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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

McDonald's Happy Meals 1, San Francisco Lawmakers 0

By Susan Duclos

Remember back in November 2010 when the San Francisco Board of Supervisors passed an ordinance requiring meals that included toys with their purchase to meet specific nutritional guidelines.

The supes today passed an ordinance that will require meals to meet nutritional guidelines if restaurants wish to include a toy with the food purchase.

More importantly, the supes passed the so-called "Happy Meal Ban" by an 8-3 vote -- meaning it can survive a promised veto from Mayor Gavin Newsom. That's right: San Francisco done banned the Happy Meal. Robble robble.

It was dubbed the Happy Meal toy ban. It goes into effect December 1, 2011.

McDonald's had a year to think about it and they have figured out a way to not only comply with the nanny state law, but sell more Happy Meals in the process!!!

SF Weekly reports "Happy Meal Ban: McDonald's Outsmarts San Francisco."

In order to include a toy with a meal, restaurants must now comply with city-generated nutritional standards. Those are standards that even the "healthier" Happy Meals McDonald's introduced earlier this year don't come close to meeting. (As SF Weekly noted in January, the school lunches our children eat aren't healthy enough to qualify, either).

And yet it seems McDonald's has turned lemons into lemonade -- and is selling the sugary drink to San Francisco's children. Local McDonald's employees tell SF Weekly the company has devised a solution that appears to comply with San Francisco's "Healthy Meal Incentive Ordinance" that could actually make the company more money -- and necessitate toy-happy youngsters to buy more Happy Meals.

It turns out San Francisco has not entirely vanquished the Happy Meal as we know it. Come Dec. 1, you can still buy the Happy Meal. But it doesn't come with a toy. For that, you'll have to pay an extra 10 cents.

Huh. That hardly seems to have solved the problem (though adults and children purchasing unhealthy food can at least take solace that the 10 cents is going to Ronald McDonald House charities). But it actually gets worse from here. Thanks to Supervisor Eric Mar's much-ballyhooed new law, parents browbeaten into supplementing their preteens' Happy Meal toy collections are now mandated to buy the Happy Meals.

Today and tomorrow mark the last days that put-upon parents can satiate their youngsters by simply throwing down $2.18 for a Happy Meal toy. But, thanks to the new law taking effect on Dec. 1, this is no longer permitted. Now, in order to have the privilege of making a 10-cent charitable donation in exchange for the toy, you must buy the Happy Meal. Hilariously, it appears Mar et al., in their desire to keep McDonald's from selling grease and fat to kids with the lure of a toy have now actually incentivized the purchase of that grease and fat -- when, beforehand, a put-upon parent could get out cheaper and healthier with just the damn toy.

Shouldn't take too long for nanny state supporters, who believe the state should tell parents what to buy their children, what to feed them, and tell restaurants what they are and aren't allowed to sell, to start whining about that nasty corporation called McDonald's daring to find a way to make more money.

That nasty capitalism bug strikes again.

I think I am going to go to McDonald's tomorrow and buy a toy with a Happy Meal, just... cuzzzzzzz.


#OWS News: Police Dismantle Philadelphia, LA Occupier Encampments

By Susan Duclos

In the latest police effort to dismantle unlawful encampments erected by Wall Street Occupiers, Philadelphia and LA police swept through and cleared out the two sites where protesters had recently been set up tents.


Police swarmed around City Hall and rousted Occupy Philadelphia protesters from their encampment overnight, more than two days after a deadline passed for them to leave.

The occupiers responded by roaming around Center City, scattering and regrouping with police following their every move in a chaotic night of cat-and-mouse that ended before daylight.

"The Dilworth occupation is over," Mayor Nutter said at a news conference just before 7 a.m.

Crews were using bulldozers and other heavy equipment to clear up debris and fire hoses to wash down the plaza as he spoke.

He called the police operation to clear the plaza "tremendously well planned and executed."

He said at least 50 people were arrested, 44 of them in a 5 a.m. face off on North 15th Street behind the Inquirer and School District buildings.

Los Angeles

Police in riot gear and biohazard suits removed anti-Wall Street activists from an encampment outside the Los Angeles City Hall on Wednesday, arresting an estimated 200 people.

Overnight on the East Coast, about 100 Occupy protesters in Philadelphia swiftly and peacefully vacated their camp but later 52 were arrested around the city on charges ranging from obstructing a highway to aggravated assault on a police officer, officials said.

In Los Angeles, busloads of police closed in on the 8-week-old Occupy LA camp after midnight and declared the hundreds of protesters congregated on the lawn, sidewalks and streets around City Hall to be an unlawful assembly, ordering them to disperse or face arrest, in line with an eviction order from the mayor.

This follows weeks of crackdowns in cities across the country, the most widely publicized was in New York when police evicted Occupiers from Zuccotti Park, where it all started, and a court decided protesters were not legally able to set up encampments in the Park but they were free to protest there as long as they followed Park rules.

There has not been much reported news from that location since the Zuccotti Park Occupiers were disbanded.

No doubt this has been a relief to New York City which the AP has reported $7 million had been spent by taxpayers in "police overtime and other municipal services', all associated with costs to the taxpayers of New York because of the Occupiers.

In Oakland where another highly publicized crack down dismantled their tent city, the city had already had a nearly $58 million budget gap and taxpayers were nailed with $2.4 million responding to the protests.

Without the encampment, SFGate reports that Occupiers have hit their "second phase" which is to "provoke confrontations" in order to stay in the news, but this has "turned off many people who lament the cost of extra policing and the damage done by vandals."

While many liberals have lamented polling that showed the general public agrees with certain concepts generated by the Occupy movement, that has not translated into support for the movement itself because of the constant strife, public reports on death threats from Occupiers and supporters, violence, public urination and defecation by Occupiers, provoked confrontations instigated by Occupiers, unsanitary conditions in which the Occupiers created with their tent cities, diseases running rampant throughout those tent cities, etc...

Mid November the Democratically leaning Public Policy Polling found that 45 percent of voters oppose the Occupiers with 33 percent being supportive of their goals. A month before that PPP found 36 percent opposed and 35 percent were supportive. In just one month, according to the PPP polls, Occupier antics cost themselves 2 percent support and gained themselves 9 percent more opposition.

Two days ago, November 28, 2011, Rasmussen found that 55 percent of likely voters now hold an unfavorable view of the Occupiers, with 39 percent holding a "somewhat favorable view."

Occupiers outstayed their welcome like a house guest that never leaves. The longer they stay the less support they are getting.

You can find all WuA's Occupier antics posts at the class warfare label page here.

Sgt Bowe Bergdahl: US Army (Prisoner of War): Day of Action & Prayer-Nov 30

Every week on War On Terror News, the top name on each Moments of Silence - our call to honor and remember our Fallen Heroes - Sgt Bowe Bergdahl is the first name listed. Sgt Bowe Bergdahl of the US Army went missing on June 30, 2009 under mysterious circumstances while deployed in Afghanistan. He is a POW/MIA.

