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Shroud of Turin Goes on Display Tomorrow

The most baffling religious relic of the Catholic Church goes on display tomorrow for the first time since 2010.

The Shroud of Turin is rarely displayed these days because of its deteriorating condition. But starting tomorrow through June 24th, the relic will will be available for public veneration in the Turin Cathedral.

Numerous scientific tests conducted on the shroud have been inconclusive in determining how old it is and how the image of an apparently crucified man was imprinted on the 14-foot-long cloth — except one. A radiocarbon dating test conducted in 1988 proved the cloth to be a medieval forgery — probably. Or maybe. Two separate labs working with small pieces of the shroud snipped off by scientists determined that the linen was manufactured in a 130-year period between 1260 and 1390.

Try as they might, those who believe the shroud to be the burial cloth of Christ have offered no convincing proof that the radiocarbon test was flawed. The latest efforts center on trying to prove that the cloth is actually 2000 years old and that it had been cross contaminated with more modern pollens or bacteria. Another explanation for the later date has to do with the sample taken by scientists coming for a patch used to repair the shroud following a fire that damaged it in the 16th century.

For those who believe, no proof is necessary. For those who don’t believe, no proof is possible.

What makes the shroud such a compelling and mysterious object is the way it appears in photographic negatives. Until 1898, all that was visible was the faint outline, presumably in blood, of a human form. But an amateur photographer, Secondo Pia, was astonished after being allowed to take a photo of the shroud, to see the clear image of a human male that showed up on the negative.

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But no one has an answer to the question of how the image got on the shroud. It’s not paint. It’s not a pigment of any kind. And there is no evidence that the various techniques to produce an image known by medieval artists were used.

But few of the nearly 1 million people who will view the shroud in the next two months care much about the scientific arguments.

Associated Press:

The 4.3-meter-long (14-foot) cloth will be displayed April 19-June 24. Pope Francis will view it on June 21 on an overnight trip to the Turin area, which will include private time with relatives.

Public viewings of the cloth were last held in 2010.

“Many pilgrims who had already seen the shroud in past showings come back, even though some saw it just five years ago,” Archbishop Cesare Nosiglia said on Saturday.

“That’s not a long time. And yet many of the bookings we have are people who have already seen the shroud. That means there is a fundamental need in people’s hearts to renew this incredible experience that they had the first time they saw it,” the prelate told reporters.

Reservations are mandatory but free of charge to see the shroud, displayed in a climate-controlled case, in Turin’s cathedral. Turin’s mayor said recently that more that 1 million people had made reservations. In 2010, some 2.5 million people came, according to organizers of the display.

The pope’s predecessor, Benedict XVI, has described the cloth as an icon “written with the blood” of a crucified man. Benedict said there was “full correspondence with what the Gospels tell us of Jesus.”

When Pope John Paul II saw the shroud in 1998, he said the mystery forces questions about faith and sciences and whether it really was Jesus’ burial linen. He urged continuous study.

Skeptics say the linen bearing the figure of a crucified man is a medieval forgery.

Nosiglia said people of all faiths will come to see the shroud, not just Christians. “Even non-believers will come. It’s an occasion that brings everybody together and aims to give a precise response to the violence in this world. It tells us that the way to build a fairer world is not violence, but love,” he said.

I am not a believer but I find the shroud the most fascinating religious artifact in the world. There is nothing comparable in any other religion of which I am aware. It is certainly the most debated, the most studied religious artifact  – and for that, a trip to Turin to view it is most definitely worth it.

More at PJ Lifestyle: 

Does New Study of Burial Cloth Add to Existing Proof that Jesus Was Resurrected Around 33 AD?

 

Posted at 4:04 pm on April 18th, 2015 by

Celebrate ‘Diversity’ by Having Girls Wear Muslim Head Scarf?

This is one of the most bizarre efforts by diversity freaks to advance their cause.

A high school principal has canceled an exercise dubbed “The Covered Girl Challenge,” where girls would cover their heads with a Muslim head scarf. The event was nixed after intense criticism from people not besotted with idiotic notions of cultural relativism.

But, hey! Her heart was in the right place:

Intense criticism has prompted an Ohio high school’s principal to cancel a student event in which girls would celebrate diversity by spending a day wearing a Muslim headscarf.

Mason High School Mindy McCarty-Stewart also issued an apology in an email Thursday to district families, saying the intent of the April 23 student-led event was meant to be positive, the Cincinnati Enquirer reported.

“I now realize that as adults we should have given our students better guidance. After much consideration and after talking with the student event organizers, we have canceled the event,” she said.

Well, if the point of the event was supposed to be positive, obviously everything is OK. The fact that it was a display of profound ignorance about Islam and the brutal way it treats women — covered or not — should have had no bearing on the happy happy path to diversity and understanding the event would have promoted.

Sharon Poe, a former school board candidate in the district, told the Enquirer she opposed the “Covered Girl” event.

“My belief is wearing these hijabs represents the oppression of women and Sharia law,” she said, adding that public schools should not be promoting one religious tradition over another.

However, Yasmeen Allen, an Iraqi native with two teenagers at Mason High, told the newspaper that Muslim students at the school “were robbed of an opportunity” to counter negativity their religion faces around the world.

McCarty-Stewart said she decided to cancel the event because it was clear it was not reaching its goal of teaching tolerance, the Dayton Daily News reported.

She also said it was a mistake for the event, which was sponsored by a Muslim student group, to be promoted by the school’s student activities department.

The decision to cancel the event has since prompted its own backlash, with some complaining that the school caved in to anti-Muslim bigotry, The Associated Press reported.

To be intolerant of intolerance is the best lesson those kids can learn out of this. Since when is it “anti-Muslim bigotry” to protest against the reality of Muslim treatment of women? Sheesh.

Only radical multiculturalists promote diversity in a vacuum. When you ignore the reality of Islam’s oppressive 8th century ideas about women and celebrate one of the major symbols of that oppression — the hijab — you give aid and comfort to the very people and ideas you are supposed to be fighting.

Muslims do not celebrate “diversity.” They punish it — harshly. The price for non-conformity is sometimes death, always ostracization. And the hell of it is, the principal is clueless about the gaping dichotomy of celebrating diversity by having girls wear an anti-diversity symbol.

Someone that dense should be fired.

Posted at 1:42 pm on April 18th, 2015 by

Last Two Doolittle Raiders Honored on Anniversary

Only two men are left alive from the 80 airmen and pilots who took off from the deck of the USS Hornet on April 18, 1942, and set out to send Japan a message that the U.S. would stop at nothing to win the war begun by Japan a few months earlier.

Retired Lt. Col. Richard “Dick” Cole, 99, and Staff Sgt. David Thatcher, 93, are the last of the Doolittle Raiders — the men who struck the first blow against the Japanese empire by bombing Tokyo. They are in Dayton, Ohio, today to present the Raiders Congressional Gold Medal to the National Museum of the US Air Force.

Associated Press:

“It just happens that way, I guess,” Thatcher, of Missoula, Montana, said of being one of the last survivors.

“Something’s just got to give,” said Cole, a Dayton native who lives in Comfort, Texas.

The museum’s director, retired Lt. Gen. Jack Hudson, accepted the medal, the highest honor Congress can give a civilian, for them in Washington on Wednesday. In a video message, Cole said it was an honor to receive the medal “on behalf of 78 fallen Raiders who we proudly served with on that famous raid.”

