Scientists are questioning a $433-million government contract for an experimental smallpox drug (ST-246) awarded to Siga Technologies by the Obama administration. Siga, a New York-based pharmaceutical company specializing in disease-causing pathogens, was given a contract in May through a "sole-source" procurement: It was the only company asked to submit a proposal, while the government reportedly blocked other companies from bidding after Siga nearly lost the contract a year ago.
The Los Angeles Times reported over the weekend that administration officials used deceitful measures to secure the contract, as Siga’s controlling shareholder is one of the world’s wealthiest men and a prominent Democratic Party donor. Interviews, email correspondence, and various documents revealed that the Obama administration replaced the project’s lead negotiator after Siga complained that contracting specialists at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) repelled its financial demands.
In late October White House Chief of Staff William Daley ordered a complete review of all loan guarantees the Department of Energy has made to various energy projects. The review “is a tacit acknowledgement that the loan program [that supported the now-bankrupt energy company Solyndra]…has raised enough internal concern that an outside assessment is necessary…”, according the Washington Post.
For weeks, nations across the world have speculated over a potential Israeli attack on Iran. While there have been a number of indications that Israel could be considering a military strike on Iran, the conjecture has been exacerbated by Israel’s unwillingness to inform the United States of its intentions.
Early last week, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) released a report that allegedly proves Iran is in fact pursuing a nuclear weapons program. The UPI writes:
A report by the International Atomic Energy Agency released Tuesday provided the strongest evidence yet that Iran is close to developing nuclear weapons, including clandestine procurement of equipment and design information needed to make nuclear arms, high explosives testing and detonator development to set off a nuclear charge, computer modeling of a core of a nuclear warhead, and preparatory work for a nuclear weapons test — powerful evidence that refutes the regime's specious claims that its nuclear program is peaceful.
Wisconsin or Ohio: Who made the better choice?
The New American looks at labor unionism in America
APPLETON, WIS. - November 14, 2011 – Ohio followed in the footsteps of Wisconsin by passing a bill restricting the collective bargaining rights for public employees. However, a recent referendum in Ohio has successfully repealed the law. While Wisconsin does not have this direct referendum process, Governor Scott Walker is facing a recall because of the new law. In the meantime, many Wisconsin school districts are enjoying substantial savings.
The mainstream media is maintaining its reputation for deliberately providing minimal coverage to Texas Congressman Ron Paul during the GOP presidential debates. On Saturday, November 12, Paul — though he remains in the top tier of the Republican contenders — received a total of 89 seconds of coverage in the entire hour-long televised portion of the debate.
Tens of thousands of Christians descended upon Detroit’s Ford Field, home of the NFL’s Detroit Lions, on November 11 and 12 to pray for the restoration of a city that has been decimated by poverty, crime, corruption, and hopelessness. Sponsored by The Call, a group of pastors, church leaders, and young people committed to praying for a spiritual transformation in America, The Call Detroit 11.11.11 gathered individuals, churches, and organizations from nearly every corner of Detroit to seek God’s mercy and ask for His blessing over the area. Promoted as a solemn assembly rather than a traditional Christian crusade, the event included no well-known speakers or Christian rock bands to entertain and inspire the crown that poured into the sports stadium. Instead, both national and local religious leaders led the assembled, along with tens of thousands more watching via the Internet, in 24 hours of fasting, worship, and prayer, including repentance for social ills like abortion, racism, and anti-Semitism, along with intercession for God to bring spiritual renewal both to the city and the nation.
“We are not just seeking to have a good gathering,” explained Lou Engle, founder of The Call. “We are trying to move heaven on behalf of a desperate situation in Detroit.
