On the same day Kim Kardashian released her book titled “Selfish,” another book was released, one focused on the lives of people who are not self-obsessed.
“Unselfish: Love Thy Neighbor As Thy Selfie” from Paul Parkinson is a collection of 99 inspiring stories about people who have decided others are more important than themselves.
Parkinson appeared on TheBlaze Radio’s “Pure Opelka” talking about the book and his personal pivot point from a career as an executive in the medical device industry to his current role as a storyteller.
The first story of the 99 in the book is also the one Parkinson called “the most extreme” example. He shared the details of Scott Neeson’s transition from a career in the entertainment industry to caring for thousands of strangers halfway around the world.
Back in 2004, Neeson was president of 20th Century Fox and as Parkinson puts it, “Had it all.” However, the million-dollar salary, the $3.5 million dollar home, the yacht and the Porsche were all pushed aside after the studio head visited Cambodia and saw people living in a garbage dump.
Parkinson told TheBlaze about Neeson’s “pivot point.” He was in Cambodia, working with the impoverished people when his office called: There was a crisis at the studio because a star was refusing to get on the private jet because some small detail was not up to snuff.
Neeson told Parkinson that it was right after that phone call that he decided he’d had enough. Neeson quit his job and sold everything: the house, the yacht, and the Porsche. He moved to Phnom Penh, Cambodia where he set up and runs the Cambodian Children’s Fund (CCF).
The CCF has grown in the decade since Neeson started the fund. According to Parkinson’s book, the program currently helps more than 30,000 people, more that 2,500 of whom are children. The former studio executive hopes to “transform Cambodia’s most impoverished kids into tomorrow’s leaders.”
A portion of the proceeds from the sale of each copy of Unselfish is being donated to the Cambodian Children’s Fund.
Listen to Paul Parkinson’s interview on TheBlaze Radio below:
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In the wake of a foiled terrorist attack in Garland, Texas — where two gunmen attempted to slaughter those at an event for the best cartoon depicting the Prophet Muhammad — some have called the event an “incitement” to violence and questioned whether free speech protects “hate speech.”
TheBlaze’s national security adviser Buck Sexton took apart the argument in a web special posted Friday, pointing out that “doing something provocative is not hate speech just because those who are provoked hate what is being said or done.”
“A religion’s prohibition against making images of their holy figures does not have to be respected by anyone other than those who voluntarily choose to do so,” he remarked. “Remember, if provocative speech is not protected by law, then by definition, we do not have freedom of speech.”
“I’m not saying freedom of speech is absolute and boundless, but lunatics bent on inflicting mass casualties on civilians don’t get a say on where those boundaries are,” Sexton concluded. “Period.”
Republicans on the House Select Committee on Benghazi released a report Friday outlining the progress they have made in the year since the committee was formed to investigate the 2012 attack that left four Americans dead, even as Democrats argued that almost nothing has been accomplished.
“I am proud of what a professional team of investigators, committed to uncovering all the facts has been able to accomplish since the Committee was created,” said Committee Chairman Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.). “This committee has interviewed eyewitnesses never before interviewed, obtained tens-of-thousands of pages of documents never before provided, and reviewed new information central to the investigation such as FBI reports specific to the interrogation and prosecution of Abu Khattala.”
The U.S. Postal Service posted a net operating loss of $1.5 billion in the first quarter of 2015, which is actually an improvement from the $1.9 billion it lost in the first quarter of 2014.
USPS has been bleeding money for years, in part because of lower mail volumes, but also because of the huge benefit costs for its retired workers that it is required by law to fund upfront. Democrats in particular have argued that this prefunding requirement is making it impossible for the mail carrier to operate at all.
State Department spokesman Jeff Rathke had to be asked three times on Friday whether the department supports efforts by the Canadian government to keep a former Guantanamo Bay detainee in prison.
Omar Khadr was convicted by the United States of several crimes, including throwing a grenade in Afghanistan in 2002 that ended up killing a U.S. soldier. Khadr was transferred from Guantanamo Bay to his home country of Canada.
“Momilies” — those little bits of motherly advice and wisdom your mom used to say — have been replaced by #MomQuotes.
