News that doesn't receive the necessary attention.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

2500 rally for Trump in Hilton Head, South Carolina, Wed., Dec. 30, 2015

12/30/15, "Update: Trump blasts Hillary Clinton, Jeb Bush at Hilton Head rally," Island Packet, Zach Murdock

"More than 2,500 people crammed shoulder-to-shoulder into the Westin Hilton Head Island Resort and Spa's grand ballroom -- a record crowd for the space, according to hotel officials -- to hear the leading Republican presidential candidate."...

Image captions, 12/30/15: 
#1, "The line to get in to see Donald Trump at his Dec. 30 Hilton Head Island rally nearly wraps around The Westin Hilton Head Resort and Spa. Delayna Earley," 21 of 37

#2, "Thousands of people waited in line to get in to see Donald Trump speak at the Westin Hilton Head Island Resort and Spa on Wednesday morning. Delayna Earley" 15 of 37 

#3, "Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump enters the room for his campaign rally Dec. 30 at The Westin Hilton Head Resort and Spa. Josh Mitelman," 3 of 37

#4, "Donald J. Trump stepped up to the stage during a campaign stop in Hilton Head, S.C., on Wednesday. Credit Stephen B. Morton/Associated Press," via NY Times, "Donald Trump Renews Attacks on Bill Clinton," First Draft, Maggie Haberman


12/30/15, "Trump Rally Draws Record Crowd in Hilton Head,", Martin Staunton, Hilton Head

"It’s the day some Donald Trump supporters in the Lowcountry have been waiting for: the chance to see the Republican front-runner in-person. Donald Trump did not disappoint the vast majority of those in attendance. There was a standing room only crowd inside the Grand Ballroom of the Westin Hilton Head Island Resort and Spa....

Supporters on hand say Trump has a “tell it like it is” approach that is long overdue among politicians. Many shared that they do not feel any of his comments are divisive. Bryan Crawford, a Hilton Head resident, says Trump’s rhetoric is refreshing. “He says what he means. For so long, we’ve had politicians that say what people wanna hear…it’s nice to hear that he says says what he believes and that truly plays into why I do support him…he says what he believes, it’s not about being the popular guy in the room, it’s about doing what’s right for the country. Crawford said. It’s a sentiment shared by Jane Martin, who traveled from North Carolina to attend the rally in Hilton Head. "He’s honest, straightforward, he's not a politician, that’s the main thing I like about him.” said Martin....

The real estate mogul assured the crowd he is ready to take on Hillary Clinton if she wins her party’s nomination, but insists Clinton isn’t ready for him. “I promise you, Hillary doesn’t want to run against me.” said Trump. The crowd cheered and for a 15 year old supporter, Trump is more than just a presidential candidate, he’s like a rock star to Emma LaLiberte, who traveled from the Tarheel State to be in the same room as Trump. "It was so cool and I got my hat signed. He did. I was really happy.” LaLiberte said.
There were a lot of happy people at the Westin this morning. Many says they are happy that Trump has a commanding lead over Republican contenders heading into the New Year and many say this visit energizes them to head to the polls to show their support at the ballot box. South Carolina’s Republican primary is set for Saturday, February 20, 2016."


Massive growth of North Pole ice in 2015. Arctic Sea Ice Extent, higher than 30% ice concentration, December 30, 2015, DMI data

12/30/15, "Arctic Sea Ice Extent," Higher than 30% ice concentration, Danish Meteorological Institute

"Current Sea Ice extent"

"Total sea ice extent on the northern hemisphere since 2005. The ice extent values are calculated from the ice type data from the Ocean and Sea Ice, Satellite Application Facility (OSISAF), where areas with ice concentration higher than 30% are classified as ice.

The total area of sea ice is the sum of First Year Ice (FYI), Multi Year Ice (MYI) and the area of ambiguous ice types, from the OSISAF ice type product. However, the total estimated ice area is underestimated due to unclassified coastal regions where mixed land/sea pixels confuse the applied ice type algorithm. The shown sea ice extent values are therefore recommended be used qualitatively in relation to ice extent values from other years shown in the figure....

Please notice, that the sea ice extent in this plot is calculated with the coastal zones masked out. To see the absolute extent, go to this page."...


Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Donald Trump tied with Pope Francis for second place as most admired man in the world, Gallup 2015 poll. Poll dates, Dec. 2-6, 2015, 824 American adults-Rolling Stone

12/28/15, "Donald Trump, Pope Francis Tie in 'Most Admired Man' Gallup Poll," Rolling Stone, Tessa Stuart

"The Gallup polls, which have been taken for both genders every year since 1948, asks respondents, "What woman or man that you have heard or read about, living today in any part of the world, do you admire most?""... 

Image caption: 12/28/15, "Donald Trump and Pope Francis tied for second in a new Gallup poll for most admired people in the world Franco Origlia/Getty, Justin Sullivan/Getty," via Rolling Stone


12/28/15, "Clinton Most Admired Woman for Record 20th Time,", Jeffrey M. Jones

"Survey Methods

Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted Dec. 2-6, 2015, with a random sample of 824 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±4 percentage points at the 95% confidence level. All reported margins of sampling error include computed design effects for weighting.

Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 60% cellphone respondents and 40% landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by time zone within region. Landline and cellular telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods."

Chart above from



Monday, December 28, 2015

Islamic Kingdom of Saudi Arabia 2015 budget deficit soars, revenues drop, but Monarchy still aims to bankrupt US shale oil companies-BBC

12/28/15, "Saudi Arabia budget deficit swells on oil price fall," BBC

"Saudi Arabia's budget deficit soared to $98bn (£65.7bn) this year as the world's biggest oil exporter counted the cost of falling crude prices. 

In the first budget under King Salman, the kingdom said revenues reached 608bn riyals (£108.7bn; $162bn), down 15% on official expectations.

Spending for the year hit 975bn riyals, some 13% more than forecast. To help make up the shortfall, the country's finance ministry said it would cut subsidies for fuel.

Petrol prices could in some cases increase by as much as 50%, authorities said, although they will remain low by international standards.

Diesel, electricity and water prices will also increase.

King Salman said the budget came "in light of the decrease in oil prices, the economic and regional and international financial challenges-where global economic growth has declined from its previous level - and the lack of stability in some of the neighbouring states."

Oil revenue

Oil prices have plunged from a five-year high of $125 a barrel in March 2012 to just $37.18 now.

Saudi Arabia said that oil revenues, which make up 77% of the total revenue figure for 2015, are down 23% compared to last year.

It is the largest member of the Opec oil-producing cartel and has refused to cut output in order to raise prices in an attempt to put other producers - mainly US shale oil companies - out of business

Saudi thinks it can withstand low oil prices for longer than US producers, many of which are small, heavily-indebted firms.

Spending on military and security projects reached 20bn riyals in 2015, Saudi Arabia said, following its intervention in Yemen as well as action against militant group Islamic State. 

The majority of the increase in overall spending was on salaries to civil and military Saudi employees."


20 inches of global warming fall in New Mexico, even more in northern mountains where they have 'great snow pack'-KRQE Ronchetti

, Edgewood is buried under 20″ of snow. Thanks John Wahl for pic. KREQMarltwitter." More photos.


Brazil was #1 African slave importer in western hemisphere though this hasn't been publicized until recently. Continued tolerance allows modern slavery to thrive today in Brazil especially In rural areas where it's closely linked to illegal deforestation-Financial Times

“Culturally, Brazil is accustomed to tolerating conditions of labour in rural areas that amount to slavery.”..."Modern slavery in the Amazon is intimately linked with illegal deforestation."

Above, African slave trade flowed from Angola to Brazil up to 1860s. map,

"It is now common knowledge among scholars of slavery that Brazil imported the largest number of enslaved Africans during the Atlantic slave trade era."..."African Heritage and Memories of Slavery in Brazil and the South Atlantic World by Ana Lucia Araujo," cambria press, Ana Lucia Araujo, Feb. 2015: "This is the first book in English to focus on African heritage and public memory of slavery in Brazil and Angola."...


Dec. 2015, "FT Seasonal Appeal: Brazil’s slaves face death threats and debt," Financial Times, Joseph Leahy in Altamira, Pará, Brazil

"We live here like slaves,” Paulo Ferreira says in his slow country drawl, as he remembers how he toiled in the Amazon this year for no pay. He slept in a makeshift wooden shelter and drank water from a spring clogged with cattle manure. He is 67-years-old.

