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The public has recognized that Corporate, Chamber of Commerce Republicans,
and Wall Street Democrats
are the same party, and serve the same constituency,
and it’s NOT THEM.

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Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Fakirs of Reality

Guest Commentary by Edward Cline:

Raymond Ibrahim, an associate director of The Middle East Forum, wrote an article for Pajamas Media, “The Ultimate Lesson of Egypt’s Faked Photo.” In it he explains why a leading Mideast newspaper, Al Ahram, decided to run a doctored photograph of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak.

One of the most widely circulated newspapers in the world, Egypt’s Al Ahram, recently ran a fake picture depicting Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak walking in front of U.S. President Barack Obama and a pack of other Mideast leaders [at the White House]. In fact, based on the original photo, Mubarak, the octogenarian, appeared trailing last.
So poor in pride and apparently also in intellectual honesty, and desperate for recognition of some important role that Egypt was playing in world affairs, the editor rationalized the deception:

Al Ahram editor Ossama al-Saraya defended the fraudulent photo by referring to it as an “expressionist photo … a brief, live and true expression of the prominent stance of President Mubarak in the Palestinian issue, his unique role in leading it before Washington.” All well and good, but beyond the euphemisms and rationalizations, the fact remains: by portraying something that was not true, the state-run Al Ahram intentionally tried to deceive the people.
الإنترنت هو عظيم! The Internet is great! Some Egyptians, however, don’t appreciate the effort, reports Ibrahim.

As Wael Khalil, the Egyptian blogger who first called attention to the altered photo, pointed out, this anecdote is a snapshot of the routine deception the Egyptian government foists on the people: “They lie to us all the time. Instead of addressing the real issues, they just Photoshop it.”
Very reminiscent of how President Barack Obama and his administration report the successful “reality” of their programs and policies in their repeated and unsuccessful attempts to deceive the American people. But, that is another story. It is also reminiscent of the “toilet paper” fatwa pronounced on a German blogger who reported that Fatwa No. 40378 in the Encyclopedia of Fatwas specified that the New Testament and Torah could be used as toilet paper. Ever defiant, she also featured a graphic of the Koran as a roll of not-so-Charmin. That exercise in freedom of speech earned her a death fatwa. Nevertheless, Fatwa No. 40378 was removed from the Encyclopedia site in an attempt to deceive. Read the story here.

However, I am reminded by Ibrahim’s article of an episode of “Seinfeld,” in which George, the neurotic moocher, liar, schemer, and ne’er-do-well, buys a car from a used car salesman who tells him, quite tongue-in-cheek, that it was once owned by Jon Voight, the actor. George buys the car for that sole reason, and his chronically tenuous self-esteem is inflated because now he can boast to distraction that he owns a car once owned and driven by a famous person. It turns out that the car was indeed owned by a “John Voight,” by a near-namesake but not by the actor. George’s new-found self-esteem rapidly deflates like a defective balloon.

The episode described by Ibrahim here of the newspaper faking a photograph of Hosni Mubarak’s falsified place in the scheme of things is equally pathetic, and also points to a problem not only with Islam but with Muslim “culture.” If by a “culture” we mean a set of fundamental beliefs and practices shared by a specific group of people, then Muslim “culture” is fraught with many deterministic and nihilistic premises grounded on one core tenet which Islam shares with Christianity and any other religion: the assertion of an unprovable existence of a supreme being, one who authored creation and who is either omniscient or omnipotent, or, paradoxically, both.

The name of this being is immaterial. The formation of a moral code based on the belief in the existence and power of a ghost that no one has ever seen (except, apocryphally, by Moses in the Old Testament) is destined, and arguably even intended, to inculcate and encourage a dishonesty (in this case, Koran-sanctioned taqiya) that manifests itself in countless forms even among those who are not particularly avid devotees to the religion, including indifferent Muslims-in-name-only (“moderates”) and alleged secularists such as Hosni Mubarak and the newspaper’s editor. The tenet requires men to work against the evidence of their senses, and often to pretend that some things are “real” and significant, even though no one can observe them. It requires them to fake reality, to appeal to an attribute of man that the creed denigrates (faith is "superior" to reason) in order to perpetrate or perpetuate a lie, a fraud, or a myth.

While dwelling on how Islam and Muslim culture are mutually crippling in terms how the creed especially corrupts a society that is not entirely founded on an esteem for truth, Ibrahim notes:

…if Muslim culture is more tenacious and consequential than Muslim doctrine, still, the former has strong roots in the latter. Thus, while radical Muslims consciously seek to uphold the letter of the law, moderates unconsciously adhere to its cultural, social, and political manifestations.

Lest one still doubt that aspects of a religion can become casually embedded in the social fabric of a civilization, one need look no further than to Christianity, which continues to exhibit a strong, albeit unconscious, influence on the secular West, including upon those who most disavow it. After all, tolerance, human rights, a desire for peace, being the “nice guy”— indeed, all of those concepts most championed by today’s liberal secularist, did not develop out of a vacuum, but rather out of a 2,000-year-old Christian heritage that preached what was then absurd and today aberrant, but which nonetheless jibes so well with the West’s secular mindset. Surely not a coincidence.
The phenomena of dishonesty and a willingness to fake reality may be observed in cultures dominated by Christianity, as well. Witness the recent statements by Pope Benedict XVI in Britain that atheism or “godlessness” can only lead to Nazism, when in fact Nazism was founded on its own virulent brand of mysticism, with Hitler as its “prophet” (and it was mostly German Protestants who buttressed his regime, with a major assist by the knowledge-repressing Vatican) espousing the superiority of the German race and culture, Germany’s “rightful” place in the scheme of things, its “destiny” to rule the globe (an Islamic dream, as well), the elevation of instinct and force over reason, and so on.

