F-35 Struggles In Dogfight with F-16, the 1980s Fighter Jet it’s Supposed to Replace

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Pilot at ‘distinct energy disadvantage’ 

Douglas Ernst writes:

The U.S. Air Force’s new F-35 struggled in a dogfight with the plane it is supposed to replace.

“The technique required a commitment to lose energy and was a temporary opportunity prior to needing to regain energy… and ultimately end up defensive again.”

A five-page report obtained by Medium’s War is Boring columnist said a test pilot was at a “distinct energy disadvantage” during the training, The Diplomat reported Wednesday. The author of the piece said the only feasible way to engage the F-16 was to pull off a specific maneuver that usually only works once.

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“The technique required a commitment to lose energy and was a temporary opportunity prior to needing to regain energy… and ultimately end up defensive again,” the author wrote, War is Boring reported.

[SEE ALSO: F-35 comes with $400K helmet; pilot can ‘see’ through plane]

The F-35 pilot also complained that it was difficult to engage the F-16 with 25mm cannon and that his helmet was too cumbersome for a dogfight, The Diplomat reported. Read the rest of this entry »


That’s Not a Rainbow: Falling Drone Knocks Woman Unconscious During Pride Parade

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A drone struck a woman during Seattle’s Pride parade

(CBS Seattle) — Seattle police are looking to find the operator of a small drone that fell into a crowd of people watching Seattle’s pride parade, knocking one 25-year-old woman unconscious.

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The woman was standing on the parade route near 4th Avenue and Madison when the 18″-by-18″ drone crashed into a building, plummeted to the crowd and struck her on the head. The woman’s boyfriend caught her as she fell, and an off-duty firefighter was able to help treat the woman until police arrived….(read more)

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The Seattle Times reports:

A drone weighing about 2 pounds struck a woman during Seattle’s Pride parade.

Parade viewers cheer at the 41st annual Pride Parade Sunday, June 28, 2015, in Seattle. Rainbows and good cheer were out in force Sunday as hundreds of thousands of people packed gay pride events from New York City to Seattle, San Francisco to Chicago to celebrate a Supreme Court ruling legalizing same-sex marriage. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

A woman was knocked unconscious Sunday when she was struck by a small drone during the Pride parade in downtown Seattle. Read the rest of this entry »


[VIDEO] Is America Ready for a Female, Socialist, or Evangelical President?

A new poll shows that America is prejudiced against few candidates. The vast majority of American voters are ready for a female president. The fewest will vote for a socialist. Does this mean Sen. Bernie Sanders should abandon his presidential ambitions? Find out.

 


[VIDEO] FIRE Co-Founder Harvey Silverglate on Harvard’s Free Speech Bait-and-Switch

FIRE co-founder Harvey Silverglate’s take on the importance of free speech on campus and Harvard’s deception when it comes to academic freedom.

via Instapundit


Elena Kagan: ‘That Was Then, This Is Now’

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Via  at Legal Insurrection Read more here…


For Many Black Americans, Confederate Flag Debate a Distraction

Vanessa White poses with a photo of her brother Eric Tripp, who was shot and killed in the 1990s, in Compton, California June 26, 2015. REUTERS/Jonathan Alcorn

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Tim Reid reports: As calls grow to remove the Confederate flag from public spaces across America’s South, Vanessa White says she questions whether that would mark real progress for black Americans like her.

The 57-year-old Compton, California construction worker has seen and endured too much, she says, to be excited. Over the years, five members of her family have been killed by guns: her two brothers, at the ages of 28 and 38; her nephew, at 19; her niece, at 16; and her niece’s mother, at 28. All of them had dropped out of school in their teens.

“We never felt like we were allowed near normal life,” said White, speaking from the tidy, two-story home she purchased last year in the struggling suburb south of Los Angeles.

