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Hezbollah: Yes, Syria Gave Us Scuds But It’s No Biggie

Via Jerusalem Post:
Hizbullah sources confirmed Thursday that the terror group received a shipment of Scud missiles from Syria, the Kuwaiti paper Al-Rai reported. According to the report, the missiles were claimed to be old and unusable. Hizbullah also accused Israel of blowing the incident out of proportion in order to provoke a media ruckus. The sources added, “Our organization has many surface-to-surface missiles spread across all of Lebanon, in case Israel attacks the country again.” In spite of this confirmation, the Syrian Foreign Ministry denied the reports, saying Israel was trying to stoke tensions in the Middle East and could be setting the stage for a possible Israeli “aggression” to avoid Middle East peace requirements.
I trust they'll think differently when Israel starts bombing in a few days. - Greg Pollowitz

Israel Bans The iPad

Via AP:
JERUSALEM – Israel has banned imports of Apple Inc.’s hottest new product, the iPad, citing concerns the powerful gadget’s wireless signals could disrupt other devices. Customs officials said Thursday they have already confiscated about 10 of the lightweight tablet computers since Israel announced the new regulations this week. The ban prevents anyone — even tourists — from bringing iPads into Israel until officials certify that they comply with local transmitter standards. The U.S. Federal Communications Commission allows devices with Wi-Fi capability to broadcast at higher power levels than are allowed in Europe and Israel — meaning that the iPad’s stronger signal could throw off others’ wireless connections, Schubert said.
Huh? - Greg Pollowitz
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Great News Thursday: Pentagon Says It Can’t Stop Another Maj. Nidal

Via Fox News:
A new Pentagon report into Major Nidal Hasan’s shooting rampage that killed 13 soldiers at Fort Hood on November 5, 2009, concluded that the existing Department of Defense safeguards were “unclear” or “inadequate” to identify the threat, according to NBC News, who obtained a copy of the report Thursday. The Department of Defense report detailed how the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Force knew prior to the shooting that Hasan was communicating with an al Qaeda recruiter, but this information was not passed on to the Department of Defense. The report cited “inconsistent” coordination between the two agencies. The report also concluded the Pentagon does not have a sufficient cyberspace monitoring program to alert authorities to potential threats.
Heckuva job. - Greg Pollowitz

Paging Michelle Obama: 6 Dead In Acapulco Drug Violence

Via AP:
ACAPULCO, Mexico – Police have identified an alleged hit man arrested on suspicion of taking part in a gunbattle that left six people dead and five wounded during a raging attack on the main boulevard in Acapulco’s tourist zone. A federal police statement released early Thursday said Ernesto Antonio Rocha Reyes, 26, was carrying a high-powered assault rifle when authorities, searching for suspects after the attacks, caught him. The statement said Reyes is an associate of Texas-born Edgar Valdez Villarreal, nicknamed “La Barbie,” who federal authorities believe is battling Hector Beltran Leyva for control of the Beltran Leyva cartel. A mother and her 8-year-old child, a taxi driver and a federal police officer were among the dead Wednesday.
But yesterday Mrs. Obama said Mexico was safe for tourists? - Greg Pollowitz

Michael Yon On General McChrystal: ‘This War Is Above His Head’

Via Facebook:
Life was good before I went to Iraq. But after three friends were killed during the GWOT, and my growing mistrust for the media and for the US Government/Military, I quit traveling the world and went to war. The United States was in peril. I am American. Today, I do not trust McChrystal anymore than some people trust the New York Times, Obama or Bush. If McChrystal could be trusted, I would go back to my better life. McChrystal is a great killer but this war is above his head. He must be watched.
Whoa. - Greg Pollowitz
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King Abdullah II: War Between Israel And Hezbollah ‘Imminent’

Via Huffington Post:
Congressman Adam Schiff hosted a “Members Only” meeting of the ‘Congressional Friends of Jordan Caucus’ in the US House of Representatives this morning in the CVC Congressional Meeting Room with Jordan’s King Abdullah II. According to one attendee in the session, “the King’s message was sobering.” King Abdullah seemed significantly concerned that conflict was about to break out again between Israel and Hezbollah in Lebanon. One congressional source told me that the word the King used was ‘imminent’ with regard to the potential outbreak of war.
I guess Israel doesn't like the idea of Syria putting Scuds on its Northern Border. - Greg Pollowitz

Happy Tax Day! How Much Booze Did Your Taxes Buy For The State Dept.?

