Monday, May 31, 2010

Oozing Competence: Obama's SmartPower™ Doctrine Makes the World a More Exciting Place Every Day

Syria conducted nuclear experiments: IAEA document

'Syria has told the UN atomic watchdog about past nuclear experiments, but is still refusing to cooperate over allegations that it was building a secret nuclear reactor with North Korea's help, a new report revealed Monday.'

Israel recoils as US backs nuclear move

'Washington's unprecedented backing for a UN resolution for a nuclear-free Middle East that singles out Israel has both angered and deeply worried the Jewish state... The resolution adopted by the United Nations on Friday calls on Israel to join the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and urges it to open its facilities to inspection...

...the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was "furious with the Obama administration for having failed to prevent the resolution from passing... and for choosing to support it... The American support for the resolution, after decades in which it supported Israel on this issue, came as a complete surprise," the paper said.

Soaring costs force Canada to reassess health model

'Pressured by an aging population and the need to rein in budget deficits, Canada's provinces are taking tough measures to curb healthcare costs, a trend that could erode the principles of the popular state-funded system... Quebec has a new flat health tax and a proposal for payments on each medical visit -- an idea that critics say is an illegal user fee... And a few provinces are also experimenting with private funding for procedures such as hip, knee and cataract surgery.'

Seoul Weighs Shift in U.S. Military Ties

'South Korea is reviewing its defense policy following North Korea's alleged sinking of a South Korean naval vessel, a process that could significantly change Seoul's military alliance with Washington, according to officials engaged in the process.'

And, no summary of the Obama Doctrine would be complete without a caustic critique from the Left: in this case from Dilip Hiro at The Puffington Roast.

Obama's Rudderless Foreign Policy Underscores America's Waning Power

'Obama’s propensity to retreat at the first sign of resistance shows that he lacks both guts and the strong convictions that are essential elements distinguishing statesmen from politicians. By pursuing a rudderless course in his foreign policy, by flip-flopping in his approach to other leaders, he is also inadvertently furnishing hard evidence to those who argue that American power is on the decline -- and that the downward slide of the globe’s former “sole superpower” is irreversible.'

And to top it all off, heavily armed 'humanitarians' are trying to destabilize the Middle East by supplying Hamas with advanced weaponry with the help of the usual cadre of useful idiots (Democrats, Leftists and old media, but I repeat myself).

Gaza 'Humanitarian' Flotilla: a Ruse for a 'Martyrdom Operation'

No summer cruise off the coast of Gaza is complete without killing or kidnapping a few Jews, don'tcha know?

The Gaza 'humanitarian' flotilla was a ruse. Haaretz has the inside story and MEMRI has the video proof, taken before the violence went down. Put simply, some of the hard-core extremists were seeking martyrdom and hoping to kill a few Jews on their way to the afterlife.

Gaza-Based Yemeni Professor Abd Al-Fatah Nu'man: As Much As the Heroes on the Flotilla Want to Reach Gaza, the Option of Martyrdom Is More Desirable to Them – Al-Aqsa TV, May 28, 2010

Yesterday, I was following the news agencies, and they reported the threats of the Zionists to detain the convoy and to prevent it from reaching Gaza. On the other side, there are people armed with faith and resolve, who chant – even while hearing the threats: 'Khaybar, Khaybar, oh Jews, the army of Muhammad will return.' A woman stood on the deck, and said: "We await one of two good things – to achieve martyrdom or to reach the shore of Gaza."

"This scent is a message to the Islamic nation worldwide: Islam is coming, and Gaza is the spearhead that sets the nation in motion."

"Yesterday, the commander of the fleet said: 'We will not allow the Zionists to come near us, and we will wage resistance against them.' With what will they wage resistance? With their fingernails. These are people who wish to be martyred for the sake of Allah. As much as they want to reach Gaza, the other option is more desirable to them.

"We pray to Allah that they be awarded both good things: That they reach the shore of Gaza safe and sound, and that they be granted martyrdom, along with us, on the walls of the Al-Aqsa Mosque – as conquerors."

Oh, and in related news, Al-Jazeera helpfully explains that the convoys should be used to bring weapons to the Hamas terrorists infesting Gaza.

The siege that Israel is imposing... It is necessary to provide Gaza not only with food, water, and building supplies, but also with weapons. Weapons must be provided, because these are weapons of revolutionaries, and aid must be provided to the Gaza Strip...

...These aid campaigns should not be restricted to food and water. The [ships] could also include returning refugees and weapons for the Palestinian revolutionaries.

I, for one, am glad they clarified the real mission of the 'humanitarian' flotilla.

