House speaker John Boehner today, in proposing his “Plan B” to avert the fiscal cliff, proposed raising tax rates on America’s millionaires. It’s perhaps no accident that this is a proposal Democrats themselves put forward almost exactly two years ago, when New York senator Chuck Schumer introduced a bill on the Senate floor that was quickly dubbed the “millionaires’ tax.” The New York Times reported at the time that Schumer and his colleagues settled on such a tax in part for its public-relations value: The issue, said the Times, could be used as a “political bludgeon” against Republicans
When the Edward Gibbon of the 22nd century comes to write his History of the Decline and Fall of the West, who will feature in his monumental study of the collapse of the most successful economic experiment in human history? In this saga of the mass suicide of the richest nations on earth, maybe the leadership of our day in Washington, London and Brussels will appear to have been swept helplessly along by irresistible forces that originated before their time.
After Hawaii Senator Daniel Inouye (D), who was third in the line of succession as president pro tempore of the Senate, died on Monday, concerns about the health of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who is fourth in the line of succession, became even more important -- and relevant. On Tuesday, Vice President Joe Biden swore in Sen. Pat Leahy (D-VT) as president pro tempore of the Senate and he now, as the Senate’s most senior member, is third in the line of succession to the presidency. Clinton, who is fourth in line, is recovering from a concussion she suffered
Russia may ease restrictions on the Muslim Brotherhood soon to improve relations with Egypt and rebuild influence lost during the Arab Spring revolutions, diplomatic sources say. (Snip) Easing restrictions on the Muslim Brotherhood would follow a similar move by the United States, which tweaked its ban on formal contacts with the Islamist group, banned under Mubarak, early in 2012. Mursi is expected to visit Washington in 2013 for the first time since his election in June. Western diplomatic sources say Mursi also accepted an invitation to visit Russia when Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov visited Egypt
Crime: Reaction in official circles to the Newtown school massacre has gone little beyond mindless demands for gun-control measures — which criminals always evade. The government already controls too much. James Madison warned that in establishing a free government, "the great difficulty lies in this: You must first enable the government to control the governed; and in the next place oblige it to control itself." Thomas Jefferson warned that "free government is founded in jealousy, and not in confidence; it is jealousy, and not confidence, which prescribes limited constitutions to bind down those whom we are
It´s clear by now that the budget talks are drifting in a drearily familiar Washington direction: Tax and spending increases now, in return for the promise of spending cuts and tax and entitlement reform later. This is a bad deal for everyone except the politicians who want more money to spend. Consider the tax increase now being touted as a sign of "compromise." Speaker John Boehner has moved from opposing higher tax rates to offering higher rates for incomes above $1 million a year. While that´s better than the scheduled increase on incomes above $200,000 a year (for singles),
Congress: The first black Republican senator in three decades will be a spokesman for Tea Party conservatism and a proud member of the party that was founded to fight slavery and made the civil rights revolution possible. Though he´ll inevitably be dismissed as a "token" or worse, Rep. Tim Scott, the next Republican senator from the former slave state of South Carolina, and the first black GOP senator since Edward Brooke of Massachusetts, shatters once again the stereotype of the GOP as a party of racists and sexists.
Six months after the federal government added cancer to the list of sicknesses covered by the $4.3 billion World Trade Center fund, a New York City health department study has found no clear link between cancer and the dust, debris and fumes released by the burning wreckage of the twin towers. The study was by far the largest to date. It examined 55,700 people, including rescue and recovery workers at the World Trade Center site, on barges or at the Staten Island landfill where debris was taken, in the nine months after Sept. 11, 2001, as well as residents of Lower Manhattan, students,
A California school district is defending its decision to name a new elementary school after an infamous murderer – by calling him a hero and a role model to children. The decision has infuriated many parents and law enforcement officers. The Alisal Union School District in Salinas agreed to name the new school in honor of Tiburcio Vasquez – who was eventually hanged for killing at least two people in the nineteenth century. Superintendent John Ramirez defended the board’s decision telling Fox News that one man’s terrorist is another man’s freedom fighter.
