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  • The Scriptorium

    12/31/2004

    Rehnquist Resumes His Call for Judicial Independence

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 11:00 pm

    The dictators in black robes are crying foul again because Congress did the right thing and passed a resolution in response to Supreme Court decisions being based on International Law and the case law of other countries. They’re also protesting the suggestion that the dictators should be subject to impeachment if they abuse their power.

    Not having the ability to impeach or discipline our Supreme Court justices is exactly why we’re in the position we’re in today – along with the filibustering, litmus test loving, liberals in Congress. Un-elected judges can overrule the elected representatives of the people, thereby stripping the American people of their right to self government.

    The use of international law and case law from foreign countries in judicial decisions is proof that our courts have been taken over by globalists, and our national sovereignty is in danger like it never has been before. President Bush’s judicial nominations in his next term could determine which direction this country goes – toward the New World Order where the masses are ruled by the elites with no representation or recourse, or toward restoring our national sovereignty and our constitution.

    Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist, delivering his 19th and most likely his last year-end report on the federal judiciary, returned on Friday to one of his longtime themes: a need to safeguard the independence of federal judges from intrusive Congressional oversight.

    Criticism of judges and their decisions “is as old as our Republic” and can be a healthy part of the balance of power between the branches, the chief justice said in remarks issued by the court’s press office. But he added that criticism from Congress had “in the eyes of some taken a new turn in recent years” – an oblique locution that nonetheless left no doubt that he himself was among those discerning a new and disturbing twist to the attacks.

    Chief Justice Rehnquist mentioned a measure Congress passed in 2003 requiring special scrutiny of judges who issue sentences shorter than those called for by the federal sentencing guidelines. In his year-end report last year, the chief justice said this approach “could appear to be an unwarranted and ill-considered effort to intimidate individual judges.” …….

    NOTE: If you are not registered at the NYT, you can use one of the following logins to read the article:

    user: cpunk89
    Pass: asdfasdf

    or

    member101
    bugmenot

    The New York Times

    Planned Parenthood Sued Over Abort Pill Death

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 8:09 pm

    Cases continue to be reported of infection, blood loss requiring transfusions, and even death as a result of the RU486 abortion pill. The parents of an 18 year old who died as a result of taking the abortion pill are suing the drug manufacturer and planned parenthood, who pushes the drug in their literature and assures their patients it’s completely safe. So, how does planned parenthood respond to this woman’s death? They chastise the “anti-choice” ideologues for not being willing to recognize that all studies prove the drug is safe. I’m sure the parents of the woman who is now dead would disagree, and could probably tell planned parenthood where to stick their studies.

    The “anti-choice” term really burns my biscuits. Is planned parenthood suggesting the victim chose to die? They only support choice if that choice is abortion. My mother worked for a planned parenthood facility for a while as an RN (I’m really not sure why), and she told me later that planned parenthood policy is to promote abortion and discourage investigation into any other option. Pro-choice means there’s one choice and they’ll help you choose it.

    News Max

    Andrea Mitchell: Bush Cabinet ‘Not the Brightest’

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 7:42 pm

    You’ve gotta love the liberal media. Suggesting that Bush needs to seek some help from outsiders in dealing with the tsunami disaster, an NBC reporter calls Bush’s cabinet “not the best and the brightest”. If they’re not calling Condi Rice Aunt Jemima, they’re insulting her intelligence. I wonder if Mitchell got her bachelors degree in 2 years and completed her Masters and PHD in record time? Somehow I doubt it.

    Never a model of journalistic objectivity, NBC reporter Andrea Mitchell positively outdid herself Thursday night, describing President Bush’s Cabinet as “[not] exactly the best and the brightest.”

    Discussing the White House reaction to the South Asia tsunami disaster, Mitchell asked Newsweek editor Jon Meacham:

    “If the president really were to take this opportunity and not only reach out overseas but do big things here, wouldn’t you have thought that he would have reached beyond the immediate circle of the White House and brought in more stellar people into the Cabinet?”

    Before Meacham could answer, Mtichell added, “I’m trying to be very diplomatic here, but this isn’t exactly the best and the brightest.”

    Colin Powell – who’s heading up U.S. relief efforts – not stellar? Condi Rice – not “the best and the brightest”?

    Ms. Mitchell apparently longs for the days when real political stars guided U.S. foreign policy – like Madeleine “The Incompetent” Albright and Sandy “Light Fingers” Berger.

    News Max

    You Might Be a Liberal if

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 6:46 pm

    You believe in global warming today just as firmly as you believed in global cooling back in the 1970s.

    You believe that even though the top 20 percent of taxpayers pay 80 percent of income taxes, that the rich are not paying their “fair share.”

    You think that the phrase “separation of church and state” is in the Constitution.

    You deplore prejudice and bigotry in all its forms, but think that everyone in the “red states” is an idiot, and Christians are morons.

    You believe that nativity scenes should be banned from public view, but that anyone objecting to pornography “only has to look the other way.”

    You think that Rush Limbaugh’s listeners are mindless “dittoheads,” but you have never doubted anything that you heard from Michael Moore.

    You think that if someone is getting richer, someone, somewhere, must be getting poorer.

    You believe that Mikhail Gorbachev deserves more credit for losing the Cold War than Ronald Reagan deserves for winning it.

    Your parents gave you an acre of preserved rain forest for your first birthday.

    You mentally subtract 100 points from someone’s IQ if the person speaks with a Southern accent.

    You pride yourself on your global awareness, global sensitivity and global outlook, but can’t name your state legislator or school board representative.

    You think that Dan Rather got a raw deal.

    You are dedicated to helping the poor, the downtrodden and the less fortunate, but you have never given blood, donated to a charity, or actually done anything to help a poor person.

    You’ll drive halfway across the country to attend a three day protest against poverty, and never stop to think how many people you could have actually helped with the money you just spent.

    You have not seen “The Passion of the Christ,” and you don’t know anyone who has seen it.

    You believe that a woman should make it on her own, without depending on her husband (except for Hillary Clinton).

    You believe that professional, working women should never be judged on their appearance (except for Katherine Harris).

    You believe that rich people should not be allowed to contribute so much money to candidates for office (except for George Soros).

    You believe that government should make a special effort to hire members of traditionally oppressed groups, such as African-Americans (except for Clarence Thomas, Colin Powell and Condoleezza Rice).

    You feel a deep sense of common cause with oppressed groups, such as Hispanic immigrants (except for Cuban Americans fleeing Castro).

    You think “count all the votes” means keep counting until you win, and military votes aren’t real votes.

    You have no problem with Hollywood movie stars flying around in private jets to give speeches on the evils of SUVs.

    You think that raising taxes will reduce the budget deficit.

    You are more concerned, more often, with the rights of convicted felons and detained terrorists than you are with the rights of small business owners.

    You uphold a woman’s right to choose, unless a woman chooses adoption, chooses to be a stay-at-home mom, chooses to homeschool, or chooses to start a business.

    You are more concerned with Vice President Cheney’s links to Halliburton than with Saddam Hussein’s links to international terrorism and mass graves.

    You believe the U.S. isn’t doing enough to help the downtrodden around the world, but have no problem with ignoring mass murder and genocide in Iraq, the Sudan, and Rwanda.

    You are worried about how the French view Americans.

    You think that protestors outside nuclear power plants are dedicated activists, but protestors outside abortion clinics are dangerous zealots interfering with a legal activity.