In his address, the Pope spoke of "a Nazi tyranny that wished to eradicate God from society.” He went on to urge the UK to guard against "aggressive forms of secularism.
He said: "Even in our own lifetimes we can recall how Britain and her leaders stood against a Nazi tyranny that wished to eradicate God from society and denied our common humanity to many, especially the Jews, who were thought unfit to live. As we reflect on the sobering lessons of atheist extremism of the 20th century, let us never forget how the exclusion of God, religion and virtue from public life leads ultimately to a truncated vision of man and of society and thus a reductive vision of a person and his destiny."
Churchill and Roosevelt did not fight Nazi tyranny solely because it sought to “eradicate God from society.” They fought it because it was tyranny. Benedict knows this. But, there he was, faking reality, begging the faithful not to abandon God by listening to those advocates of “atheist extremism,” because that would only lead to a repetition of the horrors of the 20th century.

But, there is an old, non-atheistic nemesis rising unopposed, and that is Islam. Historically, Christianity has acted like a ball-and-chain on Western civilization, hampering its progress and muting its capacity to foster human happiness. Nevertheless, men were and still are able to move forward. Islam promises destroy Western civilization from within and without, to condemn men to a state of miserable and permanent stagnation, and is the author of horrors past, present, and for the foreseeable future.

I disagree with Ibrahim’s random list of benign concepts that were “casually embedded” by a ubiquitous Christian morality in Western civilization -- he omits individual rights, which are not the same as the vague notion of unspecified “human rights,” which any statist or power-seeker can champion by just filling in the blanks, while “tolerance” can also mean a toleration, and, by extension, a sanction of the irrational -- but he is right that “the teachings of a religion can subtly color the worldview of its non-observant posterity.” Not only subtly, but dramatically, such as America's self-sacrificing effort to "remake" Iraq and Afghanistan into so-called 'democracies."

The ultimate solution for “moderate” Muslims who wish to reform Islam and chuck its poisonous and tribalist influence in Muslim “culture” (whatever that may be, aside from the equally faked “Golden Age” of Islam and Cordoba) is to abandon Islam altogether and discover and advocate reason in all things, especially in all things moral. They must acknowledge, in such a commitment, that there is no room in reason for Allah, God, or faith. They must grasp that Islam cannot be “reformed” without turning it into a “ghost” of its former self.

They, as Ayaan Hirsi Ali and other notable “apostates“ have done, must recognize that Islam, like Christianity, is a used car lot clunker or a money pit and was never a great deal even when it was new. It was once owned by scimitar-wielding thug who falsely claimed it won a NASCAR race, but it will require fortunes in labor and parts to keep it in running order as a “living“ religion. ”Moderate” Muslims should just cut their losses and walk away from it, and discover a philosophy of reason.

Reality cannot be Photoshopped. And the man who begs that it be, is a fakir who deserves the scorn of all who value the truth.

Crossposted at The Dougout
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So I heard that the PLA are the good guys and want a two state solution

Note the author

Arafat ordered Hamas attacks against Israel in 2000
By KHALED ABU TOAMEH
29/09/2010
Former PA chairman issued instructions to terror group when peace talks were failing; Hamas leader makes revelations during university lecture.

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The late Palestinian Authority chairman Yasser Arafat had instructed Hamas to launch terror attacks against Israel when he realized that peace talks with Israel weren't going anywhere, Mahmoud Zahar, one of the Hamas leaders in the Gaza Strip, revealed on Tuesday.

"President Arafat instructed Hamas to carry out a number of military operations in the heart of the Jewish state after he felt that his negotiations with the Israeli government then had failed," Zahar told students and lecturers at the Islamic University in Gaza City.
Zahar did not specify when and how Arafat instructed Hamas to launch the "military operations" - most of which were suicide bombings targeting Israeli civilians.

However, it is believed the reference is to Arafat's response to the failure of the Camp David summit in 2000.

This was the first time that a senior Hamas official disclosed that some of the Hamas suicide bombings during the second intifada, which erupted 10 years ago, were ordered by Arafat. Until now it was widely believed that Arafat had only ordered his Fatah militiamen to carry out terror attacks on Israel.

According to various testimonies, Arafat ordered the armed wing of Fatah, Aqsa Martyrs Brigades, to launch terror attacks against Israel after he realized that the government of then-prime minister Ehud Barak was not going to meet all of his demands.

Zahar claimed that Arafat's decision to negotiate with Israel was one of the factors leading to his "assassination." He said the decision was a grave mistake and a tactical error on Arafat's part.

Zahar urged PA President Mahmoud Abbas to pull out immediately from the talks with Israel.

He claimed that the PA's security coordination with Israel has resulted in the elimination of a number of Hamas men in the West Bank at the hands of the IDF.

He added that Hamas now was better able to smuggle weapons and other military equipment into the Gaza Strip in preparation for the next confrontation with Israel.

Zahar said that a growing number of Palestinians were now convinced that the armed struggle was the only way to deal with the Jewish state.

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Hmm. . . Maybe This Time It Really WAS The Jews

I certainly hope so.

New York Times:

In a Computer Worm, a Possible Biblical Clue
By JOHN MARKOFF and DAVID E. SANGER

Deep inside the computer worm that some specialists suspect is aimed at slowing Iran’s race for a nuclear weapon lies what could be a fleeting reference to the Book of Esther, the Old Testament tale in which the Jews pre-empt a Persian plot to destroy them.