Vanessa White poses with a photo of her brother George Chapman, who was shot and killed in the 1990s, in Compton, California June 26, 2015. REUTERS/Jonathan Alcorn

Vanessa White poses with a photo of her brother George Chapman, who was shot and killed in the 1990s, in Compton, California June 26, 2015. REUTERS/Jonathan Alcorn

Across the country, African Americans are applauding a fast-growing movement to remove the Confederate flag from public life after last week’s racially charged massacre of nine black worshipers in a Charleston church. But even many of those who support the effort suspect it will do little to address what they see as fundamental racial injustices – from mass incarceration of black men to a lack of economic and educational opportunities.

White’s view, she says, was shaped by exposure to racism as a child and also by a family she describes as dysfunctional. Her single mother was an alcoholic, and her brothers began committing crimes at an early age. She says she grew up never feeling like a real person because of her race. Read the rest of this entry »


Dissent Is Now The Highest Form Of Bigotry

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 Read on… from Brandon McGinley at The Federalist

Also, from Daily Caller‘s Betsy Rothstein writes:

The editorial board of PennLive/The Patriot-News in Harrisburg, Pa. is taking a hardcore stance against those who disagree with the Supreme Court ruling to legalize gay marriage.

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“As a result of Friday’s ruling, PennLive/The Patriot-News will no longer accept, nor will it print, op-Eds and letters to the editor in opposition to same-sex marriage,” they declared. 

After receiving strong pushback, the newspaper’s editorial board, which is overseen by Editorial Page Editor John Micek, quickly revised its policy. Freedom of speech will be allowed — but only for a “limited” period of time. Read the rest of this entry »


Which States Have the Most Libertarians?

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…To see which states have the most libertarians, I use six measures: Libertarian Party presidential vote share in 2008 and 2012, Ron Paul contributions as a share of personal income in 2007-8, Ron Paul and Gary Johnson contributions as a share of income in 2011-12, and “adjusted” Ron Paul primary vote share in 2008 and 2012. Ron Paul vote shares are adjusted for primary vs. caucus, calendar, number of other candidates, and the like.

This is no guarantee that laws and policies in your new digs will be to your liking (for that, look here). But you might find some new friends who will gripe about them with you…(read more)

Reason.com


[VIDEO] Snapshot of the Electorate with Pollsters Carroll Doherty and Ed Goeas


Carroll Doherty, Director of Political Research at the Pew Research Center, and Ed Goeas, President and CEO of the Tarrance Group, discuss the American electorate and the Presidential election next year at a breakfast meeting of The Ripon Society on June 2, 2015 in Washington, DC.

POLL: 72% fear economic crash, concern ‘highest ever’…

 


Chart of the Day: Tracking the Pace of Social Change

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Look how fast America changes its mind on gay marriage, abortion and other big issues…

via Michael R. Strain, Twitter

Source: 


Report: Only 47,000 Social Justice Milestones To Go Before U.S. Achieves Full Equality

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WASHINGTON—Following the Supreme Court’s landmark decision making same-sex marriage legal nationwide, sources confirmed Friday that only 47,000 social justice milestones need to be reached before the U.S. achieves full equality. “This is a watershed moment for civil rights that finally brings the dream of living in an equitable society one tiny fraction of a step closer to reality,” said civil rights lawyer Helene Najjar, adding that the country could now turn its attention to closing the income gap, ending racial discrimination in law enforcement, and providing equal educational opportunities for all children, among tens of thousands of other issues. Read the rest of this entry »


Blowhard Theater: House Bill Would Force the Supreme Court to Enroll in ObamaCare

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Mark Hensch reports: A House Republican on Thursday proposed forcing the Supreme Court justices and their staff to enroll in ObamaCare.

Rep. Brian Babin (R-Texas) said that his SCOTUScare Act would make all nine justices and their employees join the national healthcare law’s exchanges.

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“As the Supreme Court continues to ignore the letter of the law, it’s important that these six individuals understand the full impact of their decisions on the American people. That’s why I introduced the SCOTUScare Act to require the Supreme Court and all of its employees to sign up for ObamaCare.”

— Rep. Brian Babin

“As the Supreme Court continues to ignore the letter of the law, it’s important that these six individuals understand the full impact of their decisions on the American people,” he said.