    You believe that more federal regulations will make your life better.

    You believe that the network news is a better indicator of what “real” news is than talk radio, Internet news sites, and blogs.

    You believe that there was never, ever a problem with biased news coverage until Fox News went on the air.

    Brady Campaign: Beware ‘Under-Intelligent’ Gun Owners

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 5:24 pm

    The Brady Campaign, a gun safety lobbying group, recently put out a press release warning Americans to beware the underintelligent gun owners who are likely to shoot their guns in the air in celebration of New Years. Give me a break. We’ve all seen a lot of news footage lately of Muslims in Iraq and other Arab countries shooting their guns in the air while chanting anti-American slogans or screaming Allahu Ahkbar. The Brady Campaign plays on that cultural phenomenon and warns that the wild gun shooting in Iraq could happen here too.

    When’s the last time you saw a bunch of gun owners in the U.S. firing their guns in the air in celebration? I’ve never seen it either – except when a bird or a clay pigeon was involved. I’m sure quite a few liberals will believe this malarkey, but if the Brady Campaign’s goal is to promote gun safety among gun owners, calling them stupid isn’t going to do much for their cause. Now excuse me while I go outside and burn John Kerry in effigy while shooting my guns in the air and screaming “NRA Ahkbar!” Git the guns Pa!!

    Beware the lethal combination of alcohol, New Year’s Eve revelry and a loaded gun, according to the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, which in its latest press release, pointed to the threat posed by “overexcited and under-intelligent” gun owners.

    Those people, the Brady Campaign warned, might “welcome 2005 with an act of stupidity,” defined in the release as “the indiscriminate unloading of weapons into the air,” or “celebratory gunfire.” And “they may kill an innocent in the bargain, too,” the anti-gun group stated.

    However, even the gun control group, Americans for Gun Safety Foundation, found fault Wednesday with the Brady Campaign’s use of the words “overexcited and under-intelligent” while referring to gun owners. . . . .

    CNS News

    Protestant Proselytizers Eye 10% of Turks

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 3:26 pm

    Islam Online warns that Christians are stepping up their campaign to proselytize Muslims in Turkey and are…gasp…handing out millions of Bibles. Interestingly, they admit that the youth in Turkey are ignorant of the tenets of Islam, and Christianity threatens to fill that “spiritual void”. I hope they’re right.

    Protestant missionaries are planning to proselytize some 10 per cent of Turkey’s 70 million population by 2020, the Turkish army warned in a report published Friday, December 31.

    Up to one million gospels are planned to be distributed among the Turkish people during this period, Turkish daily Zaman reported Friday, citing the “Proselytizing Activities in Turkey and the World” report.

    The missionaries are trying to fill the “spiritual void” left by the youths’ ignorance about the basic tenets and rituals of Islam, according to the report.

    The proselytizers are playing on pitting the Sunnis and the `Alawiyyin against one another to preach about the Christian faith, the report added.

    “`Alawiyyin are originally a sect of the Shi`ah called ‘Nusayriyyah’. The Nusayriyyah is a movement that emerged in the third century after Hijrah. They claim that `Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) is God-incarnated. . . . . .

    Islam Online

    Update on Washington State Governors Race

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 1:31 pm

    The battle over the closest election in Washington state history continues. The Democrat Gregoire is now the official governor elect after winning 1 of 3 recounts, but that will probably be contested. It seems there are 3,500 mystery ballots that miraculously appeared in the hand recount of heavily democratic King County. This is what happens when liberals keep asking for more recounts. To them, counting every vote means count them twice if you have to. In addition to having more ballots than the number of people who voted, many of the addresses given for King County residents turned out to be storage facilities or government administrative offices. And, as was seen across the country, many military votes were not counted. I guarantee you will never see a Democrat screaming “count all the votes” when military votes are missing though. What it comes down to is this election is a mess, the Democrats have cheated themselves into a corner, and a new election is probably the only answer.

    Democratic Attorney General Christine Gregoire was officially named governor-elect yesterday, quickly declared victory and said “an election night without end has concluded.” But the election she won could still be fought in court, and the state’s chief election official said he can’t be sure Gregoire will still hold the title when inauguration day comes.

    Republican candidate Dino Rossi said conceding now, 58 days and three counts after the election, would be “a disservice to the people of Washington.”

    Minutes after signing certificates to name Gregoire as governor-elect, Secretary of State Sam Reed was asked if he was confident she would be sworn in as scheduled Jan. 12. . . . . . . .

    The Seattle Times

    Candidates Want Second Ohio Recount

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 12:59 pm

    You would think after the results from the last recount in Ohio, which showed that the machine count was only off by 300 votes, the lefties would give up on their recount obsession. However, such a conclusion assumes Democrats have a capacity for common sense and logic. They are set on proving they have neither. It’s obvious that their intent is not to overturn the election. Even your most rabid moonbat knows that this is not going to happen. Their goal is to deligitimize the election and do as much damage to our voting system as they possibly can. By doing so they get the satisfaction of damaging the country they hate, and they guarantee themselves the option of claiming voter fraud in every election they lose from now until eternity. Personally, I hope they keep it up. Wasting more of Ohio tax payer’s money will only guarantee a big red Ohio on the election map in 2008.

    Two third-party presidential candidates asked a federal court Thursday to force a second recount of the Ohio vote, alleging county election boards altered votes and didn’t follow proper procedures in the recount that ended this week.

    Lawyers for Green Party candidate David Cobb and the Libertarian Party’s Michael Badnarik made their request in federal court in Columbus.

    The two candidates, who received less than 0.3 percent of the Ohio vote, paid $113,600 for a statewide recount after the vote was certified earlier this month by the secretary of state. They have said they don’t expect to change the election results, but want to make sure that every vote is proply counted. . . . . . . .

    Associated Press

    12/30/2004

    Selective Separation

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 8:53 pm

    David Limbaugh’s latest article does an excellent job of exposing the separation of church and state crowd’s hypocrisy.

    It would be shocking if those who worship at the altar of church and state separation, while denying this nation’s Christian heritage, would at least acknowledge that they are selective as to which values they object to the state promoting.

    Until these avowed secularists start complaining about non-Christian, values-laden instruction in public schools, they’ll come up short in the credibility department. When public schools endorse New Age ideas or the radical homosexual agenda, for example, the separationists are nowhere to be found.

    Where were they, for instance, when Newton North High School in Newtonville, Mass., held a “Transgender, Bisexual, Gay and Lesbian Awareness Day,” (“To BGLAD Day”) in mid-December? On that day, students were allowed — some would say “encouraged” — to attend workshops and assemblies in lieu of their regular classes, in which speakers would “make students feel good about homosexuality, bisexuality and transgenderism.” . . . . .

    Read full article here

    Iran, Russia to study UFOs

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 7:27 pm

    Iran and Russia are joining forces to study the increase in UFO sightings over the past year. I find it particularly interesting that many of the sightings in Iran are reported around Iran’s nuclear sights, including their Uranium enrichment plant, and these sightings have picked up in the last year. I’m not suggesting that there must be a connection, but it’s curious that the increase in UFO’s in Iran coincides with increasing concern about Iran’s nuclear ambitions. The other possibility is that Iran is using the UFO bit to accuse Israel of spying on its nuke sites, similar to the PA’s use of Arafat’s death to accuse Israel of an assassination plot. The Great Satan and the Little Satan are the cause of all evil in the world after all.

    Of course, as some have suggested, these UFO’s could be nothing more than deception from the great deceiver. Perhaps some of those “signs and wonders” we’ve been warned about.

    With a rash of recent sightings of unidentified flying objects in the Eastern Hemisphere, Russia and Iran have agreed to jointly study the UFO phenomenon.

    According to the Islamic Republic News Agency, the two nations are stressing “expansion of bilateral cooperation particularly in space research and construction of satellites.”

    In addition to the scientific look at UFOs, Russia and Iran are finalizing agreement for the construction of the Zohreh satellite for Iran, which has been on the drawing board for years but has been hampered by bureaucratic obstacles.

    News of the UFO study comes as skywatching mania strikes Iran.

    WorldNetDaily

    Indonesia Needs Help, Death Toll Expected To Exceed 400,000

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 4:51 pm

    This disaster just keeps getting worse. When we first heard of the tsunami that hit Asia, I don’t think any of us imagined the death toll would reach in the hundreds of thousands. Air surveillance has revealed that the death toll in Indonesia will exceed 400,000. Many islands are completely gone, and areas not yet reached by relief efforts show no signs of life. If the death toll does go that high, disease will surely follow. Recovery from such a disaster will take years. Our prayers go out to all those countries affected. If you’re able to donate to the relief effort, amazon.com has a donations page, as does World Vision. Amazon has currently raised over 6 million dollars.

    The death toll in Acheh, the region worst hit by last Sunday’s tsunami, may exceed 400,000 as many affected areas could still not be reached for search and rescue operations, Indonesia’s Ambassador to Malaysia Drs H. Rusdihardjo said Thursday.

    He said the estimate was based on air surveillance by Indonesian authorities who found no signs of life in places like Meulaboh, Pulau Simeulue and Tapak Tuan while several islands off the west coast of Sumatera had “disappeared”.

    He said the latest death toll of more than 40,000 in Acheh and northern Sumatera did not take into account the figures from the other areas, especially in the west of the region.

    “Aerial surveillance found the town of Meulaboh completely destroyed with only one buiding standing. The building, which belonged to the military, happens to be on a hill,” he told reporters after receiving RM1 million in aid for Indonesia’s Tsunami Disaster Relief Fund here Thursday.

    UPDATE: Americans have now donated $18 million to the Red Cross. That’s 128 times what the country of France donated. America is so stingy.

    Bush ‘Undermining UN with Aid Coalition’

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 3:56 pm

    The U.S. has established a coalition with 4 other countries to lead the disaster relief operation in Asia. (hat tip: CQ) This move has caused former International Development Secretary Clare Short to launch into one of the typical globalist tirades liberals are known for. By forming a coalition that doesn’t include the crooks at the U.N., Short feels the U.S. is trying to undermine her favorite organization. Short’s comments are absurd in light of recent events and the U.N.’s own record.

    Short believes that only the United Nations has the moral authority to coordinate disaster relief efforts. Moral authority??!!! She accuses the U.S. of having a poor record when it comes to coordinating with anyone, yet completely ignores recent failures at the U.N.

    In order to leave a murderous dictator in power, the U.N. set up Oil for Food as a relief program to help the Iraqi people who were suffering under Sadam’s rule. I think everyone is aware by now of how the U.N. handled THAT relief effort. Perhaps Short has forgotten the genocide in Rawanda that the U.N. stood by and did nothing about. Or, the U.N. peacekeepers who have been raping and prostituting refugees in Congo. These are the high morals Scott celebrates and promotes.

    How evil must a person be to overlook thousands of deaths, billions in stolen money, and rape and torture simply because they’re obsessed with creating a global government. Morality plays no part in the crusade to prop up a corrupt and morally bankrupt organization.

    I have a question for Ms. Short. Would she donate money to a relief agency who had a history of stealing contributions, raping the victims it claims to help, and allowing the mass murder of those under their protection? I think not.

    United States President George Bush was tonight accused of trying to undermine the United Nations by setting up a rival coalition to coordinate relief following the Asian tsunami disaster.

    The president has announced that the US, Japan, India and Australia would coordinate the world’s response.

    But former International Development Secretary Clare Short said that role should be left to the UN.

    “I think this initiative from America to set up four countries claiming to coordinate sounds like yet another attempt to undermine the UN when it is the best system we have got and the one that needs building up,” she said.

    “Only really the UN can do that job,” she told BBC Radio Four’s PM programme.

    “It is the only body that has the moral authority. But it can only do it well if it is backed up by the authority of the great powers.”

    Ms Short said the coalition countries did not have good records on responding to international disasters.

    She said the US was “very bad at coordinating with anyone” and India had its own problems to deal with.

    “I don’t know what that is about but it sounds very much, I am afraid, like the US trying to have a separate operation and not work with the rest of the world through the UN system,” she added.

    12/29/2004

    Atheists Feel Left Out During Christmas Cleanup

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 9:10 pm

    An effort to boost Christmas Tree recycling in Chicago has come under fire by atheists, who say it unfairly benefits Christians. Authorities planned to hand out a year’s worth of blue recycling bags in exchange for one used tree, but atheist activist Rob Sherman says the program is inherently unfair to those without Christmas trees.

    Officials told him he could bring someone else’s tree but Sherman complained that “Atheists shouldn’t have to go begging from home to home for a Christian who will sponsor them.” The city will now offer the blue bags to anyone who visits a tree recycling location and brings a large bag of any recyclable material.

    To me, this is proof that anti-Christian activists aren’t just eveil, they have serious mental problems and a severely diminished IQ. A 5 year old wouldn’t act this childish. There’s no law saying you have to be a Christian to buy a Christmas tree. He could always go buy one and put it up in his house. I wonder if he’s anti-gun and also against gun buy-back programs. Perhaps he doesn’t drink soda, beer, or any other canned beverages. In that case he should protest all used can and bottle buy-backs. And then there’s the lottery. People who are anti-gambling are being disinfranchised. Those willing to gamble and buy a lottery ticket are getting big bucks, while the anti-gambling folks are left out!

    Brit Hume’s Grapevine

    Tsunami Update

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 8:08 pm

    The death toll in Southern Asia has now reached over 80,000. To put that in perspective, if you’ve ever been to Safeco Field in Seattle and seen it at full capacity, double that and it would equal the number of casualties from this disaster. If you haven’t been to Safeco field, Yankee Stadium holds 57,000.


    Yankee Stadium

    Yankee Stadium

    Relief officials are still very concerned about disease, as clean water, food, and medical supplies are still needed in many places. Wide spread disease will surely raise the death toll dramatically. It’s hard to fathom, considering 80,000 are dead already.

    As you keep the victims of this tragedy in your prayers, also remember our brothers and sisters in Christ. Several churches were holding services when the tsunami hit, and many were lost. If your church is able, encourage them to donate to any Christian relief organization now helping in the region. I believe World Vision is one of them, and they’ve been recommended by several reputable sources.

    Coincidence! Major quake exactly 1 year ago

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 7:42 pm

    When I heard the news of the earthquake in Asia, I thought I remembered a similar event the day after Christmas last year. Indeed there was. The Iran earthquake that killed 26,000 people happened exactly one year ago. Even more spooky, the time of the quakes is only 58 minutes apart. Since the Bible tells us natural disasters will increase in the last days, perhaps God is trying to tell us something here.

    WorldNetDaily

    Disaster mystery: No dead animals

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 7:36 pm

    If only humans had that sixth sense.

    As the human death toll from Sunday’s earthquake and subsequent tsunami continues to skyrocket in Asia, a mystery is unfolding in Sri Lanka.

    Somehow, the animals survived the disaster.

    According to reports out of Colombo, Sri Lankan wildlife officials are said to be stunned.

    “The strange thing is we haven’t recorded any dead animals,” H.D. Ratnayake, deputy director of the national Wildlife Department, told Reuters. “No elephants are dead, not even a dead hare or rabbit.”

    “I think animals can sense disaster,” he added. “They have a sixth sense. They know when things are happening.”

    WorldNetDaily

    Israel Aid Ignored by Media

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 5:35 pm

    LGF picked up on something that the MSM has completely ignored, and in some cases purposely omitted. Missing from Reuter’s report on foreign aid for Southern Asia was the aid given by Israel. It turns out Israel was one of the first on the scene to help, and they’ve given us a good example of how prepared they are to handle major disasters. UPI was the only news outlet to mention this effort by Israel. The MSM just keeps proving that they aren’t reliable and they rarely, if ever, tell the whole truth. No wonder there were more columns decrying the evil blogosphere today in several of the more liberal rags. We keep exposing them, and they’re panicking.

    Below is a detailed list of the Aid given by Israel:

    * The Israeli organization Latet (’To Give’) filled a jumbo jet with 18 tons of supplies.

    * A medical team headed by four doctors from Jerusalem’s Hadassah Hospital arrived in Sri Lanka on Monday night (Dec. 27), carrying medicine and baby food. The doctors specialize in rescue operations, trauma and pediatrics.

    * An IDF rescue team is now on its way to Sri Lanka with 80 tons of aid material, including 10,000 blankets, tents, nylon sheeting and water containers, all contributed by the IDF.

    * A ZAKA rescue-and-recovery team arrived in the disaster areas Monday night, armed with its specialized equipment for identifying bodies.

    * A Health Ministry contingent left for Thailand on Monday night to aid in rescue efforts. The group includes doctors, nurses and four members of the IDF.

    * Israel has also offered its assistance to India — a earch-and-rescue team from the Home Front Command, as well as consignments of food and medicine.

    Answering Atheists

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 4:38 pm

    Have you ever had an Atheist tell you that Christianity is nothing but blind faith? Explaining faith and our reasons for believing is sometimes hard, especially when explaining it to a person whose religion is science. I just finished reading “I Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist” by Norman L. Geisler, and I feel like I’ll be able to answer this question better than ever. It takes far more blind faith to be an Atheist than to put faith in a God that created the Universe. There are quite a few books out there that cover the proofs for Intelligent Design, but this one is different. It reads like a novel. I’ve never had a non-fiction, very technical book get me hooked before. I couldn’t put it down. Anyway, I highly recommend it to anyone who finds themselves needing information when talking to atheists, agnostics, or evolutionists.

    Now Who’s Stingy?

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 2:49 pm

    Reuters has released the totals for aid given in response to the earthquake and tsunami in Southern Asia. No wonder Egeland, the Norwegian UN official that called the U.S. stingy, is now changing his story. The U.S. has so far given $35 million plus 12 Navy vessels and millions in other aid. Compare that to the $140,000 dollars given by France – not million…THOUSAND. Amazon.com currently has a page on their sight for donating to the relief effort. As of 12:30 PST, Dec. 29th Amazon has collected $2,346,375.24. That means ordinary citizens have given 17 times more money than the country of France. Egeland’s home country of Norway only gave $8 million, and that includes all of the cost of emergency supplies they sent. The actual dollars sent was far less. Also, keep in mind that the U.S. contribution doesn’t include donations to World Vision, the Salvation Army, and the numerous other charities Americans give to. Americans are notoriously generous givers when it comes to charity. We give far more to charity each year than any other country in the world. The next time you hear a liberal saying that the U.S. is selfish and doesn’t give enough in foreign aid, remember this.

    UPDATE: President Bush told the media today that Mr. Egeland is misguided and misinformed. Bush offered some statistics to back that up. Forty percent of all relief aid given in the world in 2004 was provided by the United States government. The United States provided $2.4 billion in food and cash and humanitarian relief this year alone. These are easily obtained facts. I wonder why the media didn’t include this in any of it’s stories following Egeland’s bogus “stingy” comment? I thought journalists usually did a little research and investigation when covering a news event (forged document stories excluded).

