San Francisco’s Saint Mary’s Cathedral may preach charity, but the church made a splash with a new way to serve the poor: drenching homeless people with a sprinkler system, reported KCBS San Francisco. The San Francisco Department of Building Inspection asked the Archdiocese to remove the sprinklers. The church did. Responding to the wrath of the social-media world, Bishop William Justice apologized and then defended the church’s actions.
Two important establishment media voices, both longtime friends to Israel, slam Bibi Netanyahu for his winning campaign. Tom Friedman writes in The New York Times that Netanyahu has become a historic Israeli prime minister by dumping support for a two-state solution, leaving Israel to become eventually either a non-Jewish democracy or a Jewish non-democracy.
Jeffrey Goldberg writes in The Atlantic that Netanyahu won by deploying his own version of the Southern Strategy, grabbing far-right votes for his Likud party by using scare tactics against Arab Israelis. As Goldberg writes, Netanyahu might as well have been screaming, “The Arabs are coming!”
Eli Lake writes in Bloomberg that Israel chose Bibi over Obama.
Colorado Springs Republican Congressman Doug Lamborn sent a note to supporters Wednesday congratulating Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on his election win. It was a love note, complete with a biblical quote. Did Obama get one of these?
I would like to congratulate Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for winning the trust of the Israeli voters for a third consecutive term. Israel is the only true democracy in the Middle East. Only the people of Israel, and no outside factors, elect their leadership. PM Netanyahu is a true and courageous leader, and has always been an advocate for strong U.S. – Israel partnership and friendship. Both America and Israel will face many challenges in coming years and I would encourage the Prime Minister to remember the scripture of Joshua 1:9 ‘Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.’
Mike Coffman gets into the Iran debate with an op-ed in The Washington Times. Coffman opposes a deal because, he says, Iran can’t be trusted. He doesn’t mention whether he opposed nuclear deals with the Soviet Union when they couldn’t be trusted.
Hollywood has treated the plight of miners in heavy-handed dramas such as Matewan and Coal Miner’s Daughter. Now, aspiring filmmaker Kirk Loudon is taking a fresh look at this grim history in his upcoming horror film, Diggerz: Black Lung Rises. “Black Lung, a ghoulish creature that represents the 13 dead miners, now seeks revenge. After he takes a life he leaves 13 miners’ tags behind for each of the victims,” writes Anthony Mestas of The Pueblo Chieftain. The film will be shot in Trinidad, Colorado, and locals are encouraged to audition.
In case you missed it: The New York Times reporter Matt Richtel came to Colorado to cover the marijuana business. While here, he met a former Afghan War vet running a security company and reflexively thanked him for his service. The thank-you made the vet squirm – not in a good way.
At a town hall gathering in Cleveland, Obama suggested one way to increase turnout is to make voting compulsory. Here’s how it works in Australia, via Vox.
Hillary Clinton has had nothing but bad news lately. That is, until she looks at the latest CNN poll, which suggests that voters seem not to be bothered by much by any of it. Via The Washington Post.
Ted Cruz is running for president, and so he could have an even bigger stake in Washington, D.C. than he does as a senator. Maybe that’s why he’s working to upend two recently passed D.C. laws, one on contraception, one on gay rights. Via The Washington Post.
Tom Engelhardt writes at Tom Dispatch about the squirmy “thank you for your service” phenomenon, a product, he says, of the post-draft era when U.S. leaders began farming out their unpopular wars to a hired army of poor kids and people formerly known as “mercenaries,” now known as “military contractors.” As Engelhardt puts it: Bestowing the thank-yous “is a habit that reflects just how far American war, even as it has become ever more permanent in our world, has also become more alien, ever less us.” What’s wrong with thank-yous? Ask some vets and they’ll tell you: “Patriotic gloss.” “No skin in the game.”
Barney Frank on coming out as a gay congressman. Via Politico.
The National Journal does the math: If you want to win your office NCAA pool, ignore Obama’s picks. It’s a sure bet.[Photo by D.C. Addy]