Monday, October 31, 2011

Boxing, and other struggles

The Klitschko Brothers, Vitali and Wladimir, are the reigning heavyweight boxing champions of the world and arguably among the most dominant fighters in the history of the sport. For years, they have been obliterating opponents, and the two of them now hold all four heavyweight title belts. The Klitschkos grew up in Ukraine before the fall of the U.S.S.R., and now split their time between Germany, Los Angeles, and Kiev, where Vitali has become involved in politics as leader of an opposition party called The Punch. Story

Closer to home...Puerto Rico's homicide rate hit 22.5 killings per 100,000 people in 2009, higher than any U.S. state and nearly double that of Louisiana, according to the federal report. With more than 936 people reported killed so far this year, Puerto Rico is on track to break its annual homicide record of 995 murders in 1995.

Meanwhile in Europe...A centerpiece of Greece's rescue is a deal that EU leaders negotiated with representatives of private investors, led by a banking trade group called the Institute of International Finance. The deal calls for investors to voluntarily agree to write off 50% of the Greek debt they hold in exchange for a guarantee that they'll be repaid on the rest. (I wonder how much the taxpayers in the U.S. will be fleeced in this deal with the banks? Money for nothing?)

Unemployment in Spain is now at 21.5 percent.

While you were sleeping...More than 20 mortars and rockets were fired Saturday from the peace-loving Palestinians in the Gaza Strip at Israeli communities including Ashdod (population of over 200,000), Ashkelon (population of 113,000), Gan Yavne (population of 19,000) and the Eshkol Regional Council, causing light to moderate injuries to at least three people and damaging several buildings, including a school.

Murder in Canada...Four Montreal women were killed and dumped into the Rideau Canal to preserve the honour of their family, a jury was told on the opening day of a first-degree murder trial in Kingston's county courthouse. Story

Sign of the times...Swedish Automobile NV, the owner of Saab Automobile, said Friday it agreed to sell the stricken car maker to Chinese companies Pang Da Automobile Trade Co. and Zhejiang Youngman Lotus Automobile Co. for $141.9 million, conceding defeat in a two-year struggle to turn the company around after decades of losses.

A new survey shows that only about 4 in 10 Americans know that Romney is a Mormon, a number relatively unchanged since July. College grads, seniors, Republicans and Tea Party members are more likely to correctly identify his faith, but still, fewer than half of all registered voters got it right. Proof that most voters are simply unaware of what is going on.

A radio ad for a handgun training class that bars Muslims and Obama voters has sparked an investigation in Texas. "We will attempt to teach you all the necessary information you need to obtain your [Concealed Handgun License]," the ad says. Then towards the end, it adds: "If you are a socialist liberal and/or voted for the current campaigner in chief, please do not take this class. You have already proven that you cannot make a knowledgeable and prudent decision under the law." Story

Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano last week announced that the Obama administration has deported a record number of illegal immigrants in the past year. But the Obama administration is using smoke and mirrors to achieve its so-called historic record. Take away the illusion, and the facts show that the administration conjures up its deportation statistics. Story

So what's the latest arrest numbers for the Occupy protests? Here

Chicks with guns. Slideshow

Rush Limbaugh notices that the Demonrats have been using the word, infrastructure, because they want to spend even more money that they have in the past..."What is this infrastructure crap? We're not building roads? Of course we are! That's another thing that grates me. Obama stands up there, 'Roads and bridges and schoolhouses dilapidating.' Where? If there is any dilapidation taking place, it's in the inner cities, and it's in cities run by Democrats for generations"

Something's rotten in New York...virtually every career employee of the railroad was applying for and receiving disability payments, giving the Long Island Rail Road a disability rate of three to four times that of the average railroad. The Times found that retired railroad employees who had successfully claimed disability were regularly playing golf at a state-owned course without charge — another perquisite of their disability. Story

Government benefits

Anti-smoking

"Hitler remained closely involved with the crusade against tobacco to the very end. He banned smoking at his Austrian base, the Wolf’s Lair, and in the Fuhrerbunker in Berlin. In 1942, he voiced regret that he had ever allowed his troops a tobacco ration; a ration he would soon be forced to increase to boost morale when the war went from bad to worse. In 1943 he made it illegal for persons under the age of 18 to smoke in public places. A year later, with the Third Reich crumbling around him, Hitler personally ordered smoking to be banned on city trains and to protect female staff from second-hand smoke. Hitler committed suicide in April 1945 and, after burning his body, SS troops lit cigarettes in the Fuhrerbunker for the first time. Within weeks, cigarettes became the unofficial currency of Germany, with a value of fifty US cents each. Hitler ultimately, if inadvertently, succeeded in reducing smoking in Germany but only by bringing the country to its knees."

Source

Fatwa

Iran's Ayatollah Khomeini once issed this fatwa...

"A man can marry a girl younger than nine years of age, even if the girl is still a baby being breastfed. A man, however is prohibited from having intercourse with a girl younger than nine, other sexual acts such as foreplay, rubbing, kissing and sodomy is allowed. A man having intercourse with a girl younger than nine years of age has not committed a crime, but only an infraction, if the girl is not permanently damaged. If the girl, however, is permanently damaged, the man must provide for her all her life. But this girl will not count as one of the man's four permanent wives. He also is not permitted to marry the girl's sister."

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Education fail

Since the 1960s spending on education, in raw terms, in per capita terms, in terms adjusted for inflation, has soared. From the 1930s, when the first careful records were compiled, to the 1990s, real spending on education multiplied 5 times per student. It more than doubled from the ’60s.

Did this increase in spending do any good? Not on the available evidence. Test scores — measuring achievement — have not budged in 40 years. In other words, the additional investment over the last 40 years has been wasted. We might as well have thrown the money down a well.

But while tests of achievement have not moved…the tests of potential achievement have improved. For whatever reason, IQ tests and SAT tests show young people are getting smarter…or better able to take the tests. This may seem like good news. But not when it is set alongside the performance tests. What we see is that the investment in education over the last 4 decades has actually had a negative return. The raw material was better able to learn. But the investment in the teaching industry produced less in the way of actual learning.

Today, the US stands out for its educational spending, as it does for the bombs it makes and the drugs it distributes — it is on the top of the heap, by a wide margin. Spending per school aged child in the US is about $8,000 per year. In Japan, it is half that. France is in-between with about $6,000 spent per child per year.

Which country has the best scores? The one that spends the least — Japan. On math tests, Americans score 474 (out of 600). The French do a little better at 495. And the Japanese get a score of 523.

Science, the same thing. US students get an average score of 489. Japanese students are at 531.

Source

Kathleen Sebelius, Liar

If a private health insurer had engaged in the kind of criminal obstruction that Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius has been tied to in her home state of Kansas, it would be a federal case. Instead, it’s a non-story in the Washington press. Nothing to see here. Move along.

On Monday, a district judge in the Sunflower State suspended court proceedings in a high-profile criminal case against the abortion racketeers of Planned Parenthood. World Magazine, a Christian news publication, reported on new bombshell court filings showing that Kansas health officials "shredded documents related to felony charges the abortion giant faces." World Magazine reported: "The health department failed to disclose that fact for six years, until it was forced to do so in the current felony case over whether it manufactured client records."

The records are at the heart of the fraud case against Planned Parenthood. Kansas health bureaucrats now shrug that the destruction of these key documents — which they sheepishly admitted had "certain idiosyncrasies" — was "routine." Who oversaw the agency accused of destroying the evidence six years ago? Sebelius.

As governor of Kansas, Sebelius fought transparency motions in the proceedings tooth and nail for years. Prosecutors allege a long-running heinous cover-up to manufacture false records of patients who had late-term abortions — and to whitewash Planned Parenthood’s systemic failures to report child rape.

More here

War in Europe

Let us indulge in no illusions. Europe will be the battlefield for a major struggle between the order of Islam and its enemies. 40% of the population in Arab countries is under 14 years of age. 15 million Muslims are already living in Europe today and the ageing of Europe is unmissable. The Muslim threat was beaten back in Castile, Southern France and, finally, in front of Vienna. But today the border between Europe and the Islamic world is porous, and the threat to Europe is clear.

...If Europe does not very quickly abandon its utterly failed immigration policy, the vision of a "multicultural society" and a misguided tolerance in dealing with hate-filled Islamists, the constantly repeated calls for "dialogue" and "tolerance" will lead to undreamt-of problems and new politically-motivated wars of religion in our cities.

Source

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Electric universe

Did the terrain we see around us take millions of years to form? Some recent experiments suggest otherwise.

As mentioned in past articles, Electric Universe proponents think that something is wrong with the "long, slow" view of geology. Fossils are dated based on the rock layers in which they are found, so a uniformitarian view of geology influences the understanding of how life began and evolved on Earth. If the rock ages are wrong, fossil ages are wrong.

