Zimmerman, the Lead Up

Business Insider put together some chronological bullet points of George Zimmerman’s history:

  • Zimmerman grew up in a mixed-race household
  • He was an altar boy at his Caltholic church from age 7-17
  • He is bilingual
  • After he finished high school, he studied for and got an insurance license
  • In 2004, Zimmerman and a black friend opened an Allstate insurance office (which soon failed)
  • Zimmerman’s 2005 arrest for “resisting arrest, violence, and battery of an officer” occurred after he shoved an under-cover alcohol control agent at a bar when the agent was trying to arrest an underage friend of his
  • Zimmerman married his wife, Shellie, in 2007. They rented a house in Twin Lakes. Twin Lakes is about 50% white, 20% Hispanic, and 20% black.
  • In 2009, Zimmerman enrolled in Seminole State College
  • In the fall of 2009, a pit bull broke free twice and once cornered Shellie in the Zimmermans’ yard. George Zimmerman asked a police officer whether he should buy pepper spray. The cop told him pepper spray wasn’t fast enough and recommended that he get a gun.
  • By the summer of 2011, Twin Lakes “was experiencing a rash of burglaries and break-ins.” In several of the cases, witnesses said the robbers were young black men
  • In July 2011, a black teenager stole a bicycle off the Zimmermans’ porch
  • In August of 2011, a neighbor of the Zimmermans, Olivia Bertalan, was home during the day when two young black men entered her house. She hid in a room upstairs and called the police. When the police arrived, the two men, who had been trying to take a TV, fled. One of them ran through the Zimmermans’ yard.
  • After the break-in, George Zimmerman stopped by the Bertalans and gave Olivia a card with his name and number on it. He told her to visit his wife Shellie if she felt unsafe.
  • The police recommended that Bertalan get a dog. She moved away instead. Zimmerman got a second dog–a Rottweiler.
  • In September, several concerned residents of the neighborhood, including Zimmerman, asked the neighborhood association to create a neighborhood watch. Zimmerman was asked to run it.
  • In the next month, two more houses in the neighborhood were robbed.
  • A community newsletter reminded residents to report any crimes to the police and then call “George Zimmerman, our captain.”
  • On February 2, 2012, Zimmerman spotted a young black man looking into the windows of a neighbor’s empty house. He called the police and said “I don‘t know what he’s doing. I don’t want to approach him, personally.” The police sent a car, but by the time they arrived, the man was gone.
  • On February 6th, another house was burglarized. Witnesses said two of the robbers were black teenagers. One, who had prior burglary convictions, was soon caught with a laptop stolen from the house.
  • Two weeks later, Zimmerman spotted Travyon Martin and called the police. The last time he had done this, the suspect got away. This time, he disregarded police instructions and followed. A few minutes later, Martin was dead.

Is it possible that Zimmerman is an angry racist? It is. But as Business Insider wonders, “doesn’t it make you feel a bit differently about Zimmerman?”

Attribution: The Blaze

Joke of the Day

The man who gave up sex for Golf

A golfer is in a competitive match with a friend, who is ahead by a
couple of strokes. “Boy, I’d give anything to sink this putt,” the golfer
mumbles to himself.

Just then, a stranger walks up beside him and whispers, “Would you
be willing to give up one-fourth of your sex life?”

Thinking the man is crazy and his answer will be meaningless, the
golfer also feels that maybe this is a good omen, so he says, “Sure”,
and sinks the putt.

Two holes later, he mumbles to himself again, “Gee, I sure would
like to get an eagle on this one.”

The same stranger is at his side again and whispers, “Would it be
worth giving up another fourth of your sex life?”

Shrugging, the golfer replies, “Okay.” And he makes an eagle.

On the final hole, the golfer needs another eagle to win.

Without waiting for him to say anything, the stranger quickly moves
to his side and says, “Would winning this match be worth giving up the
rest of your sex life?”

“Definitely,” the golfer replies, and he makes the eagle.

As the golfer is walking to the club house, the stranger walks
alongside him and says, “I haven’t really been fair with you because you don’t
know who I am. I’m Satan, and from this day forward you will have no
sex life.”

“Nice to meet you, “the golfer replies, “I’m Father O’Malley.”

Show Them the Money

By: Ed Morrissey of HotAir

Isn’t it funny what you can find out on Friday evening about what our executive branch does? For instance, Agence France-Presse reported last night that Barack Obama bypassed Congress to send $192 million to the Palestinian Authority, claiming that national security required the US to put money into Mahmoud Abbas’ pocket:

President Barack Obama has signed a waiver to remove curbs on funding to the Palestinian Authority, declaring the aid to be “important to the security interests of the United States.”