On The Call’s website, organizers explained the purpose of the event: “We will gather to this city that has become a microcosm of our national crisis — economic collapse, racial tension, and the shedding of innocent blood of our children in the streets and of our unborn.” As Engle told the crowd: “We need Jesus’ face to appear all across America”
Democrats on the Senate Judiciary Committee overwhelming approved a bill that would overturn the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), the federal law that defines marriage for federal purposes as only between a man and a woman. The 10-8 vote in favor of the Respect for Marriage Act, sponsored by Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), marks the first time a committee in either the Senate or the House has voted to repeal the 17-year-old law, and represents a major step toward federal approval of homosexual marriage.
“Because of DOMA, thousands of American families are now being treated unfairly by the federal government,” declared Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.). “This unfairness must end.” But Republicans on the committee, reported Politico.com, “noting that the bill faces bleak prospects for passing the full Congress, said the measure was a waste of time and the matter should be left up to the states.” Thus far, Iowa, New York, Connecticut, Vermont, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire, along with the District of Columbia, have passed state laws recognizing homosexual “marriage.”
Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas), chairman of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, pointed out that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) would never allow the controversial bill to come to the Senate floor for a vote, given that the Democrats’ control of the Senate will be on the line in the 2012 elections. “Were he to schedule a vote on this bill before the next election, he would face a revolution in his own caucus,” Cornyn said.
During this last weekend of November 11 to 13, the Boston International Antiquarian Book Fair took place at the Hynes Convention Center. As an antiquarian book collector, I always go to these fairs because I love books, particularly old books, and the dealers who exhibit at this fair usually bring the best they have to offer. And considering the prices being asked, you would think they were selling jewels. And in a sense they are.
If you want to purchase a Shakespeare First Folio, be prepared to shell out over a million dollars. But no First Folio was for sale at this fair. First Folios are usually sold at Sotheby auctions where millionaire collectors or great academic institutions buy the most valuable books being offered.
That books should acquire such incredible value is a demonstration of the free-market at work. So far, there is no government agency that regulates the sale of antiquarian books. The dealers regulate themselves with a rather strict code of ethics.
By the way, not all old books increase in value. Some are not worth anything, or very little at best. Value is created by how much people are willing to pay for an item. The books that increase in value are signed first editions by noted authors, books of historical importance, and beautiful editions of great studies. Several years ago I was able to get an original 1798 copy of Robison’s Proofs of a Conspiracy from a British bookseller for $100. It would undoubtedly cost much more today.
When a group of students at a California high school elected to wear patriotic American-flag T-shirts to school on Cinco de Mayo (May 5), a Mexican holiday, they were told by their principal to turn their shirts inside out so as not to offend the school’s Hispanic students. The students took their case to court; however, last week a U.S. District Judge James Ware of San Francisco ruled that the school was well within its rights to make the students hide the U.S. flags on their T-shirts.
Three students appeared at Live Oak High School at the Morgan Hill Unified School District on May 5, 2010 wearing T-shirts adorned with the American flag. Assistant principal Miguel Rodriguez asked the students to either remove their shirts or turn them inside out. When the students refused to comply, Rodriguez ordered them to principal Nick Boden’s office. After discussing the subject with the students for well over an hour, the principal sent them home for the day.
The Blaze reports, “The Rutherford Institute and the Thomas More Law Center teamed up to represent the students and their families.”
“This is nothing more than political correctness,” declared John Whitehead, president of Rutherford. “If these kinds of decisions are upheld, they will destroy our First Amendment rights.”
Having been pulled from an exhibition at the Smithsonian Institution, a film which features ants crawling on a crucifix and a man stitching his mouth together will go on display as part of a larger homosexual exhibit at the Brooklyn Museum in Brooklyn, New York.
The nation’s second largest art museum, CNSNews.com reported last week, will feature A Fire In My Belly, a film by David Wojnarowicz, a homosexual producer who unsurprisingly died of AIDS, within an exhibit titled “Hide and Seek.”
“Hide and Seek” appeared at the Smithsonian at last year, subsidized by federal tax dollars, but the museum pulled the film after GOP elected officials complained. Now the Brooklyn Museum, also funded by state, federal, and city tax dollars, will show the film.