Tags: Democrats | Seeking | Macaca | Moments | Deportation Orders | African Union | FEMA

Democrats Seeking ‘Macaca’ Moments

By    |   Sunday, 04 July 2010 08:07 PM

Insider Report

Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):
1. Democrats Seeking ‘Macaca’ Moments
2. More Than 550,000 Deportation Orders Were Unenforced
3. Economist: Poverty ‘Eliminated’ in US
4. African Union Wants Veto Power on Security Council
5. Border Patrol Cancels Arizona Conference Over Immigration Law
6. FEMA Workers Blow Disaster Funds on Birthday Gift Cards
7. We Heard: Joe Biden, Mike Huckabee, Wall Street Journal


1. Democrats Seeking ‘Macaca’ Moments

The Democratic National Committee has launched a website to recruit and display embarrassing video and audio of Republican candidates taken by ordinary citizens at public events.

The DNC is seeking to record “macaca” moments, according to Politico — a reference to an utterance by Sen. George Allen during his unsuccessful 2006 re-election campaign.

On Aug. 11, 2006, at a campaign stop in Breaks, Va., Allen twice used the word “macaca” in reference to S.R. Sidath, a 20-year-old of Indian ancestry who was a volunteer in the campaign of Allen’s Democratic opponent Jim Webb. The word is said to be a derogatory term for a North African. Allen’s mother grew up in Tunisia.

The flap resulting from the remark surely cost Allen votes in what turned out to be an extremely close race, and torpedoed Allen’s chances for the 2008 Republican presidential nomination.

Now the Democrats are evidently hoping to record similar slip-ups that campaigns and journalists can use in ads and news coverage, Politico reports.

The site was launched Tuesday with a mass e-mail from DNC Research Director Shauna Daly, with the subject line “The Accountability Project: Hold Republicans accountable.”

The e-mail notes that the “macaca” incident was “just one moment. Who knows that else is being said when the cameras aren’t running? We don’t — but we sure wish we did.

“That’s where the new ‘Accountability Project’ comes in. It’s a platform for citizens to document Republican candidates and their public statements at local events, as well as their campaign tactics. The Accountability Project allows you to submit videos, recordings and other items for publication online.”

The site also states: “If you hear of any upcoming public events for Republican candidates in your area, you can let everyone know, so that other concerned citizens can get out there.

“The project will enable folks to keep track of Republican candidates running for every office, up and down the ballot.”

Editor's Note:

2. More Than 550,000 Deportation Orders Were Unenforced

Over a recent 12-year period, the U.S. allowed 1.8 million aliens — many of them in the country illegally — to remain free pending their scheduled court hearing, and 736,000 of them never showed up in court.

The evasion of court dates by illegal aliens skyrocketed after 2001 — from 2002 to 2006, more than half of all aliens summoned to court simply disappeared.

“We all know how bad the federal government is at controlling our border, but we face the same problem in the system set up to handle immigration cases,” said Hans von Spakovsky, senior legal fellow at the Heritage Foundation’s Center for Legal and Judicial Studies.

Illegal aliens who are apprehended are ordered to appear before immigration courts that are part of the Justice Department’s Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR).

And the EOIR masks the problem of no-shows by manipulating the numbers, according to von Spakovsky, who cites former immigration judge Mark Metcalf’s recent testimony before a House subcommittee.

In 2005 and 2006, for example, EOIR told Congress that the “overall failure” rate of aliens to appear in court was 39 percent, when in fact it was 59 percent. EOIR came up with the lower figure by combining the appearance rates for aliens who were free with those who were in jail and had no choice but to appear in court.

The overwhelming majority of aliens who lost their cases “just walk away and disappear,” von Spakovsky writes under the headline “A Broken Immigration Court System.”

In 2008, 558,000 deportation orders remained unenforced, and of those ordered deported, 45,000 were illegal aliens from countries that the Department of Homeland Security says abet terrorism.

A major reason for the failure to carry through on deportation orders is the fact that immigration judges lack the ability to enforce their orders. That is left to Homeland Security, which has a “lackadaisical attitude” toward enforcement, according to von Spakovsky, who declares: “I can’t think of any word more appropriate to describe this situation than appalling.”

