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Showing posts from October, 2014

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau misnamed?

Washington Examiner:
Federal officials are warning for a second time this month of potential security weaknesses with a massive consumer data-mining program run by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Inspector General Mark Bialek warned CFPB Director Richard Cordray that the IG office had “identified information security as a major management challenge for the CFPB due to the advanced, persistent threat to government information technology infrastructure.”

In a report made public Oct. 30, 2014, Bialek told Cordray that “improvements are needed in four high-priority security risk areas: continuous monitoring, configuration management, security training, and incident response and reporting.”

The bureau has been acquiring unprecedented amounts of consumer credit card and mortgage data since its creation by Congress and President Obama in 2010.
... This has the potential of making the problems at Home Deport and other retailers look small.   I suggest they check Russia as the source of …

The Islamist strongly support the Democrats?

David Rusin:
Islamist Campaign Donors Overwhelmingly Back Democrats

Key figures at six of America’s most prominent Islamist organizations have favored Democrats over Republicans by a ratio of 12 to 1 since the 9/11 terrorist attacks. They apparently view them as the weakest opposition to their agenda.

Liberals drive the middle class out of their cities

The Atlantic:
Why Middle-Class Americans Can't Afford to Live in Liberal Cities

Blue America has a problem: Even after adjusting for income, left-leaning metros tend to have worse income inequality and less affordable housing. Maybe that is the reason liberals talk about income inequality so much.  A home in suburban San Francisco can cost 10 times as much as a similar home in a suburb of Houston.  It is another reason why those cities were hardest hit in the financial crisis as home prices dropped to much less than was owed.

Attack ad hits media and BTW North Carolina Democrat Senator

The ad is big on ominous tones, but is a pretty accurate portrayal of the media environment Republicans are faced with.

Democrats are losing the white middle class

Wall Street Journal:
The plumbers, drillers and truck drivers who arrive at the Birchwood Cafe before sunrise pour their own coffee, tuck away eggs and air gripes that help explain why some longtime Democrats now lean Republican.

They are skeptical of President Barack Obama and don’t care much for his party’s support of federal safety-net programs. “You take a look at all the giveaway programs the Democrats have. Nobody wants to work anymore,” said Dale Lundquist, a 69-year-old excavation contractor.

Voters in this northeast Minnesota district have only once sent a Republican to Congress since 1947—for a single term after the 2010 election that produced a wave for the GOP.

But Mr. Lundquist, a former Democrat, and some of his friends say they plan to vote for Stewart Mills, the Republican challenger to Democratic Rep. Rick Nolan, one reason the race is down to the wire—and why the GOP is likely to expand its House majority inTuesday’s election.

Democrats have long been losing their hold …

Why do Democrats pretend to be scientist?

NY Times:
Why Republicans Keep Telling Everyone They’re Not Scientists
The refrain from Republicans is a stopgap between two politically untenable positions: the denial of climate change and the embrace of policies to address it. Democrats like to pretend their views are based on science when it comes to the climate, but they resist challenge on the facts or the science and treat the subject more like a religion.  Those who reject their point of view are deemed apostates are heretics rather than seekers of the truth.

My biggest argument with them is their attempts to sell their policy through fear.  The world maybe getting warmer at some point but there are reasonable people who think the consequences of that will not be as dire as Democrats project.

There is also the valid belief of Republicans that the Democrats are just using that fear in order to push for the kind of control freak government they want whether the planet is getting warmer or colder.  Frankly, I would rather be war…

Why Texas is not turning purple

David Weigel:
Bottles of beer cost $3 at the Hollywood Bar. After dark, bottles of very necessary mosquito repellant are passed around, gratis. It’s a hot night, fifty or so locals have come to talk and meet Republican candidates, and nobody’s got anything kind to say about the immigration detention center down the road. The Mexican border is just a few miles away. The reporters who trekked down to cover the late summer’s child migrant crisis? Long gone. Yet the building goes on.

“They’re actually opening up stuff faster for them than they are for us,” says Jose Pena, who works at a local appraiser’s office.

“Yeah, they put up a school for the immigrant kids like—whoosh—like that,” says Manny Rosales, a Navy veteran who’s still looking for work. “They took an old building, but they rebuilt it and got it up and running in a month. They couldn’t do it fast enough!”

It’s early October, right before the start of early voting in Texas’s elections. Rosales, Pena, and a few dozen other people …

The Democrats disgusting' race baiting

Leon Wolf:
As several key Senate races head down to the wire, many embattled Democrats have, in desperation, resorted to their most reliable, tried and true tactic: race baiting. None has done so more gratuitously or offensively than the pasty white creature of privilege Sen. Kay Hagan (D-NC)4% who hasdistributed flyers suggesting that if Thom Tillis won, blacks would be lynched and more recently suggested that Thom Tillis killed Trayvon Martin. In response to these gratuitous and offensive tactics, Thom Tillis objected publicly to the race-baiting of Hagan’s campaign; for doing so he was subjected to a National Journal story which ran an incredible headline suggesting that “both sides” were injecting race into the NC Senate campaign.

