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[VIDEO] Fireworks Filmed With a Drone

Fantastico! Flying through a firework show with a DJI Phantom 2 and filming it with a GoPro Hero 3 silver. The quad was not damaged. Here’s one in HD.

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Mosquitos vs. Capitalism

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‘Weakness & Dependence’ Quote of the Day

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Self-Defense Final Score: Home Invader 0, Armed Wheelchair-Bound Man 1

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For The Daily CallerChuck Ross reports: A South Carolina homeowner would have been at a distinct disadvantage to a man who invaded his home early Thursday.

Orlandous Brown, 33, suffers from cerebral palsy and is confined to a wheelchair.

But the Easley, S.C. man had a gun and used it to defend himself against 26 year-old Atlanta native Darin Lowe, according to The Greenville News.

Both exchanged gunfire in Brown’s living room. Read the rest of this entry »


Thugocracy: Most Union Members Have Ties to Government

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For the Associated Press, Tom Raum reports: Unions representing government workers are expanding while organized labor has been shedding private sector members over the past half-century.

A majority of union members today now have ties to a government entity, at the federal, state or local levels.

Roughly 1-in-3 public sector workers is a union member, compared with about 1-in-15 for the private sector strike-union-tallworkforce, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Overall, 11.3 percent of wage and salary workers in the United States are unionized, down from a peak of 35 percent during the mid-1950s in the strong post-World War II recovery.

The typical union worker now is more likely to be an educator, office worker or food or service industry employee rather than a construction worker, autoworker, electrician or mechanic. Far more women than men are among the union-label ranks.

In a blow to public sector unions, the Supreme Court ruled this week that thousands of health care workers in Illinois who are paid by the state cannot be required to pay fees that help cover a union’s cost of collective bargaining.

The justices said the practice violates the First Amendment rights of nonmembers who disagree with stances taken by unions.

The ruling was narrowly drawn, but it could reverberate through the universe of unions that represent government workers. The case involved home-care workers for disabled people who are paid with Medicaid funds administered by the state.

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Chart shows change in union membership as percentage of wage and salary earners; 2c x 3 inches; 96.3 …

Also in June, a California judge declared unconstitutional the state’s teacher tenure, dismissal and layoff laws. The judge ordered a stay of the decision, pending an appeal by the state and teachers union.

“The basic structure of the labor union movement has changed, reflecting changes in the economy,” said Ross Baker, a political science professor at Rutgers University. “Manufacturing is a diminishing segment of the economy. Also, a lot of the manufacturing that’s being done today is being done nonunion.”

unionthugs-cartoonUnion members continue to be a powerful political force in politics, and Baker said he didn’t see the role of unions diminishing. “I just think the colors of the collars are changing,” Baker said.

In 2013, 14.5 million workers belonged to a union, about the same as the year before. In 1983, the first year for which comparable figures are available, there were 17.7 million union workers.

The largest union is the National Education Association, with 3.2 million members. It represents public school teachers, administrators and students preparing to become teachers. Read the rest of this entry »


Government Thugs Reined by Supreme Court

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For The Washington Post, George Will writes: Two 5 to 4 decisions this week, on the final decision day of the Supreme Court’s term, dealt with issues that illustrate the legal consequences of political tactics by today’s progressives. One case demonstrated how progressivism’s achievement, the regulatory state, manufactures social strife and can do so in ways politically useful to progressives. The other case arose from government coercion used to conscript unwilling citizens into funding the progressives’ party.

“Twice this week the court played its indispensable role as constable, policing portions of this forest where progressivism has produced government guilty of gratuitous bullying.”

Under the 1993 Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), any government action that substantially burdens religious practices will be subject to strict judicial scrutiny to determine if it, rather than some less intrusive measure, is necessary to achieve a compelling government interest. The Affordable Care Act, as supplemented by regulations, requires for-profit employers to provide health-care coverage that includes all 20 Food and Drug Administration-approved birth control methods.

“…more and more decisions are made by unelected and unaccountable executive-branch ‘experts’  exercising vast discretion.”

