Thursday, December 31, 2009

Funeral Home Offers Drunk Drivers Free Burial

A Rome funeral home’s somewhat macabre pledge to offer a free burial to unlucky and irresponsible New Year’s Eve drivers has made national headlines. Motorists who plan to drink or use drugs have until noon today to sign a contract at Rome’s McGuire, Jennings, & Miller Funeral Home that would lead to what amounts to a free funeral if the driver is killed in a wreck tonight. After being posted at earlier this week, the story was also picked up by the New York Times, CNN, The Associated Press, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and others. It was also the most read story at with more than 7,100 views by late Wednesday.Barry Miller said that no one has ever signed the contract during the 10 years that the funeral home has offered the deal. “I use that contract as a tool to make people stop and think,” said Miller. Miller said he’s been associated with funeral homes across 13 states that have offered the drunk driver awareness campaign, but has never heard of anyone who actually signed the contract. The funeral home will provide the embalming services, the casket, the vault, a grave, limousine services, facilities and staff for a chapel or church service and a bronze marker, as well as 100 engraved thank you cards.

Barack Obama Gets An 'F' For Protecting Americans

There is no more solemn duty for an American commander-in-chief than the marshalling of “every element of our national power” – the phrase Obama himself used on Monday – to protect the people of the United States. In that key respect, Obama failed on Christmas Day, just as President George W. Bush failed on September 11th (though he succeeded in the seven years after that). Yes, the buck stops in the Oval Office. Obama may have rather smugly given himself a “B+” for his 2009 performance but he gets an F for the events that led to Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab boarding a Detroit-bound plane in Amsterdam with a PETN bomb sewn into his underpants. He said today that a “systemic failure has occurred”. Well, he’s in charge of that system. The picture we’re getting is more and more alarming by the hour. Here are some key elements to consider:

1. Abdulmutallab’s father spoke several times to the US Embassy in Abuja, Nigeria and visited a CIA officer there to tell him, apparently, that he feared his son was a jihadist being trained in Yemen. According to CNN, the CIA officer wrote up a report, which then sat in the CIA headquarters at Langley for several weeks without being disseminated to the rest of the intelligence community. This was not just a casual encounter. Again according to CNN, there were at least two face-to-face meetings, telephone calls and written correspondence with the father. If it’s true that the CIA sat on this then it beggars belief.

2. After 9/11, the huge bureaucracies of the Homeland Security Department and the Directorate of National Intelligence (DNI) were created. Inside the DNI, the National Counter Terrorism Center was created. These organisations were created to “connect the dots”. It may well be that the fault lay with NCTC and not the CIA – CIA spokesman George Little says here that “key biographical information” and information about “possible extremist connections in Yemen” was passed to NCTC. If NCTC knew about it, then did someone at the National Security Council within the White House? There’s a huge blame game beginning so we’ll no doubt know soon enough.

3. It wasn’t just the meeting with the father. According to CBS, “as early as August of 2009 the Central Intelligence Agency was picking up information on a person of interest dubbed ‘The Nigerian’ suspected of meeting with ‘terrorist elements’ in Yemen”. So there were other parts of the jigsaw that were not put together.

4. In his studied desire to be the unBush by responding coolly to events like this, Obama is dangerously close to failing as a leader. Yes, it is good not to shoot from the hip and make broad assertions without the facts. But Obama took three days before speaking to the American people, emerging on Monday in between golf and tennis games in Hawaii to deliver a rather tepid address that significantly underplayed what happened. He described Abdulmutallab as an “isolated extremist” who “allegedly tried to ignite an explosive device on his body” – phrases that indicate a legalistic, downplaying approach that alarms rather than reassures. Today’s words showed a lot more fire and desire to get on top of things – we’ll see whether Obama follows through with action. In the meantime, he went snorkelling.

5. There has been a pattern developing with the Obama administration trying to minimise terrorist attacks. We saw it with Abdul Hakim Mujahid Muhammad, a Muslim convert who murdered a US Army recruit in Little Rock, Arkansas in June. We saw it with Major Nidal Malik Hassan, a Muslim with Palestinian roots who slaughtered 13 at Fort Hood, Texas last month. In both cases, there were Yemen connections. Obama began to take the same approach with Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab. We’ll see whether this incident shakes him out of that complacency. Whether it’s called the war on terror or not, it’s clear that the US is at war against al-Qaeda and radical Islamists.

6. Guantanamo Bay. It seems that two of the Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) planners behind this attack were released from Guantanamo Bay during the Bush administration. That calls into question the competence of Bush administration officials but also the wisdom of closing Guantanamo Bay. How many other enemies of America and the West are going to be released back to the battlefield? As Mike Goldfarb asks: “Is the Obama administration seriously still considering sending some 90 Yemeni detainees now being held at Gitmo back to their country of origin, where al Qaeda are apparently running around with impunity?”

7. Janet Napolitano, Obama’s Homeland Security Chief, has been a disaster in this, exhibiting the kind of bureaucratic complacency that makes ordinary citizens want to go postal. On Sunday, she told CNN that “one thing I’d like to point out is that the system worked” and ABC News that “once the incident occurred, the system worked”. A day later, she grumbled that quoted “out of context” before reversing herself, telling NBC: “Our system did not work in this instance. No one is happy or satisfied with that. An extensive review is under way.” The “system worked” comment was a “heckuva job, Brownie” moment. Is she up to the job?

8. Will Obama hold individuals accountable? Briefing the press today behind a cloak of anonymity as a “Senior Administration Official”, Denis McDonough, NSC chief of staff (he gave the game away by saying he was from Minnesota), said that Obama “intends to demand accountability at the highest levels” before adding: ” It remains to be seen what that means exactly.” If heads don’t roll – and soon – then Obama’s words will seem hollow. It’s an opportunity for him to show some real steel.

