Texas man cleared in shooting of possible burglars

Texas man who shot and killed two men he suspected of burglarizing his neighbor's home cleared in the shootings Monday by a grand jury.

Joe Horn, 61, shot the two men in November after he saw them crawling out the windows of a neighbor's house in the Houston suburb of Pasadena.

Horn called 911 and told the dispatcher he had a shotgun and was going to kill the men. The dispatcher pleaded with him not to go outside, but Horn confronted the men with a 12-gauge shotgun and shot both in the back.

Horn's attorney, Tom Lambright, has said his client believed the two men had broken into his neighbor's home and that he shot them only when they came into his yard and threatened him.
The suspected burglars, Hernando Riascos Torres, 38, and Diego Ortiz, 30, were unemployed illegal immigrants from Colombia. Torres was deported to Colombia in 1999 after a 1994 cocaine-related conviction.

Port Authority contract headed to fact-finding

The Port Authority today notified the state Labor Relations Board that it has been unable to reach agreement on a new contract with Local 85, Amalgamated Transit Union, representing about 2,400 bus and trolley operators, support personnel and other hourly employees.
The current pact expires at midnight tonight.
MORE

Deal on state budget averts threatened shutdown

State lawmakers and Gov. Ed Rendell struck a deal on a new state budget early this morning, averting possible furloughs of 25,000 state workers and a partial government shutdown amid a slowing economy that has stifled the flow of state revenue. Read More

There Should Be No Fairness-Doctrine Secret Agenda

By Paul M. Weyrich

Off the record the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) says that it has no plans to reinstate the Fairness Doctrine. Nevertheless, earlier this month in a public letter to FCC Chairman Kevin J. Martin, House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) charged that the doctrine was going to be re-imposed secretly upon broadcast media.

“Under the rubric of ‘broadcast localism’ it is clear the Commission is proposing no less than a sweeping takeover by Washington bureaucrats of broadcast media. The proposals and recommendations for Commission action contained in the Notice of Proposed Rulemaking amount to the stealth enactment of the Fairness Doctrine, a policy designated to squelch the free speech and free expression of specifically targeted audiences,” wrote Boehner.

Begun in 1934 during the administration of President Franklin D. Roosevelt when AM radio was king, the Fairness Doctrine sought to ensure that radio listeners would get both sides of a political story by requiring that stations give equal air time to different opinions. In 1987, after nearly 40 years of enforcement, the FCC voted to halt the doctrine’s implementation when it had become obvious that the government’s monitoring of the media led to censorship. Radio since the 1980s holds no sort of communication monopoly as it did in the 1930s.

The press release which accompanied the letter from Boehner’s office notes, “The rules, proposed by the FCC earlier this year, would reinstitute advisory boards to regulate broadcast content and revive a host of other rules the Commission dropped more than 20 years ago.”
Sources at the FCC say that the only thing that has been circulated is a “Notice of Proposed Rulemaking” and that outside comments are just now coming back to the Commission. They insist that no rule of any kind has been circulated, and they continue to work with the National Religious Broadcasters and fully expect to exempt noncommercial stations from any final order in order to protect small stations.

They add, “This is in no way a back door to the Fairness Doctrine. It is simply an attempt to get at big companies that are not fulfilling their requirements to the public in order to have their free license to use the public airwaves. There are localism requirements to use the public airwaves just like there are indecency rules. You have to have some relationship with the area in which you are licensed to serve.” They observe that some companies have been remotely operating in places like Los Angeles and are acting as if they were in small-town America. “We are still a long way from making any permanent decisions but this has absolutely nothing to do with the Fairness Doctrine.”

As if to take a pre-emptive strike at this assertion, Boehner notes in his letter that forcing the licensees to recreate the so-called “advisory boards” of a bygone era would encumber broadcast media with onerous bureaucratic burdens not faced by cable, satellite, or the internet. The report’s assertion that these boards would help radio stations “determine the needs and interests of their communities” or promote “localism and diversity” borders on fantasy.
So what’s the problem? Why all the anxiety? Why don’t Republicans in the House of Representatives accept the quiet assurances of the FCC and settle down? The answer, of course, is talk radio. It is the only form of communication that conservatives have through which they can certainly and consistently connect with the general public. Most major television and print media are dominated by liberals, but conservatives are successful on talk radio.

One may think that the liberals who dominate other media would be willing to overlook talk radio; they are not. H.R. 2905, the Broadcaster Freedom Act, sponsored by Representative Mike Pence (R-IN), is tied up in the House Energy and Commerce Committee waiting for a vote which may never come. The House Democratic Leadership opposes this legislation because it permanently would place the Fairness Doctrine in the ashbin of history, where it belongs. The Democrats want complete control of all media.

The FCC should make it clear to Republicans, Democrats and the public, as soon as possible, that it has no intention of reinstating the Fairness Doctrine in any way, shape or form. Also, the House Leadership should move H.R. 2905 out of Committee and give it a simple up-or-down vote on the House Floor. If they did, just about everyone might come out a winner.

Paul M. Weyrich is Chairman and CEO of the Free Congress Foundation.

MEDIA EXPOSES U.S. SECRET MISSION IN IRAN

It came in the New Yorker by anti-Republican Seymour Hersh. (New Yorker)

From another story: "They believe that their mission is to make sure that before they get out of office next year, either Iran is attacked or it stops its weapons program," Hersh said. The new article, "Preparing the Battlefield," is the latest in a series of articles accusing the Bush administration of preparing for war with Iran. (CNN)

In Israel, a nation sees that time is running out. (Telegraph)

Once something is on CNN you can forget the "top secret" label.

Presbyterian Church (USA) Waives Ordination Standards

Well, I’m back from the PC (USA) General Assembly held in San Jose. This certainly isn’t my father’s denomination. Among the highlights:

1. The effort to change the definition of marriage to include same-sex partners was voted down.

2. New changes to the authoritative interpretation of the constitution will permit sessions and presbyteries to ordain people who do not abide by the ordination standards.

The General Assembly has also removed the authoritative interpretation that prohibits homosexual practice for church officers. These combined changes permit homosexuals to serve as clergy and as church officers. These changes take effect immediately.

3. Along with these changes, the General Assembly has sent a corresponding constitutional change to be voted upon by our 173 presbyteries.

If the proposed constitutional changes are approved, the “Fidelity and Chastity” standard of the constitution would be deleted, replaced with a requirement that any person must make a sincere effort to obey one’s personal interpretation of scripture for ordination. (Yes, personal interpretation has trumped objective truth.)

It should be noted that the General Assembly voted to remove the “homosexual perversion” reference in the Heidelberg Confession. Proponents claimed that this change represented a correction in the English translation from the original German document of 1563, which was adopted by the Presbyterian Church in 1967. A minority report was submitted, stated that "the current translation of the Heidelberg Catechism, as adopted in The Book of Confessions, faithfully and clearly declares to the members of the Presbyterian Church (USA) and to the world who and what we are, what we believe, and what we resolve to do."

For a perspective of G.A. from the left of the denomination: Witherspoon Society
For a perspective of G.A. from the right of the denomination: The Layman
For a perspective of G.A. from the middle: Presbyterians For Renewal

Save Talk Radio

This week Nancy Pelosi said she is interested in reviving the “Fairness Doctrine”, a move that would change talk radio as we know it and force many talk stations to abandon their talk radio format to remain profitable. She is not alone; Senators Feinstein, Durbin and Kerry have all recently made similar statements.

Broadcasters and listeners cannot allow basic freedoms of speech to be taken away for political purposes. You need to know about this issue and the consequences a so-called “Fairness Doctrine” will have on your listening choices.

Congressman Eric Cantor and Congressman Mike Pence are leading an effort to stop the Fairness Doctrine through the Broadcaster Freedom Act. The Broadcaster Freedom Act prohibits the FCC from prescribing rules, regulations, or policies that require broadcasters to present opposing viewpoints in controversial issues and will prevent the FCC or any future president from reinstating the Fairness Doctrine.

So far the discharge petition for The Broadcaster Freedom Act has 196 co-sponsors. Only 23 more needed to force a vote on the floor. No Democrats have signed on. However, just one year ago over 100 Democrats voted for legislation that placed a one year ban on bringing the Fairness Doctrine. With time running out on the one year ban it is crucial to convince these Democrats to stand against Nancy Pelosi’s pressure and sign the discharge petition to bring legislation that would permanently ban the Fairness Doctrine to the House floor for a vote.

Follow this link to the Hypocrisy Caucus: http://hypocrisycaucus.com/

These Members of Congress are hypocritical because they voted for a one-year ban on the so-called Fairness Doctrine but have thus far refused to sign on to the Discharge Petition in support of a permanent ban. If someone is going to support freedom of speech for one year they should support it permanently. Contact them and tell them to sign the Discharge Petition to allow a vote on the Broadcaster Freedom Act, HR 2905.

If these Democrats don’t allow a vote on the Fairness Doctrine in the next couple of weeks there will not be enough time to enact the bill into law before Congress adjourns for the upcoming elections. With every national poll predicting a tight race for the presidency, and big gains for liberal Democrats who despise talk radio, this could be our last chance in the foreseeable to keep our First Amendment freedom alive on the airwaves.

