TRIPOLI, Libya- The protesters converged on the conference center housing Libya's newly elected congress, trying to force their way in past startled guards. Mostly young and half of them women in headscarves, they demanded an end to the siege of the town of Bani Walid, where the government was in the midst of an attack to uproot holdouts from Moammar Gadhafi's former regime. Police rushed to the scene. But in Libya, the police are actually militias, in this case from the Tripoli neighborhood of Souq al-Jumaa that last year lost several men in a battle with Bani Walid residents.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Sunday that President Obama shouldn´t negotiate over the debt ceiling because there are "no more cuts to make." "Because the cupboard is bare. There´s no more cuts to make," Pelosi said on CNN´s "State of the Union." "It´s really important that people understand that. We all want to reduce the deficit." Pelosi said that whether and how to raise the debt ceiling "really shouldn´t be a conversation." CNN´s Candy Crowley then noted that other presidents have negotiated over the debt ceiling and asked why Obama shouldn´t. Pelosi said the level of brinksmanship in
Hillary Clinton has claimed it is by no means a foregone conclusion that she’ll be running for the presidency in 2016. In her first major interview since leaving the State Department on Feb. 1, Clinton said that she will be both ‘pragmatic and realistic’ when it eventually comes time to decide. The former secretary of state and first lady is the leading contender for the Democratic nomination, (Snip)‘I’m not in any hurry. I think it’s a serious decision, not to be made lightly, but it’s also not one that has to be made soon,’ she told New York Magazine.
Stung by public unease about new details of spying by the National Security Agency, President Barack Obama selected a panel of advisers he described as independent experts to scrutinize the NSA´s surveillance programs to be sure they weren´t violating civil liberties and to restore Americans´ trust. But with just weeks remaining before its first deadline to report back to the White House, the review panel has effectively been operating as an arm of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, which oversees the NSA and all other U.S. spy efforts. The panel´s advisers work in offices on loan from
VON ORMY, Texas — While it´s common for families to pass down small mementos from one generation to another, a San Antonio-area family is taking a larger, more agrarian approach. The Verstraeten clan in Von Ormy hands down tractors to the children, and teenagers Brett and Corey Verstraeten wound up with their grandfather´s dilapidated and rusted 1953 Allis Chalmers Model G. But the old tractor, discarded about 20 years ago because it was no longer practical for plowing, has been restored to its vintage, blaze-orange condition by the brothers. Now, they´ve been named finalists for the 2013 Tractor Restoration Competition
Vowing to continue the fight to kill Obamacare, Sen. Ted Cruz on Sunday said a shutdown of the federal government would be the fault of the president and Senate Democrats, not the GOP. “I believe we should stand our ground, and I don’t think [Senate Majority Leader] Harry Reid and Barack Obama should shut down the federal government,” Mr. Cruz, Texas Republican, said during an interview on “Fox News Sunday.” The Senate this week is set to begin debate on a bill to fund the government past Sept. 30, when the current fiscal year expires. A spending plan passed in
DALLAS — About 30,000 works of art reflecting on love will be displayed throughout Dallas this fall to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy as his motorcade passed through downtown. On Saturday, volunteers with the nonprofit art organization 29 Pieces began displaying the works as part of its Dallas LOVE Project, intended to show that Dallas — branded the "City of Hate" after the Nov. 22, 1963, assassination — is a place where love thrives. Several incidents before the assassination — including the distribution of fliers in the form of a "Wanted" poster with
President Barack Obama--now eight months into his second term--said today that the U.S. economy is "still trying to recover" from events that took place five years ago before he took office. At the same time, the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), which dates the beginning and ending of recessions in the U.S. economy, insists that the last recession ended more than four years ago. "It was five years ago this week that a financial crisis on Wall Street spread to Main Street, and very nearly turned a recession into a depression," Obama said in his weekly address.
