Sunday, October 17, 2010
Tens of thousands rally against Italian government
Tens of thousands of people marched in Rome on Saturday at a trade union rally in defence of labour contracts and against the government, as the main protest leader called for a general strike.
"We have to continue this battle and to continue it we need to start planning a general strike," Maurizio Landini, head of the FIOM-CGIL metal workers union, told the flag-waving crowd in a square in central Rome.
Protesters at the FIOM-CGIL rally shouted: "Strike! Strike! Strike!"
"We have a government that only cares about public finances," Guglielmo Epifani, leader of the leftist CGIL union, said at the rally, listing the construction and auto sectors as some of the worst affected in Italy.
"They are taking advantage of the crisis in order to weaken labour rights," he said, adding: "The social situation is very tough. The country is going downhill, it can't recover like it should. Unemployment is rising.
"We have to fight together. We need a plan for a new country," he added.
French protesters rally over pension reform
PARIS, Oct 16 (Reuters) - A million or more people marched in cities across France on Saturday in the latest protest of a campaign against President Nicolas Sarkozy's flagship pension reform, and refinery strikes squeezed fuel at airports.
Turnout was down by several hundred thousand from the last weekend rally against Sarkozy's push to raise France's retirement age, and there were no immediate reports of serious scuffles.
Five-day old rail and refinery strikes piled pressure on the centre-right government, however, by disrupting travel.
France's civil aviation authority said Charles de Gaulle international airport had just two days' worth of fuel in stock after a walkout at a refinery in northern France cut the flow through a key pipeline to Paris. France's other international airport, Orly, has fuel reserves for several days.
Saturday, October 16, 2010
The White House attack on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce isn’t about “disclosure.” It’s about disarmament. While posing as campaign finance champions, the ultimate goal of the Democratic offensive is to intimidate conservative donors, chill political free speech and drain Republican coffers.
Chamber of Commerce official Bruce Josten tried to educate the public. “(W)e know what the purpose here is,” he told ABC News. “It’s to harass and intimidate.” Josten cited protests and threats against chamber members as retribution for ads the organization ran opposing the federal health care takeover.
But this isn’t the first time liberal bullyboys have targeted right-leaning contributors. Far from it.
In August 2008, a former Washington director of MoveOn.org — the smear merchant group that branded Gen. David Petraeus a traitor for overseeing the successful troop surge in Iraq — announced a brazen witch hunt against Republican donors. Left-wing political operative Tom Matzzie told The New York Times he would send “warning” letters to 10,000 top GOP givers “hoping to create a chilling effect that will dry up contributions.” Matzzie bragged of “going for the jugular” and said the warning letter would be just the first step, “alerting donors who might be considering giving to right-wing groups to a variety of potential dangers, including legal trouble, public exposure and watchdog groups digging through their lives.”
Defenders of this brown-shirt initiative played the disclosure card — hey, they were just providing “information” — to rationalize the public humiliation of GOP donors.
Victory?? - Reggie
posted at 8:10 pm on October 15, 2010 by Allahpundit
Earlier, in Headlines, I wrote that he’d been acquitted on all counts, but that’s not quite true. Presumably all charges will now be dismissed — Radio Netherlands says the case is as good as over — but it’s not the prosecutors who have been Wilders’s chief tormentors in all this. It’s the courts, who actually forced them to press charges against him for “sowing hatred” early last year. So in theory, they could refuse the prosecutors’ motion and demand that the case proceed. Which, of course, will only succeed in making him even more popular in the Netherlands by turning him into a free-speech martyr.
The ostensible charges here are group defamation and inciting hatred, but really it’s just a blasphemy trial by the back door. And that’s why prosecutors want him released. If denouncing a religion is a hate crime against its adherents, then not only is blasphemy back in full force but you’re way, way down the slippery slope of placing certain subjects beyond criticism.
Thursday, October 14, 2010
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
American Crossroads, a Republican organization founded with the encouragement of Karl Rove and former RNC chief Ed Gillespie, is reaping the benefits that come with receiving criticism from an administration polling below 50%. Since the White House began attacking the conservative group last week for not disclosing their donors, the organization has raised $13.3 million — destroying their original fundraising goals and allowing them to target traditionally “low-risk” Democrat House seats.
“There is no question that the increased visibility that the White House has given us in the last week has increased our fundraising,” Crossroads spokesman Jonathan Collegio told The Daily Caller. “We have blown past our original $50 million fundraising goal and have increased our projection to $65 million by November 2.”
To date the group has raised $56 million.