SAUDI MARRIAGE OFFICIANT: SEX WITH GIRLS AT NINE OKAY

Wow. You have to hear this guy. A one year old can marry. A child can be given away at any age. He explained they follow the example set by Mohammad. Which is in fact true and yet so many don't see this as a flaw in this religion. Click below to see the video.

Memri

ECONOMY IMPROVES AS DOW SINKS

The story begins “The fragile economy improved slightly at the beginning of the year and could grow a bit stronger in the current quarter as extra cash from tax rebates spurs people to buy more. Still, it's not out of danger yet.”

AP

MICHELLE OBAMA: BARACK WILL FIGHT AGAINST TRADITIONAL MARRIAGE

In a bold speech, she tells a radical gay group that her husband will fight for their cause. From the story: She said he supported a complete repeal of the federal Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, which only recognizes marriages between men and women and upholds states’ rights not to honor same-sex marriages performed elsewhere. He also opposes a “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy toward gays in the U.S. military and was against a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage, she added. (Reuters)

But the lifestyle she celebrates leads to more death. From another story: The number of young homosexual men being newly diagnosed with HIV infection is rising by 12 percent a year, with the steepest upward trend in young black men, according to a new report. (Washington Post)

SUPREME COURT BACKS SECOND AMENDMENT, OBAMA WAFFLES

The story notes “A bipartisan majority of Capitol Hill urged the court to overturn the ban, which excluded Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama. 55 senators, including GOP presidential candidate John McCain and 250 House members joined Vice President Dick Cheney in signing an amicus brief urging the Supreme Court to overturn the ban last February. Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama was not one of the signers. His voting record is decidedly anti-gun, but he sought to soften his stance on gun rights in the run-up to the Supreme Court decision Thursday.” (Townhall)

Another story notes “Barack Obama sought to straddle the subject by saying he favors an individual's right to bear firearms as well as a government's right to regulate them.” (AP) Obama’s response may be due to this poll, showing Americans overwhelmingly in support of the decision. (Gallup)

Time Magazine looks at what’s next. (Time)

A battle is raging in Obama’s hometown of Chicago. (FOX News)

From another story: Legal analysts say the court is likely to have at least one vacancy during the next administration: The oldest justice is 88, two others are in their 70s, and all three could be nearing retirement. And with the court sharply split between two four-member blocs on the right and the left - with Justice Anthony Kennedy often the deciding vote - a single vacancy could determine the direction of a legal institution that decides cases with wide-ranging, long-term impacts on the country. (Boston Globe)

From the infamous 1995 questionnaire, Obama said he is in favor of banning “the manufacture, sale and possession of hand guns.” (Politico)

Gill Foundation

In an earlier post I introduced readers to Tim Gill. Gill, a Denver-based software tycoon (founder of Quark), is perhaps the most powerful force for homosexual activism in American politics.

CBN has picked up on the story. You can see it below.



Where is the Christian conservative equivalent?

Bishop gets state approval for new corporation

Bishop Robert Duncan has created a new corporation called the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh.
The application submitted to the Corporation Bureau of the Pennsylvania Department of State seeking to incorporate the non-profit organization states that its purpose is "upholding and propagating the historic Faith and Order as set forth in the Book of Common Prayer."

The new non-profit corporation is listed on the Pennsylvania Department of State's website here.

This is an attempt t0 protect property in the diocese, which under Episcopal Church canons is held in trust by the diocese for the entire church. The argument is assets instead belong to individual congregations and not the diocese itself.

The Episcopal Church's Title IV Review Committee has certified that Duncan has abandoned the communion of the Episcopal Church. Duncan has denied that charge. Two of the House of Bishops' three senior bishops refused to give Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts Schori their canonically required consent to inhibit him, based on the certification, from the performance of any episcopal, ministerial or canonical acts. Such an inhibition requires the consent of all three senior bishops.

Dallas Abortion Clinics: Closed for Business

In a story of pro-life perseverance and triumph, a coalition of Catholics, under the leadership of Bishop Charles Grahmann, is reaping the reward of their 18-year commitment to pray outside of Dallas abortion clinics. In the last several years, they have witnessed the closure of seven of the city's 13 clinics. This week, an eighth announced that it will shut its doors for good, leaving just five abortion centers in the entire city of Dallas. What is particularly encouraging about putting the Aaron Women's Health Center out of business is that it was one of the three facilities in the city to perform late-term abortions. Let's rejoice with Bishop Grahmann and applaud him for his comforting presence outside of these clinics, as he and his parishioners ministered God's healing message to the women of Dallas.

State Pension Aid System is Fair to Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh’s Mayor wants to see the state’s system of pension aid to municipalities reformed. This should come as no surprise in view of Pittsburgh’s current pension difficulties. According to the 2007 Comprehensive Financial Report, the City’s accrued pension liabilities exceed pension fund assets by $523.8 million, or stated another way, Pittsburgh’s pension plans are only 42 percent funded. The Mayor is appealing to the state for help and to the leaders of other municipalities for support in his reform efforts. Continue

Radio Waves

Royalty bill expected to clear committee.
Opponents of abolishing radio's decades-old royalty exemption have the backing of a majority of House members making it unlikely the issue will go far this year. That's not expected to stop a House subcommittee from easily approving the proposed Performance Rights Act during today's scheduled mark-up hearing. The NAB is running ads in Capitol Hill newspapers saying a royalty would "hurt local radio stations just to put money in the hands of big international companies."


The price of localism: $2.7 million.
The FCC's proposed rulebook changes requiring 24-hour staffing, community ascertainment meetings and main studios within a city of license come at a price. Simmons Media says for them it would be about $2.7 million. If the rules are implemented as proposed, the company would have to build and maintain 13 additional studio locations and hire additional staff. That just the tip of the iceberg for broadcasters.

Filming in Pittsburgh
Ohio Valley General Hospital was overtaken by film crews and a slew of actors (Daryl Hannah, Steve Gutenberg & George Lopez are a part of that list). They are taping "Shannon's Rainbow".

The story isn't only being taped locally, but was written locally by actor John Mowod and KDKA morning man Larry Richert about a 17-year-old girl and a horse named Rainbow. It's about an experience Mowod's own brother had with a horse a decade ago. Joe Mowod was a horse trainer at The Meadows Racetrack at the time and had a horse who was ill. Ignoring the recommendations that the horse should be put down, Mowod nursed the horse back to health hoping that it could live a normal life. The horse ended up surpassing that goal and won a race at the Red Mile in Kentucky.

They fought hard to have the film shot in Pittsburgh. Look for John Mowod to play the role of a horse trainer in the film. Larry Richert will also make an appearance.

SPAIN A STEP CLOSER TO GIVING APES HUMAN RIGHTS

Careful Spain. Next they will want same sex marriage and entitlement programs.

From the story: The environmental committee of Spain's parliament approved resolutions that urge the European country to comply with the Great Apes Project — a plan developed by philosophers and scientists who say the animals deserve the same rights as their closest genetic relatives, the Reuters news agency reported.

FOX News

ZOGBY: 74 PERCENT SUPPORT OFF-SHORE DRILLING

I wasn't polled but count me in. 59 percent support drilling in ANWR. McCain gets a boost for his support. (Zogby)

From Victor Davis Hanson: Building things is a good indication of the relative confidence of a society. But the last American gasoline refinery was built almost three decades ago. As "cowards of our conscious," we've come up with countless mitigating reasons not to build a new one. Our inaction has meant that our nation's gasoline facilities have grown old, out of date and dangerous. (Real Clear Politics)

MCCAIN AND OBAMA SLAM CHILD RAPE DECISION

Well iy took child rape to find common ground but find it they did. Sort of ... The problem here is the decision came from liberal judges, the kind Obama has promised to put on the Supreme Court! (USA Today)

GOP leaders aren’t ready to give up. From another story: Republican Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal called the ruling "incredibly absurd," "a clear abuse of judicial authority" and said officials will "evaluate ways to amend our statute to maintain death as a penalty for this horrific crime." (FOX News)

As of early this morning, liberal bloggers have all but ignored the ruling, with the Huffington Post main headline “Supreme Court Slashes Exxon Valdez Damages.” (Huffington Post)

Robert W. Cranmer Jr Rape Case Goes to Court

Back in February Robert W. Cranmer Jr. the son of a former Allegheny County Commissioner was charged with rape.

The charges stem from a Jan. 1 incident when an 18-year-old Mt. Oliver woman said a male friend, accompanied by Mr. Cranmer, his brother, Chuck Cranmer, and another woman, picked her up from work around 2 a.m.

Court papers obtained by Powerblog show Cranmer's formal arraignment was scheduled for June 12, 2008, and as a result his pre-trial conference has been set for July 18, 2008 before Judge Anthony Mariani.

Cranmer has been out on a $5000.00 bond since February.

The Attack on Free Speech

The speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi made it clear that she intends to make sure the so called "Fairness Doctrine," which a liberal administration could use to silence conservative and religious radio talk show hosts and much of the new alternative media, will be safe.

A bill by Rep. Mike Pence (R.-Ind.) to outlaw the “Fairness Doctrine” will not see the light of day in Congress during ’08 according the Queen Pelosi. Heaven forbid they take a vote.

