Filed under: Environment, History, Latin America, Science/Technology | Tags: A Previously Unknown Species, Member of the Raccoon Family, The Olinguito
The Smithsonian announced the discovery of a new animal species last Thursday. They have named the two-pound, two-and-a-half-foot-long carnivore from the Andes mountains of Ecuador and Columbia the olinguito. The first time in 35 years a new carnivorous mammal has been discovered.
It is a member of the raccoon family and is described as looking like “a cross between a house cat and a teddy bear.”They have been around, in quantity, but they live in the treetops of the Andean cloud forests, mostly at night. Preserved samples, mostly skulls or furs, were in museum collections, but mislabeled. The olinguito (pronounced oh-lin-GHEE-toe) have long tails, reddish-brown fur, and very long sharp claws.
New species of insects, reptiles or birds are found on expeditions to the wilder places, but it is unusual to find a new mammal — or at least a living species distinct from other known species. There may be other unrecognized species lurking in museums, improperly labeled. The more we know about the world’s species, the more we can care for their survival.
( Mark Gurney)
Filed under: Democrat Corruption, Immigration, Latin America, Law, National Security | Tags: DHS Coyotes, DHS Offers Instructions, How to Ask for Asylum
The trip for an illegal immigrant crossing the Mexican border is often grueling, dangerous an even deadly. Ruthless “coyotes” who escort illegals across the desert or through wilderness routes profit from the trip and care little about those whom they are herding north. Our immigration laws the object of passionate battles in Congress. We have, it is often asserted, perfectly good immigration laws — the problem is that they are not being enforced. We theoretically have somewhere around 11,000,000 illegal immigrants currently in the country. Democrats want to give them amnesty, for they expect future Democrat voters.
Our laws are not being enforced and not being obeyed. The Immigration and Customs Enforcement service is suing the Homeland Security Department and officials because they are not allowed to do their jobs. Ranchers on our southern border are under siege. We have something like 20 million unemployed and Democrats believe that giving work permits and amnesty to the eleven million currently here is a good idea, and now we learn that Homeland Security has posted clear guidelines on the Internet for an easier way to gain entrance to the United States. You simply step right up to a border crossing and tell official there that you have a “credible fear” of persecution or torture from drug gangs, and you may get to enter the country while you await a hearing before an immigration judge, a process that could take years. Works for about 200 people a week at the Otay crossing near San Diego.
Add this to the Lawless File. Our system of government is under attack from the Obama administration. They will obey the laws they like, and make very sure that you do, Enforce the laws that are help them to get what they want, sometimes ruthlessly, and simply ignore the laws they do not like, or waive them, delay implementation, issue an executive order to trump the law, or issue regulations that make the law impossible to enforce.
Filed under: Immigration, Latin America, Law, National Security, The Constitution, The United States | Tags: Official Mexico Outrage, Open Borders v. Rule of Law, Securing the Border
With Obama off on his African Vacation, the news has been much centered on the battle over an immigration bill in the Senate. The bill that emerged from the Senate would double the number of Border Patrol agents along the southern border with Mexico, and the number of drones guarding them from above would triple. The measure also would provide 700 miles of fencing along the border and around-the-clock surveillance flights with drones. (Since there are no teeth in the bill, and huge amounts of pork, it is unlikely to be taken seriously by the House.)
This has ignited fury in Mexico, where officials rushed to any available microphone to flood the Spanish-language media expressing their outrage. One renowned academic insisted that deploying more federal agents is tantamount to an increase in human rights violations. One Mexican congressman (Fernando Belaunzaran) said “we are friends and neighbors” as is repeated ad nauseam, but the U.S. is about to militarize the border with Mexico as if we were at war.”
The fact remains that our southern border is dangerously porous, and it’s not just humble migrants seeking a better life who cross the border. Drugs, criminal gangs, and terrorists are all part of the mix. But our hypocritical friends south of the border prefer that we have open borders, for it relieves their problems with their poorest citizens, and helps to support their economy.