Bergdahl is assigned to the 1st Battalion, 501st Infantry Regiment, 4th Brigade Combat Team, 25th Infantry Division, based at Fort Richardson, Alaska. Since Bergdahl went missing, the Taliban has released three videos showing him in captivity. The Taliban have demanded $1 million and the release of 21 Afghan prisoners and Aafia Siddiqui in exchange for Bergdahl's release. They have threatened to execute Bergdahl if Siddiqui is not released. Most of the Afghan prisoners are being held at Guantanamo Bay.

At the time of his capture, Bergdahl's rank was that of Private First Class (E-3). In June 2010, he was promoted to Specialist (E-4) during his absence. On June 17, 2011 he was promoted to the rank of Sergeant (E-5)

Sgt Bergdahl is still missing. In the ensuing months and years since his disappearance, Bowe Bergdahl has been written about - both in the msm and by the milbog community.

We have not forgotten Sgt Bergdahl.

In April 2010, in a video released by his captors, Bergdahl said:

"The very last thing is, just let me go. Get me to go, just -- release -- get me to be released because it's -- this war isn't worth the waste of human life that it has cost both Afghanistan and U.S. It's not worth the amount of lives that have been wasted -- the amount of life that has been wasted in prisons -- Guantanamo Bay, Bagram -- all those places where we are keeping, you know, prisoners. I'm a prisoner. I want to go home. You know, the men -- the Afghanistan men who are in our prisons, they want to go home, too. It's -- just let me go. Get me to come home. Release me. Get -- you know -- every day I want to go home. The pain in my heart to see my family again doesn't get any smaller. Get me -- release me. Please. I'm begging you. Bring me home. Bring us all home, back to our families, back to my family. Please. Bring me home. Please. Bring me home." -- Pfc. Bowe Bergdahl

Sgt Bergdahl is still missing.

In May 2011, Bowe's father released his own personal message to his son's captors:

An international group on a major social media site is calling for today to be a Day of Action and Prayer on behalf of Bowe Bergdahl.

Since the day Bergdahl went missing in action, many around the world have joined in prayer, and today, as well as prayers, is contact information of politicians who need to be working to expedite the return of Sgt Bergdahl to American soil, where he belongs:

Sergeant Bowe Robert Bergdahl, United States Army (dob 28 March 1986) of Hailey, Idaho, was captured in Afghanistan in June of 2009 by a Taliban allied Afghan insurgent group called the Haqqani Network. As of 30 November 2011, he will have been held captive by the enemies of America for 2 years and 5 months.
In remembrance of the June 2009 capture of Bowe Bergdahl, please contact your United States Congressional Delegation and tell them that obtaining the release of Sgt Bergdahl must be a priority. Remind them that America must not forget Bowe & that you expect the United States government to work tirelessly to bring him home.

You can use the following site to find info on where to contact your specific members of Congress.

You can also use the following lists to direct inquiries to members of the:

United States Senate Armed Services Committee -

United States House Committee on Armed Services -

Please take time on Wednesday, November 30th, to lift Bowe up in prayer, asking that he would be protected, strengthened and that he would be immediatedly returned home alive and well.

Let us NEVER FORGET those who have honorably served America in the United States Armed Forces.

No soldier left behind.


Previous columns - and more info, plus videos:

Pfc. Bowe Robert Bergdahl: DUSTWUN

Remembering Bowe Bergdahl

SPC Bowe Bergdahl: No Soldier Left Behind

For more information on today's Day of Action and Prayer:

PLEASE NOTE: A Week of Action and Prayer is being coordinated with the Congressional calenders for both the House and the Senate so it will occur while both are in session. America's politicians must know that America will not forget Bowe Bergdahl. Dates/times are January 24, 2012 at 12:00am until Tuesday, January 31, 2012 at 11:30pm

This is a public event. To join the event

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Tim Hortons is closing today!

Tim Hortons is closing - in Kandahar! A fixture on the Boardwalk, Timmy's has been a favourite of all the coalition troops. Today is the last day any of our troops will be able to get their Timmy's fix.

Timmys opened in Kandahar on Canada Day 2006:

Tim Hortons brings a taste of home to troops in Kandahar

First outlet opens at a deployed mission

OTTAWA - Troops serving in Kandahar, Afghanistan, received a taste of home Canada Day morning when the Canadian Forces Personnel Support Agency (CFPSA) officially opened the first Tim Hortons outlet at a deployed mission.

At 10 a.m. Kandahar time, (1:30 a.m. EST), men and women of the Canadian Forces, along with military from other nations, joined CFPSA Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Major-General Doug Langton, Commander of Task Force Afghanistan (TFA) Brigadier-General David Fraser, and Tim Hortons Director of Business Development Doug Anthony on the Boardwalk at Kandahar Air Field (KAF) for the official opening ceremony.

Gathered around the 40-foot trailer for the ribbon cutting, troops were treated to words of encouragement, appreciation, and Canada Day wishes while enjoying coffee and donuts.

"This is about serving you as you continue to do the outstanding job Canada asks of you," MGen Langton said to the soldiers. "We hope this little piece of home will make your lives in Afghanistan just a little bit easier.".. (Tim Hortons)

A very interesting first person account by Jennifer Jones, who worked at the KAF Timmys (a job I seriously considered applying for!!!) :


Not an average job

This is no ordinary Tim Horton's. I work on the Kandahar military base in Afghanistan.

The store is roughly in the middle of the base. In the centre is a large sand-and-gravel field where the Americans play football and the Brits play cricket. There’s a ball hockey rink right outside our store where we watch the Canadian troops play enthusiastic games of hockey in the sweltering heat. Other food outlets and stores line two sides of the boardwalk in the sand.

The store is actually a trailer and in the mornings, with six people behind the counter, it’s a busy place. We rush about in a practiced ballet of coffee and doughnuts, calling out orders and dodging the bakers as they come to fill up the showcase. Sometimes I marvel that we don’t crash into one another.

The usual

We can often tell what someone will order just by looking at the uniform. The Canadian troops usually just want a double-double, known as a NATO Standard over here. Sometimes we tempt them into an apple fritter.

The Americans prefer honey dips with a regular coffee, whereas the Brits can’t turn down a Boston cream or a Canadian maple. They’re also partial to French vanilla cappuccinos. When the cappuccino machine is temporarily out of service, we almost have a mutiny on our hands.


‘We’re prone to rocket attacks’

Of course, we’re the only Tim Horton's where the majority of customers come in fully armed. But by now I’m used to the sight of a soldier with a rifle in one hand and a coffee in the other. We’re also prone to rocket attacks on the base, and when the alarm sounds, we have to get all the customers out of the store and sit in the back until the all clear sounds. There’s a heavy thud, a feeling of impact and then the eerie wail of an old air-raid siren. That’s the signal to get to a bunker, or to the back of the store, if I’m working...