Update: 'Gaza jihad flotilla participants chanted Islamic battle cry invoking Muhammad's massacre of Jews'

Update II: 'Useful idiots condemn Israel'

Danish News: Jews being hunted down in Copenhagen in retaliation for Gaza flotilla violence

TAB points us to a chilling news report from Denmark's Ekstra Bladet. The translation may be imperfect, but you'll grok the genocidal picture.

Jews hunted game in Copenhagen

Jews should not go outside wearing a skullcap in the Muslim neighborhood of Nørrebro... such is the recommendation of several Jewish organizations. Due to the violence related to relief ships, which were on their way to Gaza, could trigger confrontations between Jews and Arabs in Copenhagen.

16 people were reported killed this morning when the Israeli military attacked six emergency vessels up bound for Gaza. This could add fuel to the fire and trigger direct, violent conflicts between Jews and Arabs in Copenhagen. The situation in the capital is now so tense that one should avoid wearing a student- or skullcap if you are a Jew and travel through Nørrebro in Copenhagen.

The risk of being attacked is simply so great that the chairman of Mosaic Church, Finn Schwarz, advises its members to remove religious headgear when they travel in Nørrebro, writes news agency Newspaq... He is sorry to see that Danish Jews will have to take precautions because there is a group of Danes with different ethnic backgrounds who have a hateful view of Jews.

Copenhagen else for decades had a reputation for being one of the most safe and tolerant places for the large and highly respected Jewish minority. But it has now become necessary to have a large security force guard the synagogue on Crystal Gade.

'F***ing Jews' on Facebook

Danish Jews must, of course, be able to walk the streets without being attacked or harassed, like any other citizen is entitled. Danes do not attack people because of their ethnic or religious background. For a small group who do not understand what is right or wrong... On the Facebook group called 'F***ing Jews', 160 people have indicated that they 'like'.

Countdown to an international outcry over this Nazi-like behavior against innocent in: 3... 2... never.

IDF: Flotilla refused security inspection; film shows humanitarians knifing Israeli soldier; other Israelis were shot by terror-linked IHH members

Latest updates:
• 2010-05-31 15:36 EST Gaza 'Humanitarian' Flotilla: a Ruse for a 'Martyrdom Operation'
• 2010-05-31 14:16 EST Danish News: Jews being hunted down in Copenhagen

After several attempts to turn back the 'humanitarian flotilla' destined for Gaza, Israeli Defense Forces boarded the vessels and a deadly firefight broke out on one of the ships. Depending upon the source, it was reported that between 15 and 20 members of IHH, an Islamic aid organization linked to terrorist groups, were killed.

It would appear that had the Gaza-bound flotilla simply permitted an inspection -- to ensure that its cargo did not include weapons for the murderous terrorist group Hamas -- none of the bloodshed would have occurred.

The Israel Navy intercepted the flotilla after the protesters on board ignored Israeli warnings. IDF forces met with severe pre-planned violence from the demonstrators, including use of live fire and light weaponry.

Early this morning, IDF Naval Forces intercepted six ships attempting to break the maritime closure of the Gaza Strip. This happened after numerous warnings from Israel and the Israeli Navy that were issued prior to the event. The Israeli Navy requested the ships to redirect toward Ashdod where they would be able to unload their aid supplies which would then be transferred over to the Gaza Strip after undergoing security inspections.

During the boarding of the ships, demonstrators onboard attacked the IDF Naval personnel with live fire and light weaponry including knives and clubs.

Additionally, one of the weapons used was grabbed from an IDF soldier. The demonstrators had clearly prepared their weapons in advance for this specific purpose.

As a result of this life-threatening and violent activity, naval forces first employed riot dispersal means, followed by live fire.

According to initial reports, these events resulted in over ten deaths among the demonstrators and numerous injuries. In addition, five naval personnel were injured, some from gunfire and some from various other weapons. Two of the soldiers were seriously wounded and the remainder sustained moderate injuries. All of the injured parties, Israelis and foreigners, are currently being evacuated by helicopter to hospitals in Israel.

Reports from IDF forces at the scene indicate that some of the participants onboard the ships were planning to lynch the forces...

In the coming hours, the ships will be directed to the Ashdod port, while IDF naval forces perform security checks in order to identify the people on the ships and the cargo brought on board. The IDF Spokesman emphasizes that this event is currently unfolding and further details will be provided as soon as possible.

This IDF naval operation was carried out under orders from the political leadership to prevent the flotilla from reaching the Gaza Strip and breaching the maritime closure.

The boarding of ships in the flotilla followed numerous warnings given to the organizers of the flotilla before leaving their ports as well as while sailing towards the Gaza Strip. In these warnings, it was made clear to the organizers that they could dock in the Ashdod Sea Port and unload the equipment they are carrying in order to deliver it to the Gaza Strip in an orderly manner, following the appropriate security checks. Upon expressing their unwillingness to cooperate and arrive at the port, it was decided upon to board the ships and lead them to Ashdod.