Not only that, but the remittances, such as Western Union Moneygrams from the United States represent the second largest source of income for Mexico, second only to the Mexican oil industry. In 2009, Mexican workers, mostly illegal aliens, sent home $21.2 billion in such transfers. According to the Inter-American Development Bank, all of Latin America received $69.2 billion in remittances from the U.S. in 2009 alone. The U.S. Post Office now offers now offers a wire transfer service, but only to Latin American countries. In May 2012, wire transfers totaled $2.34 billion.
Between June 2009 and June 2010 immigrants have gained 656,000 jobs while U.S. born workers lost 1.2 million jobs during the same period. The Pew study found that 57% of those referred to as “immigrant” workers were actually non-citizens.
Mexico annually deports more illegal aliens than the United States does. Under Mexican law, it is a felony to be an illegal alien in Mexico. Mexico welcomes only foreigners who will be useful to Mexican society. Foreigners are admitted into Mexico “according to their possibilities of contributing to national progress.” Immigration officials must ensure that immigrants will be useful elements and that they have the necessary funds for their sustenance” and for their dependents. Foreigners will be barred if their presence upsets “the equilibrium of the national demographics, when they do not behave like good citizens in their own country, when they have broken Mexican laws, and when they are not found to be physically or mentally healthy.
A National Population Registry keeps track of ‘every single individual who comprises the population of the country,” and verifies each individual’s identity. A National Catalog of Foreigners tracks foreign tourists and immigrants and assigns each individual with a unique tracking number. And don’t even think of fake immigration papers or false signatures. Foreigners who violate the terms of their visa may get 6 years in prison. There’s more, lots more, but you get the idea.
Mexico has its own problems with corruption and poverty, criminals and the drug cartels, but sending their own problems across the border because it is financially attractive helps them avoid cleaning house at home. We need to understand what the demonstrations here and the hysteria coming from Mexican officials actually mean. It is more complicated than just a matter of Democrats wanting more low-skilled, low-paid migrants to become reliable Democrat voters.
Filed under: Democrat Corruption, Domestic Policy, Immigration, Latin America, Law, National Security, Progressivism | Tags: Attorney General Eric Holder, Did He Lie To Congress?, Fast and Furious
The House Judiciary Committee is investigating whether Attorney General Eric Holder lied under earth during his May 15 testimony on the Justice Department’s (DOJ) surveillance of reporters.
During a back and forth with Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) about whether the DOJ could prosecute reporters under the Espionage Act of 1917 — “In regard to potential prosecution of the press for the disclosure of material—this is not something I’ve every been involved in, heard of,or would think would be wise policy” Holder said in his testimony.
NBC News reported the following week that Holder personally approved a search warrant that named Fox News chief Washington correspondent James Rosen a co-conspirator in a national security leaks case.
John Conyers Jr. (D-MI) the ranking member of the Judiciary Committee said that Holder was “forthright” with the panel and there was “no need to turn a policy disagreement into allegations of misconduct.”
Rep James Sensenbrenner Jr. (R-WI) said Holder should resign. He said the attorney general had misled the panel during the “Fast and Furious” gun-walking operation, and again in claiming no knowledge of the AP probe.
President Obama has said he is “troubled” and argued that”journalists should not be at legal risk for doing their jobs.” He ordered Holder to review his department’s guidelines for DOJs surveillance of reporters. In other words, he asked Holder to investigate Holder.
In the meantime, “Fast and Furious” is heating up again. This is the operation that allowed large quantities of guns to be “walked” across the border, and which Mexican Drug cartels used to kill hundreds of Mexican citizens and one American Border Agent.
The DOJ Inspector General released a report blasting a government leak intended to smear a key ATF whistleblower. The leaked memorandum was aimed at discrediting Special Agent John Dodson and contradicting his damaging testimony before Congress, about the federal program that put thousands of high-powered weapons in the hands of Mexican criminals. Disgraced former U.S. Attorney Dennis Burke, one of the officials in the administration’s lawless gun-trafficking scheme., was furious when whistleblowers had gone to Congress and the media, but he was particularly angry because Dodson had written a memo outlining the plot to allow guns to “walk” across the border— and into the hands of the drug cartel.