Just when you thought it was strange for your mom to have Facebook; Imagine getting a friend request from Iran´s highest hard-line clerical leader. Ironically, the man who forbid an entire country to from visiting social-networking sites and even sentenced violators to death, Iran´s highest dictator and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has started his own community page encouraging visitors to follow "for regular updates and news." Khamenei started the page Dec. 13, which has photographs of the 73-year-old mullah and links to YouTube videos and Instagram pictures. The page currently has
Do you hear that faint sound? It´s the grumbling of conservative pundits who are now churning out a theory that Hillary Clinton is lying about her concussion to avoid having to testify about Benghazi. Clinton had a concussion recently, her team said Saturday. And The Daily Caller´s Jim Treacher isn´t sending the Secretary of State a get-well card until she proves she was really hurt. He writes: If she has a concussion, let’s see the medical report. Let’s see some proof that she’s not just stonewalling. If it’s true, then we can all wish her a speedy recovery.
Rep. Tim Scott (R.), whom South Carolina Gov. Nikke Haley has said she will appoint to replace retiring Sen. Jim DeMint in the U.S. Senate, has been an opponent of Obamacare´s sterilization-contraception-abortifacient mandate, and a defender of traditional marriage, the right to life, and the Second Amendment. “The Constitution grants all law-abiding Americans the right to bear arms, regardless of what some would lead you to believe,”
MANILA, Philippines — Philippine legislators passed a landmark bill Monday that would provide government funding for contraceptives and sexuality classes in schools despite strong opposition by the dominant Roman Catholic Church and its followers, some of whom threatened to ask the Supreme Court to block the legislation. (snip) In a scene considered unusual just a few years ago, lawmakers openly defied the church´s stand during the plenary voting, which was shown live on nationwide TV.
Murders in the city of Chicago, Illinois, are up over last year and could hit 500 by the end of this year. That´s 41 a month, and you don´t need me to tell you that almost all of those homicides were caused by a bad guy holding a firearm. But where´s the media to wring their hands over this gun violence? Where´s the 24/7 news coverage, presidential addresses, and push for answers? When people talk about our country becoming "desensitized" to violence, most of the time that´s a discussion about films and video games.
Samuel L. Jackson, one of the stars of the new Quentin Tarantino-directed, Harvey Weinstein-produced Django Unchained, is speaking out against those who would restrict access to firearms or scale back violence in films in reaction to the massacre in Sandy Hook. Said Jackson: "I don´t think it´s about more gun control. I grew up in the South with guns everywhere and we never shot anyone. This [shooting] is about people who aren´t taught the value of life … I don’t think movies or video games have anything to do with it.” Jackson added, “We need to stop deranged people
NEWTOWN, Conn. – The gunman who slaughtered 20 children and six adults at a Connecticut elementary school may have snapped because his mother was planning to commit him to a psychiatric facility, according to a lifelong resident of the area who was familiar with the killer’s family and several of the victims’ families. Adam Lanza, 20, targeted Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown after killing his mother early Friday because he believed she loved the school “more than she loved him,” said Joshua Flashman, 25, who grew up not far from where the shooting took place.
The Republican primary to replace Rep. Tim Scott (R-S.C.) could pit former South Carolina governor Mark Sanford against his ex-wife, Jenny Sanford. Scott was tapped by Gov. Nikki Haley (R) to replace resigning Sen. Jim DeMint (R). That means a special election for Scott’s House seat will take place in 2013. Jenny Sanford was on Haley’s Senate short list, and Roll Call reports that she is considering a House bid. But so is her former husband, who famously admitted to a love affair with an Argentinian woman. (He and his former mistress are now engaged.)
