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Congressional investigators have uncovered emails showing ex-IRS official Lois Lerner targeted a sitting Republican senator for a proposed internal audit, a discovery one GOP lawmaker called "shocking."

The emails were published late Wednesday by the House Ways and Means Committee and pertain to the woman at the heart of the scandal over IRS targeting of Tea Party groups.

The emails appear to show Lerner mistakenly received an invitation intended for Sen. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, in 2012.

The event organizer, whose name is not disclosed, apparently offered to pay for Grassley's wife to attend the event, which caught Lerner's attention. The December 2012 emails show that in response, Lerner suggested to an IRS colleague that the case be referred for an audit.


In an only-in-New-York moment, an eccentric Chinese millionaire fed some 250 homeless people a fancy lunch at the Loeb Boathouse in Central Park on Wednesday — but was thanked with Bronx cheers.

Chen Guangbiao, a recycling tycoon, provided the fine food, and he personally performed magic tricks and sang “We are the World” — and all it got him were shouts from the belly-full crowd.

The homeless people he had helped blasted him as a “fraud” and a “thief” and worse because the $300 each had expected to receive was instead given in lump-sum to a shelter where they had been staying — New York City Rescue Mission.

“The meal was lousy, the cash didn’t come,” said Clarence Taylor, 52, as the ungrateful throng railed in frustration. “Prey on somebody else. Why are you preying on the homeless?”

Another unhappy homeless man, Ernest St. Pierre, vowed he wouldn’t leave until Chen coughed up the cash.

“These people have hope,” he said. “They’re hoping Chen delivers the money.”


Overly protective mothers can cause theirchildren to become obese, a study has found. Researchers from the Telethon Kids Institute analysed data from the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children and identified a connection between overprotective parenting and the rate of child obesity.

According to the paper, published on PLOS ONE, children whose mothers had high levels of protectiveness were more likely to be overweight or obese at 10-11 years of age, than those whose mothers showed average levels of protectiveness.

"We found that kids had up to a 13% higher risk of being overweight or obese if their mum had above-average protectiveness, but the pattern only emerged when kids were about 10 or 11 years old," lead author Kirsten Hancock said.


WASHINGTON — Speaker John A. Boehner announced Wednesday that he would introduce legislation next month allowing the House to sue President Obama over his use of executive actions.

In a letter to lawmakers, Mr. Boehner expressed concern with what he — and many in the Republican conference — considered the president’s unconstitutional overreach.

“The Constitution makes it clear that a president’s job is to faithfully execute the laws; in my view, the president has not faithfully executed the laws,” Mr. Boehner told reporters. “And when there’s conflicts like this between the legislative branch and the administrative branch it’s, in my view, our responsibility to stand up for this institution in which we serve.”

Representative Nancy Pelosi of California, the Democratic leader, called Mr. Boehner’s move “subterfuge,” and Josh Earnest, the White House press secretary, said that “it seems that Republicans have shifted their opposition into a higher gear.”


A federal appeals court ruled for the first time Wednesday that states cannot prevent gay couples from getting married, extending the movement's legal winning streak and bringing the issue a big step closer to the U.S. Supreme Court.

The three-judge panel in Denver ruled 2-1 that states cannot deprive people of the fundamental right to marry simply because they choose a partner of the same sex.

"It is wholly illogical to believe that state recognition of love and commitment of same-sex couples will alter the most intimate and personal decisions of opposite-sex couples," the judges wrote, addressing arguments that the ruling could undermine traditional marriage.

The decision by the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel upheld a lower-court ruling that struck down Utah's gay marriage ban. It becomes law in the six states covered by the 10th Circuit: Colorado, Kansas, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Utah and Wyoming. But the panel immediately put the ruling on hold pending an appeal.


Deputies in Panama City Beach are trying to determine why a 12-year-old boy stole a school bus and drove it to a Wal-Mart around 5 a.m. Tuesday, according to The News Herald.