There is a famous line from Hamlet: “The lady doth protest too much, methinks.”
In Shakespeare’s play, Queen Gertrude is referring to what she believes are overwrought vows from a Queen pledging fidelity to her King.
In modern times, the phrase has come to signify the tendency of a guilty party to so passionately insist on their innocence that they suggest their guilt.
Last week, this newsletter highlighted a memo I sent to candidates across the country suggesting the closing argument for the 2010 campaign be a choice between the Democratic Party of food stamps and the Republican Party of paychecks.
Watching Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other Democrats’ reaction to that memo, one couldn’t help but think “the lady doth protest too much.”
More food stamps or more paychecks? The choice for America November 2nd
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Sunday, October 10, 2010
If Fiorina beats Boxer, liberalism will suffer a grievous defeat
BY Fred Barnes
October 18, 2010
Barbara Boxer under pressure is like a reckless driver in traffic. She’s out of control and extremely careless. “You know, like, I don’t want to go back to the days when thousands of people died every day because they had no insurance,” she declared in a debate in late September. Boxer, as best one could tell, was referring to the era before President Obama’s health care plan was enacted.
If true, at least 730,000 people were dying annually in America for lack of health insurance. (To do the math, it’s a minimum of 2,000 deaths every 24 hours multiplied by 365 days.) That’s a staggering number of people who presumably couldn’t get life-saving medical care because they were without an insurance policy to foot the bill.
Boxer’s claim didn’t get a rise out of the questioners in the debate, a radio match between Boxer, the Democratic senator from California, in an NPR studio in Washington, and her Republican opponent, Carly Fiorina, at a public station in Pasadena. No one asked a follow-up.
After the debate, Boxer took questions from the media. (Fiorina did the same in Pasadena.) I asked Boxer for the basis of her claim. Without hesitation, she said it was reports, studies, things she’d read. She offered no specific citation.
That wasn’t the end of the matter. Boxer approached me in a friendly manner after the Q-and-A session, said she hadn’t seen me in a while, and said she remembered me from Roll Call, the Capitol Hill newspaper. She’d mistaken me for Morton Kondracke, my colleague as a Fox News commentator who indeed does write a column for Roll Call.
The senator briefly continued the discussion of deaths due to lack of insurance. I mentioned a study that concluded 40,000 people die annually because they aren’t insured. (At least one other study has put the death toll at zero.) But Boxer didn’t flinch. She didn’t back off from her claim. She left the press room, only to return about 10 seconds later. “Fred, did I say thousands a day?” she said. “I meant thousands a year.” It was a wise tactical retreat.
What should we draw from this episode? Three things. One, in the heat of a reelection campaign, Boxer will say just about anything so long as she can get away with it. And she usually can. Two, she is under extraordinary pressure from Fiorina, by far the strongest Republican candidate she’s ever faced. Three, Boxer is a tough, resourceful, and shrewd campaigner and not too haughty to correct a false statement when necessary to avert trouble.
Often that’s not necessary. Boxer, 69, makes so many dubious, untrue, hypocritical, or outlandish remarks in a single debate that most of them fly by without registering. Thank heaven for transcripts.
“Roe v. Wade, I believe, is a decision that brings us all together,” she said in the radio debate. That takes one’s breath away. Roe v. Wade, the 1973 decision legalizing abortion, is the most divisive Supreme Court ruling since the Dred Scott case in 1857. It brings us together the way the Civil War did—in an angry fight with political ramifications that endure for decades.
“Sixty-two percent of our people were going broke due to a health care crisis,” Boxer said in the same debate. Again, she tossed out a large, highly unlikely number. “California is not a state that sits around and lets anybody else lead,” she insisted. This may have been true decades ago, but now California leads the nation only in fiscal irresponsibility, dysfunctional governance, and the mass exodus of the business class.
On immigration, “we have to stop this arguing,” she said. “We have to come together.” This is odd coming from a notoriously argumentative senator, one for whom the label “bitterly partisan” could have been invented. Boxer was removed last summer as lead senator on the cap and trade bill to clamp down on carbon emissions because she was too fractious to line up sufficient votes.
Very good political ad.
Friday, October 8, 2010
9/11 MOSQUE IMAM BOASTS: 'Obama's historic speech in Egypt came from me'
In previous reports researched by the Walid Shoebat Foundation, it was revealed that Imam Rauf has made statements in the Arabic language - while appearing on Arabic media outlets - that completely contradict his moderate tone when speaking english, exposing him as a direct supporter of terrorism, both financially and verbally.
