SPECIAL EDITION LET’S TAKE BACK THE SENATE 6-11-12: TEA PARTY 2012 COLOR-CODED GUIDE TO SENATE SEATS.... https://docs.google.com/document/d/1wz9M2nS5hJaf70LmDsIW-_OQMFe7IPF00fw9BGdo4x0/edit#heading=h.wrr7gcoxvxrk
Tea Party Chief @2012_TeaParty
America seems to think that you are doing that #HOPIUM again.....#DoingJustFine wherever it may be in your world....http://pic.twitter.com/5xAtTVupowered by Photobucket
2:13 PM - 11 Jun 12 via web · DetailsTea Party Chief @2012_TeaParty 30 Senate seats and 30 jobs bills.... so much to do.... so little time 4:46 AM - 11 Jun 12 via web · Details
Harry Reid, October 2011: 'Private-sector Jobs Have Been Doing Just Fine'By Tom Blumer | June 10, 2012 | 10:30
Last year, Harry Reid said pretty close to the same thing President Obama said on Friday about the health of the nation's private sector. Obama claimed that "The private sector is fine." On the Senate floor on October 19, Reid claimed that "It's very clear that private-sector jobs have been doing just fine."
Don't feel bad if you don't know this, because the press mostly ignored it. The few who did notice it worked mightily to excuse it. One of the chief excusers was Pete Kasperowicz at the Hill:
Story Continues Below Ad ↓Reid signals government jobs must take priority over private-sector jobs
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) on Wednesday indicated Congress needs to worry about government jobs more than private-sector jobs, and that this is why Senate Democrats are pushing a bill aimed at shoring up teachers and first-responders.
"It's very clear that private-sector jobs have been doing just fine; it's the public-sector jobs where we've lost huge numbers, and that's what this legislation is all about," Reid said on the Senate floor.
... Reid reiterated his emphasis on creating government jobs by saying Democrats are looking to "put hundreds of thousands of people back to work teaching children, have more police patrolling our streets, firefighters fighting our fires, doing the rescue work that they do so well … that's our priority."
... Private-sector jobs have increased over the last 19 months, while government jobs have lagged. They've also seen cuts in several states that are struggling to balanced their books.
... Democrats who support the bill have said it would help save 400,000 teacher jobs and thousands of first-responder jobs that have either been cut or could soon be cut. Reid said Wednesday that these layoffs are "rooted in the last administration," but did not explain further.
Obama's "private sector is fine" statement was also rooted in a desire to steer even more federal money to the public sector, a fact which a Saturday Wall Street Journal editorial found even more revealing than the statement which got so much attention (bolds are mine):
... This is all good campaign fun, but Mr. Obama's presser was far more revealing for what it said about how he thinks an economy grows. His line about "the private economy doing fine" was followed immediately by a complaint that America's real growth problem today is shrinking government.
... (President Obama said) "Where we're seeing weaknesses in our economy have to do with state and local government—oftentimes, cuts initiated by governors or mayors who are not getting the kind of help that they have in the past from the federal government and who don't have the same kind of flexibility as the federal government in dealing with fewer revenues coming in."
"And so, if Republicans want to be helpful, if they really want to move forward and put people back to work, what they should be thinking about is, how do we help state and local governments and how do we help the construction industry."
... The President's response is to say as his first policy priority that the federal government should borrow or tax more so it can then finance more hiring by state and local governments. Spur the economy by growing the size of government.
... But the lesson of the stimulus—which spent hundreds of billions of dollars in aid to the states—is that this boost is temporary and fades when the spending ends.
Mr. Obama also misdiagnoses state and local government layoffs. They aren't the result of falling state and local revenues, which have increased by 6% over the last two years, according to the Census Bureau. The problem is that the cost of worker benefits is growing faster than revenues. Governments are having to lay off workers to pay for their rising pension and health bills.
That's especially true in states that haven't followed the example of Wisconsin's Scott Walker and altered their benefits or reformed collective bargaining. Think California and Illinois. Mr. Obama is asking Congress to tax Americans from every state more, and borrow more from China, to send money to states that have been the most spendthrift.
Let's look at changes in public-sector employment in Wisconsin as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics from December 2010 through April 2012:
- State government employment has gone from 98,500 to 100,600 (seasonally adjusted).
- Local government employment has gone from 289,100 to 278,600 (seasonally adjusted). But since December 2011, employment has only dropped by 1,300.
- Local government education employment has gone from 164,800 to 158,900 (not seasonally adjusted). But since December 2011, employment has risen by 500.
What Wisconsin's experience really shows that if the Obama administration's goal were really to sustainably preserve his beloved government sector, he would be behind what Walker has done.
Back to Reid's October statement -- it demonstrates two important points.
First, in combination with what Obama said on Friday, the idea that the "private sector is fine" is clearly a fundamental leftist and Democratic Party perception -- quite erroneous, as I demonstrated in October while making points that are mostly still quite valid today (i.e., that the private sector is nowhere near recovering the jobs lost in the recession and it policy-fumbling aftermath, a disproportionate percentage of the private sector's job growth has been in part-timers and temps, and that non-postal federal government employment has grown while states and localities have suffered).
Second, the establishment press did not do Democrats any favors by engaging in damage control on Harry Reid. If they had given Reid's out of touch comment the attention it deserved, perhaps Obama would have known better than to step into the same hole again -- this time to the point of making a statement which should haunt him for the rest of his reelection campaign -- if Mitt Romney and Republicans don't let people forget it.
Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.
Read more: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/tom-blumer/2012/06/10/harry-reid-october-2011-private-sector-jobs-have-been-doing-just-fine#ixzz1xW9GPFxW
LET’S PAINT THE SENATE SANGRIA....Cantor Press @CantorPress 52% of #smallbiz owners see overregulation as top threat to growing business, 75% blame Obamacare for lack of hiring.http://bit.ly/LuAg7h
Retweeted by Tea Party ChiefTea Party Chief @2012_TeaParty
Many @SenateFloor have forgotten their first duty to uphold the Constitution by loving and serving their fellow man in favor of worship of $
Let us pray for the Senate: we will be looking to replace over 30 seats, and now those who refuse to pass jobs bills may have no job.....
Minding Our Business: Confidence is Up, Hiring's NotFarmington Chamber of Commerce president reflects on the business climate and outlook.
- 3:30 am
Farmington’s Chamber of Commerce reflects the outcome of a recent survey published by the US Chamber of Commerce. In the first quarter Small Business Outlook Survey from March, some of the key findings indicate that while our business confidence is improving, it hasn’t impacted hiring trends - only 20% of responders actually hired in the past year. 52% of responders claim over regulation is a top threat to growing their business. Taxation, regulation, and legislation from Washington make it harder for their business to hire more
employees. Nearly 3/4ths of the small businesses surveyed claim the new health care bill is responsible for their lack of hiring.
Governor Malloy and the State of CT launched a 2 year marketing campaign in January 2012 to stimulate business development and tourism and committed $22 million toward marketing and advertising. Have you noticed the “Still Revolutionary” campaign? What is revolutionary was the Governor’s dedication to this project this year as no dollars were allocated for this effort in 2010 or 2011.
Farmington businesses can benefit by this effort as we are ideally located along our beautiful and scenic Farmington River and have easy highway access for shopping, hotels and restaurants. If Farmington businesses piggy back on the state’s efforts, we will multiply the benefits. The more our townspeople support local businesses, the better our economy will be. New entities, like Jackson Laboratories, will make us stronger also.
The Farmington Chamber of Commerce exists to promote business and economic development in Farmington by developing a stronger voice for our members and offering diversified resources and benefits to meet our memberships’ needs. I hope you found this information helpful. For further discussion, feel free to contact me, Carol Presutti, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Carol Presutti is president of the Farmington Chamber of Commerce.
Related Topics: Farmington Chamber of Commerce
Rep. Issa says White House manipulates reports on US jobs
Posted: Jun 06, 2012 2:49 PM EDTUpdated: Jun 06, 2012 2:49 PM EDTSource: FOX News
WASHINGTON -- The chairman of the Republican-led House oversight committee charged Wednesday that the Obama administration is manipulating how it reports and provides information about US jobs, in some cases for "clearly political reasons."
Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) made the assertion during a hearing on how the administration counts so-called "green jobs" and the Labor Department's recent, unannounced change on how reporters can access key unemployment reports and other information.
The Labor Department "has jeopardized the integrity of employment data in some cases for clearly political reasons," he said.
Issa said the administration is reclassifying such jobs as welder, college professor and diesel mechanic as "green jobs" to prove that billions of taxpayer dollars, through the federal stimulus program, have created alternative-energy jobs -- a major initiative for President Barack Obama.
"It's about politics. It's always been about politics," said Issa. "If you work at the Salvation Army, that's a green job."
Diana Furchtgott-Roth, a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute and contributing editor of RealClearMarkets.com, said the administration should be focused on simply creating jobs, not classifying them.
She cited the administration putting $3.5 million into the failed Solyndra solar-energy company as an example of the administration appearing to misleadingly or incorrectly tout green-job creation.
Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), the committee's ranking Democrat, said the number of green jobs created under the administration is even higher than the three million reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
"Unfortunately, this committee seems more intent on challenging the methodologies used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics rather than helping put people back to work," he said.
The second concern is the Labor Department recently ordering reporters to use government-issued software and other equipment to access Bureau of Labor Statistics reports, perhaps a violation of free-speech laws.
"This proposal threatens the First Amendment," said Daniel Moss, a Bloomberg News executive editor, testifying at the hearing.
Read More: Rep. Issa says White House manipulates reports on US jobs
Why do we say this?
LOOK AT OURS VS. OBAMA'S NO-PLAN-WHATSOEVER
Home > Business
Crossroads of business and politics can be risky
Laylan Copelin, Capitol Business
- 9 Worst Recession Ghost Towns in America (The Fiscal Times)
Updated: 11:55 p.m. Saturday, June 9, 2012
Published: 7:41 p.m. Saturday, June 9, 2012
Holding elected officials to their promises is Journalism 101.
But you would think that Gov. Rick Perry, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst and House Speaker Joe Straus wouldn't make it so easy.
More on that in a moment.
First, an explanation on why, after 40 years of writing news stories, I'll be doing a periodic column on these pages.
My editors told me to.
I'll confess I know more about the Capitol than I do about business.
After spending most of my career covering politics on the state desk, I switched to the business desk a couple of years ago for an assignment generally described by the editors as "the intersection of business and government."
In Texas, that intersection is more like an expressway.
Business interests of all stripes pay at the toll gates — campaign contributions are the coin of the realm — and speed up the on-ramps looking for tax breaks, grants, loans, partnerships and other ways to get a competitive advantage with other people's money — your money.
And no, this is not a diatribe against big business. Tree-huggers wanting tax breaks for solar panels stand alongside oil executives who long ago got theirs and want to keep theirs. Lending money to now-defunct solar manufacturer Solyndra, I'm sure, sounded like a good idea to the Obama administration at the time.
But let's not be too hard on the federal government. Our state leaders like to tweak the noses of their Beltway brethren, but just a few years ago, our state leaders were giving Countrywide Financial Corp. your money to sell you its subprime mortgages.
So at this intersection of business and government, it's not safe for Boy Scouts helping little old ladies cross the street.
I'm not saying there aren't some worthwhile causes at the Capitol, but every dollar diverted to help one individual, one company or one industry comes out of your pocket and isn't available for the general public good.
On the flip side of taxation, government also regulates. One man's common-sense rule is another's regulatory burden — or so the debate goes.
My personal favorite is a company or industry seeking government aid while complaining about government regulations.
Former state Rep. Joe Gibson of Waco offered valuable advice my first year at the Capitol some 30 years ago.
When trying to decipher the Legislature's rationale, he said not to focus so much on the pros and cons of each issue. (So much for idealism.)
Instead, understanding who wins and who loses under the Capitol dome is as easy as looking for who brings the political donations or the voters to the polls.
Politics, not substance, drives the debate.
Sound advice, but it led me down the slippery slope of focusing on politics as opposed to substance.
Which brings me back to Perry, Dewhurst and Straus.
As a political writer, I never attended many legislative hearings in between the legislative sessions. My mentors dismissed "interim hearings" as an excuse for lawmakers to return periodically to Austin on the public's dime.
However, I find some of the hearings helpful — and newsworthy — in my newfound quest for substance.
A bad hearing just has the usual suspects reciting the same points on a topic that the Legislature has never had the political will to tackle, but a good hearing can offer insights from experts on a topic that might actually get addressed.
So you can imagine my excitement when Perry, Dewhurst and Straus signed off on the Select Committee on Economic Development — a kind of bumper-to-bumper review of all the ways state government gives out your money in the name of creating jobs.
Just the idea of being able to put that gigantic number in a headline — no one in state government seems to compute it now — makes my heart stop. (That alone should encourage someone to do the math.)
Unfortunately, Perry, Dewhurst and Straus don't seem to share my enthusiasm.
The law says the three leaders would appoint the dozen-member committee, including citizens outside state government, to study which handouts worked and which ones don't — "no later than November 1, 2011."
Dewhurst, who has a reputation around the Capitol of being time-challenged, made his appointments in January. Perry and Straus didn't name their members until April.
There have been no meetings so far.
The report is due in January.
The spokespersons you pay to respond to my questions to the Big Three assure me that the taxpayers will get as good a review — even though it will now have to happen in half the time originally allotted.
Don't laugh. You paid for that explanation.
I get it. Perry, Dewhurst and Straus got distracted.
Perry had images of living in the White House instead of his Southwest Austin rental. Dewhurst, who wants to be one of 100 U.S. senators, is fighting a faction of his political party that thinks he didn't do enough as lieutenant governor to stop pat-downs at the airport. And Straus, as best I can determine, is being challenged within his own party because too many Democratic lawmakers helped elect him as speaker.
Lobbyists, who are paid six figures to know what's going on, tell me the pressure is off.
During last year's budget crunch, it was good politics to say you were reviewing every giveaway — even those that buy you political friends.
This year, not so much so.
An economic recovery — however tentative — will do that.
I had one lobbyist predicting the Legislature will give away more of your money next year in the name of creating jobs.
Let's wait and see how selective this "select" committee is.
And let's wait and see if my editor still thinks my writing a column is a good idea.
Laylan Copelin covers the intersection of business and government for the American-Statesman. Contact him at email@example.com or 445-3617
Updated: 9:37 AM
By John Richardson firstname.lastname@example.org
State House Bureau
Voters across the state will head to the polls Tuesday to make decisions ranging from who could be Maine's next U.S. senator to whether to regulate roosters in the town of Raymond.
Voting places open by 8 a.m. Tuesday, and any lines should be short. Election officials expect a low turnout for the election -- something less than 20 percent of registered voters -- based on a modest demand for absentee ballots.
The headliner of the June 12 primary election ballot is the high-stakes U.S. Senate race -- six Republicans and four Democrats are seeking to become their parties' nominees. The two winners will run in November against each other and several independent candidates, led by former Gov. Angus King.
A struggle between Republicans and Democrats to win control of the U.S. Senate, and King's entry in the race, have drawn unusual national attention to the Maine election. The winners of Tuesday's primary are expected to receive a lot of support and money from outside the state.
Also on ballots around Maine:
* Republicans in southern and coastal Maine will choose a candidate to take on 1st District Democratic Rep. Chellie Pingree in November. Maine Sen. Jon Courtney, R-Springvale, is running against Patrick Calder, a merchant mariner from Portland.
* Republicans in central and northern Maine, meanwhile, will chose a candidate to challenge 2nd District Democratic Rep. Mike Michaud. Maine Sen. Kevin Raye, R-Perry, is running against Blaine Richardson, a contractor from Belfast.
* About 40 legislative districts statewide have primary races, the first step in what will be a hard-fought fall contest between Republicans and Democrats for control of Maine's Legislature.
* Some communities will decide local referendum questions on budgets and other issues.
Raymond voters, for example, will try to resolve a dispute between two residents of Ledge Hill Road -- one who owns 16 roosters and another who can't stand the sound of them. The referendum question asks whether the town should replace its barking-dog ordinance with a new law that applies to all animals.
The 10 U.S. Senate candidates spent the past weekend making telephone calls, doing radio interviews, walking main streets and greeting fans at baseball games.
Both the Democratic race and the Republican race appeared up for grabs in the final stretch of the campaign. Candidates and volunteers who made telephone calls to party members over the weekend said a large number of voters still were trying to decide whom they will support on Tuesday.
With such a low turnout expected, the outcome could come down to who gets more core supporters to the polls, they said.
The six Republican candidates showed just how unsettled the race is during a live debate Saturday evening on WGME-13 -- the final debate of the primary -- by aggressively criticizing each others' records.
The Republican U.S. Senate candidates on Tuesday's ballot are former Maine Senate President Rick Bennett, Scott D'Amboise, Maine Sen. Debra Plowman, State Treasurer Bruce Poliquin, Attorney General William Schneider and Secretary of State Charlie Summers.
The Democrats are Maine Sen. Cynthia Dill, former Secretary of State Matt Dunlap, Maine Rep. Jon Hinck and Benjamin Pollard.
Were you interviewed for this story? If so, please fill out our accuracy form
United States Senate elections, 2012From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
November 6, 2012
Class I (33 of the 100) seats in the United States Senate
51 seats needed for a majority
(includes 2 independents who caucus with Democrats)
Senate Seats up for election:
No Senate election
Majority Leader before election
Resulting Majority Leader
Elections to the United States Senate are to be held on November 6, 2012, with 33 of the 100 seats in the Senatebeing contested in regular elections whose winners will serve six-year terms from January 3, 2013 until January 3, 2019. Additionally, special elections may be held to fill vacancies that occur during the 112th United States Congress. Currently, Democrats are expected to have 23 seats up for election, including 2 independents who caucus with the Democrats, while Republicans are expected to have only 10 seats up for election.
The 2012 presidential election, elections to the House of Representatives, elections for governors in 13 states and territories, and many state and local elections will also be held on this date.
