Sunday, December 20, 2009
Saturday, December 12, 2009
by Hana Levi Julian and Nissan Ratzlav-Katz
An underground Iranian activist has told Israel National News that the country's highest official -- Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei -- was spirited to a "secret place" for his own safety and that the nation's religious leaders are "scared." The source - an activist in the global Iranian pro-democracy movement who is involved in assisting a group of some 30,000 students located in Tehran and several other major cities - said Khamenei has disappeared. It is the Supreme Leader who controls Iran's foreign policy, and specifically its decisions regarding its nuclear development activities.
"I am told that Khamenei was taken to a secret place to monitor the situation and perhaps for his safety, and a helicopter was ready with a pilot in it to perhaps fly him out to Russia if the situation got out of hand," the source told Israel National News on Tuesday. "I am also told that prominent clergy went to meet with him hoping to force him to show leniency.... [Our consensus is that the mullahs are scared]."
Foreign journalists were once again banned, phone networks cut and Internet connections spotty at best as government forces tried to put the lid back on the growing unrest that again broke out during special observances on Monday.
The demonstrations, planned months in advance, were held on the nation's annual observance of the deaths of three students during anti-American riots in 1953, a day known in Iran as "16 Azar" -- December 7 on the secular calendar. It is a day that has "bitter memories for Iranians," according to the activist, who explained that the Shah's army had opened fire and killed students on that day.
Basij militia and police officers wielded batons and fired tear gas at demonstrators in Tehran who continue to protest what they contend was the rigged re-election in June of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. They also accuse the government of silencing academic freedom.
"16 Azar" ceremonies were held in all universities across Kurdestan and the suburbs, according to an Iranian blogger who reported that some 700 protesters gathered at Kurdestan University alone, singing anti-government songs, waving signs ("Death to dictator") and chanting slogans. At least 400 demonstrators did the same at Payam eh Noor University, as did a similar number at Sanandaj Azad University.
"Demonstrators' spirits were high," said the activist. "Frankly, I was nervous, since all communications systems were down, and [I was afraid of a bloody massacre. But the turnout was great when the cities of Kerman, Shahr Kord and especially Esfahan came out en masse and confronted the Basij," he related.
Basij 'Very Very Sorry' -- or Not?
"Students and most people participating were emboldened since there was confusion among the military, secret service and Basij," said the source. "Many Basij called [Persian-langua radio stations [outside Ira over the phone and apologized to the people of Iran, crying for having beaten demonstrators under Khamenei's orders," he said. "They said that they were told demonstrators were anti-Islam and Western-paid troublemakers, but now they -- the Basij -- are finding out that they have been told a lie by the mullahs and were very, very sorry for beating their own countrymen.
"The two that I witnessed and listened to their call broke down in tears. I personally listened to such calls from callers who identified themselves as Basij," he added.
Demonstrators reported they witnessed many police officers refusing to engage and attack protesters, according to the source, who said the government forces were seen arguing among themselves. "Good news for us!" he wrote, adding that another countrywide mass demonstration is being planned for Saturday.
The situation may not be as simple as it appeared to this group of activists, however; the Iran Khabar Agency reported late Monday that Basij forces attacked students at the Science Faculty Building of Rasht University, beating them violently with batons.
"As soon as the students gathered and started to chant slogans, the Basij forces attacked... Three students were tied up by their hands and feet and were thrown on vans... the Basij forces today had gone wild," according to the report.
Monday, December 7, 2009
Monday, November 30, 2009
Binion's closing Las Vegas hotel; casino remains
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Why are Americans so united? They don't resemble one another even if you paint them! They speak all the languages of the world and form an astonishing mixture of civilizations. Some of them are nearly extinct, others are incompatible with one another, and in matters of religious beliefs, not even God can count how many they are. Still, the American tragedy turned three hundred million people into a hand put on the heart. Nobody rushed to accuse the White House, the army, the secret services that they are only a bunch of losers.
Nobody rushed to empty their bank accounts. Nobody rushed on the streets nearby to gape about. The Americans volunteered to donate blood and to give a helping hand. After the first moments of panic, they raised the flag on the smoking ruins, putting on T-shirts, caps and ties in the colours of the national flag. They placed flags on buildings and cars as if in every place and on every car a minister or the president was passing. On every occasion they started singing their traditional song: "God Bless America!".
