Saturday, August 24, 2013

THOUSANDS DESCEND ON NATIONAL MALL TO COMMEMORATE 50TH ANNIVERSARY OF MARTIN LUTHER KING JR.’S ‘I HAVE A DREAM’ SPEECH

Organizers of Saturday’s march hoped this year’s event would serve to inspire people again to educate themselves about issues they see as making up the modern civil rights struggle. - AP via The Blaze

Tens of thousands of people marched to the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial and down the National Mall on Saturday, commemorating the 50th anniversary of his famous speech and pledging that his dream include equality for gays, Latinos, the poor and the disabled.

The event was an homage to a generation of activists that endured fire hoses, police abuses and indignities to demand equality for African Americans. But there was a strong theme of unfinished business.

Premiums are up $3,671 compared with the year before President Obama took office. That's despite Obama's repeated promises that the health care reform law he championed would cut premiums by $2,500 in his first term

Premiums Climbed $2,976 Since 2009, Despite Obama Vow - IBD

During his first campaign for president, Obama repeatedly claimed that his health reform plan would, as he said at a Virginia rally in 2008 "lower premiums by up to $2,500 for a typical family per year."

Nevertheless, the White House has been touting recent signs of health cost moderation as evidence that ObamaCare is "already working to reduce costs."

Al Gore: Pounding the Pulpit ... Again

As reported on The Lead, Al Gore is at it again, going after the sinners among us - Geoffrey Norman/The Weekly Standard
Gore: Climate change ‘deniers’ like 'an alcoholic father’ - Jake Tapper's The Lead/CNN
Up to our ears in Al Gore’s ‘climate change’ snake oil - Wesley Pruden/The Washington Times

Al Gore and his traveling medicine show is back in town with his new, improved snake oil, guaranteed to grow hair, improve digestion, promote regularity and kill roaches, rats and bedbugs. Al and his wagon rumbled into town on the eve of “a major forthcoming report” from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which is a panel of scientists affiliated with the United Nations. Their report is expected to buck up the spirits of the tycoons of the snake-oil industry.

A snake-oil salesman’s lot, like a policeman’s, is not a happy one. There’s always a skeptic or two (or three) standing at the back of the wagon, eager to scoff and jeer. The global-warming scam would have been right up Gilbert and Sullivan’s street. Would Al and the U.N. deceive us? No! Never! What! Never? Weeeell, hardly ever.... More, at the link.

As a Democrat, I am disgusted with President Obama

I voted for Obama reluctantly, but never did I imagine he would become another Richard Nixon - Jeff Jarvis/The Guardian

...And I voted for you. I'll confess you were a second choice. I supported Hillary Clinton first. I said at the time that your rhetoric about change was empty and that I feared you would be another Jimmy Carter: aggressively ineffectual.

Never did I imagine that you would instead become another Richard Nixon: imperial, secretive, vindictive, untrustworthy, inexplicable.

I do care about security. I survived the attack on the World Trade Center and I believe 9/11 was allowed to occur through a failure of intelligence. I thank TSA agents for searching me: applause for security theater. I defend government's necessary secrets. By the way, I also defend Obamacare. I should be an easy ally, but your exercise of power appalls me. When I wrote about your credibility deficit recently, I was shocked that among the commenters at that great international voice of liberalism, the Guardian, next to no one defended you. Even on our side of the political divide, I am far from alone in urgently wondering what you are doing.

As a journalist, I am frightened by your vengeful attacks on whistleblowers – Manning, Assange, Snowden, and the rest – and the impact in turn on journalism and its tasks of keeping a watchful eye on you and helping to assure an informed citizenry.

As a citizen, I am disgusted by the systematic evasion of oversight you have supported through the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) courts; by the use of ports as lawless zones where your agents can harass anyone; by your failure on your promise to close Guantánamo, and this list could go on....Read the rest, at the link.

NSA Paid GOOGLEFACEBOOK Millions To Spy on Taxpayers...

NSA paid millions to cover Prism compliance costs for tech companies - Ewen MacAskill/The Guardian ◼ Via Drudge

The National Security Agency paid millions of dollars to cover the costs of major internet companies involved in the Prism surveillance program after a court ruled that some of the agency's activities were unconstitutional, according to top-secret material passed to the Guardian.

The technology companies, which the NSA says includes Google, Yahoo, Microsoft and Facebook, incurred the costs to meet new certification demands in the wake of the ruling from the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance (Fisa) court.

The October 2011 judgment, which was declassified on Wednesday by the Obama administration, found that the NSA's inability to separate purely domestic communications from foreign traffic violated the fourth amendment.

While the ruling did not concern the Prism program directly, documents passed to the Guardian by whistleblower Edward Snowden describe the problems the decision created for the agency and the efforts required to bring operations into compliance. The material provides the first evidence of a financial relationship between the tech companies and the NSA.

Lawmakers Probing Intentional Abuses of Power by NSA Analysts - Bloomberg

“I am reviewing each of these incidents in detail,” Dianne Feinstein, a California Democrat and chairman of the Senate intelligence panel, said in a statement, after the NSA confirmed to Bloomberg News today that some analysts deliberately ignored restrictions on their authority to spy on Americans....

The incidents, chronicled by the NSA’s inspector general, provide additional evidence that U.S. intelligence agencies sometimes have violated the legal and administrative restrictions on domestic spying, and may add to the pressure to bolster laws that govern intelligence activities....

President Barack Obama told CNN in an interview broadcast today he is confident no one at the NSA is “trying to abuse this program or listen in on people’s e-mail.”

As an aside:
Who leaked the Snowden documents about Britain’s secret Middle Eastern base to a British paper? - HotAir

There are, supposedly, only two newspapers Snowden is working with: The Guardian and the Washington Post. (The NYT, wanting in on some of this Snowden action, announced today that it’s launched a partnership with the Guardian to that effect.)

Friday, August 23, 2013

Nidal Hasan GUILTY on all counts in Fort Hood shooting


Major Nidal Hasan Guilty on All Counts in ‘Workplace Violence’ Incident - Rick Moran/PJMedia

The man who screamed “Allahu Akbar” while murdering 13 soldiers at Fort Hood in an incident the Army characterized as “workplace violence” has been found guilty on all counts in a military court.

...If Hasan is executed, it will be the first death sentence carried out by the military since 1961, when Pvt. John Bennett was hung for the rape and murder of an 11 year old Austrian girl.

Hasan had been charged with 13 premeditated counts and an additional 32 attempted premeditated counts of murder. Today’s verdict means that Hasan will face the death penalty. - Mandy Nagy/Le-gal In-sur-rec-tion

From the comments: So now that this “workplace violence” event has been settled when is Obama and Holder going to be put on trial for violating the public trust?

Fort Hood shooter convicted on all counts - FOX

Hasan, an Army psychiatrist, had acted as his own attorney at the 13-day trial, but questioned only three of nearly 90 witnesses and presented only a single piece of evidence in his defense: an evaluation from his boss that called him a good soldier. He also chose not to make a closing statement.

The American-born Muslim told jurors during a brief opening statement that evidence would "clearly show" he was the shooter, and he described himself as a soldier who had "switched sides."

Military attorneys assigned to Hasan -- who remained on standby throughout the trial as he went it alone -- have suggested he wants to be put to death.

Fort Hood gunman Maj Nidal Hasan guilty on all counts - BBC

If the government, who controls the student loan industry now, gives you a ‘free’ education, you will be in bondage to the government for the rest of your life. And this is how they plan to meet the demands socialized medicine creates. This is their answer to the problem they are creating with Obamacare.



What is Charlie Rangel really saying when he says ‘no reason a young person should have to pay for college’? - The Right Scoop

...So basically what he’s saying is that if America needs more doctors and nurses, the American taxpayer should subsidize their education as an incentive. Yeah. Because with all the doctors and nurses leaving over Obamacare, we are going to need more doctors and nurses....

This is why they took over the student loan industry.

AFL-CIO Nevada Passes Resolution to Openly Criticize Obama Administration Over Obamacare


A month ago leaders from three major labor unions, Teamsters President Jimmy Hoffa, UFCW President Joseph Hansen and UNITE-HERE President D. Taylor, wrote a scathing letter to the Obama administration about how Obamacare will destroy the 40 hour work week for hardworking Americans. The letter called for the administration to "fix" what was broken and had a strong tone of regret when it came to supporting President Obama and the re-election of pro-Obamacare Democrats. - Katie Pavlich/Townhall

Now, the AFL-CIO in Nevada has passed a resolution to openly criticize the Obama administration over Obamacare, again stressing the situation needs to be fixed by the very people who created it. The resolution is a result of union concerns being ignored.