IDF naval personnel encountered severe violence, including use of weaponry prepared in advance in order to attack them, as well as having their weapons stolen by protesters and used against them. The forces operated in adherence with operational commands and took all necessary actions in order to avoid violence, but to no avail.

So much for the "humanitarian" mission. Anyone willing to bet that inspections will show that the cargo included plenty of ordnance for Hamas?

Update: Defense Minister Ehud Barak said that only one of the six ships carried extremists bent on violence:

...Mavi Marmara, the only ship on which violence took place, was different than the other five ships of the flotilla. He said that five ships carried humanitarians and peace activists but the Mavi Marmara was sponsored by the extremist organization the IHH and those aboard acted in "extreme violence"... "Their intent was violent, their methods were violent and their results were unfortunately violent."

Update II: Yes, the poor, innocent humanitarians, after resisting numerous radio warnings to turn back for a security inspection, opened fire on the Israeli Defense Forces.

Five [Israeli] Navy commandos were also wounded, some of them from gunfire. At least two soldiers were seriously wounded.

...Upon boarding the ships, the soldiers encountered fierce resistance from the passengers who were armed with knives, bats and metal pipes. The soldiers used non-lethal measures to disperse the crowd. The activists, according to an IDF report, succeeded in stealing two handguns from soldiers and opened fire, leading to an escalation in violence.

Al Jazeera on Monday broadcasted footage from the Gaza flotilla's lead vessel, the Mavi Marmara, showing Israeli Navy commandos boarding the ship. Helicopters could also be seen flying overhead.

"It was like a well-planned lynch,” one IDF officer said. “These people were anything but peace activists.”

...The IDF said that the ships would be taken to the Ashdod Port where, despite the violence, the cargo they hold will be inspected and then transferred to the Gaza Strip via land crossings.

Update III: On 28 May, Avi Trengo presciently stated that "Israel is falling into a trap":

Anyone who is yet to understand how Hamas controls Israel will have another opportunity to get it via the Gaza-bound flotilla organized by ISM provocateurs (who this time chose to call themselves "Free Gaza.") The move aims to illustrate to the world how brutal and stupid Israel's occupation is.

The problem is that because of the defense minister's childish conduct, the ISM will again defeat the IDF: Navy commandoes will raid the ships and the whole world will see an "upside down Exodus" – the activists will play the role of refugees, while we shall play the role of British thugs. Yet another photo to add to Israel's album of folly...

Update IV: The international gang of useful idiots reacts as expected.

• UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said he was "shocked";
• Turkey recalled its ambassador and warned of "irreparable consequences";
• The EU demanded Israel conduct a "full inquiry";
• Spain, France, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Austria and Greece summoned Israel's ambassadors;
• French President Sarkozy called the conflict a "disproportionate use of force."
• The British Foreign Secretary called on Israel to "act with restraint", but also stated that London had warned the flotilla organizers against the landing;
• President Obama accused the Israelis of rash violence, stating that they'd "acted stupidly";

Got you on that last one. I made it up, though give it a few hours and it may become reality.

Update V: "A race to contain the damage":

It is the IDF Spokesman’s firm contention that Israeli troops were premeditatedly attacked as they attempted to intercept the flotilla en route to the Gaza Strip overnight. “It was a lynch,” said spokesman Avi Benayahu. “An ambush.”

Benayahu said soldiers, who had been dispatched to block the flotilla because of fears that it was carrying weaponry and other highly dangerous cargo into the Hamas-controlled Strip, were attacked with knives and bars and sharpened metal implements.

Benayahu said two pistols that had been fired were subsequently found aboard the one ship, the Marmara, on which the violence erupted. And, most dramatically, he said that one IDF soldier had his weapon snatched away by one of the “peace activists” on board, that this weapon was then turned against the IDF soldiers, who came under fire, and that they had no choice but to shoot back in self-defense...

...the IDF takeover of five of the flotilla vessels was met without violence. But on the Marmara - which was in the control of the Turkish Humanitarian Relief Foundation (the IHH), described by Barak as “a violent, extremist organization that supports terrorism” - things were very different...

...Ashkenazi said the soldiers were attacked with metal bars, knives and live fire, and noted that some of the wounded soldiers suffered gunshot wounds... video footage screened on Israel’s Channel 2 appeared to show one of those aboard the Marmara stabbing an IDF soldier.

It would appear that the terrorists aboard the Marmara committed war crimes by using civilians as human shields. Try and contain your shock.

Update VI: A higher-quality video from Sky News offers a better glimpse into humanitarians violently attacking Israeli forces.

Update VII: John Hawkins has the must-read summary of reactions from left and right.

