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Friday, January 23, 2015

Huge Victory In War Against Men: Court Rules Guys Allowed To Pee Standing Up

This is one if those silly stories that I just had to cover!

From the AP: German court has ruled that a tenant who liked to pee standing up doesn't owe his landlord money for damages apparently caused by splashing, or missing his target altogether.

The Duesseldorf administrative court rejected the landlord's claim of 1,900 euros ($2,200) for alleged damage to the bathroom's marble floor, the dpa news agency reported Thursday.

While accepting expert testimony that urine had damaged the marble, Judge Stefan Hank ruled the man's method was within cultural norms, saying that "despite the increasing domestication of men in this context, urinating standing up is still common practice."

Hank said further that the tenant could have expected "regular conflicts" with those he lived with — but not that the bathroom's marble floor would be damaged.

Obama Fuming About Bibi Speech, "It Was Like A Spit In The Face...There WILL Be A Price"

We thought we’ve seen everything,” Israel Daily Ha'aretz quoted a senior US official as saying. “But Bibi managed to surprise even us."

According to the paper, "chickenshit" the word the White House called Netanyahu a few months ago, was nothing compared to the cusses used at the White House when they found out that Bibi was coming to DC to speak before Congress.
“There are things you simply don’t do. He spat in our face publicly and that’s no way to behave. Netanyahu ought to remember that President Obama has a year and a half left to his presidency, and that there will be a price,” he said.
Netanyahu's speech is supposed to cover the War On Terror and the Iranian nuclear program, and will be made just before the US/Iranian deadline to produce a "framework" of an agreement.
Just the week before the announcement of the invite, Obama called Bibi and delivered a "warning not to meddle in the battle he is waging against Congress over the sanctions legislation, the official said."
At Netanyahu’s behest, both Israeli Ambassador to Washington Ron Dermer and members of AIPAC, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, have been urging members of Congress in recent weeks to advance legislation to impose new sanctions on Iran. Netanyahu has also urged new sanctions on Iran in all his meetings with American legislators, including his meeting earlier this week with a delegation headed by Republican Senator John McCain.

The White House is well aware of the efforts Netanyahu and Dermer have been making to advance sanctions legislation, as senior Republican legislators have made no effort to hide them. One senior Republican senator, Lindsey Graham, who has visited Israel twice in recent weeks, has been particularly outspoken. In a joint statement issued at the start of a meeting between Graham and Netanyahu at the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem on December 29, Netanyahu declared on camera that new sanctions on Iran are needed. Graham then responded, also on camera, that Congress “will follow your lead” on the Iranian issue, and that new sanctions legislation would be brought to a vote soon.
On the other hand Bibi is well aware of what was reveled at Tuesday's Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing, that the US is no longer negotiating with Iran to end its nuclear program.  Should Iran develop nuclear weapons it would be an existential threat to Israel (and the United States also).
Netanyahu's office tried to soften the severity of the clash with the White House. The PM's office stressed that the invitation was made "in the name of the bipartisan leadership within the House of Representatives and the Senate," and added that "speaking before both houses of Congress will allow for the prime minster to thank President Obama, Congress, and the American people for supporting Israel."
But in the end, the Israeli Premier must have known what he Administration's reaction would be and must have weighed it before accepting the invite (which was being negotiated between the speaker and the PM for weeks). Perhaps he was willing to take the risk because both the GOP and Democrats support new sanctions. Or he realized there was no way to repair his relationship with this administration.

Hopefully Bibi has a strategy to deal with the repercussions form an Obama administration whose policy is already anti-Israel.

Marco Rubio (R-FL) Putting On His 2016 Race For POTUS Running Shoes

"He has told us to proceed as if he is running for president,"  said a senior Rubio adviser.

Jonathan Kyle (ABC News) is reporting that Marco Rubio "has begun taking concrete steps toward launching a presidential bid, asking his top advisors to prepare for a campaign, signing on a leading Republican fundraiser, and planning extensive travel to early-voting states in the coming weeks"

According to the report Rubio has told his staff to "proceed as if he is running."
Leading the effort to raise the $50 million or more he’ll need to run in the Republican primaries will be Anna Rogers, currently the finance director for American Crossroads, the conservative group started by Karl Rove that raised more than $200 million to help elect Republicans over the past two elections.

Rogers will begin working at Rubio’s political action committee on February 1 and would become the finance director of Rubio’s presidential campaign.

Rubio, 43, will gather on Friday and Saturday at the Delano Hotel in Miami with 300 supporters and major donors to his Reclaim America PAC to discuss his political future.
Aides expect Rubio will make a final decision in the comings weeks, but his schedule for the next month already looks more like the schedule of a presidential candidate than a senator.

ABC News has learned Rubio plans to skip all votes in the Senate next week and instead take a campaign fundraising swing through California with events in Beverly Hills, Newport Beach, Rancho Sante Fe and Costa Mesa. He also plans fundraising stops in Texas and Chicago.

Rubio has also scheduled a book tour that will take him to all the early primary states. A senior aide to the Florida senator tells ABC News Rubio’s book tour will include stops in Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Florida and Nevada. The first stop is tentatively scheduled for February 13 in Des Moines.
Rubio has had a meteoric rise in national politics. He was Speaker of the Florida Assembly and still in his thirties when he ran for Florida's U.S. Senate. At the time leadership of the State GOP had already decide that Governor Charlie Crist was their favorite. Rubio came from way back to defeat Crist in the state's GOP primary.