Just to review the bidding – one side (Hagan) ran two racially charged ads, the other side (Tillis) complained that the ads were racially charged, and the media reports this as “both sides injecting race” into a campaign. What despicable and ridiculous a…

US allowed 'grenade walking' exports to Mexican cartels

Daily Signal:
A long-awaited report from the Department of Justice’s inspector general sharply criticizes U.S. law enforcement officials for allowing a grenade trafficker for vicious Mexican drug cartels to operate unfettered, endangering public safety.

The Office of the Inspector General calls the federal operation “poorly conceived and executed” and “particularly irresponsible” because of information agents had about a dangerous suspect.

The case reminded some observers of how the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms allowed thousands of assault rifles to be trafficked to Mexican drug cartels in the ill-fated Operation Fast and Furious.

>>> Multiple Controversies Plagued Eric Holder Prior to Resignation

In fact, Jean Baptiste Kingery, the California man accused of being a grenade trafficker, came to the attention of the inspector general’s office during the probe of Fast and Furious, which also occurred on Attorney General Eric Holder’s watch as head of the Justice…

How allowing export of US oil will lower the price at the pump

Fuel Fix:
The government’s top energy analysts waded into the debate on exporting crude Thursday, releasing a study asserting that the cost of gasoline in the United States is closely tied to the price of international crudes, not domestic oil.

Although the report steers clear of making any recommendations about the nation’s longstanding ban on selling most U.S. oil overseas, its finding buttresses the arguments of export advocates that lifting the trade restrictions could translate into lower gasoline prices. Selling more U.S. oil overseas — and the possible increase in domestic production to follow — is seen as lowering the price of the international benchmark, Brent crude, even as it gives a modest lift to domestic West Texas Intermediate oil.

And in the end, according to the 43-page EIA analysis, it’s the international price that matters.

“The effect that a relaxation of current limitations on U.S. crude oil exports would have on U.S. gasoline prices would likely depend on its effect…

Taking on the anti energy left and the anti frackers

Bloomberg/Fuel Fix:
As he took the floor at the tony Broadmoor resort in Colorado Springs, the veteran Washington public relations guru had an uncompromising message for oil and gas drillers facing an anti-fracking backlash.

“You can either win ugly or lose pretty. You figure out where you want to be,” Rick Berman told the Western Energy Alliance, according to a recording. “Hardball is something that I’m a big fan of, applied appropriately.”

Berman has gained prominence, including a “60 Minutes” profile, for playing hardball with animal activists, labor unions and even Mothers Against Drunk Driving. In Colorado, he was offering to take on environmentalists pushing restrictions on hydraulic fracturing, or fracking.

The fight over fracking in the state has been viewed as a bellwether for similar debates brewing from New York to Sacramento. Energy companies are lobbying against a slew of regulations, including ones setting safety rules for fracking on public lands and another capping car…

Racist Hispanic group suggest illegals vote in states without voter ID

IBD:

La Raza's Advocacy Little More Than A Scheme To Encourage Illegals To Vote This is another example of how Democrats cheat.

Democrat multifaceted cheating in Maryland?

Bryan Preston:
Massive Non-Citizen Voting Uncovered in Maryland People have also been discovered to be registered in more than one state.  Maryland also had machines that recorded Republican votes as Democrat.  It is unlikely this administration will do anything about these abuses.

Air operations a weak form of interdiction

Washington Post:
Airstrikes failing to impact flow of Islamic militants
More than 1,000 fighters are streaming into Syria each month, a rate that has so far been unchanged by airstrikes against the Islamic State, U.S. officials say. Air power lacks the persistence needed for interdiction.  When used alone it is a temporary use of power and in the case of this operation it is even more temporary because the US had not devoted enough planes to the operation and has not used the right kind of planes for close air support and interdiction.For real interdiction you need a combined arms operation using ghround troops with armor and air support.

Obama's Gitmo policy backfires

Fox News:

FREED TO FIGHT: Former Gitmo detainees suspected of joining ISIS

AS MANY AS 20 TO 30 former Guantanamo Bay detainees released within the last two to three years are suspected by intelligence and Defense officials of having joined forces with the Islamic State and other militant groups in Syria, Fox News has learned. Obama thought releasing these guys would make the bad guys like us.  It clearly did not work.  We would be better off keeping them at Gitmo until the end of the war and not having to fight them again.  They hate us because they are religious bigots and not because we detain captives.

