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Saturday, November 5, 2011

‘Occupy’ Protester Charged With $10 Million Dollar Arson Fire

‘Occupy’ Protester Charged With $10 Million Dollar Arson Fire

Occupy Crowd Blames Homeless People

By Dell Hill

Here’s a report from ABC 7 - The Denver Channel.

“FORT COLLINS, Colo. -- Police have arrested an Occupy Fort Collins protester in connection with a $10 million arson fire that damaged dozens of condominiums and businesses in Fort Collins. Benjamin David Gilmore, 29, was arrested on Thursday night on suspicion of arson, burglary and criminal mischief. On Oct. 24, a fire started at 3:30 a.m. in a four-story apartment complex under construction. The fire spread to the occupied Penny Flats condominium and retail building next door.

The fire at Penny Flats caused heavy fire damage to the fourth floor and roof, and heavy smoke and water damage to the first, second and third floors, according to Poudre Fire Authority spokesman Patrick Love.

Damage was estimated at $10 million.

A video of the fire scene by Aaron Cathcart.

A joint investigation between Fort Collins Police Services, Poudre Fire Authority, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives investigators found the cause of the fire was incendiary, meaning the fire was intentionally set, officials said.

Gilmore was taken to the Larimer County jail around midnight.

Gilmore In Court On Friday

Gilmore made his first appearance before a judge on Friday afternoon via a video camera from jail. Gilmore stood up and told the judge, "I would just like to go home with my wife," and then he started sobbing.  Bond was set at $250,000, cash only. In the courtroom, Gilmore's mother asked the judge to reduce the bond.  The judge decided to keep the bond at $250,000 because he said it was a serious crime that put many lives in danger.  After the hearing, several Occupy Fort Collins protesters distanced the movement from Gilmore.

"He may have stopped by the protest, but he is in no way a direct relation to our movement," said protester Julia Crisafi.  "We are peaceful protesters." "One person's actions do not represent this group as a whole," said protester Andrew Stover.  "Non-violence is the way to change."

Gilmore Well Known At Occupy Fort Collins

Gilmore joined the Occupy Fort Collins movement in mid-October.  “He showed up on the 3rd or 4th day,” said Rich Crisler, who identified himself as the media coordinator for Occupy Fort Collins.  Crisler said he doesn't believe Gilmore started the fire.  “He had no reason to do this,” Crisler said.

“They’re [investigators] just looking for a scapegoat.”

Crisler said Gilmore owns a honey business.  Crisler said Gilmore is very kind, soft-spoken and wants to help people. “He’s not an arsonist.  I’ve dealt with people like this,” said Crisler, who said he was trained as a psychologist.  “Nothing would make me think of him doing something like this.”

Crisler believes the fire was started by several homeless people who took refuge in the apartment complex that was under construction.  Crisler said the men had invited him to join them on the 3rd floor in the back of the building several times to stay warm.  “You could see it [the fire] was burning from the back,” said Crisler.  Crisler said the protesters told investigators about the five homeless people.  

He said the five men were arrested, questioned and released. “It’s not a good story to say five homeless people accidentally started a fire,” Crisler said.”

Verum Serum had considerably more, including much evidence to make Mr. Crisler's statements basically irrelevant and perhaps even untrue.  Click Right Here.

How Do Jews Address The Issue Of Abortion?

How Do Jews Address The Issue Of Abortion?

As A Catholic, I Did Not Know The Answer - So, I Asked

By Dell Hill

I’m not Jewish.  I’ve mentioned, in passing, a time or two that I’m Catholic.

I have a reasonably good sense for how Catholicism deals with various issues, but when it comes to knowing much of anything about Judaism, I’m clueless.  That’s why I never hesitate to ask my Jewish friends the questions and learn from their answers.

I wondered how Jewish folks address the issue of abortion and birth control.  Catholic teachings have been made abundantly clear for a long time, but I’ve never heard anyone discuss how the Jews treat this subject.  

