September 30th, 2010
by Jim Hoft
Last Friday FBI agents raided the homes of far left activists in Chicago and Minneapolis who are linked to the Marxist FARC terrorists and Islamic radicals as part of a terrorism investigation.
The home of radical Hatem Abudayyeh in Chicago was raided in the terror sweep.
Radical Hatem Abudayyeh protested against Israel in Chicago in January 2009. (Daylife)
Hatem Abudayyeh is the executive director of the Arab American Action Network (AAAN). Hatem Abudayyeh has been with the Arab American Action Network (AAAN) since 1999, and was appointed Executive Director in 2003. The Arab American Action Network was founded by former PLO operative and close Obama family friend Rashid Khalidi. Obama was a director of the Woods Fund from 1994 through 2001, when the board approved a $40,000 grant to the Arab American Action Network.
In 2003 Barack Obama was an honored guest at a dinner sponsored by the AAAN for former PLO-operative Rashid Khalidi. During the dinner a video was taken that shows Barack Obama celebrating with members of this Palestinian group who are openly hostile towards Israel. Barack Obama even gave a toast to a Rashid Khalidi at this going away party. The LA Times will not release the video from this Jew-bashing dinner.
Not only was Hatem Abudayyeh’s radical organization given $40,000 by Barack Obama and the Woods Fund but his organization also collected nearly half a million in taxpayer money.
ABC Local reported:
When FBI agents raided the Chicago home of Hatem Abudayyeh last Friday, they took his laptop computer and paper records, anything with the word “Palestine” on it, according to the man’s attorney.
Federal search warrants indicate that authorities are looking for connections between terrorist organizations in the Middle East and South America and certain anti-war leaders and organizations in the U.S.
As executive director of the Arab American Action Network in Chicago, Mr. Abudayyeh is a well-known advocate for immigrant rights. When federal officers raided his North Side home last week, along with residences in Minneapolis, they were looking for funding links between Abudayyeh and the radical Islamic group Hamas that took power in the Gaza Strip three years ago.
Even as Abudayyeh is under investigation by a federal grand jury, city of Chicago records obtained by the ABC7 I-Team show that his Arab American Action Network has received thousands of dollars in city grants: as much as $457,000 since 1998. According to city officials, the money was intended for an after-school program for high-risk students who struggle with English.
So how did that happen?
And would someone in the Obama Administration explain what Abudayyeh was doing in the White House this year?
Hat Tip Steve H.
This deserves an explanation.
September 30th, 2010
Submitted by SHNS on Thu, 09/30/2010 - 15:33
Via Jim DeMint
BOZEMAN, Montana - The next Congress should enact a moratorium on land nationalization. The feds should stop fleecing exhausted taxpayers for fresh billions to purchase new acreage for Uncle Sam to mismanage.
Washington, D.C. already lords over some 650 million acres, or 29 percent of America's land. The federal government owns 45.3 percent of California, 48 percent of Arizona, 57.45 percent of Utah, 69 percent of Alaska, and 84.5 percent of Nevada. No state from the Rockies west is less than 30 percent federal, as are Montana and Washington.
But that is not enough.
Uncle Sam is like a hyperactive brat who trips over his abandoned train set and stumbles over his Legos while running out to slap a shiny, new dirt bike on Daddy's credit card. Washington constantly expands the federal estate, even while mishandling its existing properties.
In March 2009, President Obama designated 2 million federal acres as "wilderness," thus limiting public access and uses thereon. Unsated, Obama last April announced America's Great Outdoors Initiative, a national listening tour to concoct new ways for Washington to interfere in natural-resource matters. A report due November 15 will include ideas for "creating corridors and connectivity" across exterior spaces, most likely through land procurement.
Even scarier is a secret Bureau of Land Management (BLM) discussion paper leaked to Senator Jim DeMint , R, South Carolina, and Rep. Robert Bishop, R, Utah. Labeled "Internal Draft -- NOT FOR RELEASE," this document confirms the federal government's infinite desire for physical enlargement.
BLM advocates "expanded landholdings" and "acquiring parcels adjacent to its current holdings..." These envirocrats also argue that "Should the legislative process not prove fruitful...BLM would recommend that the Administration consider using the Antiquities Act to designate new National Monuments by Presidential Proclamation." So, if Congress fails to grip federal acreage even more tightly, Obama should grab it by decree.
BLM lists 14 such potential monuments, from New Mexico's 58,000-acre Lesser Prairie Chicken Preserve to California's 3 million-acre Modoc Plateau. All told, these "Treasured Landscapes" represent approximately 12.85 million federal acres that would shift from mixed-use to virtually untouchable status.