RED - REPRESENTS REPUBLICAN POLICIES
BLUE - REPRESENTS DEMOCRAT POLICIES
PURPLE - REPRESENTS TEA PARTY AGENDA/SOLUTIONS
SANGRIA - REPRESENTS REPUBLICAN IDEALS AND CONSERVATIVE VALUES
*TEA POT SEAL OF APPROVAL*
#HELL NO we don’t want this
TOUGH SHOES TO FILL
Candidates for 11-6-12
#HELL NO we don’t want this Brian Hill, attorney http://www.briankhill.com/(We do not support 9-9-9 as a way to pay for Obama’s misappropriation, we need cuts and real tax reform, not a tax gimmick and 27% flat tax for all) Peter Lumaj, investigative fraud attorney
(read Peter’s policies on stabilizing the dollar, flat tax, reduction in spending, real health care reform not Obamacare, job creation http://www.lumaj2012.com/issues/)
- Linda McMahon, businesswoman and 2010 Republican nominee for U.S. Senate http://www.lindaforsenate2012.com/
- Chris Shays, former U.S. representative http://www.shaysforussenate.com/ (this guy doesn’t realize that the internet age contributed to a slower growth economy, nor does he say how we get to 4% growth, except what already should be done or never done http://www.shaysforussenate.com/wp-content/shaysplan/RestoringthePromiseofAmerica.pdf)
"McMahon’s types of jobs include men bulked up on steroids and women prancing around the ring in bikinis, spiked hair, carrying whips and chains.” The problem is wrestling is a professional sport and not the S&M show he claims here, when WWE supports soldiers! This guy is a total douche, we don’t need someone like him in the Senate who will try to control everything rather than do what is best, we don’t need a militarized micro-manager. It is military guys like him who run around bullying people in Facebook groups online, and while we’re grateful for his military service, we can do without the superiority complex and trashing the life work of others.
Candidates for 11-6-12
John Carroll, former state senator and state representative; 2010 gubernatorial candidate
|John Carroll, former state senator and state representative; 2010 gubernatorial candidate|
http://carroll4senate.wordpress.com/ (Yes, he is consistent on the issues: discusses the denial of the Conservative Voice, specifically http://carroll4senate.wordpress.com/consistent-on-the-issues/ fiscal accountability, fairness in taxation, and adherence to the integrity of Constitutional law)
- Linda Lingle, former Hawaii governor http://www.lingle2012.com/ (I am not sold that she has specific solutions... she has down the Republican rhetoric, but now how she will change this in the Senate. It is one thing to acknowledge bad policy, another to show what policy must be corrected http://www.lingle2012.com/jobs-economy/)
Candidates for 11-6-12
#HELL NO we don’t want this Jon Bruning, Nebraska attorney general http://www.jonbruning.com/ Nebraska AG Jon Bruning Compares Welfare Recipients To Scavenging Raccoons http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2011/08/nebraska-ag-jon-bruning-compares-welfare-recipients-to-scavenging-racoons.php (This guy doesn’t get that his remarks could be taken as racist and that we’re all getting $.33 per every dollar earned and 100% increase means people have been forced on food stamps because guys like him want to crack jokes instead of getting in Obama’s face! You go to his website, and all it does is ask for money - <BINGO> CAREER POLITICIAN)
- Sharyn Elander, Real Red Daisies, Administrator
- Deb Fischer, state senator http://www.debfischer2012.com/ (She won the Primary because of her small business objectives http://www.debfischer2012.com/issues/small-business/ and lowering the costs to do business)
- Pat Flynn, financial adviser
- Don Stenberg, state treasurer and former Nebraska attorney general
- Spencer Zimmerman, truck driver and Air Force veteran
Candidates for 11-6-12
http://sowardsforsenate.com/ (sees the issues Constitutionally http://sowardsforsenate.com/issues/)
Greg Sowards, businessman
|Greg Sowards, businessman|
- Heather Wilson, former U.S. representative http://heatherwilson.com/ (don’t get me wrong: she has commendable military experience, but I don’t believe that automatically selects someone to the Senate, as I can’t find anything else on her site where she stands on the issues.)
Candidates for 11-6-12
- Rick Berg, U.S. Representative http://www.bergfornorthdakota.com/ (believes in a balanced budget and supports repeal http://www.bergfornorthdakota.com/view/cat/issues)
- Duane Sand, former North and South Dakota Director for Americans for Prosperity http://www.sandforsenate.com/ (also believes in passing a balanced budget amendment, dismantling Obamacare, and has military experience, but wants federal reserve oversight http://www.sandforsenate.com/issues/federalreserve/)
Candidates for 11-6-12
- George Allen – former U.S. Senator and former Governor of Virginia http://www.georgeallen.com (has a killer ad when you come to his page about how stimulus did not help his community and the political game involved, this man knows how to keep a waste tab, and can see exactly what needs to be cut http://www.georgeallen.com/tag/spending-and-deficits/)
- E. W. Jackson – minister and social conservative leader (kind of reminds me of the Herman Cain of Virginia but without the cheesy 9-9-9 = 27% flat tax for all http://jacksonforvirginia.org/ and has the Conservative ideology http://jacksonforvirginia.org/?page_id=12, every Conservative should have his 10 pt. pledge http://jacksonforvirginia.org/?page_id=14)
- Bob Marshall member of the Virginia House of Delegates (http://bobmarshall2012.com/ reminds me of Ross Perot a little http://bobmarshall2012.com/issues/taxes-and-spending I like the fact that he addresses Education Reform and how he feels about it http://bobmarshall2012.com/issues/education-reform I also like his positions clearly spelled out, rather than saying ‘I’m 100% pro-life’ http://bobmarshall2012.com/issues/life-liberty this man has a clear understanding of how the Senate works and the positions he should represent and how to go about doing it http://bobmarshall2012.com/issues/healthcare)
- Jamie Radtke – conservative activist (http://radtkeforsenate.com/ great ideological Conservative and active on Twitter http://radtkeforsenate.com/issues/ http://radtkeforsenate.com/about-jamie/tea-party-patriot-leaders/ while her arguments of why she is more suited than Allen, it is Marshall who deserves the opportunity for the work he’s done http://radtkeforsenate.com/allen-comparison/ )
Candidates for 11-6-12
- Jeff Fitzgerald, Speaker of the Wisconsin State Assembly (http://fitzgeraldforwisconsin.com/ has a firm grasp of what the government’s role is and is not concerning the private sector, understands that defeating tax increases are important to stop spending and waste, and he understands what is important and a priority of being politically relevant today http://fitzgeraldforwisconsin.com/on-the-issues/)
- Mark Neumann, former U.S. representative http://neumann2012.com this is it, in a nutshell https://neumann2012.com/node/36 and his website specifically lays out where he stands on each issue, when you compare yourself, you should do it to your opponent http://neumann2012.com/compare like Neumann has done, and respect others running from your party as fellow competitors.)
- Tommy Thompson, former governor and former Secretary of Health and Human Services http://www.tommyforwisconsin.com has a better website than Mark Neumann http://www.tommyforwisconsin.com/issues/ I don’t agree with him on health care, a state should created its own program for its own uninsured without tying up federal dollars into a watered-down Obamacare consolation package http://www.tommyforwisconsin.com/issues/healthcare/ )
- Eric Hovde, Businessman http://www.ericforsenate.com/landing/ I like his positions on how to fix the economy http://www.ericforsenate.com/how-to-fix-the-economy/ he has a nice website, he’s got a great appearance, and job record, but I see Neumann as having the policy that will work all the way around)
4.2 Democrats/Independents seeking re-election
POTENTIAL REPLACEMENT-Republican Elizabeth Emken http://www.emken2012.com/
POTENTIAL REPLACEMENT-Republican Kevin Wade http://www.wadeforussenate.com/
Bill Fisher Jr. (R)( I can not find a good website on him other than this http://www.electbillfisher.org/)
George LeMieux(R) (http://www.georgeforflorida.com/ (believes in repeal and replace http://www.georgeforflorida.com/issues/health-care/ I don’t see detailed plans though on deficit reduction other than ideological agreement)
Connie Mack IV ?? (I think the Penny Plan is a gimmick, that when it comes to the federal budget cuts must be addressed yearly and payment on the debt paid annually at $1.7 trillion. Sounds great, but it does not work with the way legislation is approved, nor does it give Congress incentive to examine ALL spending http://conniemack.com/issues/penny-plan )
Ron McNeil(R)http://mcneil2012.com/ (absolutely love his tax reform proposal, thorough, succinct, and relevant to fix our economy http://mcneil2012.com/files/2012/01/AmericanRestorationPlan.pdf )
Dave Weldon former U.S. Representative http://www.daveweldonforsenate.com/ (straight up ideological Conservative) Marielena Stuart (R) http://marielenastuartforussenate2012.com/ (repeal and confronts Democrats opposing Cut, Cap, and Balance, which would’ve worked http://marielenastuartforussenate2012.com/The_Economy.html )
Maryland State Primary: April 3, 2012
Daniel Bongino (R) - http://www.bongino.com/ (typical red meat Republican http://www.bongino.com/issues.html#economy )
Dennis David (Independent) doesn’t seem to have a website
Brandy Baker (Write-in) doesn’t seem to have a website
- Qualified/On ballot
PETE HOEKSTRA IS ONE OF BUSH JR.'S BUDDIES, ONE OF THE REASONS HE IS OUT OF THE HOUSE, AND BECAUSE HE SAID THAT SADDAM HAD 500 CHEMICAL WEAPONS... THOSE WERE NEVER FOUND. PERHAPS HE'D LIKE TO TELL US WHY WE FINANCED A WAR LONGER THAN TWO YEARS AND STAYED IN IRAQ SO LONG, TO THE POINT OCCUPATION AMERICANIZED IRAQ.
Todd Akin(R) http://www.akin.org/ (ideological Conservative http://www.akin.org/issues and BBA http://www.akin.org/issues/spending )
John Brunner http://johnbrunner.com/ (http://johnbrunner.com/issues/ he uses the penny gimmick like Connie Mack )
http://www.sarahsteelman.com/meet-sarah-steelman/about (http://www.sarahsteelman.com/the-issues/ meets the ideology and would serve passionately not piggishly like McCaskill)
POTENTIAL REPLACEMENT Denny Rehberg(R)
Pete Hegseth(R) http://peteforsenate.com/ (hits all the issues http://peteforsenate.com/issues)
Kurt Bills (R)http://kurtbills.com/ (is a Conservatvie and understands the issues very well and what must be done http://kurtbills.com/issues/)
|Dan Severson (R)|
POTENTIAL REPLACEMENT Joe Kyrillos(R)
- 4.2.10 Kirsten Gillibrand of New York
- George Maragos(R) http://www.maragos4ny.com/ (THIS GUY HAS THE RIGHT CONSERVATIVE POLICY http://www.maragos4ny.com/policy.html)
Wendy E. Long (R)http://www.wendylongfornewyork.com/ (great website, pics, and position but no detals on the issues or solutions :( )
Bob Turner(R)http://www.turnerforny.com/ (ideological Conservative http://www.turnerforny.com/issues.php)
POTENTIAL REPLACEMENT Josh Mandel(R)
POTENTIAL REPLACEMENT Tom Smith (R)
POTENTIAL REPLACEMENT Barry Hinckley(R)
POTENTIAL REPLACEMENT H. Brooke Paige (R)
POTENTIAL REPLACEMENT Michael Baumgartner(R)
POTENTIAL REPLACEMENT John Raese(R)
OLD HAT GOP BEING CHALLENGED
4.3 Republicans retiring or defeated in primary
The filing deadline for Republican candidates is June 1, 2012 and the primary election will take place on August 28, 2012.
- Wil R. Cardon, CEO of real estate investment firm (http://wilcardon.com/ has a great website, and he sums it up well for Arizona voters here http://wilcardon.com/issues#Economy)
- Jeff Flake, U.S. representative (http://www.jeffflake.com has a debt payment plan we can all participate in http://www.jeffflake.com/issues/governmentspending/)
- Bryan Hackbarth, former Mayor of Youngtown (I like someone who is accessible and willing to put their direct email address on their initial page instead of a donation redirect page http://www.bryan4senate.com/ this guy has an excellent handle on the inner-workings of our economic problems http://www.bryan4senate.com/issues_americanjobs.asp this guy may not have all of the answers on health and Social Security Reform, but he is close and can be reasoned with http://www.bryan4senate.com/issues_ss.asp)
Clair Van Steenwyk, conservative radio host (http://www.vanforussenate.com/ the Fair Tax doesn’t work and Congress can’t investigate fraud if the I.R.S. is dissolved, some people can’t pay the Fair Tax, and the Fair Tax works like a National V.A.T. which neither of these positions do I support http://www.vanforussenate.com/issues.html)
REPLACED BY RICHARD MOURDOCK
THOSE TEETERING ON BEING REPLACED:
4.4 Republicans seeking re-election
- 4.4.1 Scott Brown of Massachusetts
- 4.4.2 Roger Wicker of Mississippi
- 4.4.3 Dean Heller of Nevada
- 4.4.4 Bob Corker of Tennessee
- 4.4.5 Orrin Hatch of Utah
- 4.4.6 John Barrasso of Wyoming
- 5 References
- 6 External links
CompositionAmong the Senate seats up for election in 2012, there are 21 Democrats, 10 Republicans and 2 Independents. The Independents include Joe Lieberman, who ran and won as an independent in 2006 after losing the Connecticut Democratic primary. Lieberman and Independent Bernie Sanders of Vermont both caucus with the Democratic Party.
If Senators in other classes die or resign between 2011 and 2012, there may be additional special elections between the beginning of the 112th Congress (on January 3, 2011), and the 2012 election. The dates between which the death or resignation of a Senator would lead to a special election during this time period vary from state to state.
BETWEEN THE LINES
THE NEW TEA-PARTY UPRISING
Exclusive: Joseph Farah declares, 'May this movement result in Obama's political demise'Published: 24 hours agoby JOSEPH FARAH Email | Archive
Joseph Farah is founder, editor and CEO of WND and a nationally syndicated columnist with Creators Syndicate. He is the author or co-author of 13 books, including his latest, "The Tea Party Manifesto," and his classic, "Taking America Back," now in its third edition and 14th printing. Farah is the former editor of the legendary Sacramento Union and other major-market dailies.More ↓ Follow author Subscribe to author feed
I’m deeply encouraged that Americans are out in the streets again protesting tyranny.
That’s what we witnessed Friday when tens of thousands of Americans in as many as 164 cities rallied against Obamacare and its mandate to require employers to provide health insurance coverage that violate their consciences.
While the Obama administration has framed this debate as opposition to “contraception,” that is the biggest deception since he promised to fix the economy in 2008.
Neither should this issue be seen as one affecting only devout Catholics. As a non-Catholic employer who has no problem with contraception, I will refuse to comply with this mandate out of principle and my own personal conviction against subsidizing abortifacients.
This is a religious freedom issue – pure and simple. America was founded on the principle of religious freedom.
And that’s why I am so pleased to see a new, broad-based, tea-party-style movement arising to protest Barack Obama’s outrageously tyrannical and anti-American “mandate.”
May it result in his political demise.
The “Stand Up for Religious Freedom” protests come as the U.S. Supreme Court is expected to make its decision this month on the constitutionality of the Obama administration’s Affordable Care Act.
The rallies are a project of the Pro-Life Action League, united with 70 other organizations. The groups are demanding Obama and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius withdraw mandates requiring nearly all private health insurance plans to cover the prescription contraceptive drugs and devices, surgical sterilizations and abortion-inducing drugs, such as Plan B.
It’s certainly bad enough that the federal government exceeds its constitutional authority by requiring employers to provide health insurance of any kind. It’s certainly bad enough that the federal government exceeds its constitutional authority by requiring American citizens to buy a service against their will. But mandating that all employers, regardless of their deepest religious convictions, subsidize the taking of innocent human life is, quite simply, an abomination.
“[T]his president, on that day of his inauguration, lifted up his right hand and he swore before all of America to that he would uphold and defend and protect the Constitution of the United States,” Rep. Michele Bachmann told the rally in Washington. “But he had had no problem telling the religious organizations and religious oriented people of this nation that they must be forced to violate their religious beliefs under his health-care mandate. Never before, in the history of the United States of America, has this government required an employer to provide health insurance that would include taxpayer-subsidized abortion, that would mandate the provision of contraception, that would mandate sterilization and abortion-causing pills. We know this wrong.”
Lila Rose of Live Action, producers of many video exposés on the abortion chain Planned Parenthood and one of my personal heroines, disputed “war on women” propaganda used by abortionists and the Obama re-election campaign.
“We’re all here because we love our country, right?” she began. “And we love our faith and we love our freedom. And we believe – we know our country was founded on the right to life, liberty and the pursuit to happiness. And so we’ll do whatever we can in our power and the power of God, Who’s all-powerful – through prayer – to take back the freedoms that belong to us and to complete the fight [for] the right to life of every human being. We will not comply – we cannot comply with the unjust mandate coming from Kathleen Sebelius and coming from the president of the United States.”
But do 164 rallies taking place on the same day around the country make an impact if the media ignore them or treat them merely as small local events?
They can if they continue – and build momentum.
The mainstream media tried to bury the tea-party movement. It didn’t work.
Americans are rising up and fighting for liberty, again. That’s refreshing. That’s what America is all about.
In fact, it was Thomas Jefferson who wrote in a draft of the Virginia Act for Establishing Religious Freedom in 1779, three years after he wrote the Declaration of Independence: “Well aware that the opinions and belief of men depend not on their own will, but follow involuntarily the evidence proposed to their minds; that Almighty God hath created the mind free, and manifested his supreme will that free it shall remain by making it altogether insusceptible of restraint; that all attempts to influence it by temporal punishments, or burthens, or by civil incapacitations, tend only to beget habits of hypocrisy and meanness, and are a departure from the plan of the holy author of our religion, who being lord both of body and mind, yet chose not to propagate it by coercions on either, as was in his Almighty power to do, but to extend it by its influence on reason alone; that the impious presumption of legislators and rulers, civil as well as ecclesiastical, who, being themselves but fallible and uninspired men, have assumed dominion over the faith of others, setting up their own opinions and modes of thinking as the only true and infallible, and as such endeavoring to impose them on others, hath established and maintained false religions over the greatest part of the world and through all time: That to compel a man to furnish contributions of money for the propagation of opinions which he disbelieves and abhors, is sinful and tyrannical. …”
In the spirit of Jefferson, James Madison, John Adams and America’s other founders, we have a duty and an obligation to resist attacks on religious freedom today without compromise and by any and all means necessary.