In ruling out a vote on Pence’s proposed Broadcaster's Freedom Act, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D.-CA.) also signaled her strong support for revival of the “Fairness Doctrine” -- which would require radio station owners to provide equal time to radio commentary when it is requested.

What's the problem with that you ask? The “Fairness Doctrine,” which was ended under the Reagan Administration, would put a major burden on radio stations. If any host said something the other side doesn't like, station would have to let that opposing party have the mic.

So a pastor says on the air the Bible teaches homosexuality is wrong. A gay rights group could demand and be entitled to an equal amount of time on that station.

Rather than engage in the costly practice of providing that time many stations would simply not carry anything that would have opposition. So say farewell to the likes of Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, and almost all Christian talk shows who are likely to generate demands for equal time. Stations would go broke just airing opposition.

This issue is still a bit under the radar and that where the supports like it. Pay attention folks. This is a big one!

Shop Till Your Broke

Ross Park Mall is going to resemble the Beverly Hills shopping district of Western PA.
Nordstrom is getting the final touches before opening but they are not alone. Places I can afford to walk inthe fron door will also be opening their doors. Louis Vuitton, Burberry, True Religion Jeans and Michael Kors stores will be moving in as well.

If you need a spot of tea during your shopping spree you will be able to stop by tea purveyor Teavana.

Other stores expected to open include jeweler Tiffany & Co., clothing stores BCBGMaxAzria, White House/Black Market, L.L.Bean and Martin + Osa, a new concept from South Side retailer American Eagle Outfitters.
Will this region spend enough to support all these new stores? Mall management thinks so. As for me, I'll do some window shopping on the the way to JC Penny.

HEINZ PROMOTES MAYO WITH TWO MEN KISSING

That's about the last image that would get me to buy a product. It's like a diet pill with a Body by Auschwitz photo on the front.

The funny part is some ad agency got paid to do this and the folks at Heinz must have given them the go ahead.

The ad aired in Britain. Only after hundreds of complaints did they pull the ad. British gay rights group Stonewall said it was shocked that Heinz had yanked what it called an ‘‘innocuous’’ ad and urged gay consumers to boycott the company.

Sun Times

IAEA CHIEF: IRAN COULD HAVE NUKE IN 6 MONTHS

From the story: "The reports this week of Israeli military maneuvers, which took place in early June, provoked the IAEA warning," said CBS News Foreign Affairs Pamela Falk, who is based at the U.N., "because atomic energy chief ElBaradei has been pleading with Iran to accept a new package of incentives before another round of sanctions would be imposed. The problem in the region is that, as time passes and the clock is ticking on Iran's uranium enrichment program, there is a fear that Israel will act, as it did in Syria last year, to attack at least one of Iran's nuclear facilities," said Falk, who was in Saudi Arabia earlier this week.

WCBS

OBAMA : MONKEY DEVOTEE

A group of Hindus plan to send a monkey statue to Obama because “We have heard that he carries a small monkey charm in his pocket. So he is a devotee of Hanuman. That's why we want to present him with this idol.” (BBC)

While Obama may have trouble with the evangelical vote, it looks like he has the Monkey worshiping hindu vote locked up. Some advice: Never trust a guy with a monkey in his pocket. You don't know who is in charge.




Cruising on Corn

I drove down to Florida and back. I paid anywhere from $3.77 a gallon to $4.09 a gallon along the way. This week for the first time I put E85 in the gas tank. That's an 85% ethanol and 15% gasoline blend. I came across it at a Sheetz in Robinson Twp. It was $3.44 a gallon.

If you want me to go green it better leave some green in my pocket.

You have to have a car that will take E85. Check inside your gas cap door to see if there is a E85 sticker. Don't put E85 in to save a few bucks if you don't have a car that can take it. A new engine will cost you much more!

So far our E85 car is running just fine on it. I detect no difference. The problem is there are only 4 gas stations in my area that offer E85. They are listed below for those that have those corn cars:

Lititz
WoGo Station
736 Rothsville Road
Monroeville

Sheetz Station now offering E85
William Penn highway
Robinson

Sheetz
Campbells Run Road
Pittsburgh

Sheetz Pleasant Hills
1000 Clairton Blvd

Radio Waves

I guess a few things happened while I was away.....

KQV anchor Lohle dies
Longtime KQV (1410) afternoon news anchor Steve Lohle died of an apparent heart attack. Lohle was 58.

Rob Milford Resigns
KDKA (1020) reporter Rob Milford resigned. Milford was arrested after sheriff's deputies said he tried to bring a loaded .38-caliber revolver into the Allegheny County courthouse. He was covering the trial of the alleged East End rapist and told police he forgot the handgun was in his briefcase. Oooops!

Bossman Moves On
The legendary "Bossman" Porky Chedwick is headed to Florida. Porky Chedwick, 90, is moving to Tarpon Springs, near Tampa. "I'm going to live my life in shorts and sandals now," Chedwick said. I think 90 is a good age to retire.

Farewell Mr. Carlin
He was brash, foul mouthed and downright FUNNY. I loved Carlin's humor despite it all.

For those of you who care, New York's WBAI-FM wasn't cited for playing "Seven Words You Can Never Say on Television" over the air. In fact, on Oct. 30. 1973, the station played Carlin's monologue "Filthy Words". A listener complained to the FCC, and the resulting court case, FCC v. Pacifica Foundation, established the current legal standards for broadcast obscenity.

The lasting gift from Mr. Carlin.
Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that. - George Carlin

State budget unresolved as deadline looms

Seven days and counting. That's how much time remains for General Assembly leaders and Gov. Ed Rendell to reach an agreement before the deadline for a new $28 billion or so budget for fiscal 2008-09, which begins at 12:01 a.m. next Tuesday. If there is no deal, 25,000 state workers may be temporarily furloughed without pay, and state parks, libraries and driver's license centers would be shut down. Read More

MOST BELIEVE IN GOD, FEW ACT LIKE IT

Pew research survey released June 23 found that 92 percent of Americans believe in God and a majority consider religion an important part of their lives. Fifty-eight percent of Americans pray every day.

"Now if we can just get them to act like they believe in God," said Judie Brown, president of American Life League. "While it's encouraging that the rest of the country acknowledges the existence of the Lord, one wonders how so many can contemplate truth and eternity while simultaneously turning a blind eye to legalized infanticide."

“The study confirms what is already known about the United States – that it is a deeply religious nation,” reports the Washington Post. The study surveyed 35,000 adults around the country.
But while a majority of Americans believe in God and pray every day, the survey also states that "most Americans don't feel their religion is the only way to eternal life – even if their faith tradition teaches otherwise," according to the Associated Press.

"The real enemy to the preborn, to our culture, to our nation, is the moral relativism that has our world, literally, in a death grip," Brown said. "That same mentality blurs the line between right and wrong and has opened the door for abortion. We'll make little headway in defending the preborn until we take a clear and unwavering stance in favor of objective Truth: Murder of the innocent is always wrong."

Electric Shock

Consumers bracing for sticker shock when electricity-rate caps expire in a few years could get some relief as part of a state budget deal being negotiated by the governor and Legislature. Read More

CONSERVATIVE PUBLISHER GIVES UP ON NY TIMES REVIEWS

Explaining "As the publisher of Encounter Books, I have long been aghast at The New York Times’s treatment of conservative books. By and large, it oscillates between utter neglect and ostentatious contempt. This is frustrating for authors, who have been taught that a review in the Times is the literary, or at least the commercial, equivalent of entry into the Promised Land."

Pajamas Media

MORMON CHURCH BACKS MARRIAGE FIGHT IN CALIFORNIA

Sending a letter that says “The church's teachings and position on this moral issue are unequivocal. Marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God and the formation of families is central to the Creator's plan for His children. We ask that you do all you can to support the proposed constitutional amendment by donating of your means and time to ensure that marriage in California is legally defined as being between a man and a woman.”

Score one for the Mormons.

FOX News

MICHELLE OBAMA ON WORKING: “MY KIDS DON’T CARE WHERE I AM”

She is supposed to be reaching out to women. At the end of this story on being a working mom, she trashes the efforts of stay-at-home moms with this very strange statement: “I used to get up in the morning and go to an office. Now I get up and go to a plane. ... My kids still don't care where I am. They've always known two parents to work in the household and as long as we're back in time for bedtime, they could care less where we are."

AP

Dobson vs. Obama: Battle of the Bible

Anyone who listens to Dr. James Dobson and his "Focus on the Family" radio program knows he keeps a close eye on politics.

Dr. Dobson has now accusesd Barak Obama of distorting the Bible and pushing a "fruitcake interpretation" of the Constitution. The criticism, to be aired today on Dobson's Focus on the Family radio program. It runs 18 minutes and highlights excerpts of a speech Obama gave in June 2006 to the liberal Christian group Call to Renewal. Obama mentions Dobson in the speech.

"Even if we did have only Christians in our midst, if we expelled every non-Christian from the United States of America, whose Christianity would we teach in the schools?" Obama said. "Would we go with James Dobson's or Al Sharpton's?"