Democrats' bad bet on healthcare

Politico:
Obamacare brings Democrats backlash, not benefits The story tries to find excuses for the political problems with the law and in the course becomes misleading.  For example it focuses on the ads bought by opponents of the bill and contrasts that with ads by proponents, but omits the millions spent by the government trying to push this bad law.   The amount spent by the administration dwarfs that spent by opponents.  Democrats are getting the backlash they deserve for trying to cram this mess down the throats of Americans.

Billionaire waste millions pushing climate change in 2014 election

Washington Times:
San Francisco billionaire Tom Steyer has spent a staggering $76 million to promote climate change as a political issue in this year’s elections, but the subject isn’t exactly firing up the electorate.

Polls show voters continue to rank climate change at the bottom of their priority lists. Even in races featuring the “Steyer Seven,” the Democratic candidates selected by Mr. Steyer as the chief beneficiaries of his largesse, the issue is barely registering on the campaign trail.

Take the Senate race in New Hampshire. NextGen Climate Action, Mr. Steyer’s political action committee, has invested heavily in television advertising and the ground game on behalf of Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, a Democrat, in her re-election bid against Republican Scott Brown.

SEE ALSO: Harry Reid silent as environmentalist Tom Steyer tries to ‘buy our democracy’

What impact has climate change had on the contest? “None,” said Andrew Smith, director of the University of New Hampshire Survey Center.

“It’s n…

Democrats resort to their past by pushing racist fear

NY Times:
In Democratic Election Ads in South, a Focus on Racial Scars
Democrats in the closest Senate races in the South are turning to racially charged messages to jolt African-Americans into voting and stop a Republican takeover in Washington. This is the same kind of disgusting lies they used to push on behalf of segregationist Democrats.   It is just as disgusting when they are using the tactic to frighten blacks into voting for their sorry candidates.  They are using the same tactics they used to get segregationist to vote against Republicans.  Only the color of their target voter has changed.

Democrats find new way to cheat in Colorado election?

Daily Caller:
The Colorado secretary of state is investigating allegations that some Boulder County Republican election judges are actually Democrats in disguise.

Boulder County GOP Chairwoman Ellyn Hilliard initially raised the alarm when visiting polling locations where she didn’t recognize some of the GOP judges who are tasked with comparing voter signatures on mail ballots to protect against vote fraud.

She became alarmed when she noticed some ballots whose signatures clearly didn’t match those on file for the voter being accepted.

Deputy Secretary of State Suzanne Staiert began investigating and confirmed to the Daily Camera that she found “some troubling inconsistencies with some election judges.”

“One of them was a Democrat who had changed party affiliation on Oct. 10, so we are concerned that Boulder didn’t follow the list, then resorted to advertising for these positions,” she told the paper.

Hilliard submitted a list of 95 potential Republican election judges to the Boulder …

Obama's failed Middle East policy and lashing out at Israel

Washington Examiner Editorial:
Obama's assault on Israel is a moral outrage This administration cannot even get the basics of negotiation down.  They seem to have a blind spot when it comes to Israel's interest.  When they have pushed Israel into concessions those have resulted in helping its enemies kill Israelis.  One example is the pressure Obama and Clinton put on Israel to allow concrete into the Gaza strip which was in turn used to build the terror tunnels.  The administration will not even admit to it being a flawed policy, so why should Israel listen to them whine about building houses for their people in Jerusalem.  The Palestinians have no historical or legitimate claim to Jerusalem anyway.

In addition to being poor negotiators, this administration now engages in juvenile name calling to vent its frustration with its failure to persuade Israel to do something against its interest.  I agree with the Israelis that what Obama wants them to do is not in their interest and…

Pirates focus on tankers between Middle East and China

Bloomberg/Fuel Fix:
Hijackings of small oil tankers by armed gangs are increasing in Southeast Asia, home to the shortest sea-trade route between the Middle East and China, even as pirate attacks globally fell for a third year.

Five of the six vessels seized worldwide in the third quarter were in Southeast Asia, said the International Maritime Bureau and International Chamber of Commerce. There’s been 178 global piracy incidents so far this year, down from 352 in 2011, they said in an e-mailed report today.

Gangs of thieves armed with knives and guns are making Southeast Asian waters increasingly dangerous for small tankers carrying fuels such as gas oil or marine diesel, according to the report. The region includes the Malacca Strait connecting the Indian Ocean with the South China Sea and the Pacific that’s been described by the U.S. Energy Information Administration as one of the world’s “most strategic choke points.”
...

In Somalia, where armed guards and naval patrols have helped de…

Economist favor lifting oil export ban

Fuel Fix:
Free-market economists are launching an initiative to tout the promise of crude exports on Thursday, buttressing separate campaigns by oil companies and their allies on Capitol Hill.