Tea-party-style uprisings must never be constrained to economic issues. They should always be about fighting for liberty and against tyranny.
This fight is not about contraception. It’s about deception and tyranny.
Tea Party Chief @2012_TeaParty
I hear @MittRomney "Anything Obama does, I can do better~ anything he can do WE CAN DO TOO" @BarackObama <no you can't> @MittRomney YES I AM
Ron Paul supporters deride son Rand as a “Judas” over Romney supportMonday, Jun 11, 2012 at 12:41 PM EDT
Sellout. Traitor. Cancer.
Those are some pretty harsh insults even for the heated political climate of an election year, and usually such epithets would be reserved for a Benedict Arnold. But those were just some of the words being directed at Kentucky Senator Rand Paul for endorsing GOP Presidential candidate Mitt Romney – shockingly not from the left but from the libertarians that devoutly follow Rand’s father Ron Paul.
“I’m happy to announce that I’m going to be supporting Governor Romney,” Rand Paul said over the weekend.
And apparently the comment above makes you a Judas.
“There it is. And that is reason to have him burn in hell. Apparently, according to his father’s supporters, that’s enough to have to condemn him and say Rand Paul is a sellout, a traitor, a cancer. You name it, they’ve now said it,” Glenn said.
Here’s just some of the highlights from some of the message boards and some of the posts on any Rand Paul story:
-Nothing but a Judas
-Burn in hell, Rand.
-Shame on you, Rand,
-You sold out on everything your father stands for money.
-If there’s a hell, you will see it unless you can make up for your actions.
“I think they say that with love, though,” Pat joked.
ADVERTISEMENT“Unbelievable. It’s really truly unbelievable. I mean, here is the son of the guy you don’t think father and son chatted about this? You are a supporter of the father and such a rabid supporter of the father,” Glenn said.
“ I don’t understand it from libertarians. They are they’re in lockstep. Even if Ron Paul violates his own principles and the biggest one is the earmarks in the 14th district. More earmarks than you can possibly imagine, and he puts them in. If he was against earmarks, he wouldn’t put them in. But he puts them in all of the bills and then he votes against that bill. When he knows it’s going to pass, he puts the earmark in and then his district gets all of that earmark money. Where is the outrage?”
“I agree with Ron Paul on a lot of stuff, but I don’t agree with Ron Paul on everything. So I’m a neocon. I’m a danger. If you don’t agree with everything Ron Paul says, even his own son is Judas.”
“If you don’t walk in lockstep, you’re done. You want to know why libertarians never win? There’s your reason. There’s your reason. There is no compromise. And I’m sorry, but we as a people are going to disagree on things. You’ve got to get the big ones done. And you’ve got to move in one direction.”
“You know what this is? It’s the evolution revolution argument. If Ron Paul supporters actually meant evolution, they wouldn’t be tearing Rand Paul apart. Because evolution means we’re taking steps in that direction. Revolution is there is no compromise; you’ve betrayed the revolution. That’s dangerous. That’s dangerous every time. And don’t take it from me. Take it from history.”
“It’s strange how we are continually dividing ourselves and it’s particularly puzzling from a group of people who have a hard time getting together because they’re independent. They’re freethinkers. And yet there’s a portion of Ron Paulians that are not freethinkers. They just lock step with their leader. Even when their leader most likely agrees with his son. I don’t know about you, but if my supporters were taking on my son like that, I think I’d take a stand. I think I’d say something about it. But instead people like Rand Paul will be called spawns of Satan, betrayers of the revolution, betrayers of the republic. This monologue will be vilified, will be made into monsters. Even though tonight I’m doing a monologue on the Federal Reserve and the central banking system is a total and complete sham.”
“ You don’t win anything like that, gang. You only head towards revolution. Now, if that’s what you want, well, then you can join the Occupy people because you think an awful lot like the Occupy people. And I don’t mean in the government is bad. I mean in your lack of willingness to accept facts or differences.”
“There’s no common sense, there’s no deep thinking involved. You just follow your leader. Even though it violates your own principles. You just go with it. Why think for yourself when you can have somebody else do it?”
“Now, I understand this from the revolutionaries on the left. I understand following the leader because that’s what communists do. They just follow the leader. That’s not what libertarians do. They’re skeptical of leaders.”
June 10, 2012, 12:43 PM
Santorum Ready for Convention Battle with PaulBy BRIAN KNOWLTON
Rick Santorum plans to lead a strong pro-Romney effort at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., that can serve as a counterweight in case Representative Ron Paul and his supporters “are looking for a platform fight,” he said in an interview that was broadcast on Sunday.
Mr. Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator, had sharp differences withMitt Romney when both were seeking the presidential nomination, but since bowing out of the race, Mr. Santorum has thrown his support behind the presumptive nominee and has papered over their differences.
The same cannot be said of Mr. Paul, the Texas libertarian who is still technically a candidate and who will be bringing more than 200 delegates to Tampa. Mr. Santorum, appearing on the ABC News program “This Week,” suggested that fireworks with the Paul group were a distinct possibility.
Asked about his own interest in influencing the Republican platform, Mr. Santorum said, “I like the platform that we have right now.”
He then added: “I’m concerned that Ron Paul and some of his supporters out there are looking for a platform fight. And I want to make sure that we have strong, principled conservatives there who stood with me in our primary fight to go there and counterbalance the effect of the Paul folks.”
Mr. Santorum, who often sparred with Mr. Paul in the Republican debates, did not elaborate on what shape a platform fight might take.
But Mr. Paul believes in sharply reducing the United States’ entanglements overseas, and he does not believe that government has a role in some of the conservative social causes that Mr. Santorum strongly supports. But despite policy differences between Mr. Romney and Mr. Paul, the two are known to have a good personal relationship.
Mr. Santorum said on Friday in Illinois that he would work in the coming months — in part through a new conservative PAC called Patriot Voices — to ensure that his allies arrive in Tampa “armed and ready to engage the fight.”
On “This Week,” he said that he had not been contacted by Mr. Romney about a possible spot on the Republican ticket. But he made his support clear, saying, “I’ll do whatever I can to be helpful to him.”
Which may, it seems, include doing battle with Mr. Paul.
WHERE IS THE LOVE???
IF I CAN SHOW MITT ROMNEY SOME LOVE.....Team Rick Perry @TeamRickPerry
Congratulations to @MittRomney for clinching GOP nomination w/ Texas victory. Defeating @BarackObama in Nov. is now #1 priority.
@TeamRickPerry @MittRomney I'd have you hand it to him, but I just made it tonight http://pic.twitter.com/X0X7prx
powered by Photobucket
9:20 PM - 29 May 12 via web · Details
Congratulations to @MittRomney for clinching GOP nomination w/ Texas victory. Defeating @BarackObama in Nov. is now #1 priority.
@BretBaier @ZekeJMiller the mouse fell in my tea cup.... at 320am last week, and I thought surely that is a sign
@BretBaier @ZekeJMiller funny he chose those words... there was an appearance in my art studio of mouse, which means, humility...
It's official RT @ZekeJMiller Romney: I am humbled to have won enough delegates to become the Republican Party's 2012 presidential nominee
Congratulations @MittRomney on #ROMINATION - while this would look better on @TexGov the nomination was taken in Texas http://pic.twitter.com/RutzoYj
powered by Photobucket
9:06 PM - 29 May 12 via web · DetailsWHY ARE WE BOOING EACH OTHER OVER SENATE SEATS?!
Party unity elusive at Texas Republican ConventionPosted: Jun 10, 2012 12:15 PM EDTUpdated: Jun 10, 2012 12:15 PM EDT
By WILL WEISSERT
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) - The Texas Republican Convention began with a chorus of boos for Gov. Rick Perry - himself a Republican.
It ended with two candidates in a fierce battle for the GOP's U.S. Senate nomination trading barbs in dueling floor speeches.
So much for party unity.
Fellow Republicans were often at-odds during their 3-day convention in Fort Worth.
The main fight centered around the race to replace retiring U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison between tea party darling Ted Cruz and mainstream Republican favorite David Dewhurst.
The pair are headed to a July 31 runoff, with the winner almost certain to prevail in November's general election.
Still, party delegates put aside their differences long enough to approve a party platform softening the Texas GOP stance on immigration, and endorsing a guest-worker program.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Home > Louisiana Politics & Government > Breaking News
Gov. Bobby Jindal to raise money for Romney, Virginia governor
Published: Thursday, June 07, 2012, 5:00 PM Updated: Thursday, June 07, 2012, 5:00 PM By Ed Anderson, The Times-PicayuneFollow
BATON ROUGE -- Gov. Bobby Jindal is hitting the fund-raising trail Friday for political events in Virginia and Chicago, where he is expected to raise cash for the governor of Virginia and theRomney for President campaign.Hilary Scheinuk, The Times-Picayune archiveGov. Bobby Jindal will be traveling Friday to make campaign appearances for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and others.
Jindal spokesman Kyle Plotkin said the governor's first stop will be Hot Springs, Va., where he will "attend an event in support" of Gov. Bob McDonnell's Opportunity Virginia Political Action Committee.
Jindal will then fly to Chicago where he will address the Conservative Political Action Conference.
"The governor will then attend a fundraiser in Chicago, Ill., in support of the Romney for President Campaign," Plotkin said.
Jindal is expected back in Baton Rouge on Friday
Jindal has been mentioned as one of several candidates that Romney may be considering as a vice presidential running mate.
Details of who was paying for the trips and the time of the specific events were not released, in keeping with the policies of the governor's office.
Ed Anderson can be reached at email@example.com or 225.342.5810.
Related topics: bobby jindal, mitt romney
BOBBY JINDAL FACES CRITICISM OVER EDUCATION REFORM, THOUGH WE KNOW IT IS NEEDED:The Kudlow Report @TheKudlowReport
If Romney's VP pick were stocks, which would be the best to invest in? @LarrySabato & @RobertCostaNRO break it down.http://bit.ly/OhKfO8
@TheKudlowReport @LarrySabato @RobertCostaNRO oooh#BobbyJindal because #EducationReform is the future to a better a society
POSTED ON JUNE 11, 2012 AT 9:22 AM, BY TERRY STOOPSThe NC Senate budget recommendation would increase funding for public schools. Last year, the General Assembly approved $7,444,122,100 for the current year. The proposed budget would increase the K-12 budget to $7,478,264,218. (That is a net increase of $34,142,118.) Big ticket increases include a recurring appropriation of $47,414,503 for the Excellent Public Schools Act and $74,076,032 to decrease the “LEA Adjustment.” The LEA Adjustment is a predetermined amount of funding that school districts must return to the state.
The Senate budget also includes recurring appropriations for residential schools ($4,500,000) and Governor’s Schools ($800,000). My only recommendation is to use $300,000 of the Governor’s Schools funding for the Communities in Schools Reading Corps project match and the other $500,000 for improvements to EVAAS, the Education Value-Added Assessment System.
Unlike the budget approved by the NC House, the Senate does not use temporary funding to “buffer” the loss of temporary federal funds for public school personnel. Much to their credit, Senate budget writers discontinued the trend of using temporary funding for permanent expenditures.
In addition, the Senate budget does not include “pass through” funding for the Teacher Cadet program ($200,000), PTA Parental Involvement Initiative ($150,000), Tarheel ChalleNGe ($4 million), and the Teaching Fellows Program ($3.3 million). It will be interesting to see if the House leadership plans to fight for these line items.
Share on twitterShare on facebookShare on emailShare on favoritesMore Sharing Services
Second teacher union will sue over Jindal's education reform planThe Associated Press
Published: Saturday, June 9, 2012 at 4:32 p.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, June 9, 2012 at 4:32 p.m.BATON ROUGE — The Louisiana Association of Educators says it, too, will file a lawsuit to throw out a set of education changes pushed by Gov. Bobby Jindal and passed by lawmakers.
Directors of the teachers union have also endorsed an effort to recall Jindal. The union voted Saturday to sue over changes to the state's elementary and secondary school funding formula that will pay for a statewide voucher program, online schools, college tuition scholarships and an expansion of charter schools.
The affiliate of the National Education Association said the changes violate the state Constitution and illegally transfer local tax money from one district to another.
The union is not challenging Act 1, which changes teacher tenure, hiring and firing practices and gives superintendents more authority.
The Louisiana Federation of Teachers filed two lawsuits in Baton Rouge district court Thursday, claiming the changes violate constitutional provisions on the passage of legislation and governing the school financing formula. That union also challenged the changes to teacher tenure, hiring and firing.
Organizers of the recall effort, which was kicked off by Calcasieu Parish teachers Angie Bonvillain and Brenda Romero, say they're seeking endorsements from the Louisiana Federation of Teachers and the state AFL-CIO.
Teachers repeatedly protested at the Louisiana Capitol in March and April, but the measures were fast-tracked through the Legislature by Jindal allies. Union leaders had promised lawsuits, complaining about the process used to push the measures to law.
Page 2 of 2Supporters said the education changes will give parents more choices for their children, reward highly performing teachers and improve education for children in Louisiana, which ranks in the bottom five states for national achievement test performance. Jindal made the revamp his main focus of the legislative session.
Jindal described the court challenge as a bid by special interests to preserve a failing educational system. The Republican governor calls the teacher union part of a "coalition of the status quo."
Other supporters of the changes have also voiced criticism. Jim Garvey, a member of the Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education representing parts of metro New Orleans, said it was "a shame" that the Jefferson Parish chapter of the LFT had joined those suits, along with the East Baton Rouge Federation of Teachers and four individual teachers.
"The injunctions that the JFT is seeking in connection with these cases would suspend the new laws that, among other things, would allow superintendents to use teacher effectiveness, instead of teacher seniority, in deciding how teachers are assigned to classrooms," Garvey wrote. "I don't think that making seniority the basis for assigning a teacher to a classroom was the result that Jefferson's hard working teachers were seeking in paying their dues to the JFT."
He argued that vouchers, instead of taking money from public school systems as critics allege, will reduce the cost of educating the students who use them because average private school tuition is lower than the state per-pupil allotment.
IF ROMNEY IS OUR JOBS MAN.....
IS HE A BILDERBERG WANNABE ?Four separate eyewitnesses inside the Westfields Marriott hotel in Chantilly Virginia told London Guardian writer Charlie Skelton that Mitt Romney was in attendance at Bilderberg 2012, suggesting the Republican candidate could be the elite’s pick for the upcoming U.S. presidential election.
“Four eyewitnesses on the hotel staff told me Willard Mitt Romney was here at Bilderberg 2012. My four eyewitnesses place him inside. That’s one more than Woodward and Bernstein used. Romney’s office initially refused to confirm or deny his attendance as Bilderberg is “not public”. They later said it was not him,” writes Skelton. The London Guardianwriter adds that the fact Romney’s name did not appear on the official list of attendees is meaningless. Numerous power brokers, including Bill Gates, were photographed arriving at the event yet were not included on the list of participants, as is routinely the case.
An invite to the Bilderberg conference has routinely proven beneficial to future Presidents and Prime Ministers. Four years ago during a heated battle on the campaign trail, Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton gave reporters the slip to attend the 2008 Bilderberg meeting at the same hotel. On precisely the same weekend as the confab was taking place, the Washington Post announced that Hillary was withdrawing from the presidential race and would support Obama. Bill Clinton and Tony Blair were both groomed by the secretive organization in the early 1990′s before rising to prominence. Portugal’s Pedro Santana Lopes and Jose Socrates attended the 2004 meeting in Stresa, Italy before both going on to become Prime Minster of Portugal. Bilderberg also played a key role in selecting John Edwards and John Kerry’s running mate in 2004 and Bilderberg luminary James A. Johnson also hand-picked Joe Biden as VP in 2008.
The Mormon Plan for America and
The Rise of Mitt Romney
February 14, 2007Almost 30 Years ago, the late BYU Professor and LDS author Cleon Skousen founded the Freemen Institute [later to be called The National Center for Constitutional Studies]. The name came from the Book of Mormon
And those who were desirous that Pahoran should remain chief judge over the land took upon them the name of freemen; and thus was the division among them, for thefreemen had sworn or covenanted to maintain their rights and the privileges of their religion by a free government. Alma 51: 6-7Skousen joined forces with Jerry Falwell's Moral Majority on some major political issues late 70s and early 80s and I was prompted to study out both the public and the LDS insider position on government, the constitution. [LDS say it is a divine document from the hand of God] Using that research, I produced a Study called "The Mormon Plan for America".
When George Romney, Mitt's father, made his aborted run for President in 1968, there was a lot in internal LDS talk about the last days prophecies that the US constitution would hang by a thread to be saved by the elders of the LDS church. Many felt that the day had finally arrived for the actual "Kingdom of God" to be established.
This pure form of theocratic, prophet led government would prepare the way for the ushering in of the millennium, the time when Jesus would return to earth, sit in his temple in Missouri to reign over the earth, with the center of His government operated as the "Kingdom of God" on earth.
The actual background for all these whispered conversations came from much of the historical documents of the church and the speeches of many of the early church authorities.
It goes something like this. Joseph Smith implemented a program called the United Order in the church… It was a plan of sharing... everything in common, all properties and wealth turned over and owned by the church and dispersed by the Brethren to the people on an as needed basis with a requirement for good stewardship or loss of use.
It was called the "Kingdom of God." It was people living as God ordained under the United Order. However, it failed.
It was later determined that it could only work when both the secular and ecclesiastic functions operated under one authority... An LDS prophet ruling over a theocratic government where eternal commandments like the United Order and plural marriage and blood atonement would function within "The Kingdom of God"
That Theocracy would come into existence when the US Constitution would hang by a thread and the Mormon elders would be there to save it and the country and thereby usher in The Kingdom of God, the prophesied Mormon theocracy.
On December 7, 1968 Elder Hugh B. Brown presided over the groundbreaking of the LDSWashington D.C. Temple. It was dedicated in November 1974 by the prophet, Spencer W. Kimball.
The unique thing about this temple that struck me as singularly important was the design and furnishing of a large room on the upper floor. A photograph of this room is in the film, The Godmakers. It was set to house a presiding governing body.