Albright and Rice, for all their flaws, were hard workers with interesting biographies. Hillary Clinton, like John Kerry, was a mediocrity who got their job as a consolation prize for not winning a presidential election.


Lights, Camera, Hillary - daniel Greenfield/Front Page

This week CBS joined NBC and CNN in the Hillary entertainment business. While NBC airs a 4-hour miniseries produced by James D. Stern, the son of a top Bill Clinton donor, whom the New York Times accused of pushing Hillary Clinton’s candidacy eight years ago, CNN will air a documentary about Hillary and CBS is developing Madame Secretary, a television series about a female Secretary of State.

The biggest challenge for all these projects is how small a figure they have to hang so many hours of dead air on.

he NBC series will “recount Clinton’s life as a wife, mother, politician and cabinet member.” Tellingly, the political side of her life comes last. The CBS series will cover “the personal and professional life of a maverick female Secretary of State as she drives international diplomacy, wrangles office politics and balances a complex family life.”

It always comes back to the family life, because what else is there? Turn off the cameras and sitting there is the compulsively dishonest and corrupt wife of a compulsively dishonest and corrupt former president. The wife of a dishonest, but popular, president, running for his old job, may have a slight Latin American or Middle Eastern flavor, but it’s not even Evita; let alone Hillary of Arabia.

“We are against the Muslim Brotherhood,” protestor Ramez Mossed told the Free Beacon. “He [Obama] supports the Muslim Brotherhood. He has a big hand in Egypt and the mess in Egypt. We’re trying to tell him, ‘Don’t support the terrorists. Please be fair.’”

Egyptian Christians critical of media coverage and Obama response to violence in Egypt - Washington Free Beacon

A group of Egyptians protested in front of the White House Thursday afternoon to “expose” what they say is “the clear bias of the Obama administration and the American media in support of the Muslim Brotherhood and its terrorist ideology.”

Egyptians protest against Muslim Brotherhood at White House, Washington Post - Jihad Watch

Hundreds of Egyptians, who travelled to Washington, D.C. from around the United States, gathered in front of the White House before marching to the offices of the Washington Post, news network CNN, and the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), a Muslim advocacy group that protestors called the Brotherhood’s “embassy.”

Obama touts states providing quality higher ed, all led by Republican governors



Of the 10 states Obama mentioned, either directly or by referencing a school in the state, eight are led by Republican governors with the exception of Missouri and New Hampshire, where Central Missouri University and Southern New Hampshire University are located, respectively. - Red Alert Politics

Obama, despite his huffing and puffing, never acted, but now he is being presented with mass carnage not seen since Saddam Hussein gassed the Kurds in 1988. Will he do anything? Or will he leave it to the United Nations to “investigate” as he usually does?

Enemies, A Horror Story: Syria, Obama, and Iran - Roger L Simon/PJMedia

Forget — at least for the moment — Obamacare. Sure it can cause a lot of damage to our economy and health system, maybe even decimate the medical pool, but bad as it is, it can always be repealed.

Not so Iran obtaining nuclear weapons.

That catastrophe cannot be so easily rolled back. And no one has any idea what the mullahs might choose to do with the atom bomb or whom they might decide to give it to. The only thing we know is that thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands or even millions, could die, civilizations (ours) could be held hostage.

Don’t believe it?

Take a look at what’s been going on in Syria — Iran’s great friend and mentor — the last few days.

PEDOPHILIA, INCEST, AND GRAPHIC SEX: EXCERPTS FROM A COMMON CORE READING LIST BOOK FOR 11TH-GRADERS THAT WILL MAKE YOU BLUSH

Common Core, the controversial set of education standards being pushed by many state governors and education leaders, is coming under fire for its selection of a book that’s on the suggested reading list for 11th graders (i.e. 16- and 17-year-olds). The book — a past selection of Oprah’s Book Club — has graphic sex scenes and descriptions... - The Blaze

Editor’s note: The following story contains graphic language. Discretion is advised.

The work in question comes from Nobel Prize-winning author Toni Morrison. Listed on a Common Core reading list linked on the website, “The Bluest Eye” carries this description from the curriculum’s preferred bookseller: An Eleven-Year-Old African-American Girl In Ohio, In The Early 1940s, Prays For Her Eyes To Turn Blue So That She Will Be Beautiful.

That description sounds tame and appears to be a solid lesson about the problems of desiring beauty over anything else....

(Excerpts you won't find on Common Core's site:)
Pages 162-163: “A bolt of desire ran down his genitals…and softening the lips of his anus. . . . He wanted to f*** her—tenderly. But the tenderness would not hold. The tightness of her vagina was more than he could bear. His soul seemed to slip down his guts and fly out into her, and the gigantic thrust he made into her then provoked the only sound she made. Removing himself from her was so painful to him he cut it short and snatched his genitals out of the dry harbor of her vagina. She appeared to have fainted.”

Page 174: “He further limited his interests to little girls. They were usually manageable . . . His sexuality was anything but lewd; his patronage of little girls smacked of innocence and was associated in his mind with cleanliness.” And later, this same pedophile notes, “I work only through the Lord. He sometimes uses me to help people.”

Page 181: “The little girls are the only things I’ll miss. Do you know that when I touched their sturdy little t*** and bit them—just a little—I felt I was being friendly?—If I’d been hurting them, would they have come back? . . . they’d eat ice cream with their legs open while I played with them. It was like a party.”
...graphic excerpts cover incest, rape and pedophilia. In her research on the book in question, Macey France also exposes some pretty shocking support for those topics, from the author herself:
In fact, the author of the book, Morrison, says that she wanted the reader to feel as though they are a “co-conspirator” with the rapist. She took pains to make sure she never portrayed the actions as wrong in order to show how everyone has their own problems. She even goes as far as to describe the pedophilia, rape and incest “friendly,” “innocent,” and “tender.” It’s no wonder that this book is in the top 10 list of most contested books in the country.
The presence of the book on Common Core’s list, combined with Morrison’s descriptions of incest, rape, and pedophilia as “friendly,” “innocent,” and “tender” have sparked outrage in some communities. Parents in one Colorado school district are petitioning for the removal of “developmentally inappropriate and graphical content from the instructional reading list.” They are not asking for the book to be banned or even removed from the library, just taken off the suggested reading list.

Feds are building a detective squad to target consumers and companies that don't follow Obamacare's rules

More than 1,600 new employees hired by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Resources in the aftermath of Obamacare´s passage include just two described as ´consumer safety´ officers, but 86 tasked with ´criminal investigating´ – indicating that the agency is building an army of detectives to sleuth out violations of a law that many in Congress who supported it still find confusing. - Daily Mail

Judicial Watch, a nonprofit that has told MailOnline it files 'hundreds' of FOIA requests, first published evidence in July of the HHS hiring binge.

'Sounds like we now have the Obamacare police,' said the group's president, Tom Fitton, after MailOnline showed him the new data.

'Given the confusion and problems of the law's implementation, we would need a small army to police all the waste, fraud, and abuse that is already evident.'

Heritage Action for America, a conservative lobby group that opposes implementation of the Affordable Care Act, told MailOnline that it sees the hiring of criminal investigators inside HHS as a sign that its position is more and more defensible.

'The Obama administration continues to assert near unilateral power when it comes to Obamacare,' said Dan Holler, the group's communications director.

'This blatant disregard for the rule of law raises serious questions as to how these new criminal investigators will behave, what guidelines they will follow and who will provide much-needed oversight.'

Heritage Action is circulating a letter this week, penned by freshman GOP Rep. Mark Meadows, calling on 100 House Republicans to 'take the steps necessary to defund Obamacare in its entirety, including on a year-end funding bill like a continuing resolution.'

Now you had to see this coming. - Discussion at Lucianne

Feds are building a detective squad to target consumers and companies that don't follow Obamacare's rules

More than 1,600 new employees hired by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Resources in the aftermath of Obamacare´s passage include just two described as ´consumer safety´ officers, but 86 tasked with ´criminal investigating´ – indicating that the agency is building an army of detectives to sleuth out violations of a law that many in Congress who supported it still find confusing. - Daily Mail

Judicial Watch, a nonprofit that has told MailOnline it files 'hundreds' of FOIA requests, first published evidence in July of the HHS hiring binge.