9. There’s a continued, unfortunate tendency for everyone in Obamaland to preface every comment about something going wrong with a sideswipe against the Bush administration. On Sunday, Bill Burton, Deputy White House Press Secretary, briefed: “On the Sunday shows, Robert Gibbs and Secretary Napolitano made clear that we are pressing ahead with securing our nation against threats and our aggressive posture in the war with al Qaeda. We are winding down a war in Iraq that took our eye off of the terrorists that attacked us, and have dramatically increased our resources in Afghanistan and Pakistan where those terrorists are.” Why pat yourself on the back for “winding down a war in Iraq that took our eye off of the terrorists that attacked us” when the issue at hand is why the US government under Obama, er, took its eyes off a terrorist who did try to attack us and nearly killed 300 people? It’s bordering on the juvenile. Obama’s been president for a year now. It’s time for him to accept that things that happen as his responsibility, not Bush’s. It’s time for him to echo Ronald Reagan, who said over Iran-Contra: “I take full responsibility for my own actions and for those of my administration.”

10. Will there be US air attacks against targets in Yemen? Watch this space. It’s safe to say that Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula or AQAP, described to me by a senior intelligence official today as “officially recognised and in corporate terms a sanctioned franchise of al-Qaeda” that is plainly now seeking to become an international rather than just a regional Islamist player.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Hundreds Of Al-Qaeda Militants Planning Attacks From Yemen

Hundreds of al-Qaeda militants are planning terror attacks from Yemen, the country’s Foreign Minister said today. Abu Bakr al-Qirbi appealed for more help from the international community to help to train and equip counter-terrorist forces. His plea came after an al-Qaeda group based in Yemen claimed responsibility for the failed Christmas Day airliner bomb plot. Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, alleged to be behind the attempt to blow up an American-bound aircraft, spent time in Yemen with al-Qaeda and was in the country only days before the failed attack. Dr al-Qirbi said: “Of course there are a number of al-Qaeda operatives in Yemen and some of their leaders. We realise this danger. “They may actually plan attacks like the one we have just had in Detroit. There are maybe hundreds of them — 200, 300.” Dr al-Qirbi said it was the “responsibility” of countries with strong intelligence capabilities to warn states such as Yemen about the movements of terror suspects. The United States, Britain and the European Union could do a lot to improve Yemen’s response to militants on its own soil, he added. “We have to work in a very joint fashion in partnership to combat terrorism,” he said. “If we do, the problem will be brought under control. “There is support, but I must say it is inadequate. We need more training, we have to expand our counter-terrorism units and provide them with equipment and transportation like helicopters.” Mr Abdulmutallab is said to have told US agents that there were more people “just like him” ready to carry out attacks. An al-Qaeda group based in Yemen claimed responsibility yesterday for the failed attempt to bring down Northwest Airlines Flight 253 over Detroit as US President Barack Obama pledged to hunt down the plotters.Photographs apparently showing the underpants worn by alleged bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab and willed with explosives were broadcast today by ABC News. The American government pictures show the singed underwear with a six-inch packet of a high explosive called PETN sewn into the crotch, the US network reported. Mr Abdulmutallab was reported to be carrying about 80g of PETN, more than one-and-a-half times the amount carried by Richard Reid, the “shoe bomber”, in 2001 and enough to blow a hole in the side of an aircraft. Mr Abdulmutallab’s former tutors at University College London, where he was a student between 2005 and 2008, described him as “well-mannered, quietly spoken, polite and able” and said that he never gave any cause for concern. He was president of the institution’s Islamic society between 2006 and 2007. Nigerian-born Mr Abdulmutallab is being held at a federal prison in Michigan on a charge of trying to destroy an aircraft. He apparently wrote of his loneliness and struggle between liberalism and Islamic extremism in a series of postings on Facebook and in Islamic chatrooms, The Washington Post reported today. In January 2005, when he was attending boarding school, he wrote: “I have no one to speak too. No one to consult, no one to support me and I feel depressed and lonely. I do not know what to do. And then I think this loneliness leads me to other problems.” Alan Johnson, the Home Secretary, said it was unlikely that Mr Abdulmutallab acted alone and revealed that he was banned from entering Britain and placed on a “watch list” this year. Mr Johnson said that the alleged terrorist was refused a new visa and had been monitored since May after applying for a bogus course.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Obama Gives Foreign Cops New Police Powers In U.S.

Last week, as the nation's attention was focused on the Senate's debate on health care reform, President Barack Obama signed an amendment to Executive Order 12425 . It is only one paragraph long and few would pay much attention to what its effect is. But it has enormous implications. Here's the background. Generally, foreign military and police organizations are restricted from operating in the United States without oversight by the CIA, FBI, Departments of Defense, State, Homeland Security or though some other arrangement that makes such operations subject to U. S. authority. In 1983, President Ronald Reagan signed Executive Order 12425 that allowed the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) to operate in the United States but generally subject to the same laws that restrict CIA, FBI and other Federal, state and local law enforcement agencies. Specifically, INTERPOL agents were not immune from being prosecuted for violating American laws. One of those laws is 42 U.S.C. § 1983 which prohibits law enforcement authorities from violating an American's constitutionally protected rights. Presumably, that does not apply to INTERPOL as a result of this Executive Order President Obama has just signed. The effect of Obama's amendment is to give them immunity from violating any American law. Agents of INTERPOL will now presumably have the same protection that foreign diplomats have while in this country. It is that immunity that has been used by other countries to spy on the United States.This arrangement, for example, now would make it possible for an American citizen being seized by INTERPOL agents and taken out of the country outside the reach of American courts and the rights they would enforce, most notably habeas corpus or the right for a judge to review a person's detention. The extent to which INTERPOL would be exempt from American extradition laws now becomes questionable. Likewise, INTERPOL agents could seize property, including firearms, without search warrants and conduct other warrantless searches. They could break into homes and businesses to search and seize records without fear of prosecution, either criminally or civilly. In short, the powers that INTERPOL would have by being immune to U. S. law is virtually the same as martial law provides. Moreover, INTERPOL's files and records are immune from U. S. court orders, including search warrants and civil subpoenas. And INTERPOL is protected from Freedom Of Information inquires from American media. Many questions remain unanswered as a result of Obama's action. Some will contend that his order does not change the status quo because there are sufficient safe-guards extant in American law. But the order makes INTERPOL immune from prosecution under those laws so how efffective they would be against abuse by INTERPOL becomes a question. So why would an American president grant such extensive powers to a foreign organization? And foreign INTERPOL is. It is housed in Lyon, France and is governed by an Executive Committee elected by the 123 member nations though the General Assembly. But that group meets only once a year. The real power is exercised by thirteen members of the Executive Committee. It is headed by KHOO Boon Hui of Singapore. There is not an American on the Executive Committee. As best we can determine President Obama's actions have not been reviewed by Congress and certainly have not been debated publically.