With a website, papers and analysis, the new “Unlock Crude Exports” campaign aims to convince policymakers in the White House and Congress that it’s time to dismantle the 39-year-old ban on selling most U.S. oil overseas.

Margo Thorning, senior vice president of the American Council for Capital Formation that is funding the campaign, said the change would allow the United States to capitalize on its “energy advantages,” as a domestic drilling boom sends oil production to near-record levels.

“I don’t see any logical reason to ban a product that we have in abundance,” she said in an interview. “We are now a world-class energy producer, and we have such an abundance, it makes no sense to forbid exports. It’d be like forbidding the export of wheat or corn or automobiles.”
... Most of the opposition come…

Russian activity forcing scrambling of jets in Europe

AFP:
NATO reports 'large scale' Russian air activity in European airspace I suggest an alternative response.  The Russians are clearly trying to gauge what NATO response will be to an attack.  Instead of just scrambling jets to intercept a fake attack, they should also launch planes toward Russian air space in a large formation that would cause the Russians to have to recall their planes to defend Russia.

Why New York is falling behind

Eagle Ford Texas:
Reluctance to drill hurting New York’s economy High taxes and a passive aggressive opposition to drilling and fracking make for a poor economy and fewer jobs.

Women still not making it as Marine combat officers

Washington Free Beacon:
Pressure Grows for Marines to Lower Standards for Women

27 Female Marines Have Attempted the Infantry Officers Training Course. None Have Passed. It is a tough course and not all men make it either.  Lowering standards would put troops and other officers at risk in a combat situation.  Combat puts both mental and physical stress on participants and when someone is not up to the challenge that just adds to the difficulty of those who are still functioning.

Iraqi army not ready to take on ISIL

ISW:
Key Takeaway: Iraqi Army units in Anbar province have adopted a largely defensive posture in October 2014, retreating to their bases and leaving the defense of most urban areas in the hands of local Iraqi Police and Sunni tribal forces. The recent success of ISIS offensives in western Anbar will place the ISF in an inferior position for launching future counter-offensives. Many of the ISF units in Anbar are now understrength, suffer poor morale, and lack decisive leadership – leaving them vulnerable to ISIS attempts to isolate, encircle, and destroy the remaining Iraqi Army presence in the province. If the Iraqi Army cannot reinforce its positions and regain the offensive, the ISF may find itself hard-pressed to curb ISIS momentum in Anbar province and the western Baghdad Belts.
As demonstrated by the sudden fall of Hit district to ISIS forces on October 3, 2014, ISIS possesses significant offensive momentum in western Iraq which has not been entirely curbed by coalition airstrike…

There is reason to believe Jarrett was behind Benghazi decision not to rescue Americans

IBD:
Valerie Jarrett Gave Benghazi Stand-Down Order Some of the analysis looks like reasoned conjecture.  The administration is still not saying what Obama was doing during the time period.

Obama on the wrong side of voters on quarantine of Ebola docs

Rasmussen Reports:
Voters Strongly Support Quarantines, State Action to Fight Ebola It is not even close. Those who favor Quarantines want 21 day requirement for those coming from Ebola areas.

Instead of focusing on the people trying to kill us in the Middle East the administration is insulting our ally Israel

Bridget Johnson:
Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus just issued a statement firing back at a senior administration official calling Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “chickenshit” in an interview with The Atlantic.

“ISIS is on a rampage through the Middle East, slaughtering innocents and committing mass murder while plotting to kill more Americans,” Priebus said. “The priority of the Obama administration should be defeating our enemies; instead they are once again insulting our allies. It’s inexplicable and dangerous.”

“This administration consistently gets it wrong on foreign policy. Instead of taking the ISIS threat seriously, President Obama called them the ‘JV’ team. Now, instead of working with our allies in the region to protect democracy and innocent lives, the administration is hurling expletives at Prime Minister Netanyahu.”

One week out of Election Day, in a midterm where foreign policy has gotten more air time than in previously years, the RNC chairm…

Media bias watch

Jonah Goldberg:
Whatever, Margaret This is an epic putdown of a Margaret Carlson piece on Joni Ernst.  Read it all the way to the end.  It is laugh out loud funny.

Walking out on Obama in Wisconsin

It is a little blurry as the camera swings, but you can see a steady stream of people leaving as Obama continues to talk in the background.

Harry Reid's strategy backfires

Jonah Goldberg:
... You have to wonder if Harry Reid feels like an idiot yet. For years now, the Senate majority leader has been cynically protecting Democratic senators — and President Obama — from difficult votes.

