Well, last month, famed horror author Stephen King was speaking in front of a group of high school students at the Library of Congress... [and for] those that can bear it, what follows is another in a long line of liberal media members bashing the military...:
I don't want to sound like an ad, a public service ad on TV, but the fact is if you can read, you can walk into a job later on.
If you don't, then you've got, the Army, Iraq, I don't know, something like that.
It's, it's not as bright. So, that's my little commercial for that.
Nice sentiment when the nation is at war, Stephen.
It's nice to see King take a Stand against his own country's military. This walking Bag of Bones is a true Creepshow and his diatribe hints at Desperation. Maybe he's been suffering from Insomnia.
Nonetheless it's been Misery trying to read his recent books. And I won't be buying any more.
Oh. And one other thing. Hasn't King amassed enough money to fix his underbite?
The Democrat party is a party based on ID politics, not on values. They want you to vote for them based on your membership in a group or class or segment, not based on your values. This is consistent with how they'd use the levers of power, too. Their statists and collectivists.
This primary season has ruptured an alliance between two of the groups which make up the core of their base: feminists and blacks. This rupture has lead to a big POTENTIAL problem:
Their big worry is simple:
If Hillary wins, then they worry that blacks won't go to the polls.
If Obama wins, then they worry that women will stay home or vote for McCain.
The socialist president accuses the U.S. government of trying to "sabotage" the upcoming Olympic Games and of aiding protests focused on Tibet. Chavez says he will back China against what he sees as a "secessionist" attempt in Tibet.
The U.S. considers Tibet a part of China and says it is concerned about violence in Tibet but will refrain from meddling in China's internal affairs.
Chavez spoke Friday night after meeting with Chinese Vice Premier Hui Liangyu. Venezuelan and Chinese officials also signed cooperative accords.
BIRDS OF A FEATHER: CHAVEZ; CHINA, FARC, HIZBALLAH/HAMAS AND SCUM LIKE AHMADINEJAD. AND OBAMA - HAMAS KNOWS THIS AS WELL AS FARC.
BTW: CHAVEZ IS A BUDDY OF KENNEDY AND DELAHUNT. AND OTHER PROM,INENT DEM LIBS.
THEY'RE ALL SOCIALIST SCUM.
EXIT QUESTION: WHAT WILL ALL THE LIBS IN HOLLYWOOD DO?!? THEY LOVE CHAVEZ AND THE DALAI LAMA. THIS PUTS THEM IN A TOUGH SPOT. LIKE I CARE.
A man whose wife died as a result of an NHS blunder has lost his right to remain in Britain, in what a coroner described yesterday as an "extraordinary" decision.
Arnel Cabrera, 39, came to Britain from the Philippines in 2003 to join his wife, Mayra, a theatre nurse, who worked at the Great Western Hospital in Swindon.
But a year later, Mrs Cabrera died at the same hospital after she was given an epidural during the birth of the couple's child which was mistakenly injected into her arm. The baby survived.
An inquest returned a verdict of unlawful killing and found the NHS trust had been guilty of gross negligence. Now the Home Office has told Mr Cabrera he has failed in his bid to remain in the UK.
David Masters, the Wiltshire coroner who presided over the inquest, said yesterday: "This is extraordinary. In view of the verdict reached at the inquest I find it difficult to appreciate how the Home Office has reached this decision."
In its letter of refusal, the Home Office said Mr Cabrera had "not established a family life with his son in the United Kingdom". It added: "As his son remains in the Philippines there are no insurmountable obstacles to his family life being continued overseas."
GREAT BRITAIN'S NHS IS HELD PUT AS A PARADIGM OF EXCELLENCE. IT SUCKS. AND THE BUREAUCRATS OF THE NHS AND THE BRITISH GOVERNMENT ARE JUST AS BAD AS BUREAUCRATS EVERYWHERE: THEY SUCK.
THIS IS WHY WE WANT TO HAVE THE SMALLEST GOVERNMENT POSSIBLE: GOVERNMENT SUCKS.
Our old friends Chavez and the FARC continue to make the news. First we had this item on Friday, which sent markets spinning and the price of oil through the stratosphere:
A cache of controversial computer files closely tying Venezuela's President Hugo Chávez to communist rebels seeking to topple Colombia's government appear to be authentic, U.S. intelligence officials say.
The trove -- found on a dead guerrilla leader's laptops during a military raid in March -- is likely to ratchet up pressure for the U.S. to impose sanctions on one of its most important oil suppliers.
The files that have been made public so far have largely confirmed Mr. Chávez's well-known sympathy for the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC. But a review by The Wall Street Journal of more than 100 new files from the computers suggests that Venezuela has broader and deeper ties to the FARC than previously known.
These documents indicate Venezuela appears to be making concrete offers to help arm the rebels, possibly with rocket-propelled grenades and ground-to-air missiles. The files suggest that Venezuela offered the FARC the use of one of its ports to receive arms shipments, and that Venezuela raised the prospect of drawing up a joint security plan with the FARC and sought basic training in guerrilla-warfare techniques.