So who really was speaking on that historic day of June 4th 2009 in Egypt? President Obama or the Imam of the proposed Ground Zero Mosque, Feisal Abdul Rauf?
The Shoebat Foundation has obtained a shocking audio recording of Rauf's own voice boasting in Arabic that Obama’s historic speech in Cairo was provided by the Imam's work with the Cordova Initiative in what the Imam called “The Blue Print” which, according to him, was the solution to the Islamic-American divide. Rauf claimed that Chapter 6 of the Imam’s work engineered by the Cordova Initiative was the construct for the entire speech:
“This is an example of the impact of our work in a positive way to be used by the president.”
"The blue print," Rauf elaborated, included everything from U.S. policy to Jewish and Christian relations with Muslims.
Based on the discussion with the six FBI agents who arrived at his doorstep, Yassir Afifi believes he'd been under surveillance for three to six months. When Wired asked an FBI spokesman about the case, he did not acknowledge ownership of the device, but said that there was an "ongoing investigation."
This morning on his radio program, Glenn Beck discussed in more detail some of the physical challenges he’s been facing. Glenn told his audience that he will be taking several days off next week to undergo tests at a hospital “out west.”
Read the whole article from The Blaze
If it’s a day ending in “y”, it must be time for another “Sarahcuda’s probably running for president” post. Only two possibilities here, my friends: Either she’s doing a little early informal campaigning to impress the movers and shakers or the conservative leadership is huddling to coordinate the forthcoming Great RINO Purge.
Big news for me either way!
Read the rest of the article
Read the rest of the article
In a private conversation inadvertently captured by voicemail, Democratic gubernatorial nominee Jerry Brown or one of his associates can be heard referring to his Republican opponent Meg Whitman as a "whore," saying she cut a deal protecting law enforcement pensions while the two candidates competed for police endorsements.
Thursday, October 7, 2010
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
via The Blaze
8/28 Glenn Beck's Restoring Honor rally
10/2 Liberal, leftist, socialist, communist, union rally (description by Reggie)
Monday, October 4, 2010
Saturday, October 2, 2010
Claire Berlinski, author of There Is No Alternative: Why Margaret Thatcher Matters, discusses the book with, Hoover research fellow Peter Robinson.
Friday, October 1, 2010
“Waiting for Superman” (2010). Davis Guggenheim, director. Paramount/Vantage, 102 minutes. Documentary.
“Waiting for Superman” created a sensation at the Sundance Film Festival this year, and is creating an even greater sensation since its limited opening in a few major cities this week. Its premise is the failure of what Geoffrey Canada, president of Harlem Children’s Zone, calls “our implicit promise to students: that the idea of public school could work.” Public schools did work for the first 50 years, but they are failing now. This film explores the causes and solutions as it follows the experiences of half a dozen young students trying to get a better education than the one offered by their local public school.
As the film begins, Canada tells the story of learning from his mother that Superman was not a real person. He began to cry, he tells us, not because he compared Superman to Santa Claus, but because it meant that “no one was coming with enough power to save us.” Even as a young child, he could see the problems of poverty, crime, and unemployment in his neighborhood. He needed a hero with power. As an adult, he realized the super power that comes from education.
The documentary focuses largely on minority kids attending inner city schools in neighborhoods that are in shambles. As one bright young boy, Anthony, leaves for school, his grandmother calls out, “Be careful.” Not “Have a good day” or “Behave yourself” or “See you this afternoon,” but “Be careful.” These are rough neighborhoods where education is not a priority for the majority of young people.
But the filmmakers also visit Redwood City, CA, a well-to-do neighborhood near San Francisco, where the percentage of students moving on to college is also dismally low. Here the problem is not poverty but “tracking,” the practice of determining which students should be sent along a college track and which should be sent on a vocational track. The problem is, once a student starts down a lower track, it becomes increasingly difficult for him to move up to the college track. As the filmmakers point out, this system was designed 50 years ago, when only 20 percent of students went to college and the rest provided a pool of labor for the robust post-WWII economy. Today, the kinds of factory jobs available to the Baby Boomers have been mechanized out of existence or sent overseas. Everyone needs a college education today. But not everyone is being prepared for it.
Dropout rates are high throughout the country, not just in the South or the inner cities. One school administrator admits that a freshman class normally numbers 1,200 or so, but by its sophomore year the number has dropped to 300-400, an astounding loss of 75 percent! Over 2,000 schools are failing nationwide, causing many of them to be called “Dropout Factories” instead of high schools. Most are in poor urban neighborhoods, where the majority of young adults end up either dead or in prison. But the filmmakers ask a provocative question: Do failing neighborhoods produce failing schools, as conventional wisdom suggests, or do failing schools produce failing neighborhoods?
