Issue #30 for jon morrow
Torture inquiry: Pressure from courts and victims forced government's hand (World news and comment from the Guardian | guardian.co.uk) Submitted at 7/6/2010 3:39:33 PM
Nick Clegg instrumental in ensuring security services did not set terms for hearings The scope of the torture inquiry outlined by David Cameron today followed weeks of negotiations between Cameron and Nick Clegg; talks that were influenced by conversations not only with senior civil servants, but also with the security services, eminent judges and experts in international law. But it was the prime minister who took the decision to allow a judge to head the inquiry, after Clegg persuaded him not to succumb to arguments that a retired politician could do the job. Leading figures within both parties of the coalition had concluded that an inquiry was inevitable because of the noxious position they had inherited. A growing number of victims of torture and rendition were suing the government, judges had ruled that evidence of torture could not be kept secret in those cases, and the courts were showing a willingness to hold the government and its intelligence agencies to account. Scotland Yard had also begun unprecedented investigations into the conduct of two intelligence officers, reports of alleged complicity in torture before the 6 May election were appearing in the Guardian and elsewhere in the media, and the new government was facing litigation intended to force disclosure of the Labour government's interrogation policy that had facilitated torture. Falling back on the mantra of denial adopted by Labour ministers – that the UK security services do not practise, encourage or collude in torture – was never going to be an option because, increasingly, the facts showed it to be false. The origins of the problem that the government inherited can be traced directly to the war in Afghanistan that followed hard on the heels of 9/11, when there had been a realisation that MI5 and MI6 officers would need to interview individuals captured on the battlefield in an attempt to assess the threat posed by al-Qaida.
When an MI6 officer alerted London in January 2002 that a man he had just questioned had previously been mistreated by American forces, he and every other British intelligence officer received written guidance, informing them that they did not need to halt torture but must not be seen to condone it. UK intelligence officers who complied with this guidance were becoming drawn into the torture which the US had decided to employ during the so-called war on terror. Some of the victims they questioned were British citizens and residents, taken to Guantánamo. Once the guidance was issued, it became possible for MI5 and MI6 in effect to facilitate torture. Overseas intelligence agencies known routinely to use torture would be asked to detain an individual, a list of questions would be given to those agencies and UK intelligence officials would go to see the detainee a week or two later. MI5 and MI6 officers were able to make use of torture while following official government policy to the letter. Whether they were complying with the Geneva conventions or the UN convention against torture, is far from clear. The secret interrogation guidance was comprehensively redrafted in May 2004, following the publication of photographs of the abuse of inmates at Abu Ghraib. Why this was done is unclear. What is known that Tony Blair has declined to answer a series of questions about what he knew about the rewritten guidance, and that David Miliband, the previous foreign secretary, indicated to MPs that it should always remain secret: to publish it, he said, would give "succour to our enemies". The consequences of this secret guidance slowly became clear. There was a steady drip of media reports in which former detainees gave their accounts of being questioned by British intelligence officers after brutal torture in Pakistan and elsewhere. Litigation on behalf of Binyam Mohamed shed startling light on the conduct of the UK's intelligence agencies. Last February, the master of the rolls concluded that in that case,
at least, MI5's "dubious record" on human rights needed to be condemned. The Labour government fought to conceal the damning words of the country's most senior civil judge, and failed. By then, the Liberal Democrats were committed to an inquiry, with a resolution at the party conference last autumn. The Tories' pronouncements on the matter, usually from William Hague, were more nuanced, and generally fell short of a clear commitment to an inquiry. But they had been grappling with the problem: long before the election, Dominic Grieve, the QC who was then shadow lord chancellor, sought advice on the way in which any future inquiry could offer immunity to those individuals who came forward to give evidence. Shortly after the election, when asked about an inquiry, live on BBC radio, Hague replied: "We have said again in the coalition agreement that we want a judge-led inquiry. So will there be an inquiry of some form? Yes, both parties in the coalition said they wanted that. Now what we're working on is what form that should take." The intelligence agencies and senior figures in the Cabinet Office were stunned. They had no idea that Hague was about to make such an announcement. Officials said Hague's remarks "came out of the blue". Noting, however, that while he had committed the government to "some form" of inquiry, but had still not pledged a judicial inquiry, senior figures within the country's security establishment began a rearguard action to ensure that a judge would not be allowed to head the inquiry, and that a political figure – someone more malleable – was appointed. It was around this point that a number of the country's most respected legal minds, both in the judiciary and in academia, were consulted. Among the difficult issues they were asked to address was the question of how any inquiry could be established when claims were being made by more than a dozen alleged victims, while one criminal appeal by a torture victim was under way, and while police were conducting a number of criminal investigations.
Cameron is said to have been committed to an inquiry, and had been minded to appoint a judge to lead it. But late last month he experienced what one observer called "a wobble" after conversations with senior Cabinet Office figures who work closely with the security and intelligence agencies. One of the most powerful arguments deployed was that the coalition government needed to be careful not saddle itself with something like the Saville inquiry into Bloody Sunday that could drag on for a decade or more at a cost of hundreds of millions of pounds. Two weeks ago a senior Foreign Office source felt able to brief journalists that the prime minister had already concluded that intelligence agents had not deliberately acted improperly, but were let down by inadequate guidance issued to them under the previous government, and so were guilty of errors of "omission not commission". According to this source, the allegations would be examined briefly, and in secret, by a commission sitting over the summer. At this point Clegg tried to persuade Cameron that such a commission would be seen as a whitewash, one that would do nothing to end the mounting litigation. Cameron finally decided to hold an inquiry that he hopes will clear this matter up once and for all. He had little choice. As he told MPs: "Our reputation as a country that believes in human rights, justice, fairness and the rule of law – indeed for much of what the services exist to protect – risks being tarnished." • Torture • Terrorism policy • MI5 • MI6 • Nick Clegg • Global terrorism • Binyam Mohamed Ian Cobain guardian.co.uk© Guardian News & Media Limited 2010 | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions| More Feeds
UK Starts to Undo Government Profligacy (RealClearPolitics Homepage) Submitted at 7/6/2010 7:53:32 AM
Marc Thiessen, Washington Post This past weekend Americans
celebrated a revolution that began with a tea party in Boston Harbor -and today's Tea Party movement takes its inspiration from those early protests against the economic despotism of George III. So it is
ironic that the first Tea Party government seems to have been formed in, of all places, London -and it is a Tory-led government no less.Last week, Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne unveiled
an emergency budget that would be the envy of Tea Partyers here in the former colonies. Osborne announced dramatic spending cuts of 25 percent for all...
A "Political Confession" From a Reader of Wayne's Best-Selling Book (Wayne Allyn Root's Blog) Submitted at 7/1/2010 11:45:18 AM
I have received hundreds of emails and letters from readers of my book, "The Conscience of a Libertarian." Incidentally, my book is still ranked #1 in the category of "Libertarian books" at Amazon for the 12th consecutive month. This is one of the more interesting letters from readers of my book- complete with a "Political Confession." I thought you would enjoy reading the mindset of a common-sense mainstream voter who is sick and tired of the 2-party system...and ready for real change...Libertarian change: Wayne Wayne Allyn Root Mr. Root, I've just finished reading your book "The Conscience of a Libertarian" Overall good read...The only issue I have is that I think you have unfairly attacked the Ford Motor Company by grouping them with Chrysler and GM...I recall that they took no money... having said that I agree with you and enjoyed the book. My background is vastly different in yours - I chose a life of pubic service - i was in the military for 23+ years. I am now in the private sector and still what you would call one of the bad guys. I work for a small femaleowned business who has a defense contract for which I was specifically hired. True we have other lines of operation beyond government contracts. It doesn't change the fact that what you write about is spot on and true. Any person who understands business knows you are right. I would just say that at the end of the day "don't hate the player, hate the game." I think, outside of the constitution requirement to defend the country and secure its national interests for individuals, that federal programs exceed their constitutional mandates. I would scale back government 25% within my first four year term and another 25% during the subsequent term. Below is my confession after reading your book, doing a self analysis and squaring what you say with my own beliefs. My political confession…. In today’s media motivated political universe it is the exception more than the rule when someone, much less, anyone can admit they are wrong. Today is one of those instances. Here is my confession, I have been a Republican my entire adult life and have been living a lie, at least for the last 30 years. Before anyone gets excited and thinks I have gone over to the dark side and openly support the Democratic Party and the Obama Administration grab a cup of coffee, sit back, and relax while I explain the epiphany that brought me to the realization of my self- imposed deceit. First, it would be helpful to identify who and what I am. I am a white 48 year old, solid middle class, college educated American citizen who is a
retired 23+year military veteran born and raised in southern (democrat) state. I have traveled the world over, lived in Europe, the Middle East, and Afghanistan. My childhood was best characterized by living in a predominately white college campus town isolated from the rest of the world. What was unique about it was that in this secure enclave I was practically raised by a black woman who gave me a unique perspective on life…First and foremost, she taught me to accept people for who they are…To be honest, I never really saw the big deal in a person’s skin color, race, or ethnicity. It just isn’t important to me. One may call this naive, and would be true, as I found out as an adult, race, skin color, ethnicity is a big deal and our government keeps it at the forefront of our lives every day. However, this confession is not about my beliefs on race and attitudes toward it…It is about the betrayal of a political party who I thought shared the same values and beliefs that I do. I believe I am first and foremost a conservative and constitutionalist. By those strictest definitions I am a firm believer in less government. Our framers wrote an enduring document that is as relevant today as it was over 200 years ago. The beauty of the document lies in its flexibility to adapt to the times (through the amendment process) but its basic tenets are truisms that cannot be refuted. Our constitution was written to ensure that a government established by the people and for the people, remained true to the people. At its core, it guarantees a limited form of government that ensures protection of one’s inalienable rights. This is also not a class on the Constitution so I will not continue further beyond the simple fact that our government is no longer an agent for the people. Politically, my life’s expanse has covered President Kennedy through President Obama (Five Democratic Presidents and Five Republican Presidents). Given the exception of President Reagan you would be hard pressed to identify the differences between the political philosophies of each administration. Let’s be honest, President Reagan (a Republican) believed in American Exceptionalism much the same way as President Kennedy (A Democrat) did. The Johnson (Democrat) and Bush II (Republican) administrations are remarkably the same and are best summarized as presiding over massive social programs and expansion of the military industrial complex. President Nixon (Republican) and President Clinton (Democrat) were marked by scandals. Presidents Reagan and Obama (Democrat) presided over Banking institution bailouts which ultimately were marked by accusations of scandal. Presidents Nixon and Obama comparisons still have yet to written but it is safe to say that Obama will be compared to