"There is complete agreement in the intelligence community that these documents are what they purport to be," a senior U.S. official said. The Office of the Director of National Intelligence has been sharing its assessments with the White House, this official said.
Washington's stance is likely to hurt Venezuela's already deeply strained relationship with the U.S., its biggest trade partner. It could also add pressure for the U.S. to declare Venezuela a state sponsor of terrorism, alongside Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan and Syria, and impose sanctions.
The murder of Mexico's police chief signals just how serious the Mexican drug trafficking organizations are about taking on the Mexican state. And just how weak the Mexican state is.
"This could have a snowball effect, even leading to the risk of ungovernability," Luís Astorga, a Mexico City-based sociologist and drug expert, said in an interview. "It indicates terrible things, a level of weakness in our institutions -- they can't even protect themselves."
By most accounts the police chief, Edgar Eusebio Millan Gomez, was a good cop trying to do an impossible job-fighting drug organizations that have more resources, better weapons and the ability to buy or kill those that oppose them.
President Felipe Calderon also wins high praise for sharply ratcheting up the pressure on the trafficking organizations, who have responded in the most predictable and lethal fashion-murdering high-profile symbols of the enforcement effort.
It is worth remembering that the chaos the traffickers are wreaking in Mexico is not just aimed at the Mexican state, it is also aimed at undermining the already-battered viability of our southern border. The hundreds of dead across the border states of Mexico show where the battles are being fought.
The easier it is to cross dope, weapons, illegal aliens from around the world, the higher the profits for the traffickers.
And the FARC rebels in Colombia are now in a direct business relationship with Mexican trafficking organizations, according to the recently-captured FARC documents resulting from the raid that killed rebel leader Raul Reyes.
The FARC, in turn, is allied with Nicaragua (Ortega) and Venezuela (Chavez), who in turn are allied with Iran, which in turn runs Hezbollah, which in turn is actively working to expand its beach head in Latin America.
Hugo Chavez is much more than a tin-horn Latin American dictator: he is a direct threat to the National Security of the United States (and friends, Barack Obama is not a man who will take that threat seriously...)
Given Iran's active participation in killing Americans in Iraq, its unilateral escalation of violence in Beirut, its close economic ties with Venezuela, and the above reported escalation of violence against the Colombian government, the Mexican government AND American citizens in Mexico (and the US), something has to give, and soon.
The Syro-Iranian axis enflaming various battlefields in the region, from Basra to Gaza, has instructed its proxy local force on the Lebanese battlefield to surge against the pro-Western Government of Fuad Seniora. The Lebanese Government had asked Hezbollah to remove cameras installed inside the international airport and to begin the dismantling of a parallel telephone communications system. In addition, the Government removed the Airport commanding officer for collaboration with the terror group.
Within 24 hours, the "Hizb's" commander Hassan Nasrallah reacted and launched his coup. In a press conference he declared war against the Government and accused it of being an "agent of the Americans." A few hours after, Hezbollah's Special Forces and snipers tightened their grip around the Airport and moved into Sunni West Beirut. They seized the strategically located neighbourhood of Ra's al Nabaa overlooking both (Christian and Muslim) sides of the capital, fought their way into Hamra Street and practically controlled more than 90% of West Beirut. By midnight, half a million Lebanese Sunnis found themselves under an Iranian-sponsored "occupation."
NOAA's National Climate Data Center is reporting that March 2008 Southern Hemisphere sea ice extent was much above the 1979-2000 mean. This was the largest sea ice extent in March, 28.6% above the 1979-2000 mean over the 30-year historical record, surpassing the previous record set in 1994 by 10.9%
"I’ve got, as you know, these outstanding human rights complaints. Ontario, which ruled that it didn’t have jurisdiction to try Macleans Magazine and myself, nevertheless said you know, we don’t have jurisdiction to toss these guys in jail, but we would if we could. That was absolutely extraordinary. They said if we had put this on a sign rather than in a magazine, they would have jurisdiction to prosecute us. So I actually, I’ve actually taped the magazine article to a sign, and I’m going to deliver it to the Ontario Human Rights Commission, and invite the relevant thought police to actually go ahead with their threat. I mean, if it’s just the medium, I say bring it on, as John Kerry would say.
Deep within our subconscious, all of us harbor biases that we consciously abhor. And the worst part is: we act on them
The heading and subheading above are from a recent article in that well-known Greenie publication, "Scientific American". I also reproduce the first part of the article concerned below. The article seems to be aimed towards making us less prejudiced towards outgroups. But the article exists in a reality vacuum. It totally ignores realities such as the incredibly high rate of violent crime among blacks and also ignores most of the research on impression-formation and stereotyping. It is largely a rehash of some well-known work by Banerji and Richeson that I have commented on some time ago.