Thursday, September 30, 2010
A study has found that a third of all mammal species declared extinct in the past few centuries have turned up alive and well.
Some of the more reclusive creatures managed to hide from sight for 80 years only to reappear within four years of being officially named extinct in the wild.
The shy okapi – which resembles a cross between a zebra and a giraffe – was first discovered in the Democratic Republic of Congo in 1901.
After increasingly rarer sightings, it vanished from the wildlife radar for decades from 1959, prompting fears that it had died out.
But five years ago researchers working for the WWF found okapi tracks in the wild.
Other mammals ‘back from the dead’ include the rat-like Cuban solenodon, the Christmas Island shrew, the Vanikoro Flying Fox of the Solomon Islands, the Australian central rock rat and the Talaud Flying Fox of Indonesia.
The revelations come as the world’s leading conservationists prepare for a major United Nations summit on biodiversity in Nagoya, Japan, next month.
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Democrats embrace the Chris Farley school of political motivation.
Democrats seeking to boost voter turnout this fall are beginning to sound like the late comedian Chris Farley's portrayal of a "motivational speaker" on Saturday Night Live. Farley's character sought to inspire young people by announcing that they wouldn't amount to "jack squat" and would someday be "living in a van down by the river."
Massachusetts Senator John Kerry, who prefers sailing vessels to vans by the river, recently tried out the Farley method. Said Mr. Kerry, "We have an electorate that doesn't always pay that much attention to what's going on so people are influenced by a simple slogan rather than the facts or the truth or what's happening." Bay State voters are surely thrilled to be represented by a man so respectful of their concerns.
This week President Obama chimed in with another uplifting message about the American electorate. Mr. Obama told Rolling Stone that the tea party movement is financed and directed by "powerful, special-interest lobbies." But this doesn't mean that tea party groups are composed entirely of corporate puppets. Mr. Obama graciously implied that a small subset of the movement is simply motivated by bigotry.
House Democrats on Wednesday barely won a 210-209 vote to adjourn the House without extending the Bush tax cuts.
Thirty-nine House Democrats voted against adjournment after Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) urged opposition to the motion in a floor speech that said it would be irresponsible for Congress to leave without providing certainty on the tax issue. Dozens of Democrats in tough races voted against adjourning.
"Vote no on this adjournment resolution. Give Congress a chance to vote on extending tax rates," Boehner said.
Boehner's floor speech turned the vote on adjournment into a referendum on the tax cuts, which has divided Democrats for months. President Obama wants to extend tax cuts for families making less than $250,000, while allowing taxes to rise on income above that threshold. Many centrist Democrats have joined Republicans in arguing for extending all of the tax cuts.
The FBI and the U.S. Labor Department are investigating prominent labor leader Andy Stern in their probe of corruption at the Service Employees International Union, according to two people who have been interviewed by federal agents.
The two organized labor officials met with federal agents this summer to answer questions about a six-figure book contract that Stern landed in 2006 and his role in approving money to pay the salary of an SEIU leader in California who allegedly performed no work.
Both officials spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the investigation. The FBI and the Labor Department's office of inspector general declined to comment for the record.
The disclosure about the federal inquiry of Stern - who abruptly resigned as president of the 2.2-million member SEIU in April - comes just weeks ahead of contentious congressional elections in which the union is spending an estimated $44 million to support its favored Democratic candidates.
Read the full article
NationalCRs | September 20, 2010
The policies of President Obama and Congressional Democrats have resulted in 20% of young adults being unable to find work. Seeing the danger these policies pose to our generation, 18-29 year olds are "breaking up" with their decade long romance with the Democratic Party. Find out more at ourtab.org.
Member of European Parliament warns America is on path to European-style socialism
Glenn talked about this article this morning on his radio show and said it is a fair article. Get your coffee because it's quite lengthy. - Reggie
Published: September 29, 2010
Glenn Beck was sprawled out on his office couch a couple of weeks ago, taking — as self-helpers like to say — an inventory. “I think what the country is going through right now is, in a way, what I went through with my alcoholism,” he told me. “You can either live or die. You have a choice.” Beck, who is 46, was in the Midtown Manhattan offices of his production company, Mercury Radio Arts, which is named for Mercury Theater, the company created by Orson Welles. He had just finished his three-hour syndicated radio show and was a few hours away from his television show. It was a Wednesday afternoon in the middle of September, and Beck had just returned from a week’s vacation in the Grand Tetons followed by a quick hop to Anchorage, where he and Sarah Palin appeared at an event on Sept. 11.
