Gun owner catches two men responsible for a string of fires

From St. Clair County:

The two men charged Friday in a string of six barn and shed arson fires are a "Beavis and Butt-head duo" who just got a kick out of setting blazes, police say.
"They wanted to go out there and start fires and stir up stuff," said Capt. Steve Johnson of the St. Clair County sheriff's office. "It doesn't necessarily make sense why they would do this."
Bryan Boide, 23, of Belleville, and Nicholas Haegele, 19, of O'Fallon, were each charged with six counts of arson. In all, police said they started seven fires for "no apparent reason." They targeted sheds and barns.
Police in St. Clair County have been investigating a string of suspicious fires in the past month. Officers from area departments spent time patrolling backroads in unmarked police cars, during the times of day that the arsonists had struck. They stopped cars to try to obtain information.
The big break came just after midnight Wednesday. That's when Boide and Haegele were nabbed by a property owner on Bay Point Drive who got suspicious when he saw them walking around with flashlights on his property. The man grabbed his shotgun, held the pair at gunpoint and walked them to a neighbor's home. He had the neighbor call police. . . .
Thanks to Allen Boyer for this link. 


Democrats moving to disenfranchise voters who vote against Obama in Democratic primaries

The Weekly Standard has this:
After a poll released this week showed President Barack Obama only beating his Democratic primary opponent John Wolfe Jr. by seven points, 45 percent to 38 percent, in Arkansas's Fourth Congressional District, state Democrats moved to practically disenfranchise Arkansas voters. "[D]elegates Wolfe might claim won't be recognized at the national convention," national party officials are telling state Democrats. Wolfe is being accused of not following the party rules.“They want a coronation,” Wolfe tells THE WEEKLY STANDARD. “They’re conflating [Obama] with the party. Are we supposed to call him ‘Dear Leader’? Is this some kind of North Korea thing?” . . .


Obama again lectures EU to ease up on austerity

Well our stimulus has worked so well.  Obama is aligning himself with the new French Socialist president on increased spending.  Notice the one country that has controlled spending the most has been doing the best.  From Reuters:

U.S. President Barack Obama will press European leaders to ease up on fiscal austerity and focus on economic growth at a summit on Saturday that will discuss ways to stem turmoil in the euro zone and head off the risk of global contagion.
At the wooded Camp David retreat in Maryland's Catoctin Mountains, Obama and leaders from other large economic powers will try to forge a common approach to tackling a crisis that threatens the future of Europe's 17-nation single currency.
Though no major policy decisions are expected from the Group of Eight summit, leaders hope they can bridge enough of their differences to soothe rattled financial markets after worries about the risk of a Greek exit from the euro zone sent European stock prices to their lowest level since December.
"Hopefully we'll get some stuff done," Obama told Italian Prime Minister Mario Monti as he and other summit participants arrived for Friday evening dinner at a lodge at the secluded presidential retreat.
Obama earlier in the day aligned himself with Monti and new French President Francois Hollande by urging a solution to the euro zone crisis that combines fiscal belt-tightening measures with a "strong growth agenda."
On the other side of the debate is German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who has pushed fiscal austerity as a means of bringing down huge debt levels that are burdening European economies. . . .
Paul Krugman thinks that those who oppose increased spending are trying to destroy the country.  Here is Krugman making the case for more government spending.

Krugman: "We have actually had a massive unethical human experiment in austerity doctrine.  Here we have had this view that cutting government spending is going to be good for the economy even when the economy is deeply depressed and we have put it into effect in large parts of Europe and we have put it into effect to a significant effect in the US . . . . And the results have been exactly what someone like me said that they would be, which is there has been a very depressing effect on the economy.  Where is the evidence that this other view is at all right?
Paul Krugman on Republicans in Congress: "Sometimes you do wonder if these guys are moles, Manchurian candidates for I don't know who -- if their real job is to bring down America because they're really are doing the best they can."

