(PHOTOS) Magnitude 3.9 Earthquake strikes off Coast of Southampton NY, near NYC; off the coast of NY, NJ and Long Island on November 30, 2010

By Sam Foster

Trolling for election results from NY-1 and I stumble upon breaking news of a 3.9 magnitude earthquake in the ocean off the coast of NY and NJ.

While sitting at my desk this morning, hard at work on a news piece covering the still undecided congressional election between Tim Bishop and Randy Altschuler, I was suddenly interrupted by a low rumble that I have now learned was an earthquake.

Now as a former resident of New Jersey, and current New York resident, I cannot say that an earthquake is something that I have experienced before. This is Long Island, not California after all! My walls creaked, my bed shook in its place, while hanging items and decor wobbled, without falling.

The epicenter was 79 miles south-southeast of Hamptons.com's home in Southampton at a depth of over four miles below the ocean's surface.

According to the Lamont-Doherty Cooperative Seismographic Network, the quake registered a 3.9 on the Richter Scale at 10:45 a.m., and was felt across Long Island, Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts.

Update x1:

Earthquake felt as far as New Hampshire.

Update x2:

News and map from ANSS. Coordinates for the earthquake were 42 degrees N, 70 degress West.

More Details below:

Earthquake Details
This event has been reviewed by a seismologist.
Magnitude 3.9
Date-Time Tuesday, November 30, 2010 at 15:45:59 UTC
Tuesday, November 30, 2010 at 10:45:59 AM at epicenter
Time of Earthquake in other Time Zones

Location 39.799°N, 71.927°W
Depth 6.6 km (4.1 miles) (poorly constrained)
Distances 127 km (79 miles) SSE (153°) from Quogue, NY
127 km (79 miles) SSE (162°) from Southampton, NY
128 km (79 miles) SSE (148°) from West Hampton Dunes, NY
188 km (117 miles) SE (145°) from Bridgeport, CT
197 km (122 miles) ESE (120°) from New York, NY

Location Uncertainty horizontal +/- 26.2 km (16.3 miles); depth +/- 36.5 km (22.7 miles)
Parameters Nph= 16, Dmin=204 km, Rmss=0.75 sec, Gp=320°,
M-type=local magnitude (ML), Version=1
Source Lamont-Doherty Cooperative Seismographic Network (LCSN)

Event ID ld60011606

Did Obama Do All He Could To Prevent Wikileaks??

By Proof

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

In WikiLeaks, Hillary Clinton, and the Smoking Gun, in Slate, Jack Shafer explores some of the damage done to Obama's current Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton. As readers of this blog know and many others suspect, Hillary will probably be Obama's number one opponent in the 2012 primaries. So does this leak help or harm Hillary in 2012?

To be fair to Clinton, she isn't the first secretary of state to issue cables telling U.S. foreign service officers to spy on other diplomats...

...But what makes Clinton's sleuthing unique is the paper trail that documents her spying-on-their-diplomats-with-our-diplomat orders, a paper trail that is now being splashed around the world on the Web and printed in top newspapers. No matter what sort of noises Clinton makes about how the disclosures are "an attack on America" and "the international community," as she did today, she's become the issue. She'll never be an effective negotiator with diplomats who refuse to forgive her exuberances, and even foreign diplomats who do forgive her will still regard her as the symbol of an overreaching United States. Diplomacy is about face, and the only way for other nations to save face will be to give them Clinton's scalp.

My contention was that Hillary would stick with Obama, at lest nominally, until some "crisis of conscience" caused her to resign. (Failing a major conscience crisis, she could cite the cumulative effect of many smaller crises.) End game: Hillary takes a moral stand for the good of the party and is "forced" to run against Obama in 2012.
What if this wikileaks business is an attempt to force her out before she can bring her plans to fruition? By weakening her as Sec State, she is also weakened as a potential Commander-in-Chief. Damaging her with our allies, damages her as presidential material.

The damage these revelations have cause is summed up by Shafer thusly:

There is no way that the new WikiLeaks leaks don't leave Hillary Clinton holding the smoking gun. The time for her departure may come next week or next month, but sooner or later, the weakened and humiliated secretary of state will have to pay.

So, in light of the fact that the first round of wikileaks during the Obama administration cast Bush and the military in a bad light, and the second round seems to do the same for the State Department, whose titular head is a likely opponent in 2012, is it any surprise that an administration that without warning, shut down more than 70 websites for sharing music and movies cannot left a finger to stop the leaks of classified government documents by wikileaks?

Could it be that the administration had assurances if not advanced knowledge of what was going to be released, and if not complicit, was at least passive to their leaking?

H/T Memeorandum

Cross posted at Proof Positive

My Big Fat Homoerotic Christmas

A TSA pre-screen? SBE? I'm sure it's Kosher, whatever it is.

How many millions of Chinese Yuan did we borrow to pay for this?
The federally funded National Portrait Gallery, one of the museums of the Smithsonian Institution, is currently showing an exhibition that features images of an ant-covered Jesus, male genitals, naked brothers kissing, men in chains, Ellen DeGeneres grabbing her breasts, and a painting the Smithsonian itself describes in the show's catalog as "homoerotic."

