Saturday, January 24, 2009

Oh My... The Pocket Obama book

Politics: I wonder if they got the idea from the old quote about Obama being to the left of Mao.

Chairman Mao's little red book has some competition.

Hey Leonard Pitts Jr.: I hope Obama fails as well.

Politics: Speaking of Rush, someone explain to me the outrage that he hopes Obama fails comment? If you are anyone to the right of center, why the hell would you want Obama to succeed with his liberal policies? Leonard Pitts being the devout Obama worshipper whines that Rush is disloyal. Really?

And knowing this, knowing how frequently and adroitly media are manipulated by self-promoting media clowns who defame conservatism by calling themselves conservative, one is tempted to let the statement pass, to make its way unimpeded to the dustbin like so many other manufactured controversies. But occasionally, it's necessary to intercept one of them and hold it up to the light.

This is one of those times. Not because what Limbaugh said on his radio program a few days before the inauguration was an outrage — outrage is the point, remember? — but rather, because of what the thing he said says about him and his fellow clowns.

"I hope he fails."

Do you ever say that about your president if you are an American who loves your country? Would you say it about George W. Bush, who was disastrous, about Bill Clinton, who was slimy, about Jimmy Carter, who was inept, about Richard Nixon, who was crooked? You may think he's going to fail, yes. You may warn he's going to fail, yes.

But do you ever "hope" he fails? Knowing his failure is the country's failure? Isn't that, well ... disloyal?

I am trying to remember all those columns by Pitts hoping President Bush or other conservatives to succeed but all I keep finding are insults.

But Pitts like other Obama fanatics who have brought into the Obama must not fail mantra are forgetting one thing.

This country by the virtue of its laws and values is greater than any one man. If Obama policies fail, there are mechanisms in the various branches of government to correct it and move on to the next president, the next party and more importantly the next idea(s).

America will not fall apart because Black Jesus really can't turn water into wine or walk on water. There will be disappointment but to say that is is now disloyal to hope Obama fails even when you see it in context tells us more about Obama's fans who want to go after Rush.

We are in a recession that we will get out of quicker without the government to muck it up but that is another post in the making. But I am old enough to been thru two recessions to remember in the early 90s and the dot com bust not to be freaked out that America is going to fall apart. Its going to be difficult but we won't be turning into Iceland anytime soon. But this nonsense about not talking about Obama is off the chart ridiculous.

It is highly amusing to see people saying that people who want Obama to fail is not being an American. I thought dissent was the highest form of patriotism?

Limbaugh responds to Obama, points out the obvious.

Politics: Its the same method used to get the bailout passed last year. Obama is using Rush to distract from the trillion dollar bailout and trying to get Republicans to distance themselves from him and other conservatives opposed to it.

There are two things going on here. One prong of the Great Unifier's plan is to isolate elected Republicans from their voters and supporters by making the argument about me and not about his plan. He is hoping that these Republicans will also publicly denounce me and thus marginalize me. And who knows? Are ideological and philosophical ties enough to keep the GOP loyal to their voters? Meanwhile, the effort to foist all blame for this mess on the private sector continues unabated when most of the blame for this current debacle can be laid at the feet of the Congress and a couple of former presidents. And there is a strategic reason for this.

Secondly, here is a combo quote from the meeting:

"If we don't get this done we (the Democrats) could lose seats and I could lose re-election. But we can't let people like Rush Limbaugh stall this. That's how things don't get done in this town."

To make the argument about me instead of his plan makes sense from his perspective. Obama's plan would buy votes for the Democrat Party, in the same way FDR's New Deal established majority power for 50 years of Democrat rule, and it would also simultaneously seriously damage any hope of future tax cuts.

It would allow a majority of American voters to guarantee no taxes for themselves going forward. It would burden the private sector and put the public sector in permanent and firm control of the economy. Put simply, I believe his stimulus is aimed at re-establishing "eternal" power for the Democrat Party rather than stimulating the economy because anyone with a brain knows this is NOT how you stimulate the economy. If I can be made to serve as a distraction, then there is that much less time debating the merits of this TRILLION dollar debacle.

Obama was angry that Merrill Lynch used $1.2 million of TARP money to remodel an executive suite. Excuse me, but didn't Merrill have to hire a decorator and contractor? Didn't they have to buy the new furnishings? What's the difference in that and Merrill loaning that money to a decorator, contractor and goods supplier to remodel Warren Buffet's office?

Either way, stimulus in the private sector occurs. Are we really at the point where the bad PR of Merrill getting a redecorated office in the process is reason to smear them? How much money will the Obamas spend redecorating the White House residence? Whose money will be spent? I have no problem with the Obamas redoing the place. It is tradition. 600 private jets flown by rich Democrats flew into the Inauguration. That's fine but the auto execs using theirs is a crime? In both instances, the people on those jets arrived in Washington wanting something from Washington, not just good will.

If I can be made to serve as a distraction, then there is that much less time debating the merits of the trillion dollar debacle.

One more thing, Byron. Your publication and website have documented Obama's ties to the teachings of Saul Alinksy while he was community organizing in Chicago. Here is Rule 13 of Alinksy's Rules for Radicals:

"Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it."

The more people that think government is the answer, the more people will vote Democrat. Everything about this bill boils down to keeping the Dems in power and making the public welfare lovers

Two more ex-Guantanamo inmates appear in Al-Qaeda video

Terrorism: Closing down Gitmo was a smart idea.

Two men released from the US "war on terror" prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba have appeared in a video posted on a jihadist website, the SITE monitoring service reported.

One of the two former inmates, a Saudi man identified as Abu Sufyan al-Azdi al-Shahri, or prisoner number 372, has been elevated to the senior ranks of Al-Qaeda in Yemen, a US counter-terrorism official told AFP.