The rationale was pretty straightforward. He wanted to spare vulnerable Democrats named Mark — Arkansas’ Mark Pryor, Alaska’s Mark Begich and Colorado’s Mark Udall — and a few others from having to take difficult votes on issues such as the Keystone XL pipeline, EPA rules and immigration reform.

The problem for the Marks and other red- or swing-state Democrats is that, having been spared the chance to take tough votes, they now have little to no evidence they’d be willing to stand up to a president who is very unpopular in their states.

Thanks to Reid’s strategy of kicking the can down the road, GOP challengers now get to say, “My opponent voted with the president 97 percent of the time.” Democrats are left screeching “war on women!” and “Koch brothers!”

For instance, Reid kill…

Obamacare a failure at reducing cost

Washington Times:

Obamacare sends health premiums skyrocketing by as much as 78 percent The Affordable Care Act was supposed to make health care more affordable, but a newly released study of insurance policies before and after Obamacare shows that average premiums have skyrocketed, for some groups by as much as 78 percent. It maybe the most misnamed act in history. What is clear is that the Democrats have failed to achieve their stated objective with the act. They have expanded Medicaid at the expense of existing patients who are now competing with more people for limited service. And the premiums are not the only bad aspect of the program. In many cases the deductibles are so high the insurance is worthless.

Probably not the same hackers who poked around Sharyl Atkisson's computer

NY Times:
White House Cites a Breach by Hackers
Hackers recently breached an unclassified computer network used by President Obama’s senior staff, a White House official said Tuesday night. The administration kept this quite until the story leaded out into the conservative blogs.  It was being treated as another scandal by some.  It is a worrisome breach of security and demonstrates that the current cyber war policy is not very effective.

The Washington Post has an idea of who was behind the hack.
Russia suspected to be behind White House hack
Hackers thought to be working for the Kremlin breached the unclassified White House computer network, officials said. The Russians have been heavily engaged in cyber war with the US since the US objected to their aggression in Ukraine.

No surprise that conservative men will vote for a conservative woman

Image
NY Times:
An Iowan’s Example for Women Who Need Men’s Vote
In running for the Senate in Iowa, Joni Ernst has helped write a new playbook for Republican female candidates by building a surprisingly enthusiastic base of support — among men. She is much more connected to the voters in Iowa than her trial lawyer opponent.  She has run a very good campaign with smart ads and her opponent has been gaffe prone.   If I were in Iowa I would vote her.  Helping her defeat the evils of liberalism seems like a smart vote.

North Carolina senator profits from government?

Tim Carney:
Kay Hagan's corporatism and cronyism enriches her campaign, family From stimulus grants to the family business to funding from businesses, this senator has found it profitable to hold political office.

More evidence the government was behind the hacking of Sharyl Attkisson's computer

Breitbart:
Yesterday I noted that an expert who examined Sharyl Attkisson's computer found evidence it had been hacked using proprietary government software. That expert source, described as working for a government security agency, is never named in the book. Attkisson simply refers to him as "Number One."

But according to a story published late yesterday by Erik Wemple at the Washington Post, "Number One" was just the first of at least three individuals who examined Attkisson's computer for signs of tampering. The next individual is identified by the pseudonym "Jerry Patel." Patel, who was hired by CBS News as an outside expert, concludes, "someone has accessed this box." Though he can't say who, he suggests the level of skill involved is, "far beyond the the abilities of even the best nongovernment hackers."

Then in September of 2013, there is another incident. In the midst of complaints about her coverage of Bengahzi, Att…

Obama tries to justify double standard for military and civilians in dealing with Ebola

Washington Examiner:
President Obama said Tuesday that when it comes to dealing with Americans who have come into contact with the deadly Ebola virus, there are simply different standards in place for U.S. civilians and members of the U.S. armed forces.

The president’s remarks were made Tuesday during a scheduled press briefing on the federal government’s handling of the outbreak.

Are you concerned “[t]here might be some confusion between the quarantine rules used by the military and used by healthcare workers by some states?” a reporter asked.

“Well, the [U.S.] military is in a different situation, obviously, because they are, first of all, not treating patients,” the president said. “Second of all, they are not there voluntarily, it’s part of their mission that has been assigned to them by their commanders and, ultimately by me, the commander in chief.

“We don’t expect to have similar rules for our military and as we do for our civilians. They are already, by definition, if they’re in t…

Premium pricing for premium gas hits luxury models

Fuel Fix:
Mercedes drivers stung by shale boom’s quirks at the pump It is much cheaper to make regular gas from the shale oil being produced in the US which cost less to begin with.   BTW, I paid $2.72.9 yesterday at a Shell station.  That is the cheapest gas I have bought in years.