The exhibit, “Hide/Seek: Difference and Desire in American Portraiture,” opened on Oct. 30 and will run throughout the Christmas Season, closing on Feb. 13.
If you've been wondering why some billionaires are itching for higher taxes, this is the problem: We've got bills to pay...
The Smithsonian Institution has an annual budget of $761 million, 65 percent of which comes from the federal government, according to Linda St. Thomas, the Smithsonian's chief spokesperson. The National Portrait Gallery itself received $5.8 million in federal funding in fiscal year 2010, according to St. Thomas. It also received $5.8 million in federal funding in fiscal 2009, according to the museum’s annual report. The gallery’s overall funding in that year was $8 million.
If you're like me and you don't like having your income confiscated to pay for sex art, it's only because you're an intolerant, immature rube:
CNSNews.com asked Ward if he thought the exhibit might be offensive to people who disagree with the homosexual lifestyle. He said, “I believe that the American public is mature and tolerant in its opinion of alternative points of view. This is an art and cultural exhibition that displays important and key works of artistic creation and attempts to interpret them against the background of American history.”
One needn't frame this as a debate over religion or sexual proclivities. We simply don't have the money. Should the federal government be spending ¥3,300,000,000 ($500,000,000) each year on the Smithsonian Institution, passing the bill to future generations of Americans?

As millions of Americans struggle to find employment and the federal government contemplates increasing taxes in the midst of a recession, cutting funding to organizations such as NPR and the Smithsonian should be easy decisions. And if conservatives in Congress don't have the courage to confront these relatively small challenges, there's not much hope for tackling the entitlement crisis that threatens to bankrupt this country.

Happy holidays!

Update: Islamic sensibilities were NOT harmed in the making of this exhibit.

Discussion: Memeorandum

The Morning Beat at the Left Coast Rebel: Freezing government pay at its highest levels edition

Leave them kids Alone:

We Don't Need No Education When we Have teh Blogs:

BBCW: Breast milk begets junk touching & Soros + Wikileaks.

Bonsai from the Right:
GM recovery hinges on car shoppers forgetting how to use Google.

Beers with Demo:
Because the uber rich and those making $200k are exactly the same.

Instapundit: See, who says communism isn't productive. North Korea can make two things each year.

Yankee Phil: What happens at Tau Epsilon Phi...ends up in court.

Doug Ross: Footage of mass executions in Gaza and the religion of peace.

Teresamerica: Hamas IRS targets pro-Israel groups.

Hot Air Pundit: Buffalo Bill walks back that whole "It's God's fault I dropped a pass" tweet.

What Makes Us Right: A gun that shoots around corners and looks good on the mantle too!

Rule 5 never looked so good!

Yankee Phil: Miss New York crashes Miss USA float, plus how to handle a stripper pole.

Left Coast Rebel: Yes we do have Kim Kardashian photos and a link for you to view them again.

Taking off your clothes for global warming?

Leave Them Kids SLOBs Alone:

W.C. Varones says "no" to social conservatism taking the Tea Party mantle.

Shane Atwell comes to the same conclusion.

And the Liberator liberates.

Tim Bishop plus margin of democrat voter fraud could equal victory over Randy Altschuler in close NY-1 race

By Sam Foster

Today, Tim Bishop and Randy Altschuler will take the NY-1 election into the court room so a judge can rule on nearly 2,000 challenged ballots. The current vote tally completed last Tuesday left Tim Bishop with a lead of 235 votes. But, it now appears as though the incumbent is very popular outside his district, perhaps more so than NY-1.

Fox News has uncovered several instances of voter fraud where Democrats felt the needs to vote in their own outside district like Manhattan and for embattled Democrat Tim Bishop a few districts away. (Hat Tip to Lonely Conservative)

A Fox News Voter Fraud Unit review of approximately 438 of the absentee ballot voters, who also maintain mailing addresses in New York City, reveals that 48 have double registrations. They voted by absentee ballot in Suffolk County, but are also listed as current "active" voters on the New York City rolls. Being registered in two separate jurisdictions is illegal and is a felony in New York State.

In addition, our investigation reveals that one absentee ballot was apparently submitted in the name of a Democratic voter enrolled in Suffolk County, while election records at the Board of Elections in New York City show that the same voter voted, on Election Day, in Manhattan.

"It certainly is illegal to vote twice," warns John Conklin, the spokesperson of the New York State Board of Elections, who said convictions can bring a one year jail sentence.

"If you voted twice, you committed a felony, and I think it would be very difficult to do that by accident. I think that would be something to be concerned about and that the district attorney is going to come knocking on their door."

The voter in question has an extensive voting record, having cast a ballot in New York City 33 times since 1984. Records show he not only voted in a Manhattan polling place during the general election this past November, but also in the Democratic primary in September. The voter has not returned our request for comment.

The overwhelming majority of the Long Island voters, who are also on the New York City voter rolls, appear to be wealthy Manhattanites who own second-homes in the posh resort towns of East Hampton, Southampton, Montauk, Amagansett and Shelter Island. Many of them voted in Manhattan as recently as last November in New York City's mayoral election, and in the presidential election of 2008.