Burke, who left the department in 2011, refused to be interviewed for the investigation, and claimed that he had no intention of retaliating, but was concerned that congressional investigators were acting as “willing stooges” for defenders of the right to keep and bear arms. Incredibly the violence of Fast and Furious — U.S. law enforcement officers killed and hundreds of Mexican citizens massacred — was used to push for more gun control in the United States, according to official documents.
Evidence continues to come out that Fast and Furious was much bigger than the press or the administration have admitted. Mexican drug lords have claimed that the U.S. government was shipping weapons to their cartels and allowing them to bring drugs across the border in exchange for information. The CIA’s involvement is largely concealed, and all the other major scandals means that justice for the victims of Fast and Furious may never be served.
Filed under: Capitalism, Domestic Policy, Freedom, History, Latin America, Law, National Security, The Constitution | Tags: Manipulating Public Opinion, Open Borders v. Rule of Law, Propaganda and Immigration
Accuracy in Media points out the subtle changes impressed on public perception. A natural human survival strategy mistrusts the unfamiliar. The public must be educated to accept new ideas or now policies, but education can take too much time. Hence, propaganda.
Our society depends on the rule of law for survival, security, stability and prosperity. Giving special privileges to lawbreakers is instinctively rejected. Granting special privileges to criminals subverts the rule of law. If the rule of law becomes meaningless, it is replaced by a society based on political power alone. Propaganda manipulates public perceptions. A starting point can be changing definitions — changing the language in order to change perceptions.
First you have “Immigrants:” Any foreign-born individual, including naturalized U.S. citizens, documented immigrants, and undocumented immigrants. What we used to call Illegal aliens, are now “undocumented immigrants.” Illegal immigrants march in the streets with signs saying that no human being is “illegal.” You have become a bigot, racist, classist if you use the term that simply meant someone who broke the law.
“Foreign born scholars, scientists and engineers make this country more prosperous and more secure.” Well, sure. But how many scholars, scientists and engineers are paying coyotes to take them across the border to rely on forged documents?
The word “Hispanic” does not define a racial, ethnic, linguistic or cultural group. It is a meaningless term to provide political power within a Spanish-speaking minority. The term is defined by the OMB as “a person of Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Central or South American, or other Spanish culture or origin, regardless of race.” I had a neighbor who was born in Mexico, the daughter of parents who were born in Germany, who married an American, whose children were born in America. She spoke German with parents and grandparents, Spanish with siblings, English with husband and children, and dreamed, she said in all three. And what do you do with Brazilians who speak Portuguese? Or Antonio Banderas who is European? You are only Hispanic or Latino if you are the right kind.
Then there is intimidation. Mexican American Legal Defense and Education Fund founder Mario Obledo said “California is going to be a Hispanic state, and anyone who doesn’t like it should leave. They should go back to Europe.”
Former La Raza president Raul Yzaguirre called California’s proposition 187 which would have denied budget-busting social services to illegals, “racists:” and “xenophobes” The proposition won, but was blocked by a judge, and California is now bankrupt.
We can get back to a political position where we welcome legal immigrants, help them to become prosperous American citizens, and still recognize the borders of our country, if we have the will. The “Gang of Eight’s” quickly dredged up policy is not an answer. There are more issues in immigration policy than open borders vs. amnesty for anyone who has managed to cross the border. We have always been a nation of laws, we should not allow a lawless administration to change that.
Filed under: Domestic Policy, Economy, Latin America, Law, National Security, Terrorism, The United States | Tags: "Amnesty" Brings a Flood, Lies About Immigration, Promises Ignored
The Senate Judiciary Committee has just completed a hearing on the “Gang of Eight” immigration reform legislation. The hearing, according to Paul Mirengoff, “lasted for about two hours and was limited to one round of questions for two witnesses — economist Douglas Holtz-Eakin (who supports the bill) and Peter Kirsanow of the U.S. Civil Rights Commission (who opposes it).”
Kirsanow testified they had received the nearly 900-page bill only about two days ago, and lacked enough time to review and analyze it sufficiently. In other words, Mirengoff adds —”the hearing was a farce.”