Troops of the Bolivarian National Guard were deployed on Sunday night at the local chapter of the Venezuelan National Electoral Council (CNE) in the capital city of Bolívar state, south Venezuela. The military were deployed in Jesús Soto Avenue, a thoroughfare in the capital city; in the immediate vicinity of General Tomás de Heres airport, and Táchira Avenue, where the CNE local chapter is located. Edgar Mata, the CNE local director, reported that the security was reinforced with the troops of Plan República in view of a demonstration staged by the followers of Andrés Velásquez,
A peaceful demonstration was staged nearby the state office of the National Electoral Council in Bolivar (south Venezuela) to protest against the proclamation of ruling party candidate Francisco Rangel Gómez as the new state governor. Accompanied by several opposition leaders, including Mayor of the Metropolitan area of Caracas Antonio Ledezma, opposition candidate Andrés Velásquez led the demonstration. Venezuela´s National Assembly Deputy Américo De Grazia asserted the protest was pacific and denied rumors over civil unrest.
Venezuelan Vice-President and Foreign Minister Nicolás Maduro said on Monday he has not talked directly to President Hugo Chávez after the surgery the leader underwent on December 11 in Havana, Cuba. "We have not spoken to him directly. As you may know, we deeply respect his treatment cycles. We will try to contact him this afternoon (Monday) and as soon as we hear back from him, we will pass on the information," Maduro stated when asked about the reaction of the Venezuelan head of State on the results of the gubernatorial election held on Sunday,
The House GOP caucus remains supportive of Speaker John Boehner, even though he is open to tax-rate increases. “There is no revolt, no coup,” says a conservative House member, who requested anonymity to speak freely. “Boehner is going to compromise, but people recognize that he’s in a tough spot.” In a conference meeting this morning at the Capitol, Boehner told his colleagues that he would like to extend current tax rates for “99.5 percent” of taxpayers, and let the rates expire on those making more than $1 million. Boehner acknowledged that it wasn’t optimal, but the best “plan B.”
When the new plug-in sales share of the total market is only a pathetic 0.65%, this is hardly shocking: Chevy Volt and Nissan Leaf Prove Tough Resells – Used EV Market Less Than Booming Fuel-frugality aside, it seems the 2013 Chevy Volt and 2012 Nissan Leaf are proving to be expensive long-term investments. One of the main questions every new car buyer should always ask themselves is what is the depreciation of the vehicle and therefore its potential resale value? Recent reports have suggested that electric cars don’t hold their value quite as well as their regular counterparts.
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — A Pakistani-born man wanted to avenge the deaths of U.S. drone attacks in Afghanistan by blowing up a New York City landmark but lacked the money and materials to carry out the plan, a federal prosecutor said Tuesday. Assistant U.S. Attorney Karen Gilbert said at a bail hearing that Raees Alam Qazi, 20, researched bomb-making techniques on Internet sites affiliated with al Qaeda, including one using Christmas tree lights, and the FBI recorded phone calls and conversations linking Qazi to a purported "lone wolf" plot. Headline resplit by staff.
While President Obama and Speaker John Boehner are wrestling with whether or not they will agree to raise taxes, United Nations delegates partying in Doha, Qatar are planning to impose a new kind of tax on Americans. U.N. conferees have been discussing how they can start a global tax that would hit Americans hard. The U.N. bureaucrats are not deterred by the fact that Americans should be protected by our U.S. Constitution, Article 1, Section 7, which specifies that "all bills for raising revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives." The greedy globalist U.N. bureaucrats have
TAPPER: The president’s close friend and adviser, David Axelrod, on Sunday evening, after the — watching the president’s speech, was watching a football game, and an ad came on for a violent video game. And he tweeted, shouldn’t we quit — he tweeted an expression of support for banning a certain kind of weapons or regulating certain kinds of weapons, but then he said, shouldn’t we also quit marketing murder as a game? And this touches on the cultural aspect that you seem to be alluding to also being part of the solution. And I’m wondering if the president