Please keep in mind that Tim Bishop leads by only 235 votes and the story line from the media is that all of the ballots challenged were probably frivolous and all of these ballots will be overturned in court, thus securing Tim Bishops victory. This report clearly shows the high degree of voting irregularities padding Tim Bishop’s current lead. It might still be a long shot, but it certainly appears as though Altschuler’s challenges have a better chance of standing up in court.

(PICTURES) Jennifer Lopez Sex Tape Resurfaces?

by the Left Coast Rebel

The J. Lo sex tape scandal has resurfaced again, this time ironically one day after Jennifer Lopez was named a national spokesperson for the Boys and Girls Club of America. How charming!

The bad news is that it may never be seen as it is locked up in a court battle (unless Robert Stacy McCain got his grubby hands on it which is highly likely). The doubly-bad news is that my traffic sucks worse than an industrial weed blower and I have to drive hits by covering this ridiculous story.

Radar via We Smirch broke the story (who here thinks copious amounts of alcohol were involved?):

Jennifer Lopez is caught on hours of new video "exposing her genital area in public" and displaying other "deviant behavior", according to documents just filed in the singer's high-stakes legal fight to keep the tapes secret.

The Jenny From The Block singer has taken ex-husband Ojai Noa and his agent Ed Meyer to court to stop their purported release and marketing attempt of sexy videos made during the couple's short-lived marriage.

"JLo is riding a scooter in public in Cuba, while talking to the camera and numerous by-standers, with her privates in as plain view as Paris Hilton, Britany Spears and Lindsay Lohan have in the past," said Ed Meyer, a rep for Lopez's ex-hubby.

"This is among other nudity on her part in the now 21 hours of home movies, that we have so far recovered."

The tape does not contain full-on sex, but is said to grant a revealing glimpse of the singer, including her with "no underwear" and "vagina in plain view", RadarOnline.com has learned.

Noa and Meyer are producing and marketing for sale a feature film about Lopez's tumultuous first marriage to Noa, a Cuban immigrant, chef and model.

In a document filed in California Court of Appeal on November 17, Meyer said: "In Noa's Home Videos, Lopez displays deviant behavior by consensually exposing her genital area in public, however, Noa & Meyer have never ever intended to market this and the many other racy, damaging & expositive scenes from the Home Videos. It must also be stated that in Noa's Home Videos, Lopez gives her full consent to Noa taping her."

Meyer added, "The movie may or may not integrate "G" rated scenes from Noa's own Home Videos, or possibly the "G" rated scenes from Noa's own Home Videos may be marketed separately as a "fan friendly" Home Video DVD Collection."

"Ojani keeps finding more tapes that he didn't even realize that he still had," Meyer told RadarOnline.com in an exclusive interview.

"We had 17 hours at the start, and we now have just over 21 hours of home videos."

Lopez is claiming Noa and filmmaker Meyer are violating an injunction blocking the release on the basis that the video is private and personal.

But in the court filing, Meyer argued he could not be held to a previous settlement between JLO and Noa, because he never benefitted from it, nor did he even know Noa at that time.
What better excuse than to post some pictures of J. Lo in a bikini?

The Incredible Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) makes DHS's terror advisory list


By Sam Foster

In the latest chapter of ensuring that Hollywood and hysterics remain free of sanity, the Incredible Hulk...aka Mark Ruffalo (above) has landed himself on PA's terror advisory list.

Via On The Red Carpet:

The 43-year-old, who also starred in the thriller "Shutter Island" this year, was put on the list by Pennsylvania's Office of Homeland Security after organizing screenings for his new documentary "Gasland", which is about the controversial subject, the San Francisco Chronicle quoted the actor as telling the print edition of GQ magazine, calling the move "funny".

U.S. officials have not commented. Ruffalo supports the group Frack Action, which opposes gas drilling near water supplies, and last week penned an op-ed in the Huffington Post that criticized the practice.

It's like when they're not on set making films, they are in jail. And if they aren't in jail, they're working on getting to jail.

White House: Cutting government saves a lot of money

By Sam Foster

I’m surprised no one noticed it in the hubbub today regarding Obama’s scheduled government pay freeze. Although RSM’s translation from Obama bloviating into real-speak is undoubtedly worth the effort.

Click the link, go to the White House’s website and read the statement.

That is why the President has decided to propose a freeze in civilian pay for federal employees for two years, 2011 and 2012.
• This two-year pay freeze will save $2 billion for the remainder of FY 2011, $28 billion over the next five years, and more than $60 billion over the next 10 years.

• It will apply to all civilian federal employees, including those in various alternative pay plans and those working at the Department of Defense – but not military personnel.

Translation: GOVERNMENT costs a ton of money. It’s like Bill Gates’ entire fortune just to freeze wages for two years.

I don’t know how many times I’ve heard the progressives argue that there isn’t anywhere to cut. Yet we get $60 billion just from freezing wages a mere two years. I thought all this government cutting was supposed to be difficult, require lots of legislation, would put poor people into crates located under city bridges, and make grandma have to go greet at Walmart.

Yet, here we are, trimming the deficit by pronouncement and all we had to do was cut government.

That’s crazy GOP speak!

KOGO's Chris Reed on Reason.tv: Have California Democrats Turned Their Backs On Social Justice?

by the Left Coast Rebel

Chris Reed is a great a.m. talk show host here in San Diego with a clear libertarian-centered take on local and national politics. I try to check in as often as I can during commutes as he comes from a great knowledge base concerning the perpetual cluster-fark that is the Golden State's body politic.