BLM also cites seven prospective "land-rationalization" efforts, from 80,000 acres on Montana's Upper Missouri River (estimated cost: $24 million) to 1.62 million acres in Wyoming's Upper Green River Valley ($2,383,260,000). BLM wants $4.1 billion to nationalize at least 1.8 million acres.
"This is only part of the entire document, and just addresses BLM," says Melissa Subbotin, spokeswoman for the Congressional Western Caucus. "The Obama Administration has refused to turn over the rest of this memo, even though they publicly have acknowledged that there are sections concerning the National Park Service and the Fish and Wildlife Service. The true designs of this entire document are enormous."
The notion of even more soil under Uncle Sam's boot is aggravating given the chaotic state of the federal land portfolio. According to the Congressional Research Service, BLM already has a deferred-maintenance backlog of at least $480 million. At the Fish and Wildlife Service, $2.4 billion in fixes cry for attention. The Forest Service needs $5.3 billion of work, while the National Park Service awaits $8.2 billion in road, trail, and building renovations. Why not perform these repairs before nabbing more land to neglect?
Failed federal stewardship -- from refusing to thin dense foliage to restricting salvage logging of dead trees -- lets lightning bolts transform forests into ashes. Nationalizing more acres will mean even more wildfires, which will cremate birds, butterflies, and other creatures.
"In business, insolvent organizations typically don't buy more," observes Reed Watson, a research fellow at the Property and Environment Research Center in Bozeman, Montana. "Instead, valuable parts are broken up and purchased by more effective managers who, then, increase revenues and generate profits. Uncle Sam is doing exactly the opposite."
With America $13.45 trillion in debt, spending reduction must start somewhere. Freezing Washington's real-estate empire is an excellent place for the incoming Congress to exhibit a scintilla of fiscal sanity.
(Deroy Murdock is a columnist with Scripps Howard News Service and a media fellow with the Hoover Institution on War, Revolution and Peace at Stanford University. E-mail him at deroy.Murdock(at)gmail.com)
September 30th, 2010
American Public Media
September 30, 2010
It's the end of the government's fiscal year and there's still no new budget. Lawmakers voted to extend government spending until December. One issue they're looking at out of many is funding for the postal service. Reporter John Dimsdale talks with Bill Radke about the postal service's plan to raise the price of a first class stamp.
BILL RADKE: Today's the end of the government's fiscal year and there's no new budget yet from Congress. Late yesterday, lawmakers voted to extend government spending until December. One issue they're looking at out of many is funding for the postal service, which is waiting to hear today on its request to raise the price of a first-class stamp from 44 to 46 cents to head off a growing budget crisis. Marketplace's John Dimsdale is with us live from Washington, D.C. Hi John.
JOHN DIMSDALE: Good morning, Bill.
RADKE: Is the post office going broke?
DIMSDALE: Well, it ran a deficit of nearly $4 billion last year and is on track to lose another $7 billion this year. And all that's despite a 20 percent decline in volume of mail thanks to the Internet and private deliveries. And also despite cutting 36,000 jobs over the past couple years.
RADKE: So they're cutting jobs, John, why does the postal service need this rate increase way above inflation?
DIMSDALE: That depends who you ask. People in the postal service say they are stuck with too many post offices -- usually named for politicians, by the way -- and forced to deliver lots of junk mail, even on Saturdays, for very little money. But lawmakers and people who use the service say the post office refuses to make tough decisions to lay off unneeded workers and stop paying lavish salaries and pension benefits.
But of more immediate concern is a warning from the post office that it's going to run out of cash sometime next month. Congress punted on that question. The post office wants permission to skip a required payment to its employee pension fund and it wants to stop Saturday deliveries. Those issues will have to come before Congress after the election.
RADKE: Marketplace's John Dimsdale, thanks.
DIMSDALE: Thanks Bill.
September 30th, 2010
By Marc Kaufman
Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, September 29, 2010; 11:00 PM
For the first time, astronomers have detected a rocky planet in another solar system that has the most basic and essential conditions needed to support extraterrestrial life.
The presence of Earth-like exoplanets in what is called the "habitable zone" has been predicted for some time, but actually identifying and measuring one was referred to Wednesday as the beginning of a new era in the search for life beyond Earth.
"This is our first Goldilocks planet - just the right size and the right distance from its sun," said astronomer and "planet-hunter" Paul Butler with the Carnegie Institution of Washington. "A threshold has been crossed."