Mr Ferreira, whose name has been changed for his own protection, is far from alone. A legion of forced labourers in Brazil has cleared vast stretches of the forest for cattle pasture, helping the region’s more unscrupulous ranchers grow rich....
On the far-flung ranch where Mr Ferreira recently worked for three months he had no choice but to buy provisions from the rancher — no town was conveniently near. He built up a debt so large it became impossible for him to leave.

When payday came, his boss gave him no wages, saying his labours had been just enough to cover the debt. Complaining was not an option. “If a labourer tries to denounce a rancher to the authorities, he will be killed,” Mr Ferreira observes.

The idea that slavery still exists touches a raw nerve in Brazil. The country imported 4m African slaves during its first 400 years of history — 40 per cent of the total brought to the [western hemisphere] Americas, compared with 10 per cent for the US. It was the last large nation in the hemisphere to end slavery: abolition came only in 1888.

“This is a country still struggling to break with its past of slavery, a past still present in our society,” says Ubiratan Cazetta, a public prosecutor in Pará. In fact, he and others argue, the battle against the trade is becoming more difficult....

"Modern slavery in the Amazon is intimately linked with illegal deforestation, a notorious contributor to climate change. Typically, a middleman recruits labourers from Piauí and Maranhão, the country’s two poorest states, and persuades them to travel hundreds of kilometres away on bad roads to Pará, with the promise of high wages.

Like Mr Ferreira, many labourers soon find themselves crippled by debt, because they have no capital of their own, often having to borrow just to make the long journey to the ranch, as well as for provisions.

Most labourers do not dare to leave the farm or try to escape their growing debts. Although 24-hour armed guards are now rare on farms, crooked ranchers readily contract “pistoleiros”, local hitmen, to deal with argumentative workers, prosecutors and activists say. And when the authorities carry out raids to stop illegal logging, the ranchers themselves often disappear, leaving their forced labourers to take the heat.

The business model has proved remarkably resilient. Slavery has been in the spotlight in Brazil for a generation and yet it persists.

An initial crackdown began after the experiences of Zé Pereira, a labourer who in 1989 was lured to a ranch in Pará where he was imprisoned and forced to work without pay. He escaped, was ambushed and left for dead — but somehow survived and managed to file an official complaint.

In the ensuing outcry, the government began to publish a blacklist of farms accused of using slave labour. Those on the list were automatically blocked from government credit or business with state agencies.

But Mr Cazetta, the prosecutor in Pará, complains that the problem has worsened again over the past 10 years as the ranchers and the agricultural lobby have fought back. The Brazilian supreme court has halted the blacklisting of farms and businesses that allegedly use slave labour, arguing that the list’s publication violates the right of defence of those named.

“Resistance has become a lot more sophisticated,” Mr Cazetta says. Culturally, Brazil is accustomed to tolerating conditions of labour in rural areas that amount to slavery."

Along the Transamazonian highway, the same road that snakes past Mr Ferreira’s unadorned house, there is no shortage of cases showing that slavery endures.
In one incident last year, a 22-year-old from Maranhão disappeared just after ringing his mother to tell her he was due to be paid and was about to come home. A month later a cowboy riding by saw vultures circling in the distance. On closer inspection he found the corpse.

Local Catholic activists have long lists of such crimes which, as in this case, often go without proper investigation.

They also worry that a recent decline in slavery in Pará may soon be reversed. For the past four to five years, unskilled labour in the region has had an alternative, much more attractive source of employment — the Belo Monte project, a giant hydropower dam near the city of Altamira. But the construction work is scheduled to end in the coming months. That will release thousands of people desperate for work back on to the market.

Faced with utter destitution, many of Brazil’s poorest people still take their chances and sign up for work in remote farms in the Amazon — despite the debts, the threats and the risk of forced labour.

It is a desperate choice that Paulo Ferreira and his family are all too familiar with. “Otherwise how will we live?” asks Maria, the daughter-in-law of the weather-beaten worker. “By eating the walls of our homes?”...

For this year’s seasonal appeal, the Financial Times is working in partnership with Stop The Traffik, an organisation that raises awareness about human trafficking."... 


Oct. 2012 UK Guardian article: 40% of people in Rio were slaves in 1888, the year slavery was abolished in Brazil. 
10/23/2012, "Brazil comes to terms with its slave trading past," UK Guardian, Nicolas Bourcier 

"Groundworks for the 2016 Olympics bring questions of ethnicity to the surface." ..........