Latest updates:
• 2010-05-31 15:36 EST Gaza 'Humanitarian' Flotilla: a Ruse for a 'Martyrdom Operation'
• 2010-05-31 14:16 EST Danish News: Jews being hunted down in Copenhagen

Linked by: Michelle Malkin. Thanks!

Larwyn's Linx: Pearls on Green Velvet #Memorial

Have a great link you'd like me to review? Drop me an email. You can also install a Larwyn's Linx blog widget.


Pearls on Green Velvet: Doc Zero
Standing with Heroes: AT
He Will Not Rest: AWG

Versus America: Doc Zero
Obama can't find time for Gov. Brewer: RWN
Connecting Dots for Etheridge: NCTPR


Californians split on AZ law? Well, no, actually: RWN
Is Bubba playing the anti-union card?: RWN
"Little-Noticed" is the New "Unexpected": LegalIns

Unions Protesting Churches in California: BigGovt
If a picture is worth a thousand words...: NiceDeb

Climate & Energy

Top PR firm for BP tied to Rahm Emanuel: WashExam
Global Cold Wave May Be Looming — This Time, the Science Is Good: PJM
The real reason the oil still flows into the Gulf of Mexico?: JoAnneMor


What Memorial Day Means to a Veteran: AT
Dems interested in gays and spending, not Afghan war: WashExam
Wake-up Call for Peggy Noonan: Powers

Covering Obama, press encounters Nation of Islam: York
Those Folks at the Daily Caller Sure Have a Good Sense of Humor: Malkin
Pre-Obituaries in the MSM: A Idea Whose Time Has Come: Driscoll

Court Destroyed Evidence That Landrieu's Phones Were Working Fine, Just As O'Keefe Suspected: Ace
Rolling Thunder, 2010: Malkin


Free Gaza Movement & The Flotillas: Jawa
Up to 19 dead as Israel storms Gaza aid: SMH
Turkey warns Israel of 'irreparable consequences', recalls ambassador: Hurriyet

Never Give Up Your Weapons: AT
Obama delivers "a resounding slap around the face" of Israel: BrutHon
Bloomberg submits: Sanctions 9/11 Mega-Mosque: BigGovt


Pacific volcano erupts near Marianas islands, spews ash thousands of feet: WashExam
Think acupuncture's a hoax? Think again: CNet
Verizon's tiered LTE plans fuel 'sticker shock' debate : NetWorld


Memorial Day Vignettes: Ace
Lt John Finn, RIP: Former Spook
Pretty sure this tacks on an extra five centuries: Kaching

Image: Weekend of Remembrance.
Today's Larwyn's Linx sponsored by: Soccer Dad

QOTD: Comment on the confrontation between the U.S. Secret Service and the Nation of Islam:

"Now, imagine if you will, a bank executive has his/her own large personal security force and uses it to intimidate and keep a bunch of crazed SEIU members off his/her lawn. I wonder what the top news story of the day would be."

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Sweet: Census workers report being hired and fired repeatedly to inflate official employment numbers

Politifi spots an intriguing report in The New York Post that points to blatant falsity in the 'official' employment numbers. Census employees are hired, fired, then hired again to exploit a loophole in the Bureau of Labor Statistics' methodology: it counts every job offer of one hour or more over the course of a single month. And double- and triple-counting is perfectly legit in the BLS formulations.

...[Former Census worker] Naomi Cohn... told The Post that she was hired and fired a number of times by Census. Each time she was hired back, it seems, Census was able to report the creation of a new job to the Labor Department.

...Each month Census gives Labor a figure on the number of workers it has hired. That figure goes into the closely followed monthly employment report Labor provides. For the past two months the hiring by Census has made up a good portion of the new jobs.

Labor doesn't check the Census hiring figure or whether the jobs are actually new or recycled. It considers a new job to have been created if someone is hired to work at least one hour a month.

...Here's a note from a Census worker -- this one from Manhattan:

John: I am on my fourth rehire with the 2010 Census... I have been hired, trained for a week, given a few hours of work, then laid off. So my unemployed self now counts for four new jobs.

I have been paid more to train all four times than I have been paid to actually produce results. These are my tax dollars and your tax dollars at work.

A few months ago I was trained for three days and offered five hours of work counting the homeless. Now, I am knocking (on) doors trying to find the people that have not returned their Census forms. I worked the 2000 Census. It was a far more organized venture.

And here's another:

John: I worked for (Census) and I was paid $18.75 (an hour) just like Ms. Naomi Cohn from your article... I worked for about six weeks or so and I picked the hours I wanted to work. I was checking the work of others. While I was classifying addresses, another junior supervisor was checking my work.

In short, we had a "checkers checking checkers" quality control. I was eventually let go and was told all the work was finished when, in fact, other people were being trained for the same assignment(s)... I was re-hired about eight months later and was informed that I would have to go through one week of additional training.