It is my own personal belief that it was designed as the place where the theocratic government of God would conduct its business, with the prophet in His place of authority.
Now we jump ahead 40 years to 2007… and the 2008 Presidential election. A whole generation has passed and the son of George Romney has risen to the top of the list of Mormons who would qualify to take that run at the Oval Office and perhaps be in the right place as President or Vice President as the Constitution hangs by that foretold thread… and be there to call upon the elders, the Brethren to save the nation and soon usher in the "Kingdom of God."
Far fetched... I would agree that I sound like a man shouting fire in a theatre, but, as you will read, I am talking about valid LDS end-times teachings...
You will also see that Mitt Romney has been raised and trained for this day. His family has been in the church for generations. He is the great grandson of polygamists Gaskell Romney and Anna Amelia Pratt.[i]
Mitt Romney is a Temple Mormon, a High Priest, and as such he has sworn blood oaths of sacrifice, obedience and consecration to the church and the "Kingdom of God." His perfect obedience to these laws will allow him to become a god in the next life, the literal father of the peoples of a new and different earth. He is truly a Presidential candidate with an actual, definable god complex.
On February 12, 2007, as Mitt Romney announced that he would run for the office of President, he commented in a USA Today, article, Will Mormon faith hurt bid for White House? ByJill Lawrence, that…
… It is not his job as a presidential candidate to educate people about his church. "I'm running for a secular position," he said in an interview. "I subscribe to what Abraham Lincoln called America's political religion. The Constitution and the rule of law are the highest promises I would make in taking the oath of office."
Mitt Romney's LDS understanding of the U.S. Constitution and its divine role in the end times is not that of the average American.
Mitt Romney is a nice looking man, successful in the business world, with core values of family, church and faith. He does not smoke, drink or even touch coffee or tea. He has been married to the same woman for decades. He seems like the cure for dealing with the corruption of our national leadership. What could possibly be wrong in having such a man as our President? Let's look at some of the reasons his presidency could be the end ofAmerica as we know it.
I recently searched through my files and have resurrected and updated the research paper, The Mormon Plan for America. That information is part of what I share below.
Some Extremely Grave Questions
Let me re-introduce you to a portion of one chapter in my book, The God Makers, co-authored with Dave Hunt.[ii] It is a part of Chapter 16: The Hidden Kingdom. I suggest that you buy the book and read the entire story. It will shock you even more than what I will reveal here. It is a hidden kingdom that lurks beneath the placid surface of public Mormonism. It is this LDS "Kingdom of God" that former Governor, Mitt Romney has sworn blood oaths of obedience to in the LDS Temple ritual. The Late Apostle and LDS theologian, elder Bruce. R. McConkie described the Mormon temples as "Holy sanctuaries wherein sacred ordinances, rites, and ceremonies are performed which pertain to salvation and exaltation in the kingdom of God are called temples."
There are several purposes to be achieved in the temple by worthy Mormons. First, they learn the secret/sacred signs, tokens, handshakes necessary to pass by the sentinels and enter the Celestial glory where they will become gods and goddesses and people new earths like this one.
Second, they receive sacred undergarments to wear for their protection while on earth, a secret new name by which they will be called from the grave and then swear obedience to certain laws that will govern their membership, obedience to the prophet and their behavior while on earth.
Mitt Romney's temple experience was no different when he first received his "endowments" in preparation for his 30 month stint as an LDS Missionary.
The Law of SacrificeOne of several temple oaths was his oath of Obedience to the Law of Sacrifice, in which he vowed,
"As Jesus Christ has laid down his life for the redemption of mankind, so we should covenant to sacrifice all that we [I] possess, even our [my] own lives [life] if necessary, in sustaining and defending the Kingdom of God." [iii]
The "execution of the penalty" for 'disobedience at the time Mitt Romney took out his "temple Endowments" was demonstrated by
"by placing the thumb under the left ear, the palm of the hand down, and by drawing the thumb quickly across the throat to the right ear, and dropping the hand to the side"[iv].
It is hard to imagine that well-educated Mormon men of such political stature like former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, Utah Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah or Senator Harry Reid of Nevada could bring their thumbs to their throats and swear a blood oath that they will 'suffer' their throats slit from ear to ear should they not "sacrifice all that [they] possess, even [their] own lives if necessary, in sustaining and defending the Kingdom of God, as defined by the Mormon prophet.
These LDS oaths are taken directly from the rituals of Blue Lodge Masonry, the source of much of the LDS Temple rituals. It is no wonder, since the first 5 presidents and prophets of the LDS church were Masons.
These high level Temple Mormons clearly know that this Mormon "Kingdom of God" is, in reality, a Mormon one-world government, a theocracy, soon coming to America, that will be run by the strong arm of the Mormon Brethren, headed up by the only true prophet of God on earth. However, it is clear that they did swear such an oath.
The Law of ConsecrationThe other significant oath Mitt Romney has sworn to obey is the Law of Consecration. In the LDS temple ritual, the officiator says to the temple 'patrons',
We are instructed to give unto you the Law of Consecration as contained in the book of Doctrine and Covenants, in connection with the Law of the Gospel and the Law of Sacrifice which you have already received. It is that you do consecrate yourselves, your time, talents and everything which the Lord has blessed you, or with which he may bless you, to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saint, for the building up of the Kingdom of God on the earth and for the establishment of Zion.
All arise. (All patrons stand.) Each of you bring your right arm to the square.
You and each of you covenant and promise before God, angels, and these witnesses at this altar, that you do accept the Law of Consecration as contained in the Doctrine and Covenants, in that you do consecrate yourselves, your time, talents, and everything with which the Lord has blessed you, or with which he may bless you, to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, for the building up of the Kingdom of God on the earth and for the establishment of Zion.
Each of you bow your head and say "yes."
Now we can see and understand the spiritual positioning of elder Mitt Romney beginning on that first day and reinforced with every temple visit thereafter. Let's go back to Chapter 16 of my book, The God Makers, "
Secrets of the Hidden Kingdom of God
Mormon leaders call their empire the "Kingdom of God." However, their "God" is an extraterrestrial from Kolob, definitely not the God of the Bible; and the "Zion" to which their spirit-brother-of-Lucifer Jesus Christ will return to reign is Independence, Missouri.
Most Christians believe, as the Bible declares, that Christ will return to Jerusalem,Israel, to establish His millennial kingdom, whereas Mormons believe that they must establish a worldwide Mormon kingdom dictated from their Missouri base in order to make it possible for Christ to return.
Therein lays a great difference, which is why the Mormon hierarchy, beginning with Joseph Smith himself, has always had worldwide and absolute political power as its goal.
Mormon historian Klaus J. Hansen has written,
"The idea of a political kingdom of God, promulgated by a secret Council of Fifty, is by far the most important key to an understanding of the Mormon past."[v]
Mormon writer John J. Stewart has said:
"The Prophet established a confidential Council of Fifty, or "Ytfif," (Fifty spelled backwards), comprised of both Mormons and non-Mormons, to help attend to temporal matters, including the eventual development of a one-world government, in harmony with preparatory plans for the second advent of the Saviour".[vi]
Let's jump ahead to the section called: Some Extremely Grave Questions
Mormonism seems as American as apple pie, and Mormons seem to be the perfect citizens with their close families, high morals, patriotism, Boy Scout programs, Tabernacle Choir, and conservative politics. A Los Angeles Times article implied that Mormons have recently gained the image of "super-Americans . . . [who] appear to many to be 'more American than the average American." [vii]This may explain why such a high proportion of Mormons find their way into government. Returned LDS missionaries have "the three qualities the CIA wants: foreign language ability, training in a foreign country, and former residence in a foreign country."[viii] Utah (and particularly BYU) is one of the prime recruiting areas for the CIA. According to BYU spokesman Dr. Gary Williams, "We've never had any trouble placing anyone who has applied to the CIA. Every year they take almost anybody who applies."[ix] He also admitted that this has created problems with a number of foreign countries, who have complained about the "pretty good dose of [Mormon] missionaries who've gone back to the countries they were in as Central Intelligence agents."[x]
This may at least partially explain the reported close tie between the Mormon Church and the CIA.[xi] A disproportionate number of Mormons arrive at the higher levels of the CIA, FBI, military intelligence, armed forces, and all levels of city, state, and federal governments, including the Senate, Congress, Cabinet, and White House Staff. Sincere and loyal citizens, most of them may be unaware of the secret ambition of The Brethren. What could be better than having such patriots as these serving in strategic areas of government and national security?
Unfortunately, as we have noticed in every other area of Mormonism, the real truth lies hidden beneath the seemingly ideal image of patriotism presented by Mormons in public service. In fact their very presence in responsible government positions, particularly in agencies dealing with national security, raises some extremely grave questions that were expressed in my following letter mailed to the LDS Brethren in Salt Lake City. I also published it as an open letter in the Salt Lake Tribune.
The Mormon Oath of Vengeance Against this NationAn open letter to:
The President, First Presidency and members of the General Authorities of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
August 21, 1980
I was recently reflecting that although the actual blood oath and the oath of vengeance were removed from the Temple ceremonies sometime after 1930, you gentlemen [listing ten of the above] are of an age to have received your own endowments prior to their removal, and therefore, are still under these oaths.
I am particularly interested in your personal position on your oath of vengeance against the United States of America. As you recall, the oath was basically as follows:
You and each of you do solemnly promise and vow that you will pray and never cease to importune high heaven to AVENGE THE BLOOD OF THE PROPHETS (Joseph and Hiram Smith) ON THIS NATION, and that you will teach this to your children and your children's children unto the third and fourth generation.
Have you officially renounced this oath? Or are you still bound by it?
If you have not renounced it, how can you presume to lead four-and-one-half [now over six and a half million Americans] million people [US citizens] under item 12 of your Articles of Faith and still be bound to call upon heaven to heap curses upon our nation? ("We believe in being subject to Kings, Presidents, Rulers and Magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law.")
If you have renounced it, how can you justify having sworn such an oath in the most holy of holy places on this earth, before the sacred altar of your omnipotent God, and then renounce it? Gentlemen, I call upon you to repent of this abomination and proclaim to both the Mormon people and to the people of the United States of America that you renounce that oath and all it represents.
I also call upon all members of the Mormon Church who hold office in our government, serve in the Armed Services, work for the FBI and CIA who have gone through the Mormon Temple and sworn oaths of obedience and sacrifice to the church and its leaders (above), to repent of these oaths in the light of the obvious conflict of interest between their pledge of allegiance to the USA and their higher loyalty to a group of men who are sworn to seek vengeance against this great nation.
(Signed) J. Edward Decker
cc: President J. Carter
Mr. Ronald Reagan
No response was received to this letter. The Brethren are so powerful that they are immune to criticism and feel no need to explain themselves or account to anyone for these actions. The Mormon Church already packs a political punch far out of proportion to its size. The Wall Street Journal explained how, in spite of the Constitution separation between Church and State, public schools in Utah are used to instill Mormonism in young minds. It mentioned political reapportionment, airline deregulation, the basing of the MX missile and the ERA as political issues affected by the power of the Church. For example, when the Church opposed the MX for Utah, those plans were immediately dropped by the federal government. The same Wall Street Journal article quoted the following statement from J.D. Williams, a University of Utah political science professor:
There is a disquieting statement in Mormonism: "When the leaders have spoken, the thinking has been done." To me, democracy can't thrive in that climate. They [Mormon politicians] don't have to be called to Church headquarters for political instruction. They know what they're supposed to do. That's why non-Mormons can only look toward the Mormon Church and wonder: "What is Big Brother doing to me today?"[xii]
A Disturbing Possibility
While the election of a Mormon President seems unlikely, it is highly probable under the present swing toward conventional morality and conservatism that a Mormon could one day become a Republican vice-Presidential nominee. This is especially true when one considers the growing cooperating between Mormons and Christian leaders like Jerry Falwell and groups like the Moral Majority. With the power, wealth, wide influence, numerous highly-placed Mormons, and large voting block under their virtual control, The Brethren have a great deal to offer a Republican Presidential candidate. Let's assume that a Mormon Vice-Presidential candidate is on the winning ticket, and thereafter the President dies in office or is assassinated, causing the Mormon to succeed him as President of the United States.
There is every reason to believe that the new President would immediately begin to gather around him increasing numbers of zealous Temple Mormons in strategic places at the highest levels of government. A crisis similar to the one which Mormon prophecies "foretold" occurs, in which millions of Mormons with their year's supply of food, guns, and ammunition play a key role. It would be a time of excitement and zealous effort by the "Saints" to fulfill Joseph Smith's and Brigham Young's "prophecy":
The time will come when the destiny of the nation will hang upon a single thread. At that critical juncture, this people will step forth and save it from the threatened destruction.[xiii]
Not only does Mormonism predict the "saving" of America, but the precedent for an attempted takeover by force or subterfuge through political means has been set by the founding "Prophet" himself. In 1834 Joseph Smith organized an army and marched toward Independence, Missouri, to "redeem Zion." In spite of a humiliating surrender to the Missouri Militia that proved his bold "Prophecies" false, the "Prophet" later formed the "Nauvoo Legion" and commissioned himself a Lieutenant-General to command it. Lyman L. Woods stated:
I have seen him on a white horse wearing the uniform of a general. . . .
He was leading a parade of the Legion and looked like a god.[xiv]
Joseph Smith was not only ordained King on earth, but he ran for President of the United States just before his death, at which time Mormon missionaries across the country became "a vast force of political [power]."[xv] Today's Church leaders are urging Mormons to prepare themselves for the coming crisis in order to succeed where past "Saints" have failed. A major article in the LDS Ensign magazine about being prepared included this oft-repeated warning reminder:
The commandment to reestablish Zion became for the Saints of Joseph Smith's day the central goal of the church. But it was a goal the Church did not realize because its people were not fully prepared.[xvi]
Going back to our hypothetical crisis, what Mormons unsuccessfully attempted against impossible odds in the past they might very well accomplish with much better odds in this future scenario. Under cover of the national and international crisis, the Mormon President of the United States acts boldly and decisively to assume dictatorial powers. With the help of The Brethren and Mormons everywhere, he appears to save America and becomes a national hero. At this time he is made Prophet and President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the Mormon Kingdom of God, while still President of the United States. There is no provision in the Constitution to prevent this.
With the government largely in the hands of increasing numbers of Mormon [and Masonic] appointees at all levels throughout the United States, the Constitutional prohibition against the establishment of a state church would no longer be enforceable. Mormon prophecies and the curse upon the United States government in revenge for the blood of Joseph and Hyrum Smith would seemingly have been fulfilled. In effect, theUnited States would have become a theocracy exactly as planned by The Brethren, completing the first step in the Mormon takeover of the world. LDS President John Taylor boasted of it 100 years ago:
Let us now notice our political position in the world. What are we going to do? We are going to possess the earth . . . and reign over it for ever and ever. Now, ye Kings and Emperors help yourselves if you can. This is the truth and it may as well be told at this time as at any other. There's a good time coming, Saints, a good time coming![xvii]
A More Likely Scenario
While the above presents an extremely disturbing possibility, it may seem highly speculative and improbable. There is another scenario, however, which is equally disturbing and much more likely. It arises from the fact that Mormonism is actual part of something much larger.
We have already noted that the "revelations" that Joseph Smith received, far from being unique, were in fact very similar to the basic philosophy underlying many occult groups and secret revolutionary societies. Thus far in history, these numerous occult/revolutionary organizations have remained largely separate and in competition with one another.
If something should happen to unite them, and at the same time their beliefs should gain worldwide acceptance, a new and unimaginably powerful force for world revolution would have come into existence. There is increasing evidence of a new and growing secular/religious ecumenism persuasive enough to accomplish this unprecedented and incalculably powerful coalition.
It could be the means of creating the one-world government that has not only been the long-standing hope and plan of The Brethren and many other occult/revolutionary leaders, but is increasingly gaining a wide acceptance through New Age networks as the only viable option to a nuclear holocaust and/or ecological collapse. [End of quote from The God Makers, Chapter 16.]
Let's review this once more from the top before we thread Mitt Romney's bid for the Presidency into the mix.
Mormonism Teaches That:
The Constitution will hang by a thread, to be saved by the Mormon Church.
Will the Constitution be destroyed? No, it will be held inviolate by this people; and, as Joseph Smith said, "The time will come when the destiny of the nation will hang upon a single thread.At that critical juncture, this people will step forth and save it from destruction." It will be so. (Brigham Young, Journal of Discourses [JOD] Vol. 7, page 150).
…And when the Constitution of the United States hangs, as it were, upon a single thread, they will have to call for the "Mormon" Elders to save it from utter destruction; and they will step forth and do it. (Brigham Young, JOD, Vol. 2, page 317).
…We shall spread abroad, and the day shall will come – and this is another prediction of Joseph Smith's - I want to remind you of it, my brethren and sisters, when good government, constitutional government, liberty will be found among the Latter-day Saints, and it will be sought for in vain elsewhere…… The day will come when the constitution and free government under it will be sustained and preserved by this people. (George Q. Cannon, JOD, Vol 23, page 104).
The Mormons will usher in a Theocracy, or "The Kingdom of God", directed by the Lord's Prophet (LDS).
With the restoration of the gospel and the setting up of the ecclesiastical Kingdom of God, the restoration of the true government of God commenced. Through this church and Kingdom, a framework has been built through which the full government of God will eventually operate. … The present ecclesiastical kingdom will be expanded into a political kingdom also, and then both civil and ecclesiastical affairs will be administered through it. (Bruce R. McConkie, Mormon Doctrine, page 338).
When the day comes in which the Kingdom of God will bear rule, the flag of the United States will proudly flutter unsullied on the flag staff of liberty and equal rights, without a spot t sully its fair surface; the glorious flag our fathers have bequeathed to us will then be unfurled to the breeze by those who have power to hoist it aloft and defend its sanctity. (Brigham Young JOD, Vol. 2, page 317).
The Mormons will possess the whole earth and reign over it. As the Civil and Religious laws become one, the "United Order" will become the "Kingdom ofGod".
VERILY I say unto you, my friends, I give unto you counsel, and a commandment, concerning all the properties which belong to the order which I commanded to be organized and established, to be a united order, and an everlasting order for the benefit of my church, and for the salvation of men until I come- (D&C 104, verse 1).
