Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Russia, China pounce on U.S. hacked data, searching out blackmail targets

This can't be good for America's future ....

China and Russia are both taking advantage of the hack attacks against the U.S. Office of Personnel Management and the Ashley Madison adultery website, tasking experts to cross-check data and see who's cheating, who has security clearances and who's vulnerable to blackmail.

The Los Angeles Times, citing sources, said operatives in both countries are aggressively scouring through the hacked data, checking to see if any names pop up as past security clearance applicants. They're also cross-checking the hacked names with airline records and medical documents, searching for clues that might help identify undercover agents and other top U.S. intelligence officials, the newspaper said.

And two sources told the newspaper the aggressive search has already paid off. At least one undercover network of U.S. engineers and scientists has been compromised, they said, to the newspaper. The scientists had been working on the sly to provide assistance to U.S. agents stationed overseas, the sources said.

The massive OPM hack reportedly compromised millions of past and present U.S. government workers' sensitive records, including those in the CIA and military, as reported on numerous occasions.

The White House has reacted to the breaches with vows to bolster the government's cybersecurity. In the meantime, counterintelligence agents say America's enemies have gone full steam ahead to try and take advantage.

"[Digital analysis can reveal] who is an intelligence officer, who travels where, when, who's got financial difficulties, who's got medical issues, [it can] put together a common picture," said William Evanina, a top U.S. counterintelligence official, in the L.A. Times.

And asked if U.S. enemies had already used such information against U.S. undercover agents and operatives, Evanina said: "Absolutely."

She wouldn't give specifics, however.

The Pentagon is working to get ahead of the game, sifting through some of the same hacked information to find out who might be susceptible to blackmail, the newspaper said.

China was the suspected source of the recent OPM database hack which impacted an estimated 22 million past and present federal workers, along with their family members.

"A foreign spy agency now has the ability to cross-check who has a security clearance, via the OPM breach, with who was cheating on their wife via the Ashley Madison breach, and thus identify someone to target for blackmail," said Peter Singer, a fellow with the New America Foundation and coautor of the book, "Cybersecurity and Cyberwar," the newspaper reported.


Friday, August 28, 2015

200 ex-generals write Congress: Reject nuke deal else Iran gets 'far more dangerous'

An estimated 200 retired generals and admirals put pen to paper and sent a letter to Congress to advise them to reject the nuclear deal pressed by President Obama, saying the world will become a more dangerous place if it's approved.

"The agreement will enable Iran to become far more dangerous, render the Mideast still more unstable and introduce new threats to American interests as well as our allies," the letter stated.

It was addressed to House Majority Leader John Boehner, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid.

The writers say the "agreement as constructed does not 'cut off every pathway' for Iran to acquire nuclear weapons," an apparent reference to the terminology President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry used to tout the benefits of the deal.

"To the contrary," it continues, "it actually provides Iran with a legitimate path to doing that simply by abiding the deal."

The generals and admirals say the agreement will let Iran enrich uranium, develop centrifuges and keep up work on its heavy-water plutonium reactor at Arak.

And also of concern, they write: "The agreement is unverifiable. Under the terms of the [agreement] and a secret side deal (to which the United States is not privy), the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) will be responsible for inspections under such severe limitations as to prevent them from reliably detecting Iranian cheating."

The letter references the widely reported 24-day delay that was given Iran to keep out inspectors, under the terms of the forged deal. And it also mentions the facet of the agreement that "requires inspectors to inform Iran in writing as to the basis for its concerns about an undeclared site," and says such allowances are inappropriate and dangerous.

"While failing to assure prevention of Iran's nuclear weapons development capabilities, the agreement provides by some estimated $150 billion ... or more to Iran in the form of sanctions relief," the letter states.

And their conclusions?

"As military officers, we find it unconscionable that such a windfall could be given to a regime that even the Obama administration has acknowledged will use a portion of such funds to continue to support terrorism in Israel, throughout the Middle East and globally," they wrote, summarizing the agreement is a danger to the world.