He sat down with Reason.tv to talk about the Democratic party's stranglehold on the state:

Check out Chris Reed's show on a.m. 600 KOGO on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays and listen live here.

Iranian Nuclear Scientist Majid Shahriari Killed in Bombing

by the Left Coast Rebel

This story sounds like something pulled straight from the pages of a Tom Clancy novel or from the script of the Bourne series:

TEHRAN—Assailants on motorcycles attached bombs to the cars of two nuclear scientists as they were driving to work in Tehran Monday, killing one and seriously wounding the other in separate attacks, state television reported.

The report didn't say whether the two university teachers were directly involved in the country's highly controversial nuclear program.

State TV swiftly blamed Israel for the attacks. At least two other Iranian nuclear scientists have been killed in recent years in what Iran has alleged is part of a covert attempt by the West to damage its nuclear program. One of those two was killed in an attack similar to those on Monday.

The nuclear program is at the center of a bitter row between Iran on one side and the U.S. and its allies on the other. A number of world powers suspect Iran is trying to make nuclear weapons, an allegation the government denies.

Tehran's refusal to limit some of its nuclear activities has brought on multiple rounds of United Nations sanctions against the country.

The assailants, who escaped, drove by their targets on motorcycles and attached the bombs as the cars were moving. They exploded shortly thereafter, the state TV report said.

The man killed Monday was identified as Majid Shahriari, a member of the nuclear-engineering faculty at Shahid Beheshti University in Tehran. His wife, who was in the car with him, was wounded.

A second, separate attack in the capital Tehran seriously wounded nuclear physicist Fereidoun Abbasi. His wife was also in the car with him, and she was also wounded.

A progovernment website, mashreghnews.ir, said Mr. Abbasi held a Ph.D. in nuclear physics and was a laser expert at Iran's Defense Ministry and one of few top Iranian specialists in nuclear-isotope separation. The site said Mr. Abbasi has long been a member of the Revolutionary Guard, the country's most powerful military force. It said he was also a lecturer at Imam Hossein University, affiliated to the Guard.

Some Iranian media reported that Mr. Abbasi died after he was transferred to hospital. But Iran's official IRNA news agency said he was in a stable condition in the hospital.

The attacks bore close similarities to another in January that killed Tehran University professor Masoud Ali Mohammadi, a senior physics professor. He was killed when a bomb-rigged motorcycle exploded near his car as he was about to leave for work.

In 2007, state TV reported that nuclear scientist Ardeshir Hosseinpour died from gas poisoning. A one-week delay in the reporting of his death prompted speculation about the cause, including that Israel's Mossad spy agency was to blame.

I hate to make jest of this story but I just had to post this photo of a "motorcycle bomb":

Obama's Federal Pay Freeze Freezes Federal Pay at All-Time High, Karl Marx Would be Proud

by the Left Coast Rebel

I saw the headline, I heard the news. Obama is going to, or is at least considering, "freezing" pay for Federal workers across the board and is planning on teleprompting it to the nation this morning.

The useful idiot-tools in the press where I caught this were parroting to each other how groundbreaking and incredible this is. Our Dear Leader is listening, they say to each other, we don't like it, but he is listening to the election results.

They don't like it - which means I just might - but the Obamanation is pushing it; which means that there is a 99.9% chance that it pushes the socialist agenda.

Therefore --- what's the layman's-catch with this "pay freeze" from Obama?

Well, for starters and most importantly, the move potentially freezes the pay of Federal workers at an all-time, budget-smashing, record high.

Here's a chart from Zero Hedge showing the growth-in-pay in the Federal job space, just since 2005:

Federal Workers_1_1

Five minutes of research thus shows that Obama's "pay freeze" is actually the best thing to happen to the overpaid, six-figure-plus Federal worker. The "freeze" doesn't address Federal hiring and instead of cutting Federal pay at say 25% across the board then scaling back and cutting the pay of those left, the Obamanation gets to hold the teleprompter-banner of "I'm doing something and listening to the American people."

All the while in fact he is just continuing the spread-the-wealth agenda of government theft or the "art of giving with one hand, and taking with 10."

The fact that will be missed by this move as well is that a Federal pay "freeze" also disallows We the People to cut Federal pay and move it back to sane levles, at the same time.

Should we be surprised? No. Remember that Obama referred to his entire three month experience in the private sector as "working behind enemy lines."

--- Dreams From My Father
Ch.7 p. 55-56

Discussion at Memeorandum

Updated: The inimitable Robert Stacy McCain:

Shorter Obama: ‘In This False Dilemma, America Must Make a Manichean Choice Between My Indisputably Wise Policies and My Tendentious Straw-Man Caricature of Republican Policies’

Rest in Peace, Leslie Nielsen

by the Left Coast Rebel

Best known for his slap stick portrayals in the classic Airplane! and later Naked Gun series, actor Leslie Nielsen passed away Sunday night from complications due to pneumonia. He was 84.

Nielsen's career spans back 60 years, beginning as an actor in live TV dramas in New York. He came to Hollywood in the mid-1950s, his first film was a flop - MGM's Vagabond King.