Dobson took aim at examples Obama cited in asking which Biblical passages should guide public policy - chapters like Leviticus, which Obama said suggests slavery is OK and eating shellfish is an abomination, or Jesus' Sermon on the Mount, "a passage that is so radical that it's doubtful that our own Defense Department would survive its application," Obama said.

Dobson accused Obama of wrongly equating Old Testament texts and dietary codes that no longer apply to Jesus' teachings in the New Testament. "I think he's deliberately distorting the traditional understanding of the Bible to fit his own worldview, his own confused theology," Dobson said. "... He is dragging biblical understanding through the gutter."

Haggard has left 'restoration program'

Ted Haggard, the evangelist forced out of his job after being caught up in a sex scandal involving a male prostitute has left a "spiritual restoration program" and no longer has any ties to the megachurch he founded, the congregation's new pastor said Sunday.

Under a severance deal that Haggard reached with the church in 2006, he agreed to leave Colorado Springs and not talk about the scandal publicly. The deal expired at the end of 2007. New pastor Brady Boyd said Haggard was now free to live where he wanted and has returned to Colorado Springs.

Haggard, who also stepped down as president of the National Association of Evangelicals, confessed to undisclosed "sexual immorality" and said he bought meth but didn't use it.
Haggard then moved to Phoenix with his family to begin what church leaders called a spiritual restoration program, which was expected to include counseling and prayer and last five years or longer. Boyd said Haggard asked to be released from the program in January and is no longer connected with New Life.

A Golden but Fleeting Outsourcing Opportunity for PAT

The threat by 231 Port Authority (PAT) employees to retire early and take the current lucrative health care benefits retirees receive in addition to their full pensions—and the $500 per month supplement through age 62—has handed PAT’s board and management a wonderful opportunity to launch a major outsourcing program. They must immediately and unambiguously indicate that the retirees will not be replaced with call backs or new hires. Rather, those jobs will be outsourced by hiring private vendors or other regional transit agencies to cover bus routes the 231 retirees would have been able to cover. Continue

PRIEST PROTECTS HOLY EUCHARIST

Judie Brown, president of American Life League, released the following statement regarding Professor Douglas Kmiec being denied Holy Communion:“We applaud the actions of the Catholic priest who humbly enforced Canon 915 earlier this month by denying Holy Communion to Professor Kmiec. The long held but erroneous idea that all moral issues carry the same weight as the destruction of preborn human beings by acts of abortion is entirely contrary to the teachings of the Catholic Church. Those who publicly create scandal by arguing otherwise reject official Church teaching and are thus unworthy to receive the Body and Blood of Christ in Holy Communion. To receive the sacrament when one is publicly opposing a fundamental teaching of the Catholic Church creates scandal.”“It is my hope that all faithful Catholic priests will reject this politicization of the Blessed Sacrament and preserve its sanctity. Holy Communion is not a political prop, but rather the centerpiece of the Catholic Faith.”

CATHOLIC CHARITIES UNDER FEDERAL INVESTIGATION

It apprears the Bishop of Richmond, Va. helped cover up a scandal in which employees of Catholic Charities in his diocese paid for an abortion and took the girl (a teenage Guatemalan immigrant) down to the abortion mill.

Here is the story:

Bishop Francis X. DiLorenzo of the Diocese of Richmond, Va. is under fire for allegedly covering up a scandal in which Commonwealth Catholic Charities of Richmond (CCR), now under federal investigation, falsified documents and paid for a 16-year-old to have an abortion in January.

“This latest scandal and the foot dragging that occurred on the part of the bishops gives us cause to wonder how serious a problem this really is in dioceses across America,” said American Life League President Judie Brown, a member of the Pontifical Academy for Life.

The United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is investigating CCR after learning employees not only illegally signed abortion consent forms, but also helped the girl implant a contraceptive device months before.

According to an investigative article from The Wanderer, Bishop DiLorenzo wrote a letter to his fellow bishops April 29 - three months after the abortion - detailing how CCR was complicit in procuring and paying for the abortion. One employee is said to have accompanied the girl to the abortion mill January 18. The Guatemalan girl is an illegal immigrant and ward of the federal Office of Refugee Resettlement in the Department of Health and Human Services. The letter from Bishop DiLorenzo admits that the “implementation of the contraceptive device and the abortion were contrary to basic teachings of the Catholic Church … we are aware that this incident is a most regrettable stain on the record of excellence both of the MRS (Migration and Refugee Services) and Catholic Charities.”

The Wanderer reports that it could find no evidence that the incident was reported to local social services or the Virginia State Police as is required by the Richmond diocese guidelines on reporting “ministry-related” sexual abuse.According to the Washington Times, David Siegel, acting director of the HHS Refugee Resettlement Office, criticized the USCCB in a letter April 23.

"USCCB's inability to direct the actions of its sub-grantee was a failure of management, oversight and monitoring," he said in the letter to Johnny Young, executive director of the USCCB Migration and Refugee Services (MRS) agency. Four Catholic Charities employees have been fired. Bishop DiLorenzo’s letter also states MRS staff will receive training on “the primacy of Catholic teachings and beliefs as they impact their work or professional ethics ... to assure that such unacceptable incidents never happen again.”

“What is the criteria for employment?” asked Brown. “Does a diocese place more emphasis on being politically correct than in assuring that employees are people of ethical and moral strength?”

GOING GREEN: TARGETING FAITH COMMUNITIES

Al Sharpton and Pat Robertson join Al Gore’s Alliance for Climate Change’s television ad campaign. “Its tone and message reflect an emerging movement of religion and the environment that crosses all denominations and political affiliations. The ad dovetails with a new report by the Sierra Club, "Faith in Action." In the report, Sierra, the oldest and largest grass-roots environmental organization in the United States, highlights groups of all religious affiliations -- including evangelicals, Quakers, Catholics, Buddhists, Muslims, Unitarians and Episcopals -- working to protect "God's creation" in each of the 50 states. "From a faith perspective, it is a crisis in the relationship we have with the God who created Heaven and Earth," says Davis, author of the soon-to-be published book, "Scripture, Culture, and Agriculture: An Agrarian Reading of the Bible." "It is arguably the greatest crisis humanity as a whole has ever faced."
(ABCNews)

Pro-Abortion Language Tanks in War Supplemental

Help is finally on the way for our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. While the war rages on in the Middle East, the conflict at home has finally been settled over the controversial war supplemental bill (H.R. 2642), which passed the House by a 268-155 vote.

Thanks to the efforts of Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Rep. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), the legislation--worth $161.8 billion--heads back to the Senate without a provision that would have given groups like Planned Parenthood a discount on contraception and drugs like Plan B that can act as abortifacients. Had the language been included, a future president could have applied the prices to abortion drugs like RU-486, if he so chose. Planned Parenthood's clinics, which already make a tidy profit on these pills, would have used the lower costs to broaden the drug's distribution and lure more women into taking medication that has already caused serious side effects.

Considering the number of accusations leveled at Planned Parenthood in the last six months, including a multi-million suit involving a fraudulent mark-up on the price of these very pills, Congress should be highly skeptical of the investments it's already making in Planned Parenthood--let alone future ones.

SENATOR DODD, CHAIRMAN OF THE SENATE BANKING COMMITTEE, GETS QUESTIONABLE MORTGAGE DEAL

In exchange, it appears the Democrat helped bail them out. (Heritage)

Now Dodd is facing tough questions. (Courant)

DRILLING COULD HELP GOP IN NOVEMBER

From the story: A recent Gallup Poll found that 57 percent of Americans would support drilling in offshore or wilderness areas that are currently off-limits to drilling, while 41 percent oppose the idea. Frank Newport, the poll's editor in chief, contends that Republicans' push for more drilling is now "generally in sync with majority American public opinion." (San Francisco Chronicle)

From another story: "One major deposit in the Rocky Mountain West alone would equal current annual oil imports for more than 100 years," Bush said. "Unfortunately, Democrats in Congress are standing in the way of further development." (FOX News)

Meanwhile, the Sauids are promising more oil… if needed. (FOX News)

OBAMA PLAYS RACE CARD

At a Florida fundraiser, the Democrat said “The choice is clear. Most of all we can choose between hope and fear. It is going to be very difficult for Republicans to run on their stewardship of the economy or their outstanding foreign policy. We know what kind of campaign they’re going to run. They’re going to try to make you afraid. They’re going to try to make you afraid of me. He’s young and inexperienced and he’s got a funny name. And did I mention he’s black?" (Sun Times)

Obama still holds a slim 2 point lead among registered voters. (Gallup)

Newsweek has him with a 15 point margin. (Newsweek)

Salem Web Network Acquires Intercristo.com

Salem Web Network, a subsidiary of Salem Communications Corporation (Nasdaq:SALM), the leading radio broadcaster, Internet content provider and magazine and book publisher focused on Christian, conservative values and family-themed content announced that it has acquired Intercristo.com, one of the nation's oldest and most respected online Christian employment websites, from CRISTA Ministries.

The addition of Intercristo.com will complement Salem's other job-focused websites, ChristianJobs.com and ChurchStaffing.com, offering job-seekers the broadest selection of opportunities while giving Christian-friendly companies and organizations access to the largest Christian audience anywhere.According to Rick Killingsworth, senior vice president of Salem Web Network, Intercristo.com will enhance the company's ability to serve the unique employment needs of the Christian marketplace.