"Accordingly, we urge the Congress to reject this defective accord," the letter wraps.

Among the signers: Admiral David Architzel, U.S. Navy, retired; Admiral Stanley Arthur, U.S. Navy, retired; General Alfred Hansen, U.S. Air Force, retired; Admiral James Hoggs, U.S. Navy, retired; and General Ronald Yates, U.S. Air Force, retired.



Judge slaps down EPA water rule, citing 'risk of irreparable harm to the states'

The Environmental Protection Agency received a big face-slap from a federal judge in North Dakota who ruled the entity cannot go forward with a new rule that would give it massive control over waterways, at least for the time being.

U.S. District Judge Ralph Erickson issued a temporary injunction against the rule, which has been widely criticized as a massive bureaucratic overreach that would lead to brutal crackdowns on developments near the smallest of bodies of waters, as WND has previously reported, here and here, and again, here. Basically, critics of the rule had argued the regulation would give the EPA the power to developments and other land activities next to even puddles of water – something the government derided as untrue. Critics also said the rule would result in costly compliance measures for developers, energy companies, businesses, farmers and ranchers and other private property owners – all denied by the government.

The federal judge, however, sided with the rule's critics and found in favor of the states.

Erickson's view, from Fox News: "The risk of irreparable harm to the states is both imminent and likely," he said.

His ruling comes from a case brought by 13 states, requesting the court suspend EPA waterway rules that were deemed as infringements on the Tenth Amendment and the states' right of sovereignty.

Among the states that petitioned the court: North Dakota, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, Nevada, South Dakota and Wyoming. It wasn't clear if the judge's injunction would apply to even those states that weren't parties to the petition.

But private property rights advocates and some politicians were cheering Erickson's ruling as a big win.

"North Dakota landowners and energy workers and their peers around the country will be temporarily spared the devastating consequences of an onerous rule. This is appropriate, given the judicial history of this issue and its impact on states and property rights. The injunction provides time for Congress to continue working toward a fix and for a complete judicial review of the legal merits of the rule," said North Dakota state congressman Kevin Cramer, Fox News reported.

And Julia Slingsby, the press secretary of the Natural Resources Committee, said to the news outlet: "The Waters of the United States rule is unlawful and an abuse of executive power. The judge’s decision to block the rule, which was challenged by 13 states, is encouraging, especially as EPA’s credibility has been questioned in the past month. The EPA needs to be stopped before it does more harm to our nation’s precious water resources."

The 13 states sought court action after attorneys general for more than 30 states sent a letter to the EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers requesting a delay of the rule's implementation for several months, but were never answered. So they went to court for the preliminary injunction.


Monday, August 24, 2015

Jesus picture gets boot from Kansas school: 'That's what's wrong with this world,' ex-student says

The Freedom From Religion Foundation has successfully pressured a school in Kansas to remove a picture of Jesus that had hung in the hallways for decades.

Royster Middle School took down the "Head of Christ" print by Warner Sallman, following a complaint from the well-known atheists' group that's headquartered in Wisconsin.

Richard Proffitt, who serves as superintendent of Chanute, said the school district attorney advised to remove the picture, the Wichita Eagle reported.

Warner Sallman first drew his Jesus picture in charcoal.
"We were notified and we responded to stay in compliance," he said, the newspaper reported.

Sallman drew the picture in 1924 in charcoal. It was later reproduced in color, and a copy of that colorized version hung in Royster in the 1940s.

"Oh man, it's getting bad," said Erika Semey, a former Royster student who attended a decade ago, Fox News reported,. "That's what's wrong with this world. Not enough people have Christ in their lives."

FFRF's Ryan Jayne couldn't disagree more.

"It's nice to have people who appreciate the law and get things done [and] who follow the law even if it's likely to be unpopular in the community," he said, Fox News reported.

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Iran to inspect itself? United Nations gives OK for rogue nation to act as own watchdog

This deal just gets crazier and crazier ... to put it mildly ...