Editor's Note:

3. Economist: Poverty ‘Eliminated’ in US

Poverty as it has historically been defined no longer exists in the United States, according to an analysis of official statistics cited by noted economist Walter Williams.

The poverty line as defined by the Department of Health and Human Services last year was $22,000 for an urban family of four. Therefore 15 percent of Americans, about 40 million people, were classified as poor.

“But there’s something unique about those ‘poor’ people not seen anywhere else in the world,” Williams, an economics professor at George Mason University and a syndicated columnist, writes in the Jewish Daily Review.

He points to Robert Rector, a researcher at the Heritage Foundation who collected data from several government sources for a report titled “How Poor Are America’s Poor?” Among his findings:

  • 43 percent of all poor households own their own homes, the average home having three bedrooms, one-and-a-half baths, a garage and a porch or patio.
  • Two-thirds of poor households have more than two rooms per person, and the typical poor American has more living space than the average — not necessarily poor — individual living in Paris, London, Vienna, and other European cities.
  • 80 percent of poor households have air conditioning, nearly three-quarters own a car, and 31 percent own two or more cars.
  • 97 percent of poor households own a color television, more than half own two or more color TVs, and 62 percent have cable or satellite TV reception.
  • 89 percent own a microwave oven, and more than a third have an automatic dishwasher.

Williams adds that what is defined as poverty is misleading because official counts of poor households look only at cash income, and ignore such additional sources of support as the earned-income credit, Medicaid, food stamps, and other federal and local government subsidies.

Lower income households are “poor” only in relation to the rest of the population, he asserts.

“Material poverty can be measured relatively or absolutely,” Williams observes.

“An absolute measure would consist of some minimum quantity of goods and services deemed adequate for a baseline level of survival. Achieving that level means that poverty has been eliminated.”

Editor's Note:

4. African Union Wants Veto Power on Security Council

The African Union, a coalition of nations that includes Libya and Somalia, wants at least two permanent seats on the United Nations Security Council — with the same veto power that the United States has.

Currently, the council has five permanent members with veto power — the U.S., Russia, China, Britain, and France — plus 10 rotating seats held by member states that do not have veto power.

“Various models put forward since 2005 envisage enlarging the council’s non-permanent membership by another 10 or so countries,” CNS News reports.

“Some want additional permanent members too, but differences persist over whether or not they should have veto power.”

The so-called group of four — India, Japan, Germany, and Brazil — want permanent seats and have agreed to forgo veto power if they get them.

The 53-member African Union wants new permanent seats, at least two of them for African nations, but with veto power.

A coalition of other nations opposes calls for more permanent seats. Italy, for one, is against giving Germany a seat, South Korea opposes a seat for Japan, and Pakistan is reluctant to see a seat going to India.

Pakistan proposes that the council should also include seats reserved for Islamic and Arab states, specifically nations in the 56-member Organization of the Islamic Conference and the 22-member Arab League.

Britain supports giving permanent seats to the group of four, Russia and France support India’s bid, and China may support India but opposes a permanent seat for Japan.

The U.S. has “generally been wary about expanding the permanent membership,” according to CNS News. The Bush administration backed only Japan’s bid, but Secretary of State Hillary Clinton recently suggested that the Obama administration would also back India for a permanent seat.

Editor's Note:

5. Border Patrol Cancels Arizona Conference Over Immigration Law

It might come as no great surprise that the U.S. Department of Education would cancel a planned conference in Arizona following the state’s passage of a tough law targeting illegal immigration.

But the same can’t be said about a conference cancellation by the U.S. Border Patrol, the agency most directly affected by out-of-control illegal immigration.

The Border Patrol has more than 4,000 agents in Arizona, representing almost one-quarter of its force.

The agency had booked 40 rooms at a resort in Prescott, but canceled the conference over concern about the immigration law debate, Fox News reported.

