June 27, 2013

Robert Spencer Skewers AP’s Coverage of UK’s Ban of Spencer-Pamela Geller Visit

Over at Jihad Watch, Robert Spencer has posted what he says is the substance of his entire email exchange with James Brooks of the Associated Press in the wire service’s coverage of the UK Home Office’s decision to ban Spencer and fellow Stop the Islamization of America leader Pamela Geller, so we can compare what actually transpired to what was published.

Brooks apparently did not contact Geller (or if he did, he didn’t report any of it), and gave no indication that he tried. He gave 14 words of his report to his exchange with Spencer in his seventh of 11 paragraphs, and the AP’s headline writers chose to call the pair “US anti-Islam activists” (bold is what AP included):


Initial Unemployment Claims (062713): 346K SA; Raw Claims Virtually the Same as Last Week

Filed under: Economy,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 8:20 am

- Business Insider — 345,000 seasonally adjusted initial claims.
- Reuters — 345,000

Seasonal adjustment factors:
- Week ended June 22, 2013 — 96.8
- Week ended June 23, 2012 — 97.2

Raw claims:
- Week ended June 15, 2013 — 335,320 (before revisions)
- Week ended June 23, 2012 — 370,521

For the prediction of 345,000 to be accurate, raw claims will need to be 334,000 (334K divided by .968 is 345K, rounded). That seems like where things should come in if they’re not getting any better or worse.

The report will be here at 8:30 a.m.

HERE IT IS (permanent link):


In the week ending June 22, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 346,000, a decrease of 9,000 from the previous week’s revised figure of 355,000. The 4-week moving average was 345,750, a decrease of 2,750 from the previous week’s revised average of 348,500.


The advance number of actual initial claims under state programs, unadjusted, totaled 334,978 in the week ending June 22, a decrease of 1,589 from the previous week. There were 370,521 initial claims in the comparable week in 2012.

After next week’s almost inevitable upward revision, this week’s raw claims will be either virtually identical to or greater than last week’s.

Not much else to say. Today’s news indicates a job market that’s continuing to meander in mediocrity.

Thursday Off-Topic (Moderated) Open Thread (062713)

Filed under: Lucid Links — Tom @ 6:05 am

Rules are here. Possible comment fodder may follow later. Other topics are also fair game.

Positivity: Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom

Filed under: Activism,Positivity,Taxes & Government — Tom @ 6:00 am

From Denver:

Jun 27, 2013 / 04:15 am

Hundreds of people in the Archdiocese of Denver attended a prayer rally for religious freedom on June 22, standing up for the right to serve God in their public and private lives.

“We’re here as Christian Catholics, we want to unite together and represent Jesus Christ and everything that he taught us; to be free to love God, worship God and obey God,” local Maria Herrera told CNA.

“Prayer in the Square: a Rally for our First Freedoms” was held by the Archdiocese of Denver at the Colorado state capitol.

The event was part of the national Fortnight for Freedom called for by the U.S. Catholic bishops, with participation from members of various faith backgrounds.

Currently in its second year, the fortnight is a two-week period of prayer, education and action devoted to the protection of religious liberty in the United States and around the world.

The fortnight began on June 21, the vigil of the Feasts of St. John Fisher and St. Thomas More, two martyrs who accepted death rather than violating their consciences. It ends on July 4, Independence Day.

The two-week religious liberty campaign was established in response to the growing number of threats to religious freedom in the U.S. Among the most prominent of these threats is the HHS mandate that requires employers to facilitate health insurance covering contraception, sterilization and some drugs that can cause early abortions. The mandate will take effect for many objecting religious employers beginning in August. …

Go here for the rest of the story.

Banned From Britain: Pamela Geller, Robert Spencer

Pamela Geller announced at her Atlas Shrugs blog Wednesday morning that “the British government has banned us (herself and fellow Stop Islamization of America activist Robert Spencer) from entering the country … In not allowing us into the country solely because of our true and accurate statements about Islam, the British government is behaving like a de facto Islamic state. The nation that gave the world the Magna Carta is dead.” She has posted the letter (Page 1; Page 2) from the British Home Office Secretary (UK’s equivalent of our Homeland Security) telling her that her presence would not be “conducive to the public good.”

A later post at Geller’s blog has a collection of press reports which readers should review for the predictable signs of bias. One which isn’t there is from the Associated Press, written by James Brooks: