Arizona Appeals Injunction on Immigration Law
Arizona officials asked a federal appeals court to lift a judge’s ruling that blocks full enforcement of the state’s illegal-immigration law, as dozens of the law’s opponents were arrested across the city. Republican Gov. Jan Brewer called on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals to set aside a lower court’s ruling that put key parts of the law on hold until the full legal dispute is aired. Among them: a requirement for police to check suspects’ immigration status during routine stops if there’s a reasonable suspicion they are in the U.S. illegally. Some parts of the law took effect Thursday as scheduled. The governor’s action came as hundreds of demonstrators, most of them pressing for the law to be struck down permanently, blocked parts of downtown. Traffic and light-rail service near City Hall were stalled for nearly an hour,. Several hundred protesters converged on the local jail where at least six people were arrested after chaining themselves to the building. Arizona Gov.
A federal appeals court has denied Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer’s request for an expedited hearing on the state’s controversial immigration law. Instead, the case has been scheduled for a hearing during the first week in November. Meanwhile, Brewer is asking the state legislature to consider changing the state’s controversial immigration law so that police officers can question the immigration status of suspects.
Is Back-Door Amnesty in the Works?
A group of Republican senators has written to top immigration officials in the Obama administration asking them to reveal whether large-scale plans are under way to provide a so-called non-legislative version of amnesty. The lawmakers cite an 11-page draft document written by staff to the director of the Citizenship and Immigration Service that says they are reviewing several executive orders and other mechanisms that effectively would serve as a substitute for comprehensive immigration reforms. The objective would be to promote “family unity, foster economic growth … and reduce the threat of removal for certain individuals present in the United States without authorization.” Among the suggestions, the document offers proposals for rewriting legal opinions to allow unaccompanied minors, victims of human trafficking or extreme hardship and others who’ve overstayed their visas to remain in the U.S.
- “Transparent” Obama would like nothing more than to bypass Congress and the will of the people to enact his own priorities
FBI Seeks New Powers over Internet Data
If the Obama administration persuades Congress, Internet providers would be more easily forced to hand over records to the FBI without a court order for terrorism and intelligence investigations, The Washington Post reports. The new data being sought by the Justice Department could include web browsing history, search history, e-mail times and dates, your location and even Facebook friend requests. “It’ll be faster and easier to get the data,” said Stewart Baker, a former senior Bush administration Homeland Security official. “And for some Internet providers, it’ll mean giving a lot more information to the FBI.” The digital-freedom advocate Electronic Frontier Foundation calls the proposal “one of the most powerful and frightening tools of government surveillance to be expanded by the Patriot Act,” and says the lack of oversight “make this power ripe for abuse.”
Exploding US Debt a Huge Risk says Congressional Budget Office
The mushrooming U.S. government debt burden may cause a new financial crisis by spurring a sharp rise in interest rates, warns Doug Elmendorf, director of the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). Countries such as Greece already have seen such crises, as their debt buildups sent interest rates soaring and drove away international bond investors. The CBO projects that U.S. federal government debt will reach 62 percent of Gross Domestic Product by Sept. 30, up from 36 percent just three years earlier. Only once before has that figure surpassed 50 percent, during and just after World War II. The debt has been created by massive budget deficits, with the White House projecting a gap of $1.47 trillion this year. Current government policies aren’t encouraging, Elmendorf notes. Spending on Social Security and Medicare are set to ratchet higher as the population ages. “A high level of federal debt, combined with an unfavorable long-term budget outlook, would also increase the probability of a sudden fiscal crisis,” Elmendorf writes.
- Strap on your seat belts – the “sudden fiscal crisis” looms just over the horizon
62 Percent Think U.S. Is on the Decline
A Fox News poll released Friday finds widespread belief among American voters that the country is on the decline as a civilization. In addition, a majority thinks the country is moving toward socialism. A 62 percent majority of voters thinks the United States is on the decline. That’s more than twice as many as the 26 percent who believe it is on the rise. Most Republicans — 76 percent — think the country is in decline, and 64 percent of independents agree. Views among Democrats are more evenly split: 41 percent say on the rise and 43 percent say on the decline. The poll also finds 73 percent of voters think the government in Washington has too much power, up from 64 percent who thought so in 1997. Almost all voters — 89 percent — think elected officials in Washington are employees of the American public and “should therefore try to follow the will of the people when making decisions.”