On the third day of training, I got sick and visited my doctor. I called my supervisor and asked how I can make up the class. She informed me that I was 'terminated.' She elaborated that she had to terminate three other people for being five minutes late to class.

I did get two days' pay and I am sure the 'late people' got paid also. I think you would concur that this is an expensive way to attempt to control sickness plus lateness. I am totally convinced that the Census work could be very easily done by the US Postal Service.

When I was trying to look for an address or had a question about a building, I would ask the postman on the beat. They knew the history of the route and can expand in detail who moved in or out etc. I have found it interesting that if someone works one hour, they are included in the labor statistics as a new job being full...

Put simply, the U.S. Postal Service could easily have performed all of the functions of the Census.

But that would be cost-effective, efficient and accurate, factors that are antithetical to the aims of the Obama administration and Democrats in general.

Linked by: Curmudgeonly & Skeptical. Thanks!

L'Affaire Sestak: Anyone wondering why White House counsel Greg Craig inexplicably resigned last year? And Deputy Counsel followed on May 7th?

Eagle-eyed commenter A.G. assembles another piece of the Sestak-White House puzzle.

I think that we can probably infer from your timeline that the job offer (Navy Sec.) to Sestak was made sometime between early February, 2009 to, at or around, March 26, 2009- contrary to what the White House and Sestak claimed last Friday that the offer was sometime "last summer". Sestak likely turned down the offer and told them he would stay in the race, so then Obama nominated Mabus. Any offer by the White House to Sestak after March 26 would've been predicated upon Mabus stepping down or being replaced -- possible, but less likely.

A possible related note: I have no idea whether this is relevant to your timeline at this point, but it might be, so I'll throw it out there: The White House Counsel at the time the job offer was made to Sestak was Gregory Craig. Robert Bauer, a former Democrat election lawyer, who wrote the Sestak legal memorandum released last Friday, now holds the position.

Rumors started leaking last summer -- less than half a year on the job -- that the highly experienced Yale Law grad Gregory Craig was already on his way out, and were reported in many media outlets (WaPo, WSJ, etc.). On July, 22, 2009 White House Deputy Chief of Staff Jim Messina denied the rumors, "Sounds like typical Washington parlor games to me. These rumors are wrong." (WaPo), and denied it again to the WSJ a month later...

...In September, Craig told a group of three people, which included the president, that he was thinking of resigning (according to Politico). He then announced his resignation in November, with Politico reporting that, "[H]is decision was unrelated to the difficulties in closing Guantanamo Bay prison or other policy issues." Politico also reported that, "Craig said he could 'think of many ways in hindsight that I could have better served the president' but declined to be more specific."

So, who knows Craig's specific reason for resigning, but inquiring minds might want to know...

One more data point: in news you definitely could have missed, White House Deputy Counsel Daniel J. Meltzer resigned earlier this month:

...Among other things, Mr. Meltzer played a leading role in the administration’s efforts to close the military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and related policies affecting terrorism detainees.

He was also the White House’s main contact with the Justice Department’s powerful Office of Legal Counsel, which evaluates whether proposed policies would be lawful...


Anyone willing to bet that our beloved investigative pro journalists at the "newspaper of record" will diligently research these matters?

A Newsreel From the Very Near Future

Universal International News, in conjunction with the Obama administration, presents Government Newsreel number 903.

Under cover of darkness, GM's top secret new vehicle -- the 2012 Buick Bureaucrat -- arrives at the New York Auto Show. Powered entirely by green energy sources, this beautiful Buick turns heads as it hits a top speed of 200 feet per minute.

Not to be outdone, Chrysler's luxurious Dodge Deficit offers a unique eight-door design, which means your entire family will arrive in style at the soup kitchen.

Good news at the National Healthcare Service: President Obama has promised to airlift hundreds of doctors from Cuba later this month to address the long lines in hospitals. Government officials have also promised to remedy medical priorities that currently place undocumented citizens at the front of the line.

And more positive news on the economic front: the rate of unemployment increases has slowed, moving from 17.1% to 17.4%, a tenth-of-a-percent less than analysts had predicted! Proof positive that Stimulus Seven is working!

As for financing the $45 trillion national debt, great progress this week as leaders from Brazil, Russia, India and China have agreed to meet next month in Beijing. Topic one will be answering President Obama's request to buy more Treasury Bills.

Blackouts continue to plague the industrial Northeast as wind production farms have missed their quotas for the third month in a row. The Department of Energy promises to find new green energy sources by 2013 that should help alleviate the troublesome outages.

The velvet cloak of night did not stop President Obama from introducing his new volunteer corp uniforms. The new cadre combines elements of ACORN, Organizing for America,, the SEIU and Americorps into a single, cohesive unit! First job on the list: internal national security to ensure safety for all Americans!

