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Can Relationships Withstand the Strains of Midlife?

Can Relationships Withstand the Strains of Midlife?

By Susan Krauss Whitbourne, Ph.D.

Relationships are complex enough, but adding to the strains of those that last into midlife are the individual changes that partners experience over time. The media often portray these dynamics in compelling ways, with the latest entry of USA’s “Satisfaction” providing new insights that mesh with the latest research on adult attachment style.

 
ISIL captured 52 U.S.-made howitzers; artillery weapons cost 500K each

Image: U.S. Army

ISIL captured 52 U.S.-made howitzers; artillery weapons cost 500K each

By Douglas Ernst - The Washington Times

Sunni radicals with the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) may have captured as many as 52 U.S.-made M198 howitzers in their march across Iraq in June.

“They shouldn’t have too much trouble shelling large area targets like a city if they have sufficient ammo,” Jeremy Binnie of the British military consultancy HIS Janes toldMcClatchy news service Monday.

Mr. Binnie told McClatchy that the Islamic terrorist organization would have a difficult time figuring out exactly how to use the technology’s pinpoint accuracy, but that members would still be able to do significant damage. Each howitzer has a range of 20 miles and can fire two rounds per minute.

In addition to the stolen artillery weapons, ISIL is also in possession of 1,500 armored Humvees, McClatchy reported.

 
What Would a New U.S. Military Look Like?

What Would a New U.S. Military Look Like?

RFD US Military

An article in Foreign Policy magazine argued that if we “were starting fresh,” today’s United States armed forces would look very different.

It’s an interesting thought, so Room for Debate asked other experts: What would the U.S. military look like if we could start from scratch?

 ..............................................................

Put more money in basic pay and less in pensions and health care. Rethink the antiquated officer-enlisted divide and don't relocate service members as often since many spouses have careers too.

Two things we would never, never do if designing our military from scratch would be to saddle it with the dysfunctional weapons acquisition system and unnecessary basing structure it is laboring under. 

The U.S. armed forces are unbeatable, instead of sending troops, we should train our allies. They know the people and the geographic terrain, speak the language and understand the culture.

 
Being Grateful for Differences as a Path to Self-Acceptance

Being Grateful for Differences as a Path to Self-Acceptance

By Nathaniel Lambert, Ph.D.

Being grateful for your difference can allow you to reach a new level of self-acceptance. With this heightened feeling of surety, you can positively reframe many things in life. By being accepting of who you are and allowing yourself to feel grateful for your difference, you put yourself in the best possible light for everyone else to see.

“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought, and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.” -- Gilbert K. Chesterton

 
Immigration poll results a political blow for Obama

Immigration poll results a political blow for Obama

A Post-ABC News poll finds widespread disapproval of the way Obama and Republicans in Congress have handled unaccompanied minors at the border.

Nearly 6 out of 10 Americans are not happy with Obama’s performance in dealing with the tens of thousands of minors who have arrived from Central America in recent months, overwhelming Border Patrol stations. All told, 58 percent disapprove of his management on the issue, including 54 percent of Latinos.

The findings represent a political blow for a president who called immigration reform a top second-term priority when he was reelected two years ago with 71 percent support from Latino voters.

But as with other hot-button issues, congressional Republicans fare even worse in the court of public opinion, with 66 percent disapproving of the job GOP lawmakers have done to address the crisis. Almost as many Republicans disapprove of their party’s handling of the issue as say they approve, with negative ratings rising to a majority among conservatives.

 
Illegal immigrants in D.C. fail written driver’s test at 80% rate

D.C. Council Member Mary Cheh, Ward 3 Democrat and chairwoman of the Committee on Transportation and the Environment, said the different look to the city's "limited-purpose license" does not seem to have discourage applicants. (The Washington Times)

Illegal immigrants in D.C. fail written driver’s test at 80% rate

By Crystal Hill - The Washington Times

Four out of five illegal immigrants seeking driver’s licenses under a new D.C. law have failed a written knowledge test — a rocky start to a program that in its first two months has issued 268 licenses, according to city officials.

The failure rate of 80 percent compares with a 58 percent failure rate for people seeking traditional driver’s licenses, the Department of Motor Vehicles told a D.C. Council committee. In addition, a check of the DMV website this week shows a massive backlog in appointments required to apply for the District’s “limited-purpose license.” The first available date for an illegal immigrant to get an appointment is in March, and more than 6,000 appointments are pending.