While momilies were often considered to be clever bits of motherly advice, posts found on social media using #MomQuotes, typically spotlight hilarious and kooky things moms have said to their kids.
The writers at the “Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon” noticed this and “seeded the clouds” on Twitter to find some of the best things ever said by moms.
Hashtag game! Tweet out a funny or weird thing your mom said and tag with #MomQuotes. Could be on our show!
— jimmy fallon (@jimmyfallon) May 6, 2015
It did not take long for the #MomQuotes to start rolling in.
Thursday night’s episode featured Fallon reading some of the best and funniest tweets found with the hash tag #MomQuotes.
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Recently there have been several stories published regarding secretive American refugee resettlement programs under which a disproportionately high percentage of Muslim immigrants are being dispersed across the United States, an issue that Rep. Trey Gowdy of South Carolina has brought to the State Department with respect to a town in his Congressional district.
Ann Corcoran, a patriotic citizen living out on a farm in rural Maryland has been the providing oversight that Congress has not on this issue for years via her blog, Refugee Resettlement Watch.
In the book, Ms. Corcoran makes the case that the federal government at the urging of the United Nations is accepting thousands of immigrants each year, including from Muslim-majority countries hostile to the U.S., without concern for assimilation or any of the national security implications of such decisions. Corcoran believes that these programs aid and abet those individuals seeking to fulfill an element of jihad of hijra, in a bid to ultimately spread Islam and Shariah law in America.
The hijra … is the Islamic doctrine of immigration. And Muhammad instructed his followers that one of the five responsibilities … that Muslims are supposed to do — one of them is to migrate and that migration is a form of jihad. And the refugee resettlement program as it is now constructed in the United States is now bringing large numbers of Muslims into the country from countries that hate us. We’ve brought over 100,000 Somalis, we have brought over 100,000 Iraqis — and most of the Iraqis … are Muslim. We’re about to admit potentially 11,000 Syrians, 93% so far that have come into the country are Muslim — into the country that the United Nations have picked for us. And thus, I’m making the case that the refugee resettlement program — that is by the way where the UN picks our refugees, U.S. State Department distributes them around the country is in fact a significant contributor to the hijra to America.
While Americans may be aware of the fact that as Corcoran argues during our interview, there are refugees being resettled all over the country with little to no local control over such programs or federal oversight — assisted by leftist religious groups that are taxpayer funded — perhaps less noticed is an alliance between leftist activists and big business enabling jihadists to come into the country, as we have seen for example in the Somali population of the Minneapolis area.
… [T]he financial driving factor behind this … is cheap labor, which goes across all of these immigrant areas. The meat packers out in places like Minnesota have enormous power. And they’re working with left-wing foundations to convince local elected officials that this is all just a wonderful thing, diversity is a wonderful beautiful thing, but there’s really — money is driving this… And of course there’s the ideology, and the need for Democrat voters, or the wish for more Democrat voters… But there’s a big money component to all of this. And that’s why you see these elite Republicans supporting this program because it involves big money, big business, I call it “big meat” for example.
Corcoran continues: (more…)
The House Armed Services Committee is warning that it should no longer be assumed that the U.S. military is either the most technologically superior or the most dominant fighting force, an assessment that comes just as the rise of the Islamic State and Russia is posing a real challenge to the United States.
“[W]ith the continued diffusion of advanced technology, U.S. military technological superiority is no longer assumed and the dominance U.S. forces have long enjoyed in the air, sea, space, and cyberspace domains is no longer assured,” the committee wrote in a report detailing the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for fiscal year 2016. “Such a security environment demands that the nation’s armed forces are agile, efficient, ready, and lethal.”
Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush finally got some good, albeit not great, news with a poll that found the former Florida governor leading in New Hampshire — though only narrowly.
Bush, the son and brother of former presidents, stands at 15 percent in the WMUR Granite State poll, with his three nearest opponents in a virtual tie: Florida Sen. Marco Rubio at 12 percent, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker at 11 percent and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul at 10 percent. (more…)
Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said Thursday that his department is not trying to use the U.S. military to take over Texas, a fear some have raised in the wake of military exercises in that state.
