Tuesday, July 28, 2009


Pierre Omidya, eBay founder, brief background summary:

Ebay founder Pierre Omidyar's politics have become the subject of blog
commentary because the web auction site over the last week repeatedly
scrubbed an offering of an allegedly genuine copy of President Barack Obama
s birth certificate – from Mombasa, Kenya.

But the company said it wouldn't get involved in any discussion of Omidyar's
activities or political statements.

Spokeswoman Evonne Gomez said, "We certainly wouldn't comment on our founder s political concessions or beliefs. He is not involved in the day-to-day
operations of the company."

She said if a question was submitted in writing, she would consult on
whether it would be answered. A question submitted by WND didn't, however,
produce a response.

"I will coordinate with colleagues on the corporate side," she said. "We
wouldn't comment on his political views or associations."

Omidyar, a billionaire, former CEO and current chairman of eBay, earlier
this month was appointed by Barack Obama to serve on the 28-member President
s Commission on White House Fellowships.

According to a White House press release from June 17, Omidyar joins former
Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle, General Wesley Clark, former NBC anchor
Tom Brokaw, and several others on the committee, which recommends candidates
to the president for selection as White House Fellows. The release calls the
White House Fellowship "America's most prestigious program for leadership
and public service, providing young individuals with experience working at
the highest levels of the federal government."

Omidyar further serves as a trustee of the Punahou School in Hawaii, the
elite private high school that Obama graduated from in 1979, and endorsed
Obama's candidacy for president on his blog in March 2008.

WND reported has reported that over the last week eBay has scrubbed at least
five auctions offered by a seller known to the public only as

The sale was for a document that purportedly was a Kenyan birth certificate
for Obama.

Gomez told WND any items that are removed are being of company policy.

The "birth certificate" seller allegedly obtained Obama's document while
traveling in Africa. The seller explained that the Kenyan natives boasted
that Barack Obama II was born in the Coast Provincial Hospital in Mombasa at
7:24 p.m. On Aug. 4, 1961, which correlates with speculation that has
existed over President Obama's birthplace since even prior to his election.

WND also reported that the seller, colmado_naranja, then tried to sell a
dissertation" on Obama's birth, including the "supporting documents" – which
presumably includes the Kenyan birth certificate advertised on the seller's
original auction page.

Nonetheless, like the four previous auction pages posted by the seller, the
fifth sale for the "dissertation" was scrubbed by eBay administrators.

Further, an alert notice was sent to eBay members who had been in contact
with colmado_naranja, warning them that the seller may be fraudulent and
attempting to extract private information from prospective buyers.

Previously, colmado_naranja claimed, the auction pages were removed because
of an eBay policy prohibiting the sale of government documents, even though
WND discovered several foreign birth certificates and even a driver's
license – albeit all from 1935 or older – for sale on the auction site.

An eBay help desk representative said the fifth auction auction for "the
dissertation" was removed because the company believed, "a third party had
accessed the [seller's] account."

The latest offering from colmado_naranja is an auction for a photograph of
several people who reportedly helped in the hunt for the "birth certificate,
and a promise that more information would be unveiled in a planned YouTube

President Obama's place of birth, however, remains only one of several
questions and possible avenues for answers that remain in determining
whether or not Obama is a "natural born citizen" under the U.S. Constitution
and eligible to serve as president.

WND has reported on dozens of legal challenges to Obama's status as a
natural born citizen." The Constitution, Article 2, Section 1, states, "No
Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at
the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the
Office of President."

Some of the lawsuits question whether he was actually born in Hawaii, as he
insists. If he was born out of the country, Obama's American mother, the
suits contend, was too young at the time of his birth to confer American
citizenship to her son under the law at the time.

Other challenges have focused on Obama's citizenship through his father, a
Kenyan subject to the jurisdiction of the United Kingdom at the time of his
birth, thus making him a dual citizen. The cases contend the framers of the
Constitution excluded dual citizens from qualifying as natural born.