The planet, called Gliese 581G, is quite close at 20 light years from Earth's solar system. It is considered to be in the habitable zone because of its distance from its sun and its size.
Together, those two measurements tell scientists that any water on the planet will be in liquid form, and that the planet is large enough to have the gravitational pull to hold an atmosphere around it.
Butler and colleague Steven Vogt of the University of California at Santa Cruz said their discovery, which was published in the Astrophysical Journal, was pieced together by collecting data over 11 years, does not mean that life necessarily exists on the planet. Rather, they said, the basic conditions are present to allow it to begin and keep it going. And from their research, they strongly believe similar conditions are present in many other solar systems.
"This is clearly one of the most exciting areas of science these days," said Edward Seidel of the National Science Foundation, which has helped support Butler's work for almost 25 years. "If we do discover life outside our planet, it would perhaps be the most significant discovery of all time."
Adding to the significance of the discovery, the star Gliese 581 is now known to have six and perhaps seven planets orbiting it. And unlike most distant solar systems detected so far, the planets all orbit in a circular path and are lined up by type in a way similar to our solar system.
"As we collect more data, we can see the system looks like our own - with an inner clutch of rocky, terrestrial planets and then a big loner like Jupiter further out," Vogt said.
It is significantly different, however, because the central sun is an M dwarf, a star with only 1 percent of the power that comes off Earth's sun. All the planets in the system are closer to their sun than the Earth is to its sun.
Butler and Vogt said the likelihood of finding many more planets in habitable zones has greatly increased because of where this first one was found and how long it took to find it. Gliese 581 is one of the stars closest to Earth (86th in distance from our solar system), and so is one of the easiest to study for exoplanets. In addition, it took 11 years of observing to tease out the presence of the habitable zone planet, a short time in astronomical terms.
"The logic now says there are lots of planets like this out there," Vogt said.
The research was funded by the National Science Foundation, NASA and some private sources.
The first exoplanet was detected in 1995 by a Swiss team and then quickly confirmed by Butler and his then-colleague Geoffrey Marcy. Since then, almost 500 exoplanets have been found, but many have been large gas giants like uninhabitable Jupiter.
But as techniques for finding exoplanets have become more precise, the ability of astronomers to find smaller ones has improved.
The scientific excitement about exoplanets was reflected in August, when the National Academy of Sciences' 10-year survey of astronomy placed exoplanet study near the top of the field's priorities.
In addition to discovering more and hopefully smaller planets, the study said, astronomers should be thinking about ways to learn about the chemical makeup of distant planets and their atmospheres. In particular, they should look for oxygen, ozone, methane and other "biosignatures" that suggest the presence of some form of biology.
The work by Butler and Vogt was mostly done at the W.M. Keck Observatory on the dormant Mauna Kea volcano in Hawaii and involves indirect measurements of the "wobble" of a target star that is created by the gravitational pull of an orbiting planet. It took 240 lengthy observations of Gliese 581 by the Americans and a Swiss team before Butler and Vogt were able to tease out the measurements of a habitable zone planet.
The newly discovered planet is locked in relation to its sun the way the moon is locked in relation to Earth - with only one side bathed in sunlight. But the researchers said the extremes of dark cold and bright heat are reduced along a band that circles the planet where the dark and light meet, creating a wide range of promising environmental niches.
Those areas are large enough, Butler said, for heat-loving creatures to live on the sun-facing region of the band and polar bears on the cold-facing side. He also said that because the planet does not rotate on an axis, the view from these areas would be of perpetual sunrise or sunset.
Red dwarf stars like Gliese 581 are considered among the longest living in the universe, so they can potentially provide a stable stellar environment for eons - an important factor in setting the conditions for life. The Earth's sun is also relatively long-lived but will cool to the point that Earthly life is impossible long before Gliese 581 loses its force.
September 30th, 2010
Jewish World Review By Arnold Ahlert
Jewish World Review
By Arnold Ahlert
Unless something totally unforeseen occurs, Democrats are poised to take a real beating in November. Their response to the impending disaster has run the gamut. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is in denial: "One thing I know for sure is that Democrats will retain their majority in the House of Representatives." Massachusetts Senator John Kerry is condescending: "We have an electorate that doesn't always pay that much attention to what's going on, so people are influenced by a simple slogan rather than the facts or the truth or what's happening." President Obama is angry: "It is inexcusable for any Democrat or progressive right now to stand on the sidelines in this midterm election." Why is the electorate ready to kick Democrats to the curb? Here's why:
- An "unstimulated" economy. The original Mother of All Stimulus packages, $787 billion dollars, quickly grew to an astounding $865 billion. It wasn't enough. Congress pumped out another $26 billion in "supplemental" stimulus in August. The results? Unemployment in the private sector remains well above the eight percent Democrats promised, even as public sector workers who support Democrats were rewarded; our Democratically-controlled Congress has amassed more debt in the last four years than nearly the previous two hundred and thirty combined; the Keynesian economic model Democrats stand by is a colossal failure; the Summer of Recovery was a propaganda fiasco.
