The Forsyth Precinct April 2010
The Newsletter for Informed and Concerned Voters
Please vote for these conservative candidates! (I)=Incumbent
NC Senate District 32--- Nathan Jones, Brian C. Miller (withdrawn) Court of Appeals Judge-- Ann Marie Calabria (I) County Commissioner–At Large (Vote for 1)-- Mark Baker, Frederick (Fred) Benson, Jonathan Mark Corts, Bill Whiteheart Court of Appeals Judge-- Rick Elmore (I), Steven Walker Sheriff (Vote for 1)-- , Dave Griffith, William (Bill) Schatzman (I) WSFCS Board–At Large (Vote for 3)-- Lori Goins Clark, Stan Hill, Donny C. Lambeth (I), Jeannie A. Metcalf (I), William H. Roberts WSFCS Board–District 2 (Vote for 4)-- A.L. (Buddy) Collins (I), Jane D. Goins (I), Stacey Walker McElveen, Marilyn A. Parker (I), Jill Tackabery (I)
‘No accountability in Washington,’ says former CFO of EPA By John Staples Forsyth Republican Party last month, sayLyons Gray, former Chief Financial ing that there is “no measurable accountOfficer of the Environmental Protection ability” in the nation’s capitol these days. Agency, spoke at a dinner meeting of the Gray, a former state legislator and EPA official,noted that several Fifth District officials were not able to attend the meeting because “they are McCrory advises GOP................pg. 1 in Washington protecting Lyons Gray EPA CFO speaks.....pg 1 our liberty, our free speech, our right to congregate, our Exploiting the Reagan legacy..... pg. 2 belief in limited governClinton ‘Human Rights’ report.. pg. 3 ment, our belief in transFormer Spearker to leave early. pg. 4 parent government and in Wake Dems’ abortion move........pg. 4 the Constitution’s second amendment.” Wisconsin charges 5 for fraud....pg. 5 “In the face of those Biden assures Palestinians..........pg. 5 who oppose this, they dare Export ban on NV goggles..........pg. 6 to stand up for the U.S. and what it Radical Muslim ties?................. pg. 7 Constitution means to you and me,” Faith under fire...........................pg. 7 Gray said. Speaking briefly of Federal vs. private sector............pg. 8 the changes that are to ocClergy could face th e law.......... pg. 9 cur with the recent passage Church and State continued........pg. 9 of the health care reform
McCrory advises local GOP to prepare for the November election By John Staples FPN reporter In a brief stopover in Winston-Salem recently, former Charlotte mayor and state gubernatorial candidate Pat McCrory helped recharge Republican enthusiasm for the state’s next big political battle next fall. McCrory, a youthful and energetic speaker, told local GOP supporters there were five major issues that needed to be addressed in order to reinvigorate the party. He asked his audience at a luncheon what they believed the five issues were and then outlined his list as job creation, stimulating the economy, public safety and defense, lowering taxes, and conservative adherence to ethics and values. “”I think Republicans can unite around these five main issues,” said McCrory. “We can’t just depend on Democrats to do a bad job.” First on the list, he said, was the issue of jobs. The former Charlotte mayor said he wasn’t talking about just any jobs, however. “The Democrats classify private sector and public sec-
The lighter side..........................pg. 10
Cont. on page 2
Volume 4, Issue 4
tor jobs as the same. They want to make us more and more dependent upon the public sector. Almost all the stimulus money is going to shore up government jobs....The bailout statement that the stimulus money created jobs is bogus.” Recalling the days when President Dwight D. Eisenhower spent money to help create the interstate highway system, McCrory said the money helped create private sector jobs and had a lasting beneficial economic effect. In contrast, he said that only 10 percent of President Obama’s job creation stimulus money has been spent on the nation’s infrastructure. “As Republicans, if we do spend your money, we should spend it on something that will have long-term results,” he said. McCrory asked his audience what they believed is the number one priority of government and with the response that it is “public safety and defense of the country,” he said: “At the local level, we should own that issue!” He noted that at the state level, Gov. Bev Perdue is closing prisons and hasn’t improved the state’s probabtion system. The fourth issue McCrory listed was that Republicans should continue to fight to lower taxes and should be questioning waste at any level of government. “We shoudl repreat this over and over,” he said. Lastly, McCrory said ethics and values constitute an issue that Republicans should stress. “The independent vote will vote for the person they trust,” he noted. Following that, McCrory said Republicans should not make the same mistake that Democrats have made. “If we win in the fall, we should not get the arrogance that the majority tend to get. McCrory had to leave the luncheon almost immediately after his speech for another meeting. He stayed to answer briefly a few questions posed by local Republicans. See ‘McCrory advises,’ page 5
The Newsletter of the Forsyth Precinct
GE’s Immelt exploits the Reagan legacy to bolster his image with conservatives NewsWire Washington, DC: In response to GE’s recent announcement of its sponsorship commemorating the Centennial Celebration of President Ronald Reagan’s birth, today the Free Enterprise Project of the National Center for Public Policy Research is criticizing GE CEO Jeff Immelt for exploiting Reagan’s legacy to curry favor with conservatives. ”I’m outraged over Immelt’s shameless exploitation of President Reagan’s historic presidency to improve GE’s reputation among conservatives. Reagan is the champion of conservatives because he fought for liberty and limited government. In contrast, Immelt uses GE’s vast lobbying resources to expand the size and role of government in order to create markets for its products and loot Americans of their liberty,” said Tom Borelli, Ph.D., Director of the Free Enterprise Project. Borelli notes that GE is an aggressive supporter of cap-and-trade legislation and the company played a key role in passing the Waxman-Markey climate change bill last year. GE hopes the capping of carbon emissions would force demand for its renewable energy products such as wind turbines and solar panels. With cap-andtrade currently stalled in the Senate, GE lobbyists are now writing energy legislation for Lindsey Graham (R-SC) that would mandate that an increasing amount of electricity be derived from renewable energy sources. ”In anticipating a Tea Party surge of conservatives to be elected next November, Immelt needs to steer the GE ship hard right. With his revenue increasingly dependent on government projects, policies, and subsidies, Immelt can’t be caught on the progressive aisle if the Republicans take charge in Congress. That’s why Immelt is running ads recalling Reagan’s role with GE during the 1950’s,” added Borelli. ”It’s going to take a lot of advertising to wash away the progressive odor from Immelt’s policies. Immelt is a member of President Obama’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board and he has repeatedly been an Obama cheerleader ranging from defending the president’s commencement speech at Notre Dame to echoing Obama’s views on CEO greed during a talk at West Point. GE’s NBC Universal media empire frequently promotes