I am getting more than fed up with Congress churning out bills in a great hurry that no one has had a chance to read. That, of course, is the idea. You do it slowly, time to get public input, discuss the provisions, why it might end up being something the people don’t want at all. It might turn out to be something poorly thought out and damaging to the country and the economy. Here is the situation as I understand it:
We have ten million working age Americans who cannot find work. So there is a big rush to ‘regularize some guesstimated eleven million illegals” because “we can’t deport eleven million people.” Besides, some of them have been living here for years, have homes, and have children who were born here, or children who were brought here as little children who know no other home. The call for compassion.
We are a nation of laws. Crossing the border illegally is against the law. The Department of Homeland Security is in charge of the Border Patrol and Customs and Border Enforcement. Secretary Napolitano insists that the Border is well controlled, and illegals crossing the border are not a problem. People on the border and states on the border say illegal immigration has increased substantially since “amnesty” was first mentioned. The illegals even say “Obama will let me out.” And they are illegal, not “undocumented.”
The situation along the border with the drug cartels and coyotes transporting people is so bad that the Border Patrol doesn’t even patrol the border, but has had to pull back about 25 miles from the border.
Congress passed some kind of law and some kind of appropriations for a fence along the border, but everyone has apparently lost interest after about two miles were built, and while Gang of Eight Members were down on the border to look at the existing fence, some illegals were climbing over the fence right in front of them— which they found amusing.
The President of the United States who is tasked with seeing the laws are enforced, has told the Homeland Security people not to pay any attention to illegals, we presume because he thinks they will be Democrat voters.
There was an enormous scandal about “Fast and Furious.” a gunrunning ploy that was supposed to identify the cartel leaders, but ended up killing Border Patrol agent Brian Terry and a few hundred Mexicans, but it wasn’t anyone’s fault and we are supposed to ignore it. Border Patrol people are armed with bean bags and cannot protect themselves.
We have an E-Verify system in place to prevent illegals from gaining employment with false or forged documents, but it is not enforced, nor required.
It seems to me that before we start rushing through a big bill that is supported by a “bi-partisan” Gang of Eight that attempts to settle the entire immigration problem, a 900 page bill that nobody has read nor considered the consequences of each change. we might separate it into smaller parts. Part One might be enforcing the laws that are presently on the books. If enforcing them is impossible because of Executive Orders issued by the President, then Congress needs to step up and see that the laws are enforced. That is his Constitutionally mandated task. Once the Border Patrol can go back to the border with something besides bean bags, the fence is built, and E-Verify is up and running and being enforced — then we can begin to talk about Part Two: how many people we want to let in, and from where, and how we decide.
I am thoroughly sick of false promises of mandates and fixes and regulations and appropriations that somehow never happen; and a border that is never enforced because Democrats want more welfare dependent Hispanic illegals who will be reliable Democrat voters. Marco Rubio is sure that — this time, they mean the promises. They will write them down in the bill. But somehow it will never get enforced. First you fulfill the promises about enforcement. Then, when that is done, we can talk.
Filed under: Domestic Policy, Latin America, Law, Media Bias, Politics, Progressivism, The Constitution, The United States | Tags: Euphemisims Mislead, Multiculturalism, Political Correctness
Mr. Virtual President Bill Whittle speaks at a Virtual Town Hall about the problem of immigration, and has some important things to say.
Also in the news, the Associated Press has refined their Stylebook to eliminate the phrase “illegal immigrant”. Also “illegal alien,” “an illegal”, “illegals” or “undocumented”).
Back in October of 2012, AP had reaffirmed use of the term “illegal immigrant.” Why do we not say “undocumented immigrants” or “unauthorized immigrants?”
To us, they said, these terms obscure the essential fact that such people are here in violation of the law. It’s simply a legal reality….What they lack is the fundamental right to be in the United States.
Jay Leno considered the AP change and asked why they just don’t consider them “Undocumented Democrats?”
We are deep into a territory where political correctness is so rampant that the language no longer represents reality. If reality is too uncomfortable to face, we shall just change the language that describes it. Like putting a tire patch on a hot air balloon, and hoping it holds.