- The American public usually has things right – it’s the self-serving politicians who are out of step
Obama Official Led Fund Supporting World Government
President Obama’s assistant secretary of state for population, refugees and migration, Eric P. Schwartz, previously served as the director of a George Soros-funded organization that promoted global governance. Schwartz also coordinated meetings on behalf of Obama’s transition team with a group that advocates placing more blue United Nations helmets on U.S. troops and coercing the U.S. to join the U.N.’s International Criminal Court, which could prosecute American citizens and soldiers for “war crimes” and other offenses. A 2009 report by Cliff Kincaid, president of America’s Survival Inc, warned joining the International Criminal Court “could spark a revolt in the U.S. Armed Forces.” In a separate posting, Kincaid wrote, “Schwartz and his associates are clearly laying the groundwork for the Obama Administration’s acceptance of and membership in the International Criminal Court.”
- The New World Order folks haven’t just infiltrated the Obama administration, they have been welcomed and empowered by our globalist/socialist President
BP announced Friday that it will set up a $100 million charitable fund to support unemployed oil rig workers experiencing economic hardship due to the deepwater drilling moratorium imposed by the Obama administration. The fund will be administered by the Gulf Coast Restoration and Protection Foundation, a supporting organization of The Baton Rouge Area Foundation (BRAF). “BRAF has a strong track record of meeting community needs, and we are confident the Foundation will respond effectively to assist the rig workers who today are struggling to make ends meet,” incoming BP CEO Bob Dudley said in the statement.
House Approves Bill on Drilling, Oil Spills
The House approved a bill Friday to boost safety standards for offshore drilling, remove a federal cap on economic liability for oil spills and impose new fees on oil and gas production. Democratic leaders hailed the bill as a comprehensive response to the Gulf of Mexico oil spill and said it would increase drilling safety and crack down on oil companies such as BP. Companies with significant workplace safety or environmental violations over the preceding seven years would be banned from new offshore drilling permits. Republicans and some-oil state Democrats opposed the measure, calling it a federal power grab that would raise energy prices and kill thousands of American jobs because of the new fees and liability provision. The legislation, which passed 209-193, has yet to be taken up in the Senate, where partisan disagreements will likely delay final consideration of a joint House-Senate bill until after the August congressional recess.
Pot Farms Raided in California
Winding down a three-week sweep of large-scale marijuana-growing on remote public lands, U.S. and California agents have arrested 97 people, most of them Mexican nationals. More arrests are planned. Several Mexican drug cartels established the pot farms in the Sierra Nevada. Agents have so far destroyed more than 432,000 marijuana plants valued at $1.7 billion. “Tremendous devastation has been done and continues to be done by these industrial-sized grows,” Gil Kerlikowske, who directs the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy.
California Declares State of Emergency over Budget Woes
Increasing pressure on lawmakers to negotiate a state budget that closes a $19 billion shortfall, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger declared a state of emergency over the state’s finances this past week. In the declaration, Schwarzenegger ordered three furlough days per month beginning in August for thousands of state employees to preserve the state’s cash to pay the state’s debt obligations and for essential services. California’s budget is several weeks overdue and Schwarzenegger and top lawmakers are at impasse over how to balance the state’s books. Analysts say it could be several more weeks before the Republican governor and leaders of the Democrat-led legislature reach an agreement, a delay that may threaten to lower the state’s already weak credit rating, now hovering just a few notches above “junk” status.
Economic growth slowed last quarter as consumers continued to pinch pennies in the aftermath of the worst recession since the 1930s. Economic output rose at a modest annual rate of 2.4% in the second quarter, down from 3.7% in the first quarter and 5% in fourth-quarter 2009. The Bureau of Economic Analysis‘ second-quarter report on gross domestic product was bleak news for an economy struggling to gain momentum with unemployment at 9.5%. Growth would have to equal 5% for a full year to drive the unemployment rate down 1 percentage point.
Consumer spending grew at a lackluster 1.6% annual rate in the second quarter, down from 1.99% the first quarter. State and local governments, whose budget cuts have been a drag on economic growth, incrased spending 1.3%, first rise since second-quarter 2009.
NATO announced Friday that six more U.S. troops have died in Afghanistan, bringing the death toll for July to at least 66 and surpassing the previous month’s record as the deadliest for American forces in the nearly 9-year-old war.U.S. and NATO commanders had warned casualties would rise as the international military force ramps up the war against the Taliban, especially in their southern strongholds in Helmand and Kandahar provinces.