'Sounds like we now have the Obamacare police,' said the group's president, Tom Fitton, after MailOnline showed him the new data.

'Given the confusion and problems of the law's implementation, we would need a small army to police all the waste, fraud, and abuse that is already evident.'

Heritage Action for America, a conservative lobby group that opposes implementation of the Affordable Care Act, told MailOnline that it sees the hiring of criminal investigators inside HHS as a sign that its position is more and more defensible.

'The Obama administration continues to assert near unilateral power when it comes to Obamacare,' said Dan Holler, the group's communications director.

'This blatant disregard for the rule of law raises serious questions as to how these new criminal investigators will behave, what guidelines they will follow and who will provide much-needed oversight.'

Heritage Action is circulating a letter this week, penned by freshman GOP Rep. Mark Meadows, calling on 100 House Republicans to 'take the steps necessary to defund Obamacare in its entirety, including on a year-end funding bill like a continuing resolution.'

Now you had to see this coming. - Discussion at Lucianne

Thursday, August 22, 2013

On Wednesday, warnings have been popping up on Craigslist.The message states that Police are posing as buyers, meeting with sellers, confiscating the presidential ticket, and issuing a criminal ticket.

Hundreds Selling President Obama Tickets on Craigslist - VIDEO - WKBW NY

UB Prepares for President Obama
Pause in Airport Operations Expected When Air Force One Lands in Buffalo
Security Preparations Underway for President Obama
Details of President Obama's Visit to Buffalo - WKBW NY

President Obama will speak in Alumni Arena on the University of Buffalo North Campus on Thursday. Doors will open to the public at 9 a.m.

Tickets for Thursday’s program are free and open to the public, but are required for entrance. One ticket per person will be distributed on a first-come, first-serve basis while supplies last, starting at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 20, in the Alumni Arena Box Office on the UB North Campus.

All attendees will go through airport-like security and should bring as few personal items as possible. No bags, sharp objects, umbrellas, liquids or signs will be allowed in Alumni Arena. Cameras are permitted.

NSA surveillance story cuts into Obama’s popularity with young voters

Some polls show a double-digit drop in Obama’s approval rating since Edward Snowden revealed NSA secrets, weakening the president ahead of fall fights with congressional Republicans over the budget and immigration. - The Hill

Polling taken by The Economist and YouGov finds a 14-point swing in Obama’s approval and disapproval rating among voters aged 18-29 in surveys taken immediately before the NSA revelations and last week. Overall, the swing in Obama’s approval rating moves just four points.

A USA Today/Pew Research poll released in June found that young voters were significantly more likely to support Snowden's decision to leak classified material. While 60 percent of 18- to 29-year-olds said exposing the surveillance programs served the public good, just 36 percent of those over 65 said the same.

Revealed: NSA collected 56,000 emails that had nothing to do with terror... and the agency can monitor 75% of all U.S. internet traffic - Daily Mail

If We Can't Even Reach Out to the Millennials, Our Own Children, How Are We Gonna Reach Out to the Hispanics? - RUSH

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Genocide in Syria as 1,300 people including hundreds of women and children are wiped out in nerve gas attack say Syrian rebels as Hague warns use of chemical weapons would mark 'shocking escalation'


The world has looked on in horror today as graphic images emerged showing the aftermath of a dawn poison gas attack in the suburbs of Damascus that wiped out 1,300 people as they lay sleeping in their beds. - Daily Mail



HORRIFIC VIDEOS CLAIM TO SHOW CHILD AND ADULT VICTIMS OF REPORTED CHEMICAL ATTACK IN SYRIA THAT MAY HAVE KILLED HUNDREDS - Sharona Schwartz/The Blaze

In one video, which was also posted by the Times of Israel, a long line of bodies is seen along a corridor (Note: The Blze chose not to embed this video - embedded here, above)

Almost a year ago to the day — August 20, 2012 — President Barack Obama said any chemical weapons use by Syria was a “red line” that would change the “calculus” regarding U.S. involvement in the ongoing conflict in which more than 100,000 have reportedly been killed.

A year ago today: Obama Warns Syria's Assad Chemical Weapons A 'RED Line'

Arcata Eye, McKinleyville Press Merging
Into Mad River Union Newspaper


After 17 years of weekly service to their respective communities, the McKinleyville Press and Arcata Eye newspapers will publish their final editions Wednesday, Sept. 25, then cease publication. - McKinleyville Press

In other news, the Mad River Union, a new weekly newspaper merging the Eye and the Press, will debut with Issue 1, Volume 1 on the following Wednesday, Oct. 2.

This union of newspapers will include the best of the Arcata Eye and the best of the McKinleyville Press. It will be co-published by veteran newspapermen Kevin L. Hoover and Jack Durham.

In a sense, the Mad River Union will restore the tradition of the beloved Arcata Union, which closed after 109 years in 1995. Hoover and Durham both worked at the Union, which covered Arcata, McKinleyville and beyond.

Like the Eye and Press, the Mad River Union will be an independent, non-partisan community newspaper that reflects the character and diversity of the communities it covers. The Union strives to provide readers with a newspaper that is fair, accurate, relevant, smart, engaging, adventurous and open to all without fear or favor. - Arcata Eye

Have ??? Answers at the Link(s).

◼ LIKE The Mad River Union on Facebook, get breaking news and updates.

Noam Chomsky: “I don’t usually admire Sarah Palin, but when she was making fun of this ‘hopey, changey stuff,’ she was right. There was nothing there”

Two liberals say Sarah Palin is right: Obama lacks substance - Cheryl K. Chumley/Washington Times

A couple of noted liberal political activists, first Howard Dean and now Noam Chomsky, have found common ground with the most unlikeliest of individuals — former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin — and admit she’s right on at least one key view: President Obama doesn’t have a whole lot of substance.

At least he didn’t during his presidential campaign, Mr. Chomsky said in a recent interview with the left-wing outlet Democracy Now.

Taking Up Arms: Women in Mexico Have Had Enough

Women in Mexico have had enough and are doing something about their communities being overrun with cartels, criminals and drug lords. - Katie Pavlich/Townhall

Naturally, the Mexican government isn't too happy about what they call "vigilantes" taking things into their own hands, but at this point, it's the only option.

The Top Five Priorities of the GOP

From technology to changes in the primary calendar, the GOP sent a message at their summer meeting last week in Boston that they have an ambitious agenda and want to do things differently. - ABC

Here are the five biggest priorities of Republican Party.

1. Technology
2. Outreach
3. Minorities and Younger Voters
4. The Presidential Primary Calendar
5. Debates

Joe Nosef, the chairman of the Mississippi GOP, said he is "pleased that the party is aggressively advocating for both a fair and reasonable debate process."

"The seemingly endless circular firing squad during the primary process in 2012 was clearly not in the best interest of our party," Nosef said. "We can have a process that provides for robust debate of the issues without severely damaging our eventual nominee in the process."

DNC still struggling to pay off debt, The Republican National Committee, meanwhile, outraised the DNC more than two-to-one in July, $5.9 million to $3.9 million. The RNC has $12.3 million in cash and no debt. - Aaron Blake/Washington Post

The Democratic National Committee continues to struggle to pay off its debt from the 2012 election, according to its latest campaign finance report.

In July, the DNC actually saw its debt rise from $18.3 million to $18.5 million, even as its cash on hand declined from $5.7 million to $4.1 million. The committee raised $3.9 million, but spent significantly more than that — $5.4 million.



RNC Statement on FEC Filing - GOP.com

WASHINGTON – Today, Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus announced the RNC raised $5.9 million in July 2013. The committee’s cash on hand totals $12.3 million.

The continued support from donors at all levels has enabled the RNC to launch an unprecedented community-based field operation. The RNC already has more staff on the ground than in headquarters, which is unheard of in an off-year. Meanwhile, the RNC is developing an entirely new data and digital operation, under the leadership of Chief Technology Officer Andy Barkett and Chief Digital Officer Chuck DeFeo, which will empower candidates and activists at all levels.

“As we saw at our Summer Meeting in Boston, there’s great energy in the Republican Party, and we stand united behind the cause of building a permanent, nationwide campaign,” said Chairman Priebus. “With the support of our donors and investors, we’re making it happen.
“By making these investments now, we will ensure our party is more competitive than ever in 2014, 2016 and beyond. I’m proud of the work we’re doing on the ground and in communities. And I’m confident that we’ll be able to leapfrog the Democrats in our data capabilities.”