The bus was parked in front of the driver's house with the door open when the boy decided to walk inside and then saw the keys. He drove the bus 14 miles to a Wal-Mart without incident and authorities were only alerted when an employee at the store noticed the bus driver was having difficulty parking.

Security footage from the bus showed the child was calm and collected during the drive. When deputies asked the boy why he did it, the child provided no real explanation.


SCOTUS to POTUS: Heh… not exactly!

The Supreme Court delivered a blow Thursday to President Obama, ruling that he went too far in making recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board.

In a unanimous decision, the high court ruled in favor of Senate Republicans and limited the president's power to fill high-level vacancies with temporary appointments.

The court upheld the general authority of the president to make recess appointments, but said Obama lacked the power to fill slots at the NLRB during a brief, three-day Senate recess in 2012.

Obama had argued that the Senate was on an extended holiday break and that the brief sessions it held every three days were a sham that was intended to prevent him from filling seats on the NLRB.

The justices rejected that argument.

The issue of recess appointments receded in importance after the Senate's Democratic majority changed the rules to make it harder for Republicans to block confirmation of most Obama appointees.

But the ruling's impact may be keenly felt by the White House next year if Republicans capture control of the Senate in the November election. The potential importance of the ruling lies in the Senate's ability to block the confirmation of judges and the leaders of independent agencies like the NLRB. A federal law gives the president the power to appoint acting heads of Cabinet-level departments to keep the government running.


News That Makes You Think… 06.25.14

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News-That-Make-You-ThinkThe U.S. intelligence community warned about the "growing threat" from Sunni militants in Iraq since the beginning of the year, a senior intelligence official said Tuesday -- a claim that challenges assertions by top administration officials that they were caught off guard by the capture of key Iraqi cities.

Earlier Tuesday, in an interview with Fox News, Secretary of State John Kerry said "nobody expected" Iraqi security forces to be decisively driven out by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, as they were earlier this month in Mosul.

But in a separate briefing with reporters Tuesday afternoon, the senior intelligence official said the intelligence community had warned about the ISIS threat.

“During the past year, the intelligence community has provided strategic warning of Iraq’s deteriorating security situation," the official said. "We routinely highlighted (ISIS') growing threat in Iraq, the increasing difficulties Iraq’s security forced faced in combating (ISIS), and the political strains that were contributing to Iraq’s declining stability.”

Asked who failed to act, the official did not explain.

Offering a grave warning about the current strength of the group -- which is a State Department-designated terror organization -- the official also said that barring a major counteroffensive, the intelligence community assesses that ISIS is "well-positioned to keep the territory it has gained."The official said the ISIS "strike force" now has between 3,000 and 5,000 members.


WASHINGTON (June 24, 2014) — Seeking to mobilize a global front against anti-gay violence and discrimination, Vice President Joe Biden declared Tuesday that protecting gay rights is a defining mark of a civilized nation and must trump national cultures and social traditions.

Biden told a gathering of U.S. and international gay rights advocates that President Barack Obama has directed that U.S. diplomacy and foreign assistance promote the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender men and women around the world

"I don't care what your culture is," Biden told about 100 guests at the Naval Observatory's vice presidential mansion. "Inhumanity is inhumanity is inhumanity. Prejudice is prejudice is prejudice."

With anti-gay laws taking root in nearly 80 countries, Biden and other top White House officials met with religious, human rights and HIV health care advocates in a forum dedicated to promoting gay rights internationally.


A week after an NBC News poll showed that the American people had lost faith in Obama's competence and ability to lead, a new CBS News/New York Times pollhas even worse news for a president embattled by his own incompetence, arrogance, and failed policies.

In just one month, the president's job approval rating has shifted a full 9 points against him. Though Obama was still upside on approval by 5 points (43-48%) back in May, he now faces a 14 point deficit of 40-54%.

In just one month, disapproval of Obama's foreign policy has skyrocketed a full 10 points to a record high of 58%. With only 36% approving, that ties this poll's record low in this category.

In the run up to his re-election, when the president was triumphantly declaring the Iraq issue settled and Al Qaeda decimated, foreign policy was one of the president's strengths. At the time, the president's approval ratings on this front hovered at or near 50%.


WASHINGTON, June 24 (Reuters) - The District of Columbia Council on Tuesday approved a "yoga tax" on gymnasiums and yoga classes that has angered fitness buffs in the U.S. capital.

The Democratic-controlled council voted 12-1 to give final approval to a $10.6 billion budget for 2015 that included a sales tax on gyms, yoga studios and other athletic businesses, a spokeswoman for Council Chairman Phil Mendelson said.

The budget also includes a substantial income tax cut that would be offset by expanding the existing 5.75 percent sales tax to such services as tanning salons, health clubs, car washes and bowling alleys. The move is expected to raise $5 million a year.


A Minnesota man has become people's exhibit No. 1 for why a life of crime and a social media habit don't mix.

Nick Wig was arrested Thursday after allegedly breaking into a home in Dakota County, south of Minneapolis, authorities said. His undoing, they said, was that he logged into his Facebook account on homeowner James Wood’s computer and forgot to log out.

“This is a first case in Dakota County in which a suspected burglar left his Facebook profile on the computer screen of the victim’s computer,” Monica Jensen, spokesperson for the Dakota County Attorney’s Office told ABC News today.


News That Makes You Think… 06.24.14

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News-That-Make-You-ThinkRepublicans dropped a hammer on IRS Commissioner John Koskinen during a testy hearing covering the disappearance of emails tied to the agency's tea party targeting scandal.

The emails, covering the period January 2009 to April 2011, belonged to embattled former official Lois Lerner and could shed light on whether an expansive scheme to single out conservative groups for special scrutiny was guided by members of Congress or administration officials outside the IRS.

'The committee requested all of Lois Lerner’s emails over a year ago,' said House Oversight Committee Chairman Rep. Darrell Issa. 'And we subpoenaed the emails in August 2013 and again in February 2014. ... You worked to cover up the fact they were missing and only came forward to fess up on a Friday afternoon after you had been caught red-handed.'

'You personally did not cause the targeting,' he told Koskinen, referring to the tea party scandal. 'You personally did not destroy the emails. But by your actions and your deception, you now own this scandal.'

'We have a problem with you,' Issa sniped at the front end of a three-hour, 36-minute ordeal, 'and you have a problem maintaining your credibility.'


The NYPD could have dozens of new eyes in the transit system — without a cop setting foot on a train — if a plan to put surveillance cameras in subway cars gets the green light.

Police Commissioner Bill Bratton envisions a future in which officers armed with tablets keep tabs on rolling subway cars remotely.

“One of my officers could actually be standing on a platform waiting for that train to come in ... monitoring the cameras on that subway car to see if there’s an issue on that 10-car train that he wants to go and focus on,” Bratton told the Daily News.

Conductors could also monitor display terminals in their cabins between stations to detect disturbances in real time and enable prompt assessments of reports from riders via subway intercoms, Bratton said.

“Cameras are ubiquitous throughout the system. Why not inside train cars?” asked John Samuelsen, president of Transport Workers Union Local 100. “Anything that improves security and helps our conductors keep riders safe is a positive.”

The MTA is investigating the addition of cameras in the city’s subway system.

Chicago recently installed cameras in 830 older-model subway cars with a $13.9 million grant from the federal Department of Homeland Security. In the first three months of this year, Chicago transit cops made 60 arrests on vandalism and graffiti charges — equal to the total for all of last year, said Chicago Transit Authority spokeswoman Catherine Hosinski.


Deep Fried Donut Bacon CheeseburgersDeep fried doughnut bacon cheeseburgers are a thing now, and you can get them from the Calgary Stampede.

Guys, we know you’re supposed to be on a beach body diet and everything, but can you please just look at these deep fried doughnut bacon cheeseburgers.

The oozy yellow cheese, the greasy salty bacon and the soft glazed doughnut bun, it just makes us sohappy. Happier than the day Tesco started stocking Lucky Charms.

