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Archive for July, 2012

Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged Part II: Behind the Scenes

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Born This Way?

Born This Way?

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In related news, Chick-Fil-A says it will continue to process and serve gay chickens.

June 16, 2012 Clip No. 3496

London-Based Shiite Cleric Abdallah Al-Khilaf: Wahhabi Fatwa Permits Sodomy to Widen the Anus as a Means to Jihad

Following are excerpts from an address by London-based Shiite cleric Abdallah Al-Khilaf, which aired on Fadak TV and was posted on Youtube, on June 16, 2012.

Abdallah Al-Khilaf: First, we’d like to show you a fatwa, which appeared on the Lions of Sunna Internet forum. One Wahhabi wrote: “Dear Sheik, may Allah grant you martyrdom and black-eyed virgins in Paradise, I wanted to commit a martyrdom operation. I turned to Sheik Abu Dimaa Al-Qassab, who told me that they had invented a new and unprecedented form of martyrdom operations – explosive capsules are inserted into your anus.

“In order to train for this method of Jihad, you must consent to being sodomized for a period of time, so that your anus becomes wider, making room for the explosives.

“My question is whether I am permitted to allow one of the mujahideen access to my anus, if my intentions are honorable, and the purpose is to train for Jihad by widening my anus.”

The sheik praised Allah and said: “In principle, sodomy is forbidden. However, Jihad is more important. It is the pinnacle of Islam. If sodomy is the only way to reach this pinnacle of Islam, then there is no harm in it.

“The rule is that necessity makes the forbidden permissible. Something that is required in order to perform a duty becomes a duty in and of itself. No duty takes precedence over Jihad.

“Therefore, you must be sodomized… After you have been sodomized, you must ask Allah for forgiveness.

“Know, my son, that Allah resurrects the mujahideen on Judgment Day on the basis of their intentions. Allah willing, your intention is to support Islam. May Allah include you among those who heed His call.”

This is the fatwa that led a man a while ago to carry out a bombing attack against then Interior Minister Naif bin Abd Al-Aziz [sic].

[…]

Please recycle

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by HANS BADER on JULY 30, 2012 · at CEI.org
New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn wants to kick Chick-fil-A out of New York because its CEO said he opposed gay marriage.  She sent the head of New York University, which leases space to the one Chick-fil-A restaurant in New York City, a letter stating, “Chick-fil-A is not welcome in New York City as long as the company’s president continues to uphold and promote his discriminatory views […] I urge you to sever your relationship with the Chick-fil-A establishment that exists on your campus.”  My guess is that the university will regard this letter more as an unstated threat than as a mere statement of the Speaker’s opinion, since universities are pervasively subject to ad hoc government regulations and ordinances, making it imperative to cultivate municipal officials’ goodwill.  (For example, a university that annoys municipal officials can end up with an enrollment cap, or lose lucrative eminent domainprerogatives.  Business owners are often subject to municipal predation  that can potentially drive them out of business, forcing them to ingratiate themselves with city officials.)
Government pressure on a private institution to terminate a contract with another private entity due to that entity’s speech violates the First Amendment rights of that entity.  For example, if a government official pressures a private institution to take action against someone (such as firing an employee) for his speech, that violates the First Amendment, see Korb v. Lehman, 919 F.2d 243 (4th Cir. 1990) (pressure on defense contractor to fire employee for speech); Dossett v. First State Bank, 399 F.3d 940 (8th Cir. 2005); Reuber v. U.S., 750 F.2d 1039 (D.C. Cir. 1985).  Government retaliation for speech does not necessarily need to include explicit threats or pressure to violate the First Amendment.  For example, if the Government merely reprimands a public employee for his speech, or censures a private citizen for his speech, some courts find that to be a violation of the First Amendment.  See Columbus Education Association v. Columbus Board of Education, 623 F.2d 1155 (6th Cir. 1980) (reprimand); Little v. N. Miami, 805 F.2d 962 (11th Cir. 1986) (censure resolution by city council); White v. Lee, 227 F.3d 1214 (9th Cir. 2000) (baseless investigation over speech).
Quinn’s pressure comes in the wake of similar attacks on Chick-fil-A by other politicians.  As I noted in The Washington Examiner,
[Boston’s] mayor said he would block Chick-fil-A from opening a restaurant there because its CEO opposes gay marriage.  [He has since retreated from this position]
Similarly, an alderman in Chicago has said he will block a zoning permit needed for a Chick-fil-A restaurant in Chicago because of its CEO’s views.
Under the Supreme Court’s Umbehr decision, cities cannot punish firms or withhold even discretionary benefits like zoning permits over their speech. The Supreme Court long ago ruled that firms have free speech rights in its rulings in favor of Consolidated Edison and theFirst National Bank.
Chick-fil-A has faced unusually few discrimination claims of any kind for a restaurant chain. There is no evidence that Chick-fil-A discriminates against gay patrons, and it has restaurants in many cities than ban anti-gay discrimination.
Actually, Chick-fil-A’s case against Chicago is even stronger than the business whose free-speech rights were recognized in the Supreme Court’s Umbehr decision, which involved retaliation against a business for its speech through denial of government contracts.  The First Amendment applies with even greater force when the speech restriction is imposed through regulatory decisions, like a zoning decision, rather than tied to a government contract.  See, e.g., CarePartnersLLC vLashway, 545 F.3d 867, 872 (9th Cir. 2008).  Withholding regulatory approval is even less permissible, since it doesn’t involve the government’s power of the purse.
Nor is there any illegal-discrimination rationale for trying to banish Chick-fil-A, even assuming a city official could just ban a supposedly discriminatory restaurant chain without any due process.  Chick-fil-A has had far fewer discrimination claims filed against it than most restaurant chains of its size, and I cannot find any reported case of it being sued for discrimination against gay customers, even though it operates in many cities that have ordinances banning sexual-orientation discrimination in employment and public accommodations.
Moreover, what the Chick-fil-A CEO said was not linked to illegal discrimination against customers or employees, much less linked as closely as the amicus briefs filed by various big corporations in support of the University of Michigan in the Gratz v. Bollinger case, where, to curry favor with liberal Congressmen and politicians, they filed amicus briefs defending a race-based college admissions policy struck down 6-to-3 by the Supreme Court (which held that the policy’s racial discrimination violated both the Constitution, and 42 U.S.C. 1981 – a race-discrimination statute that also applies to corporate America.)  Yet no one has ever attempted to ban any of those companies from a city.  (Companies make a big deal out of supporting affirmative action as a way of currying favor with liberal lawmakers.  It is an indirect form of lobbying.  Companies that lobby heavily have outperformed “the S&P 500 by 11 percent a year, every year since 2002, according to The Economist.” Sadly, in a world of crony capitalism and big government, a giant corporation’s profits now depend as much on currying favor with lawmakers as on making the best product for customers.)

