THE OTHER SHOE DROPS: Updates To Previous Posts
† Red Is The New Blue (Dog) (second item): In an effort to capitalize on Rep. Parker Griffith’s switching his party affiliation and “creat[e] a snowball effect,” Sen. John McCain (R-AZ.) called Rep. Chris Carney (D-PA) to pitch him on crossing the aisle - permanently – but was rebuffed (for now, anyway), reports Politico. Carney is one of several party-switching targets the Senate GOP will woo:
But persuading colleagues to change sides is a delicate matter, often handled at the member level and with great discretion. The hope is to bag the quarry without being seen or heard trying to do so.
A top House Republican aide, wanting to avoid revealing a poaching patrol, downplayed the effort.
“You’ve got to have a willing partner; you don’t just hunt these guys down,” said the Republican. “They have to nudge you first.”
But the aide acknowledged that they had gotten “a nibble” from Carney and were now making the pitch that he’d be better off switching parties than running again as a Democrat in a northeastern Pennsylvania seat that President Obama lost by 9 percentage points last year.
Meanwhile, in this Washington Post op-ed William Daley - a national co-chair of Obama's presidential campaign, and scion of the Daley political machine - warns that “[e]ither [Democrats] plot a more moderate, centrist course or risk electoral disaster not just in the upcoming midterms but in many elections to come”
† Is Hasan A Crazy Terrorist, Or A Terrorist Crazy?: In an interview with Al-Jazeera, American-born Yemeni imam Anwar al-Aulaqi said that Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan exchanged several E-mails for more than a year beginning December 17, 2008 about the permissibility of killing US soldiers and Israeli civilians, reports The Associated Press:
Links between the Muslim cleric and Hasan are already being investigated, but the interview reveals for the first time how long the two men knew each other and communicated, and also offers insight into how early Hasan was thinking about the possibility of attacking fellow service members.
Aulaqi, a US-born preacher, said he met Hasan nine years earlier at the Dar al-Hijrah Islamic Center in Washington, DC and the pair begin communicating after Aulaqi left the United States for Yemen. …
Aulaqi denied having suggested the attack on Fort Hood, but said he supported Hasan's actions, adding that Hasan was motivated by long-standing grievances against the US military. …
The Pentagon has launched an investigation into the shootings to determine whether warning signs were missed and to prevent such an assault from happening again.
The FBI had dismissed the E-mail communications between Hasan and Aulaqi as harmless “research” yet several weeks after Nidal’s alleged jihad against soldiers at
In an E-mail interview Walid Phares, author of "Future Jihad: Terrorist Strategies against America" tells The Christian Science Monitor that "It is now inescapable for any seasoned expert on the Jihadist movement to see a wide and clear connection between Awlaki and Hasan."
Al-Aulaqi himself told al Jazeera that he was surprised the U.S. military had not figured out what Hasan was up to. Meanwhile, Sens Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) and Susan Collins (R-ME) were surprised that the Obama administration is not cooperating with the Senate’s investigation of the
† Is Obama Already A Lame Duck?: The New York Times’ Sheryl Gay Stolberg notes that “Barack Obama had been in office just two days when he established himself as the Deadline President,” referring to his ill-considered executive order to shutter Gitmo exactly one year hence, “a hard and fast date, set down in black and white for every American to see.” She then goes on to detail the deadlines he will miss, because – for reasons he does not (and may never) understand – no one jumps when he snaps his fingers:
On Capitol Hill, Mr. Obama set what his senior adviser, David Axelrod, calls “a very aggressive calendar,” only to discover that Congress does not necessarily respond to a presidential kick in the pants. …
In foreign affairs, Mr. Obama vowed to sign a new arms control treaty with
Stolberg points out that “there are deadlines - and then there are deadlines,” citing Ronald Reagan firing 11,000 striking air traffic controllers when they did not return to work on the date he specified, “an episode that contributed to his aura of toughness.”
But the tough-talking Obama has an aura of weakness (eighth item), if not cluelessness (third item), so when he demands a specific action by a specific date no one here or abroad fears the consequences of crossing him (third item).
† Living In These Mad, Mad, Madoff Times: The New York Times reports that an increasing number of delinquent owners who are anticipating that their bank will seize their home are stripping out all the appliances and fixtures before vacating the premises:
As it turns out, several troubled states, like
“If the homeowner sells the components to the house while they still own the house, that’s not a crime,” said Officer Bill Cassell, a spokesman for the
So too in
“This window of time can be quite short,” Ms. Halferty said in an e-mail message. “Once homes are abandoned, arguably any number of people can get access and strip the fixtures.” …
Banks are largely powerless to stop a homeowner determined to strip a property. Lenders can pursue such homeowners in court, but the expense and difficulty typically outweigh the gain.
† Star Trek Memorabilia Auction Is A Stellar Success: "Star Trek" fan Ted Moustakis paid more than $24,000 to acquire several props at a Christie's auction that turned out to be fakes, and filed a $7 million suit against the auction house, reports New York Law Journal:
Among the items [he] bought at the 2006 auction to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the "Star Trek" franchise was a visor he believed was worn by "Data," an android character played by actor Brent Spiner in "Star Trek: The Next Generation," a sequel to the original TV show.