Three other men appear in the video, including Abu al-Hareth Muhammad al-Oufi, identified as an Al-Qaeda field commander. SITE later said he was prisoner No. 333.

The Defense Department has said as many as 61 former Guantanamo detainees -- about 11 percent of 520 detainees transferred from the detention center and released -- are believed to have returned to the fight.

The latest case highlights the risk the new US administration faces as it moves to empty Guantanamo of its remaining 245 prisoners and close the controversial detention camp within a year.

Barcelona cancels holocaust memorial service in support of Gaza.

Spain: Given the public overwhelming support for Hamas, the safety of those at the ceremony would be in danger.

BARCELONA – The Catalunya government has called off the ceremony marking the International Holocaust Remembrance Day, which was scheduled to take place on January 27, citing the Israeli offensive in Gaza as the reason.

The Gaza campaign has inflamed the already pro-Palestinian public opinion in the northeastern Spanish region, and the local media has run endless stories comparing the Israeli stance on the situation in the Strip to Nazi atrocities.

Over 30,000 people marched in Catalunya's streets in support of Hamas, during the three-week campaign, burning Israeli flags and handing out flyers threatening local pro-Israel journalists.

The overwhelming public support for the Palestinians has prompted the government to cancel the Holocaust Remembrance Day service. This was to be the only public event marking the day, and was scheduled to take place in Barcelona's central piazza.

"Marking the Jewish Holocaust while a Palestinian Holocaust is taking place is not right," a local City official told Barcelona's La Vanguardia newspaper.

This bit from Harry's Place is also not surprising.

Incidentally, I have heard rumours that some British councils are also contemplating cancelling their events. Let’s see.

UK: Repeat abortions among teenage girls up by 70%

UK: So how are things going along in abortion for everyone central?

The number of abortions performed on teenage girls who have had at least one before has risen by almost 70 per cent since 1991, fuelling fears that terminations are being carried out for lifestyle reasons.
Experts yesterday warned that binge drinking among teenagers had also contributed to the increase.

In 2007, 5,897 girls under 20 had their second, third or even fourth termination.

Sixteen years earlier, in 1991, the figure stood at just 2,934, the journal Contraception reported.

The analysis by scientists at Nottingham University, found that - even taking into account the rise in abortion among all age groups - the proportion of repeat terminations carried out on teenagers rose by 68 per cent in 16 years.

Abortions in the UK have reached record levels - almost 200,000 a year in England and Wales - a rate second only in the western world to the U.S. Researcher Jacqueline Collier, a professor of health services research, said that although there were probably many reasons behind the 'radical increase' in repeat abortions in teenagers, it is likely that alcohol played a part.

When you have a society that makes abortion just a lifestyle choice that is encouraged it is no surprise this happens. Even with expanded sex education, pills on demand and other services abortion rate goes up because there is no reason to be responsible for your actions anymore.

Get pregnant? Kill the baby and move on to the next party. Even the lady used as an example shows a complete lack of common sense on why she has so many abortions.

Tom Hanks: Sorry for being fascist religious bigot.

Culture: Not only that he has conceded that people have the right to vote according to their own views. Thanks Hanks for the permission.

Tom Hanks is apologizing for calling Mormons who supported Prop 8 “Un-American.”

Hanks made the comments in a Fox News interview last week. Now he's taking them back.

In a statement released today the actor still says he thinks Prop 8 is wrong but went on to say, “but everyone has a right to vote their conscience; nothing could be more American. To say members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints who contributed to Proposition 8 are 'Un-American' creates more division when the time calls for respectful disagreement."

Washington Post: Obama's suck boy.

Media: NYtimes griped that Obama hasn't done a sit down chat with them, but the Washington Post has quickly stepped in to become quite the Obama apologist to curry favor. As another example of how bipartisanship means kissing Obama's ass.

Just days after taking office vowing to end the political era of “petty grievances,” President Obama ran into mounting GOP opposition yesterday to an economic stimulus plan that he had hoped would receive broad bipartisan support.

Republicans accused Democrats of abandoning the new president’s pledge, ignoring his call for bipartisan comity and shutting them out of the process by writing the $850 billion legislation. The first drafts of the plan would result in more spending on favored Democratic agenda items, such as federal funding of the arts, they said, but would do little to stimulate the ailing economy.

The GOP’s shrunken numbers, particularly in the Senate, will make it difficult for Republicans to stop the stimulus bill, but the growing GOP doubts mean that Obama’s first major initiative could be passed on a largely party-line vote — little different from the past 16 years of partisan sniping in the Clinton and Bush eras.

Obama: I won! and taking on Rush Limbaugh.

Politics: I did say way back when that Obama was arrogant but you see that in his mind the definition of bipartisan is meaning you agree with him and the Dems on proposals.

President Obama warned Republicans on Capitol Hill today that they need to quit listening to radio king Rush Limbaugh if they want to get along with Democrats and the new administration.

"You can't just listen to Rush Limbaugh and get things done," he told top GOP leaders, whom he had invited to the White House to discuss his nearly $1 trillion stimulus package.

One White House official confirmed the comment but said he was simply trying to make a larger point about bipartisan efforts.

"There are big things that unify Republicans and Democrats," the official said. "We shouldn't let partisan politics derail what are very important things that need to get done."

One of those proposals is to give money to workers who pay zero federal income tax which is nothing more than social redistribution of money earned by those who make a higher income.

Yet in a polite but pointed exchange with the second-ranking House Republican leader, Rep. Eric Cantor of Virginia, Obama took note of the parties' fundamental differences on tax policy toward low-wage workers, and made clear that his view would prevail.