 
What Hillary Clinton's happiness says about you

texts hillary

What Hillary Clinton's happiness says about you

Megan Carpentier

Megan Carpentier

After so many attacks, did Hillary's critics make her into the Everywoman? Because she sure is smiling again

On the cover of Ed Klein's new No1 bestseller, Blood Feud, Hillary Clinton is seated on an outdoor stage in winter clothes, squinting with what we are made to believe is barely-disguised animosity at President Obama taking the oath of office instead of her.

In reality, she's at New York City mayor Bill DeBlasio's inauguration, when the temperature with wind chill was about 20F. She's probably freezing her ass off.

The deliberately unflattering shot may be jarring, given that even those pictures of her testifying at the Benghazi hearing last year were at least contextually relevant: For the majority of her time as Secretary of State, pictures of Hillary hewed to the standard politician fare – stern, inspired, possible annoyed.

But if you've been watching Hillary's public image closely for a while, pictures highlighting her supposed Bitchy Resting Face are older hat than that thing Matt Drudge is still wearing. She's often portrayed as "unladylike" – holding grudges, winning arguments at any cost, not suffering fools lightly – so of course you get photos of her looking tired, pissed off or somehow "unattractive", since there is nothing less feminine than being unworthy of the male gaze.

Of course – as demonstrated by the flap over her book-tour comments about being broke after Bill left office – every woman doesn't run for president. And if Hillary does, the campaign will almost certainly sap her smile of some of that contentedness, and provide a new series of unattractive photos by which people will decide to judge whether she is fit for office. Her popularity will plummet, her enemies will have a field day and someone, somewhere will conduct a poll about whether Americans want to have a beer with her – when, by the her No1 hater's own admission, she's clearly a wine drinker. And some women watching will hear something (probably from a man) in the midst of Hillary's next round in the spin cycle that reminds them: it's not that so much that Hillary Clinton's doing it wrong, it's that she's been set up so that she won't ever be able to do it "right".

Or maybe things have changed just enough that no random dude on the campaign trail will demand that she iron his shirt, and no one will ask again how being a grandmother will affect her run for office, and the next pundit who questions whether the cut of her pantsuit is sufficiently sexy will have to close his computer and walk away from the internet until 2017. Perhaps what Rebecca Traister wrote in The New Republic is right: "The degree to which our cultural attitudes about women in politics have matured is astonishing."

 
James M. Burns, a Scholar of Presidents and Leadership, Dies at 95

James M. Burns, a Scholar of Presidents and Leadership, Dies at 95

James MacGregor Burns, a Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer and political scientist who wrote voluminously about the nature of leadership in general and the presidency in particular, died on Tuesday at his home in Williamstown, Mass. He was 95.

Mr. Burns, who taught at Williams College for most of the last half of the 20th century, was the author of more than 20 books, most notably “Roosevelt: Soldier of Freedom” (1970), a major study of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s stewardship of the country through World War II. It was awarded both the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Award.

An informal adviser to presidents, Mr. Burns was a liberal Democrat who once ran for Congress from the westernmost district of Massachusetts. Though he sometimes wrote prescriptively from — or for — the left, over all he managed the neat trick of neither hiding his political viewpoint in his work nor funneling his work through it. His work was often critical of American government and its system of checks and balances, which in his view was an obstacle to visionary progress, particularly as a rein on the presidency. In works like “The Deadlock of Democracy” (1963) and “Packing the Court: The Rise of Judicial Power and the Coming Crisis of the Supreme Court” (2009), he argued for systemic changes, calling for a population-based Senate, term limits for Supreme Court justices and an end to midterm elections.

The nature of leadership was his fundamental theme throughout his career. In his biographies of Roosevelt, John F. Kennedy and Edward M. Kennedy, among others, and in his works of political theory — including “Leadership,” a seminal 1978 work melding historical analysis and contemporary observation that became a foundation text for an academic discipline — Mr. Burns focused on parsing the relationship between the personalities of the powerful and the historical events they helped engender.

His award-winning Roosevelt biography, for example, was frank in its admiration of its subject. But the book nonetheless distilled, with equal frankness, Roosevelt’s failings and character flaws; it faulted him for not seizing the moment and cementing the good relations between the United States and the Soviet Union when war had made them allies. This lack of foresight, Mr. Burns argued, was a primary cause of the two nations’ drift into the Cold War.

Roosevelt “was a deeply divided man,” he wrote, “divided between the man of principle, of ideals, of faith, crusading for a distant vision, on the one hand; and, on the other, the man of Realpolitik, of prudence, of narrow, manageable, short-run goals, intent always on protecting his power and authority in a world of shifting moods and capricious fortune.