    AUSTRALIA:$27 million donation.  Sent five air force transport planes with supplies and medical specialists to Sumatra, and two 15-member emergency medical teams and 12 police to Phuket.
    AUSTRIA: 1 million euros ($1.4 million) in aid to the countries hit.
    BELGIUM: Military plane due to stop at Dubai to load most of its cargo — UNICEF aid such as tents, vaccines.
    BRITAIN: Pledged 15 million pounds ($28.9 million US); plastic sheets and tents worth 250,000 pounds (480,000 U.S.) to Sri Lanka; 370,000 pounds (709,000 US) to EU aid offer, $100,000 (192,000 US) to World Health Organisation.)
    CANADA: C$4 million ($3.3 million); Blankets, water tablets, jerrycans and plastic sheeting sent to Sri Lanka.
    CHINA: 21.6 million yuan ($2.6 million) of aid to India, Indonesia, Thailand, Sri Lanka and Maldives.
    CZECH REPUBLIC: Sent drinking water and medicine to Sri Lanka and Thailand; pledged 10 million crowns ($446,000).
    DENMARK: Increased aid pledge to 85 million Danish crowns ($15.6 million) after spending almost all initial 10 million crowns pledged. Aid to cover — medical supplies, food, water, shelter, reconstruction.
    UNICEF flight from Copenhagen taking supplies to the area, including oral rehydration salts and medical supplies for 150,000 people for three months.
    EGYPT: Egyptian Red Crescent Society sending a plane with 500,000 Egyptian pounds $81,000) worth of medicine and other aid as initial step.
    EUROPEAN UNION: Ready to release up to 30 million euros (41 million US) on top of 3 million euros (4.1 million US) already allocated to IFRC.  This money comes from the donations of member nations and averages out to 1.6 million per country.
    FINLAND: Pledged 2.5 million euros (3.4 million U.S.) spread among World Food programme, UNICEF, WHO and IFRC. Local aid groups give 75,000 euros. Finnish Red Cross send field hospital with 15 staff to Sri Lanka and 31 aid workers to Thailand.
    FRANCE: 136,000 euros (140,000 US) pledged to affected states in Southeast Asia. French authorities and aid groups decide to send 110 tonnes of aid. Asian countries are probably leery of accepting aid from France, as their “donations” are usually in the form of loans.
    GERMANY: Doubling emergency aid to 2 million euros (2.7 million US). Air force medical evacuation plane to set off for Phuket, two more planes chartered to take disaster relief teams, medicine and consular officials there. Germany’s largest utility E.ON donates 1 million euros.
    GREECE: Sending C-130 transport aircraft carrying 25 rescue workers to Phuket on Thursday to help with rescue operations.  Sent plane to Sri Lanka with five tonnes of food and clothes; offered 150,000 euros (204,000 US) in aid.
    ISRAEL: Sent one medical team to Sri Lanka, one to Thailand. Military search and rescue team due in Sri Lanka, held up by coordination problems.  What they call coordination problems was actually a rejection of Israel’s offer due to anti-Semitism
    ITALY: Will send 2 Hercules aircraft, one to Sri Lanka, one to Thailand.
    JAPAN: Pledged $30 million in aid, sent three navy vessels to Thailand to help rescue survivors.
    KUWAIT: Pledged aid supplies worth $2 million, sent $100,000 immediate aid.
    NETHERLANDS: Contributing 2 million euros (2.7 million US) to Red Cross-Red Crescent appeal, plus participating in EU aid programme.
    NORWAY: Preliminary contribution of 50 million Norwegian crowns ($8.2 million) for emergency relief, including medicine, food, clean water and shelter.
    POLAND: Earmarked 1 million zlotys ($336,000) for Polish NGOs involved in relief.
    QATAR – Sent urgent relief aid worth $10 million.
    SAUDI ARABIA: Pledged $10 million aid package — $5 million of food, tents and medicine to be distributed via Saudi Red Crescent, $5 million for international aid groups such as the Red Cross and U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees.
    SINGAPORE: Contributing some $1.2 million to global effort, military medical teams and supplies ready to fly to Indonesia.
    SLOVAKIA: Sent plane with drinking water, tents and medicine to Sri Lanka; aid worth 6.6 million Slovak crowns ($231,660).
    SLOVENIA: Donating 20 million tolars ($113,500) of aid through International Red Cross and Crescent.
    SOUTH KOREA: Raises aid to $2 million, may send military cargo plane to move aid workers and supplies.
    SPAIN: Sent aircraft to Sri Lanka with first aid, sanitary equipment and 19 volunteers, promised 50 million euros.
    SWEDEN: Sent 2 communications specialists to help U.N. relief efforts in Sri Lanka. Sending tents and communication equipment to Maldives. Swedish Red Cross to contribute $750,000 to IFRC appeal.
    SWITZERLAND: Has allotted 2 million Swiss francs in aid on six teams to bring in drinking water, food and shelter supplies.
    TAIWAN: Pledged additional $5 million after giving $100,000 to Indonesia, $50,000 each to Thailand, India and Sri Lanka. Sends more than 100 relief workers.
    UNITED ARAB EMIRATES: Pledged $2 million in aid; its Red Crescent society to provide food, blankets and clothing.
    UNITED STATES: Pledged initial $35 million. Pentagon ordered 12 vessels to region, though no decision taken on their role.
    INTERNATIONAL COMMITTEE OF THE
    RED CROSS
    : Cargo plane flying from Kenya to Sri Lanka carrying 105 tonnes of supplies, provide aid to 150,000 people in north and east. Trying to raise more than 50 million Swiss francs ($44 million).
    INTERNATIONAL FEDERATION OF THE
    RED CROSS AND RED CRESCENT
    : has dispensed initial one million Swiss franc grant for relief efforts and launched appeal for 7.5 million francs.
    IMF: Intends to provide assistance, no specific pledges.
    UNHCR: Initially distributing $380,000 of non-food relief items, including plastic sheeting, clothing, kitchen sets.
    UNICEF: Delivered 50 water tanks to southern India, 45-tonne shipment of water purification tablets and water systems due to reach Sri Lanka on Thursday. WHO and UNICEF said they were providing four emergency kits to Indonesia to cover 40,000 people for three months, providing shelter, food and clothing.
    U.N. WORLD FOOD PROGRAMME: Sends 168 tonnes of commodities to Sri Lanka, plus more than 4,000 tonnes of rice, wheatflour, lentils and sugar, enough to provide 500,000 people with emergency rations for two weeks.
    U.N. DEVELOPMENT PROGRAMME: Provided $100,000 each to Sri Lanka, India, Indonesia, the Maldives and Thailand to help assess damage and coordinate emergency needs.
    U.N. POPULATION FUND: Earmarked up to $1 million and extra staff to help health needs of pregnant and nursing women.

    Former US attorney general joins Saddam defence team

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 12:54 pm

    It’s a sad thing that people like Ramsy Clark are not considered traitors. No doubt, the far left will hold Clark up as someone who speaks what they’re thinking (DU has built a shrine to him by now). Not only is Clark deeply concerned for the welfare and fair treatment of a man who had thousands of innocent people slaughtered, he feels the U.S. is really the one that should be on trial for war crimes. His comments sound more like one of Al Jazera’s terrorist video tapes than the comments of a former Attorney General.

    Former US attorney general and left-wing activist Ramsey Clark is to join the defense team of Saddam Hussein, a spokesman for the toppled Iraqi president’s lawyers said on Wednesday.

    Clark, who held the office of attorney general under US president Lyndon B. Johnson, “is one of the members of the defense team of president Saddam Hussein,” Ziad Khassawneh said. “This honours and inspires us.”

    The former top US justice official, who arrived Tuesday in Jordan where the defense team is based, has become known as a left-wing lawyer and firm critic of US foreign policy since leaving office.

    He visited Saddam Hussein in Baghdad in February 2003 just before the US-lead invasion and has also been involved with the defense of former Yugoslav leader Solbodan Milosevic, on trial for war crimes at a UN court in the Hague.

    Clark told reporters in the Jordanian capital that his principle concern was protecting the rights of Saddam, who only saw a lawyer for the first time this month, a year after his capture.

    “In international law, anyone accused of crime has the right to be tried by a confident, independent and impartial court, and there can be no fair trail without those qualities,” said Clark.

    “The special court in Iraq was created by the Iraqi governing council, which is nothing more than a creation of the US military occupation and has no authority in law as a criminal court,” he said.

    The Iraq Special Tribunal was established by the US-led coalition last December to try members of the former regime of Saddam.

    Clark also said the United States itself must be tried for the November assault on Fallujah, destruction of houses, torture in prisons and its role in the deaths of thousands of Iraqis in the war.

    Khaleej Times

    Aid Grows Amid Remarks About President’s Absence

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 12:40 pm

    Always eager to find ANYTHING to attack the President with, the Washington Post runs another article condemning Bush for having the nerve to be on vacation when the tsunami hit Southern Asia. Instead of rushing out to talk to the media moonbats outside his Crawford ranch, Bush stayed inside following the announcement of the tragedy. Let’s see – Get on the horn and start the process of getting aid to those who need it, or rush outside and talk to the Old Media morons who hate you and will trash anything you say anyway. Tough choice.

    Of course, running story after story about the Presidents vacation instead of writing about the tragedy itself and encouraging the American people to help (something private citizens in this country do best) is incredibly sensitive to those in need.

    The Post writer goes on to praise the German Chancellor Schroeder for cutting his vacation short and returning to work. If the German Chancellor had his home converted to a pseudo-government headquarters prohibiting any real vacation, he wouldn’t have had to do that. There’s a reason the press calls the Bush ranch the Western Whitehouse. The Whitehouse follows him there.

    The Press acts as if nothing can truly happen or get done without them being notified. The fact that Aid was immediately promised to the affected countries, and our military is already involved in relief efforts means nothing because Bush didn’t run it by the media first. The media should come first, and THEN action. Morons.

    The Bush administration more than doubled its financial commitment yesterday to provide relief to nations suffering from the Indian Ocean tsunami, amid complaints that the vacationing President Bush has been insensitive to a humanitarian catastrophe of epic proportions.