These bad boys are one of the new delicacies being served at Calgary Stampede, a festival over in Canada this July, which also boasts scorpion pizza, deep fried cookie dough and crocodile burgers on the menu.


Shiite Turkmen villagers in northern Iraq have claimed that an Al Qaeda-inspired Sunni militant group carried out a "savage massacre" in four villages near the city of Kirkuk.

The Washington Post reported that more than a dozen residents of the villages of Brawchi, Karanaz, Chardaghli and Beshir described atrocities that took place last week. Kirkuk's deputy police chief, General Turhan Abdel-Rahman, said that he knew of at least 40 dead from the four villages, but noted that there were other bodies inside the village of Beshir.

"Tell the world. It was a savage massacre," one man present at the burial of 15 bodies in the village of Tafaz told the Post.

Many survivors of the attacks have fled to Kirkuk, where Iraqi Kurdish security forces are in control.


KHARTOUM, Sudan — A Sudanese woman on death row for apostasy had her sentence canceled and was ordered released by a Khartoum court on Monday, the country’s official news agency reported.

SUNA said the Court of Cassation canceled the death sentence against 27-year-old Meriam Ibrahim after defense lawyers presented their case. The court ordered her release.

Ibrahim, whose father was Muslim but who was raised by her Christian mother, was convicted of apostasy for marrying a Christian. Sudan’s penal code criminalizes the conversion of Muslims to other religions, a crime punishable by death.

Ibrahim married a Christian man from southern Sudan in a church ceremony in 2011. As in many Muslim nations, Muslim women in Sudan are prohibited from marrying non-Muslims, though Muslim men can marry outside their faith.


The search is on for the UK's naughtiest pet and it's resulting in some adorable pictures.

Direct Blinds have launched the competition after finding that the most damaged household items included sofas, carpets, pillows, blinds, doors and walls.

And who was behind all these menacing breaks? - Britain's mischievous pets!

From cats and dogs to rabbits and horses, there's a whole set of scamps who have been prone to some less-than pleasing behaviour.

But now the whole world knows it as their pictures have been uploaded onto Facebook as an entry in the contest to win £500.

Owners may be pushed to the limit with these rascals, but these pictures are hard not to smile at.

It must be difficult to stay mad at these innocent faces who look like butter wouldn't melt even as they pose by their crime.


The Impeachment Must Now Go Forward…


When the President was first elected, I pledged to wait from the day of his election--to his then swearing in--to begin critique of his public policy. I promised to do so because in the day of the first "post racial" President I felt it was a necessary discipline to criticize him on policy, actions, behaviors, and decisions rather than abstract arguments like birth certificates and "the President is a secret Muslim" conspiracies.

For the duration of his presidency I have kept this rule. I have not bought into the conspiracies, I have observed what our courts have said about the birth certificate, and I have narrowed my critique to what his actions are. In my nine-week number one political best-seller NO HE CAN'T I refined those arguments to four specific sections of critique--and even complimented him on an attribute I found admirable.

None of the above has shielded me from the irrationally insane defenders of the President from labeling me racist, homophobic, bigoted, and the usually invoked stuff the left throws out when they have absolutely nothing to debate you of substance over.

Early in his Presidency I felt his view points were just wrong, as time went by I believed his goals were misguided/short-sighted, as his term continued I believed his policies were damaging, but now I believe his decision making is treacherous.

It is for that final item that I have publicly now finally called for what many normal people who listen to me on close to a 1000 affiliates a day have been saying--some for months--that the time for impeaching President Obama has come. They believe this is imperatively important if the Senate is won by the opposing party in November.


News That Makes You Think… 06.23.14

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Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Iraq Monday to try and prevent the country from descending into sectarian civil war fewer than three years after the departure of American forces.

News-That-Make-You-ThinkKerry was scheduled to meet with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki as well as senior Kurdish and Sunni leaders. Kerry was expected to personally urge the Shiite al-Maliki to give more power to political opponents in an attempt to defuse a Sunni insurgency that has captured large amounts of territory in the north and west of the country, including several key border crossings between Iraq and Syria.