That use of the word “Myrtus” — which can be read as an allusion to Esther — to name a file inside the code is one of several murky clues that have emerged as computer experts try to trace the origin and purpose of the rogue Stuxnet program, which seeks out a specific kind of command module for industrial equipment.

Not surprisingly, the Israelis are not saying whether Stuxnet has any connection to the secretive cyberwar unit it has built inside Israel’s intelligence service. Nor is the Obama administration, which while talking about cyberdefenses has also rapidly ramped up a broad covert program, inherited from the Bush administration, to undermine Iran’s nuclear program. In interviews in several countries, experts in both cyberwar and nuclear enrichment technology say the Stuxnet mystery may never be solved.

There are many competing explanations for myrtus, which could simply signify myrtle, a plant important to many cultures in the region. But some security experts see the reference as a signature allusion to Esther, a clear warning in a mounting technological and psychological battle as Israel and its allies try to breach Tehran’s most heavily guarded project. Others doubt the Israelis were involved and say the word could have been inserted as deliberate misinformation, to implicate Israel.

“The Iranians are already paranoid about the fact that some of their scientists have defected and several of their secret nuclear sites have been revealed,” one former intelligence official who still works on Iran issues said recently. “Whatever the origin and purpose of Stuxnet, it ramps up the psychological pressure.”

So a calling card in the code could be part of a mind game, or sloppiness or whimsy from the coders.

The malicious code has appeared in many countries, notably China, India, Indonesia and Iran. But there are tantalizing hints that Iran’s nuclear program was the primary target. Officials in both the United States and Israel have made no secret of the fact that undermining the computer systems that control Iran’s huge enrichment plant at Natanz is a high priority. (The Iranians know it, too: They have never let international inspectors into the control room of the plant, the inspectors report, presumably to keep secret what kind of equipment they are using.)

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The Backstreet Bedouin-boys

They're all the rage in Riyadh.

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Weasel Zippers:

Visitor Logs Show Muslim Man Whose Home Was Raided by FBI Raided For Ties to Palestinian Terrorists Visited White House in April…

This regime is infested with radicals from top to bottom…



Here’s the AP report on Hatem Abudayyeh’s arrest:
FBI agents in Chicago took a laptop and documents from the home of a
Palestinian-American anti-war activist in an attempt to silence his advocacy, an attorney said Sunday.

The FBI on Friday searched eight addresses in Minneapolis and Chicago, including the home of Hatem Abudayyeh, who is the executive director of the Arab American Action Network, attorney Jim Fennerty told The Associated Press.

“The government’s trying to quiet activists,” Fennerty said. “This case is really scary.”

More than half a dozen agents went to Abudayyeh’s home on Friday and took any documents containing the word “Palestine,” Fennerty said.

Abudayyeh, a U.S. citizen whose parent immigrated from Palestine, wasn’t home at the time of the raid because he was at a hospital with his mother who is battling liver cancer, Fennerty said.
Now here’s a screenshot of the White House visitor log showing Hatem Abudayyeh visiting on April 22, 2010:


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Emirates 24/7 h/t Will:

Up to 20 Britons training in Pak terror camps
By AFPPublished Thursday, September 30, 2010

Up to 20 Britons are undertaking terrorist training in Pakistan to launch attacks in Britain, a report said Thursday, citing intelligence sources.

Al-Qaeda and associated militant groups are training the young Muslims, who hold British passports, in Pakistan's tribal areas, Britain's Daily Telegraph newspaper said.

They are being trained to use firearms and explosives in order to carry out shooting sprees in Britain, intelligence sources are cited as saying in the daily paper.

"We believe there are 15 to 20 Britons in the camps," a source in Islamabad told the Telegraph, on condition of anonymity.

The report came after it emerged that Western intelligence agencies had uncovered an Al-Qaeda plot by Pakistan-based militants to attack Britain, France and Germany, according to security sources and media reports.

Militants were planning simultaneous strikes in London and cities in France and Germany, in attacks similar to those in Mumbai two years ago, British and US media reported.

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Foreign Policy:

CIA chief Leon Panetta briefs Pakistan intelligence chief on major attack
Posted By Josh Rogin Wednesday, September 29, 2010 - 11:38 PM

The U.S. government is working furiously to counter a plot to attack several European public targets, CIA chief Leon Panetta told the head of Pakistan's intelligence community Wednesday.

The plot, to attack multiple public targets in several European capitals, was slated to occur in late November, according to Panetta. After capturing one of the prospective attackers en route from Pakistan's FATA region, the U.S. government authorized the CIA to step up drone strikes inside Pakistan to unprecedented levels while working with various allied governments to kill or capture the two to three dozen militants reportedly preparing for the operation.

The strikes being planned focus on soft targets, such as tourist attractions and public meeting spaces. No targets were believed to be in the United States, although the targets could very well have American citizens present.

Panetta, traveling in Islamabad, met with Lt. Gen. Ahmed Shuja Pasha, the head of Pakistan's Inter Services Intelligence agency (ISI) Wednesday to brief him on what American intelligence services have discovered about a series of Mumbai-style attacks planned by al Qaeda in cooperation with Pakistan's Haqqani Network and Lashkar-e-Taiba, the military group responsible for the devastating attacks in India in November 2008.

The Cable received a read-out from a high-level source who was briefed directly on the Panetta-Pasha meeting. The CIA is asking Pakistan to allow expanded permissions to increase the intensity of drone strikes inside Pakistan -- which are already at record levels --and allow greater access for U.S. and associated forces operating inside Pakistan.

