Is This The Start Of Something Big?

Unless the Iranians are insanely careless when moving ordnance around an “ammunition depot”, it’s unlikely that an explosion of this size was an accident, especially if reports are true that this was actually a highly secret missile base, a senior Guard commander was killed and/or that two consecutive explosions occurred in two IRGC bases.

Mystery surrounds deadly blast at Iran ammunition depot

Mystery surrounds yesterday’s explosion at a Revolutionary Guard ammunition depot that was so large it was felt and heard almost 30 miles away in Tehran.

. . .

The Fars News Agency, which is connected to the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), reported on Sunday that the IRGC “strongly dismissed certain baseless reports” that the explosion was “related to nuclear tests or transport of missile warheads.”

“The blast happened during the transportation of [conventional] ammunition,” said the IRGC press chief General Ramazan Sharif. Some 15 soldiers had been “martyred,” he said, dialing down initial estimates of 40, though some of the wounded were in critical condition.

See also:
Blasts hit IRGC military base in W Tehran, 15 dead
‘IRGC military base blast kills 17’
Accidental explosion at Revolutionary Guard ammunition depot kills 17 west of Iran’s capital
Iran explosion at Revolutionary Guards military base
17 killed in Iran base blast
Iran exile group claims blast near Tehran hit closely guarded missile base
Iran exile group claims blast hits missile base
Iran exile group claims blast hits missile base
Iran Exile Group Claims Blast Hits Missile Base
Iran Guards: Officer killed in blast a ‘martyr’
Iran: Dead Guard commander was missile expert
Massive explosion in Iran kills 17
17 killed in massive explosions at munitions depot near Tehran
Iran: Top Revolutionary Guard commander among those killed in blast
US blog: Mossad behind Iran blast
Israelis wonder about deadly Iranian missile-site explosion

Was this Israeli orchestrated sabotage of an Iranian test, related to Iran’s nuclear weapons program or, perhaps, a U.S. B-2 strike, based on timely intelligence? Either possibility could be a plausible explanation for what occurred. One thing’s for damn sure, if it turns out that, indeed, two separate IRGC bases were hit near simultaneously, it wasn’t an accident.

/in any case, keep the Iranian “accidents” coming, they’re much easier to sell to the international community and much less disruptive to world markets than belligerent acts of war by foreign powers

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Another One Bites The Dust

Yet another government entitlement program looks to be about to go belly up.

Social Security Disability Payments Could End in 2017

Aging baby boomers and laid-off workers are inundating Social Security’s disability program with benefit claims, a financial strain that new congressional estimates report could leave the program bankrupt by 2017.

Applications have increased by 50 percent over the past decade, according to a report from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), as more people with disabilities lost their jobs — and often remain unemployed for months or even years — in an economy that has been hemorrhaging jobs.

See also:
Social Security Disability and SSI going broke
Social Security Disability Payments May Cease in 2017
Social Security disability on verge of insolvency
Report: Disability fund losing cash
A look at Social Security’s disability program
Old And In The Way: The Politics, Policies and Poverty Of Aging
Soc. Sec. disabilities claims up by 50%
U.S. Trust Funds
Social Security Disability Payments In Peril by 2017
Another Looming Entitlement Crisis
Social Security Disability Fund In Trouble
Government Running Out of Funds for Social Security
Social Security disability payments could end in 2017

Medicare, Social Security, and now Social Security Disability are all well down the road toward insolvency and the politicians, particularly the Democrats, don’t have the guts to do a damn thing about it. So, if you’re under say, 50, I wouldn’t be counting on any of these entitlement programs to be there for you when you might need them in the future.

/it’s the Age of Obama economy and you’re just going to have to learn to fend for yourself

Where The Hell Is Samantha Power?

Welcome to the insane liberal foreign policy bizarro fantasy world of responsibility to protect (R2P).

Humanitarian Hawk

President Obama’s non-war war in Libya makes no sense, blame his nutty security adviser “for multilateral affairs and human rights” — Samantha Power.

It turns out Power was the main White House aide agitating for military force against Libyan strongman Moammar Gadhafi. She helped overrule reluctant Pentagon brass by arguing force can be justified on “humanitarian grounds.” She noted that “on a single day, Gadhafi killed 1,200” of his own people.