So I asked.

A life-long friend - who just happens to be Jewish - said “you should ask Rabbi Simmons”.  So I did.

What do Jews believe about birth control and abortion? Does it differ for orthodox, conservative, and reform Jews?


“Generally speaking, the use of contraceptives is not allowed. The basic Jewish idea is that the one who does the family planning is God.

However, there are circumstances when birth control is not only permitted, but advisable. There are a variety of factors, most importantly the parents' emotional and physical state. A rabbi would have to weigh the factors to determine what method of birth control should be used, and for how long should it be used.

As for abortion: Nobody disputes a woman's "free choice" over her body - to cut her hair, or to undergo lyposuction if she chooses. On the other hand, everybody agrees that there are limits to "choice" - i.e. a woman does not have the right to commit murder.

So the abortion debate really comes down to one basic question: Does abortion constitutes murder? In other words, does a fetus have the status of human life?

The Jewish position is a rational, middle ground, taking into account both the quest for spiritual greatness and the realities of everyday life.

In Jewish law, a baby attains becomes a full-fledged human being when the head emerges from the womb. Before then, the fetus is considered a "partial life."

So is it permitted to destroy this partial life?

Generally, no. This is illustrated by a case in the Talmud whereby a building collapsed on Shabbat. The rescue crew does not know if anyone is trapped under the rubble or not. And even if someone is trapped, they may already be dead. Despite these doubts, we push aside the restrictions of Shabbat in order to dig out the rubble - on the chance that it may result in the prolonging of human life. Why? Because every part of human life - even a doubtful, partial human life - has infinite value.

This applies to a fetus as well.

However, there can be certain factors which may create an exception. For example, when partial life threatens a full life. The Talmud discusses a case where doctors say that if the mother continues with the pregnancy, she will die. In such a case, we kill the fetus in order to save the mother. Why? Because when the partial life of the fetus is weighed against the full life of the mother, we give precedence to saving the full life.

Our question now is where to draw the line? What constitutes a "threat to the mother?"

As a general guideline, if the fetus poses a real danger to the mother - i.e. the pregnancy will aggravate a heart condition or will cause the mother to go blind - then there is room for discussion.

What about danger to emotional health? There are certain circumstances where this, too, may be grounds for abortion. For example, if the mother became pregnant through rape, and the thought of bearing this child will cause her a nervous breakdown or severe emotional trauma.

There are other factors as well, including whether the pregnancy is in the first 40 days or not. But the bottom line is that each case must be decided individually by a rabbi well-versed in Jewish law.

* * *

Western society has slipped far from this Torah value. Of the approximately 2 million abortions performed annually in the United States, about 75 percent are attributed to matters of convenience (i.e. having a baby would interfere with the mother's school or work), or to financial considerations (i.e. a baby is not affordable at this time).

In Judaism, these constitute unacceptable reasons for killing the "partial life" fetus. When one's parents become old and require costly medication, should we then kill them also for financial considerations?!

Or how about when a fetus is diagnosed as having birth defects? Some argue that abortion of a handicapped fetus spares the child a "poor quality of life." Yet who said that having one arm constitutes a poor quality of life?! Should the mother of Stephen Hawking (the world's leading astrophysicist who is near-fully paralyzed) have made a decision that his was a life not worth living? Every time someone loses a limb in an accident, should we kill them?!

Or how about mental retardation? If a set of highly intelligent parents are appalled to discover that their fetus has an IQ of "only" 100, is abortion justified?

Judaism says that this type of selection process is evil. It hearkens to the Nazi program called "T-4," which systematically set out to kill all physically and mentally disabled persons.

By contrast, the Torah teaches that the true value of a person is his soul. The great 20th century sage the Chazon Ish used to stand up in respect when a person with Downs Syndrome came into the room. He explained that to have been given such limitations, the soul of this person must be very great, having come into this world to complete the process of perfection in this unique way.