Complicating the situation is Obama's decision to spend sums estimated in
the hundreds of thousands of dollars to avoid releasing a state birth
certificate that would put to rest all of the questions.

WND has reported that among the documentation not yet available for Obama
includes his kindergarten records, his Punahou school records, his
Occidental College records, his Columbia University records, his Columbia
thesis, his Harvard Law School records, his Harvard Law Review articles, his
scholarly articles from the University of Chicago, his passport, his medical
records, his files from his years as an Illinois state senator, his Illinois
State Bar Association records, any baptism records, and his adoption records

"Where's The Birth Certificate?" billboard in Pennsylvania

Because of the dearth of information about Obama's eligibility, WND founder
Joseph Farah has launched a campaign to raise contributions to post
billboards asking a simple question: "Where's the birth certificate?"

The campaign followed a petition that has collected almost 400,000
signatures demanding proof of his eligibility, the availability of yard
signs raising the question and the production of permanent, detachable
magnetic bumper stickers asking the question.

The eBay birth certificate seller is a self-proclaimed "collector of old
Dominican and Cuban money" and has worked in the Congo.

"This spring I traveled through Kenya and its capital Nairobi. I was
overwhelmed by the 'iconicized' face of U.S. President Barack Obama that
displays itself throughout the country. I had lunch at a small eatery and
noticed that the club sandwich with fried plantains was now known as 'Obama
s Plate of the Day,'" the seller wrote on the initial auction page. "As an
American I was bombarded with questions in English (English is national
language of Kenya) on my feelings and opinions of a Kenyan governing the
United States of America.

The first several times I responded in saying that
not enough time had elapsed since Barack Obama's appointment as president of
the U.S.A., and that I'd have to hold my official opinion until at least
January 2010, a year in office might be sufficient for me to judge his
ability to govern the U.S.A.

"Naturally I thought that by 'Kenyan' they were referring to Barack Obama's
blood, being that his father Barack Obama Sr. was a native of Kenya. After a
day and a half of my being in Nairobi I learned that they were literally
referring to President Barack Obama Jr. as being born in Kenya, a native of

The seller also cited the fact that Obama has not release his "Hawaiian"
birth certificate. His administration, the seller says, "in an attempt to
put the birth certificate issue to a rest, has presented the American public
with a fake, forged, fraudulent Hawaiian birth certificate."

The "certification of live birth" posted online and widely touted as "Obama
s birth certificate" does not in any way prove he was born in Hawaii, since
the same "short-form" document is easily obtainable for children not born in

The true "long-form" birth certificate – which includes information
such as the name of the birth hospital and attending physician – is the only
document that can prove Obama was born in Hawaii, but to date he has not
permitted its release for public or press scrutiny.

Oddly, though congressional hearings were held to determine whether Sen.
John McCain was constitutionally eligible to be president as a "natural born
citizen," no controlling legal authority ever sought to verify Obama's claim
to a Hawaiian birth.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


"A shallow, manipulative and egotistical amateur who is in over his head"
The Canadian Press


Obama's White House is Falling Down
By Daniel Greenfield

In the sixth month of his presidency, Obama has turned an economic downturn into an economic disaster, taking over and trashing entire companies, and driving the nation deep into deficit spending expected to pass 10 trillion dollars.

Abroad, Obama seems to have no other mode except to continue on with his endless campaign, confusing speechmaking with diplomacy. It is natural enough that Obama, who built his entire campaign on high profile public speeches reported on by an adoring press, understands how to do nothing else but that.

Ego driven photo op appearances and clueless treatment of foreign dignitaries

While the press is still chewing over Obama's Cairo speech, this celebrity style coverage ignores the fact that Obama's endless world tour is not actually accomplishing anything. Instead his combination of ego driven photo op appearances and clueless treatment of foreign dignitaries have alienated many of America 's traditional allies. Those who aren't being quietly angry at Obama, like Brown, Merkel or Netanyahu, instead think of him as as absurdly lightweight, as Sarkozy, King Abdullah or Putin do.