President Obama's vaunted vows that accountability would be a key, non-negotiable aspect of his nuke deal with Tehran seems to have melted away with a report the United Nations is letting Iran act as its own watchdog – its own inspector – for a long-suspected nuclear arms development site.

Republicans quickly seized on the report, which first came to light from the Associated Press.

"President Obama boasts his deal includes 'unprecedented verification,'" said House Speaker John Boehner, AP reported. "He claims it's not built on trust. But the administration's briefings on these side deals have been totally insufficient – and it still isn't clear whether anyone at the White House has seen the final documents."

The Parchin site, as seen from satellite.
And House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Ed Royce was even blunter: "International inspections should be done by international inspectors. Period," he said, AP reported.

The terms of the newly discovered secret side deal – the Parchin agreement, forged by the International Atomic Energy Agency and Iran –  would allow Tehran to used its own experts and technical advisers to search out evidence of nuclear arms development activities at one of the same site's it's been accused of developing nuclear arms technology, AP said.

Former IAEA director general Olli Heinonen said he couldn't think of any other deal ever made between other countries that allowed for such concessions, AP said.

Democratic House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi dismissed the danger of the deal, though, saying simply she "truly believe[s] in this agreement," the news wire service reported.

Iran has turned away inspectors from its Parchin site for years. World powers, backed by satellite imagery, have long suspected the area is one of Iran's busiest spots for developing nuclear capability. And the IAEA itself has presented satellite images that indicate Iran has tried to sanitize the area, a suspicious behavior that underscores the notion of an ongoing cover-up.

The new revelations of the side deal could very well prove the final straw for congressional members who were already opposed to the Obama-backed nuclear deal with Iran. In recent days, key Democrats like Sens. Chuck Schumer and Robert Menendez have joined in teh Republican-led call to kill the deal, saying America has conceded too much to Iran and received too little in return.

Monday, August 17, 2015

Jade Helm critics mocked by media: Dallas writer pokes fun of pastors who express concern

Jade Helm 15, the Special Operations weeks-long military training mission that kicked off this July in seven states out west, is about half-way over, and its peaceful progression has apparently emboldened several in the press to unleash pot-shots at government watchdogs who expressed concerns at its secrecy.

Jade Helm was widely criticized for its labeling of two states, Texas and Utah, and the southern portion of California as "hostile" areas for training purposes, and for refusing to embed journalists with the military during the exercise.

Meanwhile, other critics picked up on the "Master the Human Domain" mission logo and expressed suspicion the military was using the Jade Helm exercise as a psychological warfare testing ground to learn how U.S. intelligence agents could influence citizens in overseas' conflicts.

Some said the exercise was aimed at taking Americans' gun rights; others, as a precursor to martial law. Reports also surfaced about closing Wal-marts, fueling some to suggest the military was going to use the retail outlets as a staging area for the operation, or worse, as internment facilities.

In response to these rumors and fears, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announced members of the National Guard would be monitoring the exercise – an action that hardly alleviated all the worries.

Just a few days ago, Dallas pastor Rick Wiles and and televangelist Jim Bakker discussed the operation in a series of broadcast programs, saying the mission may be rounding the curve toward completion, but in their minds, Americans should remain skeptical of the military's actions.

Wiles, for instance, told Bakker during one show: "The government is saying, 'All we're doing is, we've got our troops practicing for foreign wars,' but I'm not so sure about that. I think they are getting ready for social unrest."

It wasn't long after that discussion many in the media shot out some mocking pieces, slamming not just Wiles and Bakker but pretty much all Americans who expressed doubt in their government over Jade Helm.

Writing for the Dallas Observer, Stephen Young waxed sarcastically about the fears surrounding Jade Helm and said: "Congrats to everyone reading this outside of a FEMA camp based in an abandoned Wal-Mart for making it through the first month of Jade Helm 15 unscathed. For those of you who've been interned, and yet still inexplicably have web access, our prayers are with you. Thanks to the brave actions of Texas Governor Greg Abbott and the members of the Texas Guard he deployed to watch the not-at-all routine military takeover exercises enveloping the rest of the American South and Southwest, our fine state has remained largely unscathed."