It is commonly believed that fossils are created when an animal or plant dies and is subsequently entombed in mud or silt before decay and dissolution. After millions of years, the sediments in which it is buried harden because of pressure from the overlying accumulation of other later deposits.

Tectonic forces then break or bend the ocean bottom (or lakebed), causing it to rise above the waterline and dry out, hardening the sediments into stone. Those layers of stone around the world are used to determine when the fossils were alive, since it is assumed that the top layers are younger than the bottom layers. The layers of hardened sediments are called "the geologic column."

Prevailing theories state that it took millions, if not billions, of years to arrange the scenery on our planet. Mountains rise in response to mechanisms that are so slow as to be undetectable: the Himalayas, the Alps, and the Rocky Mountains retain the same shapes that ancient nomadic tribes saw.

The seas, it is said, have not left their basins in time spans that have no meaning to the human mind. The Atlantic Ocean has bridged the distance between Africa, Europe, and the Americas for a period greater than the human species has existed on Earth.

Rivers, deserts, canyons—all appear to our modern eyes just as they would have appeared to Alexander the Great, Goyathlay, Sargon, or Khufu. The cyclic processes of erosion or sediment deposition are the same today as they were long ago. Most of the current methods for dating artifacts, geologic layers, or fossils are dependent on that presumed gradual, uniform action.

What if the uniformitarian hypothesis is incorrect? What if the topography of Earth was created in a time so short that ancient civilizations were able to record it? What meaning would the Neolithic, or the Jurassic, or the Precambrian eras have? Would evolutionary theory suffer for the lack of a chronological map?

More here

Part two here

Sin taxes

One man’s sin is another man’s revenue base, at least when it comes to Uncle Sam’s tax coffers.

Federal and state governments annually rake in $96 billion in revenue fed by Americans’ appetites for easy money, nicotine and booze, according to an analysis by The Washington Times. Take away the taxman’s take on gambling, drinking and smoking, and many jurisdictions would be in serious financial straits.

All told, the gambling, tobacco and alcohol industries individually pay $24.9 billion, $44.3 billion and $27 billion, respectively, in annual state and federal taxes, a figure set to rise as cash-strapped government officials seek new money sources in a struggling economy, according to the most recently available data.

For example, Delaware receives $659 million of its total state revenue - almost 8 percent - from the gambling, tobacco and alcohol industries, ranking as one of the top 10 states dependent on so-called "sin taxes" in an analysis by the financial website 247WallSt.com. By June 30, the lottery alone contributed $287 million to the state’s general fund - an $11.5 million increase over the last fiscal year.

More here

Weasel Republicans

Republicans scored historic gains in last year's elections in part on their pledge to scrap the new health care law — but their passion for repeal has dimmed in the face of a split Congress and the difficulties of untangling the complex legislation.

Dozens of House-passed repeal bills and amendments have stalled in the Senate as Republican leaders have shied away from using them as bargaining chips in the broader spending debates that have dominated Washington this year.

Now, 18 months after President Obama signed the legislation, the only change to reach his desk has been a relatively minor repeal of the 1099 tax reporting requirement that drew near-universal condemnation from businesses.

"By the time we got to the debt-ceiling debate, you could tell the leadership, the [Republican Study Committee], the organizations that pushed the priority agenda through our conference had turned over to the money side of this equation rather than the principled side of Obamacare," said Rep. Steve King, an Iowa Republican who has sponsored some of the repeal efforts.

Part of the problem is the bottom line.

The Affordable Care Act, as the law is known, intricately wove incentives, such as expanded coverage for young adults and pre-existing conditions, together with more contentious provisions such as Medicare payment cuts and the individual mandate that requires all Americans to find coverage.

More here

Obama's Deficits

Friday, October 28, 2011

Insurrection

Communities all over the country feel that their hands are tied with one-size-fits-all DC Brand Red Tape. The rules and regulations prevent them from doing what is best for their specific circumstances. The situation has escalated to the point where elected officials are now taking charge to do what is local and logical.

What took place this weekend in the rural New Mexico town of Cloudcroft could become the model for all who want to cut the red tape. Hundreds of people were at what is being called the "Otero County Tree Party" in support of realigning the federal government and putting them back where they belong.

Ten years ago, the New Mexico State Legislature passed SB1, which was signed into law by then-governor Gary Johnson. The legislature overwhelmingly voted for it, believing that it was a necessity borne out of "Uncontrollable, but preventable wildfires, and unresponsive federal agencies." The Forest Service’s (USFS) inaction to reduce or remove the fuel buildup put "the lives and property of the citizens of New Mexico" at risk.

SB1 exerted local sovereignty over public lands. But it had never been tested.

More here

Unfair to Tea Party

The Richmond tea party is demanding a refund of about $10,000 from the city, claiming it unfairly charged them for rallies while allowing the Occupy protesters to use the same space for several weeks for free.

The political organization is sending the city an invoice for the charges incurred for three rallies held in Kanawha Plaza over the past three years. The Occupy protesters have been camped in the plaza since Oct. 15.

Richmond Tea Party spokeswoman Colleen Owens says it's not fair that her group had to pay fees for permits, portable toilets, police presence and emergency personnel. The group also had to purchase a $1 million insurance policy.

Tea party groups across the nation have raised similar concerns since the protests spread from New York earlier this month.

Source

Fannie and Freddie

The bailouts of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have cost taxpayers more than $150 billion so far, and while reformers like Elizabeth Warren and Paul Volcker have called for them to be shut down, and President Obama has vowed to do just that, the mortgage giants remain the biggest financial albatross from the mortgage crisis. That may not change anytime soon because of the influence that Fannie and Freddie wield in Washington, according to Gretchen Morgenson, a New York Times business columnist and co-author of the best-selling Reckless Endangerment.

Morgenson, speaking to a meeting of the CFA Society at the Houston Club, said the widespread bipartisan support for Fannie and Freddie during the inflation of the housing bubble had made it a new "third-rail" of politics — an untouchable subject because so many people would be compromised by a thorough investigation into the cause of Fannie and Freddie’s collapse.

Consider just the former Fannites in the Obama administration: William Daley, the president’s chief of staff, is a former Fannie director; Thomas Nides, deputy secretary of state, whose official bio fails to mention he was senior vice president and a member of Fannie's operating committee and who also was chief operator officer of Morgan Stanley when it was advising the Treasury Department on Fannie and Freddie after the meltdown; and Thomas Donilon, Obama’s national security adviser, who was an executive vice president at Fannie before leaving in 2005 to resume his private law practice.

That, of course, doesn’t begin to touch on the members of Congress from both sides of the aisle who received campaign contributions from Fannie and Freddie, which had some of the best-financed lobbying outfits in Washington. Given the intricate web of influence that Fannie and Freddie continue to wield in the nation’s capital, is it any wonder that so little has been done to address the problem?

Morgenson raised an even more troubling question: What message does it send if, in both the case of the mortgage giants and Wall Street, no decision-makers are held accountable for one of the worst financial crises in our history?

Source

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Europe's financial troubles

If you think the U.S. economy is in trouble, think again. Consider Greece...about 25% of the country's businesses have recently closed with more on the way. Vacancy rates in downtown Athens are running between 30% and 40%. We are in good shape compared to them.

And in Turkey...Twenty-five of the Navy's 48 active-duty admirals are in jail pending trial on charges connected with a plot to overthrow Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's moderate Islamist government. ... Twelve of the Air Force's 69 active-duty generals are in jail pending trial for their alleged part in the coup d'état. The percentage of arrested generals in the Army is the lowest, 14 percent. Story

Here in the U.S., "We have lost our ambition, our imagination, and our willingness to do the things that built the Golden Gate Bridge," President Obama said at a fundraiser in San Francisco on Tuesday. Why am I thinking of Jimmy Carter right now? Can you spell...M-a-l-a-i-s-e?

Government meddling in the economy never seems to work yet Obama is putting forth an initiative to make it easier for homeowners to refinance their mortgages. Standby for the fallout in about a year or two.

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Tuesday shows that 18% of the nation's voters Strongly Approve of the way that President Carter Obama is performing his role as president. 40% Strongly Disapprove, giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -22. That's the lowest level ever measured for him.

Karma...A group of several dozen "Occupy Las Vegas" protesters camping on Clark County land located under the final approach to Runway 19 at McCarran International Airport today narrowly missed being injured when a 50 lb. slab of "blue ice" reportedly landed within feet of their tents. According to witnesses, the slab fell to earth seconds after Air Force One passed overhead while landing. Blue ice is the frozen material formed by leaks in commercial aircraft lavatory waste tanks, a mixture of human waste and vivid blue liquid disinfectant that freezes at high altitude. Source

A record-low 26% of Americans favor a legal ban on the possession of handguns in the United States other than by police and other authorized people. When Gallup first asked Americans this question in 1959, 60% favored banning handguns. But since 1975, the majority of Americans have opposed such a measure, with opposition around 70% in recent years. Source

At a recent million-dollar San Francisco fundraiser, President Carter Obama warned his recession-battered supporters that if he loses the 2012 election it could herald a new, painful era of self-reliance in America. Source (Is he predicting a cut in entitlements?)

