Evangelicals Turn Out to Vote in Record Numbers

According to a post-election survey conducted by Public Opinion Strategies for the Faith and Freedom Coalition, self-identified evangelicals were the largest single constituency to vote in the 2010 midterm elections. The demographic comprised 29 percent of the vote and cast 78 percent of their ballots for Republican candidates. The turnout and was the largest ever recorded in a midterm election. The survey also found that 52 percent of all self-identified members of the Tea Party movement are conservative evangelicals, which is consistent with other organizations’ surveys. Evangelicals were joined by frequently-church-attending Roman Catholic voters, who constituted 12 percent of the vote and cast 58 percent of their ballots for Republican candidates, as opposed to 40 percent of their ballots for Democrats, according to CNN exit polling.

Okla. Islamic Law Ban could Block Ten Commandments Too

An Oklahoma Muslim filed a federal lawsuit on Thursday to block a state constitutional amendment overwhelmingly approved by voters that would prohibit state courts from considering international law or Islamic law when deciding cases. The measure, which got 70% of the vote in Tuesday’s election, was one of several on Oklahoma’s ballot that critics said pandered to conservatives and would move the state further to the right. The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Oklahoma City, seeks a temporary retraining order and injunction to block the election results from being certified by the state Election Board on Nov. 9. Among other things, the lawsuit alleges the ballot measure transforms Oklahoma’s Constitution into “an enduring condemnation” of Islam by singling it out for special restrictions by barring Islamic law, also known as Sharia law. Joseph Thai, a professor at the University of Oklahoma’s College of Law, said the ballot measure “raises thorny church-state problems as well” and could even affect a state judge’s ability to consider the Ten Commandments.

  • As the U.S. population of Muslims continues to grow exponentially, efforts to incorporate Sharia law will become more and more frequent

Obama Drops Plan to Limit Global Warming Gases

Environmental groups and industry seem headed for another battle over regulation of greenhouse gases, as President Barack Obama said he will look for ways to control global warming pollution other than Congress placing a ceiling on it. “Cap-and-trade was just one way of skinning the cat; it was not the only way,” Obama said at a news conference Wednesday, a day after Democrats lost control of the House. “I’m going to be looking for other means to address this problem.” Legislation putting a limit on heat-trapping greenhouse gases and then allowing companies to buy and sell pollution permits under that ceiling narrowly passed the House in 2009 as a centerpiece of Obama’s domestic agenda, but it stalled in the Senate.

Obama Invites GOP Leaders to Meet on Jobs, Tax Cuts

President Obama is planning a conference in two weeks with congressional leaders, including newly emboldened Republicans, as both parties set down markers for the new political landscape created by Tuesday’s elections. Americans also “want to change the tone here in Washington,” Obama told reporters after meeting with his Cabinet. “We can’t afford two years of just squabbling.” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., among those invited to the White House, offered a different assessment of the elections. McConnell said voters want to stop the “liberal onslaught” from Obama and the Democrats, including the health care law he said Republicans would try to repeal.

  • Unless Obama is willing to change his stripes (unlikely), there will more squabbling, not less

U.N. Human Rights Council Takes Aim at New Target: United States

The United Nations Human Rights Council, a conclave of 47 nations that includes such notorious human rights violators as China, Cuba, Libya and Saudi Arabia, met in Geneva on Friday, to question the United States about its human rights failings. It heard, among other things, that the U.S. discriminates against Muslims, that its police are barbaric and that it has been holding political prisoners behind bars for years. Russia urged the U.S. to abolish the death penalty. Cuba and Iran called on Washington to close Guantanamo prison and investigate alleged torture by its troops abroad. Indonesia, the world’s most populous Muslim nation, told it must better promote religious tolerance. Mexico complained that racial profiling had become a common practice in some U.S. states. For the first time ever, the U.S. came under the Human Rights Council’s microscope as part of the its centerpiece activity, the “Universal Periodic Review,” a rotating examination of the human rights failings and strong points of every country in the world, from North Korea to Norway, by the council’s members. But what really is under review is the gamble by the Obama administration to join the council in the first place, rather than shun it in disdain, as the Bush administration did, along with its predecessor, the U.N. Human Rights Commission, because of its roster of despotic members and unbridled antagonism toward Israel.