The "amazing" thing that the researchers found was that whites (and some blacks) are more wary of blacks than they are of whites -- no matter how you measure or detect that. Such a finding would, however, surely surprise only a psychologist. If blacks REALLY ARE more dangerous to others, it is merely psychological good function to be more wary of them than of others. And I don't think even Leftists attempt to deny the high rate of black crime. So to call such perfectly proper wariness in people "bigotry" is itself bigoted. Bigotry is judging people according to a fixed and wrong set of preconceptions and it seems to me that that is exactly how psychologists are judging others when they refer to perfectly normal and adaptive behaviour as bigotry.
The one thing that the research literature on stereotyping shows most clearly is that the "stereotypes" people have in their heads are not usually (Except, perhaps in the case of psychologists) rigid or imprisoning but are highly flexible and responsive to the realities that people encounter (See for instance here and here). That fact fully explains all the behaviour that the psychologists described below view as "bigotry". If blacks change, the perceptions and expectations of them will change -- but I am not holding my breath.
Fortunately, the same literature tells us that once we get to know a particular person as an individual, the importance of the stereotype recedes rapidly -- so that the particular person will then in general be treated as we find him/her, regardless of any expectations we have about the group to which he/she belongs. A rather amusing example of that which I once came across was a white neo-Nazi whose best friend was a very dark-skinned Bengali. And there was another guy who could not stand "Chinks" (East Asians) but who was happily married to one. And Wilhelm Marr, the man who in 1879 invented the term "antisemitism" (he thought it was a good thing), was actually married to a Jewish lady! Psychologists have traditionally seen such behaviour as perverse but a good knowledge of the impression-formation research would have told them that it is normal.
"There is nothing more painful to me at this stage in my life," Jesse Jackson once told an audience, "than to walk down the street and hear footsteps and start thinking about robbery-then look around and see somebody white and feel relieved."
Jackson's remark illustrates a basic fact of our social existence, one that even a committed black civil-rights leader cannot escape: ideas that we may not endorse-for example, that a black stranger might harm us but a white one probably would not-can nonetheless lodge themselves in our minds and, without our permission or awareness, color our perceptions, expectations and judgments.
Using a variety of sophisticated methods, psychologists have established that people unwittingly hold an astounding assortment of stereotypical beliefs and attitudes about social groups: black and white, female and male, elderly and young, gay and straight, fat and thin. Although these implicit biases inhabit us all, we vary in the particulars, depending on our own group membership, our conscious desire to avoid bias and the contours of our everyday environments. For instance, about two thirds of whites have an implicit preference for whites over blacks, whereas blacks show no average preference for one race over the other.
Such bias is far more prevalent than the more overt, or explicit, prejudice that we associate with, say, the Ku Klux Klan or the Nazis. That is emphatically not to say that explicit prejudice and discrimination have evaporated nor that they are of lesser importance than implicit bias. According to a 2005 federal report, almost 200,000 hate crimes-84 percent of them violent-occur in the U.S. every year.
The persistence of explicit bias in contemporary culture has led some critics to maintain that implicit bias is of secondary concern. But hundreds of studies of implicit bias show that its effects can be equally insidious. Most social psychologists believe that certain scenarios can automatically activate implicit stereotypes and attitudes, which then can affect our perceptions, judgments and behavior. "The data on that are incontrovertible," concludes psychologist Russell H. Fazio of Ohio State University.
Now researchers are probing deeper. They want to know: Where exactly do such biases come from? How much do they influence our outward behavior? And if stereotypes and prejudiced attitudes are burned into our psyches, can learning more about them help to tell each of us how to override them?
I’m greatly wishing I could get back to Beirut right now. But the airport is closed, and we’re hearing that Hezbollah is attempting to close Beirut’s port, too. In fact, from the sounds of it, Hezbollah is taking the city — at least the western part of it. This was the threat, and it seems like they’re making good on it.
US warship threatens regional stability: Hezbollah
The pro-Iranian Hezbollah group accused the United States on Friday of endangering regional stability by deploying a warship off Lebanon and vowed to defy what it called an act of military intimidation.
The United States said on Thursday it sent the destroyer USS Cole to the eastern Mediterranean because the Bush administration was concerned about Lebanon's political deadlock.
Police in Halifax are investigating a complaint about a political cartoon that some members of a local Islamic group claim is a hate crime.
The cartoon, published April 18 in the Chronicle Herald newspaper, depicts a woman in a burka holding a sign that reads, "I want millions," and she says, "I can put it towards my husband's next training camp."
The cartoon by Bruce MacKinnon is a reference to Cheryfa MacAulay Jamal, a woman from Nova Scotia whose husband was arrested in 2006 in an anti-terrorism raid. Qayyum Abdul Jamal was released from jail after charges against him were stayed on April 15.
Zia Khan, director of the Centre for Islamic Development in Halifax, said the cartoon goes beyond what can be considered free speech.
Dan Leger, the Herald's director of news content, said the cartoon does not take aim at all Muslims.