The latest Raider to fall was Lt. Col. Robert Hite, who died March 29 at age 95 at a Nashville, Tennessee, nursing facility. Hite was also the last of the eight Raiders who were captured by Japanese soldiers. Three were executed and a fourth died in captivity. Three other Raiders were killed soon after the bombing run, as most crash-landed or had to ditch.

Cole was the co-pilot for their mission’s leader, James “Jimmy” Doolittle, in plane No. 1 of the 16. Thatcher was engineer-gunner aboard the 7th plane, nicknamed “The Ruptured Duck,” whose crew’s crash-landing and evasion of Japanese troops in China was depicted in the movie “Thirty Seconds Over Tokyo.”

Thatcher, who was played by Robert Walker in the movie while Spencer Tracy portrayed Doolittle, chuckled as he recounted how the Raiders had given little thought at the time of the raid about earning a place in history.

“We figured it was just another bombing mission,” he said in a phone interview from his home this week.

In the years afterward, though, he said, they realized: “It was an important event in World War II.”

Thatcher, who said he uses a cane and walker but otherwise is “getting around OK,” was looking forward to weekend events including reunions with family members of the other Raiders to share stories and remembrances.

“You learn something new every time,” Thatcher said.

Sixteen specially outfitted B-25s — a land-based bomber not designed for carrier take-offs — flew the long, perilous mission to drop a few bombs on the Japanese capital, also hitting targets in Yokohama and one each in Yokosuka, Nagoya, Kobe and Osaka. They took off 10 hours early after the task force was sighted by a Japanese picket boat, but all 16 crews managed to make it to the coast of China where most of the crews bailed out after running out of fuel.

Friendly villagers rescued all but 10 of the Raiders, which resulted in massive, brutal retaliation by the Japanese.

Smithsonian:

That generosity shown by the Chinese would trigger a horrific retaliation by the Japanese that claimed an estimated quarter-million lives and would prompt comparisons to the 1937-38 Rape of Nanking. American military authorities, cognizant that a raid on Tokyo would result in a vicious counterattack upon free China, saw the mission through regardless, even keeping the operation a secret from their Pacific theater allies. This chapter of the Doolittle Raid has largely gone unreported—until now.

Long-forgotten missionary records discovered in the archives of DePaul University for the first time shed important new light on the extent to which the Chinese suffered in the aftermath of the Doolittle raid.

n the moments after the attack on Tokyo, Japanese leaders fumed over the raid, which had revealed China’s coastal provinces as a dangerous blind spot in the defense of the homeland. American aircraft carriers not only could launch surprise attacks from the seas and land safely in China but could possibly even fly bombers directly from Chinese airfields to attack Japan. The Japanese military ordered an immediate campaign against strategically important airfields, issuing an operational plan in late April, just days after the Doolittle raid.

Survivor accounts point to an ulterior objective: to punish the Chinese allies of the United States forces, especially those towns where the American aviators had bailed out after the raid. At the time, Japanese forces occupied Manchuria as well as key coastal ports, railways and industrial and commercial centers in China.

[...]

By early June, the devastation had begun. Father Wendelin Dunker observed the result of a Japanese attack on the town of Ihwang:

“They shot any man, woman, child, cow, hog, or just about anything that moved, They raped any woman from the ages of 10 – 65, and before burning the town they thoroughly looted it.”

He continued, writing in his unpublished memoir, “None of the humans shot were buried either, but were left to lay on the ground to rot, along with the hogs and cows.”

The Japanese eventually captured eight of the Americans, executing three for “war crimes.” One American died in captivity and the remaining four were eventually rescued by soldiers when Nanking, where the prisoners were being held, was liberated.

The audaciousness of the raid had a big effect on American morale, but it was the Japanese, shaken by the notion that their cities were not invulnerable, who were affected even more. The military actually moved up plans to attack Port Morseby, New Guinea and Midway Island. When our codebreakers, who had cracked one of the Japanese navy cyphers, intercepted the information, the resulting naval engagements in Coral Sea and especially the decisive battle off of Midway Island sealed the fate of Japan and sent us on the road to victory.

The World War II generation is rapidly receding into history, but exploits like the Doolittle Raid will never be forgotten as long as courage and fortitude are celebrated in America.

Posted at 11:10 am on April 18th, 2015 by

Yee-Hah: Open Carry Coming to Texas

About time:

Texas is poised to become the largest state in the U.S. to allow citizens to openly carry handguns, a change long sought by gun-rights activists. The Texas House of Representatives on Friday voted 96-35 to allow residents with concealed-handgun licenses to openly carry their guns in public in holsters. A similar open-carry measure passed the Texas Senate last month; the two open-carry bills must be squared before being sent to Republican Gov. Greg Abbott, who has indicated support for the idea.

In contrast to its reputation for being permissive on firearms, Texas is one of six states, including California, New York and Florida, that currently bars citizens from openly carrying handguns. People who want to carry handguns in public on their person must obtain concealed-weapons permits and keep the weapons hidden.

“We are seeing historic progress in Texas,” said Terry Holcomb Sr., executive director of Texas Carry, a gun-rights group. He noted that open-carry legislation had never even made it out of a Texas legislative committee before this year.

No doubt the Left will flip out. But if Democrats can find a right to baby murder in the Constitution, surely conservatives can point to an actual constitutional amendment to support their position. Hey — it’s even happening in California.

Posted at 10:29 am on April 18th, 2015 by

The Fall of Ramadi Would Upend US Iraq Policy

It’s the same old story we’ve heard a dozen times. Islamic State targets a key city or region. They attack relentlessly. Iraqi troops flee in terror. And the government tries to cover up the fact that their soldiers are unable to stem the Islamic State tide.

What’s happening in Ramadi is a familiar story, one that has played out across western Iraq since early last year. But the administration had just made the claim this week that Islamic State had lost 30% of the territory it conquered last year, suggesting the war were going better.

The lightning assault on Ramadi would suggest otherwise.

Washington Post:

Rawi said that there had been “realignments” of forces but not retreats and that there were assurances from the U.S.-led ­coalition that airstrikes would increase. Still, he said, support has been sorely lacking.

“We don’t know if it’s neglect or just a lack of capacity,” he said.

Brig. Gen. Tahseen Ibrahim, a spokesman for Iraq’s Ministry of Defense, said reinforcements from counterterrorism units had been deployed.

“Our troops are preparing themselves to attack,” he said. Discussions were underway as to whether to also send what are known as popular mobilization forces, which include Shiite militias, but there was not yet an agreement, he said.

The question of sending the largely Shiite paramilitary forces has been contentious in Anbar, a predominantly Sunni province. But as the security situation has deteriorated, a growing number of local tribal leaders and officials have said they need all the help they can get. In his sermon Friday, Iraq’s top Shiite cleric, Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani, said “all sons of Iraq” should help the fight, a comment viewed as an endorsement of the militias playing a role.

At a Pentagon briefing Thursday, Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, played down the importance of Ramadi, saying that it is “not symbolic in any way” and that Baiji, a key location for Iraq’s oil infrastructure, is “a more strategic target.”

But Iraqi military officials have said that securing Anbar province, much of which is controlled by the ­Islamic State, is an essential step before any advance on Mosul, the group’s base of power in Iraq.

That view was echoed Friday by Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, who called Dempsey’s remarks a “gross mischaracterization.”

“The fall of Ramadi would be seen by Iraqi Sunnis as a failure of the Baghdad government to protect them, and could deal a major blow to political reconciliation efforts that are essential to defeating ISIL,” McCain, using another acronym for the Islamic State, said in a statement Friday that was released jointly by Sen. Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.). “Yet apparently, the current U.S. strategy is to defend an oil refinery in Beiji, but abandon the capital of pivotal Anbar province to ISIL.”