First Ever Heads Of Missions Conference At The Ministry Of Foreign Affairs

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs, headed by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Avigdor Liberman, will host a conference next week (27-31 December) for Israeli Heads of Missions. At the conference, Israel’s ambassadors and consuls general serving throughout the world will discuss broad diplomatic and strategic issues. This is the first time a conference for all of Israel’s Heads of Missions has been held. The idea is to facilitate direct dialogue with the country’s leaders, mutual updates on major diplomatic issues, and a discussion of action plans to deal with the challenges awaiting the State of Israel in the international arena in the coming year, including the Iranian threat. A major part of the conference will be devoted to examining Israel’s integration and potential contribution to items on the world agenda such as the environment, renewable energy, water and sewage treatment, and new technologies.The participants will discuss how to develop and promote Israel’s foreign relations and its image as a country that contributes to creating a better future for everyone. They will also talk about the rise of new global powers and how to deal with them. On Monday, 28 December, the Heads of Missions will be guests of President Shimon Peres at the President’s Residence. Foreign Minister Liberman will open the conference. Other officials invited to attend include Prime Minister Benyamin Natanyahu, Defense Minister Ehud Barak, Minister of Intelligence and Atomic Energy Dan Meridor, Bank of Israel Governor Stanley Fischer, and senior officials of Israel’s diplomatic and security community. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs plans to make the Heads of Missions Conference an annual event, as it is in other leading foreign ministries in the world.

Monday, December 28, 2009

AC/DC Concert In Doubt Over Birds

Aussie rockers AC/DC could have to cancel a sold-out concert because their big sound poses a danger to rare birds. Animal rights campaigners are threatening legal action if the veteran band goes ahead with a gig planned for Wels airport in Austria in May. Hans Uhl of BirdLife said birds nesting in the area at the time would be threatened by anthems such as Highway To Hell and You Shook Me All Night Long. "The second biggest colony of curlews in Upper Austria and various other ground-nesting birds must not become endangered," Mr Uhl said. Tickets for the event - which sees the group return after playing to a sold-out crowd at Vienna’s Ernst Happel Stadium last May - sold out after going on sale earlier this month.The event's 80,000 tickets were sold out within hours. In Australia, the band's Melbourne concerts at Etihad Stadium in February had been in doubt after AFL objections earlier this year. The AFL said the dates would clash with a possible pre-season NAB Cup match. But the signing of a new contract between the league and the stadium has allowed AC/DC to go ahead with the three Melbourne shows on February 11, 13 and 15. The band sold 180,000 tickets for those shows.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Tighter Airport Security Expected After Attempted Terrorism

Tighter security is in effect at the Minneapolis- St. Paul International Airport after what federal authorities call "an attempted act of terrorism" aboard a Delta flight from Amsterdam to Detroit Friday. "We heard a loud pop, and a bit of smoke, some flames and yelling and screaming," said Illiaa Schelke, a passenger aboard Flight 253. Authorities say a passenger from Nigeria tried to detonate a mixture of powder and liquid. Passengers saw a glow, then smoke, and smelled something burning. "There was one guy, who sat on the other side, the right side of the wing because this was on the left side of the wing, and he jumped over the other people and he took care of it," said passenger Peter Smith.The man was tackled to the ground. The plane was met by emergency vehicles as it landed. Passengers saw the suspect being removed. "His hands were wrapped in bandages and he was handcuffed to the railing of the bed," said one passenger. The Transportation Security Administration released a statement Christmas evening warning travelers to brace themselves for tighter security. They told reporters passengers may notice additional screening measures put into place to ensure the safety of the traveling public on domestic and international flights. That could mean longer lines and waits for holiday travelers heading back home this weekend. A spokesman for the Metropolitan Airports Commission told reporters Friday it will step up a police presence beginning immediately with officers being move visible. In addition, they will deploy bomb-detection dogs to roam the terminals.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

How the Terrorist Stole Christmas

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Obama's Christmas Tree Graced By Chairman Mao, A Transvestite & Obama On Mount Rushmore