At issue is Obama's proposal that his various tax breaks for low- and middle-income workers, including his centerpiece "Making Work Pay" tax credit, be refundable — that is, that the benefits also go to workers who earn too little to pay income taxes but who pay Social Security and Medicare taxes. Republicans generally oppose giving tax credits to people who pay no income taxes, a view that Cantor voiced at the White House meeting with Obama.

"We just have a difference here, and I'm president," Obama said to Cantor, according to Rahm Emanuel, the White House chief of staff, who was at the meeting. Emanuel said that Obama was being lighthearted and that lawmakers of both parties had laughed.

Cantor, in an interview afterward, had a similar recollection. He said the president had told him, "You're correct, there's a philosophical difference, but I won, so we're going to prevail on that.

"He was very straightforward," Cantor added. "There was no disrespect, but it was very matter-of-fact."

How about giving back money based on the Medicare and Social Security taxes instead of cutting a welfare check which is robbing those who had the nerve to have a higher income? What Obama and the Dems want in this pork stimulus bill is cover with Republicans on board when not if this fails miserably to actually get the economy on track. I do not have any hope that the GOP will do that because of the lack of leadership in Congress.

As for sniping at Rush Limbaugh, bad idea because Obama proved in this exchange one of Rush's claims that the bipartisanship translate to agree with him and the Dems. That will only fuel conservatives that Rush is right and show that Obama must be thin skinned to even bring his name up in a meeting like this to prove his point.

Friday, January 23, 2009

UK parliament calls off screening of Fitna

UK: I am surprised there was even a screening scheduled in the UK of all places.

LONDON: The UK’s parliament has cancelled the screening of a controversial film, titled ‘Fitna’, by right-wing Dutch MP Geert Wilders following vociferous protest by the Muslim community.

The screening was to take place on January 29 at the House of Lords. The decision to cancel the showing was taken on Friday when Lord Nazir Ahmed held a meeting with the government chief whip of the House of Lords and leader of the House, together with representatives from the Muslim Council of Britain, the British Muslim Forum and other representatives from the British Muslim community.

Freed by U.S., Saudi Becomes a Qaeda Chief

Terrorism: This is just the first of many especially now with Obama closing down Gitmo and wanting to release some prisoners.

State Department gives Clinton rock-star treatment.

Nation: They are now relevant and can't wait to find new ways to kiss up to everyone else in the world.

"One longtime ambassador told us he hadn't seen anything like it in his decades-long career. If that wasn't enough, President Obama dropped by with Vice President Joe Biden, standing alongside Clinton as she announced the appointment of special envoys -- former Sen. George Mitchell for the Middle East and former U.N. Ambassador Richard Holbrooke for Afghanistan and Pakistan (rock stars themselves in the diplomatic community).

It was a foreign policy "who's who," with former cabinet secretaries and hundreds of State Department employees. It was quite a sight to see Clinton standing onstage with Obama, Biden, Holbrooke and Mitchell before a standing-room-only crowd -- she clearly enjoyed being the host of this event.

There hasn't been this much activity at the State Department in ages. Having the president come to the State Department on just his second full day in office and has given a boost to members of the civil and foreign service. They've been demoralized over the past few years by the war in Iraq, Guantanamo, the plummeting U.S. image around the world, diminished resources and responsibilities that moved to the Pentagon under the Bush administration.

When Obama noted he signed three executive orders Thursday and that "I can say without exception or equivocation that the United States will not torture," the crowd broke out into loud applause.

Despite all the foreign policy challenges facing the United States, the employees at the State Department are excited about Obama's promise of a "new era in American leadership" and his message that the State Department, and diplomacy, are back, and American values will guide them."

Burn Notice to film in Miami for 3rd Season.

Entertainment: Someone in Miami government has a brain.

As Burn Notice's second season resumes Thursday night, Miami officials are preparing for the show to return to film its third season.

The popular USA Network show has its main set in the closed Coconut Grove Convention Center, which was slated for demolition this year to make way for a waterfront park. Burn Notice threatened to film its third season elsewhere if it couldn't stay in the expo through the summer, and City Hall has since agreed to the longer lease, Miami film coordinator Robert Parente said.

In exchange, Burn Notice's rent will rise from $6,000 to $20,000 a month, and City Manager Pete Hernandez can grant the show an extension in the event a Hollywood writers' strike delays production, Parente said. Burn Notice executives have the approved lease and are expected to sign it soon, he said.

''It's a good deal for everybody concerned,'' Parente said.

94% of Households Ready for DTV switch

Business: I don't like the way the DTV switch has been handled, the fact taxpayers had to pony up about a billion dollars to hand out coupons, that electronics stores may be overcharging(looking at you Best Buy) and the fact there is a deadline.

All that said, this switch has been delayed once and delaying it again to June is not going to do jack because there will always be a bunch of people unprepared.

Nielsen today reported that 6.5 million households -- 5.7% of the nation -- are still "totally unready" for the switch, but that the numbers are higher in some locations and in some demographics. Nielsen said 9.9% of African-American households and 9.7% of Hispanic households are totally unready.

Nielsen defines as "totally unready" households without digital TV sets or converter boxes that aren't hooked up to cable or satellite.

Nielsen's numbers suggest a number of big markets -- among them Los Angeles, Phoenix and Houston -- could temporarily lose more than 10% of Hispanic or African-American households with the digital changeover.

TARP Money decided by political Interference.

Nation: Not a surprise and in Barney Frank's case he was on a social agenda that had nothing to do with the finances of this bank.

As President Barack Obama's team sets about revising the $700 billion TARP program, following last week's release of the second half of the money, among the issues it faces is widespread dissatisfaction with way the program has been implemented. Treasury Secretary nominee Timothy Geithner, testifying Wednesday at his Senate confirmation hearing, acknowledged "there are serious concerns about transparency and accountability...confusion about the goals of the program, and a deep skepticism about whether we are using the taxpayers' money wisely."