The Arizona law allows local and state law enforcement to question people about their immigration status if there's reason to suspect they're in the country illegally. It also makes it a state crime to be in the United States illegally.

The Education Department nixed its North American Mobility program convention set for October in Tucson and moved the event to Minnesota.

Arizona Republican Rep. Trent Franks said in a statement to Fox that the cancellations show the Obama administration is using “federal agencies as political tools” to “harm our state’s economy for having the audacity to protect our citizens.

“These boycotts completely disprove the Obama administration’s disingenuous claims that they are in any way interested in strengthening border security.”

The Obama administration is planning to file suit against the Arizona law.

Editor's Note:

6. FEMA Workers Blow Disaster Funds on Birthday Gift Cards

Employees at the Federal Emergency Management Agency ran up more than $247,100 in “improper” expenses using FEMA credit cards — including $4,318 for two “Happy Birthday” gift cards.

The Department of Homeland Security Office of Inspector General examined purchases between October 2007 and June 2009 by FEMA employees who used “disaster-purchase” credit cards provided by the agency.

“Disaster purchase cards can be used only for disaster needs, using disaster funding, and are the preferred method to pay for disaster-related micro-purchases,” a report from the inspector general stated.

“With more effective internal controls, FEMA could have prevented more than $247,100 of improper purchases or detected them more quickly.”

Among the purchases deemed improper:

  • Two “Happy Birthday” gift cards, each for $2,159, were bought with funds designated for Hurricane Ike disaster relief operations in Texas.
  • 19 portable ceramic heaters were purchased for $1,098 with funds allocated for disaster relief efforts in Oklahoma. Homeland Security prohibits cardholders from buying personal convenience items such as heaters, according to the report.
  • 360 golf umbrellas costing $9,000 were bought with Hurricane Ike disaster relief funds. Similar umbrellas were available for half the price. At least 60 of the umbrellas were never used.
  • Cardholders spent more than $20,000 on software, printers, and other office supplies using funds designated for other purchases.
  • More than $2,800 was spent on purchases “that appeared to have been made by individuals other than the cardholders,” the report discloses.

Not surprisingly, the inspector general recommended that FEMA “increase oversight.”

Editor's Note:

7. We Heard . . .

THAT Vice President Joe Biden has been accused of comparing Republicans with Nazis by using the word “blitzkrieg” in a fundraising e-mail.

In the e-mail sent via the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, Biden warned that House Democrats “will be hit with a GOP blitzkrieg of vicious swift-boat-style attack ads.”

“Blitzkrieg” is a term that was used to describe Germany’s military offensives during World War II.

The Newsvine website, in an article headlined “Biden e-mail compares Republicans to Nazis,” said Biden “continued with his Nazi slur by referring to Democrats as the Allies who fought back the Nazi occupation of Europe.” Biden stated: “Our Democratic allies in the House need your help, and the president and I hope we can count on you to come to their defense.”

A spokesman for House Minority Leader John Boehner told the New York Daily News that “invoking the Nazis’ crimes against humanity in a political debate is simply inappropriate.”

THAT former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, who hosts a weekend television talk show on Fox News, will get a six-week tryout as a daily talk show host.

“The Huckabee Show” will run on some of the stations owned by the Fox Television Stations group, including stations in New York and Atlanta, TVNewsCheck reported.

Huckabee will continue to host his weekend show during the tryout, which begins on July 26.

THAT thieves prefer The New York Times to The Wall Street Journal.

For several months, a thief stole every copy of the Times from a rack near the door of a Starbucks coffee shop on the West Side of Manhattan, while the Journal, stacked below the Times on the rack, was never touched, the Westside Independent reported.

Starbucks finally moved the Times copies behind the counter. The Journal remains untouched.

Editor's Note:

Editor's Notes:

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Insider Report Headlines (Scroll down for complete stories):1. Democrats Seeking Macaca Moments2. More Than 550,000 Deportation Orders Were Unenforced3. Economist: Poverty Eliminated in US4. African Union Wants Veto Power on Security Council5. Border Patrol Cancels...
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Sunday, 04 July 2010 08:07 PM
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