WASHINGTON- President Obama used the podium at the Congressional Black Caucus´ annual dinner Saturday to again rip Republicans for trying to defund U.S. healthcare reform. Obama told those gathered at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center for the caucus foundation´s Phoenix Awards dinner he wanted to speak "as clearly as I can -- it´s not going to happen." (Snip) "It is time for these folks to stop governing by crisis" and focus on "what really matters," Obama said, reiterating that the federal debt ceiling is not up for negotiation because the country is obligated to pay its bills. While Obama spent
When those like Senator John McCain say that Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX), Mike Lee (R-UT), and other conservatives have no chance at winning the battle to defund Obamacare, they are wrong. Cruz, Lee, and the others do indeed have a pathway to victory, though it is a long one and will require a lot of stars to align. Here is the path: First, when Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid brings the House continuing resolution (CR) to the floor next week, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell needs to deliver 41 Republican votes to filibuster it until Senator Reid agrees not to try and
WASHINGTON— Days after mass shootings in both of his hometowns, President Barack Obama urged his most ardent supporters Saturday "to get back up and go back at it" and help push stalled legislation out of Congress so dangerous people won´t get their hands on guns. "We can´t rest until all of our children can go to school or walk down the street free from the fear that they will be struck down by a stray bullet," Obama said in a keynote speech to the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation´s annual awards dinner. Legislation calling for expanded background checks failed to clear the
BOSTON- Harvard, the richest university in the United States, said on Saturday it would seek to raise some $6.5 billion in donations to fund new academic initiatives and bolster its financial aid program. The fundraising drive by the Cambridge, Massachusetts, institution is the university´s biggest and believed to be the most ambitious ever undertaken by a university, ahead of one concluded last year by Stanford University in California that raised $6.2 billion. Harvard unveiled its campaign at an event featuring Bill Gates, who spent three years at the school in the 1970s before dropping out to co-found Microsoft Corp. Gates,
WASHINGTON — Four American citizens were reported injured in the Saturday attack on a shopping mall in Kenya. The wife of a foreign service national working for the U.S. Agency for International Development was killed, U.S. officials said. Kenyan officials said the assault on Nairobi´s top shopping mall killed at least 39 people and wounded more than 150 others. Somalia´s Islamic extremist group al-Shabab claimed responsibility. No details about the injured Americans were released by the State Department, which cited privacy concerns. Consular officers were in contact with the injured and were providing appropriate assistance, a State Department official said.
Speaking at the annual Congressional Black Caucus dinner, President Obama excoriated congressional Republicans Saturday night for risking a government shutdown, and vowed to stop their efforts to defund his health-care plan. “It is time for these folks to stop governing by crisis,” Mr. Obama said at the Washington Convention Center. “Some want to shut down the government rather than provide people with health care!” Referring to Republicans’ strategy to defund Obamacare, the president said he wanted to speak “as clearly as I can.” “It’s not going to happen,” he said. The administration and congressional Republicans are on a collision course over a
"This is the United States of America," declared President Obama to the burghers of Liberty, Missouri, on Friday. "We´re not some banana republic." He was talking about the Annual Raising of the Debt Ceiling, a glorious American tradition that seems to come round earlier every year. "This is not a deadbeat nation," President Obama continued. "We don´t run out on our tab." True. But we don´t pay it off either. We just keep running it up, ever higher. And every time the bartender says, "Mebbe you´ve had enough, pal", we protest, "Jush another couple trillion for the road. Set ´em up, Joe."
Speaking at a Ford Motor Co. plant in Missouri Friday, President Obama accused congressional Republicans of "trying to mess with me" by derailing basic government operations. The sharply-personal remarks--made during a speech in which the president outlined his economic vision--came just hours after the House passed a continuing resolution on a largely party-line vote that would keep the government running while simultaneously defunding the Affordable Care Act. Because the Senate is expected to strip out the defunding plan when it considers the measure, the House action raises the prospect of a possible government shutdown at the end of the month.
A Twitter debate on policy turned ugly Friday, when a local Democratic official wished the children of a Republican aide to Sen. Ted Cruz would "die from debilitating, painful and incurable diseases" after she praised the House´s vote to derail funding for Obamacare. Amanda Carpenter, who formerly worked for Sen. Jim DeMint before heading to the Texas Republican´s office, praised the GOP-led action in a tweet. "GOP beat gun control, changed Obama´s mind on Syria, is holding the line on amnesty. We can defund Obamacare, too!" she posted early Friday afternoon.