"Just a step from the centre of Rio de Janeiro, at the heart of the docks undergoing a massive facelift in preparation for the 2016 Olympics, two workers await the verdict of three archaeologists at the bottom of a trench. Municipal workers have once again stumbled on the remains of the Valongo wharf, where the largest number of slaves imported to the [western hemisphere]...disembarked....A place of suffering long buried under the paving stones of this dazzling city....

Work on the wharf has also revealed the scale of the slave trade in Brazil. Of the 9.5 million people captured in Africa and brought to the New World between the 16th and 19th century, nearly 4 million landed in Rio, 10 times more than all those sent to the United States.

But for the last century Brazil has tried to forget its past, refusing to accept the legacy of the slave trade."...

Image of Feb. 2015 book cover from


Brazil population is over 205 million as of 2015.



Brazil on world map, copyright


Brazil comprises 3,287,597 square miles of total area.

The US 50 states comprise 3,717,792 square miles
. ...........  


Sunday, December 27, 2015

India PM says Afghanistan will succeed only when terrorism no longer flows across the border; when nurseries and sanctuaries of terrorism are shut-Press Trust of India

12/25/15, "Afghanistan Will Succeed When Terror No Longer Flows Across Border: PM Modi," Press Trust of India,, Kabul

"In a veiled attack against Pakistan, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today said that Afghanistan will succeed only when terrorism no longer flows across the border and when nurseries and sanctuaries of terrorism are shut.

Declaring that India is in Afghanistan to contribute not to compete, but to lay the foundations of future and not light the flame of conflict.

"Afghanistan will succeed only when terrorism no longer flows across the border; when nurseries and sanctuaries of terrorism are shut; and, their patrons are no longer in business, he said, adding, "Terror and violence cannot be the instrument to shape Afghanistan's future or dictate the choices Afghans make," he said.

The Prime Minister was addressing the Afghan Parliament here after inaugurating its swanky new building that was built by India at a cost of nearly Rs. 600 crore (USD 90 million) in the presence of Afghan President Ashraf Ghani.

He also opened an 'Atal block' in the Parliament premises named after former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee whose 91st birthday fell today.

In his nearly 40-minute address during which he was lustily cheered by the assembled audience on several occasions, PM Modi also made a veiled reference to Pakistan's reservations about Indian involvement in Afghanistan, saying, "there are some who do not want us to be here".

PM Modi said, "There are some who did not want us to be here. There were those who saw sinister designs in our presence here. There are others who were uneasy at the strength of our partnership. Some even tried to discourage us."

PM Modi saluted people of Afghanistan for having faith in India and not judge by what others tell them, including about the mysterious Indian consulates, in another veiled dig at Pakistan.

"You never doubted the sincerity of our commitment and the strength of our friendship. And, you have seen the fruits of our partnership," he said, adding, "You have judged us by what you see, not what others tell you, including about the mysterious Indian consulates."

Pakistan has long alleged that India was fomenting trouble in its Balochistan province through Indian consulates in Kandahar and Jalalabad.

"You know that India is here to contribute not to compete; to lay the foundations of future, not light the flame of conflict; to rebuild lives, not destroy a nation," PM Modi said."


Map of India, Pakistan, and Afghanistan, from


Saturday, December 26, 2015

Home in New Hampshire for the holidays, Beltway Republican discovers Trump voters are real-Politico Playbook, Allen

12/26/15, "POLITICO Playbook, presented by Abbott – D.C. REPUBLICANS go home for holidays, discover Trump voters are real," Mike Allen,
"A Republican Playbooker who lives in D.C. is back home in New Hampshire for the week: “Driving around the state’s capital [Concord] (which is more heavily Democrat than Republican) notice...lots of visible support for Bernie: lawn signs and bumper stickers. There are signs of support for Hillary too, but Bernie appears to be winning the passion race, if nothing else. A smattering of Ben Carson signs placed only at busy intersections. More paid media from Right to Rise [Bush PAC] than anyone. 
I asked my folks, all longtime supporters of establishment Republicans, who they're backing: Trump. When you try to advocate for more traditional candidates, they dig in more for Trump (whose Christmas card is kept in a place of honor).”"...


In his Christmas message, Czech President Zeman says migrant wave in Europe is an 'organised invasion and not a spontaneous movement.' Large majority of illegal migrants are young, single men in good health-AFP

12/26/15, "Czech leader calls migrant wave in Europe an 'organised invasion'," AFP

"Czech President Milos Zeman called the current wave of refugees to Europe "an organised invasion", adding young men from Syria and Iraq should instead "take up arms" against the Islamic State (IS) group.