    As the death toll surpassed 50,000 with no sign of abating, the U.S. Agency for International Development added $20 million to an earlier pledge of $15 million to provide relief, and the Pentagon dispatched an aircraft carrier and other military assets to the region. Secretary of State Colin L. Powell, in morning television appearances, chafed at a top U.N. aid official’s comment on Monday that wealthy countries were being stingy with aid. “The United States is not stingy,” Powell said on CNN.

    Washington Post

    12/28/2004

    Quake, roaring sea, … now pestilences

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 8:36 pm

    The tragedy in Southern Asia may worsen, and the death toll may continue to rise as disease breaks out.

    The United Nations warns epidemics will break out within days unless health systems in southern Asia can cope with tens of thousands of corpses and hundreds of thousands left homeless in the wake of the 9.0 quake-induced killer tsunami that struck 11 nations.

    “This may be the worst national disaster in recent history because it is affecting so many heavily populated coastal areas, so many vulnerable communities,” said the U.N.’s Emergency Relief Coordinator Jan Egeland. “The longer term effects may be as devastating as the tsunami itself. Many more people are now affected by polluted drinking water. We could have epidemics within a few days unless we get health systems up and running.”

    The crisis cuts across all human needs, say experts – water, sanitation, food, shelter and health.

    WorldNetDaily

    U.N. official slams U.S. as ‘stingy’ over aid

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 2:57 pm

    Yesterday, a Norwegian-born UN official responded to a U.S. donation of $15 million in emergency aid by calling the U.S. stingy. He even went so far as to suggest that the U.S. should raise taxes so it can be more generous. Having a U.N. official tell us how to tax our population is bad enough, but to call the U.S. stingy takes the cake. The U.S. pays for the U.N., gives more money in foreign aid than any other country, and the American people give more money to overseas charity than any nation in the world. I have a solution. Stop giving money to the U.N., and give it to the victims of this recent earthquake instead. We’d kill two birds with one stone.

    U.N. Undersecretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs Jan Egeland must have gotten the same message from a few U.S. officials, because he’s backing down today. Western nations aren’t stingy after all.

    Mr. Egeland should remember that the U.S. pays his salary. If not for the generous contributions of the United States, he wouldn’t be standing before the world press and pontificating about moral values while working for the most corrupt organization on the planet.

    Ohio Recount Ends, Bush wins! …..Again

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 2:10 pm

    The Associated Press gave this article a different title. They lead off with “Ohio recount Ends, shows Vote Closer”. The headline leads the reader to believe that the recount actually accomplished something, and proved that the race in Ohio was much closer than originally thought. Then you read the article.

    The recount that cost the Green and Libertarian Party $113,000, and the tax payers of Ohio 1.5 million dollars, dropped Bush’s total by a whopping 300 votes from a 118,775 vote win to a 118,475 vote win. Now, that’s a wise use of tax payer money. So distraught were the Democrats, they were willing to force the people of Ohio to pay $5,000 a vote to fish for more Kerry votes. I hope the residents of Ohio remember that in 2008.

    The completion of the recount means little to some Democrats, however. Jesse Jackson and his ilk are still filing a lawsuit with the Ohio Supreme Court citing election fraud. The Republicans conspired to make minorities stand in long lines. Oh the humanity!!

    Associated Press

    12/27/2004

    Quake’s power = million atomic bombs

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 10:08 pm

    Earthquake Update:

    Scientists describe Sunday’s devastating earthquake off the island of Sumatra as a “megathrust” — a grade reserved for the most powerful shifts in the Earth’s crust.

    The term doesn’t entirely capture the awesome power of the fourth largest earthquake since 1900, or the tsunami catastrophes it spawned for coastal areas around the Indian Ocean.

    [snip]

    Sieh and other scientists said it probably jolted the planet’s rotation. “It causes the planet to wobble a little bit, but it’s not going to turn Earth upside down,” Sieh said.

    CNN.com

    DEATH TOLL ESTIMATED TO REACH 42,000

    Bodies washed up on tropical beaches and piled up in hospitals Monday, raising fears of disease across a 10-nation arc of destruction left by a monster earthquake and walls of water that killed more than 22,000 people. Thousands were missing and millions homeless.

    Humanitarian agencies began what the United Nations said would become the biggest relief effort the world has ever seen.

    [snip]

    Late Monday, Indonesian Vice President Yusuf Kalla was quoted as saying he believed the toll in the country could be as high as 25,000, that would be 20,000 more deaths than confirmed there so far and push the overall death toll to 42,000.

    Associated Press

    Iraq to Air Footage of Iranian Meddling

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 10:00 pm

    Iraq will be adding their voice to the U.S. claim that Iran is behind much of the terrorism killing coalition troops and civilians in Iraq. It’s a very good sign that the Iraqi government is speaking out against the insurgency and interference by other Arab countries. Perhaps Iraq is finally starting to take some responsibility for their own future and security, rather than depending on the U.S. to defend them and create their future for them.

    IRVAJ English -

    Filibusters Violate the Separation of Powers

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 9:33 pm

    If any of you have been following the debate on Judicial nominees and the Dems use of the filibuster, this article by David Limbaugh is a must read. Our constitution gives the President the power to make judicial appointments with the advice and consent of the Senate. This means the Senate can vote his nominations up or down, but it does not give the Senate the right to stop that nomination from coming to a vote. By denying an up or down vote, the minority in the Senate has been taking a power away from the President that is clearly given him in our constitution.

    Republicans in Congress are dealing with this issue by passing a resolution to stop filibustering in cases of judicial nominations. I think this is a wonderful idea. That’s the only way we’ll get judges who are actually appointed by the President we elected. The minority should not be able to forcibly appoint the judges they want based on a litmus test and what amounts to temper tantrums and arrogance.

    Some are expressing concern that Republicans may be over reaching and risk a back lash. I agree with David Limbaugh – we saw the backlash for this policy of filibustering judicial nominations on Nov. 2nd. The “values voters” are tired of any judge who would put an end to legislating from the bench being blocked by the minority.

    The Dem’s New Conspiracy Theory

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 9:14 pm

    The New York Times has latched onto a new conspiracy theory. They probably got their information from the folks at DU. The new tin foil hat scare involves Republicans supposedly increasing their Congressional representation by including incarcerated felons in the census, thereby trying to steal the election yet again. Captain Ed at Captain’s Quarters does an excellent job of exposing the Times’ lies in a letter to the public editor. You can read his letter here.

    It amazes me that the Times continues to print poorly researched garbage when they consistently get caught in their lies. I guess when your loyal readers are primarily Democrat, you don’t have to worry too much about accuracy or accountability. As long as you point the finger at the Bush administration, you’re deserving of a Pulitzer.

    Poll shows troops in support of war

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 8:55 pm

    If the troops in Iraq fighting the war support us being there and our mission there, it makes you wonder why so many liberals don’t support it. Perhaps they should go there. It would probably change their minds.

    Despite a year of ferocious combat, mounting casualties and frequent deployments, support for the war in Iraq remains very high among the active-duty military, according to a Military Times Poll.

    Sixty-three percent of respondents approve of the way President Bush is handling the war, and 60% remain convinced it is a war worth fighting. Support for the war is even greater among those who have served longest in the combat zone: Two-thirds of combat vets say the war is worth fighting.

    But the men and women in uniform are under no illusions about how long they will be fighting in Iraq; nearly half say they expect to be there more than five years.

    In addition, 87%% say they’re satisfied with their jobs and, if given the choice today, only 25% say they’d leave the service.