He then jabbed at Wiles and Bakker, referring to the latter as a "disgraced televangelist ... who's previously claimed that Miley Cyrus has sex with demons."

Ring of Fire Radio picked up on the theme, blogging: "Televangelist Jim Bakker wants Americans to know that it's right to be skeptical of Jade helm 15. After serving time in prison for fraud int he 90's, Bakker returned to the airwaves to spread his message of doubt and deception. In a discussion with Rick Wiles, the pair ventured an idea (read: conspiracy theory) that the real purpose of Jade Helm 15 is to instill social distrust and unrest in communities. Thus preparing the country for another civil war."

The exercise, involving hundreds of special forces from four military branches – the largest of its kind on American soil – is due to wrap Sept. 15.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Carly Fiorina humble in face of debate success: 'Lot more people know who I am'

Okay, if you missed her performance, you missed brilliance ...

Presidential hopeful Carly Fiorina took to Fox & Friends on Friday to discuss her unrivaled success on the 5 p.m. debate stage, adopting a humble tone to thank the powers-who-be for the chance to shine a national light on her campaign.

Carly Fiorina
"I think a lot more people know who I am," she said, when asked about what's changed in the hours since poll watchers and pundits declared her the clear winner of the Thursday night debate. "Before this debate, only 40 percent of Republican voters ever heard my name. Last night, they said, ohmigosh, there's another woman in the race, ohmighosh she actually does pretty well."

She also thanked Fox for the chance to make an appearance in the nationally televised event, saying she's done well with the grassroots crowds but her low name recognition factor has kept her from catching and riding the larger media attention. And that chance has resulted in widespread Internet searching on her name – even more so than on Trump's, Steve Doocy on Fox & Friends said.

"Of course it makes me feel good, absolutely," Fiorina said. "What all that activity demonstrates is that people have started to pay attention."

Fiorina fielded on policy question, on the economy, and said the top action the government could take to bolster job growth would be to get out of the way of small business.

"The engine of economic growth in this nation has always been small business, community-based businesses, family businesses," she said. "If is the small, family-owned, community-based business that we're crushing, and in fact we're destroying more than we're making."

Why?

"Big government," Fiorina said. "This is called crony capitalism, when the government gets so big only the big [businesses] can survive. We have to get the engine of economic growth, small business, growing again."

Monday, August 3, 2015

DNC chief Debbie Wasserman Schultz can't differentiate in Socialist v. Democrat

That's about right ...

Debbie Wasserman Schultz, the chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee, couldn't explain the difference between a socialist and a democrat during a nationally televised interview – and when asked the same question in a second, later TV spot, similarly stumbled.

She was first asked point-blank by Chris Matthews on MSNBC: "What's the difference between a Democrat and a socialist. I used to think there was a big difference. What do you think it is?"

As Mediaite pointed, she tried to dodge the question before then diverting to the bigger chasm
between Democrats and Republicans.

A few days later, NBC's "Meet the Press" host Chuck Todd posed the same question to her, and once more, Wasserman Schultz couldn't explain.

Debbie Wasserman Schultz
Todd asked: "Given that Bernie Sanders is an unabashed socialist and believes in social democratic governments, [he] likes the ones in Europe, what is the difference? Can you explain the difference?"

And Wasserman Schultz's reply: "You know, Chuck, it's always fun to be interviewed by Chris Matthews and I know that he enjoys that banter. The important distinction that I think we are going to be discussing, I'm confident we'll be discussing during this campaign, is the difference between Democrats and Republicans."

She then went on to define the Democrats as for-the-people and the Republicans as extremists.

Video here: http://www.mediaite.com/tv/debbie-wasserman-schultz-again-wont-explain-difference-between-democrats-and-socialists/



Thursday, July 30, 2015

Obamacare overhaul leaves taxpayers on hook for $2.4 billion, audit finds

More reasons to get government out of the health care business ...