Bias and the IPCC Report on Climate Change (RealClearPolitics -
Nixon (and later Carter) for presiding over a country who inherited an over bloated economy supported by an even bigger government who failed to keep spending in check. I could bore you with facts and figures but I would rather not. If you refute my assertion I challenge you to prove me wrong. Who cares anyway…it is my confession. Now for my confession. I wrongly believed that the Republican Party coveted ideas in strong opposition to the Democratic Party. At least that is what they say – but actions speak louder than words. As the so called party of “conservative ideals” I believed, wrongly as it would prove itself, that they were the defenders of individual liberties, that they would scale back government, turn much of their usurped power back over to the states and local governments where they belong. Boy was I wrong….I held out hope that when the Republican finally took over Congress in 1994 and then briefly controlled both houses and all three branches that we would see a return to minimalist government. Again, I was wrong. Newt Gingrich’s “Contract with America” turned out to be a farce and given what the Republicans actually did should have been re-titled “Contract on America” because in reality, it was a hit piece. What is amazing is that the only period in American History over the last 40 years where our leaders scaled back government by any significant measure was during the Bush senior era – and that was only relegated to the Defense Department. Never mind that the budget didn’t decrease. Now comes Bush II on the heels of 9/11 and creates the DHS that all but negates the DoD drawdown of the late 80’s and early 90’s. Couple the Bush II expansion with the current administrations massive expansion health care and the subsequent growth in the IRS and HHS I challenge anyone to explain to me the difference between the two parties. Democrats railed against violation of individual liberties with the passage of the Patriot act and warned against the intrusive tactics of both its policies and DHS but when they got in power did they do anything to scale it back. No they didn’t . Quite the contrary, they one upped the Republicans with Obamacare. Only this time the roles were reversed and the Republicans railed against the Democratic plan of usurping individual liberty and privacy. I could go on and on about the similarities between the two parties. Their only differences lie in their campaign promises and who they portray themselves to be in order to get elected. I for one no longer believe them. It is sad in that there may actually be a republican candidate who supports and believes what I do but won’t get my vote. They can thank the candidates that over the last 20 years played this bait and switch game with me . As the saying goes, fool me once, shame on
you, fool me twice, thrice, four times to twenty and shame on me. Never again. The only way any of the two Major Parties will ever get my vote again is once they complete the following 12 step program (the normal model for a recovery program, right???) Step 1: Repeal Obamacare, remove laws that require business provide healthcare. It is an individual right. Companies don't provide auto insurance but people have to drive back and forth to work. Reinforce, under the interstate commerce clause the ability for insurers to sell across state lines. Cap litigation settlements unless gross negligence can be proven. Adopt laws that say if you don't win, you pay. Step 2: Defeat Cap and Trade Step3: No more Stimulus except to small businesses - a five year moratium on payroll or any other taxes. Step 4. Simplify tax code – Eliminate personal income tax, establish a flat tax, or institute a national sales tax. Either or but no combination. Coupled with that is Personal Property Rights Step5. Repeal the 17th Amendment and return senatorial elections back to the states Step 6: Drill Baby Drill Step 7: Abolish the Department of Education – It is a joke and waste of taxpayer money Step 8: Convert Welfare to Workfare: Reinforce the difference between those who can’t work vs those who won’t work. Raise SS to age 72. Step 9: Secure Border/no amnesty but work visas. Draconian measures against companies who hire illegals. Step 10: Reduce Government by 25% within the next four years and another 25% over the four following that. Abolish Government Unions. Taxpayers are their Union. Step 11: Turn College Student Loans back over to the private Industry Step 12 : Term Limits for Congressman and Senators. No more professional politicians. Now, many in the GOP will try to convince me that I am foolish, that not supporting them is ensuring a Democratic Victory. My response is, No, your failure to support me ensures a Democratic Victory. That knife cuts both ways. But my side is sharper in that I have the power of the vote and neither party does. You see, it doesn’t matter to me anymore, whether or not a candidate can win or lose. What matters most to me is will that candidate stand up and be counted, support my ideas, and promote the individual over the government. Whether he wins or loses in moot. Voting for the lesser of two evils is still voting for evil. I guess what I am trying to confess is that at the end of the day, after 30 years of denial, I am a Libertarian. Thank you Maurice “Brent” Cox York County, Virginia
Obama: Bumbling Incompetent…or Bumbling Marxist? (Wayne Allyn Root's Blog) Submitted at 7/6/2010 12:18:45 AM
Welcome to “the Teleprompter Depression.” Each Time Obama Steps in Front of a Teleprompter, Another Business Dies. As a common-sense small businessman, I have a front row seat to a slow motion economic Armageddon that will be written about, discussed and debated for decades to come. Big shot economists don’t listen to guys like me. They scoff as I keep predicting in commentary after commentary that small business is suffering a catastrophe of epic proportionsleading this nation towards levels of unemployment and economic crisis that will rival or surpass the Great Depression. Just last week, the Bureau of Labor Statistics quietly reported that the labor force dropped by roughly one million people during just the last two months. If those numbers were added into the unemployment numbers, it would shock and terrify the American people. I do not believe the tragedy that is unfolding before our eyes is a mistake, coincidence, or due to incompetence. I believe my old college classmate Obama (Class of ’83 Columbia University) is a Marxist purposefully trying to destroy capitalism, by overwhelming the system, thereby creating a distraction giving him cover to redistribute America’s wealth to his voters (those who create no jobs, pay few taxes, depend on government handouts for survival, or work for government or unions). As a bonus, he gets to bankrupt the groups that contribute virtually all the money to his political opposition. This is truly a “Marxist Triple Play.” Consider a few highlights of Obama’s reign of destruction:
#1) The biggest income tax increase in the history of America will take effect on Jan 1st, 2011. The new tax increase falls almost 100% on small business owners and high-income taxpayers (whose contributions happen to fund Obama’s political opposition). As a result, many more jobs will be lost and more businesses closed. #2) A dramatic 60% capital gains tax increase (from 15% to 23.8% effective rate, including new universal healthcare taxes) will accompany the big income tax increase above. More jobs will be lost, more businesses closed. #3) Taxes on dividends will increase from 15% to 39.6%, and then another 3.8% by 2013 for Obama’s new healthcare taxes. Stocks will be crushed and older Americans will be devastated (because they live off dividends, investments, and bank interest). More lives ruined, more jobs lost. #4) New taxes on income, investments, and even tanning bed users soon take effect to pay for Obamacare. Worse,18,000 new I.R.S. agents will be hired to enforce these taxes (at a cost of billions annually in new government employee salaries, pensions and benefits). More jobs lost. #5) The pending Cap and Trade legislation threatens dramatic new taxes on anyone who owns a business, owns a home, owns an auto, or buys products manufactured or delivered through the use of energy. Once again, the more you own, the more you'll be taxed. More jobs will be lost, more manufacturing jobs sent overseas, more homes foreclosed. #6) The pending financial reform bill threatens onerous new rules, regulations and taxes on banks and Wall Street. More jobs will be lost (and more banking and financial jobs sent overseas).
#7) The pending new jobs bill threatens gigantic new taxes on every Sub Chapter S corporation in America. More jobs will be lost and more small businesses ruined. #8) The threat of a gigantic new national sales tax (VAT) on everything manufactured, bought and sold in America looms large. Fewer jobs, reduced consumer spending, more businesses closed forever. #9) Obama is pushing for the reduction or elimination of tax deductions (such as mortgage or charitable contributions) for high income earners (mostly small business owners). More jobs lost, reduced charitable contributions, and the real estate industry damaged beyond repair. #10) The threat of bans or restrictions on offshore oil drilling being put permanently into place. More jobs lost (and more jobs sent overseas where drilling is welcomed). As a bonus for Obama, he gets to ruin the Texas economy. #11) All signs indicate that Obama will soon propose to take the income cap off FICA (Social Security) taxes. If this were to happen, a successful small business owner (if there are any left) could see his or her FICA taxes alone go from an already bloated and burdensome $15,000 per year to an unimaginable $150,000 (or more). In U.S. history, no taxpayer has ever seen a TEN TIMES tax increase in one year. This devastating nightmare will wipe out small business and cause people that Obama calls “rich” to lose their homes and businesses. #12) A new I.R.S. law (with the passage of Obamacare) requires business owners to file thousands of new I.R.S. forms each year documenting virtually every expenditure made by their business. As a result of this blizzard of new paperwork, small business faces ruin. #13) Let’s not forget the gigantic tax
hikes on the state and local level for income taxes, sales taxes, property taxes and new taxes disguised as “user fees.” Local taxes are already at levels that taxpayers and small businesses can no longer afford to pay. #14) Finally, Obama refuses to consider lowering the 2nd highest corporate tax rate (40%) in the industrialized world. As a result, more businesses will choose to leave the U.S. (and more jobs will be sent overseas). And you wonder why there are no jobs? You wonder why there is no recovery? This is the “Teleprompter Depression.” Every time Obama steps in front of a teleprompter another business dies. Each of these taxes and proposed taxes is a job killer. Taken together, the Obama regime’s policies are the equivalent of General Sherman’s march to the sea- leaving a tragic path of destruction in its wake. Obama has launched an unprecedented, overwhelming, death-by-tax assault on the groups that fund fiscally conservative causes and candidates: taxpayers and business owners. There are only two reasonable explanations. Obama is executing a bumbling Marxist scheme to destroy capitalism, expand government to Soviet-like levels, and turn Americans into dependent serfs begging for government to save them, clothe them and feed them. “Bumbling” because the plan never works- eventually Obama will run out of taxpayers to rob, thereby bankrupting his own programs and bringing down his government. Or the other choice is that he is truly the most incompetent bumbling President in modern history. I’ll leave it to you to decide. Either way -- God help America.
The Left Stuff: NASA’s Muslim Outreach (Michelle Malkin) Submitted at 7/6/2010 9:02:18 AM
**Written by guest-blogger Doug Powers “The Obama administration: Erasing the line between satire and reality since January 20, 2009 NASA Administrator Charlie Bolden first mentioned the challenge given him by President Obama back in February, but the story started making the rounds again thanks to Bolden’s laughably patronizing interview with Al Jazeera: NASA Administrator Charles Bolden said in a recent interview that his “foremost” mission as the head of America’s space exploration agency is to improve relations with the Muslim world. Though international diplomacy would seem well outside NASA’s orbit, Bolden said in an interview with Al Jazeera that strengthening those ties was among the top tasks President Obama assigned him. He said better interaction with the
Muslim world would ultimately advance space travel. “When I became the NASA administrator — or before I became the NASA administrator — he charged me with three things. One was he wanted me to help re-inspire children to want to get into science and math, he wanted me to expand our international relationships, and third, and perhaps foremost, he wanted me to find a way to reach out to the Muslim world and engage much more with dominantly Muslim nations to help them feel good about their historic contribution to science … and math and engineering,” Bolden said in the interview. Obama insists on spreading the wealth around the world, but now, since we’re perilously close to being out of wealth, NASA is charged with redistributing self-esteem? I can already see the Sally Struthers PSA’s: “For the price of only a cup of Apollo 11 feelgood, you can help convince a child over here that their country had something to do with it. Please help!”