These include four that prevent a fertilized egg from being implanted in the uterus. Some persons consider this tantamount to abortion and oppose these abortifacients for religious reasons. Why did Congress, having enacted RFRA, write this clearly incompatible birth control mandate? Congress didn’t. Read the rest of this entry »


China: World’s tallest skyscrapers will also be pollution-eating

Originally posted on China Daily Mail:

When the world's tallest tower is built in Wuhan, China, it will also be one of the most environmentally friendly skyscrapers anywhere

When the world’s tallest tower is built in Wuhan, China, it will also be one of the most environmentally friendly skyscrapers anywhere

Though it is already home to the world’s largest building – in the form of the New Century Global Centre in Chengdu – China is seeking to create the world’s tallest structure as well. Designed by UK-based Chetwoods Architects and known as the Phoenix Towers, this tower concept is slated to be built in Wuhan, Central China.

But equally impressive is the fact that this building will be able to suck pollution out of the air and water and will host more than the usual building features.

The larger of the two towers reaches a total of 1000 meters (3,280 ft) in height – beating the Burj Khalifa by 170 meters (558 ft) – and sports an ambitious list of sustainable technology.

The towers cover 7 hectares…

View original 855 more words


Malala Yousafzai: ‘All I want is education. And I’m afraid of no one’

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I was driving past a business here in the Houston Heights, when I glimpsed this painted on the side of the building. I recognized that iconic WWII poster before I realized it was not just any woman, but 14 year old Malala Yousafzai, the Pakistani girl who was attacked for wanting an education. The words next to her are her quote, ( “I don’t mind if I have to sit on the floor at school.) All I want is education. And I’m afraid of no one.”

(at the Avis Frank Gallery, 1606 White Oak Dr., Houston, TX 

Shepherd Songs I was driving past a business here in the Houston….


Meanwhile, in Dubai…

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Dubai is building a massive temperature-controlled “city” that will house an 8 million square foot shopping complex called the “Mall of The World,” the United Arab Emirates’ ruler, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, announced Saturday, according to Khaleej Times. (via Business Insider)

Applied Technotopia


[VIDEO] Japanese Musician Recreates Disgraced Politician Ryutaro Nonomura’s Uncontrollable Weeping on Electric Guitar

What’s more fun than watching a Japanese politician disgrace himself, lose his marbles, and cough up a bucket of tears on live TV? Watching a Japanese musician recreate the flood of tears on electric guitar, sob by humiliating sob.

Disgraced politician Ryutaro Nonomura, who attempted to claim over 3 million yen (around US$30,000) in travel expenses without providing any supporting evidence has been seen around the world sobbing violently at a press conference thanks to numerous YouTube videos….

One parody in particular caught the attention of the meme-surfers at Rocketnews24:

…Prepare to cringe and be impressed while watching the following video of a perfectly timed, perfectly pitched recreation of Nonomura’s teary defense performed on an electric guitar.

The video was uploaded by a guitarist who goes by the username RioT_Clover on Twitter

「野々村議員 政務費不正疑惑 泣き乱しながら潔白主張」を弾いてみたょ【ギター】

Rocketnews24YouTube


Border Meltdown: Obama Delivers 290,000 Illegals To U.S. Homes

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For The Daily Caller, Neil Munro writes: The vast majority of 50,000 unaccompanied youths and children who have illegally crossed the Texas border during the last few months have been successfully delivered by federal agencies to their relatives living in the United States, according to a New York Times article.

A second New York Times article reports revealed that officials have caught an additional 240,000 Central American migrants since April, and are transporting many of them to their destinations throughout the United States.

border-meltdown5The deluge of 290,000 illegals — so far — are exploiting legal loopholes that allow them to get temporary permits to stay in the United States.

Experts say that President Barack Obama’s administration has failed to close the loopholes and is unlikely to deport more than a small percentage of the illegals, despite the high unemployment rates among American Latino, African-American and white youths, and the strapped budgets of many cities and towns.

The president’s policy has caused protests by frightened citizens in towns such as Murrieta. But Obama’s allies — such as La Raza, an ethnic lobby for Latinos — are eager to escalate the conflict and to paint the protestors as racists. Those protests may escalate before the November elections. Read the rest of this entry »


[PHOTO] Ellion Irwin: New York, 1955

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[PHOTO] Floating Water Droplets

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A photo through two floating water droplets

Exploring Space


Obama’s Border Crisis

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For POLITICO Magazine, Rich Lowry writes: It’s hard to imagine a more apt summation of the lunatic state of the nation’s immigration debate than this week’s split screen.