Fast facts:
Total raised in July 2013: $5.9 million
Total cash on hand: $12.3 million
Percentage of donors who gave less than $200: 98 percent
Average donation: $51

"ObamaCare, Ending Health Insurance for Families As We Know It."

Obamacare, the policy enacted by the party that keeps loudly bragging about standing for the “middle class” and “working families,” is spurring companies to ditch health-insurance coverage of their employees’ working spouses. - Jim Geraghty/National Review

Why does most of the media coverage suggest that Republicans are crazy for wanting to repeal this legislative monstrosity, and the Democrats are sane for wanting to keep it in place?

Health plans drop working spouses - Alex Nixon/Trib Live
University dumps spouses from health care coverage - bearingdrift.com
UPS to drop 15,000 husbands and wives - Atlanta Business Chronicle
UPS drops spousal coverage, teachers get hours cut due to ObamaCare - Ed Morrissey/HotAir
40% of companies alter insurance coverage to avoid new health care tax - CNBC



Video: Ted Cruz Explains How We Win The - Debra Heine/Breitbart
__________________
Click the link below, enter your zip code, and you'll be able to call your member of Congress. Tell them to defund Obamacare. #DontBlink

◼ RedState: TAKE ACTION

Former Senate Majority Leader Gloria Romero, a liberal Democrat, speaks out against organized labor.

PROMINENT DEMOCRAT BLASTS UNIONS FOR 'CHOKEHOLD' - WND via Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association

The former majority leader of the California State Senate, who describes herself as a “longtime liberal Democrat” who “still pay(s) union due,” is complaining about the influence of unions in her state....

“Money flows to those who control the levers of power, and in California that means Democrats who have long been allied with, and funded by, public-sector unions. One does not make the decision to ‘cross’ powerful interests lightly, for recrimination is swift,” she wrote.

She continued, “Some unions have helped advance agendas that defend quality of life and rights for all Californians. But too many have played a shameful, oversized role in abandoning the needs, hopes and aspirations of a demographically changing California. The answer is not to ban unions but to empower members to gain freedom in choosing how their own political dues are spent.”

Conservative talk radio may not have killed amnesty this time around, but it definitely helped liberals realize they’ve already lost.

The day amnesty died - Conn Carroll/Washington Examiner @conncarroll

When Congress comes back in September, it will be consumed by talk of defunding Obamacare, government shutdowns, and defaulting on the nation’s debt. With only nine working days left in the House before the current government funding authority runs out on September 30th, it is highly unlikely the House will debate, let alone vote on, immigration at all.

Until immigration advocates give up their quest to confer citizenship on millions of individuals who entered the U.S. illegally, amnesty is functionally dead.

The RNC’s horrific open-borders pandering - Michelle Malkin

California GOP chair rebuilding the party from scratch

This is the second time Brulte, 57, a former minority leader in the state senate, helped rebuild California's Republican Party. But this time it will be even harder, he said, because it's been three long election cycles since a Republican won a statewide office. Brulte's six-year rebuilding plan is modest and the task daunting: making the party relevant again. - David M. Drucker/Washington Examiner

“As far as I’m concerned, Hillary disqualified herself for the presidency in that fist-pounding moment at a congressional hearing when she said, ‘What difference does it make what we knew and when we knew it, Senator?’” Paglia told Salon. “Democrats have got to shake off the Clinton albatross and find new blood.”

Camille Paglia: Hillary Clinton ‘disqualified herself’ from presidency with Benghazi spin - Joel Gehrke/Washington Examiner @joelmentum

Then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton should have resigned after the Sept. 11, 2012, terrorist attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, according to feminist author Camille Paglia, who believes that Clinton “disqualified herself [from] the presidency” during her congressional testimony on the assault.

“I for one think it was a very big deal that our ambassador was murdered in Benghazi,” Paglia told Salon. “In saying ‘I take responsibility’ for it as secretary of state, Hillary should have resigned immediately. The weak response by the Obama administration to that tragedy has given a huge opening to Republicans in the next presidential election. The impression has been amply given that Benghazi was treated as a public relations matter to massage rather than as the major and outrageous attack on the U.S. that it was.”

Camille Paglia: “It remains baffling how anyone would think that Hillary Clinton is our party’s best chance” - Salon

JERSEY SHORE MAYOR TO SELL HOUSE, CAN'T AFFORD PROPERTY TAXES

60% Hike in One Year... - AP

The National Security Agency—which possesses only limited legal authority to spy on U.S. citizens—has built a surveillance network that covers more Americans' Internet communications than officials have publicly disclosed, current and former officials say.

New Details Show Broader NSA Surveillance Reach, Programs Cover 75% of Nation's Traffic, Can Snare Emails - SIOBHAN GORMAN and JENNIFER VALENTINO-DEVRIES /Wall St. Journal

The programs, code-named Blarney, Fairview, Oakstar, Lithium and Stormbrew, among others, filter and gather information at major telecommunications companies. Blarney, for instance, was established with AT&T Inc., T +0.24% former officials say. AT&T declined to comment....

Sen. Ron Wyden, an Oregon Democrat, in 2012 sought but failed to prohibit the agency from searching its databases for information on Americans without a warrant. He has also pushed intelligence agencies to detail how many Americans' communications have been collected and to explain whether purely domestic communications are retained in NSA's databanks. They have declined.

"Technology is moving us swiftly into a world where the only barriers to this kind of dragnet surveillance are the protections enshrined into law," Mr. Wyden says... much more at the link

Millions of dollars are being used for the ads, which feature two of the state’s biggest celebrities: Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox



Not Everyone Loving MNsure’s Paul Bunyan-Themed Ad Campaign - CBS Minnesota

Al Jazeera Caught Airing Fake Death of Muslim Brotherhood Protestor



The Al Jazeera news channel has been caught airing what appears to be the fake death of a Muslim Brotherhood-backed protestor in Egypt, according to reports.

A supposedly dead protestor was filmed and broadcast earlier this week on Al Jazeera....As a distraught woman yells in Arabic, the man in question can be seen clutching what is described as a gunshot wound. However, when the man’s hand is moved it becomes apparent that he has not been injured despite a pool of blood.

“Covered in blood, his hand rests on what would seem to be the source of that blood, a gunshot wound,” FSA write of the apparently staged death.

“‘Doctors’ surrounding him as he lays there, eyes shut and face frozen,” FSA writes. “One of the ‘doctors’ then decide to lift the mans shirt up and to the viewers big surprise, there is no wound underneath the shirt!”

“The supposed dead man, wanting to obstruct the view of his non-wound for the camera, then effortlessly re-positions his legs in way of the camera,” according to FSA Crimes.

Al Jazeera quickly cuts to a different angle once the man moves.

If this California teacher gets her way in court, she won't have to pay union dues much longer

Right-to-work gets its day in court - Sean Higgins/Washington Examiner

Rebecca Friedrichs is an Orange County, Calif., math teacher who pays about $700 to her union every year. She didn't sign up for that expense, though. Under California law, she has no choice: Public school teachers either enroll or they don't work.

If she gets her way in court, however, she won't have to pay dues much longer. She is one of 10 educators suing the California Teachers Association to end the dues requirement.

"I just want to have a free choice," she told the Washington Examiner.

Should they get the case to the Supreme Court, a ruling in their favor could effectively make every state a right-to-work state. Big Labor could face huge membership losses as people in previously "closed shop" union workplaces opt out.

It’s estimated that 2,000 small-business investors will have to pay these retroactive taxes.

California Wants Small-Business Owners To Pay Back $120 Million In Tax Breaks - CBS Sacramento

Small-business investors in California were promised big breaks five years ago, but now they’re being told to pay up, instead after a court ruling.

After following the law, many of them are getting hit with tax bills as high as $250,000....

“They relied on California law as it was written, that they would get a tax break if they invested in certain kinds of businesses,” Lieu said.

But a court ruled in December that practice by the state was unconstitutional. Now, the Franchise Tax Board wants its money....

“It sends a message that you can’t trust government. If you comply in good faith with the rules, they can go back and penalize you.”

North Coast Democratic power players endorse Lehman

Boasting the endorsements of some of Humboldt County's most noteworthy politicos, Chris Lehman announced Monday his candidacy for the seat representing the North Coast in the state Senate that is being vacated by Noreen Evans next year. - Thadeus Greenson/The Times-Standard

In statements released endorsing Lehman, some well-known Humboldt politicians raved about him. Chesbro called him an “unwavering defender of our region's” natural resources and environment; Lovelace called him “the right person to represent us here on the North Coast” and Berg said he will make a “remarkable Senator for our region” at a time when the interests of “our district have been too often overlooked in Sacramento.”