One thing Obama is gifted with is a preternatural self-confidence. In early 2010 Rep. Marion Berry, a Democrat from Arkansas, said the president had assured congressional Democrats that they wouldn't face a bloodbath in the midterm elections like the one they had endured in 1994. The difference this time, Obama said, was that they had him. Berry mentioned the remarks as he announced his retirement. His seat is now held by a Republican. Source

Al Gore claimed to have invented the internet and now Massachusetts Senate candidate, Elizabeth Warren, is claiming to be the inspiration for the Occupy Wall Street protests..."I created much of the intellectual foundation for what they do."

Interesting concept from Mexico...Architects have designed an incredible 65-storey 'earth-scraper' which plunges 300 metres below ground. The stunning upside down pyramid in the middle of Mexico City is designed to get around height limits on new buildings in the capital. The subterranean building will have 10 storeys each for homes, shops and a museum, as well as 35 storeys for offices. Story with photos

Your morning coffee might do more than jump-start your day. Researchers say that daily caffeine jolt might also reduce your risk of developing a type of skin cancer. Basal cell carcinoma is the most common form of skin cancer, with nearly one million new cases diagnosed each year in the United States. Story

Suck it up, Feminazis...Survey of legal secretaries...they prefer not to work with female partners. Story

Scary fact of the day...During the 1918 Spanish influenza epidemic, at least 50 million died and about 500 million more were infected around the world.

Letter to Holder

Your Department has made an enormous error in judgment. It instructed federally-licensed firearms dealers to illegally sell at least 2,000 guns that the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) intended to be trafficked to drug cartels in Mexico. The results of this error in judgment have implicated the United States in well over one hundred deadly crimes and the deaths of two federal agents.

This not only raises serious questions about your ability to serve as the head of the Justice Department, but also begs the question of why an anti-gun Administration would knowingly force licensed firearms dealers to sell guns to violent criminals. I raise this because Operation Fast and Furious — if the facts of this case had not come to light — would have been used by this Administration as another false argument to attack law-abiding American gun owners.

The American people deserve to know if your Department had any intent to link the legal purchase of firearms here in the U.S. to crimes committed near our southern border. Operation Fast and Furious funneled firearms legally purchased at gun shops in the U.S. to known criminal syndicates to prove these syndicates have access to legal purchased weapons. This is a deliberate attempt to vilify and attack the millions of gun owners in America who value our Second Amendment and have never broken the law.

Source

The view

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Abortion in Russia

Russia's parliament adopted a law Friday limiting abortions but rejected even tougher restrictions backed by the country's conservative Orthodox Church.

Health officials say Russia's abortion rates are among the world's highest, contributing to a fertility rate of only 1.4 children per woman — far below the 2.1 needed to maintain the existing population. The country's birth rate has become a serious concern for Russia as it fights to stem a steep population decline.

The Health Ministry says more than a million pregnancies are terminated in Russia annually, although abortion critics say the statistics don't include private clinics and the real number amounts to six million a year.

The law passed Friday limits abortions to 12 weeks of pregnancy, except for women who say they can't afford a child, who may have an abortion up to 22 weeks. The law also stipulates a mandatory waiting period of two to seven days before the procedure to allow a woman to reconsider her decision.

The law does not include restrictions proposed by the Russian Orthodox Church, such as a requiring a husband's consent for married women, parents' consent for teenage girls or for a doctor's right to refuse an abortion.

During the Soviet era, abortion laws were liberal and unrestricted abortions became virtually the only effective method of family planning, as condoms were unreliable and seldom used.

The abortion debate in Russia has not become as divisive and heated as the abortion debate in the United States, but the effort to restrict them has strong backing from the Russian Orthodox Church, which has sought a more muscular role in society.

Russia's population, now at 143 million, has shrunk by 5.7 million since the 1991 fall of the Soviet Union, a plunge blamed on rampant alcoholism, bad diets and lack of exercise.

Source

Transparency, and other lies

President Barack Obama has been accused of breaking his promise to make the US government transparent, after it emerged public bodies may soon be allowed to lie about what records they hold.

Mr Obama's justice department has proposed that if documents requested by the public are exempt from freedom of information laws, federal agencies should be able to "respond to the request as if the excluded records did not exist."

Transparency campaigners described the move as a "stunning" reversal of Mr Obama's pledge to run "the most transparent administration in history" during his campaign for the presidency.

In a joint statement, the American Civil Liberties Union, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington, and OpenTheGovernment.org said the plan threatens to "destroy integrity in government".

"It is very problematic," said Patrice McDermott, the director of OpenTheGovernment.org. "There are options open to them other than this nuclear option of lying to requesters".

The plan is the latest in a string of controversial moves by Mr Obama, who earlier this year even insisted on collecting an award for his commitment to transparency behind closed doors at the White House.

More here

Statistics

*63% of youth suicides are from fatherless homes (US Dept. Of Health/Census) -- 5 times the average.

*90% of all homeless and runaway children are from fatherless homes -- 32 times the average.

*85% of all children who show behavior disorders come from fatherless homes -- 20 times the average. (Center for Disease Control)

*80% of rapists with anger problems come from fatherless homes -- 14 times the average. (Justice and Behavior, Vol 14, p. 403-26)

*71% of all high school dropouts come from fatherless homes -- 9 times the average. (National Principals Association Report)

*75% of all adolescent patients in chemical abuse centers come from fatherless homes – 10 times the average. (Rainbows for All God’s Children)

*70% of youths in state-operated institutions come from fatherless homes – 9 times the average. (U.S. Dept. of Justice, Sept. 1988)

*85% of all youths in prison come from fatherless homes -- 20 times the average. (Fulton Co. Dept. of Correction)

Source

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Euthanasia by the backdoor

British healthcare....

The orders – which record an advance decision that a patient's life should not be saved if their heart stops – are routinely being applied without the knowledge of the patient or their relatives.

On one ward, one-third of DNR orders were issued without consultation with the patient or their family, according to the NHS's own records. At another hospital, junior doctors freely admitted that the forms were filled out by medical teams without the involvement of patients or relatives.

Under medical guidelines, the orders should only be issued after senior staff have discussed the matter with the patient's family. A form, signed by two doctors, is then placed in the patient's notes to record what decision was taken.

The findings emerged in spot checks of 100 hospitals undertaken by the Care Quality Commission (CQC), an official watchdog, earlier this year.

A charity for the elderly said the disclosures were evidence of "euthanasia by the backdoor," with potentially-lethal notices being placed on the files of patients simply because they were old and frail.

More here

Ramblings

Over the weekend, Senate Democrats passed a dubious milestone — going 900 days without fulfilling their legal obligation to pass a budget. Worse is the fact that this gross dereliction of duty has gone largely unnoticed. Story

Meanwhile, in the two years Harry Reid and President Carter Obama have controlled Washington, government jobs have increased 13.5 percent to 2.1 million. During that same time, 2.5 million private-sector jobs were lost.

Notice how Obama doesn't buy into all this nation-building nonsense? Taking out Bin Laden with special forces and now Gaddafi with bombs and missiles. I'm beginning to like this guy. If only he knew something about economics....

And this is a hell of a good question...If the Declaration of Independence is a legal action why is the secession of states from the union illegal? Story

Bill Maher is on a roll..."If you just presented the Republicans with Obama's resume and didn't say who it was, they would erect statues to this guy. He killed Bin Laden, he killed Gaddaffi, he saved us from a depression. I mean all, just, the killing alone, Michelle Malkin would name her vibrator "Obama."

Moammar Gadaffi secretly salted away more than $200 billion in bank accounts, real estate and corporate investments around the world before he was killed. The new estimates of the deposed dictator's hidden cash, gold reserves and investments are "staggering."

Did you see the story about building green cars in Finland with U.S. government (taxpayer) loans? What could go wrong?

