Saturday, May 4, 2013
"The CSG is the one group that's supposed to know what resources every agency has. They know of multiple options and have the ability to coordinate counterterrorism assets across all the agencies," a high-ranking government official told CBS News. "They were not allowed to do their job. They were not called upon."
Information shared with CBS News from top counterterrorism sources in the government and military reveal keen frustration over the U.S. response on Sept. 11, the night Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans were killed in a coordinated attack on the U.S. Consulate in Libya.
The circumstances of the attack, including the intelligence and security situation there, will be the subject of a Senate Intelligence Committee closed hearing on Nov. 15, with additional hearings to follow....
Absent coordination from Counterterrorism Security Group, a senior U.S. counterterrorism official says the response to the crisis became more confused. The official says the FBI received a call during the attack representing Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and requesting agents be deployed. But he and his colleagues agreed the agents "would not make any difference without security and other enablers to get them in the country and synch their efforts with military and diplomatic efforts to maximize their success."
Another senior counter terrorism official says a hostage rescue team was alternately asked to get ready and then stand down throughout the night, as officials seemed unable to make up their minds.
◼ Special ops halted from responding to Benghazi attacks, U.S. diplomat says - Ernesto Londoño/Washington Post
...The account is certain to reignite a debate over whether the Obama administration has been sufficiently forthcoming in its public accounting of the events and missteps that resulted in the first death of a U.S. ambassador in the line of duty in a generation.
When it was all over and the jets had not been scrambled and the troops not dispatched, an American lieutenant colonel in Tripoli who commanded the four-man special ops team told Hicks he was sorry his men had been held back.
“I’ve never been so embarrassed in my life that a State Department officer has bigger balls than someone in the military,” the officer told Hicks, according to the diplomat’s account. Hicks called that “a nice compliment.”...
◼ The hearing will explore why the State Department never activated its Foreign Emergency Support Team. - USA Today
According to the Times' calculator, Romney would have had to win 73 percent of the Hispanic vote to prevail in 2012. Which suggests that Romney, and Republicans, had bigger problems than Hispanic voters.
The most serious of those problems was that Romney was not able to connect with white voters who were so turned off by the campaign that they abandoned the GOP and in many cases stayed away from the polls altogether. Recent reports suggest as many as 5 million white voters simply stayed home on Election Day. If they had voted at the same rate they did in 2004, even with the demographic changes since then, Romney would have won.
Likewise, the white vote is so large that an improvement of 4 points -- going from 60 percent to 64 percent of those whites who did vote -- would have won the race for Romney.
So which would have been a more realistic goal for Romney -- matching the white turnout from just a few years earlier, or winning 73 percent of Hispanic voters?
...Romney lost because he did not appeal to the millions of Americans who have seen their standard of living decline over the past decades. They're nervous about the future. When Romney did not address their concerns, they either voted for Obama or didn't vote at all. If the next Republican candidate can address their concerns effectively, he will win. And, amazingly enough, he'll win a lot more Hispanic votes in the process. A lot from other groups, too.
It would do more than any immigration bill or outreach program ever could.
◼ NRA’s new liberty culture war not like the old culture war - Le-gal In-sur-rec-tion
It makes sense from a strategic point of view because it ties into the somewhat libertarian trend among conservatives and definitely Tea Party supporters focused on individual autonomy and self-reliance. It also puts the purpose of the 2nd Amendment, freedom from tyranny, in a broader social context of an overreaching government.
◼ THESE ARE THE FACES OF THE NRA CONVENTION THAT THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA WON’T SHOW YOU - The Blaze
Watch the mainstream media’s coverage of the 2013 NRA Convention — if there is any — and you will almost certainly not meet any of the gun owners TheBlaze is about to introduce you to. Despite the stereotypes thrown around about gun owners in America, we found a remarkably diverse, patriotic crowd at the event in Houston Saturday who shattered the image anti-gun advocates have carefully crafted for “gun nuts.”
Without having to seek them out, we found gun owners old, young, black, white as well as a lot of military veterans. However, they all had one thing in common — they are not happy about the way gun owners in America are portrayed in the media.
◼ Mark Levin Addresses NRA Convention in Houston - Townhall
◼ Their identities have been a well-guarded secret, known only to their high-powered lawyers and a handful of House lawmakers and staff. But now Fox News has learned the names of the self-described Benghazi “whistleblowers” who are set to testify before a widely anticipated congressional hearing on Wednesday. - FOX
Appearing before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee will be three career State Department officials: Gregory N. Hicks, the deputy chief of mission at the U.S. Embassy in Libya at the time of the Benghazi terrorist attacks; Mark I. Thompson, a former Marine and now the deputy coordinator for Operations in the agency’s Counterterrorism Bureau; and Eric Nordstrom, a diplomatic security officer who was the regional security officer in Libya, the top security officer in the country in the months leading up to the attacks.
◼ The Benghazi Talking Points, And how they were changed to obscure the truth - Stephen F. Hayes/Weekly Standard
◼ Benghazi Impeachment Suddenly Not So Far-Fetched - Roger L. Simon/PJM
Reading Stephen F. Hayes’ new article in The Weekly Standard — “The Benghazi Talking Points” — I am beginning to feel like Nostradamus. I’m not ready to make any predictions, but let’s put it this way…
Barack Obama is bloody lucky he’s a Democrat, because if he were a Republican, he’d be in deep trouble right now, close to the brink of extinction. Only his increasingly pathetic loyal media claque can save him. It will be interesting to see if they do so at the expense of their own reputations.
◼ The great unraveling has begun. Bonus? Hillary is history. - Lucianne
◼ State Dept: Benghazi Whistleblowers "Lying" About Requesting Clearance To Testify - Ian Schwartz/Real Clear Politics
◼ Lawyer Of Benghazi Whistleblower To State Dept: "Apologize" For Calling Me A Liar - Ian Schwartz/Real Clear Politics
◼ Whistleblower Lawyer: When ARB’s General Pickering Found Out He Might Have To Deal With Hillary, He ‘Became Physically Ill’ (Video) - Nice Deb
◼ It’s a sad lesson which we should always keep in mind and important reminder for elected officials at every level. Something like this should never happen again. - HotAir
◼ "My 285th post on Kent State." Why the 1960s still matter - Will Bunch/Philadelphia Daily News
A recent spike in crime saw the Eureka Police Department taking multiple burglary reports every day this week, and officials in Trinidad said they are also receiving a steady number of burglary reports and complaints at city hall.
”All the thefts are up,” EPD Sgt. Steve Watson said. “It definitely feels like that problem has increased, so it's very busy with these types of calls.”
The department received 116 reports of burglaries and thefts in progress in the month of April, including one where a woman not only lost heirloom jewelry but a laptop, external hard drive and flash drives containing her master's thesis. Last weekend, a thief was caught on tape stealing $1,800 worth of surveillance cameras from Redwood Electronics.
Between Sunday and Thursday, the EPD received 16 reports of burglaries, including car break-ins.
The EPD has received a number of calls about vehicle thefts, shoplifters and sometimes identity theft as well, Watson said. This week alone, the department recovered three stolen cars in one day.
Trinidad has also experienced an increase in crime, according to City Clerk Gabe Adams....
”The immediate increase is due, in no small part, to the prison realignment and it's impact on the local jail system,” Watson said. “There's been a definite correlation, at least in this town. You can see it.”
Prison realignment was intended to reduce overcrowding in state prisons by amending around 500 non-violent, non-sexual or non-serious criminal statutes to sentences in county jails. As a result, people who commit less serious crimes are often booked and released.