Filed under: Africa, Domestic Policy, Heartwarming, Latin America | Tags: Coffea arabica or C.robusta, Native to Tropical East Africa, The Many Ways of Coffee
Few people anywhere begin the day without a hot drink. Coffee, chocolate and tea. Yerba maté, (Argentinian). Creative blends of apple cider vinegar, herbs and honey (really?) But worldwide, coffee dominates. And as with all things popular, they’ve been trying to find something wrong with it for years, with little success. Yes, it can keep you awake at night, so don’t drink it at night.
Here’s a great roundup of how coffee is served around the world from Smithsonian magazine. There are two main species of coffee that are grown in nearly every tropical region. Brazil and Vietnam lead production. And coffee is now the second most in demand commodity after oil. Black, with cream, cream and sugar, iced, flavored, and think of the vast array of coffee makers and coffee pots.
I grew up with a percolator, Folgers, and fresh spring water. My dad liked good coffee, cream and sugar. My mother liked HOT coffee. I swear, the woman had an asbestos tongue. I have a vast collection of demitasse cups, and never use them. Then there’s Starbucks: double shot caramel macchiato with extra foam and sprinkles.
Filed under: Freedom, Heartwarming, History, Latin America, Politics, United Kingdom | Tags: "The Special Relationship", The Falkland Islands, The Falkland War 1982
Reader Subsidy Eye posted this video in the comments, but it’s too good to miss. The great war for the Falkland Islands in 1982. A little long, but worth every minute. British pluck, daring, and wonderful British humor. Enjoy the story of the Tin Triangle.
Filed under: Foreign Policy, Freedom, History, Latin America, Politics, The United States, United Kingdom | Tags: Argentina Bullies Islanders, Negotiated Settlement?, The Falkland Islands Vote
The people of the Falkland Islands went to the polls yesterday and voted in an historic referendum to remain a part of the United Kingdom as a British Overseas Territory.
The vote was not exactly close. There was a 92 percent voter turnout, and 99.8 percent voted to stay British. Only three residents voted otherwise.
When the people in Argentina get critical of their government, as happens under authoritarian governments, the Argentine government stirs up trouble over the Falklands, just 300 miles off their coast. Argentine officials describe the Falkland Islanders as a population, not a people. The Foreign Minister Hector Timerman recently said that Falkland Islanders “do not exist” and refused to talk with their government ministers. He told a press conference in London that the 3,000-off residents of the South Atlantic archipelago are simply British citizens who live there.
As a result of Argentina’s recent campaign of bullying and intimidation against the islands’ inhabitants, and in order to send a clear message to the world, the Falkland Islands’ government decided to put the question of its relationship with the UK to a popular vote.
Argentina, of course said that it will not recognize the outcome of the vote. Sadly, instead of backing America’s closest ally, the UK, the Obama administration has sided with Argentina by supporting its calls for a negotiated “settlement” over the islands. Making matters worse, the administration has repeatedly refused to say that it will back the outcome of the recent referendum.
Secretary of State John Kerry reiterated this embarrassing U.S. policy in London a couple of weeks ago, saying “I’m not going to comment, nor is the President, on a referendum that has yet to take place and hasn’t taken place.”
The Falkland Islanders do not need American support for their referendum, nor do the British. The Islanders are asking for recognition of their right to self-determination — a right guaranteed by the United Nations Charter and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. But President Obama has turned out to be not as expert in foreign policy as he claimed, based on living briefly as a small child in Indonesia. And he’s made it clear that he is irritated by foreign policy matters that keep interfering with his domestic agenda. Nevertheless, as a nation that is a champion of free people and free elections, we should be championing the free choice of an island people to continue their alliance with their parent country.
Last year Jaime Daremblum wrote at PJMedia about Argentina’s Slow-Motion Disaster: massive capital flight and high inflation:
Whenever Argentina starts rattling sabers over the British Falkland Islands, it’s a surefire sign that the South American country is experiencing some type of domestic turmoil. So it comes as no surprise that President Cristina Kirchner has responded to high inflation and massive capital flight by picking a diplomatic fight with London over a sparsely inhabited archipelago that has been a U.K. possession since 1833. …
American observers should not be fooled: The ongoing diplomatic row between London and Buenos Aires is nothing more than a political smokescreen designed to benefit Buenos Aires. Kirchner would rather have Argentines railing against British “colonialism” than railing against their own government, which has become an international embarrassment.