Saturday, June 29, 2013

In South Africa Obama Compares Nelson Mandela to George Washington. Easy, Barack.

Verne Strickland USA DOT COM June 30, 2013

I predicted this. It had to happen. The Western press has re-clothed terrorist Nelson Mandela as a benign, cuddly old homebody, while he plied his trade as a murderer and known Communist. So I say: "Easy, Barack. You are on the world stage now. Don't gloss over this man's true character by likening him to an American of the stature of George Washington. This is a new low even for you. But it's helpful again to see you reveal your true colors.

In South Africa Obama Compares Nelson Mandela to George Washington

Posted by Jim Hoft on Saturday, June 29, 2013, 4:15 PM

 Barack Obama compared Nelson Mandela to George Washington during his stop in South Africa. Which would make sense except that Nelson Mandela was an America-bashing socialist.

mandela castro
America-basher Nelson Mandela with buddy Fidel Castro.
ABC reported, via Free Republic:
Although President Obama will not get a chance to see Nelson Mandela on his trip to South Africa, he is using his historic visit to pay tribute to the man he calls a hero to the world and will meet today with the Mandela family. At a joint press conference with South African President Jacob Zuma this morning, President Obama spoke extensively about Mandela’s legacy.
“Our thoughts and those of Americans and people all around the world are with Nelson Mandela and his family and all of South Africans,” Obama said. “The struggle here for freedom, Madiba’s moral courage, this country’s historic transition to a free nation has been a personal inspiration to me, an inspiration to the world, and it continues to be.”…
…Later, when asked about his policy toward Africa, Obama again returned to Mandela.
“Mandela shows what was possible when a priority is placed on human dignity, respect for law, that all people are treated equally,” Obama said.

“And what Nelson Mandela also stood for is that the well-being of the country is more important than the interests of any one person,” Obama continued. “George Washington is admired because after two terms he said enough, I’m going back to being a citizen. There were no term limits, but he said I’m a citizen. I served my time. And it’s time for the next person, because that’s what democracy is about. And Mandela similarly was able to recognize that, despite how revered he was, that part of this transition process was greater than one person.”

Friday, June 28, 2013

Politics casts shadow over Mandela as he lies dying . . .

Verne Strickland June 28, 2013

This article is not an entirely sanitized profile of South Africa's first black president. If it were, I wouldn't use it. But during the course of the text, the praise and adulation seem to give way to a more realistic assessment of Nelson Mandela -- without his angel wings. That's the way I see him. The Western press has made a Teflon hero and icon out of a man that had feet of clay all the way up to his hips. He is a known communist, and is branded as a murderer. More details on that in a follow-up feature. Mewanwhile, here's a treatment offered by The Washington Post:

Outside his hospital’s green gate, hundreds of youths from the ruling African National Congress, brought here by the party in large buses, dance, sing and chant, “Nelson Mandela, Nelson Mandela.” Many wear the ANC’s green and yellow colors, some on T-shirts emblazoned with the face of South African President Jacob Zuma, who is running for reelection next year.
“There is no born-free without a liberator,” the back of one shirt reads. “Vote ANC 2014.”

In response, opposition leaders expressed skepticism, saying that small arms would not be adequate.