 
Pulitzer-Winning Reporter Held in Immigration Case

View image on Twitter

Pulitzer-Winning Reporter Held in Immigration Case

By JULIA PRESTON

Jose Antonio Vargas, an activist who has said he is an illegal immigrant, was arrested by the Border Patrol in Texas.

Jose Antonio Vargas, a journalist and activist who has publicly said he is an illegal immigrant, was taken into custody Tuesday by the United States Border Patrol in McAllen, Tex., as he tried to board a plane. Mr. Vargas was in McAllen to join a vigil for thousands of children who have been crossing the border from Central America in recent months.

His apprehension poses a dilemma for the Obama administration, which will now have to decide how to handle his case at a time when the border situation has made all decisions about immigration high profile and politically fraught.

Mr. Vargas, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, wrote about his status as an undocumented immigrating in The New York Times Magazine. In a post on Twitter on Tuesday, he said his only forms of identification were a Phillipines passport and “my pocketbook U.S. Constitution.”

 
Military and Intelligence Leaders Lose Confidence in Obama’s Afghan Plan

top-box

Military and Intelligence Leaders Lose Confidence in Obama’s Afghan Plan

The idea of pulling nearly all American troops out of Afghanistan in 2016 suddenly seems pretty lousy, after so much of Iraq has collapsed under a similar scenario.

When President Obama announced his plan to leave Afghanistan by the end of 2016, U.S. intelligence said it could be done safely. Now, intelligence and military leaders are privately warning that the U.S. counterterrorism forces could be needed there for much longer.

During the internal administration debate earlier this year over the way forward in Afghanistan, the CIA supported a plan to degrade al Qaeda to the point that America could withdraw almost all of its troops there by 2016. The responsibility of fighting al Qaeda would be left mostly to the Afghan and Pakistani militaries.

For a White House looking to announce a new policy to go to zero combat troops in Afghanistan by the time President Obama leaves office, the agency’s classified assessment was exactly what they wanted to hear. But the assessment ran afoul of military leaders, especially those responsible for Afghanistan, who had long advocated for leaving a residual force in Afghanistan past 2016, including a strong contingent of the special operations and intelligence personnel to pursue and press al Qaeda.

Now, those military leaders and some of their intelligence community brethren are warning privately that the rise of ISIS and the growing crises in Iraq, Syria, and North Africa are drawing away counterterrorism resources faster than expected from Afghanistan and Pakistan. The plan to degrade al Qaeda enough so that U.S. forces can leave is already lagging behind schedule. And given what’s happening in Iraq, they argue dismantling U.S. counterterrorism capabilities in Afghanistan no longer looks like a good idea in the first place.
 
A Clinton approach for angrier times

A Clinton approach for angrier times

Hillary Clinton and Bill Clinton are pictured. | Getty

Hillary Clinton has a unique asset if she runs for president — Bill Clinton, who presided over a booming economy and an era of sunny Democratic centrism.

But she also faces a singular challenge: convincing voters who are skeptical of some Wall Street-friendly policies during his tenure that she can connect with their concerns at a time when the wealth gap is massive between the very rich and everyone else.

After a decade and a half of being tethered to her husband’s record, Hillary Clinton established her own political identity as senator and as secretary of state. But a string of questions from interviewers during her book tour about her husband’s tenure as president underscores the ongoing issue she will face reconciling their past with her future.

On a broad range of issues from tax policy and Wall Street reform to religious rights, more than a dozen senior Democratic strategists and people who have worked with the former first family told POLITICO that Hillary Clinton will have to craft a platform that reflects the party’s shift left and populist sentiment across the political spectrum that distrusts entrenched interests and worries about growing wage inequality. Some described this balancing act as one of the most significant issues for the potential presidential candidate.

“This is the most important set of conversations going on right now. We are in a different economic era that requires a different kind of response,” said Simon Rosenberg, founder of the New Democrat Network who shaped the economic message for Bill Clinton in the 1992 campaign. “Apple isn’t making the same products they were 20 years ago, so you should not expect any Democrat to obey policies that are over 20 years old.” Rosenberg added that no one in the Hillary Clinton orbit underestimates the task she faces.

“Their eyes are wide open. No one thinks it’s going to be an easy election in the primary or in the general,” he said. “Things are very unsettled in American politics right now and no one close to her thinks this would be anything but a very tough race.”

The former first lady has embraced her husband’s overall record, which includes the fastest jobs and economic growth of the past half-century.

 
Germany 'may revert to typewriters'

Germany 'may revert to typewriters'

Philip Oltermann in Berlin

Typewriter on bench

Politicians claim communciations technology mistrusted after US spying allegations and NSA revelations

German politicians are considering a return to using manual typewriters for sensitive documents in the wake of the US surveillance scandal.