While his officials carry out their dirty economic deeds, Obama responds to any and every crisis as if it were a Mickey Rooney and Judy Garland musical, with a cry of, "Let's put on a show." Thus far Obama has put on "shows" across America , Europe and the Middle East . And what the adoring media coverage neglects to cover, is that Obama's shows have solved absolutely nothing. They have served only as high profile entertainment.

Neither alienating America 's traditional allies, through a combination of arrogant bullying and ignorance, nor appeasing America 's enemies, has yielded any actual results. Nor does it seem likely to. Islamic terrorism is not going anywhere, neither are the nuclear threats from North Korea and Iran . While Obama keeps smiling, the global situation keeps growing more grim.

At home, if Obama was elected as depression era entertainment, the charm of his smiles and his constant appearances on magazine covers appear to be wearing thin on the American public. Despite the shrill attacks on Rush Limbaugh or the Republican Enemy of the Weak-- the Democratic party of 2009, is polling a lot like the Republican party of 2008. The Democrats have suddenly become the incumbents, and the only accomplishment they can point to is lavish deficit spending, often on behalf of the very same corporations and causes they once postured against.

The European Union Parliament's swing to the right cannot be credited to Obama, though doubtlessly some European voters seeing socialist economic crisis management on display in the world's richest country decided they wanted none of it, but it is part of a general turning against federalism. And Obama's entire program is dependent on heavily entrenching federalism at the expense of individual and state's rights. Yet that is precisely his achilles heel with independent voters who are polling against more taxes and expanded government. And no amount of speeches by Obama can wish away his 18 czars or the national debt he has foisted on generation after generation of the American people.

That leaves Obama with a choice between socialism and the independent voter. And thus far he has chosen socialism.

Obama's tactic of hijacking Bush Administration era policies on the economy and the War on Terror, and exploiting them as trojan horses to promote his own agenda, have left him coping with a backlash from his own party, as well as general Republican opposition.

His Czars are meant to function as the bones in an executive infrastructure accountable to no one, but a lack of accountability isn't just another word for tyranny, but for incompetence. A functional chain of command is accountable at multiple levels if it is to function effectively. Obama's White House by contrast is in a state of over-organized chaos, the sort of organized disorganization that undisciplined egotistical leftists naturally create for themselves, complete with multiple overlapping levels of authority and no one in charge but the man at the top, who's too busy doing other things to actually be in charge.

Dennis Blair as National Intelligence, who collaborated with the Muslim genocide of Christians in East Timor , trying to muscle out the CIA to create his own intelligence network, is typical of the kind of chaos being spawned by every chief in an expanding government bureaucracy working to make sure that all the Indians answer to him. Similarly the National Security Council wrestling with the State Department, highlighted by Samantha Power getting her own specially created NSC position to butt heads with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, illustrates the state of conflict and chaos in American foreign affairs. A state of chaos so pervasive that incompetence has now become commonplace, and no one can even be found to double check the spelling of a Russian word that is meant to be the theme of American's diplomatic reconstruction with Russia , or to pick out a gift for the visiting British Prime Minister.

The death of Chrysler at the hands of Fiat and the UAW

Meanwhile on the economy, Obama exploited the ongoing bailouts, transforming them from bailouts into takeovers meant to shift the balance of power in what had been a democracy and socially engineer not only corporations, but the lives of ordinary Americans. But the public's patience with corporate bailouts is at an end, most Americans were never happy with them to begin with, and want them to end. The death of Chrysler at the hands of Fiat and the UAW might look like a victory in the union ranks, but it doesn't play too well outside Detroit . And tacking on CAFE standards that will kill the pickup truck and the SUV will badly erode Obama in the swing states, if exploited properly in 2010 and 2012. Despite the constant media barrage, orchestrated out of the White House, the public is growing disenchanted with the performance of Obama and the Democrats.