Obama has played more golf than Tiger Woods in the last six years and life is bad for others

Tim Stanley:
Life under Obama sucks. And these numbers prove it

Tim Stanley explains why America has fallen out of love with its President A Brit explains why America fell out of love with Obama.

Obama was warned about ISIL in January and did little to nothing to counter it

Yahoo News:
President Obama’s former ambassador to Iraq says in a new interview that his administration “did almost nothing” in response to intelligence warnings earlier this year that Islamic State radicals were gaining ground in Iraq and threatening the country’s stability.

“The administration not only was warned by everybody back in January, it actually announced that it was going to intensify support against ISIS with the Iraqi armed forces. And it did almost nothing,” says James Jeffrey, who served as U.S. ambassador to Iraq between 2010 and 2012, in "Frontline's" "The Rise of ISIS," which airs on PBS Tuesday night (check local listings) and is previewed here exclusively on Yahoo News.

Jeffrey is one of a number of ex-administration officials who appear in the film and sharply criticize the decisions of the president they once served. Former U.S. Ambassador to Syria Robert Ford and former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta both take issue with Obama’s refusal to…

Wind power is challenged as unreliable alternative

Donna Rachel Edmonds:
Wind power is too variable and too unpredictable to provide a serious alternative to fossil fuels, a new study by the Scientific Alliance and the Adam Smith Institute has confirmed. The researchers concluded that, although it is true that the wind is always blowing somewhere, the base line is only around 2 percent of capacity, assuming a network capacity of 10GW.

The majority of the time, wind will only deliver 8 percent of total capacity in the system, whilst the chances of the wind network running at full capacity is “vanishingly small”. As a consequence, fossil fuel plants capable of delivering the same amount of energy will always be required as backup.

The report was undertaken by the Scientific Alliance and the Adam Smith Institute. Using data on wind speed and direction gathered hourly from 22 sites around the UK over the last nine years, the researchers were able to build a comprehensive picture of how much the wind blows in the UK, where it blows, and how …

Sharia's war on women

Phyllis Chesler:
ISIS has just be-headed a woman in Baquba because she dared to resist being raped. In the process of struggling to defend herself, she actually killed her would-be rapist, an ISIS warrior. The woman was at home recovering from a medical illness.
This is precisely the crime that led to Reyhaneh Jabbari’s execution in Iran at dawn this past Saturday—except that the Iranian regime first jailed and tortured her for five years. Her life might have been spared if her victim’s family had forgiven her, but that did not happen. Her would-be rapist was a former member of Iran’s Intelligence Ministry.

And thus we learn that under Sharia law the penalty for resisting rape is torture and death for women.

What happens when a woman does not or cannot resist being raped?

In 2008, in Somalia, 13-year old Aisha Ibrahim Duhulow was accused of adultery (“zina”—in her case, sex outside of marriage). She had reported being gang-raped to the controlling jihadist group there, al-Shabab. The ver…

Shale energy states are where the growth is

John Kemp:
Thanks to shale, energy-producing states have been the strongest economic performers in the United States over the past decade, sharply improving their position compared with the energy-consuming states.

Only 13 of the 50 states produced more energy than they consumed in 2010, the latest year for which comprehensive data is available, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA).

The other 37 were all net energy consumers, relying on some combination of interstate commerce or imports to meet the shortfall (Chart 1).

The shale revolution and the renaissance in U.S. oil and gas production have resulted in a stark contrast between the fortunes of the two groups.

Eight of the 13 energy-producing states improved their relative position between 2003 and 2013 when ranked by per capita gross domestic product (Chart 2). They accounted for almost half of the 18 states that rose in the rankings.

By contrast, energy-consuming states have fared poorly. None of the 10 states …

Who knew?

LA Times:
Obama is no strategic genius on the Middle East Actually this was a reader's reaction to an absurd story in the Times comparing Obama to a famous Roman general.

Baltic countries stock up on anti-tank weapons to repel Russian invasion

BBC:
The Baltic states of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia have been studying the 2008 Russia-Georgia war, writes Robert Beckhusen for Medium, and they think they've learned an important lesson

The way to stop Russian tanks isn't with other tanks, he says, it's with anti-tank missiles. Lots of them.

When it faced off against Russia, Georgia didn't have this capability - and it proved costly. Beckhuson quotes Frederic Labarre, who wrote a history of one of the key battles in the Russia-Georgia conflict for Small Wars Journal.

"On the one hand, it is clear that cool-headed infantry is more than a match for armour, especially in an urban environment," Labarre says. "This lesson had been put to the test many times and many years before, by many countries. One wonders therefore why it wasn't applied by the Georgians."

The Baltic states, according to Beckhusen, aren't interested in repeating these strategic errors.