Lastly, a well-deserved comeuppance for hate-speech specialists Michelle Malkin and Glenn Reynolds. They were convicted last week of 800 counts of inciting hatred and violating FTC blogging rules; their punishment: 20 years in Leavenworth. Hate-mongers beware: expect internal security forces to be knocking on your doors shortly!

Join us next week for more approved news stories, only from Universal International News, the patriotic channel!

Larwyn's Linx: Skipping Arlington to spend Memorial Day with Farrakhan

Have a great link you'd like me to review? Drop me an email. You can also install a Larwyn's Linx blog widget.


Who skipped Arlington to spend Memorial Day with Farrakhan?: Atlas
Giving thanks for those who made the ultimate sacrifice: Malkin
Quick Notes: Obama’s oil spill press conference: AnBlackCon

Kagan removed Constitutional law as Harvard requirement: Patterico
King Barack the Verbose: Steyn
The Vanities of the Bonfire: Cold Fury


IRS Asked to Review Unions’ Political Donations: RWN
2% solution and collapse of the budget process: Hewitt
Obama, ACORN and Stealth Socialism: MonCrief

Wise Guys: The End of Free-Market Capitalism: AT
LA Official to Obama: Oil Drilling Moratorium 'Will Kill Us': GWP
A Continent of Lies and Broken Promises: ZH

Climate & Energy

How Fannie Mae Chief got Cap-and-Trade Patent: BigGovt
Are Climate Alarmists losing the Mainstream Media?: AT
Deepwater Oil Spill - The LMRP Attempt, the 'Press Conference', etc.: OilDrum


Obama, The Thin-Skinned President: Wehner
What our media taught me: Hanson
If you're going to criticize Texas' new social studies curriculum, you'd better quote it. : Althouse

How the liberal mind works: Cashill
Why are some Lefties so worried about an Obama impeachment?: RWN
Interview with Rush Limbaugh: Army of One author Zev Chafets: Driscoll

Curtis Sliwa comes to Andrew Cuomo event dressed as king to mock 'coronation': BlogProf
Maher: Obama Not Acting Like A "Real Black" President: RCP
Billy's Last Ride: CBullitt


Taliban using chem weapons against U.S. troops?: GWP
The Grand Jihad Has Arrived: GoV
The Gaza Flotilla: Showboating for Hamas: Rosett


Starting up in the iPad garage: Edgelings
Navy to use dolphins, sea lions to protect sub base: Exurban


Memorial Day: the Warriors Among Us
Stories Shared to Honor Heroes on Memorial Day: BMW
Competence is its own reward: CFB

Image: The Oil Drum.
Today's Larwyn's Linx sponsored by: Flopping Aces Memorial Day Weekend Post

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Is there a true 'nuclear option' to seal the Gulf spill?

Word has it that the Soviets used tactical nuclear weapons to seal similar leaks back in the day.

Komsomoloskaya Pravda, the best-selling Russian daily, reports that in Soviet times such leaks were plugged with controlled nuclear blasts underground. The idea is simple, KP writes: 'the underground explosion moves the rock, presses on it, and, in essence, squeezes the well’s channel.'

Yes! It’s so simple, in fact, that the Soviet Union, a major oil exporter, used this method five times to deal with petrocalamities. The first happened in Uzbekistan, on September 30, 1966 with a blast 1.5 times the strength of the Hiroshima bomb and at a depth of 1.5 kilometers. KP also notes that subterranean nuclear blasts were used as much as 169 times in the Soviet Union to accomplish fairly mundane tasks like creating underground storage spaces for gas or building canals.

These kinds of surgical strikes to shut off underground leaks, however, were carried out only five times, with the last one occuring in 1979. And there was only one misfire, near Kharkov, Ukraine, where a nuclear blast was unable to stanch a gas leak.

Happily, with a track record like that, "the chances of failure in the Gulf of Mexico are 20%," KP writes. "The Americans could certainly risk it."

KP must be unfamiliar with the American strain of Leftist moonbats, who would sooner reduce an entire continent to a subsistence-level existence than allow the use of modern technologies like, say, DDT. As for nukes? The Leftists would rather nuke an American city than risk the life of an American Eel.

Updated Timeline: The Sestak Bribe and the White House Coverup

The contradictions between Congressman Joe Sestak's account of a job offer and the belated, official White House response are, in a word, stunning. The controversy isn't dying down and it won't be going away. In fact, I suspect it has only just begun.

13 February 2009: Pennsylvania Senator Arlen Specter votes for the controversial $787 billion Stimulus package, leading to an outcry by Pennsylvania voters and Republicans nationwide. The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that both before and after the vote, Specter is courted as a Democratic convert by Gov. Ed Rendell and Vice President Joe Biden.