”People who used to be held days or weeks are released within the hour in many cases,” Watson said. “Less people are getting caught. They know, at least right away, they won't do as much time in jail.”
The word I have thought about this week is "Respect". This word is often misused or totally eliminated in our current vocabulary. We often times feel no respect for anyone who does not think the way we do, but that is so wrong. The current resident of the White House is working very hard to eliminate free speech, but we cannot allow this to happen. This will only happen if we continue to find fault at every turn in the road.
Soon elections will begin in the Federation from NFRW to the Divisions. How can we vote for anyone who shows disrespect for their opponent. We need leaders not combatants, we need women who love this Federation and those whom they will work with.
Do we have members leaving the Federation due to lack of respect for their time and energy? Have unkind words been stated causing a member to question if this is how they wish to spend their time and energy? Do you make new and old members know how they are important to our Federation? Do we have leaders who command and not lead? No one person is more important than another. I am so proud of the Executive Committee and Board of Directors who serve CFRW with love and determination to be the best they can be. It is fun we can disagree on issues, but we do have respect for each other and value our different opinions.
We also need as many members of the Federation to join in supporting the special election of Senate District 16.
His campaign is looking for volunteers to phone bank and walk precincts in the district to break the Democrats 2/3 super majority stronghold!
If you'd like to volunteer or help in any way possible, please RSVP to Julie Griffiths (559) 213-2240 or Ben Berquam (559) 618-1109
More info visit: vidakforsenate.com We need to be ready to make phone calls and walk precincts, if possible. This is our opportunity to take one more State Senate Seat for the Republicans. Location is the Central Valley.
Thank you for the honor or being able to serve you.
YOU ARE THE BEST OF THE BEST
ONE TEAM, ONE PURPOSE, ONE GOAL
May Our Father in Heaven bless you always,
BUSINESSMEN AND BUREAUCRATS CAPTURE CALIFORNIA SCHOOLS
May 1, 2013
By: Camille Giglio, CFRW Legislative Analyst
(The CFRW Voting Body has not yet taken positions on these two bills, so there is currently no official CFRW position. However, we are working toward an official position as soon as possible. Thank you.)
"The question before us is whether...we accept bureaucrats choosing careers for our children and directing our economy, or whether liberty will remain our children's future."
Sen. Michele Bachmann, Fed Ed in Minnesota Classrooms
California senate bill 421 and senate bill 594 are two very important education bills quietly making their way through the California State Legislature. If passed they will put the finishing touches on the total re-make of the educational system and its funding in California.
The origins of the concept of using the schools as mere training centers for future workers began with the passage, in 1965, of The Elementary and Secondary Education Act, ESEA. It was strengthened when President Bush the First, promoted America 2000, expanded when Clinton and Gore changed the name from America 2000 to Goals 2000. Then Goals 2000 eventually became No Child Left Behind and is now bearing its bitter fruit with Obama's Race To The Top agenda which appears to incorporate all of the above with the original Elementary and Secondary Education Act.
SB 421 and SB 594 were both heard in the Senate Education Committee composed of 7 Democrats and two Republicans and passed through to the Senate Appropriations Committee. We were listed as the only Opponents on SB 421.
SB 421 by Sen. Ed Hernandez, (D), entitled Pupil Instruction: International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma, authorizes the aggressive promotion of the IB education program headquartered in Geneva Switzerland and recognized by the United Nations and its global policy.
California with IB courses offered in certain high schools is second only to Florida which has about 144 such schools. This high school diploma program is designed for students who have shown special talents toward the math and science agenda desperately sought by educators and corporations.
This IB program supersedes the regular high school curriculum with its (expensive) testing and diploma offerings. Currently the testing fees are being paid with federal tax dollars or private, business sector partnerships. Seldom paid by parents.
It is a very expensive program. Watchdog Wire put out a report on the costs of the IB Program. The report states that there are, as of February, 2013, 1,403 IB schools in America. 91% are paid with public dollars which pays for re-training facilitators, travel expenses, etc. which costs about $8,000 per teacher. (there is also a bill in Sacramento that would authorize funding for teacher training.) HYPERLINK "http://www.watchdogwire.com" www.watchdogwire.com.
SB 421 declares that schools certified by the Swiss based IB Program will be authorized to issue special Diplomas for this 2 year program which will supplants the current regular high school Diploma. Thus it would create a two-tiered Diploma system. The reason offered by the author and his sponsors, the IB World Schools, is that the program is so rigorous that it is not possible for the IB student to adhere to the normal high school course.
Translated this means that the students will not be given a general academic education, but will be taught to the demands of the training for the job. Goodbye California and U.S. history, goodbye english grammar and composition, goodbye several other worthwhile-to- the-student's-intellectual-development courses.
It authorizes incorporation of the School-to-Work or Career Technical education agenda into the IB program which is little more than using the school system to prepare the student for the jobs market upon graduation.
It further creates a strong tie between education and workforce development Boards and Councils through the strengthening of Workforce development Centers, partnered with the school system. The result is the business-like merger of the schools supplying their students to the corporate world and its workforce demands.
And, lastly, it sets up a grant program, with California education dollars, for students within the federal poverty income level and/or free lunch programs. This is an attempt at recruitment of students to enter this very expensive program which just might be required to be offered at every high school.
Teacher Union lobbyists, non-profit religious and community groups are crying that schools don't have enough money to educate the students, but placing programs like this next to the regular courses will bankrupt the system. The taxpaying citizen whose hard earned dollars support the schools never hears about that aspect of costs.
Our legislators will, therefore, be voting to superimpose the educational agenda headquartered in Switzerland and directed from Switzerland (there is now a branch office in Bethesda, Md) on our local and state school districts and Superintendents making the education of our California children subservient to global education and workforce desires.
Parents, well they are not a part of this plan. If a problem develops both the teacher and/or the parents are required to direct their concerns to Switzerland.
This latter plan of including potential drop-out students is not an authorized or recognized segment of the international IB Program. IB was designed as a recruitment tool to draw off the student with high IQ and quick learning potential. It was not meant to be an equal opportunity "level the playing field" catch-all for all intellectual levels of students. California is going to try and change this bringing the IB program into harmony with the "California Dreamin" social justice mantra.
Senate Bill 594, Darrell Steinberg, (D), Career Pathways Investment, sets up the system whereby, in California, these Career Pathway educational programs will be paid for with California tax dollars and public offered bonds.
"Pathways" is another one of those words that carries red flags with it.
(It doesn't matter what they call the program, school-to-work, S.T.E.M, IB or AP, or career pathways, they all end up doing the same thing - creating the international, world system of education, preparing a student to be assigned by the federally controlled workforce development entities, anywhere on the globe or the local community, to work at a job designed by the government, foreign or otherwise.)
If the Workforce Development councils determine that x number of future workers will be needed for certain industries, i.e. health care, forestry, transportation, whatever the government thought of the moment decides, then that's what the school's education program will focus on and that's the area of education that will get the funding.
Along with the changes in curriculum will come a need to hire and train more employees to meet the needs of this program. There is a serious question of just how many students have actually graduated under this program in the schools where it is currently being offered.
SB 594 by Steinberg, creates the State Career Pathways State Investment Committee which will negotiate a partnership with business entities to enter into Workforce Development Bond agreements to fund and provide training for the school IB, STW, STEM programs creating partnerships with school districts, community college districts or a consortium of those entities.