Silent as a rock, I watched the charity concert broadcast on Saturday once, twice, three times, on different tv channels. There were Clint Eastwood, Willie Nelson, Robert de Niro, Julia Roberts, Cassius Clay, Jack Nicholson, Bruce Springsteen, Silvester Stalone, James Wood, and many others whom no film or producers could ever bring together.
The American's solidarity spirit turned them into a choir. Actually, choir is not the word. What you could hear was the heavy artillery of the American soul. What neither George W. Bush, nor Bill Clinton, nor Colin Powell could say without facing the risk of stumbling over words and sounds, was being heard in a great and unmistakable way in this charity concert. I don't know how it happened that all this obsessive singing of America didn't sound croaky, nationalist, or ostentatious!
It made you green with envy because you weren't able to sing for your country without running the risk of being considered chauvinist, ridiculous, or suspected of who-knows-what mean interests. I watched the live broadcast and the rerun of its rerun for hours listening to the story of the guy who went down one hundred floors with a woman in a wheelchair without knowing who she was, or of the Californian hockey player, who fought with the terrorists and prevented the plane from hitting a target that would have killed other hundreds of thousands of people. How on earth were they able to bow before a fellow human?
Imperceptibly, with every word and musical note, the memory of some turned into a modern myth of tragic heroes. And with every phone call, millions and millions of dollars were put in a collection aimed at rewarding not a man or a family, but a spirit which nothing can buy.
What on earth can unite the Americans in such a way? Their land? Their galloping history? Their economic power? Money? I tried for hours to find an answer, humming songs and murmuring phrases which risk of sounding like commonplaces. I thought things over, but I reached only one conclusion.
Only freedom can work such miracles!
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Saturday, October 17, 2009
Just read an interesting treatise called, “The End of Money…”
In the article the author, Richard C. Cook, provides insight into a work by another author by the name of Thomas Greco. Mr. Cook and Mr. Greco decry the "global bankers" and refer to the 'Founding Fathers' and their "fight" against the International Bankers. They point to Ron Paul and his efforts to bring out the flaws in the current the monetary system and the evils of the Federal Reserve.
With these references and denunciations it seems that these men, the authors, hold beliefs similar to those of many of today's conservative Americans who are calling for monetary responsibility and fiscal restraint. Unfortunately, nothing could be further from the truth.
My point here is not to review the article itself but to point out what each person should do when encountering anything or anyone who is advocating ANY position. One must check out the background or histories of the people or organizations who are making the statements. Within the article "The End of Money" there is some telltale wording and 'catch phrases' that should set off alarm bells in any informed reader. I will call these 'philosophical fingerprints' or PFs.
PFs can reinforce an espoused position or they can function as a 'discordant note' in the "symphony" of thought. Where PFs are at odds with what the reader believes the author is saying it should set off alarm bells and be the 'clarion call' to start digging into just 'who' it is behind the 'what'. I will not say what PFs I found. That I leave to you to discover on your own. Most will not take the time. But, failure to do so, places the reader at the mercy of those people who who belive' rightly or wrongly, that the average American will not do the 'homework' necessary to provide themselves the knowledge for clear and considered thinking on the issue at hand.
Only when you know the 'who' part of the equation can you really begin to understand 'what' that person is saying.
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Friday, August 14, 2009
Dirty Secret No. 1 in Obamacare
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Health care reforms are turning into health care revolts. Americans are turning up the heat on congressmen in town hall meetings across the U.S.
While watching these political hot August nights, I decided to research the reasons so many are opposed to Obamacare to separate the facts from the fantasy. What I discovered is that there are indeed dirty little secrets buried deep within the 1,000-plus page health care bill.
Dirty secret No. 1 in Obamacare is about the government's coming into homes and usurping parental rights over child care and development.
It's outlined in sections 440 and 1904 of the House bill (Page 838), under the heading "home visitation programs for families with young children and families expecting children." The programs (provided via grants to states) would educate parents on child behavior and parenting skills.