According to The Cable's source, Panetta told Pasha that the U.S. already has in custody one of the alleged attackers, a German citizen of Pakistani origin named Siddiqui. He was captured leaving Pakistan's FATA region and is now currently being held at Bagram Air Force Base in Afghanistan.

The attacks were planned for late November and allied intelligence agencies are employing all resources at their disposal to round up the rest of the perpetrators, with the understanding that the threat has not yet been neutralized.

"Unless you have killed or captured all 24 to 36 operatives, how can you be sure the plot is foiled?" the source said.

According to the source briefed on the Panetta-Pasha meeting, there were no targets inside the United States for the plot, but the high-value European targets that were reportedly on the list of sites to be attacked could very well have American citizens present.

European governments have already been taking precautionary measures. The Eiffel Tower was evacuated for the second time Tuesday and the U.K. government is holding its official threat warning level at "severe," the second highest level, which means that "a terrorist attack is highly likely."

Panetta told Pasha that the drone strikes will escalate further in the coming days and pressed him for information that might aid the search and increased access to Pakistani intelligence data on the groups involved.

Pasha, in turn, asked Panetta for any remaining intelligence the U.S. is holding on the groups and individuals it was targeting. Pasha wants the ISI to be in the loop on any related CIA operations. The tone of the meeting was friendly, but extremely tense, the source said.

The Pakistani government is cooperating fully with the CIA, but concerns linger that elements not completely under the government's control may still be holding out, protecting friends in and allegiances with groups such as the Haqqani Network.

The crisis couldn't come at a worse time for the Pakistani civilian government led by President Asif Ali Zardari. Zardari has been under increasing attack by elements in the Pakistani military and the ISI, who have been pressing for his ouster and using elements within the media and judiciary to bolster their cause.

Pasha, as well as Army Chief Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, is said to be working with the civilian government on the imminent threat. But simultaneously, elements of the military and intelligence services are increasing their behind-the-scenes opposition to the Zardari government.

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton declined to comment on the specifics of the threat Wednesday after meeting with EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton in Washington.

"Now with regard to the intelligence reports of threats, we are not going to comment on specific intelligence, as doing so threatens to undermine intelligence operations that are critical in protecting the United States and our allies," Clinton said.

"As we have repeatedly said, we know that al-Qaida and its network of terrorists wishes to attack both European and U.S. targets. We continue to work very closely with our European allies on the threat from international terrorism, including the role that al-Qaida continues to play."

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He's Waiting for Another Attack?

If you read Epa's pieces below (and you really should) I'd say he may have given up on that line of thinking.

Because if he really is waiting for an excuse, and the American public gets wind that it happened and he knew about the camps, he's going to wish all he had to worry about were The Tea Parties.

But then again, perhaps the contradictory imminent threat information, coupled with the release of this book, would explain the sudden increase in drone attacks and now these incursions.

Newsmax:

Woodward Book: Pakistan Has 150 Terrorist Camps
Wednesday, 29 Sep 2010
By: William Chedsey

In its third and final excerpt from Bob Woodward’s new book, “Obama’s Wars,” The Washington Post revealed that the U.S. military has identified and secretly targeted about 150 terrorist camps in Pakistan, but that the Obama administration is waiting for another terrorist attack on the United States before bombing the sites.

In May, Woodward reports, President Obama sent his national security adviser, retired Marine Gen. James L. Jones, and CIA Director Leon Panetta to Pakistan. At a meeting in Islamabad, Jones told Pakistani President Asif Ali Zardari that, if there were a successful future terrorist attack against the United States, “Obama would be forced to do things that Pakistan would not like,” Woodward wrote.

“No one will be able to stop the response and consequences,” Jones told Zardari. “This is not a threat, just a statement of political fact.”

According to Woodward, “Jones did not give specifics about what he meant. The Obama administration had a ‘retribution’ plan, one of the most sensitive and secretive of all military contingencies. The plan called for bombing about 150 identified terrorist camps in a brutal, punishing attack inside Pakistan.”

But some critics of the president are wondering why America should have to wait for another terror attack before going after so many known terror camps, where Islamist operatives are undoubtedly being trained for attacks against the United States, Israel, and our allies in Europe.

A Washington Times editorial on Tuesday warned, “It’s a mistake to wait for an attack on our homeland. If the plan is in place and the targets selected, why not attack them now?”

The conservative editorial page even offered some political counsel to the president: “If America suffers a major terrorist attack on President Obama’s watch that could have been pre-empted, he won’t be able to count on the national unity Mr. Bush enjoyed nine years ago.”

Gen. Jones and spy chief Panetta both told the Pakistani president that, as Woodward described it, “There might be no way to save the strategic partnership” between the United States and the Pakistani government if a successful attack struck the U.S. homeland.

“If that happens, all bets are off,” Panetta told President Zardari, according to Woodward.

Pakistan, with a strong presence of both Taliban and high-ranking al-Qaida terrorist operatives, is the only Islamic state in the world possessing nuclear weapons.

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The Man has NO CLUE - McDonald's May Drop Health Plan

Sign outside McDonald's Plaza, one of the four...
WSJ:

McDonald's Corp. has warned federal regulators that it could drop its health insurance plan for nearly 30,000 hourly restaurant workers unless regulators waive a new requirement of the U.S. health overhaul.

The move is one of the clearest indications that new rules may disrupt workers' health plans as the law ripples through the real world.

Trade groups representing restaurants and retailers say low-wage employers might halt their coverage if the government doesn't loosen a requirement for "mini-med" plans, which offer limited benefits to some 1.4 million Americans.