Ask any parents of a handicapped child and they will tell you that their child is precious - irrespective of "performance."

* * *

If the issue of abortion seems morally clear, so why is there such a bitter public debate?

Often it is difficult to accept responsibility for the consequences of actions. When you get behind the wheel of a car, there are a variety of risks involved. Even if you are careful, you might accidentally run somebody over and kill them. And you'd have to live with that consequence.

So too, when a man and woman engage in intercourse, there are a variety of risks involved - among them transmitted diseases, emotional attachment, and pregnancy. It is not a question of being careful. It's a question of taking responsibility for one's actions.

So what's the right thing to do. In the absence of severe health danger, a woman must carry the fetus to full term. With 1-in-6 American couples infertile, giving up the baby for adoption is an obvious option. (Of course, a Jewish mother who opts for adoption should stipulate that the child ends up in a Jewish home.)

I hope this has been helpful.

With blessings from Jerusalem,

Rabbi Shraga Simmons”

Thank you, Rabbi Shraga Simmons.  You’ve certainly answered my question and offered what I like to call ‘good old fashioned common sense’ to illustrate your points.  

Based on the answer from Rabbi Simmons, I’d say that - with very few exceptions - Jews are opposed to abortions and the use of contraceptives to prevent pregnancy.  

Why is it then that women like Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Fl), who, by all accounts is Jewish, get away with openly advocating abortion rights for women in America?  

If her religion dictates, as Rabbi Simmons says, In the absence of severe health danger, a woman must carry the fetus to full term,” is there no penalty for Mrs. Schultz in staunchly supporting and voting for abortion legislation, in violation of her own religion’s teachings?

I would be very interested in hearing your answers....

Abraham Lincoln - March 21, 1864

“Property is the fruit of labor…property is desirable…is a positive good in the world. That some should be rich shows that others may become rich, and hence is just encouragement to industry and enterprise. Let not him who is houseless pull down the house of another; but let him labor diligently and build one for himself, thus by example assuring that his own shall be safe from violence when built.”

Abraham Lincoln - March 21, 1864

OWS Has Long-Since Overstayed Its Welcome

OWS Has Long-Since Overstayed Its Welcome

“Their Protests Now Need rape shelters. This is actually happening. And New York City lets it go on.”

By Dell Hill

Hat Tip - AllahPundit @ HotAir

“Grim perfection from Glenn Reynolds: “I guess they really are taking Tahrir Square as their model.”

Let it sink in: Their protests now need rape shelters. This is actually happening. And New York City lets it go on.

Zuccotti Park has become so overrun by sexual predators attacking women in the night that organizers felt compelled to set up a female-only sleeping tent yesterday to keep the sickos away.

The large, metal-framed “safety tent” — which will be guarded by an all-female patrol — can accommodate as many as 18 people and will be used during the day for women-only meetings, said Occupy Wall Street organizers.

“This is all about safety in numbers,” said Becky Wartell, 24, a protester from Portland, Maine…

Some of the male OWS protesters remained in denial over the growing number of sex attacks.

“Sexual harassment gets called rape, and it’s not,” one scoffed when told of the women’s tent.”

AP goes on to support this incredible irony with facts and links.  Read it all right here.

Thousands Of New Yorkers To Lose Their Health Insurance

Thousands Of New Yorkers To Lose Their Health Insurance

This is just one more exhibit demonstrating that Obamacare will be a complete and utter disaster for Americans.”

By Dell Hill via Doug Ross Journal

Read it and weep, New York.  

    Obamacare-style price controls succeed in New York: 'tens of thousands' to lose their health care coverage

“Just call me Kreskin. I foresee tens of thousands of pissed-off New Yorkers when they find out the mantra "if you like your health care plan, you can keep it" was as worthless as every other Obama promise.

