Monthly Archives: November 2012

November 30, 2012

Border crossing operates on honor system, Border Patrol hundreds of miles away

Construction of the new border crossing cost more than $5 million and Border Patrol officials estimate it will cost $200,000 a year to maintain. The station was scheduled to open with little fanfare earlier this spring but was delayed until after the election.

The Obama administration is set to reopen a crossing station at the Texas and Mexico border that was closed after the September 11 terrorist attack for security concerns, yet is newly constructed to be monitored by customs and border officers stationed hundreds of miles away.

Federal officials estimate the Boquillas crossing located in the Big Bend National Park will accommodate 20,000 visitors a year, whose entry into the U.S. will by monitored by Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers 300 miles away in El Paso through surveillance cameras that will observe kiosks where identification cards are scanned for access.

“Remote technology would assist CBP in maintaining security and verifying the identity of those entering the United States, while also ensuring that they possess proper documentation to do so,” said the Federal Register notice announcing the project.

Documentation required to cross the border include a passport, border-crossing card or permanent resident card.

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November 29, 2012

You Won’t Believe What Glenn Beck Did to an Obama Bobblehead During His Show on Tuesday

The idea, for Beck however, is not to be untoward, but through irony, to highlight the hypocrisy of those who would shout in defiance at defacing the image of a sitting U.S. president, but not that of an image so sacred to Christianity — the world’s largest religion.

UPDATE: Ebay, the online marketplace where Glenn Beck put his Obama creation up for auction for charity, has now pulled the ad. At it’s last bidding around 11:00 a.m. ET, the bid for the Obama doll in the jar was up to $11,300. All of the proceeds were to do to the Mercury One charity.

On Monday, TheBlaze alerted readers to a new painting that depicts Barack Obama as Jesus Christ crucified, adorned with a crown of thorns. The work, entitled “Truth,” is part of a larger exhibit at the Bunker Hill Community College Art Gallery in Boston titled “Artists on the Stump – the Road to the White House 2012.” This, of course, is not the first controversial rendition that has been labeled “artwork,” nor is it the first time President Obama has been likened to Christ, or in general, God.

Now, the creator of “Truth,” Michael D’Antuono, said that his “First Amendment rights should override someone’s hurt feelings” and that “we should celebrate the fact that we live in a country where we are given the freedom to express ourselves.”

After receiving roughly 4,000 angry emails over the painting, D’Antuono also said he respects “their right to express themselves” and hopes they will afford him the same.

With this in mind, Glenn Beck chose to exercise his First Amendment rights and “express himself,” during his Tuesday evening broadcast by featuring a piece of artwork of his own.

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Mexican mural is one of the largest public projects in the California and the largest historical timeline mural in the USA

A historical timeline depicting fundamental parts of Mexican and Chicano history, from the Pre-Columbian era to modern day. Measuring over 1,000 feet in length, the mural on Shady Lane first began as a project three years ago and was completed just last week.

Octavio Gonzalez stands in the shade of a nearby telephone post on Shady Lane. He looks up at a life-size image of Cesar Chavez as a young man, one he painted himself over the course of two months.

“He always talked about nonviolence,” said Gonzalez, who marched with Chavez during a rally in Calexico in the early 1970s.

He remembers finding the portrait of Chavez in a library book and wanting to replicate it.

Other Mexican Americans are pictured standing at Chavez’s side as they march for equal rights. A sign with the word “Chicano” is painted at the end of the picture.

The image is part of a much- longer mural, a historical timeline depicting fundamental parts of Mexican and Chicano history, from the Pre-Columbian era to modern day. Measuring over 1,000 feet in length, the mural on Shady Lane first began as a project three years ago and was completed just last week.

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After the Crack-Up

You’d think our wealthiest conservatives would want to mimic that accomplishment in other areas of our culture. Why not create an alternative to NPR? It reaches 33 million people with its feigned neutrality. Or The Daily Show? Ridicule is a powerful weapon, and the Left offers Americans much to laugh about.

It’s been weeks since our “surprise” loss on November 6. The conservative crack-up began in real time, as we watched Karl Rove, à la Captain Queeg, insist that his employer, Fox News, was calling Ohio, and the election, for President Obama prematurely.