"The whole purpose of that cartoon was to comment on the outrageous demands of this individual for compensation long before any hearing into her case had ever been held," he said.
In an interview with the Herald before the cartoon ran, Jamal said she wanted to sue the federal government for what her family has gone through and told the reporter, "I want millions," Leger noted.
"[MacKinnon] depicted her exactly the way she looks and used her own words, and that's the genius of cartooning that you're able to do that," he said.
Leger said he first heard of the Islamic group's concerns when the newspaper was contacted by police.
His engravings chronicled the American scene from the Civil War period to the turn of the century. They highlighted every major national event and issue, the political process, elections, and scandal in the government. The American scene was ripe in subject matter for Nast. The country was fast becoming an industrial nation; railroads were spreading, factories were being built, and cities were fast becoming crowded with immigrants that supplied cheap labor. Scandal was everywhere. Elections were being rigged. One of his most famous political cartoon attacks was aimed at Boss Tweed.
If Nast had turned his attention to caricaturizing and satirizing Muslims, they'd have started another cartoonifada.
Unless... the REAL reason oil is so dear is fear of a USA preemptive attack on Iran. Not so much the preemptive attack -- or the phony PUBLIC recriminations which will follow it (coinciding with PRIVATE thanks!).
But the conventional retaliatory strikes which Iran will inevitably attempt to inflict on the oil assets of the Gulf States. If they can wipe out a lot of the oil assets, then the price might go to $500/barrel.
IMHO: This is now the ONLY plausible explanation for the continued oil price SPIKE.
At one time I felt sure Bush would do the right thing and neutralize Iran with a preemptive strike. Now, I am not so sure. not at all. He has more or less let Iran eff-up Iraq and Lebanon. And let Assad get away with murder - over and over again.
Bush is a wimp - that's what Dubya stands for, it seems.
I hope the oil speculators know something I don't. About us attacking Iran, that is...
WHAT'S AT INSTAPUNDIT TODAY, WAS HERE LAST TUESDAY! GLENN:
May 09, 2008
PROFITING FROM CLIMATE CHANGE: "Al Gore blames the Burma tragedy on global warming despite growing evidence to the contrary. Could the hype be related to his financial interests?" It's no crazier than the Cheney-Halliburton connections!
posted at 02:08 PM by Glenn Reynolds
IDB: Al Gore And Climate Ka-Ching
By INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY | Posted Thursday, May 08, 2008 4:20 PM PT
Junk Science: Al Gore blames the Burma tragedy on global warming despite growing evidence to the contrary. Could the hype be related to his financial interests?
Former vice president tells NPR's 'Fresh Air' cyclone is example of 'consequences that scientists have long predicted might be associated with continued global warming.' ... Using tragedy to advance an agenda has been a strategy for many global warming activists, and it was just a matter of time before someone found a way to tie the recent Myanmar cyclone to global warming.
Former Vice President Al Gore in an interview on NPR’s May 6 “Fresh Air” broadcast did just that. He was interviewed by “Fresh Air” host Terry Gross about the release of his book, “The Assault on Reason,” in paperback.
“And as we’re talking today, Terry, the death count in Myanmar from the cyclone that hit there yesterday has been rising from 15,000 to way on up there to much higher numbers now being speculated,” Gore said. “And last year a catastrophic storm from last fall hit Bangladesh. The year before, the strongest cyclone in more than 50 years hit China – and we’re seeing consequences that scientists have long predicted might be associated with continued global warming.”
Gore claimed global warming is forcing ocean temperatures to rise, which is causing storms, including cyclones and hurricanes, to intensify.
The American Federation of Government Employees endorsed Barack Obama Friday, giving the Illinois senator fresh momentum toward capturing the Democratic nomination for president.
"Our people, I think, recognize the enthusiasm and vitality behind Senator Obama's campaign," AFGE President John Gage said.
Gage, a previously uncommitted superdelegate to the Democratic National Convention, said he is also personally endorsing Obama.
Obama, the Democratic front-runner, is vying with Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton for the party's presidential nomination. His candidacy has been picking up momentum since Tuesday, when he handily won the North Carolina primary and held Clinton to a narrow victory in Indiana.
While calling Clinton a friend and saying she has worked hard for federal employees, Gage said some members of AFGE's board also think having Obama as the Democratic nominee would help the Democratic slate as a whole. Obama will do better in "bringing along some of the downticket races," Gage said.
AFGE is the largest federal employee union, representing 600,000 workers in the federal government and the government of the District of Columbia.
IF YOU PAY TAXES YOU SHOULD OPPOSE OBAMA AND ANY DEM.
IF YOU MAKE MONEY FROM TAXES YOU SHOULD SUPPORT THEM.
AND MOST DO OBAMA AND THE DEMS HAVE THE SUPPORT OF THE UNIONS WHO WORK FOR TAX-PAYERS: THE SEIU, AFSCME AND NOW AFGE.
A new study has found that Antarctica’s Adelie penguins have recently been exposed to trace levels of the chemical DDT as a result of frozen stores of the pesticide seeping out of the continent’s melting glaciers.