While Lehman's not a household name in his home county, much less throughout the state's expansive 2nd Senate District, Emenaker said Lehman's widely known among the power players of the Democratic party, both in and out of Humboldt County.

Journal Interviews Chris Lehman, Your Fresh-Faced Candidate for State Senate - Ryan Burns/The Journal
Meet Your Next State Senator: Chris Lehman Announces, Basically Already Wins Bid to Succeed Noreen Evans - Hank Sims/Lost Coast Outpost
MATTHEW IN THE MIDDLE: I Hate State Politics - Lost Coast Outpost

Thankfully, state and local leaders concerned with Common Core's impact have begun to push back.


After putting Common Core implementation on “pause,” Indiana is now withdrawing as a governing member of Common Core’s national tests. Alabama, Oklahoma, and Georgia have now withdrawn from the national tests. Utah withdrew from one of the testing consortia last year. - Lindsey Burke/Heritage

There are indications that other states are growing concerned about the national standards push. An Ohio legislator has a proposal to repeal Common Core, and Florida and Arizona have voiced concerns over the cost of the endeavor.

These are good first steps. But to ensure excellence in education, states should completely hop off the national standards bandwagon. You can read the Heritage proposal for ◼ how they can get started here.

America has reached an education policy fork in the road. One path leads toward choice and customization; the other, centralization and uniformity. If student-centered learning is our goal, only the path toward choice will take us there—and that includes choice in standards and assessments.

Gearing up for a new standard of teaching: Local educators help teachers prepare for launch of Common Core - Kaci Poor/The Times-Standard

”The first couple of years -- with anything new like this -- there is going to be a learning curve, teachers are going to be adjusting,” she said. “But nationwide, everyone is learning. This will be a new baseline.”

Common Core’s Data Mining Trojan Horse

The Common Core Agenda – Let’s Take It From the Top

Like all Orwellian euphemisms, "Common Core" is not about innocent ideas like the word "common" or the term "core." The phrase "Common Core" is used to hide the real aspects of an education policy which if articulated openly would never be taken seriously, let alone be implemented....
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STOPCOMMONCORE.COM

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Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Obama’s Strange Love Affair with the Muslim Brotherhood

The only hope for democracy in Egypt — and it’s a mighty slim one, maybe the size of a third of an M&M crushed under a camel — is the military. At least they’re not insane. - Roger L Simon/PJMedia

Nevertheless, the President of the United States is not amused. We read our government is secretly “reviewing” our support of Egypt. They are urging the Egyptian military to negotiate with the Brotherhood, the same religious fanatics who evidently just told 24 Egyptian policemen to lie face down in the Sinai desert and summarily executed them, the same madmen who are running all over Egypt burning down Christian churches.

What is the explanation for this absolutely self-destructive, even idiotic, policy on our part?

There can be only one — the president of the United States is actually psychologically disturbed. He does not react in a normal manner. I know that’s a vicious and importunate thing to say, but the reaction to Egypt (and to Benghazi, for that matter) is not one of a psychologically healthy human being.

It’s more than the narcissism of which he is often accused, as bad as that is. It’s a form of extreme neurotic attraction to (notably Islamic) religious fascism. Obama is not a Muslim, but he has these deep feeling about it (some of them related to imperialism, others to his absent father, no doubt) that allow him to overlook, or rationalize, all that hideous misogyny, homophobia, and jihadist fanaticism, that loathing of democracy and freedom, even when it could not be more obvious. To Obama, those abhorrent – monumentally illiberal — behaviors and ideologies almost seem irrelevant. But they are the most relevant of all.

The Egyptian military are at least modern. The Brotherhood are decidedly anti-modern, determined to take Egypt, and the world, back to the Middle Ages. (Obama was also, many of us remember, oddly unsympathetic to the cause of the Green Movement in Iran — his silence setting him apart from virtually every Western leader.)

Egypt official says Obama weak against Muslim Brotherhood because brother is major funder for them - The Right Scoop

We already know Obama’s half brother, Malik Obama, helps fund international terrorism with his so-called humanitarian group, named “Barack H. Obama Foundation,” that Lois Lerner helped get tax-exempt status in record time. So it’s really no shock to learn he is connected to the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood via fundraising.

But what is interesting is that an Egyptian official is trying to warn Americans that Obama won’t crack down on the Muslim Brotherhood because his brother is helping finance them...

Rick Perry to headline California GOP convention

"He's speaking Saturday night," California Republican Party spokesman Mark Standriff tells The Hill.

The Texas governor has had an interesting past relationship with California — earlier this year he ran ads encouraging businesses in the state to move to Texas....

Others who will attend: Republican National Committee co-chairwoman Sharon Day and National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Greg Walden (R-Ore.). A number of this election's most competitive House seats are expected to be in California.

As the events in a Heathrow transit lounge – and the Guardian offices – have shown, the threat to journalism is real and growing...


David Miranda, schedule 7 and the danger that all reporters now face - Alan Rusbridger/The Guardian

As the events in a Heathrow transit lounge – and the Guardian offices – have shown, the threat to journalism is real and growing...

The state that is building such a formidable apparatus of surveillance will do its best to prevent journalists from reporting on it. Most journalists can see that. But I wonder how many have truly understood the absolute threat to journalism implicit in the idea of total surveillance, when or if it comes – and, increasingly, it looks like "when".

We are not there yet, but it may not be long before it will be impossible for journalists to have confidential sources. Most reporting – indeed, most human life in 2013 – leaves too much of a digital fingerprint. Those colleagues who denigrate Snowden or say reporters should trust the state to know best (many of them in the UK, oddly, on the right) may one day have a cruel awakening. One day it will be their reporting, their cause, under attack. But at least reporters now know to stay away from Heathrow transit lounges.

David Miranda detention: a betrayal of trust and principle - The Guardian Editorial

Glenn Greenwald: detaining my partner was a failed attempt at intimidation
The detention of my partner, David Miranda, by UK authorities will have the opposite effect of the one intended
- Glenn Greenwald/The Guardian

Before letting him go, they seized numerous possessions of his, including his laptop, his cellphone, various video game consoles, DVDs, USB sticks, and other materials. They did not say when they would return any of it, or if they would.

This is obviously a rather profound escalation of their attacks on the news-gathering process and journalism. It's bad enough to prosecute and imprison sources. It's worse still to imprison journalists who report the truth. But to start detaining the family members and loved ones of journalists is simply despotic. Even the Mafia had ethical rules against targeting the family members of people they felt threatened by. But the UK puppets and their owners in the US national security state obviously are unconstrained by even those minimal scruples.

If the UK and US governments believe that tactics like this are going to deter or intimidate us in any way from continuing to report aggressively on what these documents reveal, they are beyond deluded. If anything, it will have only the opposite effect: to embolden us even further. Beyond that, every time the US and UK governments show their true character to the world - when they prevent the Bolivian President's plane from flying safely home, when they threaten journalists with prosecution, when they engage in behavior like what they did today - all they do is helpfully underscore why it's so dangerous to allow them to exercise vast, unchecked spying power in the dark.

The White House credibility deficit

The NSA leaks ended the power of Obama officials to ration access. No self-respecting journalist believes what they say - Jeff Jarvis/The Guardian

In his address about Egypt's military coup – or whatever bowdlerizing euphemism is permitted this week in Washington – Obama condemned the notion that "security trumps individual freedom." Really?

After his press conference announcing an oversight commission for the NSA, it emerged that the NSA's truth-challenged director of national intelligence, James Clapper, would apparently oversee the oversight. The White House had to explain the joke, and then said Clapper would merely facilitate.

And in the latest revelations from Edward Snowden on NSA noncompliance even with its over-broad license to snoop on most anyone, the Washington Post reported that the administration – which supposedly welcomes this discussion and at first permitted a spokesman to defend the administration on the record – tried to withdraw his quotes and replace them with a new statement. The Post wouldn't go along with this gag and reported the attempt.

...That is the punchline of the Snowden affair: when we can't trust what government tells us, we come to trust those whom government doesn't trust. Thus, we no longer necessarily care what the official line is and who delivers it. And when that happens, access – the currency of the Beltway – becomes worthless. Ah, the irony.

Obama administration asks Supreme Court to allow warrantless cellphone searches...