Free Diapers Are a Right...there is an economic recovery bill authored by Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D.-Conn.) that seeks to empower struggling families by directing the federal government to distribute free diapers through daycare centers. (I'm sure that right is in the Constitution...right next to the right to abortion)

Things I didn't know..."While the majority of Arab terrorists are Muslim, it’s important to note that there is a not-so-small contingent of Christians who not only openly support HAMAS and Fatah and other Islamic terrorist groups, but take part in their terrorist attacks and mass murders.... HAMAS has had Christian leaders. The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine terrorist group, which murdered Israeli Tourism Minister Rehavam Ze’evi and perpetrated several deadly homicide bombings in Israel, was founded and headed by George Habash and deputy Dr. Wadih Haddad, both Greek Orthodox Christians. Greek Orthodox, Eastern Orthodox, and Coptic Christians are among the most anti-Semitic, anti-Israel fanatics there are. In many cases, such as with Egypt’s Copts, they led the Muslims in pogroms against the Jews....They and their religious leader, Pope Shenouda III, are, in many cases, even more anti-Semitic than their Muslim countrymen in Egypt, and they’re big supporters of HAMAS, as lead by their pope." Source

True or False?..."Tobacco users consume 25 percent more health care services than non-tobacco users." Wal Mart is using that meme to raise health insurance premiums on those that smoke. I don't believe that's true but using their logic, Wal Mart could also raise the premiums on women employees because they use health care services at a far more higher rate than men.

Obama's approval rating among blacks has dropped from a high of 96 percent to 79 percent according to a recent poll.

Have you heard about the movement to normalize pedophilia? They're calling it "minor-attracted persons" nowadays. Story

President Felipe Calderon accused U.S. authorities of deporting Mexican criminals to save on judicial costs, a policy that ostensibly "exacerbates" violence in this country. Story

Thomas Sowell only has something interesting to say..."One of the sad signs of our times is that we have demonized those who produce, subsidized those who refuse to produce, and canonized those who complain."

Steve Jobs was not impressed after meeting Mick Jagger, saying: "I think he was on drugs. Either that or he's brain damaged."

Rustling still in fashion...There's no clearinghouse that tracks thefts nationally, but statistics among certain states are staggering. In Texas — the nation's biggest cattle producer — and to a lesser extent Oklahoma, some 4,500 cattle have been reported missing or stolen this year....

Big surprise...Libyan law will be based on Islam, and any law that violates Islamic doctrine will be considered void.

In August, 1979...Ayatollah Khomeini said, "The governments of the world should know that Islam cannot be defeated. Islam will be victorious in all the countries of the world, and Islam and the teachings of the Koran will prevail all over the world."

"Parasites on Parade" is the description of the Occupy Wall Street protestors by a clever wag.

Afghanistan's president, Hamid Karzai, says he'd support Pakistan if the U.S. and Pakistan went to war. The U.S. should withhold any further financial aid to the Karzai administration. He might also be reminded what happened to Gaddafi.

California is a weird place...Teenagers must get permission from their parents to go to a tanning salon, but they can get abortions without their parents knowledge.

Monday, October 24, 2011

First of its kind

The murder case is the first of its kind in the state, one involving a married same-sex couple.

On Thursday, 47 year old Cara Rintala entered a not guilty plea in the death of her wife, 37 year old Annamarie Rintala.

Police say it was an incidence of domestic violence that turned to murder, with Rintala allegedly beating and strangling Annamarie in the basement of their Granby home at 18 Barton Street in March of last year.

A week later, Rintala moved to Rhode Island, where she's been living since she was arrested this week.

This was a long investigation by the Northwestern District Attorney's Office; one that Northwestern District Attorney David Sullivan said left no stone unturned. "Without a doubt, there was only one course that our office would take: that Cara Rintala is reponsible for the death of her partner, Annamarie," Sullivan said.

It is interesting to note that both of these women worked in the field of public safety; Cara was a firefighter for the Ludlow Fire Department, while Annamarie was a paramedic.

Source

Animals

Battering ram

The crime of rape is often used as a battering ram by the loony feminists against men, but when the allegations made are demonstrably false, the same people are strangely silent. Here is the other side of the coin.

Here is a gem from Rape Trauma Services: "Only 16% of rapes are ever reported to the police."

This begs the question how do they know? Well, because "In a survey of victims who did not report rape or attempted rape to the police, the following was found as to why no report was made: 43% thought nothing could be done, 27% felt it was a private matter, 12% were afraid of police response, and 12% felt it was not important enough."

This presupposes that all these "victims" were actually victims and not fantasists or simply lying little tarts. Can 12% of "victims" really be afraid of the police response? Can another 12% really believe a rape is not important enough to report?

While undoubtedly some rapes do go unreported, no one knows exactly how many there are. One suspects that very few stranger rapes go unreported, especially the man in the park wearing a balaclava who holds a knife to a woman's throat.

The saga of rape is one that has of course caused much mendacious ink to flow, none more so that the book its modest author describes as a classic, Against Our Will. Published in 1975, rape is, says Susan Brownmiller "a conscious process of intimidation by which all men keep all women in a state of fear".

All men? How about Peter Tatchell, Elton John, and apparently at least one member of the cast of every British soap opera that just has to have its own gay? How can people make such ludicrous claims? Obviously she must be gagging for it.

Though Brownmiller's book was published 36 years ago, its spirit of dishonesty lives on, and for many men on the receiving end of such false allegations, the consequences can be disastrous, unlike for the unsuspecting males who published her ravings, and made a fat profit out of it.

More here

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Parallels

In the 1930’s Hitler and Nazism were rising in power in Germany. As the evil of their intentions became reality on the ground, nearly every leader in Europe completely denied the evil in front of their eyes. The drive to think only good thoughts about Hitler and appease him in every way saturated the speech and reports of political and religious leaders, the universities and the press. Not even the invasion of bordering states could disprove the "Hitler is a reasonable man" point of view held by the establishment. Appeasement would make him like them and be reasonable. Peace at all costs was the moral motto.

Since they would not strike while Hitler was weak, the Europeans had to deal with the Nazis when they came to full fighting strength, and it took massive costs of treasure and blood to deal with the problem. The establishment’s peace by appeasement brought great evil.

The parallels between the establishment’s denial about the Nazis then and their leadership about Islam today are frightening. We see that denial of facts in the face of fear is a human trait.

All of these quotes come from William Manchester’s biography William Spencer Churchill Alone.

More here

Deficits

One term presidency

Steve Jobs told President Barack Obama he was "headed for a one-term presidency," citing the U.S.’s competitive disadvantages with China and a "crippled" education system, a new biography of the former Apple CEO indicates.

"You’re headed for a one-term presidency," Jobs told Obama in a meeting last year where he asserted that the White House needed to be more friendly toward business, according to the Huffington Post, which obtained a copy of Walter Isaacson’s forthcoming book, "Steve Jobs."

Jobs also told Obama that "regulations and unnecessary costs" put the United States at a competitive disadvantage with China, where companies can build factories more cheaply.

The recently deceased Jobs also told Obama that the education system was "crippled by union work rules," according to Isaacson. Jobs proposed principals be able to hire and fire teachers based on merit, and to extend the length of both the school day and year.

More here

Friday, October 21, 2011

Potpourri

President Carter Obama is truly clueless. He compares the Occupy protests to the Tea Party. Apparently he hasn't heard of the arrests at the Occupy protests for attacking police, the thefts, the fights, the rapes, the crapping on police cars, the trash, the sex and drugs, the perverts exposing themselves, the anti-semitism, spitting on people, faking injuries, some guy sniffing somebody's girlfriend's feet, and the desecration of the U.S. flag. Yeah, sure, just like the Tea Party.

A new Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of Likely Iowa caucus-goers shows that Cain is in front with 28% followed by former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney at 21%. Congressman Ron Paul is a distant third at 10% followed by former House Speaker Newt Gingrich at 9%, Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann at 8%, and Texas Governor Rick Perry at 7%. The sixth place finish for Perry is a sharp decline from early September when Perry was the frontrunner both nationally and in Iowa.

An Oakland, California newspaper reporter noted that the Occupy Oakland protestors consisted largely of "bullies, the mentally ill, drunks, thugs, and anarchists." Another calls the situation similar to "Lord of the Flies."

Quote of the week...Joe Biden..."Don't screw around with me."

I.Shit.You.Not. A windmill farm in western Pennsylvania has been shutting down at night because a bat belonging to an endangered species was found lying dead beneath one of the windmills. Now you know what the expression "bat shit crazy" means.

Climatologists may be basing their apocalyptic predictions of global warming on faulty data. 42% of the temperature gauges used in global warming research are improperly sited, the General Accounting Office reported. Improperly sited temperature gauges near water tanks, buildings and air conditioners could render the data from the gauges as useless as the gauges would be temperatures that were artificially raised by these man-made structures. Story

Democrats stoop to new lows...Someone affiliated with the Department of Energy has been going back to make changes to press releases posted on the Internet weeks and months ago, CNBC has found. Story

Military news...the Marine Corps’ F-35B Joint Strike Fighter has been conducting short take-offs and vertical landings aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Wasp for a few weeks now. Just yesterday, the F-35 program invited a host of reporters to watch the jet conduct operations from the Wasp. Story with photo 

Feminazis are in mourning...In a stunning victory, duped dad Pedro Soto and his attorney Richard A. Lowe, Esq. have prevailed against the Orange County Department of Child Support Services in a paternity fraud case emblematic of the numerous outrageous injustices faced by men and fathers in family court. In this case, Soto has paid over $75,000 in child support for a child DNA tests have established is not his, and who has been living with both of his biological parents for many years. Story

In Great Britain, The Intergenerational Foundation (IF), an organization "established to promote fairness between generations", notes that homes with spare bedrooms are now being selfishly used by older people when they are needed by the young. In a report the IF has proposed a tax increase to squeeze these seniors out of their homes to "free up space" for the younger generation. (isn't socialism wonderful?)

