Just Because the Mainstream Press Isn’t Telling You About It, Doesn’t Mean You Shouldn’t Know About It: News You Should Know for January 12

Stories of the Day

Can someone please tell President Obama and the rest of the Democrats that NOTHING is EVER FREE. “As the President’s State of the Union speech nears, he is launching trial balloons right and left–mostly left–to see what might prove a hit for his annual night of big policy initiatives. Some of the proposals on deck are cyber security and Internet proposals, two years of “free” community college, and changes in the way people qualify for homeownership.” OBAMA PITCHING BIG GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS AHEAD OF SOTU SPEECH

“Late in the morning on Saturday (EST), January 10, the Conseil Représentatif des Institutions juives de France (CRIF) disclosed the identities of the four individuals killed in the kosher market takeover the day before.  They were all men, and they were gunned down not long after Amedy Coulibaly entered the store.  None was killed in the commando raid.  One, a clerk in the store, Yohan Cohen, was shot as he grappled with the gunman.  The other three were presumably executed.  Besides the 22-year-old Cohen, they are Yoav Hattab, 21, reportedly the son of the chief rabbi of Tunis; Philippe Braham, 40; and François-Michel Saada, in his 60s. (snip)

The failure to give the grocery store victims names and faces is in keeping with the practice of the MSM not to pay attention to victims of rocket attacks from Gaza or of Palestinian terrorism, unless they are mistaken for Muslims – the owner of the bloody shoe in Ashkelon, injured in a Palestinian rocket attack, or the young Israeli beaten up by an Arab mob near Temple Mount and who was being protected by a policeman.  An exception is the four rabbis butchered in Jerusalem, two of whom were Americans.

George Zimmerman’s face was on the home page of almost every American news site Saturday.  He’d been arrested for throwing a bottle of wine at his girlfriend.

But anyone curious about who was killed in Hyper Cacher, the kosher market, had to go to Israeli or Jewish-American websites, or the Daily Mail, to find out.” Jewish victims at kosher market nameless, faceless in the MSM

“Do liberals actually believe in the right to offend?” The answer would be “no, not really.” Indeed, the outpouring of support for free speech in the aftermath of the Paris attack coincides with, and partially obscures, the degradation of speech rights in the West. Commencement last year was marked by universities’ revoking of appearances by speakers Condoleezza Rice and Ayaan Hirsi Ali for no other reason than that mobs disagreed with the speakers’ points of view. I do not recall liberals rallying behind Condi and Hirsi Ali then. (snip)

Brendan Eich donated a thousand dollars to California’s Proposition Eight in 2008. Six years later it cost him his job. In 2014, when Charles Krauthammer merely stated his agnosticism on the question of what causes global warming, liberals organized a petition demanding his removal from the Washington Post.” Blasphemy for Me, but Not for Thee

“If we’re serious about turning the tide, we have to recognise that the credo of the Left, with its contempt for Western values, its antipathy to freedom and its emphasis on non-judgmentalism, is hindering our response to terror. All cultures are not equal. One that murders non-believers, despises freedom of expression, and violently oppresses women and homosexuals is not equal to what we are striving for in the West.

We must ignore the malcontents and declare that our values, our achievements and our way of life are better than our enemies. Those who think otherwise shouldn’t be silenced or forced to join in with what they can reasonably opt out of; but neither should they be appeased. If they choose to put their faith first, they must not expect society to bend to their will, to refrain from offending them, or to exempt them from the rule law.” LEFT WING VALUES ARE HINDERING OUR RESPONSE TO ISLAMIC EXTREMISM

Is it possible that the those on the Left might have just been jolted from their deep slumbers? “The change has come, above all, from the soft Left. We conservatives never had a problem with the unapologetic defense of Western values. As for the old Left, or what remains of it, it cheerfully snarls at all religions. In between, though, is a swathe of people for whom the paramount political virtue has, until now, been not causing offense to minorities.