"Intercristo.com has long been one of the preeminent websites focusing on employment within the Christian community. With this addition to our growing portfolio of sites, Salem Web Network is now the one-stop employment source serving faith- based and family-friendly consumers and businesses." CRISTA President and CEO Bob Lonac commented that the sale of Intercristo to Salem Web Network was the next step in the growth of the Christian employment site. "After much consideration and prayer between all parties, it was clear that Intercristo could reach a far greater number of people for the mission of serving Christ when matched with Salem and the massive exposure this partnership will provide."

In addition to Intercristo.com, Salem owns ChristianJobs.com, ChurchStaffing.com, OnePlace.com, Christianity.com, Crosswalk.com , SermonSearch.com, CrossCards.com, CrossDaily.com, and TheFish.com, making Salem the number one online destination for Christian content.

I'm Back

I have returned from my hiatus and will resume blogging. It was a nice break and my thanks to both Jim's for doing a great job at updates while I was away.

RU-4Safety?

(Tony Perkins) Racism, fraud, illegal cover-ups, and manslaughter may sound like an edgy Hollywood script, but at Planned Parenthood, it's all in a day's work. The organization, funded by millions of your hard-earned dollars, has been implicated in the deaths of at least four patients.

In this week's issue of The Journal of Immunology, scientists from the University of Michigan blame the fatalities associated with RU-486 on infections that were caused by "off-label use." In other words, some of the clinics that dispensed the drugs ignored the FDA's instructions and advised women to take the pills vaginally--despite the agency's warning that oral use is much safer. At least eight women have died from bacterial infections after taking RU-486. Four of the eight victims had something in common. They had all visited California's Planned Parenthood clinics that didn't follow FDA protocol for dispensing the pills. It took four fatalities in one week before the nation's largest abortion merchant would consider changing its policy.

Although Planned Parenthood changed its guidelines for dispensing RU-386 in 2006, its defiance of the FDA continues. In addition to altering the suggested dosage, Planned Parenthood urges women to take one of the drugs at home, completely disregarding the FDA's warning that the second portion of the pill regime "should be done in a medical office to monitor women for complications." Planned Parenthood, which claims to have "done more than any other organization in the United States to improve women's health and safety," shrugged off its carelessness back in 2006. "We don't really know all the circumstances surrounding these women's deaths," a spokeswoman said. Now that we do, what can Americans expect Congress to do about it?

Democrats have fully supported investment in Planned Parenthood, despite its abhorrent track record. The clinics' use of RU-486 has been linked to thousands of complications (many of them serious or life-threatening) and four fatalities, yet taxpayers are still forced to provide the resources for Planned Parenthood's medical negligence. Any institution with such a cavalier attitude toward health and safety shouldn't be trusted with women's lives or federal funding.

The Values Void

(FRC) A quick tour through the candidates' official websites may do more to predict who our next president will be than months of polling data. On one nominee's site, visitors can select from featured articles called, "When Faith Is Front and Center," "Reconciling Faith and Politics," and "Strengthening Families." In another section, they can scroll through the priority issues of "ethics," "faith," and "family" and read excerpts from speeches, watch video clips, and peruse editorials devoted entirely to this senator's religious conviction.

If you attributed that content to Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), guess again. The site belongs to Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.), whose party is vying for the "values void" created by the GOP's near-silence on its core issues.

MURTHA – WHERE’S THE QUICK APOLOGY?

MURTHA – WHERE’S THE QUICK APOLOGY?

Rep John Murtha (D) PA-12 said on May 17,2006 “Marines killed innocent civilians in cold blood.” Rep Murtha used these words to describe a military operation in the Iraqi city of Haditha before the facts were known. Yesterday the 7th Marine was aquitted of all charges.

His statements bordered on traitorous. As a Pennsylvanian and residing in his district I am ashamed to call him Congressman much less “honorable”.
I know he has 18 terms in congress; I know he ‘brings home the bacon’ when it comes to federal dollars but shouldn’t the voters of the 12th district give up the DC clout, kick him out of office and honor our Marines who are serving us in ways most of us can’t imagine.

If you are as outraged at Murtha as I am voice your opinion and contact him.
If you need to have your memory refreshed about Haditha you can read the Michelle Malkin piece which covers the whole story.

Call him: 800-289-2642 from Western PA (or) 814-535-2642 (or) 202-225-2065Fax him: 814-539-6229 -- District202-225-5709 -- WashingtonWrite him or Visit him: 647 Main St, Suite 401Johnstown, PA 159


The Marines Vs. Haditha Smear Merchants
By Michelle Malkin

Yet another U.S. Marine, Lt. Col. Jeffrey Chessani, had charges dropped Tuesday in the so-called Haditha massacre -- bringing the total number of Marines who've been cleared or won case dismissals in the Iraq war incident to seven. "Undue command influence" on the prosecution led to the outcome in Chessani's case. Bottomline: That's zero for seven for military prosecutors, with one trial left to go.
I repeat: Haditha prosecution goes 0-7. But you won't see that headline in the same Armageddon-sized font The New York Times used repeatedly when the story first broke.
The Times, Rep. John Murtha, D-Pa, and the rest of the anti-war drum-pounders who fueled the smear campaign against the troops two years ago should hang their hands in shame. They won't, of course. Perpetuating the "cold-blooded Marines" narrative means never having to say you're sorry.
It means never having to look Lt. Col. Chessani (charges dismissed), Lt. Andrew Grayson (acquitted), Lance Cpl. Stephen Tatum (charges dismissed), Capt. Lucas McConnell (charges dismissed), Lance Cpl. Justin Sharratt (charges dismissed), Sgt. Sanick Dela Cruz (charges dismissed), Sgt. Frank Wuterich (awaiting trial) and their families in the eyes and apologize for the preemptive character assassination they all faced at the hands of the hyperventilating, noose-hanging press.
Murtha and company applied Queen of Hearts ("Off with their heads!") treatment to our own men and women in uniform while giving more benefit of the doubt to foreign terror suspects at Gitmo. It is worth recalling, because the press won't do it for you, what they concluded about the now-crumbling Haditha case in the summer of 2006 before a single formal charge had been filed.
-- MSNBC hangman Keith Olbermann, who couldn't wait to define the entire war in Iraq by a single moment about which he knew nothing, inveighed that the incident was "willful targeted brutality." Due process? For convicted cop-killer Mumia Abu-Jamal, of course. For our military? Never mind.
-- Far-left The Nation magazine railed, "Enough details have emerged … to conclude that … members of the 3rd Battalion, 1st Marine Regiment perpetrated a massacre." The publication also judged the event "a willful, targeted brutality designed to send a message to Iraqis." Not content with hanging the troops, the Nation pinned blame on the president and a so-called "culture of impunity" that supposedly permeates the most accountable military in the world.
-- Singing the same tune as The Nation, The New York Times spilled a flood of front-page ink on the case and took things a step further in a lead editorial blaming not just President Bush, but also top Pentagon brass for the "nightmare" killings in Haditha. Times reporter Paul von Zielbauer filed over 30 stories on the case, which the paper wishfully called the "defining atrocity" of the Iraq war.
-- Hoping to facilitate a self-fulfilling prophecy, media tools around the world likened Haditha to the Vietnam War's most infamous atrocity -- from The Guardian ("My Lai on the Euphrates?") to the Daily Telegraph ("Massacre in Iraq just like My Lai") to the Los Angeles Times ("What happened at the Iraqi My Lai?") to The New York Times' Maureen Dowd ("My Lai acid flashback") and the Associated Press, which reached into its photo archives to run a 1970 file photo of My Lai to illustrate a Haditha article.
-- And, of course, there's the permanent stain left by the slanderous propaganda of Rep. Murtha -- the stab in the Marines' backs heard 'round the world: "Our troops overreacted because of the pressure on them, and they killed innocent civilians in cold blood."
Relatives of the Haditha Marines have called for Congress to censure Murtha, who cuts and runs to the nearest elevator when questioned about the Haditha dismissals. He and the Haditha smear merchants have skated while the men and their families suffered global whippings on the airwaves and eternal demonization in print. Whose "culture of impunity"?

Don’t Toll I-80 – Cut Welfare 10%

A bipartisan coalition of fiscally responsible, state lawmakers led by House Republican Finance Committee Vice Chairman State Representative Daryl Metcalfe (R-Butler) will officially challenge Governor Ed Rendell to address Pennsylvania’s escalating infrastructure repair and improvement revenue shortfall by reducing state welfare spending by 10 percent, or roughly $1 billion.

Details will be presented at 9:30 AM Tuesday, June 17. The Press Conference can be viewed live here…

State welfare spending has increased 30% under Governor Rendell.

PC (USA) Controversial 'Trinity Paper' Returns To 218th Assembly

From the story: The controversial "Trinity Paper," which offered Presbyterians a variety of metaphors for the traditional and Biblical language of Father, Son and Holy Spirit, has returned to the 218th General Assembly after a cool reception in 2006.