"Steinberg's agenda has some serious constitutional issues, for corporate bond funding for schools raises the constitutional question re: taxation with representation. What he is proposing is outright corporate buying of public schools without local property owners whose taxes and bond issues fund those schools. Property tax payers do not pay taxes exclusively to provide workers for corporate interests." Education Public Policy issues analyst, M. Thompson.
Both of these bills are scheduled for hearing in the Senate Appropriations Committee. This committee does not accept opposition or support letters and focuses only on the finances involved and how the state will either pay for this new law or obtain the funding from other sources.
However, your local state Senator should receive the benefit of your concerns over these bills. Here is a listing of the members of the Senate Appropriations Committee:
Kevin DeLeon, (D-L.A.) Chair, phone 916-651-4022, fax 916-327-8817.
Mimi Walters, (R-Orange/Laguna Hills)V.Chair,916-651-4037.
Ted Gaines, (R-11 No. Cal counties) 916-651-4001, fax 916-324-2680.
Jerry Hill, D-San Mateo & Sta Clara) 916-651-4013, fax 916-324-0283.
Richard Lara, (D-L.A.) 916-651-4033,fax 916-327-9113.
Alex Padilla, (D-Van Nuys) 916-651-4020, Fax 916-324-6645.
Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacto) 916-651-4006, Fax 916-323-2263.
Sen. Michele Bachmann, entitled: Fed Ed in Minnesota Classrooms; Smaller Learning Communities Preparing Workers for a State Planned Economy,...The entire 2003 6 page published article can be accessed by googling the title of the article.
Ed Source. Kathryn Baron, Bonds would fund business investment in schools under Steinberg proposal, April 30, 2013.
International Baccalaureate (IB) Unraveled, Debra K Niwa.
Learning about Propositions
By: Claire Sirchia Plotner, CFRW Legislative Analyst
A citizen, Dr. John Randolph Haynes, who was concerned about the bribery and corruption at the state level, started a grassroots campaign to introduce a statewide initiative and referendum process. He attempted to reform Sacramento and bring rational government into California when it became apparent that graft was the business standard in Sacramento. Concerned citizens established the Lincoln-Roosevelt League of Republican Clubs in May of 1907. Their candidates won election and started state reform as well as the primary process in California. The result was the election of Gov. Hiram Johnson, a Liberal Republican, who implemented the initiative and referendum process, i.e. direct democracy, in California. That was 1911. (Initiative and Referendum Institute USC).
Since then 1,759 ballot measures were submitted, 360 were placed on the ballot and 122 were approved. Historically, less than 10% of attempted ballot measures make it into law.
Ballot measures are either recalls, referendum or initiatives. Citizens may initiative any of these processes through the Secretary of State’s Office. The cost to start the procedure is $200.00. California citizens can write it or receive assistance from the Secretary’s office for ballot language. See the Secretary of Sate’s website for details.
Referendums: by the citizens - reject recently passed laws or parts of laws that were voted on by the Legislative and Executive branches in Sacramento. Any California citizen may challenge or approve statues with the exception of taxes. Citizens have ninety days from the enactment of a bill to request and receive title and summary from the Attorney General, gather signatures (504,760 valid) and file the petition. A simple majority of the electorate must approve.
Referendums placed on the ballot by the legislature have the effect of becoming constitutional law if passed by a simple majority.
Initiatives: Initiatives are ballot measures introduced by citizens. There are two types, Constitutional and standard:
A constitutional initiative requires 807,616 valid signatures to qualify. Constitutional initiatives are the most secure as they cannot be overturned except by a very complicated process.
Standard initiatives require 504,760 signatures and cannot be overturned by a simple majority vote in Sacramento.
In summary, ballot measures are recalls, referendum or initiatives. Propositions are created by citizens are either recalls, referendums to reject laws passed in Sacramento or initiatives to create law. Propositions by the government are referendum to turn a standard law into a constitutional amendment.
All California constitutional laws cannot be overturned easily. A referendum and a constitutional convention are necessary.
We are proud to be part of the California Federation of Republican Women (CFRW), and the National Federation of Republican Women (NFRW), the largest women’s political volunteer organization in the nation. When you join Humboldt Republican Women, Federated, you're joining forces with women throughout the state and across the nation, women who share your ideals and your goals for our country.
Friday, May 3, 2013
Editor’s Note: The graphic descriptions and images here may be upsetting to readers.
◼ As the nation awaits a verdict in the abortion murder case against Kermit Gosnell, new revelations of his 40-year career continue to surface. And what they reveal about the abortion industry isn’t a pretty picture. - Michael Carl WND
Found in Gosnell’s background is the “Mother’s Day Massacre.” The event was given the name because Gosnell and his partner, Harvey Karman, bused 15 poor women from Chicago to Gosnell’s Philadelphia clinic to do the abortions on Mother’s Day in 1972.
Operation Rescue Senior Policy Advisor Cheryl Sullenger told WND in an interview that Gosnell and his partner not only did the abortions before Roe v. Wade, they were using an experimental method.
“It was called the super coil, a plastic ball with razor blades on it. They would insert the coil into the woman’s uterus to induce an abortion,” Sullenger said. “I don’t think any of the women knew they were guinea pigs, that they were being used as an experiment.”
The blades were gel-coated and laid down. The device was designed so that when the woman’s body temperature melted the gel, the blades sprang up to cut the baby, thus inducing the abortion.
“Most of the women experienced complications and needed additional medical treatment,” Sullenger said. “One women ended up needing a radical hysterectomy.
“That’s why they call it the Mother’s Day Massacre,” Sullenger said.
That, she said, was the beginning of Gosnell’s long career in the abortion industry....
“So because Dr. Gosnell is the most visible tip of the iceberg today – he’s the rule not the exception to the rule. He’s visible evidence of the rule – that abortion kills babies, sometimes kills women, it hurts human beings,” (Dr. Martln Luther King, Jr.’s niece, Alveda) King said.
(Priests for Life National Director Father Frank) Pavone believes that there’s more at stake than the fate of Gosnell. Abortion itself is on trial.
“When we hear the things that are coming out of the testimony, nothing is shocking us because we’ve heard it all before,” Pavone said. “The fact that Roe v. Wade made abortion legal did not make it safe. We see all sorts of corruption in unregulated facilities. Sadly this is only more of the same.”
Newsbusters noted that the local tax-funded National Public Radio station WHYY described Gosnell as “a physician who had worked in our community for 30 years, cared for women in all of that time.”
◼ Gosnell behind ‘Mother’s Day Massacre’ over 40 years ago that injured 9 women - lifesitenews.com
The super-coil that Gosnell used had been developed by Harvey Karman, a Los Angeles psychologist who killed a woman in April 1955 after attempting to perform an abortion with a speculum and a nutcracker. After that incident he was charged with performing an illegal abortion, and spent some time in jail.
Karman (born Harvey Walters) tested the device on "hundreds" of women in Bangladesh, at the government's invitation. “Those women suffered a high rate of complications,” the grand jury report states. “Nonetheless, Karman brought his 'super coil' to Philadelphia, where he found an ally in Gosnell.”
Although Karman never earned a doctorate or M.D., after he was released from jail he began saying he had earned a doctorate from a non-existent European university and calling himself “doctor.” Like Gosnell, he was considered a pioneer of abortion rights.