  • While the U.S. has issues, as does every nation, it is an outrageous mockery of human rights justice for repressive regimes to throw stones at America. It’s simply a way for them to deflect attention and continue the unrelenting attacks by the New World Order against the USA and its Christian heritage

Fraud Charges Cloud Navajos’ New Leadership

When Navajo voters elected Ben Shelly as their next president Tuesday, they created a potentially huge question about the tribe’s future leadership. Just days earlier, Shelly was charged by a special prosecutor with conspiracy, fraud and theft and accused in the tribe’s Window Rock District Court of looting nearly $9,000 from discretionary funds allocated to lawmakers. If Shelly, the current tribal vice president, is convicted after the Jan. 11 inauguration, he could face removal under Navajo law as chief executive on America’s largest Indian reservation, which sprawls across northeastern Arizona and parts of New Mexico and Utah. Vice presidential running-mate Rex Lee Jim would be poised to take over as president. But Jim also faces charges in the theft of tribal discretionary funds. He, too, could be barred by conviction from overseeing the Dine government. Next in the line of succession prescribed by the Navajo Nation Code would be the speaker of the Tribal Council, but no one knows who will hold that title in 2011. The 24 council members elected Tuesday must choose a speaker after they are seated early next year. About half of those delegates also face criminal charges in the widening scandal.

  • Finally, the Navajo Nation has fully integrated into our greedy, lawless, materialistic society – a very sad day indeed.

Norway Top Place to Live, U.S. Jumps from 13th to 4th

Norway remains at the top of the U.N. list of best places in the world to live. The United States jumps from 13th place last year to 4th while Zimbabwe comes in dead last. The U.N. Development Program, compiles the so-called human development well-being list based on global wealth, poverty, health and education. Japan was first in life expectancy, at 83.6 years, while Afghanistan was just over half that, at 44.6 years. Tiny Liechtenstein claimed the highest per capita annual income, at $81,011, , which was 460 times higher than last-placed Zimbabwe at $176.

IMF Says US Needs ‘Credible’ Plan to Cut Debt

International Monetary Fund Chief Economist Olivier Blanchard says the United States needs a “credible” a plan to cut its debt and dispel fears about the economy. Budget deficits and sovereign debt have ballooned worldwide after governments spent trillions of dollars in stimulus to revive growth. The U.S. deficit reached $1.294 trillion in the fiscal year through September, the second highest on record. The Federal Reserve said Thursday it will buy more government bonds, expanding record stimulus in a bid to reduce unemployment and avert deflation. “It is very important that the U.S., over the next few months or a year, puts in place a very credible, medium-term plan so we can see what happens to the debt five years out, 10 years out,” Blanchard said in an interview with CNBC.

  • Instead of reining in debt, the Federal Reserve is expanding it. If Obama doesn’t sink us Bernanke will.

Economic News

Employers added 151,000 jobs in October, the most in five months. The education and health care sectors led the way. But the unemployment rate, measured by a separate survey of households, remained stuck at 9.6% for a third month. So far this year, the economy has added 874,000 jobs. But that comes after the nation lost more than 8 million jobs in 2008 and 2009.

More private animal shelters are not accepting strays as they fill up with animals abandoned because their owners cannot afford to keep them. No one tracks how many shelters do not take strays, but “we are seeing more of it,” says Pam Burney, vice president for community initiatives with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. The shelters are reaching capacity because more people who are losing jobs or homes are abandoning their cats and dogs, Burney says.

Pacific Gas & Electric says the San Bruno natural gas pipeline explosion could wind up costing the utility $1 billion. PG&E revealed in a regulatory filing Thursday that the cost of repairing the devastated neighborhood, compensating victims, inspecting its pipes and other expenses could reach $550 million. Replacing valves on those pipelines is expected to cost $450 million. The Sept. 9 blast killed eight people and destroyed dozens of homes.