The poor will be exalted and the rich made low. All property, including liquid assets will be deeded to the "kingdom" (Church), all money turned in. Some property will be conditionally 'deeded' back for us to "manage" as is deemed necessary for each man.
This is spelled out in the Doctrine & Covenants 42:
28 Thou knowest my laws concerning these things are given in my scriptures; he that sinneth and repenteth not shall be cast out.
29 If thou lovest me thou shalt serve me and keep all my commandments.
30 And behold, thou wilt remember the poor, and consecrate of thy properties for their support that which thou hast to impart unto them, with a covenant and a deed which cannot be broken.
31 And inasmuch as ye impart of your substance unto the poor, ye will do it unto me; and they shall be laid before the bishop of my church and his counselors, two of the elders, or high priests, such as he shall appoint or has appointed and set apart for that purpose.
32 And it shall come to pass, that after they are laid before the bishop of my church, and after that he has received these testimonies concerning the consecrationof the properties of my church, that they cannot be taken from the church, agreeable to my commandments, every man shall be made accountable unto me, a stewardover his own property, or that which he has received by consecration, as much as is sufficient for himself and family.
33 And again, if there shall be properties in the hands of the church, or any individuals of it, more than is necessary for their support after this first consecration, which is a residue to be consecrated unto the bishop, it shall be kept to administer to those who have not, from time to time, that every man who has need may be amply supplied and receive according to his wants.
34 Therefore, the residue shall be kept in my storehouse, to administer to the poor and the needy, as shall be appointed by the high council of the church, and the bishop and his council;
If a man shall transgress this law, it shall ALL be taken from him, without recourse. All this is for the benefit of the Church. He who sins against this shall be cursed and delivered over to Satan. Lands shall be gotten by purchase or by blood when there is a problem in obtaining it. Every Mormon in the world swears an oath of obedience to the Law of Consecration and the Law of Sacrifice... in the Temple rites. They are bound by blood oath to honor their word.
Let's look at the portion of the Revelation, Doctrines & Covenants 104, given to Joseph Smith the Prophet, April 23, 1834, concerning the United Order, which set this in its spiritual place.
1 VERILY I say unto you, my friends, I give unto you counsel, and a commandment, concerning all the properties which belong to the order which I commanded to be organized and established, to be a united order, and an everlasting order for the benefit of my church, and for the salvation of men until I come-
2 With promise immutable and unchangeable, that inasmuch as those whom I commanded were faithful they should be blessed with a multiplicity of blessings;
3 But inasmuch as they were not faithful they were nigh unto cursing.
4 Therefore, inasmuch as some of my servants have not kept the commandment, but have broken the covenant through covetousness, and with feigned words, I havecursed them with a very sore and grievous curse.
5 For I, the Lord, have decreed in my heart, that inasmuch as any man belonging to the order shall be found a transgressor, or, in other words, shall break the covenantwith which ye are bound, he shall be cursed in his life, and shall be trodden down by whom I will;
6 For I, the Lord, am not to be mocked in these things-
7 And all this that the innocent among you may not be condemned with the unjust; and that the guilty among you may not escape; because I, the Lord, have promised unto you a crown of glory at my right hand.
8 Therefore, inasmuch as you are found transgressors, you cannot escape my wrath in your lives.
9 Inasmuch as ye are cut off for transgression, ye cannot escape the buffetings ofSatan until the day of redemption.
10 And I now give unto you power from this very hour, that if any man among you, of the order, is found a transgressor and repenteth not of the evil, that ye shalldeliver him over unto the buffetings of Satan; and he shall not have power to bringevil upon you.
11 It is wisdom in me; therefore, a commandment I give unto you, that ye shall organize yourselves and appoint every man his stewardship;
12 That every man may give an account unto me of the stewardship which is appointed unto him.
13 For it is expedient that I, the Lord, should make every man accountable, as asteward over earthly blessings, which I have made and prepared for my creatures.
14 I, the Lord, stretched out the heavens, and built the earth, my very handiwork; and all things therein are mine.
15 And it is my purpose to provide for my saints, for all things are mine.
16 But it must needs be done in mine own way; and behold this is the way that I, the Lord, have decreed to provide for my saints, that the poor shall be exalted, in that the rich are made low.
17 For the earth is full, and there is enough and to spare; yea, I prepared all things, and have given unto the children of men to be agents unto themselves.
18 Therefore, if any man shall take of the abundance which I have made, and impart not his portion, according to the law of my gospel, unto the poor and the needy, he shall, with the wicked, lift up his eyes in hell, being in torment.
Is Socialism The United Order?
In a speech by this title, given at the LDS April 1966, General Conference of the Church, Mormon Elder and one of the governing Brethren of the church, Marion G. Romney, of the Council of the Twelve Apostles [and an uncle to Mitt Romney] had this to say about this United Order that Joseph Smith claimed came directly from God for the administration of properties and possessions.
Now as to the United Order, and here I will give the words of the Lord and not my words. The United Order, the Lord's program for eliminating the inequalities among men, is based upon the underlying concept that the earth and all things therein belong to the Lord and that men hold earthly possessions as stewards accountable to God.
On January 2, 1831, the Lord revealed to the Prophet Joseph Smith that the Church was under obligation to care for the poor. (See D& C 38.) Later he said:
"I, the Lord, stretched out the heavens, and built the earth ...and all things therein are mine. And it is my purpose to provide for my saints, for all things are mine. But it must needs be done in mine own way...." (D& C 104:14-16.)
On February 9, 1831, the Lord revealed to the Prophet what his way was. (See D& C 42.) In his way there were two cardinal principles: (1) consecration and (2) stewardship.
To enter the United Order, when it was being tried, one consecrated all his possessions to the Church by a "covenant and a deed which" could not "be broken."(D& C 42:30.) That is, he completely divested himself of all of his property by conveying it to the Church.
Having thus voluntarily divested himself of title to all his property, the consecrator received from the Church a stewardship by a like conveyance. This stewardship could be more or less than his original consecration, the object being to make "every man equal according to his family, according to his circumstances and his wants and needs." (D& C 51:3.)
This procedure preserved in every man the right to private ownership and management of his property. At his own option he could alienate it or keep and operate it and pass it on to his heirs.
The intent was, however, for him to so operate his property as to produce a living for himself and his dependents. So long as he remained in the order, he consecrated to the Church the surplus he produced above the needs and wants of his family. This surplus went into a storehouse from which stewardship's were given to others and from which the needs of the poor were supplied.
These divine principles are very simple and easily understood. A comparison of them with the underlying principles of socialism reveal similarities and basic differences.
The following are similarities: Both (1) deal with production and distribution of goods; (2) aim to promote the well-being of men by eliminating their economic inequalities; (3) envision the elimination of the selfish motives in private capitalistic industrial system.
Now the differences: (1) The cornerstone of the United Order is belief in God and
acceptance of him as Lord of the earth and the author of the United Order. Socialism, wholly materialistic, is founded in the wisdom of men and not of God. Although all socialists may not be atheists, none of them in theory or practice seek the Lord to establish his righteousness. (2) The United Order is implemented by the voluntary free-will actions of men, evidenced by a consecration of all their property to theChurch of God.
One time the Prophet Joseph Smith asked a question by the brethren about the inventories they were taking. His answer was to the effect, "You don't need to be concerned about the inventories. Unless a man is willing to consecrate everything he has, he doesn't come into the United Order." (Documentary History of the Church. Vol 7,pp.412-413.) On the other hand, socialism is implemented by external force, the power of the state.
What Have We Learned?
Basically, what we glean from Elder Marion Romney is that the United Order is a theocratic form of socialism. That, as a system, it can only operate properly under the Law of Consecration, as a function of the "Kingdom Of God" as understood in the context of the authority of the only true church on earth… the Mormon Church.
Mitt Romney understands this as a function of his Mormon upbringing, training, BYU Education, Temple worthiness and his LDS Priesthood [both Aaronic and Melchizedek… as an elder and High Priest].
He also is the nephew of the very General Authority and Apostle of the church, Marion Romney, who taught the doctrine from the pulpit to the entire church at the General Conference in 1966.
In his defense, I do not believe that Mitt Romney is overtly plotting such an LDS "New World Order." I am certain it is not even in the back of his mind as he runs for office. However, as you have clearly seen, it is in his spiritual DNA, in his blood, in his roots and in his temple obligations.
In a TV interview the weekend following his 1007 announcement, he said:
"his Mormon beliefs would not handicap his run for the Republican presidential nomination.
"I'm not running for pastor in chief," Romney told ABC News' "This Week with George Stephanopoulos" Sunday. "I'm running for commander in chief." The interview with the candidate and his wife Ann was videotaped earlier.[xviii]
In the announcement, itself, Romney stated that the USA needed transformation.
"Mitt Romney wants transformation. How do we know? The former Massachusetts Republican governor used the word 'transform' or a variant no fewer than 13 times in his presidential announcement Tuesday…. "So when he said on Tuesday, 'If there ever was a time when innovation and transformation were needed in government, it is now,' Romney was accurately describing the need to overhaul the doddering status quo in health care, education and homeland security - just for starters.
"He was also correct when he added, 'I do not believe Washington can be transformed from within by a lifelong politician.'"[xix]
Remember, Mormonism Teaches That:
When our leaders speak, the thinking has been done. Satan gets a great victory when we disagree or "do our own thinking".[xx]
The Church Prophet has the right to identify how the Lord would have us vote and who would dare disobey?
"Now, does the office of the President of the Church embrace the right to identify for the whole membership of the church, and all the peoples of the world for that matter how the Lord would desire that we vote on certain matters? Certainly it does! Who would dare to proscribe God?"[xxi]
When the prophet speaks, the debate is over.[xxii]
All LDS administration is done by direct Revelation from God[xxiii]
When the Mormon leaders speak, we are to obey and believe, even if our scientific knowledge says otherwise.[xxiv]
God can (and often does) change his mind from revelation to revelation.
"That is modern revelation. May I repeat? Modern revelation is what President Joseph Smith said, unless [then] President Spencer W. Kimball says differently"[xxv]
If you are told by your leader to do a thing, DO IT! None of your business if it is right or wrong.[xxvi]
LDS Prophet (from 1985 to 1994), Ezra T. Benson proclaimed:
a. The Prophet rightly should be in politics… after all, we do need God in Government.
b. The Prophet is above all humanity, above all scripture, above all the other prophets, above scientific knowledge and Must Be Obeyed.
Sometimes, in American politics, we are asked to focus more on the platform than the candidate, because we can trust the party and the candidate's advisors to keep the candidate on the 'straight and narrow' as best they can.
In Mitt Romney's case, his oath of office has already been sworn in a sacred LDS Templeceremony. That oath is to the Mormon Plan for America and it will supersede any oath of office as President.
And it doesn't really matter in the LDS scheme of things if Mitt Romney does not make it to the Oval Office, or even the office of Vice President. This Mormon Plan for America has been in the shadows for over 160 years. The Brethren believe it is their birthright, their purpose, their destiny to usher in the purification of the earth for Christ's return.
They did not give up on the plan when Joseph Smith failed in his bid for the Presidency, nor did they give up when George Romney withdrew his bid. They will rejoice if Mitt makes it, but if not, they will merely look ahead to the one who will usher in the "Kingdom of God" in the soon coming future. Meanwhile, they will continue to prompt their people to file for every level of public office, to be ready when the wonderful fulfillment of prophecy comes.
[ii] Harvest House Publishers; Rev Upd Su edition, November 15, 1997
[v] Klaus J. Hansen, Quest for Empire, The Political Kingdom of God and the Council of Fifty in Mormon History, pp. 55-56.
[vi] John J. Stewart, op. cit., p. 204.
[vii] 35 Los Angeles Times, Apr. 5, 1980, Part 1:1, p. 1.
[viii] Kostman et al, op. cit.
[ix] Salt Lake Tribune, Oct. 1, 1981
[xi] Kostman et al, op. cit.
[xii] The Wall Street Journal, Nov. 9, 1983, p. 16.
[xiii] Journal of Discourses, vol.. 7, p. 15.
[xiv] Hyrum L. Andrus, Joseph Smith, the Man and Seer, p. 5.
[xv] John J. Stewart, op. cit., p. 209; Hyrum L. Andrus, Joseph Smith and World Government, op. cit., p. 54.
[xvi] The Ensign, Jan. 1979, "To Prepare a People," p. 18.
[xvii] Journal of Discourses, vol. 1, p. 230.
[xviii] UPI Staff, United Press International, February 19, 2007 WASHINGTON
[xix] Romney's Campaign Of Transformation, J Pinkerton, Newsday Thursday, Feb 15, 2007
[xx] Improvement Era (Official LDS church magazine), June 1945, p. 345.
[xxi] LDS Stake Bulletin, Renton Washington Stake, Fall, 1976.
[xxii] "The Debate is over", President N. Eldon Tanner [1st Counselor to the Prophet, The Ensign, August 1979, First presidency Message.
[xxiii] Ensign, May 1978, page 64.
[xxiv] Elder Wilford Woodruff, Journal of Discourses, Volume 5, page 83
[xxv]Elder S. Dilworth Young, BYU Fireside May 5, 1974
[xxvi] President Heber C. Kimball, Journal of Discourses, Vol. 6, page 32.
Distributed by www.worldviewweekend.com
Disclaimer: Worldview Weekend, Christian Worldview Network and its columnists do not necessarily endorse or agree with every opinion expressed in every article posted on this site. We do however, encourage a healthy and friendly debate on the issues of our day. Whether you agree or disagree, we encourage you to post your feedback by using the feedback button.
21 StumbleUpon0 5
Printer Friendly Version | Return to home | Send this article to a friend
Age 0, UT
Ed Decker did not receive a reply to his open letter because the accusations are not true. I would know. I am a "Temple Mormon". We have no future goals to take over the U.S. or the world. There is no conspiracy. We love America as it is, which is a good place to raise children, enjoy the freedom to pursue a great education, work hard at our jobs, and be good neighbors. The God-Makers movie and book take things out of context, and adds things or removes them purposely in order to make their points. So, I ask you, what have you seen your Mormon neighbors do? Serve our fellowmen regardless of their religion, and not go out of our way to attack someone else's beliefs. Please ask your Mormon neighbors about these accusations and get the facts from the source. Not from someone with a grudge. Thank you.
Townhall Columnists Steve Chapman
The Bogus Threat from Shariah Law
Jun 10, 2012
In the 19th century, Catholicism was regarded by many people in this country as thoroughly incompatible with Americanism. They saw it as a hostile foreign element that would subvert democracy. Today, a majority of the justices on the Supreme Court are Catholic, and they are taken to be as American as Mountain Dew.
We've come a long way in religious tolerance. Or maybe not. The belief that Catholics are irredeemably alien and disloyal has given way to the fear that Muslims pose a mortal threat to our way of life.
That distrust is behind a push in state legislatures to forbid courts from applying Islamic Shariah law in any case. Arizona, Tennessee, Louisiana and Oklahoma have passed these bans, though the Oklahoma law was ruled unconstitutional by a federal appeals court.
In May, Kansas enacted its version, which doesn't mention Shariah but prohibits state courts from basing decisions on any foreign laws or other legal codes. The point, however, is not in doubt. One supporter said the bill, which passed 122-0 in the House of Representatives, was needed because "they stone women to death in countries that have Shariah law."
Does that mean we need anti-Shariah laws to keep women from being stoned to death with the cheerful blessing of American courts? Amazingly, no. It seems that our laws and Constitution take precedence on American soil no matter what the rules are in Iran.
The chief sponsor, Republican Rep. Peggy Mast, explained, "I want to make sure people understand there's sometimes a conflict between other laws and the Constitution, and we need to assert our Constitution is still the law of the land." That's like asserting that the sun is hot: It will be true regardless.
The change will have about as much effect in Kansas as a ban on indoor co-ed field hockey. It turns out no one has been able to find a case where a Kansas court has actually employed Islamic strictures to reach a verdict.
If, for instance, a Muslim man marries a Muslim woman and then tries to divorce her by saying "I divorce you" three times, in accordance with Shariah, he will find he's wasted his breath. State marriage law will govern in Kansas just as it has in other states when it conflicts with the dictates of Islam.
The problem with banning any consideration of Islamic law is that it interferes with the religious rights of Americans. If two Jewish merchants have a contract that calls for arbitration of disputes in a rabbinical court, state courts will generally enforce any judgment.
If a Muslim-owned company wants to lend or borrow money in accordance with the Islamic ban on interest, its choice should likewise be respected. If a Muslim wants to allocate his estate according to Islamic rules, what's it to you? Outlawing such accommodation for Islam would illegally discriminate against one religion.
That problem is what led a federal appeals court to overturn the Oklahoma ban, overwhelmingly approved by voters in 2010 as an amendment to the state constitution. The measure was a drone missile targeted specifically at Islam, in brazen defiance of the First Amendment.
In Kansas, by contrast, the lawmakers were so careful to avoid that pitfall that they largely defanged the measure. A decision resting on the application of foreign or other legal codes would be invalid only if the verdict violates "the fundamental liberties, rights and privileges granted under the United States and Kansas constitutions" -- something courts generally are not allowed to do anyway.
University of Virginia law professor Douglas Laycock, who generally disapproves of anti-Shariah measures, says the Kansas law "is so narrowed and watered-down it doesn't look to me like a very big deal." It's not impossible that it would prevent a court ruling, he says, but "it would be unusual."
Even so, the laws are based on fears that are unwarranted, if not fraudulent. Muslims, who make up a tiny percentage of the population, are not about to seize control of American law. The same conservatives who accuse judges of trying to stamp out expressions of Christian faith now imagine they are eager to do the bidding of ayatollahs.
Of course, it's always possible that people practicing a religion with many dark associations will bide their time, infiltrate our institutions and someday put us under the control of secretive foreign clerics. Those Catholics may be sneakier than you think.
Home > News
France to host next Friends of Syria meet on July 6
7:00 a.m. CDT, June 7, 2012
PARIS (Reuters) - France will host the third "Friends of Syria" meeting in Paris on July 6, its foreign ministry said on Thursday, as pressure mounts on world powers to act to stem the escalating bloodshed in an uprising against President Bashar al-Assad.