If the police arrest you, do they need a warrant to rifle through your cellphone? Courts have been split on the question. Last week the Obama administration asked the Supreme Court to resolve the issue and rule that the Fourth Amendment allows warrantless cellphone searches. - Timothy B. Lee/Washington Post

Obama Administration Secretly Suspended Military Aid to Egypt...

The U.S. government has decided privately to act as if the military takeover of Egypt was a coup, temporarily suspending most forms of military aid, despite deciding not to announce publicly a coup determination one way or the other, according to a leading U.S. senator. - Josh Rogin/Daily Beast

The office of Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT), the head of the Appropriations State and Foreign Operations Subcommittee, told The Daily Beast on Monday that military aid to Egypt has been temporarily cut off.

“[Senator Leahy’s] understanding is that aid to the Egyptian military has been halted, as required by law,” said David Carle, a spokesman for Leahy.

The administration’s public message is that $585 million of promised aid to the Egyptian military in fiscal 2013 is not officially on hold, as technically it is not due until Sept. 30, the end of the fiscal year, and no final decisions have been made.

PRESIDENT OBAMA, DO NOT CUT OFF AID TO EGYPT - Atlas Shrugs

f the US cuts off aid to Egypt, it sends a signal of support for the genocidal Muslim Brotherhood. Write your members of Congress and urge them not to cut off aid.

If we abandon freedom, the consequences will come back to bite us for decades to come.

Obamacare Is Coming: @Forever21 Slashes Workers’ Hours

A leaked memo shared last week on social media with the hashtag #Never21 proves the company capped some full-time workers at 29.5 hours a week as of August 18, resulting in a loss of the health coverage and other benefits offered to full-time workers. - Heritage

Abedin has not disclosed how much she made from Teneo, the Clinton Initiative, or Mrs. Clinton, and the State Department has refused to say what kind of role Mrs. Clinton played in creating the special arrangement

Unanswered questions on Huma Abedin’s role in Clinton empire - Charles Rollet/Daily Caller

Sen. Charles Grassley is investigating the matter, but his office says it has faced numerous obstacles due to the State Department’s refusal to hand over key information.

“Agencies should be transparent about their operations,” the Iowa Republican said in a statement to The Times.

“Basic information about a special category of employees who earn a government salary shouldn’t be a state secret. Disclosure of information builds accountability from the government to the taxpaying public. Agencies that lose sight of transparency also lose public trust.”

Abedin said she was thorough in keeping her work at the State Department separate from her private consulting in a letter she wrote in response to Grassley’s inquiry....

The consulting firm Abedin works for, Teneo, has also been scrutinized by the Times for blurring the line between charity and private profit. It was founded by former Bill Clinton aide and Coca Cola board member Douglas Band, who ran Teneo while overseeing one of the Clinton Foundation’s vast nonprofits, the Clinton Global Initiative.

Monday, August 19, 2013

Government’s tyrannical grip tightens

Here’s the latest outrage from what I call the Stasi SuperSnooper State: - John Seiler/CalWatchdog

Feds Threaten To Arrest Lavabit Founder For Shutting Down His Service - from the either-you-help-us-spy-on-people-or-you’re-a-criminal dept - techdirt

The saga of Lavabit founder Ladar Levison is getting even more ridiculous, as he explains that the government has threatened him with criminal charges for his decision to shut down the business, rather than agree to some mysterious court order. The feds are apparently arguing that the act of shutting down the business, itself, was a violation of the order:
… a source familiar with the matter told NBC News that James Trump, a senior litigation counsel in the U.S. attorney’s office in Alexandria, Va., sent an email to Levison’s lawyer last Thursday – the day Lavabit was shuttered — stating that Levison may have “violated the court order,” a statement that was interpreted as a possible threat to charge Levison with contempt of court.
This is pure Soviet/KGB-East German/Stasi socialism. It means Levinson doesn’t really own his business, and can shut it down any time he wants as if it were a hot dog stand. It means the government owns his business — and owns him and you and me.

ISP CEO Explains What Happens When The NSA Shows Up At Your Door - techdirt
“What Is That Box?” — When The NSA Shows Up At Your Internet Company - Justine Sharrock/Buzzfeed

When people say the feds are monitoring what people are doing online, what does that mean? How does that work? When, and where, does it start?
Pete Ashdown, CEO of XMission, an internet service provider in Utah, knows. He received a Foreign Intelligence Service Act (FISA) warrant in 2010 mandating he let the feds monitor one of his customers, through his facility. He also received a broad gag order. In his own words: at the link

Moving? Have a friend in another state?

Find a Republican Women club wherever you go: ◼ The National Federation of Republican Women includes local Republican women's clubs in 49 states, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia.

Time for Answers from the NSA

After a report of 2,776 privacy violations, even NSA defenders are getting fed up. - John Fund/National Review

It’s time to ask tough questions about the National Security Agency’s surveillance activities — even for conservatives who have given the NSA the benefit of every doubt up until now....

Former NSA director Mike Hayden, in a speech to the Bipartisan Policy Center last week, dismissed the nation’s most outspoken transparency groups and privacy advocates as “nihilists, anarchists, activists, Lulzsec, Anonymous twentysomethings who haven’t talked to the opposite sex in five or six years.” That’s reminiscent of former CBS News executive Jonathan Klein’s 2004 defense of the forged George W. Bush National Guard memos that ultimately cost Dan Rather his anchor chair at the network. Klein lashed out at the bloggers who broke the news that the documents had been forged by contrasting CBS’s “multiple layers of checks and balances” with “a guy sitting in his living room in his pajamas writing what he thinks.”

The fact is that we need to double-check all those “checks and balances” the NSA assures us will prevent abuse of its surveillance powers. Similarly, the media should inject some balance into how they treat President Obama’s assurances that nothing is wrong at the NSA.

What if the president lied to us?

With the latest major revelation about National Security Agency surveillance, there’s a huge taboo question that needs to be put out on the table: Has President Obama been deliberately lying about the NSA, or have his statements just been repeatedly “wrong”? - David Sirota/Salon

...Since at least the Iraq War if not before, the media and political class typically goes out of its way to avoid declaring a lie a lie. Simply put, from “we know where (the WMDs) are” to Obama’s “actually abusing” declaration, seemingly deliberately inaccurate statements are rarely ever framed as outright lies. Even when such statements come from those with vested interests in hiding the truth, words and phrases like “misstated,” “wrong,” “least untruthful” and “misspoke” are trotted out.

These words and phrases now comprise a whole Washington vocabulary crafted specifically to avoid the L word. That’s because once the L word comes out, it means the official in question is deliberately misleading the public — and that is rightly considered an abhorrent act in a democracy.

But just as it is utterly absurd to claim Director of National Intelligence James Clapper didn’t lie before Congress (and some reporters thankfully admitted that truth in the open), it has now become almost silly to insinuate or assume that the president hasn’t also been lying. Why? Because if that’s true — if indeed he hasn’t been deliberately lying — then it means he has been dangerously, irresponsibly and negligently ignorant of not only the government he runs, but also of the news breaking around him.... Read the rest at Salon.

How President Obama is flouting Obamacare More reasons to delay and rewrite this ill-conceived law



Democrats strong-armed Obamacare into law three years ago. Now they´re busy flouting it. - Chicago Tribune Editorial

The mandate that employers provide insurance next year or pay a penalty, as the law requires? Delayed for at least a year. The law´s dictate that people applying for federal subsidies to buy insurance provide proof that they´re eligible for the government aid? Scaled back. Sharp limits on Americans´ out-of-pocket costs for health care? Suspended for a year.

Providing members of Congress and more than 10,000 staff members with federal health care subsidies that the law does not allow? Done, via a deal brokered by President Barack Obama.

And on and on....

Bottom line: Let's delay and rewrite this ill-conceived law. Congress need not start from scratch. Lawmakers can build on what all of us have learned from three years of painful trial and error. Three years of attempting, but failing, to make this clumsy monstrosity work for the American people.

OBAMA'S HOMETOWN PAPER: SCRAP OBAMACARE - Larry O'Connor/Breitbart

The Chicago Tribune has come out in favor of delaying and re-writing Obamacare, a program they refer to as a "monstrosity."

Bottom line: Let's delay and rewrite this ill-conceived law. Congress need not start from scratch. Lawmakers can build on what all of us have learned from three years of painful trial and error. Three years of attempting, but failing, to make this clumsy monstrosity work for the American people.

The newspaper located in President Obama's hometown of Chicago executes a blistering analysis of the law and how President Obama and Democrats in Congress are attempting to flout it...