There is no British magazine like Charlie Hebdo, but we used to have a scatological TV show called “Spitting image,” which parodied, in puppet form, politicians, celebrities, Royals and, for a time, Jesus. A few Christians wrote in to complain and were dismissed as uptight prudes. Then a Muslim objected to the way his second prophet was being mocked, and the puppet was promptly dropped. Immigrants, explained the editor, had a hard enough time of it without their beliefs being mocked. (snip)

Conservatives, of course, have few such hangups. We approve of civility, and find papers like Charlie Hebdo tiresome, childish and obnoxious. But we also know that their obnoxiousness is the flip-side of religious freedom. If you are free to practice your faith, I must be free to laugh at it.

In recent years, in Europe at any rate, a large chunk of the population lost sight of that principle. If the Paris monstrosity has brought some of them back to their senses, then a tiny bit of good might have come of this foul business.” Paris attack wakes Europeans to importance of free speech

View image on Twitter13 stunning photos from Paris’ massive anti-terror rally

The Left hi-jacking our language once again. “Multiculturalism is one of those buzzwords that does not mean what it should. The ancient and generic Western study of many cultures is not multiculturalism. Rather, the trendy term promotes non-Western cultures to a status equal with or superior to Western culture largely to fulfill contemporary political agendas.

On college campuses, multiculturalism not so much manifests itself in the worthy interest in Chinese literature, Persian history, or hieroglyphics, but rather has become more a therapeutic exercise of exaggerating Western sins while ignoring non-Western pathologies to attract those who see themselves in some way as not part of the dominant culture.

It is a deductive ideology that starts with a premise of Western fault and then makes evidence fit the paradigm. It is ironic that only Western culture is self-critical and since antiquity far more interested than other civilizations in empirically investigating the culture of the other.  It is no accident that Europeans and Americans take on their own racism, sexism, and tribalism in a way that is not true of China, Nigeria or Mexico. Parody, satire, and caricature are not Chinese, African, or Arab words.” Multicultural Suicide

An empty chair’s repeat performance. “More than 40 heads of state came together in Paris to denounce a wave of terrorism that defiled the City of Light last week — yet there was one glaring exception: The U.S. sent only a low-level official.

French President Francois Hollande, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, British Prime Minister David Cameron and dozens of other world leaders all took part in the powerful denunciation of last week’s terror attacks that left 17 innocents dead.

Even Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas set aside their differences to march together on Boulevard Voltaire.

But the nation that stands as the symbolic face of the war on terror was nowhere in sight.” Eric Holder, U.S. officials no-shows at Paris unity rally

Harsh opinions being expressed from across the pond. “The US was represented at the march only by Jane Hartley, the American ambassador to France who is unrecognizable to most Americans, let alone the rest of the world.” America snubs historic Paris rally: Holder skipped out of proceedings early, Kerry was in India, Obama and Biden just stayed home

Tone deaf. “’I wish our US President had gone to Paris to stand with our European allies,” tweeted James Stavridis, the retired Navy admiral and current dean of Tufts University’s Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.

“It’s stunning, truly stunning,” said Aaron David Miller, who among other responsibilities during his time at the State Department under both Republican and Democratic administrations, helped deliberate over which officials to send to which events. “It’s a poster child for tone deafness.’” Barack Obama’s French kiss-off: The president’s decision to skip the Paris march raises eyebrows

“But wait… isn’t somebody missing from this picture? In what is possibly one of the worst games of Where’s Waldo in history, the fine folks at Weasel Zippers notice that Eric Holder doesn’t seem to be on the scene.

twitter 011214Nobody from the US govt marched in Paris today… not even Eric Holder

From an honest Democrat. “Sunday, President Obama morally abdicated his place as the leader of the free world.

His decision to stay home instead of standing side by side with French President Hollande as millions marched in Paris in solidarity with the slain journalists of Charlie Hebdo in opposition to radical Islam – an enemy fiercer than we have seen in decades – sent a clear message to the world: Obama just doesn’t care.

His words about the horrendous terrorist attack this week were not enough. They came off as inauthentic at best and offensive at worst.” Obama AWOL in Paris: Message to America, allies is we don’t care

“You won’t find it in the American media, but the U.K. Daily Mail has obtained confirmation from an administration spokesman that President Obama spent much of yesterday watching the NFL Playoffs (as I speculated).

According to an administration official, President Obama spent part of his Sunday afternoon watching a National Football League game on television.”