With unemployment booming and the economy dropping, the jobs aren't there and the spending is out of control. Republicans today are polling better on ethics and the economy, than the Democrats are. That shows a trend which is likely to register in the mid-term elections in 2010, in the same way that the EU parliamentary elections served as a shock to the system.

In the opposition, Republicans are free to embrace the rhetoric of change, to champion reform and push libertarian ideas about the size and scope of government. In turn all Obama has is his celebrity fueled media spectacle world tour. A charade now serving as a parallel to the depression era entertainment that functioned as escapism in a dour time. But before long, it may be Obama that the American public will want to escape from.

A shallow, manipulative and egotistical amateur who is in over his head

Obama has tried to play Lincoln, Reagan, JFK and FDR-- but in the end he can only play himself, a shallow, manipulative and egotistical amateur who is in over his head, and trying to drag the country down with him. Obama's White House is falling down and while the flashbulbs are still glittering and the parties are going on in D.C. and around the world, Obama and the Democratic Congress may be headed for a recession of their own.

Sunday, July 19, 2009


From ThisNation.com:

What is an Executive Order?
From time to time I hear that President Bush has issued an Executive Order establishing this policy or that. What is an Executive Order? Where does the President get the authority to issue them? Is there any way to reverse an Executive Order?

“Stroke of the pen. Law of the Land. Kinda cool.”
Paul Begala, former Clinton advisor, The New York Times, July 5, 1998

“We’ve switched the rules of the game. We’re not trying to do anything legislatively.”
Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt, The Washington Times, June 14, 1999

Executive Orders (EOs) are legally binding orders given by the President, acting as the head of the Executive Branch, to Federal Administrative Agencies. Executive Orders are generally used to direct federal agencies and officials in their execution of congressionally established laws or policies. However, in many instances they have been used to guide agencies in directions contrary to congressional intent.

Not all EOs are created equal. Proclamations, for example, are a special type of Executive Order that are generally ceremonial or symbolic, such as when the President declares National Take Your Child To Work Day. Another subset of Executive Orders are those concerned with national security or defense issues. These have generally been known as National Security Directives. Under the Clinton Administration, they have been termed “Presidential Decision Directives.”

Executive Orders do not require Congressional approval to take effect but they have the same legal weight as laws passed by Congress. The President’s source of authority to issue Executive Orders can be found in the Article II, Section 1 of the Constitution which grants to the President the “executive Power.” Section 3 of Article II further directs the President to “take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed.” To implement or execute the laws of the land, Presidents give direction and guidance to Executive Branch agencies and departments, often in the form of Executive Orders.

A Brief History and Examples
Executive Orders have been used by every chief executive since the time of George Washington. Most of these directives were unpublished and were only seen by the agencies involved. In the early 1900s, the State Department began numbering them; there are now over 13,000 numbered orders. Orders were retroactively numbered going back to 1862 when President Lincoln suspended the writ of habeas corpus and issued the Emancipation Proclamation by Executive Order. There are also many other Executive Orders that have not been numbered because they have been lost due to bad record-keeping. Such is not the problem today. All new Executive Orders are easily accessible (see below).

Many important policy changes have occurred through Executive Orders. Harry Truman integrated the armed forces under Executive Order. President Eisenhower used an EO to desegregate schools. Presidents Kennedy and Johnson used them to bar racial discrimination in federal housing, hiring, and contracting. President Reagan used an EO to bar the use of federal funds for advocating abortion. President Clinton reversed this order when he came into office.

President Clinton has come under fire for using the EO as a way to make policy without consulting the Republican Congress (see the quotes at the beginning of this article). Clinton has signed over 300 EOs since 1992. In one case, he designated 1.7 million acres of Southern Utah as the Grant Staircase - Escalante National Monument. He also designated a system of American Heritage Rivers and even fought a war with Yugoslavia under Executive Order.