I don't think I've ever seen anything so horrifying as this #gosnell profile on Fox. 32 wk baby, died of scissors wound— Joel Gehrke (@Joelmentum) May 4, 2013
◼ From Roe to Gosnell - The case for regime change on abortion. - James Taranto/Wall St. Journal
Here is incontrovertible proof that Kirsten Powers and Conor Friedersdorf are correct in arguing that the murder trial of Philadelphia abortionist Kermit Gosnell has received insufficient media coverage: On Friday, Snopes.com was compelled to publish a page confirming that the story is real, not merely an urban legend.
Gosnell, as we noted in January 2011, is charged with eight counts of murder. One of his alleged victims, Karnamaya Mongar, was a 41-year-old woman. The other seven did not live long enough to acquire names. They were infants who were born when Gosnell induced labor in their mothers. According to the Philadelphia grand jury report, he or his employees then killed them by using scissors to sever the neck and spinal cord:
He called that "snipping."
◼ Via Maggie's Notebook - and ◼ link
◼ Ted Cruz Defends The Constituion, Challenges Biden To Gun Debate During NRA Convention Speech - Matt Wilstein/Mediaite
Judge Jeanine Pirro
NRA-ILA Leadership Forum with featured speakers:
◼ Mark Levin at the NRA: ‘It’s not a bill of needs — it’s a bill of rights. The 2nd Amendment is included’ - Jeff Poor/Daily Caller
Schoolgirl, 19, arrested after giving birth in bathroom stall and attempting to 'flush the baby down the toilet'
A 19-year-old school girl gave birth in a bathroom stall at her high school in Lancaster, Pennsylvania on Tuesday and then attempted to flush the fetus down the toilet.
Cherlie Lefleur discarded the male fetus into a trash can in the bathroom at McCaskey East High School after failing to flush it away.
Investigators have yet to determine if the fetus was stillborn or born alive; an autopsy showed it was 27 to 29 weeks.
◼ Teen Who Tried to Flush Baby in Toilet Could Have Used Safe Haven Law - Life News
Micaiah Bilger, the Education Director for the Pennsylvania Pro-Life Federation, says LaFleur had another option.
“If you live in Central Pennsylvania, chances are you have heard about the tragic Lancaster County incident where a teenager gave birth in a school bathroom and threw her baby in the trash,” she said today. “Officials say the baby was a boy at seven months gestation. They do not know yet whether he was born alive.”
“This story reminds me just how much we need to get the word out about the help available to pregnant women and new mothers in desperate situations,” Bilger adds. “Pennsylvania has a safe haven law to help new mothers in crisis. The law allows a woman who feels she can’t take care of her baby to drop off the newborn (up to 28 days old) at a health care facility, no questions asked.”
“Please help spread the word that help is available, whether mothers want to keep their baby, give it up for adoption, or feel they can’t take care of it,” Bilger concludes.
◼ Have questions about how the Baby Safe Haven Law in your state can impact you? Call 1-888-510-BABY. - nationalsafehavenalliance.org
California Safe Haven Law:
California Penal Code 271.5; Health & Safety Code 1255.7: You can leave your baby, up to 3 days old, with an employee at any safe surrender designated hospital in California.
Pennsylvania is one of 49 states that have passed a Safe Haven Law. How does Safe Haven work? ◼ It allows parents to relinquish newborns up to 28 days old. - FACT SHEET
There's no happy warrior in there, no joy of the battle, just acceptance of what he wearily sees as the landscape. He'd seem hapless if he weren't so verbally able.
So, the president is stuck. But it's too early to write him off as a lame duck because history has a way of intervening. A domestic or international crisis that is well-handled, or a Supreme Court appointment, can make a president relevant. There are 44 months left to Mr. Obama's presidency. He's not a lame duck, he's just lame.
◼ Bottoms Up, Lame Duck - Maureen Dowd/New York Times
The president called a press conference to mark the first 100 days of his second term, and he quickly ended up playing defense, dwelling on how hemmed in he feels.
ABC News’s Jonathan Karl asked Obama if he was already out of “juice” to pass his agenda, citing the president’s inability to get a watered-down gun bill passed in the Senate, Congress swatting away Obama on the sequester cuts, and the recent passage of a cybersecurity bill in the House with 92 Democrats on board, despite a veto threat from the White House.
◼ Obama: The fall - Charles Krauthammer/Washington Post
From king of the world to dead in the water in six months. Quite a ride.
Boston bomber´s widow stops cooperating with authorities as it emerges the female DNA found on bomb is NOT hers
Katherine Russell, the widow of Boston bomber Tamerlan Tsarnaev, has stopped co-operating with authorities as it emerged female DNA found on one of the detonated bombs does not belong to her.
Tsarnaev, who was later killed in a gunfight with authorities, called his wife in the hours after the FBI released surveillance images of him and his younger brother, Dzhokhar.
But only Russell knows what was said in the conversation, as she has stopped cooperating with authorities over recent days, the New York Times reported....
A source told CNN that the bombs were built in the apartment that Tsarnaev shared with Russell and their three-year-old daughter. Residue samples were found on the kitchen table, the kitchen sink, and the bathtub, the source said.
Her silence comes as sources told the newspaper that the fingerprints and female DNA found on at least one of the bombs did not belong to her. Authorities had taken a sample from her this week.
Even as the White House strove last week to move beyond questions about the Benghazi attacks of Tuesday, September 11, 2012, fresh evidence emerged that senior Obama administration officials knowingly misled the country about what had happened in the days following the assaults. The Weekly Standard has obtained a timeline briefed by the Office of the Director of National Intelligence detailing the heavy substantive revisions made to the CIA’s talking points, just six weeks before the 2012 presidential election, and additional information about why the changes were made and by whom.
As intelligence officials pieced together the puzzle of events unfolding in Libya, they concluded even before the assaults had ended that al Qaeda-linked terrorists were involved. Senior administration officials, however, sought to obscure the emerging picture and downplay the significance of attacks that killed a U.S. ambassador and three other Americans. The frantic process that produced the changes to the talking points took place over a 24-hour period just one day before Susan Rice, U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, made her now-famous appearances on the Sunday television talk shows. The discussions involved senior officials from the State Department, the National Security Council, the CIA, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, and the White House.
The exchange of emails is laid out in a 43-page report from the chairmen of five committees in the House of Representatives. Although the investigation was conducted by Republicans, leading some reporters and commentators to dismiss it, the report quotes directly from emails between top administration and intelligence officials, and it includes footnotes indicating the times the messages were sent. In some cases, the report did not provide the names of the senders, but The Weekly Standard has confirmed the identities of the authors of two critical emails—one indicating the main reason for the changes and the other announcing that the talking points would receive their final substantive rewrite at a meeting of top administration officials on Saturday, September 15.... read the whole article at the link. ◼ Discussion at Lucianne
◼ Bombshell CNN Investigation: 3 Al Qaeda Operatives Took Part In Attack On Benghazi Consulate - Mediaite
◼ Discussion at Lucianne
◼ Does the Obama Government Really Want to Catch Anyone Involved in the Benghazi Attack? - PJM
◼ Discussion at Lucianne
◼ Exclusive: US Hired al-Qaida-Linked Group to Defend Benghazi Mission - John Rosenthal/Newsmax
◼ Ace quizzes Victoria Nuland, State Dept. on altered Benghazi talking points - Twitchy
We’ve heard more than a few people say that investigators should just “let it go” — the terrorist attack that killed four Americans “happened a long time ago” and, besides, the election is over and Obama won. What difference, at this point, does it make?
If Hillary wants to know "What difference does it make?," she should ask her flackNuland, who made the changes to placate "superiors"— DepressiveBlogger69 (@AceofSpadesHQ) May 3, 2013
If it made no difference, why did Hillary have her spokeswoman work so hard to obscure the truth of #Benghazi?— DepressiveBlogger69 (@AceofSpadesHQ) May 3, 2013
More, at Twitchy. If you're on Twitter, share/retweet Ace's full set of questions.