the Administration’s green agenda and MSNBC’s progressive attack dogs, led by Keith Olbermann, consistently assaults anything that represents conservative values.” GE is being richly rewarded by Obama’s economic stimulus package. GE lobbied the Administration to make sure its utility customers, including Duke Energy, Exelon and FPL Group, were given hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayer money. The contrast between Reagan and Immelt’s GE is stark in regard to dealing with national adversaries. While Reagan was responsible for the fall of the Soviet Union, Immelt’s GE has profited from selling infrastructure equipment to Iran. ”Immelt should realize slick advertising will not cover up his pact with the progressive devils. Because of Immelt, today’s GE has far more in common with Obama, Reid, Pelosi and Olbermann than with President Reagan.” The Free Enterprise Project is a program of The National Center For Public Policy Research (http://www.nationalcenter.org), a conservative, free-market nonprofit think-tank established in 1982. It is supported by the voluntary gifts of over 100,000 individual recent supporters, and receives less than one percent of its revenue from corporate sources.
No Accountability, says Gray Continued from page 2 bill, Gray said, “They say they’re going to cut Medicare, which means they’re going to take it from this pocket and put it in that pocket.” Gray said that under the Democratic leadership, Congressional action has all been focused on “my, me and our agenda, or what’s best for me” rather than what’s best for the country. He urged local Republicans to “be strong in your beliefs” and “dare to support those who are strong in their beliefs” as well. Gray said he has heard from the Democrat who is campaigning to run against Sen. Richard Burr in the fall. “ I get emails from Cal Cunningham, and he’s no Richard Burr. He served in the State Senate for two years and he cuts no slough in the legislative building.” Gray admonished local Republicans to give their time and talent to support the GOP in the fall. “Carry yourself with what I call that inner core of strength and character.’ Forsyth GOP Chairman Nathan Tabor thanked Gray for his time and attention to the party’s needs. He said the party meets every Monday at noon at the Golden Corral restaurant near Hanes Mall and that the next major event will be the Lincoln-Reagan Day dinner on April 15. The Fifth District Convention is set for April 17 beginning at 10 a.m. at the new courthouse in Wilkesboro. The District 12 Convention is scheduled fro April 18.
The Newsletter of the Forsyth Precinct
Clinton works with ‘advocacy groups’ on U.N. ‘Human Rights’ report By Penny Starr, Senior Staff Writer CNSNews.com (CNSNews.com) – Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Thursday that the State Department is soliciting comments from citizens, advocacy groups and other non-governmental organizations on the human rights record of the United States. ”Human rights are universal, but their experience is local. This is why we are committed to holding everyone to the same standard, including ourselves,” Clinton told a press briefing at the State Department, where she unveiled the “2009 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices.” Clinton said the U.S. is now gathering facts on its own record because – as a member of the U.N. Human Rights Council – it is participating in the UNHRC’s “universal periodic review” process. The Obama administration’s decision to join the Human Rights Council was controversial. The Geneva-based, 47-member HRC faces numerous criticisms, chief among them the presence of countries with poor rights records. Iran is currently running for a seat on the council. ”In the fall, we will present a report (to the UNHRC) based on the input of citizens and NGOs, gathered online and in face-to-face meetings across the country attended by senior government officials,” Clinton said on Thursday. ”Assessing opportunities for progress and soliciting citizen engagement is one way that we demonstrate our commitment in word and deed to the basic principles that guide us toward a more perfect union and a more peaceful world,” she added. Following Clinton’s remarks, Michael Posner, assistant secretary for democracy, human rights and labor, took questions from reporters. One asked how the U.S. would defend itself against critics who say the U.S. “does not have clean hands, particularly when it comes to the criminal justice system.” ”I doubt that other governments are going to say things that people in this society don’t say every day,” Posner said. He reiterated Clinton’s commitment to preparing the first-ever report on the U.S. human rights record for review by the HCR. Posner said the State Department is holding a series of meetings around the country to gather information it will use for the 20-page report it plans to submit to the Geneva-based United Nations Human Rights Council in November. ”We’re not doing it in a formulaic way,” Posner said. “We’re doing these sessions, these public sessions, we’re inviting in advocacy groups from around the country – we had one in New Orleans, we had one in New York, we had one here is Washington. ”We’re going to spread out to the border areas,” Posner said. “We’re going to go to Detroit. We’re going to talk to people in this society who are on the front line of criticizing, whether it’s the criminal justice system, immigration policies or national security policies — no holds barred,” he said. ”We’re going to hear them,” Posner said. “We’re going to incorporate their thoughts and suggestions into a report to the U.N. And then we’re going to show up
The Human Rights Council has been criticized for disproportionately criticizing Israel at the expense of other situations around the world. In this March 2, 2009 photo, Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki used the HRC as a platform to condemn the “illegitimate Zionist regime” and call for Israeli leaders to be indicted for crimes against humanity. (AP Photo) at the end of the year and present that report and get comments from other countries.” But Austin Ruse, president of a United Nations watchdog organization, the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute, said the State Department’s process for preparing its report to the UNHRC may not be objective. ”It will give pretty left-wing groups a forum for criticizing the U.S.,” Ruse told CNSNews.com. That internal criticism will then end up at the U.N. Human Rights Council. ”This is a two-step process,” Ruse said. “The second step is another opportunity for the U.S. to come under fire, this time by the United Nations.” According to the United Nation’s web site, the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) process was set up to review member nations every four years. It is a three step process – reviewing the human rights “situation” of member nations, asking for “voluntary pledges” to follow recommendations made by the Human Rights Council, and following up to see if those recommendations have been followed. The U.S. State Department web site says the collection of complaints about human rights abuses in the United States is part of its goal of “transparency” in the UPR process. ”In the pursuit of a transparent and effective UPR process, the Department of State is encouraging the American public, including non-governmental organizations and civil society more broadly to provide input regarding human rights in the United States directly to the Department of State,” the Web site says. Comments will be accepted online through April 30. Ruse said it remains to be seen if the report provided to the United Nations by the State Department will include the human rights concerns of all Americans. ”I would hope that on their listening tour, the State Department will listen to social conservatives about the rights of the unborn child being violated,” Ruse said. “We shall see if the State Department is interested in the proper understanding of human rights.” In addition to the United States, 15 countries will undergo UPR by the U.N. Human Rights Council this year: They include Liberia, Libya, Malawi, Mauritania, Lebanon, Maldives, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Mongolia, Honduras, Jamaica, Panama, Andorra, Bulgaria and Croatia.###