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Funny Diver Faces

Matt King/Adam Pretty/Al Bello, Getty Images
One of the highlights of the 2012 Olympics will undoubtedly be diving. There’s been some stiff competition this year, especially in the preliminary rounds, and all the athletes have been killing themselves trying to look as graceful as possible while tumbling through the air. How do we know? There’s something on each diver’s face that just reads, “This stunt is kind of difficult to do.”
These competitors may look like elegant swans from a distance, but when the camera gets right up close for those slow-motion instant replays, not one of them is capable of hiding the pain in their faces.
If diving isn’t the one event you’re looking forward to watching during the 2012 Olympics, it will be after you’re done browsing through this gallery of all the best diver faces.
Funny Diver Face

Richard Heathcote, Getty Images

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Online Town Hall Thursday with Gov. Gary Johnson
& Women’s Right Activist Ann E. W. Stone 

 
Thursday, August 2, 2012 

6:00 PM PDT/  7:00 PM MDT/  8:00 PM CDT/  9:00 PM EDT


Please join Governor Gary Johnson, the Libertarian Party presidential nominee, for an online town hall Tuesday evening, 9 p.m. EDT/ 6 p.m. PDT.

Joining Governor Johnson is special guest Ann E. W. Stone. Ms. Stone is one of the original incorporators of the National Women’s History Museum and the founder of Republicans for Choice. This year (2012) she was named as one of the 21 Leaders for the New Century by Women’s eNews.

Ann Stone is also the founder and president of The Stone Group,Inc., an award-winning direct marketing business. Ms. Stone has founded other businesses and helped launch a national bank. She serves on the boards of Empowered Women International and The Washington Center (Women as Leaders).

Ms. Stone speaks professionally in the United States and overseas on such topics as entrepreneurship, politics, women’s history, women’s issues, and much more. She has been listed in the Who’s Who of Marketing and Advertising Executives and the International Edition of Who’s Who as well as Outstanding Women in America. In 1992, she was chosen as one of 75 Women Who Changed Politics in America by C&E Magazine.

This town hall will be featured on Vokle.com. To ask questions via video or text, simply sign into your Facebook account or sign up for a Vokle account. If you just want to watch the town hall, go to  www.GaryJohnson2012.com.

These informal online video chats are an excellent opportunity to exchange ideas regarding important issues of the day, and we urge you to participate if you can.

Again, go to www.GaryJohnson2012.com Thursday evening for what I am sure will be a great discussion.
         
Hope to see you online!
Gov. Gary Johnson 
 

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Election Humor

A new poll shows that 83% of Americans support the work requirement for welfare that President Obama just gutted. In other news, Obama’s popularity just rose 83% among welfare recipients. 