Thursday, May 2, 2013
◼ On April 30 I told you about reports have come out that the Obama administration is now threatening the whistleblowers who have been talking to Congress about the Benghazi attacks. - Tim Brown/Freedom Outpost
In that report, I covered how at least one of the State Department whistleblower’s attorney stated that her client had already been intimidated by unnamed Obama administration officials. The Fox News report video provided in that article featured a whistleblower, who not only said that special forces could have responded to the attacks in Benghazi on September 11, 2012, but also said that the United States knows exactly who perpetrated last year’s assault, but the Obama administration won’t act because they “don’t want to upset anybody.”
“We have all the capability, all the training, all the capacity to kill and capture that only terrorist involved with the specific events of 9/11 and Ambassador Stevens’ death, but terrorists who are feeding other regions, including Europe that eventually could affect our national security in the short-term. We’re not talking midterm or long term. This is a short-term.”
The whistleblower said,
“I know for a fact that C-110, the EUCOM CIF, was doing a training exercise in … not in the region of North Africa, but in Europe,” the operator told Fox News’ Adam Housley. “And they had the ability to act and to respond.”
“We had the ability to load out, get on birds and fly there, at a minimum stage,” the operator told Fox News. “C-110 had the ability to be there, in my opinion, in a matter of about four hours…four to six hours....”
He then concluded with this chilling statement,
“It was frustrating not only for myself before the men and the guys that I work with. We always talk amongst each other and discuss that, you know, it’s probably going to take a 747, a 757 to get shot down in Tripoli for somebody to pay attention to that, which is unfortunate.”
#WarOnWomen Joe Biden calls teenage girls 'a snake in the bed' - Obama ok with selling morning after pills to 15 year-olds
"When they're 12 to 14, a dad puts his beautiful little daughter to bed. And then the next morning, there's a snake in the bed."
◼ OBAMA OK WITH OCR-THE-COUNTER MORNING-AFTER PILL FOR 15 YEAR-OLDS - AP
The Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday had lowered the age at which people can buy the Plan B One-Step morning-after pill without a prescription to 15 - younger than the current limit of 17. The FDA decided that the pill could be sold on drugstore shelves near condoms, instead of locked behind pharmacy counters.
Obama, speaking at a news conference while in Mexico, said the FDA's decision was based on "solid scientific evidence."
How much? CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer was there as the mayor made his jaw-dropping prediction.
How does 50 percent grab you?
That’s how much Mayor Bloomberg predicted taxes would have to go up if any of the labor-friendly mayoral wannabes win and grant wage hikes to city workers.
“A tax increase of a quarter to 50 percent might do it, but even then it might not. It is … the numbers are staggering,” Bloomberg said.
Diana Waterman, a member of the Maryland Federation of Republican Women, has been elected Chairman of the Maryland Republican State Central Committee. One of only seven female Republican State Party Chairmen, Diana inspires all with her commitment and sense of determination. The NFRW is very proud to congratulate Chairman Waterman!
NFRW Parliamentarian Jan Kennady Honored
Jan Kennady, NFRW Parliamentarian and elected county commissioner, was recently honored by the New Braunfels, Texas Herald-Zeitung newspaper as its inaugural "Ferdinand J. Lindheimer Lifetime Achievement Award" honoree. The award, named after the newspaper's first editor, will be neither an annual or regular award but rather will be given only when an individual's years of dedication and distinction merit recognition. As the newspaper reports, the inaugural Lindheimer honoree, our own Jan Kennady, certainly fits the bill. Jan's years of dedication and distinction merit this recognition and we salute Jan.
Citing Jan as a former Herald-Zeitung Citizen of the Year and her accomplishments, the newspaper adds that Jan "is a pioneer who champions the people. When her constituents have a need, [Commissioner Kennady] rises to the occasion." It goes on to recount Jan's "remarkable faithfulness and effectiveness," both of which have earned her the respect and admiration of many. Through all of her hard work, not only has Jan's integrity remained, but "she inspires and motivates. She listens and she cares."
The NFRW is proud to join in honoring NFRW Parliamentarian, Jan Kennady!
May Celebrations of Heritage
As reported by the Republican National Committee, May 1 marked the beginning of both Jewish American Heritage Month and Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.
As a time to honor our Jewish American friends and neighbors, May brings the opportunity to recognize all that Jewish Americans have done to strengthen the United States. Their faith and culture enrich us and their history inspires us. The RNC notes that, nearly 360 years ago, even before America's founding, Jewish immigrants arrived in what was then New Amsterdam and since that time we have been blessed by the myriad contributions of Jewish Americans.
The Republican National Committee also recalls the countless contributions - in every field imaginable - Asian Americans, South Asians and Pacific Islanders have made to our country. This is a time to not only celebrate our neighbors and community members but to also become aware of the rich traditions, cultures and heritage that have strengthened the fabric of this nation. This month represents our opportunity to recognize the significant impact of Asian Americans' and Pacific Islanders' work, innovation and leadership in our communities.
America is grateful for the heritage and spirit brought by all cultures which make us one united country and which continues to make America the land of opportunity for all.
NFRW Campaign School in Ohio
NFRW is organizing a campaign management school in Mansfield, Ohio for Saturday, June 29th. The cost is $100, which includes lunch and materials. The school will be held at The Waterford in Mansfield; Mansfield lies between Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio. ◼ Click here to register!
Mamie Eisenhower Library Project List
The Mamie Eisenhower Library Project list has been updated and is available on the NFRW website. It contains new book recommendations, especially for adults and AP US History students. Click here to access the list.
Region 3 Conference Held in Albuquerque, New Mexico
NFRW members from Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, and Utah "Worked Toward Solutions" at their regional conference in Albuquerque, New Mexico April 26-27th. After a resounding opening night with a mariachi band, the conference attendees heard from author John Fund, who addressed solutions to voter fraud; Utah Congressman Chris Stewart, who called upon the attendees to be faithful as he and others fight to defeat Obamacare, bit by bit; strategist Laura Carno, who offered solutions for combating the stereotyping of women that the Democrats engage in; and Arizona GOP Chairman, Robert Graham, who put forth a powerful PowerPoint presentation on how to turn states from blue to red.
NFRW speakers included Patt Parker, who spoke on "NFRW Striving for Excellence," Lynne Hartung, who spoke on "Marketing Your NFRW Club," and President Chornenky, who presented on "RNC Outreach--The Hispanic Vote." The conference concluded with New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez, known for Katie's Law and advocacy for children. The Governor brought everyone to their feet as she presented concrete examples of her successes in New Mexico despite working with an opposition-controlled state legislature. Camaraderie and networking abounded at this dynamic and successful regional conference, according to Carol Salmon, Region 3 Director.
NFRW 37th Biennial Convention
Plan now to attend the National Federation of Republican Women's 37th biennial convention in Louisville, Kentucky September 21-22, 2013. Invited speakers include Kentucky's United States Senators Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul, along with governors, members of Congress, and leadership experts.
A leadership training institute will be presented on Friday, September 20, followed by the opening reception to be held at Churchill Downs, home of the Kentucky Derby. Campaign and election workshops will be offered along with two special luncheons, the second of which will be the national awards luncheon. Elections will be held for NFRW officers for the 2014 through 2015 term and convention business including proposed NFRW Bylaw amendments will be conducted.