Blue Cross Blue Shield Confirms Plan To Drop Most Small Group Plans In NY

Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield, the largest health insurer in the region, announced to health insurance brokers on Friday that it will eliminate most of its small group plans in the New York market effective April 1, 2012, and is slashing its financial incentives for brokers to sell those products—a move one industry insider has said would be “catastrophic” for the insurance marketplace.

...Officers of New York State Association of Health Underwriters sent a letter—of which Mr. Hasday was one of the signers—dated November 2, addressed to the superintendent of the State Department of Financial Services, stating concerns that a major carrier, which it did not mention by name, is withdrawing from the small group market because of rate request denials/reductions in the last five consecutive quarters. Mr. Hasday later confirmed that the letter referred to Empire.

“The major carrier’s pending withdrawal from the small group market is nothing short of catastrophic to small employers in the state ... tens of thousands of employees are going to be left without coverage, as there will be only two to three other carriers left in which brokers may try to place coverage. If the other carriers follow suit, the availability of coverage will dry up entirely.”

Empire is dropping coverage for two reasons, both of which will apply to Obamacare:

• All "insurance companies [must] get approval from the State Insurance Department before changing any rates."

• An "insurance company could only spend a certain percentage of premiums for non-claim costs."

Both of these strictures represent price controls that will drive insurers out of business. This is just one more exhibit demonstrating that Obamacare will be a complete and utter disaster for Americans.

We are on the road to single-payer health care, a system in which government controls your health care; in which it rewards friends and punishes enemies; and in which it rations care for those deemed too expensive.

The oldest and youngest Americans, the handicapped, and those most in need of health care are certain to suffer. Which is the whole point of government-run health care: total control of human lives by the ruling class.

Hat tip: Mark Levin.

The History of Daylight Saving Time ‘Tonight’s The Night!’ - ‘Fall Back One Hour’

The History of Daylight Saving Time

‘Tonight’s The Night!’ - ‘Fall Back One Hour’

By Dell Hill via NatGeo

“Most U.S. residents set their clocks one hour forward in spring and one hour back in fall. However, residents of Arizona and Hawaii—along with the U.S. territories of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands, among others—will do nothing. Those locales never deviated from standard time within their particular time zones.

Contrary to popular belief, no federal rule mandates that states or territories observe daylight saving time.                                

Federal law simply stipulates that areas that do switch back to standard time at 2 a.m. on the last Sunday in October.

Likewise, the rule requires that regions that observe daylight saving time, or DST, begin the period at the same time on the first Sunday in April.
This is the last year, however, in which daylight saving time will fall within those days.

In 2005, the U.S. Congress passed a law extending DST by one month as of 2007. Next year, daylight saving time will begin three weeks earlier, on March 11, and end a week later, on November 4.

Standard Time

While the U.S. Naval Observatory in Washington, D.C., sets what is known as standard time in the country through its maintenance of atomic clocks, the observatory has nothing to do with daylight saving time.

Oversight of DST first resided with the Interstate Commerce Commission. In 1966, the U.S. Congress transferred that responsibility to the newly created Department of Transportation. Congress ordered the agency to "foster and promote widespread and uniform adoption and observance of the same standard of time within and throughout each such standard time zone."

So why is a transportation authority in charge of time laws? Bill Mosley, a public affairs officer at the U.S. Department of Transportation, explains that it all dates back to the heyday of railroads.

"In the early 19th century … localities set their own time," Mosley said. "It was kind of a crazy quilt of time, time zones, and time usage. When the railroads came in, that necessitated more standardization of time so that railroad schedules could be published."

In 1883 the U.S. railroad industry established official time zones with a set standard time within each zone. Congress eventually came on board, signing the railroad time zone system into law in 1918.

The only federal regulatory agency in existence at that time happened to be the Interstate Commerce Commission, so Congress granted the agency authority over time zones and any future modifications that might be necessary.

Part of the Act of 1918 also legislated for the observance of daylight saving time nationwide. That section of the act was repealed the following year, and DST thereafter became a matter left up to local jurisdictions.        