A new audit from the Health and Human Services inspector genera's office shows the $2.4 billion taxpayers loaned the federal government to implement an Obamacare overhaul demanded by President Obama did not bring the promised results, and in fact, could prove to be a total waste.

Taxpayers provided the money at Obama's request to get nonprofit co-ops, the Obamacare alternative to mega-insurers, up and running so more Americans would join the health care plan. But of the 23 funded by the $2.4 billion, only one has met sign-up goals, the audit found, the Associated Press reported.

And one, the Iowa/Nebraska co-op, actually had to shut down after regulators voiced concerns over how money was being used, AP said.

"The low enrollments and net losses might limit the ability of some co-ops to repay startup and solvency loans and to remain viable and sustainable," the audit said.

The audit only covers the co-ops' activities through the end of 2014, but a review of the last few months shows 2015 appears to follow the same failing trend. Co-ops continue to report financial losses, AP reported.

The co-ops are officially called Consumer Operated and Oriented Plans and they were put in place as an Obama-inspired and Democratic-implemented option to the corporate insurance agencies, after failing to get enough people to sign on to the government-run insurance plan. The deal was taxpayers would provide startup money and reserve money for the nonprofits to get going.

Just a few months ago, the White House was calling the co-ops a success. The president's Domestic Policy Council said just recently, "In states throughout the country, co-ops have competed effectively with established issuers and attracted significant enrollment," AP said.

But the inspector general's report finds differently.

Among the findings of the audit: Maine was the only co-op that recorded financial solvency for 2014, with $5.9 million in income. Kentucky's co-op lost $50.4 million; Montana's lost $3.5 million. New York's lost $35 million.

Medicare chief Andy Slavitt downplayed the findings in a statement to AP: "The co-ops enter the health insurance market with a number of challenges, [from] building a provider network to pricing premiums that will sustain the business for the long term," Slavitt said. "As with any new set of business ventures, it is expected that some co-ops will be more successful than others. [The administration] takes its responsibility to oversee the co-op program seriously."


Thursday, July 23, 2015

Seattle seeks Sharia law for Muslim homebuyers: Mayor vows 'new tools' to accommodate Islam beliefs

Seattle's local governing authorities are pressing forward with a plan to give Muslims with Sharia-compliant beliefs a financial option to buy homes.

The idea comes in recognition of the current purchasing and financing laws that Muslims say lock them out of home buying, due to their Sharia principles.

"We will work to develop new tools for Muslims who are prevents from using conventional mortgage products due to their religious beliefs," said Seattle Mayor Ed Murry, at a recent press conference, Fox News reported.

The facet of home financing that Sharia-compliant Muslims can't abide? The payment of interest, FOx News said. And that means about 30,000 Muslims in the Seattle area who follow what the Koran calls "the right way" aren't able to participate in the banking loan process – because interest is the primary way lenders earn money.

Chicago already offers some options for Sharia-compliant Muslims, as well as the Bank of America. But the special treatment in Seattle isn't sitting well with everyone. Critics say the idea opens the door to financing for Islamic radicals and even terror-tied groups, via money laundering.

In 2008, some in Congress opposed the American International Group's provision of special insurance programs for Sharia-compliant Muslims.

In a letter dated Dec. 18, Rep. Frank Wolf and then-Rep. Sue Myrick wrote: "You may defend your decision to offer Sharia products and will probably state that they have no real ties to Sharia law, and therefore pose no threat. You are wrong, Like Britain, the way to America's legal code is through its wallet, and if Sharia law gains a strong footing in the United States, it will be through Sharia finance and Sharia products."

Fox News reported Seattle's plan to help Muslims could lead to banks outright buying the home and holding the title. The bank would then contract with the buyer to purchase the home at marked-up price. The buyer could then pay in a lump sum or in payments over time.

Some financial outlets in Seattle are already offering such options.

Halal Inc. has a website ad that says "instead of starting with a flawed system and trying to 'make a fit,' we took the perfect system ordained by Allah and created a legal framework for it," Fox News found.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Iran deal exposes Obama’s fairyland views

President Obama stepped onto the national stage early Tuesday morning to announce a deal with Iran to stop that country’s development of nuclear capabilities – and by stop, of course, what he really meant was delay.