“That’s why I introduced the SCOTUScare Act to require the Supreme Court and all of its employees to sign up for ObamaCare,” Babin said.

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“They deserve an Olympic medal for the legal gymnastics.”

— Rep. Joe Pitts

Babin’s potential legislation would only let the federal government provide healthcare to the Supreme Court and itsnon-stop-panic-4 staff via ObamaCare exchanges.

Also see – Supreme Court Resigns Duties, Tortures English Language to Save Obamacare]

[More – Scalia: ‘Words No Longer Have Meaning if an Exchange That is Not Established by a State is ‘Established by the State’]

“By eliminating their exemption from ObamaCare, they will see firsthand what the American people are forced to live with,” he added.

His move follows the Supreme Court’s ruling Thursday morning that upheld the subsidies under ObamaCare that are provided by the government to offset the cost of buying insurance. Read the rest of this entry »


‘Previous Swarms of Immigrants Came over Fleeing Communism, Despising it, Cherishing Freedom and Openness’

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“America is not chiefly about a place. Our physical location is happenstance. It is not about blood or soil. It is not about race. America is an idea — and ideal.”

editor-commen-deskThough the original subject is a critique of Ann Coulter’s misguided attack on Nikki Haley’s Americanism, the argument within the argument — Ace’s passionate monologue about immigration history — stands on its own, as a solid defense of American ideals, and it’s worth capturing in its entirety.

Ace writes:

America is not chiefly about a place. Our physical location is happenstance. It is not about blood or soil. It is not about race. America is an idea — and ideal.

The reason America is in decline is because far too many born-and-raised Americans do not understand America…

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Ace continues:

…I oppose our current nearly-open-borders immigration scam for a lot of reasons, but a major reason is this: The current temperament of the world is anti-assimilationist and anti-American.

Previous waves of immigrants came in during periods where it was widely believed that assimilation was good, because America itself was good. Now foreign immigrants are being taught — as native-born Americans are being taught — that America is shameful and needs to be rejected, torn down, and even, as one anti-American, communist-sympathizing foreign critic said, “fundamentally transformed.”*

“Previous waves of immigrants came in during periods where it was widely believed that assimilation was good, because America itself was good.”

Immigrants are no longer being encouraged to give up their old hatreds — their old, unsettled wars — carried over from their former countries. Now they’re being taught that Tribal Identity is the only true identity, and that any adopted identity, such as Americanism, is a sham propagated by, most likely, Jews.

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“Immigrants are no longer being encouraged to give up their old hatreds — their old, unsettled wars — carried over from their former countries.”

Nor are they being encouraged to give up the political biases they suffered under in their home countries, chiefly socialism and authoritarianism. Strong Men on White Horses increasing the Chocolate Rations out of their undying love for the people.

Previous swarms of immigrants came over fleeing communism, despising it, cherishing freedom and openness and a government that kept out of their way.

[Order Daniel R. Ernst’s book “Tocqueville’s Nightmare: The Administrative State Emerges in America, 1900-1940” from Amazon.com]

Is that what the current immigrants want, in the main? The Democrat Party– long covertly agitating for socialism, now overtly doing so — sure seems to think the new immigrants will vote more socialist governments into power, because they’re sure salivating at those new fundamentally-transforming votes. Read the rest of this entry »


Supreme Court Guide: Six Big Decisions Remain

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The Supreme Court is scheduled to issue decisions Thursday, with six major cases remaining on the docket, and is expected to release opinions again on Friday and perhaps next week. Still to be decided are the health-law subsidies and gay-marriage cases, along with closely watched rulings involving congressional redistricting and power plant emissions. Here’s a list of the remaining cases….(read more)

WSJ


Secret Service Captures ‘Most-Wanted’ Hacker

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Susan Crabtree reports:  The Secret Service’s financial crimes branch just notched a major victory by nabbing the most-wanted computer hacker in the world, a Turkish man accused of running a global operation to hack automated teller machines.Secret-Service-Confidential

Ercan Findikoglu, 33, is set to be arraigned Wednesday in the U.S. Eastern District Court of New York. U.S. officials successfully extradited him from a German prison after years of negotiations and a legal battle over his release and transfer to U.S. authorities.