Daylight saving time was observed nationally again during World War II, but was not uniformly practiced after the war's end.

Finally, in 1966, Congress passed the Uniform Time Act, which standardized the start and end dates for daylight saving time but allowed individual states to remain on standard time if their legislatures allowed it.
A 1972 amendment extended the option not to observe DST to areas lying in separate time zones but contained within the same state.

Before the move by Congress last year to extend DST, the most recent modification occurred in 1986, when the start date was moved from the last Sunday in April to the first Sunday in April.

Evening Daylight

According to Mosley, the drive behind the switch is "to adjust daylight hours to when most people are awake and about."

Daylight saving time decreases the amount of daylight in the morning hours so that more daylight is available during the evening.

Not everyone benefits from the change, Mosley conceded. Farmers and others who rise before dawn may have to operate in the dark a while longer before daybreak.

Daylight saving time, however, can bring many benefits. Mosley said research has shown that more available daylight increases energy savings while decreasing the number of traffic accidents, traffic fatalities, and incidences of crime.

Congress noted other advantages while updating legislation in 1986, including "more daylight outdoor playtime for the children and youth of our Nation, greater utilization of parks and recreation areas, expanded economic opportunity through extension of daylight hours to peak shopping hours and through extension of domestic office hours to periods of greater overlap with the European Economic Community."

Obama Snubs World Series Champs - Apparently Too Busy To Call

Obama Snubs World Series Champs - Apparently Too Busy To Call

“The Cardinals celebrated a historic World Series victory last Friday night. But President Obama didn’t join them. He never made a call to the champs after the seventh game of the World Series.”

By Dell Hill

The 2011 World Series was, by every measure, a classic.

A great series of ups and downs - despite the errors - that keeps you glued to the TV set from start to finish.  This was one for the ages because both the St. Louis Cardinals and the Texas Rangers were quite capable of producing runs by the bushel at any given moment.

All Hail the St. Louis Cardinals - World Series Champions.

Cardinal Slugger Albert Pujols

I had no dog in this fight.  My Red Sox imploded in classic and embarrassing fashion.  But, I cheered for the Texas Rangers because they were the American League team and since having lived about twenty minutes from the Ballpark at Arlington, I’ve been fond of Nolan Ryan’s team.

Sooooo, how did Cardinal’s manager Tony LaRussa like his congratulatory phone call from President Obama?

What’s that you say?  The President didn’t call?

That’s hard to believe, since the President has traditionally called every World Series Champions club house as far back as I can remember.  There must be some mistake.

According to Jim Hoft - The Gateway Pundit and a staunch St. Louis Cardinals fan - the call never came.

“The Cardinals celebrated a historic World Series victory last Friday night. But President Obama didn’t join them. He never made a call to the champs after the seventh game of the World Series.

CBS Local reported:

Was President Barack Obama too busy watching the “Operation Repo” marathon or something else last Friday night?

When KMOX host Charlie Brennan asked now-retired St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony La Russa how the traditional call of congratulations from the White House went, La Russa suddenly realized that…it never happened.

“That’s a good point, I hadn’t really even thought about that,” replied a surprised-sounding La Russa, who can be forgiven for having a few other things on his mind over the past week. “As we were getting into the World Series we had a call from the White House to make sure they had the correct number for my office.”

But as the wild, champagne-drenched celebration of the team’s 11th World Series title was going on in the locker room, that phone never rang.

“We never did get a call,” La Russa said.

Maybe Obama didn’t like their politics?

In August 2010, St. Louis Cardinals Manager Tony La Russa introduced Cardinal great Albert Pujols at Glenn Beck’s “Restoring Honor” Rally in Washington DC. Pujols was awarded the “Hope” Award at the massive rally.

In June 2010 Cardinals Manager Tony La Russa came out in favor of the tea party movement and the Arizona immigration bill.

Do you suppose that had anything to do with Barack Obama’s decision not to call the Cardinals last week?


You’re being far too kind, Jim.