunman identified as Eduardo Sencion, of Carson City, Nev. burst into an IHOP restaurant, killing 3 members of the Nevada Air National Guard and one civilian with an AK-47. We will not hear why he did it from his own lips, as he turned the rifle on himself.

A witness, Ralph Swagler, was armed but couldn't reach his weapon in time to stop Sencion before he went into the restaurant. When he came out into the parking lot, he shot into several businesses before ending his own life.

Marine Corporal Awarded Medal of Honor

Dakota Meyer, who was a corporal in the Marine Corps at the time, will be awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor for exceptional bravery and resourcefulness in Afghanistan's Ganjgal Valley, according to an article in USA Today. He says that he doubted he would leave the place alive, since he was convinced his superiors had underestimated enemy strength and the enemy occupied the high ground and hid in a nearby village. His warrior instincts proved to be sound when he decided to go in a Humvee to rescue his comrades, making a total of five trips. He is credited with saving the lives of 13 U.S. troops and 23 Afghan soldiers, and killing 8 Taliban insurgents.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A Video Game for the "Age of Civility"

Gateway Pundit describes a new game, "Tea Party Zombies Must Die," in which liberals can indulge their fantasy of watching conservatives such as Brit Hume, Bill O’Reilly, Sean Hannity, Michele Bachmann, Sarah Palin and Newt Gingrich get killed.

We Will Never Forget 9/11

The following Yahoo News article describes 9 little-known facts about the terrorist attacks on 11 September 2001. One of them (#7) stands out:

One company lost two thirds of its workforce

Global financial services firm Cantor Fitzgerald was the worst business affected by the 9/11 attacks. Unfortunately, its New York headquarters based on the 101st and 105th floors at One World Trade Center lost 658 out its 960-strong workforce – which amounted to two third of its total NYC staff.

After the tragedy hit, CEO Howard Lutnick called a colleague and said: “We could shut the firm and attend our friends' funerals, or we're going to work harder than we've ever worked before to help their families.” And that’s exactly what they did. Ten years later, Cantor Fitzgerald has handed out more than $180 million (£109 million) to the families of the deceased staff and has fulfilled its promise to pay their health care.

Hoffa Declares War on GOP; Obama Approves

Real Clear Politics has an article on a video on what was said the day before yesterday:

Teamsters President Jimmy Hoffa had some profane, combative words for Republicans while warming up the crowd for President Obama in Detroit, Michigan on Monday.

"We got to keep an eye on the battle that we face: The war on workers. And you see it everywhere, it is the Tea Party. And you know, there is only one way to beat and win that war. The one thing about working people is we like a good fight. And you know what? They've got a war, they got a war with us and there's only going to be one winner. It's going to be the workers of Michigan, and America. We're going to win that war," Jimmy Hoffa said to a heavily union crowd.

"President Obama, this is your army. We are ready to march. Let's take these son of bitches out and give America back to an America where we belong," Hoffa added.

When he took the stage, President Obama said he was "proud" of Jimmy Hoffa and other labor leaders.

UPDATE: Presidential candidate Herman Cain wastes no time striking back at Hoffa's belligerent comments. In a Daily Caller article he says, "They have no plan, they have no ideas."

Monday, September 5, 2011

Cartoons for Your Enjoyment

How Can This Be? New York Has Strict Gun Control!

FOX News reports that 31 people were shot in a 48-hour period in New York City.

Calling the violence "just unconscionable," Mayor Bloomberg demanded that federal authorities step up their efforts to get illegal weapons off the streets.

Police sources believe that the three latest shootings are connected to the pre-dawn festivities leading up to Monday's West Indian Day parade. The traditional celebration, known as J'ouvert, has been the scene of numerous shootings in the past....

UPDATE: NBC New York reports that the total number of people shot in New York over the Labor Day weekend was 67, of which 10 were killed.

Jane Fonda's Biggest Regret: Not Sleeping with Che Guevara

An article in the Daily Mail (U.K.) about this perennial contender for the title of "Most Hated Woman in America" gives a quick overview of the type of sleaze that has taken over the federal government. At least her ex-husband Tom Hayden didn't fulfill his fantasy of being elected President.

Special Days in September

Did you know that September is Recovery Month, according to SAMHSA [Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration]? Or that this is Suicide Prevention Month?

From the "I Could Just Kick Myself" file: The World Bird Sanctuary of St. Louis, MO celebrated World Vulture Awareness Day on Saturday, 3 September? Vultures are like septic tanks: they perform a valuable service (clearing away animal carcasses by eating them), but don't get proper recognition.

At least it's not too late to observe International Talk Like a Pirate Day on the 19th of this month.