The face of China's Mao Zedong, blamed for the deaths of 50 to 80 million of his countrymen, graces an ornament on the White House Christmas tree for President Obama's first holiday season in residence. According to, the tree also features an ornament adding Obama to Mount Rushmore. The images, such as the "transvestite" character "Hedda Lettuce," are attributed to the work of Simon Doonan, creative director of Barney's New York, whose previous projects have included Margaret Thatcher as a dominatrix and Dan Quayle as a ventriloquist's dummy, according to the New York Times."Why let a holiday season come between the White House and making some political statements," Big Government's report asked. "These photos of ornaments on the White House Christmas tree in the Blue Room were taken just days ago. Of course, Mao has his place in the White House." The Times noted the White House's choice of Doonan to decorate this year was confirmed by volunteers and florists who gathered to install annual displays. The Times reported Doonan's work in the White House "certainly … will be less controversial than Mr. Doonan's displays for Barneys for more than two decades, which have alternatively fascinated and horrified holiday shoppers." The report said previous holiday themes have included Andy Warhol and Sigmund Freud.
"And, so soon after collecting the Nobel Peace Prize, why wouldn't the White House have an ornament superimposing President Obama onto Mt. Rushmore," said Big Government's "Capitol Confidential" column. On the website's forum page, one participant commented, "It's a 'Holiday Tree' not a Christmas tree. These people don't have any real morals so they might as well score some points with the moonbats." The report follows a commentary from legendary martial arts champion, actor and columnist Chuck Norris on Obama's penchant for rejecting Christianity and its symbols. Norris wrote in his recent column that Obama has "sarcastically belittled America's Judeo-Christian heritage and degraded its adherents with trite remarks typical of any atheistic antagonist."He cited statements by Obama, including, "Whatever we were, we are no longer a Christian nation," and "The Sermon on the Mount [is] a passage that is so radical that our own defense department wouldn't survive its application." Obama also declared publicly in Turkey last April, "We do not consider ourselves a Christian nation." Norris wrote, "President Obama has enabled an anti-Christian agenda unlike any former president by revising America's religious history, minimizing the role of religion today, passing secular-progressive legislation and turning a blind eye to issues like atheists' lawsuit to remove the national motto ('In God We Trust') off of the walls of the new Capitol Visitors Center in Washington, D.C., or the ACLU's disposal of Veteran memorial crosses in the Mojave Desert and at Mount Soledad. "Every time President Obama has had an opportunity to stand for Christianity in any way, he has not only denied it but disdained it," he said.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Grandma Got Run Over By Obama

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Lawyer Files Lawsuit Against Obama Administration

Conservative attorney Larry Klayman filed a lawsuit against the White House Monday demanding that it release information on healthcare meetings with lobbyists. The lawsuit, filed in federal district court, charges the Obama administration violated the Federal Advisory Committee Act and the Freedom of Information Act by not providing relevant information about closed-door meetings on healthcare policy. Klayman’s suit refers to reports of meetings between administration officials on the "Health Reform De Facto Advisory Committee" and lobbyists representing the pharmaceutical industry, Planned Parenthood, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, AARP and others. Klayman said the advisory committee has been tasked to design a policy that “is intended, at its endpoint, to socialize the American health care system.” The suit demands that the White House release the minutes and final results of the meetings as well as the names and addresses of all people involved. Should the White House not comply, “Public confidence in the integrity of the presidency and the executive branch as a whole has been and will be harmed” because of the “appearance that the president and the Obama administration as a whole are under the influence of” those groups listed in the suit, Klayman wrote in the criminal complaint. The White House has not yet responded to a request for comment. The lawsuit was filed just hours after the Senate vote to advance its version of healthcare reform legislation.The administration’s meetings with various interest groups have raised questions among conservatives and liberals regarding their influence on the outcome of the legislation. Most recently, some observers questioned if the White House’s agreement with the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America on prescription drug costs helped sour senators on an amendment to the Senate bill allowing the “reimportation” of cheaper prescription drugs into the U.S. The amendment failed to pass last week. Klayman, who founded the nonprofit group Judicial Watch, gained notoriety for filing multiple lawsuits against the Clinton administration in the 1990s. The lawyer also sued the Bush administration to uncover more information about Vice President Dick Cheney’s energy task force. “Because time is short, we have to get this information out before the [conclusion of the healthcare votes],” Klayman told The Hill. “There’s going to be a lot of wheeling and dealing before the month ends.” In the lawsuit, Klayman alleges that he was “illegally detained” by Secret Service agents at the front gate of the White House after he hand-delivered a letter to agents addressed to President Barack Obama requesting that the administration reply to his information requests. Klayman says that agents “berated, harassed and threatened” him for his "public advocacy.” He says that the agents eventually delivered the letter to Obama but that his request for information “was later denied in its entirety.” Klayman ran for Senate in Florida as a Republican in 2004, losing in the primary.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Soldiers To Support Behind Scenes During Iraq's Elections

With the Iraqi national elections approaching, U.S. Soldiers are preparing to support the Iraqi Army and Iraqi Police while remaining in the background. The Soldiers of the 1st Battalion, 15th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Heavy Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division, who are responsible for assisting Iraqi forces in and around Najaf, Iraq, take that mission very seriously. The actual coordination and facilitation of the elections for Najaf has been organized by the Najaf Iraqi Police and the 3rd Battalion, 30th Brigade, 8th Iraqi Army, said Capt. Neil Penttila, commander, C Company, 1st Bn., 15th Inf. Regt., whose company is currently stationed at Forward Operating Base Endeavor outside Najaf. "We try to stay in the background whenever necessary," Penttila said. "It's the Iraqi plan. We're incorporated into that plan as a safety net. We go on their command."During the elections, the U.S. battalion will be providing enablers to the Iraqi Army and Iraqi Police such as intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance assets. They will also be ready to provide support at the Iraqi commander's request. As part of a reconnaissance mission, Soldiers of C Company traveled to various polling sites in Najaf, Dec. 3, recording their locations and ensuring they will be accessible during the elections. Penttila said he feels confident in the capabilities of the Iraqi Security Forces in Najaf, and that his confidence extends to his Soldiers' readiness if they are called.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Fraud Peddling Scientists Hate America

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Kansas Girl Says 'Superman' Lifted Vehicle Off Her