Those triads included:
Rainbow, Ark and Dove
Speaker, Word and Breath
Overflowing Font, Living Water and Flowing River
Compassionate Mother, Beloved Child and Life-Giving Womb
Sun, Light and Burning Ray
Giver, Gift and Giving
Lover, Beloved and Love
Rock, Cornerstone and Temple
Fire that Consumes, Sword that Divides and Storm that Melts Mountains
The one Who Was, the One Who Is and the One who is to Come

Read more....

With the PC(USA) is losing 50,000 members a year, don’t we have more pressing concerns than renaming the members of the Trinity?

Cocky Ignorance

Thomas Sowell: Now that Senator Barack Obama has become the Democrats' nominee for President of the United States, to the cheers of the media at home and abroad, he has written a letter to the Secretary of Defense, in a tone as if he is already President, addressing one of his subordinates.

The letter ends: "I look forward to your swift response."

Because of the widely publicized statistic that suicide rates among American troops have gone up, Senator Obama says he wants the Secretary of Defense to tell him, swiftly: "What changes will you make to provide our soldiers in theater with real access to mental health care?"

What has been widely publicized in the media is that suicides among American troops have gone up. What has not been widely publicized is that this higher suicide rate is still not as high as the suicide rate among demographically comparable civilians. Read more…

Supreme Court Grants Habeas Corpus To Non-Citizens

From Gary Bauer: On June 13, 1942, four armed German spies rowed ashore from a German U-boat on the beaches of Long Island, New York. They were sent to sabotage American defense plants. Four days later, four more German spies landed near Jacksonville, Florida. Thankfully, all eight were quickly captured before they could carry out their missions.

In the middle of World War II, these men were tried by military tribunal, not in civilian courts. Their cases began less than a month later, on July 8, 1942, and all eight were convicted on August 4, 1942, less than two months after coming ashore. All were sentenced to death. Two men, who cooperated with the government, were spared by President Roosevelt, but the remaining six were executed at a District of Columbia jail four days later. In less than two months time, these Nazis were captured, tried and executed.

Once upon a time, not that long ago, America was a serious nation. Yet, almost 66 years later to the day, the United States Supreme Court, in a 5-to-4 decision, has now declared that Islamofascist terrorists captured on foreign soil possess more rights under our Constitution than Nazi spies sent here to commit acts of terrorism.

RIP - TIM RUSSERT

From the story:

Russert remembered for his fondness for church, faithfulnessBy Catholic News ServiceWASHINGTON (CNS) -- NBC News Washington bureau chief and 'Meet the Press' moderator Tim Russert, who died June 13 at the age of 58, was remembered for his warm lifelong ties to the Catholic Church and his support for Catholic education as well as for his career covering politics.Russert collapsed of an apparent heart attack at work.An active Catholic who apparently kept a promise to God to never miss Sunday Mass if his son was born healthy, Russert spoke often and fondly of his Catholic school education and of the role of the church in his life.'Americans valued his tremendous command of the political electoral process and his commitment to discovering each aspect of the story that contributed to people having a better awareness of the issues of public life and candidates for political office,' said Archbishop George H. Niederauer of San Francisco, chairman of the U.S. bishops' communications committee, who was attending the U.S. bishops' spring meeting in Orlando, Fla.'But those of us who shared his Catholic faith and his deep love for it appreciate his sharing of the story of his own faith and his loyalty to the life of the Catholic Church in this country and the many charities to which he contributed his time and talent,' the archbishop told Catholic News Service.Russert had been scheduled to give the Catholic Common Ground Initiative's Philip J. Murnion Lecture June 27 at The Catholic University of America in Washington.In opening the 2000 convention of the National Catholic Educational Association, Russert recalled his years at Canisius High School in Buffalo, N.Y., and John Carroll University in Cleveland, both Jesuit schools. Russert said his father, a sanitation worker who never finished high school, 'worked two jobs all his life so his four kids could go to Catholic school, and those schools changed my life.''Sister Mary Lucille founded a school newspaper and appointed me editor and changed my life,' he added. Teachers in Catholic schools 'taught me to read and write, but also how to tell right from wrong.'Msgr. Francis Maniscalco, former communications secretary for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, described Russert as a formidable journalist but also 'just a very good man' and 'very much a down-to-earth Catholic.''He took his religious faith seriously,' said Msgr. Maniscalco, who is currently the Respect Life director and public policy adviser for the Diocese of Rockville Centre, N.Y.The priest said Russert was a 'serious Catholic' as shown in his book, 'Big Russ & Me.' He also recalled how Russert helped the bishops' communications department put together a group of Washington-based journalists at the time of the clergy sex-abuse crisis to discuss media coverage of the issue.He fondly remembered how Russert was 'always double-checking to see if he could get an interview with Pope John Paul (II),' and periodically reminding Msgr. Maniscalco the interview had been loosely promised by the Vatican.Russert told church workers attending the 2005 Catholic Social Ministry Gathering that 'if there's an issue that Democrats, Republicans, conservatives and liberals can agree on, it's our kids.' With '15 million kids largely living off the streets' and 12 youths shot dead daily in the United States, addressing the issue is imperative, Russert said.'Who are our children? How do we get into their hearts and minds,' Russert asked, 'to get them to see the value of our values?'In dealing with his own son, Luke, Russert added that he tells him, 'You are always, always loved, but you are never entitled.'Russert, his wife, Maureen Orth, and their son had just returned from a trip to Italy to celebrate Luke's graduation from Boston College.Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada said in a statement that Russert 'was a warm and gracious family man with a great zest for life and an unsurpassed passion for his work' whose work was an inspiration to many.'Tim asked the tough questions the right way and was the best in the business at keeping his interview subjects honest,' Reid said.President George W. Bush said in a statement that Russert 'was an institution in both news and politics for more than two decades. Tim was a tough and hardworking newsman. He was always well-informed and thorough in his interviews. And he was as gregarious off the set as he was prepared on it.'

Communist Cuba Scraps Uniform Wages In New Reform Move

From the story: In a new reform move, communist Cuba announced Wednesday it was scrapping salary caps long meant to underscore egalitarianism but which President Raul Castro's government says hurt productivity.

For years the pay for street sweepers and brain surgeons has been separated by just a few dollars a month, until a new resolution adopted in February but explained to the Cuban people on Wednesday.

Most Cubans, in an economy controlled by the government, earn the equivalent of 17 dollars a month in Cuban pesos, struggling to make it to the end of the month when many foods, clothing and personal care goods are sold only in government-run hard-currency stores. Read more…

How can this be in this "worker’s paradise"? As a friend noted: “So, the US Congress is considering capping the CEO's salaries of big (oil) corporations at the same time Cuba is realizing (finally) how stupid capping salaries is.”

Truckers Face Fines For Idling Engine Over 5 Minutes

Goodbye air conditioning for long-haul truckers sleeping at truck stops: Georgia's environmental regulators are proposing a new rule that would limit diesel engine idling to five minutes.

Diesel engines account for a significant portion of smog and soot pollution in Georgia. Local leaders have often complained that their options for improving local air quality are limited, partly because of long-haul truck traffic on the two major interstates that cross in Macon.

The rule is still in the development stages, but the draft proposal would allow the state to hold drivers, trucking or construction companies and even landowners accountable for excessive diesel idling. Read more…

So I suppose the inverse is true, no idling to keep warm in the winter either?

States at odds over gay marriage recognition

As thousands of gay couples across the country prepare to marry in California next week, many states are girding for a surge of complex and politically charged legal challenges when newlyweds return to their home states. Read More

Kozinski: No Judge of Character

(FRC) For as long he has presided on the bench, the Chief Justice of the Ninth Circuit Court has been a staunch advocate of free speech. And the Los Angeles Times thinks it knows why. The paper discovered that Judge Alex Kozinski, who was presiding over a lower court obscenity case, had something in common with the suit's defendant. They both have an affinity for hard-core pornography. In a revelation that is shocking the legal community, Kozinski posted on a personal website nauseating photos of bestiality, striptease, transsexuals, and other images too graphic to describe.

[Kozinski has] yet to recuse himself from the current case involving sexual fetish videos. Meanwhile, Kozinski insists that the content of his site would not qualify as "obscenity," a stance he's taken repeatedly in his official capacity. Read more.....

This may help explain why the 9th Circuit is the most overturned court in the land. As noted by George Will:

There should be two Supreme Courts, one to reverse the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, the other to hear all other cases. Last term, 18 of the court's 82 cases (22 percent) came from the liberal 9th Circuit, based in San Francisco, and the 9th was reversed in 15 of the 18. The 9th's winning percentage (.167) was worse than that of the 1962 Mets (.250).

CAMPAIGN NEWS WITHOUT THE POLITICS.

I ran across an interesting blog that I thought I would pass on to anyone who is interested. Meghan McCain, daughter of Presidential Nominee John McCain, has her own blog which she records her travels with her dads campaign. She is traveling with two friends and her blog gives an interesting peek into the backstage happenings of the McCain campaign. The blog is more travel log than political and the young Ms. McCain gives an interesting point of view from the campaign trail.