Such meetings bring together a coalition of countries, which include France, the United States, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, that want Assad's rule to end. Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius set the date for the latest talks during a meeting in Istanbul on Thursday.
"In the face of a worrying aggravation of the situation in Syria ... France has decided to organize on July 6 in Paris the third ministerial meeting of the Friends of Syria group, which follows those in Tunis and Istanbul," his ministry said in a statement.
(Reporting by Alexandria Sage; Editing by Mark Heinrich)
DECLINEAFP / Getty Images
Hosni Mubarak in ‘Full Coma’
Deposed Egyptian dictator Hosni Mubarak is in a full coma Monday mere weeks after being sentenced to life in prison for complicity in the killing of protesters during last year’s Arab Spring uprisings. The disgraced 84-year-old’s health has been deteriorating since his sentencing, and Interior Ministry spokesman Alaa Mahmoud reported Monday that he had slipped into a coma. “His two sons, Gamal and Alaa, submitted a request to the prison authority to move beside him, and it has been accepted,” Mahmoud said. Mubarak, who was wheeled into court proceedings on a hospital gurney, is currently in a prison hospital in the Egyptian capital of Cairo.Tea Party Chief @2012_TeaParty
However #Ahmedinejad one must look at the big picture to see you are squeezed from all sides/walk a mile in your moccasins to see why.
#Ahmedinejad people have been unwilling to trust you, because at times you are passionate to the point of flagrant with your words....
#Ahmedinejad 1) remove lingering doubts you are imposed upon by Hezbollah 2) full protection from impunity in circle http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/10/iran-moscow-nuclear-talks_n_1584758.html?icid=maing-grid7%7Cmain5%7Cdl1%7Csec3_lnk2%26pLid%3D168655
Iran: Moscow Nuclear Talks Could Stall06/10/12 03:49 PM ET FOLLOW:
Iran, Iranathon, Video, Iran Nuclear Weapons, Iaea, Iran Moscow Nuclear Talks, Iran Nuclear Program, Iran Nuclear Talks, Irna, Moscow Nuclear Talks, World News
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad attends a bilateral meeting with Chinese President Hu Jintao at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing Friday, June 8, 2012. (AP Photo/Mark Ralston, Pool)TEHRAN, Iran — An Iranian negotiator warned Sunday that this month's talks in Moscow over Iran's nuclear program could stall because of faulty preparation.
Ali Bagheri, Iran's No. 2 nuclear negotiator, said advance talks were agreed on to clarify the agenda for the Moscow round, set for June 18-19.
The official IRNA news agency said Bagheri made the complaint in a letter to senior EU official Helga Schmid on Sunday.
Concerned that Iran might be aiming toward nuclear weapons, the West wants to stop Iran's 20 percent uranium enrichment program. Western experts say it would not be difficult to upgrade 20 percent enriched uranium to weapons grade. Iran insists its nuclear program is peaceful.
In exchange for discussing enrichment, Iran wants the West to ease sanctions.
President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad recently said the West needs to explain what meaningful concessions it will offer to Iran in return for a halt to 20 percent enrichment.
"If some want us to forgo this right, they should first give their reasons, and secondly (disclose) what they will give the Iranian nation in return," he said.
Schmid has indicated there is no need for preliminary talks. The EU official said the six-power proposal at the Baghdad talks addresses "our key concerns on the 20 percent enrichment activities."
"The next round of talks in Moscow will be successful provided that deputies and experts are able to prepare a specific agenda on the basis of Iran's proposals and those of 5+1," IRNA quoted Bagheri's letter as saying, referring to the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council and Germany.
"If agreements at each round of talks are not pursued by deputies and experts in an appropriate manner, what will be the guarantee for success of the upcoming talks," IRNA quoted Bagheri as saying.
Former Israeli official: U.S. suspects Jonathan Pollard was not only Israeli spy operating on American soil
Former ambassador to Washington Itamar Rabinovich tell Israel Radio that 25 years later, U.S. is still using Pollard to punish Israel.By Haaretz | Jun.11, 2012 | 7:28 PM | 22
Jonathan Pollard during an interview at the Federal Correction Institution in Butner, North Carolina, May 15, 1998. Photo by AP
Text size Comments (22) Print Page Send to friend Share on Facebook Share
THIS STORY IS BYHaaretz
RELATED TAGSJonathan Pollard
RELATED ARTICLESUnited States officials suspect that Jonathan Pollard was not the only Israeli spy operating on U.S. grounds, former Israeli ambassador to Washington Itamar Rabinovich said on Monday in an interview with Israel Radio.
Rabinovich, Israeli envoy to Washington from 1993 to 1996, said that officials in the U.S. intelligence community believe that Israel still conceals the full extent of its espionage activity on American soil.
Speaking of his encounters with American officials, Rabinovich said that he “heard the claim concerning the enormous damage done to the Americans, but there is also a hidden one, which is not voiced openly, but is implied.”
“They suspect that he wasn’t the only one, that there were additional Pollards, and that Israel, despite its promises, did not reveal all the cards in this case and in similar cases,” Rabinovich added.
When asked, the former ambassador said he doubts Israeli spies operate in the U.S. today.
According to Rabinovich, the U.S. is “punishing Israel at Jonathan Pollard’s expense. They are angry with Israel more than with Pollard.”
Jonathan Pollard used to work as a civilian analyst for Navy intelligence. In 1987 he received a life sentence after he was convicted of spying for Israel.
In 1995 Pollard was granted Israeli citizenship, but it was only in 1998 that Israel finally admitted it paid him in exchange for classified information.
On Wednesday, President Shimon Peres will be awarded the United State's highest civilian honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Barack Obama.
In a petition sent to Peres prior his departure, The Committee to Free Pollard asked the Israeli president to demand Pollard’s release. According to the group, some 70,000 people signed the letter, among them authors Amos Oz, A.B. Yehoshua and David Grossman, Nobel Prize winners Daniel Shechtman and Yisrael Uman, and former Israeli president Yizhak Navon.
The committee said that Gilad Shalit, the Israeli soldier, who was kidnapped and held for over five years by Hamas in Gaza, who was released in October, also joined the call for Pollards release.
Israel accuses Syria of genocide, urges intervention
- Related News
- Russia says is not against Assad's departure
- Sat, Jun 9 2012
- Smell of death lingers at Syrian massacre village
- Fri, Jun 8 2012
- U.N. condemns new Syria massacre, hopes fade for Annan plan
- Thu, Jun 7 2012
- Israeli court clears deporting South Sudan migrants
- Thu, Jun 7 2012
- Syria accused of new massacre as U.N. meets
- Wed, Jun 6 2012
By Dan Williams
JERUSALEM | Sun Jun 10, 2012 10:43am EDT
(Reuters) - A senior Israeli minister on Sunday made the Jewish state's most explicit call yet for military intervention to topple President Bashar al-Assad and accused him of committing genocide to suppress the 15-month-old uprising against his rule.
Vice Prime Minister Shaul Mofaz urged world powers to oust Assad in the same way that last year's Western-backed campaign in Libya overthrew former strongman Muammar Gaddafi.
"A crime against humanity, genocide, is being conducted in Syria today. And the silence of the world powers is contrary to all human logic," Mofaz told Israel's Army Radio.
"Since in the not-distant past the powers chose military intervention in Libya, here the required conclusion would be immediate military intervention to bring down the Assad regime."
Israel had so far taken a cautious line on the uprising in its Arab neighbour. While the overthrow of Assad would weaken his close ally and Israel's main enemy Iran, it has been wary of what might happen if the Syrian leader were to be replaced by an Islamist government more hostile to the Jewish state.
The military chief, Lieutenant-General Benny Gantz, said last week he saw a "lose-lose prospect" for Israel whichever way the Syria conflict played out.
But with Israeli public opinion appalled by media reports of mounting Syrian civilian deaths, some officials had begun to suggest privately that they would welcome foreign military intervention.
A belief that the uprising may have reached a tipping point and can no longer be rolled back has also given more space to hawks who see in Assad's fall an opportunity to weaken Iran - whose nuclear program is Israel's biggest security concern.
Assad, from the minority Alawite sect, considered an offshoot of Shia Islam, has close ties both with Shi'ite Iran and the Lebanese Shi'ite political and military group Hezbollah, which was originally set up to oppose Israel.
But during his rule, Israel maintained what it believed to be a manageable standoff with Syria which might spin out of control were an organization like the Sunni Muslim Brotherhood - ruthlessly crushed by his father Bashar al-Assad - to take charge next door.
NETANYAHU SAYS IRAN, HEZBOLLAH HELPING
Comments by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday, however, suggested that concerns about Iran may be starting to predominate in Israel's calculations.
"This is a slaughter carried out not only by the Syrian government. It is being helped by Iran and Hezbollah," he said in broadcast remarks to his cabinet. "The world should understand what kind of environment we live in."
Iran denies helping Assad to crush dissent.
Netanyahu has steered clear of explicitly calling for military intervention in Syria, telling Bild newspaper last week: "That's a decision for the leading powers who are now talking about it. The less I say as prime minister of Israel, the better."
Mofaz, a former top general and political centrist who became junior partner in Netanyahu's conservative coalition government last month, said Israel had limited options on Syria.
"We cannot get involved, for understandable reasons. But I think that the West, led by the United States, has an interest in guarding the threshold (so) genocide does not take place."
Soldiers and militias loyal to Assad have killed at least 10,000 people, including many majority Sunnis, according to U.N. figures.
The Assad government puts its own losses at more than 2,600 dead. It has condemned the killing of civilians in Syria, and blamed the violence on Sunni Islamist terrorism.
Israel's comments on Syria come at a time of intense frustration with the west's failure to curb Iran's nuclear program. World powers have so far used sanctions and negotiations to stop a program they believe is geared towards producing nuclear bombs. Israel has hinted it could attack Iran preemptively should it deem diplomacy a dead end.
Iran dismisses accusations it is secretly developing nuclear arms and has vowed wide-ranging reprisals if attacked, raising the specter of a Middle East war in which Syria and Hezbollah would support Tehran against Israel.
Ehud Yaari, Middle East correspondent for Israel's top-rated Channel Two television, described Syria as a test-case for international resolve in the Middle East.
"When you see the lassitude (by world powers) regarding goings-on in Syria, you cannot but draw discouraging conclusions about their readiness to act to stop Iran," he said.
Israeli officials other than Mofaz have preferred to frame prospective foreign intervention in Syria in terms of humanitarian aid.
Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon on Sunday offered Israeli relief to Syrian refugees - either in countries like Jordan and Turkey that recognise Israel, or in Israel itself.
(Writing by Dan Williams; Editing by Myra MacDonald)
Israel Condemns Violence in Syria
Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu attends the weekly Cabinet meeting in Jerusalem, June 10, 2012.
TEXT SIZERobert Berger
June 10, 2012
JERUSALEM - Israel has broken its silence on the conflict in neighboring Syria and is condemning the violence there.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says an "axis of evil" is behind the atrocities in Syria.
Netanyahu told the Cabinet that Iran and the militant group Hezbollah in Lebanon are assisting the Syrian government in the massacre of civilians.
The prime minister was one of many Israeli officials to express outrage over the violence in Syria after a long period of relative silence. Israel was reluctant to take sides in the conflict because Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has kept a quiet border with Israel on the disputed Golan Heights. And Israel fears that if the Assad regime is toppled, Islamic militants could take over.
But in the wake of the massacres, Israeli leaders are now calling for regime change in Syria.
President Shimon Peres said he respects the courage of the Syrian rebels and hopes they will win.
He also said that the international community is not doing enough to stop the violence, and he urged the West to intervene.
Peres will discuss the Syria crisis with U.S. President Barack Obama this week at the White House.
Tea Party Chief @2012_TeaParty In order to have #IsraeliPalestinianPeaceProcess Palestinians must be represented according to population and current census unabridged.
8hTea Party Chief @2012_TeaParty The problem in #IsraeliPalestinianPeaceProcess is that the indigenous identity of Palestinians is not respected and it lost in politics.
Like #IsraeliPalestinianPeaceProcess it would be unrealistic for Native Americans to enforce Old Treaties-as we are part of the land itself.
#Palestinians are indigenous people of the area. They are a minority in #Israel just like Native Americans are here, according to our tribes
#Palestinians Gen. 9-10 they were separated into their lands, everyone according to language, family, and their nations.
#Palestinians ARE a people, the descendants of Ham, read Gen. 9-10 Ham was the father of Canaan, sons of Ham: Cush, Mizraim, Put, Canaan.
#Israel won-there is no going back to 1967 boundary to promote peace #Palestine must be represented in govt./negotiate http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/06/10/israeli-palestinian-negot_0_n_1584903.html?icid=maing-grid7%7Cmain5%7Cdl4%7Csec3_lnk3%26pLid%3D168627
5:50 AM - 11 Jun 12 via web · Details
JESUS WAS A PALESTINIAN JEW....
“In my opinion, the most important thing to know about the historical Jesus is that he was a first century Jew who lived in Palestine.”
(Bart Ehrman, 'The Lost Gospel of Judas Iscariot,' p. 153).
"One of the ironies of early Christianity is that Jesus himself was a Jew who worshiped the Jewish God, kept Jewish customs, interpreted the Jewish law, and acquired Jewish disciples, who accepted him as the Jewish messiah...the one thing that nearly all scholars agree upon, however, is that no matter how one one understands the major thrust of Jesus's mission, he must be situated in his own context as a first-century Palestinian Jew. Whatever else he was, Jesus was thoroughly Jewish, in every way -- as were his disciples."
(Bart Ehrman, 'Misquoting Jesus,' p. 187)
"Jesus himself, of course, was Jewish, as were his disciples. Jesus was born a Jew...he was brought up a Jew, he worshiped the Jewish God, kept the Jewish Law, followed Jewish customs, became a Jewish teacher, gathered Jewish followers, and taught them what he considered to be the appropriate interpretation of the Jewish Law."
(Bart Ehrman, 'God's Problem,' p. 141).
For thousands of years, the Jewish people were primarily subject to foreign rule (Egyptian, Syrian, Babylonian, Persian, Greek, Roman, etc.), with only brief periods of independence. In the first century, Romans ruled the Mediterranean area known as Palestine (modern day Israel), where Jesus was born and lived his life. In the hierarchy of power, the Jewish self-government reported to the authority of the local Roman government (King Herod), which reported to Rome (Emperor Caesar).
- The Roman government practiced syncretism, accepting that all religious beliefs, philosophical teachings, and government systems are ultimately compatible, or a reflection of, a larger system – the Roman system. They practiced one of the first “one country, two systems” policies – pronouncing that all people had religious freedom, political freedom, and freedom of thought, yet maintaining strict control.
- The Jews held much distrust and often hatred for the Roman Empire – they were unwilling subjects. At the time of Jesus’ birth, the local Roman ruler, King Herod had initiated a massacre of all Jewish baby boys born at the time. Herod was also responsible for placing forbidden idols within the Jewish temple. Such actions added more reasons for Jewish resentment of the foreign Roman government.
- The Jews understood the world to be divided into two types of people: Jewish and Gentile (non-Jew). The Jews worked hard to disassociate themselves from the Gentiles.
- The Jewish people accepted their freedom in both their governing system, and in maintaining their own traditions, yet the Roman government required that everything be ultimately subject to Roman authority. For example, Jewish citizens were under the authority of the Jewish court system (the Sanhedrin), yet all rulings for the death penalty were sent to the Roman government.
- The Jewish religious and governing system was divided between two parties: the Pharisees – the ‘people’s party’, taught the law and traditions of Israel’s patriarchs, and were strictly conforming to Jewish law; and the Sadducees – the wealthy and conservative leaders who rejected the traditions in favor of political and religious cooperation with the Romans.
The economy of first century Israel was supported by three key segments: agriculture of olives, figs, grains, dates, and vineyards; trade fostered by Israel’s key location on the Mediterranean Sea; and large government building projects sponsored by King Herod.
- King Herod employed many laborers by commissioning many public works (e.g. building temple in Jerusalem, palaces, ports, fortresses, stadiums, ornate stone carvings, etc.)
- There was a very large disparity between rich and poor.
- The upper class was made up of the temple priests and priestly aristocracy (including the Sadducees – a Jewish sect)
- The middle class was comprised of traders and merchants, artisans (stonecutters, masons, sculptors) and craftsman (metal, wood, cloth dye). The Pharisees (another Jewish sect), sages, scribes, and teachers were also a part of the middle class.
- The lower class was made of laborers (weavers, stone carriers, slaves (non-Jewish person taken into slavery because of debt), and the unemployable (lepers, blind, insane, crippled, etc.)
- The Roman government required heavy taxation of its people. Tax collectors were local employees considered to be outcasts and traitors.
- Jews were also required to give sacrifices to the temple – sometimes in the form of money, and usually by purchasing sacrificial animals to offer to the priests.
- Traveling teachers made their living by traveling from town to town and accepting gifts from those who came to hear them.
- During the first century, the temple courtyards had often become a marketplace – local merchants would sell sacrificial animals at excessive cost in order to turn a profit from the tourists or religious seekers that would come to the temple.
Cultural Setting / Daily Life
Jesus spent most of his life in and around the farming village area of Nazareth. Similar to many farming villages throughout the world, life was patterned after traditions, roles and rituals passed down from many generations beforehand.
- Population: The village area of Nazareth was populated mostly by Jews, but also with some diversity of Syrians, Greeks, and Romans. The major city of Palestine was Jerusalem, which was more cosmopolitan and contained far greater ethnic diversity.
- Language: The common language in the Roman Empire was Greek. However, at the time it was common for Jews to also use Hebrew, Aramaic, and Latin. Jesus’ every day language was Aramaic.
- Village Life: The hub of a village was the marketplace and shops. And for a Jewish village, the synagogue was a central meeting place, and the seat of the local Jewish government.
- Housing: Houses were all purpose 1-2 room squares, with dirt floors, flat roofs, low and narrow doorways, and front wooden doors. Often people would sleep on flat roofs during hot nights. The houses were arranged around a central shared courtyard where neighbors performed daily chores (cooking, laundry, etc.) in each other’s company. Water was carried in from a public well and stored in a courtyard cistern. Lighting was provided by earthenware oil lamps. People slept on mats, and owned limited personal goods.