The requirement concerns the percentage of premiums that must be spent on benefits.

While many restaurants don't offer health coverage, McDonald's provides mini-med plans for workers at 10,500 U.S. locations, most of them franchised. A single worker can pay $14 a week for a plan that caps annual benefits at $2,000, or about $32 a week to get coverage up to $10,000 a year.

Last week, a senior McDonald's official informed the Department of Health and Human Services that the restaurant chain's insurer won't meet a 2011 requirement to spend at least 80% to 85% of its premium revenue on medical care.

McDonald's and trade groups say the percentage, called a medical loss ratio, is unrealistic for mini-med plans because of high administrative costs owing to frequent worker turnover, combined with relatively low spending on claims.Democrats who drafted the health law wanted the requirement to prevent insurers from spending too much on executive salaries, marketing and other costs that they said don't directly help patients.

McDonald's move is the latest indication of possible unintended consequences from the health overhaul. Dozens of companies have taken charges against earnings--totaling more than $1 billion--over a tax change in prescription-drug benefits for retirees.

More recently, insurers have proposed a round of double-digit premium increases and said new coverage mandates in the law are partly to blame. HHS has criticized the proposed increases as unwarranted.

Democrats, looking toward midterm elections in which the health overhaul is an issue, say it already has stopped insurance practices they call abusive, has given rebates to seniors with high out-of-pocket prescription costs and has allowed parents to keep children on their insurance plans until they turn 26.

McDonald's, in a memo to federal officials, said "it would be economically prohibitive for our carrier to continue offering" the mini-med plan unless it got an exemption from the requirement to spend 80% to 85% of premiums on benefits. Officials said McDonald's would probably have to hit the 85% figure, which applies to larger group plans. Its insurer, BCS Insurance Group of Oak Brook Terrace, Ill., declined to comment.

McDonald's didn't disclose what the plan's current medical loss ratio was.

The issue of limited-benefit plans has also hit colleges, which face the same 80-to-85% requirement beginning next year.

"Having to drop our current mini-med offering would represent a huge disruption to our 29,500 participants," said McDonald's memo, which was reviewed by The Wall Street Journal. "It would deny our people this current benefit that positively impacts their lives and protects their health--and would leave many without an affordable, comparably designed alternative until 2014."

The health law expands Medicaid and offers large subsidies to lower-income people to buy coverage, but those provisions don't kick in until 2014.

Federal officials say there's no guarantee they can grant mini-med carriers a waiver. They say the answer may not come by November, when many employers require employees to sign up for the coming year's benefits.

The government is waiting for the association of state insurance commissioners to draft recommendations. The head of the association's health-insurance committee, Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger, said she doesn't think these types of mini-med plans deserve an exemption.

"If they are sold as comprehensive coverage, we expect them to meet the same [medical-loss ratio] standards as other health plans," she said.


This administration has made a SHAMBLES of everything it has touched which is to say, EVERYTHING. They have NO IDEA what they are doing since they are experimenting with social theories, whose implementation have already failed around the world and throughout history. Yet they persist since the theory must be correct because they have chosen it.

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This Week On The Gathering Storm

Listen to The Gathering Storm Radio Show, hosted by WC and Always On Watch. The show broadcasts live every Friday beginning at noon, Pacific Time.

The call-in number is 646-915-9870.

Callers welcome!

Our scheduled guest this week is Heidianne Jackson.

Listen to the October 1, 2010 edition of The Gathering Storm Radio Show, live or later, by CLICKING HERE.

UPCOMING SHOWS
October 8: IQ al Rassooli
October 15: Midnight Rider
October 22: IQ al Rassooli
October 29: Az Zaqqum with Freaky Fatwa Friday, just in time for Halloween

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The view from the TUMOR - Pakistan's Frontier Post

Presented without commercial interruption, there will be a lot of questions you should be asking yourself after reading this one:frontier post.jpg

New U.S. Raids on Pakistan Constitute 'Naked Aggression'

"It's high time that the Pakistani government wake up to the potential costs of its trickery with its own people. ... Even on Sunday, as ISAF officials and their Afghan puppets were crowing that their gunships had killed 'militants' in two sorties in North Waziristan, local politicians were in complete denial that any incursion had occurred."


These attacks are, plain and simple, a naked aggression against Pakistan by the Afghanistan-based and NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), which is to say, America. What else could they be? On Sunday, two of their helicopter gunships intruded into Pakistan and killed over thirty people, claiming they were militants. A Foreign Office spokesman said that Pakistan had protested to NATO/ISAF over the incursion, yet the very next day their gunships trespassed into Pakistani territory again and slaughtered another six people.
ISAF insists that it has a mandate for hot pursuit into Pakistani territory and targeted "militants" who attacked coalition forces in Afghanistan from Pakistan and had been fleeing after the assault. Our foreign spokesman denied such a mandate for ISAF, but his assertion must be taken with a pinch of salt. Islamabad has long clamored about how the incessant U.S. drone attacks are stark violations of our territorial sovereignty, yet it's clear beyond a shadow of a doubt that these incursions carry the tacit support of the Pakistani State, if not its explicit acquiescence.
There is a foul air about the acts of Pakistani officialdom: it keeps too many things secret from its own people while playing the obedient and loyal slave to Western capitals, particularly Washington. After every drone incursion, it goes so far as to instantly endorse American claims of killing militants, while the locals often wail that innocent civilians, commonly composed of women and children, have been murdered. Even on Sunday, as ISAF officials and their Afghan puppets were crowing that their gunships had killed "militants" in two sorties in North Waziristan, local politicians were in complete denial that any incursion had occurred. Ultimately, the officials grudgingly bleated that only one assault had taken place, and that it occurred in Kurram Agency and not North Waziristan, where Monday's attacks took place.

