June 12, 2009
From Little Green Footballs:
As we noted last Sunday, when murder suspect Scott Roeder was arrested [for the murder of abortion doctor George Tiller], the phone number of Operation Rescue was discovered on a Post-It note in his car.
Now it turns out that this wasn’t just the phone number of the Operation Rescue office, but of a specific person: Cheryl Sullenger, the senior policy adviser for Operation Rescue — who was herself convicted in 1988 of conspiring to bomb a California abortion clinic, and served two years in prison.
Sullenger’s name even appears on the Operation Rescue press release about the murder of Dr. George Tiller.
So now we learn that one of the senior officials for Operation Rescue (who are spinning like crazy to portray themselves as a non-extremist group with no connections to violence or to Scott Roeder) is a convicted felon in an abortion clinic bombing plot. Isn’t that lovely?
It’s going to be a little harder to convince people that the perp is a lone gunman when one of your organisation’s three authorised spokespeople has been acting as a spotter for the sniper.
June 2, 2009
A prominent US abortion doctor has been shot dead at a church in the city of Wichita, Kansas.
Dr George Tiller, one of the few US doctors who performed late-term abortions, had been vilified by anti-abortionists in the US. The gunman fled in a car, but officials say a suspect is now in custody. US Attorney General Eric Holder said the US would offer protection to “appropriate people and facilities” in the wake of Dr Tillers’ killing.
Dr Tiller’s clinic – called Women’s Health Care Services – had often been the site of demonstrations, and he had been shot and wounded by an assailant 16 years ago. Questioning of the suspect, a 51 year-old man, is continuing. Wichita Deputy Police Chief Tom Stolz said he was likely to face one charge of murder and two counts of aggravated assault for allegedly pointing a gun at two other men.
Dr Tiller, who was 67, was shot just after 1000 (1500 GMT) at the Reformation Lutheran Church. His lawyer, Dan Monnat, said his client was killed while serving as an usher during a morning church service. His wife was in the choir at the time.
- BBC News
May 22, 2009
A Tory MP is to retire after admitting he claimed a £1,645 “duck island” on expenses – as two Labour ministers face questions over capital gains tax.
Sir Peter Viggers, whose gardening claims totalled £30,000, is to quit at “the direct request of David Cameron”.
Meanwhile Gordon Brown defended James Purnell and Geoff Hoon, saying they had complied with the “spirit and letter” of rules over the sale of London homes. They both insist they did nothing wrong by not paying capital gains tax…
After hearing about the latest expenses revelations, Tory leader David Cameron told Gosport MP Sir Peter he faced the removal of the whip if he did not announce that he would withdraw at the next election.
The Conservatives’ scrutiny panel will decide what figure Sir Peter will have to pay back. Sources say it will be a “substantial sum”.
Sir Peter said the claims he made “were in accordance with the rules at the time, and were all approved by the fees office”.
- BBC News
May 17, 2009
A radical Muslim who dressed his baby daughter in a hat with “I love al-Qaeda” on it tried to firebomb the home of the publisher of a controversial novel about the Prophet Mohammed.
Ali Beheshti, 40, along with Abrar Mirza, 22, have admitted conspiracy to recklessly damage property and endanger life after they poured diesel through the letterbox of a publishing house in Islington, North London.
Abbas Taj, 30, a mini-cab driver, was found guilty at Croydon Crown court of conspiracy to firebomb the home of Martin Rynja, the publisher of The Jewel Of Medina. He was to be the getaway driver, but was stopped in his car and arrested by armed police near Angel Tube station in the early hours in September last year, just after they had set fire to the premises.
Beheshti’s 20-month-old daughter, Farisa, was pictured wearing the hat when he took her along to a protest against Danish cartoons of the prophet Mohammed and proudly called her “the youngest member of al-Qaeda”. He waved banners vowing to “Massacre those who insult Islam” and promising “Europe, your 9/11 will come!” During the protests in 2006 he called himself Abu Jihad — meaning holy war.
The three men began their attack when publisher Mr Rynja was preparing to release The Jewel Of Medina, a novel about the Prophet Mohammed and the life of his child bride, Aisha.