The Israeli soldier, Galid Shalit, was released this week from 5 years captivity in a trade with Palestinians for about 1000 criminals in Israeli jails. No one in the mainstream media mentioned that he had been denied visits by the Red Cross for the entire five years. After all, we mustn't offend the Palestinians.

Sergey Bubka was a Russian pole vaulter who was active in the 1980's and 1990's. He is still the current outdoor world record of 6.14 metres (20 feet 1-3/4 inches), set on 31 July 1994 and the current indoor world record of 6.15 meters, set on 21 February 1993.

For over 50 years, 82% of the UN General Assembly emergency meetings have been about condemning one state - Israel.

Who says there's no good news?...Vigilantes in Mexico are targeting the drug cartels. Story

It is not generally known but most Iranians hate Arabs. Iranians are Indo-European while most other muslim countries are Arab. Saudi Arabia fears Iran has plans to overthrow the Saudi monarchy. Both Iran and Saudi Arabia are struggling to be the top dog in the middle east.

America's rush to the cultural bottom has now resulted in Barbie with tattoos. Should we laugh or cry?

Sucks to be Keith...Olbermann is only drawing an average of about 46,000 viewers on his new show on Current TV.

Meanwhile...Almost 26 million Americans are either unemployed, marginally attached to the labor force, or involuntarily working part-time -- a number experts say is unprecedented.

Canadian healthcare

You would have thought falling over and breaking a hip in a hospital hallway would guarantee a quick medical response.

But one 82-year-old woman who did exactly that was left lying on the floor for half an hour - because staff said nobody could come to her aid until an ambulance was called.

Doreen Wallace was leaving a Niagara Falls hospital with her son when she slipped and fell in the lobby.

The Canadian pensioner had been visiting her dying husband at Greater Niagara General Hospital on October 8 and was already nursing a broken arm.

She told TheStar.com: 'It was horrible. Everybody who walked through the door stopped and stared at me.

'I was inside the hospital. Why did they have to wait for an ambulance to come and pick me up?'

After Mrs Wallace fell over, a security guard called for help and two nurses from the emergency room rushed to the scene.

But, to son Mike Wallace's amazement, instead of administering first aid or rushing the elderly woman into an operating theatre, they insisted she would have to wait for ambulance paramedics to arrive.

Mr Wallace, said: 'I was floored. We were a 50-yard walk, literally, down to the emergency department.'

As they waited for nearly 30 minutes, the security guard used paper towels to wipe away blood from Mrs Wallace's slashed arm and her head was wrapped in a dirty blanket.

She was finally lifted into a wheelchair after a passing orthopedic surgeon spotted the drama.

When paramedics did eventually arrive, it emerged that they had travelled from another hospital because of a lack of staff at Greater Niagara General Hospital.

Full story

Media guide

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Bill Maher rant

At an appearance at George Washington University Saturday night, Bill Maher bounded into territory that the news media have been gingerly tiptoeing around.

Magic underwear. Baptizing dead people. Celestial marriages. Private planets. Racism. Polygamy.

"By any standard, Mormonism is more ridiculous than any other religion," asserted the famously nonbelieving comic who skewered the "fairy tales" of several faiths in his documentary "Religulous." "It's a religion founded on the idea of polygamy. They call it The Principle. That sounds like The Prime Directive in ‘Star Trek.' "

He said he expects the Romney crowd — fighting back after Robert Jeffress, a Texas Baptist pastor supporting Rick Perry, labeled Mormonism a non-Christian "cult" — to once more "gloss over the differences between Christians and Mormons."

Maher was not easy on the religion he was raised in either. He referred to the Roman Catholic Church as "an international child sex ring."

But atheists, like Catholics and evangelical Christians, seem especially wary of Mormons, whom Maher dubbed the "ultimate shapeshifters."

More here

Prosecutorial discretion

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano told the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday that under the administration’s policy of exercising "prosecutorial discretion" in the enforcement of the immigration laws, her department is currently authorizing some illegal aliens to work in the United States.

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), the ranking-member of the Senate Judiciary panel, asked Napolitano: "According to the information from your department, some individuals who are given relief will obtain work authorizations. So people with no right to be in the country will be allowed to work here. Is that correct?"

Napolitano said: "Well, senator, since around 1986 there has been a process where those who are technically unlawfully in the country may apply for work authorization. This goes to CIS [Citizenship and Immigration Services]. It's not an ICE [Immigration and Customs Enforcement] or CBP [Customs and Border Protection] function. And those cases are reviewed by CIS in a case-by-case basis. So there’s no change in that process. Like I said, that goes back to the mid-80s that is contemplated now."

Sen. Grassley then asked, "But yes, some of them could have an opportunity to work here even though they are here illegally?"

"Well, that happens now, senator," said Napolitano.

The three agencies she mentioned are all components of DHS.

Although Napolitano did not specify what 1986 policy she was referring to in her response to Sen. Grassley, President Ronald Reagan signed the Simpson-Mazzoli Act into law in November of that year. The act applied to illegal aliens who requested a change of status within 18 months of the law's passage and who had come into the United States prior to Jan. 1, 1982, and had resided in America since that time.

More here

Dirty cops

David Dutcher met Sharon on Match.com in late 2008, a few months after separating from his wife. "We had a lot in common," he recalled. Sharon loved four-wheel-drive trucks and sports.

They met for coffee, then dinner. Sharon was tall, slender, blond and beautiful. She moaned that she had not had sex in a long time. She told him he had large, strong hands and wondered if that portended other things. She described his kisses as "yummy."

"It felt a lot like Christmas," said Dutcher, 49, a tall, burly engineer with wavy red hair.

On their second date, Sharon suggested they join one of her friends "who was partying because she had closed a real estate deal," Dutcher said. They drove to an Italian restaurant in a suburb near San Francisco. Sharon's friend, "Tash," was a loud and raucous brunet who was pounding down shots.

The women fiddled with Dutcher's tie and massaged his neck and shoulders. The brunet unbuttoned her blouse to reveal generous cleavage. "I am way over my head with these girls," he remembered thinking. "I hadn't been out dating in a while."

Sharon had trouble finishing her tequila shots and asked Dutcher to help, he said. When the women went to the bathroom, two men at the other end of the bar peppered Dutcher with questions.

"Are you a celebrity?" they wanted to know.

The women suggested going to a house with a hot tub that Tash was housesitting, Dutcher said. He followed them in his truck. Within a few minutes, a flashing red light appeared in his rearview mirror. The officer said he had been swerving.

More here

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Speechless

Headline of the Day..."Teleprompter stolen, Obama speechless"

Bumper Sticker of the Day..."Yes, Yes, We Cain!"

MSNBC race relations commentator extraordinare Melissa Harris Perry explains it is racist when Michele Bachmann points out only 53% of Americans pay federal income tax and says we all need to pay. "What that is meant to imply is that there is a whole group that is dependent, ... and that the 53% talk is just codeword for the "2011 version of the welfare queen." Story

Ronald Reagan once characterized taxpayers as..."someone who works for the federal government but doesn’t have to take the civil service examination."

Mitt Romney quote during the 2002 Massachusetts governor debate..."We do have tough gun laws in Massachusetts; I support them. I won't chip away at them. I believe they protect and provide for our safety."

Rush Limbaugh nails it again..."This Occupy Wall Street thing is designed to shift attention away from Obama and his agenda, his failed agenda in Washington, to focus it on the enemy of the day as announced by the Democrats, which happens to be Wall Street and the banks. But, again, it's an interesting point that Charlie Gasparino makes in the New York Post column, and that is if capitalism had really been allowed to work as it's designed, all these institutions bailed out by government would have failed, and the people in charge of them would be hurt, would have been harmed, which is what these lunatics claim that they want."

"We live on a planet in which the wealthiest societies in history, from Norway to New Zealand, are incapable of defending their own borders while basket cases like North Korea and Pakistan have gone nuclear, and Sudan and Somalia are anxious to follow. Whatever supple lies it may tell itself, a rich nation that cannot bother keeping up an army is retreating not only from imperialism and conquest but also from greatness. Continentals enjoy more paid leisure time than anybody else, yet they produce less and less great art, music, literature. A land of universal welfare invariably universalizes mediocrity." Source

Only in California...The state teachers' pension system is just one of several immense public pension liabilities facing California's taxpayers. A 2010 Stanford University study put the state's combined public pension liabilities at well over half a trillion dollars.