Findikoglu allegedly organized criminal operations using hacked debit cards, including one that stole $40 million in cash from ATMs in the span of just 10 hours in February 2013 in New York City and 23 other countries. He used hacked bank debit cards, removing their balance limits, to trigger ATMs to freely release the cash. Read the rest of this entry »


Pentagon Rushing to Open Space-War Center To Counter China, Russia

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The Pentagon and intelligence community are developing war plans and an operations center to fend off Chinese and Russian attacks on U.S.military and government satellites

The ops center, to be opened within six months, will receive data from satellites belonging to all government agencies, Deputy Defense Secretary Robert Work said Tuesday at the GEOINT symposium, an annual intelligence conference sponsored by the United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation.

“We want to be able to establish patterns of life from space. We want to know what the unusual looks like. If, all of a sudden, a lot of cars show up in a parking lot of an adversary’s missile plant, we want to know about it and we want to know about it quickly. If, suddenly, small boats are swarming in the Gulf or pirates are starting to congregate off Aden, we want to know.”

“[W]e are going to develop the tactics, techniques, procedures, rules of the road that would allow us … to fight the architecture and protect it while it’s under attack,” Work said. “The ugly reality that we must now all face is that if an adversary were able to take space away from us, our ability to project decisive power across transoceanic distances and overmatch adversaries in theaters once we get there … would be critically weakened.”

“If Russian soldiers are snapping pictures of themselves in war zones and posting them in social media sites, we want to know exactly where those pictures were taken.”

Work also said that Air Force Secretary Deborah James would soon be named the “principal space advisor” to Defense Secretary Ashton Carter, where she will to provide “independent advice separate from the consensus process of the department.”

Senior officials at the Pentagon and Office of the Director of National Intelligence are still finalizing details of the new center, which will back up the military’s Joint Space Operations Center at Vandenberg Air Force Base, California.

The center will help the military and government coordinate their preparations for and responses to any attack, said Lt. Cmdr. Courtney Hillson, a spokeswoman for Work. Read the rest of this entry »


Slighting Alexander Hamilton: A Democratic Party Tradition

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Stephen F. Knott Secretary of the Treasury Jacob Lew announced Thursday that Alexander Hamilton would be joined on the ten-dollar-bill by a woman to be named later, or perhaps relegated to appearing on some bills but not on others. Lew cited bureaucratic imperatives in choosing to ignore calls to remove the anti-51PA1F97HWL._SL250_paper money, bank-hating, Indian-killer Andrew Jackson from the twenty-dollar-bill, while adding that symbols on currency are a “way for us to honor our past and express our values.”

[Check out Stephen F. Knott’s book Alexander Hamilton and the Persistence of Myth” at Amazon.com]

By downgrading the founder of his own cabinet department, Lew, perhaps with the best of intentions, continued a tradition that has deep roots in his own political party. From the moment Hamilton was mortally wounded by Vice President Aaron Burr, the Democratic Party has done its best to relegate Hamilton to the ash heap of history. Jackson warmly welcomed Burr to his home as Hamilton’s killer escaped to the west, while Thomas Jefferson’s lieutenants scurried to contain the emotional impact of Hamilton’s death from damaging their party’s political prospects. Jefferson spent considerable time portraying Hamilton as an un-American, pro-British agent intent on importing monarchy and corruption.

[Read the full text here, at  TheHill]

Part of the Jeffersonian-Jacksonian contempt for Hamilton stemmed from the fact that Hamilton was an immigrant from the Caribbean, and thus his “Americanism” was constantly questioned. This sense that Hamilton was not “one of us” animates the writings of Jeffersonians and of Jefferson himself, who was 51WhWm6YhyL._SL250_appalled that Hamilton did not see eye to eye with him despite having been “received” by Americans and “given . . . bread” and having honors “heaped . . . on his head.”