- Food: The woman’s daily job included preparing food for her family – for example, they would grind grain, bake bread, milk the animals, and make cheese. Typically a family ate two meals: Breakfast – light or small amounts of food taken to work; and Dinner – A large meal with cheese, wine, vegetables and fruits, and eggs. As for meat, fish was most common, followed by chicken or fowl. Red meat (beef and lamb) was served only on special occasions, and pork and crustaceans were absolutely forbidden. Most foods were boiled or stewed in a big pot and seasoned with salt, onions, garlic, cumin, coriander, mint, dill, and mustard. Food was sweetened with wild honey or syrups from dates or grapes. Food was generally served in a common bowl and eaten by dipping in with the fingers.
- Clothing: The undergarment was called a “tunic”. The outer garment was called a “mantle” – it was loose fitting with fringes, bound by blue ribbon. Men wore a belt – a four-inch wide leather belt or cloth “girdle”. If one was wearing only an undergarment, then he was said to be “naked” or “stripped”. If one was wearing only an undergarment (tunic) and belt, they were said to be wearing a “loincloth”. The phrase “to gird your loins” meant that the tunic was pulled up between the legs and tucked into the belt. People also wore sandals on their feet, and a white cloth over their head, hanging to their shoulders. This cloth protected them from the sun.
- General Physique: Most Jews were fairly small in stature, light-skinned but tanned from sun. Most had black or brown hair worn long, and most men wore beards.
- Family Structure: The husband was the spiritual and legal head of the house. He was responsible for feeding, sheltering and protecting the family. Children were instructed early to honor their parents. A Jewish family lived by very strict moral, social and religious rules. Parents, unmarried children, and a married son and spouse would often all live under one roof.
- The Role of Women: In first century Israel, women were considered second-class citizens, akin to slaves. The fact that they are mentioned as avid followers of Jesus is unusual – both that they would be allowed to follow him with his disciples, and unusual that the authors of Jesus’ biographies would mention their presence at all.
- Jesus’ Family life: Joseph (Jesus’ father) was a carpenter, making their family a part of the middle class. Mary (Jesus’ mother) was a teenager who was “promised” by her parents to be married to Joseph (at the time when Jesus was considered to be miraculously conceived). Following their marriage, and Jesus’ birth, Mary and Joseph had other children as well.
Jewish leaders fought for the purity of their belief in one God in the face of conflicting foreign religions. Yet at the same time, they fragmented into sects divided over variations of the Jewish law.
- The Jewish people believed in one God (monotheism) who was invisible and could not be portrayed. In contrast, the surrounding cultures believed in many gods (polytheism) who could be represented by images or idols.
- Jewish tradition was centered on the Sabbath Day – the day began on Friday at sundown and ended at Saturday sundown. Sabbath was started with prayer, the lighting of the candles by the wife of the household, followed by a joyful Friday supper. Sabbath was considered to be a day of rest and worship, where everything one did was in honor of God.
- The Jewish people were seeking a “Messiah” or savior – they were waiting for the leader God had promised who, according to their understanding, would bring them spiritual renewal and political freedom from centuries of foreign oppression, currently from the Roman Empire.
- The culture of first century Israel was very interested in the supernatural – it was common for people to believe in curses and be controlled by superstitions.
- The major religious holiday during the Jewish year was the Passover feast celebrating the deliverance of the Jewish people from their slavery in Egypt. During the Passover, many Jews would travel to Jerusalem in order to celebrate in the holy city. This is why Jesus and his disciples traveled to Jerusalem for their last supper together – they were celebrating the Passover. This is also the tradition that caused so many Jews to be present in Jerusalem at the time of Jesus’ arrest, trial, and crucifixion.
For the first century Jew, religion, law, history, ethics and education were inseparable. Through both written (Torah) and oral (Mishna) law, teaching was passed from generation to generation. Rabbi's (teachers) and synagogues were highly esteemed aspects of society.
- The Roman Empire thrived on syncretism – seeking to have all people (Greek, Syrian, Egyptian, Jew, etc.) maintain their own traditions and philosophies, and yet seeing them all under a general Roman perspective.
- The Jewish education emphasized law, ethics, and history for the purpose of right, moral living. In contrast, the Greek education system called “gymnasium” emphasized science, arts, linguistics and bodily training.
- Most Roman citizens were influenced by the teachings of different philosophical systems; the two major philosophies of the time being Stoicism and Cynicism.
- For Jews, the “Torah”, translated “law” was the source of all learning – religion, history and ethics. The Torah includes the first five books of the modern Bible (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy)
- The “synagogue” translated “house of assembly” was the Jewish place of both worship and education
- Young Jewish boys started formal education at the age of 5, learning to read and write. At age 10, boys would start to learn the Jewish law. Formal education was complete by age 18. Young girls would learn at home from their mothers and other women. Young men were educated by a Rabbi (teacher) from the local synagogue.
- Young men, seeking advanced education as “scribes” or doctors of the law, could study a broader range of topics with a religious motivation in mind.
- At the highest level of education, a scholar would go to a great or renowned teacher and become a disciple, often learning through daily discussions and activities. These men were known according to who their teachers were– “from the school of….”
- Jesus studied at the synagogue – in one instance when Jesus was 12 years old as recorded in Jesus’ biography by Luke, the author says “They (Jesus’ parents) found him (Jesus) in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions. Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers.” (Luke 2:46-47)
- Johnson, Luke T.The Writings of the New Testament: An Interpretation.Fortress Press, Philadelphia. 1986.
- Josephus, Flavius.The Jewish Antiquities, 20.200.
- Kingsbury, Jack Dean. Proclamation Commentaries: Matthew. Fortress Press, Philadelphia. 1986.
- The Student Bible: New International Version. Notes by Philip Yancy and Tim Staffod. Zondervan Bible Publishing, Grand Rapids, Michigan. 1986.
- Ward, Kaari. Jesus and His Times. The Reader’s Digest Association, Inc., Pleasantville, New York. 1987.
AS PALESTINE WAS CONQUERED REPEATEDLY THE LANGUAGE EVOLVED...
It is generally agreed that the historical Jesus primarily spoke Aramaic, perhaps along with some Hebrew and Greek (although there is some debate as to the degree). The towns of Nazareth and Capernaum in Galilee, where Jesus lived, were primarily Aramaic-speaking communities, although Greek was widely spoken in the major cities of the Eastern Mediterranean such as Antioch and Alexandria. Jesus may have also known enough Hebrew to discuss the Hebrew Bible, and he may have known Koine Greek through commerce in nearby Sepphoris.
Aramaic, as a Semitic language, was a common language of the Eastern Mediterranean during and after the Neo-Assyrian, Neo-Babylonian, and Achaemenid Empires (722 BC – 330 BC). Aramaic remained a common language of the region in the 1st century AD, despite the subsequent Macedonian-Greek (331 BC) and Roman (63 BC) invasions. Indeed, in spite of the increasing importance of Greek, the use of Aramaic was also expanding, and it would eventually be entirely dominant among Jews both in the Holy Land and elsewhere in the Middle East around 200 AD; it would remain so until the Arab conquest in the 7th century. Jesus and his disciplesspoke a Galilean dialect clearly distinguishable from that of Jerusalem (see Jewish Palestinian Aramaic). To give some perspective, in roughly the same time period, the Mishnah was recorded in Mishnaic Hebrew, Josephus wrote in Aramaic, and Philo and Paul of Tarsus wrote in Greek.
Most of the apostles from the Galilee region also spoke Aramaic. The message of Christianity spread (primarily among Jewish Aramaic-speaking enclaves) throughout Roman Judaea, Roman Syria and Roman Mesopotamia, and even beyond the empire into Kerala, Indiain Aramaic (or Syriac; Aram is the Hebrew word for Syria).
The Jewish Palestinian Aramaic, also called Galilean Aramaic, was a Western Aramaic language spoken by the Jews in Palestine in the early first millennium. Its closest relatives are the Samaritan Aramaic and Christian Palestinian Aramaic. The language is notable for being that spoken by Jesus.
After the defeat of the Bar-Kochba revolt in 135 AD, the center of Jewish learning in the land of Israel moved to Galilee. With the Arab conquest of the country in the 7th Century, Arabic gradually replaced this language.
The main text in it is the Jerusalem Talmud, which is still studied in Jewish religious schools and academically, although not as widely as the Babylonian Talmud. The language also appears in early works of Kabbalah, such as the Zohar and its Tikkunim.
Palestinian Arabic is a Levantine Arabic dialect subgroup spoken by Palestinians and the majority of Arab-Israelis.Palestinian Arabic exhibits a vocabulary strata that includes word borrowings from Turkish, Kurdish, Armenian, Syriac, and Persian..
Palestinian-Hebrew ArabicIsraeli Arabs have adopted Hebrew loanwords, like yesh יֶשׁ ("we did it!" - used as sports cheer) which cannot be translated literally into Arabic. According to social linguist Dr. David Mendelson from Givat Haviva's Jewish-Arab Center for Peace, there is an adoption of words from Hebrew in Arabic spoken in Israel which contain alternative native terms. According to linguist Mohammed Omara, of Bar-Ilan University some researchers call the Arabic spoken by Israeli Arabs Arabrew. The list of words adopted contain:
- ramzor רַמְזוֹר (traffic light)
- shamenet שַׁמֶּנֶת (sour cream)
- beseder בְּסֵדֶר (O.K, alright)
- kohavit כּוֹכָבִית (asterisk)
The 2009 film Ajami is mostly spoken in Palestinian-Hebrew Arabic.
EDUCATION‘I WANT YOU TO KILL ALL INFIDELS’: BOY DRAWS CONTROVERSIAL IMAGE OF JESUS — SHOULD SCHOOL TAKE IT DOWN?
- Posted on June 11, 2012 at 7:16am by Billy Hallowell
- Email »
- Comments (195)Children show their creative imaginations in some intriguing ways. The artwork and storytelling they engage in often illustrates the ideas that are bopping around inside of their heads. Take, for instance, a student-drawn picture at Hamilton Elementary School in Fresno, California. The image, which has become intensely controversial, portrays Jesus Christ, with a caption that reads, ”I want you to kill all infidels.”
But, despite the educational elements associated with its creation, at least some parents have voiced their concern over its prominent display. One couple claims that school officials have done little to listen to their qualms — that is, until media began reporting on the story.
“I do believe common sense tells you, hey this may not be appropriate for a k through 8 school, right in the main lobby where each child passes on their way to school and home.” said Chris Alfaro, who is a parent of a second-grade student at Hamilton and a Christian.
Hamilton elementary has been quiet in terms of handing the criticism. A spokesperson for the Fresno Unified School District issued a statement to ABC30, telling the outlet the following aboutthe picture’s creation:
“Students at Hamilton were assigned to create a help wanted poster for soldiers needed to fight in the crusades and write a poem about Joan of arc, the Black Death, or the Magna Carta and create a visual background for it. This was one of several posters displayed.”Anti-Christian bias or merely a drawing created for a specified assignment? You decide. Watch more about the controversy from KSFN-TV:
Israeli, Palestinian Negotiators Quietly MeetBy MOHAMMED DARAGHMEH 06/10/12 11:41 AM ET
FOLLOW:Israel, Arab-Israeli Conflict, Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, Israeli Settlements, Palestine,Palestinians, World News
RAMALLAH, West Bank -- Israeli and Palestinian negotiators have been meeting quietly in recent weeks in hopes of ending a three-year standstill in peace efforts, both sides confirmed Sunday.
Officials acknowledged the agenda of the recent talks has been modest, and stressed there is no breakthrough in sight. Nonetheless, the revelations gave a small sign of hope that a formula can be found to restart formal negotiations addressing core issues.
Peace talks broke down in December 2008, and have remained frozen ever since. The Palestinians say they will not resume negotiations until Israel halts settlement construction in the West Bank and east Jerusalem, occupied lands claimed by the Palestinians for a future state. The Palestinians also want Israel to accept its pre-1967 boundaries, before it captured the West Bank and east Jerusalem, as the basis of a final border. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says talks should restart without preconditions.
Palestinian officials said their chief negotiator, Saeb Erekat, and Netanyahu's envoy, Yitzhak Molcho, have been meeting on a regular basis in hopes of finding a formula for restarting talks. They said they have not eased their demands, but were open to scheduling a meeting between Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas. The two men have not met since a short-lived attempt to relaunch negotiations in late 2010.
The Palestinian officials said Abbas is seeking a goodwill gesture from Israel, such as a "significant release" of Palestinian prisoners held by Israel. They said Abbas, who is locked in a power struggle with the Islamic Hamas movement, feels he needs a concrete accomplishment from the meetings or risk facing ridicule at home. Israel is holding about 4,000 Palestinian prisoners, and Abbas is seeking the release of several hundred Palestinians, including people who were arrested before a 1993 interim peace accord, those with significant health problems, and prominent political figures.
An Israeli official confirmed there have been "ongoing contacts at different levels." He refused to elaborate, but said Israel is always ready to consider goodwill gestures. He cited Israeli concessions that ended hunger strike by Palestinian prisoners last month, and the recent return of the remains of dozens of dead Palestinian militants to their families.
The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were discussing a sensitive diplomatic issue.
Negotiators Erekat and Molcho also held a series of meetings earlier this year under Jordanian auspices. But the dialogue failed to produce any breakthroughs because of disagreements over the settlement issue.
The Palestinians view settlement construction as a sign of bad faith and say there is no point in talking as long as Israel builds homes for its citizens on occupied lands. More than 500,000 Israelis now live in Jewish settlements in the West Bank and east Jerusalem.
Netanyahu, leader of the hawkish Likud Party, has traditionally been a strong supporter of the settlers. But in recent months, he has shown signs of moderation, warning that Israel's continued control over millions of Palestinians is unsustainable and would jeopardize the state's future as a democracy with a Jewish majority.
Last month, Netanyahu brought the main opposition party Kadima into his government, giving him a coalition that holds 94 of parliament's 120 seats. The supermajority has reduced Netanyahu's reliance on hardliners in the previous coalition and raised speculation that he may be planning more significant concessions to the Palestinians.
Josef Federman contributed from Jerusalem.
U.S. hints at bypassing U.N. on Syria
Wed, May 30 2012By Louis Charbonneau and Michelle Nichols
UNITED NATIONS | Wed May 30, 2012 5:24pm EDT
(Reuters) - If the U.N. Security Council does not take swift action to pressure Syria to end its 14-month assault on the opposition, member nations may have no choice but to consider acting outside the United Nations, the U.S. envoy to the world body said on Wednesday.
Speaking to reporters after international mediator Kofi Annan's deputy, Jean-Marie Guehenno, gave the 15-nation council a bleak assessment of the impact of Annan's efforts to halt the violence in Syria, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice said there were three ways the Syrian conflict could end.
The first would be if Syrian President Bashar-al Assad's government decided to comply with its obligations under Annan's six-point peace plan - stopping its military assaults on Syrian towns, withdrawing heavy weapons, returning troops to barracks and talking with the opposition on a "political transition."
The second option would involve the council taking action to pressure Damascus to fully comply with the Annan plan, she said.
Neither of those scenarios appear likely because Damascus has shown no interest in living up to its commitments and Russia has made clear that any Security Council moves to step up the pressure on Assad's government through sanctions are out of the question.
"In the absence of either of those two scenarios there seems to be only one other alternative, and that is indeed the worst case," Rice said, adding that it was unfortunately looking like "the most probable."
"That is that the violence escalates, the conflict spreads and intensifies," she said. "It involves countries in the region, it takes on increasingly sectarian forms, and we have a major crisis not only in Syria but in the region."
In such a case, Rice said, the Annan plan would be dead and the Syrian violence would become "a proxy conflict with arms flowing in from all sides."
"And members of this council and members of the international community are left with the option only of having to consider whether they're prepared to take actions outside of the Annan plan and the authority of this council," she said.
She did not specify what kind of "actions" she meant. The United States has led past military interventions that were not authorized by the Security Council, namely in Kosovo and Iraq. So far the United States and its Western allies have rejected military options and said they would not arm the rebels.
RUSSIA DEFENDS ARMS SALES TO SYRIA
German Ambassador Peter Wittig said council members expressed revulsion at the massacre at Houla last week, where more than 100 people, including many children were killed, probably by Syrian government forces and militia.
Wittig urged the council to consider a resolution that would sanction "spoilers" of the Annan plan and suggested that it think about whether the mission of unarmed observers should be expanded.
The British and French envoys also spoke of the need to intensify pressure on Assad's government.
But Russian Ambassador Vitaly Churkin said Moscow, which holds a veto on the Security Council, opposes the idea of ratcheting up pressure on Damascus in the form of U.N. sanctions.
"Our attitude toward sanctions, frankly, continues to be negative," he said, adding that Moscow wants countries doing so to stop supplying weapons to Syrian rebels. He also voiced concern about the increasing presence of extremists in Syria.
Asked about Russia's supply of weapons to Assad's government, Churkin said: "The weapons we may have provided to Syria under various contracts, which were concluded a long time ago, are fully in line with international law and do not contribute to the current armed violence in Syria."
The expulsion of Syrian diplomats from several countries, including the United States, could be mistaken as a precursor to foreign military intervention in Syria, Churkin said.
"I hope an effort is made not to allow this step to be misinterpreted as something which is basically a prerequisite of some kind of a foreign military intervention in the near future, which is not the case."
Syrian Ambassador Bashar Ja'afari complained about unilateral U.S., European and other sanctions, calling them "irresponsible acts."
Speaking to reporters in Geneva, Guehenno said that "in the council there is an understanding that any sliding toward a full-scale civil war in Syria would be catastrophic and the Security Council now needs to have that kind of strategic discussion on how that needs to be avoided."
He did not say what kinds of steps the council should take. Earlier he told the council via video link that the violence is unlikely to stop without political negotiations between the government and opposition, U.N. diplomats said.
(Additional reporting by Tom Miles and Stephanie Nebehay in Geneva; Editing by Anthony Boadleand Christopher Wilson)
TO AVOID OCCUPATION-LIKE TACTICS THAT HAVE STRAINED AND AGGRAVATED RELATIONSHIPS, THE U.S. AGREES WITH ISRAEL, THAT THEY ARE BEST TO ADVISE US AND BE ABLE TO SECURE THEMSELVES...
