Wednesday, October 31, 2012
Pastor Joseph Lowery, a civil rights movement hero who delivered the benediction at President Obama’s inauguration, reportedly said that he is shocked that any black Americans would stay home with Obama on the ballot and suggested that all or most white people would go to hell.
The local outlet paraphrases Lowery’s comments. “Lowery said that when he was a young militant, he used to say all white folks were going to hell,” the Monroe County Reporter (Ga.) says in covering a rally in Forsyth, Georgia. “Then he mellowed and just said most of them were. Now, he said, he is back to where he was.”
The local mayor, who attended the rally, rejected that statement from Lowery. “The Bible doesn’t say anything about white or black to go to heaven,” Mayor John Howard said. “I have great number of black and white friends. I’ve been in the military. I make friends with everybody. I’m too old for enemies.”
The 91-year-old Lowery worked with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and played a key role in various important moments in the civil rights movement, such as the march from Selma, Ala., to Montgomery, Ala. “Lowery was awarded the Medal of Freedom in 2009 by Obama and was elected earlier this year to lead the state’s delegation to the Democratic national convention,” the Georgia Tipsheet recalled.
He sees this election in explicitly racial terms. “I don’t know what kind of a n—– wouldn’t vote with a black man running,” Lowery said, according to the Reporter. “All that he did with the stimulus was genius. Nobody intelligent would risk this country with Romney.”
Lowery’s benediction at Obama’s inauguration emphasized peaceful relations between all Americans. “And now, Lord, in the complex arena of human relations, help us to make choices on the side of love, not hate; on the side of inclusion, not exclusion; tolerance, not intolerance,” he prayed in 2009. “And as we leave this mountain top, help us to hold on to the spirit of fellowship and the oneness of our family.”
Why does this man feel entitled to spew anti white racism? It doesn't sound very Christian. Because it's not...it's black supremacist lingo.
France has expelled a Tunisian imam accused of spreading anti-Semitic views and denigrating women at his Paris mosque.
The French interior ministry said Muhammad Hammami, 77, was guilty of "deliberate, repeated and unacceptable provocations".
He was arrested at his home and flown straight to Tunis, although he has lived in France for much of his life.
The move comes as Israeli President Binyamin Netanyahu is visiting France.
He is due to visit the Jewish school in Toulouse where a teacher and three children were murdered earlier this year by Muslim extremist Mohamed Merah.
French officials say that Mr Hammami frequently made anti-Semitic speeches and called for "violent jihad" from his pulpit at the Omar Mosque.
He also reportedly called for adulterous wives to be whipped to death and defended violence against women.
Interior Minister Manuel Valls told reporters: "We decided to be uncompromising against all those who utter hate speech against the Republic and our values."
The preacher, whose assets were frozen by the government in May, has denied all the allegations against him.
French authorities have expelled numerous Muslim imams in recent years for preaching anti-Western sentiments.
Archaeologists in Bulgaria say they have uncovered the oldest prehistoric town found to date in Europe.
The walled fortified settlement, near the modern town of Provadia, is thought to have been an important centre for salt production.
Its discovery in north-east Bulgaria may explain the huge gold hoard found nearby 40 years ago.
Archaeologists believe that the town was home to some 350 people and dates back to between 4700 and 4200 BC.
That is about 1,500 years before the start of ancient Greek civilisation.
The residents boiled water from a local spring and used it to create salt bricks, which were traded and used to preserve meat.
Salt was a hugely valuable commodity at the time, which experts say could help to explain the huge defensive stone walls which ringed the town.'Extremely interesting'
Excavations at the site, beginning in 2005, have also uncovered the remains of two-storey houses, a series of pits used for rituals, as well as parts of a gate and bastion structures.
A small necropolis, or burial ground, was discovered at the site earlier this year and is still being studied by archaeologists.
"We are not talking about a town like the Greek city-states, ancient Rome or medieval settlements, but about what archaeologists agree constituted a town in the fifth millennium BC," Vasil Nikolov, a researcher with Bulgaria's National Institute of Archaeology, told the AFP news agency.
Archaeologist Krum Bachvarov from the institute said the latest find was "extremely interesting".
"The huge walls around the settlement, which were built very tall and with stone blocks... are also something unseen in excavations of prehistoric sites in south-east Europe so far," he told AFP.