The chemical’s presence could indicate that other frozen toxins will be released as a result of climate change in the environment, according to Heidi Geisz, a marine biologist at Virginia Institute of Marine Science. Geisz, who has worked in Antarctica since 1999, led the team that sampled the DDT levels in the penguins as an effort to determine the long-term changes in pollutants found in the continent's seabirds.
She is concerned about the release of a whole cocktail of toxic chemicals, including PCBs and PBDEs, into the ocean. Such industrial pollutants have long been linked to various health problems in humans.
"DDT is not the only chemical that these birds are ingesting and it is certainly not the worst," Geisz told New Scientist magazine.
DDT (dichloro-diphenyl-trichloroethane) latches onto tiny airborne particles that then migrate toward the poles. The chemical was first synthesized by chemists in 1874, and began being used as an insecticide in the 1940s.
The United States officially banned the use of DDT in 1972, as did the UK in 1984. However, it remains in use today by some countries as part of their efforts to fight diseases such as malaria and dengue. But worldwide, use of DDT has tumbled to 40,000 tons per year in 1980 to 1,000 tons per year today.
A previous study conducted in 1964 had found modest amounts of DDT in the Adelie penguins. But because of the ban, Geisz and her colleagues had expected levels to have decreased over the past 40 years. Instead, they were surprised to find that birds living near Antarctica’s western peninsula had DDT levels identical to those observed in 1964 .
Geisz explained the process, “As DDT crawls up the food chain, from plankton to krill to penguins, it breaks down into a sister molecule called DDE. The more DDE in an animal, the longer the chemical has been around.”
However, the researchers observed low levels of DDE in the penguins, a finding that suggested a new source for the DDT.
Puzzled by the DDT’s origin, Geisz reviewed glacial records dating back several decades, and learned that the continent’s glaciers swelled during the 1950s and 60s, something that might have trapped chemicals such as DDT. As the Antarctic Peninsula’s winter temperatures steadily rose 6 degrees Celsius over the past 30 years, the glaciers began melting faster than they swelled.
Based on her analysis, Geisz estimated that 1 to 4 kg per year of DDT re-enters the ecosystem as a result of glacial runoff from the continent’s western ice sheet melts.
BIG EFFIN DEAL!
THE WORLD WOULD BE A BETTER PLACE IF WE WERE STILL USING 40,000 TONS OF DDT A YEAR: WE MIGHT HAVE WIPED OUT MALARIA - THE WORLD'S WORST DISEASE INMTERMS OF THE NUMBERS; IT DWARFS AIDS.
You can stomp Old Glory all you like. One of Obama's buddies did it not so long ago (See above). But trash the Mexican flag and the ACLU wants in
"A high school student says he may file a lawsuit against a physical education teacher who took a Mexican flag he had brought for Cinco de Mayo and put it in the garbage. Clint Straatman denies Froylan Camelo's version of events but said he took the flag Monday because "white kids" might have hurt the 16-year-old. He said he put it in a garbage can because he had no place else to keep it.
Camelo said he was changing into gym clothes at Minico High School in Rupert when Straatman told him, "Give me the flag." "I said, 'What's the problem?'" Camelo, speaking in Spanish, told The Times-News of Twin Falls. "He said, 'The problem is that we are in the United States and not in Mexico.' He grabbed it from me. He threw the flag in the garbage can."
Camelo said he then took the undamaged flag out of the garbage. He said he's been contacted by the American Civil Liberties Union and is considering a lawsuit against Straatman.
Camelo and others brought Mexican flags to the south-central Idaho school to celebrate Cinco de Mayo, the May 5 recognition of Mexico's victory over the French army on that day in 1862. About a third of the student body is Hispanic.
Just a small note about Google censorship. The picture above seems to have been censored from their image cache. I did a Google image search for it and could not find it -- despite it being much in the news lately. In response to the search terms "Ayers" with "flag" it should have been at the top of the page. I guess it is pretty red-hot so Google seem to have done their best to keep it from our eyes.
Maybe after they read this they will restore it. They do seem to respond to criticisms I make of them. I guess they have a team monitoring all adverse mentions of them. They probably search for combinations of the terms "Google" and "evil" -- as critics of Google often mock their proclaimed policy of not being evil.
The potentially transforming events in the 2008 campaign are matters of war and peace. Both may be in play between now and November, in ways that add extra volatility to the presidential race. Let's start with war: The United States is already fighting two of them, in Iraq and Afghanistan. But judging from recent statements by administration officials, there is also a small, but growing, chance of conflict with Iran.
The administration is signaling the Iranians that they need to stop supplying and training Shiite militias in Iraq -- or run the risk of U.S. retaliation. The Maliki government in Baghdad, worried about the danger of escalation, is passing this message to Tehran, but so far the only consequence has been that the Iranians have broken off talks in Baghdad that were aimed at stabilizing the situation.