Many Muslims youths in the 1970s didn’t consider being an astronaut to be a viable career option thanks to that infidel Jim Henson and his Pigs in Space, but even still, wouldn’t it be cheaper to Photoshop an Islamic flag on the moon and just tell them they’ve alredy been there? If you’re going to lie, lie big! There were and are Muslim astronauts— how in the world were they motivated to get the training without Obama’s manufactured inspiration? In February, Bolden offered a clue about what this is really about: Specifically, he talked about connecting with countries that do not have an established space program and helping them conduct science missions. He mentioned new opportunities with Indonesia, including an educational program that examines global climate change. So it’s a combination Muslim outreach/global warming study, which most likely means that Muslim astronauts will be spending
considerable time orbiting Al Gore while all parties involved figure out how to stick a landing in America’s wallet (body waste will be jettisoned over the homes of Trey Parker and Matt Stone). Hopefully NASA weeds out any astronaut applicants who are only concerned with learning how to take off and don’t seem too concerned with how to land. Before anybody in the administration starts using this as inspiration for Muslims, let’s get it out of the way right now: Neil Armstrong never converted to Islam. My guess is that this program will be discontinued, ending in a crescendo of frustration once everyone realizes the maddening futility of zero-gravity stonings. Comedy Central is expected to have absolutely no comment on the above story. Update: Don’t miss Charles Krauthammer’s take on this subject. **Written by guest-blogger Doug Powers Twitter@ThePowersThatBe
DOJ vs. Arizona: The battle over preemption; Updated with complaint link (Michelle Malkin) Submitted at 7/6/2010 9:49:15 AM
Scroll for updates… Here it comes. After months of advance hype and threats, Team Obama is reportedly set to file suit against the state of Arizona over its immigration enforcement law. The Washington Post says the filing could come today. The word of the day: “Preemption.” The lawsuit, which three sources said could be filed as early as Tuesday, will invoke for its main argument the legal doctrine of “preemption,” which is based on the Constitution’s supremacy clause and says that federal law trumps state statutes. Justice Department officials believe that enforcing immigration laws is a federal responsibility, the sources said…The preemption doctrine has been established in Supreme Court decisions, and some legal experts have said such a federal argument likely would persuade a judge to declare the law unconstitutional. But lawyers who helped draft the Arizona legislation have expressed doubt that a preemption argument would prevail. Rosemary Jenks at Numbers USA has some helpful legal context: The Supreme Court has stated clearly and often that the U.S. Constitution gives Congress “plenary power” over immigration policy, meaning that Congress has virtually unlimited authority to regulate immigration into the United States. The Supremacy Clause of the Constitution says that federal law supersedes conflicting state law. In immigration matters, the courts have consistently held that this means that states may enact immigration-related laws that go as far as, but no further than, duly enacted federal laws, except in areas where Congress has specifically preempted state action. (The primary example of Congress preempting state action is 8 U.S.C. 1324b(h)(2), which prohibits states and localities from “imposing civil or criminal
sanctions (other than through licensing and similar laws) upon those who employ, or recruit or refer for a fee for employment, unauthorized aliens,” which is why states and localities must tie E-Verify mandates to the issuance of business licenses.) Congress has not preempted state or local action regarding any of the federal laws that the new Arizona law seeks to enforce, so long as the state law goes no further than existing federal law. The Arizona law was drafted meticulously to ensure that it complies fully with the U.S. Constitution and with federal immigration laws. Hans Bader noted last year that leftwing attorneys are selective supporters of preemption doctrine: Other Obama appointees, like attorney general Eric Holder, are also big supporters of gun control. (Holder has argued that the Second Amendment does not protect any individual right). Many (but not all) state constitutions protect the right to possess a firearm. But liberal administrations often seek to use federal workplace laws to try to override rights protected by state constitutions or laws. For example, the Clinton Administration argued
that a federal law called Title VII overrode California’s broad equalprotection guarantees, which forbade racial quotas and preferences in government contracting, college admissions, and public employment. This “preemption” argument was rejected by a federal appeals court in Coalition for Economic Equity v. Wilson (1997). (Ironically, liberal lawyers often oppose preemption when it expands individual freedom, like federal curbs on baseless statecourt lawsuits. The Obama Administration opposes preemption when it would prevent trial lawyers from bringing lawsuits). SB1070 author Kris Kobach responded to the preemption issue back in April: NLJ: How did you ensure that S.B. 1070 conforms with federal preemption doctrine, which is likely to be the major basis for challenging the law? KK: The provision of the law that many have focused on is the one makes it a misdemeanor for an alien to fail to carry registration documents on his person. They fail to mention that an individual is only guilty if he is in violation of 8 USC sec 1304(a) or 8 USC 1306(e). Those provisions
have been around since 1940, making it a crime to fail to register or carry certain documents. The state statue literally refers to those federal statutes. A person can only be guilty under the state statute if he is guilty under the federal statute. The principle that protects the Arizona law is the legal principle of concurrent enforcement. This has been recognized by several courts, including the 9th Circuit. It holds that a law is not conflict-preempted if the state law prohibits the same behavior that is already prohibited by federal law. Similarly, if a state officer acts in a way to assist the federal government in that action, he concurrently enforces what is already prohibited under federal law. That principle guides any interpretation of S.B. 1070. The controlling Supreme Court precedent is 1976s De Canas v. Bica. In that case, the Supreme Court recognized states may enact legislation to discourage illegal immigration within their jurisdictions. The mere fact that a state law concerns illegal immigration or affects immigration in some way does not render it pre-empted. The Arizona law is scheduled to take effect July 29 — and the openborders mob is gearing up. Remember Saul Arellano? The now10-year-old son of illegal alien deportation fugitive Elvira Arellano has been hauled back from Mexico to join pro-illegal alien activists on another amnesty march to the Washington. Good thing such kiddie human shield antics don’t cut it in a rational court of law. *** Related: Arizona Democrats running as fast as they can away from Obama. Update: Here you go. Update: You can find the complaint here via William Jacobson.
Obama and Netanyahu in Washington talks (World news and comment from the Guardian | guardian.co.uk) Submitted at 7/6/2010 4:39:52 AM
Meeting seen as a test of whether two leaders can overcome recent tensions and restart Israeli-Palestinian peace talks Barack Obama will meet the Israeli prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu for the fifth time today at the start of a US visit aimed at improving strained relations between Israel and the US. Netanyahu is expected to get a better reception than he did in March, when Obama kept him at arm's length and refused even a photo of their meeting. Today's meeting was due to be held a month ago, but was postponed after Israeli troops killed nine Turkish activists in a raid on a Gaza aid
flotilla. The meeting is being seen as a test of whether Obama can overcome recent tensions with Netanyahu and work together to restart long-suspended direct peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians. The White House is hoping Netanyahu will underline his commitment to direct talks with the Palestinians. It also wants him to extend beyond September a 10-month moratorium on new settlements. But such a move would put a strain on Netanyahu's rightwing governing coalition. A new report today from the Israeli human right group B'Tselem said settlements control 42% of the West Bank, a fifth of which were seized from private Palestinian landowners. Israel's left-leaning newspaper Haaretz urged the prime minister to
use his visit to demonstrate his commitment to the creation of a Palestinian state. "The prime minister must not squander the occasion presented by his meeting with Obama by haggling over a settlement freeze; he must present objectives that are both courageous and realistic," it said. Addressing the cabinet on Sunday, Netanyahu said the time had come for the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, to get ready to meet the Israelis "because there is no other way to advance peace". "I hope this will be one of the results of the visit to Washington," he said. Signalling a further concession last night, Israel announced it was lifting a ban on most consumer goods entering Gaza, while maintaining limits on building materials. Today's talks are seen as an
opportunity for the two leaders to signal they have made up after a spat in March when Israel announced an expansion of its settlements in East Jerusalem during a visit by the US vice-president, Joe Biden. Obama and Netanyahu are also likely to discuss continuing mutual concerns over Iran's nuclear programme. • Binyamin Netanyahu • Barack Obama • Israel • Obama administration • US foreign policy • United States • Palestinian territories Matthew Weaver guardian.co.uk© Guardian News & Media Limited 2010 | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions| More Feeds
Obama: The Great Jobs Killer (Wayne Allyn Root's Blog) Submitted at 6/27/2010 2:54:52 PM
Why Obama Should Top the F.B.I.’s Most Wanted List The Pamela Anderson Factor As former President Ronald Reagan might have said, “Obama, there you go again.” The current occupant of the White House claims to know how to create jobs. He claims jobs have been created. But so far the score is Great Obama Depression 2.2 million lost jobs, Obama 0 – a blowout. Obama is as hopeless, helpless, clueless and bankrupt of good ideas as the manager of the Chicago Cubs in late September. This “community organizer” knows as much about private sector jobs as Pamela Anderson knows about nuclear physics. It’s time to call Obama what he is -“The Great Jobs Killer.” With his massive spending and tax hikesrewarding big government and big unions, while punishing taxpayers and business owners- Obama has killed jobs, he has killed motivation to create new jobs, he has killed the motivation to invest in new businesses, or expand old ones. With all this killing, Obama should be given the top spot on the FBI’s Most Wanted List. Meanwhile, he has kept the union workers of GM and Chrysler employed (with taxpayer money). He has made sure that most government employee union members got their
annual raises for sleeping on the job (with taxpayer money). He made sure that his voters got handouts mislabeled as “tax cuts” even though they never paid taxes (with taxpayer money). And he made sure that major campaign contributors collected billions off government stimulus (with taxpayer money). As far as the taxpayers- the people that actually take risks with our own money, to create small businesses, and jobs, and pay most of the taxes- we require protection under the Endangered Species Act. You won’t find proof of the damage Obama is doing on Wall Street, but rather on Main Street. My friends are all part of the economic engine of America: SMALL Business. Small business creates 75% of new jobs (and a majority of all jobs). I called one friend who was a wealthy restaurant owner. He says business is off by 60%. He’s drowning in debt. He won’t last much longer. His wealth is gone. I called another friend in the business of home improvement. He says business is off 90% from 2 years ago. NINETY PERCENT. My contractor just filed personal bankruptcy. She won’t be building anymore homes. The hair salon where I’ve had my hair cut for years closed earlier this year. Bankrupt. But here’s the clincher -- ESPN ZONE just closed all their restaurants across the country. ESPN ZONE! If they can’t make it selling cheap food and overpriced beer with 100 big screens
blaring every sporting event on the planet, to a sports-crazed society, we are all in deep, deep trouble. I’ve polled all my friends who own small businesses -- many of them in the Internet and high tech fields. They all agree that in this new Obama world of high business taxes, income taxes, payroll taxes, capital gains taxes, and workers compensation taxes, the key to success is to AVOID employees. The only way to survive as a business owner today is by keeping the payroll very low and by hiring only independent contractors, or part-time employees provided by temp agencies. The days of jobs in the private sector with big salaries, full benefits, and pensions are over. We’ve all seen where those kinds of jobs get you as a business owner—in bankruptcy court, or surviving on government welfare like GM and Chrysler. Or in the case of government itself -- completely insolvent, but surviving by ripping off taxpayers and fraudulently running printing presses at the Fed all day and night to print money by the trillions. Unfortunately, small businesses don’t have the power to impose taxes or print money. So unlike government, we’ll just have to cut employees and run lean and mean. It has now become clear that, outside of the burgeoning field of Census Takers, there will be no major increase in new jobs for years to come. Outside government, Obama has created a wasteland of economic
ruin and depression that looks much like the landscape of Mel Gibson’s first movie “Mad Max.” Without a printing press in Obama’s world, you’re just plain out of luck. The days of believing the Obama propoganda about a jobs recovery are over. The trillion dollar corporate handouts (neatly named “stimulus”) may have kept big business in the money for the last 18 months, and artificially propped up the stock market, but small business is the real “canary in the coal mine.” My small business-owning friends aren’t creating one job. Not one. They are shedding jobs. They are learning to do more with fewer employees. They are creating high tech businesses that don't need employees. And many business owners are making plans to leave the country. In a high tech world where businesses can be run from anywhere in the world, Obama has a problem. His one trick ponyraise taxes, raise taxes, raise taxes- is chasing away the business owners he desperately needs to pay his bills. So who is going to pay Obama’s taxes? Not his voters. They want government to pay them. Who is going to create Obama’s jobs? Not his voters- they've never created a job in their lives. So what is Obama going to do? Maybe he can get Pamela Anderson on the line.