With Shia militias rampaging through Sunni towns and villages, residents of Anbar don’t trust the government, and military forces fleeing the region and not much being sent from Baghdad to help with the fight confirms their suspicions that the government just doesn’t care very much about them.

The fall of Ramadi would only add to their well-founded skepticism:

Should Iraqi forces appear to only be able to win with the help of militiamen that reportedly looted their communities, it could exacerbate the very same sectarian tensions that led to the rise of ISIS.

“It can increase Sunni resentment and can set the stage of future Sunni resistance against Shiite advancement,” Gartenstein-Ross said. Given that the groups were also backed in some way by Iran “creates risks of perception of regional Shite war.”

And with less territory to control, there could be more ISIS fighters available to move to other areas to “surge them somewhere else or try to capture new territory.”

That’s because the terror group doesn’t appear to have lost many of its forces, even as it lost Tikrit.

U.S. defense officials told The Daily Beast that Iraqi forces confronted little resistance and that few fighters left Tikrit. It suggested that remnants of Saddam Husein’s regime—Baathist party members—were as strong a presence in Tikrit as ISIS. (After all, Tikrit is Saddam’s hometown and a Baathist stronghold.) Baathists and ISIS have increasingly worked together in Iraq even as they have varied goals: While Baathists are Iraqi secular nationalists seeking a return to power, ISIS wants a regional, ultra-religious caliphate.

What remains unclear is whether the loss of territory will create a stronger or weaker alliance between the two groups.

If Ramadi falls, it will likely push back Iraqi and US plans to retake Anbar province, including the key city of Mosul, this year. It may also change US calculations on whether we should give the Iraqi army more sophisticated arms.

But the real damage would occur with efforts to unite the country behind the government. Many Sunnis, if not fighting with IS, are not very troubled that the terrorists are giving the government all they can handle. That kind of lukewarm loyalty to Baghdad stands in the way of forging an effective, united front of Shias, Sunnis, and Kurds to throw Islamic State out of the country.

The fall of Ramadi would only exasperate the problem as Sunnis are confirmed in their belief that government forces will only fight and die to protect Shias. Prime Minister al-Abadi would do well to rush a sizable number of troops to the battle in Anbat and make a supreme effort to protect Ramadi from IS.

Otherwise, progress against Islamic State elsewhere won’t mean very much in the end.

Posted at 8:49 am on April 18th, 2015 by

‘Fundamental Transformation’ Taking America Down a Peg Economically

You have to give Obama this: he promised “transformation” and he’s delivering:

As world leaders converge here for their semiannual trek to the capital of what is still the world’s most powerful economy, concern is rising in many quarters that the United States is retreating from global economic leadership just when it is needed most.

The spring meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank have filled Washington with motorcades and traffic jams and loaded the schedules of President Obama and Treasury Secretary Jacob J. Lew. But they have also highlighted what some in Washington and around the world see as a United States government so bitterly divided that it is on the verge of ceding the global economic stage it built at the end of World War II and has largely directed ever since.

“It’s almost handing over legitimacy to the rising powers,” Arvind Subramanian, the chief economic adviser to the government of India, said of the United States in an interview on Friday. “People can’t be too public about these things, but I would argue this is the single most important issue of these spring meetings.”

The evidence is clear: our first Third World, fundamentally anti-American president, sold to the American public as a sunny optimist, is in fact a saturnine, rage-filled chameleon who will only ramp up the destruction in the final two years of his disastrous presidency.

Of course, the New York Times finds a positive spin to explain the decline:

Washington’s retreat is not so much by intent, Mr. Subramanian said, but a result of dysfunction and a lack of resources to project economic power the way it once did. Because of tight budgets and competing financial demands, the United States is less able to maintain its economic power, and because of political infighting, it has been unable to formally share it either.

Experts say that is giving rise to a more chaotic global shift, especially toward China, which even Obama administration officials worry is extending its economic influence in Asia and elsewhere without following the higher standards for environmental protection, worker rights and business transparency that have become the norms among Western institutions.

President Obama, while trying to hold the stage, clearly recognizes the challenge. Pitching his efforts to secure a major trade accord with 11 other Pacific nations, he told reporters on Friday: “The fastest-growing markets, the most populous markets, are going to be in Asia, and if we do not help to shape the rules so that our businesses and our workers can compete in those markets, then China will set up the rules that advantage Chinese workers and Chinese businesses.”

The Times: defending Obama til the last dog dies. Watch whom they endorse in the 2016 election to see what fate they wish for America.

Posted at 4:44 am on April 18th, 2015 by

LAUSD Finds That $1.3 Billion iPad Program Was Largely a Bust

I know my shocked face is around here somewhere…

The Los Angeles Unified School District is seeking to recoup millions of dollars from technology giant Apple over a problem-plagued curriculum that was provided with iPads intended to be given to every student, teacher and administrator.

To press its case, the Board of Education on Tuesday authorized its attorneys in a closed-door meeting to explore possible litigation against Apple and Pearson, the company that developed the curriculum as a subcontractor to Apple.

L.A. schools Supt. Ramon C. Cortines “made the decision that he wanted to put them on notice, Pearson in particular, that he’s dissatisfied with their product,” said David Holmquist, general counsel for the nation’s second-largest school system. He said millions of dollars could be at stake.

The program was sold as a “civil rights imperative” by the previous superintendent, John Deasy. In reality, it was just another bureaucratic excuse to throw away taxpayers’ money on education. The average liberal’s plan for improving our schools begins with “increase spending” and doesn’t flesh out much beyond that. The leftist core principle, after all, is that anything can be made better by bathing it in tax revenues. Childhood Santa Claus beliefs are more rooted in reality.

Giving lower-income students an increased access to technology that could help with education is not a bad thing in an of itself. It’s just that even the best ideas can be screwed up in a nanosecond once a bureaucracy gets to work on them.

Deasy, it should be pointed out, was also the superintendent who was rewarding students for just showing up.

This is the second largest and one of the worst school districts in America. It needs some fundamental change, not a shiny, expensive tech bandage on the problem to keep the people distracted for a while.

Posted at 3:25 pm on April 17th, 2015 by

ISIS Claims Car Bomb at U.S. Embassy in Kurdistan

ISIS targeted the U.S. Embassy in Irbil today, with a suicide car bomb detonating in the Kurdish capital at about 5:30 p.m. local time.

Kurdish news site Rudaw noted that the embassy is located in a Christian neighborhood, Ainkawa, which is frequented by Westerners and was busy on a Friday evening.

The bomb detonation was followed by about an hour of gunfire being exchanged between Kurdish security forces and the terrorists.

“The duck-and-cover protocol was activated at the U.S. consulate. All chief of mission personnel have been accounted for. There are no reports of injuries to chief of mission personnel or to the local guards,” State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf told reporters today.

“Host nation fire assets responded to extinguish the fire. Local authorities have also responded and are securing the area. We appreciate the rapid response of the Kurdistan and regional government authorities to this matter, and we will work with them to investigate the incident to determine the facts behind the explosion.”

Kurdish media reported that one American was injured in the attack; the State Department said no embassy personnel were hurt. Four people were killed and 18 injured in the attack. ISIS claimed responsibility on Twitter.

Harf was asked about the shock of terrorists infiltrating an otherwise safe city.

“I think that Iraq remains a dangerous place. Many parts of it do. So I’m not going to get into specifics, but we know that the security environment there is quite a challenging one, and obviously take a number of security precautions when it comes to our people and our facilities,” she said.