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T he Newsletter of the Forsyth Precinct
Former Speaker to leave prison 11 months early RALEIGH Jim Black, the former speaker of the N.C. House who was convicted on federal corruption charges, is scheduled to get out of prison in March 2011, about 11 months earlier than his original sentence. Black, 74, pleaded guilty in 2007 to a long list of charges stemming from illegal payments he accepted from campaign contributors, including pocketing an envelope of cash handed over in a men’s bathroom at a restaurant. A Democrat from Matthews, Black was speaker a record-tying eight years before his downfall. When sentenced, his federal release date was scheduled as Feb. 24, 2012. Information posted on the Web site of the Federal Bureau of Prisons now lists Black’s projected release date as March 31, 2011, but provides no explanation for the change. Edmond Ross, a spokesman for the federal prison system, said Tuesday that he could not comment specifically on Black’s case, citing privacy restrictions. However, he said it is not unusual for an inmate’s sentence to be reduced for good behavior, for completing a treatment program or because of a terminal illness. “There are a number of reasons why an inmate might have a sentence reduced,” Ross said. Jim Craven, Black’s lawyer, declined to comment Tuesday on why his client is getting out early. Shortly after his 2007 conviction, Black’s lawyers filed a request for him to receive treatment for alcoholism in prison. Successfully completing that treatment could earn a sentence reduction of up to one year. Before going to prison, Black had denied having a drinking problem. During the 2006 fraud trial of former North Carolina lottery commissioner Kevin Geddings, prosecutors questioned Black about a dinner meeting at which he drank two vodka tonics made with Grey Goose, which he said was his favorite brand. “I only have two drinks, ever,” Black said under oath. In 2008, President George Bush rejected a request to commute Black’s sentence. Last year, Black’s lawyer tried again, petitioning a federal pardon attorney to have Black’s sentence reduced on compassionate grounds. Craven wrote in a letter that the former speaker had become increasingly infirm and that his wife, Betty, has been diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. A former optometrist, Black is incarcerated at the federal correctional institution in Jesup, Ga., about 65 miles southwest of Savannah. email@example.com or 919-829-4698
Around the State Wake Dems draft resolution restoring tax-funded abortions By David N. Bass Associate Editor, Carolina Journal RALEIGH — After weeks of complaints from pro-choice advocates about partisan ties between Republicans on the Wake County Board of Commissioners and a pro-life state legislator, Wake County Democratic Party Chairman Jack Nichols has joined forces with liberal commissioners to reinstate coverage for elective abortions in the county’s employee health insurance plan. Nichols, who also works as an attorney for Planned Parenthood Health Systems in Raleigh, drafted a resolution that commissioners will vote up or down at Monday’s commission meeting. The resolution would reverse a decision by county administrators in February to nix taxpayer-funded elective abortion coverage from their standard health insurance package out of concern that it ran afoul of a 1981 state Supreme Court ruling. ”As you and I discussed, attached is a resolution for you to present at the agenda meeting tomorrow,” Nichols wrote in an e-mail dated March 9 to Commissioner Stan Norwalk, a Democrat. Nichols said he would discuss the resolution with three other county commissioners, all of whom are also Democrats. Elective abortions are those considered unnecessary for medical reasons, such as to save the life of the mother or in cases or rape or incest. A number of local governments — including the Town of Apex and Cumberland County — have already removed the coverage. Norwalk confirmed by telephone that Nichols drafted the resolution. E-mail correspondence shows that before giving his OK, Norwalk removed a section that reprimanded County Attorney Scott Warren for advising commissioners that continuing to fund elective abortions opened the county to a lawsuit. Keeping the abortion coverage in the plan actually saves taxpayer dollars, Norwalk said, since bringing a child to term “would cost 10 times as much.” He also said the other side is playing politics with the issue. ”It’s absolutely political. This wouldn’t be brought up if it weren’t an election year,” he said. But Commissioner Paul Coble, a Republican, said that Norwalk and his allies are valuing Nichols’ legal advice above the advice of the county attorney. ”What this resolution says is that we should ignore the advice of our own attorney and take the advice of the attorney working for the organization [Planned Parenthood] that stands to benefit the most from it,” he said. Since commissioners voted Feb. 15 to let stand the decision by county staff, pro-choice groups have intensified their criticism of ties between Republican county commissioners and Paul “Skip” Stam, the Republican House minority leader and a pro-life supporter. Stam has encouraged local governments to nix the elective abortion coverage or face a potential lawsuit. Tony Gurley, Republican chairman of the Wake County commissioners, first raised the issue before county staff eliminated the benefits administratively. Norwalk took exception to that relationship, going so far as to give out Stam’s General Assembly phone number for citizens to complain. In an op-ed column published in The Carrboro Citizen, Planned Parenthood spokeswoman Paige Johnson called efforts to remove the coverage “a political conspiracy” and pointed out that Stam “was behind the alarming move.” Nichols, though, has many partisan connections. In addition to serving as chairman of the Wake Democratic Party, Nichols was a Wake County commissioner from 1990 to 1994, and he’s filed to run again this year as a Democrat against Coble. He was a principle founder of Planned Parenthood Health Systems in Raleigh, and remains the “principle attorney to this day,” according to the group’s Web site. Nichols’ counterpart, Wake County GOP Chairman Claude Pope, said that Nichols was making the issue a partisan one. ”All along it’s been a legal issue, not a partisan issue, but now Nichols is using it for political reasons,” Pope said.