It is interesting to note that Brazil's stimulus policies haven't been working out too well also.  From the Financial Times:

Brazil’s economic output shrank in March, defying government stimulus measures and surprising economists who had predicted that Latin America’s biggest economy would begin to recover from a prolonged slowdown.
The 0.35 per cent contraction, compared with February, makes Brazil’s growth the second slowest in Latin America in real terms, after Argentina. The news comes as Asia’s major emerging market economies, China and India, are also decelerating.
“The weak … conditions are likely to encourage the authorities to add more fiscal and monetary stimulus to the economy and to remain activist on the foreign exchange front,” said Alberto Ramos of Goldman Sachs in a client note. . . .

UPDATE: The WSJ's Political Diary has this on Monday, May 21, 2012:

Washington's $15.7 trillion of debt is now officially larger than the entire U.S. economy. But Team Obama has convinced much of the media that skyrocketing debt is only a problem if politicians try to restrain it.
Witness the Beltway media scorn heaped on Speaker of the House John Boehner. Last week Mr. Boehner said that before allowing the debt to grow beyond its current statutory limit of $16.4 trillion, he'll demand the same condition he attached to last year's increase: cuts in planned future spending equal to the amount of the increase.
George Stephanopoulos, interviewing Mr. Boehner yesterday on ABC, largely rejected the premise that spending cuts are necessary. He asked if tying cuts to the debt limit increase would "actually create more uncertainty over the next several months."
"No, George, the issue is the debt," said Mr. Boehner. "You know, people aren't clamoring to invest in Greece today. And if we don't begin to deal with our debt and our deficit" in an "honest and serious way, we're not going to have many options."
Replied Mr. Stephanopoulos, "Well, as you know, a lot of people say that what makes us like Greece is putting the question of whether or not we're going to pay our bills—making that a political question." . . .

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Add Justice Breyer to the likes of Mayor Daley, David Brock, Rosie O'Donnell on guns?

As Justice Breyer wrote in the McDonald case:

I can find nothing in the Second Amendment’s text, history, or underlying rationale that could warrant characterizing it as “fundamental” insofar as it seeks to protect the keeping and bearing of arms for private self-defense purposes. . . .
Such concerns cause self-defense advocates to write:
That Breyer demands armed police protection provided at taxpayer expense illustrates no small amount of elitist hypocrisy considering his dissent in the landmark District of Columbia v. Heller case, in which the Supreme Court majority held the Second Amendment protects the right of individuals in federal enclaves to possess a firearm in the home for traditionally lawful purposes, including self-defense. . . .

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Seriously, this is considered new information?: ABC News: "Cops, Witnesses Back Up George Zimmerman's Version of Trayvon Martin Shooting"

As far as I can tell, everything in this ABC News discussion was available in the police reports that I wrote about early on in this case.  The ABC News video is incredibly biased against Zimmerman, though the headline and as much of the story as I was willing to read through fits this: "Cops, Witnesses Back Up George Zimmerman's Version of Trayvon Martin Shooting."


Some signs of the times?

Man who fathered 30 kids says he needs a break—on child support

Why do these 11 women keep having kids with this guy if they already know that he has so many kids that he can't provide more than $1.49 a month to many of them?

Postal employee on workers’ comp caught running Boston Marathon

A U.S. District Court in Florida convicted a former Florida postal worker of health care fraud after she was caught participating in more than 80 long-distance races, including the Boston Marathon, all while taking workers' compensation for a back injury.
Jacquelyn V. Myers . . . faces up to 15 years in prison. . . .
In May 2009, Myers claimed to have a lower back injury that prevented her from delivering the mail as part of her job. She was relieved of her mail carrying responsibilities and put on "light duty."
However, photos and videos emerged showing Myers participating in the races, including a triathlon. And in what would ordinarily be considered good news, her race times actually improved after she made her initial injury claim. . . .