But when Moustakis attended a "Star Trek" convention and asked Spiner to autograph the visor, the actor allegedly told him the visor was not real. Spiner then warned other fans to be careful not to purchase fake memorabilia, "like the guy who paid 12 Grand for a phony visor from Christie's."
An appellate court panel unanimously dismissed the suit, on the grounds that the merchandise was being sold "as is."
† Updates To Previous Posts (fifth item, Prediction: Christians Will Be “Extinct” In The Holy Land Within 60 Years): The Wall Street Journal offers more evidence that, despite President Barack Hussein Obama’s assertions to the contrary, Muslims throughout the Middle East do not tolerate the “infidels” in their midst and seek to drive them from the homes and villages they have lived in since antiquity by any means necessary – from forcing them to follow Sharia law to destroying their stores and churches to mass murder:
Meet Yussuf Khoury, a 23-year old Palestinian refugee living in the
Mr. Khoury's crime in that Hamas-ruled territory was to be a Christian, a transgression he compounded in the Islamists' eyes by writing love poems.
"Muslims tied to Hamas tried to take me twice," says Mr. Khoury, and he didn't want to find out what they'd do to him if they ever kidnapped him. He hasn't seen his family since Christmas 2007 and is afraid even to talk to them on the phone.
Speaking to a group of foreign journalists in the
In 2007, one year after the Hamas takeover, the owner of
Christians have only recently begun to talk about how Muslim gangs simply come and take possession of Christian-owned land while the Palestinian security services, almost exclusively staffed by Muslims, stand by. …
While [Christians] represented about 80% of the city's population 60 years ago, their numbers are now down to about 20%, a result not just of Muslims' higher birth rates but also widespread Christian emigration. …
Palestinian plight not attributable to
† Updates To Previous Posts (fifth item, What Freedom Of Speech Means To Muslims): Gulf News, a newspaper published by Al Nisr Publishing, partly owned by Obaid Humaid Al Tayer, the United Arab Emirates Minister of State for Financial Affairs, wants its journalists to avoid using the words "bailout" and "default" when reporting on Dubai's debt crisis, reports The Wall Street Journal:
Reporters for the paper, the largest English-language daily in the U.A.E., were also urged to steer clear of the phrase "debt crisis" and asked to "ensure the following politically correct terminology is used" - words such as "financial consolidation" and "fiscal support" - when describing the sheikdom's economic problems and the assistance it has received from Abu Dhabi, according to the note sent Dec. 14.
† Updates To Previous Posts (eighth item, College President Earning $220K Is A Deadbeat Dad): Montgomery College trustees have accepted the resignation of President Brian Johnson, who had been on paid leave since September 30th. Board Chairman Michael C. Lin refused to disclose the financial terms of the settlement, but the college was under a contractual obligation to pay Johnson $233,210 in salary for the fiscal year ending June 30th.
† Updates To Previous Posts (fourth item, Revenge Of The Nerds): Gary Becker, 52, the former mayor of
Editorial Note: Since this story broke back in January, The Associated Press has consistently omitted Becker’s party affiliation. He is a Democrat.
† Updates To Previous Posts (last item, 10 Reasons Michelle Obama Should Be Proud – Really Proud – Of America): This latest installment in The Stiletto Blog’s ongoing series meant to help instill the necessary pride of country in Michelle Obama’s consciousness to enable her to serve as an unofficial ambassador focuses on the passengers and crew aboard Northwest Airlines Flight 253 from Amsterdam to Detroit who prevented Nigerian passenger Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab from completing his attempt to blow up the plane and put out the fire he started with a homemade explosive device, saving the lives of 278 passengers and 11 crewmembers. The Washington Post reports:
Jasper Schuringa, an
Schuringa, on his way to
Schuringa pulled the melted plastic syringe from Abdulmutallab, shook it and threw it to the floor, the FBI said in an affidavit. Flight attendant Dionne Ransom-Monroe asked the suspect what was in his pocket, the FBI said, and he replied, "Explosive device."
The fire out, Schuringa marched Abdulmutallab to the front of the plane, helped by a flight attendant. They stripped off some of his clothes, searched him for weapons and handcuffed him …
Passengers and crew members worked to restore calm as the jet sped toward
In media interviews, Syed Jafry of
For her part, in interviews with CNN and ABC Homeland Security chief Janet Napolitano made the incredible claim that – despite Abdulmutallab being on Terrorist Identities Datamart Environment (TIDE) database maintained by the U.S. National Counterterrorism Center and smuggling both liquid and powder bomb-making compounds onto a plane – “the system worked” (WH spokesperson Robert Gibbs repeated the ridiculous talking point on CBS). No, what worked is that passengers once again took matters into their own hands and acted courageously and competently. One wonders what we need the feds for if we have to keep saving ourselves from their incompetence - the latest example being to issue and then rescind senseless security measures that served only to inconvenience air passengers further but would not have stopped another Abdulmutallab - which is compounded exponentially by political correctness.