Bankers, regulators and politicians complain of a secretive and opaque process for deciding which banks get cash and which don't. The goal of aiding only banks healthy enough to lend -- laid out by the Treasury when the program began -- clearly seems to have shifted, but in a way that's hard to pin down and that the Treasury has declined to explain. Part of the problem is that some powerful politicians have used their leverage to try to direct federal millions toward banks in their home states.

"It's totally arbitrary," says South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford. "If you've got the right lobbyist and the right representative connected to Washington or the right ties to Washington, you get the golden tap on the shoulder," says Gov. Sanford, a Republican.

Example 1. Barney Frank.

On Oct. 27, the FDIC and Massachusetts bank regulatory officials, alleging poor lending practices and executive-compensation abuses by OneUnited, slapped it with a strong enforcement action, a cease-and-desist order. Among other things, the officials told the bank to get rid of a 2008 Porsche for executives.

Mr. Cooper, the bank's attorney, dismisses the order as a "hastily cobbled together" action. "What we are talking about is a hiccup, a blip on the screen of an otherwise-stellar enterprise," he says. Asked whether the bank had sold the Porsche, he said only that it was complying with the order.

Mr. Frank -- who has played a leading role in both the initial design of TARP and current planning to revamp it -- says he spoke with a federal regulator and asked that OneUnited be given consideration for TARP money, "without in any way impinging on their general safety and soundness rules." Mr. Frank said he didn't remember which federal regulator he spoke with.

On Dec. 19, OneUnited received $12 million from the Treasury, on condition it raise $20 million from its shareholders, which it did.

Ms. McLaughlin, the spokeswoman for the Bush administration Treasury, said that OneUnited's application was subject to the same review process as other banks faced.

Mr. Frank said he didn't try to interfere with the regulatory process. "We have never told the regulators that they should ease up on them or not order them to do this or that," he said.

He cites the bank's status as the state's only financial institution owned by African-Americans. "We did say, yes, I thought it would have been a social tragedy if the one minority bank in Massachusetts that has been working so hard and had been overextended into housing was to be wiped out by a federal action, the Fannie-Freddie preferred [shares] thing, and that's why I think it was important to try to help them."

Rep. Waters said she was unaware that the bank received money. OneUnited was "just a small" bank, she said.

Note to Frank, when you are spending taxpayer's money..being the one minority bank in Taxxachusetts is not even close to being a good reason to pour money into it.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Robert Reich: No stimulus money for white males or skilled workers.

Nation: Anyone surprised? This pork filled stimulus bill is nothing more than a massive redistribution of taxes to benefit liberal social justice concerns.

What kind of a moron advocates this nonsense?

But if there aren’t enough skilled professionals to do the jobs involving new technologies, the stimulus will just increase the wages of the professionals who already have the right skills rather than generate many new jobs in these fields. And if construction jobs go mainly to white males who already dominate the construction trades, many people who need jobs the most — women, minorities, and the poor and long-term unemployed — will be shut out.

What to do? There’s no easy solution to either dilemma…

People can be trained relatively quickly for these sorts of jobs, as well as many infrastructure j0bs generated by the stimulus — installing new pipes for water and sewage systems, repairing and upgrading equipment, basic construction — but contractors have to be nudged both to provide the training and to do the hiring.

I’d suggest that all contracts entered into with stimulus funds require contractors to provide at least 20 percent of jobs to the long-term unemployed and to people with incomes at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty level. And at least 2 percent of project funds should be allocated to such training. In addition, advantage should be taken of buildings trades apprenticeships — wich must be fully available to women and minorities

Now in Youtube version it sounds even worse with the added bonus of Charles Tax Cheat Rangel saying middle class opposition will be moot because they are too busy working.

This is a lawsuit waiting to happen if Reich's gets his plan in action. What about white people who are out of a job? Are they going to be a victim of positive discrimination? The fact is right now construction companies are laying people off and not hiring, the states get the money, the companies will go on a hiring spree.

If you want people to get these jobs instead of doing the worst Affirmative Action creed ever, move the money towards vocational schools or tax credits/incentives only for companies to hire. That doesn't mean forcing them to waste time that could be used to build by training people to meet some social quota.

Princess Caroline Withdraws Senate Bid

Politics: NYTIMES is covering for her..

Caroline Kennedy announced early Thursday that she was withdrawing from consideration for the vacant Senate seat in New York, startling the state’s political world after weeks in which she was considered a top contender for the post.

Ms. Kennedy on Wednesday called Gov. David A. Paterson, who will choose a successor to Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton, to inform him that she was no longer interested.

“I informed Governor Paterson today that for personal reasons I am withdrawing my name from consideration for the United States Senate,” Ms. Kennedy said in a statement released by her public relations firm.

Ms. Kennedy did not elaborate, but a person who spoke to her suggested that her concerns about the health of her uncle, Senator Edward M. Kennedy, who suffers from brain cancer and was hospitalized after a seizure on Tuesday, contributed to her decision.

Ms. Kennedy believed that the job was hers if she would accept it, the person said, but aides to Mr. Paterson would not comment on whether that was true.

NYPOST who broke the story says Patterson was sick of her.

Sources close to Kennedy said she had decided to bow out for "personal" reasons.

But others said she made her move after it became clear Paterson wasn't going to pick her for the seat.

Several sources said the governor, who has sole power to replace Clinton, was unimpressed with the daughter of John F. Kennedy in media interviews and in private sessions with various officials.

Two sources said Paterson had conveyed to Kennedy on Tuesday that she wasn't likely to get picked. Kennedy also was at Obama's inauguration, but kept a low profile and was barely seen.

I believe the Post as I have a hard time seeing Caroline not taking the Senate Seat because Ted is sick, hell Ted would have still encouraged her to take it. You can't have a congress without a Kennedy in it.