The trio were planning to spend the night at Regent’s Park Mosque, in North London, as part of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, but shortly after arrival they set out with “fire-making equipment” for the home of Mr Rynja…
The publication of The Jewel of Medina was cancelled by one major publisher in the United States over fears that it could offend Muslims.
Run that “religion of peace” line past me again…
May 16, 2009
“The question may be asked: Is Blackpool chic enough for the French? Its Golden Mile, with its fish and chip shops, tattoo parlours and amusement arcades bears little resemblance to the Champs Elysses or Croisette, but work is under way to make Blackpool more stylish.”
A Lancashire seaside resort is using a dash of French glamour and internet social networking sites to boost holidaymaker numbers.
A new YouTube film, complete with sexy French accents, promotes Blackpool as a sophisticated place. The aim of the film is to attract visitors who may have traditionally felt that Blackpool was not for them…
The 90-second-long film, titled Blackpool Je t’aime, is artfully shot and includes images of the town’s tower, trams and fairground.
Helen France, director of tourism for Blackpool Council, said: “Often when we get French visitors – they like to do London, Stratford and Edinburgh and often drop off at a seaside town on the way, and we hope that this will encourage them to come to Blackpool.”
- BBC News
May 15, 2009
The number of people out of work in the UK rose 244,000 to 2.22 million in the first three months of 2009, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.
The jobless rate rose from 6.7% to 7.1%. Unemployment benefit claimants in April rose 57,100 to 1.51 million.
The quarterly rises in the jobless rate and number were the biggest since 1981.
The figures were due to be released by the ONS at 0930 BST on Wednesday, but came out at 1400 on Tuesday after an “accidental early release”.
The ONS has launched an inquiry into how the early release happened.
- BBC News
May 14, 2009
Home Secretary Jacqui Smith has said she hopes that widespread criticism levelled at police following the G20 protests will not dent recruitment. She told the Police Federation of England and Wales there had been “too much police-bashing” in recent weeks.
Three inquiries are under way following the death of Ian Tomlinson and other complaints of police brutality at G20. The head of the Independent Police Complaints Commission has voiced “serious concerns” about the event.
IPCC chairman Nick Hardwick has also angered the Police Federation by warning officers to remember they are “servants, not masters” of the people.
- BBC News
May 3, 2009
In which I present, the REAL cause of the swine ‘flu outbreak…
… express doubts about the current risk analysis …
… and point out that all the protective measures in the world still wont be much help unless you read the instruction leaflet.
There is no evidence of the swine flu virus spreading in a sustained way outside North America, a top World Health Organization official says.
Dr Michael Ryan, WHO Director of Global Alert and Response, praised European nations’ handling of cases and said events did not seem out of control.
Mexico has cut its suspected death toll by 75 to 101, indicating the outbreak may not be as bad as initially feared. The country has ordered a five-day shutdown in a bid to contain the virus.
Mexican Health Minister Jose Angel Cordova told the BBC that, based on samples tested, the mortality rate was comparable with that of seasonal flu.
- BBC News
Apologies to Dr Phil.
April 25, 2009
British National Party (BNP) chairman Nick Griffin has defended a party leaflet which says that black Britons and Asian Britons “do not exist”.
The BNP’s “Language and Concepts Discipline Manual” says the term used should be “racial foreigners”.
In a BBC interview, Mr Griffin said to call such people British was a sort of “bloodless genocide” because it denied indigenous people their own identity.
Mr Griffin is standing in the European Parliament elections in June…
The manual describes the BNP’s “ultimate aim” as the “lawful, humane and voluntary repatriation of the resident foreigners of the UK”.
- BBC News
April 24, 2009
A bus driver is to be recognised for teaching his Eastern European colleagues at First Glasgow bus company how to understand Glaswegian slang.
James Lillis, 55, will receive the 4th annual Helen Dowie award for Lifelong Learning at the STUC conference in Perth on Wednesday.
Mr Lillis, who has driven buses in the city for 30 years, runs the workplace learning centre at his depot.
He started teaching “Glaswegian” at the centre after learning basic Polish.
One in 10 drivers working for First Glasgow, the city’s main bus operator, come from outside the UK. The majority of the foreign drivers come from Poland, with Slovak, Hungarian, Lithuanian and Czech drivers also employed.
- BBC News