He went on to say that compassion was "possible" for refugees who are old or sick and for children, but not for young men who in his view should be back home fighting against jihadists.

"A large majority of the illegal migrants are young men in good health, and single. I wonder why these men are not taking up arms to go fight for the freedom of their countries against the Islamic State," said Zeman, who was elected Czech president in early 2013.

He added that their fleeing their war-torn countries only serves to strengthen the IS group.

The 71-year-old evoked a comparison to the situation of Czechs who left their country when it was under Nazi occupation from 1939-1945....

In November, the leftwinger attended an anti-Islam rally in Prague in the company of far-right politicians and a paramilitary unit.

The country's Prime Minister Bohuslav Sobotka, who has previously criticised the head of state's comments, said Zeman's Christmas message was based "on prejudices and his habitual simplification of things"....

Both the Czech Republic and Slovakia, former communist countries that joined the European Union in 2004, have rejected the EU's system of quotas for distributing refugees amid the current migrant wave. More than one million migrants and refugees reached Europe this year, mainly fleeing violence in Afghanistan, Iraq and Syria.

The crisis has strained ties within the European Union, with mostly newer members taking a firm anti-migrant stance and some northern countries like Germany welcoming those fleeing war....

A recent survey showed that nearly 70 percent of Czechs oppose the arrival of migrants and refugees in their country."

(AFP Photo/Michal Cizek)"

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

More than 7000 rally for Trump in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Dec. 21, 2015

12/21/15, Trump Grand Rapids, WZZM

As Trump takes stage in Michigan, 12/21/15
Trump rally in Grand Rapids, Mich., 12/21/15

12/21/15, Trump rally, Grand Rapids, Getty

More than 7,000 rally for Trump in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

12/21/15, "Trump takes on trade policy, 'losers' in Grand Rapids," Detroit Free Press, Kathleen Gray, Lansing Bureau, Grand Rapids

"Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump came to Michigan Monday, taking aim at everything from U.S. trade policy, a budget deal reached in Congress last week, his challengers in the race for president and the "losers" in the crowd who repeatedly disrupted his hour-long speech.

"The American dream is dead, but I’m going to make it bigger and better and stronger," he told a crowd of more than 7,000 at the DeltaPlex Arena in Grand Rapids. "This isn’t the real silent majority. It’s a very loud, very aggressive, noisy majority."

The vast majority of the crowd, many of whom stood in the rain for hours for the chance to see Trump, loved his message, repeatedly chanting his name. The chants of "U.S.A.!" especially grew when nearly a dozen people interrupted the speech with anti-Trump slogans....

Waiting in rain to see Trump, 12/21/15

"Mexico is going to become the car capital of the world, just you watch," he said, adding he'll place a 35% tax on cars coming into the United States, even vehicles made by domestic automakers outside the country. "And if you wait another day, it's going to be 40%."...

As for the protesters, Trump urged security to "be nice" to them as they removed them from the arena....

Trump rally, 12/21/15
The visit was Trump’s second to Michigan since he announced his presidential aspirations in June. He came to Birch Run for a rally with 2,000 supporters in August.

Trump has been leading in the polls almost continuously since entering the race despite controversial statements against Mexicans, Muslims and the other candidates."...


1. Image caption: 12/21/15, "The crowd for Donald Trump on Dec. 21, 2015, at the DeltaPlex in Grand Rapids, Mich.  Nicole Hendrix, WZZM," "Live coverage: Donald Trump campaigns in Grand Rapids,"

2. Image caption: 12/21/15, "People take photos and video as Donald Trump takes the stage at his presidential campaign rally at the DeltaPlex Arena in Walker on Monday, Dec. 21, 2015. (Neil Blake |" 

3. Image caption 12/21/15: "Crowds of people gather to attend presidential candidate Donald Trump's campaign rally at the DeltaPlex in Grand Rapids on Monday, Dec. 21, 2015. (Emily Rose Bennett | The Grand Rapids Press)"

4. Image caption 12/21/15, Donald Trump campaigns in Grand Rapids, Michigan, getty photo

5. Image caption: 12/21/15, From Kathy Gray, "It's wet and gloomy in grand rapids but the line is long for @realDonaldTrump," Detroit Free Press, Kathy Gray

6. Image caption 12/21/15, for "All I want for Christmas is to Make America Great Again"..." sign: "Riki gheller came all the way from flint for @realDonaldTrump rally,"  Detroit Free Press, Kathy Gray


12/21/15, "Donald Trump Campaigns In Grand Rapids,", Getty image


12/21/15, "20 best photos from Donald Trump's Michigan campaign visit,", by Matt Vande Bunte, Walker, Mich.