9/11 families upset at Obama's war court freeze

Terrorism: Via Miami Herald.

Families of the Sept. 11 victims here to observe military commission hearings reacted with fury and frustration Wednesday to President Barack Obama's instruction to freeze the war court.

''Get this trial going,'' said retired New York City Deputy Fire Chief Jim Riches, who lost his firefighter son, Jimmy, in the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001.

Should the president decide the current war court formula is insufficient, ``then let's get another system in place where they can prosecute it expeditiously.''

This week was the second time the Pentagon brought five family members chosen by lottery to observe the proceedings in a process open to parents, children, spouses or siblings of the 2,973 people killed on 9/11.

And, like those who visited before them, they cradled photos of their lost loved ones and urged the new president not to close the controversial prison camps here, whichtoday detain some 245 foreign men, most as suspected terrorists.

''People should know that the safest place to hold these trials is at Guantánamo . . . not the homeland,'' Lorraine Arias Believeau tearfully told a knot of reporters.

Her stockbroker brother, Adam, perished inside the World Trade Center that Thursday morning.

Defense for polygamists cites gay marriage

Culture: Remember leftists saying that gay marriage wouldn't lead to polygamy? Well...

Canada's decision to legalize gay marriage has paved the way for polygamy to be legal as well, a defense lawyer said Wednesday as the two leaders of rival polygamous communities made their first court appearance.

The case is the first to test Canada's polygamy laws.

Winston Blackmore, 52, and James Oler, 44, are each accused of being married to more than one woman at a time. The charges carry a maximum penalty of five years in prison, British Columbia Attorney General Wally Oppal said.

But Blackmore's lawyer, Blair Suffredine, said during a telephone interview that marriage standards in Canada have changed.

"If (homosexuals) can marry, what is the reason that public policy says one person can't marry more than one person?" said Suffredine, a former provincial lawmaker. Canada's Parliament extended full marriage rights to same-sex couples in 2005.

Suffredine said the case is also about religious persecution.

Blackmore and Oler lead rival polygamous factions in Bountiful, a town in southeastern British Columbia. Blackmore is charged with marrying 20 women and Oler is accused of marrying two women.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

BET: Obama will be covered objectively

Media: Via Romenesko. Unless Obama completely forgets about doing something for minorities and especially working on black issues which would cause a turn agains him. I don't see any black mainstream print media, radio or TV networks covering Obama in anything but we drank the kool-aid mode.

Los Angeles Times
"There's been so much talk about the black journalist, about is this something that a black journalist can cover with a level of integrity, or are all black journalists just drinking the Kool-Aid, celebrating Barack Obama before he won," BET anchor Jeff Johnson told viewers on Tuesday. "There's a question for us as a network: Are we going to be able to cover this the right way? Well, I'm telling you we are."

Again, if you have to pledge that you are going to do something, you are not going to do it. As for the commentator on Romenesko who cited That is the biggest Black MSM funded Obama cheerleading site since before he got the nomination.

Obama to close CIA black sites, Gitmo in 12 months.

Politics: Fine with me. Since 9/11 not another attack on American soil. If Obama wants to dismantle the machine and bring terrorists to American soil, so be it. Its all on him now.

"...Mr. Obama will shutter "all permanant detention facilities overseas," the draft said, according to the individuals who asked not to be named because the orders have not yet been signed. There are at least eight such prisons, according to published reports. The Bush administration never revealed the number or location of the facilities, although several were said to be in Eastern Europe.

The individuals said there will be three executive orders. One will order the black sites closed and require all interrogations of detainees across the entire U.S. intelligence community to adhere to the U.S. Army Field Manual. The manual specifies a range of interrogation techniques that are not considered torture.

Another executive order will close the prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba within 12 months, in accordance with an Obama campaign pledge. The final order deals with overall detention policy.

The orders discuss the status of the estimated 250 detainees at Guantanamo and what to do with them and calls for a series of reviews on the status of the prisoners and the military commissions set up to try them. The review will look at transferring prisoners to military facilities in the United States."

Lord help us if something happens because I will point out the first of these orders as a probable cause. Obama wants to be loved and as the saying goes if its a choice between being loved or being feared, I will take the latter.

Wilders to be Prosecuted for Insulting Muslims

EU: As the Netherlands takes it place as the cowards of Europe gutting free speech, replacing it with appeasement and in the end giving Islam a special protected status where all criticism will not be tolerated.

Party for Freedom (PVV) leader Geert Wilders will be prosecuted for "incitement to hatred and discrimination" and "insult of Islamic worshippers". The appeal court in Amsterdam ruled yesterday that the Public Prosecutor's Office (OM) must bring a case against the MP.

A series of Islamic organisations and individuals had asked the OM to prosecute Wilders for statements he made on Islam in the media and in his short anti-Islam film 'Fitna.' The OM decided in July 2008 that none of these statements were punishable offences, and therefore brought no case against the politician.

The far left organisation Netherland Recognises Colour (Nederland Bekent Kleur) and various Muslim groups and individuals had asked the appeal court to force the OM to prosecute Wilders after all. They got their wish yesterday.

The appeal court considers "that the contested views of Wilders (also as shown in his movie Fitna) constitute a criminal offence according to Dutch law as seen in connection with each other, both because of their contents and the method of presentation. This method of presentation is characterized by biased, strongly generalizing phrasings with a radical meaning, ongoing reiteration and an increasing intensity, as a result of which hate is created."

Furthermore, "most statements are insulting as well since these statements substantially harm the religious esteem of the Islamic worshippers." (...) Also, "the instigation of hatred in a democratic society constitutes such a serious matter that a general interest is at stake in order to draw a clear boundary in the public debate."

European values are only as strong as the level of threat they feel towards them.