Executive Orders are controversial because they allow the President to make major decisions, even law, without the consent of Congress. This, of course, runs against the general logic of the Constitution — that no one should have power to act unilaterally. Nevertheless, Congress often gives the President considerable leeway in implementing and administering federal law and programs. Sometimes, Congress cannot agree exactly how to implement a law or program. In effect, this leaves the decision to the federal agencies involved and the President that stands at their head. When Congress fails to spell out in detail how a law is to be executed, it leaves the door open for the President to provide those details in the form of Executive Orders.

Congressional Recourse
If Congress does not like what the executive branch is doing, it has two main options. First, it may rewrite or amend a previous law, or spell it out in greater detail how the Executive Branch must act. Of course, the President has the right to veto the bill if he disagrees with it, so, in practice, a 2/3 majority if often required to override an Executive Order.

Congress is less likely to challenge EOs that deal with foreign policy, national defense, or the implementation and negotiation of treaties, as these are powers granted largely to the President by the Constitution. As the Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces, the President is also considered the nation’s “Chief Diplomat.” In fact, given national security concerns, some defense or security related EOs (often called National Security Directives or Presidential Decision Directives) are not made public.

In addition to congressional recourse, Executive Orders can be challenged in court, usually on the grounds that the Order deviates from “congressional intent” or exceeds the President’s constitutional powers. In one such notable instance, President Harry Truman, was rebuked by the Supreme Court for overstepping the bounds of presidential authority. After World War II, Truman seized control of steel mills across the nation in an effort to settle labor disputes. In response to a challenge of this action, the Supreme Court ruled that the seizure was unconstitutional and exceeded presidential powers because neither the Constitution or any statute authorized the President to seize private businesses to settle labor disputes. For the most part, however, the Court has been fairly tolerant of wide range of executive actions.

Contributing Author: Jeffrey C. Fox, Catawba College

Additional Resources
The ultimate criticism of Executive Orders is that the runaway use of EOs could result in a President becoming a virtual dictator, capable of making major policy decisions without any congressional or judicial input. The following web sites contain articles arguing against the liberal use of Executive Orders by the President.

The Impact of Executive Orders on the Legislative Process: Executive Lawmaking? William Olsen, Cato Institute
Executive Orders A Blueprint for Dictatorship? Tanya L. Green, J.D., Concerned Women for America
For What Purposes Have Presidents Used Executive Orders?
The best way to get a feel for the types of “laws” that are made by Executive Order is to access them online. Executive Orders are available through multiple government publications and on the Internet (except those classified in the name of national security). You can read the text of these orders daily in the Federal Register and also under Title 3 of the Code of Federal Regulations. All EOs have been numbered and published since 1936.

Sites Providing Access to Executive Orders
The White House
Executive Orders Disposition Tables (Federal Register)
Executive Orders in the States
The use of Executive Orders is not just a presidential activity. They are also used by most state governors, who are the chief executives of their states. The following links will give you a feel for the types of Executive Orders used in a few states:


Tuesday, July 14, 2009


The mobile phone company Nokia is being hit by a growing economic boycott in Iran as consumers sympathetic to the post-election protest movement begin targeting a string of companies deemed to be collaborating with the regime.

Wholesale vendors in the capital report that demand for Nokia handsets has fallen by as much as half in the wake of calls to boycott Nokia Siemens Networks (NSN) for selling communications monitoring systems to Iran.

There are signs that the boycott is spreading: consumers are shunning SMS messaging in protest at the perceived complicity with the regime by the state telecoms company, TCI. Iran's state-run broadcaster has been hit by a collapse in advertising as companies fear being blacklisted in a Facebook petition. There is also anecdotal evidence that people are moving money out of state banks and into private banks.

Nokia is the most prominent western company to suffer from its dealings with the Iranian authorities. Its NSN joint venture with Siemens provided Iran with a monitoring system as it expanded a mobile network last year. NSN says the technology is standard issue to dozens of countries, but protesters believe the company could have provided the network without the monitoring function.