Tesla Motors, another Solyndra?...Tesla received $465 million loan at 1.6 percent interest rate. Story 

You knew it was coming sooner or later...An elementary school principal has caused outrage by banning Halloween, Thanksgiving and Columbus day, saying they are insensitive. Anne Foley, the principal at Kennedy School in Somerville, Massachusetts, sent an email to teachers warning them about celebrating Thanksgiving. She wrote: "When we were young we might have been able to claim ignorance of the atrocities that Christopher Columbus committed against the indigenous peoples." Story  (banning Christmas is the ultimate goal of the Leftists)

Fact of the Day...The number of Americans who believe the earth is warming dropped to 59 percent last year from 79 percent in 2006, according to polling by the Pew Research Group.

Cold War starting in the Far East?...Japanese fighters scrambled to intercept Chinese intelligence planes near or in Japanese airspace a record-setting 83 times between April and September of this year.

Traffic accidents plummeted 40 percent in Abu Dhabi and 20 percent in Dubai between last Tuesday and Thursday, when the BlackBerry blackout rolled through the Middle East, reports The National, the UAE's state-owned English daily.

Sign of the times...An immigrant group based in Bern has called for the emblematic white cross to be removed from the Swiss national flag because as a Christian symbol it "no longer corresponds to today’s multicultural Switzerland." Ivica Petrusic...will launch a nationwide campaign in October to ask Swiss citizens to consider adopting a flag that is less offensive to Muslim immigrants. Story

Fraud isn't unique to the western hemisphere...An Italian hairdresser claiming disability benefit for blindness has been charged with defrauding the state after tax police filmed her working in her salon and riding a bike, officials said Friday. The woman, 62, was judged "completely sight-impaired" by a medical panel and had been claiming benefits "for at least three years," they said. Authorities will now try to get their money back and are suing for damages. "Not only was she styling hair but we also filmed her cycling, crossing the street with a keen eye on the lights and even reading the paper," police in Vigo near Ravenna said. Story

Uganda

Housing market

Every day seems to bring fresh bad news about the housing market. Sales are down, foreclosures are up, mortgages are harder to obtain. Americans had better get used to it -- the housing mess is unlikely to see a near-term fix.

Since taking over mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in the heat of the 2008 financial crisis, the government now stands behind about 95 percent of U.S. residential mortgages. Without any policy changes, this course will push the national debt to $30 trillion in ten years, according to Peter J. Wallison, a fellow at the American Enterprise Institute.

It could get even worse. CoreLogic estimates that 10.9 million homeowners owe more on their mortgages than the property is worth, or 22.5 percent of all outstanding loans. Amherst Securities Group projects that without further policy changes, 10.4 million additional borrowers are likely to default on their mortgages.

Policy experts agree that the situation poses unacceptably high risks to taxpayers and that private investors must eventually replace the federal government in housing finance -- but they disagree on both the path forward and how the future system will be structured.

"It certainly feels as though we are stalled," said Susan Wachter, professor of financial management at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School, before testifying to Congress on housing finance on Thursday morning. "The most important thing that has to happen is that there needs to be consensus."

Unfortunately for U.S. taxpayers and homeowners, there's little hope that the deadlock will break. Here are four reasons that the mortgage mess won't get fixed any time soon....

More here

Den of thieves

Occupy Wall Street protesters said yesterday that packs of brazen crooks within their ranks have been robbing their fellow demonstrators blind, making off with pricey cameras, phones and laptops -- and even a hefty bundle of donated cash and food.

"Stealing is our biggest problem at the moment," said Nan Terrie, 18, a kitchen and legal-team volunteer from Fort Lauderdale.

"I had my Mac stolen -- that was like $5,500. Every night, something else is gone. Last night, our entire [kitchen] budget for the day was stolen, so the first thing I had to do was . . . get the message out to our supporters that we needed food!"

Crafty cat burglars sneaked into the makeshift kitchen at Zuccotti Park overnight and swiped as much as $2,500 in donated greenbacks from right under the noses of volunteers who’d fallen asleep after a long day whipping up meals for the hundreds of hungry protesters, the volunteers said.

"The worst thing is there’s people sleeping in the kitchen when they come, and they don’t even know about it! There are some really smart and sneaky thieves here," Terrie said.

"I had umbrellas stolen, a fold-up bed I brought because my back is bad -- they took that, too!"

More here

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Deer smuggling

The smuggling operation across the Texas border proved lucrative, netting more than $2 million for hauling the undocumented 41 who went by such aliases as "Hit Man" and "Spike."

But the illegal cargo wasn’t immigrants from Mexico. It was white-tail deer, secretly brought into Texas from Northern states to breed with native deer in an effort to produce trophy bucks with chandelier-sized antlers.

The imports are illegal, as the state tries to protect Texas deer against diseases that could decimate native herds.

When the smuggler — a prominent East Texas deer breeder named Billy Powell — was sentenced three weeks ago to six months of home confinement and a $1.5 million fine, it sent shock waves through a growing Texas industry.

Some people might find deer breeding a strange niche because the state’s deer are so plentiful they can be nuisances, munching on gardens and straying onto roads.

But Texas game warden Capt. Greg Williford said breeders cater to high-dollar hunters who want that "trophy showpiece for their mantel."

More here

Medicare fraud

Early each morning, private ambulances charged toward a leafy Tomball subdivision where, for a hefty price to taxpayers, patients are dispatched to psychiatric "therapy" in a brown brick house where two portable potties are perched in the driveway.

The ambulances are but specks among hundreds of emergency medical vehicles across Harris County making millions of dollars off the poor, the sick and the mentally vulnerable, whether they need a costly EMS lift or not.

Medicare and the American public pay for the ride - dubiously and often - billed to the U.S. government as trips of medical necessity to "clinics" or "hospitals," a Houston Chronicle investigation has found. Much of it fueled by the daily trafficking of the mentally ill and fragile to so-called therapy programs in aging strip malls, mid-rises and residential neighborhoods.

Many of the patients are neither physically debilitated nor confined to a sick bed. They are not headed to, or coming from the hospital, and there is no medical emergency.

Their reason for traveling in an ambulance - equipped with a driver, a medical technician, a gurney, a defibrillator and red sirens - is a mystery even to some of them.

Yet, the unabated growth of this enormous EMS industry - 397 companies in Harris County alone - has allowed the nation's largest insurance provider for the elderly and disabled to morph into a virtual ATM, the Chronicle's examination of Medicare billings shows.

More here

Myth

Monday, October 17, 2011

Weekend roundup

US authorities deported 397,000 undocumented immigrants, of which 210,000 had criminal records in the fiscal year just concluded, the top immigration enforcer told lawmakers Wednesday. John Morton, director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), offered the figure at a congressional hearing, which would outpace the records of 390,000 illegals and 195,000 with criminal records in the prior fiscal year. ... In the face of questions about the administration's toughness on immigration, Morton said ICE had held some 25,000 hearings for businesses suspected of hiring illegals, and had arrested 217 employers along with 15,000 undocumented workers, and had imposed $6 million in fines in the fiscal year ended September 30. Story  (I'm not sure how high the bullshit factor is in this story but it's got to be pretty high)

Elsewhere...Democrats in Wisconsin are seeking to gather more than 540,000 signatures on a petition to recall Republian Governor Scott Walker. The signatures must be obtained by January 13, 2012. Stephan Thompson of the state Republican Party said the recall is welcomed because it will "encourage a comparison between the positive results we're seeing around the state and the failed policies of the past favored by those seeking a recall."

Michael Moore on Friday called for police departments across the country to join the Occupy Wall Street protests "the same way the Egyptian army joined the people in Freedom Square there in Cairo. My appeal to the police is you are us and we are you," Moore said in a web only video published at MSNBC.com. "We’ll even let you beat on a bongo drum." Source

In what must be a record, the Nobel Peace Prize winning president of the U.S. is now involved in numerous wars...Iraq and Afghanistan, along with bombing Libya, predator warfare in Somalia and Yemen, and now he's sending troops to Uganda. How many other Nobel Peace Prize winners can claim the same?

Perhaps the biggest story in the political world since the U.S. House of Representatives voted to impeach Bill Clinton in the 1990s, although the Senate refused to remove him from office, is the fact that this week a subpoena from the House was issued to the entire top tier of the Obama Administration. Yet as of today the big media outlets–ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, the New York Times, and the Washington Post–have ignored the story entirely. And if they did mention it in passing, it was buried on a back page or relegated to an inconspicuous web page while never seeing the light of day on the air. Only Fox gave the story top billing. Story

Charles Krauthammer recently had this to say about President Carter Obama..."What do you do if you can’t run on your record?"... "Find villains."