Aaron McGruder: Obama is not black.

Entertainment: Follow the logic?

On the topic of race and ethnicity, McGruder said that to him, Obama is not black because he is not a descendant of a slave.

"The person who is one of us in the White House is Michelle Obama and her momma," McGruder said.

His comments outraged Dionne Robinson, 44, of Richmond.

"I want my $5 back," she said. "It's one thing to have an opinion, but he doesn't have any facts. He needs to go back to college."

Robinson said that people were enslaved in many parts of the world, not just in America.

Her son, Zane Robinson, 14, of Richmond watches "The Boondocks," but was disappointed by the show's creator.

"He's nothing like his show," Zane said. "I thought it was kind of boring. His answers were long and they didn't make any sense."

Like his mother, Zane -- who wore a sweatshirt that celebrates Obama's presidency -- didn't like McGruder's comments about Obama. "He didn't seem to know what he was talking about," Zane said.

Boondocks is a great show with timely commentary but McGruder is a bit of a moron who says things that makes it clear he doesn't think first before saying something.

If he is trying to say that being from a slave line makes you black that would be stupid. "Being black" is the color of your skin and the experiences that you go thru because of it.

Coming from a slave line is not a prerequisite for being black.

Racine City mayor resigns after sex-sting arrest.

Crime: A pedo got busted.

The city of Racine, Wis., has received a letter of resignation from its mayor, who faces charges in an Internet sex sting.

City Council President David Maack says Tuesday's resignation of Mayor Gary Becker will allow the city to move forward without having to deal with the process of removing him from office.

Maack says the council will meet soon to decide whether to hold a special election or appoint someone to fill the roughly two years remaining in Becker's term.

The 51-year-old Becker was charged Thursday with six felonies. He's accused of trying to arrange a sexual encounter with someone he thought was an underage girl.

Becker's attorney, Patrick Cafferty, said his client intends to plead not guilty.

Portland mayor's sex romp with teen boy.

Crime: 2009 is starting out with a bang in the mayor sex scandal category.

Multnomah County's prosecutor plans to investigate Portland Mayor Sam Adams after Adams admitted he had a sexual relationship with an 18-year-old he met in 2005.

As Adams was contemplating a run for mayor in 2007, he denied allegations that he had had a sexual relationship with Beau Breeedlove, a legislative intern he met four years ago when Breedlove was 17. But Adams acknowledged Monday that he did have such a relationship, but only after Breedlove turned 18.

The county's criminal investigation will look into allegations that Adams' had sex with a minor and whether Adams' lie about his sexual relationship with Breedlove while serving as a city commissioner rose to the level of official misconduct.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

UK economy on the brink of collapse?

UK: First bailout bid as worked to stop bank losses, this is the same bailout that experts were saying was the model for the rest of the world.

The U.K. government is rushing out new additions to its financial rescue plan, in an effort to kick-start lending and quell rising concerns about the health of the country's banking system.

Faced with plunging bank stocks and a worsening economic downturn that the £500 billion ($740 billion) rescue plan has failed to stem, the U.K. government now plans to offer banks a number of new measures, featuring a kind of insurance that would limit their losses on mortgage and other loans. The insurance would be aimed at easing worries about the extent of banks' losses and at reviving the market for securities into which banks repackage the loans.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown and Treasury Chief Alistair Darling plan to announce the package early Monday, after an intense weekend of negotiations. Urgency to finalize the package increased after a nerve-wracking late trading session on Friday that saw shares of Barclays PLC, considered one of the stronger U.K. banks, plummet 25% while Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC fell 13%.

The politicians will present the package to Parliament, where they are expected to face tough questions over why the existing bailout plan, announced in October, has failed to restore lending. That bailout included a £37 billion capital injection into three of the country's biggest banks -- RBS, HBOS PLC, and Lloyds TSB Group PLC -- as well as government guarantees of bank debt. At the time, the package was seen as a global model for dealing with the financial crisis.

You shall not speak over Obama...ever!

Media: Via DCRTV.

Rush Jests During Obama Speech - 1/20 - "Where's Puff Daddy?" Rush Limbaugh said during the post-inauguration poem. "I'm still waiting for a rhyme here, it's a poem," Limbaugh added. Heard via WMAL and WCBM. Adds a local radio listener: "Rush Limbaugh - speaking over Barak Obama during the (inauguration) speech - sounds like the 'stupid' kid talking out loud while the new principal is speaking to the school. Shut up Rush, you sound like a bitter, racist pig. The man is the president, can't you let him speak? You have all the time in the world to blast him later on".....

Principal Obama. Yet another title for Black Jesus to wear proudly I guess.

Miami police chief Maureen Dowd's driver for a night.

South Florida: I wonder if this is the same SUV he got in trouble for a couple of years back? But he does know how to party in Miami. The NYTIMES had to get a loan from a billionaire to make payments on its own loans. Why are you sending Dowd to Miami on the company's dime for such a fluff story?

At some spas, going AWOL produces a Mother Superior scowl from management. Here, the easygoing staff seems to expect it, even enable it. There’s a hair salon that will wash the massage oil out of your hair, give you a great blow dry and reasonably priced sun streaks, and send you on your way out into the warm night with some cheap dangly earrings.

I called the only person I knew in Miami and asked him to bust us out of there on Saturday night. Fortunately, he was chief of police, my pal John Timoney, so the great escape from Canyon Ranch went flawlessly in his white getaway S.U.V.

Chief Timoney took us over to the most over-the-top spot in this over-the-top city: the leopard-skin-swathed, stained-glass-filled, Medusa-head-branded Versace mansion, a testament to what one man accomplished by reducing antiquity to a throw pillow.