The Nigerian government is reporting that 219 kidnapped schoolgirls remain unaccounted for two months after Boko Haram extremists stormed their secondary school in a brazen abduction that sparked global condemnation.

A special fact-finding committee created to look into the kidnapping issued a final report that said the group took 276 girls, but 57 escaped either as the trucks drove away or soon after, Voice of America reported.

The chairman of the panel, Brigadier General Ibrahim Sabo, said the investigation included interviews with four girls who escaped.


In recent years, NOAA’s US Historical Climatology Network (USHCN) has been “adjusting” its record by replacing real temperatures with data “fabricated” by computer models. The effect of this has been to downgrade earlier temperatures and to exaggerate those from recent decades, to give the impression that the Earth has been warming up much more than is justified by the actual data. In several posts headed “Data tampering at USHCN/GISS”, Goddard compares the currently published temperature graphs with those based only on temperatures measured at the time. These show that the US has actually been cooling since the Thirties, the hottest decade on record; whereas the latest graph, nearly half of it based on “fabricated” data, shows it to have been warming at a rate equivalent to more than 3 degrees centigrade per century.


JERUSALEM (AP) — The Israeli military says it has carried out airstrikes on a number of military targets inside Syria, including the military headquarters, in response to a cross-border attack that left an Israeli teenager dead. In a statement early Monday, the military said nine targets were struck and "direct hits were confirmed."

"Yesterday's attack was an unprovoked act of aggression against Israel, and a direct continuation to recent attacks that occurred in the area," said Lt. Col. Peter Lerner, a military spokesman. He said Israel "will not tolerate any attempt to breach Israel's sovereignty and will act in order to safeguard the civilians of the state of Israel."


Straphangers throughout the city reported being the victim of creeps bumping, grinding, groping, flashing and assaulting them more than 3,000 times over a five-year period — and Grand Central Station is the epicenter of subway sleaze, an unprecedented Daily News analysis of subway crime data revealed.

The NYPD recorded 369 misdemeanor sex crimes and eight felony sex crimes at the century-old transit hub, or on trains approaching it, from July 2008 through June 2013 — the highest reported tally for sex crimes at any station in the system during that time.


A leading UK sports consultant has said that the public should be encouraged to do more “low-level” exercise and that standing up for three hours a day can extend life span by two years.

Dr Mike Loosemore, head of the Institute of Sport Exercise and Health at University College London, said: “There is now enormous evidence that simply standing makes huge differences to your health.”


News That Makes You Think… 06.16.14

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NEWS THAT MAKES YOU THINK... 06.16.14News-That-Make-You-Think

The Obama administration said Sunday the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad will remain open amid the growing sectarian violence in Iraq but will increase security and that some embassy staff will be temporarily evacuated.

State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said the staff will be moved to U.S. Consulate Generals posts in Basra and Erbil and to the Iraq Support Unit in Amman, Jordan.

The embassy is within the Baghdad's Green Zone. It has about 5,000 personnel, making it the largest U.S. diplomatic post in the world.

The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant – also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) -- swept across northern Iraq last week and captured the major cities of Mosul and Tikrit.


The radical Sunni militants rampaging through war-torn Iraq will bring their battle to the U.S. if they are not stopped, a prominent lawmaker warned Sunday.

"This is as dangerous as it gets," House Intelligence Committee Chairman Rep. Mike Rogers said on "Fox News Sunday, issuing a devastating warning that the growing Al Qaeda contingent in Iraq presents a problem that “we're either going to face in New York City or we're going to face it (in Iraq).”

“These are not monkey bar terrorists out in the desert somewhere planning some very low-level attack,” the Michigan Republican added, amid reports that a heavily armed and well-funded Al Qaeda-linked group called the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria seized two major Iraqi cities and seemed poised to march on Baghdad. “These are sophisticated, command and controlled, seasoned combat veterans who understand the value of terrorism operations external to the region, meaning Europe and the United States.”