Angus King (I-Maine) said on CNN moments ago that there wasn’t “final confirmation” to lawmakers that ISIS was behind the attack, but noted that it was a “pretty sophisticated and powerful bomb” that targeted the embassy.

“It really is very difficult to secure a major city,” King said, adding that heightened security protocols at the embassy “served their purpose today.”

Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.), who sits on the Foreign Relations Committee, said he’s “closely monitoring” the developments.

“I was just in Irbil earlier this month, visiting with local officials and security personnel,” Gardner said. “The Kurdish people are our allies in the war against extremism in the region, and it’s important for the United States to continue to offer them our support.”

 

Posted at 2:35 pm on April 17th, 2015 by

Cardinal Francis George, Leader of American Catholics, Dead at 78

A towering intellectual force in the American Catholic church is dead of cancer at age 78.

Former leader of the Chicago Archdiocese, Cardinal Francis George, succumbed to the disease after a long illness. George retired last year after a third diagnosis of cancer and was replaced by Archbishop Blase Cupich. He was elevated to head the Chicago diocese following the death of Cardinal Joseph Bernadin in 1997.

In his 17 years as head of the third largest Catholic diocese in America, George confronted the sex scandals roiling the church head on, proposing in 2002 a “zero tolerance” policy for sex offender priests. He also became a leading light in the anti-abortion debate and was the driving force behind Catholic bishops opposing President Obama’s contraception mandate in the Affordable Care Act.+

A Chicago native, George suffered a bout of polio when he was 13 and was denied entrance to the seminary. Instead, he attended a private seminary run by the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate. After becoming a priest, he spent the next 30 years traveling the world representing his order, eventually landing in Portland, Oregon to head the church there. John Paul II tapped him to lead the Chicago diocese in 1997.

Chicago Tribune:

As head of the nation’s third-largest archdiocese, he shepherded the Chicago church through school closings and the priest sexual abuse scandal, striving to reconcile his support for the clergy with the pain of victims.

He also became a point person between the U.S. and the Vatican on the abuse scandal and matters such as liturgy of the Mass, playing a key role in revisions that brought the English translation closer to the original Latin.

George in November 2014 became the first Chicago archbishop to retire, following his third cancer diagnosis, and was replaced by current Archbishop Blase Cupich.

“He stood apart for his intelligence, his ability to make the church’s proposal in a compelling way to contemporary society, his deep faith, personal holiness and courage,” said Catholic scholar and papal biographer George Weigel.

“I think he would want to be remembered as a good and faithful priest,” Weigel said. “That’s all he ever wanted to be.”

George received his first cancer diagnosis in 2006 and had surgery to remove his bladder and prostate. He was diagnosed with cancer again about six years later and underwent more surgery.

His most recent diagnosis came in March 2014, when doctors found new cancer cells in his right kidney. He underwent chemotherapy, but the archdiocese announced in late 2014 that he had stopped taking an experimental drug because it had not been effective.

From his childhood on the Northwest Side of Chicago, George embarked on a spiritual career that took him around the globe as a missionary, then brought him back home in 1997 when he was appointed as the eighth archbishop of the Chicago Archdiocese and spiritual leader of its more than 2 million Catholics.

Born Jan. 16, 1937, George went to St. Pascal School in the Portage Park neighborhood, where he knew early on that he wanted to serve the church.

“The first time I thought about being a priest was my first Holy Communion, when I really came to appreciate the nature of that sacrament as much as a 7-year-old could,” he said in a church documentary in December 2013 commemorating his 50th anniversary as a priest.

Cardinal George was immensely popular in the city due to his good humor and gentle ways. When it became necessary to close dozens of Catholic schools due to declining enrollment, he publicly agonized over his decision, realizing that the people who would be hurt the most were black and Latino parents desperate to keep their children out of the Chicago public school system.

In fact, George made saving Catholic education in Chicago his life’s mission. When he arrived, the diocese was ready to close 45 schools in addition to the 175 they had shuttered in the previous 3 decades.

George, a former professor who graduated from St. Pascal Catholic School on Chicago’s Northwest Side, balked at such a drastic move. He immediately launched fundraising campaigns, ordered academic overhauls and traveled to Springfield to lobby legislators for tax credits and private school vouchers. He also pledged to make teachers’ salaries competitive with those of public school teachers, an inequity he found particularly troubling.

His early efforts met with success, said Bob Gilligan, executive director of the Catholic Conference of Illinois. By 1999, George had brokered a meeting with House Speaker Mike Madigan, then-Gov. George Ryan and other legislators and secured support for a state income tax credit of up to $500 for parents of private and parochial school students to help defray tuition costs. Legislators also increased money for transportation and textbooks.

“I’m not asking (policymakers) to be open to this for sentimental reasons. I’m asking them to be open to it for public reasons,” George once said. “This is a pivotal, central public service. It is privately provided, but it is a public service.”

But success in Springfield was short-lived, Gilligan said, in part because of the state’s own fiscal crisis. The cardinal’s proposals to fund math and science education for at-risk students, reimburse schools for fulfilling state mandates, provide vouchers and lift the cap on the tax credit never materialized. Even money for transportation and textbooks has disappeared from the budget, he added.

To be sure, the progress has been slower than expected, said Sister Mary Paul McCaughey, superintendent of Catholic schools.

“It took a little longer than what the two of us had hoped,” she said.

To this day, teacher salaries remain way below those in public schools and schools in other dioceses, and individual Catholic schools still don’t provide parents the same academic accountability that neighborhood public schools offer by publicizing their test scores.

The cardinal, however, has focused on securing outside funds, building a case for parish schools as community stabilizers that serve children in need of a quality education, not just Catholics. He claims that Catholic schools save the public school system $1 billion a year, a cost it would incur if Catholic schools closed and displaced more than 60,000 students.

His was a powerful voice that will be missed by Christians of all denominations.

Posted at 2:32 pm on April 17th, 2015 by

Celebrate Diversity! New White House Social Secretary Is Hip-Hop Expert

Somehow, you knew this was coming:

Deesha Dyer, a former music and hip-hop culture writer, has been selected as President Obama’s new social secretary, overseeing the parties and public events held almost daily at the White House. Ms. Dyer, 37, who spent the past two years as the deputy social secretary, will fill the position to be vacated by Jeremy Bernard, the first man and the first openly gay person to serve in that role. By choosing Ms. Dyer, the White House is drawing from a group of people who have been working for the Obamas since early in the administration.

She began in the White House in 2009, as an intern in the Office of Scheduling and Advance. Two years earlier she had gone back to school to earn an associate degree in women’s studies from a community college in Philadelphia, after working as an assistant at a real estate investment trust and writing freelance articles about rap music for publications like The Philadelphia City Paper.

After Ms. Dyer began working at the White House, she quickly ascended to more senior roles in the scheduling office, and traveled with the president and first lady to handle news media, lodging and site logistics.

Well, at least there’s no fixation on credentialism, a rare departure from the Ivy League bunch that runs the American government these days. But there is “diversity”:

In a statement, President Obama said that Ms. Dyer represented the diversity in race, gender and socioeconomic backgrounds outside the Washington beltway. “Deesha shares our commitment to a White House that reflects America’s history, highlights our culture and celebrates all Americans,” he said. “Michelle and I look forward to working with her in this new role as we welcome visitors from across the country and around the world to the people’s house.”

Ms. Dyer is also the creator of a hip-hop AIDS program based in Philadelphia, and serves as a mentor for Michelle Obama’s program for high school girls.