[Also see the book Knott co-authored with Tony Williams – “Washington and Hamilton: The Alliance That Forged America at Amazon.com]

In the twentieth century, Franklin D. Roosevelt led the effort to elevate Jefferson into the American Pantheon and downgrade Hamilton’s status. Roosevelt saw himself as a Jefferson for the new century, battling forces similar to those that confronted the Sage of Monticello over a century earlier. Roosevelt led the drive for a Jefferson Memorial in Washington and selected the truncated quotes that adorn its walls. Hamilton’s “monument” in Washington consisted of an undersized statue on the back side of the Treasury building in Washington, and to make matters worse, that statue had been erected during the corrupt Harding administration by its privileged Secretary of the Treasury Andrew Mellon. Read the rest of this entry »


Champagne Corks Are Popping: MSNBC Staff Celebrates, Welcomes Return of Brian Williams

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Stephanie Smith reports: Brian Williams’ welcome to MSNBC might be frigid because staffers there haven’t forgotten a scathing report he arrogantly aired on his short-lived “Rock Center” about “corrosive” cable news blowhards at MSNBC, Fox News and CNN.

The two-part September 2012 report was so unpopular at MSNBC that, at a network holiday party shortly after, some over-served staffers even chanted “F - - k Brian Williams.”

“Rachel Maddow said on-air last week she was ‘really happy’ about Williams joining MSNBC and she believes in ‘second chances.’”

Williams is now a cable staffer after his demotion from NBC’s “Nightly News”anchor chair. But in 2012, as anchor and managing editor of his own show, “Rock Center,” he aired a two-parter on cable news’ “partisan ranting” from correspondent Ted Koppel. Williams introduced one segment by describing cable as, per Koppel, “corrosive and does nothing to help compromise in this country.”

“The rank and file at MSNBC were furious at Brian. They hated it so much, they were still mad about it months later at the office Christmas party…That’s where some cheered ‘F - - k Brian Williams’ — It was like a rallying cry.”

Williams stuffily wondered, “Has any of this splashed up against what we do?” Koppel responded: “What works about cable television is it’s cheap and it makes a ton of money. There is nothing cheaper than a bunch of talking heads. The people who hire those talking heads have discovered the more irascible, the more partisan, the nastier they are, the bigger an audience.” Read the rest of this entry »


Former NAACP Official James Wilburn: Rachel Dolezal ‘Has Very Self-Serving Motives’

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SPOKANE, Wash. (CBS Seattle) — The nation was both shocked and engrossed at the narrative of Rachel Dolezal, the former head of the NAACP Spokane chapter who was outed as a white woman pretending to be black after her parents went public with the information.

The varying degrees of Dolezal’s family history, work for the NAACP, and choice of identification started a whirlwind debate drawing criticism, confusion, and concern from both the public and those who personally know her.

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“People can identify with another race but it doesn’t change their racial heritage. You inherit your race but to be transgender or transsexual you do not inherit. It is not passed down from your parents.”

— former Spokane NAACP chapter President James Wilburn

For many, the saga prompted a discussion of how Dolezal’s “passing” deception opens the conversation on race in America and if her actions may have damaging consequences to race relations on some levels.

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“Many people felt that her story was so outrageous that it sensationalized the issue of race. Rachel’s  reality is not the true African-American experience. It took us off the real discussion and issues concerning racial discrimination and victimization.”

— Former Spokane NAACP chapter President JamesWilburn

“Many people felt that her story was so outrageous that it sensationalized the issue of race. Rachel’s  reality is not the true African-American experience. It took us off the real discussion and issues concerning racial discrimination and victimization. Black men are losing their lives left and right because of the real color of their skin that they can’t put on Rebecca-Carrolland take off at will,” former Spokane NAACP chapter President James
Wilburn tells CBS Seattle.

“What strikes me as the most perverse and pathological aspect of this story is Dolezal’s relationship to and ultimate identity-theft of her black adoptive siblings, or at least her perception of what their identities mean to them and the world…”

The concept of race being fluid and being something that can be “claimed” is worrisome to many. On the opposite side of the argument, some have defended Dolezal by comparing the choice of race to the choice of gender. This defense itself is problematic for many fighting for civil rights.