Rogers’ fears were echoed by his colleague, Sen. Lindsey Graham, who issued dire caution of his own.

“Iraq and Syria combined are going to be the staging area for the next 9/11 if we don't do anything about it," the South Carolina Republican said on CNN's "State of the Union" of the radical Sunni militants marching through much of Iraq. ‘“If Baghdad falls, if the central government falls, a disaster awaits us of monumental proportions.”


Flagler County deputies said they were called to Wadsworth Park in Flagler Beach on Wednesday after the raccoon was found high up in a tree with the container stuck on his head.

A deputy climbed a ladder to rescue the raccoon from the tree, but the raccoon was spooked and jumped to another tree, according to authorities. Fire Rescue used their hose to spray the raccoon with water to fall safely on a tarp held by deputies.

Authorities removed the container from the raccoon's head and released it back into the wilderness.

“The actions of Deputy Williams and all other rescue personnel saved this raccoon from certain death,” said Sheriff James L. Manfre. “Residents should not feed wild animals and should use caution when encountering them."


JERUSALEM (June 15, 2014) — Israeli troops on Sunday arrested some 80 Palestinians, including dozens of Hamas members, in an overnight raid in the West Bank as Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu accused the Islamic terrorist group of kidnapping three teenagers who went missing nearly three days ago.

The crisis escalated already heightened tensions between Israel and the new Palestinian government, which is headed by Western-backed President Mahmoud Abbas but backed by Hamas.

Netanyahu has condemned Abbas' agreement with the terrorist group, and said he would hold him responsible for the safety of the youths, who disappeared apparently while hitchhiking in the West Bank late Thursday. The three, one of whom holds American citizenship, have not been heard from since then.

Palestinian officials condemned the overnight crackdown and rejected Netanyahu's contention that they are responsible. Hamas, meanwhile, praised the apparent kidnapping but stopped short of accepting responsibility.


NY governor makes it easier for Tommy to be Tammy (at least on paper)

New York's governor is making it easier for the transgendered to be transgendered when what they need is counseling.

And he's is doing it through executive order.

Currently, the transgendered can't have their birth certificates changed unless they can prove that they have had surgery to alter them physically to the opposite gender.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo issued an edict June 5 stating the birth certificates can be changed if the person requests it – without surgery.

Linda Harvey of Mission America is concerned, too, about children who want to be the opposite sex and some psychologists going along with it.

Harvey says: "Can 6-year-old Tommy become – if his parents go along and the doctors go along – to suddenly have his birth certificate changed to become 'Tammy.' I mean, is that where we're going?"

While surgery was once required, New York media reported the new change requires only an affidavit signed by a medical professional that the transgender is undergoing mental health treatment for "gender dysphoria."


To the list of bygone New York City pleasures, add one more slice of life — the sausage pizza.

While pepperoni and cheese remain the most popular, the sausage slice has been replaced by buffalo chicken and pineapples, artichokes and ziti.

Joe Pozzuoli founded the Greenwich Village institution Joe’s Pizza in 1975 and has seen pizza trends come and go. On a recent trip to Joe’s, four slice pies sat ready — traditional cheese, a fresh-mozzarella pie, pepperoni and a Sicilian.

And the owner of the Carmine Street spot, a favorite of Leonardo DiCaprio and Tobey Maguire, discusses sausage pizza the way a musician might talk about that neighborhood’s folk singers — as a relic of times past.

“It’s fallen off over the past 10, 15 years,” says Pozzuoli. “Thirty years ago, I would order 30 to 40 pounds of sausage a week. Now, I order very little. Two or three pounds.”

When asked why he thinks the topping fell out of favor, even as its cousin, the pepperoni slice, remains popular, this old-school pizzaiolo can only shrug and guess.

“I wish I knew,” he says. “Sausage is more fat. Many people don’t eat fat [anymore].”