Somewhere, Letitia Baldrige is… reacting perfectly.

 

Posted at 2:31 pm on April 17th, 2015 by

Cruz Demands Public Outline of Iran Deal

Via The Hill:

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) is demanding six world powers and Iran to produce a single outline of the framework agreement reached over Tehran’s nuclear program.

“While there appears to be consensus that some agreement was reached … there is no consensus on the actual parameters of that agreement — including such critical items as the scope of Iran’s ongoing nuclear program, the extent of the [International Atomic Energy Agency] verification regime, and the schedule for nuclear-related sanctions relief by both the United States and the international community,” Cruz, a 2016 presidential contender, wrote Friday in a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry.

This seems reasonable, given that the lunatic at the center of the “negotiations” said that the State Dept. fact sheet on the deal was wrong.

You know you’re dealing with some serious governmental transparency problems when you’re being called out by the guy in charge of a Sharia dictatorfest. The only people who seem to think this is going well for the United States are President Obama, John Kerry, and their various spokesmorons. Ayatollah Khamenei doesn’t really strike me as the type given to levity, but I bet he is having a continual hearty guffaw over the Keystone Cop foreign policy show being put on by Team Lightbringer.

Twenty-one months, boy and girls. Hope for change.

Posted at 1:55 pm on April 17th, 2015 by

Perry: ‘We Saw a Crazy Man Walk Into the White House…’

While running through a list of national security failures, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry told the New Hampshire Republican Leadership Summit today that “we saw a crazy man walk into the front of the White House and nobody seemed to know where he came from.”

Upon the audience bursting into laughter, Perry clarified, “And I am talking about the crazy man that walked through that wasn’t supposed to be there, OK?”

That would be Omar Gonzalez, who jumped the fence and ran through the open door of the White House back in September.

“I know somebody will take that wrong,” Perry added.

Perry issued a scathing criticism of the current White House occupant during the address, particularly on foreign policy.

“You see individuals being led to a beach in Libya and be beheaded. You see a young Jordanian pilot burned alive in front of us. You see these young Christian college kids that are murdered. And there is — there’s pessimism in the world. And we think back and we look at Libya and we see what happened to Libya. We see Egypt. We think about our best friend and most reliable partner, the most vibrant democracy in the Middle East, treated the way Israel’s been treated. We think about Syria. And we realize that we missed an incredible opportunity to stop ISIS in its tracks in Syria early by funding the Syrian rebels. And we could’ve gotten rid of Assad as well, I would suggest to you, but our president stood back,” the governor said.

“And then they left, ISIS, and went into Northern Iraq and at that particular point in time, I will suggest to you, had the Americans delivered lethal weapons to those Peshmerga fighters in Northern Kurdistan, that they would have stopped ISIS. They were fighting for their country. They’re fighting for their family. But we didn’t. And today, ISIS controls a greater part of that region of the world than the entirety of the size of the United Kingdom. And while all that was going on, there was somebody watching. Vladimir Putin was watching. And he realized that Crimea wasn’t going to be a problem to annex.”

Perry sounded like a guy who will be tossing his name into the ring at this first-in-the-nation state gathering of Oval Office hopefuls.

“Two things I learned in 2011, number one is you got to spend a lot of time in New Hampshire and you’d better be healthy and you’d better spend like years here,” he quipped.

Perry also stressed that “to be prepared to stand on a stage and talk about this myriad of issues, whether it’s domestic policy, monetary policy, whether it’s foreign policy, takes years of intense study.”

“And I spent the last three years in that, in that mode, being able to stand up and discuss all of these issues and do it in a way that is very profound and impactful,” he said. “…But with that said, I will suggest to you that the next President of the United States really needs to be someone who has deep experience as an executive.”

“That that executive experience is incredibly important to the next leader of this country because we’ve spent eight years with a young, inexperienced United States senator. And I will suggest to you economically, militarily and foreign policy wise, we’re paying a tremendous price.”

Posted at 1:45 pm on April 17th, 2015 by

Turkey Increasingly Upset About Armenian Genocide Being Referred To As ‘Genocide’

Silly people and their truth.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey’s president, has accused the EU of declaring “enmity” on his country as next week’s centenary commemorations of the massacres of Armenians by the Ottoman Empire descend into bitter rows over what to call them.

Both the European Parliament and Pope Francis this week referred to the killings as a genocide, a term recognised by much of the rest of the world but fiercely disputed by Turkey.

The European decision prompted a furious response from Mr Erdogan.
“Such decisions are nothing but expressions of enmity against Turkey by abusing Armenians,” he said while on a visit to Kazakhstan. “Come on, let’s leave history to historians.”

Earlier he had made an implicit threat to deport Armenian citizens, many of whom work in Turkey.

Well, it’s been 100 years so it kind of has been left to the historians, and the historians tend to refer to it as a genocide. Those who don’t usually opt for “Armenian holocaust” instead.

Here is another classic example of a dictator used to tightly controlling the messaging at home getting upset when he bumps into the big, bad, connected rest of the world.

President Erdogan can take comfort in the fact that Russell Crowe seems to be on his side.

Erdogan will be fine. After all, being a Holocaust denier really never hurt Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s United Nations or Ivy League speech opportunities.

Posted at 1:26 pm on April 17th, 2015 by

Delusional Nonentity Totally Serious About Presidential Run

No, really:

Former New York Gov. George Pataki attempted to convince reporters at the First in the Nation Summit Friday he really is mulling a run for the presidency. Some think Pataki might really aspire to the vice presidency or a Cabinet position, but the New York Republican tried to dispel those rumors Friday.

“I’ve had opportunities in the past to be in the Cabinet. I had no interest,” he said. “I was the governor of New York State for 12 years — the executive. It is a powerful governorship. There is no other governmental position that appeals to me.” “Deep in my heart, I know I have the ability to run a complex government,” Pataki told The Daily Caller.

Stop laughing. No, seriously — stop laughing:

Pataki also took shots at Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, saying in his remarks that the former New York senator and secretary of state runs away from the press, “only answering staged questions from people who have been planted somewhere across America we are going to take questions from normal citizens across New Hampshire.”

Pataki noted he was making his eighth trip to New Hampshire since September. “Every four years there’s the Olympics the World Cup and Pataki shows up thinking about running for president,” he said.

I bet if you polled New Yorkers right this minute, fewer than one in five could tell you who George Pataki is. Or was. But hey, if Jeb can do it…

Posted at 1:07 pm on April 17th, 2015 by

GOP Hopeful, Son and Brother of Failed Presidents, Rooting for Democrat Lynch

That, of course, would be the second least-compelling presidential candidate in the field, Jeb Bush:

Likely presidential contender Jeb Bush said Thursday the Senate should confirm attorney general nominee Loretta Lynch despite objections from many of his fellow Republicans. The former Florida governor appeared Thursday night at a GOP “Politics and Pies” event on the eve of a gathering Friday that will bring together more than a dozen other potential and declared contenders for the nomination.

Lynch was nominated by President Barack Obama in November, but Senate Republicans have delayed a confirmation vote. Bush said presidents should have the right to pick their teams, adding that Lynch’s confirmation would at least speed up the departure of current Attorney General Eric Holder, deeply unpopular with the GOP.

That’s the Bush family — no tactics and no strategy, either. Honestly, the entire clan is the perfect dupe/punching bag for the Left, who must thank whatever deity they don’t believe in for the gift that keeps on giving.