Government to compensate torture victims as official inquiry launched (World news and comment from the Guardian | guardian.co.uk) Submitted at 7/6/2010 3:26:46 PM
PM moves to ensure courts will no longer be able to disclose evidence about British complicity in torture David Cameron todayordered an unprecedented inquiry into evidence and allegations of British complicity in the torture and abuse of terror suspects. But he immediately moved to ensure the courts would no longer be able to disclose damning evidence which, he implied, could jeopardise intelligence sharing with the US. Honouring a promise while in opposition that he would set up a judge-led inquiry into mounting evidence, emerging mainly from court hearings, the prime minister told the Commons he had asked Sir Peter Gibson – a former appeal court judge who privately monitors the activities of the intelligence agencies – to "look at whether Britain was implicated in the improper treatment of detainees held by other countries that may have occurred in the aftermath of 9/11". He said that while there was no evidence that any British officer was "directly engaged in torture" in the aftermath of 9/11 there were "questions over the degree to which
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British officers were working with foreign security services who were treating detainees in ways they should not have done". Though he did not point directly to a particular case, he made clear he was referring to evidence disclosed by the high court that MI5 knew about the abuse of Binyam Mohamed, a British resident held incognito in Pakistan in 2002 before being secretly rendered to jails in Morocco, Afghanistan, and Guantánamo Bay. In rulings highly critical of government officials, a string of senior judges ruled this year that CIA information showing MI5 involvement in abuse should be disclosed. The US made it clear it was appalled and suggested it would cut off intelligence sharing with the UK. To prevent any repeat of such disclosures, Cameron told MPs the government intended to publish a green paper setting out "proposals for how intelligence is treated in the full range of judicial proceedings, including addressing the concerns of our allies". Government officials made clear ministers are seeking legislation that would in future prevent judges release information passed to MI5 by the CIA or by any other foreign intelligence agency. He said the government wanted to pursue "mediation" with six former
Guantánamo Bay detainees who had brought civil claims about their treatment – and who are demanding the disclosure of MI5 and MI6 intelligence. They will be offered outof-court compensation. The inquiry by Gibson, who will be assisted by Dame Janet Paraskeva, head of the civil service commissioners, and Peter Riddell, the former Times journalist and fellow of the Institute of Government, will not be able to summon foreign witnesses or compel former Labour ministers to testify. However, the inquiry has the freedom to investigate the policies that underpinned MI5 and MI6 conduct. Critically, it could allow the inquiry to identify the government ministers who authorised those policies. Widespread support for the inquiry was expressed , qualified by concern over the degree of secrecy that will surround it, and over its inability to compel former ministers to appear. There was also concern that the government's new interrogation guidelines for British intelligence officers – published after being recently rewritten – contained a number of loopholes that could still lead to it being used to facilitate torture. Andrew Tyrie, a backbench Tory MP who has been campaigning for an
inquiry for several years, welcomed "a huge step forward". He added: "They wouldn't be in this mess but for all the excuses for secret stitch-ups instead of open justice. This inquiry can only be credible with the broadest remit, the most public proceedings possible and by full engagement with victims, witnesses and lawyers. Any attempt to exempt intelligence from legal scrutiny is an attempt to exempt the security services from the rule of law." Tom Porteous, the London director of the New York-based NGO Human Rights Watch said: "The PM's announcement of an inquiry is an excellent first step towards reestablishing the UK's credentials as a rights respecting nation." • Torture • Global terrorism • Binyam Mohamed • Terrorism policy • Foreign policy • US national security • Guantánamo Bay • United States Richard Norton-Taylor guardian.co.uk© Guardian News & Media Limited 2010 | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions| More Feeds
NASA: From the Moon to Mecca (RedState) Submitted at 7/6/2010 9:23:30 AM
From the “you can’t make this up” file, President Obama is turning NASA into his Muslim-outreach agency. According to Fox News, NASA Administrator Charles Bolden says that NASA’s foremost mission in 2010 is to improve relations with the Muslim world. Pause. Re-read. Pause. Huh? Yes. Re-read again. He went on to say, “[w]hen I became the NASA administrator — or before I became the NASA administrator — [President Obama] charged me with three things. One was he wanted me to help re-inspire children to want to get into science and math, he wanted me to expand our international relationships, and third, and perhaps foremost, he wanted me to find a way to reach out to the Muslim world and engage much more with dominantly Muslim nations to help them feel good about their historic contribution to science … and math and engineering.” Now, reasonable people can disagree about what NASA should be doing and how much we should spend on a national space program. But come on - are you serious? Now, for my money, I am proNASA (when managed correctly) and believe of all the things we can cut from the trillions of dollars we pour down the drain every year, perhaps NASA is worth funding - what with the extent to which our economy and national defense depend on satellites. But that’s ok, the Ruskies and their 11ish spies infiltrating our country can be counted on to hook us up
anytime we need to get into space to repair a satellite that won’t quite zoom in on Moscow right? Heck, maybe they’ll “fix” it for us! But I digress. I started off talking about “reasonable” people… sorry… So, at least Obama is keeping the dreams of our youth alive, you know? Instead of following the Kennedy mold of inspiring a nation by putting a man on the moon within a decade, perhaps President Obama can ask Americans to figure out how to avoid “slipping the surly bonds of earth” via the next suicide bomber? President Kennedy, in May of 1961 before a joint session of Congress, said the following: Finally, if we are to win the battle that is now going on around the world between freedom and tyranny, the dramatic achievements in space which occurred in recent weeks should have made clear to us all, as did the Sputnik in 1957, the impact of this adventure on the minds of men everywhere, who are attempting to make a determination of which road they should take… Now it is time to take longer strides–time for a great new American enterprise–time for this nation to take a clearly leading role in space achievement, which in many ways may hold the key to our future on earth… Recognizing the head start obtained by the Soviets with their large rocket engines, which gives them many months of leadtime, and recognizing the likelihood that they will exploit this lead for some time to come in still more impressive successes, we nevertheless are required to make new efforts on our own. For while we cannot guarantee that we shall one
day be first, we can guarantee that any failure to make this effort will make us last. We take an additional risk by making it in full view of the world, but as shown by the feat of astronaut Shepard, this very risk enhances our stature when we are successful. But this is not merely a race. Space is open to us now; and our eagerness to share its meaning is not governed by the efforts of others. We go into space because whatever mankind must undertake, free men must fully share. On the other hand… President Obama’s NASA Administrator, while praising the contributions from the Russians and Chinese on the International Space Station, said, “It is a matter of trying to reach out and get the best of all worlds, if you will, and there is much to be gained by drawing in the contributions that are possible from the Muslim (nations).” According to Fox News, “[Bolden] said the United States is not going to travel beyond low-Earth orbit on its own and that no country is going to make it to Mars without international help,” and “[he] has faced criticism this year for overseeing the cancellation of the agency’s Constellation program, which was building new rockets and spaceships capable of returning astronauts to the moon. Stressing the importance of international cooperation in future missions, Bolden told Al Jazeera that the moon, Mars and asteroids are still planned destinations for NASA.” Uh-huh. “Planned” in the sense that we hope to hitch a ride with someone else.
Roy Blunt’s ad campaign begins (RedState) Submitted at 7/6/2010 3:00:18 PM
MO Congressman Roy Blunt is running for the MO Senate seat currently occupied by Christopher “Kit” Bond, who will be retiring at the end of his current term. I’ve been fairly regular in criticisms of Blunt’s Dem opponent, Robin Carnahan, a typical leftist Obama acolyte. But today we’ll just stick (mostly) to a simple post of the spot that is kicking off Rep. Blunt’s advertising campaign. Blunt remains ahead of Carnahan in the polls. The most recent Rasmussen survey shows Blunt up 48%-43%, a wider lead than was seen in the prior poll. The MO Senate race appears to be shaping up as one of the closest in the country, and it shouldn’t be. Blunt is running against a member of a MO left-wing dynasty and she should be no different than her brother, Congressman Russ “Rubberstamp” Carnahan, who never met an Obama policy he didn’t like. Blunt is a reliable conservative and will stand up for the values that readers of Redstate hold dear. For more about the Blunt campaign, visit his web site.
Ride Along with Mitch (FreedomWorks) Submitted at 7/2/2010 12:58:20 PM
PERSONAL FREEDOM AND POWER Indispensable for personal freedom is the liberty to contemplate, reason, communicate, exchange and work, and to possess the gains made by these endeavors. George Mason codified the elements of freedom in the 1776 Virginia Declaration of Rights: "That all men are by nature equally free and independent, and have certain inherent rights...namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety." Ride Along with Mitch Can the astonishing popularity of Indiana’s pennypinching governor carry him to the White House in 2012? Governor Mitch Daniels of Indiana is dedicated to human freedom. Andrew Ferguson in the Weekly Standard quoted Daniels from a previous interview: “Never take a dollar from a free citizen through the coercion of taxation without a very legitimate
purpose,” Daniel s said in an interview last year. “We have a solemn duty to spend that dollar as carefully as possible, because when we took it we diminished that person’s freedom.” Oh, doesn’t every American politician believe in freedom? No. Most American politicians believe in power and government control. Daniels is unique. He comprehends that free people exchanging ideas, goods and services are what drives innovation and prosperity. Yes, taxation without a legitimate purpose does diminish a person’s freedom retarding the person’s opportunity to invest their time, intellect, and labor. Again, the free exchange of ideas, goods and services fosters inspiration and resourcefulness and propels commerce, science, art and charity. Personal freedom best advances civilization. Daniels has a clear philosophy of the purpose of government: “I’m enough of a Whig to know that government can create the conditions in which free markets can flourish,” he says. “Beyond that I get skeptical.” In other words, government has clear
and consistent rules in which the citizens can plan and invest their money, time and labor. Why is Daniels unique? He has experienced many key components of American life. He is well educated – Princeton. Early in his career he experienced Washington as an aid to Senator Lugar. He has been a business executive; greatly contributing to his philosophy of governing is his association with the Hudson Institute, a think tank dedicated to human freedom. Ferguson writes: He also enjoyed the company he kept. “There were a lot of really smart, really interesting, really flaky people,” he said. Hudson placed him in the thick of the conservative intellectual counterculture of the 1980s. He dabbled in highbrow activism, joining the board of the human-rights group Freedom House and founding a pro-immigration group with the great economist Julian Simon. He still seeds his conversation with references to George Gilder, Thomas Sowell, Michael Novak, and, especially, Charles Murray, whose work, he says, demonstrated that big government liberalism—or statism, to
use Daniels’s preferred term—does more harm than good to the very people it was designed to help. And it does this by smothering free enterprise, which works as the real engine of human innovation and betterment. “I’m enough of a Whig to know that government can create the conditions in which free markets can flourish,” he says. “Beyond that I get skeptical.” Daniels recognizes the explosive expansion of government and the loss of personal freedom:“What we’ve seen in the past year, what I call shock-and-awe statism, has put the American experiment at risk,” he said. “For the first time in my life, the country faces survival-level issues.” Ferguson reports: Those would be, along with “terrorism in a WMD world,” the national debt and the recurring federal deficits. The “American experiment” is personal freedom. Mitch Daniels is an American dedicated to personal freedom. Fortunately for Indiana, he is also their governor.
Ohio Communist Rick Nagin, on Defeating Republicans in November by Trevor Loudon (New Zeal) Submitted at 7/5/2010 6:07:00 PM
Cross posted from KeyWiki
BlogRick Nagin is a leader of the Communist Party USA in Ohio.Like many communists, Nagin is also a Democrat, almost succeeding in
securing a Cleveland City Council, running as a Democrat in 2009.Rick Nagin has an history with Democratic Rep. Dennis Kucinich.
He served as Kucinich's Labor Coordinator in the 2008 primary and in return Kucinich endorsed Nagin during his
Sangin pullout may be seen as retreat | Analysis (World news and comment from the Guardian | guardian.co.uk) Submitted at 7/6/2010 3:48:46 PM
Many will ask why troops went there in the first place, and what, if anything, was achieved The decision to pull British forces out of Sangin in the Helmand valley and replace them with US troops may make military and tactical sense. But it will inevitably be portrayed in some quarters as further evidence of a politically misled, under-strength and ill-equipped British army's inability to get the job done. The withdrawal will also prompt pointed questions, not least from bereaved relatives, about whether the sacrifices made by British forces there were worthwhile. Of the more than 300 British service personnel killed in Afghanistan, more than 100 died in and around the Sangin outpost. The 30,000-strong surge of US forces ordered last year by Barack Obama is expected to be completed by the end of next month. Most of these troops are being sent to Helmand and neighbouring Kandahar where a big push against the Taliban is expected in September, after the holy month of Ramadan. In this context, it is logical, as government officials suggest, to concentrate the British contingent in one area – central Helmand – as fresh American forces arrive. But critics of the campaign are likely to draw comparisons with the British
drawback and subsequent withdrawal from southern Iraq in 2007-9 – and to suggest history is now repeating itself. The British military deeply resented suggestions at that time, attributed anonymously to Iraqi and US officials, that the Americans were obliged to take over in Basra because the British had failed. In fact it was the Iraqi army, in an operation known as the Charge of the White Knights, that finally cleared the Iran-backed Shia Mahdi army and other militias out of Basra in March 2008, with American back-up. The operation, ordered by Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki marked a turning point for the Iraqi government's ability to take responsibility for its own national security. But no similar, large-scale handover to Afghan national army and police forces in southern Afghanistan is yet possible. And whatever the Americans may privately say about the British contribution, they are likely to encounter similar problems in Sangin, including an ongoing blizzard of improvised explosive devices. Like the 2009 British Operation Panther's Claw, an American-led Helmand offensive earlier this year in Marjah encountered tougher than expected resistance. Despite early US claims of success, the fighting there is continuing. US commanders also appear to have underestimated Taliban opposition around Afghanistan's second city,
Kandahar. The British deployment in Sangin began in 2006 when Tony Blair sent 3,000 personnel to Helmand. The name soon became synonymous with extreme violence, accounting for 10% of the casualties of the Nato mission. Drug smuggling, tribal rivalries and official corruption compounded the problems. British vulnerability was underlined by constant attacks by small arms, mortars and roadside bombs. It soon became apparent that British forces were spread too thin but Gordon Brown blocked requests for more troops. A shortage of helicopters made matters worse. As the Americans began to arrive in greater numbers, they took over the town of Musa Qala from Britain. But the US-devised counter-insurgency strategy seemed to lack impact. Now the British are leaving Sangin, many will ask what it was all for, why they went there in the first place, and what, if anything, was achieved at the terrible cost of so many brave young men and women killed and maimed. Answers will be hard to find. • Defence policy • Military • Afghanistan • Foreign policy Simon Tisdall guardian.co.uk© Guardian News & Media Limited 2010 | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions| More Feeds
Tied in Georgia (RedState) Submitted at 7/6/2010 10:00:34 AM
John Oxendine has long held the lead on the Republican side of the Georgia primary for Governor, but if InsiderAdvantage’s poll for WSB is accurate, that has changed. It’s tied says this poll, and Karen Handel made it one. In a seven way race, with three in double figures and 34% undecided, anything can happen, which made it all the more notable that Oxendine led for so long. But now IA shows a tie: Oxendine 18, Handel 18, and Nathan Deal now in third at 12, with 4 candidates in single figures (MoE 3.1). Insider Advantage points out that the television ad war is just beginning, so we’ll see who has the money and the message to win that fight. California taught us that one good ad push can make all the difference, especially with the right endorsements backing it up. P.S. Karen Handel! Crossposted from Unlikely Voter
Thailand extends state of emergency (World news and comment from the Guardian | guardian.co.uk) Submitted at 7/6/2010 5:45:58 AM
Thailand extends emergency rule in parts of the country, including Bangkok, over lingering fears of unrest by redshirts The Thai government this morning extended a state of emergency imposed in about a third of the country during recent political protests, citing ongoing danger from anti-government groups. Anti-government demonstrations, mainly by supporters of ousted prime minister Thaksin Shinawatra, turned violent in April and May. Ninety people were killed and almost 2,000 wounded, raising fears for stability in the country. Calm has been restored but the government remains wary, warning that violent elements in the antigovernment redshirt movement may attempt to rekindle another round of unrest. "We have been informed there are people who continue to try to spread false information to spur hatred and
instigate unrest," Ongart Klampaiboon, minister to the prime minister's office, said. Ongart said it had been decided the emergency decree would expire in five provinces which have seen little political activism, but it would be extended in Bangkok and 18 of the country's 76 provinces for another three months. Critics say that while the government calls for reconciliation between deeply divided political blocs, it is stifling opposition with arrests, censorship and emergency rule. Businesses and rights groups had been calling for the special law, which has unnerved some investors and tourists, to be dropped when it had been due to expire tomorrow. "The government could justify it in time of violence but now that it is over, civil rights should be restored. Threats should be dealt with using normal law," said Niran Pithakwatchara of the National Human Rights Commission. The Brussels-based thinktank International Crisis Group said yesterday that Thailand should immediately lift the emergency or
frustration could lead to more violence. Anti-government activists say the law is being maintained to enable the military to thwart any bid by protesters to regroup. "As long as the decree is in place, we cannot regroup. It's too risky even for a low-key provincial gathering," said Somyos Preuksakasemsuk, an antigovernment activist briefly detained in May. The three-month extension would make it the longest period Bangkok has been under emergency rule. The law also covers much of the north and the north-east, main bastions of support for Thaksin, ousted in a 2006 military coup. Authorities accused Thaksin, a former telecoms tycoon turned populist politician who is living in self-exile, of instigating the weeks of protests by his red-clad supporters. Many of the movement's backers are rural and urban poor, but they include academics and leftwing and prodemocracy activists. They say an undemocratic royalist and military-linked establishment unfairly forced their champion from
power. Thaksin and several protest leaders were accused of terrorism in connection with shadowy gunmen who mingled with demonstrators and occasionally battled security forces on Bangkok's streets, raising the prospect of a country sliding into civil war. Thaksin, convicted of graft after he was ousted, denies any connection with the gunmen or financing the protest. The emergency bans political gatherings of more than five people and forbids the publication and broadcast of information deemed a threat to national security or that could cause panic. It also gives broad powers to the security forces, including the right to detain suspects for up to 30 days without charge. • Thailand • Protest guardian.co.uk© Guardian News & Media Limited 2010 | Use of this content is subject to our Terms & Conditions| More Feeds
Communist Rosalio Munoz on Exploiting Mexican Americans to Further Revolution by Trevor Loudon (New Zeal) Submitted at 7/5/2010 6:19:00 PM
Cross posted from KeyWiki BlogThe
Communist Party USA maintains a Mexican American Equality Commission.Rosalio MunozLos Angeles based Rosalio Munoz is a
leader of that Commission.The Commission's job is to coordinate Mexican American opposition to immigration laws and for
immigration amnesty, promote Latino seperatism and radicalism, exploit and exacerbate Latino grievances, build mass Latino
Incredible New Microwave Map of the Entire Sky (Wired: Wired Science) Submitted at 7/5/2010 4:47:59 PM
I’ll Take This Message To Washington (RedState) Submitted at 7/6/2010 9:49:23 AM
Read It. Reduce It. Repeal It. Reform It. Later today my first Michigan 1st District TV Ad is going to debut. In it I briefly explain my 4 R’s. I’m glad to have the opportunity to further discuss it here. We all remember the 3 R’s from grade school, and we still need them; but I am going to tell you about a different group of R’s - ones that can be easily acted upon and results measured. 1) Read It. Many of you know what I’m talking about here. Two thousand plus page bills being passed by Congress that no one reads. The only ones who know what is in the bills, are those who wrote them months or years before and kept them in a desk drawer to be brought out at the right moment. In this case, the perpetrators are Democrat-controlled Congress and Administration. Even when the Democrats say they’ll read the bill and publicly debate it, they manage a sleight of hand. Behind closed doors different cards are being dealt and deals made, out of sight of the people. I advocate Congress honestly read and publicly debate all the bills on which they intend to vote. Let the people see government at work, and end this practice of passing complicated legislation in the dark of night. When this happens the people can only ask, “What is the government trying to hide?”
2) Reduce It. We’re running a $13 trillion debt. Our own government is about to bankrupt the nation, and we are at serious risk of imploding our economy. We must declare “Enough is Enough!” The economic disaster America faces is more than the issue about current taxes, it is the financial burden on our children and grandchildren. If we don’t stop the Democrat’s spending, future generations will labor for the government –not their own pursuit of happiness and the American Dream. In order for all Americans to have equal opportunity for success, they must have economic freedom. A nation buried in the abyss of debt chains everyone. Remember this debt and then ask yourselves, “Where are the jobs this Administration and Democrat Congress promised with all of this spending?” Michigan’s employment rate hasn’t improved, and here in Northern Michigan we have the same pain, and no jobs. Temporary public sector jobs are an unsustainable band-aid to an ailing economy. The people can only have confidence when the private sector is showing strength. Stop spending borrowed money and let the real recovery begin. Let’s remember, too, that this debt is not just an economic issue; it’s a moral issue. It is simply immoral for us to leave the next generation a $13 trillion debt. 3) Repeal It. Repeal the health care bill. Of all the tasks set before the new Congress in January 2011, this is one of the most important. The
health care bill did not reform anything in its two-thousand pages–and remember they did not read it either. What it did do is destroy almost everyone’s current plan, with which they were largely satisfied. The health care bill took away people’s freedom to make their own choices. Socialized medicine decreases quality; it can never provide you the care you can choose for yourself with your own purchasing power. The new Congress needs to Repeal It and start over, passing legislation with honest and sensible reforms. 4) Reform It. We must replace career politicians who went to Washington and forgot why they were sent there. The only way ”We the People” can take back our government is to change-out the incumbents who have betrayed the people’s trust and will. We must send people to Congress who will work on the 4 R’s with me. As the candidate seeking to be your representative from Michigan’s 1st District, I give you my word of honor to stand by these 4 R’s . You and I together can work to restore America to her rightful owners, the people. We will stand up and say once again, as our fellow patriots from so long ago said, “Enough is Enough!” Remember the 4 R’s. Read It. Reduce It. Repeal It. Reform It. I’m Dan Benishek and I not only approve this message, but I’ll take it to Washington.