Photo below of Trump Grand Rapids rally taken by attendee, a Free Republic poster:

12/22/15, "After Action: Donald Trump Rally Grand Rapids Michigan, Donald Trump Rally Grand Rapids Michigan ^ | 12/22/2016 | Eddie01  


Sunday, December 20, 2015

How Donald Trump solved government gridlock after six years and millions of tax dollars wasted: Lessons of Wollman Rink ought not be forgotten-NY Times Editorial, November 13, 1986

11/13/1986, "Lessons of the Wollman Rink," NY Times Editorial
"New York City bungled the job of reopening Central Park's Wollman Skating Rink for six years, wasting millions. Then last June, city officials said it would take two more years to correct the mistakes and complete the job. 

He made his point: today the rink reopens for skaters, three weeks ahead of schedule and $750,000 under projected cost. The whole affair ought to reopen discussion of laws governing city construction contracts. 

Mr. Trump's achievement required skirting the spirit if not the letter of New York State's archaic Wicks Law, which bars use of a general contractor for public works costing more than $50,000. The state and localities must seek separate bids for construction, plumbing, electrical, heating and ventilation work. Agencies like the Parks Department or Board of Education, with little expertise, are left to coordinate the work. 

Though intended to increase competition and reduce building costs, the Wicks Law does the opposite. The inevitable conflicts and delays caused by multiple contracting scare off responsible bidders, while inviting shoddy work, cost overruns and endless litigation. The city estimates that the law costs the taxpayers $100 million annually. 

Yet the State Legislature, responding to union pressure, refused to act last session on Governor Cuomo's proposal to repeal the law and allow the city to use general contractors. Meanwhile, the city isn't helpless. It could be setting tougher requirements for bidders and making more use of experienced project managers for complex jobs. 

As the skaters glide again against the backdrop of the midtown skyline, the lessons of the Wollman Rink ought not to be forgotten."


Comment: "Lessons" noted by Free Republic poster

"Lesson one: Trump can get the job done. 

Lesson two: Government waste and incompetence can be fixed. 

Lesson three: Some truths are so undeniable that even The New York Times has to admit it.

Lesson four: Try as you may, you cannot erase history."


Friday, December 18, 2015

Islamic State roots are in 'Jihadi Salafism,' Princeton University Professor-BBC

12/18/15, "Is Saudi Arabia to blame for Islamic State?" BBC

Following are two of five views from BBC article discussing the roots of ISIS:

"Professor Bernard Haykel: IS [ISIS] theology directly linked to Wahhabism"

"Professor Bernard Haykel is director of the Institute for Transregional Study of the Contemporary Middle East, North Africa and Central Asia at Princeton University."

"The Islamic State's religious genealogy comes from 'Jihadi Salafism', a theological current that is very old in Islam that is quite literalist.

"[Followers are] extremely rigorous, and condemn other Muslims who don't share their theology. That gives them the hard edge when it comes to violence, because they can justify it theologically.

"Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab is in that Salafist tradition. He was a religious reformer in Arabia who was able to create a religious movement that ended up creating a state.

"He saw that Muslims had deviated from the 'true' message of Islam; not praying properly or at all, or engaging in practices that he felt were violations of the faith.

"A lot of scholars of the period started writing treatises against his ideas. They felt that he was not sufficiently educated to teach.

"Eventually he was able to connect with the leader of the al-Saud family in 1744. That alliance had very strong and lasting effects.

"He believed there is a pure version of the faith, and that if one goes back to it, one is guaranteed salvation in the hereafter, but also in life God will give you all the things he promised. 

"The first Saudi State, based on this Wahhabi faith, seemed to confirm his message because of the political and military success it had throughout the 18th Century and 19th Century where it conquered most of Arabia.

"Once a town was conquered he would appoint teachers to educate people in his version of the faith. He wrote a number of short books that were the basis for the teaching, books that are used by ISIS today.