Well, hey, Samantha, what about the Ivory Coast? What about your “responsibility to protect”? Innocent civilians are being massacred by the hundreds. Why aren’t you protecting them? Why Libya and not Ivory Coast?

Ivory Coast conflict intensifies amid reports of a massacre

Estimates of the dead in the contested town of Duekoue were hard to pin down, with figures ranging from more than 300 to 1,000 people killed. The International Committee of the Red Cross said that more than 800 civilians had been killed in “intercommunal” violence in the town, where tens of thousands of Ivorian civilians have been displaced by fighting between the forces of Alassane Ouattara, the internationally recognized winner of a November election, and Laurent Gbagbo, who refuses to step down.

“We are shocked by the brutality and scale of this act,” said Dominique Liengme, the Red Cross’s representative in Ivory Coast.

See also:
Ivory Coast massacre claims hundreds
Red Cross: 800 killed in Ivory Coast town
Mass graves, ‘1000 dead’ in Ivory Coast
Machete thugs hack to death 1,000 in just one town as Ivory Coast battle rages
More than 1,000 killed in Ivorian town
Massacre on the streets of Ivory Coast
Massacre in Ivory Coast city as strongman Laurent Gbagbo clings to power
Ivory Coast violence: 800 found dead in Duekoue, anti-government protests against Gbagbo intensify
Ivory Coast massacre kills 1,000: agency
Slaughter in Ivory Coast as the Grisly Political Standoff Intensifies
UN investigates massacre
Massacre Uncovered In Western Ivory Coast
Impasse On The Ivory Coast

C’mon Samantha, why aren’t you badgering your boss Obama to intervene in this conflict? What’s happening in Ivory Coast is much worse than anything that’s happened in Libya so far. Is “responsibility to protect” a consistent doctrine or just a trendy catch phrase you throw around at Washington cocktail parties to impress your liberal elite friends? What part of massacre don’t you understand?

/[expletive deleted] armchair intellectual, heads up their asses, Obama administration clown posse hypocrites

100 Too Many

How awesome is it that a country with a weak, unstable central government, teetering on the brink of falling into the hands of radical Islamists, has 100 nuclear warheads, and keeps building more?

At 100, Pak ahead in N-arsenal

How many nuclear weapons does Pakistan need to feel secure? Not enough. Islamabad has doubled its nuclear weapons to more than 100 in the last few years, overtaking India’s tally in the process, and is adding more bombs to its arsenal, according to new estimates by proliferation gurus.

Four years ago, Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal was estimated to contain between 30 to 60 weapons, about the same as India’s. Since then, the country has rapidly accelerated its program. Current estimates by western nuclear pundits cited in the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists and other journals put the number between 100 and 110 — and growing.

See also:
Pakistan doubles its nuclear arsenal
Pakistani Nuke Stockpile Tops 100, Experts Say
Pakistan has 100 nuclear weapons, doubled its arsenal: Post
Report Says Pakistan’s Nuclear Arsenal Tops 100
At 110, Pak N-stock shoots past India’s: Report
‘Rapidly expanding’ Pak arsenal now possesses over 100 deployed nuke weapons: Expert
Pak has 110 N-weapons to edge ahead of India: US Report
Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal tops 100: report
Pakistan Doubles Its Nuclear Arsenal
Don’t worry, India’s deterrence is robust: Pokhran II scientist

Do we really need this headache too? These yahoos can’t even control a significant chunk of their own territory, what the [expletive deleted] do they need 100 nuclear warheads for? God help us all if even one of these warheads falls into the hands of the Taliban or al Qaeda with the proper arming codes. And if the Islamists eventually manage to topple the unpopular, current secular government, they’ll probably have all the arming codes.

/I’d be extremely surprised if the United States didn’t have contingency plans to seize or spike these warheads if the Pakistani government were to fall to Islamic terrorists, however, every additional warhead they produce makes that task that much more difficult

Friday Night Bad News Dump

Obama was hoping you wouldn’t notice the new record deficit he set. It’s more than three times as large as the deficit was when Bush left office.

White House predicts record $1.47 trillion deficit this year, 9 percent unemployment next year

New estimates from the White House on Friday predict the budget deficit will reach a record $1.47 trillion this year. The government is borrowing 41 cents of every dollar it spends.