It's high time that the Pakistani government wake up to the potential costs of its trickery with its own people. It must know that, for all intents and purposes, the game is up for the U.S.-led occupiers in Afghanistan. Their soldiers know it, their commanders know it, their political bosses know it, and even their embedded journalists are now talking of the war being unwinnable. This frustration escalated sharply after the Marja adventure, which coalition forces thought would be a showcase for President Barack Obama's troop-surge, but which has turned into a humiliating fiasco. The occupiers are in despair and growing desperate to cut and run, particularly as their own domestic publics, even in America, are becoming increasingly opposed to this war and want their army home at once.
Even Obama would find it hard to stay beyond the middle of next year. On top of the war's snowballing unpopularity and the growing divisions within his administration, with a significant segment calling for a pullout, there are compelling political reasons to do so. A continuing stream of American soldiers in body bags and a yearly drain of $100 billion on the recession-hit U.S. economy, added to the economic woes of a skeptical public, could hurt his bid for recapturing the presidency. He would certainly be loath to risk that for a military adventure that has obviously gone irreversibly wrong. However, he wouldn't want to leave with his tail between his legs, but with a show of victory, no matter how false. Extending the war into Pakistan, in whatever fashion, would thus come naturally to him and other occupiers as a way to drive home a deceitful impression to their people that the war had been won in Afghanistan, that only Pakistan remained to be tackled, and that they had tackled it.
So they've escalated from drone attacks on our territory to gunship assaults, which in all probability will intensify in the days ahead. Don't forget that during the campaign, Obama had spoken of hot pursuit into Pakistan. Prime Minister Gilani must immediately hold an inter-agency meeting on this new U.S.-led adventurism and decide on how to respond, which should be tangible and no ruse. Otherwise the occupiers will go back laughing from Afghanistan while we're left in the lurch with our tribal compatriots unappeasably angry at Islamabad and the rest of our disdainful political and military establishment.
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NATO says aircraft entered Pakistan, killed "armed individuals"
30 Sep 2010 13:21:07 GMT
Source: Reuters
KABUL, Sept 30 (Reuters) - NATO aircraft crossed the border into Pakistan on Thursday morning and killed "several armed individuals", the alliance said in a statement, after Pakistan said a cross-border airstrike killed three border guards.

Aircraft from the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) initially crossed the border briefly while targeting suspected insurgents who were firing on a coalition base from a position inside Afghanistan, the statement said.

They were then fired on by people in Pakistan, and crossed the border again to target that group.

"Operating in self-defence, the ISAF aircraft entered into Pakistani airspace killing several armed individuals," the statement said.

The statement did not say if ISAF thought those killed were border guards, and when asked for clarification, an ISAF spokeswoman said both sides were still investigating the incident. (Reporting by Sayed Salahuddin; Editing by Emma Graham-Harrison)
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Obama is right ... there IS A CANCER IN PAKISTAN

There is apparently, a documented terror attack coming the west's way which caused a paroxysm of action around the world in western European nations, American highways and cities, and not coincidentally resulting in a measurable, large increase in drone attacks to KILL BAD GUYS and anyone STUPID ENOUGH to remain in their vicinity. Presumably they remain so because they agree with the goals of these mass murderers, or mass murderer wannabees.


friendly pakistan.jpg

And now....

Officials: Pakistan Blocks NATO Supply Trucks

PARACHINAR, Pakistan -- Pakistan blocked a vital supply route for U.S. and NATO troops in Afghanistan on Thursday in apparent retaliation for an alleged cross-border helicopter strike by the coalition that killed three Pakistani frontier troops.

The blockade appeared to be a major escalation in tensions between Pakistan and the United States. A permanent stoppage of supply trucks would place massive strains on NATO and hurt the Afghan war effort.

"We will have to see whether we are allies or enemies," Pakistani Interior Minister Rehman Malik said of the border incident, without mentioning the blockade.

NATO said it was investigating Pakistani reports that coalition aircraft had mistakenly attacked its forces. The coalition has on at least one other occasion acknowledged mistakenly killing Pakistani security forces stationed close to the border.

Over the weekend, NATO helicopters fired on targets in Pakistan at least two times, killing several suspected insurgents they had pursued over the border from Afghanistan. Pakistan's government protested the attacks, which came in a month during which there have been an unprecedented number of U.S. drone missile strikes in the northwest, inflaming already pervasive anti-American sentiment among Pakistanis.

The surge in attacks and apparent increased willingness by NATO to attack targets on the border, or just inside Pakistan, could be a sign the coalition is losing patience with Pakistan, which has long been accused of harboring militants in its lawless tribal regions.

Pakistani security officials said Thursday's deadly airstrike took place on a checkpoint in the Upper Kurram region.

The dead men were from a paramilitary force tasked with safeguarding the border, the security officials said. Their bodies were taken to Parachinar, the region's largest town, one official said. Three troops also were wounded.

The security officials spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation and because in some cases they were not authorized to release the information to the media.

The border between Pakistan and Afghanistan is unmarked. Border troops wear uniforms that resemble the traditional Pakistani dress of a long shirt and baggy trousers, which could make it hard to distinguish them from ordinary citizens or insurgents.

U.S. officials have complained in the past that Pakistani security forces do little to stop the movement of militants seeking to cross over into Afghanistan and attack foreign troops there.