Across South Africa, there is a political dimension to the national grief over Mandela, who remained critically ill but in stable condition Friday, as President Obama landed in the country on the second leg of his Africa visit. At a time when the ANC is facing immense challenges, its efforts to manage Mandela’s possibly last days and hours suggest it is seeking to be seen as the party best able to carry forward the anti-apartheid icon’s ideals and perpetuate his legacy.
In recent days, a revolving door of ANC leaders has visited the Mediclinic Heart Hospital in the administrative capital, Pretoria, often making a point during interviews of mentioning Mandela’s links to the ANC. The party has ordered its followers nationwide to attend group meetings to pray for his recovery, and Zuma has made it a priority to personally inform the nation about every development in his illness.
“There is an umbilical cord between Nelson Mandela and the African National Congress that cannot be broken,” Ace Magashule, the premier of Free State province and a top ANC leader, told a local television station Friday, outside the hospital.
The sharp deterioration in Mandela’s health comes amid significant questions about the ANC and its future after his death. Despite retiring from public life, the 94-year-old former president remains the party’s most beloved figure and its highest moral authority. Meanwhile, the current generation of leaders, including Zuma, has been criticized as elitist and corrupt.
There are also deep divisions inside the party, whose culture and actions have drawn denunciations even from revered stalwarts of the anti-apartheid era. One well-known activist, Mamphela Ramphele, recently launched a political party called Agang that could pose a significant challenge to the ANC in next year’s elections.
“Some ANC leaders want to cling on to brand Mandela, as members are leaving the party,” said William Gumede, a South African political analyst who has written extensively about the ANC. “They say, ‘Stay, this is still the party of Mandela.’ ”
Critics accuse the ANC, as well as other politicians, of exploiting the popular grief over Mandela by claiming him as their own. In an opinion piece in the local Business Day newspaper on Friday titled “Political vultures are circling over Mandela,” analyst Anthony Butler wrote that politicians would try to use “their allegedly close relationships with the great man to their political advantage.”
“Despite their better instincts, ANC professionals may well decide that ‘Mandela’s legacy’ is an inescapable theme for next year’s national and provincial elections,” said Butler, a politics professor at the University of Cape Town.
ANC officials deny that they are politicizing Mandela’s hospitalization, saying their accusers have their own political motives. “We went to the hospital to say ‘Madiba, get well,’ ” said Jackson Mthembu, the party’s national spokesman, using Mandela’s Xhosa clan name. “And we will continue do so. Nothing is going to stop us from going there. He’s our leader. We owe him that.”
Mandela matured politically inside the ANC, which he joined in 1943. In the 1950s, he was the national president of the ANC Youth League and was on the party’s national executive board. But it wasn’t until he was released from prison in 1990, after being incarcerated for 27 years, that Mandela became president of the ANC.
In 1994, after the ANC won South Africa’s first all-race elections, he became the country’s first black president. In 1999, he stepped down from office after one term and retired from public life, although he remained an immensely influential figure.
In recent years, disillusionment with the ANC and its current leadership has grown, despite the party’s political dominance, and it is widely seen as out of touch with South Africa’s impoverished masses. Last year, Zuma battled allegations that he had misused public money to renovate his private home. In April, the ANC came under fire for broadcasting images of Zuma and other senior ANC leaders posing with a lethargic, frail Mandela. They were accused of taking advantage of Mandela for political gain.
In interviews, South Africans said that Mandela is a key reason why they support the ANC, and some expressed concern about the party’s future after he dies.
“The ANC is so messed up right now,” said Vuyokazi Duna, 31, in Mandela’s ancestral village of Qunu. “When he passes on, I don’t know what will happen.”
Outside the hospital Friday, Nonkululeko Ketwa, a government employee, said the uncertainty was reason enough for Mandela to live longer. “We still need him,” she said.

Twitter Account Gets Scrubbed In Zimmerman Case -- Surprise, Surprise!

Verne Strickland June 24, 2013

Deletion spree sanitizes postings of teenage prosecution witness

“This shit right here goin make me smoke I need a drink a Lott.” 

JUNE 26--In a late-night scrubbing spree, dozens of embarrassing and incriminating posts were deleted Tuesday evening from the Twitter account of a Florida woman who has been described as a star government witness in the George Zimmerman murder case, The Smoking Gun has learned.
The sanitizing of Rachel Jeantel’s Twitter account came as the 19-year-old Miami resident prepared to take the stand and testify about a phone call she had with Trayvon Martin just before the unarmed 17-year-old was shot to death by Zimmerman in February 2012.