Among his self-congratulatory back-pats: The part where he said the accord “demonstrates that American diplomacy can bring about real and immediate change.”

Congratulations, Mr. President. Once again, you’ve exposed the depth of your Land of Oz-like thinking. Believing in the power of the tongue to control terrorists, state sponsors of terror and all-around enemies of Israel and the West is not only sheer hubris – it’s borderline madman.

What part of the ayatollah’s mid-negotiations “Death to America” chants did you not hear?

Listeners of the early morning speech he delivered while staring directly and nearly unblinkingly into the lens of the camera – a la the “look ‘em in the eye” approach – had to know the deal was bad for America when he assured: “Today, because America negotiated from a position of strength and principle …”

But did anybody ever think that -- ever?

Just look at these headlines: From U.S. News, in November 2014: “Desperate and Dumb: The White House is Grasping at Straws to Reach a Nuclear Deal.”

From Fox News, via Charles Krauthammer, in January: “Obama’s ‘Negotiating Out of Weakness and Desperation’ With Iran.

From the Washington Post, in March: “Obama is Conceding Too Much to Iran.”

From Breitbart, in April: “Cotton: U.S. Negotiating With Iran ‘From a Position of Weakness,’ ‘Desperate for Deal.’”

From The Week, in June: “Former Top Obama, Bush Advisers Warn Against Weak Iran Nuclear Deal.”

That’s quite a list – a quick drop in the bucket of what’s out there. But you know what’s curiously missing?

Mentions and accolades of America’s negotiations with Iran from “a position of strength and principle,” except in stories quoting Obama’s claim to such.

As Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tweeted shortly after the announcement: “When willing to make a deal at any cost, this is the result. From early reports, we can see that the deal is a historic mistake.” He then tweeted: “World powers have made far-reaching concessions in all areas that were supposed to prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapons capability.”

One huge hole in the deal is its appeasement quality. Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton called it a pact akin to the “ill-fated Munich Agreement which sought to appease Nazi Germany.” U.S. Sen. Ben Sasse, R-Neb., said the “administration just lit a fuse for a nuclear arms race in the Middle East.” And Iran expert Clare Lopez bluntly called the pact “sheer insanity” and a means for Iran to both fund and continue its secret pursuit of nuclear weapons.

Another frightening facet: The deal reportedly gives Iran the power to hold up inspectors from accessing sites deemed suspicious. Obama may say the plan is “not built on trust” but rather “verification,” but that’s just not true if IAEA inspectors have to wait for the all-clear from Iran in order to gain access to suspicious sites.

And one more thought to consider: What of the U.S. hostages held in Iran? While Obama cheers himself, Idaho’s Saeed Abedini, a Christian evangelical, and Amir Hekmati, a former U.S. Marine, continue to rot in Iranian prisons. As Commentary opined, comparing their sad fate to those of terrorist ilk: “Obama seems more concerned with springing terrorists from Guantanamo Bay than in freeing Americans held captive by one of the world’s most repressive regimes.”


This accord would have been the perfect time to win the release of Abedini, Hekmati and other Americans held by Iran. 

Position of “strength and principle?” Hardly. Position of “politics and personal agenda” is much more to the truth.


Friday, July 10, 2015

Louie Gohmert reminds: Democrats were party of slavery

Rep. Louie Gohmert took to the House floor to deliver an impassioned speech about history, with a lesson on hypocrisy, reminding the nation and those on the left the rabbit hole of removing all things perceived as racist – like the Confederate flag – is a deep one that leads right to the Democratic Party.

The context of Gohmert's remarks was the nationwide condemnation of the Confederate flag, leading to a congressional legislative attempt to boot the banner from some federally managed properties. Gohmert first reminded the cause of the shooting at the Charleston, South Carolina, church that left nine dead – the spark that started this recent anti-Confederate flag efforts – was "evil," rather than a piece of cloth waved by the suspected shooter, Dylann Roof.