Over the past two years, they have been …

The $200 million US oil price stimulus

Stephen Moore:
American workers and motorists got some badly-needed relief this week when the price of oil plunged to its lowest level in years. The oil price has fallen by about 25 percent since its peak back in June of $105 a barrel. This is translating to lower prices at the pump with many states now below $3 a gallon.

At present levels, these lower oil and gas prices are the equivalent of a $200 billion cost saving to American consumers and businesses. That’s $200 billion a year we don’t have to send to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and other foreign nations. Now that’s an economic stimulus par excellence.

There are many global reasons why gas prices are falling, but the major one isn’t being widely reported. America has become in the last several years an energy-producing powerhouse. And sorry, Mr. President, I’m not talking about the niche “green energy” sources you are so weirdly fixated with.

Oil prices are falling because of changes in world supply and world demand. Demand has slowed b…

Charles Barkley attacks the mendacity of blacks who accuse others of 'acting white'

Rich Lowry:
No one to this point had doubted that Super Bowl-winning Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson is black. His great-great-grandfather was a slave emancipated after the Civil War. His grandfather was president of Norfolk State University, a historically black college.

At least no one had doubted until columnist Mike Freeman of the web site Bleacher Report wrote that the source of tensions in the Seahawks locker room might be “that some of the black players think Wilson isn’t black enough.”

Not black enough? This set basketball great and uninhibited sports commentator Charles Barkley on an epic rant.

On a Philadelphia radio show, Barkley spoke about the dirty little secret of how “when you’re black you have to deal with so much crap in your life from other black people.”

When black kids succeed in school, he explained, “the loser kids tell them you’re acting white.”

In general, there are too many blacks who think that “it’s best to knock a successful black person down ’cause…

CBS has no response to claims it buried stories critical of Obama

NY Post:
CBS honchos stuck their heads in the sand Monday rather than address a former veteran reporter’s memoir that revealed how the network routinely canned stories it perceived as anti-Obama.

Everyone from network CEO Les Moonves to “Evening News’’ anchor Scott Pelley to former “Evening News’’ Executive Producer Patricia Shevlin ignored repeated phone calls and e-mails from The Post seeking comment on the bombshell claim by ex-CBS investigative ace Sharyl Attkisson.

In her new book, “Stonewalled: My Fight for Truth Against the Forces of Obstruction, Intimidation, and Harassment in Obama’s Washington,” Attkisson charges that CBS higher-ups quashed her reporting on the deadly attack on the US Embassy in Benghazi, Libya, as well as reports on the federal “Fast and Furious’’ gun-running scandal and the president’s ObamaCare debacle.

Moonves failed to answer repeated phone calls or an e-mail seeking comment.

A secretary for David Rhodes, president of CBS News, immediately volleyed a Post r…

Dems in high tax states struggle

Washington Times:
Democrats in blue states in peril as Republicans ride anti-tax wave

Voter frustration gives GOP gubernatorial challengers hope in Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland
The low tax low regulation model like that in Texas leads to more prosperity for all.  All three of these states were visited by Gov. Rick Perry in an attempt to lure businesses to lower cost Texas.

There is no hiding the direction of 2014 election

Washington Post:.
Poll: Midterm momentum belongs to GOP
A Post-ABC News survey shows the GOP aided by public dissatisfaction with the direction of the country. With a week to go the polls are having to get real and they show a clear momentum away from the Democrats.  They may not love the GOP but they know they do not like Democrats' policies like Obamacare and amnesty.

Democrats on the defensive everywhere

NY Times:
In New Hampshire, House Incumbents Try to Prevent Another Flip of Seats
Carol Shea-Porter and Ann McLane Kuster are locked in tight re-election battles with opponents who are eager to tie them to President Obama, who has a 40 percent approval rating here. They are being tied to Obama's unpopular policies not his person.  That is important to remember in judging why they are losing.  The policies they have embraced are not working and have made things worse for many people.  Some in the media have tried to sugar coat the despised "Affordable Care" Act but the people who are having to pay more for less are not happy.  It is not just a botched roll out that is the problem.  For many people the program itself really sucks.

Maryland governor's race within the margin of error after Obama vist

Matt Lewis:
Obama Visits Maryland; Democrat Drops 9 Points? Maryland is one of the bluest and most corrupt states in the US.  If Obama is that toxic in Maryland, no wonder other candidates around the country want to keep their distance.