Via Washington Times:
Months after President Obama urged federal agencies last year to cut wasteful spending, the U.S. Department of State paid $3,814 to fill an order of Jack Daniel’s whiskey for gratuities at one of its many overseas embassies. The booze buy wasn’t unusual. Last year alone, the State Department sent taxpayers tabs totaling nearly $300,000 for alcoholic beverages — about twice as much compared to the previous year, according to an analysis of spending records by The Washington Times.
Where's my TARP - Troubled Alcohol Relief Program - bailout loot? At the very least, let's change the tax laws for individuals to match that of corporations, meaning, home alcohol purchases should be deductible, no? - Greg Pollowitz

Now They Tell Us: Obamacare Won’t Stop Premium Increases

Via Los Angeles Times:
Public outrage over double-digit rate hikes for health insurance may have helped push President Obama’s healthcare overhaul across the finish line, but the new law does not give regulators the power to block similar increases in the future. And now, with some major companies already moving to boost premiums and others poised to follow suit, millions of Americans may feel an unexpected jolt in the pocketbook. Although Democrats promised greater consumer protection, the overhaul does not give the federal government broad regulatory power to prevent increases. Many state governments — which traditionally had responsibility for regulating insurance companies — also do not have such authority. And several that do are now being sued by insurance companies.
As Pelosi warned, we had to pass this turkey to see what's in it. - Greg Pollowitz

Update On The Chicago Killings In The Name Of ‘Allah’

Via Chicago Sun-Times:
. . .The man’s family members and court records paint a troubled portrait of the suspect. He was born in Chicago but lived in Madison, Wis., where he has amassed a long rap sheet. He was in prison in Wisconsin from 1996 to 2001 on a theft conviction and was in federal prison more recently on a gun conviction. In 2008, after serving his federal term, he was treated for marijuana addiction and worked at a bakery and in other temporary jobs, court records show. Last year, he was arrested for battery after pushing Twanda Thompson against a van in a Wal-Mart parking lot on Sept. 25 in Madison. They were arguing over whether she should take the baby into the store or he should wait with the child, records show. Witnesses told police that he yelled, “What would you do if your woman was acting like this?”
Remember the quote: "What would you do if your woman was acting like this?" - Greg Pollowitz

Rubio Up Big Over Crist, But Crist Leads As An Independent

Via Quinnipiac:
Marco Rubio has opened up an elephant-sized 56 – 33 percent lead over Gov. Charlie Crist in Florida’s U.S. Senate Republican primary, but in a three-way general election with Rubio on the GOP line, Crist as an independent and Democratic U.S. Rep. Kendrick Meek, Crist has a razor- thin edge, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today. Gov. Crist leads Meek 48 – 34 percent in a general election matchup, while Rubio’s margin over the Democrat is just 42 – 38 percent, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University survey finds. If Crist were to file as an independent for the general election, he would get 32 percent of the vote, compared to Rubio’s 30 percent and Meek’s 24 percent.
An interesting development. . . - Greg Pollowitz