Sometime between February and July 2009: A member of the White House staff (possibly Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel) offers Rep. Joseph Sestak (D-PA), who is running against incumbent Senator Arlen Specter (D-PA), an unspecified job in return for him dropping out of the race. The rationale: the White House believes Specter has a better chance of winning against a GOP contender than Sestak.

26 March 2009: President Obama announces his intent to nominate Ray Mabus to be Secretary of the Navy.

28 April 2009: After months of speculation, Specter switches to the Democrat Party.

30 May 2009: "Sestak to challenge Specter"

Congressman Joe Sestak (D) plans to ignore White House and DSCC pressure and will shortly announce his primary challenge to US Senator Arlen Specter (D). reports "is privately telling supporters that he intends to run for Senate." In support of the report, TPM quoted Sestak's sister and campaign employee: "He intends to get in the race." TPM also produced a scan of handwritten note from Sestak to a supporter in which the Congressman wrote: "I am writing you as especially dear supporters to let you know I intend to run for the US Senate." Meanwhile, State Representative Bill Kortz (D) -- a retired steelworker -- says he plans to also continue his primary run against Specter. While Sestak is positioning himself to the left of the incumbent former Republican, the pro-life and pro-gun rights Kortz is positioning himself to the right of Specter.

22 July 2009: White House Deputy Chief of Staff Jim Messina denies rumors that White House Counsel Greg Craig is 'on his way out' as sources report that Craig has 'clashed with others in the inner circle over various matters.'

9 November 2009: After months of official denials, White House Counsel Greg Craig tenders his resignation, stating "his decision was unrelated to the difficulties in closing Guantanamo Bay prison or other policy issues."

18 February 2010: Apparently unaware that job offers by an administration in exchange for political favors are illegal, Rep. Joe Sestak (D-PA) readily admits that he was offered a job to drop out of the Senate primary race with Arlen Specter during an interview with Philadelphia TV newscaster Larry Kane.

Were you ever offered a job to get out of this race? (The contest against Arlen Specter)... Sestak didn’t flinch .

Yes,” he answered.

“Was it Navy Secretary?”, I asked.

“No comment.”

He proceeded to talk about staying in the race but added that “he was called many times” to pull out... Later, I asked, “So you were offered a job by someone in the White House?

He said, “Yes.” ...When the taping stopped, Joe Sestak looked surprised.

18 February 2010 15:45: After calling the White House for its reaction and receiving the word that they would respond 'shortly', Kane breaks the story on KYW news radio. Kane later related on his website that he was stunned the White House took so long to respond. As "the question was being asked, Joe Sestak never hesitated. In a split second, he just said, 'yes.'"

19 February 2010 06:45: At 6:45AM, 15 hours later, a Deputy Press Secretary calls Kane and says, "You can say the White House says it’s not true."

9 March 2010: MSNBC reports that Sestak did confirm receiving an offer for the Secretary of Navy job ("it completely reconfirms it") in an interview with Joe Scarborough:

Scarborough: "Your name came up because of this offer for you to run the Department of Navy if you'd get out of the race in Pennsylvania. Did you feel there was a connection there when the President made that offer to you?"

Sestak: "You know, it's interesting... Something happened last July before I got in the race, and I never got asked about it and someone asked me. And, you know, I answered it honestly, I just said 'yes'. But it didn't go beyond that and actually and Joe, I don't think I should."

10 March 2010: Rep. Darrell Issa, the top Republican on the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee sends a letter to the White House Counsel Robert Bauer. The letter requests information regarding the Sestak job offer including: (a) which White House staffers communicated with Sestak about the Senate race; (b) which positions, if any, were offered to reward Sestak for dropping out of the race; (c) what investigations, if any, did the White House undertake to determine whether criminal activity took place; and (d) does the White House expect to refer the matter to the Department of Justice? Issa issues a 18 March 2010 deadline for a reply by the White House counsel.

16 March 2010: Peppered by questions from reporters, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs issues the following statement: "I’ve talked to several people in the White House. I’ve talked to people who have talked to others in the White House. I’m told that whatever conversations have been had, are not problematic. I think Congressman Sestak has discussed that this is – whatever happened is in the past and he is focused on this primary."

18 March 2010: No reply is received by Issa.

22 Mach 2010: Issa issues a second request along with an adivsory that further silence on the matter would result in a request to the Attorney General to appoint a special prosecutor. A second deadline is issued by Issa of 5 April 2010.

5 April 2010: No reply is received by Issa to his second request. During a press conference, Robert Gibbs is asked by a CNS News reporter whether the White House would endorse the appointment of a special prosecutor, given the 5 April deadline. Gibbs ignores the question and instead references his 16 March remarks.