Siemens is also accused of providing Iran with an internet filtering system called Webwasher.

"Iranians' first choice has been Nokia cellphones for several years, partly because Nokia has installed the facility in the country. But in the past weeks, customers' priority has changed," said Reza, a mobile phone seller in Tehran's Big Bazaar.

"Since the news spread that NSN had sold electronic surveillance systems to the Iranian government, people have decided to buy other company's products although they know that Nokia cellphones function better with network coverage in Iran."

Some Tehran shops have removed Nokia phones from their window displays. Hashem, another mobile phone vendor, said: "I don't like to lose my customers and now people don't feel happy seeing Nokia's products. We even had customers who wanted to refund their new Nokia cellphones or change them with just another cellphone from any other companies.

"It's not just a limited case to my shop – I'm also a wholesaler to small shops in provincial markets, and I can say that there is half the demand for Nokia's product these days in comparison with just one month ago, and it's really unprecedented. People feel ashamed of having Nokia cellphones," he added.

News of the boycott has appeared on the front page of Iranian pro-reform papers such as Etemad-e Melli, owned by the reformist candidate Mehdi Karroubi. Hadi Heidari, a prominent Iranian cartoonist, has published an image of a Nokia phone on a No Entry traffic sign.

A Nokia spokeswoman refused to comment on the company's sales in Iran.

The Iranian authorities are believed to have used Nokia's mobile phone monitoring system to target dissidents. Released prisoners have revealed that the authorities were keeping them in custody on the basis of their SMS and phone calls archive, which was at officials' disposal.

One Iranian journalist who has just been released from detention said: "I always had this impression that monitoring calls is just a rumour for threatening us from continuing our job properly, but the nightmare became real when they had my phone calls – conversations in my case.

"And the most unbelievable thing for me is that Nokia sold this system to our government. It would be a reasonable excuse for Nokia if they had sold the monitoring technology to a democratic country for controlling child abuse or other uses, but selling it to the Iranian government with a very clear background of human rights violence and suppression of dissent, it's just inexcusable for me. I'd like to tell Nokia that I'm tortured because they had sold this damn technology to our government."

NSN spokesman Ben Roome said: "As in every other country, telecoms networks in Iran require the capability to lawfully intercept voice calls. In the last two years, the number of mobile subscribers in Iran has grown from 12 million to over 53 million, so to expand the network in the second half of 2008 we were required to provide the facility to intercept voice calls on this network."

In other sectors, state-run TV has also been targeted by protesters who have listed products advertised on its channels and urged supporters to join a boycott. Companies are running scared, and viewers have noticed the number of commercials plummet.

"We don't have many choices to show and continue our protests. They don't let us go out, they have killed many, we are threatened to text people or distribute emails, they have summoned people who shout Allahu Akbar ['God is great'] on rooftops at nights, so we need to look for new ways," said Shahla, a 26-year-old Iranian student.

"I can obviously see on the TV that they are facing an [advertising] crisis. This at least shows them how angry people are," she added.

The SMS boycott, meanwhile, has apparently forced TCI into drastic price hikes. The cost of an SMS has doubled in recent days. Protesters view the move as a victory.

Sunday, July 12, 2009


JERUSALEM (AP) — An attempt by Hamas police to detain a young woman walking with a man along the Gaza beach has raised alarms that the Islamic militant group is seeking to match its political control of the coastal territory with a strict enforcement of Islamic law.

The man she walked with and two of his peers were detained, beaten and ordered to sign statements promising not to engage in immoral activities, said the woman and one of the men.

The incident was the first known case of Hamas openly trying to punish a woman for behaving in a way it views as un-Islamic since seizing power two years ago. But it follows months of quiet pressure on Gaza's overwhelmingly conservative 1.4 million residents to abide by its strict religious mores.