This is a MUST READ - honest! Go here.

The end of an era for Timmys in Kandahar.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

A Tragic Loss, Kimberly Webb Joyner: RIP

By Susan Duclos

Although I do not know the family personally, James Joyner over at Outside The Beltway, and his two young daughters Katie and Ellie, have suffered a tragic loss of his wife, their mother, Kimberly Webb Joyner.

My wife, Kimberly Webb Joyner, died this morning in her sleep from unknown causes. She was 41. — She leaves behind two little girls she loved more than anything, Katie, who turns 3 on New Year's Eve, and Ellie, who was born June 21

My heartfelt condolences go out to the family.

Kimberly Webb Joyner- 1970-2011: Rest in peace.


The New Hampshire UnionLeader Endorses Newt Gingrich

By Susan Duclos

A huge endorsement comes down the pike for Newt Gingrich in New Hampshire as the UnionLeader gives him their endorsement to be the GOP nominee to go up against Obama in 2012.

America is at a crucial crossroads. It is not going to be enough to merely replace Barack Obama next year. We are in critical need of the innovative, forward-looking strategy and positive leadership that Gingrich has shown he is capable of providing.

He did so with the Contract with America. He did it in bringing in the first Republican House in 40 years and by forging balanced budgets and even a surplus despite the political challenge of dealing with a Democratic President. A lot of candidates say they're going to improve Washington. Newt Gingrich has actually done that, and in this race he offers the best shot of doing it again.

The UnionLeader is the only newspaper in New Hampshire that runs throughout the whole state as well as being influential, and as Hot Air's Ed Morrissey points out, this endorsement is not a guarantee that Gingrich will win the NH GOP primary in January, but it is noteworthy.


Saturday, November 26, 2011

Obama Goes From One Of The Most Influential People To One of The Least

By Susan Duclos

In April 2011, TIME listed Barack Obama as one of the top 100 most influential people in the world but news reported by TVNewser shows that GQ (originally Gentlemen's Quarterly) has Barack Obama listed as one of the least influential people alive out of a list of 25.

Less than a year away from the November 2012 presidential election finds Obama in a bit of quandary, not only is he being seen as less influential at home and around the world, but with a flailing economy and high unemployment, polls are seeing a downward pattern as well as a loss of support from key voting blocs compared to his numbers in 2008.

Via National Journal:

Only 44 percent of registered voters approve of Obama’s performance, while half of the country disapproves of his performance, according to the survey. His job-approval rating is only at 42 percent among independents.

White voters continue to view Obama negatively -- just 37 percent back the job he has done as president, the poll found, including only 34 percent of blue-collar whites. The numbers are better among whites with a college degree –- 42 percent support Obama –- but that’s still a notable drop-off from the support he received in 2008. Then, 47 percent of whites with a college degree voted for Obama, according to exit polling.

Obama is also suffering a significant dropoff in support among Hispanics: 56 percent approve of the president’s performance. He won 67 percent of the Hispanic vote in 2008. The contest for the Latino vote, which is concentrated in battleground states like Colorado and Nevada, will be pivotal.

Other numbers in the survey paint a similarly challenging picture for Obama. Only 45 percent of voters think he deserves reelection; 48 percent think he doesn’t. He has a dismal 33 percent approval rating on the economy.

Most damaging, 81 percent of respondents say they are somewhat or very dissatisfied with the country’s direction – including 50 percent who say they are very dissatisfied. That “right track, wrong track” question has historically been a key indicator of a president’s reelection chances.

With the Solyndra and Fast and Furious scandals still being investigated, reports from the CBO that Obama's stimulus plan cost more, did less and actually harms the economy in the long run combined with Obama vehemently pitching for more stimulus (just not calling it stimulus), Obamacare taking front page news again with the Supreme Court agreeing to hear constitutionality arguments and a potential judgment just months before the 2012 elections and Obama's disapproval ratings hitting new highs, Obama is facing an uphill battle in his reelection campaign.

Even Democratic pollsters are telling Obama to abandon his 2012 bid for reelection.

Perhaps most indicative of the Obama campaigns desperation at this point is the Hail Mary they are throwing in sending VP Joe Biden to three key states, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Florida, believing that "Biden might be more of an asset to President Barack Obama's re-election campaign than the president himself."

The Biden plan underscores an uncomfortable reality for the Obama team. A shaky economy and sagging enthusiasm among Democrats could shrink the electoral map for Obama in 2012, forcing his campaign to depend on carrying the 67 electoral votes up for grabs in the three swing states.

Obama won all three states in 2008. But this time he faces challenges in each, particularly in Ohio and Florida, where voters elected Republican governors in the 2010 midterm elections.

The president sometimes struggles to connect with Ohio and Pennsylvania's white working-class voters, and with Jewish voters who make up a core constituency for Florida Democrats and view him with skepticism.

They are sending the man, Biden, who recently answered (video at link) the question of whether the Republican Party was strong enough to beat Obama, said "Oh, absolutely! Absolutely, it’s strong enough to beat both of us...."

This is the man who said "we can't win without Florida" at a time when Florida polls showed Obama with 57 percent disapproval and 53 percent believing Obama doesn't deserve a second term.

Generic Republican candidates are ahead of Obama in Ohio and Pennsylvania as well.

Headlines highlighting polls showing Obama vs (insert name here) in head-to-head match ups have no predictive value until after the GOP primaries when one candidate is chosen to run against Obama in 2012 and Conservatives and Conservative-leaning Independents have a chance to coalesce behind the nominee of choice.


Friday, November 25, 2011

CBO Admits Obama's Stimulus Cost More, Did Less And Hurt Economy In The Long Run

By Susan Duclos notices a few thing from the Congressional Budget Office's (CBO) latest quarterly report on the economic effects of the Obama stimulus aka American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).

The CBO report explains why they revised the employment numbers downward, and specifies how the economy is hurt in the long run.

: After nearly all the stimulus money has been spent, the Congressional Budget Office now admits it cost more than advertised, did less to boost growth and will hurt the economy in the long run.

The CBO's 22 page PDF report can be found here.

Page 9 of the PDF shows the original cost estimate of the ARRA and how it has taken a 5 percent hike in how much it cost American Taxpayers:

When ARRA was being considered, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and the staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation estimated that it would increase budget deficits by $787 billion between fiscal years 2009 and 2019. CBO now estimates that the total impact over the 2009–2019 period will amount to about $825 billion.

Unemployment is 9 percent, U6 unemployment which is the figures when over 2 million unemployed who haven't sought work in the four weeks preceding the survey, is over 16 percent, according to the United States Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics.

According to a recent FED report released in November, there is a 50-50 chance of the U.S. heading into a double dip recession. (Source- LA Times)

Back to the November 22, 2011 CBO report, page 9:

By CBO’s estimate, close to half of that impact occurred in fiscal year 2010, and nearly 90 percent of ARRA’s budgetary impact was realized by the end of September 2011.