Hotel reservations at the Galt House in Louisville and site of the convention may now be made by clicking here. Convention registration will begin in early to mid May.
Celebrate NFRW's 75th Anniversary in Your Club
To grow our membership and celebrate our 75th anniversary throughout the nation, here are ideas for hosting a 75th birthday celebration:
◼ Plan a 75th birthday celebration at a State Federation meeting.The Grand Finale Celebration in Louisville will spotlight club birthday parties throughout the nation! Make a memory and share your club's special celebration and be sure to share how many new members you recruited! Celebrate the past and continue to grow for the future!
◼ Plan a 75th birthday party during one of your club meetings.
◼ Enjoy a delicious 75th birthday cake!
◼ Invite prospective members to celebrate this special occasion! Don't forget to put membership forms on the tables.
◼ Prepare a press release, invite the media, and take photos of your birthday celebration. ◼ Submit photos and newspaper clippings of your event to NFRW. Be recognized during the NFRW convention in Louisville.
◼ Have a fourth of July parade in your area and enter a car or float celebrating the 75th birthday of NFRW. Invent, invite, and celebrate.
◼ Invite new members, members who have not attended in a while, former officers of your club or State Federation, and their families.
◼ Check to see if a former national president resides in your state, and invite her to the celebration.
◼ Invite or honor the current NFRW president.
◼ Decorate by using the NFRW 75th Anniversary logo.
◼ Give away door prizes at your celebration: 75 peppermints, 75 tootsie rolls, 75 lifesavers, 75 of any and everything.
◼ National Federation of Republican Women
Obama nominates top campaign bundler, subprime lender whose bank failed, costing depositors millions
Obama has just nominated Penny Pritzker, the billionaire former chairwoman of just such a bank (until 1994) and later a director for its holding company (with an active role in its operations, according to Crain’s, from 1999 until its failure in 2001) as his new secretary of Commerce.
Commerce is a meaningless cabinet position, usually given to a party hack or a big donor. (It has actually been vacant since last June, and it’s not like anyone has noticed.) But that this bauble would go to this particular big donor and longtime Obama fundraiser — one of the first in Chicago’s smart set to embrace Obama’s 2004 campaign for U.S. Senate — seems somewhat incongruous.
Probably the most important aspect of Superior’s failure was the fact that over a thousand depositors lost up to $40 million at the time, and that the billionaire Pritzker clan settled with the FDIC to avoid government action against them.
◼ OBAMA TAPS CHICAGO INSIDER, BILLIONAIRE BUNDLER TO HEAD COMMERCE DEPARTMENT - The Blaze
Pritzker, a billionaire Hyatt hotel heiress, will fill a cabinet post that has been vacant since former Secretary John Bryson resigned in June 2012 after he said he suffered a seizure that led to a series of traffic collisions.
If confirmed, Pritzker would become the fourth woman serving as secretary in Obama’s current cabinet. She also would be the wealthiest cabinet member by far, with Forbes estimating her net worth at $1.85 billion and ranking her as the 277th richest American.
But her background comes with some questions.
“She and her secretive family have been caught up in some pretty dodgy commercial ventures including but not limited to dodging taxes and running a bank that specialized in subprime mortgages,” The Atlantic notes.
Back in 2008 when she was “widely reported to be a leading contender for commerce secretary,” The New York Times laid down some difficult truths about Pritzger. It’s true that 53-year-old woman — then just 49 — has managed a number of businesses in her career. Unfortunately, one of them was Superior Bank which, in The Times‘s words, “focused on bundling subprime mortgages into securities, the practice that later helped set off the current financial crisis.” Oops.In fact, as noted in the above, her “shady” background was the reason she removed her name from consideration when she was nominated for the gig in 2008. Or, you know, Congress can choose to ignore these issues and move forward with the nomination of one President Obama’s chief fundraisers.... She was his finance chairwoman in 2008 and served as co-chair of Obama for America 2012.
◼ Meet Obama’s Chicago fat cat Commerce nominee - Micelle Malkin
Taxpayers, beware. Pritzker is a deep-pocketed doyenne with a family history of dodging taxes — or siphoning them away from the public for her own family’s gargantuan private gain. If you want to see how she’ll oversee a $10 billion government agency, look at her own wealth redistribution record....
One of the most lucrative schemes milked by these developers and perfected in Chicago is a mechanism called tax increment financing. When I worked in Seattle covering corporate welfare and city government, I became strange bedfellows with a diverse alliance of libertarians and Ralph Naderites who rightly oppose “public-private partnership” deals between developers, statist Democrats and corporate welfare Republican politicians. These “public-private partnership” scams inevitably involve tax increment financing gimmickry to siphon off tax dollars to subsidize developers/builders/contractors, who then reward politicians with big campaign donations.
TIF schemes totaling hundreds of millions of tax dollars were at the heart of the Obama/Daley/Pritzker Chicago Olympics bid. And a huge franchise of Pritzker’s Hyatt Hotels Corp. was the beneficiary of a $5.2 million TIF subsidy approved by Chicago Dems last year. It’s part of a massive redevelopment project with the Obamas’ hometown University of Chicago that robs local schools to subsidize well-connected corporations.
Don’t take my word for it. As a radical leftwing local activist put it: “It’s not fighting economic blight; it’s a way of taking from everyone and giving to the 1 percent.” From Chicago to Chicago on the Potomac, it’s dirty statist business as usual.
Wednesday, May 1, 2013
A portent of trouble ahead came early in April when Time magazine's Joe Klein, normally a reliable Obama enthusiast, warned that "we are now seeing weekly examples of this administration's inability to govern." Then the Obamacare train wreck meme flashed across the headlines when Sen. Max Baucus, one of the health reform law's chief sponsors, told Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius that "I just see a huge train wreck coming down. You and I have discussed this many times, and I don't see any results yet." Despite Baucus' subsequent efforts to walk back his comments, the "train wreck" quickly became a staple of political conversation across the ideological and media spectrum, fueled by growing evidence that health insurance premiums for millions of Americans will soon skyrocket because of Obamacare.
The Benghazi story seemed to have fizzled out in April until Rep. Trey Gowdy, R-S.C., said during a weekend interview on Fox News that "explosive hearings" were soon to be held and suggested that they would include "eyewitness testimony" from survivors who had been kept behind closed doors by the Obama administration since Sept. 11 last year. One of those survivors was presented in-shadow Monday on Fox News' "Special Report," then Obama played possum when asked about the issue at his Tuesday news conference, claiming he was "not familiar" with it....