The Planck satellite released its first microwave radiation map of the entire sky. The image is made from 10 months of data and will be followed by three more all-sky surveys by the end of the European Space Agency’s mission in 2012. Astronomers will use the data to study the early universe and how stars and galaxies form. “This single image captures both our own cosmic backyard — the Milky Way galaxy that we live in — but also the subtle imprint of the Big Bang from which the whole universe emerged,” David Parker of the U.K. Space Agency said in a press release July 5. The Milky Way galaxy dominates the center of the image, the blue light is the dust in the galaxy and the red is hot gas. The yellow-spotted areas are the Cosmic Microwave Background radiation, which the oldest light in the universe. It was emitted 400,000 years after the Big Bang and reveals information about how galaxies first began to form. The mottled look of the Cosmic Microwave Background radiation is the result of differences in temperature and density. The light from the Milky Way will be digitally removed from the image so that astronomers can study the most precise picture yet of the entire CMB. Planck records microwave radiation in nine different frequency bands, which will help scientists separate the light from the galaxy and the light from the early universe. “Just looking at the pictures you can tell we’re seeing new things about the structure of our galaxy,” David Clements of Imperial College London said in a press release. “Once we’ve done that, and stripped away these foregrounds, then it’s on to the Cosmic Microwave Background and the glow of the Big Bang itself!” Image: ESA, LFI, HFI Consortia. Higher resolution version. See Also: • Astronomers Make 5-Gigapixel Image of Milky Way • New NASA Sky Mapper to Hunt Stars, Galaxies, Near-Earth Asteroids • Cosmic Dust Gives Milky Way a Fiery Mane • Origin of Milky Way Clouds Revealed
Florida, Bureaucracy, and the Oil-Spill Cleanup (RealClearPolitics Homepage) Submitted at 7/6/2010 1:04:55 PM
Ryan Tracy, Newsweek Who's the Boss? The chain of
command for oil spill recovery efforts. Wayne Harris, chairman of the Okaloosa County, Fla., board of commissioners, was ready to go to jail. The county's engineers had a plan to protect a crucial inland bay
from oil, but had spent days waiting for the green light. The plan included several floating barges, a submerged oil-catching curtain, and a wall of air projected from an underwater pipe. State and federal authorities had so
far not accepted or rejected the idea, which could cost more than $2 million in the first month. And under federal law, BP and...
10 Crazy-Looking New Deep-Sea Creatures (Wired: Wired Science) Submitted at 7/6/2010 2:52:18 PM
We Hold These Truths to be SelfEvident… (FreedomWorks) Submitted at 7/5/2010 9:42:09 PM
This past weekend marked the 234th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence. And while much has changed since the signers met in secret to dissolve the bands that tied them to England, their words are as true today as they have ever been. The preamble to the Declaration states: We hold these truths to be selfevident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government … The arrangement of this statement reveals the founders’ belief that individual rights pre-exist the establishment of a government-- a radical notion at the time. The Declaration begins, “We hold these truths to be self-evident…” By referring to the aspects of the
subsequent statement as "self-evident truths," the founders insist that they do not merely apply to colonists but rather that they are universal. Included in these universal truths is the idea, “that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” This bold assertion insists that no one life is more valuable than the next, and that—by virtue of sharing the same rights—no individual has the authority to rule over or oppress another. Moreover, the equal rights shared by all humans are “unalienable.” They cannot be taken away. This is because they are granted not by any man or institution but rather they are “endowed” upon individuals by their Creator. Only the One who grants rights has the authority to take them away. Although the founders believed in the unalienable rights of every person, they also understood that there will always be forces in this world that seek to oppress. Thus, “to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive
of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it.” Put simply, government possesses no rights. Its sole purpose is to protect the rights of its citizenry from outside forces. If it fails in this duty, it is the responsibility of individuals to abolish it. The writers of the Declaration—and subsequently the writers of the Constitution—believed that government’s power comes out of its ability to protect the rights of its people. Individuals do not receive natural rights from government and thus government does not have the authority to take rights away. To the extent that it protects individual rights, government operates legitimately. However, when it fails to protect such rights or when it imposes upon them, it becomes an illegitimate ruler over what would otherwise be free people. When the founding fathers gathered in 1776, they did not merely declare the independence of the colonies from their British oppressors. They declared the independence of all individuals from the unlawful intrusion of overreaching government. And that declaration forever altered the course of human history.
Meet Rosalio Munoz - Mexican American Communist by Trevor Loudon (New Zeal) Submitted at 7/5/2010 9:40:00 PM
Cross posted from KeyWiki BlogAs a leader of the Communist Party USA's Mexican American Equality Commission, Los Angeles based activist Rosalio Munoz, enjoys a
level of political influence that would be envied by most U.S. Congressmen or Senators - if they had the slightest inkling of its extent.Munoz's primary job is to ensure that as many Mexican Americans as possible vote Democrat - to
next image >> Ten new possible species could change everything about the way we think about deep sea-life in the Atlantic Ocean. Most of the creatures are so strange, it is hard to know which direction they swim or where their mouths are. The images were captured by researchers from the University of Aberdeen during more than 300 hours of diving with a remotely operated vehicle between 2,300 feet and 12,000 feet deep along the MidAtlantic Ridge, the largest mountain range on Earth, which runs down the center of the Atlantic Ocean between Europe and the Americas. Three of the species, which look like colorful wavy worms, belong to a group of creatures called Enteropneust, which is believed to be the evolutionary link between backboned and invertebrate animals. Previously only a few specimens of the group, from the Pacific Ocean, were known to science. “They have no eyes, no obvious sense organs or brain but there is a head end, tail end and the primitive body plan of back-boned animals is established,” said Monty Priede, one of the lead researchers on the project, part of the Census of Marine Life. One of the most surprising observations by the researchers was how different the species were on either side of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, just tens of miles apart. “[The two sides of the ridge were] mirror images of each other,” Priede said. “but that is where the similarity ended.” “It seemed like we were in a scene from Alice Through the Looking Glass,” Pried said. “This expedition has revolutionized our thinking about deep-sea life in the Atlantic Ocean. It shows that we cannot just study what lives around the edges of the ocean and ignore the vast array of animals living on the slopes and valleys in the middle of the Ocean.” Captions courtesy of University of Aberdeen. Above: Deepsea Jellyfish Trachymedusa. Feeds on plankton and small crustacea near the sea floor. Image: David Shale
The Gadsden Flag: ’Don’t Tread on Me’ (Marines Magazine) Submitted at 6/28/2010 3:58:00 PM
The history of the United States Marine Corps is unlike any other, and though it has seen many brethren tried in countless battles, its tradition
continues to run as deep as the blood sacrificed during the American Revolution. In November 1775, as war with England became a reality, the Second Continental Congress ordered that five companies ...
Arrogant Washington Threatens Rick Perry and Texans’ Right To Govern Themselves
Obama’s radical SEIU appointee in hot water
Shocked, shocked? Not. Mark Tapscott at The Examiner reports on NLRB Big Labor radical Craig Becker’s conflict-of-interest troubles: In the least surprising news of the week, Craig Becker — Big Labor’s go-to legal expert — has served on the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) for barely three months, and he’s already under investigation. Becker lost a bipartisan Senate confirmation vote for the NLRB before Obama gave him a recess appointment. Becker is so pro-union he previously opined that “employers should have no right to be heard” in cases before the NLRB. Aside from impartiality, the other concern about Becker was that the former associate general counsel for the radical Service Employees International Union (SEIU) and AFLCIO lawyer would be embroiled with conflicts of interest regarding unions he’s now charged with overseeing. Sure enough, on June 2, Becker joined in on an NLRB decision involving SEIU Local 1957 and denied St. Barnabas Hospital’s request to review a union election. House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform Ranking Member Darrell Issa, R-Calif., asked the Inspector General to examiner Becker’s conflict of interest in the matter. An investigation is underway. See how Becker gives himself a pass: The NLRB told The Washington Examiner Becker isn’t commenting on the investigation but did pass along a windy ruling Becker authored on recusal motions. Becker argues it would be appropriate to recuse him from cases involving the national SEIU but not cases involving the local chapters because they are “distinct legal entit[ies].” …It should have been painfully obvious to Obama that Becker is not just incapable of being impartial but also incapable of meeting the most basic ethical requirements to perform his job. Hasn’t stopped Obama from putting such interest-conflicted pals in power before and won’t stop him now, alas. *** Previous Craig Becker posts.
Submitted at 7/6/2010 11:40:07 AM
In one of the most outrageous displays of arrogance by Washington in recent memory - which is saying a lot, of course - the House Democrats have inserted specific language on top of $10 Billion in funding for education included in a War Supplemental bill targeted directly and solely at Texas - language that demands the money be spent in certain ways. According to the Houston Chronicle, “The proposal would allow the federal government to give money directly to school districts, provided Perry certifies that the federal support will not replace the state money. Perry must also agree not to proportionally cut education funding more than any other item in the next budget. While the measure includes $10 billion in education funding nationally, Texas is the only state that must make such a certification before receiving the federal funding.” The thing is, besides being an affront to federalism and our right to live free from far away know-it-alls in DC telling us what to do, Perry’s office
makes the good point that, “[t]he House-passed version requires that the governor guarantee the Legislature will provide a certain level of state funding, which is prohibited by the Texas Constitution…” Llolyd Doggett (D-TX), who never misses an opportunity to expand the reach of liberals in Washington (see, e.g. his stubborn and senseless involvement in the judicial nominations process and ridiculous criticisms of Senator Cornyn), complains that Perry misspent $3 Billion that should have been used for education. But, in truth, Texas used the funds exactly the way every other state used them. They were passed through to school districts through state formulas. What’s really going on is that the statists are aggravated that Governor Perry keeps telling the Feds to stuff it when he believes it is better for Texans that they not take federal money and the strings that comes with it. And they cannot stand it. It gets even better when you realize that they moved money from some congressional districts to others (want to guess how Republican districts
made out vs. Democrat districts?). Even more, hundreds of school districts in Texas are going to lose funds compared to what they would have gotten if we were allowed to distribute using state formulas like every other state. And, every other state can use these funds to cover budget shortfalls they are experiencing. Texas, if we are awarded such funds which is in doubt, can only give these funds over and above existing levels which will create a funding cliff when they run out. In other words, it will lead to teacher layoffs which is what these funds are designed to prevent. Look - Texas is not without faults. Nor is any state in the Union. But this kind of nonsense coming out of Washington is precisely the problem we have today - where federal money taken out of the pockets of the American people is then held hostage and used coercively to manipulate the choices of states and prevent the people from living free. Looking forward to more Washington involvement in healthcare are you?