The mansion, Casa Casuarina, had been turned into a private club but is now open to the public, with a restaurant on its patio that started out in September, and tours of the mannerist upstairs suites. We had a drink in the ornate bar with the owner, Peter Loftin, a mountain of Southern charm, a retired telecommunications mogul who bought the house for $19 million in 2000. Then we ate a sampling from the kitchen: a mound of succulent Kobe beef, fried pork belly, sea scallops with osetra caviar, black grouper, blue prawns cooked at the table on a salt block, foie gras with a riesling-pineapple-coriander emulsion and Meyer lemon tart and crushed amaretti mousse with vanilla-bean meringue, washed down by Champagne (Krug, Clos de Ambonnay 1995), at one of the outdoor tables under a tent by the elaborately tiled pool.

"Obama will build us schools!"

Politics: I would hate to be the person to say they are not the 51st state.

“This man is Jesus,” shouted one man, spilling his Guinness as Barack Obama began his inaugural address. “When will he come to Kenya to save us?” If Barack Obama’s spin doctors have been trying to lower expectations since his election victory, the message clearly has not reached the land of his father…

“Now he is president we will get food and jobs,” said Ben Ochieng, as he danced to the traditional music that replaced the planned show…

“It is right that when people get power they look after their family, so we know that Obama will build lots of good things for us, like schools and roads and clinics,” said George Opiyo as he left the theatre.

Romenesko/Politico highlight Ben Affleck.

Media: You would expect better from both pushing Affleck as some finance guru heckling Newsweek. I don't mind leftist vs leftist violence but even Newsweek deserves better.

As for news sources Affleck reads: Huffington Post, The New York Times, Washington Post, The Nation, BBC, Al-Jazeera, and the Economist.

No wonder he is so informed.

LATIMES: We pledge to watch Obama..honest!

Media: If you have to pledge to do something, you probably won't and just covering your ass.

LAT: "We pledge to watch Obama, to hold him to his work, and to report back"

Los Angeles Times PressThink

Barack Obama's victory "was welcome news to us, as it was for many millions of Americans," says the LAT editorial board. "But recent history supplies a sobering lesson in what happens when support for a president dulls the skepticism needed to ensure public accountability."

Jay Rosen: "What we should care about is not how many questions the press gets to ask at White House news conferences -- a hapless metric -- but how open to questions the Obama White House is in all the available ways.">

Glenn Greenwald: "It remains to be seen what the media behavior will be towards Obama

Dan Froomkin: "We should hold Obama to his bold pledges."

Liberal Froomkin's Obama excuse making is the best as its a number of qualifications to when they should go after Obama as they did to Bush. You will be seeing more of this in the future.

Man tries to return empty lobster shell.

Nation: The ending is the best.

Walter U. Tessier of Division Street walked into the Price Chopper on Saturday with a lobster in hand saying he wanted to return it because ''it was bad,'' Montgomery County sheriff's deputies said.

Store workers were about to allow Tessier to trade the $10.99 lobster for a bag of king crab legs when they discovered the lobster was all shell. Tessier had eaten it and put the shell parts back together, deputies said.

When confronted, the man with a passion for seafood ran from the store with the bag of crab legs in hand, they said.

Deputies said they caught up with him at his home only to discover that he had already eaten the crab legs.

Tessier was charged with petit larceny and given an appearance ticket to return to court at a later date.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Blood vessel microscopic 'submarine'

Medical: But where is the minituarization ray?

It was the flight of fancy behind the Raquel Welch science fiction film Fantastic Voyage.

More than 40 years on, the concept of a microscopic ‘submarine’ that can swim through narrow blood vessels and help save a patient’s life has moved closer to reality.

Scientists have designed one of the world’s tiniest motors, just a quarter of a millimetre wide, which they believe will be powerful enough to drive a tiny robot around the body and even into the delicate structures of the brains of stroke victims.

Obama may quickly reverse abortion policy

Culture: As the new dawn arrives.

President-elect Barack Obama is considering issuing an executive order to reverse a controversial Bush administration abortion policy in his first week in office, three Democratic sources said Monday.

Obama's second full day as president falls on the 36th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion in the United States.

The sources said Obama may use the occasion to reverse the "Mexico City policy" reinstated in 2001 by Bush that prohibits U.S. money from funding international family planning groups that promote abortion or provide information, counseling or referrals about abortion services. It bans any organization receiving family planning funds from the U.S. Agency for International Development from offering abortions or abortion counseling.

As the culture of death is renewed again on the taxpayer's dime.

Europe opposes more troops for Afghanistan

Afghanistan: Even with hope and change coming in, no more troops.

Most voters in leading European countries believe their governments should resist any request by incoming U.S. President Barack Obama to send more troops to Afghanistan, according to an opinion poll published on Tuesday.

The Harris poll for the Financial Times showed "clear majorities" in Britain, France, Italy and Germany believed their governments must not send more forces to Afghanistan if Obama asked them to do so, the newspaper said.

Other hand Black Jesus should talk to Iran because that is the only thing European leaders can do these days. Talk.

The poll showed voters would like to see Obama reaching out to Iran, which clashed with President George W. Bush's administration over its nuclear program.

Obama has said he may be willing to reverse Bush's policy by offering direct talks with Iran.

At least two-thirds of voters in the five European countries surveyed, as well as in the United States, said Obama should personally meet leading figures in the Iranian government, the Financial Times said.

The poll showed Obama enjoyed high approval ratings in Europe.

Of course he does.

EU recession: deep and long-lasting

EU: Usually words like that have a nicer meaning but in this case the EU is over the cliff and the only parachute has tax payer spending written all over it.

The European Union said Monday it is facing a "deep and protracted recession" and slashed growth forecasts, while Britain announced its second massive bank bailout in just over three months in another wave of bad economic news in Europe.