Lt. Col. John Dorrian, a spokesman for intelligence and special operations at NATO headquarters in Kabul, said coalition forces observed early Thursday what they believed were insurgents firing mortars at a coalition base in Dand Wa Patan district of Paktia, which is next to Upper Kurram.

"A coalition air weapons team called for fire support and engaged the insurgents," he said. "The air weapons team reported that it did not cross into Pakistani air space and believed the insurgents were located on the Afghan side of the border."

Dorrian said Pakistani military officials had informed the NATO military coalition that members of their border forces had been struck by coalition aircraft. He said the coalition was reviewing the reports to see if the operation in Paktia was related to those reports.

Hours after the incident, Pakistani authorities were ordered to stop NATO supply trucks from crossing into Afghanistan at the Torkham border post, a major entryway for NATO materials at the edge of the Khyber tribal region, two government officials said.

No reason was given, but earlier this week Pakistan threatened to stop providing protection to NATO convoys if the alliance's helicopters attacked targets inside Pakistan again.

By midmorning, there was a line of around 100 NATO vehicles at the checkpoint, the officials said.

The other main route into Afghanistan in southeastern Pakistan had received no orders to stop NATO trucks from crossing, which they were doing as normal, said Syed Mohammed Agha, a spokesman for the Pashin Scouts border guards.

Some 80 percent of non-lethal supplies for foreign forces fighting in landlocked Afghanistan are transported over Pakistani soil after being unloaded at docks in Karachi, a port city in the south. While NATO and the United States have alternative supply routes, the Pakistani ones are the cheapest and most convenient.

In June 2008, a U.S. airstrike killed 11 Pakistani troops and frayed ties between the two nations. Pakistan said the soldiers died when U.S. aircraft bombed their border post in the Mohmand tribal region. U.S. officials said coalition aircraft dropped bombs during a clash with militants. They expressed regret over the deaths, but said the attack was justified.

Pakistan and the U.S. have a complicated, but vital, relationship, with distrust on both sides.

Polls show many Pakistanis regard the United States as an enemy, and conspiracy theories abound of U.S. troops wanting to attack Pakistan and take over its nuclear weapons. The Pakistani government has to balance its support for the U.S. war in Afghanistan -- and its need for billions of dollars in American aid -- with maintaining support from its own population.

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"US Is 'Practically Owned' by China" That can't be true, the real estate values in Osgiliath are way up !

CNBC:

US Is 'Practically Owned' by China: Analyst


shenzen.jpg

The US supremacy as the top world economy will end sooner than many people believe, so gold is a better investment than the dollar despite it hitting a new record, Tom Winnifrith, CEO at financial services firm Rivington Street Holdings, told CNBC.com Monday.

Gold [XAU=X 1313.25 4.45 (+0.34%) ] hit a new record high Monday and silver [XAG=X 22.01 0.14 (+0.64%) ] rose to another 30-year peak as investors were worried about the dollar weakening further after the Federal Reserve hinted at more quantitative easing last week.

The US trade deficit and debt continue to grow and the authorities are reluctant to address the problem, preferring to print money, Winnifrith said.

"America is practically owned by China," he said.

He reminded of the fact that in 1900, sterling was the world's reserve currency but by 1948, that was no longer the case as the British Empire collapsed.

"America is doing what Britain did," Winnifrith said. "America spends much more than it can afford and it's not addressing the issue."

In 1832, China and India were the world's two largest economies and by 2032, they will regain that status, he predicted.

"The 200 years when Britain and the US were the top two economies were an aberration and that will change," Winnifrith said.

"The decline of empires has happened much faster than folks think. I believe that gold will be a far better bet in 20 years than the dollar," he added.


Meanwhile, in Bentonville, AR, they were all seen out on the golf course.

People, the USA NEEDS to have the debate on what kind of economy we should rebuild. Dems are endlessly complaining that republican businessmen and unfeeling fat cats are exporting jobs overseas, and that McConnell and Boehner are complicit. But the problem is what UNDERLIES the capital forces which compel companies to export those jobs or be uncompetitive. American LABOR RATES are uncompetitive. This is a natural result of our history and world history.
But we are choosing free trade and Walmart prices and goods over the tariff system Japan had in place from WW2 until the 90's, where they held internal prices (and therefore wages) high and sent export prices crashing.
We need to have a frank open discussion about all this. NATIONALLY.

Just YESTERDAY a major recipient of Obama-stim $$, Caterpillar announced they are building their newest factory - IN CHINA. This took place weeks after Obama claimed they would now hire more American workers because of stimulus $. But nothing can overcome the fact the capital is a force of nature

A trade war via tariffs right now might be cataclysmic, but it might not be FOR THE USA. Maybe we should wait. However we aren't even having the discussion in any party.
If we as consumers will always CHOOSE Walmart prices then we have to accept Walmart manufacturing wages if we want those jobs here. Do we? Who knows? No one has asked
Anyone here ready for that, and it's effects?
If not we need to understand what our choices are.
Both parties recognize this will not just be painful but involve choices which will imperil their biggest backers. Yet THAT is precisely the leadership which is compulsory.
It may be that we can become the idea center and creative power of the world, bu I simply don't believe that's possible when all the dollars, and profits made EVEN HERE, flee to where cheap labor is.
The universities will be there. The labs will be there.
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"Our goal has never been peace,” says a Fatah official in a PA TV panel. “Peace is a means; the goal is Palestine" – meaning the conquest of Israel.