President Obama said Republicans in Congress were threatening to make the United States into "a deadbeat" and a "banana republic" with their maneuvers to tie the federal budget and the debt ceiling to defunding ObamaCare. (Snip) "You don´t have to threaten to blow the whole thing up just because you don´t get your way," Obama said. "Nobody gets 100 percent of what they want." Telegraphing his intention to veto any spending bill that delayed or defunded his signature health care law, Obama accused Republicans of lacking "the same common sense" and willingness to compromise that ordinary Americans showed in their
Mackinac Island— U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, a libertarian leader and potential presidential contender, said Saturday Republicans likely have lost the battle on repealing Obamacare and should focus on improving the president’s signature health care law. Paul struck a tone of realism Saturday — a day after the U.S. House voted for the 42nd time to derail the Affordable Care Act. The latest effort was a condition of funding federal operations past Sept. 30 or risking a government shutdown. “I’m acknowledging that we probably can’t defeat or get rid of Obamacare but by starting with our position of not funding it
Nancy Pelosi, the top Democrat in the U.S. House, seems to believe that Republicans don´t like President Obama because they´re jealous. "You know why it is," Pelosi told Politico in an interview. "He´s brilliant ... He thinks in a strategic way in how to get something done ... and he´s completely eloquent. That´s a package that they don´t like." Republicans also don´t like what Pelosi called the president´s non-partisanship. Obama has been "open, practically apolitical, certainly non-partisan, in terms of welcoming every idea and solution," Pelosi told Politico "I think that´s one of the reasons the Republicans want to take
Having attained power in late 1917 on a raft of promises — land to Russia´s peasants, bread to Russia´s starving cities and peace to Russia´s World War I-weary soldiers — V.I. Lenin was able to dispense with every one of them by advancing civil war from 1918 to 1921 to justify his acts by crisis. In place of promises of liberty and rights, Lenin gave Russians propaganda, empowering the Bolsheviks to govern through knoutish messages, if not the barrel of the gun. In so doing, he sought to undermine Russia´s weak democracy and to transform society fundamentally. "The Russian Revolution was permeated
As the 50th anniversary of the JFK assassination approaches, so does the merchandising onslaught — books, movies, commemorative magazines. But there is one aspect of this commercialism that remains surprising: The most shameless huckster of Kennedy mythology and memorabilia is Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg. Her public image is that of the classy, quiet keeper of the Kennedy legacy, the civic-minded former lawyer who publishes books on poetry while her cousins crash into trees and kick nurses. With the bar for Kennedy comportment set so low, it’s almost impossible for Caroline not to look good. Look closer, though, and it’s clear that Caroline’s image is
Last week, Starbucks asked its American customers to please not bring their guns into the coffee shop. This is part of the company´s concern about customer safety and follows a ban in the summer on smoking within 25 feet of a coffee shop entrance and an earlier ruling about scalding hot coffee. After the celebrated Liebeck v McDonald´s case in 1994, involving a woman who suffered third-degree burns to her thighs, Starbucks complies with the Specialty Coffee Association of America´s recommendation that drinks should be served at a maximum temperature of 82C. Although it was brave of Howard Schultz, the company´s
In recent columns in the mainstream press, columnists have been distorting gleefully the Pope´s recent statements to make it appear he´s the liberal that will bring the Catholic Church in line with their own agenda. In actuality, Pope Francis is no more likely to approve gay marriage or homosexual activity than any other pope. If the media were less agenda-driven, they would be trying to debunk a miracle that defies explanation and which involves Pope Francis when he was a bishop in Argentina in 1996.
Isn’t it obvious that Ted Cruz is in it for Ted Cruz? The man had a choice–he could fight the’ Senate’s push for “amnesty first” immigration legislation, which he had a very good chance of killing, or he could stage a showy fight against funding Obamacare that he’d certainly lose. The first course would annoy the business backers who fund Senate and presidential campaigns. The latter course would gin up and channel conservative anger , boosting Cruz’s profile in the caucuses and primaries,without doing anyone much damage at all (since it would fail). The choice seems to have been a