A Kansas mother is praising a neighbor as a "Superman" after her 6-year-old daughter told her he somehow found the strength to lift a car off her. Kristen Hough said Friday that her daughter Ashlyn was treated for minor injuries afterward. Hough's 32-year-old neighbor Nick Harris says he saw a vehicle back out of a driveway and over Ashlyn. He says he doesn't know how he managed to lift the Mercury sedan off the child.There were no witnesses to confirm the incident last week. But Ottawa police say Ashlyn told them it happened. Lt. Adam Weingartner says he didn't have anything to dispute the account. Weingartner says it appeared Ashlyn wasn't pinned under the car long enough to be seriously hurt. Ottawa is 50 miles southwest of Kansas City, Mo.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Allow Afghan Women To Give Massages

A Swedish army gender adviser in Afghanistan has taken the Armed Forces to task for only employing local men to perform massages on troops stationed in Mazar-E-Sharif. In a written internal document submitted from Swedish headquarters at Camp Northern Lights, Gender Field Adviser Captain Krister Fahlstedt of Afghanistan force FS17 took exception to an army contract specifying that on-base massage services should be provided exclusively by men. "The agreement specifies, with no further explanation, that the physiotherapists (masseurs/masseuses) should be men," wrote Fahlstedt in his November submission. The captain's investigations showed that the recommendation was followed to the letter, as two men were brought in to perform massages. "It is the opinion of FS17 that there are no reasonable grounds for gender to be one of the profile requirements," he wrote.Fahlstedt further stressed that his force was committed to strengthening the position of women in society by helping create the conditions in which they could become self-sufficient. "It's not important as such whether women eventually get the job, what's important is that there's equality of opportunity and they are treated on the same terms as men," Fahlstedt told reporters. "Contracts of this kind must always be gender neutral, and this is actually the only time I've seen an army contract worded in this way," he added. Fahlstedt, active in both the Centre Party and the Swedish Federation for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights (RFSL), returned earlier this month to Sweden from service with the FS17 force. He remains hopeful that the army will rectify the situation and begin considering the possibility of employing Afghan masseuses. "I haven't received a formal response yet but I have been leda n n o n s to believe that the necessary changes will be made to the contract," he told reporters.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Minnesotans For Global Warming Song (If We Had Some Global Warming)

US, Poland Sign Deal On Stationing GIs

U.S. and Polish officials signed a deal Friday to regulate the stationing of American troops and military equipment in the eastern European country, paving the way for a U.S. military presence in the heart of the former Soviet bloc. The step is a prerequisite for the deployment of U.S. Patriot missiles to Poland, which is expected early next year. It is also to serve as the legal framework for a possible future missile defense site. Defense Minister Bogdan Klich hailed the so-called status of forces agreement, which he said will increase Poland's security and strengthen U.S.-Polish military cooperation. "It's an important moment in the cooperation between the U.S. and Poland," Klich said, adding the deal "reflects our interests well." The signing came after 15 months of negotiations, with the stickiest points revolving around issues of taxation and discussions over which country would have the right to try any U.S. soldiers who commit crimes off-base. The two sides agreed that any wrongdoing committed by a U.S. soldier off base and off duty would fall under Polish jurisdiction, Poland's deputy defense minister, Stanislaw Komorowski, told reporters.Polish courts would also decide on any U.S. request to transfer a case to American jurisdiction. He said it is rare for the U.S. to grant such powers to a host nation and called it a success for Poland's negotiators. However, U.S. companies supporting the base will only be subject to U.S. taxation, Komorowski said. Wary of neighboring Russia, Poland welcomes stronger military ties with the U.S. Still, it's very sensitive about sharing jurisdiction over parts of its territory - a legacy of the stationing of Soviet troops in Poland during the communist era. Washington plans to deploy a U.S. Patriot anti-missile battery that will be used for training the Polish military. The garrison, in a yet unnamed location, is to eventually have about 100 U.S. military personnel. The Patriot garrison was a Polish condition for a 2008 deal to host long-range missile defense interceptors. The deal, which was struck by the Bush administration, angered Russia and was later reconfigured under President Barack Obama's administration. Under the Obama plan, Poland would host a different type of missile defense interceptors as part of a more mobile system and at a later date, probably not until 2018.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

UN Security Stops Journalist’s Questions About ClimateGate

Does Obama Believe In Winning?

