Now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine:
Louisiana Republican Congressman John Fleming – on the House floor Monday — says he was "disturbed" when the White House covered a religious symbol which was part of the backdrop for President Obama's speech at Georgetown University earlier this month.
We reported that the monogram, "IHS," which comes from the Greek for Jesus, was covered with black-painted plywood. Fleming said Monday: "This administration has no problem spending money imprinted with the phrase, 'In God We Trust,' but won't have our president speak with any symbol of Christ in public view."
He then told Cybercast News: "I have a concern about the very sharp turn to socialism that's happening in our government... our president does not want to be associated with religious symbols, at least not Christian symbols."
The president is expected to wear a traditional robe featuring the cross and prayer of the Virgin Mary when he speaks at the university of Notre Dame next month.
You know the old saying, "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery." Now it seems President Obama's campaign slogan "Yes We Can," is being replicated by an unlikely figure.
The London Guardian reports Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who is seeking re-election in June, is distributing a video that uses a strikingly similar slogan. The video's cover features a photo of Ahmadinejad pointing to the Farsi phrase for "We Can" on a classroom blackboard. The report suggests that Ahmadinejad is hoping to capitalize on his former role as a university lecturer.
In the Thick of It
A German radio station – Radio Bremen — is reporting that an expedition by 20 American, Canadian, Italian and German scientists has found that ice in parts of the North Pole is thicker than previously thought.
The Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research says that earlier measurements had indicated what it called a strong decrease of ice thickness in the central Arctic. So the researchers expected the areas they were surveying, many of which had never been measured before, to be about two meters thick. But they discovered the ice was actually four meters thick.
The study's full results will be available in coming weeks.
And finally, an Italian gaming company, Molleindustria (Molleindustria.org) has re-worked one of its online video games following complaints that it promoted religious intolerance. The game pitted religious figures such as Jesus, Mohammed, and Buddha against each other in combat. On it’s Web site, the game was described as: "The ultimate fighting game for these dark times... religious hate has never been so much fun."
But the Organization of the Islamic Conference called the game: "Incendiary in its content and offensive to Muslims and Christians."
So the company removed the game and uploaded a new one. According to Molleindustria’s Web site, gamers are now asked to "give love and respect" by clicking on the figures before they disappear. They vanish anyway, and the screen then displays a burning village and the message: "You didn't respect religion and now the world is a total mess."
— FOX News Channel's Zachary Kenworthy contributed to this report.