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Biden assures Palestinians of statehood backing Karin Laub Associated Press RAMALLAH, West Bank | An open diplomatic row during the visit of Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. has shined a spotlight on the U.S. failure to rein in Israeli settlement ambitions and deepened Palestinian suspicions that the United States is too weak to broker a deal. Mr. Biden’s handshakes and embraces gave way to one of the strongest rebukes of Israel by a senior U.S. official in years after Israel’s announcement during his visit that it plans to build 1,600 homes in disputed East Jerusalem. Israel apologized for the poor timing but is sticking to its plan to build the homes, enlarging one of the settlements that have impeded negotiations with Palestinians. The vice president on Wednesday assured Palestinians the U.S. is squarely behind their bid for statehood and urged the sides to refrain from actions “that inflame tensions or prejudice the outcome of talks.” “It’s incumbent on both parties to build an atmosphere of support for negotiations, and not to complicate them,” Mr. Biden said, standing alongside Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. Israel’s announcement was widely seen as a slap in the face to its all-important U.S. ally. It stirred significant anger among U.S. officials and widespread skepticism about whether the Obama administration would have the courage or the backing to take Israel to task as the U.S. relaunches long-stalled peace negotiations. The future of those talks was called into question late Wednesday when Arab nations withdrew their support for them. “This is a global message of American weakness and Israeli arrogance,” said Palestinian lawmaker Hanan Ashrawi. Mr. Biden condemned the Israeli announcement and pointedly arrived 90 minutes late to a dinner with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Israel’s oblique response to the row — that Mr. Netanyahu was blindsided by the announcement, that no one meant to offend Mr. Biden, that in the future the prime minister would make sure sensitive announcements are routed through him — did not appear likely to put the matter to rest. The words of Interior Minister Eli Yishai, whose office ordered the new homes — “I am very sorry for the embarrassment … Next time we need to take timing into account” — only reinforced the feeling that there would in fact be a “next time.” Israel’s opposition Kadima party said it is planning a no-confidence vote in the
prime minister in parliament for “destroying” the Biden visit. Israel’s latest building plans came just as the Palestinians had reluctantly agreed to resume indirect, U.S.-brokered talks in the coming days — after a 14-month deadlock. Capping a day of meetings with Palestinian leaders, Mr. Biden declared Wednesday that Washington is committed to brokering a final peace deal. “The United States pledges to play an active as well as a sustainable role in these talks,” Mr. Biden said. He stressed the Palestinians deserve an independent state that is “viable and contiguous,” a clear message to Israel that the U.S. expects a broad withdrawal from the West Bank as part of a settlement. Palestinians fear Jewish settlement enclaves would render a future state untenable by breaking it up into pieces. The new construction plan also drew a sharp rebuke from Egypt, Israel’s closest ally in the Arab world, and from U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. Late Wednesday, the 22-nation Arab League recommended withdrawing support for indirect talks between Palestinians and Israelis.