Obama Uses Police Memorial for Porta Potties
118586 Views 1618 Comments Flag as inappropriate

This photo by Officer Thomas Brennan shows the porta potties setup on the police memorial, with its flag still at half mast.
PoliceLink
May 30, 2008
PORTLAND, OR – Police officers in Portland, Oregon, are still waiting for an apology from Barack Obama after campaign staffers of his recent rally in Portland, Oregon, setup porta potties directly on top of the Portland Police Memorial, which honors the agency’s 25 fallen police officers.
The Obama rally drew a crowd of over 75,000 people.
Officer Thomas Brennan, who was working overtime at the rally, took a picture of the offending toilets, with the American flag still at half mast because of Police Officers Memorial Day, directly behind them. The local law enforcement memorial service had been held at the site only five days earlier.
Despite a large amount of open areas in the vicinity, the campaign staffers claimed the toilets were placed on the memorial for safety reasons to accommodate wheelchair access.
The Obama campaign has not responded to requests for an apology.

The Entitlement Mess

John Stossel in TownHall.com: Congress is spending us into a hole. We hear about the cost of earmarks and the Iraq war. But what about "entitlements"?

That's the government's ironic term for programs that transfer money from people who earned it to people who didn't.

Entitlement? How can you be entitled to someone else's money? To finance "entitlement" programs, the government threatens force against the taxpayers who provide the money. Read more…

It is worth noting that from our country’s founding until the late 1930s, it was considered unconstitutional for the government to make transfer payments to private individuals. When Roosevelt started paying “entitlements” to farmers and other individuals in the 1930s, the Supreme Court ruled each time that this practice was unconstitutional.

The administration’s response was that the money was already distributed and that it would be impossible to get it back. Then the next year, similar legislation would be enacted and the scene was played again. This fight went on for six years and eventually ended with the replacement of the court’s majority in 1939.

The result – it now takes 53% of the federal budget just to cover federal entitlement programs.

Forbidding the Poor from Choosing Good Schools

(FRC) Congressional Democrats, in a foretaste of their likely education agenda for 2009, have signaled to poor families in the District of Columbia that their school choice vouchers aren't going to be renewed this fall. The news comes as a bitter blow to nearly 2,000 such families in the District, where Congress instituted a pilot school voucher program using federal funds in 2004.

District of Columbia Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton (D), who supports axing the program, says she met with families receiving the choice funds and "they look completely befuddled." It's no wonder why. The average yearly income for the families that participate in the program is just $22,736. Children enrolled in the program can use their vouchers, or scholarships, to attend a private school, a religious school, or one of the city's charter schools, as an alternative to the public system. Read more…

Pennsylvania’s GOP Ship Continues to Sink

Lowman Henry: If the massive number of Republicans switching to the Democratic Party in the weeks before the Pennsylvania Primary was a political earthquake, what has been happening since is a strong aftershock.

Pre-primary conventional wisdom held that Republican voters were re-registering as Democrats to participate in the hotly contested election between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. GOP leaders predicted many, if not most, of the wayward Republicans would return to the fold after the primary. Reacting to the surge in party switches, the Republican State Committee and many county committees announced plans to entice their voters back into the party.

Early evidence suggests that is not happening. In fact, the erosion of the Republican Party's voter base continues apace. Read more…

McCain Not Dissing Billy Graham, Or Not?

(Follow up to story posted Monday) The John McCain campaign says it is working on a meeting with Billy Graham. Word that McCain had turned down such a meeting shot through evangelical circles in recent hours. But the McCain camp says it's untrue and that it's dealing directly with Franklin Graham to make it happen. Read more…

But...

But in statements released by Billy and Franklin Graham, both directly contradicted the McCain campaigns claims. Both Grahams indicated they had no discussion with the McCain campaign about a meeting with the elder Graham.

Franklin Graham's statement released to CBN News stated: "The offer to meet with Mr. Graham was extended by someone who is not in an official capacity to arrange such a meeting, nor is he affiliated with the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association. So far, Billy Graham's office has not been directly contacted about meeting with Sen. McCain. Read more...

Legislature Tests Rendell Over Graduation Exams

(AP) Some state lawmakers are seeking to block a proposal to require new state graduation tests for Pennsylvania high school students, arguing that greater legislative input is needed before the state spends any money on the exams.

But their cause is unlikely to succeed because Gov. Ed Rendell's administration insists the testing program is essential to establishing uniform graduation requirements for the state's 501 school districts.

The Senate Education Committee voted 10-1 Monday to approve a measure that would give the Legislature the sole authority to impose any new statewide graduation requirements. Read more…

Given past abuses on the state assessment test (PSSA), having some accountability on the content of the graduation test should be a requirement.

3 Charges Dropped Against PC(USA) Minister In Gay Wedding

From the story: The Rev. Janet Edwards will be tried in a church court for conducting a marriage ceremony for a lesbian couple in 2005, although three of five charges against her were dismissed yesterday.

The Rev. Edwards, a minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA) who serves at the interdenominational Community of Reconciliation in Oakland, has never denied conducting the ceremony. Denominational policy permits clergy to bless gay couples but says the ritual should not resemble a marriage ceremony. The Rev. Edwards believes that the part about not resembling a marriage ceremony is advisory, not binding. Read more…

The Permanent Judicial Commission (the equivalent of the Supreme Court within the Presbyterian Church (USA)) blew it on the recent Jane Spahr ruling. Despite the fact that Spahr stated that she was conducting a same-sex wedding, the PJC ruled that she was not conducting a same-sex wedding, because same-sex weddings are not permitted in the PC (USA). Therefore she could not be reprimanded.

Follow that twisted logic, and it becomes evident why we are losing 50,000 members a year. It may be more of the same in this case.

Critics Again Call For Repeal of I-80 Tolls

From the story: U.S. Rep. John Peterson, R-Venango County, and other politicians and business people from the Interstate 80 corridor called on the state Legislature today to repeal Act 44 of 2007, which calls for putting first-time tolls on the busy four-lane, east-west highway.

"Act 44 is the most irresponsible piece of legislation I've ever seen passed by state government,'' said Mr. Peterson, who was a state legislator before being elected to Congress. "There were no hearings and no discussion on a measure that would hurt the economy and the people who live along the I-80 corridor.''

And it was passed by a Republican-controlled state senate!

Rendell to Democrats: Get over Clinton, It’s Obama Now

At this weekend's [Democrat State Committee] meeting, the New York senator's most vocal Pennsylvania cheerleader, Gov. Ed Rendell, gave Clinton loyalists until June 14 to lick their wounds and mourn the demise of her candidacy.

''You've got seven days,'' Rendell said Friday. ''You can use every curse word you know.'' he said.

After that, Rendell said, he expects Clinton's supporters to ''go to work with as much enthusiasm and vigor for Senator Obama as you did for Senator Clinton.'' The story....

This may be wishful thinking. Animosity between the camps runs deep. Over a month after the Pennsylvania primary election, there are still Hillary signs posted in Butler County.

McCain Campaign Declines to Meet with Billy Graham

From the story: In another disturbing sign that Sen. John McCain has little interest in reaching out to his conservative base, including evangelical Christian voters, his campaign has declined an offer to meet with the Rev. Billy Graham.

For almost six decades, Graham has been America’s most influential preacher and evangelist, a man sought out by every president since Harry Truman. Read more…

Senator Specter: Investigate Planned Parenthood!

Michelle Malkin asks: Can Arlen Specter spare a moment from investigating the New England Patriots to probe Planned Parenthood's efforts to advise underage teens on how to circumvent parental notification laws to secretly obtain RU-486, the abortion drug cocktail?

Oil execs, tobacco execs, banking execs, pharmaceutical company execs and baseball players have all been hauled up before Congress for highly publicized whippings by crusading lawmakers. But the executives of Planned Parenthood have escaped government scrutiny and public accountability for their predatory behavior, dangerous medical practices, deception and deadly windfall. Read more…

Power Break

I want to let our readers know that I will be a taking some time off. Doing the blog and the radio show and my several other projects, there comes a time when one needs to unplug. I will be doing just that.

I have two bloggers that will continue to post here while I away. Jim Powers is a regular contributor with great politcal insight. He will cotinue to post stories. Joining Jim Powers is another Jim. Jim Pierce.

If that last name sounds familiar it's because he is my father. He has sent story ideas in the past and has agree to step in while I'm take some time off.

While I'm away, the news will be updated everyday on PowerBlog! and as always the Talk Back Forum is there for you, so please continue to visit.

Rendell -- Second thought, Clinton a fine No. 2

She would, she wouldn't . . . she would? Gov. Rendell reversed himself yesterday and concluded that, yes, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton would definitely make a good No. 2 candidate on the Democratic presidential ticket. Read More

DEMOCRATS SUDDENLY NOT SO THRILLED WITH CLIMATE BILL

From the story: Some Democrats were worried yesterday that the GOP might try to block withdrawal of the legislation to prolong a debate that many Democrats think no longer works to their political benefit. Republicans have pounced on the high price of gasoline and have stressed that the climate legislation, by introducing a price on carbon dioxide emissions, would further raise the price of gas along with that of all other fossil fuels. James M. Inhofe (Okla.), the top Republican on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, said in a statement, "Now Democrats are on record as supporting legislation that would significantly increase prices at the pump and in our homes."

Washington Post

WHAT TO DO WITH BILL CLINTON?