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John Lovitz on Hannity

"What I find is he's hypocritical with saying, you know, 'the 1% don't get us,' and he's a multi-millionaire now. 'You know, they're not paying their fair share of taxes, now I'm going over to George Clooney's house to get money from millionaires and billionaires,' and he collected $15 million." "Instead of making people victims of people who are successful, we should be telling people look you are having a hard time I feel bad for you, let's look at how you can succeed, let's give you the tools to succeed. Instead of turning everybody into victims. A victim mentality is what he is selling."

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Go drink that coffee

men who drank at least six cups of coffee a day had a 10 percent lower chance of dying during the 14-year study period than those who drank none. For women, the risk was 15 percent lower, according to Freedman’s work, published in the latest issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. . . .


More on Elizabeth Warren

Cherokee Genealogist debunks Elizabeth Warren's claim to be a Cherokee. Listen to this at WRKO. There is also more evidence of her using it for personal advantage. From ABC News:
A 1997 piece from the Fordham Law Review lists Massachusetts Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren as the “first woman of color” hired by Harvard Law School, according to reports. The article, which was unearthed by Politico, was titled ”Intersectionality and positionality: Situating women of color in the affirmative action dialogue.” The author, Laura Padilla, who now serves as the Associate Dean of California Western Law School in San Diego, CA., reportedly based her description on a phone conversation with then Harvard Law spokesman, Mike Chmura. . . .
In addition, there is the claim that Elizabeth Warren plagiarized her contributions to a book.

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New piece at Fox News: What Zimmerman, Martin medical reports tell us and the media didn't

UPDATE: Photos from George Zimmerman investigation

My new Fox News piece starts this way:
The new medical reports on the George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin case tell us a lot. And it is not just for what they find, but also what they don’t find.
First, the reports provide striking evidence that Zimmerman did not start the fight with Martin, and that Zimmerman shot Martin in self-defense. Martin’s injuries were two-fold: broken skin on his knuckles and the fatal gunshot wound.
Zimmerman’s injuries involved: a fractured nose, a pair of black eyes, two lacerations to the back of his head and a minor back injury.
It takes considerable force to break the skin on multiple knuckles. The large range of injuries on Zimmerman indicates that the Martin’s attack was prolonged. . . . .

The South Florida Criminal Lawyers' Blog has this very useful discussion (the whole post is definitely worth reading).  Note also that this post is from April 13, 2012 and my guess that the new evidence would 

. . . the "provocation" theory is shaky, at best. F.S. 776.041 provides that the "Stand Your Ground" law is not available to a person who: "Initially provokes the use of force against himself or herself." . . .. . . First, even if Zimmerman "provoked" the incident, he may still justifiably use deadly force, if: "Such force is so great that the person reasonably believes that he or she is in imminent danger of death or great bodily harm and that he or she has exhausted every reasonable means to escape such danger other than the use of force which is likely to cause death or great bodily harm to the assailant." According to Zimmerman and at least one witness, Trayvon Martin was on top of Zimmerman. What is more, Zimmerman claims that Martin bashed his head on the concrete, which caused Zimmerman to fear death or great bodily harm. If the State cannot contradict this version of events, Zimmerman likely can establish that he "exhausted every reasonable means to escape," (he claims he was pinned to the ground), and he reasonably feared Martin's use of force would "likely cause death or great bodily harm."
Second, it is far from clear that following Trayvon Martin while speaking with the police constitutes "provocation." The second exception to "provocation" states that if the provocateur "In good faith...withdraws from physical contact" and communicates his desire to "withdraw from physical contact," but the other party "continues or resumes the use of force," then the provocateur may rely on the "Stand Your Ground" law. What is important to note, is that F.S. 776.041(2)(b) presumes that the "provocation" includes "physical contact." However, based on the evidence that is public thus far, there is no evidence that Zimmerman initiated "physical contact." What is more, there is no precedent in Florida law indicating that conduct short of "physical contact" provides justification for the use of force, or amounts to "provocation."
Make no mistake: George Zimmerman has a real chance of avoiding a jury. All he has to do is convince a judge, by a preponderance of the evidence, that he acted in justifiable self-defense.