Hamas officials in Gaza have publicly urged shopkeepers to take down foreign advertisements showing the shape of women's bodies and to stash away lingerie often displayed in windows. Officials search electronic shops to check if they are selling pornography on tiny flash drives.

"There's an open, public program to preserve public morals in Gaza," said local rights activist Isam Younis. "In reality that means trying to restrict freedoms."

Hamas denies any crackdown is under way. Since taking power, it has said it would only try to lead by example and not impose its views on anyone.

However, the group has taken no public action against small, shadowy groups that have attacked perceived hotbeds of Western immorality, such as hairdressers and Internet cafes, fueling criticism that it has not been tough enough on hard-line Muslim groups.

Freelance journalist Asma al-Ghoul says a group of Hamas police sent a clear message that certain behavior would not be tolerated when she went to the beach one evening in late June.

Al-Ghoul, 26, said she was spending time with a group of friends — two women and three men — on the northern Gaza shore.

Al-Ghoul is fairly exceptional in Gaza because she does not wear a Muslim headscarf. On that evening she wore jeans and a T-shirt — dress that is considered fairly provocative in Gaza's conservative society and which could have easily attracted the attention of the plain-clothed Hamas vice police who patrol the beaches.

Al-Ghoul swam, fully dressed, with a girlfriend, and then asked a male friend to walk her over to a nearby beach house rented by another couple she knew to shower and change.

Three policemen showed up and waited for al-Ghoul in the beach house garden, said an eyewitness who asked to remain anonymous because of security concerns. They took her identity card and demanded she accompany them to a nearby station — an order she refused.

An argument ensued and she was able to avoid detention and get her identity card back only after the homeowner contacted a senior Hamas official who intervened and spoke to the officers by telephone. The official, Taher Nunu, was not immediately available for comment.

The eyewitness said the police did not say why they wanted to detain al-Ghoul, but were insinuating that her behavior was unbecoming. Under Hamas' strict interpretation of Islamic law, a woman should not go out in public with men who are not related to her.

However, al-Ghoul said her male friends were subsequently beaten by Hamas police, detained for several hours and asked to sign statements saying they would not "violate public moral standards again," she said.

Al-Ghoul said she mostly felt angry that the police made her feel like she had done something wrong.

"I'm not provocative and my dress isn't provocative, and I'm not scandalous either," she said.

Her story only became public after rights groups published excerpts on their Web sites. Her version of events was confirmed by two other witnesses, including Adham Khalil, one of the men who was detained. Khalil said he was beaten.

Hamas police spokesman Islam Shahwan denied the incident took place but said Gaza residents "must preserve our customs and Islamic traditions."

Saturday, July 4, 2009



Today's June Employment Numbers

The updated Official and Alternate Employment
data are displayed here:


John Williams' full analysis of the reports is available
only to paid SGS Newsletter subscribers, but we are
providing you with the bullet points and the introductory
paragraphs, for your interest.

- June Jobs Loss Was 513,000 Net of
Concurrent Seasonal Factor Bias
Likely Topped 700,000 with Birth-Death Machinations

- Payroll Employment Growth Overstatement
Could Top 2.5 Million
Per Year with Birth-Death Modeling

- Annual Payroll Decline Deepened to 4.2%
Equal to 1958 Trough and Near 1949 Trough

- SGS-Alternate Unemployment at 20.6%

"June Employment Reporting Showed Ongoing Economic Deterioration.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released ongoing indications of deteriorating U.S. employment/unemployment conditions in June, with a worse-than-expected 467,000 drop in June payrolls, but a narrower-than-expected rise in unemployment to 9.5%.

Net of the Concurrent Seasonal Factor Bias (discussed below) and net of distortions built into the reporting by the Birth-Death Model (discussed below), the June jobs loss likely exceeded 700,000.

"The severe recession continues to deepen.

My broad outlook has not changed; the worst of the financial and economic crises remain ahead of us.

Best regards,
The ShadowStats Team