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posted by Pastorius at permanent link# 2 Comments

John Brennan's Gotta Go



I am not a John Brennan fan so it takes near zero effort to get behind a call by a well-respected group of national security professionals calling for the exit of Obama's CounterTerror chief. The simple reason is that we cannot have a person in this job who is unable to even articulate the name of the enemy we fight.His latest embarrassment involved a Hamas operative who has been sported about to some of our most sensitive CT facilities as part of a Muslim Outreach program. The folks behind the call for the boot are:

Frank Gaffney, President, Center for Security Policy
Lieutenant General William G. “Jerry” Boykin U.S. Army (Ret.), former
Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence
Admiral James “Ace” Lyons, U.S. Navy (Ret.), former Commander-in-Chief, U.S. Pacific Fleet
Patrick Poole, Counterterrorism Expert
Clare Lopez, former CIA Officer
“Deputy National Security Advisor John Brennan must resign his post immediately,” said Mr. Gaffney, whose Center for Security Policy sponsored Team B II’s recently released report entitled, Shariah: The Threat to America.  “Mr. Brennan is, at best, willfully blind to the threat posed to the homeland and national security of the United States by those who adhere to shariah.  In the wake of this recent episode at the National Counterterrorism Center, in which the FBI gave a guided tour of one of our most sensitive counter-terrorism facilities to a known Hamas operative, it is clear that the cluelessness fostered by Mr. Brennan is causing an empowering of the wrong sorts of Muslims in America – and endangering the American people.  As the Team B II report documents, this is not an isolated incident.  Rather, it is emblematic of misbegotten and reckless policies that can only be corrected by a change in leadership at the top of the Nation’s homeland security team.”
They also just released a report called "Shariah- The Threat to America" on the worldwide enemy who has engaged us in a very Long War struggle. They have aligned themselves as a modern analogue to the Cold War era Team B which offered alternative looks and suggestions about major national security issues.

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posted by Pastorius at permanent link# 3 Comments


Cutting Corners Around the Constitution – Scoundrel Soros’ Massive Campaign to Tranform the Courts



From Weasel Zippers:

Soros is bankrolling a massive campaign to usurp and replaceevery voter’s right to elect judges with a “merit” system where judges are selected by legal (read: lefty) elitist groups such as the American Bar Association and the American Trail Lawyers Association.
American Justice Partnership (AJP)’s 29-page study, Justice Hijacked: Your Right to Vote at Stake, highlights the depth Soros’ efforts to corrupt our courts. An excerpt from the beginning of the study (p5):
An analysis of hundreds of documents and websites, foundation and nonprofit IRS Form 990s, reveals that OSI [Soros' Open Society Institute] has funneled at least $45.4 million into a highly-coordinated campaign to reshape the judiciary and fundamentally change the way judges are chosen in many American states. This figure is almost surely a conservative estimate, for these same organizations have received an additional $52.4 million from OSI to finance a range of activities, some of which, such as “general support” contributions, may be supporting OSI’s judiciary campaign. As Investor’s Business Daily noted, “Soros’ ’shaping public policies,’ as OSI calls it, is not illegal. But it is a problem for democracy ‘because it drives issues with cash and then only lets the public know about it after it is old news. That means the public makes decisions about issues without understanding the special agenda of groups behind them. Without more transparency, it amounts to political manipulation.”
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Shahzad was Going to Set Off a Second Bomb

NBCNewYork:

FBI Releases Video of Times Square Bomb Simulation
Faisal Shahzad said he thought his first attack would kill at least 40 people
By PETE WILLIAMS and JONATHAN DIENST

View more news videos at: http://www.nbcnewyork.com/video.



The FBI has released a video showing the detonation of a prototype of the failed car bomb set off in Times Square in May, and had the device been made correctly, its end result would have been "devastating," officials said Tuesday.

Faisal Shahzad, who has admitted to planting the car bomb in a parked SUV on May 1, told investigators that he believed the car bomb would have killed about 40 people.

In the video released by the FBI, the Bureau's Operational Technology Division sets up tests in a field in Osceola Mills, Pennsylvania on June 29, 2010. The explosive tests involve a 1993 Nissan Pathfinder stuffed with 250 pounds of ammonium nitrate and diesel fuel, along with three 25-pound propane tanks and two 5-gallon gasoline containers.

Taken from various cameras, and even shown slow motion, the FBI video reveals that the explosion would have been quite large -- almost certainly enough to kill scores of people in crowded Times Square.

In a memorandum urging a federal judge to sentence Shahzad to life in prison, prosecutors say Faisal Shahzad told the FBI had he been successful, he planned to build and set off another car bomb somewhere in New York City two weeks later.

"While it is impossible to calculate precisely the impact of Shahzad's bomb had it detonated, the controlled detonation... demonstrated that those effects would be devastating to the surrounding area," the sentencing document said.

Shahzad is set to be sentenced next week.

The government says Shahzad left the United States in 2009 for the explicit purpose of learning to build a bomb and attack the US. While there, he made a video which was released by the Taliban in July of this year. On it, Shahzad says, "I have been trying to join my brothers in jihad since 9/11 happened. I am planning to wage an attack inside America."

"Shahzad used the Internet to access websites that provided real time video feeds of different areas of Times Square," prosecutors said in today's court filing. "According to Shahzad, he wanted to select the busiest time for pedestrian traffic in Times Square because pedestrians walking on the streets would be easier to kill and to injure than people driving in cars."

Shahzad was arrested two days after his May 1 attempted bombing fizzled in a Times Square packed with tourists. The bomb he had packed into the back of a sports utility vehicle sputtered and did not explode.

The former U.S.-educated financial analyst pleaded guilty after confessing to investigators who plucked him off a plane as it was about the leave the United States.

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