In Washington, most respectable opinion lined up, yet again, to condemn Republicans for not passing an amnesty under the guise of defunct-for-now “comprehensive immigration reform.”

 “If you are a run-of-the-mill immigrant here illegally, your odds of getting deported are close to zero.”

– John Sandweg, former acting director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement

Meanwhile, the crisis on the Southern border continued. A massive influx of people — largely driven by Central Americans, many of them children — drawn here in the expectation of lax immigration enforcement is overwhelming border officials and facilities.

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A Wall Street Journal story about the White House reaction to the crisis was headlined, “Obama Plans Executive Action to Bolster Border Security,” which has a man-bites-dog feel to it after all of the administration’s executive actions to undermine immigration enforcement.

A leaked memo from a high-ranking Border Patrol official said that only 3 percent of non-Mexicans apprehended at the border are being returned to their native countries.

The border crisis is of a piece with a broad unraveling of the president’s policy over the past year. His erstwhile spiritual mentor might have put it under the category of “chickens coming home to roost.”

He adopted the policy of maximum risk in Iraq by pulling out all our combat troops, and Sunni jihadis are marching on Baghdad. He championed a vast new health law reliant on the smooth operation of perhaps the most complex federal website ever, and it’s still not functioning properly. He has systematically ignored the nation’s immigration laws, and tens of thousands of new illegal immigrants are showing up at our doorstep. Read the rest of this entry »


[PHOTO] Marilyn Monroe: ‘Beware of Danger’

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History: Remember When The Founders Almost Voted Against Independence?

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“We should always remember that a free Constitution of civil Government cannot be purchased at too dear a Rate; as there is nothing, on this Side the New Jerusalem of equal importance to Mankind.”

–John Adams, 1776

For americasfuture.orgChristian Corrigan writes: In the midst of commemorating our Nation’s birthday with fireworks and fellowship, many overlook the magnitude and uncertainty of the muggy days of early July 1776 in Philadelphia that fundamentally altered the course of human history.

“One can only imagine the fear, anxiety, and pressure that shrouded the delegates as the vote approached on the morning of July 2…”

Six months earlier, Thomas Paine had captivated the colonies with his powerful pamphlet Common Sense, assuring the colonists that independence was their natural right and calling them to arms.  But despite the growing fervor of their constituents in favor of separation, the delegates to the Second Continental Congress were skeptical about the prospects of actually winning independence from the Crown. Read the rest of this entry »


REWIND: DOJ Court Documents in Benghazi Suspect Case Put Video Narrative to Rest

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“We will make sure that the person who made that film is arrested and prosecuted”

– Secretary of State Hillary Clinton to Father of SEAL killed in Benghazi

Court documents filed by the U.S. Justice Department in the criminal case against Benghazi attack suspect Ahmed Abu Khatallah provide unprecedented details about the evolution of the assault and further shatter the Obama administration’s initial claim that it sprouted from protests over an anti-Islam film.

The narrative that the video played a role continues to live on, with former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton saying recently that some of the attackers may indeed have been influenced by the online video.

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But the Justice Department’s court filings make clear that at least those spearheading the attack were part of a “conspiracy,” one that involved several members of the Ansar al-Sharia “Islamic extremist militia.”

A government motion filed Tuesday seeking Khatallah’s detention provides some of the greatest detail to date on the suspect’s alleged role.

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The motion says that in the days preceding the attack, the defendant “voiced concern and opposition to the presence of an American facility in Benghazi.” According to the motion, a group of 20 or more “armed men,” including militia members, assembled outside the U.S. compound at 9:45 p.m. the night of Sept. 11, 2012, and “aggressively breached” the gate.

They carried rifles, handguns and rocket-propelled grenade launchers.

After breaching the gate, they stole a U.S. vehicle, “forcibly entered” buildings and stole U.S. property.

NavymapBenghazi-map

“During this initial attack, buildings within the Mission were set on fire,” the court document says, noting that the fires “ultimately led to the deaths” of U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and Information Management Officer Sean Smith. Read the rest of this entry »


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