USCIS Official: 90% Syrian
Refugee Applications Approved
The Obama administration's approval rate for accepting Syrian refugees to the US is currently over 90%, a US Citizenship and Immigration Service official testified before a Senate panel Thursday. "Worldwide our average approval rate is about 80 percent," Barbara Strack, the head the Refugee Affairs Division at USCIS responded when pressed by Sen. David Perdue (R-GA)67% on the current annual approval rate for refugees. She noted that Syrian refugees are currently experiencing a higher approval rate.
Supreme Court Prepares to
Take On Politically Charged Cases
The new Supreme Court term, which opens on Monday, marks the start of Chief Justice John Roberts Jr.'s second decade on the court and will reveal whether the last term's leftward drift and acrimony were anomalies or something more lasting. The court will decide major cases on politically charged issues, including the fate of public unions and affirmative action in higher education. It will most probably hear its first major abortion case since 2007 and revisit the clash between religious liberty and contraception coverage. It will consider three cases that could make it harder for workers and consumers to band together in class actions. And it will hear cases on the death penalty.
Obama to Veto Bipartisan Bill
That Would Save the A-10 'Warthog'
Pres. Obama plans to veto a defense bill that would not only save the A-10 from retirement, but restore its combat capability as well. The Fiscal 2016 National Defense Authorization Act is a rare piece of legislation that made congress seem almost functional. There was compromise, input from constituents, and common sense support for our troops taken into account. As an ultimate slap to the Air Force’s “misguided” plan to retire the A-10, the new defense bill also requires the Air Force to consult a third party to analyze and assess how the Air Force will successfully replace the platform with an aircraft that is able to fill all of the close air support requirements.
Islamic State Destroys
Palmyra's Arch of Triumph
The Islamic State has blown up the iconic Arch of Triumph in the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra, officials said. Maamun Abdulkarim, the country's head of antiquities, said he was told the "icon of Palmyra," which stood at the entrance to the UNESCO world heritage site, was destroyed by the militants on Sunday, according to AFP. He called on the international community to "find a way to save Palmyra," which was a center for art and commerce in Roman times, and warned that militants have laid explosives in other monuments.
Lawless Secret Service
Blackmails Jason Chaffetz
Representative Chaffetz has been investigating the scandal-plagued Secret Service when Secret Service personnel improperly accessed his protected records in a hunt for dirt. The aim of this was made clear by assistant director Ed Lowery, who wrote to assistant director Faron Paramore: "Some information that he might find embarrassing needs to get out." Critics are saying that the agency's brass - at least 18 of them were culpably aware of the plan, and 45 employees illegally viewed the congressman's information - have violated the Privacy Act. They have illegally accessed protected federal records, which is fraud under federal law and carries a ten-year prison sentence.
Job Creation Misses Big in September
The US economy created 142,000 jobs in September, a number that missed expectations and could cool expectations that the Federal Reserve will start raising interest rates soon. Unemployment held at 5.1% (U3), according to the Labor Dept. The U6 Rate, that includes those who are working part-time for economic reasons or have not looked for employment fell to, 10.0%. The participation rate plunged to 62.4 percent in September, its lowest since October 1977. The total labor force fell to a 2015 low, losing another 350,000 people.
Oregon Gunman Targeted
Christians in Mass Murder
The gunman in Thursday's mass murder at an Oregon community college specifically targeted Christians, three witnesses said, while online accounts linked to the shooter expressed disdain for organized religion. Authorities say Christopher Harper Mercer killed at least nine people and injured many more, at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg before he was killed in an exchange of gunfire with police.
Obama Pulled Kerry, Power
from Netanyahu UN Speech
Ambassador Power and Secretary Kerry were unable to attend Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu's speech before the General Assembly because they were called into a meeting with President Obama, which they participated in via video teleconference, a State Dept. Official said. Although they were both in New York for the United Nations General Assembly meetings, the two high-ranking US officials were notably absent for the entirety of the Israeli Prime Minister's speech.
Pentagon Weighs Using Force to
Protect US-Backed Syrian Rebels
Senior US military leaders and defense officials are debating whether military force should be used to protect Washington-backed Syrian rebels who have come under attack by Russian airstrikes in recent days. The question was part of a broader debate within the Pentagon about the the broader dilemma of how the administration should respond to what White House press secretary Josh Earnest described as Russia's "indiscriminate military operations against the Syrian opposition."
Putin Drafting 150,000 Conscripts; Iran, Hezbollah Prepare Ground Offensive in Syria
Vladimir Putin has conscripted 150,000 new troops into the Russian army as the country unleashed a new wave of airstrikes in Syria - while and Iran and Islamist group Hezbollah prepare for a major ground offensive. Hundreds of Iranian troops have arrived in Syria over the last ten days, backed by the country's Lebanese allies, Hezbollah, and rebel fighters from Iraq and Afghanistan, two Lebanese sources claimed today. Sources said the Iranian ground forces were 'soldiers and officers', not advisers.
The Scariest Thing Obama
Has Proposed to Date
Few people understand how Pres. Barack Obama has succeeded in pushing through initiatives, programs and legislation that are distinctly unpopular with the total of the American population. To that end, few people understand how such a divisive incumbent president achieved re-election. Common sense would have that if a majority of people stood against a program, initiative or legislation – or a candidate for that matter – that success in achieving a positive result would be scant, if not impossible. But, as we have come to understand – almost seven years after the fact, Barack Obama and the Progressive machine do not play by a traditional set of rules. Instead, they play by a set of rules that are foreign and unintelligible to mainstream America and, especially, the tone-deaf Republican establishment. Progressives have long understood the importance of not only the potency of “the message” but the need to control the message. They have become masters at crafting and controlling the framing of issues, and advancing talking points sympathetic to their cause. For many decades this consisted of touching Mr. and Ms. America in one of two vulnerable places, or both: the heart and/or the wallet. If a Progressive candidate, spin doctor or political operative could use a narrative to touch the voters’ hearts, making them sympathetic and/or angry to the allegory then they had succeeded – most of the time – in their call to action, in the political sense, to vote. Likewise, if they could demonstrate, via rhetorical example, how an opponent’s policy, legislation or platform would adversely affect their individual wallets the outcome was almost always in their favor. The truth seldom mattered. The end justified the means.