The economy in the 16 nations that use the euro will shrink by 1.9 percent in 2009, with the entire EU contracting 1.8 percent, the European Commission said. That is a drastic cut from its earlier forecasts of 0.1 percent for the euro zone and 0.2 percent for the EU.

The 27-member bloc said 3.5 million jobs will disappear in the EU in the year ahead as business and household spending falls and banks tighten lending.

Obama's stimulus bill not big enough.

Nation: Does the Centre for Economic and Policy Research realize that Obama is spending taxpayer money he really doesn't have at the moment?

Apart from the size, most of the money in the package looks to be well spent. Two-thirds of the stimulus goes to spending of various types. Much of this will take the form of aid to hard-pressed state and local governments in the form of increased funding for Medicaid and education. The package will also increase the generosity of unemployment benefits as well as modernising the programme so that more part-time and intermittent workers will be eligible for benefits.

Bailing out fiscally irresponsible state/local government while expanding the welfare industry is a good thing. Its going to be a long 4 years.

School district warns Inappropriate comments about Obama will not be tolerated!

Politics: Comments that make people feel uncomfortable is really not grounds for punishment.

Mason school officials said they are taking a proactive educational approach in advance of next week's planned Inauguration Day activities.

"Inappropriate comments that may make other students, staff or families feel unwelcome or uncomfortable in school or on the bus will not be tolerated," Superintendent Kevin Bright said in an e-mail sent to parents Monday, Jan. 12.

The district, he said, expects students and staff to show respect for President-elect Obama and the incoming administration, as well as President Bush and the outgoing administration, and recognize that "while the election is a competitive process, our nation's greatness is displayed when all sides come together for a united country."

How is threatening free speech a proactive educational approach?

Ingrid Mattson warned Jews to be wary of "right-wing" Christians

Politics: Ingrid Mattson is invited to speak at Obama's inaugural prayer service and President of the Islamic Society of North America, a group that was linked to terrorist groups like Hamas during the Holy Land Foundation had this warning to Jews who ally with "right wing" Christians.

A Roman Catholic and atheist before turning to Islam, she has warned American Jews not to ally themselves with right-wing Christians, who, she says, "are really anti-Semitic."

More at the Boston Globe.

Ohio state workers stunned by requested real world concessions

Nation: Ohio gov is asking for cuts and the state union is saying no.

The state has asked workers in its largest labor union to accept a 5 percent across-the-board pay cut, a shorter work week and unpaid holidays to help balance the state's troubled budget, according to a document obtained by The Plain Dealer.

The list of cuts and changes Gov. Ted Strickland's administration has asked the workers to accept, which also includes mandatory furloughs and paying more for their health insurance, would amount to $250 million in concessions, according to a members-only e-mail from Ohio Civil Service Employees Association president Eddie L. Parks.

In the e-mail updating members on bargaining, dated Thursday, Parks said that the union expected to have to fight to keep its wages and health care agreements intact. But the union's negotiating team nonetheless was "aghast at the scope of the concessions the state proposed."

Parks said "the union has also been told that even if concessions are made, there will be no guarantee that layoffs won't happen."

In fact, Parks said he expects layoffs regardless of how negotiations are resolved.

But the union has HOPE!

Meanwhile, Parks said OCSEA won't consider the state's request for concessions until Strickland reveals his hand.

"The union team said it will not be considering any economic 'proposals' before the state budget has been released and it is known how much federal relief Ohio may receive," Parks said in the e-mail.

Among other items the state asked the union to accept: a 35-hour work week, a 75/25 split in health care payments, and eliminating current contractual rules that prevent a union member's work schedule from being changed to avoid overtime.

Australia's little pro-nazi muslim girl.

Australia: As someone pointed out in Blair's comments, if this was a child with a sign saying kill Hamas, there would be outrage.

Robert Fisk!?:

"And pro-Palestinian marchers should think twice before they start waffling about genocide when the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem once shook Hitler's hand and said – in Berlin on 2 November 1943, to be precise – "The Germans know how to get rid of the Jews... They have definitely solved the Jewish problem." The Grand Mufti, it need hardly be added, was a Palestinian."

Ill. voters resigned to their stupidity and political corruption

Politics: So the reason Illinois keeps voting crooks could be the voters in the state are dumb as dirt.

Charlotte Podolner has faithfully voted in every election she could in her 88 years, then watched as one Illinois politician after another headed to jail.

That's just the way it goes here, she says, convinced that nothing - not even the federal corruption charges against Gov. Rod Blagojevich - will change the state's legacy of shady politics. About 1,000 elected officials, including three governors, have been convicted of corruption since the early 1970s.

"Chicago has a ... reputation for corrupt politics. It's not flattering, but we're always thought of as manipulators," said Podolner, a retired office worker from Chicago. "It's part of our tradition."

But political experts say voters themselves bear some responsibility since they have continued to elect officials of questionable character. Many appear to accept corruption as part and parcel of politics and often are willing to put up with it if they get something in return.

....Chicago resident and former public school teacher Twesi Hopkins voted for Blagojevich twice, even though he'd heard of corruption investigations involving the Democratic governor before his 2006 re-election. Hopkins, 59, generally has been happy with the governor's leadership, like approving free rides for seniors on Chicago-area public transportation.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Don't bother with Circuit City liquidation "sales"

Business: Instapundit reader wrote saying he saw big crowds but no deals. Well there is a reason for that via Consumerist. This news came out when the first wave of CC stores were closing down.

Your worst suspicions have been confirmed, the liquidator that ran the notoriously awful CompUSA liquidation (they actually raised prices, click here to see a photo) is conducting the liquidation of 155 Circuit City stores.

Not saying you aren't going to get a deal but expecting 50% off a flat screen most likely won't happen.


Gizmodo: Circuit City Closeout Deals Aren't Deals At All.