Here's a video montage of some Leslie Nielsen Naked Gun classic scenes:


And a classic scene from 1980's Airplane:

Rest in peace, Leslie Nielsen and don't call me Surely.

Via Google Trends and Memeorandum.

Swiss Voters Approve "Far-Right" Deportation Plan

by the Left Coast Rebel

It always puzzles me when I read a story from overseas where voters in a particular nation go against the perceived politically correct will of the powers that be.

This story involves that and the people of Switzerland making a statement against foreign born criminals living in their nation:

(DW-World) Swiss voters have approved a far-right initiative to automatically expel foreign residents convicted of serious crimes, according to poll results.

Swiss national broadcaster SF1 said 52.9 percent of voters backed the initiative in Sunday's referendum....

The initiative, which would apply to foreigners convicted of crimes like murder, rape or trafficking in drugs or people, has been criticized by human rights groups and legal experts, who said it could disregard international anti-discrimination treaties and the free movement of peoples under European Union law.

Are not a people free to expel foreign people in their own land convicted of crimes. I mean, come on. Am I to gather that these people are actually illegal aliens, too, ie. "foreigners"?

I imagine that the leftist groups protesting this also think that Arizona's common sense immigration law, SB 1070, was the height of inhumanity too.

Via Memeorandum

(VIDEO) Car Crashes into Troy's Restaurant in Highland Park, California Killing Martha Pena, Injuring Three Others

by the Left Coast Rebel

I saw this video earlier today on the local news. One Martha Pena died as a result of this car crash. I can only imagine sitting in this (Troy's) restaurant as this happened:

ABC 7 Los Angeles:

Officials have released surveillance video and the name of the woman killed Saturday when a car crashed into a Highland Park burger restaurant.

Martha Pena, 52, was sitting at a table with two people believed to be her husband and son.

Disturbing surveillance video shows the car crashing into Troy's Restaurant, killing Pena and injuring three others.

Police said the driver lost control of his car and plowed through the wall of the business.

He was questioned and released.

The Morning Beat at the Left Coast Rebel: Post Thanksgiving, Catching up with teh Blogs Edition


by the Left Coast Rebel

The LCR homestead both online and physically here in San Diego has been free of my presence now for exactly one week. My flight pulled in late last night from Philadelphia and I'm glad to be back home. Perhaps this may be the longest time that I have gone without blogging, I enjoyed the related benefit of relaxation. Being far and away from the news cycle was rejuvenating.

Thank you all for sticking around and thanks to Proof Positive, Right Klik, Sam Foster and RN's Les for holding down the fort over the last week.

Epic Playing Catchup with teh Blogs:

The inimitable, Robert Stacy McCain: Stacy lifts a glass to Holiday Traffic Suckage Season by getting his grubby meat claws on an upskirt picture of Kate Middleton. No, really (it's barely NSFW). Related - Jennifer Aniston in a purple bikini! Also, at American Power.

Must I be a citizen to vote? Howard Towt offers up Part Deux.

Who can we thank? Someone at Hot Air reads LCR and linked to Sam Foster's Canadian socialized medicine/cookie story, resulting in a Thanksgiving Hotair-lanche.

We are all lab rat-victims in the same toxic-Keynes stew: Doug Ross and Krugman's chickens coming home to roost. Also, Willie Nelson busted in Texas for marijuana possession.

Child Emperors, basketball as the world turns burns: No Sheeples couldn't be any more correct on this one. Related - Moonbats of NPR variety think fat lips lend street cred.

Roger Ebert, stuck on stupid statism: They are TSA rules, what's the big deal! Related at Lilac Sunday - Is that a tampon string or a Moooslim fuse????

Commies, 9th Circuit: If this at Maggie's Notebook doesn't make your blood boil, well, then....

Palin, feminist?: Great essay from T. Christopher at Republican Redefined (could you please write more at LCR, T.)? Related at Pundit & Pundette - Palin Overexposure?

This economy still stinks on ice: Lonely Conservative. Also, Obama seizes sites? How Orwellian is that?

All Together now...I'm Ronery, So Ronery:

Maggie's Notebook
illuminates more info on the dangerous situation in the Koreans.

Carol provides a stunning picture
regarding North Korea as well.


Of course - Enviro-fascism falls under it's own weight.

Faster the better - Puritanical progressivism does the same.

Gassy - Oxygen on Saturn moon?

Ruling Class - Reporting for duty to celebrate myself!

San Diego Local Order of teh Bloggers (SLOBs):

Mut rationally asseses risk and puts the 's' back in 't' and 'a'.

Demo has a beer to take the edge off the bailout nation example 4,213.

Liberator sheds light on the tunnel at the border.

WC Varones
offers up depressing econo-news.

Unlikely Hero Story of the Day: Carlos Flores of East Harlem

Image: Carlos Flores saved a man sprawled on the tracks of
the No. 6 train, pulling him to safety. Flores wanted to make
sure he got to work on time.

by the Left Coast Rebel

Via NY Post:

An East Harlem man was being hailed as a subway hero for pulling a straphanger off the tracks Sunday, saving him from being crushed by a train.