“If someone is supportive of the president’s policies, whether you agree with them or not, there should be some deference to the executive,” he said. “It should not always be partisan.” In Jackson, Mississippi, earlier, Bush said he will make up his mind “in relatively short order”’ whether to seek the Republican nomination and is not concerned that several rivals have a head start in declaring their candidacies.

“I’m on a journey to kind of measure support,” Bush said. “Other people’s processes are not really that relevant to me. I’ll make up my mind in relatively short order. I’m excited about just the possibility of being in a position to consider it.”

Maybe you ought to stop considering, Jeb, since you have only a slightly better chance of being elected president than the soon-to-collapse Hillary! candidacy. You’re both figments of the political media’s imagination.

Posted at 12:58 pm on April 17th, 2015 by

Low Bar: Scott Brown Says Hillary Would Be Better President than Obama

Ya don’t say.

Hillary Clinton “will make a better president than Barack Obama,” former Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown says, but Mitt Romney would have made a better president than both of them put together.

“Let’s start with this: I think Hillary Clinton would have made, and will make, a better president than Barack Obama, absolutely,” he said in an interview with Boston Herald Radio on Friday. I think Mitt Romney would have made an incredibly better president than both of them combined. That being said, yes, I do like Hillary Clinton personally.”

Brown admits that Her Madameship is a flawed candidate, and that her attempts to portray herself as an everyday American are bunk.

Still, with Hillary largely getting a free pass from the press (despite their protestations to the contrary) the last thing the GOP needs right now is any Republican saying nice things about her. She’s got the MSM for that.

The Romney “what ifs” need to be purged from the Republican psyche as well. Yes, he would have been a better president than Obama, but so would my houseplants. And yes, he was right about almost everything that was a point of contention during the primary. However, Mitt Romney was also a very flawed presidential candidate, and Republicans who are flawed don’t get the kid-gloves treatment from the media. Romney isn’t president because he couldn’t be tougher than Candy Crowley for five minutes, so let’s stop with the warm fuzzies about what might have been and nominate someone with a spine next time.

Posted at 12:18 pm on April 17th, 2015 by

Obama on Russian Missile Sale to Iran: No Big Deal, They’re Just ‘Defensive’

President Obama said today he’s “surprised” that Russian President Vladimir Putin actually waited until now to sell missiles to the Iranians.

Putin said during a live Q&A program yesterday that it was acceptable to lift the ban on selling the S-300 anti-aircraft missile system to Iran because Tehran is “demonstrating a lot of flexibility and an obvious desire to reach a compromise on their nuclear program.”

Putin also stressed that it’s Russia’s prerogative to lift a unilateral ban and that Iran “does not pose any threat to Israel whatsoever.”

He said that since Russian companies made the $900 million equipment, “Why should we take the loss?”

Appearing at the White House today with Italian Prime Minister Mattero Renzi, Obama said the sale “was slated to happen in 2009, when I first met with then-Prime Minister Putin.”

“They actually stopped the sale, paused or suspended the sale at our request. And I’m frankly surprised that it held this long, given that they were not prohibited by sanctions from selling these defensive weapons,” Obama added.

“When I say I’m not surprised, given some of the deterioration in the relationship between Russia and the United States, and the fact that their economy is under strain and this was a substantial sale. I do think that it sends a message about how important it is for us to look like we are credible in negotiations if in fact a deal fails, and we are needing to maintain sanctions.”

Obama steered this into a criticism of Congress.

“Because I’ve heard some in Congress who are opposed to this deal say either let’s just slap on even more sanctions, or we’ll do sanctions unilaterally, regardless of what other countries are willing to do. The reason that the sanctions regime has worked is because painstakingly we built an international coalition that has held this long,” he said.

“And if it is perceived that we walked away from a fair deal that gives us assurances Iran doesn’t get a nuclear weapon, then those international sanctions will fray. And it won’t just be Russia or China. It will be some of our close allies who will start questioning what — our capacity or the wisdom of maintaining these.”

Obama stressed that “we don’t want to put ourselves in that position.”

“We want to make sure that if there’s no deal on the Iran nuclear program, it’s because the Iranians were not willing to accept what the international community considered to be an appropriate and fair approach to this problem,” he added.

Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office said he called Putin earlier this week to express “grave concerns” about the sale.

“The Prime Minister told President Putin that this sale will only encourage Iranian aggression in the region and further undermine the stability of the Middle East.”

Israel has expressed concern that the missiles will make their way to Hezbollah.

Posted at 11:37 am on April 17th, 2015 by

Did FBI Director Mislead on Americans Joining ISIS Before Mid-Term Elections?

For more than a year, U.S. officials have been warning of the potential terror blowback from Americans who have fought in Syria. Senior counter-terrorism officials have repeatedly claimed that more than 100 individuals have traveled from the U.S. to fight with terror groups in Syria and Iraq.

However, FBI Director James Comey began to walk those claims back in late September and early October — just weeks before the November mid-term elections.

In an interview with 60 Minutes, he claimed that “roughly a dozen” U.S. persons were fighting with extremist groups in Syria.

That was a marked change from his own comments in May, when his own figures were considerably higher:

Comey declined to give a precise figure for Americans believed to be involved in the Syrian struggle but said the numbers are “getting worse.”

“I said dozens last time,” said Comey, referring to an interview with reporters four months ago. “It’s still dozens, just a couple more dozen.”

A senior U.S. counterterrorism official estimated this year that 60 to 70 Americans have traveled to fight in Syria. Comey said that Americans in Syria are actively recruiting other Americans to join the fight.

Several dozen in May 2014 is still considerably more than “roughly a dozen” just a few months later.

An Associated Press article allowed Comey to explain his walk-back on his own numbers:

“When I use a number of more than 100, that means people who have gone and come back, people who have attempted to go and we locked them up, people who have gone and stayed,” Comey said during an interview with reporters at FBI headquarters. “The figure that I’ve been operating with is, ballparkish, a dozen still there fighting with terrorist groups.”

The AP reporters deemed the 100-plus Americans fighting in Syria claim that had been repeated by a number of U.S. senior officials — including Comey himself — as having reached “urban legend status.”

But once America was past the mid-term elections, the stated numbers provided by senior officials quickly soared.

In early March, Director of National Intelligence James Clapper claimed that 180 U.S. persons had traveled to Syria. More remarkably, he claimed that 40 such individuals had already returned to the United States.

According to Reuters, Clapper also said that he was not aware of any plots that anyone who had returned from Syria had been involved in. However, Abdirahman Sheik Mohamud had already been arrested on state terror charges at the request of the FBI a week before Clapper made his comments.

Posted at 10:02 am on April 17th, 2015 by

Reid Relieved He Didn’t Suffer Brain Damage in ‘Freak Accident’

Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said his brain is learning to adjust to the injuries he suffered over the winter holiday break.

Reid still wear sunglasses around the Senate and has undergone surgery to repair a fractured eye socket.

“Things happen. This was a freak accident and I’m not blind in my right eye. But I’m so grateful that it didn’t do any damage to my brain, almost got smacked in the temple there,” Reid said of what he says was an accident with home workout equipment. He also suffered fractured ribs.

“And I’m — accepted where I am just and I look around, it’s easy to do. People have a few more problems than you have,” he told MSNBC. “The main problem of not being able to see out of one eye, the real problem it takes awhile for my brain to adjust. So I have trouble with depth perception.”

“But right now, I stumble a bit, once in a while. I’ll get over that. Your brain will adjust to that and I’ll be fine.”

Reid wants former Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto to replace him in the Senate when he retires at the end of the 114th Congress.