Friday, December 11, 2009

Closed Chrysler Dealers To Drive Obama's Eligibility

Two lawyers have joined forces to assemble a case challenging in U.S. bankruptcy court the federal government's use of Troubled Asset Relief Program funds to bail out Chrysler and in doing so may have created a scenario that finally will bring to a head the issue of Barack Obama's eligibility to be president. The attorneys are Leo Donofrio, who has launched cases directly challenging Obama's eligibility, and Stephen Pidgeon, who also has worked on the issue. Their new case questions the authority by which the federal government and administration officials intervened in the auto industry, specifically allocating some $8 billion-plus to Chrysler, which later was forgiven. Pidgeon told reporters the plaintiffs in the case are former Chrysler dealers who lost their businesses as part of the "restructuring" of the automobile company. They have been damaged with the loss of their businesses, and the case alleges the Obama administration, through its use of TARP money, influenced Chrysler's outcome. Donofrio told reporters the core issue is the disbursement of TARP funds to the auto maker that were intended to help banks and financial institutions. The previous Treasury secretary had indicated such expenditures were not appropriate, and, in fact, a congressional effort to authorize the expenditures failed, he said. So, along with a bankruptcy court challenge, a "quo warranto" case is being filed in Washington, D.C., demanding to know by what authority administration officials set up the financial arrangements with Chrysler and handed out taxpayer money. part of the demand for information about the authority used, Donofrio confirmed, there will be questions about Obama's eligibility to be president. Donofrio contends that since by Obama's own admission his father never was a U.S. citizen, Obama was born a dual citizen. The framers of the Constitution, he argues, did not consider a dual citizen to be a "natural born citizen" as required for the presidency. The burden, then, would shift to Obama and his administration officials to document their constitutional authority for their decisions and their handling of taxpayer money.If the president cannot document his eligibility to occupy the Oval Office, his presidential task force had no authority to act at all, the case contends. Pidgeon told WND the plaintiffs in the case are the former Chrysler dealers, and their interests will be paramount. The goal is "to get them restored," he said, and "put them back where they were before their contracts were rejected." "Our clients are not in this action as 'birthers,'" he said, citing a term used for people who question Obama's constitutional eligibility. "Our clients are here to seek redress for wrongs." But the case may open doors that have been closed in other disputes over Obama's eligibility. Most previous cases, at one point or another, have been dismissed because the plaintiffs do not have "standing" – they have not suffered direct injury for which they have a reasonable expectation of seeking redress. In the case of the dealers, they have suffered financial loss because of circumstances that developed with the government's intervention in the auto industry. According to columnist Devvy Kidd, the case is "complicated." She explained a "quo warranto may be issued from the United States District Court for the District of Columbia in the name of the United States against a person who within the District of Columbia usurps, intrudes into, or unlawfully holds or exercises, a franchise conferred by the United States or a public office of the United States, civil or military." That means quo warranto applies not just to eligibility but to the "exercise" of authority through public office, she said. She noted the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals already has described as "interesting and unresolved" some of the questions raised in a related case that did not involve the dealers. In that case, once again, the appellants did not have "standing." "The Chrysler dealers have the requisite injury – loss of their franchises – to meet the standing requirements," she wrote. The formal paperwork in the filings is expected to be submitted to the courts within days on a motion to reconsider the bankruptcy court's decisions and the quo warranto pertaining to the authority of Obama and his appointees.Journalists previously have reported on many cases brought over the issue of Obama's eligibility, including one at the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that alleges Congress failed in its constitutional duties by refusing to investigate the eligibility of Obama to be president. The case is being handled by attorney Mario Apuzzo for lead plaintiff Charles F. Kerchner Jr. and others against Obama, the U.S., Congress, the Senate, House of Representatives and former Vice President Dick Cheney along with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. The case focuses on the alleged failure of Congress to follow the Constitution. That document, the lawsuit states, "provides that Congress must fully qualify the candidate 'elected' by the Electoral College Electors." The case asserts "when Obama was born his father was a British subject/citizen and Obama himself was the same." The Constitution also provides, the lawsuit says, "If the president-elect shall have failed to qualify, then the vice president elect shall act as president until a president shall have qualified." The Obama eligibility cases have cited Article 2, Section 1 of the Constitution, which states, "No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President." Some of the lawsuits question whether he was actually born in Hawaii, as he insists. If he was born out of the country, Obama's American mother, the suits contend, was too young at the time of his birth to confer American citizenship to her son under the law at the time. Other challenges have focused on Obama's citizenship through his father, a Kenyan subject to the jurisdiction of the United Kingdom at the time of his birth, thus making him a dual citizen. The cases contend the framers of the Constitution excluded dual citizens from qualifying as natural born. Further, others question his citizenship by virtue of his attendance in Indonesian schools during his childhood and question on what passport did he travel to Pakistan three decades ago. Adding fuel to the fire is Obama's persistent refusal to release documents that could provide answers and the appointment – at a cost confirmed to be at least $1.7 million – of myriad lawyers to defend against all requests for his documentation. While his supporters cite an online version of a "Certification of Live Birth" from Hawaii as his birth verification, critics point out such documents actually were issued for children not born in the state.The ultimate questions remain unaddressed to date: Is Obama a natural born citizen, and, if so, why hasn't documentation been provided? And, of course, if he is not, what does it mean to the 2008 election or the U.S. Constitution if it is revealed that there has been a violation? News outlets also has reported on another case that was dismissed by U.S. District Judge David Carter in California. It also now is heading to the appeals level. Among documentation not yet available for Obama is his kindergarten records, Punahou school records, Occidental College records, Columbia University records, Columbia thesis, Harvard Law School records, Harvard Law Review articles, scholarly articles from the University of Chicago, passport, medical records, files from his years as an Illinois state senator, his Illinois State Bar Association records, any baptism records and his adoption records. Because of the dearth of information about Obama's eligibility, World Net Daily founder Joseph Farah has launched a campaign to raise contributions to post billboards asking a simple question: "Where's the birth certificate?" The campaign followed a petition that has collected more than 480,000 signatures demanding proof of his eligibility, the availability of yard signs raising the question and the production of permanent, detachable magnetic bumper stickers asking the question. The "certification of live birth" posted online and widely touted as "Obama's birth certificate" does not in any way prove he was born in Hawaii, since the same "short-form" document is easily obtainable for children not born in Hawaii. The true "long-form" birth certificate – which includes information such as the name of the birth hospital and attending physician – is the only document that can prove Obama was born in Hawaii, but to date he has not permitted its release for public or press scrutiny. Oddly, though congressional hearings were held to determine whether Sen. John McCain was constitutionally eligible to be president as a "natural born citizen," no controlling legal authority ever sought to verify Obama's claim to a Hawaiian birth.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Puppet Show Caught In Stimulus Spending Spat

A Minneapolis puppet show is caught up in the controversy over how some of the billions in economic stimulus dollars have been spent. Some members of Congress targeted the Heart of the Beast Theater as an example of wasteful spending. The theater, located on East Lake Street for 37 years, received a $25,000 economic stimulus grant. Kathee Foran, executive director of the theater, said the grant for which the theater applied had to be tied to a specific job. Foran said the money was used to save the job of their community program director--who duties include booking shows outside the theater that keep the puppet artists employed.Foran said, "An employed artist is as valuable as an employed computer programmer, employed plumber, employed contractor, employed construction worker." But Phil Krinkie of the Taxpayers League of Minnesota doesn't see it that way. Krinkie said, "A person benefits from this. A small group of people may go watch this show, a puppet show, that's nice, but is it necessary?" The Heart of the Beast theater employs the equivalent of nine full-time workers. They all took a big pay cut earlier this year when the recession forced the theater to close down for six weeks. The stimulus money is one thing helping them stay afloat now.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Obama's Approval Rating Lowest of Any President at This Point