Saber rattling from the Bush White House may seem almost routine, but pay attention to the comment last week by Adm. Michael G. Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. "Iran is not going away. We need to be strong and really in the deterrent mode, to not be very predictable."
The risk of a U.S.-Iranian confrontation is growing in part because Saudi Arabia and other U.S. allies in the Middle East are so eager for it. "Behind closed doors, we are praying that the Iranians will make a mistake so that you will have a reason to attack," one Saudi told me this week. Another prominent Arab official said he hopes the United States will strike Iranian training camps just over the border from Iraq.
How would a U.S.-Iran confrontation play out in the campaign? Obviously, that depends on how you read the American political mood. Usually, we assume that the nation rallies around the party of war, but that's less certain in this case. America is war-weary, and it mistrusts President Bush. So a military skirmish with Iran might backfire, adding to public dissent -- much as happened with the Nixon administration's attack on Viet Cong sanctuaries in Cambodia in 1970.
Adding to the combustible mix is Hillary Clinton's hawkish position on Iran, which has support from the center-right of the party even if she drops out. Her rhetorical threat to "totally obliterate" Iran if it launched a nuclear attack against Israel was sharper than anything that has come out of the Bush White House. The anti-Iran stance from centrist Democrats blunts John McCain's appeal as the tough-guy candidate. But it complicates the Democrats' argument for withdrawing U.S. troops rapidly from Iraq, since the main beneficiary of such a move would be Tehran.
Uri Messer's testimony will cause difficulties for Prime Minister Ehud Olmert in the investigation of suspicions that the prime minister accepted large sums of money from US businessman Morris Talansky, legal officials were quoted as saying Friday.
Yediot Aharonot and Ma'ariv reported that Messer, Olmert's close associate and lawyer, had cooperated with the inquiry against the prime minister.
The officials told the newspapers that Messer was interrogated without turning state witness and that his testimony would also cause problems for Olmert's former bureau chief Shula Zaken in the case.
During the past 10 days, Zaken has been questioned four times by police on the same affair. She has refused to answer questions on each occasion and has been placed under house detention, which was due to expire on Friday.
Zaken and Messer have both been implicated in a number of other allegations against the prime minister. Their alleged involvement in the new affair has not been fully explained.
On Thursday night, minutes after a court decision lifted the gag order that had been preventing any publication of the details of the case, Olmert said he has never taken a bribe or "a single agora" for himself, but that he would resign if the attorney-general decides to indict him as a result of the new police investigation.
"I hope and believe that we will not get to this stage," he said in a dramatic statement at his Jerusalem residence.
A police source said the funds in question were "very large," and were allegedly received over an extensive period of time, "both directly and indirectly." Hundreds of thousands of dollars are believed to be involved.
Okay, will he finally resign if it comes to that, or will he continue to be disrespectful of the law? On the other hand, I see that Ehud Barak is still stalling and biding for time, because as head of the Labor party, he's still slow to leaving:
Following Prime Minister Ehud Olmert's speech as details of an ongoing investigation against him were finally publicized, opposition and coalition MKs were quick to call for his head.
While Labor officials were quoted by Israel Radio as saying that the party would remain in the coalition until a final decision is made on whether to serve an indictment against the prime minister, Labor Secretary-General Eitan Cabel said Labor needed to reconsider its position in the coalition in light of the revelations.
"I do not see how Olmert can continue to lead the government in the current situation," Cabel told Israel Radio Friday.
Cabel also said Kadima was "obligated to do something" to stabilize the political establishment.
In addition, Shelly Yacimovich, one of Olmert's sharpest critics in Labor, announced that "the coalition partnership with Olmert has ended, as staying in a coalition headed by Olmert issued a stamp of approval for his corrupt actions. If Olmert has even a grain of Zionism and responsibility, he must resign immediately in view of the harsh allegations. While himself being suspected of criminal activity, Olmert is running a war against the rule of law."
I think I'm going to have to take a moment to note how dismaying it is to see Yachimovich abusing the word "Zionist", which does mean nationalist, but if she's as much in favor of giving away Israel to a terrorist organization, then she's not being very Zionist herself, is she?
Now as for Barak, it says that:
Labor's Young Guard demanded that Labor chairman and Defense Minister Ehud Barak promptly resign from the coalition. Representatives of the group warned that "if Labor does not withdraw from the coalition immediately, they will lose the public's trust in future elections."
However, Barak associates said the party would maintain a steady relationship with Olmert and that Labor would remain in the government until things become clearer, Army Radio reported.
All he's doing is stalling out of his apparently being more interested in a government seat than in true responsibility. I suggest he start to rethink his position, because his colleagues are getting very restless.
The position is INSANE on its face because Iran is just as bad or worse than Hamas, and Obama has said he wouldn't talk to Hamas.
But let's forget the inconsistency and hypocrisy for a moment.
Let's examine it in terms of Obama's CHIEF PERSONAL MODUS OPERANDI: tossing people under the bus when it's expedient.