In Kabul, police fired weapons into the air Friday to disperse a crowd of angry Afghans who shouted “death to America,” hurled stones and set fire to two vehicles after an SUV, driven by U.S. contract employees, was involved in a traffic accident that killed four Afghans on the main airport road. Afghan police, some carrying riot shields, converged on the area, firing warning shots into the air to disperse the protesters. Sayedzada said the crowd burned two foreigners’ vehicles.
Militants flew an al-Qaeda flag over a Baghdad neighborhood Thursday after killing 16 security officials and burning some of their bodies in a brazen afternoon attack that served as a grim reminder of continued insurgent strength in Iraq’s capital. It was the bloodiest attack in a day that included the deaths of 23 Iraqi soldiers, policemen and other security forces across the country who were targeted by shootings and roadside bombs. In addition, a roadside bomb killed four people, including three army soldiers, and wounded 11 people south of Baghdad on Saturday, The mayhem serves as a stark warning that insurgents are trying to make a comeback three months after their two top leaders were killed in an airstrike on their safehouse, and as the U.S. military presence decreases day by day.
Separatist rebels triggered a land mine Friday that killed at least five paramilitary soldiers and wounded 41 others in India’s remote northeastern state of Assam, where a deadly separatist insurgency has long raged. The soldiers were traveling in two buses when militants used a remote control device to trigger the explosion. The blast occurred on a road passing through a dense jungle near the town of Goalpara, about 125 miles west of the state capital, Gauhati. The wounded soldiers, at least 33 in critical condition, were taken to nearby hospitals. Initial investigations indicated the rebels belonged to the National Democratic Front of Bodoland, an insurgent group that has fought for independence from India since 1986.
ASSIST News Service reports that soldiers from the Burmese Army attacked another Karen minority village on July 23, burning 50 homes, a school and a church. More than 600 villagers fled as the army advanced. They joined 300 more from neighboring areas whose villages have not yet been attacked, but who have abandoned their homes in fear to seek refuge in the jungle. The Karen people, many of whom are Christian, are regularly targeted by the Burmese army. Most escaped with only what they could carry, and are enduring the rainy season without shelter. Hundreds of civilians have fled towards the Thai-Burma border, and some have already crossed the border to seek refuge in Thailand. Benedict Rogers, Christian Solidarity Worldwide’s East Asia Team Leader, said, “The regime’s record is one of widespread and systematic rape as a weapon of war, forced labor, attacks on civilians, murder, and destruction of over 3,500 villages in Eastern Burma alone since 1996.”
A huge wildfire in the high desert wilderness north of Los Angeles jumped an aqueduct on Friday, rushing toward hundreds of houses as firefighters also tried to keep flames from damaging power lines that bring electricity to Southern California. Some 2,000 structures were threatened and 300 homes were evacuated. Winds apparently carried embers across the wide concrete channel, with flames rapidly spreading to backyard fences at the edge of Palmdale. Plumes of smoke streamed across the city of 139,000.By early evening the winds picked up and pushed the flames north and east toward the suburbs of Los Angeles County’s inland desert. The fire has burned more than 20 square miles since erupting Thursday afternoon.
Further north in Kern County, good weather helped firefighters build containment lines around two wildfires that destroyed 49 homes in remote mountain communities earlier in the week. The fire that destroyed eight residences and a few outbuildings as it spread across about 26 square miles of the Sequoia National Forest in the Sierra Nevada was 55% contained. The fires have consumed a total of 42,000 acres, or about 75 square miles.
Flooding in Pakistan has killed more than 800 people this week, a government official said Saturday as rescuers struggled to reach marooned victims and some evacuees showed signs of fever, diarrhea and other waterborne diseases. The flooding caused by record-breaking rainfalls caused massive destruction, especially in the northwest province, where officials said it was the worst deluge since 1929. The U.N. estimated Saturday that some 1 million people nationwide were affected by the disaster. The highway connecting Peshawar to the federal capital, Islamabad, was shut down after the water washed away bridges and other links.
A giant chunk of hail that plunged into the prairie town of Vivian, S.D., last Friday was confirmed today as the heaviest hailstone ever recorded in the United States. The National Climate Extremes Committee, a branch of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, confirmed the weight of a record 1.94 pounds and also a record diameter (8 inches). The previous heaviest — a hailstone stone that fell in Coffeyville, Kan., on Sept. 3, 1970 — was 1.67 pounds.
- And great hail from heaven fell upon men. (Rev. 16:21)