Lifesaver Carlos Flores, 36, said a combination of benevolence and not wanting to miss an overtime shift at his grocery store job prompted his derring-do.

"I was thinking, if he gets hit I can't go to work. It's Sunday. I can't miss out. It's a time-and-a-half day," Flores told the Daily News.

The heroic feat unfolded about 8 a.m. as Flores was waiting for a downtown No. 6 train at a crowded E. 103rd St. station.

Flores, a produce clerk at a NoHo grocery store, was thinking about the $19-an-hour shift ahead of him when an elderly man yelled for help, pointing to a man dazed and sprawled on the tracks.

Bystanders were yelling at the man to "Get up!" warning, "The train is coming" and "You're going to get hit."

When the man in peril failed to stir, Flores noticed the digital sign on the platform showing the next downtown train arriving in three minutes.

"That's a good thing," said Flores, figuring he had just enough time to jump down on the tracks, make the rescue and still get to work on time.

Once he reached the 6-foot-tall, 220-pound man, the 5-foot-7, 180-pound Flores realized his plan wasn't going to be as easy as he thought.

"I jumped on the tracks. I grabbed him. I stood him up," Flores said. "I'm walking him toward the platform. A guy on the platform grabs his hands. Now I'm down there. The train is coming."

Flores said he could see the lights of the train and hear its brakes squealing as it rumbled into the station.

"I'm like, 'Oh my god!' " said Flores, the father of a 10-year-old son.

NYC Transit spokeswoman Deirdre Parker said unbeknown to Flores, a customer had notified the station agent of the emergency. The station agent radioed the Rail Control Center in the nick of time to get the conductor to halt the train just as it nosed into the station.

"[The] train operator did see someone on the tracks," Parker said. "The customer [Flores] did help bring that person to the platform."

Parker said the rescued man, whose name was not immediately released, had apparently fainted. He was taken to Harlem Hospital.

"We are glad that everything worked out well this time," said Carmen Bianco, NYC Transit senior vice president for subways, cautioning that "we discourage anyone from jumping to the roadbed."

A Fire Department source said the man tumbled onto the tracks after apparently suffering a seizure.

Flores said he didn't wait around to get the full story, jumping on the same No. 6 train that had briefly stopped for the rescue.

(PICTURES) Kim Kardashian Goes Twitter-Free, Creating the Perfect Storm for Kim Kardashian Bikin Pictures

by the Left Coast Rebel

Are we supposed to care a whit that the holier-than-thou, pampered bourgeoisie in Hollywood are signing off of Twitter (for what, a day?) to make a statement for World AIDS day on November 30 and raise $1 million for the Keep a Child Alive charity? They make it sound like it's a big deal that they will have to survive without Twitter for a day.

Oh, the humanity!

If only our lives were so tough these days.

Here's a picture of an advertisement showing Kim Kardashian dead and in a coffin, for the event:

Lady Gaga, Justin Timberlake and Usher will quit social networking sites, including Twitter to raise money for the charity as well.

Back to Kim Kardashian. At least she's beautiful.

But as they say, beauty is fleeting (and/or curvy):

Post inspiration goes to The Other McCain, a man of clear conscience, unjustifiably suffering from Holiday Traffic Suckage.

"11 Foreign Countries Wage War Against Arizona and American Sovereignty"

By Proof

Maggie's Notebook has this video about the potential interference of adjudicating Arizona's border enforcement law by foreign nations and the seeming complicity of Eric Holder and the oxymoronically named Obama justice department.

Though the video's headline speaks of "impeaching" Obama. I am not ready to go that far. But it does seem as if the only way to rid ourselves of this biased and perhaps incompetent Attorney General Eric Holder is to fire his boss.

Cross posted at Proof Positive

"Giving Money to the Very Rich" - the Liberal Mindset on Display

By Proof

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

On Fox News Sunday this AM, Juan Williams displayed the typical liberal mindset concerning government taxation: It's their money.
If you earn or possess money or other assets in any way, it's because the government, in their beneficent mercy, allowed you to keep it. Senator Claire McCaskill was on FNS as well, touting the same line, just not in such short compass as Mr. Williams.

How, the convoluted lexicon of liberalspeak, did "not taking from" ever equal a "gift"? If the Bush tax cuts are extended, the government is not "giving" anything to anyone. They are just taking at the same rate they did before. For the sake of accuracy, it was the Democrats who forced the sunset provision in the Bush Tax Cuts in the first place, and this administration, who are cheerleaders for letting the tax cuts expire, will be responsible for what should properly be characterized as the "Obama Tax Increases".

Since a tax increase "on the rich" will play well to Obama's base, Democrats think this bit of class envy will give them a populist cachet. But, let's change the currency for a moment, shall we? Many parents speak of their children as a "treasure". Let's apply liberal taxspeak to child rearing:

First, if you have more than two children, the government will "give" you two of them. It's not "fair" for you to have more than two while some people have none at all. So, two of the children you already have will be "given" to you by the government, and any others, for the sake of fairness, will be redistributed. (It may be that some of those without children wouldn't want to take any, but they have to. It's only "fair"!)