A $192 million aid package was frozen by the US Congress after the Palestinians moved to gain statehood at the United Nations last September.

But in a memo sent to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, published by the White House, the president said it was appropriate to release funds to the authority, which administers the West Bank and Gaza Strip.

In signing the waiver, Obama instructed Clinton to inform Congress of the move, on the grounds that “waiving such prohibition is important to the national security interests of the United States.”

Congress deliberately froze those funds, and not just because of the statehood demand through UNESCO. Hamas, a terrorist organization, reconciled with Fatah and has rejoined the PA, which means we’re putting almost $200 million into the hands of a terrorist organization.

The language of the Palestinian Accountability Act could not be clearer: “[N]o funds available to any United States Government department or agency … may be obligated or expended with respect to providing funds to the Palestinian Authority.” Obama literally waived that statutory language off yesterday afternoon.

The Times of Israel reported on the official White House explanation of why Obama did so:
The AFP news agency quoted White House spokesman Tommy Vietor as saying the $192 million aid package would be devoted to “ensuring the continued viability of the moderate PA government under the leadership of [Palestinian Authority] President Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister Salam Fayyad.”

Vietor added that the PA had fulfilled its major obligations, such as recognizing Israel’s right to exist, renouncing violence and accepting the Road Map for Peace.

Have they? They certainly haven’t done so since Hamas rejoined the PA in February. Hamas has refused to change its charter to recognize Israel or renounce violence, and certainly they have rejected the Road Map for Peace, which has been lying dead for years thanks to the PA’s refusal to seriously implement it. When Hamas broadcasts its recognition of Israel in Arabic — something that the PA has never done, to my knowledge — then perhaps the Obama administration’s claims can be taken seriously.

Andy McCarthy calls this a “triple play,” and slams this claim by Vietor as fantasy:

In the real world, the very immoderate PA has reneged on all its commitments. In addition to violating its obligations by unilaterally declaring statehood, the PA has also agreed to form a unity government with Hamas, a terrorist organization that is the Palestinian branch of the Muslim Brotherhood. The PA continues to endorse terrorism against Israel as “resistance.” Moreover, the PA most certainly does not recognize Israel’s right to exist. Back in November, for example, Adil Sadeq, a PA official writing in the official PA daily,Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, declared that Israelis:

“have a common mistake, or misconception by which they fool themselves, assuming that Fatah accepts them and recognizes the right of their state to exist, and that it is Hamas alone that loathes them and does not recognize the right of this state to exist. They ignore the fact that this state, based on a fabricated [Zionist] enterprise, never had any shred of a right to exist…”

In sum, everything Obama is saying about Palestinian compliance is a lie. Even if we were not broke, we should not be giving the PA a dime. To borrow money so we can give it to them is truly nuts.

The White House knows it, too — which is why we only found out through the Friday night news dump

So Long to Second Amendment

The collection agency for the Federal Reserve known as the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is working with legislators to gain control over the rights of Americans. Without the right to due process, the IRS can simply claim a citizen owes $50,000 dollars or more to their illegal operation. This accusation alone will give their agency the right to revoke American’s travel rights and even remove the right to own a firearm.

With the help of Representatives like Barbara Boxer of California, a bill rapidly working through Capitol Hill (passed through the Senate and is currently up for review in the House) will give the IRS power to:

  • Accuse Americans of delinquency of tax payment without due process
  • Revoke their passports and travel rights
  • Place the accused in a centralize database
  • Authorize the removal of their right to own a firearm

No formal charges are required. Simply the accusation from the IRS is sufficed to strip American citizens of their Constitutional rights.

“There is no requirement that the tax payer be guilty of or even charged with tax evasion, fraud, or any criminal offense — only that the citizen is alleged to owe the IRS back taxes of $50,000 or more,”reports the Daily Economist.

In essence, these blacklisted citizens would be remotely labeled “domestic terrorists” and treated as such.

Former White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel bragged to the Brady Center that the ‘No Fly’ list. Emanuel proudly stated that those on the “no fly” list could not own a firearm because of their suspicious status.

Moreover, the IRS and this bill will suspend travel rights to more than “30,000 active-duty troops and a similar number of reserve-component members owe the Internal Revenue Service a collective $390 million in back taxes, according to IRS data,” reports WTLX.