Hey, it's about fucking time...A bishop in the Roman Catholic Church has been indicted for failure to report suspected child abuse, the first time in the 25-year history of the church’s sex abuse scandals that the leader of an American diocese has been held criminally liable for the behavior of a priest he supervised. Story

Those crazy Mormons...From an outsider's perspective, a man who can convince more than one woman to be married to him at any given time, clearly wears the trousers. But a new documentary has revealed that it is actually the women instigating polygamous marriage in Mormon communities. Story

According to the Los Angeles Times, Obama has placed more calls to Turkish leader Erdogan than any other world leader except for British leader David Cameron. Who knew that Turkey is so important?

Silly me, I thought Sikhs were peaceful. Story (the biker bar down the road from me doesn't have fights like this)

So you want to drill a well out in the Gulf of Mexico?...Where once the application for a drilling permit was 40 pages long, today it is routinely more than 3,000 pages. Story

Leaked cables show Japan nixed a presidential apology to Hiroshima and Nagasaki for using nukes to end the overseas contingency operation known as World War II. Will the next president apologize for the current one? Story

Check out this stupendous panorama from atop Mount Everest.

Haley Barbour, the Mississippi governor who considered a run for president himself in 2012, said on Thursday that Herman Cain would sweep the South if he were the Republican nominee. "If this election is where it ought to be, and that is a referendum on how President Obama is doing, Republicans are going to win," Barbour said Thursday on Laura Ingraham's radio show. "If Herman Cain is our nominee against Barack Obama, I think he'll sweep the South."

Spending

When Republicans took control of the House in January, they pledged to make deep cuts in federal spending, and in April they succeeded in getting a bill advertised as cutting $38 billion from fiscal 2011's budget. Then in August, they pushed for a deal to cut another $2.4 trillion over the next decade.

Some analysts have blamed these spending cuts for this year's economic slowdown.

But data released by the Treasury Department on Friday show that, so far, there hasn't been any spending cuts at all.

In fact, in the first nine months of this year, federal spending was $120 billion higher than in the same period in 2010, the data show. That's an increase of almost 5%. And deficits during this time were $23.5 billion higher.

These spending hikes haven't stopped many analysts from claiming that the country is in an age of budget austerity, one that's hurting economic growth.

More here

Herman Cain's Enron moment

What GOP presidential contender Herman Cain lacks in political experience, he likes to say, he makes up for with decades' worth of success in corporate America. He climbed the corporate ladder at the Pillsbury Company, chaired the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, and rescued the failing Godfather's Pizza franchise. That business-centric message has won Cain his share of admirers: a focus group convened after a recent Fox News presidential debate overwhelmingly declared Cain the winner.

"I think that over 40 years of business experience is resonating a lot more with people than simply having political experience," he said on a recent Iowa visit. "Knowing how Washington works isn't necessarily an advantage. As a businessman going in, I don’t want to know how Washington works. I want to change Washington D.C. and so by not knowing how it is supposed to work I can ask tough questions that will help change the culture."

Cain clearly believes that his pro-business message is what GOP voters want to hear. So much so, in fact, that on Saturday he officially unveiled his candidacy for the 2012 GOP nomination. But scrubbed from Cain's official story is his long tenure as a director at a Midwest energy corporation named Aquila that, like the infamous Enron Corporation, recklessly dove into the wild west of energy trading and speculation—and ultimately screwed its employees out of tens of millions of dollars.

According to five lawsuits filed in federal court in 2004, Aquila's board of directors—which Cain joined in 1992—allegedly steered employees into heavily investing their retirement savings in company stock. At the same time, the company shifted its business model from straightforward energy generation to risky energy trading, an unregulated market made infamous by now-defunct Enron. The suits, later folded into a single, massive class action, alleged that Cain and top company officials violated a 37-year-old federal law requiring that employers manage employees retirement programs responsibly. (Cain's presidential exploratory committee did not respond to a request for comment.)

More here

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Mormons

It's perfectly true that Mormonism is a heretical brand of Christianity, but, then, to almost any Christian denomination, there are other denominations that are heretical. Mormons are rather more heretical than most, because they have a string of prophets, beginning with Joseph Smith, who are not recognized as such by other Christians. They also have some offbeat notions about the afterlife, apparently believing that a good Mormon will become a god himself, and get a planet to run. If this is exaggerated, please let me know. And in the beginning, polygamy was not only permitted, but almost required, although now it's prohibited. But that's more in violation of the traditions of Western Civilization, where polygamy has always been frowned upon, than it is of Christianity. An aside — my understanding is that there's a passage in the Book of Mormon that actually does prohibit polygamy, while, of course, it is nowhere prohibited in the Bible. And then there's the underwear thing.

But Pastor What's-his-name says that Mormons aren't Christians. To convince me of that, you'd have to define the term. To me, anybody who considers Christ devine is a Christian by definition, no matter what other deviant theology is involved. This is a pretty broad definition, of course because religious boundaries are hard to define. Unitarians don't accept Jesus' divinity (Unitarians, you see, not trinitarians) but they're usually considered Christians anyway, because Jesus is still central to them. On the other hand, though Jesus is divine in Islam, Muslims aren't considered Christians. And then you have all this talk about Judeo-Christianity, which is especially batty, because Christians worship Jesus, and Jews consider him at best a false prophet.

But I've always said that what interests me most about a religion is how its members behave. A religion may have a wonderful Truth, but if its followers are bums or criminals, I have a problem with that religion. On the other hand, I might think a religion has daffy ideas, but if its followers are good, trustworthy, self-reliant, moral people, that's good enough for me. And that seems to be the case with Mormons. So I'm pro-Mormon in that sense. Ironically, evangelicals and fundamentalists largely deserve all those adjectives, too, so it'll be a shame if they come to blows over theological details. I have problems with Mitt, but his religion isn't one of them.

More here

Pitchforks

Cheap tricks

A recent check by the Texas Secretary of State’s office indicates that 600,000 registered voters do not have a valid driver’s license or state issued identification card. In Texas, identification is not required to register to vote but due to a bill just passed by the Texas Legislature, valid identification may be required at the polls to vote if Senate Bill 14 is cleared by the justice department.

As many as a quarter of voters in some small Texas counties might not be able to cast ballots if the federal government allows the new state voter ID law to go into effect.

One concern is that undocumented immigrants have registered to vote in Texas. Since no identification is required to register to vote, undocumented immigrants could register. In prior years, no ID was required at the polls so it is possible that many non-citizens could have registered to vote and illegally cast ballots. Texas does not issue drivers licenses to illegal immigrants so many without identification could be turned away at the polls. Senator Fraser’s bill requires voters to show a valid government-issued photo ID — such as a Texas driver’s license, Department of Public Safety identification card, state concealed handgun license, U.S. military ID or U.S. passport — to vote in elections.

"Republicans are using cheap tricks to steal elections," said Rebecca Acuña, spokeswoman for the Texas Democratic Party. "In certain counties, Republicans could disenfranchise a quarter of the voters currently participating in elections."

Source

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Jesse Jr.

Jesse Jackson, Jr. said recently, "Obama should 'declare a national emergency' and take 'extra-constitutional' action 'administratively.'"

Illinois Republican Rep. Joe Walsh responded to Jackson..."Jesse Jackson Jr., you asked Obama to declare a jobs state of emergency, bypass Congress, and take action by himself? If you want a dictator and state run jobs program, you might be happier living in North Korea with Kim Jong Il. Contact my district office if you need to expedite your passport, ... when you swear an oath of office to uphold the Constitution, and then you try to use the Constitution as Charmin, people start to notice."

Texas history, bye bye Cherokees

The very future of the Lone Star Republic was at stake on Oct. 16, 1838, when a volunteer militia fought Mexican conspirators and their Indian allies on a battlefield in East Texas.

Vicente Cordova was a respected citizen of Nacogdoches in the early 1830s held in high esteem by Mexicans and Anglos alike. Although elected to several important public posts over the years, the popular figure hid his hatred of American immigrants and his burning desire to hasten the day of reckoning with the gringos.

After the first shot of the Texas Revolution was fired in the fall of 1835, Cordova went to work. Exploiting his prestige in the Nacogdoches area, he organized an underground Mexican militia to attack the Texans marching on Bexar. But before he could act, the government general at San Antonio surrendered.

Cordova was not deterred by the sudden capitulation and looked for other ways to help the cause. He sent word to Mexican officials in March 1836 that he had solicited sufficient support from the Cherokees to surprise the retreating rebel army from the rear. Once again, events moved faster than Cordova, and Santa Anna was defeated at San Jacinto before he could stage his ambush.

Over the next two years, the victorious Texans failed to detect the true sentiments and continuing conspiracy of the clever spy. In the spring of 1838, Gen. Vicente Filisola commissioned Cordova to recruit East Texas Indians as "auxiliaries to the Mexican army" and put him in contact with Manuel Flores, a special agent with the same assignment. Together, the two snakes in the grass planned the overthrow of the Republic and the restoration of Mexican rule in the liberated province.