    Compared with last year, the percentages for support for the war and job satisfaction remain essentially unchanged.

    USATODAY.com

    Abbas Continues to Make Demands

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 2:51 pm

    If anyone thought the Middle East peace process would move forward faster with Arafat gone, they were probably overly optimistic. Abbas continues to take a harder line as time passes. As Israel engages in more appeasement, the PA makes more demands. Perhaps Abbas is engaging in some political maneuvering approaching the PA elections, but any retreat on these demands and “campaign promises” won’t be popular among the terrorists. He will be held to the agenda he sets now, by his own people.

    Israel released 159 Palestinian prisoners today who were jailed in Israeli jails for security violations and terrorist attacks inside Israel. As we should all expect, Abbas claimed this was not enough, and demanded that all political prisoners, no matter the offense, be released from Israeli jails.

    Another example of appeasement leading to more demands is the “uncompromising” list of demands issued by Abbas this week. It might as well have been Arafat waving his shaking hands and energizing the terrorists with impossible demands for the evil Zionist entity.

    Included in Abass’ demands are Palestinian control of Jerusalem as its capital, the right of return for all refugees, and yet more land concessions. The Gaza withdrawal was not a step forward as the Israelis and the Europeans had hoped. It was just the beginning according to Abass.

    The AFP includes this little nugget of propaganda in their article detailing Abass’ demands.

    On the issue of refugees, Abbas said he would continue to hold out for an implementation of UN General Assembly Resolution 194, which stipulates the right of return for Palestinians who either fled or were expelled from their homes when the state of Israel was created.

    For those of us who live in the real world, the Palestinian refugees did not flee and were not expelled when Israel was created. The Arabs living in Israel (not called Palestinians then) fled when their Arab neighbors told them to evacuate in preparation for an Arab attack on Israel. When Israel surprised everyone and wasn’t defeated, those Arabs who had evacuated found themselves without homes. When they turned to the Arab world for refuge, they were denied entry. Arabs created the refugee crisis so they could use the refugee crisis. If millions of Palestinians are allowed back into Israel to take over Jewish homes, Israel will cease to be a Jewish nation. None of Abass’ demands will ever be met, but now the Palestinian people will expect it and demand it. And the conflict goes on.

    For Bush, Key Foreign Policy Goals Intersect

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 1:52 pm

    Now that the election is over, Europe feels it’s in a position to start making demands. Responding to Bush’s campaign promise to improve relations with Europe, European officials warned Bush that better relations are dependant upon how the U.S. handles the Middle East peace process. In other words, if you don’t force Israel to accept continued terrorism in exchange for more concessions, we’ll take our ball and go home.

    Europe’s threats to continue despising us unless we follow their lead will have no more success than the whiners in the U.S. congress who think being a minority means Republicans need to be more fair and accept the minority agenda.

    If Bush were the type of leader to compromise on what he knows is right in order to win friends and influence people, U.S. troops wouldn’t be in Iraq right now.

    I found this paragraph from the article particularly amusing.

    In Middle East diplomacy, the Europeans have generally been the bankers, providing vast sums of money to keep the Palestinian Authority functioning. But they have little leverage over Israel, leaving the United States to deal with the nuts and bolts of fashioning an agreement between the two sides.

    So, Europe funds the terrorists while the U.S. steps in to force Israel to accept it. They’re admitting they need the U.S. just as much as the U.S. needs Europe (they think), yet they still feel they’re in a position to make demands. What causes this kind of thinking? I would say it’s something in the water, but that wouldn’t explain Democrats.

    The problem is, it’s hard for Europeans to understand a country that isn’t populated with immoral anti-Semites. The notion that a country would do what’s right rather than what’s popular is beyond them. Don’t look for Bush to cater to their demands. His goal for the Middle East is democracy and an end to terrorism, not appeasement. Ask the Dutch and the French what appeasement and “multi-culturalism” gets you.

    Washington Post

    Muslim second wives may get a tax break

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 12:51 pm

    Muslim Sharia Law continues to make inroads in several countries. Canada is systematically incorporating Sharia law and allowing Muslims to live under their own laws, and now Britain is doing the same. Muslim polygamists in Britain will now get a tax break under Sharia. It’s very unsettling to watch countries who claim to have a separation of church and state include Sharia law in their laws and tax codes. Is this the first step toward legalizing polygamy, or just the first step toward the Islamification of countries who are blind to the danger their putting themselves in?

    The U.S. has several Supreme Court Justices who have made it well known that they feel international law should play a part in U.S. law and should influence the Supreme Court’s decisions. This makes it especially disconcerting to see one of our closest allies catering to Islam and condoning polygamist marriage.

    THE Inland Revenue is considering recognizing polygamy for some religious groups for tax purposes. Officials have agreed to examine “family friendly” representations from Muslims who take up to four wives under sharia, the laws derived from the Koran.

    Existing rules allow only one wife for inheritance tax purposes. The Revenue has been asked to relax this so that a husband’s estate can be divided tax-free between several wives.

    The move is bound to create controversy if it leads to a change in the rules. It is seen as a breakthrough by Muslim leaders who have been campaigning to incorporate sharia into British domestic law.

    Ahmad Thomson, of the Association of Muslim Lawyers, said: “Wives and immediate children should be exempt from inheritance tax. If the government is family friendly they should change a tax which is unfairly hitting minority religious values.”

    Any concession by the Revenue could open a wider debate about the legality of plural marriages. At present a person married to more than one people can be charged with bigamy.

    Apparently Muslims are exempt from this bigamy law in Britain.

    Times Online – Sunday Times

    Massive rescue efforts as Asian quake and tsunami toll over 23,200

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 12:29 pm

    The death toll continues to rise in Asia. Last night the toll was up to 12,000 and today it nearly doubled to over 23,000. There are still many thousands more missing, so that number is sure to go up. The biggest threat now may be the spread of disease from the thousands of corpses that line beaches and city streats and hospitals.

    An AFP reporter among the first to reach the province’s main city Banda Aceh, which has been in blackout since the quake struck, described a scene of ruin and death, with hundreds of bodies and pulverised buildings.

    Bloodied corpses covered by plastic sheets lay rotting on the ground at an Indonesian Red Cross office in Lambaro on the northern outskirts of Banda Aceh. Police said there were 500 bodies at the centre.

    “People told me it was as if God had unleashed his anger on the people,” said Haji Ali, a resident in Patong Labu, a small settlement close to the north Aceh town of Bireuen.

    Relief efforts have been hampered by the closure of the region’s main airport at Banda Aceh.

    In Sri Lanka a massive humanitarian operation was launched to help 250,000 people believed to have lost their homes.

    “We had no mechanism to deal with this type of disaster,” said top government aide Lalith Weeratunga, as the nation appealed for international aid and President Chandrika Kumaratunga declared a state of disaster.

    In southern India survivors grimly buried or burnt their dead as the death toll rose to more than 6,500, with thousands more missing amid warnings of a return of killer tsunamis.

    AFP

    12/26/2004

    Tsunamis Hit Southern Asia

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 6:22 pm

    More than 11,000 people have been killed across southern Asia in massive sea surges triggered by the strongest earthquake in the world for 40 years. The 8.9 magnitude quake struck under the sea near Aceh in north Indonesia, generating a wall of water that sped across thousands of kilometres of sea. Casualty figures are rising over a wide area, including tourist resorts on Thailand packed with holidaymakers.