Good News: Michelle Obama Declares Mexico Safe For Americans

Via ABC News:
On a visit to Mexico, first lady Michelle Obama said today that in despite recent drug-related violence along the U.S. border, Mexico is still a safe country for Americans to travel with their families and said she hopes to bring her daughters south of the border for a visit. “Our embassies are not discouraging American visitors. I think that they are encouraging them to be aware and to be smart as they travel,” she said in an interview with ABC News today. “I think that’s good advice anywhere in the world, you have to be smart, conscientious, particularly young people who are taking their spring breaks and their minds are elsewhere.” “I would encourage any American to spend time here,” she said.
Right. 22,000+ dead due to drug violence since 2006 is considered safe? - Greg Pollowitz

Obama’s New Space Vision: A Multi-Billon Dollar Lifeboat

Via Fox News:
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — A top NASA official said President Obama will announce plans to continue development of a stripped-down version of the Orion Crew Exploration Vehicle for use as a crew lifeboat on the International Space Station. Obama, who is scheduled to deliver a space policy speech at NASA’s Kennedy Space Station in Florida April 15, will also unveil plans to initiate development of a heavy-lift launch vehicle by 2015, NASA Deputy Administrator Lori Garver told reporters following remarks at the 26th National Space Symposium here April 13. Orion — part of NASA’s five-year-old Constellation program designed to replace the retiring space shuttle with new rockets and spacecraft optimized for the moon — was targeted for termination in Obama’s 2011 budget request.
What an incredible waste of money. - Greg Pollowitz

Chicagoland: ‘Allah’ Told Him To Kill His Family

Via Chicago Sun-Times:
Three children and an adult were killed early this morning in Chicago’s Marquette Park neighborhood, and a relative from Madison, Wis., whom police believe was the shooter was later taken into custody. Sources said the shooter told police “Allah” had told him to kill his family. And he told the officer who arrested him, “Too bad I ran out of bullets,” a source told the Chicago Sun-Times. The dead included a woman believed to be the pregnant wife of the shooter; 16-year-old Keyshai Fields, who was four months pregnant; a 3-year-old girl named Keleasha Larry; and a 7-month-old boy who was the shooter’s son, according to law enforcement officials and family members. Family members said the dead 7-month-old was named Jihad.
Horrible. - Greg Pollowitz

Over 6 In 10 Expect Taxes To Rise

Via Gallup:
PRINCETON, NJ — Sixty-three percent of Americans believe their taxes will increase in the next 12 months, while 4% expect a change that will reduce their taxes. Majorities of all income groups share this view, though it is more common among Americans in upper-income households. Americans in most demographic groups widely expect their taxes to increase over the next year, but there is pronounced variation among income groups, as noted, and by political party affiliation. Specifically, 74% of Republicans expect their taxes to go up, as do 64% of independents. A proportionately lower 49% of Democrats share that view, but it is still the most common response within the group. Forty-one percent of Democrats expect their taxes to remain unchanged, and 6% think theirs will go down.
I would like to see this poll House districts represented by a Dem, but which McCain carried in 2008. That's the real number Dems need to worry about. - Greg Pollowitz

FedEx Update: Explosion Was An Accident

Via AP:
SAN DIEGO — San Diego authorities say a package explosion at a FedEx warehouse appears to have been sparked by batteries and was not intentional. City fire spokesman Maurice Luque (loo-KAY’) says two lithium batteries in a box made contact and exploded shortly after 6 a.m. Wednesday at the building in the Miramar neighborhood. However, FedEx Corp. spokesman Rob Boulware says the batteries were nickel-cadmium. Police Lt. Dan Christman say employees who were sorting packages were about 6 feet away from the cardboard box when it exploded. They reported a flash and a smell like gunpowder, but nobody was hurt.
Good news. - Greg Pollowitz