Barack Obama, America's Selective Salary Policeman (FreedomWorks) Submitted at 7/6/2010 12:29:20 AM
Personal Freedom and Power II: Possessions “….private property, production, and voluntary exchange that are the ultimate sources of human civilization.” Hans-Hermann Hoppe Utilizing possessions greatly advances a person’s opportunities to invest their time, intellect, and labor. This fosters inspiration and resourcefulness and propels commerce, science and art. Civilization advances. Barack Obama, America's Selective Salary Policeman President Obama said, "I think at some point you have made enough money.” Michelle Malkin in Real Clear Politics observed the President’s bias and intent to limit a person’s lawfully earned wage, and his weak recognition of what made America the economic powerhouse. Malkin quoted the President:"I think at some point you have made enough money." Peddling financial regulatory reform at a rally in Quincy, Ill., Obama then
ad-libbed peculiar definitions of what he called the "American way" and the profit motive:"(Y)ou can just keep on making it if you're providing a good product or providing good service. We don't want people to stop, ah, fulfilling the core responsibilities of the financial system to help grow our economy.” Next Malkin, citing her Fundamental lesson of Capitalism 101, states why America is exceptional: Governments and bureaucrats don't make what people want and need. They only get in the way. It is individuals, cooperating peacefully and voluntarily, working together without mandate or central design, who produce the world's goods and services. They make what people desire and demand for themselves, not what Obama and his imperial overlords ordain that the masses should have. Malkin correctly observes the benefits of people freely exchanging ideas, goods and services. What does this have to do with restricting the amount of money a person makes? A core element of freedom is liberty to labor as a person chooses, reaping the
fruits of their labor (money), and directing how their money is used. Utilizing their money greatly increases their opportunity to invest their time, intellect and labor. This fosters inspiration and resourcefulness and propels commerce, science and art. Personal freedom best advances civilization. America is exceptional because of the philosophy of freedom acknowledged in our founding documents. Indispensable for personal freedom is the liberty to contemplate, reason, communicate, exchange and work and to possess the gains made by these endeavors. George Mason codified the elements of freedom in the Virginia Declaration of Rights when he stated, “ certain inherent rights, namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.” Tragically, few of our governing imperial overlords, Republicans and Democrats, appreciate and practice the philosophy of freedom.
VA finds more veterans at risk for infections (Navy Times - News) Submitted at 7/6/2010 2:19:05 PM
The Veterans Affairs Department’s problems with improperly cleaned
medical equipment that may have left veterans exposed to viruses took another bad turn Tuesday when VA officials announced that they overlooked 79 veterans in Miami who
had received colonoscopies with improperly sterilized equipment when initial warnings were sent out last spring.
(Michelle Malkin) Submitted at 7/6/2010 2:04:36 PM
AP Carries Water For Hospital Lobbyists (Sweetness & Light) Submitted at 7/6/2010 2:15:19 AM
The Associated Press dutifully takes some dictation from the ‘healthcare reform’ lobbyists: Jay and Sheryl Raether of Oconomowoc, Wisc., with their triplets, from left, Vincent, Mira, and Luk [sic], on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, June 15, 2010. First health overhaul provisions start to kick in By Ricardo Alonsozaldivar, Associated Press Writer Tue Jul 6, [...]
TSA Blocks ‘Controversial Opinion’ Websites: So I Guess This Is Goodb (Michelle Malkin) Submitted at 7/6/2010 11:39:32 AM
Follow Team HTC-Columbia on Google Maps by A Googler (The Official Google Blog) Submitted at 7/6/2010 9:38:00 AM
As a former professional cyclist, nothing beats the thrill of being in the peloton and racing towards the finish line. Although I’ve traded in my cycling career for life as a Googler, I’m still a fan and enjoy watching my former teammates and friends battle in races like the Tour de France, which started on Saturday. While the cyclists were preparing to tackle the pave of Arrenberg and the Cols in the Alps, I got to thinking about ways that we can bring that experience to the hundreds of millions of fans who will be following the Tour de France over the next few weeks. Google is home to many other cycling enthusiasts, so we got together to work on ways to build a My Tracksbased gadget that will allow all the other fans to follow the action like never before. The My Tracks application for Android phones lets you record and share your own outdoor activities,
and now Team HTC-Columbia will use a special version of the app with SRM to transmit their telemetry and location in real-time as they make their way through the 3,642 kilometers of the Tour de France. The nine riders (sadly, now eight, as Adam Hanson was injured on Sunday) on Team HTC-Columbia are carrying HTC Legend phones with ANT+ that use My Tracks to capture their location along with their power, heart rate, cadence and speed. On www.google.com/mytrackstour, you’ll see a Google Map showing the team members’ location on the course and a detailed telemetry report. You can observe how Michael Rogers’ heart rate spikes as he attacks the climbs in the Alps on Stage 9, see how many watts Mark Cavendish puts out in the sprint on the famous sprinters’ stage into Bordeaux, and see just how fast riders climb the famous Col du Tourmalet. From the image above, you can see how Maxime Monfort took the lead during Stage 2 between Bruxelles and Spa yesterday. Right now, the riders
are racing in Stage 3, which takes them across the border into France and you can follow all the latest action on our website or directly on your own iGoogle page. The team also built a map gadget that is available for you to embed on your own website or blog. We’re also publishing an API that any web developer or broadcaster can use to build their own custom application or use to enhance the live television coverage. I'm excited about the potential for web developers and broadcasters to make use of the API and data in creative ways to help all the Tour de France followers (myself included!) get even closer to the action. This project was the work of many Googlers in their 20% time, and as cycling fans ourselves, we’re happy to be able to share it with the world. We hope you enjoy this unique way of following Team HTC-Columbia over the next few weeks. Posted by Dylan Casey, Product Manager
Marine Corps Body Bearers (Marines Magazine) Submitted at 6/29/2010 9:56:51 AM
WASHINGTON – It’s an iconic scene: Six men stand together halfway around the world from home and raise a flag on top of Mount
Suribachi. When the men returned home, their story of valor on Iwo Jima lifted a nation to its feet in the midst of the turning point of World War II. Now, more ...
**Written by guest-blogger Doug Powers So is it fair to say “I guess this is goodbye” to any of Michelle’s readers who work for the TSA and check out the site from work? From CBS News via Drudge: The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is blocking certain websites from the federal agency’s computers, including halting access by staffers to any Internet pages that contain a “controversial opinion,” according to an internal email obtained by CBS News. The email was sent to all TSA employees from the Office of Information Technology on Friday afternoon. It states that as of July 1, TSA employees will no longer be allowed to access five categories of websites that have been deemed “inappropriate for government access.” The categories include: • Chat/Messaging • Controversial opinion • Criminal activity • Extreme violence (including cartoon violence) and gruesome content • Gaming The email does not specify how the TSA will determine if a website expresses a “controversial opinion.” Does Michelle have some readers out there who work for the TSA? If so, try to access this site — and then try to access HuffPo. I’m just curious, but I think I know how that will turn out. You’ll notice that porn sites are not on the list of banned sites. This is so that SEC employees aren’t discouraged from seeking careers with the TSA. My guess is that somebody at the top of the chain in Homeland Security simply got tired of employees laughing at this picture every day: So would you rather have your TSA screener distracted by websites that might not have anything to do with his or her job, or sleeping? Hmm… **Written by guest-blogger Doug Powers Twitter@ThePowersThatBe
Strong Results at 2 Military Contractors (NYT > General Dynamics Corporation) Submitted at 4/28/2010 11:00:00 PM
General Dynamics was helped by a rebound in its business jet unit, while Northrop Grumman’s shipbuilding division posted strong sales.
Amazon Kindle dual-screen e-reader patent granted, Barnes & Noble Nook potentially in trouble (Engadget) Submitted at 7/6/2010 2:04:00 PM
Looks like the battle for e-reader dominance between Amazon and Barnes & Noble could soon expand beyond the recent spate of price drops and into the courtroom as well: the USPTO just granted a 2006 Amazon patent on e-readers with secondary LCD displays (like the original Kindle's scroller-navigation panel), and several of the claims are potentially broad enough to cover the Nook and many other devices with both electronic paper and LCD displays. What's more, Amazon agreed not to file for any corresponding foreign patents during the four-year approval process and thus wasn't required to publish the patent application -- meaning this is likely a complete surprise to the entire industry. Yeah, it's juicy. Here's one of the claims that could cause problems for Barnes & Noble -in plain English, it potentially covers any device with both an electronic
paper display and a second smaller LCD display next to it. A handheld electronic device comprising: a housing; an electronic paper display disposed in the housing and having a first surface area; and a liquid crystal display (LCD) disposed in the housing proximate the electronic paper display, the LCD having a second surface area that is smaller than the first surface area of the electronic paper display. That's pretty sweeping -- it doesn't take much to look at the Nook and see that it has both an electronic ink display and a smaller LCD located next to it. Now, we don't know if Amazon has any plans to actually sue anyone over this patent yet, but we're guessing there's a flurry of legal activity happening at all the major e-reader manufacturers right now, and we're definitely curious to see what the fallout looks like -- remember, Barnes & Noble is already involved in a trade secret dispute over the Nook with Spring Design, which claims that B&N saw its Alex reader under
Feds File Suit Against Arizona (Michelle Malkin) Submitted at 7/6/2010 1:40:06 PM
**Written by guest-blogger Doug Powers Michelle wrote this morning that a lawsuit filing was imminent, but now it’s official. From the AP via Ace: PHOENIX — The U.S. Justice Department has filed a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of Arizona’s tough new law targeting illegal immigrants. The government filed the lawsuit in U.S. District Court in Phoenix on Tuesday. The lawsuit argues that Arizona’s new measure requiring state and local police to question and possibly arrest illegal immigrants during the
enforcement of other laws usurps federal authority. [...] The government will likely seek an injunction to delay the July 29 implementation of the law until the case is resolved. Brewer’s not going to back down. If this ends up in the Supreme Court, what kind of havoc would it wreak among the left if the 2nd Amendment and a state’s right to defend its citizens and borders were both upheld? When informed that the US government filed suit against Arizona, Ecuador just nodded and said, “Yeah, we know.” **Written by guest-blogger Doug Powers Twitter@ThePowersThatBe
NDA and then copied it for the Nook. That case isn't scheduled to wrap up before November, so there's a chance B&N and Spring Design could end up simultaneously fighting each other in one case while taking on Amazon as allies in another, which would be... messy. We'll see what happens -while we've no doubt Barnes & Noble will put up a serious fight if it comes to that, we're curious to see if the shift away from e-reader development to general-use tablets hastens as the market contracts, margins shrink, and the cost of litigation becomes prohibitive. The ball's very definitely in Amazon's court now -- stay tuned. [Thanks, Anand] Amazon Kindle dual-screen e-reader patent granted, Barnes & Noble Nook potentially in trouble originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 06 Jul 2010 15:04:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds. Permalink GoRumors| Amazon Patent (PDF)| Email this| Comments
Soldier linked to helo attack video charged (Navy Times - News) Submitted at 7/6/2010 12:02:34 PM
BAGHDAD — An American soldier suspected of leaking a military video of an attack on unarmed men in Iraq was charged with multiple counts of mishandling and leaking classified data and putting national security at risk, the Army said in a statement Tuesday.