Page 16 of the CBO report revises previous estimates on employment downward:

The current estimates of the impact of ARRA on output and employment differ from those CBO presented in August 2011 because CBO has adjusted its methodology and slightly revised its projections of the timing of changes in federal spending as a result of ARRA. All told, CBO’s estimate of the increase in employment attributable to ARRA for calendar year 2011 was revised downward from a range of 1.2 million to 3.7 million FTE jobs to a range of 0.6 million to 3.6 million FTE jobs.

Page 17 of the report explains how Obama's stimulus hurts economic growth in the long run:

ARRA’s long-run impact on the economy stems primarily from the resulting increase in government debt.14 To the extent that people hold their wealth in government securities rather than in a form that can be used to finance private investment, the increased debt tends to reduce the stock of productive private capital. In the long run, each dollar of additional debt crowds out about a third of a dollar’s worth of private domestic capital, CBO estimates. (The remainder of the rise in debt is offset by increases in private saving and inflows of foreign capital.) Because of uncertainty about the degree of crowding out, however, CBO’s range of estimates of ARRA’s long-run effects reflects the possibility that the extent of crowding out could be more or less than one-third of the added debt.

Over the long term, the output of the economy depends on the stock of productive capital, the supply of labor, and productivity. The less productive capital there is as a result of lower private investment, the smaller will be the nation’s output over the long run.

Reports like this explain clearly why Nancy Pelosi and Democratic politicians, including Barack Obama, have made a calculated decision to stop using the word "stimulus" as reported in The Hill and other news agencies back in September.

Democrats are now being careful to frame their job-creation agenda in language excluding references to any stimulus, even though their favored policies for ending the deepest recession since the Great Depression are largely the same.

Indeed, with President Obama scheduled Thursday to lay out his job-creation plans before a joint session of Congress, liberal Democrats and left-leaning policy groups are pressuring him to ignore short-term deficit spending concerns in favor of sweeping spending initiatives designed to boost hiring.

The Democrats’ signature “Make it in America” platform aims to create jobs by increasing infrastructure spending, providing financial help to struggling states and expanding tax credits for businesses, all of which were key elements of their 2009 economic stimulus bill.

Recognizing the unpopularity of the 2009 package, however, Democratic leaders have revised their message with less loaded language – “job creation” instead of “stimulus” and “Make it in America” in lieu of “Recovery Act” – in hopes of tackling the jobs crisis.

So, the next time you hear Obama or Democrats talk about "investing in America" aka spending more money we do not have, understand they want more of the same "stimulus" that failed to accomplish what their Keynesian ideology thought it would accomplish in 2009, 2010 and 2011.


Thursday, November 24, 2011

U.S. Embassy In Syria Urges Citizens To Leave 'Immediately'

By Susan Duclos

Text of full Emergency Message for U.S. Citizens from the U.S. Embassy in Damascus below the post.

Since March, a reported 4,000 people have been killed from a military crack down in Syria.

A key U.N. committee voted Tuesday to condemn human rights violations by Assad's government and called for an immediate end to all violence in a nonbinding resolution adopted by the General Assembly's human rights committee.

Via CBS News:

The resolution, sponsored by Britain, France and Germany, was passed by a vote of 122-13 with 41 abstentions. It must now be approved at a plenary session of the 193-member world body, where its adoption is virtually certain.

U.S. Ambassador Susan Rice said in a statement that the committee's first-ever resolution on Syria's human rights violations "has sent a clear message that it does not accept abuse and death as a legitimate path to retaining power."

The U.S. Embassy has issued a warning which urges it's citizens to leave while they still can.

The U.S. Embassy in Damascus urged its citizens in Syria to depart "immediately," and Turkey's foreign ministry urged Turkish pilgrims to opt for flights to return home from Saudi Arabia to avoid traveling through Syria.

"The U.S. Embassy continues to urge U.S. citizens in Syria to depart immediately while commercial transportation is available," said a statement issued to the American community in Syria Wednesday and posted on the Embassy's website. "The number of airlines serving Syria has decreased significantly since the summer, while many of those airlines remaining have reduced their number of flights."

With tensions building and civil war becoming more and more likely, the U.S. has parked the USS George H.W. Bush, an aircraft carrier, off the coast of Syria. (Source)

From the U.S. Embassy of the United states, Damascus, Syria:

November 23, 2011

Embassy of the United States of America
Consular Section
2, Al-Mansour St., Abu Roumaneh
P.O. Box 29
Damascus, Syria
Tel: (963-11) 3391-4444
Fax: (963-11) 331-9678

This message is intended for the American community in Syria. If you have any questions, please contact the Consular Section at the above address. If you wish to be added to our e-mail distribution, we invite you to complete the enrollment process through our website. To access the site please enter the following link address or directly, at

Wardens: Transmission by phone is mandatory.

Emergency Message for U.S. Citizens: Significant decrease in the number of commercial flights from Syria

November 23, 2011

The U.S. Embassy continues to urge U.S. citizens in Syria to depart immediately while commercial transportation is available. The number of airlines serving Syria has decreased significantly since the summer, while many of those airlines remaining have reduced their number of flights. Please take this opportunity to review our most recent Travel Warning for Syria.

U.S. citizens living or traveling in Syria are encouraged to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). U.S. citizens without internet access may enroll directly at the nearest U.S. Embassy or U.S. Consulate. By enrolling, U.S. citizens make it easier for the embassy/consulates to contact them in case of emergency.

Up-to-date information on security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or, for callers outside the United States and Canada, on a regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).

Stay up to date by bookmarking our Bureau of Consular Affairs website, which contains the current Travel Warnings and Travel Alerts as well as the Worldwide Caution. Follow us on Twitter and the Bureau of Consular Affairs page on facebook as well.

For information on “What the Department of State Can and Can't Do in a Crisis,” please visit the Bureau of Consular Affairs’ Emergencies and Crisis link at:


Plurality of Voters Want Supreme Court To Overturn Obamacare

By Susan Duclos

According to a Quinnipiac University poll, by a margin of 48 percent to 40 percent, a plurality of American voters want the Supreme Court, who recently agreed to hear arguments over the constitutionality of Obamacare, to overturn the controversial healthcare law that Democrats in control of both chambers of Congress at the time passed and Barack Obama signed into law against the opposition of the majority of Americans.

Overall, voters oppose the law by 48%-40%, according to the Quinnipiac University survey. Democrats support the Obama health care effort by 70%-19%, while Republicans oppose it by 86%-8%.

The Quinnipiac survey found independent voters opposed to the law by 45%-38%.

Campaign 2012 points to another portion of the poll:

Of course, the Court does not decide cases by popular opinion, but Congress often does, and the numbers there are no better. Asked, "Do you think Congress should try to repeal the new health care law, or should they let it stand?" 47% said the law should be repealed. Only 41% want Congress to let it stand. Back in May voters narrowly rejected repeal 45% to 44%.