President Obama's job approval rating has fallen to 47 percent in the latest Gallup poll, the lowest ever recorded for any president at this point in his term. Jimmy Carter, Gerald Ford and even Richard Nixon all had higher approval ratings 10-and-a-half months into their presidencies. Obama's immediate predecessor, President George W. Bush, had an approval rating of 86 percent, or 39 points higher than Obama at this stage. Bush's support came shortly after he launched the war in Afghanistan in response to the terror attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said he doesn't "put a lot of stock" in the survey by Gallup, which has conducted presidential approval polls since 1938, longer than any other organization. "If I was a heart patient and Gallup was my EKG, I'd visit my doctor," Gibbs said in response to questions from Fox. "I'm sure a six-year-old with a Crayon could do something not unlike that. I don't put a lot of stake in, never have, in the EKG that is daily Gallup trend. I don't pay a lot of attention to the meaninglessness of it." Gallup Editor-in-Chief Frank Newport responded: "Gibbs said that if Gallup were his EKG, he would visit his doctor. Well, I think the doctor might ask him what's going on in his life that would cause his EKG to be fluctuating so much. There is, in fact, a lot going on at the moment -- the health care bill, the jobs summit, the Copenhagen climate conference and Afghanistan."The new low comes as Obama struggles to overhaul the nation's health care system and escalates America's involvement in the Afghanistan war. He is also presiding over a deep and prolonged recession, with unemployment at 10 percent. "There's no doubt Obama's 47 percent is mainly a result of the continuing bad economy," said Larry Sabato, director of the University of Virginia's Center for Politics. "But there is also a growing concern about government spending and debt, and a sense that Obama is trying to do too much, too soon." He added: "President Obama has reason to be concerned about his ratings. Even in tough times, presidents have usually been able to stay above the critical 50 percent mark in the first year, when the public is most inclined to give the new incumbent the benefit of the doubt." Obama officials have not always shown disdain for Gallup. During last year's presidential campaign, Obama adviser David Plouffe, trumpeted "the latest Gallup poll" to reporters because it showed that 53 percent of Americans did not find Obama Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, "trustworthy." When Gallup began taking presidential approval polls 71 years ago, Franklin Roosevelt had been president for more than five years. During his remaining time in office, his job approval rating never fell below 48 percent. The next 11 presidents, both Democrats and Republicans, all had higher job approval ratings than Obama at this stage of their tenure. Their ratings were:
-- George W. Bush, 86 percent
-- Bill Clinton, 52 percent
-- George H.W. Bush, 71 percent
-- Ronald Reagan, 49 percent
-- Jimmy Carter, 57 percent
-- Gerald Ford, 52 percent
-- Richard Nixon, 59 percent
-- Lyndon Johnson, 74 percent
-- John Kennedy, 77 percent
-- Dwight Eisenhower, 69 percent
-- Harry Truman, 49 percent
The poll is an average of a three-day tracking of 1,529 adults taken Dec. 4-6. It has a margin of error of 3 percentage points.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Fidel Castro's Son Elected To Baseball Federation

A son of former Cuban leader Fidel Castro's has been elected one of three vice presidents of the International Baseball Federation after a vote Sunday in Lausanne, Switzerland, Cuban sports officials said. Antonio Castro, a 39-year-old doctor, was elected to the post along with Japan's Kazuhiro Tawa and Mexico's Alonso Perez. Ricardo Fraccari of Italy was selected the federation's new president. The IBAF administers baseball outside the major pro leagues.
Antonio Castro
Fidel Castro, who stepped down as Cuba's president in February 2008, is a lifelong fanatic of sports - particularly baseball. His son has been vice president of the Cuban Baseball Federation since 2000, and also is the national team doctor. The Cuban Sports Institute called the younger Castro's election "a vote of confidence in Cuban sports in general and especially in baseball on the island."

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Take Back Al Gore's Oscar

No, it wouldn't do anything for the environment. But two Hollywood conservatives (yes, there are some) have called upon the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to rescind the prestigious, profitable gold Oscar statuette that it gave ex-Vice President Al Gore et al two years ago for the environmental movie "An Inconvenient Truth." Roger L. Simon and Lionel Chetwynd, both Academy members, are among a small, meandering pack of known political conservatives still believed to be on the loose in the liberal bastion of movie-making. In 2007, Hollywood's Academy sanctified Gore's cinematic message of global warming with its famous statue, enriched his earnings by $100,000 per 85-minute appearance and helped elevate the Tennesseean's profile to win the Nobel Peace Prize despite losing the election battle of 2000 to a Texan and living in a large house with lots of energy-driven appliances. Chetwynd and Simon were prompted to make their hopeless demand this week by the leak two weeks ago of a blizzard of British academic e-mails purporting to show that scientists at the University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit systematically falsified data to document the appearance of global warming in recent years. The university is reportedly investigating the claims, which added dry fuel to the never-ending political debate over whether the Earth really is warming as a result of human activity or if it's just normal natural cycles and the debate is what's heated. The demand to withdraw Gore's award provides yet another opportunity to argue. The startling leak comes at an inconvenient time just before next week's United Nations' climate change meeting that will cause an immense carbon footprint with thousands of people flying up or over to Denmark to talk about saving the environment. These airplanes will include Air Force One with its primary passenger President Obama, who's returning to the Copenhagen scene where he didn't help win the 2016 Summer Olympics for Chicago, which could do with a little global warming at this time of year.Simon, a screenwriter who is also chief executive officer of Pajamas Media, a network of conservative online blogs, conceded he knew of no precedent for the Academy withdrawing a previously-awarded Oscar, despite decades of Hollywood hijinks and worse. But, he added, "I think they should rescind this one." The controversial leaked documents have been assembled here by Pajamas Media and the Competitive Enterprise Institute. The joint demand by Simon and filmmaker Chetwynd is available on video here. The television news-watching world in America has not learned much about the so-called Climategate scandal because it has not really been mentioned on the air except for a notorious cable news channel named for a three-lettered, wily, wild animal that often seems to revel in debunking liberal shibboleths. Network news programs have been far more concerned with the obviously more important White House party-crasher story involving a couple of formally-dressed phonies. The falsified documents do not come up in Gore interview excerpts published late last night here by Politico's John F. Harris and Mike Allen. This week White House Press Secy. Robert Gibbs claimed that global warming was no longer in dispute by most people. But a subsequent Rasmussen Reports poll of Americans finds only one in four adults believe most scientists agree on the topic. And while only 20% claim to have followed the leaked e-mail story Very Closely, nearly 60% believe it is at least somewhat likely that scientists have falsified environmental data to support their own global warming beliefs and theories.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Barack Obama Ecstasy Pills Hit Streets: Approval Ratings High