Wisconsin charges 5 with election fraud, 2 from ACORN by Ed Morrissey
task force to combat attempts to pervert elections, especially in Milwaukee, where most of the problems occurred in 2004. Van Hollen has announced indictments in five cases — including two felony indictments against ACORN for scheming to have registrants vote multiple times in November 2008. The AG released the following statement MILWAUKEE – Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen announced that the Milwaukee Election Fraud Task Force has brought additional electoral fraud cases against five Wisconsin residents. The Department of Justice, acting as Special Pros-
ecutor for Milwaukee County, has filed felony charges against Maria Miles, Kevin The state of Wisconsin faced seriClancy, Michael Henderson, Herbert ous problems of election fraud in the 2004 Gunka, and Suzanne Gunka, all alleging election in what some of us at the time election fraud arising out of the Novemcalled “The Silence of the Cheese.” In the ber 4, 2008, Presidential Election. aftermath of the embarrassing scandal, “The integrity of elections is depenthe state pushed hard for reforms — undent upon citizens and officials insisting successfully at times, as with voter-ID they be conducted lawfully. Wisconsin’s laws — and raised the enforcement procitizens should not have to wonder whether file for voter fraud. their vote has been negated or diminished Before the 2008 election, by illegally cast ballots,” Attorney GenWisconsin’s Attorney General J. B. Van eral J.B. Van Hollen said. Hollen and Milwaukee County District According to the criminal comAttorney John Chisolm formed a special plaints, Miles and Clancy served as Special Registration Deputies (“SRD”) for the City of Milwaukee in advance of the 2008 Presidential Election. Each worked for the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (“ACORN”). Continued from page 1 Miles and Clancy are each charged with the felony offense of Falsely Procuring To the question of what he would do about illegal immigration if he were elected Voter Registration as Party to a Crime. governor next time around, he said simply, “I would enforce the law. There are laws The complaint alleges that Miles and on the books that would take care of the problem.” ### Clancy submitted multiple voter registra-
McCrory advises local GOP
tion applications for the same individuals, and also were part of a scheme in which they and other SRDs registered each other to vote multiple times in order to meet voter registration quotas imposed by ACORN. Henderson is charged with one count of Voting by a Disqualified Person and one count of Providing False Information to Election Officials, both felonies. The complaint alleges that Henderson registered to vote at the polls on November 4, 2008, thereby certifying that he was a qualified elector. It also alleges that he then cast a ballot. At that time, Henderson was on an active period of probation for felony convictions from Rock County. A felon on an active period of supervision for a felony offense is prohibited by state law from voting in any election. Herbert and Suzanne Gunka are each charged with the felony offense of Double Voting. The complaint alleges that they each voted in the November 2008 election by casting absentee ballots before the election.
The Newsletter of the Forsyth Precinct
State Department lifts ban on exports of night-vision goggles tration had conducted a National Intelligence Estimate of the security compromises caused by illicit arms exports to rogue states and terrorists, and also whether a damage assessment was conducted of the illicit export of missile technology to China that took place in the late 1990s. “This is a request to see all the analysis behind the plan for loosening export controls,” the Senate aide said. “The letter shows two key senators, a conservative and a liberal, uniting to question whether the administration’s plans for relaxing export controls will harm national security.” On the ITT sanctions, the State Department said in a 2004 letter that ITT had improperly exported “night-vision and space remote sensing” equipment that was contrary to U.S. national security interest. In a plea agreement, ITT was fined $50 million and committed to investing another $50 million in research, development and capital improvements for its nightvision products. The export ban was to have expired on March 28, and it was not clear why the State Department decided to end it earlier. ITT, a high-technology engineering and manufacturing company, has taken “appropriate steps to address the causes of the violations and to mitigate any law enforcement concerns,” the department said in its notice, which was published in the Federal Register on Monday. The White Plains, N.Y.-based company said it is committed to “following both the letter and intent of all U.S. laws and regulations.” “ITT will continue to cooperate fully with all government agencies, auditors, customers and partners to protect our nation’s vital defense capabilities and technologies,” said David J. Albritton, vice president for communications. Republican and Democratic congressional officials said there were no major objections to the State Department’s decision. Republican aides said the ITT case shows that current export controls work, and there is no reason for them to be eased, as Mr. Obama has proposed.
Nicholas Kralev and Bill Gertz The Washington Times The State Department has lifted a ban on exports of night-vision equipment that was imposed in 2007 on a U.S. company caught selling sensitive defense articles to China and other countries without a license. Meanwhile, two key U.S. senators on Tuesday wrote to Gen. James L. Jones, the White House national security adviser, warning that the Obama administration’s plan to loosen controls on exports of sensitive goods and technology could undermine national security. “We are concerned that potential adversaries have proven adept at acquiring sensitive technologies under the existing system, and that if not carefully tailored, proposed modifications to the system could exacerbate the problem,” Sen. Jon Kyl, Arizona Republican, and Sen. Russ Feingold, Wisconsin Democrat, stated in the letter. The State Department’s decision on ITT Corp., a defense contractor that makes military-grade goggles, monoculars and gun sights capable of seeing through darkness, followed the company’s plan to prevent future export violations, as well as its cooperation with the government’s investigation, administration officials said. Three years ago, the State Department said ITT had sold sensitive information to China, Singapore and Britain for night-vision systems without proper export licenses, violating the Arms Export Control Act and International Traffic in Arms Regulations rules, with some of the violations dating back to 1990. Regarding the bipartisan letter from Mr. Kyl and Mr. Feingold, who generally hold opposite political views on other issues, a Senate aide said the letter is a sign of congressional concerns over plans by the White House to loosen export controls. President Obama, in his State of the Union speech Jan. 27, said he planned to reform export controls as part of efforts to produce jobs. “We are sure you agree with us that the first priority of evaluating the export control regime must be our national security,” the senators stated. “We respectfully await your detailed responses to our questions and request for information.” The letter included a list of 15 detailed questions that included a veiled request to halt the Commerce Department’s Validate End User program that identified several Chinese companies as eligible for receiving sensitive exports, despite several of the firms being identified with past illicit arms activities. The letter also asked if the adminis-