Similar salt mines near Tuzla in Bosnia and Turda in Romania help prove the existence of a series of civilisations which also mined copper and gold in the Carpathian and Balkan mountains during the same period.
BBC Europe correspondent Nick Thorpe says this latest discovery almost certainly explains the treasure found exactly 40 years ago at a cemetery on the outskirts of Varna, 35km (21 miles) away, the oldest hoard of gold objects found anywhere in the world.
Libya's General National Congress has approved the new government led by Prime Minister Ali Zidan.
The vote comes a day after protesters unhappy at the make-up of the proposed cabinet disrupted proceedings.
Mr Zidan's list includes a mixture of liberal figures and Islamists as he tries to build a coalition acceptable to all parties.
The previous Prime Minister, Mustafa Abu Shagur, was dismissed after Congress voted down his cabinet.
Only two-thirds of the assembly's 200 members attended the session on Wednesday and after the vote, the session abruptly adjourned for prayers.
The head of Congress and Libya's interim leader, Mohammed Magarief, said he had been advised by security guards to end the session early.
About 100 protesters stood outside the Congress building, but there was no repeat of Tuesday's disturbances.Inclusive cabinet
The new government has representatives from the two biggest blocs in the Congress - the Alliance of National Forces, led by liberal former Prime Minister Mahmoud Jibril, and the Muslim Brotherhood's Justice and Construction Party.
Mr Zidan said he had tried to strike a balance between Libya's different regions in making the appointments.
According to his list, the defence and interior ministries would be headed by ministers from the eastern city of Benghazi, considered to be the cradle of last year's revolution that ended Muammar Gaddafi's rule.
Two women are also among the ministers proposed by Mr Zidan.
The protesters on Tuesday reportedly said some of the proposed ministers had links to Col Gaddafi.
Despite largely peaceful elections in July, Libya's transition continues to be affected by instability.
Reining in the different militia and trying to integrate them into a single national army will be one of the biggest challenges for any new government, analysts say.
Jill Stein, a presidential candidate from the Green Party, has been arrested in Texas while attempting to resupply protesters camping out in trees to oppose the Keystone XL pipeline, according to anti-pipeline activists.
The Tar Sands Blockade activists said she was released soon after being taken to the Wood County jail in Quitman, TX.
“Dr. Jill Stein has been released from Wood County Jail on a Class B Misdemeanor Criminal Trespass charge,” the group’s website stated.
Tar Sands has been protesting against the costruction of the Keystone XL pipeline for the last month. However, a spokesperson for TransCanada, the company in charge of the pipeline project, confirmed they are preparing to build around the existing blockade.
Jill Stein and two other women came to resupply the tree-sitters in Winnsboro, Texas. Stein and a freelance journalist were subsequently detained by TransCanada security, and handed over to the police.
“Jill Stein has been released from jail,” says Tar Sands Blockade say in their Twitter (Image from twitter user@KXLBlockade)
On her website, www.jillstein.org, the third-party candidate explains she went to the blockade to adress a very important national issue: climate change.
“Everyone needs to step up resistance to climate-killing emissions. Romney and Obama are only talking about the symptoms of climate change in terms of destruction caused by Hurricane Sandy; the blockaders are addressing the cause.”
The Green Party's media coordinator, Scott McLarty, explained to RT that Jill Stein was focusing on the issue as both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney have ignored climate change during the presidential debates that took place earlier in October at Hofstra University.
“We find it reckless and irresponsible that both the Democratic and the Republican candidates for president never once mentioned climate change at all during this debates.”
Earlier this month, police arrested Dr Stein and her running mate, Cheri Honkala, after they tried to enter the site of the second presidential debate at Hofstra University.
The two were protesting against the exclusion of all but the two major political parties from taking part in the debate.
RT has been broadcasting all third-party debates live and will host the third and final debate, which will take place on November 5, from its DC studios. Jill Stein is slated to participate, alongside Gary Johnson.
SANTA ANA – U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein said Wednesday that she hasn't faced off in a debate against her Republican opponent because she's heard nothing from her challenger, Elizabeth Emken, that she needed to debate.
"There's just nothing constructive coming out of their campaign," said the four-term Democratic senator following a meeting with the Register's editorial board. She added that she's been accessible to the public and the media.