Confirmed: Obama watched NFL playoffs instead of going to Paris

From an ex-Lefty. “So why didn’t POTUS show up?  A liberal friend emailed me that it was admittedly a “political mistake.”  ”Political,” yes, but “mistake”?  I doubt the decision was made innocently or even faintly by mistake.   Obama is a man known for his political expediency more than anything, indeed above anything, and also for being a constant campaigner.  It was obvious that going to Paris would have been good public relations and that therefore not attending was a deliberate choice.

There had to have been a reason for his non-attendance and the bizarre dissing of this event by his administration. I believe it stems from this: There are two words our president seems constitutionally unable to put together — “Islamic” and “terrorism.”  For Obama (and, as a sideshow, the zany Howard Dean), these terms are mutually exclusive, an oxymoron.  Appearing in Paris, Obama might be put in the unusual position of having to link them, our complaisant press rarely having the nerve to ask such an impertinent question.  Holder, in a television interview from Paris (I think it was CNN — there have been so many), danced around the question, hemming and hawing as if he couldn’t quite make out what was being said or had been asked an embarrassing question about  IRS emails.” #BarackNEstPasCharlie: Why Didn’t Obama Go to Paris?

“Just how low is this president prepared to go?  How embarrassing is it that the United States gave so little serious thought to yet more bloody proof that Islamic terrorism is on the rise, and not at all in a “JV” way?  Obama’s pathetic appeasement and preference for “leading from behind” have become an international tragedy.  His denial of the obvious, much of it his own doing, is catastrophic for the world, not just for the United States.” Silence of the Lamb

Democrats

From many of the comments: “Democrats must be polling badly.” “ Senior Democrats, dissatisfied with the party’s tepid prescriptions for combating income inequality, are drafting an “action plan” that calls for a massive transfer of wealth from the super-rich and Wall Street traders to the heart of the middle class.

The centerpiece of the proposal, set to be unveiled Monday by Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), is a “paycheck bonus credit” that would shave $2,000 a year off the tax bills of couples earning less than $200,000. Other provisions would nearly triple the tax credit for child care and reward people who save at least $500 a year.

The windfall — about $1.2 trillion over a decade — would come directly from the pockets of Wall Street “high rollers” through a new fee on financial transactions, and from the top 1 percent of earners, who would lose billions of dollars in lucrative tax breaks.” Democrats, in a stark shift in messaging, to make big tax-break pitch for middle class

Let’s hope these folks do what’s right for the country by reaching across the aisle. “Reacting to early signs that President Obama and the Democratic rump in Congress is lurching to the Left, centrists are complaining bitterly that the left-wing Elizabeth Warren wing of the party is taking control.

Liberal Democrats say centrist grumbling is sour grapes over their decimation in the midterm election.

Obama cannot discount the shrinking centrist group because they can cross the aisle and hand the new GOP’s new Senate majority victories on everything from the Keystone XL oil pipeline and banking reforms, to dismantling Obamacare.” Centrist angst over Dems’ leftward lurch

Free Speech

I love her spunk! I wish more people in the entertainment industry would speak up like this. “Underwood, who stands for traditional American values, issued the following statement in response to the attacks on her new song, which just hit #1 on the Country charts this week.

“I’m not the first person to sing about God, Jesus, faith [or] any of that, and I won’t be the last. And it won’t be the last for me, either. If you don’t like it, change the channel,” she said.” ATHEISTS WON’T STOP CARRIE UNDERWOOD FROM SINGING ABOUT FAITH: ‘IF YOU DON’T LIKE IT, CHANGE THE CHANNEL’

Illegal Immigration

Terrific. “Leaked internal training documents from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) reveal Border Patrol agents are now receiving guidelines instructing them that the vast majority of illegal immigrants in the U.S. are off limits to federal agents and are substantially immune to detention and deportation. A trusted federal agent in the CBP provided exclusive copies of the documents to Breitbart Texas and also agreed to an interview on the condition of anonymity.” EXCLUSIVE: CATCH AND RELEASE 2.0 — LEAKS HIGHLIGHT TEARDOWN OF IMMIGRATION ENFORCEMENT

“But recently that has changed.  Now, for the first time in American history, an entire class of persons, a class that numbers in the millions, has been given broad, de jure amnesty and immunity from both federal and state laws.  In this class of people are those who have been characterized as the undocumented (i.e., illegal) immigrants. (snip)

American voters have to decide whether or not they want their government to establish a privileged class of residents who live off of their taxes.  As their property taxes go up, as fees on their cell phones, license plates, natural gas and electricity bills go up, they can think about the privileged few who have a lot of those expenses subsidized.” The New Privileged Class: Illegal Immigrants

“President Obama’s new deportation amnesty will impose “billions of dollars in costs” on states, they told a federal court this week — including more than $130 for each Texas driver’s license issued to illegal immigrants under the policy.