"[But] now there's this big race to go after the Confederate flag," he said.

He then suggested those who want to erase from U.S. society all symbols and signs that are tainted by anything racist ought to do a complete job of it.

"In thinking about that," Gohmert said, "I think there is an entity that was so evil in supporting slavery, in fighting against civil rights, in fighting against the Christian brother that Martin Luther King Jr. was ... we ought to look at those symbols and ought to look at what they stood for and perhaps ban any political organization [that touted them] from participating in Congress."

He then read from the Democratic Party's political platforms from 1856 and from 1860, where it was stated "all efforts of the abolitionists or others made to induce Congress to interfere with questions of slavery ... have an inevitable tendency to diminish the happiness of the people and endanger the permanence and stability of the union and ought not to be countenanced by any friend of our political institutions," he said.

"That was the official number one plank," Gohmert said, of the Democratic Party's 1856 platform.

And the third plank for that year?

"They're saying they want to preserve slavery in any state that wants to have it," he said. "I mean, it sounds like something the Ku Klux Klan would've done."

Gohmert said the party adopted the same platforms again in 1860 and concluded: "So if we're going to eliminate everything that reminds us of the hideous past that supported slavery, the oppression, the horrors that slavery entailed ... if we're going to have a complete cleansing of this country of anything, any symbol, then this platform from he Democratic Party in 1856 and 1860 ... then I think its time not for the Washington Redskins to change its name, but for the Democratic Party to change its name."

Why?

"Because the history of the Democratic Party is one of oppressing African Americans, one of supporting slavery," he said.

Gohmert then suggested a better way for the country to deal with race relations and the current campaigns to erase or skew history.

"Let's recognize the good with which we've been blessed. Let's stop the name calling, the race baiting, the division politics," he said. "Let's quit trying to tear this country apart because of things of the past with which not one person in this room would have taken part in. If we're really going to go there, we've got to end the Democratic Party."

He went on: "We don't need to end the Democratic Party.We just need to work together in the present. That doesn't mean we can't disagree ... [but] let's look at the example of the victims' families in Charleston, South Carolina and say, 'Wow, they are incredible believers and followers of Jesus Christ – that's somebody we can emulate.'"

http://www.wnd.com/2015/07/louie-gohmert-reminds-democrats-were-party-of-slavery/?cat_orig=politics

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Obama regulations take root: Feds vow to 'diversify' housing and take out 'segregated living'

The Obama administration's long-awaited new housing regulations came out Wednesday giving the federal government more tools to make sure neighborhoods around the nation aren't developed and populated in racially segregated manners.

The rules, issued under the Department of Housing and Urban Development, are supposed to put a stop to "segregated living patterns" and "racially or ethnically concentrated areas of poverty," HUD said, the Hill reported.
Feds are foisting their image of diverse housing on Americans.

How it works is HUD will give local communities information on how to prevent and address perceived segregated housing areas, and offer grant money to address the situation. The grant money could then be used to help diversity the neighborhoods and "expand equal access to opportunity for all Americans."

HUD Secretary Julian Castro put it this way: "Unfortunately, too many Americans find their dreams limited by where they come from, and a ZIP code should never determine a child’s future. This important step will give local leaders the tools they need to provide all Americans with access to safe, affordable housing in communities that are rich with opportunity," the Hill reported.

Critics, however, call the carrot-stick tradeoff of government recommendations for grant dollars a prime example of federal overreach.

Rep. Paul Gosar, R-Ariz., said, in a previous interview: "American citizens and communities should be free to choose where they would like to live and not be subject to federal neighborhood engineering at the behest of an overreaching federal government."

Other critics, like Heritage Foundation fellow Hans von Spakovsky, said in previous comments the HUD regulations seem to be yet another attempt of the Obama administration "to take race into account everything."

The regulations could impact 1,250 local governments in the country. They're due to be phased in, beginning in the next 30 days.