General Motors finalized details Thursday for an initial public offering of stock (IPO) this month that will make GM a public company again and let the government begin to sell its stake to start recouping $50 billion in taxpayer bailout money.

Toyota‘s second quarter profit more than quadrupled on a sales recovery despite lingering worries about the quality of its cars after massive recalls. Toyota reported July-September profit of $1.2 billion on Friday, up dramatically from a year earlier.

Greece

Court documents seen by The Associated Press accuse two men of assembling a wave of mail bombs using tiny amounts of crude explosive materials concealed by hollowed-out books and bogus charity pamphlets. The court papers accused two Greek men, 22 and 24, of using the materials to foil courier screeners and authorities and send explosive packages as far as the office of German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Police in Athens Thursday discovered a 14th package addressed to the French embassy. It was destroyed by a controlled explosion. Police were also inspecting packages Thursday at a private delivery company’s sorting office outside Athens. The latest incidents occurred despite a large-scale operation involving police, the post office and private mail companies to re-examine thousands of parcels. A 48-hour ban on all outgoing airmail packages from Greece remained in effect. One suspect was arrested carrying a booby-trapped package addressed to French President Nicholas Sarkozy. A mail bomb addressed to Italian Prime minister Silvio Berlusconi was intercepted and destroyed at an airport in Italy. The two suspects have been charged with membership in a terrorist group and multiple terrorism-related offenses.

Pakistan

A suicide bomber struck a mosque in northwest Pakistan during prayers Friday, causing the roof to collapse and killing at least 50 people. The bombing may have targeted an anti-Taliban activist, officials said. The blast was the latest in a series of attacks at mosques and Sufi shrines in Pakistan, and underscored the relentless security challenge to a nation where Islamist militants have thrived despite U.S.-supported army offensives against them.

Iraq

Iraqi Christians say they do not believe their government is serious about protecting them, according to the Christian Post. One Iraqi Christian leader said many officials have given their sympathy following Sunday’s slaughter at a Baghdad church, but he does not believe any promises. “At the funeral there was the Shiite leader, the official spokesperson of the government ministers,” said Bishop Georges Casmoussa of Iraq, according to Christian Today. “All the discussion was flippant – ‘We are with you, we are all suffering,’ etcetera, but we have demanded a serious investigation. We can’t count on good words anymore. It’s all air. We’ve heard enough.” Violence has increased steadily against Christians in Iraq, and about the religious minority has fled the country since 2003. Sunday’s attack by Islamic militants killed 58 people and wounded almost 80, making it the deadliest recorded attack on Christians yet.

Volcanoes

The most powerful eruption in a century from Indonesia‘s most volatile volcano has killed at least 78 people and raised the death toll to 122. Blistering gas from the volcano spewed farther than expected Friday, incinerating houses at the edge of the danger zone, triggering chaotic evacuations. Dozens of bodies were found Friday after searing gas avalanched down Mount Merapi around midnight. Houses and trees were torched and villagers incinerated as they fled.

Weather

Hurricane Tomas flooded the earthquake-shattered remains of a Haitian town on Friday, forcing families who had already lost their homes in one disaster to flee another. In the country’s capital, quake refugees resisted calls to abandon flimsy tarp and tent camps. Mud up to their ankles and a steady rain falling on their tents, residents of Haiti’s earthquake camps ignored warnings to leave their makeshift homes as Hurricane Tomas bore down on their deforested and flood-prone nation early Friday. Tomas’ maximum sustained winds were near 80 mph Friday, said the U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami, which predicted dangerous storm surges along the coast and possible flash floods and mudslides in mountainous areas.

A rain-sodden hillside collapsed on homes in a suburb of Costa Rica‘s capital early Thursday, killing at least 20 people, many as they slept. Dozens of rescuers, some using dogs, were searching for survivors as an undetermined number of people remain missing. The landslide in the suburb San Antonio followed two days of heavy rains that flooded a river near the town and sent 1,500 people to shelters across Costa Rica.

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