A Venezuelan farmer who held a months-long hunger strike to protest President Hugo Chavez's policies of land nationalization has died at a military hospital, his relatives said.
"Today, August 30, 2001, the exhausted body of husband and father Franklin Brito stopped breathing," his family said in a statement released to Venezuelan media, calling his death a "symbol" for the Venezuelan people in their struggle for "freedom."
Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Friday, August 27, 2010
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
Little-known fact: Obama's failed stimulus program cost more than the Iraq war
By: Mark Tapscott
Editorial Page Editor
08/23/10 11:32 AM EDT
Expect to hear a lot about how much the Iraq war cost in the days ahead from Democrats worried about voter wrath against their unprecedented spending excesses.
The meme is simple: The economy is in a shambles because of Bush's economic policies and his war in Iraq. As American Thinker's Randall Hoven points out, that's the message being peddled by lefties as diverse as former Clinton political strategist James Carville, economist Joseph Stiglitz, and The Nation's Washington editor, Christopher Hayes.
The key point in the mantra is an alleged $3 trillion cost for the war. Well, it was expensive to be sure, in both blood and treasure, but, as Hoven notes, the CBO puts the total cost at $709 billion. To put that figure in the proper context of overall spending since the war began in 2003, Hoven provides this handy CBO chart showing the portion of the annual deficit attributable to the conflict:
But there is much more to be said of this data and Hoven does an admirable job of summarizing the highlights of such an analysis:
* Obama's stimulus, passed in his first month in office, will cost more than the entire Iraq War -- more than $100 billion (15%) more.
* Just the first two years of Obama's stimulus cost more than the entire cost of the Iraq War under President Bush, or six years of that war.
* Iraq War spending accounted for just 3.2% of all federal spending while it lasted.
* Iraq War spending was not even one quarter of what we spent on Medicare in the same time frame.
* Iraq War spending was not even 15% of the total deficit spending in that time frame. The cumulative deficit, 2003-2010, would have been four-point-something trillion dollars with or without the Iraq War.
* The Iraq War accounts for less than 8% of the federal debt held by the public at the end of 2010 ($9.031 trillion).
* During Bush's Iraq years, 2003-2008, the federal government spent more on education that it did on the Iraq War. (State and local governments spent about ten times more.)
Just some handy facts to recall during coming weeks as Obama and his congressional Democratic buddies get more desperate to put the blame for their spending policies on Bush and the war in Iraq. For more from Hoven, go here.
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
And Obama Wants Us To Be More Like Them ::: China's massive traffic jam could last for weeks | Asian Correspondent
A massive traffic jam in north China that stretches for dozens of miles and hit its 10-day mark on Tuesday stems from road construction in Beijing that won't be finished until the middle of next month, an official said.
Bumper-to-bumper gridlock spanning for 60 miles (100 kilometers) with cars moving little more than a half-mile (one kilometer) a day at one point has improved since this weekend, said Zhang Minghai, director of Zhangjiakou city's Traffic Management Bureau general office.
But he said he wasn't sure when the situation along the Beijing-Zhangjiakou highway would return to normal.
The traffic jam started Aug. 14 on a stretch of the Beijing-Zhangjiakou highway. That section has frequently been congested, especially after large coalfields were discovered in Inner Mongolia, Zhang said. Traffic volume has increased 40 percent every year.
Drivers stranded in the gridlock in the Inner Mongolia region and Hebei province, headed toward Beijing, passed the time sleeping, walking around, or playing cards and chess. Local villagers were doing brisk business selling instant noodles, boxed lunches and snacks, weaving between the parked trucks on bicycles.
The highway construction in Beijing that is restricting inbound traffic flow and causing the jam "will not be finished until Sept. 17," he said.
Monday, August 23, 2010
TEHRAN, Iran — Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad Sunday inaugurated the country's first domestically built long-range unmanned bomber aircraft, calling it an "ambassador of death" to Iran's enemies.
Friday, August 20, 2010
"There is no question there is a concerted effort to make this a political issue by some. And I join those who have called for looking into how ... this opposition to the mosque is being funded," she said. "How is this being ginned up that here we are talking about Treasure Island, something we've been working on for decades, something of great interest to our community, as we go forward to an election about the future of our country and two of the first three questions are about a zoning issue in New York City?"
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Dear Leader! ::: White House Directive: Erect Signs at All Stimulus Projects as ‘Symbol of President Obama’s Commitment to American People’
Monday, August 16, 2010
Friday, August 13, 2010
Opponents of the Tea Party movement tried responding to the conservative grassroots movement nicely -- by creating the inclusive, deliberative Coffee Party.
But now they're ready to get mean.
A new progressive group called the Agenda Project has launched the "F*ck Tea" campaign. "Progress is the real American party," reads the campaign website's tag line.
"Set aside your good manners, your tolerance, your measured understanding of policy differences, and your earnest do-gooder ideas for a just a moment to join me in telling the Tea Party what you really think of them," Agenda Project founder Erica Payne said in a press release.
The Agenda Project describes itself as "a public policy organization dedicated to building a powerful, intelligent and well-connected political movement capable of identifying and advancing rational, effective, non-ideological ideas in the public debate."
F*ck Tea is one of several projects the group is advancing to push back against what Payne calls "the rhetoric over results paradigm that is holding our country hostage."
The campaign is selling products like mugs and t-shirts with "F*ck Tea" emblazoned across them and plans to sell other products like a "Glenn Beck Bowl Buddy."
While the Tea Party and the subsequent Coffee Party are grassroots, decentralized movements, Payne's Agenda Project is structured as a 501(c)(4) nonprofit. Payne is a former Democratic National Committee official who has founded other organizations like the Democracy Alliance, a group of liberal donors whose partners have invested over $100 million in progressive organizations.