Then came the fingerpointing, and the conjecture. Our pundits covered every scenario. We were too conservative. We weren’t conservative enough. The social issues killed us. We didn’t hit the social issues hard enough. We had a candidate problem. A woman problem. A Hispanic problem. It will continue for months, this self-abuse masquerading as self-examination. And liberals will eat it up, watching us wallow in self-doubt.

But if there is one thing conservatives can agree on post-election, it’s this: The dominance of the Left in the storytelling arena is making a difference at the polls. It’s impossible to measure, but anyone who doesn’t think it skews outcomes is living in an alternative universe.

The fact is, it’s easier to sell a political narrative to America when it comports with the cultural narrative we see and hear every day.

“The universe is made up of stories, not atoms,” the poet Muriel Rukeyser once said. Stories, not facts, are the way people process information. Screenplays, plays, scripts, and stories are packed not with hard data but with something more powerful and human: emotional data. That’s why we remember stories long after we’ve forgotten facts. Stories stir our souls.

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Students Told to Disavow ‘American-ness, maleness, whiteness, heterosexuality’

“As a journalism major, I will now strive to avoid the liberal arts college as much as possible, not because the college fails to provide its students with any practical knowledge, but because the college seeks to indoctrinate its students with a hostile paradigm that views people like me—an American, white, heterosexual male from a middle-class background—as evil; whitey-righty need not attend.”

A political science professor at Butler University asks students to disregard their “American-ness, maleness, whiteness, heterosexuality, middle-class status” when writing and speaking in the classroom – a practice the school’s arts and sciences dean defended as a way to negate students’ inherent prejudices.

The syllabus of the course at Butler, a small Midwestern liberal arts institution in Indianapolis, spells out that students should use “inclusive language” because it’s “a fundamental issue of social justice.”

“Language that is truly inclusive affirms sexuality, racial and ethnic backgrounds, stages of maturity, and degrees of limiting conditions,” the syllabus states, referencing a definition created by the United Church of Christ.

The syllabus of the class, called Political Science 201: Research and Analysis, goes on to ask students “to write and speak in a way that does not assume American-ness, maleness, whiteness, heterosexuality, middle-class status, etc. to be the norm.” It is taught by a black, female professor.

In an interview with The College Fix, Jay Howard, dean of Butler’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, denied this practice essentially presumes every student who walks through the door is a racist or misogynist.

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Two-thirds of millionaires left Britain to avoid 50p tax rate

Almost two-thirds of the country’s million-pound earners disappeared from Britain after the introduction of the 50p top rate of tax, figures have disclosed.


George Osborne, the Chancellor, announced in the Budget earlier this year that the 50p top rate will be reduced to 45p from next April.

In the 2009-10 tax year, more than 16,000 people declared an annual income of more than £1 million to HM Revenue and Customs.

This number fell to just 6,000 after Gordon Brown introduced the new 50p top rate of income tax shortly before the last general election.

The figures have been seized upon by the Conservatives to claim that increasing the highest rate of tax actually led to a loss in revenues for the Government.

It is believed that rich Britons moved abroad or took steps to avoid paying the new levy by reducing their taxable incomes.

George Osborne, the Chancellor, announced in the Budget earlier this year that the 50p top rate will be reduced to 45p from next April.

Since the announcement, the number of people declaring annual incomes of more than £1 million has risen to 10,000.

However, the number of million-pound earners is still far below the level recorded even at the height of the recession and financial crisis.

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America’s True National Debt: $87 Trillion

These figures underscore the profound and alarming lack of seriousness that has gripped our politics. The president prattles on about the “Buffett Rule” and “fair shares,” but those associated revenues amount to mere snowflakes in the face of the biggest debt avalanche in history sliding down our national mountain.

This piece came out in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal, but its content is too important to let it glide past without sufficient amplification. Its authors are Chris Cox (a former Congressman and SEC Chairman) and Bill Archer (the former Chair of the House Ways and Means Committee). Both were members of President Clinton’s bipartisan commission on tax and entitlement reform in 1994. As today’s politicians bicker over the minutiae of a deal to avert the man-made disaster known as the “fiscal cliff,” Cox and Archer warn that America is headed toward a far more dangerous precipice if our entitlement spending isn’t responsibly and seriously reined in. Their piece explicates why the record-setting, eye-popping annual deficit and national debt figures that most Americans have heard about — $1.1 Trillion and $16 trillion, respectively — don’t even approach capturing the magnitude of Uncle Sam’s red ink. In short, the government is relying on budgeting gimmicks and practices that would land private sector accountants in jail:

As Washington wrestles with the roughly $600 billion “fiscal cliff” and the 2013 budget, the far greater fiscal challenge of the U.S. government’s unfunded pension and health-care liabilities remains offstage. The truly important figures would appear on the federal balance sheet—if the government prepared an accurate one. But it hasn’t. For years, the government has gotten by without having to produce the kind of financial statements that are required of most significant for-profit and nonprofit enterprises. The U.S. Treasury “balance sheet” does list liabilities such as Treasury debt issued to the public, federal employee pensions, and post-retirement health benefits. But it does not include the unfunded liabilities of Medicare, Social Security and other outsized and very real obligations. As a result, fiscal policy discussions generally focus on current-year budget deficits, the accumulated national debt, and the relationships between these two items and gross domestic product. We most often hear about the alarming $15.96 trillion national debt (more than 100% of GDP), and the 2012 budget deficit of $1.1 trillion (6.97% of GDP). As dangerous as those numbers are, they do not begin to tell the story of the federal government’s true liabilities.

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Secession: It’s constitutional by Walter E. Williams

The War of 1861 settled the issue of secession through brute force that cost 600,000 American lives. Americans celebrate Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address, but H.L. Mencken correctly evaluated the speech: “It is poetry, not logic; beauty, not sense.” Lincoln said that the soldiers sacrificed their lives “to the cause of self-determination – that government of the people, by the people, for the people should not perish from the earth.” Mencken says: “It is difficult to imagine anything more untrue. The Union soldiers in the battle actually fought against self-determination; it was the Confederates who fought for the right of people to govern themselves.”

For decades, it has been obvious that there are irreconcilable differences between Americans who want to control the lives of others and those who wish to be left alone. Which is the more peaceful solution: Americans using the brute force of government to beat liberty-minded people into submission, or simply parting company? In a marriage, where vows are ignored and broken, divorce is the most peaceful solution. Similarly, our constitutional and human rights have been increasingly violated by a government instituted to protect them. Americans who support constitutional abrogation have no intention of mending their ways.

Since Barack Obama’s re-election, hundreds of thousands of petitioners for secession have reached the White House. Some people have argued that secession is unconstitutional, but there’s absolutely nothing in the Constitution that prohibits it. What stops secession is the prospect of brute force by a mighty federal government, as witnessed by the costly War of 1861. Let’s look at the secession issue.

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Obama Using “Endangered” Species to Kill Economy, Push Extreme Agenda

“Created in 1970 by an executive order of President Richard Nixon, the EPA has morphed into a lethal Leviathan that regularly issues edicts that can bankrupt towns and cities, as well as businesses and individuals.”

“The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service today released its Candidate Notice of Review, a yearly appraisal of the current status of plants and animals considered candidates for protection under the Endangered Species Act (ESA),” the USFWS announced in a November 20, 2012 press release. “There are now 192 species recognized by the Service as candidates for ESA protection, the lowest number in more than 12 years,” the agency release stated.

Those opening sentences in the press release might have caused many farmers, ranchers, businesses and property owners to heave a sigh of relief, hoping that they might be spared prosecution and persecution due to the reduced ESA candidate list. That could be a false hope, as the Obama administration gives every sign of utilizing all the tools and opportunities at its disposal to stop energy projects, block economic development, and lock up federal lands. As reported here recently (“Specious Endangerment: Obama Awards Spotted Owls 9.6 Million Acres”), the administration has nearly doubled the critical habitat for the Northern Spotted Owl, locking up 9.6 million acres of forestland in Washington, Oregon, and California.

Will a chipmunk or snail darter be used next as a pretext to wreak havoc on an industry, State, or region? The same USFWS press release states: “Today’s notice identifies two new candidate species: Peñasco least chipmunk (Sacramento and White Mountains, New Mexico) and Cumberland arrow darter (Kentucky and Tennessee).”

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Spencer’s Mountain – Ending

“The magic is as wide as a smile and as narrow as a wink, loud as laughter and quiet as a tear, tall as a tale and deep as emotion. So strong, it can lift the spirit. So gentle, it can touch the heart. It is the magic that begins the happily ever after.” – Unknown