Take a tour around the city and view a real part of Americana – the Mom & Pop corner store. Our Rochester, New York Bureau Chief and photo journalist, Slick Nick, has done it again.
Click on the photo to see the full gallery of images.
Welcome to this special wrap-up edition of Kernels From the Cornfield – No Husks, No Hulls, No Shucks!
News with a dash of commentary to spice up your fare for Saturday, December 5th, 2015.
1. They’re Here! – When last Kernels was published on Wednesday, I left with the breaking story of what appeared to be a terrorist attack in San Bernardino, California.
Authorities have now confirmed that the husband and wife who committed the atrocity, which killed 14 and wounding 17 more, was indeed an Islamic State inspired terror attack.
In fact, it is reported that the female posted to Facebook while she and her husband were slaughtering innocents the couple’s pledge of allegiance to the would-be caliph. ISIS since has released a statement saying the pair were supporters of the Islamic State.
Whether the jihadists may have been part of cell is not yet known.
A bomb-making factory was found in the couples garage. This was apparently not the only attack planned, according to the experts. Those in-the-know believe that the shooting at the county employees’ holiday party may have been one of convenience rather than initial target, prompted by an argument the male shooter was involved with a co-worker.
This is definitely not the first such terror attack in the US of A. A few years ago an Army major pledged to the jihadists opened fire at Fort Hood, Texas. Though the Administration of President Barack Obama deemed it a result of violence in the workplace, the reality was that the major was radicalized and pledged fealty to the terrorists, acting to avenge his extremist brothers.
Then there were the two jihadists who traveled from Arizona to Texas in a failed attack in response to cartoonists and others depiction of the Prophet Mohamed.
2. Be Wary, Not Afraid – Now that terrorists have pierced the collective heart of the US of A, the rhetoric has become political and sides are being drawn – not so much about the threat of other acts by Islamists, but rather on whether stricter gun control laws are needed.
It made no difference when Paris was attacked that France has some of the strictest gun laws in the world. The number of gun owners is relatively few, yet terrorists struck killing over 100 and causing mayhem of catastrophic proportions.
Read my take on how we should be reacting: Be Wary – Not Afraid.
In his weekly radio address today, the President said, “We are Americans. We will uphold our values — a free and open society. We are strong. And we are resilient. And we will not be terrorized.“
Yet, I contend Americans are being terrorized every day and not just by foreign terrorists or those holding to a corrupt religious interpretation or malignant ideology: An Act of Terror.
3. Jobs Door to Rate Hike – With November producing 211,000 new jobs, the Federal Reserve to raise the interest rate from 0 to a higher percentage for the first time in eight years.
Reportedly the decent jobs report indicates to the Fed that the American economy is strong enough to back off artificially propping up the markets and economy.
4. Attacking the Gun – Those to the left politically, rather than addressing the fact that terrorists will find a way no matter what laws are on the books, are calling for stricter gun laws. This is something as I noted above, made no difference with the Paris attacks.
The New York Times today, for the first time since 1920, put an editorial on the front page decrying the laxness of US gun control laws.
“It is a moral outrage and a national disgrace that civilians can legally purchase weapons designed specifically to kill people with brutal speed and efficiency. These are weapons of war, barely modified and deliberately marketed as tools of macho vigilantism and even insurrection,” the editorial board wrote.
But are we dividing on the wrong issue?
A Democratic Sheriff in New York State, however, is taking a different perspective on the gun issue.
Are we failing to recognize the root of the issue is the evil and corruption rightly blamed on a malignant misinterpretation of a religious belief?
5. Chicago Politics – The Windy City has long been derided over is political machinations, including tales of how the late Mayor Richard Daily used to famously send out his goons during elections to cast ballots for the dead.
The current political uproar is over what is becoming more and more evident – a police cover-up of the murder of a 17-year-old in October of 2014 by a police officer. That officer has now been charged with murder.