Allowing people to keep more of what they earn is not "giving" them anything at all. All this is aside from the argument about taxing gross income, rather than net income, which the libs like to gloss over. A small business with a gross income of $250,000 will not take home anywhere near that much. If they invest money back into the business or hold back reserves (or at least try to) to meet payroll for their employees when revenues are down, they take home even less.

Ask yourself, who is going to employ more people? A business grossing $250,000 or a business grossing $1,000,000? Why take money out of the hands of the people who create the most jobs? Then ask yourself, is the government better suited to direct wealth to create solid, self sustaining jobs with a minimum of waste, fraud and abuse or the private sector? Rather than address the fact that these taxes (and new regulations) will impact small businesses hard, Democrats are focusing on class envy.

But, for now, I'd settle for getting rid of the Orwellian Newspeak that allowing people to keep more of what they earn is "giving money" to them. It's only fair...

Cross posted at Proof Positive, per LCR shameless blogwhoring, (somewhat related) discussion via a more-than-predictable NYT Frank Rich column at Memeorandum

The Tea Party Movement and Thomas Jefferson

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA

Engaging in the process of reasoning and the often enlightened thought it brings can be a very intimidating and even threatening process. It quite often requires one to analyze not only the views of others, but also to analyze ones own {often long held} beliefs as well. The result can be, and often is, the realization that our most "sacred beliefs" can be legitimately brought into question.

I offer the words of one of America's great early thinkers. A philosopher and the third President of these United States, Thomas Jefferson.
Fix reason firmly in her seat, and call to her tribunal every fact, every opinion. Question with boldness even the existence of a God; because, if there be one, he must more approve of the homage of reason, than that of blindfolded fear.
I hope our wisdom will grow with our power, and teach us, that the less we use our power the greater it will be.
I hope we shall crush in its birth the aristocracy of our monied corporations which dare already to challenge our government to a trial by strength, and bid defiance to the laws of our country.
Jefferson, who ought to be viewed as the forerunner of the modern day Tea Party Movement {and his words of truth above} are, I fear, being misrepresented and manipulated to serve the special moneyed business interests that have long been working at gaining control of the machinations of our government and our lives.

Just the opinion of a 21st century independent conservative.

Rational Nation USA welcomes yours!

Cross posted to Rational Nation USA

19 Yr. Old Somali Born Man Apprehended in Portland Bomb Plot

By Proof

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But don't even think about ever profiling guys like this!
BTW, That's not a Star of David, that's the Multnomah Co. Sheriff's star!

The FBI thwarted an attempted terrorist bombing in Portland's Pioneer Courthouse Square before the city's annual tree-lighting Friday night, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office in Oregon.

A Corvallis man, thinking he was going to ignite a bomb, drove a van to the corner of the square at Southwest Yamhill Street and Sixth Avenue and attempted to detonate it.

However, the supposed explosive was a dummy that FBI operatives supplied to him, according to an affidavit in support of a criminal complaint signed Friday night by U.S. Magistrate Judge John V. Acosta.

Mohamed Osman Mohamud, 19, a Somali-born U.S. citizen, was arrested at 5:42 p.m., 18 minutes before the tree lighting was to occur, on an accusation of attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction. The felony charge carries a maximum sentence of life in prison and a $250,000 fine.

My first thought, when I heard about a plot to blow up a tree lighting ceremony in Portland was "a disgruntled Lutheran choir boy". Then I considered elderly "Nuns with Guns". Imagine my surprise when I discovered it was a 19 yr. old, Somali born man with two forms of the name "Muhammad" in his name!

And to top it off, he is apparently one of the Osmond brothers! FBI agents are descending on Salt Lake City even as we speak!

H/T memeorandum

Cross posted at Proof Positive

Targeting the Real Problem at its Core.. Corporatism

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA

While perusing the internet late night on what was a relatively slow day for substantial news I happened upon the following article in The Daily Caller. The well written article was all about how the Tea Party and Freedomworks President Matt Kibbe are teaming up "to promote responsible, sound business practices, and beginning next year, the two will begin encouraging supporters to boycott big business that lobbies for a “progressive” agenda."

As a strong advocate of free market laissez faire capitalism this sounds all good and well. After all what is more American than a market unfettered by unnecessary and restrictive regulation, government subsidies, and crony capitalism. A market that would determine the winners and losers based solely on consumer demand for a companies product and the competitiveness of each company in a given market. It works for me, and I would fathom to guess it works for most Americans that believe in a true market based economy.

As I  read further I became increasingly aware the efforts of  The Tea Party and Freedomworks are really  focused on boycotting businesses that support Obama's progressive agenda. In other words...
"Their primary focus will be on companies that lobbied for legislation like cap and trade and healthcare reform – two cornerstones of the Obama agenda.
“Big business has had huge impact on public policy,” Borelli told the Daily Caller. “It’s time to make business pay the price for lobbying for big -business politics..."
See more of this article here.

Okay, I buy the Obama administration's policies are not conducive to a truly free market based economy. And I am most definitely opposed to cap and trade as it will directly benefit our global competitors. As to ObamaCare double that. However, it seems to me the article is more about bashing the Obama administration than addressing the larger problems.

What I am struggling with, and I recognize it may just be me, is how in the hell did the Bush administration  and the RINO's escape criticism for their failed brand of free market capitalism? Is anyone in the conservative movement actually analyzing our economic realities? Perhaps they are more interested in tying all of our problems to the progressives without even looking at or recognizing the problem is not limited to just the progressives. What's the explanation for the 2001 -2009 years that helped set the stage for today's realities?