News That Makes You Think – 06.13.14

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Iraq is breaking up. The Kurds have taken the northern oil city of Kirkuk that they have long claimed as their capital. Sunni fundamentalist fighters vow to capture Baghdad and the Shia holy cities further south.

News-That-Make-You-Think Government rule over the Sunni Arab heartlands of north and central Iraq is evaporating as its 900,000-strong army disintegrates. Government aircraft have fired missiles at insurgent targets in Mosul, captured by Isis on Monday, but the Iraqi army has otherwise shown no sign of launching a counter-attack.

The nine-year Shia dominance over Iraq, established after the US, Britain and other allies overthrew Saddam Hussein, may be coming to an end. The Shia may continue to hold the capital and the Shia-majority provinces further south, but they will have great difficulty in re-establishing their authority over Sunni provinces from which their army has fled.


Orthodox Jewish woman says school fired her for observing Sabbath.

An Orthodox Jewish religious teacher says her temple bosses canned her — because she was too observant and doesn’t work on the Sabbath!

Ellen Gastwirth, 41, says in a new Brooklyn federal-court lawsuit that she was hired as the director of education at the reformed Jewish synagogue Temple Judea on Long Island in 2005.

Gastwirth said everything was kosher until Rabbi Todd Chizner was hired there in 2006 and learned she was a Sabbath-observant Orthodox Jew.

“What do you people do on that day that would prevent you from being here?” Chizner insultingly asked Gastwirth in October 2008, when she said she couldn’t work on the Jewish holiday of Sukkot, the suit states.


Parents, teachers and cheesy after-school specials have long tried to convince kids that being cool and popular isn't all that it's cracked up to be. Now scientists are chiming in as well.

Dating, flouting authority and surrounding yourself with good-looking friends may make you popular when you're 13, according to a study published online Wednesday. But don't believe the media hype, psychologists say. Kids who try to act cool in early adolescence are more likely to have problems with drugs and alcohol, and have trouble managing friendships as they grow older. And their popularity tends to fade by the time they're 22.


US considers options as militants push closer to Baghdad.

Al Qaeda-inspired militants pushed into a province northeast of Baghdad Friday, capturing two towns there after having already toppled cities in the country’s north, as the Obama administration considered possible responses to the crisis.

Police officials said militants driving in machine-gun-mounted pickups entered two towns in Diyala province late Thursday.

Iraqi soldiers abandoned their posts there without any resistance, the officials told The Associated Press.


Demonstrations continue today in Washington D.C. for the release of Meriam Ibrahim, the Sudanese Christian wife and mother who is facing death for apostasy.

International Christian Concern is gathering with other organizations outside the Sudanese embassy.

The groups have been demonstrating outside the White House since Thursday morning. Ibrahim's husband is American, as well as the couple's two children, which are with her in a Sudanese prison.


Harrison Ford was taken to a local hospital in England after suffering an injury on the set of “Star Wars: Episode VII” on Thursday.

The 71-year-old actor was injured by a door of the Millennium Falcon, the spaceship that his character, Han Solo, pilots in the “Star Wars” films,reports The Hollywood Reporter.

“Harrison Ford sustained an ankle injury during filming today on the set of ‘Star Wars: Episode VII.’ He was taken to a local hospital and is receiving care. Shooting will continue as planned while he recuperates,” Disney said in a statement.

Ford was at Pinewood Studios, 20 miles west of London, at the time of the indecent, reports Variety.

“Episode VII” — which will be directed by J.J. Abrams and is also set to star Lupita Nyong’o, Oscar Isaac and Adam Driver, among others — is set to arrive in theaters on Dec. 18, 2015.


Obama Dumping On States!

News That Makes You Think… 06.09.14

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News-That-Make-You-ThinkThe pair who fatally shot two Las Vegas police officers and one civilian before taking their own lives Sunday are believed to be a married couple who possessed white supremacist paraphernalia and spoke of targeting police officers.

The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported late Sunday that officers were searching a small apartment complex about four miles from the Cici's Pizza restaurant where the officers were killed and the Wal-Mart where the two killed one other person before executing an apparent suicide pact.