The medical reports strengthen the argument that Zimmerman did not initiate physical contact and Zimmerman's yelling for help surely falls under the heading that he "communicates his desire to 'withdraw from physical contact.'" See also this post entitled "Probable Cause Affidavit in George Zimmerman Case Woefully Inadequate" on the same blog.

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Newest piece at National Review Online: Obama and GM Cook the Books

My newest piece at National Review starts this way:

Would you hire President Obama as your financial adviser? Three years ago his administration invested more than $100 billion in taxpayer money to bail out General Motors. On Tuesday, the entire company, not just what the government owns, was worth less than $34 billion. By anyone’s definition, that investment is a glaring failure. Yet over the last few days the Obama campaign, in a $25 million marketing blitz, has flooded the airwaves with ads in battleground states, claiming the bailout should be counted a rousing success.
Unfortunately, assertions that “all loans have been repaid to the federal government,” that the bailout “saved more than one million American jobs,” that “U.S. automakers are hiring hundreds of thousands of new workers,” that GM is again the “number-one automaker” — all are based on creative accounting. . . .

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Peter Ferrara reviews "Debacle"

Peter Ferrara's discussion of our new book at the American Spectator starts this way:
Obama has already succeeded in fundamentally transforming America, from a prosperous nation that draws people the world over, voting with their feet, to a rapidly declining former superpower on the fast track to a third-world status similar to Argentina or Venezuela. That is effectively what is argued by the new book Debacle: Obama's War on Jobs and Growth and What We Can Do Now to Regain our Future, by leading taxpayer activist Grover Norquist and economist John Lott. . . .



Zimmerman's nose was broken, Martin's knuckles had broken skin

The news is as important for what it says as what it doesn't say.  Martin had broken skin on his knuckles, but note that there was no mention about Zimmerman having similar bruises on his knuckles. What does that tell you?  It means that Martin was hitting Zimmerman sufficiently hard and often to break the skin on his knuckles, but that Zimmerman didn't hit Martin back.  That means Zimmerman didn't throw the first punch.  That means that it is that much harder to believe that Zimmerman started the fight.  And that is extremely important.  It looks as if Zimmerman stopped following Martin when it was suggested, but even if he didn't, even if he asked Martin what he was doing, that doesn't justify Martin attacking him. From ABC News
A medical report compiled by the family physician of accused Trayvon Martin murderer George Zimmerman and obtained exclusively by ABC News found that Zimmerman was diagnosed with a "closed fracture" of his nose, a pair of black eyes, two lacerations to the back of his head and a minor back injury the day after he fatally shot Martin during an alleged altercation. . . .
WFTV in Florida reports on Martin's injuries, but again it is what injuries aren't reported that is also important.
WFTV has learned that the medical examiner found two injuries on Martin’s body: The fatal gunshot wound and broken skin on his knuckles.
When you compare Trayvon’s non-fatal injury with Zimmerman's bloody head wounds, the autopsy evidence is better for the defense, Sheaffer said. . . .
So despite already facing being overcharged, the Obama administration continues to go after Zimmerman:

WFTV legal analyst Bill Sheaffer said federal prosecutors would have to prove the hate crime to charge Zimmerman, though.
“What the government would have to prove is that Mr. Zimmerman acted out of hatred toward African-Americans. That's why he came into contact with him. That's why he shot and killed him," Sheaffer said.
Sheaffer said a federal hate crime murder charge could bring more serious consequences than the second-degree murder charge Zimmerman faces now.
“Mr. Zimmerman could be punished by up to life in prison or even the death penalty,” said Sheaffer. . . .
Hate crime?  Against a person who donated his time to mentor black kids?  Against someone who is part black himself?  Against a guy who tried to help his neighbors, some of whom are black, by volunteering to be the community watch leader.

Enough already!  Leave the guy alone!