The alliance with the Cherokees was renewed that summer, and Cordova set up his headquarters on an island in the Angelina River. After assembling an impressive force of Mexicans and Indians, he decided the time had come to strike.

Cordova dispatched a strange letter to President Sam Houston that August. He formally unveiled his revolt and informed Houston that the Texans’ wives and children would be spared if his own men’s families were likewise left alone.

What in the world was Cordova thinking? His premature announcement robbed the rebels of the element of surprise and ensured their disastrous downfall.

More here

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Friday, October 14, 2011

Forgery

The South Bend Tribune is reporting that a joint investigation by its newspaper and Howey Politics has uncovered dozens, if not hundreds, of forged signatures on the ballot petitions filed by the campaigns of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton to have their names placed on the Indiana ballot during the highly-contested and critical 2008 Democratic primary race. The allegations, if proven, represent crimes that could still be prosecuted. Forgery is a Class D felony with a statute of limitations of five years. Incredibly, the signature of St. Joseph Co. Prosecutor Michael Dvorak appears twice on petitions filed by the campaign of Hillary Clinton. Dvorak confirmed one of the signatures was his, but he declined to comment after being asked to confirm the authenticity of the second signature that appeared on a separate petition. More than thirty people whose names appeared twice on Clinton's petitions confirmed their signatures had been forged. A forensic signature expert confirmed the same person has signed signatures on petitions filed by the Obama campaign....

More here

Mitt

"I believe the world is getting warmer. I can't prove that, but I believe based on what I read that the world is getting warmer; and -- and number two, I believe that humans contribute to that. I don't know how much our contribution is to that 'cause I know there's been -- there have been periods of -- of greater heat, uh, and warmth in the past, but -- but I believe that we contribute to that. And so I think it's important for us to reduce our emissions of pollutants and greenhouse gases that may well be significant contributors to the climate change and the global warming that you're seeing."

Thank you for 1944

The postcard arrived in Ed Denzler's mailbox in Pearland last month, a mystery from his past nestled among the routine bills and coupons.

Addressed in neat block letters to Denzler, the handwritten note reads, in English: "It takes a strong man to save himself, a great man to save another. Thank you for 1944. From China."

On the front is a black-and-white photograph of U.S. and Chinese service members listening to an American with a fiddle accompany two Chinese soldiers on traditional stringed instruments called erhus

The card was mailed from China, postmarked Aug. 27, and had Chinese writing on the back that Denzler couldn't decipher.

The 88-year-old World War II veteran fought in Burma in 1944 with Merrill's Marauders, a famous volunteer unit, and served with the Chinese Combat Command in 1945. But he had no idea what would have prompted such a note more than 60 years later.

"I couldn't imagine where it came from," said Denzler.

Baffled, he emailed Robert Passanisi, the historian and chairman of Merrill's Marauders Association. The 87-year-old Passanisi told him that at least four other Marauders and their descendants had received similar postcards. The messages and images varied, but the sign-off was always the same: "Thank you for 1944."

Denzler was determined to figure out who sent the cards.

More here

Under the climate bus

As the world turns away from the hysterics of the global warming crowd, the True Believers are looking for a scapegoat for their turn in fortunes. To blame Michael Mann or Phil Jones would be to admit that Climategate proved once and for all the fallacy of their "science" — that it was based on the manipulation of data and outright forgery.

Looking for dead weight in this sinking ship, Myles Allen of the Guardian has decided to toss Al Gore overboard: "Al Gore is doing a disservice to science by overplaying the link between climate change and weather. To claim that we are causing meteorological events that would not have occurred without human influence is just plain wrong."

Now only to a true believer would there be no link between weather and climate. Myles Allen is not quite there, but he seems to recognize the problem 20 years of linking odd weather to global warming has turned into a farce. If everything proved global warming, then nothing really does.

His dump on Al Gore is refreshing: "When Al Gore said last week that scientists now have ‘clear proof that climate change is directly responsible for the extreme and devastating floods, storms and droughts that displaced millions of people this year,’ my heart sank. Having suggested the idea of "event attribution" back in 2003, and co-authored a study published earlier this year on the origins of the UK floods in autumn 2000, I suspect I may be one of the scientists being talked about."

More here

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Holder Lied, Mexicans Died

A subpoena has been issued to Attorney General Eric Holder in regard to what and when he knew of the Fast and Furious operation. Hopefully he will resign. And hopefully Janet Napolitano will resign too. She's supposedly in charge of Homeland Security. Best comment on Eric Holder..."Holder lied, Mexicans died"

After 10 years in Afghanistan you'd think we would have made a difference...According to a United Nations report, opium production in Afghanistan has risen by 61% this year compared with 2010. One driver for this increase is rising opium prices in world markets. Afghanistan produces 90% of the world's opium, the main ingredient of heroin.

Also, there is not a single, public Christian church left in Afghanistan, according to the U.S. State Department. This reflects the state of religious freedom in that country ten years after the United States first invaded it and overthrew its Islamist Taliban regime. In the intervening decade, U.S. taxpayers have spent $440 billion to support Afghanistan's new government and more than 1,700 U.S. military personnel have died serving in that country. Story

Ann Coulter points out in her latest column that the Democratic Party and the mainstream media are comparing the Occupy Wall Street protests to the Tea Party demonstrations. But, she writes, The Democratic National Committee called the tea partiers "angry mobs" and "rabid right-wing extremists." ABC said they were a "mob." CNN accused them of "rabble rousing." Harry Reid called them "evil mongers." Nancy Pelosi said they were "un-American." CNN's Anderson Cooper and every single host on MSNBC called the tea partiers a name that referred to an obscure gay sex act.

Best headline of the week..."Racist Republicans flocking to Cain" Source

Suck it up, liberals...Former President George Bush hosted the Warrior Open golf tournament this past Sunday in Irving, Tex. The competition for wounded veterans of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, gave Bush the opportunity to interact with soldiers. While Bush has had few public appearances since leaving office, showing his support of the U.S troops has been one of his priorities. In April, he hosted Warrior 100, a similar event where he biked 62 miles (100 kilometers) with injured servicemen. Source

Rick Perry is now confusing the 18th and 16th centuries...claiming that Americans fought the revolution in the 16th century. He admits that debating is not his best attribute. Ha.

Herman Cain on the Occupy Wall Street protests..."I happen to believe that these demonstrations are planned and orchestrated to distract from the failed policies of the Obama administration."

Analyzing the results of Saturday’s Florida Straw Poll on "Fox News Sunday," Fox News senior political contributor Brit Hume said businessman Herman Cain’s victory may not mean very much, and that Perry’s poor showings recently may indicate his campaign is on the verge of "total collapse."

Good quote from years past..."We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge or gallantry would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution is designed only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for any other." - President John Adams

People are really losing their common sense...according to Fox News reports...A dad snapping photos of his 4-year-old daughter in a Glasgow, Scotland, shopping mall was detained by police and told to delete his photos out of security concerns, and further was banned from the mall.

No common sense in Saudi Arabia either...A soccer player from Colombia reportedly was detained in Saudi Arabia for walking through a mall wearing a sleeveless shirt that revealed his religious tattoos, including one of Jesus. Juan Pablo Pino, 24, a member of Saudi Arabia’s Al Nasr soccer club, was taken into custody in Riyadh on Friday by Saudi moral police after mall customers complained about the tattoos.

If you reside in America and it is dinnertime, you have almost certainly broken the law. In his book Three Felonies a Day, civil-liberties lawyer Harvey Silverglate estimates that the average person unknowingly breaks at least three federal criminal laws every day. This toll does not count an avalanche of other laws — for example misdemeanors or civil violations such as disobeying a civil contempt order — all of which confront average people at every turn. Story

While watching the video of the "Occupy Austin" demonstration I saw one sign I liked..."Our enemies don't live in caves in Afghanistan...they live in Washington, D.C."

Question of the day...If Obama fundraiser and largest Solyndra stakeholder George Kaiser recently had a net worth of 12 billion dollars, why did taxpayers ever have to put one cent on the line for Solyndra? Story

A group that supports Obama, Working Families Party of New York, has an advertisement on Craig's List seeking leftists (and other thugs) to join the Wall Street protests. The pay rate is $350 to $650 per week. And the mainstream media claim the protests are spontaneous?

Republicans' support for Herman Cain has surged to 18%, their support for Rick Perry has sagged to 15%, and their support for Mitt Romney remains relatively stable at 20%. However, Romney's support is matched by the 20% of Republicans who are unsure which candidate they will back for the Republican nomination in 2012. Story

Hank Williams, Jr. wrote a song in response to being fired from Monday Night Football. One of the lines in the song is..."Keep the government out of my business...and y'all can keep the change."