    Links to more information on this tragedy:

    http://news.yahoo.com

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/south_asia/4125481.stm

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,142566,00.html

    http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1308606/posts

    http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1308759/posts

    http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1308771/posts

    http://earthquake.usgs.gov/eqinthenews/2004/usslav/

    “All the planet is vibrating” from the quake, said Enzo Boschi, the head of Italy’s National Geophysics Institute. Speaking on SKY TG24 TV, Boschi said the quake even disturbed the Earth’s rotation.

    12/24/2004

    Archaeologists identify traces of ‘miracle’ pool

    Filed under: — Ben Rast @ 6:29 pm

    Yet another archaeological discovery has been made of a place mentioned in the gospels. Archaeologists in Jerusalem have identified the remains of the Siloam Pool, where Jesus cured a man of blindness (John 9).

    Archaeologists in Jerusalem have identified the remains of the Siloam Pool, where the Bible says Jesus miraculously cured a man’s blindness, researchers said Thursday — underlining a stirring link between the works of Jesus and ancient Jewish rituals.

    The archaeologists are slowly digging out the pool, where water still runs, tucked away in what is now the Arab neighborhood of Silwan. It was used by Jews for ritual immersions for about 120 years until the year 70, when the Romans destroyed the Jewish Temple.

    MSNBC – Archaeologists identify traces of ‘miracle’ pool

    YMCA Chief Fired for Transgender Ball Flap

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 3:07 pm

    Remember when the YMCA used to be a Christian organization? It appears those days are over. A Chicago YMCA allowed an all night transgender fashion show at its facilities, and, because of a scheduling problem, children coming to their swim meet the next morning were welcomed by “he/she/its” in the locker rooms when they arrived.

    The AP article tries to paint the parents as bigots, and focuses on the names some of the parents used to describe the transgender “models” lurking around the facility. What the AP article fails to mention, are the used condoms thrown all over the women’s locker room. I think if my children walked into a locker room filled with men in leather and women’s clothes and there were condoms all over the room, I’d have some choice words too.

    The employee who was fired for allowing the show to be held at the Y claims he feared he would be fired for discrimination if the transgender group filed a lawsuit against the Y. Sadly, he’s probably right. The Y has every right to deny the use of their facilities to anyone they choose. However, you’re almost guaranteed a lawsuit if you exercise that right. It’s sad when Christian organizations feel they have to cater to people who are against everything they stand for.

    Chicago Tribune

    AP Article

    Hamas Has Strong Election Showing

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 2:22 pm

    Local Palestinian elections show strong support for electing terrorists as their leaders. Why does this not surprise me? Hamas and Fatah came out on top, signaling that the Palestinian people aren’t giving up their terrorist tactics after the death of their terrorist leader, Arrafat. For those who thought Arrafat’s death would lead to a new era where peace could be achieved, things don’t look too promising. It’s hard to imagine a strong support for Abbas in the presidential elections in light of the local elections. If Abbas does win, he will be under heavy pressure from Hamas and Fatah to continue the fight to push Israel into the sea. Meanwhile, the rest of the world is still saying “peace and security”.

    The radical Hamas movement made a surprisingly strong showing in local Palestinian elections, according to preliminary results obtained Friday, signaling a drop in popularity for the ruling Fatah (news – web sites) movement ahead of next month’s presidential poll.

    Elections for local councils were held Thursday in 26 communities perceived as Fatah strongholds, with some 150,000 eligible voters choosing from among more than 800 candidates. Sixteen percent of the 360 local council seats were reserved for women.

    According to preliminary results obtained by The Associated Press, Fatah won a majority of council seats in 14 towns, while Hamas, participating for the first time in Palestinian elections, took control in nine communities.

    Associated Press

    Sex scandal in Congo threatens to engulf UN’s peacekeepers

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 1:59 pm

    Yet another UN scandal, and this one could put the nail in the coffin of the U.N. – that is if the MSM will even cover it. Pornographic tapes and pictures created by U.N. peace keeping forces are on sale in Congo, yet the media doesn’t report them. Remember the constant, daily showing of Abu Graib pictures just as soon as the story broke. I’m sure the pictures from the Congo scandal are so vile they’re nothing the media should or would put on television. I just find it interesting that, with that kind of evidence out there, the media isn’t touching it. A sting operation recently netted a UN official who got caught in the act, but I had no idea this was still being investigated until I saw this article in a British newspaper. Isn’t the U.N. great. They’ll steal your money, designate your private property a wild life preserve, rape your women, and sit by and watch while Muslims commit genocide in Sudan. Sadly, the U.S. taxpayer is paying for it to happen.

    HOME-MADE pornographic videos shot by a United Nations logistics expert in the Democratic Republic of Congo have sparked a sex scandal that threatens to become the UN’s Abu Ghraib.

    The expert was a Frenchman who worked at Goma airport as part of the UN’s $700 million-a-year effort to rebuild the war-shattered country. When police raided his home they discovered that he had turned his bedroom into a studio for videotaping and photographing sex sessions with young girls.

    The bed was surrounded by large mirrors on three sides, according to a senior Congolese police officer. On the fourth side was a camera that he could operate from the bed with a remote control.

    When the police arrived the man was allegedly about to rape a 12-year-old girl sent to him in a sting operation. Three home-made porn videos and more than 50 photographs were found.

    Times Online

    Christians in Indonesia Move Underground

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 1:39 pm

    Fearing bombings and shootings by Islamic militants, some Christians in Indonesia are abandoning traditional churches in favor of more unorthodox but secure confines, such as hotel ballrooms and office blocks.

    With foreign governments warning of holiday terror attacks, tens of thousands of police officers will guard churches in the world’s most populous Muslim nation. Metal detectors will be in place for most services and armed escorts will accompany parishioners, church officials said.

    “It puts us at a lower risk for being a target for religious persecution,” said Pastor Steve Lunn, originally from Seattle, whose International English Service holds worship services for 1,000 people in a downtown Jakarta office building.

    Associated Press

    Festivus briefly shares space with nativity scene

    Filed under: — Jennifer Rast @ 2:43 am

    A display on public property contained a nativity scene, a display honoring Zoroastrianism, and a display honoring Festivus. The city made the area an open forum where people of all faiths could put up displays. But, the ACLU still had a problem with it. According to the ACLU the nativity scene violates the separation of church and state, however the Zoroastrian display is fine. Separation of church and state is just a smoke screen for the real goal of the ACLU, to remove Christianity from the public square. The sad thing is they make this so obvious to all by singling out Christianity on a regular basis, and no one seems to care. For liberals the separation smoke screen acts to ease their conscience while allowing them to ignore the blatant discrimination against Christians.

    When a church group put a nativity scene on public property, officials warned it might open the door to other religious – and not-so-religious – displays. They were right.
    Since the nativity was erected in Polk County, displays have gone up honoring Zoroastrianism and the fake holiday Festivus, featured on the TV show “Seinfeld.”
    The Polk County Commission voted 4-1 Wednesday to permit the nativity scene to remain across the street from the courthouse, as well as to make that area a “public forum” open to any type of display.
    But the commission insisted that unless someone claims a particular display and submits a written request asking it remain, it would be removed. By Wednesday evening, no one had claimed the Festivus display, and the commission said it would come down; a woman claimed the Zoroastrianism display, which was to stay.

    BostonHerald.com