5,113 Days After the Falling Man
of September 11, 2001
It has been 5,113 days since the al Qaeda attacks on New York's World Trade Center, the Pentagon in Washington, DC, and the failed third assault that was intercepted into a farm field in Shanksville, Pennsylviania, by American patriots. To borrow a phrase from a past generation that certainly applies to this event, it is a day that will live in infamy. But few would believe where our country is today given the events of that fateful day. Today Americans stand viciously divided in our politics as a society that rationalizes Islamofascist aggression (and, in the case of Iran, facilitates it), even as we harbor ideological factions that stand in protest of our law enforcement officers. We have moved away from the cohesive and united front we embraced shoulder-to-shoulder at the smoking pile of rubble that was the remnants of the World Trade Center; the tomb that holds so many souls.
Charlatans & Sheep
One of the many painful signs of the mindlessness of our times was a recent section of the Wall Street Journal, built around the theme "What's Holding Women Back in the Workplace?" Whenever some group is not equally represented in some institution or activity, the automatic response in some quarters is to assume that someone has prevented equality of outcomes. This preconception of equal outcomes requires not one speck of evidence, and defies mountains of evidence to the contrary. Even in activities where individual performances are what determine outcomes, and those performances are easily measured objectively, there is seldom anything resembling equal representation. For 12 consecutive years - from 2001 through 2012 - each home run leader in the American League had a Hispanic surname. When two American boys whose ancestors came from India tied for first place in the US National Spelling Bee in 2014, it was the 7th consecutive year in which the US National Spelling Bee was won by an Asian Indian. We all know about the large over-representation of blacks among professional basketball players, and especially among the star players. The best-selling brands of beer in America were created by people of German ancestry, who also created China's famed Tsingtao beer. Of the 100 top-ranked Marathon runners in the world in 2012, 68 were Kenyans. The list could go on and on. Although blacks are over-represented among professional football players, even the most avid National Football League fan is unlikely to be able to recall seeing even one black player who kicked a punt or a point after touchdown. Should there be an article titled: "What's Holding Black Kickers Back in the NFL?" Could it be that blacks are more interested in playing positions where there is more action and - not incidentally - more money?
Europe's Migrant Crisis:
Muslim History v. Western Fantasy
The world as understood by Islamic nations varies wildly from the Western nations' understanding of the world. Whereas Muslims see the world through the lens of history, the West has jettisoned or rewritten history to suit its ideologies. This dichotomy of Muslim and Western thinking is evident everywhere. When the Islamic State declared that it will "conquer Rome" and "break its crosses," few in the West realized that those are the verbatim words and goals of Islam's founder and his companions as recorded in Muslim sources - words and goals that prompted over a thousand years of jihad on Europe. Most recently, the Islamic State released a map of the areas it plans on expanding into over the next five years. Not only are Mideast and Asian regions included, but the map includes European lands: Portugal, Spain, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Greece, parts of Russia, Bulgaria, Ukraine, Romania, Armenia, Georgia, Crete, and Cyprus. The reason for this is simple. According to Islamic law, once a country has been conquered (or "opened," as the euphemistic Arabic words it), it becomes Islamic in perpetuity. This, incidentally, is the real reason Muslims despise Israel. The motivation is not sympathy for the Palestinians - if it was, neighboring Arab nations would've absorbed them long ago, just as they would be absorbing all of today's Muslim refugees. No, Israel is hated because the descendants of "apes and pigs" - according to the Koran - dare to rule land that was once "opened" by jihad and therefore must be returned to Islam.
Obama: Nihilist or Just Incompetent?
VICTOR DAVIS HANSON
Three things so far have saved Obama's otherwise unfortunate tenure; all came over his own objections. One, after the 2010 midterm tsunami, the newly elected House Republicans put a lid on spending - ratified by the wins of 2014. Sequestration is a crude blunderbuss and slashed defense, but it at least slowed down Obama's disastrous serial $1 trillion-plus budget deficits. In spending terms, it certainly has vastly reduced the government's share of GDP. We know that because Obama occasionally brags of falling deficits, as if to say, "Thank you for not letting me be entirely myself." When he leaves office, we will have $20 trillion in debt and nearly 100 million permanently out of the work force, as well as uncontrolled and unaddressed entitlement spending on life support through zero-interest rates. But we will still be alive for now, thanks to sequestration. Shutting down the government may have been politically unwise (or not - given the 2014 midterm elections), but it kept the debt financeable. Then there is energy. Obama once bragged of sky-high electricity costs to come - echoed by Steven Chu's dream of European-level gas prices. Obama mocked "drill, baby, drill" and claimed it was no solution to the energy crisis, as he tabled Keystone and put millions of acres of federal lands de facto off the market for energy exploration. He tried to "bankrupt" the coal industry. The EPA became a rogue agency. Almost all his crony-capitalist Solyndra-like projects failed. And? Gasoline and natural gas prices have plunged, thanks to fracking and horizontal drilling.
Facebook Censorship on 'Refugees'
QUOTE OF THE DAY
"One of the wonderful things about free markets is that the path to greater wealth comes not from looting, plundering and enslaving one's fellow man, as it has throughout most of human history, but by serving and pleasing him." ~ Walter Williams