And federal employees are not immune to this revoking of their rights. IRS figures show that in 2010, “98,000 federal employees owed a combined $1 billion in back taxes.” As well as a shocking amount of members of the Senate combined owe an estimated $2 million dollars in unpaid taxes.

As this move by the Federal Reserve, with support by our elected officials, empowers the IRS to bully all citizens of America into paying an unconstitutional tax, we can clearly see that the central banking cartels are in charge of the US and not any branch of US government; including their puppet Barack Obama.

This more toward suspicion without accusation is the slow and incremental tip-toe by the global Elite toward an encompassing takeover of our American Republic and transform it into a Fascist dictatorship. The Obama administration, through the NDAA, signing statements, and executive orders has continued the process started by certain previous Presidents. And this has all happened right under our noses. Without much resistance by the American public, our US Constitution is being shredded.

The time has come to stop complying with this system.

The global Elite will not stop until they have their One World Government. There is no negotiating. They demand total submission of the populations of all nations and countries.

We out number them dramatically.

We can stop them once we unilaterally stop complying with their takeover.

Attribution: Tom Tancredo

The Groundscraper

For most hotels the key selling point is a room with a view, particularly if it towers over a bustling cityscape or sprawling countryside.

But designers behind this new luxury resort have gone in the completely opposite direction to attract customers – by creating a ‘groundscraper’ hotel built 16 floors beneath the earth’s surface.

The hugely ambitious underground hotel project will see a 19-storey, 380-room structure chiselled out of a giant quarry in Songjiang, near Shanghai.

Designers have set aside a site about 30 miles from the city of Shanghai, in an abandoned quarry at the foot of Tianmashan Mountain.

While towering skyscrapers boast of rooftop restaurants and penthouse luxury, the InterContinental Shimao Shanghai Wonderland’s bottom two floors will include an underwater restaurant, athletic complex for water sports and 10-meter deep aquarium.

Surrounding the unique hotel will be a 428,000 square-meter theme park, complete with room for bungee jumping and rock climbing overlooking the descending 16 floors.

Project developers Shimao Property Group worked with British engineering firm Atkins to design the imaginative hotel, which they hope to complete in late 2014 or early 2015.

It is thought the vast project will cost at least $555 million, with nightly rooms starting at around $320.

Attribution: Mail Online

Europa gets Drilled

A laser-powered drill could be used to penetrate the thick layers of ice on Jupiter’s frozen moon Europa, allowing robot probes to explore the oceans beneath.

The problem scientists who hope to study the oceans beneath the crust of Europa have faced has always been the amount of energy needed to melt through the miles of ice.

Batteries would not last long enough, even a small nuclear reactor would be too big, and solar power would be absolutely useless so deep in the depths of the moon’s oceans.

But the VALKYRIE drill would leave its bulky power plant on the surface of the moon, with a high-powered laser shooting down a fibre-optic cable to run the device.

Once it had penetrated icy crust of Europa, it could then explore the oceans beneath collecting and analysing samples before melting its way back to the surface, sealing the hole behind it.

Inventor and explorer Bill Stone unveiled the design yesterday at Nasa’s Astrobiology Science Conference in Atlanta, Georgia.

He told Wired Science: ‘Our modest goal over the next three years is to use a 5,000-watt laser to send a cryobot through up to 250 meters of ice.’

‘All the data show there are no show-stoppers for doing that. But from my standpoint, this is child’s play compared to what we could do.’

Dr Stone’s team combined several simultaneous advances in different fields, where researchers weren’t necessarily aware of each others’ work.

Bart Hogan, an optics expert and principal engineer on the project, told Wired: ‘It’s like you have all these groups making lenses for better eyeglasses, and someone says, “Hey, we can put these lenses together and build a telescope,”‘

With a doctorate in structural engineering and 11 patents to his credit, Dr Stone has already designed a range of robot explorers, of which VALKYRIE is just the latest.

His first robot, DEPTHX, descended deep into flooded Mexican hydrothermal springs to to find and collect samples of previously unknown microbial species between 2003 and 2007.

The next, called ENDURANCE, did the same thing in a freshwater lake hidden beneath a permanent ice cap in Antarctica in 2008 and 2009, creating the first 3-D chemistry map of a sub-glacial lake.

It was while testing ENDURANCE in advance of the Antarctic mission that Dr Stone came up with the novel power solution for VALKYRIE.

ENDURANCE used a tiny fibre optic cable – thinner than a strand of human hair – to communicate with the team sitting at the surface.

Dr Stone was suddenly struck with the idea that a much bigger cable could carry immense amounts of energy in the form of photons.