“…Not least of all because I could not, at any given point in my life, despite having grown up in a white family, with no black people within a 15-mile radius, suddenly choose to present myself as a white woman.”

— Rebecca Carroll, Director of Digital Media & Marketing at Scenarios USA

“People can identify with another race but it doesn’t change their racial heritage. You inherit your race but to be transgender or transsexual you do not inherit. It is not passed down from your parents,” Wilburn says.

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“I believe she needs professional help. Someone with the appropriate training in mental health would need to assess her and make the appropriate diagnosis so she can get the help she needs.”

— former Spokane NAACP chapter President James Wilburn

Rebecca Carroll, Director of Digital Media & Marketing at Scenarios USA, notes that Dolezal’s lies shed light on important issues regarding her family relations and transracial (when a child of one race is adopted by the family of another) adoptees. Read the rest of this entry »


Ernest Hemingway’s Cuba Home to Get $900,000 in U.S. Improvements

Ernest Hemingway's home near Havana, Cuba, is expected to soon receive an infusion of badly needed building supplies from the United States. An American foundation restoring the legendary writer's home in Cuba on Saturday, June 20, 2015, signed an agreement with the Cuban government to -- for the first time -- import construction materials directly from the United States to aid the preservation efforts. (CNN)

Ernest Hemingway’s home near Havana, Cuba, is expected to soon receive an infusion of badly needed building supplies from the United States. An American foundation restoring the legendary writer’s home in Cuba on Saturday, June 20, 2015, signed an agreement with the Cuban government to — for the first time — import construction materials directly from the United States to aid the preservation efforts. (CNN)

HAVANA (AP) — A U.S. foundation will ship nearly $900,000 in supplies to build a state-of-the-art facility to preserve Ernest Hemingway’s books, letters and photos – the first major export of construction materials to Cuba since President Barack Obama loosened the trade embargo on the island.

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The Boston-based Finca Vigia Foundation has been trying for years to help Cuba stop thousands of pages of documents from slowly disintegrating in the baking heat and dripping humidity of the sprawling homewhere the American writer lived and worked outside Havana from 1939 to 1960. Officials with Cuba’s National Cultural Heritage Council, which runs the Finca Vigia, have been enthusiastic about building a conservation laboratory but said they didn’t have the funds or supplies to do it.

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High-quality building materials are virtually impossible to find throughout much of Cuba, with homeowners forced to buy paint and water pumps stolen from government agencies and pay overseas travelers to bring items as large as sinks and kitchen cabinets in their checked luggage. In state-run hardware stores, a request for an item as mundane as a box of screws can provoke peals of laughter from salesclerks.

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The foundation’s proposal to send four shipping containers with as much as $862,000 of materials ranging from nuts and bolts to tools and roofing was approved by the U.S. government in May, after Obama created a series of exemptions to the embargo. The exceptions include permission for Americans to export supplies donated for the purpose of supporting the Cuban people in fields such as science, archaeology and historical preservation. Read the rest of this entry »


Tensions Build as Supreme Court Readies Blockbuster Rulings

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) –  Lawrence Hurley reports: Tensions are building inside and outside the white marble facade of the U.S. Supreme Court building as the nine justices prepare to issue major rulings on gay marriage and President Barack Obama’s healthcare law by the end of the month.

Of the 11 cases left to decide, the biggest are a challenge by gay couples to state laws banning same-sex marriage and a conservative challenge to subsidies provided under the Obamacare law to help low- and middle-income people buy health insurance that could lead to millions of people losing medical coverage.

Many legal experts predict the court will legalize gay marriage nationwide by finding that the U.S. Constitution’s guarantees of equal treatment under the law and due process prohibit states from banning same-sex nuptials.

The four liberal justices are expected to support same-sex marriage, and conservative Justice Anthony Kennedy, the expected swing vote, has a history of backing gay rights.