Bizarre zero tolerance policy gets Detroit grounds keeper fired

A grounds keeper and his foreman were both fired.  Chevilott wanted to give the gun to the police, but they didn't arrive so he had to give it to the police after he was done with work.  From Fox News:

A Detroit groundskeeper, who turned in a loaded handgun he found hidden in weeds while working, was fired by the Wayne County Department of Public Services, MyFoxDetroit.com reports.
John Chevilott, who is just two years shy of retirement, found the loaded snub-nosed revolver on May 3 when he and his crew were mowing a lawn in Wayne County. Chevilott secured the gun, waiting for police to drive by so he could hand it over to them. . . .
According to a Wayne County spokeswoman and the rules, employees aren't allowed to possess a weapon on work property.
Chevilott says he didn't bring a weapon to work. He found it on the job. . . .

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While defending Obama's tax policies, Will Smith is stunned to learn about what Frances' new president plans to do to tax rates

See Will Smith's reaction at 1:20 into the clip.

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Germany's economy grew at a 2 percent rate in the

So much for Krugman's predictions about Germany and their austerity policy. From the Financial Times:
The German economy grew five times faster than expected in the first quarter of the year, jumping 0.5 per cent. . . . The year on year increase was 1.7 per cent, beating expectations of a 0.8 per cent jump, and the German statistics office said growth was supported by an increase in net trade as exports to outside the eurozone gained. But this is still more a tale of divergence than cheer as French GDP came in flat and the Netherlands GDP fell 0.2 per cent as the country remained in technical recession. And while German’s performance could be the basis for a beat (with Austria providing some more support after it found 0.2 per cent growth in the first quarter), eurozone GDP is predicted to fall 0.2 per cent with the data due later this morning. . . .

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Yet more bogus information on Wikipedia

From The Atlantic:
A woman opens an old steamer trunk and discovers tantalizing clues that a long-dead relative may actually have been a serial killer, stalking the streets of New York in the closing years of the nineteenth century. A beer enthusiast is presented by his neighbor with the original recipe for Brown's Ale, salvaged decades before from the wreckage of the old brewery--the very building where the Star-Spangled Banner was sewn in 1813. A student buys a sandwich called the Last American Pirate and unearths the long-forgotten tale of Edward Owens, who terrorized the Chesapeake Bay in the 1870s. These stories have two things in common. They are all tailor-made for viral success on the internet. And they are all lies. Each tale was carefully fabricated by undergraduates at George Mason University who were enrolled in T. Mills Kelly's course, Lying About the Past. Their escapades not only went unpunished, they were actually encouraged by their professor. . . .


So if private businesses are too big to manage what does that say about government?

David Boaz has a thoughtful post here.


More adventures of the most open and transparent administration in history: Confiscating donor cell phones before fundraising dinner

Even former Hillary Clinton staffers are calling this policy "absurd." It just goes to show you how hard it is to campaign when you are constantly saying something in public that tries to hide how incredibly leftwing a person really is. Reason.com has this:
Pool reporter David Nakamura of the Washington Post reported that at a $35,800 a head fundraiser at the home of Blackstone COO Hamilton “Tony” James in New York City Monday night, the 60 attendees were asked to place their phones in plastic bags by the door. An Obama aide called the move it "standard operating procedure," but veterans of a range of other campaigns said they'd never heard of the practice, which is common in secure White House spaces where there are concerns of espionage, but unknown in contexts in which only political secrets are discussed. The new prevalence of sophisticated audio and recording capacities in mobile devices owned by virtually anyone wealthy enough to write a check to a political campaign, however, has put a new pressure on campaigns concerned with staying on a public message. Former aides to presidential candidates Hillary Clinton, Rick Perry, and Jon Huntsman all expressed surprise at the practice, and they've never seen an instance where a campaign asked donors to surrender their cell phones. The former Clinton aide called the Obama policy "absurd," suggesting that the Obama policy is almost certainly a response to the infamous 2008 fundraiser where Obama described voters in rural Pennsylvania as "bitter."