Breaking: Box Blows Up At FedEx Office

Via AP:
SAN DIEGO (AP) — San Diego police say a package containing wires and batteries has exploded at a FedEx office but nobody was injured. The explosion occurred shortly after 6 a.m. Wednesday in a strip mall in the Sorrento Valley neighborhood. Lt. Dan Christman says employees sorting boxes were about 6 feet from the cardboard box when it exploded. The workers reported there was a flash and a smell like gunpowder. Christman says batteries and wires were seen inside the box. The building was evacuated and a police bomb squad was called in. It’s not immediately clear whether the explosion was deliberate but police say there had been no reports of any threats to the building. A message left with a FedEx spokesperson was not immediately returned.
Fox News is reporting nobody was hurt and they still haven't figure out if it was an accidental explosion or not. - Greg Pollowitz

Book Excerpt: Spitzer Spent $100K On Prostitutes

Via Fortune:
. . .To be sure, Spitzer patronized prostitutes and broke the law — for a longer period and with greater frequency than anyone knew. He had been a customer of the Emperors Club for at least two full years and spent more than $100,000 on more than 20 appointments with perhaps 10 escorts in New York City, Washington, Dallas, Palm Beach, and San Juan. Yet many other prominent men have strayed — why did Spitzer’s sexual habits become the target of federal investigative methods befitting an al Qaeda terrorist? Did the investigation really begin with a routine IRS review that spotted a Suspicious Activity Report buried within a database containing millions of them? Or did someone tip off the feds?
Note: The excerpt at the link above does contain some profanity. - Greg Pollowitz

Bernanke: Cut The Deficit

Via New York Times:
WASHINGTON — The Federal Reserve chairman said Wednesday that the government must begin to make “difficult choices” to address its gaping deficits and warned that “postponing them will only make them more difficult.” The chairman, Ben S. Bernanke, said that a “credible plan” for reining in federal deficits could help long-term interest rates and raise consumer and business confidence. “Although sizable deficits are unavoidable in the near term, maintaining the confidence of the public and financial markets requires that policymakers move decisively to set the federal budget on a trajectory toward sustainable fiscal balance,” he said. In testimonyto the Joint Economic Committee of Congress, Mr. Bernanke did not address monetary policy or say how long the Fed would keep short-term interest rates near zero. He also did not specify whether he believed the government should raise taxes, make cuts to Social Security and other benefits programs, or do something else. But his admonitions could help give momentum to the bipartisan fiscal commission created by President Obama. Under questioning from Senator Sam Brownback, Republican of Kansas, Mr. Bernanke said the nation’s debts and deficits could at some point alarm investors and raise long-term interest rates and the government’s borrowing costs.
Tax increases on the way. . . - Greg Pollowitz

Poland Update: Pole MP Apologizes For Blaming Russia For Smolensk Air Crash

Via The Georgian Times:
Pole MP Artur Gurski has apologized for blaming Russia for the Smolensk air crash, the Novie Izvestia newspaper says. According to the MP, he made the statement in ‘a state of a profound shock’ just in several hours after the air crush. The Tu-154 passenger plane with Polish President Lech Kaczynski, his wife and a delegation of senior officials, crashed some 300-400 meters from the runway near the Russian city of Smolensk on Saturday while landing in heavy fog.
Gurski's claim immediately fed conspiracy theories on the web, not that this statement will stop them, however. - Greg Pollowitz

An Even Better Ha Ha Ha: Toomey 50%, Specter 40%; Toomey 47%, Sestak 36%

Via Rasmussen Reports:
Republican hopeful Pat Toomey for the first time registers 50% support in his race against incumbent Democrat Arlen Specter in Pennsylvania’s contest for the U.S. Senate. The latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of likely voters in the state shows Specter earning 40% of the vote, a level he’s held steady at since the first of the year. Four percent (4%) prefer some other candidate, and six percent (6%) are undecided. Toomey this month also makes his strongest showing to date against Specter’s Democratic Primary challenger, Congressman Joe Sestak. Toomey picks up 47% support to Sestak’s 36%. Given this match-up, five percent (5%) like another candidate, and 12% are undecided.
Also from the poll, 60% of Penn. voters want to repeal Obamacare. Don't those bitter, gun-clingers know what's good for them? - Greg Pollowitz

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