- The health care bill. The absolute epitome of ideological, public-be-damned arrogance. A horrendous compendium of bribes, exploding bureaucracy, runaway costs, written in secret and unread by those who passed it. It includes a mandate, likely un-Constitutional, forcing people to buy health insurance or pay a fine. The same administration which originally claimed the commerce clause of the Constitution made such a fine possible is now saying that the federal governments's "power to tax" justifies it. Irrelevant. 60% of Americans want this monstrosity repealed, ASAP.
- The federal lawsuit against the state of Arizona. Again, it's the arrogance, stupid. Despite all the hectoring from Democrats and the Obama administration about racist this, and xenophobic that, fair-minded Americans recognized four things: people have a right to protect their life and property, and if the federal government can't or won't do it, they have a right to do it themselves; the idea that anyone opposing the "rights" of illegal aliens is a bigot is nonsense on stilts; the ruling class in Washington, D.C. is holding genuine border control hostage to "comprehensive reform;" the glaring double-standard of suing Arizona for violating federal immigration statues, even as the feds turn a blind eye to hundreds of "sanctuary cities" with illegal protection directives unquestionably in conflict with federal law.
- The demonization of the Tea Party movement. Take your pick: teabaggers, racists, angry white men, fringe elements, bigots, Astro-turfers, etc. etc. Democrats and the media have tried every one, and every one has been a miserable failure for one overwhelmingly simple reason: decent Americans know they're decent, and getting insulted by Democrats running the country into the ground has only stiffened their resolve. Progressives want to demonize people who believe in smaller government, fiscal responsibility and a desire to return to Constitutional principles? Why not attack people who believe in guns, and religion too? Oh wait. The president already did that as well.
- A hopelessly compromised media. Air America tanked, CNN is tanking, and ABC, NBC and CBS news programs have been shedding viewers at historically unprecedented rates—even as Fox and the Wall Street Journal prosper. Americans don't mind people in the media expressing their opinions, as long as they're characterized as opinions, but they seethe when such opinions are portrayed as "hard news." They get even angrier when certain stories are "omitted" by those same organizations, especially when Americans recognize such omissions are calculated to protect the progressive agenda. I wonder if it occurs to either Democrats or their media water-carriers that a majority Americans may savor whacking both groups in November. Depressed looks on the faces of Nancy Pelosi and Katie Couric? In theater circles, that's known as a "two-fer."
- The Ground Zero mosque. Yet another reminder of the contempt progressives and their media enablers have for ordinary Americans who had the "temerity" to allow their feelings to be known. Despite every attempt to characterize these Americans as Islamo-phobic bigots, the public wasn't buying, again for one overwhelmingly simple reason: decent Americans once again demonstrated their decency by separating the legality of the project from the appropriateness of it.
- The complete disconnect between the First Family and ordinary Americans. The golfing, the soirees, and the high-priced vacations have created the perception that we are living through another "let them eat cake" moment in history. On Tuesday, the president called the public schools in Washington, D.C. a "'struggling' system that doesn't measure up to the needs of first daughters, Sasha and Malia." Those would be the same public schools Congressional Democrats tossed 3,300 low-income kids back into when they killed funding for vouchers that had freed those kids from D.C.'s educational ghetto. The First Lady is hectoring Americans to eat healthier. Perhaps more Americans would if they could afford to: the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) stated in their Producer Price Index that the price of food increased 2.4% for March 2010. That's the biggest increase in almost 30 years.
- The war on terror. A politically correct contingency operation against unnamed insurgents with a specific draw-down date? Democrats once again prove that all the talk about Afghanistan being the "good war" was complete rubbish. They want out, and victory—along with the heroic efforts of our men and women in harm's way—be damned. Once again: has America ever fought another war where they knew the exact location of the enemy, had the ability to inflict possibly irreparable damage on them—and decided to split the difference instead? If you answered "Vietnam," another progressively-instigated catastrophe resulting in the deaths of fifty-eight thousand American soldiers and three million innocent Asians, go to the head of the class. And when is that civilian trial of the 9/11 perpetrators scheduled to begin?
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