“The Senate is a better place because of women. Men and women are different. I’m so impressed with how women appear to me to be more patient… I wish I could articulate the way I really feel about how much better the Senate is because of women,” he said.

“I’m so happy, gratified that during the time that I was majority leader and now the time I’m minority leader, that we have women who lead these committees. I mean, we had Feinstein, head of intelligence, Boxer, environment and public works, Patty Murray, budget, she’s going to labor HHS. Maria Cantwell, small business. On and on with these women who are just so dynamic and prior to Mikulski, and I can be here, they weren’t around.”

So in turn, Reid stressed, “the country is ready for a woman to be president of the United States and of course the Senate’s ready for a woman being — it’s just a question of time until they will replace Reid and Schumer, there will be leaders that come from the ranks of women who serve so adequately here in the Senate.”

Reid has endorsed Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) to take his spot as Senate Democratic leader.

Reid admitted that Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) recently told him on the Senate floor that he was going to “kick the s**t” out of him.

“And I said to him, John, if I were in your position, I would do the same thing. He said, you know, I felt so sentimental when I heard you say that. That’s what he said. John McCain and I are friends. I understand — we came to the House together. We came to the Senate together,” Reid said. “It’s how we talk to each other. I would like to be able to tell everybody here, my female colleagues haven’t said something comparable to me, but they have.”

Posted at 9:03 am on April 17th, 2015 by

PA President ‘Abbas Awards Medals of Honor to Fatah Terrorists

Reprinted with permission from MEMRI.

Ahead of Palestinian Prisoners Day, which is marked on April 17, Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud ‘Abbas decided to award medals to the first female Fatah member imprisoned by Israel, Fatima Bernawi, the first male Fatah member imprisoned, Mahmoud Bakr Hijazi, and the first Fatah member who was “martyred,” Ahmad Moussa Salama,  in honor of their “national struggle.”[1]

On April 16, 2015, the website of Fatah’s Egyptian branch wrote about Bernawi in an article dedicated to Prisoners Day: “Bernawi was arrested in October 1967 after she placed a bomb in the Zion Cinema in Jerusalem. She was sentenced to life in prison, but was released after ten years, in November 1977. [Israel's] Prison Service described [her release] as a ‘gesture of good will’ towards Egypt ahead of the visit by the late Egyptian prime minister Anwar Sadat in Jerusalem on November 19, 1977, [a visit] that paved the way to the signing of the Israel-Egypt peace agreement in 1979.”

The website stated further: “Fatima Bernawi was one of the first Palestinian women to adopt [the means of] armed self-sacrifice operations after the start of the modern Palestinian revolution, which was launched by Fatah on January 1, 1965. She was the first young Palestinian woman to be arrested by the Israeli occupation forces, and is the first woman prisoner listed in the records of the [Palestinian] women prisoners’ movement…”[2]

AbbasHonor1

Fatima Bernawi (Image: Fateheg.org, April 16, 2015)

AbbasHonor2

Fatima Bernawi during her service as head of the PA women’s police force (Image: Fateheg.org, April 16, 2015)

Mahmoud Bakr Hijazi was caught while attempting to carry out a terrorist attack in Israel on January 7, 1965, and was sentenced to 30 years in prison, but was released in 1971.[3] Ahmad Moussa Salama was killed while participating in Fatah’s first terror operation, an attack on Israel’s National Water Carrier on January 1, 1965.[4]

Endnotes:

[1] Al-Hayat Al-Jadida (PA), April 17, 2015.

[2] Fateheg.org, April 16, 2015.

[3] Aljazeera.net, April 17, 2013.

[4] Thawra.ps, February 9, 2011.

Posted at 7:42 am on April 17th, 2015 by

Deaf Activists Protest Hearing

A rally took place recent in Washington, D.C., with dozens of deaf activists.  The activists at the rally opposed “audism” — that is, the ability for the deaf to hear.

The activists have a website opposed to the deaf hearing: audismfreeamerica.blogspot.com.

The deaf activists marched to the Lincoln Memorial calling “for the end of the social disease of audism.”

A flyer distributed at the march says:

We honor our history, our culture, our language (ASL), our allies, and deaf people from all walks of life.  We march to combat Audism (attitudes and practices based on the assumption that behaving in the ways of those who speak and hear is desired and best) particularly in the media, education, and medical profession.

x

Special scorn was reserved for the miraculous cochlear implant — the device that now can allow the deaf to hear.  For example, Rush Limbaugh uses this technological miracle to hear.

Because of this amazing device, they claim:

Deaf children who are not exposed to sign language are at risk for experiencing language deprivation which leads to cog native, psycho/social, economic and medical challenges.

y

The dream that the deaf could hear is thousands of years old.  The Gospel of Mark says:

After he took him aside, away from the crowd, Jesus put his fingers into the man’s ears. Then he spit and touched the man’s tongue. He looked up to heaven and with a deep sigh said to him, “Ephphatha!” (which means “Be opened!”). At this, the man’s ears were opened, his tongue was loosened and he began to speak plainly.

Watch this amazing video of a child hearing for the first time after receiving an implant:

Posted at 6:36 am on April 17th, 2015 by

Junior Wing of Permanent Bipartisan Fusion Party Rallies to Dear Leader’s Side on ‘Free Trade’ Enabling Act

And here you thought the November elections were supposed to have been about stopping Obama’s continuing power grab. Suckers!

Key congressional leaders agreed on Thursday on legislation to give President Obama special authority to finish negotiating one of the world’s largest trade accords, opening a rare battle that aligns the president with Republicans against a broad coalition of Democrats. In what is sure to be one of the toughest fights of Mr. Obama’s last 19 months in office, the “fast track” bill allowing the White House to pursue its planned Pacific trade deal also heralds a divisive fight within the Democratic Party, one that could spill into the 2016 presidential campaign.

With committee votes planned next week, liberal senators such as Sherrod Brown of Ohio are demanding to know Hillary Rodham Clinton’s position on the bill to give the president so-called trade promotion authority, or T.P.A. Trade unions, environmentalists and Latino organizations — potent Democratic constituencies — quickly lined up in opposition, arguing that past trade pacts failed to deliver on their promise and that the latest effort would harm American workers.

In other words, to the hard Left, Obama is not “progressive” enough — but to the quislings of the GOP, he’s just fine. And who are these quislings. The usual suspects:

The deal was struck by Senators Orrin G. Hatch of Utah, the Finance Committee chairman; Ron Wyden of Oregon, the committee’s ranking Democrat; and Representative Paul D. Ryan, Republican of Wisconsin and chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee. It would give Congress the power to vote on the more encompassing 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership once it is completed, but would deny lawmakers the chance to amend what would be the largest trade deal since the North American Free Trade Agreement of 1994, which President Bill Clinton pushed through Congress despite opposition from labor and other Democratic constituencies.

While supporters have promised broad gains for American consumers and the economy, the clearest winners of the Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement would be American agriculture, along with technology and pharmaceutical companies, insurers and many large manufacturers that say they could also expand United States’ exports to the other 11 nations in Asia and South America that are involved.

Because giving Obama — or any president — free rein by ceding congressional responsibility and oversight of his actions — is such a great idea.

President Obama embraced the legislation immediately, proclaiming “it would level the playing field, give our workers a fair shot, and for the first time, include strong fully enforceable protections for workers’ rights, the environment and a free and open Internet.”