Friday, July 3, 2015

Supreme Court fallout: ACLU sues Kentucky clerk for refusing wedding licenses

Let the lawsuits begin ...

The American Civil Liberties Union has filed suit against a Kentucky clerk for refusing to give wedding licenses to four couples, two of whom were gay.

Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis said her religious beliefs barred her from complying with the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling that requires states to marry gays. And instead of discriminating against gays, she decided to stop issuing licenses altogether – for homosexuals and heterosexuals, fox News reported.

The scene at the Supreme Court during gay marriage debate.
Davis is hardly alone.

A clerk in Decatur County, Tennessee, resigned her post, along with two office assistants, because of their opposition to the high court's ruling and their worries about lawsuits if they stood strong on their religious beliefs.

And in New Orleans, the state Office of Vital Records hesitated on issuing same-sex marriage licenses until late this week, the Associated Press reported.

Kentucky's highest-ranking – Gov. Steve Beshear and Attorney General Jack Conway – warned clerks on Friday, right after the court's decision made the media waves, to comply or risk criminal charges that could bring up to a year in jail.

Some clerks failed to immediately comply, but then changed their minds. Davis, however, said she couldn't, and wouldn't ever, issuing a gay marriage license.

"It's a deep-rooted conviction. My conscience won't allow me to do that," she said, Fox News reported. "It goes against everything I hold dear, everything sacred in my life."

ACLU filed it s suit in U.S. District Court in Ashland, requesting an injunction that would compel Davis to start issuing licenses and punitive damages for allegedly violating the couple's court-stamped rights.

In court documents, ACLU legal director William Sharp said Davis' religious beliefs are "not a compelling, important or legitimate government interest."

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Pam Geller sues D.C. transit over ad flap: 'Abridging our freedoms so as not to offend savages is surrender'

Pamela Geller, co-founder and president of the American Freedom Defense Initiative, filed a lawsuit against the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, alleging the government entity violated the First Amendment by refusing to run her political ad about radical Islamism.

Geller's AFDI sent in an ad to the WMATA in May that contained an image of an angry man wearing a turban and wielding a sword, with a bubble by his mouth and the text: "You can't draw me!" Another bubble below contained the words: "That's why I draw you." The ad also blared the phrase: "Support free speech."

The ad is from a "Draw Muhammad" event organized by AFDI in Texas, during which police shot and killed two would-be Islamist terrorists who tried to storm the venue.

WMATA, about a week after Geller filed the application, denied the ad and announced it was no longer going to accept any type of "issue-oriented advertising" at all, the Daily Caller reported. The WMATA told the Daily Caller News Foundation the ban on issue-oriented advertisements wasn't related to any particular ad application or organization, but Geller finds the announcement curiously coincidental.

"It's an end run around the first amendment," she said, to the Daily Caller.

Geller accused the WMATA of violating her First Amendment rights; she's suing for damages on that point, as well as for legal fees.

She said, to the Daily Caller: "The West is the target for Islamic terrorism. The whole country is on heightened alert for an Islamic State attack on July 4th. Abridging our freedoms so as not to offend savages is surrender and un-American. It results in more demands, more surrender, more capitulation to sharia law (which is what WMATA did)."

In 2012, Geller won a similar lawsuit against the WMATA over an ad that portrayed Adolph Hitler and Haj Amin al-Husseini, alongside the text: "Staunch ally, the leader of the Muslim world." The ad also contained the text: "Islamic Jew-Hatred: It's in the Quran."

Geller just faced down a similar ad flap in New York. There, she tried to post ads on the city bus system of a menacing man with a masked face with text, "That's his Jihad. What's yours?" The ad also read: "Killing Jews is worship that draws us close to Allah."

As WND previously reported, the MTA board reacted by banning all forms of political advertisement and a federal court later rubber-stamped the move, ruling the agency could indeed do that.

Geller's attorney, Robert Muise, objected to the move and vowed to appeal, saying: "The government should not be permitted to violate the First Amendment and then on the heels of an adverse court decision simply modify its rules to avoid the consequences of its unlawful behavior."