U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., sits down with the Orange County Register editorial board at the Register's Santa Ana headquarters Wednesday. Discussion ranged from the Iranian nuclear program response to the attacks in Benghazi and the state of the US economy.
"We've been on the road five days last week, two days this week," she said. "I do regular constituent breakfasts, a couple hundred people a week."
Emken spokesman Mark Standriff scoffed at the explanation and continued to criticize the incumbent's failure to debate.
"That's unworthy of the office she's been holding for two decades and disrespectful of the people she claims to represent," Standriff said.
Feinstein noted that she has debated in the past – John van de Kamp and Pete Wilson when she ran for governor in 1990, and Tom Campbell and Gray Davis in two of her Senate races.
Polls show Emken posing less of a challenge than those four. A September Field Poll put Feinstein at 57 percent and Emken at 31 percent, a 26-point margin that grew from a 19-point advantage in July.
Feinstein has a huge financial advantage as well, having spent $12.4 million through Oct. 17 while Emken has spent $745,000, according to federal disclosures.
The U.S. Mission in Benghazi convened an “emergency meeting” less than a month before the assault that killed Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans, because Al Qaeda had training camps in Benghazi and the consulate could not defend against a “coordinated attack,” according to a classified cable reviewed by Fox News.
Summarizing an Aug. 15 emergency meeting convened by the U.S. Mission in Benghazi, the Aug. 16 cable marked “SECRET” said that the State Department’s senior security officer, also known as the RSO, did not believe the consulate could be protected.
“RSO (Regional Security Officer) expressed concerns with the ability to defend Post in the event of a coordinated attack due to limited manpower, security measures, weapons capabilities, host nation support, and the overall size of the compound,” the cable said.
According to a review of the cable addressed to the Office of the Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, the Emergency Action Committee was also briefed "on the location of approximately ten Islamist militias and AQ training camps within Benghazi … these groups ran the spectrum from Islamist militias, such as the QRF Brigade and Ansar al-Sharia, to ‘Takfirist thugs.’” Each U.S. mission has a so-called Emergency Action Committee that is responsible for security measures and emergency planning.
The details in the cable seemed to foreshadow the deadly Sept. 11 attack on the U.S. compound, which was a coordinated, commando-style assault using direct and indirect fire. Al Qaeda in North Africa and Ansar al-Sharia, both mentioned in the cable, have since been implicated in the consulate attack.
In addition to describing the security situation in Benghazi as “trending negatively,” the cable said explicitly that the mission would ask for more help. “In light of the uncertain security environment, US Mission Benghazi will submit specific requests to US Embassy Tripoli for additional physical security upgrades and staffing needs by separate cover.”
As for specific threats against the U.S., the cable warned the intelligence was not clear on the issue, cautioning that the militias in Benghazi were not concerned with any significant retaliation from the Libyan government, which had apparently lost control in Benghazi. A briefer explained that they “did not have information suggesting that these entities were targeting Americans but did caveat that (there was not) a complete picture of their intentions yet. RSO (Regional Security Officer) noted that the Benghazi militias have become more brazen in their actions and have little fear of reprisal from the (government of Libya.)”
While the administration’s public statements have suggested that the attack came without warning, the Aug. 16 cable seems to undercut those claims. It was a direct warning to the State Department that the Benghazi consulate was vulnerable to attack, that it could not be defended and that the presence of anti-U.S. militias and Al Qaeda was well-known to the U.S. intelligence community.
In a three-page cable on Sept 11, the day Stevens and the three other Americans were killed, Stevens wrote about “growing problems with security” in Benghazi and “growing frustration” with the security forces and Libyan police. The ambassador saw both as “too weak to keep the country secure.”
Fox News asked the State Department to respond to a series of questions about the Aug. 16 cable, including who was specifically charged with reviewing it and whether action was taken by Washington or Tripoli. Fox News also asked, given the specific warnings and the detailed intelligence laid out in the cable, whether the State Department considered extra measures for the consulate in light of the anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks – and if no action was taken, who made that call.
The State Department press office declined to answer specific questions, citing the classified nature of the cable.
"An independent board is conducting a thorough review of the assault on our post in Benghazi," Deputy Spokesman Mark Toner said in written statement. "Once we have the board's comprehensive account of what happened, findings and recommendations, we can fully address these matters."