The head of the Bundestag's parliamentary inquiry into NSA activity in Germany said in an interview with the Morgenmagazin TV programme that he and his colleagues were seriously thinking of ditching email completely.

Asked "Are you considering typewriters" by the interviewer on Monday night, the Christian Democrat politican Patrick Sensburg said: "As a matter of fact, we have – and not electronic models either". "Really?", the surprised interviewer checked. "Yes, no joke", Sensburg responded.

During the continuing row over alleged US spying operations in Germany, there had been speculation that the CIA may have actively targeted the Bundestag's NSA inquiry committee.

"Unlike other inquiry committees, we are investigating an ongoing situation. Intelligence activities are still going on, they are happening," said Sensburg..

Last year, the Russian government reportedly took similar measures in response to proof of NSA spying, as revealed by whistleblower Edward Snowden.

 
When Teachers Cheat

PHOTOGRAPH: OLIVER MUNDAY

When Teachers Cheat

by Rachel Aviv

Faced with the demands of high-stakes testing, a struggling school made a terrible choice.

One afternoon in the spring of 2006, Damany Lewis, a math teacher at Parks Middle School, in Atlanta, unlocked the room where standardized tests were kept. It was the week before his students took the Criterion-Referenced Competency Test, which determined whether schools in Georgia had met federal standards of achievement. The tests were wrapped in cellophane and stacked in cardboard boxes. Lewis, a slim twenty-nine-year-old with dreadlocks, contemplated opening the test with scissors, but he thought his cut marks would be too obvious. Instead, he left the school, walked to the corner store, and bought a razor blade. When he returned, he slit open the cellophane and gently pulled a test book from its wrapping. Then he used a lighter to warm the razor, which he wedged under the adhesive sealing the booklet, and peeled back the tab.

He photocopied the math, reading, and language-arts sections—the subjects that would determine, under the No Child Left Behind guidelines, whether Parks would be classified as a “school in need of improvement” for the sixth year in a row. Unless fifty-eight per cent of students passed the math portion of the test and sixty-seven per cent passed in language arts, the state could shut down the school. Lewis put on gloves, to prevent oil from his hands from leaving a residue on the plastic, and then used his lighter to melt the edges of the cellophane together, so that it appeared as if the package had never been opened. He gave the reading and language-arts sections to two teachers he trusted and took the math section home.

Flipping through its pages, he felt proud of how much material he had covered that year. “Without even reading the question, I could tell you just by the shape of the graph, ‘Oh, my kids know that,’ ” he told me. He put the test in his fireplace once he’d confirmed that he had taught the necessary concepts. But he worried that his students would struggle with questions that were delivered in paragraph form. Some of his seventh-grade students were still reading by sounding out the letters. It seemed unfair that the concepts were “buried in words.” Lewis felt that he had pushed them to work harder than they ever had in their lives. “I’m not going to let the state slap them in the face and say they’re failures,” he told me. “I’m going to do everything I can to prevent the why-try spirit.”

 
Millennial Politics Don't Make Any Sense

Millennial Politics Don't Make Any Sense

They love socialism—but can't define it. They love welfare—but hate taxes. Why are young people so confused?

By Derek Thompson

Millennial politics is simple, really. Young people support big government, unless it costs any more money. They're for smaller government, unless budget cuts scratch a program they've heard of. They'd like Washington to fix everything, just so long as it doesn't run anything.

That's all from a new Reason Foundation poll surveying 2,000 young adults between the ages of 18 and 29. Millennials' political views are, at best, in a stage of constant metamorphosis and, at worst, "totally incoherent," as Dylan Matthews puts it.

  • Millennials hate the political parties more than everyone else, but they have the highest opinion of Congress.
  • Young people are the most likely to be single parents and the least likely to approve of single parenthood.
  • Young people voted overwhelmingly for Obama when he promised universal health care, but they oppose his universal health care law as much as the rest of the country ... even though they still pledge high support for universal health care. (Like other groups, but more so: They seem allergic to the term Obamacare.)
 
Tech mogul ramps up GOP giving

Sean Parker is shown. | Getty

Tech mogul ramps up GOP giving

By ALEXANDER BURN

Sean Parker’s outreach to the GOP comes amid a broader intensification of his political activities.

Silicon Valley billionaire Sean Parker has sharply ramped up his political giving to Republicans, directing upwards of half a million dollars to GOP candidates and causes during the most recent quarter of 2014, sources said.