These polling numbers, not only from Quinnipiac, but supported by other polling organizations such as Gallup and Rasmussen, will not influence the Court itself and it shouldn't because the Supreme Court Justice's must use the law and not opinion in their judgments, but the continuing opposition of Obamacare by the American people could be indicative of a populace that will hold the issue of Obama and Democrats' healthcare law against them in the 2012 elections.


Happy Thanksgiving 2011

I Ate Too Much Turkey

by Jack Prelutsky

I ate too much turkey,
I ate too much corn,
I ate too much pudding and pie,
I'm stuffed up with muffins
and much too much stuffin',
I'm probably going to die.

I piled up my plate
and I ate and I ate,
but I wish I had known when to stop,
for I'm so crammed with yams,
sauces, gravies, and jams
that my buttons are starting to pop.

I'm full of tomatoes
and french fried potatoes,
my stomach is swollen and sore,
but there's still some dessert,
so I guess it won't hurt
if I eat just a little bit more.

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone... enjoy your food, your family and give thanks for everything you have.


Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Video- "New Company Policy: We are not hiring until Obama is gone."

By Susan Duclos

Video below:

A west Georgia business owner is stirring up controversy with signs he posted on his company's trucks, for all to see as the trucks roll up and down roads, highways and interstates:

"New Company Policy: We are not hiring until Obama is gone."

"Can't afford it," explained the employer, Bill Looman, Tuesday evening. "I've got people that I want to hire now, but I just can't afford it. And I don't foresee that I'll be able to afford it unless some things change in D.C."

Looman's company is U.S. Cranes, LLC. He said he put up the signs, and first posted pictures of the signs on his personal Facebook page, six months ago, and he said he received mostly positive reaction from people, "about 20-to-one positive."


CNN National Security Debate: Video- Gingrich Makes Waves On Immigration

By Susan Duclos

Kudos go to Wolf Blitzer who moderated the 13th GOP Debate. Blitzer allowed free answers, did not act like he was a candidate and attempt to debate the actual candidates with his personal opinions, and allowed the time needed for candidates to debate each other.

As always I encourage anyone who did not see the debate on CNN, to read the transcript, found here, for yourself.

The major blogosphere and media buzz seems to be surrounding the question on Illegal Immigration and Newt Gingrich's answer.

Transcript of the exchange below video of it.

BLITZER: Speaker Gingrich, let me let you broaden out this conversation. Back in the '80s -- and you remember this well. I was covering you then. Ronald Reagan and you -- you voted for legislation that had a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants, as you well remember. There were, what, maybe 12 million, 10 million -- 12 million illegal immigrants in the United States right now.

Some called it amnesty then; they still call it amnesty now. What would you do if you were President of the United States, with these millions of illegal immigrants, many of whom have been in this country for a long time?

GINGRICH: Let me start and just say I think that we ought to have an H-1 visa that goes with every graduate degree in math, science and engineering so that people stay here.


GINGRICH: You know, about five blocks down the street, you'll see a statue of Einstein. Einstein came here as an immigrant. So let's be clear how much the United States has drawn upon the world to be richer, better and more inclusive.

I did vote for the Simpson-Mazzoli Act. Ronald Reagan, in his diary, says he signed it -- and we were supposed to have 300,000 people get amnesty. There were 3 million. But he signed it because we were going to get two things in return. We were going to get control of the border and we were going to get a guest worker program with employer enforcement.

We got neither. So I think you've got to deal with this as a comprehensive approach that starts with controlling the border, as the governor said. I believe ultimately you have to find some system -- once you've put every piece in place, which includes the guest worker program, you need something like a World War II Selective Service Board that, frankly, reviews the people who are here.

If you're here -- if you've come here recently, you have no ties to this country, you ought to go home. period. If you've been here 25 years and you got three kids and two grandkids, you've been paying taxes and obeying the law, you belong to a local church, I don't think we're going to separate you from your family, uproot you forcefully and kick you out.

The Creeble Foundation is a very good red card program that says you get to be legal, but you don't get a pass to citizenship. And so there's a way to ultimately end up with a country where there's no more illegality, but you haven't automatically given amnesty to anyone.

BLITZER: Congresswoman Bachmann, you agree with the speaker?

BACHMANN: Well, I don't agree that you would make 11 million workers legal, because that, in effect, is amnesty. And I also don't agree that you would give the DREAM Act on a federal level. And those are two things that I believe that the speaker had been for, and he can speak for himself.

But those are two areas that I don't agree with. What I do think, though, is what Steve -- what Steve Jobs said to President Obama. He had said to President Obama that he had to move a great deal of his operation over to China because he couldn't find 30,000 engineers to be able to do the work that needed to be done.

That's what we want to do. We do want to have people. And I agree with the speaker, people like chemists and engineers, and people who are highly skilled.

We think about the United States and what's in the best interests of the United States. If we can utilize these workers, like Steve jobs wanted to, then we need to offer those visas. That will help the United States. But I don't agree that we should make 11 million workers who are here illegally legal.

BLITZER: Let me let the speaker respond to that.

GINGRICH: Well, I mean, two things, first of all, in the DREAM Act, the one part that I like is the one which allows people who came here with their parents to join the U.S. military, which they could have done if they were back home, and if they serve on it with the U.S. military to acquire citizenship, which is something any foreigner can do.

And I don't see any reason to punish somebody who came here at three years of age, but who wants to serve the United States of America. I specifically did not say we'd make the 11 million people legal.

I do suggest if you go back to your district, and you find people who have been here 25 years and have two generations of family and have been paying taxes and are in a local church, as somebody who believes strongly in family, you'll have a hard time explaining why that particular subset is being broken up and forced to leave, given the fact that they've been law-abiding citizens for 25 years.

BLITZER: Congresswoman Bachmann, you want to respond?


BACHMANN: If I understood correctly, I think the speaker just said that that would make 11 people -- 11 million people who are here illegally now legal. That's really the issue that we're dealing with. And also, it would be the DREAM Act, the federal DREAM Act, which would offer taxpayer-subsidized benefits to illegal aliens. We need to move away from magnets (ph), not offer more.

BLITZER: Let's broaden it out.

Governor Romney, where do you stand? Are you with the speaker, that some of those illegal immigrants -- I think -- he didn't say all -- some of them, if they have roots, they belong to a church, for example, should be allowed to stay in this country?

ROMNEY: Look, amnesty is a magnet. What when we have had in the past, programs that have said that if people who come here illegally are going to get to stay illegally for the rest of their life, that's going to only encourage more people to come here illegally.

The right course for our immigration system is to say we welcome people who want to come here legally. We're going to have a system that makes that easier and more transparent. But to make sure we're able to bring in the best and brightest -- and, by the way, I agree with the speaker in terms of -- I'd staple a green card to the diploma of anybody who's got a degree of math, science, a Masters degree, Ph.D.