Nigel Parry for The New York Times
Brendan Smialowski for The New York Times
Beck has a square, boyish face, an alternately plagued and twinkle-eyed demeanor that conjures (when Beck is wearing glasses) the comedian Drew Carey. He is 6-foot-2, which is slightly jarring when you first meet him, because he is all head and doughiness on television; I never thought of Beck as big or small, just as someone who was suddenly ubiquitous and who talked a lot and said some really astonishing things, to a point where it made you wonder — constantly — whether he was being serious.
At some point in the past few months, Beck ceased being just the guy who cries a lot on Fox News or a “rodeo clown” (as he has described himself) or simply a voice of the ultraconservative opposition to President Obama. In record time, Beck has traveled the loop of curiosity to ratings bonanza to self-parody to sage. It is remarkable to think he has been on Fox News only since January 2009.
In person, Beck is sheepish and approachable, betraying none of the grandiosity or bluster you might expect from a man who predicted “the next Great Awakening” to a few hundred thousand people in late August at the Lincoln Memorial or who declared last year that the president has a “deep-seated hatred for white people or the white culture.” He wore a blue dress shirt tucked into jeans and brown loafers, which he kicked off as soon as he sat down. He showed little interest in the results from primary elections held the day before — upsets in Delaware and New York for Tea Party candidates whose followers often invoke Beck and Palin as spiritual leaders and even promote them as a prospective presidential ticket in 2012.
“Not involved with the Tea Party,” Beck told me, shrugging. While many identify Beck with a political insurgency — as Rush Limbaugh was identified with the Republican sweep of 1994 — to believe that the nation suffers from “a political problem” comically understates things, in his view. “I stand with the Tea Party as long as they stand for certain principles and values,” Beck told me. He is a principles-and-values guy.
Beck talks like someone who is accustomed to thinking out loud and inflicting his revelations in real time. He speaks in the language of therapy, in which he has been steeped through years of 12-step programs and the Mormon-affiliated addiction-treatment center he and his wife run in the New York, New Jersey and Connecticut region. As he lay on his office couch, he recalled a very low moment. It was back in the mid-1990s. He was newly divorced, lying on the olive green shag carpet of a two-bedroom apartment in Hamden, Conn., that smelled like soup. It had a tiny kitchen, and his young children slept in a bed together when they visited on weekends. “It was the kind of place where loser guys who just got divorced wind up,” Beck said. “You’d see a new guy come in, you’d say hello and he’d walk in alone, and you’d be like, ‘Yeah, I understand, brother.’ ”
Beck understands, brother. Communists in the White House are bent on “fundamentally transforming” the country; progressives speak of putting “the common good” before the individual, which “is exactly the kind of talk that led to the death camps in Germany,” as he said on his show in May. Or, as he said in July of last year, “Everything that is getting pushed through Congress, including this health care bill,” is “driven by President Obama’s thinking on . . . reparations” and his desire to “settle old racial scores.” It sounds harsh, maybe, but this is the rhetoric of crisis and desperation, and so much of the population is too blind drunk to recognize the reality — which is that the country is lying on an olive green shag carpet on the brink of ending it all. “Some have to destroy their family and their job and their house and their income,” Beck told me. “Some don’t get it, and they die.”
Some do get it, and they revere Glenn Beck.
WHILE THE RIGHT has traditionally responded to its aggrieved sense of alienation with anger, Beck is not particularly angry. He seems sorrowful; his prevailing message is umbrage born of self-taught wisdom. He is more agonized than mad. He is post-angry.
Beck rarely speaks with the squinty-eyed certainty or smugness of Rush Limbaugh or his fellow Fox News hosts Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity. He often changes his mind or nakedly contradicts himself. “When you listen and watch me, it’s where I am in my thinking in the moment,” Beck told me. “I’m trying to figure it out as I go.” He will sometimes stop midsentence and recognize that something he is about to say could be misunderstood and could cause him trouble. Then, more often than not, he will say it anyway.
In the middle of his analogy to me about his own personal crash and the country’s need to heal itself, Beck looked at his publicist with a flash of alarm about how I might construe what he was saying. “He is going to write a story that I believe the whole country is alcoholics,” he said. And then he went on to essentially compare his “Restoring Honor” pageant at the Lincoln Memorial to a large-scale A.A. meeting. “When I bottomed out, I couldn’t put it back together myself,” Beck told me. “I could do all the hard work. I could do the 12 steps. But I needed like-minded people around me.”