Parker, the Napster co-founder and former Facebook president, boosted six Republicans seeking reelection – most significantly by donating $350,000 to a super PAC supporting Mississippi Sen. Thad Cochran as he battled tea party challenger Chris McDaniel.

Prior to this year, Parker had given money overwhelmingly to Democrats, including President Barack Obama, New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker and Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe, as well as to groups backing progressive goals such as gun control and campaign finance reform.

His outreach to the GOP comes amid a broader intensification of Parker’s political activities ahead of the 2014 and 2016 elections.

In addition to supporting the Mississippi Conservatives super PAC, Parker cut checks to the campaigns of Idaho Rep. Mike Simpson and National Republican Congressional Committee Chairman Greg Walden, who faced primary challengers on the right. He donated to both the campaigns and leadership PACs of Illinois Rep. Peter Roskam and Ohio Rep. Pat Tiberi.

Parker also gave a six-figure sum to an outside group supporting South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham’s reelection campaign, according to a Parker adviser, who declined to identify the group.

 
Obama sets up clash with Democrats

Obama sets up clash with Democrats

Dan Roberts in Washington 

Central American migrants

Proposal to change 2008 trafficking law to ease influx of child migrants at US border faces fierce opposition from Democrats

Senator John Cornyn, a Texas Republican, and Representative Henry Cuellar, a Texas Democrat, together proposed legislation on Monday that would include changes to a 2008 anti-trafficking law, the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act, and allow children from countries like Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador to be returned within a week of their arrival in the US rather than holding them for months as they await a full asylum hearing, as currently required.

The proposal from Cornyn and Cuellar matches White House demands for changes to the Wilberforce Act, which has paradoxically been blamed for encouraging smuggling gangs and families in Central America by allowing unaccompanied children to remain with relatives in the US while their cases are processed.

But the idea faces fierce opposition from a number of senior Democrats, especially those in the hispanic caucus, which is urging the passage of a “clean” funding bill to deal with the crisis and refuses to countenance any watering down of anti-trafficking measures it says are vital to ensuring a fair legal hearing for refugees.

Under the new bill, children from countries in Central America would in future be treated the same as those from Mexico, who currently can be fast-tracked back to their country of origin.

“Our proposal would improve the Trafficking Victims Protection Act of 2008, treating all unaccompanied minors equally and ensuring due process under the law in a timely, fair manner,” Cornyn said in a statement.
 
George Clooney vs. The Daily Mail

PHOTOGRAPH: VITTORIO ZUNINO CELOTTO/GETTY

George Clooney vs. The Daily Mail

by Lauren Collins

The Mail is a machine for wasting reputations, but Clooney has a bigger stature than anyone the paper has come up against before.

Until last week, when George Clooney excoriated the Daily Mail for fabricating a story about his future mother-in-law, the newspaper’s most prominent sworn enemy was Hugh Grant. As I wrote in a 2012 Profile of the paper, Grant mounted a dauntless attack on the Mail during the Leveson Inquiry into the practices of the British press, deconstructing detail by detail a story that the Mail on Sunday had run about him and a “charming, married, middle-aged lady” with whom, as it happened, Grant was not having an affair. Grant claimed that the only way the paper could have gotten the voicemail that prompted the piece was by hacking his phone. The Mail struck back, releasing a statement that read, “Mr. Grant’s allegations are mendacious smears driven by his hatred of the media.” (The “mendacious” part was rich, given that the Mail had admitted that the story was untrue and paid Grant damages.) Jeering stories soon appeared in the Mail’s pages. Later, Grant spoke to the BBC about the experience. “I can see why they’re cross, because for once someone has had the courage to question their probity and their honesty,” he said. “Generally speaking, if anyone does that with a paper like the Daily Mail, however much they may go on about freedom of speech, no one is allowed the freedom of speech to question the Daily Mail. If you do, you will be trashed.”

Grant is right: for all its charms, the Mail is a machine for wasting reputations. Sometimes civilians are its fodder, “monstered” like so many recyclables that got thrown in with the garbage. The paper demonstrates particular efficiency and relish in shredding the character of celebrities. When Paul Dacre, its editor, made his own appearance before Leveson, he asserted that “latitude should be given to papers who look into the lives of people who intrude into their own lives—in other words, into their own privacy.”
 
San Diego Chargers LB Manti Te'o and his Season of Knowledge

San Diego Chargers LB Manti Te'o and his Season of Knowledge

By Ruben J. Gonzalez

For San Diego Chargers LB Manti Te'o, the difference between a rookie year and year two can be be defined by the work and preparation in-between.