He tossed his first book agent under a bus, (when a bigger agent came along - after his first book was published and AFTER his Kerry Convention speech; he broke his contract). He tossed his mother under a bus when he chose to stay in cushy private school in Hawaii rather than be with her in SE Asia. He tossed his white grandmother under a bus in his speech SAVING Wright. Then he promptly tossed Wright under a bridge when Wright became JUST TOO threatening to his personal ambition.
PREDICTION: In the middle of the fall campaign, when Ahmadinejad says something similar, Obama will toss him under the bridge - and blame Ahmadinejad and not his own naivete.
Obama will do this when Ahmadinejad starts to reflect badly on HIM. Not because of any principle. Obama has no principles beyond the pursuit of personal power, class warfare and appeasement of any threat to the West.
If Obama had any principles then he would treat Iran as he claims he would treat Hamas.
Hamas knows - through intermediaries, just like FARC knows thorough intermediaries - that Obama is on their side.
If you want to elect a man who favors FARC over the elected leaders of Colombia and Hamas and Iran over Israel, then by all means vote for Obama.
The decision by the Lebanese government to shut down a private telephone network operated by the Iranian-backed group Hezbollah was an act of war and Hezbollah would defend itself, Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, Hezbollah’s leader, said on Thursday. ... “This decision was a declaration of war and the start of war on the resistance and its weapons,” Mr. Nasrallah said, speaking via satellite at a news conference convened by Hezbollah in the southern suburbs of Beirut.
“Our response to this decision is that whoever declares or starts a war, be it a brother or a father, then it is our right to defend ourselves and our existence,” he said.
... For 17 months, Lebanon has struggled through a political standoff between the Hezbollah-led opposition which is supported by Iran and Syria and the government of Prime Minister Fouad Siniora, who is backed by the West and Saudi Arabia. The impasse has left the country without a president since November.
Hizballah did in Lebanon what jihadists try to do EVERYWHERE - in Gaza (successfully, so far...), in Iraq (unsuccessfully - due to the Sunni Awakening and The Surge), and even in parts of Europe (like in the Parisian banlieues): they aim to set up an enclave under sharia and then to defend it with "martial law" and warfare if necessary. This is what they mean when they vow to "restore the caliphate" and to subjugate the infidels under dhimmitude.
This is why "radical islam" can't be allowed to get a toe-hold ANYWHERE.
We can cut them off sooner - when they are small in number and weak, or later - when they are armed and dangerous.
Waiting only makes the price we pay dearer.
LET'S GET IT ON!
Sound bellicose? Makes me a "warmonger"?
YEAH SURE: that's what they said about WS Churchill in the 1930's.
We can fight back now at a high cost, or later at a horrifically high cost.
And yes, I mean Iran. If we wait and they get a nuke, then the world will pay a horrifically high price.
Or surrender and live in dhimmitude.
If you don't think you'd mind living under an Ahmadinejad or Nasrallah, then you should vote for the appeasers, the Democrats.
Appeasement is nothing more than surrendering a little bit at a time.
Or as Churchill said: appeasement is like feeding the other guy to the crocodile in the hope that he'll eat you last.
Eddy Arnold, whose mellow baritone on songs like "Make the World Go Away" made him one of the most successful country singers in history, died Thursday morning, days short of his 90th birthday. ... His wife of 66 years, Sally, had died in March, and in the same month, Arnold fell outside his home, injuring his hip.
... Most of his hits were done in association with famed guitarist Chet Atkins, the producer on most of the recording sessions.
The late Dinah Shore once described his voice as like "warm butter and syrup being poured over wonderful buttermilk pancakes."
... Friends said his wife helped handle his business dealings and was the inspiration for many of his love songs.
"What hurts me more than anything else is that he died of a broken heart," said Grand Ole Opry star Jim Ed Brown, a friend. "I don't think he ever recovered from that."
Arnold was born May 15, 1918, on a farm near Henderson, Tenn., the son of a sharecropper. He sang on radio stations in Jackson, Tenn., Memphis, Tenn., and St. Louis before becoming nationally known.
Early in his career, his manager was Col. Tom Parker, who later became Elvis Presley's manager.
His image was always that of a modest, clean-cut country boy.
ONE OF HIS BIG HITS WAS "RICHEST MAN IN THE WORLD".
OBAMA SHOULD LISTEN TO IT; IT WILL TELL HIM A LOT ABOUT THE "BITTER WHITE FOLK", AND WHY THE POLITICS OF CLASS WARFARE DOESN'T WORK ON US!
LYRICS: I got a humpack mule a plow and a tater patch Eggs that are gonna hatch someday I got my Lord above and a good girl to love me I'm the richest man in the world
Thank you thank you Lord above for smiling down on me I'm richer now than any man has any right to be Health and love and happiness have been my cup of tea The richest man in all creation surely it is me
I got a humpack mule a plow and a tater patch...