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Radical Muslim group has deep ties to White House
Church and State Faith under fire
By Aaron Klein WorldNetDaily JERUSALEM – A radical Muslim group that was an unindicted co-conspirator in a scheme to raise money for Hamas has an extensive relationship with the Obama administration, WND has learned. Last week, President Obama’s top adviser on counter-terrorism, John Brennan, came under fire for controversial remarks he made in a speech to Muslim law students at New York University. The event was sponsored by the Islamic Society of North America, or ISNA. ISNA is known for its enforcement of Saudi-style Islam in mosques throughout the U.S. It was named by the Justice Department as an unindicted co-conspirator in its case against the Holy Land Foundation in Texas, which was found guilty in 2008 of raising money for the Hamas terrorist organization. Last year, Holy Land founders were given life sentences for “funneling $12 million to Hamas. The Obama White House has deep ties to ISNA. The relationship began even before Obama took office. One week before last year’s presidential inauguration, Sayyid Syeed, national director of the ISNA Office for Interfaith and Community Alliances, was part of a delegation that met with the directors of Obama’s transition team. The delegation discussed a request for an executive order ending “torture.” Straight from the mouths of the real people: Get “Schmoozing with Terrorists: From Hollywood to the Holy Land Jihadists Reveal their Global Plans – to a Jew!” ISNA President Ingrid Mattson represented American Muslims at Obama’s inauguration, where she offered a prayer during the televised event. Mattson also represented ISNA at Obama’s Ramadan dinner at the White House. Last June, Obama’s top aide, Valerie Jarrett, invited Mattson to work on the White House Council on Women and Girls, which Jarrett leads. In July, the Justice Department sponsored an information booth at an ISNA bazaar in Washington, D.C. Also that month, Jarrett addressed ISNA’s 46th annual convention. According to the White House, Jarrett attended as part of Obama’s outreach to Muslims. ‘Burn down the master’s house’
Couple gets 25 years for touching Quran before washing hands
ISNA President Ingrid Mattson
© 2010 WorldNetDaily In Pakistan, a Christian man was sentenced to life in prison after a neighbor with whom he had a business disagreement accused him of desecrating the Quran, and a husband and wife were jailed for 25 years for touching Islam’s holy book without washing their hands. The reports came from Compass Direct News, the Center for Legal Aid Assistance and Settlement and LogansWarning.com. According to Compass, the life term was imposed on Imran Masih, 22, of Faisalabad after he was convicted under the nortorious Section 295-B of Pakistan’s legal code, which bans “blasphemy” against Islam. The conviction was based on the accusation of a rival shopkeeper who was accused of using a mosque loudspeaker to incite a mob that beat Masih. Masih had been accused by Hajji Liaquat Abdul Ghafoor, the neighboring shopkeeper, of tearing pages out of the Quran and burning them. But Masih explained he was burning old merchandise Compass reported Masih’s family members claimed Ghafoor fabricated the blasphemy case because of a business disagreement. Other shopkeepers reported to Compass they has seen the two arguing over business just a few days before the accusations. “Ghafoor started shouting that Masih had desecrated the Quran and made blasphemous remarks about Islam and prophet Muhammad,” said one of the shopkeepers, according to Compass. “Ghafoor spread misconceptions about Imran Masih, and a mob of angry Muslim men unaware of the facts attacked Masih and viciously beat him, looted his shop and later handed him over to police.” An appeal is planned to the Lahore High Court. The second episode developed, according to reports from CLAAS, when Munir Masih and Ruqqiya Bibi were accused of touching a Quran without washing their hands.
Discover the Networks notes ISNA, through its affiliate, the North American Islamic Trust – a Saudi governmentbacked organization – reportedly holds the mortgages on 50 to 80 percent of all mosques in the U.S. and Canada. “Thus the organization can freely exercise ultimate authority over these houses of worship and their teachings,” states DTN. ISNA was founded in 1981 by the Saudi-funded Muslim Students’ Association. The two groups are still partners. WND previously attended an MSA event See ‘Faith Under Fire,’ page 9 at which violence against the U.S. was urged by speakers. “We are not Americans,” shouted one speaker, Muhammad Faheed at Queensborough Community College in 2003. “We are Muslims. [The U.S.] is going to deport and attack us! It is us versus them! Truth against falsehood! The colonizers and masters against the oppressed, and we will burn down the master’s house!” ISNA was named in a May 1991 Muslim Brotherhood document – “An Explanatory Memorandum on the General Strategic Goal for the Group in North America” – as one of the Brotherhood’s likeminded “organizations of our friends” who shared the common goal of destroying America and turning it into a Muslim nation, according to Discover the Networks. above when searching for the Forsyth PreIslam scholar Stephen Schwartz describes ISNA as “one of the chief con- cinct Newsletter either in Google or Google Images.You may go directly to the site duits through which the radical Saudi form by simply typing in forsythprecinct.com in your browser’s (Internet Explorer, of Islam passes into the United States.” Mozilla Firefox, etc.) address box at the top of the browser page.If you would like to be included in the monthly email reminders of the latest issue, write to: Jack See ‘Radical Muslim ties,’ page 9 Stewart, publisher, at: email@example.com.
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Federal pay surpasses private sector job pay
Around the World
From Hot Air by Ed Morrissey For those balancing offers of employment from the public and private sector, first, our congratulations. Beyond that, make the decision a little easier by reading the analysis of compensation for jobs that exists in both realms, reported by USA Today. Not only are salaries now over 10% higher in the federal government, but the benefits package averages more than four times the benefits offered in the competitive sector: Federal employees earn higher average salaries than private-sector workers in more than eight out of 10 occupations, a USA TODAY analysis of federal data finds. Accountants, nurses, chemists, surveyors, cooks, clerks and janitors are among the wide range of jobs that get paid more on average in the federal government than in the private sector. Overall, federal workers earned an average salary of $67,691 in 2008 for occupations that exist both in government and the private sector, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data. The average pay for the same mix of jobs in the private sector was $60,046 in 2008, the most recent data available. These salary figures do not include the value of health, pension and other benefits, which averaged $40,785 per federal employee in 2008 vs. $9,882 per private worker, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis.