"One thing I learned in the NFL is you gotta stay injury free," Te'o said. "The season is a very long season and no matter how good you are, you are no good to your team if you are on the sidelines. I'm now focused on flexibility, making sure that I'm not only physically ready for this season, but mentally ready and spiritually ready and so far its looking good.

Publisher's Note: If this guy ever amounts to anything, I am giving up commenting on NFL football.

 
Colorado Democratic Gov. REFUSES WH request to host illegal immigrant children

Colorado Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper said his state's taxpayers don't want 'another burden'

Democratic governor who played pool with Obama REFUSES White House request to host illegal immigrant children

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (L), joked with President Joe Biden at the National Governors Association convention on Friday, but was starkly critical two days later of the Obama administration's request to house illegal immigrant children in hist state

Colorado Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper said his state's taxpayers don't want 'another burden' in relation to the child immigration crisis.

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Matthews Burwell met privately with dozens of governors Sunday as the Obama administration tried to get support from the leaders of states that will host thousands of the Central American children who have crossed the Mexican border on their own since Oct. 1.

Governors of both parties expressed concerns about the cost to states, including providing public education for the children, according to those who attended the meeting. Burwell left the meeting through a side door without talking to reporters.

'Our citizens already feel burdened by all kinds of challenges. They don't want to see another burden come into their state,' said Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, a Democrat. 'However we deal with the humanitarian aspects of this, we've got to do it in the most cost-effective way possible.'

Under current law, immigrant children from countries that don't border the United States and who cross into this country by themselves are turned over to HHS within 72 hours. From there, they often are reunited with parents or placed with other relatives already living in the country, while they wait for an immigration court to decide their future. The court process can take years

Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad were among the most vocal Republican critics. They seized on the administration's plans to place the children with friends or family members without checking on their immigration status.

 
Obama slammed by black Chicago residents: ‘Worst president ever’

President Barack Obama jogs down the ramp of Air Force One as he arrives Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Thursday, July 10,  2014.  (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

Obama slammed by black Chicago residents: ‘Worst president ever’

By Cheryl K. Chumley - The Washington Times

Black residents of Chicago’s South Side, who recently rallied to decry a spate of violence in the city, ripped President Obama for ignoring their plight while pushing for funding for illegal immigrants at their expense.

Demonstrators blasted the Obama administration’s inaction in Chicago while federal funds are earmarked to help the roughly 50,000 illegal immigrants who have crossed into America since October.

“Mr. President, we’re asking for you,” one woman said. “You’re spending billions of dollars in Texas, but we’ve a problem here in Chicago. We will not stand by this here, and keep letting this senseless killing and shooting happen in our community.

 
Jon Voight goes on rant about Obama, Democrats on Fox News
 
What Would Reagan Do in Iraq?

What Would Reagan Do in Iraq?

Peter Beinart

Rand Paul and Rick Perry each claim to be the Gipper’s heir in the Middle East. Who's right?

 Last month, Paul opined in The Wall Street Journal that, “Though many claim the mantle of Ronald Reagan on foreign policy, too few look at how he really conducted it.” The Kentucky senator went on to argue that Reagan was highly cautious about sending U.S. troops into harm’s way, and that in that spirit, Republicans nowadays should resist renewed military intervention in Iraq. In a reply last Friday in The Washington Post, Perry accused Paul of having “conveniently omitted Reagan’s long internationalist record of leading the world with moral and strategic clarity.” Reagan, Perry insisted, “identified Soviet communism as an existential threat to our national security and Western values, and he confronted this threat in every theater”—meaning Republicans should be more willing to confront the jihadist threat in Iraq and beyond. In Politico on Monday, Paul volleyed back, declaring that “some of Reagan’s Republican champions today praise his rhetoric but forget his actions.”

They’re both right. As Paul suggests, Reagan was far more skeptical of direct military intervention than today’s conservatives remember. He sent U.S. ground troops into harm’s way twice in eight years: to invade Grenada, a country with roughly 500 troops, and to serve as peacekeepers in Lebanon, a mission he quickly aborted after a Hezbollah bomber killed 241 of them. The year after those interventions, as Paul notes, Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger laid out a series of tests for military force—later popularized by Colin Powell—that essentially ruled out any intervention where public support, and decisive victory, could not be guaranteed. It was on that basis that in his final years in office, Reagan fended off members of his administration—led by a young assistant secretary of state named Elliott Abrams—who wanted to invade Panama. Even then, Reagan left the White House haunted by the belief that he had intervened too much. His final words in the Oval Office, according to Press Secretary Marlin Fitzwater, were “the worst thing I ever did was send those troops to Beirut.”