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In three key decisions since 1996, Kennedy has broadened the court’s view of equality for gays. The most recent was a 2013 case in which the court struck down a federal law denying benefits to married same-sex couples.

During oral arguments in the gay marriage case on April 28, Kennedy posed tough questions to lawyers from both sides but stressed the nobility and dignity of same-sex couples.

The healthcare decision is tougher to call. Chief Justice John Roberts, the swing vote when the court upheld Obamacare in 2012, said little during the March 4 oral argument to indicate how he will vote. Read the rest of this entry »


How Meddlesome Government is Making your Barbecue More Expensive and Less Tasty

The Houston Rodeo Barbecue Grand Champion Kerry Fellows with the pit he used from Pitts by JJ on the Eastex Freeway Saturday March 09, 2013.(Dave Rossman/ For the Chronicle)

The Houston Rodeo Barbecue Grand Champion Kerry Fellows with the pit he used from Pitts by JJ on the Eastex Freeway Saturday March 09, 2013.(Dave Rossman/ For the Chronicle)

Why Freddy’s Barbecue Couldn’t Really Exist

 writes: Between taking bites out of his political opponents, Frank Underwood, in the first two seasons of Netflix’s “House of Cards,” liked to visit a hole-in-the-wall barbecue joint called Freddy’s. Freddy’s BBQ is fictional and the 100-best-bbqshow used a shack in Baltimore for the set.

[Check out Johnny Fugitt’s book “The 100 Best Barbecue Restaurants in America” at Amazon.com]

DC tourists may be disappointed to learn they cannot sample Frank’s favorite ribs, but the most disappointing fact is not that Freddy’s is fictional. The sad truth is that Freddy’s could simply not exist in DC or in most major cities today.

While researching barbecue restaurants for my recently released book, The 100 Best Barbecue Restaurants in America I visited 365 barbecue restaurants across 48 states. Many owners shared with me that their businesses are hampered by local environmental, safety, and health regulations

Nathaniel E. Bell/Netflix, via Associated Press Kevin Spacey as the ruthless American politician Francis Underwood with Robin Wright as his wife, Claire. Nathaniel E. Bell/Netflix, via Associated Press

No Tasty Barbecue For You

In Houston, for example, Pizzitola’s Barbecue hangs its hat on being the only remaining Houston barbecue restaurant to cook with a traditional open pit. Pizzitola’s has been smoking barbecue this way for 50 years and was grandfathered into the local safety law banning their traditional method of smoking meat.

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“The White Swan came under federal regulations and were required to use electric cookers rather than continuing to smoke as they had for generations.”

As newer barbecue restaurants popped up just outside city limits, Houston lost tax revenue and residents had to leave the city for great barbecue—everyone lost.

[Read the full story here, at TheFederalist.com]freddysbbq

Houston lost tax revenue and residents had to leave the city for great barbecue—everyone lost.

“Today, cities require restaurants to invest tens, if not hundreds, of thousands of dollars in safety hoods and equipment.”

It might seem unfair for Pizzitola’s to have such an exemption and, thus, an advantage over their competition, but it’s actually a blessing and a curse. If Pizzitola’s were to make any major changes to the restaurant—like adding a patio or dining-room space—they would lose their grandfathered-in status.

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Pizzitola’s cannot adapt to compete with other restaurants because this risks losing the way they have been preparing barbecue for 50 years. Eventually this handicap will catch up to them.

No More Opportunities For the Little Guys

Although local regulations have done the most damage, federal regulations are also to blame. From the 1940s until 2009, The White Swan smoked traditional North Carolina pork over smoldering oak.

“It was a shame to see a historic, small town, family-run barbecue joint forced to serve cooked pork rather than traditional smoked barbecue simply to comply with federal food regulations.”

When they franchised in 2009 (and created a number of new jobs), The White Swan came under federal regulations and were required to use electric cookers rather than continuing to smoke as they had for generations.  It was a shame to see a historic, small town, family-run barbecue joint forced to serve cooked pork rather than traditional smoked barbecue simply to comply with federal food regulations. Read the rest of this entry »


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