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Vet loses guns to DC police as he travels through nation's capitol

A wounded Vet gets thrown in jail after stopping at Walter Reed for medical treatment. The legal costs and time in jail are something you don't want to put anyone through. Even after the charges were dropped, DC refused to return his guns. From The Washington Times:
Returning to South Carolina on June 30, 2010, Mr. Kim stopped at Walter Reed for a doctor’s appointment. Afterwards, he got lost while driving his two-door Honda Civic in downtown D.C. in the evening. He was pulled over by police. The officer said that his driver’s license had been suspended. He was unaware of this. He found out the next morning that it was wrongly suspended due to a clerical error in which North Carolina incorrectly reported to South Carolina that he didn't pay a speeding ticket. Mr. Kim called and had this cleared up the next morning. However, because of the suspended license, the D.C. police officer called for backup, and told Mr. Kim he would have to go to the police station. Then the cops asked Mr. Kim if they could search his vehicle. The lieutenant agreed because his guns were properly locked in a case in the trunk, in compliance with federal firearm transport laws. Mr. Kim was handcuffed and told to sit on the curb during the search. He recalled that the officers inspected the collection and “were upset about the fact that I had the AR-15, which D.C. considers to be an ‘assault weapon.’” The model of rifle is illegal in the District, but not in his home state. The officers then told Mr. Kim he was in violation for the carrying firearms outside the home (in his vehicle) in the District. The nation’s capital does not acknowledge the right to bear arms, so there are no carry rights. “I told them I had been under the impression that as long as the guns were locked in the back, with the ammunition separate, that I was allowed to transport them,” Mr. Kim told me in an interview. “They said, ‘That may be true, however, since you stopped at Walter Reed, that make you in violation of the registration laws.” It is illegal to possess a firearm anywhere in D.C. other than the home. Mr. Kim’s attorney, Richard Gardiner, said his client was lawfully transporting the firearms, and that would have been his defense if the matter went to trial. “The mistake he made was agreeing to a search of his vehicle,” the attorney explained in an interview. “If the police ask for consent to search, the answer is ‘no.’ If they ask, ‘why not?’ The answer is, ‘no.’” . . .

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Was Rev. Wright offered a bribe by Democrats in 2008 to be quite until after the election?

ED MORRISSEY has an interesting discussion here.  The incident raises questions about Obama's honesty.

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So how slow is the recovery?: Ask Jerry Brown in California

Just in January, California was predicting that the deficit would be $9 billion.  Now at the beginning of May, just four months later, the estimated deficit has increased by about 74 percent.  The reason according to Bloomberg?
“Tax receipts are coming lower than expected and the federal government and the courts have blocked us from making billions of necessary budget reductions. The result is that we are now facing a $16 billion deficit.” . . .
It would be nice to have a breakdown by reason.  Finally, it is amazing that Democrats think that they can impose taxes and not have it impact people's behavior.

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Liberals say that it has been OK to classify yourselves as a minority if you have "one-drop" of minority blood

I guess that I missed the memo that it was OK to classify oneself as a minority with "one-drop" of minority blood.  I really get the impression that this is just trying to cover liberal's tracks on Elizabeth Warren and give her cover.  It seems that if I had done that (and I am 1/32nd American Indian), there were be few claiming that was the right rule to use.  Here is a piece that refers to the "one-drop" rule.  Had I heard of the "one-drop" rule?  Sure, but I thought that this rule was surely objectionable to liberals.  Apparently, I was completely wrong.

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NJ judge says that even blind person has the right to own guns

So apparently you don't lose your rights when you are blind.  From CBS 2 News in New York:

. . .  That episode began a legal battle that wound up in Morris County Superior Court. Prosecutors argued Hopler shouldn’t have guns because he’s a danger. However, a judge ruled otherwise, saying his disability shouldn’t take away his constitutional right to bear arms.
Robert Trautman is Hopler’s attorney, and said police singled out his client.
“The state argued that Steve drinks too much.” Trautman said. “It’s just simply that the police didn’t want Steve Hopler to own firearms because he’s blind and they felt that was improper.” . . .

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