Today it was revealed that police reports do not match what is evident on the videos which have been released. The cry for the resignation of Mayor Rahm Emanuel, former Chief of Staff to President Obama, continue to grow louder and louder.
Many are saying the dash-cam video of the murder was not released until a judge ordered its release and nearly a year after Emanuel won re-election. The contention is the video was withheld to insure the Mayor’s re-election.
6. Trampling Evidence – MSNBC came under fire for traipsing through the home of the San Bernardino terrorist couple and airing driver’s licences and other personal identifying items.
The network was let in by the building manager, who had not been instructed by police to keep people from the apartment.
Other networks, including CNN, followed suit in wandering through the apartment.
Police authorities are also being criticized for not properly sealing off the residence. Critics note that evidence may have been destroyed and contaminated.
7. African Terror – The African continent continues to reel what seems day after day with jihadists attacks. The most recent at Lake Chad.
A triple suicide attack on an island in Lake Chad killed at least 27 people. More than 80 were wounded.
“Three suicide bombers blew themselves up in three different places at the weekly market on Loulou Fou, an island in Lake Chad,” the source told AFP, speaking on condition of anonymity in a region where a state of emergency was put in place last month following a wave of attacks by Boko Haram Islamists.
8. Climate Accord – The 195 world leaders who met this week in Paris, France to hammer out a deal to confront the issues and concerns with climate change have come to agreement on a working agreement.
According to Reuters:
Negotiators have adopted a draft of a global agreement to fight climate change and passed it on to environment and foreign ministers to work out the remaining points of dispute.
The draft is full of brackets and multiple options, highlighting how a host of sticking points remain to be worked out. Most relate to how to define the obligations of countries in different stages of development in fighting climate change.
Negotiators now have a week to eke out an agreement palpable to all parties.
9. Bananas in Danger – One of the most popular and nutritious fruits in the world is in danger from a new disease attacking the #1 variety of banana.
The Washington Post reports:
A new strain of Panama Disease, a fungus, is threatening the existence of the Cavendish, the banana that replaced the Gros Michel as the world’s top banana export, representing 99 percent of the market, along with a number of banana varieties produced and eaten locally around the world.
And there is no known way to stop it—or even contain it.
10. OOPs! – Say it ain’t so!
The largest newspaper in Norway, Aftenposten, erroneously published the obituary of the world’s best-known and loved elf, Santa Claus.
The paper had to come out with a retraction and apologize to Norwegian children and those little tykes from continent to continent for such a dastardly mistake.
According to AFP:
The notice added that a funeral for Santa, born on December 12, 1788, would be held on December 28 at the “Chapel of the North Pole”.
It was unclear how the mischievous announcement managed to make it onto Aftenposten’s site, but the newspaper has promised to “review its internal processes to establish what went wrong”.
“Aftenposten has strict guidelines for both the content and use of symbols in our obituaries. This ad is a violation of these and should never have been published,” said the newspaper’s editor Hakon Borud.
The false, defamatory and offensive obituary has been deleted.
Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus – and he’s alive and well!
That’s what caught my attention this Saturday, December 5th, 2015.
Tune in Monday for another edition of Kernels From The Cornfield.
I am Mark Ivy
As a former, professional print journalist in my former life, I can tell you there are none of the pros who have a thing on our own Rochester, New York Bureau Chief Slick Nick.
If you haven’t seen his video report about the economic status of his home city, you have missed an Emmy-award-winning performance.
Check it out!
Click on the screen shot of Slick Nick to view the video.
This post is just too good not to see.
Slick Nick has captured the awesome beauty of a sunrise in Rochester, New York.
Click on the image to see the full post.
I posted these pictures as my first project on Mark’s site. And along with this I feel that since the sunrise is the birth of a new day, this would reflect the birth of Mark’s new site. Mark has done a wonderful job on this and I’m pleased to be a member!
Author & Rochester Bureau Chief: Slick Nick
Published: November 29, 2015