President Barack Obama's approval rating may be hovering in the 50 percent range, but that doesn't mean America's Commander-in-Chief isn’t catching on with new constituents. There is now a line of Ecstasy pills made in the image of the 44th president of the United States, according to Texas police who have snatched a batch off the streets. Ecstasy is known for a sense of elation, diminished feelings of fear and anxiety, and ability to induce a sense of intimacy with others. Perhaps a good Election Day strategy to get out the vote?A stash of the brightly colored tablets was found Monday during a south Texas traffic stop. Police in Palmview detained a driver after finding black tar heroin, cocaine, marijuana and several Ecstasy pills in the back of his car. The drugs look like a "vitamin for kids," police spokesman Lenny Sanchez said. Police say that other Ecstasy pills they found were made to look like the cartoon characters Homer Simpson and the Smurfs. The 22-year-old driver is expected to face felony drug possession counts. Palmview is near the border with Mexico. No word on the driver's political affiliation.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Rumsfeld Cries Foul on Obama Claim Troop Requests For Afghanistan Were Denied

Former Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld on Wednesday lashed out at President Obama for claiming the Bush administration rebuffed commanders' repeated requests for more troops in Afghanistan. In a rare break in his public silence since leaving the Pentagon, Rumsfeld rejected the claim as a "bald misstatement" and "disservice" that cannot go unanswered. "Such a bald misstatement, at least as it pertains to the period I served as secretary of defense, deserves a response," Rumsfeld said in a written statement. "I am not aware of a single request of that nature between 2001 and 2006." The president leveled the charge in his speech Tuesday night outlining his plan to send 30,000 more U.S. troops into Afghanistan. In his speech, Obama gave a detailed history of the Afghanistan war starting with the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks. He argued that the Iraq war drew needed resources away from Afghanistan, allowing the situation to deteriorate since 2003. "Throughout this period, our troop levels in Afghanistan remained a fraction of what they were in Iraq," Obama said. "Commanders in Afghanistan repeatedly asked for support to deal with the reemergence of the Taliban, but these reinforcements did not arrive."White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs explained Wednesday that Obama was referring to requests that came in during 2008, and suggested Rumsfeld was on thin ice with his criticism. "I will let Secretary Rumsfeld explain ... whether he thinks that the effort in Afghanistan was sufficiently resourced during his tenure as secretary of defense," he said. But if Obama were referring to the 2008 period, he would seem to have been pointing the finger at his own secretary of defense, Robert Gates, who served in the same position in the previous administration. Rumsfeld said in his statement the White House should make public any such requests if they exist to back up the allegation. "The president's assertion does a disservice to the truth and, in particular, to the thousands of men and women in uniform who have fought, served and sacrificed in Afghanistan," Rumsfeld said. He urged Congress to review the claim in the upcoming debate to "determine exactly what requests were made, who made them, and where and why in the chain of command they were denied." Unlike former Vice President Dick Cheney, Rumsfeld has kept largely out of the public eye since leaving the administration after the 2006 mid-term elections in which Republicans suffered huge losses, largely the result of setbacks in the Iraq war.

Jesus Christ Called For Jury Duty

Jesus Christ was called for jury duty this week in Jefferson County. Court officials were skeptical at first when on Monday a potential juror submitted a name change form with "Jesus Christ" on it. But the 59-year-old Birmingham woman, who previously went by Dorothy Lola Killingworth, assured the presiding judge that was her name. "It raised eyebrows, so I asked her if that were truly her name," Circuit Court Judge Scott Vowell said. "She assured me that it was. She had her name changed in the Probate Court, and she presented her driver's license." Christ was sent to Judge Clyde Jones's courtroom for a criminal case.She was excused because she was disruptive, court officials said. Instead of answering questions, she was asking them, a court employee in Jones's office said. Efforts to reach Christ today were unsuccessful. Court administrator Sandra Turner said she and others in the jury assembly room were somewhat shocked at first when the woman insisted Christ was her name. And when her name was called, several potential jurors laughed out loud. Unlike some Jefferson County residents, Christ did not try to get out of jury duty, Turner said. "She was perfectly happy to serve," said Turner.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Think Twice Before You Get A Flu Shot

Did Jesus Reveal The Name Of The Anti Christ

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Iraq Reports Drop In Civilian Deaths

Iraqi officials say fewer than 90 civilians were killed in violence in November in one of the lowest monthly death tolls since the U.S.-led invasion in 2003. Figures compiled from various Iraqi ministries say a total of 88 Iraqi civilians were killed in violence last month. This compares with more than 300 killed in October, which included a major bombing in Baghdad.Violence from insurgent attacks and sectarian clashes has been sharply down this year, but at least two large-scale bombings have hit central Baghdad since August. U.S. commanders plan to end combat operations on Aug. 31 and withdraw all forces by the end 2011.