Researching the possibilities, he found that while there had been huge developments in both industrial lasers and fibre optic cables, no one had tried to fire the former down the latter.

Most development in the technology of fibre optic cables had been in the field of telecommunications, which uses very low power, Dr Stone told Wired.

While big industrial lasers, which can be powerful enough to cut a car in half, were usually only used in sealed units, with safety as the overriding concern, he added.

However, whether the new concept works or not, it is unlikely to make a mission to Europa anytime soon.

Nasa still have no clear, high-resolution pictures of what the surface of the moon is like and whether or not it is possible to land a spacecraft on there.

Mr Stone’s team has already built and tested the laser-fibre-optic power system at his laboratory in Texas.

They now plan to test a prototype of VALKYRIE at the Matanuska Glacier, Alaska, in June 2013.

Attribution: Wired Science, Mail Online

Going Postal

From Hope Yen of the AP:

WASHINGTON — A Senate bill aimed at saving the U.S. Postal Service would make it harder to close thousands of low-revenue post offices and end Saturday mail delivery, even though the struggling agency says those moves are just what’s needed to reduce its massive debt and become profitable again.

The measure takes steps to help the agency avert bankruptcy as early as this fall, through a cash infusion of $11 billion to pay off debt and reduce costs by offering retirement incentives to 100,000 employees. But the bill sidesteps decisions on postal closings, buying time for lawmakers who would rather avoid the wrath of voters in an election year.

The Senate planned to vote quite soon on a final bill, after considering amendments that could restrict the Postal Service from further cuts to first-class mail delivery. During debate, lawmakers agreed to hold off closing rural post offices for a year, give communities new ways to appeal, prevent any closings before the November elections but also shut five of the seven post offices on the Capitol grounds.

The final bill was expected to pass the Senate but faces an uncertain future. The House has not taken up its own version, which would create a national commission with the power to scrap no-layoff clauses in employee contracts.

“This of course kicks the can down the road,” complained Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., who unsuccessfully pushed for a commission in the Senate bill. He said the current proposal failed to address longer-term fixes and delayed major decisions. “We’ll be on the floor in two years addressing this issue again, because it is not a solution.”

Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe also has criticized the Senate bill as a short-term answer. Noting that more people every year are switching to the Internet to send letters and pay bills, he has called the Postal Service’s business model “broken.” The agency has estimated that the Senate bill would only provide it enough liquidity to continue operating for two years or three years.

The Postal Service said Wednesday it preferred legislation “that will provide it with the speed and flexibility to adapt to a changing marketplace for mailing and shipping products.”

At stake are more than 100,000 jobs, part of a postal cost-cutting plan to save some $6.5 billion a year by closing up to 252 mail-processing centers and 3,700 post offices. The agency, $12 billion in debt, says it needs to begin closings this year. At the request of Congress, Donahoe agreed to delay closings until May 15 to give lawmakers time to pass legislation.

The Senate bill proposes cutting about half the mail processing centers the Postal Services wants to close, from 252 to 125, and allowing more areas to maintain overnight first-class mail delivery for at least three more years. Beyond the one-year freeze on closing rural post offices, the Postal Service would face additional layers of approval before closing any mail facility.

The Postal Service on Tuesday circulated a smaller list of mail processing centers that probably would close under the Senate bill; many in more rural or small states would be spared. For instance, centers would survive in Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Missouri and Vermont, whose senators were sponsors of the postal bill or pushed amendments, according to the preliminary list obtained by The Associated Press. A facility in Easton, Md., also would stay open. Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., previously attempted to block the postal bill in protest of that specific closure.

Also surviving were all four mail processing centers in Nevada, home to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, as well as all eight centers in Colorado and all five centers in Utah.

The Postal Service would get an infusion of roughly $11 billion, which is basically a refund of overpayments made in previous years to a federal retirement fund. The money could pay down debt and finance buyouts to 100,000 postal employees.

The agency could make smaller annual payments into a future retiree health benefits account, gain flexibility in trimming worker compensation benefits and find additional ways to raise postal revenue under a new chief innovation officer.

An amendment approved Tuesday would bar the Postal Service from closing post offices for one year if they are in areas with fewer than 50,000 people, unless there was no significant community opposition.

After one year, the agency would have to take rural issues into special consideration. Post offices generally would be protected if the closest mail facility was more than 10 miles away.

“Our post offices are the lifeblood for towns across our state and a source of good-paying jobs in areas hard-hit by the economic downturn,” said Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., who co-sponsored the amendment. “This amendment protects rural post offices, with a realistic eye toward the future.”

Attribution: Karen