A grass roots rebellion against Islamic supremacy in Europe

Walid Shoebat:
Europe is known for its soccer fan clubs who are widely called “soccer hooligans.” These call themselves the GnuHonnters, a take on the English term “new hunters.” Their motto is: “Comrades in spirit. Many colors, but one entity.” It refers to the fact that they support different soccer clubs. Now they are united under the banner “hooligans against [Islamic] Salafists” (HoGeSa) and they are fed up with the Muslim supremacy in Europe so this Sunday they decided to unite forces and demonstrate in Cologne Germany. Clashes soon erupted between police forces and HoGeSa protesters were at least 13 officers were injured, the German news agency DPA reported.
...
Earlier this month, Kurds in Germany clashed with radical Muslims in the northern city of Hamburg and elsewhere in street clashes fueled by the conflict involving the jihadist group Islamic State in northern Iraq and Syria.

Europe is different from the U.S. in which political activism either takes on extremist left wing or…

The Obama open borders policy has sheltered killers

Center for Immigration Studies:
Lax Immigration Policies May Have Shielded Killer of California Deputies There were several opportunities to capture this guy that were ignored.  He got around 10 traffic tickets near his home in Utah that should have led to his arrest and deportation if we had a sane immigration enforcement policy.

China burglarizing cloud computing with cyber attacks

Arthur Herman:
“For China, cyber-war is total war. Dealing with it requires much more than just added firewalls, tighter access controls and more sensors.”

I wrote that in February 2013, when the Wall Street Journal revealed that its editors and reporters had been under more or less continuous attack from Chinese hackers — as were The New York Times, Yahoo, Google, and a host of other tech companies and media outlets.

Events last week show that we remain clueless about the nature of this threat and about how to deal with it.

Apple announced last week that it’s been the target of the latest hacking outrage, after a series of devastating attacks on its iCloud server. Recall that Google’s server came under attack back in September.

Cloud storage is supposed to be safer than keeping data on a computer or device. But using what’s called a “man-in-the-middle” attack, hackers can interpose themselves between the cloud and user in order to steal vital login information. So while users last week t…

Departure from Afghanistan demonstrates a policy of retreat from victory

Max Hastings:

That we can't even leave a memorial behind says everything Pulling out of Helmand province in Afghanistan is not a success story.  The success our troops had there has been squandered by this administration and by the Afghan government.

Turmoil and instability in the world makes the case for domestic energy production

Fuel Fix:
Oil production around the globe is a canary in the coal mine, with major disruptions providing a strategic warning about growing instability and persistent violence around the world, according to a new report.

While oil supply interruptions can be traced to natural disasters, production problems and other relatively benign causes, in many cases they “reflect growing or at least ongoing turmoil,” says the paper, issued by Republicans on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.

“Losses in oil production often reflect instability,” said the panel’s top Republican member, Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska. “Energy reporting clearly pointed to Iraq’s deteriorating security years before the current collapse and provides us strategic warning of violence in other countries and regions.”

In releasing the report Monday, Murkowski suggested that the analysis shows supply disruptions are not only a warning of deeper political instability but also a reminder of the tenuous nature of i…

Return of the Taliban--Obama's failed Afghan policy

Image
Guardian:
Taliban return to Afghan town that rose up and drove out its leaders
27 Oct 2014: Insurgents now control about 80% of Gizab district in Uruzgan province four years after successful revolt, sources say The premature retreat of US and allied forces is letting the Taliban steal back the country.   The failure to defeat these illiterate religious bigots will lead to more suffering inside Afghanistan and trouble for the world down the line.

Democrats corrupting the voting process in Maryland?

Watchdog.org:
Voting machines that switch Republican votes to Democrats are being reported in Maryland.

“When I first selected my candidate on the electronic machine, it would not put the ‘x’ on the candidate I chose — a Republican — but it would put the ‘x’ on the Democrat candidate above it,” Donna Hamilton said.

“This happened multiple times with multiple selections. Every time my choice flipped from Republican to Democrat. Sometimes it required four or five tries to get the ‘x’ to stay on my real selection,” the Frederick, Md., resident said last week.

Queen Anne County Sheriff Gary Hofmann said he encountered the problem, too, personally.

“This is happening here as well. It occurred on two candidates on my machine. I am glad I checked. Many voters have reported this here as well,” Hofmann, a Republican, wrote in an email Sunday evening.

READ ALSO: Group sues over ‘illegal’ voters.

Two other Maryland voters reported the same in Anne Arundel County on Friday.

A similar vote switch turned…

ISIL uses fake newscast using hostage to challenge the US story about events in Kobani

Washington Examiner:
ISIS uses hostage to debunk claims on strategic town

ISIL claims that the bombing made it difficult to use their tanks and heavy weapons so they switch to infiltration tactics and fighting house to house in Kobani.

Democrats' problem with women voters in Texas

Breitbart:
Latest-Poll-Has-Wendy-Davis-Losing-By-12-Points-Among-Women Greg Abbott is leading Davis 49 to 37 in a NYT/CBS poll.  The only way these guys are going to turn Texas blue is by holding their breath.