Hubble Captures Fireworks in the Starburst Cluster (Wired: Wired Science) Submitted at 7/6/2010 11:05:19 AM
This gorgeous star cluster doesn’t need a holiday to set off fireworks. Officially called NGC 3603, the small community of young stars is located about 20,000 light-years away in the constellation Carina. Ultraviolet radiation and violent stellar winds from the cluster’s stars shoved away the cloud of gas and dust in which the stars formed, giving the Hubble Space Telescope’s new Wide Field Camera 3 a clear view. Hubble captured this image in August 2009 and December 2009, just a few months after the new camera was installed, in both visible and infrared light. The image shows a sharper view of the stars than an earlier image taken with Hubble’s NICMOS infrared camera in 2007, and traces sources of sulfur, hydrogen and iron. Most of the stars in the cluster were born around the same time, but age differently depending on their masses. Clusters like NGC 3603 give astronomers a lab to study stars’ life cycles in detail, as well as a window into the origin of massive star formation in the distant universe. NGC 3603’s stars are among the most massive known. After they burn through their fuel, these stars will end their lives in spectacular supernova explosions. Image: NASA See Also: • Hubble Captures Sparkling ‘Jewel Box’ Star Cluster • Hubble Captures Surprising Star Motions • Hubble Deciphers Misfit Star Mystery • Spectacular Space Photo of the Christmas Tree Cluster • Hubble Finds Crystal-Clear View of Young Star Cluster • New High-Res Images of Luminous Star-Forming Region
1st Class Stamp Nearly 2X Cost In 1930 (Sweetness & Light) Submitted at 7/6/2010 2:53:25 AM
From a context free Associated Press: (Click to enlarge) Post office plans to announce new rate increase By Randolph E. Schmid, Associated
Press Writer Tue Jul 6, 2010 WASHINGTON – Battered by massive losses, the Postal Service wants to raise rates to bring in more money. Postal officials scheduled a briefing Tuesday to discuss the [...]
Editors’ Choice: Mac mini with Snow Leopard Server (Apple Hot News) Submitted at 7/6/2010 1:19:21 PM
PC Magazine makes Mac mini with Snow Leopard Server an Editors’ Choice (4.5/5 stars) and writes that
the ultra-compact device brings “the sort of flawless design and ease of use we expect from Apple…to a
space that usually offers neither: the server market.”
Lenovo's Liu Chuanzhi: 'we are lucky that Steve Jobs has such a bad temper and doesn't care about China' (Engadget) Submitted at 7/6/2010 2:40:00 PM
We're guessing that Lenovo chairman Liu Chaunzhi didn't intend spark a slew of sensational headlines when he spoke briefly with the Financial Times this week, but he did make a few statements that are hard to ignore (yet easily misinterpreted). The standout is that he reportedly said Lenovo is "lucky that Steve Jobs has such a bad temper and doesn't care about China," and that if "Apple were to spend the same effort on the Chinese consumer as we do, we would be in trouble." Of course, what's easily lost following the "bad temper" bit is that Chaunzhi is actually sort of praising Apple (albeit in a roundabout way), and he even later goes on to describe Jobs as "a genius," and the exception to his rule that a manager "needs to be the string on which he puts one pearl after another" -- he says Jobs is instead "a big pearl." For its part, while Apple
hasn't commented on Chaunzhi's comments directly, it did point out that it's opening a new store in Shanghai this Saturday, and that it's on track to have 25 stores in the country by the end of next year. Lenovo's Liu Chuanzhi: 'we are lucky that Steve Jobs has such a bad temper and doesn't care about China' originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 06 Jul 2010 15:40:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds. Permalink| Financial Times| Email this| Comments
What is going on in Kentucky? (RedState) Submitted at 7/6/2010 12:30:32 PM
With the help of the Real Clear Politics, here are the last few polls of the Kentucky Senate race. PPP: Randal Paul +1. RR: Paul +25. SUSA: Paul +6. RR: Paul +8, Paul +7. And now we have PPP: Tie. Why is PPP running so much further toward Jack Conway than the other two pollsters? Now in the primaries the contrarian poll result was so often the right one, but this isn’t a primary with all the sampling issues primaries bring. This is a general election result, which should be much easier to survey.
So why exactly is PPP trending a good 5 or so points toward Conway, when compared with SurveyUSA and Rasmussen Reports? Rasmussen had Obama job approval at 58-41 against, PPP at 58-37. That’s not the difference. Rasmussen has Paul’s favorability at 55-38 in favor, while Conway’s stands at 51-36 in favor. PPP shows Paul underwater at 42-34 against, while Conway is at 31-29 in favor. Why the sharp difference? Is it just different definitions of likely voter? Let’s watch as these polls develop and look for more patterns. Crossposted from Unlikely Voter
Panasonic FZ35 and Canon SX20 IS superzoom cameras shoot it out in group test, rise to the top (Engadget) Submitted at 7/6/2010 3:01:00 PM
The DP Review gang (motto: "blood in / blood out") has just done another one of its world famous superzoom group camera tests, and the results are guaranteed to frighten and enlighten you. Both the Panasonic FZ35 and Canon SX20 IS were singled out for boffo kudos (that's right -- boffo kudos). Apparently they're "the most refined models in this test," with lenses deemed "sharp across the zoom range," and kickass quality images and HD video. Of course, each of these bad boys has its own character, with the Canon feeling
more like an entry-level DSLR to the reviewer, even with "by far the best viewfinder in this test." Panny's entry, on the other hand, gets points for portability and an intuitive user interface. Besides those two guys, there are a half dozen or so other cameras in the test. How did your favorite hold up? Hit the source link to check it out for your own self. Panasonic FZ35 and Canon SX20 IS superzoom cameras shoot it out in group test, rise to the top originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 06 Jul 2010 16:01:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds. Permalink| DP Review| Email this| Comments
Hulu Plus on PS3 only requires PlayStation Plus during preview period (Engadget) Submitted at 7/6/2010 1:54:00 PM
Though it originally seemed like you'd need to drop an additional $50 annually to get your on-demand TV fix via PlayStation 3, it turns out that the PlayStation Plus is not technically needed for Hulu Plus functionality. Concerned console owners emailing firstname.lastname@example.org are being told Sony's premium service is "only a requirement during the preview period," after which point "you should be able to download the Hulu
Plus app," which will still require Hulu's own $10 monthly subscription, of course. We reached out to a Hulu representative and confirmed the above for ourselves -- so the only question is how long you'll have to wait without shelling out. Hulu Plus on PS3 only requires PlayStation Plus during preview period originally appeared on Engadget on Tue, 06 Jul 2010 14:54:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds. Permalink Examiner SF| Reddit| Email this| Comments
Angle Tells Reid To Pull Down Phony Site (Sweetness & Light) Submitted at 7/5/2010 11:18:30 PM
From a pdf file of the ‘cease and
desist’ notice: Cease and Desist Notice to Friends of Harry Reid and Harry Reid Mr. Marc E. Elias, Esq. Perkins Coie 607 Fourteenth Street,
NW Washington, DC 2005 RE: Cease and Desist Notice to Friends of Harry Reid and Harry Reid Dear Marc: This firm serves as [...]
Iraq may need U.N. peacekeepers after 2011 (Navy Times - News)
Meet Kristi Noem (R CAND, SD-AL).
Submitted at 7/6/2010 11:52:34 AM
BAGHDAD — The top American military commander in Iraq said Tuesday that U.N. peacekeeping forces may need to protect disputed territories in the nation's north if tensions between Kurds and Arabs haven't eased by the time U.S. troops leave in 2011.
15 Must-Have Games for iPad (Apple Hot News) Submitted at 7/6/2010 1:41:46 PM
Peter Cohen (Loopinsight.com) presents a selection of standout iPad games — ranging from action to strategy to multi-player crossword — with mini-reviews that detail how each app’s gameplay is enhanced on iPad.
Amtrak offers additional military discounts (Navy Times - News) Submitted at 7/6/2010 3:09:51 PM
Active-duty service members who book their travel by July 9 will get an additional 10-percent discount from Amtrak for travel during the period of Aug. 21 to Nov. 12.
Manufacturers' Shipments, Inventories, and Orders (U.S. Census Bureau Economic Briefing Room) New orders for manufactured goods in May decreased $5.8 billion or 1.4 percent to $413.2 billion. May 2010: 1.4 % change April 2010: 1.0 % change
Stoudemire to Sign With Knicks (WSJ.com: The Daily Fix) Submitted at 7/6/2010 9:58:16 AM
Amar'e Stoudemire says he will sign with the Knicks. Plus, the All-Star game selections, the World Cup semifinal and more.
We Are Losing the Freedom to Fail (RealClearPolitics Homepage) Submitted at 7/6/2010 2:25:33 PM
Michael Goodwin, New York Post
Submitted at 7/6/2010 3:09:06 PM
Kristi is challenging Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin for South Dakota’s at-large House seat, and we were able to finally speak with her briefly: Kristi’s site is here. Moe Lane Crossposted to Moe Lane.
US government to sue Arizona over immigration law (World news, breaking world news, latest world news from the US, Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa) Submitted at 7/6/2010 2:22:09 PM
The US Justice Department is to sue the state of Arizona over its controversial new law targeting illegal immigrants weeks before it comes into effect.
Queen addresses United Nations General Assembly in New York (World news, breaking world news, latest world news from the US, Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa) Submitted at 7/6/2010 3:32:19 PM
The Queen tells the United Nations it has "moved from being a highminded aspiration to being a real force for common good".
Barack Obama: Nasa must try to make Muslims 'feel good' (World news, breaking world news, latest world news from the US, Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa) Submitted at 7/6/2010 11:40:16 AM
The head of the Nasa has said Barack Obama told him to make "reaching out to the Muslim world" one of the space agency's top priorities.
EAST ON BROIL (DrudgeSiren.com - Recent Top Stories) Submitted at 7/5/2010 8:10:02 AM
EAST ON BROIL
Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu hail 'unbreakable' bond of US and Israel
Oliver North, US Troops Veterans Day Video
(World news, breaking world news, latest world news from the US, Europe, Asia, Australia, Africa)
If this doesn't choke you up, nothing will.Thanks to Shona.
Submitted at 7/6/2010 2:16:56 PM
(New Urban Legends)
With a warm handshake, Barack Obama backs calls by the Israeli prime minister to resume direct peace talks with the Palestinians.
Subway Free Cash Cards (New Urban Legends) Submitted at 7/1/2010 10:00:00 AM
by Trevor Loudon (New Zeal) Submitted at 7/5/2010 4:25:00 PM
Illinois Freeway Work Zones Submitted at 7/3/2010 10:00:00 AM
Warning about Illinois using photo radar in freeway work zones.
The Democratic Disconnect on Creating Jobs
Are Subway sandwich shops offering free gift cards to those who participate in a market research program?
General Dynamics to Build New Destroyer
Mary Kate Cary, US News
(NYT > General Dynamics Corporation) Submitted at 4/17/2009 11:00:00 PM
In an agreement that the Navy hopes will save money, General Dynamics and Northrop Grumman will swap ship-building contracts.
F1 Key Virus (New Urban Legends) Submitted at 7/6/2010 10:00:00 AM
Can a form of malware be activated by prompting Internet Explorer users to press the F1 key?
World Cup Live: Netherlands 3, Uruguay 2 (WSJ.com: The Daily Fix) Submitted at 7/6/2010 12:59:17 PM
Minute-by-minute analysis of the Dutch's victory that propels them to their first title match since 1978.
There's No Downside to More Stimulus (RealClearPolitics Homepage) Submitted at 7/6/2010 1:53:40 PM
Kevin Drum, Mother Jones
Submitted at 7/6/2010 2:03:27 PM