But if Reagan might have approved of Paul’s reluctance to send troops into combat, Perry is right that in other ways, Paul is hardly Reagan’s foreign-policy clone. Paul, for instance, zealously advocates congressional limitations on a president’s national-security powers. Reagan, by contrast, oversaw the Iran-Contra scheme, which subverted Congress’s efforts to bar aid to Nicaragua’s anti-communist rebels.

 
Athletes can be trained to push through pain: study
 
World Cup Hero Tim Howard Talks About Sudden Fame

Tim Howard Goes Shirtless & His Torso is Covered in Tattoos

World Cup Hero Tim Howard Talks About Sudden Fame

 Has your sudden fame in the U.S. been overwhelming?
It’s not overwhelming for me in the sense that I play in England. In England, soccer is just mega—it’s huge. I’ve been there for 11 years. I’ve seen firsthand how people react. Obviously, in America, the nonsoccer fans have really taken notice of the sport with the World Cup. That’s been cool to see as an American who is trying to help grow the sport.

 
How To Be Nice To The Ones You Love Most

How To Be Nice To The Ones You Love Most

By Alex Lickerman, M.D.

Why is it we so often find ourselves treating the ones we most love the most shabbily? I don't think, contrary to popular wisdom, that the answer is that familiarity breeds contempt. After all, it's not that all the wonderful things we loved about our loved ones when they first entered our lives gradually become repulsive to us ("I hate that you're so kind to everyone!").

 
Islamic State leader al-Baghdadi formerly a U.S. captive

jihadist: Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, leader of the al Qaeda splinter group the Islamic State, has rarely been photographed. (associated press)

Islamic State leader al-Baghdadi formerly a U.S. captive

By Rowan Scarborough - The Washington Times

The U.S. held him captive for a time in 2004 before an unconditional release put him back into Iraq’s growing Sunni insurgency.

The elusive al-Baghdadi, known then by his nom de guerre, Abu Du’a, would go on to become the most dominant figure in today’s radical Islamic movement.

A Sunni mullah who is in his early 40s and reportedly hails from Fallujah or Samarra, al-Baghdadi commands his own terrorist army and controls much of Iraq north and west of the capital, Baghdad, as well as a smattering of towns in Syria.

 
Smuggling her children to a better life

Godoy with her children, Madison Zepeda, left, and Adonis Zepeda. (Post)

Smuggling her children to a better life

Pamela Constable

Desperate to be reunited with the family she left behind in Honduras, Allis Godoy had her two kids smuggled into the U.S.

From the moment she fled poverty-stricken Honduras a decade ago, Allis Godoy knew she would find a way to be reunited with the children she left behind. She was desperate enough to have them smuggled across Mexico to the U.S. border, spending thousands of dollars and risking their lives so they could join her in Northwest Washington.

Four years ago, her teenage son David made the hazardous trip. Two and a half months ago, her youngest daughter, Madison, finally reached her side. By then, the pixie-like 10-year-old had endured two failed smuggling attempts and a third that landed her in the custody of U.S. immigration agents in Texas on April 14. Two weeks later, she was flown to Washington by the federal government and greeted by the mother who had last seen her when she was 6 months old.

It was the crowning achievement of Godoy’s life.

“If people call this a crime, why is it a crime to want to give your children a better future?” asked Godoy, 39, who makes salads in a restaurant kitchen and lives in a tiny apartment in Columbia Heights. “I have only one goal in life,” she said. “To make sure my children never have to endure what I did as a child.”

“It is not safe in Honduras. There is so much poverty and delinquency,” said Godoy. “I never wanted to leave them, and my dream was to go home after a few years. But it didn’t work out. Everything was so hard here, and I didn’t have the courage to go back empty-handed.” Some of her relatives faced the same dilemma, so they helped each other pay to bring their children north. “This is a family investment in their future,” she said.

.......................................

 Publisher's Note: A simple-minded article for the simple-minded readers of the Washington Post.

 
Sen. John McCain on illegal child immigrants: Fly them home, now

**FILE** Sen. John McCain, Arizona Republican (Associated Press)

Sen. John McCain on illegal child immigrants: Fly them home, now

By Cheryl K. Chumley - The Washington Times

Sen. John McCain took a strong stance on the scores of illegal immigrants who’ve been streaming across the U.S. southern border in recent weeks, telling a CNN audience that authorities should fly them home as quickly as they can.