From the story: While the former President's political skills are extraordinary, some senior Democratic and Obama officials - and Hillary Clinton aides - believe he is now simply too toxic to be a high-profile surrogate. "Before all the controversy there were plenty of things he could have done, but he's definitely a liability now," a Democratic operative with close ties to Obama Nation told the Daily News. (NY Daily News)

Another question: What to do with Hillary? (Townhall)

Meanwhile, Obama claims he is “very proud of America” (superdelegates) for electing him, adding “It’s a sign of enormous growth in this country.” (NY Times)

Jonah Goldberg takes a look at the Obama Messiah complex. (Townhall)

Corruption in Luzerne County?

The FBI and IRS are investigating possible financial ties between two Luzerne County judges and a local attorney whose firm has made millions leasing a juvenile detention center to the county, according to two courthouse sources who say they’ve been interviewed by the federal agents.

The sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the investigation, said the agents asked about the relationship between President Judge Mark A. Ciavarella Jr., Senior Judge Michael T. Conahan and Robert J. Powell, part-owner of the Luzerne County Juvenile Center in Pittston Township.

Judge Conahan and Judge Ciavarella played key roles in closing a county-owned juvenile facility in 2002, arguing it was decrepit and unsafe.

Mr. Powell’s company, Pennsylvania Child Care LLC, has a 20-year, $58 million lease agreement with the county that has been criticized as too expensive by state officials. Faced with a threatened cut in state subsidies for juvenile detention that would cost $2 million per year, the county commissioners are trying to negotiate an end to the lease.

Full Story

OBAMA'S TRUE COLOR - NOT BLACK NOR WHITE BUT RED

OBAMA’S TRUE COLOR – NOT BLACK – NOT WHITE – BUT RED

There is an old saying that goes “You are known by the company you keep.” If you apply this axiom to presidential politics and specifically democratic Presidential nominee, Barack H. Omama you will find throughout his life he has been surrounded by, and gravitated toward communist, socialist, and far left radicals.

Let me list some of Barack’s circle of friends and mentors. Some of them you know and some you may not have heard of.

William Ayers – Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) Revolutionary Youth Movement and the Weathermen and Weathermen Underground. Ayers is married to Beradine Dohrn who was a member of all of the above organizations and convicted felon.
Known for having met and helped Castro, North Vietnam, and Hugo Chavez.

Beradine Dohrn is a convicted felon and see above.

Carl Davidson is a Marxist, and former SDS officer. Said Davidson: “He [Castro] is a remarkable man, with a photographic memory, wide knowledge and keen insights.... We should all wish Fidel and Cuba well, and double our voices against the blockade.”
In the mid-1990s Davidson was a major player in the Chicago branch of the New Party, a Marxist political coalition whose objective was to endorse and elect leftist public officials. Most New Party members hailed from the Committees of Correspondence (the Marxist coalition cited in the preceding paragraph), the Democratic Socialists of America, and the militant leftist organization ACORN. Davidson first met Barack Obama through the New Party, which endorsed the latter in his run for the Illinois state senate in 1996. Obama had actively sought this endorsement, and he used a number of New Party volunteers as campaign workers. (Source: www.discoverthenetworks.org.)

Another former SDS member and Carl Davidson collaborator is Marilyn Katz. She co-wrote the book “Stopping the War, Seeking Justice”. Oh, did I mention an Obama supporter.

Next we have Michael Klonsky, a former SDS Leader and founder of the Communist Party Marxist Leninist (CPML) and of course an Obama Chicago supporter.

Jodi Evans is one of the founders of Code Pink, a leftist anti- war anti American group. She is the daughter of Tom Hayden, one of the founders of SDS. Tom Hayden accompanied his future wife, Hanoi Jane Fonda, to North Vietnam creating a firestorm of communist propaganda. Both Jodi Evans and Tom Hayden have backed Obama.

We then have the now infamous Reverends; Wright, Pfleger, Moss, and Meeks. All of these men have a problem with America and anyone who has success and is not black. If you listen closely to their preaching you will find the “redistribution of wealth” theme woven throughout their ranting along with hate, racism and anti- American themes.

Last but not least is Frank Marshall Davis, Communist Party of USA. He is referred to in Obama’s book, “Dreams from My Father” just as Frank. Why does Obama not identify this Frank? The PoliticalAffairs.net web site, self described as “Marxist Thought” had an article by Gerald Horne. Horne said “ In his best selling memoir ‘Dreams of my Father’, the author speaks warmly of an older black poet, he identifies simply as "Frank" as being a decisive influence in helping him to find his present identity as an African-American”
This article goes on to describe Frank Marshall Davis as Obama’s mentor in Hawaii in the 70’s.

Obama says he is for hope and change. I am not sure what he is hoping for or what he wants to change; I fear he hopes he gets elected so he can change the USA to the United States of Communist America.

Smoking ban goes down in flames

A bill banning most public smoking in Pennsylvania landed in limbo Wednesday when the state House and Senate split on a laboriously crafted compromise. The Senate voted 31-19 to reject the measure, but the House voted 163-38 to approve it. Read More

PAT Costs Still Out of Line With Other Bus Systems

The Port Authority and the Amalgamated Transit Union are currently negotiating a new labor contract. These negotiations are being conducted against the backdrop of the County Chief Executive’s demand that the union make substantial concessions on retiree benefits backed by a threat to withhold the County’s matching funds required to receive state transit funding. In other words, the Port Authority is facing a serious crisis if the union maintains its public stance of being totally intransigent with respect to concessions. Continue

Meet Tim Gill

Chances are you don't know the name Tim Gill. I want to change that. Consider him the homosexual George Soros.

Gill, a Denver-based software tycoon (founder of Quark), is perhaps the most powerful force for homosexual activism in American politics.

In 2006, Gill and his allies spent nearly $1.4 million setting up a bogus pro-life group, Coloradans for Life, to attack Marilyn Musgrave, three-term congresswoman from Colorado. She was a lead sponsor of the original Federal Marriage Amendment. She has a 100 percentpro-life voting record, but that didn't stop Gill from funding lies. All to turn the election. It nearly worked; Musgrave survived, winning by less than 3 points. The same can not be said in other states.

Between Gill's efforts and those he's recruited, he's helped produce Democratic majorities in state legislatures in places like Oregon,Colorado, Iowa and New Hampshire.

Now, he has taken his strategies nationwide, and pro-family forces have a fight on their hands. Gill is a self-described introvert who rarely speaks publicly, he shuns the media spotlight.

In 1994, he formed the Gill Foundation, investing huge amounts of his fortune to seed gay-rights organizations in all 50 states. One, in particular, enjoyed spectacular growth. The Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network(GLSEN) swelled from a group run out of an apartment to the leading gay-activist group in America's schools.

By 2001, according to USA Today, Gill Foundation donations to homosexual-rights organizations around the country represented 20 percent of their annual budgets. As of this year, the foundation has made grants of well over $115million, making Gill far and away the leading funder of the homosexual movement. Gill launched training seminars around the country to help the organizations sharpen their message, hone their efficiency and raise money more effectively.

It's Gill's strategy that we must understand. Instead of simply pouring money into high-profile campaigns for Senate or Congress, he puts much of his money into local races in an effort to shift control to gay-friendly Democrats.

In 2006, Gill and his cadre of allies carefully targeted a total of 70 state and local races in a dozen states. Gill's targets were chosen either because of their outspoken leadership on traditional marriage or because knocking them out could help switch a legislative chamber to Democrat - and thus gay-friendly - control. Price tag: $15,000,000.00

So what has change in Gill's original target of Colorado? A law allowing homosexual couples to adopt children. A statute that completely redefines the family in Colorado. Any two or more people living together as a single household can be legally considered a family. Colorado joined Iowa and Oregon in passing a homosexual nondiscrimination law. Although a late amendment exempted religious organizations, the law could force Christian businesses to hire homosexuals, bisexuals and "transgenders."

Ladies and Gentleman, meet Tim Gill......

MORE TEENS OPT FOR ABSTINENCE

Story notes “US teens are having less sex, doing fewer drugs and smoking fewer cigarettes than those who grew up in the 1990s, a study released Wednesday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has found.” Oddly, abstinence programs were given no mention in the story.

AFP

MCCAIN CHALLENGES OBAMA TO TEN TOWN HALL DEBATES

In a letter to Obama, McCain wrote “What a welcome change it would be were presidential candidates in our time to treat each other and the people they seek to lead with respect and courtesy as they discussed the great issues of the day, without the empty sound bites and media-filtered exchanges that dominate our elections." (CNN)

From Thomas Sowell: Senator John McCain has been criticized in this column many times. But, when all is said and done, Senator McCain has not spent decades aiding and abetting people who hate America. On the contrary, he has paid a huge price for resisting our enemies, even when they held him prisoner and tortured him. The choice between him and Barack Obama should be a no-brainer. (Townhall)

Meanwhile, Obama struggles to redefine his take on Iran. (Weekly Standard)

OBAMA FRIEND/FUNDRAISER FOUND GUILTY ON 16 COUNTS

From the story: Rezko's ties to Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill. have created image problems for the White House hopeful. Rezko, a longtime friend and supporter of Obama's, raised tens of thousands of dollars for his campaigns, much of which Obama has since returned. (ABC News) More details. (Chicago Sun-Times)