Judge Jeanine: “Mr. President, George Bush was MORE popular in the Arab world than you are”



via The Right Scoop

Judge: California high-speed rail violates initiative

A Sacramento County judge dealt a major blow to California's high-speed rail project Friday, ruling that the agency overseeing the bullet train failed to comply with the financial and environmental promises made to voters when they approved initial funding for the project five years ago. - Juliet Williams/Sacramento Bee

Superior Court Judge Michael Kenny said the California High-Speed Rail Authority "abused its discretion by approving a funding plan that did not comply with the requirements of the law" and has failed to identify "sources of funds that were more than merely theoretically possible."

Yet he declined to immediately halt funding for the project, saying it was not clear that he had the discretion to do so and he will hold another hearing to determine what happens next. A date has not yet been set.

The 2008 initiative, Proposition 1A, required the rail authority to specify where the funding would come from for the first operable segment of high-speed rail and have all the environmental clearances in place. Kenny said the agency did not comply with either of those mandates, but Proposition 1A appears to leave it up to lawmakers to decide whether the funding plan is sufficient to warrant funding.

The office of Gov. Jerry Brown, who has championed the project, directed inquiries to the rail authority. Dan Richard, the Brown-appointed chairman of the authority's board, said work on the project will continue until the judge determines the remedy.

Many Health Insurers to Limit Choices of Doctors, Hospitals

Main Reason Behind These Limited Plans: Cost - Anna Wilde Mathews/Wall St. Journal

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Defense minister Col. Gen. Abdel Fattah El-Sisi intends to fix the damage to Coptic churches at Rabaa Adaweya and Nahda squares, according to a report by the Mid-East Christian News.

“The Egyptian defense minister ordered the engineering department of the armed forces to swiftly repair all the affected churches, in recognition of the historical and national role played by our Coptic brothers,” read a statement that aired on Egyptian television. - Coptic Orthodox Diocese of the Southern United States

Bishop Mousa thanked Sisi for his efforts to repair the damaged churches.

“We thank Col. Gen. Sisi for commissioning the brave Egyptian armed forces to rebuild the places of worship damaged during the recent events,” Bishop Mousa said on Twitter.

The Associated Press and AFP contributed to this report. Source: ◼ http://www.foxnews.com/world/2013/08/16/egyptian-military-chief-vows-to-rebuild-coptic-churches/

The NYT’s description of how US officials begged and pleaded with the Egyptian military to avoid a showdown with the Muslim Brotherhood to no avail is full of pathos in more ways than one. It describes how senior American officials who once bestrode the world were reduced to groveling. How the mighty had fallen. Not only did the US consent to be ignored, Obama paid for the privilege.


The Revenge of the “False Choice” - Richard Fernandez/PJMedia Belmont Club
American and European diplomats trying to defuse the volatile standoff in Egypt thought they had a breakthrough … Two senators visiting Cairo, John McCain of Arizona and Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, met with Gen. Abdul-Fattah el-Sisi, the officer who ousted Mr. Morsi and appointed the new government, and the interim prime minister, Hazem el-Beblawi, and pushed for the release of the two prisoners. But the Egyptians brushed them off. …

All of the efforts of the United States government, all the cajoling, the veiled threats, the high-level envoys from Washington and the 17 personal phone calls by Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, failed to forestall the worst political bloodletting in modern Egyptian history. The generals in Cairo felt free to ignore the Americans first on the prisoner release and then on the statement, in a cold-eyed calculation that they would not pay a significant cost — a conclusion bolstered when President Obama responded by canceling a joint military exercise but not $1.5 billion in annual aid.
They had Obama over a barrel. How did he get there?

...The State Department should have realized that walking down the aisle with the Muslim Brotherhood to the altar of democracy was like handcuffing yourself to an anvil and trying to swim the English channel. They were bound to drag Obama down and they did. One of President Obama’s favorite phrases is “false choice”. He once said “we Reject the False Choice Between Our Security and Our Ideals”. On another occasion he thundered against the false choice between privacy and security in discussing the NSA scandal. What are we now to make about the choice offered to the Egyptian people between the ideological descendants of Stalin and Hitler? The President should dust off the teleprompter and say, “I reject the false choice …” That would be a start. But the Egyptians need more choices than pick one of two — especially these two — if they are to escape from disaster.

Summer Dystopia: 75% of Americans Unhappy with Nation’s Direction

Don’t Trust Congress or Media Either - CNS

“Three-quarters of Americans are now dissatisfied with the nation’s course, up from 68 percent in July,” an ◼ August 12 Gallup poll found.

The Gallup results were echoed by ◼ a Rasmussen poll, which found that only 29 percent of likely voters believe “the country is heading in the right direction.”

And Americans don’t trust Congress or the news media to help turn things around.

In modern political history, the GOP has won when it has embraced its conservative principles and articulated a message of freedom and enterprise. Freedom is the most inclusive message in politics. As the late Andrew Breitbart used to say, "If we can't sell Freedom, we suck."

POLITICO MISDIRECTS FROM OBAMA'S COLLAPSING NUMBERS - Mike Flynn/Breitbart

Politico's Mike Allen and Jim VandeHei stretched their writing wings and penned ◼ an editorial Thursday night on the looming collapse of the Republican party. Allen and VandeHai, whose day jobs are to undercut the GOP and its candidates, feign concern that the party isn't doing enough to appeal to voters who don't support the party. A more interesting story for the democrats-with-by-lines is the precipitous drop in support for Obama on every major issue.
According to Gallup, just 35% of Americans support Obama's handling of the economy. In early June, before Obama embarked on an extensive tour of speeches about the economy, 42% approved of his efforts. In other words, the more he talked about the economy, the less Americans approved of how he was handling it.
It isn't just the economy, though. Americans don't support how Obama is handling virtually every issue. Only 26% support Obama's handling of the federal deficit. Taxes? 36% approve. Foreign Affairs? 40%. Immigration? 39%. Health Care? 39%. Only on fighting terrorism (50%) and race relations (51%) does Obama win the backing of a majority, just, of Americans.
Obama basically has the backing of the Democrat base and no one else....

Allen and VandeHei would rather the GOP adopt the Democrat playbook and make explicit appeals based on identity politics. An healthy dash of racial politics with a pinch of feminist rhetoric. It is a recipe for disaster for the GOP. Which is, of course, why Politico is pushing it.

What’s behind Wikileaks’ latest release of “insurance” files?

Wikileaks has been known to release insurance files from time to time. These are dumps of encrypted files that can only be opened by those who hold the encryption key to do so. For one, it makes certain that information reaches the public in the event those who hold the information aren’t available to release it themselves. It can also be sort of a secret holder’s way of saying, “back off, or I’ll go all secret-exposing nuclear on you…” - Mandy Nagy/Le-gal In-sur-rec-tion

But Wikileaks’ latest release of such files has everybody talking. That’s because they’re almost 400 gigabytes large. That’s large.

So, folks are all wondering, what could possibly be in there?

In Egypt: Muslim Brotherhood Cancels Protests

Muslim Brotherhood claims snipers had been placed along routes of anti-military protests planned for capital. - Al Jazeera
Drudge:
Army Chief: New clashes won't be tolerated...
Cabinet to debate fate of Muslim Brotherhood...
Saudi prince fires celebrity TV preacher for Brotherhood link...
EU will 'urgently review' ties...
Egypt Stocks Tumble...
McCain: US has 'no credibility' in Arab world...
American al-Qaeda terrorist urges attacks on US diplomats...
Egyptian security forces arrest brother of al-Qaeda's top leader...
Iran says it has 18,000 nuclear centrifuges...
CAIRO MARCH CANCELLED

The Brotherhood’s Currency of Blood - Sultan Knish

Like all terrorist organizations, the Muslim Brotherhood has only one commodity to trade in. Blood. In the war of ideas for the future of Egypt, the Brotherhood had nothing to offer but the blood of its followers and victims. It has no new ideas. It has no record of accomplishments. It has no vision for the future except the same old corruption and authoritarianism cloaked in a deceptive Islamist garb....

For the wealthy titans of the Brotherhood, their followers are pawns to be disposed of, human shields for their political ambitions. The Muslim Brotherhood spent their blood generously during the clashes with Egyptian police the same way that Hamas and Hezbollah spill the blood of their own people.