Thank you for all you do,
CFRW Northern Division
Defeat National Standards for State Schools
WHEREAS, The national standards-based “Common Core State Standards” initiative is the centerpiece of the Obama Administration’s agenda to centralize education decision at the federal level;
WHEREAS, The Obama Administration is using the same model to take over education as it used for healthcare by using national standards and boards of bureaucrats, whom the public didn’t elect and can’t fire or otherwise hold accountable;
WHEREAS, National standards remove authority from States over what is taught in the classroom and how it is tested;
WHEREAS, National standards undercut the principle of federalism on which our nation was founded;
WHEREAS, There is no constitutional or statutory authority for national standards, national curricula, or national assessments and in fact the federal government is expressly prohibited from endorsing or dictating state/local decisions about curricula; and
WHEREAS, The Obama Administration is attempting to evade constitutional and statutory prohibitions to move toward a nationalized public-school system by (1) funding to date more than $345 million for the development of national curriculum and test questions, (2) tying national standards to the Race to the Top charter schools initiative in the amount of $4.35 billion, (3) using the Common Core State Standards Initiative (CCSSI) to pressure State Boards of Education to adopt national standards with the threat of losing Title 1 Funds if they do not and (4) requesting Congress to include national standards as a requirement in the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary School Act (No Child Left Behind);
BE IT RESOLVED, That California Federation of Republican Women, Northern Division in session at the Spring Conference in Redding encourages all Federated members to become educated about this take over of local control as recommended by the vote of the National Federation of Republican Women in its October 1, 2011 Biennial Convention.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That local club presidents ask their members to (1) write their CA Superintendant of Public Instruction and the State Board of Education members and request that they retain control over academic standards, curriculum, instruction and testing, (2) write their Congressional Members and request that they (a)protect the constitutional and statutory prohibitions against the federal government endorsing or dictating national standards, (b) to refuse to tie national standards to any reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, (c) defund “Race to the Top” money, and (d) prohibit any more federal funds for the Common Core State Standards Initiative, including funds to assessment and curriculum writing consortia, (3) write their Governor and state representatives to refuse federal funds and mandates and (4) spread the word about the threat of a federal government takeover of education.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That upon adoption, California Federation of Republican Women, Northern Division issues a press release with copies sent to each club president for club publicity person to disseminate to local media including Facebook and Twitter accounts.
Submitted by: Karen Klinger, Sacramento RWF and Liz Froelich, Ygnacio Valley RWF
Passed Unanimously at the NFRW 36th Biennial Convention, Kansas City, MO – October 1, 2011
Passed Unanimously at the Alabama GOP State Executive Committee Meeting,
Birmingham, AL – February 25, 2012
Similar Resolution to shut down Common Core passed unanimously at the RNC Spring Meeting in Los Angeles, April 12, 2013 Final “Resolved” states:
RESOLVED, the 2012 Republican Party Platform specifically states the need to repeal the numerous federal regulations which interfere with State and local control of public schools…and, therefore, the Republican National Committee rejects this CCSS plan which creates and fits the country with a nationwide straitjacket on academic freedom and achievement.
Police say liberal student activist threatened herself with rape in Facebook hoax, framed conservatives
The obscene message directed at activist Meg Lanker-Simons was posted on a college “crush” Facebook page earlier this week and immediately ignited outrage from the college community.
“I want to hate f**k Meg Lanker-Simons so hard. That chick that runs her liberal mouth all the time and doesn’t care who knows it,” it read. “I think its hot and it makes me angry. One night with me and shes gonna be a good Republican bitch,” the post reads, according to a screenshot.
Before the post was removed, Lanker-Simons commented on it and on her own blog, calling it “disgusting, misogynistic, and apparently something the admins of this page think is a perfectly acceptable sentiment.”
She also encouraged the poster to seek help at the UW Counseling service and ends with the advice:
“Instead of focusing on how angry and turned on me ‘running my mouth’ makes you, perhaps you should listen instead. You might learn something.”
But on Monday, The University of Wyoming Police Department issued a citation to Lanker-Simons for “interference” for “false statements she made to the UW Police Department,” according to a UW statement referred to by Laramie Boomerang Online.
"Subject admitted to making a controversial post on UW Crushes webpage and then lied about not doing it," according to the citation.
The University of Wyoming also confirmed a statement that the police had “"obtained substantial evidence verifying that the offending Facebook post came from Lanker-Simons' computer, while the computer was in her possession.”...
Lanker-Simons was in the news in 2010 when she was a plaintiff in a successful lawsuit against UW after it retracted its invitation to have Bill Ayers speak on campus.
◼ PAPER: Saudi Arabia warned USA in writing about Tamerlan Tsarnaev in 2012 - Daily Mail
Saudi Arabian ambassador in Washington now DENIES his nation warned the United States about Tamerlan Tsarnaev in 2012, Rejected his application for entry visa to visit Mecca in 2011
Saudi embassy in Washington D.C. issues denial of account of a senior official who talked to MailOnline
A letter to the Department of Homeland Security allegedly named Tsarnaev and three Pakistanis as potential jihadis worthy of U.S. investigation
Red flags from Saudi Arabia to have included Tsarnaev's name and information about a planned explosive attack on a major U.S. city
Saudi foreign minister, national security chief both met with Obama in the oval office in early 2013
◼ AP: Russia had elder Boston suspect under surveillance - The Telegraph
Russian agents placed the elder Boston bombing suspect under surveillance during a six-month visit to southern Russia last year, then scrambled to find him when he suddenly disappeared after police killed a Canadian jihadist, a security official told The Associated Press.
U.S. law enforcement officials have been trying to determine whether Tamerlan Tsarnaev was indoctrinated or trained by militants during his visit to Dagestan, a Caspian Sea province that has become the center of a simmering Islamic insurgency.
The security official with the Anti-Extremism Center, a federal agency under Russia's Interior Ministry, confirmed the Russians shared their concerns. He told the AP that Russian agents were watching Tsarnaev, and that they searched for him when he disappeared two days after the July 2012 death of the Canadian man, who had joined the Islamic insurgency in the region. The official spoke only on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the news media.
Security officials suspected ties between Tsarnaev and the Canadian — an ethnic Russian named William Plotnikov — according to the Novaya Gazeta newspaper, which is known for its independence and investigative reporting and cited an unnamed official with the Anti-Extremism Center, which tracks militants. The newspaper said the men had social networking ties that brought Tsarnaev to the attention of Russian security services for the first time in late 2010.
◼ Wife to claim Tamerlan Tsarnaev's body; Cause of death to be divulged - USA Today
The Center for Individual Rights, a public interest legal group in Washington, D.C., filed the lawsuit Tuesday in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California in Los Angeles on behalf of 10 teachers from California and the Christian Educators Association.
“The union spends millions of teachers’ hard-earned monies supporting causes and candidates that many of us oppose,” said Rebecca Friedrichs, one of the plaintiffs, in a statement. “The union is free to press its agenda, but individual teachers should not be forced to pay for it. It is shocking to me and many other teachers that union officials have the power by law to spend our wages to press for causes that many of us oppose on moral, fiscal, or philosophical grounds.”
One of the key issues of the legal action is the state’s “agency shop” policy, which requires every public school teacher – including non-union members – to pay up to $1,000 per year for the union’s collective bargaining efforts. The plaintiffs argue that these compulsory subsidies for political activity violates their First Amendment right to free speech and free association.
The California Teachers Association (CTA), a member of the NEA, publishes The California Educator, which the Center for Individual Rights calls a “highly political magazine.” The CTA further uses these fees to advocate for homosexual causes such as the “GLBT Conference,” according to the CIR news release announcing the lawsuit. That’s on top of millions of dollars contributed to Democratic politicians....
◼ Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act - wikipedia
◼ White House responds to petition against CISPA, calls for new bill that 'protects privacy' - The Verge
The White House has finally responded to a petition on its website signed by over 100,000 web users protesting the controversial cybersecurity bill CISPA, which was passed by the House of Representatives earlier this month. In its response to the petition, the White House comes out more forcefully against the bill, saying "This legislation still doesn't adequately address our fundamental concerns" about privacy, and pointing back to the veto threat issued by President Obama's office two weeks ago.
◼ Senate Won't Vote On CISPA, Deals Blow To Controversial Cyber Bill - Huffington Post
The Senate will not vote on a cybersecurity bill that passed the House earlier this month, according to two Senate staffers, dealing a blow to a measure that sparked opposition from privacy advocates and the White House.