We want those brains in our country. But in order to bring people in legally we've got to stop illegal immigration. That means turning off the magnets of amnesty, in-state tuition for illegal aliens, employers that knowingly hire people that have come here illegally.

We welcome legal immigration. This is a party, this is a party that loves legal immigration. But we have to stop illegal immigration for all the reasons the questioner raised, which is, it is bringing in people who in some cases can be terrorists, in other cases they become burdens on our society.

And we have to finally have immigration laws that protect our border, secure the border, turn off the magnets, and make sure we have people come to this country legally to build our economy.

BLITZER: Just to precise, and I'll give Speaker Gingrich a chance to respond. Are you saying that what he's proposing, giving amnesty in effect, or allowing some of these illegal immigrants to stay, is a magnet that would entice others to come to this country illegally?

ROMNEY: There's no question. But to say that we're going to say to the people who have come here illegally that now you're all going to get to stay or some large number are going to get to stay and become permanent residents of the United States, that will only encourage more people to do the same thing.

People respond to incentives. And if you can become a permanent resident of the United States by coming here illegally, you'll do so. What I want to do is bring people into this country legally, particularly those that have education and skill that allows us to compete globally.


GINGRICH: I do not believe that the people of the United States are going to take people who have been here a quarter century, who have children and grandchildren, who are members of the community, who may have done something 25 years ago, separate them from their families, and expel them.

I do believe if you've been here recently and have no ties to the U.S., we should deport you. I do believe we should control the border. I do believe we should have very severe penalties for employers, but I would urge all of you to look at the Krieble Foundation Plan.

I don't see how the -- the party that says it's the party of the family is going to adopt an immigration policy which destroys families that have been here a quarter century. And I'm prepared to take the heat for saying, let's be humane in enforcing the law without giving them citizenship but by finding a way to create legality so that they are not separated from their families.

That exchange led to Team Romney immediately attempting to make the case that Gingrich was calling for amnesty for all illegal immigrants.

Gingrich is leading the GOP candidates in poll averages according to RCP.

FiveThirtyEight takes note of a recent Quinnipiac University national poll which provides a revealing chart in which when Republican voters are asked what candidates has the necessary "knowledge and experience necessary to be a good president," Gingrich more than doubles Romney by a 48 percent to 22 percent margin.

This is notable for me personally because while watching these debates the past few months and even being a Rick Perry supporter, I have noticed Gingrich's ability to answer questions clearly showing a vast amount of knowledge, he cuts to the heart of the issues and I have mentioned here on the blog previously his ability to keep his eye on the endgame which is removing Barack Obama from the White House in 2012, instead of indulging in the endless bickering among GOP candidates.

Gingrich may not have the "likability" factor that others have but his rock solid performances in every debate to date has given me reason to give him a second, long look.


Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Stocks Plummet As Supercommittee Fails, Liberals Cheer

By Susan Duclos

CSMonitor "Stocks plummet as supercommittee fails."

Stocks were sold in droves as the Congressional supercommittee failed to reach a deal to cut the deficit. The Dow turned negative, dropping 248 points to close at 11547. Stocks dropped even more sharply in Germany and France.

The Politico "Left blogs cheer supercommittee's collapse."

Judging by the reaction from the blogosphere, the deficit supercommittee’s failure is a victory for the left.

Liberal bloggers are praising the widely expected collapse in bipartisan talks and the apparent failure of supercommittee to come to an agreement on deficit reduction, noting that it was the best outcome that they could have hoped for.

'Nuff said?


Liberals Cheering Supercommittee Failure Shows They Never Wanted Deficit Reduced


Anti-Obama Merchandise Sales Top Pro-Obama Sales By Almost 4-to-1

By Susan Duclos

Usually when it comes to elections and we refer to someone talking with their wallet, it is via campaign donations. Today, via an email subscription and my uncontrollable urge to click links when I see them, (yes, it is a sickness) I found a little political entertainment.

The CafePress which sells a variety of items from T-shirts to cups, stickers to stationary, to name a few among a whole host of unique gifts, offers yet another fun way to gauge the spending public's election sentiment.

CafePress runs an "Election Meter", tracking the sales of their merchandise and seeing a correlation of their sales matching nicely with national polls. When a Republican candidate is polling well, sales for merchandise with that candidates name rises as well.

For example, Newt Gingrich recently started surging in the polls and coincidentally, the CarePress Meter tool showed "The Rise of Newt" in sales.

As the GOP field heads into primary season, those numbers fluctuate and most likely will continue to do so until one candidate is nominated to go up against Obama in 2012.

The Daily Caller points out how predictive the "Meter" was in 2008:

According to the clothier, the “Meter” successfully predicted President Obama’s victory in 2008. This week’s data represents a stark contrast to Obama’s sales during the 2008 election cycle.

“As CafePress saw four years ago (and four years before that), the T-shirt economy has a history of predicting presidential winners,” said CafePress Director of Marketing Marc Cowlin in April. “In 2008, Obama was a consistent fan favorite on CafePress, surpassing sales of McCain t-shirts and gifts by more than 30 percent in the weeks leading up to the election.”

According to the results for the week ending: Nov 20, 2011, Anti-Obama merchandise outsold pro-Obama merchandise by almost four-to-one at 79 percent to 21 percent.

Marc Cowlin, Director of Marketing at CafePress, stated via a November 8, 2011 press release "As was the case in 2008, merchandise sales can be extremely insightful. On CafePress, which features user-designed products, creating designs and purchasing products is synonymous with political expression. That's what makes our site such an interesting poll, and we're often referred to as a Cultural Barometer(R). Our users are among some of the most politically-engaged and use CafePress to voice how they feel about a candidate or a campaign."

So, if you are politically engaged and you want to become part of that Cultural Barometer(R) and you believe, like I do, that "Anyone but Obama" is better than Obama in 2012, head on over and get yourself some Anti-Obama gear!!!

(Disclaimer- Being a capitalist vs an Obama socialist, I just joined the CafePress affiliate program.- Pending approval)

Monday, November 21, 2011

MSNBC's Chris Matthews To Obama: 'Give Us Our Orders'

By Susan Duclos

"I have to tell you, you know, it's part of reporting this case, this election, the feeling most people get when they hear Barack Obama's speech. My, I felt this thrill going up my leg. I mean, I don't have that too often."--- MSNBC's Chris Matthews, February 2008

Looks like the thrill is gone. Now Matthews is begging Obama: "Give us our orders and tell us where we’re going. Give us the mission."

Video below via Christopher Bedford at The Daily Caller:


Liberals Cheering Supercommittee Failure Shows They Never Wanted Deficit Reduced

By Susan Duclos

According to polling on what Americans list as priorities, the federal deficit is listed in the top three in multiple polling from a variety of organizations, such as CBS News, New York Times, CNN and Bloomberg polling, just to name a few examples.