Love that bit about a “free and open Internet.” Naturally, the Republicans have driven a hard bargain to get some Democrats on the Barry Hussein/GOP team (stop laughing):

But Mr. Obama’s enthusiasm was tempered by the rancor the bill elicited from some of his strongest allies. To win over the key Democrat, Mr. Wyden, the Republicans agreed to stringent requirements for the deal, including a human rights negotiating objective that has never existed on trade agreements.

The bill would make any final trade agreement open to public comment for 60 days before the president signs it, and up to four months before Congress votes. If the agreement, negotiated by the United States trade representative, fails to meet the objectives laid out by Congress — on labor, environmental and human rights standards — a 60-vote majority in the Senate could shut off “fast-track” trade rules and open the deal to amendment.

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!  Oops, sorry: I said no laughing.

Posted at 4:06 am on April 17th, 2015 by

Hillary Clinton’s Uterus For President! (Says Topless Woman, Too Many Others)

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If the election were held in Times Square tomorrow, Hillary Clinton might just be moving back into the White House.

That’s what Gavin — I mean, his lefty “brother” Miles — McInnes discovered when he ventured into the, I guess, adrenal gland of America, on behalf of TheRebel.media.

Being a lefty and all, Miles thinks Hillary should get to be president, pretty much by acclamation, just because she’s female.

After all, he says:

“We’ve done black. Let’s do a woman next.”

There are a few holdouts, but as Miles points out, one of them is a fictional character, so…

Generally, people are pretty “hey, great!” about Hillary’s sole, shall we say, “anatomically correct” qualification.

Speaking of which, maybe the topless woman — oh, yeah: MATURE CONTENT WARNING — should run for president instead. She’s got two very big qualifications, and what with that body paint, she sure looks patriotic enough, but I have a feeling she’s not “natural born.”

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Posted at 4:03 am on April 17th, 2015 by

They’re Not ‘Migrants,’ They’re Invaders

How long is it going to take what used to be called “Christendom” to figure this out? The Muslim immigrants flooding into Europe’s soft underbelly are not in any traditional sense immigrants. They want nothing to do with the native culture. They do not want to integrate and become, say, “Italian,” or, ha ha, “Swedish.” They want to colonize in the name of their dark and savage god. And murder is their most effective weapon:

Muslims who were among migrants trying to get from Libya to Italy in a boat this week threw 12 fellow passengers overboard — killing them — because the 12 were Christians, Italian police said Thursday. Italian authorities have arrested 15 people on suspicion of murdering the Christians at sea, police in Palermo, Sicily, said.

The original group of 105 people left Libya on Tuesday in a rubber boat. Sometime during the trip north across the Mediterranean Sea, the alleged assailants — Muslims from the Ivory Coast, Mali and Senegal — threw the 12 overboard, police said. Other people on the voyage told police that they themselves were spared “because they strongly opposed the drowning attempt and formed a human chain,” Palermo police said.

The boat was intercepted by an Italian navy vessel, which transferred the passengers to a Panamanian-flagged ship. That ship docked in Palermo on Wednesday, after which the arrests were made, police said.

Everyone knows that life is tough in dysfunctional Third World basket cases like “Libya” and the other fictional countries in the Middle East and much of sub-Saharan Africa. But unless the West is entirely prepared to give up the idea of nation-states, most of which were formed from a dominant, largely homogeneous ethnic group, then its culture will eventually be thrown overboard like the poor Christians. Because they are coming in their thousands and their ten thousands:

Thousands of people each year make the dangerous sea journey from North Africa to Europe’s Mediterranean coast, often aboard vessels poorly equipped for the trip. Many of them attempt the voyage to flee war and poverty in Africa and the Middle East. More than 10,000 people have arrived on Italian shores from Libya since last weekend alone, according to the Italian coast guard.

Many die each year while attempting the voyage, often when boats capsized. Last year at least 3,200 died trying to make the trip. Since 2000, according to the International Organization for Migration, almost 22,000 people have died fleeing across the Mediterranean.

Until the West declares that fleeing “war and poverty” in the Third World, where both of those conditions are among the very things that make the Third World the Third World, and figures out a way to help others without committing cultural suicide, this problem will continue. Of course, cultural suicide is precisely the goal the Left wishes for what we used to call civilization. And if you disagree, you’re obviously a xenophobic racist.

 

Posted at 3:54 am on April 17th, 2015 by

Auto Repair Owner to Refuse Service to ‘Openly’ Gay People

The owner of an auto repair shop in Michigan has become the latest center of attention in the culture wars after writing a post on his Facebook page saying, among other things, that he would refuse service to “openly” gay people.

Dieseltec owner Brian Klawiter also says that he will run his business based on his Christian beliefs.

Klawiter is sticking by his guns:

“I am a Christian,” wrote Brian Klawiter, owner of Dieseltec in Grandville, Michigan. “My company will be run in a way that reflects that. Dishonesty, thievery, immoral behavior, etc. will not be welcomed at MY place of business. (I would not hesitate to refuse service to an openly gay person or persons. Homosexuality is wrong, period. If you want to argue this fact with me then I will put your vehicle together with all bolts and no nuts and you can see how that works.)”

Klawiter also stated that he will offer a discount for customers who bring their gun into his shop — on-duty police officers excluded, he said, because their guns were purchased with tax dollars.

Dieseltec’s new policy seems to have been inspired by recent battles over “religious freedom” laws in Indiana and Arkansas. “Enough is enough,” the owner began his post. “Our rights as conservative Americans are being squashed more and more everyday. Apparently if you are white (or close to it), you have a job, go to church, and own a gun… That translates into racists, privileged, bigot, conspiracy theorist. Too many of us say nothing.”

Naturally, when his Facebook declaration went viral, local NBC affiliate station WOOD-TV got a hold of him and to further elaborate on his new policy. “If you have a vehicle that needs to be repaired, we’d be happy to do that for you,” he told the channel. “But if you want to come in here with your boyfriend and you want to openly display that, that’s just not going to be tolerated here. We don’t believe that here.”

The story was picked up by Huffington Post and ThinkProgress; and, as a result, his post has since shot up to being among the top 10 trending items on Facebook.

A GoFundMe page was started, purportedly in support of the auto shop, but has since been removed.

On Thursday afternoon, Klawiter claimed in a new Facebook post that he had not requested anyone set up a crowdfunding page to support his business. However, he said, “I will stand firm on my views and will not back down” in the face of alleged threats to attack his business.

What if the two guys who come in are just a couple of buds hanging out for the day? If they start making out, that’s one thing (no doubt a gay couple will try that so they can bring a nice, fat lawsuit), but otherwise, define “openly” gay. That kind of stupidity is just one reason this guy’s business deserves to go belly up.

It’s one issue to refuse to take an active part in a gay marriage ceremony or ritual by supplying flowers, or food, or photography, or any other wedding service based on religious convictions. That principled stand should be protected. But to refuse service to someone based on their sexual orientation is clearly illegal. It’s not a question of applying your religious beliefs to your business. It’s a matter of obeying the anti-discrimination law in your state — and if your hatred of gays is so profound that you can’t do business with them, you should probably find another line of work.

Besides, any businessman who refuses perfectly good money based on a personal dislike of a customer is a bad businessman. A gay person’s money is just as green and just as good as a straight person’s cash. Deliberately taking a loss because you disagree with how someone lives their life is senseless.

Now it’s not likely that Klawiter’s business will rise or fall based on the number of gay customers he might turn away in Grandville, Michigan. But his attitude could convince straight people concerned about his overt bigotry to take their business elsewhere. That might, indeed, cut into his profits — which makes me question why he took to Facebook so that all the world would know of his prejudice.

Posted at 2:26 pm on April 16th, 2015 by