Per Florida law if he runs for POTUS, Rubio cannot also run to be reselected to his senate seat a decision he told Hugh Hewitt which with he would be very comfortable:
You know, I think by and large, when you choose to do something as big as that, you’ve really got to be focused on that and not have an exit strategy.
At a breakfast briefing earlier this week Rubio indicated that should he run, foreign policy and national security would be his priority:
“The next president of the United States needs to be someone who has a clear view of what is happening in the world — a clear strategic vision of America’s role in it, and a clear tactical plan of how to engage America in global affairs,” Rubio, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, told a room full of reporters at the St. Regis Hotel in downtown Washington. “And I think for governors, that’s going to be a challenge — at least initially — because they don’t deal with foreign policy on a daily basis.”

Rubio, who has supported an aggressive U.S. role in the world, added: “I think that the predominant obligation for the federal government is to provide for our national security and to conduct foreign policy for the United States. And I feel very comfortable debating that with any of the potential candidates or anyone else who might want to be president.”
Rubio's involvement with the gang of eight immigration bill may end up hurting him in any primary campaign. He helped to craft the bill which upset those who were, then pulled his support. His initial support upset Republicans who were against amnesty and those who wanted the us border secured.  After he withdrew his support because of its feckless border security provisions he upset those who wanted a comprehensive bill at all costs.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Breaking: Saudi State TV Confirms King Abdullah Dead at 91

Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz has died in hospital, state TV says.

Before the announcement, Saudi television cut to Koranic verses early on Friday, which often signifies the death of a senior royal.

The Royal Court announced in a statement read on official Saudi TV. Prince Salman was named the new the King of Saudi Arabia and Prince Muqrin as Crown Prince. King Salman has called on the family's Allegiance Council to pay allegiance to Muqrin as his crown prince and heir, the statement said.

Salman however,is  believed to be ill, there  is speculation he is suffering from dementia or Parkinson’s disease, something the Saudis deny.  The new king is a chipper 79, so he probably is not that far behind his brother.

In recent months Salman has begun to play a more active role and has represented the country at important meetings abroad – including a high-octane Gulf summit. He also serves as deputy prime minister and defense minister.

King Abdullah, who is said to be aged about 90, had been in hospital for several weeks suffering from a lung infection. Apparently Pneumonia was his cause of death.

Per the WSJ
Born before his father founded the modern Saudi state in 1932, King Abdullah focused his final years on internal and external security threats to a nation he had seen grow into an oil giant and center of political and religious power in the region.

His death removes a bulwark against the democratic and Islamist movements that have roiled the rest of the Arab world since the uprisings of 2011, though his immediate successors are seen as just as conservative as he was, or more.

In one of his final statements, an address before the consultative Shoura Council read by his half-brother and heir to the throne earlier this month, Abdullah emphasized that his country was “blessed with security and stability” in the heart of a volatile region.
There is now word whether Secretary of State Kerry will bring James Taylor to sing at the Funeral.

Hypocritical Pelosi Rips Boehner For Bibi Invite (But She Negotiated W/Syria's Assad Over Bush Objections)

Calling it "out of order" House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) blasted Speaker John Boehner's (R-OH) invitation to Israeli Premier Netanyahu to address a joint session of Congress in March. But in April 2007 then Speaker Pelosi traveled to Syria to visit to negotiate with President Bashar al-Assad without the consent of, and despite the objections of the Bush White House.

According to a report in Roll Call Pelosi's objection was primarily based on the fact that neither the White House or the House Democratic Party leadership was consulted.
It’s out of order in terms of the protocol,” Pelosi said of the invite. Boehner apparently did not consult with the White House on the joint session, nor did he make Democratic leadership aware of the Netanyahu invite.

Pelosi said her understanding was that the joint session — which was originally slated for Feb. 11 but has since been moved to March 3 — would take place within two weeks of the Israeli elections on March 17. “I don’t think that’s appropriate for any country,” the California Democrat said.

Pelosi noted that, when she was speaker, she invited a number of foreign leaders at the time to speak before a joint session, including King Abdullah of Jordan, French President Nicholas Sarkozy, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Mexican President Felipe Calderon. All of those speakers, she said, were invited in consultation with congressional Republicans and the White House.
Pelosi's visitor list may have been made in consultation with the White House, but in April 2007 she went to Syria for a meeting with Despot/President Bashar al-Assad ignoring the very public objections of the Bush Administration. Even worse she attempted to negotiate for the U.S. without administration approval and she attempted to negotiate for Israel without the knowledge of then Prime Minister Ehud Olmert.

At the time of her visit, liberal mouthpiece  Washington Post  blasted her on their editorial page.
After a meeting with Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad in Damascus, Ms. Pelosi announced that she had delivered a message from Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert that "Israel was ready to engage in peace talks" with Syria. What's more, she added, Mr. Assad was ready to "resume the peace process" as well. Having announced this seeming diplomatic breakthrough, Ms. Pelosi suggested that her Kissingerian shuttle diplomacy was just getting started. "We expressed our interest in using our good offices in promoting peace between Israel and Syria," she said.

Only one problem: The Israeli prime minister entrusted Ms. Pelosi with no such message. "What was communicated to the U.S. House Speaker does not contain any change in the policies of Israel," said a statement quickly issued by the prime minister's office. In fact, Mr. Olmert told Ms. Pelosi that "a number of Senate and House members who recently visited Damascus received the impression that despite the declarations of Bashar Assad, there is no change in the position of his country regarding a possible peace process with Israel." In other words, Ms. Pelosi not only misrepresented Israel's position but was virtually alone in failing to discern that Mr. Assad's words were mere propaganda.
So which is worse, inviting the leader of a close ally to speak in front of Congress without consulting the White House, or negotiating with a thug, a sponsor of terrorism on behalf of one's own country and another, without the approval or consultation of either nation? Everyone knows the correct answer except for the hypocritical Pelosi.