Contrary to Liberal's arguments, fact checkers have found that Social Security does contribute to our federal deficit. In fact the numbers show Social Security ran a $37 billion deficit last year, is projected to run a $45 billion deficit this year, and more red ink every year thereafter

Other entitlement programs which include Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid and Unemployment insurance, as of 2010, took up over 58 percent of America's expenses. (Chart below from Business Insider)

There is no doubt that our government's spending practice of spending more money than we have has led to historically high deficits and that current entitlement programs are unsustainable and further add to the deficit.

Using just Social Security as an example,, via the Congressional Budget Office's (CBO) own figures, has found that SS has "has passed a tipping point."

For years it generated more revenue than it consumed, holding down the overall federal deficit and allowing Congress to spend more freely for other things. But those days are gone. Rather than lessening the federal deficit, Social Security has at last — as long predicted — become a drag on the government’s overall finances.

As recently as October, CBO was projecting that it would be 2016 before outlays regularly exceed revenues. But Social Security’s fiscal troubles are more severe than was thought, and the latest projections show the permanent deficits started several years ahead of earlier predictions.

Medicare, Medicaid and the Obamacare subsidy program, and Social Security will consume all revenues by 2049.

A deficit Supercommittee was created, a 12-member bi-partisan panel formed with the express purpose of making a deal that would reverse the country’s economic mess and reduce the deficit. The goal was to slash at least $1.2 trillion in deficit cuts

At the time the Supercommittee was formed, Senator John Kerry, the Democratic presidential nominee from 2004, said "The world is watching. And our strength at home determines our strength in the world."

Democratic co-chair of the Supercommittee, Senator Patty Murray of Washington stated "Many worry our government is broken. And at times, it’s easy to share their fear. The committee has the opportunity to show the American people we can still come together, put politics aside and solve a problem plaguing our country."

The Republican co-chair, sitting next to Murray, said "Will history record that we wrote the first chapter of America’s decline? Or will history record that we kept faith with the founding fathers and previous generations and left the next generation with greater blessings of liberty and vaults of limitless opportunities? The choice is ours, let the work begin."

The Supercommittee failed.

Now, both parties are quickly trying to figure out how to turn the committee’s embarrassing failure into a political win for their side.

The Democratic message: We stood up to Republicans looking to gut Social Security, slash Medicare and permanently extend the Bush-era tax cuts for high income Americans.

The Republican counterattack: Democrats wanted little more than tax increases and refused to consider changes to deficit-driving health care entitlements. Both sides are positioning themselves as the party that compromised and sought a middle-ground.

Only one side of the political spectrum is applauding the failure of the Supercommittee to accomplish it's goals.


Via The Politico, headline "Left blogs cheer supercommittee's collapse."

Judging by the reaction from the blogosphere, the deficit supercommittee’s failure is a victory for the left.

Liberal bloggers are praising the widely expected collapse in bipartisan talks and the apparent failure of supercommittee to come to an agreement on deficit reduction, noting that it was the best outcome that they could have hoped for.

Pretty much says it all right there. Liberals never wanted any reform of entitlements combined with a reduction of Government spending, which would require a "shared sacrifice." The only sacrifice Liberals propose is to raise taxes to continue to pay off the interest of money borrowed to support entitlement programs and government spending that is now at levels that cannot be sustained in the long term.

Robert J. Samuelson at Washington Post explains:

Contrary to much press coverage, the committee’s Republicans opened the door to compromise by abandoning — as they should have — opposition to tax increases. Sen. Patrick Toomey of Pennsylvania proposed a tax “reform” that would raise income taxes by $250 billion over a decade. First, he would impose across-the-board reductions of most itemized deductions and use the resulting revenue gains to cut all tax rates. Next, he would adjust the rates for the top two brackets so that they’d be high enough to produce the $250 billion. All the tax increase would fall on people in the top brackets.

Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin called Toomey’s proposal a “breakthrough.” With good reason: It came from a “no new taxes, over my dead body” Republican who had signed Grover Norquist’s pledge against any tax increases. But the details of Toomey’s plan are murky, and many Democrats claim that it would cut taxes for the rich. Democrats also didn’t respond with an equal concession: a willingness to deal with Social Security and Medicare.

Democrats never wanted the Supercommittee to succeed and their supporters have no problem admitting it.

Former three-term Republican Senator Judd Gregg asks "Where in the world is Obama?" when the Supercommittee came on to it's last days to offer a solution.

Conservatives are not the only ones asking that question either. H/T to Hot Air, we have a video of one of the Democratic members of the panel, Senator Joe Manchin, saying that Obama needed to do something, yet Obama didn't.

Is it any wonder that some Democrats want Barack Obama to abandon his candidacy for reelection?


Democratic Pollsters Want Obama To 'Abandon His Candidacy For Reelection'

By Susan Duclos

In 2010 Douglas E. Schoen, a Bill Clinton pollster and Patrick H. Caddell, a pollster for Jimmy Carter, published a piece in the Wall street Journal which expressed disappointment in Barack Obama's deliberately divisive and cynical approach to governance.

WSJ July 2010:

Rather than being a unifier, Mr. Obama has divided America on the basis of race, class and partisanship. Moreover, his cynical approach to governance has encouraged his allies to pursue a similar strategy of racially divisive politics on his behalf.

We have been watching the division of class Obama created, stoked, encouraged, and embraced, play itself out in the headlines over the last two months with the Occupy Wall Street antics.

In November of 2010 in the Washington Post op-ed pages, Caddell and Schoen begin making the argument that Obama should not run for reelection in 2012 saying they did not come to that conclusion lightly but that it was clear to them that Obama had "largely lost the consent of the governed," going on to state that the 2010 midterm elections was a "referendum on the Obama presidency," a vote of "no confidence in Obama and his party," and that Obama "has almost no credibility left with Republicans and little with independents."

Today, the same two men write that Obama should abandon his candidacy for re-election, citing examples of Harry Truman and Lyndon Johnson who, according to Caddell and Schoen, "accepted the reality that they could not effectively govern the nation if they sought re-election to the White House," further stating that Truman and Johnson took the "moral high ground" in their decision against running for a new term as President.

Certainly, Mr. Obama could still win re-election in 2012. Even with his all-time low job approval ratings (and even worse ratings on handling the economy) the president could eke out a victory in November. But the kind of campaign required for the president's political survival would make it almost impossible for him to govern—not only during the campaign, but throughout a second term.

Put simply, it seems that the White House has concluded that if the president cannot run on his record, he will need to wage the most negative campaign in history to stand any chance. With his job approval ratings below 45% overall and below 40% on the economy, the president cannot affirmatively make the case that voters are better off now than they were four years ago. He—like everyone else—knows that they are worse off.

President Obama is now neck and neck with a generic Republican challenger in the latest Real Clear Politics 2012 General Election Average (43.8%-43.%). Meanwhile, voters disapprove of the president's performance 49%-41% in the most recent Gallup survey, and 63% of voters disapprove of his handling of the economy, according to the most recent CNN/ORC poll.