The more I thought about the article in The Daily Caller the more intrigued {and distressed} I became. So I spent some time researching information on the internet that made some sense and did justice to the concept of a capitalist based free market system. At lest as I've always envisioned and understood it should be.

The result of my late night search turned up a November 2008 article published in The Thinker entitled "On Corporatism and Capitalism." This article more clearly defines the problems with our current mixed economy and how a true free market competitive capitalistic system is in direct conflict with our current Corporatism.

As the article is well written, concise, and with pertinent links I an reproducing it at Rational Nation with full credit and acknowledgement to Jeffry Ellis at The Thinker.

Regular readers of The Thinker will note that I’ve spent a bit of time lately defending free-market capitalism, in light of the recent financial crisis and $700B bailout. In this post in particular, I asserted that the most vocal opponents of capitalism — especially those who are blaming the current financial mess on “unbridled capitalism” — have refused to acknowledge and address capitalism’s underlying values. They have failed to practice intellectual empathy in this debate; they have made no effort to understand capitalism from the viewpoint of its proponents. Consequently they are opposing not true capitalism, but their own unfair caricature of capitalism. They have fallen victim to the straw-man fallacy.
This month’s Cato Unbound topic touches on what I’ve been saying. The lead essay is now up, wherein Roderick Long (bio here) takes on the question of whether it is fair for libertarians to be characterized as corporate shills and big-business apologists:
No and yes. Emphatically no—because corporate power and the free market are actually antithetical; genuine competition is big business’s worst nightmare. But also, in all too many cases, yes —because although liberty and plutocracy cannot coexist, simultaneous advocacy of both is all too possible.
Long blames three factors for the ongoing confusion between corporatist plutocracy (i.e., undue corporate influence over the political process) and a libertarian laissez-faire brand of capitalism:
  1. Widespread agreement among liberals that laissez-faire capitalism and corporate plutocracy are the same thing. [They are NOT.]
  2. A widespread tendency among conservatives to cloak corporatist policies in free-market speech, further confounding the two.
  3. A tendency among many libertarians to reflexively dismiss many criticisms of corporate power as anti-market speech, when some of the criticism may indeed be well founded. This leads many libertarians to inadvertently defend features of corporatism.
The net result of these three factors, says Long, is that:
Those who are attracted to free markets are lured into supporting plutocracy, thus helping to prop up statism’s right or corporatist wing; those who are repelled by plutocracy are lured into opposing free markets, thus helping to prop up statism’s left or social-democratic wing.
Those who advocate free-market capitalism should be more diligent and explicit — both in their own thinking, and in educating others — in making the case that free market capitalism and corporatism are INCOMPATIBLE WITH EACH OTHER. You cannot have true free market capitalism when corporations can lobby and make deals for protection, and subsidies, and bailouts, and favorable tax codes, and for any other mechanisms that tend to defeat or interfere with competition. Anyone who says otherwise is either misunderstanding free market capitalism (whether willfully or out of ignorance) or is cloaking their own corporatist agenda in free market rhetoric.
Isn't time this nation confronted the real problems of our economic system and stopped cloaking them in the rhetoric of the free market pretenders? Just askin.

Cross posted to Rational Nation USA.
Via: Memeorandum 

Smash Mouth Politics? Obama Gets 12 Stitches!

By Proof

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No, it wasn't smash mouth politics? It was a pickup basketball game that earned Obama 12 Stitches.

President Barack Obama received 12 stitches Friday after being inadvertently hit with an opposing player's elbow in the lip while playing basketball with friends and family

The culprit (or hero to half America) is Rey Decerega, director of programs for the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute.

We say this just in case Ray is somehow never seen or heard from again*!

*Closed Captioning for the Humor Impaired: It's a joke!

Cross posted at Proof Positive, via Memeorandum.

Congressman Ron Paul Introduces HR 6414

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA

Congressman Ron Paul once again standing up {and doing something} on behalf of the beleaguered American  citizen. Supporting them and addressing the ridiculous statism that threatens our very liberties.

Congressmen Paul introduced HR 6414 on November 17th following the TSA's use of  intrusive full body scans and pat downs. The belief these measures will prevent  terrorism or insure a safer more secure nation is at best just wishful thinking.

HR 6414:

A BILL – HR 6416

To ensure that certain Federal employees cannot hide behind immunity.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,
No law of the United States shall be construed to confer any immunity for a Federal employee or agency or any individual or entity that receives Federal funds, who subjects an individual to any physical contact (including contact with any clothing the individual is wearing), x-rays, or millimeter waves, or aids in the creation of or views a representation of any part of a individual’s body covered by clothing as a condition for such individual to be in an airport or to fly in an aircraft. The preceding sentence shall apply even if the individual or the individual’s parent, guardian, or any other individual gives consent.
Notice the concise simplicity of this resolution. Note also that Congressman Paul has been a consistent advocate for limited constitutional government, non interventionist foreign policy, sound economic policy, and balanced federal budgets.

Cross posted to Rational Nation USA.

Via: RonPaul.com