"ISIS claims that the Saudi state has deviated from the true beliefs of Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab, and that they are the true representatives of the Salafi or Wahhabi message."


"Wahhabism benefitted from the arrival of the Muslim brotherhood"...

"Professor Madawi al-Rashid: Wahhabism led to Islamic awakening"

"Saudi-born Professor Madawi al-Rashid is visiting professor at the Middle East Centre at the London School of Economics."

"The Wahhabis were given full control of the religious, social and cultural life of the kingdom. As long as the Wahhabi preachers preached that Saudis should obey their rulers, the al-Saud family were happy.

"In the 1960s and 1970s the Arab world was full of revolutionary ideas. The Saudi government thought the Wahhabis were a good antidote, because they provide an alternative narrative about how to obey rulers and not interfere in politics.

"In the 1980s, King Fahd established a printing press to publish Korans, sent for free to different parts of the world. They established Al-Madinah University to teach religion to students from around the world. 

"Wahhabism is definitely an intolerant form of Islam. It is a local religious tradition that has gone global prematurely. We're seeing that it can be a revolutionary language that would inspire someone to commit atrocities in the name of Islam.

"When Afghanistan was invaded by the Soviet Union, Wahhabism was instrumentalised by the Saudi regime. It inspired young Muslim men to go to Afghanistan to fight a jihad against the Russian infidels.

"Wahhabism benefitted from the arrival of the Muslim brotherhood, who were exiled from places like Egypt, Syria and Iraq in the 1950s and 1960s. Saudi Arabia welcomed them.

"A lot of them became religious teachers so the fusion between this Wahhabi tradition, and the organisational skills of other Islamists, led to the emergence of a new trend in Saudi Arabia; the Islamist trend, what is referred to as the Islamic awakening.""...

"The Inquiry: Is Saudi Arabia to blame for IS? was broadcast on the BBC World Service. Listen online or download the podcast."


Disband the Republican Party, let Democrats run it, because that's what's happening anyway. Republicans have largest number of seats in the House of Representatives they've had since the Civil War, and it hasn't made any difference at all-Rush Limbaugh, 12/17/15

12/17/15, "GOP Sells America Down the River," Rush Limbaugh 

"And now the Republicans have the largest number of seats in the House they've had in Congress since the Civil War. And it hasn't made any difference at all. It is as though Nancy Pelosi is still running the House and Harry Reid is still running the Senate. "Betrayed" is not even the word here. What has happened here is worse than betrayal. Betrayal is pretty bad, but it's worse than that....[W]e don't even need a Republican Party if they're gonna do this. You know, just elect Democrats, disband the Republican Party, and let the Democrats run it, because that's what's happening anyway." 


Trump has 14 point lead in New Hampshire Franklin Pierce University Boston Herald poll, Dec. 13-17, 2015. 71% of Trump voters are firm, won't change their mind compared to 45% avg.

Trump 26.0
Cruz 12.4
Rubio 12.4
Christie 10.8
Bush 9.8
Kasich 7.5
Fiorina 6.1
Carson 4.9
Paul 2.9
Graham .4
Pataki .3
Santorum .3
Huckabee .2

430 likely New Hampshire Republican voters, 35.7 Registered Independents and 64.3 Registered Republicans. Land lines and cellphones, 4.7% error margin

12/18/15, "Donald Trump holds the frontrunner position in New Hampshire, but other outsiders drift as Chris Christie, Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio gain momentum," R. Kelly Myers, Marlin Fitzwater Fellow, Franklin Pierce University

"Seventy-one percent of voters who would vote for Trump said it was a firm choice, suggesting that his support may be the most solid among the Republican candidates."...By comparison, overall only 45% of likely New Hampshire Republican primary voters describe their vote choice as firm. (p. 4)...


"The results outlined in this report are based on a survey conducted by RKM Research and Communications on behalf of Franklin Pierce University and the Boston Herald. All interviews were conducted by paid, trained and professionally supervised interviewers. The survey is based on a probabilistic sample 430 likely Republican presidential primary voters in New Hampshire. Interviews were conducted by landline and cellular telephone, December 13-17, 2015. The sampling margin of error is +/-4.7 percent."...




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I'm the daughter of an Eagle Scout (fan of the Brooklyn Dodgers and Mets) and a Beauty Queen.