CHICAGO (Reuters) - The senior executive of the county that includes Chicago dropped a proposed tax on bullets on Wednesday but kept a plan to tax firearms to help defray healthcare expenses associated with the high rate of gun.
"It is very important to us to tax guns because we know that guns are the sources of the incredible violence we have in our neighborhoods," Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle told a news conference. She said 29 percent of guns used in crimes in Chicago were purchased legally in suburban Cook County.
Under the plan, the county would impose a $25 tax on the purchase of firearms. The tax is expected to raise $600,000 in revenue in 2013. Preckwinkle abandoned a proposed tax of 5 cents a bullet because the tax in some cases would have exceeded the price of ammunition.
If approved by the board, the nation's third most populous county with nearly 5.2 million residents could be the first major U.S. metropolitan area to impose a tax as a form of gun control, according to the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence.
There have been 440 murders in Chicago so far this year, surpassing last year's total of 435 and 22.2 percent more than in the same period a year ago, according to Chicago police.
Preckwinkle proposed dedicating $2 million to a violence prevention program, which would primarily provide grants to non-profit organizations with proven experience in violence prevention or community outreach.
She noted that 670 victims of gun violence had been treated by the county's health system last year. The average cost per patient was $52,000.
The Cook County Board of Commissioners is due to vote on the firearm tax proposal on Friday. Commissioner Jesus Garcia, who supports the revised plan, said he thinks it will be approved.
Taxes on buyers or sellers of guns or ammunition have been proposed but failed in six states, including California, Louisiana, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Oklahoma and Pennsylvania, according to the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence.
Tennessee has a hunting-related 10 cent tax on shotgun shells and cartridges that applies to sellers. The money is used to support wildlife resources.
Richard Pearson, executive director of the Illinois State Rifle Association, said the proposal was another scheme to punish law-abiding firearm owners and dealers, and that it would prompt people to purchase weapons elsewhere.
"It's just another thing to drive the business out of state," Pearson said.
Father Michael Pfleger, pastor of Chicago's St. Sabina Church, said the tax would make a difference, just as cigarette taxes affected cigarette consumption. He called gun violence "the undeclared disaster," and said that in his South Side neighborhood a gun could be bought for as little as $20.
"We are a city with more guns than computers in many neighborhoods and that's unacceptable," Pfleger said.
Ah, the good Reverend Pfleger. You remember him Rev. Wright's buddy and fellow black liberation theologist. Of course, it couldn't be the culture of the people. It must be the guns. Why no knife tax. I'm sure there are plenty of those kind of injuries too. Stupid is as stupid does.
Ten years too late, it’s good riddance to wind farms – one of the most dangerous delusions of our age
PUBLISHED: 19:31 EST, 30 October 2012 | UPDATED: 03:04 EST, 31 October 2012
The significance of yesterday’s shock announce-ment by our Energy Minister John Hayes that the Government plans to put a firm limit on the building of any more onshore windfarms is hard to exaggerate.
On the face of it, this promises to be the beginning of an end to one of the greatest and most dangerous political delusions of our time.
For years now, the plan to cover hundreds of square miles of the British countryside with ever more wind turbines has been the centrepiece of Britain’s energy policy — and one supported by all three major political parties.
Back in 2008, when Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced his wish to see the country spend £100 billion on windfarms, the only response from the Tory leader David Cameron was to say that he should have done it sooner.
It was the only way, they all agreed, Britain could meet our commitment to the EU that, by 2020, we must produce nearly a third of our electricity from ‘renewables’ — with the largest part provided by tens of thousands more wind turbines.
Yet now, out of the blue, has come this announcement by the Coalition Energy Minister that from now on there is to be a moratorium on building onshore turbines other than those for which consent has already been given.
What made this even more piquant was the fact that Mr Hayes chose to drop this bombshell just hours before attending a conference in Glasgow staged by RenewableUK, the professional lobby group for Britain’s wind industry.
These are the very people who for years have been making fortunes out of the greatest public subsidy bonanza of modern times. Now Mr Hayes is to stop their gravy train in its tracks.
It will give them the biggest shock of their professional lives.
The ramifications of such a policy U-turn stretch in all directions, not least to Brussels, where our EU colleagues won’t be taken in for a moment by Mr Hayes’s disingenuous claim that Britain doesn’t need more onshore windfarms because we are now on course to meet our ‘renewables’ target without them.