Russia’s climbdown sets stage for regime changePaul Joseph Watson
Monday, June 11, 2012
President Barack Obama has told the US Navy and Air Force to prepare air strikes on Syria as part of a “no fly zone” that will be enforced with the aid of British and French military power, according to a report.
“Their mission will be to knock out Assad’s central regime and military command centers so as to shake regime stability and restrict Syrian army and air force activity for subduing rebel action and wreaking violence on civilian populations,” reports Israeli intelligence outfit DebkaFile.
Having threatened military action for months, the United States was apparently encouraged by the fact that Russia is once again backing down from its harsh rhetoric and indicating that it will not oppose the toppling of President Bashar Al-Assad.
After having intimated that Russia would support Syria via indirect military means if NATO powers launched an attack, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Saturday that Russia “will be only glad to support such an outcome” (the ousting of Assad), suggesting Moscow has softened on the idea of regime change in Syria.
The likelihood of military intervention has been brought forward by reports that opposition rebels are planning to use chemical weapons and then blame the atrocity on Assad’s regime.
Rebels attempted to stage a similar ‘false flag’ recently when British Channel 4 reporter Alex Thomson was purposefully led by rebels into a trap whereby it was hoped he would be killed by government troops and his death used as a propaganda stunt.
Hostility towards Syria from the international community has intensified in recent weeks, particularly after the recent massacre in Houla which was blamed on Assad’s forces despite the fact that eyewitnesses in Houla said opposition rebels were responsible for the slaughter, which killed 108 people – mostly women and children.
As Daniel McAdams highlights, the Houla massacre has been exalted as the primary justification for military intervention and yet the media-generated narrative behind the atrocity has completely collapsed.
“A respected mainstream publication, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ), has reported that the infamous Houla massacre in Syria, which the US and NATO hoped would be the casus belli for their planned invasion, was in fact carried out by rebel forces,” writes McAdams.
US air strikes on Syria will be launched without Congressional approval, just as Obama green lighted the attack on Libya with a churlish disregard for the constitutional process. US Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta has repeatedly stated that Congressional authorization for a military assault on Syria will not be sought by the Obama administration, which considers NATO and the UN to be the supreme authority.
Given what happened last year in Libya, where Al-Qaeda flags now fly high over courthousesand other centers of power while minorities are brutally oppressed – allied to what is set to unfold in Syria – our warning back in 2008 before Obama even took office has become even more prescient.
“Obama may eventually withdraw a portion of troops from Iraq, but mark our words, they won’t be home long before they are sent off to bomb another broken-backed third world country, this time in the name of a United Nations-backed “humanitarian” war, just as Bill Clinton presided over in Somalia and Serbia with the full support of the establishment political left.” we wrote on November 4 2008 in an article entitled, The More Things “Change” The More They Stay The Same.
The same “humanitarian” bloodbath inflicted on Libya, which went from the most prosperous country in Africa to a sectarian nightmare ruled by brigades of armed thugs, now awaits Syria unless the likes of China and Russia back up their rhetoric with any real action, a scenario that is becoming increasingly unlikely with each passing day.
Paul Joseph Watson is the editor and writer for Prison Planet.com. He is the author of Order Out Of Chaos. Watson is also a regular fill-in host for The Alex Jones Show and Infowars Nightly News.
Syrian National Council elects Kurd its new leader
ISTANBUL | Sat Jun 9, 2012 6:52pm EDT
(Reuters) - The main Syrian opposition umbrella group, the Syrian National Council, elected Kurdish activist Abdelbasset Sida as its leader at a meeting in Istanbul on Sunday, a council statement said.
Sida, who has been living in exile in Sweden for many years, was the only candidate for the presidency of the SNC at a meeting of 33 members of the councils' general secretariat.
The 56-year-old succeeds Burhan Ghalioun, a liberal opposition figure who had presided over the council since it was formed in August last year.
Sida said his priority would be to expand the council and hold talks with other opposition figures to include them in the council, which some have accused of being dominated by Islamists.
"The main task now is to reform the council and re-structure it," Sida told Reuters.
(Reporting by Marian Karouny and Khaled Yacoub Oweis, Amman newsroom; Editing by Jon Hemming)
Mary Dejevsky: The Euro crisis will look
like a walk in the park if Syria explodes
Even those interventions filed in the 'success' box have yet to produce orderly, self-reliant statesMARY DEJEVSKY
FRIDAY 08 JUNE 2012
We are sitting around watching the Syrian crisis, while evil is allowed to flourish. Dr. Sima Barman...
We are sitting around watching the Syrian crisis, while evil is allowed to flourish. Dr. Sima Barman...
After Houla comes Qubair in Syria's Hama province. Upwards of 70 people, including women and children, have been slaughtered. As with Houla, where more than 100 were killed in similarly barbaric ways, President Bashar al-Assad blames "terrorists"; his enemies blame Assad, and inexorably the pressure mounts for outside intervention. The calls come from Syrian opposition leaders, who equate their cause with that of the anti-Gaddafi forces in Libya. And they come from ordinary people and politicians, distressed by the multiplying massacres of the innocent. The urging is loud and it is impassioned. It should be resisted at all costs.
At every level the picture is deceptive. Even on the smallest, most local scale things are less black and white than they have been made to look. Take Houla. For many proponents of intervention, it will be sufficient that 108 people, including women and children, were killed in cold blood. But initial accounts spoke of young children with cut throats. Not apparently true; all, it is now said, were shot when gunmen sprayed living quarters indiscriminately.
That is bad enough, but it is not quite the same as singling out children and slashing their throats. Nor, strictly speaking, were the victims political opponents of the Assad regime. Local clan rivalries, rather than national politics, are now blamed. Even the assumption that Assad forces were responsible for the carnage is not quite true. In both Houla and now Qubair, it is shabiha militias – from Assad's Alawite clan, but not regular army troops – that are identified as the culprits.
In many ways, these truths force a more pessimistic prognosis than the version initially put out – whether in ignorance or for propaganda purposes – by the anti-Assad opposition. If what began as an uprising is already manifesting itself along clan and religious lines, the enforced departure of Assad will not settle the dispute. It will merely rip the lid off, and allow oxygen into an already seething cauldron of strife, as foreign intervention did in Iraq. Is that something the Americans or the British, with or without the French, should get themselves into? Just as we have ended the painful withdrawal from Iraq and are still trying to extricate ourselves from Afghanistan?
Even those interventions filed away in the "successful" box – Kosovo, Libya – have yet to produce orderly, self-reliant states. Kosovo, while now recognised by most countries as independent, is not viable as such in either economic or security terms, and will not be for a very long time, if ever. The Western military assessment of the Libyan operation is that the whole enterprise came so close to failure at times as to render it useless as a model. While presented as an exclusively aerial intervention, it required far more Special Forces on the ground than has been openly acknowledged, and the victorious opposition still struggles to control the country. Militias, with tanks, shut down Tripoli airport only this week.
Syria is a far more complex proposition. There are far more Syrians than Libyans; the country is more divided in every respect, and Assad himself – still – enjoys stronger support in more of the country than either the opposition or its foreign sympathisers like to admit. Indeed, the more that law and order deteriorates, the more Syrians may look to the regime, or its semi-detached militias, for protection. But the most compelling reason why outsiders should resist the calls for intervention, however emotive the newspaper headlines and television pictures, lies not in Syria itself, but in the neighbourhood.
Russia and China may have ranged themselves against the Western powers over the immediate future of Assad, but this shadow of the Cold War is benign compared with the real flames now licking at the Middle East. A late-arrival at the Arab Spring, Syria is already becoming the battlefield for a proxy war between the Gulf States and the Saudis on the one hand, and Iran on the other; between the Sunni power-holders to the south and the Shia to the east.
While the US and others hesitate to supply weapons to the opposition, they have tacitly encouraged consignments from elsewhere – into a region already awash with arms. Syria's violence is already spilling over into Lebanon, where power and demography – as between Christian and Muslim, Sunni and Shia, Lebanese and Palestinian – are so finely balanced. Tripoli, in northern Lebanon, has seen street fighting in recent weeks. South and west of Syria lie Israel, Gaza and the occupied Palestinian territories.
To the east, Iraq, with its majority Shia population and defeated Sunni minority, remains unstable, with the Kurdish region in the north independent in all but name. Iraq's Kurds now have representations abroad that look increasingly like diplomatic missions. Any hint of pressure from Baghdad, a more aggressive stance from Turkey, or more general regional turmoil, and the demand for full Kurdish independence could become urgent. That would inevitably precipitate a new surge of discontent in the Kurdish regions of Turkey, Iran and Syria. Kurdish statehood – beyond northern Iraq – has so far been an eventuality almost too sensitive to mention, lest the word fuel demands for the deed.
If the violence in Syria escalates, with or without Assad, and outsiders intervene, it will be almost impossible to confine the turmoil within that country's borders. Even in more self-contained Libya, the overthrow of Gaddafi had unforeseen cross-border fallout – producing a coup and a power vacuum in Mali. With Syria, the risk is already of a region-wide conflagration in which almost every national border and every seat of power could be up for grabs.
For now, it is utterly disingenuous of the US and Britain to call for action in Syria and blame Russia for being obstructive; a compliant Russia would only expose Western impotence. The reality is twofold. The first is that Kofi Annan's UN-backed plan, ailing and ineffectual as even he recognises it to be, is all that separates the region from mayhem. The second is that there are times when durable resolution is only possible when enemies are left, literally, to fight it out. From Europe, the current euro crisis might look like a threat to the world as we know it. But it is nothing, absolutely nothing, compared with what could happen if Syria explodes.
CONSIDERING ALL OF THE INTELLIGENCE LEAKS, AND THE PERILOUS POINT WE ARE AT WITH SYRIANS BEING SLAUGHTERED, YOU WOULD THINK THERE WOULD BE DISCRETION IN WHAT AND HOW ITEMS ARE BEING PRINTED AND PORTRAYED IN THE PRESS, MEANING SOMETIMES A JOURNALIST WILL TAKE 3-7YRS. TO ANALYZE THE FACTS BEFORE BRINGING IT TO THE PUBLIC SO THAT IT IS UNDENIABLE AND WELL-RESEARCHED, IF AT ALL.....
Lawmakers: Justice must move fast on leaks inquiryMonday, June 11, 2012
The heads of the House and Senate intelligence committees say the Justice Department must move quickly and ignore politics in investigating possible unauthorized disclosures of classified information.
Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Republican Rep. Mike Rogers suggested on CBS’ “Face the Nation” that they’re willing to see how prosecutors conduct their investigation before considering whether a department-appointed special counsel should take over.
Rogers says he’ll be watching for signs of undue political influence.
Feinstein says she believes Obama’s assertion that the White House wasn’t involved in the disclosures and she hopes the investigation can “get to a relatively quick disposition.”
New York Times journalist defends national security leaks
By Morgan Little
12:22 p.m. CDT, June 10, 2012Two stories published by the New York Times, which exposed the extent of U.S. involvement in cyber attacks against Iran and the White House’s secret 'Kill List,'have sparked scrutiny over the last week amid allegations that administration officials had leaked classified information for political gain.
The debate continued Sunday as Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) reiterated calls for a special prosecutor to take charge of leak investigations and as a reporter who wrote one of the stories said he doubted that any politically motivated leaks were involved.
David Sanger, chief Washington correspondent for the New York Times, appeared on CNN’s “Reliable Sources” to defend his reporting on U.S. involvement in deploying the Stuxnet computer virus against Iran.
Sanger said that during 18 months of reporting for his book “Confront and Conceal: Obama’s Secret Wars and Surprising Use of American Power,” he obtained information from the ground up. He said he had serious doubts as to whether there were any political motivations behind the leaks.
“Did I talk to a lot of people in the administration? Of course,” he said, as would be expected when writing a book about national security.
Sanger contended that how Obama conducts himself in the theater of international military action is key for the public to know, and is a necessary story for the media to report on, regardless of the secrecy associated with national security issues.
“Can we debate them out in the open? Of course,” he said.
McCain dismissed Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder’s appointment of two federal prosecutors to oversee the investigation.
“Mr. Holder’s credibility with Congress, there is none. We continue to have this problem with him withholding information on Fast and Furious, which resulted in the killing of a border patrol agent in Arizona. He is close to being held in contempt,” McCain said on CNN’s “State of the Union.” Darrell Issa (R-Calif.), chairman of the House committee investigating the Fast and Furious operation – an effort to track gun purchases by Mexican drug cartels that lost track of many of the weapons – has proposed holding Holder in contempt. Democrats have dismissed the effort as political grandstanding.
“This information had to have come from the administration. It couldn’t have come from anywhere else,” McCain said, referring to details in Sanger’s book. “The president may not have done it himself, but he’s certainly responsible as commander in chief.”
Copyright © 2012, Los Angeles TimesTea Party Chief @2012_TeaParty @gopconference we know what #EricHolder has been leaving out
52mGOP Conference @gopconference AG Holder has repeatedly failed to supply Congress with the full truth behind the flawed #FastandFurious operation. http://bit.ly/LNFvxv
ERIC HOLDER HAS CONTINUED TO WITHHOLD INFORMATION FROM CONGRESS ON THE RELATIONSHIPS AND DETAILS OF THE FAST AND FURIOUS OPERATION, WHICH DOES GO BACK TO THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION, YET IT WAS CONTINUED BY THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION WITHOUT ANY CHECKS AND BALANCES OR APPROVAL FROM CONGRESS, AS THERE WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN PERMISSION TO CONTINUE WEAPONS’ TRANSFER TRANSACTIONS... ERIC HOLDER THINKS THAT BY STONEWALLING IN AN ELECTION YEAR THAT HE IS PREVENTING OBAMA FROM LOOKING BAD.
THE TRUTH IS OUT, AND IT IS IN ERIC HOLDER’S BEST INTEREST TO COOPERATE WITH CONGRESS AND FACE THE CONTEMPT CHARGE, TURN OVER DOCUMENTS, AND LET CONGRESS PROPERLY AND THOROUGHLY INVESTIGATE OR HE COULD FACE CRIMINAL CHARGES LIKE FORMER SHERIFF VICTOR HILL FACES A 37 COUNT INDICTMENT:
June 11, 2012 3:00 AM
- TEXT House committee schedules contempt vote against Holder
Domestic Issues ,
(CBS News) CBS News has learned the House Oversight Committee will vote next week on whether to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress. It's the fourth time in 30 years that Congress has launched a contempt action against an executive branch member.
This time, the dispute stems from Holder failing to turn over documents subpoenaed on October 12, 2011 in the Fast and Furious "gunwalking" investigation.
The Justice Department has maintained it has cooperated fully with the congressional investigation, turning over tens of thousands of documents and having Holder testify to Congress on the topic at least eight times.
However, Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., says the Justice Department has refused to turn over tens of thousands of pages of documents. Those include materials created after Feb. 4, 2011, when the Justice Department wrote a letter to Congress saying no gunwalking had occurred. The Justice Department later retracted the denial.
"The Obama Administration has not asserted Executive Privilege or any other valid privilege over these materials and it is unacceptable that the Department of Justice refuses to produce them. These documents pertain to Operation Fast and Furious, the claims of whistleblowers, and why it took the Department nearly a year to retract false denials of reckless tactics," Issa wrote in an announcement of the vote to be released shortly. It will reveal the vote is scheduled for Wednesday, June 20.
Read the memo and draft version of contempt report (PDF)
Gov't answers CBS News "Fast and Furious" records requests with blank pages
Republicans prep contempt citation against Holder over Fast and Furious
ATF let "gunwalking" suspect go after arrest
Issa says the Justice Department can still put a stop to the contempt process at any time by turning over the subpoenaed documents.
If the House Oversight Committee approves the contempt citation, the matter would likely be scheduled for a full House vote.
For several weeks, there has been closed-door discussions and debate among House Republicans as to whether to move forward with contempt. Some have expressed concern that it could distract from the Republican's focus on the economy in this election year.
Led by Republicans Senator Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, and Issa, Congress' investigation into Fast and Furious is now in its second year. In the ATF operation, agents allowed thousands of weapons to "walk" into the hands of Mexican drug cartels in the hope it would somehow help ATF take down a major cartel. Some of the weapons were used in the murder of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry at the hands of illegal immigrants crossing into Arizona. Mexican press reports say hundreds of Mexicans have died at the hands of the trafficked weapons. The story was exposed nationally for the first time by CBS News in February 2011.
Democrats on the House Oversight Committee have called the Republicans' move to find Holder in contempt a politically-motivated "witch hunt."
In 1983, Congress found EPA administrator Anne Gorsuch Burford in contempt for failing to produce subpoenaed documents.
In 1998, the GOP-controlled House Oversight committee found Attorney General Janet Reno in contempt for failing to comply with a subpoena on campaign finance law violations.
In 2008, the Democratic-led House Oversight Committee found former White House counsel Harriet Miers and Chief of Staff John Bolton in contempt for failing to cooperate with an inquiry into whether a purge of federal prosecutors by the Bush administration was politically motivated.
Congress went to federal court to seek enforcement of that contempt action, but a compromise was reached with the Executive Branch before any court decision was final.
McCain: Holder has 'no credibility'
By ROBIN BRAVENDER |
6/10/12 10:13 AM EDT
Sen. John McCain doubled down on calls for a special prosecutor after Attorney General Eric Holder appointed two federal prosecutors to oversee investigations into leaks of classified information.
“Mr. Holder’s credibility with Congress – there is none," the Arizona Republican said Sunday on CNN's "State of the Union." “We continue to have this problem with him withholding information on Fast & Furious, which resulted in the killing of a border patrol agent in Arizona. He is close to being held in contempt."
Holder on Friday tapped the U.S. attorney for Washington, D.C., Ronald Machen, and the U.S. attorney for Maryland, Rod Rosenstein, to lead the special investigation. But the move hasn't ended calls by GOP lawmakers to appoint a special prosecutor that would be completely independent of the Justice Department.
“In the Valerie Plame situation, they appointed a special counsel," McCain said. “If it is – and it certainly is -- the most egregious breach of intelligence in anybody’s memory, that certainly requires a special counsel who is completely independent."
to continue reading the blog,