The bill says that the government agents, "well-trained and competent staff," would "provide parents with knowledge of age-appropriate child development in cognitive, language, social, emotional, and motor domains ... modeling, consulting, and coaching on parenting practices," and "skills to interact with their child to enhance age-appropriate development.
Are you kidding me?! With whose parental principles and values? Their own? Certain experts'? From what field and theory of childhood development? As if there are one-size-fits-
Are we to assume the state's mediators would understand every parent's social or religious core values on parenting? Or would they teach some secular-progressive and religiously neutered version of parental values and wisdom? And if they were to consult and coach those who expect babies, would they ever decide circumstances to be not beneficial for the children and encourage abortions?
One government rebuttal is that this program would be "voluntary." Is that right? Does that imply that this agency would just sit back passively until some parent needing parenting skills said, "I don't think I'll call my parents, priest or friends or read a plethora of books, but I'll go down to the local government offices"? To the contrary, the bill points to specific targeted groups and problems, on Page 840: The state "shall identify and prioritize serving communities that are in high need of such services, especially communities with a high proportion of low-income families."
Are we further to conclude by those words that low-income families know less about parenting? Are middle- and upper-class parents really better parents? Less neglectful of their children? Less needful of parental help and training? Is this "prioritized" training not a biased, discriminatory and even prejudicial stereotype and generalization that has no place in federal government, law or practice?
Bottom line: Is all this what you want or expect in a universal health care bill being rushed through Congress? Do you want government agents coming into your home and telling you how to parent your children? When did government health care turn into government child care?
Government needs less of a role in running our children's lives and more of a role in supporting parents' decisions for their children. Children belong to their parents, not the government. And the parents ought to have the right -- and government support -- to parent them without the fed's mandates, education or intervention in our homes.
Kids are very important to my wife, Gena, and me. That's why we've spent the past 17 years developing our nonprofit KICKSTART program in public schools in Texas. It builds up their self-esteem and teaches them respect and discipline. Of course, whether or not they participate in the program is their and their parents' choice.
How contrary is Obamacare's home intrusion and indoctrination family services, in which state agents prioritize houses to enter and enforce their universal values and principles upon the hearts and minds of families across America?
Government's real motives and rationale are quite simple, though rarely, if ever, stated. If one wants to control the future ebbs and flows of a country, one must have command over future generations. That is done by seizing parental and educational power, legislating preferred educational methods and materials, and limiting private educational options. It is so simple that any socialist can understand it. As Josef Stalin once stated, "Education is a weapon whose effects depend on who holds it in his hands and at whom it is aimed."
Before so-called universal health care turns into universal hell care, write or call your representative today and protest his voting Obamacare into law. Remind him that what is needed in Washington is a truly bipartisan group that is allowed an ample amount of time to work on a compromise health care law that wouldn't raise taxes (for anyone), regulate personal medical choices, ration health care or restrict American citizens.
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
Thursday, June 18, 2009
Friday, April 17, 2009
Regarding the release of CIA memos:
The American Civil Liberties Union, which brought a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit that forced the release of the memos, called on the administration to name a special prosecutor to investigate torture under the administration of George W. Bush.
"We have to look back before we can move forward as a nation. When crimes have been committed, the American legal system demands accountability," said Anthony Romero, the ACLU's executive director.
"President Obama's assertion that there should not be prosecutions of government officials who may have committed crimes before a thorough investigation has been carried out is simply untenable," he said.
"Enforcing the nation's laws should not be a political decision," he added.
Amnesty International's executive director in the United States, Larry Cox, welcomed the release of the memos.
I would ask if what Romero said is true, why are there so many illegal aliens still in this country. Why are guns still in the hands of criminals? Why is the administration full of tax cheats? Why is the Constitution being trampled?
The answer is obvious. The government is out of control. They do not have a clue as to the wishes of their constituents. Both parties have betrayed "We the People".
The tax day protests SHOULD have sent them a wake up call, however the coverage by the main stream media did not accurately portray the reasons and convictions of the protesters. The White House even said that the President was "unaware" of the protests. If he was unaware, what the hell is he doing in office?