Here the top 10 big winners on salary by dollar difference. Job Public relations manager Broadcast technician Clergy Chemist Graphic designer Landscape architects Recreation worker Cook Pest control worker Laundry worker
Federal $132,410 $90,310 $70,460 $98,060 $70,820 $80,830 $43,630 $38,400 $48,670 $33,100
Private $88,241 $49,265 $39,247 $72,120 $46,565 $58,380 $21,671 $23,279 $33,675 $19,945
Difference $44,169 $41,045 $31,213 $25,940 $24,255 $22,450 $21,959 $15,121 $14,995 $13,155
Pct 50.05% 83.31% 79.53% 35.97% 52.09% 38.45% 101.33% 64.96% 44.53% 65.96%
In case you’re wondering, the worst deal on the list is for optometrists, who take an average 42% loss in salary to work for the federal government. In that case, though, the benefits package just about makes up the difference. Physicians and surgeons are just about at the break-even point, while lawyers only take a 2.5% loss in salary. Why does a government broadcast technician make 83% more than one in the private sector? Why does the government employ public relations managers at all? Clearly, these jobs could be outsourced by contract and save the taxpayers a lot of money. Why aren’t they outsourced? Most of these jobs are unionized. The SEIU and AFSCME have a grip on the federal workplace, which is — not coincidentally — why taxpayers pay double for a recreation worker, or 45% more for pest control salaries rather than just call Orkin.
Out of the Box “The further the spiritual evolution of mankind advances, the more certain it seems to me that the path to genuine religiosity does not lie through the fear of life, and the fear of death, and blind faith, but through striving after rational knowledge.” Albert Einstein
“Above all, we must realize that no arsenal, or no weapon in the arsenals of the world, is so formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women. It is a weapon our adversaries in today's world do not have.” Ronald Reagan
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Clergy could face the law over same-sex ceremonies Warning comes after amendment to allow churches to hold events By Bob Unruh WorldNetDaily British lawmakers have tentatively approved a bill to allow churches to host same-sex marriages, prompting warnings that the measure would be one step from forcing clergy to perform the homosexual ceremonies. Even the head of the nation’s top homosexual activist group, Ben Summeriskill of Stonewell, is concerned about the implications for churches, according to the Christian Institute. “Right now, faiths shouldn’t be forced to hold civil partnerships, although in 10 or 20 years, that may change,” he said. The Christian Institute, a nondenominational Christian charity committed to upholding the truths of the Bible, reported protests already have erupted from Michael Scott-Joynt, the bishop of Winchester. “I believe that it will open, not the Church of England, but individual clergy, to charges of discrimination if they solemnize marriages as they all do, but refuse to host civil partnership signings in their churches,” he said. “Unless the government does something explicit about this, I believe that is the next step.” Also concerned was David James, the bishop of Bradford, who said while the plan was being billed as an “available option,” he had no confidence it would remain so. “Even if this amendment says on the face of it that it only applies to those who choose to perform civil partnerships, that may not end up being the case, and clergy may end up facing very costly legal bills in order to defend themselves against lawsuits,” the Institute’s Mike Judge told the London Telegraph. He continued, “The government has failed to understand the nature of religious liberty and has treated faith as nothing more than a matter of personal devotion. Now Christians feel let down and ignored. This is another step in the process of trying to force religions groups to abandon their core beliefs.” The plan still must be approved in the House of Commons. Homosexual activists long have been working on such a change. WND also has reported on the move in the U.S. toward “hate crimes” laws that would banish any criticism of homosexual activism. and could, according to critics, create danger for members of the clergy. A bill was adopted under President Obama’s direction last year. The law almost immediately sparked a lawsuit alleging it violates the civil rights of Christians and pastors, who according to the complaint now can become the target of federal investigations, grand juries and even charges for no more than opposing the activism of homosexuals. The lawsuit was filed by the Thomas More Law Center in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan on behalf of Pastors Levon Yuille, Rene Ouellette, James Combs and Gary Glenn, the president of the American Family Association of Michigan. Richard Thompson, president of the Thomas More Law Center, said at the time the lawsuit was filed, “There is no legitimate law enforcement need for this federal law. Of the 1.38 million violent crimes reported in the U.S. by the FBI in 2008, only 243 were considered as motivated by the victim’s sexual orientation. Moreover, [Attorney General] Eric Holder himself testified at a Senate hearing that the states are doing a fine job in this area.” He called it a “political payoff” to homosexual advocacy groups for support of Obama in the last presidential election. “The sole purpose of this law is to criminalize the Bible and use the threat of federal prosecutions and long jail sentences to silence Christians from expressing their biblically-based religious belief that homosexual conduct is a sin. It elevates those persons who engage in deviant sexual behaviors, including pedophiles, to a special protected class of persons as a matter of federal law and policy,” Thompson said at the time. The Hate Crimes Act was dubbed by its critics as the “Pedophile Protection
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Act,” after an amendment to explicitly prohibit pedophiles from protection by the act was defeated by majority Democrats. In fact, during congressional debate, supporters argued that all “philias,” or alternative sexual lifestyles, should be protected. The law was promoted by its advocates as a crackdown on “bias” crimes motivated by a person’s “actual or perceived” “sexual orientation” or “gender identity.” Obama signed the “Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr. Hate Crimes Prevention Act” in October after Democrats strategically attached it to a “must-pass” $680 billion defense-appropriations bill. The law cracks down on any acts that could be linked to criticism of homosexuality or even the “perception” of homosexuality. As Congress debated it, there were assurances it would not be used to crack down on speech. Obama boasted of the “hate crimes” bill when he signed it into law. “After more than a decade, we’ve passed inclusive hate-crimes legislation to help protect our citizens from violence based on what they look like, who they love, how they pray or who they are,” he said. The bill signed by Obama was opposed by the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, which called it a “menace” to civil liberties. The commission argued the law allows federal authorities to bring charges against individuals even if they’ve already been cleared in a state court.