The identities of the suspects have not been officially released, but a law enforcement official close to the investigation told the Review-Journal that the suspects were married, in their 20s, and new to the area. The paper reported that investigators found swastika symbols during their search of the apartment. Several neighbors the paper spoke to said the man's first name was Jared, while one person gave the women's name as Amanda.


The mother of the accused Brooklyn butcher blamed the criminal justice system for failing her violent son, who is accused of fatally stabbing a 6-year-old boy and repeatedly knifing the youngster’s 7-year-old playmate.

Marie Bauzile — who watched her son, Daniel St. Hubert, get locked up five years ago after he viciously attacked her — said jail should not be a substitute for mental health facilities.

“Jail is not the answer,” Bauzile, 60, told the Daily News from her South Ozone Park, Queens, home on Sunday. “If people have a mental problem, it’s not jail. It’s not the answer.”

St. Hubert, 27, was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia while serving time for trying to strangle Bauzile with an electrical cord in 2009. His sister, Judith Perry, has said he was given no meds or psychiatric referrals when he was released from the upstate Clinton Correctional Facility on May 23.


A 111-year-old New Yorker who lived on the Upper West Side and had been certified as the oldest man in the world died Sunday morning, according to friends who had been taking care of him.

Alexander Imich died peacefully at 9:03 a.m., according to his friends Michael Mannion and Trish Corbett. He had attained the rank of oldest man on the planet this April as determined by the Gerontology Research Group of Torrance, Calif.

Imich shrugged off the title in an interview with NBC 4 New York last month when asked for his secret to longevity.


The Justice Department is resurrecting a program designed to thwart domestic threats to the United States, and Attorney General Eric Holder says those threats include individuals the government deems anti-government or racially prejudiced.

The Domestic Terrorism Executive Committee was created in the wake of the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing but was scrapped soon after the 2001 terrorist attacks as intelligence and law enforcement officials shifted their focus to threats from outside the country. The committee will be comprised of figures from the FBI, the National Security Division of the Justice Department and the Attorney General’s Advisory Committee.

In his statement announcing the return of the committee, Holder said he remains concerned about the specter of attacks prompted by Islamic extremists, but he said this committee will be tasked with identifying other threats.

“We must also concern ourselves with the continued danger we face from individuals within our own borders who may be motivated by a variety of other causes from anti-government animus to racial prejudice,” Holder said.

According to reporting from Reuters, the American Civil Liberties Union is pushing back against the DOJ plan, fearing “it could be a sweeping mandate to monitor and collect controversial speech.”

Conservative groups are alarmed on multiple levels. First, they see themselves once again the target of an administration that disagrees with them philosophically.


The accused Brooklyn Ripper, charged with butchering two young children in an elevator, is now terrifying even hardened staffers on the Bellevue psych ward.

Daniel St. Hubert has been threatening to beat up cops and hospital workers since being taken in for evaluation last week, sources told The Post on Sunday.

“Any hospital staff that have to deal with him are very nervous around him,” said a Bellevue source. “They are on high alert.

“He is extremely hostile and accepts no responsibility for anything,” the source said, adding that his colleagues describe the alleged killer as a “menacing brute” with “a bad look in his eyes.”


A Texas mom is angry over a school ban on sunscreen that she says led to her daughter getting a severe sunburn during a field trip.

The North East Independent School District has the restriction because it considers sunscreen toxic, and fears kids will eat it, parent Christy Riggs, of San Antonio, told Fox News.

“The reality is: Children don’t eat sunscreen and they’re not going to,” Riggs said.

School district spokeswoman Aubrey Chancellor told ABC News that allergic reactions to sunscreen are one of the numerous reasons the district does not allow sunblock in its 72 schools.

“We don’t want students sharing sunscreen,” Chancellor told the station. “If students get it in their eyes or react badly to the sunscreen it can be quite serious.”

The district treats sunscreen as a medicine, Chancellor said, and requires a doctor’s note to apply it at school.



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