That’s actually a little better than the administration predicted in February.

The new estimates paint a grim unemployment picture as the economy experiences a relatively jobless recovery. The unemployment rate, presently averaging 9.5 percent, would average 9 percent next year under the new estimates.

The Office of Management and Budget report has ominous news for President Barack Obama should he seek re-election in 2012 — a still-high unemployment rate of 8.1 percent. That would be well above normal, which is closer to a rate of 5.5 percent to 6 percent. Private economists don’t think the unemployment rate will drop to those levels until well into this decade.

“The U.S. economy still faces strong headwinds,” the OMB report said. They include tight credit markets, a high inventory of unsold housing and retrenchment by state governments bound by balanced budget mandates. The European debt crisis has also had an impact.

See also:
Mid-Session Review
Budget of the U.S. Government

Federal budget deficit to exceed $1.4 trillion in 2010 and 2011
Forecast for 2011 Deficit Is Raised to $1.4 Trillion
Obama Budget Office Forecasts $1.47 Trillion Deficit This Year
Obama’s budget deficit heading further up
US deficit heads toward record $1.47 trillion
Federal deficit expected to reach record high
OMB: Economic pain will linger
US predicts record budget deficit
U.S. economy faces strong headwinds: White House
U.S. Trims ’10 Deficit Forecast as Economy Faces Headwinds
Republicans pounce on new OMB deficit predictions
Budget 2011: Past Deficits vs. Obama’s Deficits in Pictures

And remember, these record deficit projections are based on rosy White House economic assumptions.

Real GDP is expected to rise by 3.1 percent during the four quarters of 2010 and to increase 4.0 percent in 2011. The growth rate is projected to rise to 4.3 percent in 2012 and 4.2 percent in 2013 as the economy returns closer to its potential output level. Beyond 2013, real GDP growth is projected to moderate, declining gradually to 2.5 percent per year in 2018-2020.

If the U.S. economy falls short of these GDP projections, the now record deficits will become even worse. And you don’t even want to think about what happens if interest rates rise significantly and it costs the U.S. Government even more to borrow these incredibly humongous amounts of money.

/there’s no way that Obama can legitimately blame Bush for this budget mess anymore, although that won’t stop him from trying to revise history

Obama Lied, Your Health Care Plan Died

Remember this talking point, repeated ad nauseam?

Well, guess what, are you sitting down? Obama lied, what a shocka!

Friday night news dump: White House says 51 percent of company health plans won’t meet Obamacare guidelines

At Investor’s Business Daily, Sean Higgins and David Hogberg have a doozy of a story:

Internal White House documents reveal that 51% of employers may have to relinquish their current health care coverage by 2013 due to ObamaCare. That numbers soars to 66% for small-business employers.

The documents — product of a joint project of the Labor Department, the Health and Human Services Department and the IRS — examine the effects new regulations would have on existing, or “grandfathered,” employer-based health care plans.

Draft copies of the documents were reportedly leaked to House Republicans earlier in the week. Rep. Bill Posey, R-Fla., posted them on his Web site Friday afternoon. (View the full report here.)

The Associated Press is also on the story. Even they can’t ignore the dishonesty that was used to sell the health care overhaul:

Over and over in the health care debate, President Barack Obama said people who like their current coverage would be able to keep it.

But an early draft of an administration regulation estimates that many employers will be forced to make changes to their health plans under the new law. In just three years, a majority of workers — 51 percent — will be in plans subject to new federal requirements, according to the draft.

See also:
Administration: 51% Of Companies’ Health Plans Won’t Pass Muster
Health overhaul to force changes in employer plans
Health-care rules may force some to change coverage, leaked document suggests
Draft Health Rules Set Hurdles
Keep Your Health Plan Under Overhaul? Probably Not, Gov’t Analysis Concludes
Health overhaul to force employer plan changes
ObamaCare Vindication Watch: Majority of Workers Will Have to Change Health Coverage
Interim Final Rules for Group Health Plans and Health Insurance Coverage Relating to Status as a Grandfathered Health Plan under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

Well, Obama and the Democrats passed Obamacare without reading it and now we’re sure as hell finding out what’s in it and it’s getting worse by the day.

/hey, you [expletive deleted] up, you elected them