“There has to be a halt to this,” he said during a talk with CNN “State of the Union” host Candy Crowley on Sunday. “The best way to do that is for planeloads of these young people to be returned to their country of origin.”

Mr. McCain said the situation facing the minor-aged border crossers was “tragic,” but added that “we cannot have an unending flow of children from all over the world, much less Central America, coming into our country,” Newsmax reported.

The Arizona senator said he’s about to bring forth legislation that mandates any illegal immigrant who’s arrested at the border wear ankle monitors so that federal authorities can track them, Newsmax said.

 
Liberal lawyers ensuring illegal aliens are never deported

FILE - In this June 20, 2014 file photo, immigrants who entered the U.S. illegally stand in line for tickets at the bus station after they were released from a U.S. Customs and Border Protection processing facility in McAllen, Texas. Tackling what he has called a humanitarian crisis, President Barack Obama on Tuesday, July 8, 2014 asked Congress for $3.7 billion to cope with a tide of minors from Central America who are illegally crossing the U.S. border, straining immigration resources and causing a political firestorm in Washington.  (AP Photo/Eric Gay, File)

 Liberal lawyers ensuring illegal aliens are never deported

By Judson Phillips

Providing lawyers for illegal aliens is not a popular idea. It would be dead on arrival in Congress. But when you have liberal lawyers, who needs Congress?

On Wednesday, in a move that was missed by most of the mainstream media, a group of so-called “civil lights” lawyers filed a lawsuit in Seattle. The purpose of their suit is to compel the government to assign court-appointed lawyers to every minor illegal alien so they can fight their deportation.

Left-wing groups are moving quickly to make sure those illegals stay and ensure that more come.

This lawsuit will be successful.

How is it possible to see the future? Simple. The left is using a strategy known as “sue and settle.” To put it mildly, it is nefarious.

Liberals have done this with several environmental suits, and now they are going to do this with immigration amnesty.

 
U.S. Sees Risks in Assisting a Compromised Iraqi Force

U.S. Sees Risks in Assisting a Compromised Iraqi Force

A classified assessment of Iraq’s security forces concluded that many units are so deeply infiltrated by Sunni extremists or Shiite personnel backed by Iran that Americans assigned to advise them could face heightened risks, according to U.S. officials.

The report concludes that only about half of Iraq’s operational units are capable enough for American commandos to advise them if the White House decides to help roll back the advances made by Sunni militants in northern and western Iraq over the past month.

Adding to the administration’s dilemma is the assessment’s conclusion that Iraqi forces loyal to Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki are now heavily dependent on Shiite militias — many of which were trained in Iran — as well as on advisers from Iran’s paramilitary Quds Force.

Shiite militias fought American troops after the United States invaded Iraq and might again present a danger to American advisers. But without an American-led effort to rebuild Iraq’s security forces, there may be no hope of reducing the Iraqi government’s dependence on those Iranian-backed militias, officials caution.

The findings underscore the challenges ahead for the Obama administration as it seeks to confront militants with the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, which has seized major cities in Iraq, all but erased the Syrian-Iraqi border and, on Sunday, staged a raid less than an hour’s drive from Baghdad.

At the center of the administration debate is whether to send more military advisers, weaponry and surveillance systems — and, if so, in what numbers, at what cost and at what levels of risk — to a country that American combat troops left in 2011, but that now teeters on the brink of collapse.

 
Immigrants ignore U.S. immigration laws because Obama won’t enforce them

Immigrants ignore U.S. immigration laws because Obama won’t enforce them

James Jay Carafano

It became her mantra. The U.S. border with Mexico, Janet Napolitano would say, “has never been more secure.” First uttered in 2010 during Congressional testimony, she repeated it often for the remainder of her tenure as Homeland Security Secretary.

Even four years ago, not everyone agreed. True, illegal border crossings had dried up in some sectors. But elsewhere new transit corridors had opened. And cartel activity had never receded. Smugglers used everything from tunnels to ultralight aircraft to funnel people and drugs north, and money and guns south.

Still, there was no question that, in 2010, border interdictions were rising, and the total number of people unlawfully present in the United States was declining. The drop started even before Napolitano got on the job. A 2008 report by the Washington-based Center for immigration Studies estimated the number had fallen 1.3 million since 2007, an 11 percent decline.

The report cited “strong indications” that stepped-up enforcement played a major role. Others pegged the decline to disappearing jobs–a result of the recession. Doubtless both factors were at play. Nevertheless, Napolitano trumpeted the numbers, largely to argue that a general amnesty for illegal immigrants was now perfectly appropriate. After all, with the border secure, more illegal immigrants could not possibly follow!

 
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