Earlier this month, the House of Representatives passed the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, known as CISPA, in a 288-127 vote. The bill would give businesses and the federal government legal protection to share information on cyber threats with each other to enhance the nation's cybersecurity. The bill comes at a time of increased concern over hacking threats at home and from China.
◼ Also known as the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, CISPA would create a loophole in all existing privacy laws, allowing companies to share Internet users' data with the National Security Agency, part of the Department of Defense, and the biggest spy agency in the world — without any legal oversight. - ACLU
And on average, maybe we are. But averages also sometimes obscure more than they reveal. My colleague Derek Thompson has written before about how, once you compare students from similar income and class backgrounds, our relative performance improves dramatically, suggesting that our educational problems may be as much about our sheer number of poor families as our supposedly poor schools. This week, I stumbled on another data point that belies the stereotype of dimwitted American teens.
When it comes to raw numbers, it turns out we generally have far more top performers than any other developed nation.
That's according to the graph below from Economic Policy Institute's recent report on America's supply of science and tech talent. Among OECD nations in 2006, the United States claimed a third of high-performing students in both reading and science, far more than our next closest competitor, Japan....
If we have so many of the best minds, why are our average scores so disappointingly average? As Rutgers's Hal Salzman and Georgetown's B. Lindsay Lowell, who co-authored the EPI report, noted in a 2008 Nature article, our high scorers are balanced out by an very large number of low scorers. Our education system, just like our economy, is polarized.
Tuesday, April 30, 2013
#LetThemSpeak: Rep. Darrell Issa says ‘no response’ from administration regarding Benghazi whistleblowers
President Obama said he is unaware of longstanding efforts by Republican lawmakers to question survivors of the Benghazi attacks but pledged to investigate it.
“I’m not familiar with this notion that anybody has been blocked from testifying,” the president said during a White House news conference on Tuesday. “So what I’ll do is I will find out what exactly you’re referring to.”
Obama’s pledge to find out more came as officials at the State Department pushed back against allegations -- first aired Monday on Fox News -- that career employees at the agency have been threatened if they furnish new information about the Benghazi attacks to members of Congress.
“The State Department is deeply committed to meeting its obligation to protect employees, and the State Department would never tolerate -- tolerate or sanction -- retaliation against whistle-blowers on any issue, including this one,” spokesman Patrick Ventrell told reporters at a briefing on Tuesday. “That’s an obligation we take very seriously -- full stop.”
◼ In his press conference today, President Obama claimed ignorance of any roadblocks keeping Benghazi whistleblowers from testifying, but he promised he’d get to the bottom of it and get back to the press. - Twitchy
They’ll have to get in line, because Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) has been asking for a weeks what it will take to clear the way for survivors of the Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. consulate in Libya to come forward and tell their stories.
Issa issued the following statement in response to Obama’s remarks, along with links to copies of his four letters.
A lawyer for Benghazi whistleblowers has publicly stated that the State Department is blocking her client’s ability to talk freely with counsel. Over the past two weeks, I have sent four letters requesting that this Administration make information available about how lawyers – who already have security clearances and are representing Benghazi whistleblowers – can be cleared to fully hear their clients’ stories. I have yet to receive any response from the Obama Administration.Issa also joined in on the #LetThemSpeak hashtag campaign.
Even if the President really doesn’t know anything about someone wanting to come forward, his position should be that whistleblowers deserve protection and that anyone who has different information about Benghazi is free to come forward to Congress. The President’s unwillingness to commit himself to protecting whistleblowers only aids those in his Administration who are intimidating them.
◼ BREAKING: Rep. Trey Gowdy Says Eyewitnesses Will Testify Next Week at Benghazi Hearing (Video) - Jim Hoft/Gateway Pundit
“Well I am not liberty to disclose the identity of the witnesses but I will just say what I have said previously which is it is going to be a very informational and instructive hearing. I would encourage you to follow it. Benghazi is warming up. It is not going away despite the efforts of this administration… You know that hearsay evidence is not so interesting. First hand accounts by eye-witnesses much more compelling. So I would again repeat for your audience and those who may be watching. Let me just say next week will be a good opportunity for us to hear non-hearsay accounts of what happened in Benghazi.“
Of course, with Republicans representing only 11.73 percent of all registered voters in Philadelphia, the party’s got its work cut out. (The registration numbers, as of this morning, were 805,518 Democrats, 120,206 Republicans, and 98,870 others (non-partisan/independent, as well as third parties) for a total of 1.024,594 voters, according to the City Commissioners’ office.)
Yet despite the daunting registration numbers, the prospect of a unified party – along with the existence of an open mayoral seat with Mayor Nutter term-limited by the City Charter - has led to a handful of GOP candidates loosely testing the waters to gauge voter interest. And it’s led to a roughly equal number of others who are having their names tossed around by prominent ward leaders and political operatives....
But the big story is the emergence of a dark horse candidate who is well-known and liked among the business and philanthropic communities in Philadelphia and who comes from a prominent family here.
Dana Spain, 43, the daughter of native Philadelphians Joan and Bernard Spain (who, along with his brother Murray, founded Spain’s Card and Gift and Dollar Express stores), is aggressively coming out of the gate and is not shy about talking about her vision for the fifth largest city in America.
Spain, who runs DLG Communications, a branding and marketing communication company, was a former owner and chief operating officer at Philadelphia Style Magazine, a luxury lifestyle publication. She also founded PAWS, the Philadelphia Animal Welfare Society – a privately funded, non-profit, no-kill shelter/clinic. With all this on her plate and more, why would she consider running as a Republican against what many pundits believe are insurmountable odds?
"I'm a cheerleader, and I build things from scratch. And I want to be a cheerleader for our city because we need that right now," Spain told me, adding, “People are still looking at us as a backwards city.”
Spain, who is brand new to the political scene, said, “I am an outsider. The only thing that I have in mind here is to fix the city that I love.”
One supporter willing to publicly go on the record was Ben Haney, owner-operator of Mac’s Tavern in Old City and a GOP political consultant.
“I think in a time where our city is facing serious financial crises on several fronts, Dana is a breath of fresh air," he said. "Her experience as a lifelong Philadelphia and successful businesswoman who is engaged in the city but not beholden to politics will allow her to make the tough decisions necessary to transform Philadelphia into the city Philadelphians truly deserve.”
When identity politics were brought into the equation, Spain was enthusiastic to respond. “Philadelphia is ready for a female mayor. Women in industry are ready for it, too. A fresh set of ideas is welcome, and we are ready for it.”
So 85% of us will hardly notice a job-killing bill that's blowing the deficit into orbit? Repeal ObamaCare now.— John Hayward (@Doc_0) April 30, 2013
Is he disregarding the dropped insurance, cut hours, & premium hikes going on? W/o even bothering to place blame, he's ignoring big probs.— Mary Katharine Ham (@mkhammer) April 30, 2013
Obama: If states would properly cooperate on Obamacare, we wouldn't have to assert federal authority.— TheBlaze (@theblaze) April 30, 2013
Obama is really proud of his new 3 page Obamacare application. But what about the 20000 pages of regulations?— Charlie Spiering (@charliespiering) April 30, 2013
◼ Obama: 'Not Familiar' with Intimidation of Benghazi Whistleblowers - Elizabeth Sheld
God, I can't BEGIN to imagine how the poor bastards that have to APOLOGIZE for Obama are handling this press conference.— Moe Lane (@moelane) April 30, 2013
◼ Hashtag predictions: The questions Obama won’t answer at his Tuesday presser - Twitchy