Church and State Radical Muslim ties Continued from page 6 According to terrorism expert Steven Emerson, ISNA “is a radical group hiding under a false veneer of moderation” that publishes a bi-monthly magazine, Islamic Horizons, that “often champions militant Islamist doctrine.” The group also “convenes annual conferences where Islamist militants have been given a platform to incite violence and promote hatred,” states Emerson. Emerson cites an ISNA conference in which al-Qaida supporter and PLO official Yusuf Al Qaradhawi was invited to speak. Emerson further reports that in September 2002, a full year after 9/11, “speakers at ISNA’s annual conference still refused to acknowledge Bin Laden’s role in the terrorist attacks.” Also, ISNA has held fundraisers for terrorists, notes Discover the Networks. After Hamas leader Mousa Marzook was arrested and eventually deported in 1997, ISNA raised money for his defense. The group also has condemned the U.S. government’s post-9/11 seizure of Hamas’ and Palestinian Islamic Jihad’s financial assets.
Faith Under Fire Continued from page 7 The organization said the husband and wife were convicted of “contaminating” the Quran when they touched it. The group, which fights for the rights of the poor and marginalized in Pakistan, said the incident dated back to late 2008 when the accusations unleashed the fury of Islamic extremists. CLAAS reported local stories suggested police agents were paid to discover additional evidence that would be used to convict the couple. Munir Masih was locked up in Kasur’s district prison, and his wife went to the women’s prison in Multan on conviction.
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American reliance on government at all-time high Patrice Hill The Washington Times The so-called “Great Recession” has left Americans depending on the government dole like never before. Without record levels of welfare, unemployment and other government benefits as well as tax cuts last year, the income of U.S. households would have plunged by an astonishing $723 billion — more than four times the record $167 billion drop reported last month by the Commerce Department. Moreover, for the first time since the Great Depression, Americans took more aid from the government than they paid in taxes. The figures show the devastating results of the massive job losses last year and indicate that the economic recovery that began last summer is tenuous and has a long way to go before many Americans resume life as normal, analysts said. Economic growth typically depends on consumer spending, which is fed by wages, rents, interest and other forms of income. But the tentative revival of consumer spending in the second half of last year appears to have been fed largely by an extraordinary flood of government spending, as growth in other kinds of income has disappeared. “Governmental support was critical in keeping the economy, particularly consumer spending, from completely collapsing during the crisis,” said Harm Bandholz, an economist at Unicredit Markets. He said he is concerned that so much of the economic rebound is a result of government spending rather than a revival of private income and jobs. That situation is unsustainable, he said, because the government has had to borrow massively to prop up the economy and cannot continue that binge for long. While wages and other job-related income fell by a record $206 billion last year to $7.84 trillion, transfer payments from the government such as unemployment checks and Social Security burgeoned by $231 billion to $2.1 trillion. Meanwhile, the amount of taxes that individual Americans paid plummeted by $325 billion to $2.1 trillion as a result of middle-class tax cuts and because nearly 6 million people were thrown out of work and are no longer paying payroll taxes. Commerce economists said last year’s unprecedented drop of $256 billion in private wages — the mainstay of consumers in ordinary times — was particularly dramatic, and was more than 40 times larger than the drop in wages during the entire 2001 recession. Equally dramatic, a measure of income that closely tracks the ravages of the recession also plummeted by an unprecedented $384 billion. That measure excludes transfer payments and adjusts for inflation. It has stabilized at $9.1 trillion since the middle of last year, in a sign that the worst of the job and income losses are over. While most of the government benefits — including Social Security, welfare, Medicaid, food stamps and regular unemployment benefits — are sent automatically to those who qualify, Congress is debating an extension of some benefits enacted as part of the stimulus package last year. Those include jobless benefits and health insurance subsidies for the unemployed. The Senate on Friday failed to pass an extension of jobless benefits for up to 99 weeks for workers in states with high unemployment rates. Long-term jobless benefits expired Sunday, leaving many Americans dependent on those payments in limbo. With more than 8 million workers laid off during the recession, unemployment benefits have quadrupled from $34 billion in January 2008 to $124 billion at the end of last year. “Millions of Americans are now relying on unemployment benefits as their only source of income other than food stamps,” said Ross Eisenbrey, vice president of the Economic Policy Institute. “They are unable to find work because there are more than six job seekers for every opening. There is literally nothing that most of these workers can do to get a job today. Unemployment benefits are often the only way they can make ends meet for their families and keep a roof over their heads.” The proposed extension in long-term jobless aid was held up Friday by Sen. Jim Bunning, Kentucky Republican, who objected that it added $10 billion to the budget deficit. As a result of record U.S. government borrowing, total debt in the United States has soared to an all-time high of 370 percent of yearly economic output, far exceeding its peak of 300 percent during the Great Depression. “If we cant find $10 billion somewhere for a bill that everybody in this body supports, we will never pay for anything,” Mr. Bunning said. Democrats vowed to renew the unemployment aid this week to minimize disrup-
tion for more than 1 million jobless people who would begin to exhaust their extended benefits on Monday. “The simple fact of the matter is that this is an emergency situation and should be treated as such,” said Senate Majority Whip Richard J. Durbin, Illinois Democrat. “The most vulnerable families in America are going to suffer because of this political decision by one senator. … We will be back, we will try to get this done. And to those families: Hang in there.” The massive shift into dependence on the government, while essential in promoting an economic revival last year, has postponed a reckoning for many consumers who went too far into debt to maintain their lifestyles during the boom years, Mr. Bandholz said. While the government was lavishing aid, banks were cutting credit to consumers by a record $250 billion, nearly as much as the amount consumers gained from government transfer payments. “This shift only postpones a solution to the problem” by substituting government debt for consumer debt, Mr. Bandholz said. “These elevated debt loads will at least result in sluggish growth rates for the time being — and if the problem is not tackled with determination, it might very well lead to another crisis.”
The Lighter Side