But nowhere will this announcement be greeted with more delirious surprise than in all those hundreds of communities across the land where outraged local protest groups have formed in ever greater numbers to fight the onward march of what they see as the greatest threat to Britain’s countryside for centuries.
I have been following this extraordinary story for ten years ever since, in 2002, I first began looking carefully at what really lay behind this deceptive obsession with the charms of wind power. It didn’t take me long, talking to experts and reading up on the technical facts, to see that the fashionable enthusiasm for wind energy was based on a colossal illusion.
I first warned about what I called ‘the greatest mistake in our history’ in an article in the Mail almost ten years ago.
I described the claim that it would be the answer to all our future energy problems as a catastrophic failure of judgment. I feared that windpower was stupendously inefficient and ludicrously expensive and that by falling for the greatest energy hoax of our time, the Labour government could be consigning Britain to a very dark future.
So unreliable are wind turbines — thanks to the wind’s constant vagaries — that they are one of the most inefficient means of producing electricity ever devised.
Indeed, the amount of power they generate is so derisory that, even now, when we have built 3,500 turbines, the average amount of power we get from all of them combined is no more than what we get from a single medium-size, gas-fired power station, built at only fraction of the cost.
No one would dream of building windfarms unless the Government had arranged to pay their developers a subsidy of 100 per cent on all the power they produce, paid for by all of us through a hidden charge on our electricity bills.
The only way the industry managed to fool politicians into accepting this crazy deal was by subterfuge — referring to turbines only in terms of their ‘capacity’ (i.e. what they could produce if the wind was blowing at optimum speeds 24 hours of every day). The truth is that their average actual output is barely a quarter of that figure.
Yet it was on this deception that the industry managed to fool pretty well everyone that windfarms could make a contribution to Britain’s energy needs four times larger than reality — and thus was ‘the great wind scam’ launched on its way.
For years our politicians continued to fall for this racket, as they ruthlessly bent the planning rules to ensure that nothing stood in the way of the turbines.
Meanwhile, ever more rural communities fought to stop the countryside around their homes being threatened with these monsters.
At long last, the penny began to drop with a growing number of MPs being besieged by constituents who wanted to know why our green and pleasant land should be disfigured for no obvious purpose other than to enrich the developers, and landowners such as David Cameron’s father-in-law Sir Reginald Sheffield, who has cheerfully admitted that the turbines on his Lincolnshire estate earn him £1,000 a day.
Earlier this year, 100 MPs, led by Chris Heaton-Harris, MP for Daventry, called for an end to building any more onshore turbines, on the grounds that the public should no longer be expected to pay out hundreds of millions of pounds a year in subsidies for something which was both useless and a crazy waste of money.
It was this groundswell of opposition, coming mainly from the Tory shires but winning support from MPs of all parties, which recently led David Cameron to appoint John Hayes as our new Energy Minister — with the private brief that he must find a way to curb those windfarms which are so massively unpopular.
Hence last night’s startling U-turn — which will destroy the long-standing all-party consensus on the issue.
The Lib Dems — led by our technically illiterate Energy and Climate Change Secretary Ed Davey — the Labour Party and Brussels will scarcely be able to contain their anger.
For countless others, this blast of realism will send up a cheer of relief across Britain — apart from Scotland, which has devolved powers. First Minister Alex Salmond has laughably pledged that, within eight years, it must derive all its electricity from ‘renewables’. (He has never explained what happens when the wind drops.)
In terms of seeing off the great wind delusion, however, this is only what Churchill once described as ‘the end of the beginning’.
When all those MPs finally became brave enough to recognise that onshore wind turbines are both useless and a waste of money, what they omitted to say was that the same objections apply twice over to those we are erecting in the seas around our coasts.
It’s not just that the thousands of offshore turbines that the Government still wants built will not only produce amounts of electricity scarcely less pitiful than those onshore. Because they are so much more expensive to build, they attract subsidies not at 100 per cent but at 200 per cent.
Thus, every reason that led John Hayes to strike such a blow yesterday for common sense in respect of onshore windfarms also applies, with redoubled force, to those vast offshore wind factories.
Until our politicians finally have the courage of their newfound convictions and halt this madness, too, one of the most bizarre follies of our age will not have been finally chucked where it belongs — firmly into the rubbish bin of history.