A reporter asked Carter if those fears were accurate at all, and Carter answered with one word: “No.”
Operation Jade Helm 15 is scheduled to run from July to September, and it will consist of various military exercises in other states as well, including Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico and Utah.
Those plans led Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) to say the National Guard would monitor U.S. troops, but the White House has also dismissed the idea that the exercises are a sign of a plan to overrun Texas or any other state.
“I have no idea what he’s thinking,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters Wednesday.
Peter Schweizer’s “Clinton Cash” links Bill and Hillary Clinton through their work at the Clinton Foundation and State Department to all manner of unsavory characters, including authoritarian leaders, African warlords and businessmen with dubious backgrounds, in addition to more respectable Clinton political operatives and supporters who in Schweizer’s writing paid the Clintons and enriched themselves by way of projects supported by the Clintons.
One Clinton-linked transaction however implicates another figure: presumed 2016 GOP presidential candidate Jeb Bush.
In a chapter titled “Disaster Capitalism,” Schweizer explores the dealings of the Clinton Foundation — in league with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton — in Haiti following the devastating January 2010 earthquake that claimed the lives of approximately 230,000 people.
In the wake of the disaster, the Clintons immersed themselves in the relief effort, helping procure and allocate funds towards activities such as cleaning debris, fixing roads, and arranging deals for things like building telecommunications infrastructure and constructing homes, with varying degrees of success but almost universal financial rewards for those connected in one way or another with the Clintons.
It is in the area of home construction where former Florida Governor Jeb Bush appears.
Clinton supporter and former Democratic presidential candidate General Wesley Clark traveled to Port-au-Prince Haiti in the wake of the earthquake to lobby Haitian president René Préval for a home-building contract for a south Florida company in which Clark was a board member called Innovida.
One of Clark’s colleagues on the Innovida board was Jeb Bush.
What would happen to Innovida serves as a microcosm of what Schweizer dubs the “Clinton Blur” between philanthropy, politics and business.
As Schweizer tells it:
[Wesley] Clark was a big cheerleader for the company [Innovida]. “It can do more for housing in Haiti, better and faster, than any other technology out there,” he said. Innovida’s ties to the Clintons ran even deeper than Clark. According to the South Florida Business Journal, Innovida’s CEO Claudio Osorio was a “big fundraiser” for the Hillary 2008 campaign and had contributed to CGI.
Innovida had little track record of actually building homes. Yet the company saw its project fast-tracked by the Haitain government and the State Department. Innovida received a $10 million loan from the US government to build five hundred houses in Haiti.
Sadly, the houses were never built. In 2012 Osorio was indicted and convicted of financial fraud. Prosecutors would later accuse Osorio, who drove a Maserati and lived in a Miami Beach mansion, of using the money intended for relief victims to “repay investors and for his and his co-conspirators personal benefit and to further the fraud scheme.” He was ultimately sentenced to twelve years in jail. Innovida collapsed.
Of Bush’s involvement with Innovida (more…)
A decision by a federal appeals court that the government went too far by collecting phone data on millions of Americans has emboldened members of Congress who are seeking to end that program once and for all.
The Second Circuit Court of Appeals said Thursday that the program goes beyond what Congress authorized. The existence of the program was revealed by whistleblower Edward Snowden, and the decision that it may violate the law led some to renew their calls to scale it back.
Attorney General Loretta Lynch said Thursday that she’s days away from deciding whether to launch an investigation into the behavior of Baltimore City police, to see if officers are routinely violating the civil rights of city residents.
The city of Baltimore has asked the Justice Department to investigate, and newly sworn-in Lynch told a Senate subcommittee that a decision would be coming soon.
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), who is running for president as a Democrat, proposed legislation that would break up eight of the nation’s biggest banks, a step he said is needed to ensure the government isn’t forced to bail out these “too big to fail” institutions.
Banks on Sanders’ list are Bank of America, Bank of New York Mellon, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, Morgan Stanley, State Street and Wells Fargo.
Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) on Wednesday rejected the idea that Democratic control and Democratic policies in Baltimore are to blame for the death of Freddie Gray after he was seriously injured in police custody, and for the subsequent rioting in the city, instead trying to shift the blame onto Republicans.
Cummings was on CNN Wednesday, when host Chris Cuomo challenged him by saying blame should be laid at the feet of Democrats, who have controlled Baltimore for decades.
The government’s watchdog on the IRS said Wednesday that almost 1,600 IRS employees were found to be “willfully noncompliant” when it comes to paying their taxes over the ten-year period ending in 2013.
And while the law says the IRS must fire anyone who willfully violates federal tax law, only 39 percent of those people were fired. The rest of the cases — representing 960 employees — were “mitigated to lesser penalties such as suspensions, reprimands, or counseling.”
Sharpshooter Kirsten Joy Weiss has just posted a new video — and it’s unlike any clip we have seen from her. This time she’s showing us how to “garden with a gun.”
Technically speaking, Weiss is really showing us a different and more entertaining way to plant seeds.
The D-I-Y video shows how you can replace the metal shot inside your shotgun shells with seeds and then fire them into an open space.
According to Weiss, swapping the shot with seeds also produces a shooting experience more akin to a confetti-filled party popper, with “no recoil at all.”
Watch the light-hearted clip:
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Pop music legend Sir Elton John told Congress on Wednesday that one major factor in the spread of AIDS in Africa is the decision by some governments in Africa to punish AIDS victims because of their sexual orientation, instead of working with those victims.
“The worst fear is stigma, to be honest with you,” he told a Senate Appropriations subcommittee hearing about global health issues. “We are seeing, especially in African countries, the LGBT community suffering under draconian laws. When people like that who are suffering from HIV are penalized, they go underground and the disease is spread even further.”
The Department of Homeland Security is asking Congress to create a new government entity called the United States Citizenship Foundation, which would “promote citizenship, immigrant civic integration, and instruction in the English language.”
DHS put the idea forward on Wednesday in a formal legislative proposal for Congress to pass. According to a Senate aide, DHS said the proposal was “related” to President Barack Obama’s 2016 budget request.
A high-ranking State Department official admitted Wednesday that the department is taking Hillary Clinton at her word when she says she has handed over all work-related emails that she created from her personal email account when she was secretary of state.
Joyce Barr, assistant secretary of state for administration, was questioned at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing by Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas), who asked if the department actually has all of Clinton’s work-related emails. Barr said the State Department has “all the emails that she’s released to us,” and Cornyn asked if there was any way to verify that all emails have in fact been turned over.
Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-Fla.) has a new idea to impose term limits on members of Congress that he hopes will actually allow members to vote on the proposal, even if they want to stay in office forever.
DeSantis on Tuesday introduced a resolution proposing an amendment to the Constitution that would limit people to three terms in the House, and just two in the Senate. Term limits is a reasonably popular idea, but according to DeSantis, the trouble has always been getting members who never want to leave to vote for the change.
The Senate voted Tuesday evening to pass the Republican budget plan for 2016, finishing up a process that Republicans hope is the first step toward a balanced budget after ten years.
The Senate passed the budget plan in a 51-48 vote, about a week after the House passed it 226-197.
The three GOP senators who have declared a run for the White House in 2016 found themselves somewhat divided on Tuesday when the Senate held a procedural vote on the budget.
The Senate voted to proceed to the Republican budget resolution, which would cut $5 trillion from projected spending levels over the next decade, even as it would continue to allow slower growth in overall spending.
Attorney General Loretta Lynch traveled to Baltimore Tuesday to tell civic leaders that her department will be available to help the city in any way possible to deal with the fallout from the death of Freddie Gray at the hands of police.
In brief remarks to reporters, she said Baltimore has already done a good job helping kids to resist the idea of joining a gang, and said the Justice Department would help support that mission.
The IRS may have approved up to $5.6 billion worth of education tax credits that should never have been allowed, according to a new report from the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration.
TIGTA’s report, released Tuesday, noted that a law passed in 1997 created two education tax credits, while the 2009 stimulus bill replaced one of these with the new American Opportunity Tax Credit, which will remain in effect at least through 2017.