Nancy Pelosi advised her fellow Democrats, “I’m not encouraging members to go to the convention.” Apparently, neither is Obama’s job performance. 


In a recent radio interview, DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz said “nobody’s success can be credited just to themselves.” Any failures, however – that was all just Bush, right? 


A group of California cities is studying whether to track drivers by GPS and tax them on the number of miles they drive. I’m guessing most of the mileage will be one way – out of the state. 


In a fundraising email, President Obama noted that in 2008, “I had significantly fewer gray hairs than I do today.” As did most everyone who’s watched you handle the economy. 


During a recent press conference, House Speaker John Boehner said that when it comes to jobs, “this White House has checked out.” And like most out-of-control celebrities, he trashed the room first. 


Senate Democrats announced that they’re pushing for a HUGE raise in the death tax next year. Guess they figure it’ll make a nice bookend to Obamacare taxing you just for being alive. 


A new report shows sales of pro-Obama merchandise have dropped drastically since 2008. Pity his presidency didn’t have the same effect on unemployment, gas prices, and foreclosures. 


An Obama 2012 ad aimed at rural America features the line “we can succeed here just like we can in the big city.” So… he wants to limit milk to 16 oz. glasses? 


Democrat Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro said that Congress ought to look at imposing a federal tax on soda pop. Sure. Then when sales plummet, a penalty for people who don’t buy it. 


The Obama administration’s new plan to grant temporary work permits to illegals may cost more than $585 million and require hiring hundreds of new federal employees. See? It’s not amnesty, it’s a jobs program. 


Discussing his economic policies at a fundraiser in Oakland, California, President Obama told supporters that “we tried our plan – and it worked.” So… he wrecked the economy on purpose? 


Due to the added burden of new EPA regulations, two Pennsylvania coal companies announced they’re laying off 225 employees. Well, they can always get jobs with solar companies as bankruptcy lawyers. 


In California, TSA workers are now expanding out of airports and into train stations and bus terminals. Well, thank goodness. About time someone made a serious effort to get the wheelchair-granny menace under control. 


Speaking in Philadelphia, Vice President Joe Biden told the crowd, “I wish my kids would become wealthy.” Don’t tell Obama, but I think that’s Joe’s way of saying he’s voting Republican this year. 


The New York Times posted another huge loss this quarter. Hope they stay afloat. What a terrible world it’d be without them – all those untrained puppies. 


— Fred Thompson 


Anthony Weiner was reportedly weighing a run for mayor of New York Tuesday. He had to resign Congress after he texted nude photos of himself to women. Still it isn’t right to judge Anthony Weiner till you’ve walked a mile with his pants around your ankles. 


The DNC changed the name of President Obama’s convention speech site in Raleigh from Bank of America Stadium to Panther Field. This didn’t go unanswered. Bank of America swiftly decided to charge the Democratic Party a thirty-dollar account-closing fee. 


John Sununu ripped President Obama for anti-capitalism remarks, saying he wished Obama could be more American. That’s unfair. President Obama spends more money than he’s got and he may lose his job this year, so what could be more American than that? 


Democrats apologized Thursday for making fun of Ann Romney’s dancing horse in a TV ad blasting Mitt Romney. Ridiculing the animal caused nationwide offense. We live in a time where half the country adores horses while the other half is down to eating them. 


President Obama left the campaign trail Friday to monitor the Colorado shooting. He met with the top officials of the FBI and Homeland Security inside the White House. They wasted no time intercepting Sarah Palin’s mail to see if she’d put a target over Gotham City. 


Hillary Clinton was reported Tuesday orchestrating an allied effort to shove Bashar Al-Assad out of power quietly in Syria. Quietly would be a change of pace. The last time Hillary Clinton overthrew a president, the lamp smashed a portrait in the Oval Office. 


ABC News issued an apology Monday saying they are sorry for claiming the Colorado movie house killer James Holmes was connected to the Tea Party. The contrition is real. ABC reporters and anchors are genuinely sorry he had no connection to the Tea Party. 


President Obama told Oakland Democrats to fight for his re-election this year. They put a slight reverb in his microphone that gives his voice the sound of God. He’s doing all he can to win the gun-owner vote by sounding as much as possible like Charlton Heston. 


North Korea’s women’s soccer team walked off before Thursday’s match. Organizers accidentally displayed the South Korean flag and the North Koreans were outraged. They will never be able to go home now that they know what it is like to be angry and have food. 


A Washington D.C. voting group sent out voter registration forms to dead people and pets in Virginia. It was a little obvious to the county registrars. During Virginia’s last presidential primary General Robert E. Lee voted for Obama and Traveler voted for Hillary. 


— Argus Hamilton 


The apartment that President Obama used to live in when he was a college student in New York is now up for rent for $2,400 a month. Coincidentally, Obama was only there for one four-year term. 


— Leno 

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