More than 1,100 pages of documents submitted by Texas and two dozen other states suing to stop the amnesty detail the costs in depth, and include sworn affidavits from state officials, federal immigration officers and others arguing that the amnesty will increase illegal immigration, leaving the states with even bigger burdens.” Obama amnesty to impose billions in costs on states, lawsuit alleges

Leftism

Emphasis mine. “As times go on the stories about how far and how fast the economy of Venezuela has fallen apart become ever more dramatic. They now actually have the Army, seriously, the armed forces, guarding food supplies. And the police are handing out toilet paper. We can just about imagine such things happening in the wake of some massive natural disaster, the levee breaks, the hurricane comes ashore, but not as day after day activity as something normal for the nation. But there has been no natural disaster in Venezuela, this is just the result of some years of idiot socialism. What makes it all so tragic is that there was and is another way to achieve the stated aim: making the poor better off. And when we consider what we might want to do to make the poor better off we’d better pay attention to this, admittedly extreme, example.

Here’s the news report:

Shoppers thronged grocery stores across Caracas today as deepening shortages led the government to put Venezuela’s food distribution under military protection.

Long lines, some stretching for blocks, formed outside grocery stores in the South American country’s capital as residents search for scarce basic items such as detergent and chicken.

Police inside a Luvebras supermarket in eastern Caracas intervened to help staff distribute toilet paper and other products. (snip)

There’s absolutely nothing wrong at all with the intention of making the poor better off. Indeed, I share that aim: that’s why I’m this capitalist free marketeer type, as it’s the only socio-economic system we’ve ever had that has made the poor substantially better off for any period of time. However, there are good ways and bad ways of going about doing this and if we want to succeed in our aim, in the US, of making the poor better off then we’d do well to pay attention.

The short answer is don’t screw with the market.The Ghastly Economic Mess In Venezuela And How To Avoid It (Hint, Don’t Raise The Minimum Wage)

Obamacare

I have no words… “All of which raises a question: If annual physicals are worthless, why did Dr. Emanuel and his accomplices build them into PPACA? Their clinical limitations have long been known, and the President was called out as early as 2008 on his claim that such preventive care would reduce health care expenditures. Nine months before he was elected, the New England Journal of Medicine reported, “Barack Obama has argued that ‘too little is spent on prevention and public health.’… Our findings suggest that the broad generalizations [about preventive care] made by many presidential candidates can be misleading.”EZEKIEL EMANUEL: GO RATION YOURSELF: Obamacare advisor says not to bother with annual wellness visit

President Obama

We’re in the best of hands. “It’s high time the news media paid more attention to Valerie Jarrett. An old Chicago friend of both Barack and Michelle Obama’s, she exercises unusual influence in the White House as a “senior adviser.” Many in Washington believe that she is at the heart of the disappointment the Obama administration has become. They are unwilling to say so in public. But the evidence keeps piling up. (snip)

More and more people in Washington do have advice for Obama — on the conduct of his administration. No one I spoke to believes he will follow it, but they all agree that the organizational lines of authority at the White House need to be better observed, that there should be better communication with both parties on Capitol Hill, and that the decision-making process should involve more people and be less directed toward short-term political fixes (most of which haven’t worked). So far the Obama administration’s management style has guaranteed only one thing: The only long-term fixed presence in the Obama White House is Valerie Jarrett, the person who mentored the careers of both Barack and Michelle Obama a quarter of a century ago and who remains glued to their sides to this day.” Valerie Jarrett, Obama’s ‘Berlin Wall’: The woman insiders describe as the president’s “real chief of staff” keeps out bad news and new ideas.

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