6 May 2010: White House Deputy Counsel Daniel J. Meltzer resigns.

18 May 2010: Sestak defeats Arlen Specter in the Democrat Pennsylvania primary race for U.S. Senate.

25 May 2010: 'Sestak Awkwardly Dodges Questions About Alleged White House Job Offer':

Senate hopeful Joe Sestak joined Senate Democrats at their weekly caucus lunch today, where he was grilled by CNN producer Ted Barrett about his claim that the White House once offered him a job to get him out of the Pennsylvania primary...

"The question is what job was offered to you and by whom? Because David Axelrod said last night that it would be illegal if you were offered a job. So who offered you the job?" asked Barrett, who towers over Sestak by a foot or more.

"I have nothing to say on the matter. I've answered," Sestak offered.

"Do you think this will go away, though, or this will not be a liability for you?" Barrett pressed.

Sestak seemed visibly rattled, but continued to pivot away from the questions.

26 May 2010: All seven Republican members of the the Senate Judiciary Committee request that the Department of Justice appoint a special prosecutor to probe the Sestak allegations.

27 May 2010: Inexplicably, Former President Bill Clinton meets with President Obama, ostensibly to discuss the oil spill.

27 May 2010: Inexplicably, the White House contacts Joe Sestak's brother and campaign manager Richard in preparation for the "official statement" it would soon release.

28 May 2010: Bill Clinton ignores questions regarding his interactions with Joe Sestak.

28 May 2010: 14 members of the House of Representatives send a letter to FBI Director Robert Mueller requesting that the FBI conduct a probe of criminal conduct.

28 May 2010: The White House finally issues a memo describing its review of discussions related to Sestak. It claims that Bill Clinton acted as a cutout between Rahm Emanuel and Joe Sestak and no substantial job offer was mentioned.

Contradictions between the White House and Sestak accounts

The following contradictions exist between the official White House account and the original Sestak interview:

• White House: "White House staff did not discuss these options with Congressman Sestak."
&bull: Sestak: Replied "Yes" to the question "you were offered a job by someone in the White House?"

• White House: "It has been suggested that discussions of alternatives to the Senate campaign were improperly raised with the Congressman. There was no such impropriety. "
• Sestak: Replied "Yes" to the question "Were you ever offered a job to get out of this race?

• White House: "It has been suggested that the Administration may have offered Congressman Sestak the position of Secretary of the Navy in the hope that he would accept the offer and abandon a Senate candidacy. This is false."
• Sestak: Replied "No comment" to the question "Was it Navy Secretary?", when a simple "No" would have sufficed. In a separate interview, MSNBC says that Sestak did confirm the offer of the Secretary of the Navy position.

"If proven, the reported actions of the Obama administration are clear violations of three federal laws. The impact and fallout from documented violations, as well as the refusal of the Holder Justice Department to appoint a Special Counsel to investigate this matter, have the potential to eclipse the Watergate scandal of the early 1970’s – it is that serious."

[i] 18 U.S.C. § 600: Whoever, directly or indirectly, promises any employment, position, compensation, contract, appointment, or other benefit, provided for or made possible in whole or in part by any Act of Congress, or any special consideration in obtaining any such benefit, to any person as consideration, favor, or reward for any political activity or for the support of or opposition to any candidate or any political party in connection with any general or special election to any political office, or in connection with any primary election or political convention or caucus held to select candidates for any political office, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.

18 U.S.C. § 211: Whoever solicits or receives, either as a political contribution, or for personal emolument, any money or thing of value, in consideration of the promise of support or use of influence in obtaining for any person any appointive office or place under the United States, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both. Whoever solicits or receives anything of value in consideration of aiding a person to obtain employment under the United States either by referring his name to an executive department or agency of the United States or by requiring the payment of a fee because such person has secured such employment shall be fined under this title, or imprisoned not more than one year, or both. This section shall not apply to such services rendered by an employment agency pursuant to the written request of an executive department or agency of the United States.

18 U.S.C. § 595: Whoever, being a person employed in any administrative position by the United States, or by any department or agency thereof, or by the District of Columbia or any agency or instrumentality thereof, or by any State, Territory, or Possession of the United States, or any political subdivision, municipality, or agency thereof, or agency of such political subdivision or municipality (including any corporation owned or controlled by any State, Territory, or Possession of the United States or by any such political subdivision, municipality, or agency), in connection with any activity which is financed in whole or in part by loans or grants made by the United States, or any department or agency thereof, uses his official authority for the purpose of interfering with, or affecting, the nomination or the election of any candidate for the office of President, Vice President, Presidential elector, Member of the Senate, Member of the House of Representatives, Delegate from the District of Columbia, or Resident Commissioner, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both.

Hat tips: Homeland Security U.S. and MSNBC's Morning Joe. Linked by: Gateway Pundit, Dan Riehl, Strata-Sphere, Nice Deb and Creative Minority Report. Thanks!