They also believe that Hillary Clinton would be the natural choice to play savior to the Democratic party.

I have my doubts as to why Clinton would want to save a party with leaders that turned against her in 2008 when they stripped Michigan of their delegate's votes which favored Clinton.

We have seen multiple examples of buyer's remorse from individuals and groups that voted for Barack Obama in 2008, and the feel of the Caddell/Schoen pieces encouraging Obama to abandon his 2012 candidacy for reelection, seems to have that same type of regret attached to it.

It is doubtful if Obama's ego would allow him to withdraw and more doubtful still that Hillary Clinton would want the presidency at this time, but to see what Andrew Malcolm at Investors Business Daily describes as "friendly fire" continuing to come from Caddell and Schoen is indicative of party supporters who are desperate for "anyone but Obama."


NYC Dept of Health to Survey 9/11 Teens

Important information:

Health Department to Survey Adolescents about Their Health Ten Years after 9/11

Two part survey asks adolescent WTC Health Registry enrollees about long-term health impacts of exposure to WTC attacks

Nov. 16, 2011 – The World Trade Center (WTC) Health Registry, the largest post-disaster public health registry in United States, launched its third pediatric health survey this month. More than 1,300 adolescent enrollees who were exposed to the WTC disaster will be asked to share valuable information about their health ten years after 9/11, including information about their quality of life, mental health including depression and stress symptoms, smoking/alcohol/drug use, and school involvement. Parents and guardians are also asked to provide information about their child’s physical and mental health. Parents and guardians of adolescent enrollees can obtain more information about completing this survey by e-mailing or calling the Registry at 1-866-692-9827.

“Children and adolescents who were exposed to 9/11 are now ten years older and their health concerns may have changed over the past decade,” said Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas Farley. “We need to hear directly from these young people and their parents. Whether it’s persistent post-traumatic stress disorder or respiratory illness that a young person is dealing with, filling out the WTC Health Registry survey helps us understand the potential long-term health effects of the disaster so we can help people more effectively.”

Data collection will continue through March 2012. Results from this survey will help identify potential late emerging and long-term health effects and address gaps in 9/11 health care services for adolescents. More than 3,000 children under the age of 18 were enrolled by their parents in the Registry when it began in 2003-04. Ten years later, many of the children are now adults and have begun to receive the adult survey as they turn 18.

Parents and adolescents will receive the survey which has two components, a parent survey and an adolescent survey, by mail or email and this is the first time participants will have the option to take the survey online. The survey takes approximately 15-20 minutes to complete and parents must consent to their child filling out the survey. Spanish and Chinese speaking participants will receive translated versions of the survey.

This past summer, the Registry launched its third adult health survey with more than 66,000 enrollees, including enrollees who were children during the second survey, but are now adults age 18 years or older. Nearly 30,000 enrollees have completed the third survey to date.

About the WTC Health Registry

The World Trade Center Health Registry became the largest post-disaster public health registry in United States history when 71,000 people directly exposed to the WTC disaster voluntarily enrolled and completed the initial survey in 2003-04. The Registry was established by the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and the federal Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. The National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health has funded the Registry since May 2009. Registry findings continue to contribute to an understanding of the health impacts of 9/11 among persons directly exposed to the disaster. As of October 2011, the Registry has published 23 peer-reviewed papers in scientific journals. Additionally, several university-based researchers have recruited Registry enrollees for other 9/11-related studies and published their findings. More information about the Registry, its findings and opportunities for external researchers can be found on the Registry’s website.


Sunday, November 20, 2011

#OWS News: 2 Months In And Over 4,500 Occupiers Arrested To Date

By Susan Duclos

According to NYT City Room the number of arrests of Occupy protesters nationwide is now said to be more than 4,500 just a little over 2 months since the protests began.

Nothing "manufactured" about that narrative.

And they wonder why public support is eroding....

You can find all WuA's Occupier antics posts at the class warfare label page here.


Friday, November 18, 2011

List: Members of Congress Calling for AG Eric Holder to Resign

By Susan Duclos

Freepers, updated list along with names of those co-sponsoring "no confidence" resolution, go here.

The Daily Caller reports the list of Congressmen and women demanding The Obama administration's Attorney General Eric Holder's resignation over the "Fast and Furious" scandal is now up to 51.

[Update 11/20/11- Now 52 ]

[Update 12/13/11- Now 56]
[Update 12/15/11- Now 57]- Also 73 cosponsors on its House of Representatives resolution of “no confidence” in Attorney General Eric Holder’s ability to serve. Number of Congress members now holding no confidence in Holder is 85 between those calling for his resignation and those co-sponsoring the resolution.

Huge shout out and thank you to Matthew Boyle for his response to my email asking which members I was missing.

This list will be updated as new members of Congress demand Holder's resignation. (List has been recreated by state.

LIST CONTINUOUSLY UPDATED, last update 12/22/11- For names and list of those co-sponsoring "no confidence" resolution, go here.

Trent Franks
Paul Gosar
Ben Quayle

Duncan Hunter
Devin Nunes

Mike Coffman

Gus Bilirakis
Connie Mack
John Mica (chair, House Transportation Committee)
Allen West
Dennis Ross
Sandy Adams

Paul Broun
Lynn Westmoreland
Tom Graves

Raul Labrador

Randy Hultgren
Joe Walsh
Bobby Schilling

Dan Burton

Tim Huelskamp
Lynn Jenkins
Mike Pompeo

Brett Guthrie

John Fleming

Rodney Alexander
Charles Boustany
Jeff Landry

Andy Harris

Thaddeus McCotter

Michele Bachmann

Alan Nunnelee
Steven Palazzo

Todd Akin
Sam Graves (chair, House Small Business Committee)
Vicky Hartzler
Blaine Luetkemeyer

Denny Rehberg

New Jersey:
Frank LoBiondo

New Mexico:
Steven Pearce

New York:
Ann Marie Buerkle
Michael Grimm

North Carolina:
Walter Jones
Patrick McHenry

Bob Latta
Pat Tiberi

Tim Murphy

South Carolina:
Jeff Duncan
Trey Gowdy
Joe Wilson

Diane Black
Stephen Fincher

Quico Canseco
John Carter
John Culberson
Blake Farenthold
Bill Flores
Louie Gohmert
Kenny Marchant
Ted Poe
Ron Paul

Cynthia Lummis

The Senate

Johnny Isakson


James Inhofe

Contact your Congress member and ask them why they are not on this list.

Fox News Insider - November 2, 2011
The Daily Caller - November 10, 2011
The Daily Caller- November 11, 2011
The Daily Caller- November 15, 2011
The Hill- November 17, 2011
The Daily Caller- November 17, 2011
The Daily Caller- November 18, 2011
The Daily Caller - November 19, 2011
The Daily Caller- December 11, 2011
The Daily Caller - December 13, 2011

The Daily Caller full list by state.