What it bought with their blood is the outrage of the world. Terrorist organizations are one-trick ponies. They unleash horrifying violence, blame it on the brutality of the authorities and wait for the world to step in and apply pressure on whatever government they are trying to overthrow....

Egypt has only had peace by suppressing the Muslim Brotherhood. It will only have peace when the Muslim Brotherhood is suppressed once again. The last two years have shown that there can be no peace with the Muslim Brotherhood. In or out of power, the Brotherhood is murderous, intolerant and ruthlessly bent on absolute power.

Responding to the carnage with new calls for an end to foreign aid is an explicit form of collaboration in the Muslim Brotherhood’s atrocities and the surest way to ensure that they will be repeated. Egypt may deserve to lose its foreign aid, but issuing such calls now is handing a victory to the world’s worst terrorist organization and giving it every incentive to up the body count next time around....

Wars aren’t won through de-escalation, but through escalation. America lost in Afghanistan because it wasn’t willing to fight harder and bloodier than the Taliban. The Egyptian government has shown that it is willing to match the Muslim Brotherhood’s ruthlessness without backing down.

To reward the courage of the Egyptian soldiers and police who fought the Muslim Brotherhood in the streets by forcing their government to stand down and surrender to the terrorists who nearly turned Egypt into a second Iran is an unmitigated crime. It is a crime whose consequences will not only be felt by the women and Christians of Egypt, but by all of us.

The Snowden story, they both said, was a battle they were waging together, a fight against powers of surveillance that they both believe are a threat to fundamental American liberties. UPDATED

How Laura Poitras Helped Snowden Spill His Secrets - New York Times

She is not as expansive or carefree as Greenwald, which adds to their odd-couple chemistry. She is concerned about their physical safety. She is also, of course, worried about surveillance. “Geolocation is the thing,” she said. “I want to keep as much off the grid as I can. I’m not going to make it easy for them. If they want to follow me, they are going to have to do that. I am not going to ping into any G.P.S. My location matters to me. It matters to me in a new way that I didn’t feel before.”

There are lots of people angry with them and lots of governments, as well as private entities, that would not mind taking possession of the thousands of N.S.A. documents they still control. They have published only a handful — a top-secret, headline-grabbing, Congressional-hearing-inciting handful — and seem unlikely to publish everything, in the style of WikiLeaks. They are holding onto more secrets than they are exposing, at least for now.

“We have this window into this world, and we’re still trying to understand it,” Poitras said in one of our last conversations. “We’re not trying to keep it a secret, but piece the puzzle together. That’s a project that is going to take time. Our intention is to release what’s in the public interest but also to try to get a handle on what this world is, and then try to communicate that.”

The deepest paradox, of course, is that their effort to understand and expose government surveillance may have condemned them to a lifetime of it.

“Our lives will never be the same,” Poitras said. “I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to live someplace and feel like I have my privacy. That might be just completely gone.”

UPDATED:
Glenn Greenwald's partner detained at Heathrow for 9 hours - The Guardian
HELD UNDER UK TERRORISM ACT - NYT

“What’s amazing is this law, called the Terrorism Act, gives them a right to detain and question you about your activities with a terrorist organization or your possible involvement in or knowledge of a terrorism plot,” Mr. Greenwald said. “The only thing they were interested in was N.S.A. documents and what I was doing with Laura Poitras. It’s a total abuse of the law.” He added: “This is obviously a serious, radical escalation of what they are doing. He is my partner. He is not even a journalist.”

'Profound attack on press freedoms' - Glenn Greenwald/The Guardian

This is obviously a rather profound escalation of their attacks on the news-gathering process and journalism. It's bad enough to prosecute and imprison sources. It's worse still to imprison journalists who report the truth. But to start detaining the family members and loved ones of journalists is simply despotic. Even the Mafia had ethical rules against targeting the family members of people they felt threatened by. But the UK puppets and their owners in the US national security state obviously are unconstrained by even those minimal scruples.

If the UK and US governments believe that tactics like this are going to deter or intimidate us in any way from continuing to report aggressively on what these documents reveal, they are beyond deluded. If anything, it will have only the opposite effect: to embolden us even further. Beyond that, every time the US and UK governments show their true character to the world - when they prevent the Bolivian President's plane from flying safely home, when they threaten journalists with prosecution, when they engage in behavior like what they did today - all they do is helpfully underscore why it's so dangerous to allow them to exercise vast, unchecked spying power in the dark.

Pacific Justice Institute: Maintaining your constitutional privacy rights in the public schools

Simply fill out the attached one-page Notice with your basic info and signature, check all the boxes of rights you wish to assert, and give that page to your child’s teacher(s), principal, superintendent, and school board members.

Q: Why do I need this Notice of Privacy?
A: During the debate over the recently-enacted AB 1266, PJI became very concerned as we heard the bill’s supporters act as though constitutional privacy rights were not important. Specifically, transgender activists dismissed students’ privacy rights to share intimate spaces such as bathrooms, locker rooms, showers, and overnight school sleeping arrangements with members of only the same biological sex. It was also suggested that students today don’t care about their privacy as much, and thus their rights have diminished. PJI strongly disagrees with these characterizations, and we believe that one remedy on the path back toward sanity is affirmative assertion of these rights.

Q: Will submitting this Notice cancel out the bad effects of AB 1266?
A: Not quite. We can’t undo all the damage of AB 1266. But this Notice is a very important reminder to school personnel that no state or federal law can override privacy rights.

Q: What if school officials ignore this form and my child’s privacy rights are violated anyway?
A: If you feel that your child’s privacy rights are actually violated in the ways identified by this Notice, contact PJI immediately. Our full contact info is available at www.pji.org. We will be evaluating every violation carefully to determine the best candidate(s) for filing suit.

Find the form, at the link.

Common Core’s Data Mining Trojan Horse

Although high information Americans are becoming aware of the federal takeover of education through Common Core Standards, there seems to be little recognition yet that Common Core gives schools and third parties unprecedented access to students’ personal information. The federal government is acquiring a massive amount of data that can be sold to the highest bidders. This is an invasion of student and family privacy and a violation of our 4th Amendment rights. - Carole Hornsby Haynes, Ph.D.

...The range of data that can be collected includes hobbies, psychological evaluations, medical records, religious affiliation, political affiliation, family income, behavioral problems, disciplinary history, career goals, addresses, and bus stop times and locations.

Research Fellow Joy Pullmann at the Heartland Institute said the February 2013 report by the USDOE, “Promoting Grit, Tenacity, and Perseverance,” p. 44, reveals that Common Core's data mining includes “…using cameras to judge facial expressions, an electronic seat that judges posture, a pressure-sensitive computer mouse and a biometric wrap on kids’ wrists.”

...The Electronic Privacy Information Center in Washington is suing the USDOE in an effort to stop the illegal collection, storage, and sharing of student data. President and executive director Marc Rotenberg said that, “Once the data gets out there it has all sorts of ramifications. It weakens the [FERPA] structure Congress put in place because Congress understands that a lot of student data can be stigmatizing, keeping people out of jobs, for example.”

ParentalRights.org President Michael P. Farris maintains that personal privacy is being destroyed by those who want to track children. The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child has browbeaten nations to create a national database so that the government can track children, purportedly to protect their human rights.

Touting this centralized database system as a method to personalize student education is a naïve notion by the tech industry, which evidently thinks the massive problems of public education can be fixed with a bit of slick technical engineering.

Student data mining is merely the Trojan horse for a nationwide tracking system of our citizens. Our children are being used as guinea pigs while those complicit with this Marxist government enjoy their new found riches.

The Narrative Implodes

The web is rife with rumor that one side or the other is holding a scandal over the administration’s head. There is no proof that any such scandal exists. But given the parade of scandals already too numerous to mention it cannot wholly be discounted that some such exists. - Richard Fernandez/PJMedia Belmont Club

So Obama remains hunkered down in Martha’s Vineyard, emerging periodically from his vacation home, like a cuckoo from a clock, to make a statement no one appears to hear, playing for time. No one in the Beltway seems to know what line to take. Shall they restore democracy in Egypt by supporting the Muslims Bros, knowing they too will take their revenge on the generals and the Copts? Suspend aid to the Egyptian military and open the door to Russia, who might do a hat trick and scoop up Saudi Arabia into the bargain?

Choices. Choices. What happened to the good old days when one could vote “present”? The Beltway is reading the tea leaves for a sign. And all they’re getting is Jay Carney.

If Christians were burning mosques,
the world would be outraged

World Silent As Brotherhood Targets Coptic Christians - IBD Editorial