In relating that conversation, Jeantel has told investigators that a “scared” Martin said he was being followed by an unknown white man who demanded to know what the teen was doing inside the Retreat at Twin Lakes, a gated community in Sanford, Florida. Jeantel contends that she heard Martin ask the man, “Why you following me for?” before she heard someone “bump” the teenager. “Next thing I hear…the phone is shut off,” Jeantel told investigators in an April 2012 interview.
Jeantel’s testimony may allow prosecutors to further portray Zimmerman, a 29-year-old neighborhood watch commander, as Martin’s pursuer, an armed aggressor who profiled the black teen before murdering him with a single gunshot to the chest.
As TSG reported yesterday, Jeantel, pictured above, maintains a Twitter account (@MsRachel_94) to which she has made more than 200 posts over the past five months. Many of the teenager’s tweets referred to drinking, smoking, and getting high. She also made references to Martin’s death, referred to acquaintances as “bitch” and “nigga,” and wrote about having “jackass lawyers on my ass.”
Yesterday afternoon, after TSG sought to contact several of Jeantel’s Twitter followers and Facebook friends, 14 tweets--and 13 linked Twitpic photos--were deleted from her Twitter account (which carries the personal motto “My Character And Action Describe Who I Am”). The removed tweets included references to drinking and a link to a sexually suggestive set of photos. Another killed tweet, from June 23, read “Court nails” and linked to a photo of fingernails (presumably Jeantel’s) with fresh orange polish. Additionally, several Twitpic images of assorted liquor bottles were deleted.
The scrubbing of Jeantel’s Twitter account, however, did not end there.
After 10 PM (Eastern) last night, 43 other tweets were deleted. The postings disappeared about two hours after TSG published a story about Jeantel’s social media musings. A TSG comparison of Jeantel’s sanitized Twitter account with the version from early Tuesday afternoon showed that the number of published tweets plummeted from 202 to 146.
A compilation of the 43 deleted Jeantel tweets can be found on pages beginning here. The 14 tweets deleted yesterday afternoon can be found here.
The material deleted last evening included nearly all remaining references to the underage Jeantel’s partying, including tweets like “When u drinking & smoking u need good music in ur ears hahaha I feel so good on Sunday” and “I need a drink to sleep dis off fuck dis shit boi.”
A quartet of consecutive February 24 tweets was also killed. “Party time let get high,” read the first tweet, which included beer glass emoticons. The messages “Omg everybody high” and “Lol we going to hell for smoke on Sunday I need some more drink” then followed. Jeantel’s final tweet that day was “I hope I dnt hit no one tonight lord plz watch my driving.” Her first February 25 tweet, also deleted, read, “Just got home thank u lord good night.”
Several tweets from February 26--the one-year anniversary of Martin’s death--were also deleted, including one that read, “Omg people calling n praying n shit lol I need a drink smoke and a pray my head killing me right now cannot wait when this day end.” A February 26 message reading “#rip Tray” remains on Jeantel’s Twitter page.
On March 5, it was disclosed that Jeantel was not truthful to investigators last year when she claimed that the reason she did not attend Martin’s funeral was due to a hospitalization. In apparent response to news reports about that lie, Jeantel tweeted, “Jus got home n hear wat was going and I’m angry.” In a follow-up post, she wrote, “remember who cause the funeral to happen keep it 100% Mr.ass hoe damn they p*ssed me off.” Those two tweets were erased last night.
A pair of Jeantel’s deleted April tweets appear to refer to Robert Zimmerman, Jr., George’s older brother and the outspoken Zimmerman family spokesman who recently had to apologize for a pair of his own controversial Twitter posts. In one tweet, Zimmerman juxtaposed a photo of Martin with an image of a Georgia teen recently charged with murdering a 13-month-old boy. The picture of Martin shows him holding up two middle fingers, while the photo of the other teen appears to show him flashing gang signs. “A picture speaks a thousand words. Any questions?" tweeted Zimmerman, who is seen above on CNN's "Piers Morgan Live.".
In an April 4 tweet, Jeantel recounted a tweet she had received from “J” asking her “did you see the bro talking shit bout u.” Her tweet concluded, “oh really I have jackass lawyers on my ass kno “JR” want to up in ok.”
The following day Jeantel tweeted, “JUST FOR ‘JR’,” and included a link to a Twitpic showing someone giving the camera the finger. The image was deleted last night.
A third post seeming to refer to Robert Zimmerman, Jr. appeared on Jeantel’s Twitter page on May 28. That day, Robert appeared at the Sanford courthouse for a hearing in his brother’s case and later conducted a press conference during which he declared his brother’s innocence and called for the withdrawal of second-degree murder charges against his sibling.
“Omg can somebody Robert jr shut the fuck up with his life story,” Jeantel wrote in her May 28 tweet. While that message was not among the 43 tweets removed last night from Jeantel’s Twitter account, it was deleted early this morning. A follow-up tweet, scrubbed last night, reported, “This shit right here goin make me smoke I need a drink a Lott.” (5 pages)

Sunday, June 23, 2013


Yea, though I walk high above the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil . . .

By Verne Strickland    June 23, 2013

Millions watched around the world Sunday night as high-wire artist Nick Wallenda attempted a 1,500-foot walk across the Grand Canyon -- one of the Wonders of the World.

The fact that he succeeded -- which seemed uncertain at times -- has transformed Wallenda himself into a global sensation.

A seventh-generation wire-walker, 34-year, Wallenda, successfully walked a two-inch thick cable across the Little Colorado River Gorge near the Grand Canyon. He completed the walk in just under 23 minutes.

His tightrope was stretched 1,500 feet above the gorge floor, and he made the tense 1,400-foot long televised walk without a net or safety harness. At one point, 13 minutes into the walk, he stopped and knelt in an effort to slow the cable's movement.

"Thank you, Jesus, praise your name, my sweet Christ," the 34-year-old father and family breathed into a a live wireless microphone attached to his shirt collar.

Beloved evangelist Billy Graham during his career in Christian ministry has reached millions via television and personal appearances, bringing many thousands of souls to Christ.

But faithful disciple Nick Wallenda probably eclipsed every record for his message of praise and thanksgiving, which continued minute by breathless minute as Wallenda moved carefully across the wire, obviously tiring toward the end, and seemingly making slight missteps on several occasions.

In a very sense, then, this death-defying stroll was as much a victory for Jesus Christ as for the Discovery Channel and live television itself. They made money. Christ won souls.

Commercial religious entertainer Joel Osteen, whom I have never heard utter the Blessed Name of Jesus Christ, was unfortunately chosen to render a prayer of appeal from The Man Upstairs to help Nik Wallender during his dangerous walk.

Osteen really heated up into a froth of faux sincerity and religious piety in a prayer that it seemed would last longer than Wallenda's walk -- but never spoke directly to or about the Lamb of  God, Christ the Righteous. He was spared embarrassment toward the end of his grand exhortation by the network, which mercifully cranked up theme music to obscure how he ended his TV face time.

I don't know what Osteen is, but I know what he isn't -- a true follower of our Lord, who says to us: "He who denies me before the world, him will I likewise deny before my Father Which is in Heaven."

But back to the very popular, brave and sincere Mr. Nik Wallenda, who grew up performing with his family and has dreamed of crossing the Grand Canyon since he was a teenager. Sunday's stunt comes a year after he traversed Niagara Falls earning a seventh Guinness world record.

While we're on this theme, many who might have witnessed that stunning accomplishment may recall the imbroglio which ensued when the network transmitting the live telecast quickly shut off the wire-walker's live microphone as soon as he mentioned the name of Jesus.

We know, of course, that Nik's prayer did not thus get to the vast audience looking in for that feat, but it definitely got to Almighty God, who is not mindful of an audio cut-off switch thrown by some atheist producer.

There is proven peril in the legacy built by the Wallendas. Nik's great-grandfather, Karl Wallenda, fell during a performance in Puerto Rico and died at the age of 73. Several other family members, including a cousin and an uncle, have perished while performing wire walking stunts.

How many bottom lines are we left with here?

One is that Nik didn't fall to his death. The second is that this young man of faith doubtless ramped up the spirits of modern Christian disciples. The third is that Nik, as he literally put his life on the line, used this landmark occasion to give glory to God. I'd say those are three major accomplishments for one mortal on one June evening 1,500 feet above the Grand Canyon Floor.

For Nik and the millions who watched breathlessly by television and cable throughout the world, these sweet words may have come to mind: "Just a Closer Walk with God." There is no doubt that his Lord was with him every step of the way.