I've got water in my well and heaven in my heart I have a perfect woman I can trust when we're apart Cash enough to see a show and eat out now and then A roof a bed a fishing pole and folks who call me friend
I got a humpack mule a plow and a tater patch...
I don't have much bank account my cash on hand is small But tell me what are riches but contentment after all Other folks may think I'm poor but I know it's not so Cause when I count my blessings I'm the richest man I know
I got a humpack mule a plow and a tater patch...
Now the rich folks talk about the grub they eat Now I've got all those rich folks beat Cause I've got a field of yellow yams And a smokehouse filled with country hams Talk to me about caviar They ain't nothing but fish eggs packed in a jar I got a whole pond of big round trout Fish eggs what are they talking about Hey I got no fancy swimming pool but the creek in the woods Is deep and cool I'm a lucky man I'm a lucky fool I'm wealthy I'm wealthy
(IsraelNN.com) Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni is making preparations for replacing Prime Minister Ehud Olmert if and when the latest bribery scandal forces him to resign, political analysts reported.
"The main scenario discussed yesterday in the political corridors, assuming Olmert does indeed leave or is made to leave, is that the Foreign Minister will replace him, in her capacity as Acting Prime Minister," right-of-center website Makor Rishon wrote Wednesday. While the Kadima party's regulations determine that a new party chairman must be chosen in primaries, Livni may circumvent the regulation by arguing time is pressing and stability is of cardinal importance.
Livni has offered no public backing for the Prime Minister in his time of trouble. According to the report, she is already making "careful and delicate" contact with the Kadima party's Knesset faction members in an attempt to secure their backing.
It should be remembered that last year, when the first Winograd report was released, she did not resign her position in the government, which does discredit her. She may claim to be turning "right-wing", but I wouldn't be so quick to trust her at all. The sooner the government dissolves, the better. No doubt she's had these opportunistic views of hers planned for a while now.
Some strange reasoning at the University of North Dakota after swastikas were plastered up in several places. I guess Jews (Sorry: "Zionists") are not allowed to be offended:
"UND President Charles Kupchella has condemned the racist and anti-Semitic graffiti, saying such actions should not be tolerated on a university campus. But members of the school's Jewish Student Organization have criticized Kupchella for declining to describe the graffiti as a "hate crime" or to describe the image found in West Hall, which looks like a scribbled out swastika with one axis facing the wrong direction.
That seems to be the conclusion to be drawn from the report of a piece of psychological research below. But that conclusion must of course be interpreted to make conservatives look bad. So the assumption is injected that they SHOULD be angry! No argument is offered to say why. I will probably say more about this when the actual academic journal article underlying the report below comes online. One of the authors, John Jost, has however previously been shown as having some strange ideas about how to define conservatism so I expect further idiocy and bias in his measure of "rationalization". There is already an extended comment on the study up at STACLU
Individuals with conservative ideologies are happier than liberal-leaners, and new research pinpoints the reason: Conservatives rationalize social and economic inequalities. Regardless of marital status, income or church attendance, right-wing individuals reported greater life satisfaction and well-being than left-wingers, the new study found. Conservatives also scored highest on measures of rationalization, which gauge a person's tendency to justify, or explain away, inequalities.
The rationalization measure included statements such as: "It is not really that big a problem if some people have more of a chance in life than others," and "This country would be better off if we worried less about how equal people are." To justify economic inequalities, a person could support the idea of meritocracy, in which people supposedly move up their economic status in society based on hard work and good performance. In that way, one's social class attainment, whether upper, middle or lower, would be perceived as totally fair and justified.
If your beliefs don't justify gaps in status, you could be left frustrated and disheartened, according to the researchers, Jaime Napier and John Jost of New York University. They conducted a U.S.-centric survey and a more internationally focused one to arrive at the findings. "Our research suggests that inequality takes a greater psychological toll on liberals than on conservatives," the researchers write in the June issue of the journal Psychological Science, "apparently because liberals lack ideological rationalizations that would help them frame inequality in a positive (or at least neutral) light."
The results support and further explain a Pew Research Center survey from 2006, in which 47 percent of conservative Republicans in the U.S. described themselves as "very happy," while only 28 percent of liberal Democrats indicated such cheer. The same rationalizing phenomena could apply to personal situations as well.
"There is no reason to think that the effects we have identified here are unique to economic forms of inequality," the researchers write. "Research suggests that highly egalitarian women are less happy in their marriages compared with their more traditional counterparts, apparently because they are more troubled by disparities in domestic labor."
The Republic of Korea health officials reported on May 7 at least five suspected human cases of bird flu in the Seoul capital, according to local the RoK’s Yonhap news agency.
The five people have had bird-flu like symptoms of fever and coughing since May 6, the agency said. Blood tests are underway to find out whether they are positive to the deadly H5N1 strain of avian flu.
The RoK’s Ministry of Food, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries announced earlier on the same day that the highly virulent H5N1 strain had been found in dead chickens from a bird vivarium located at the Gwangjin ward office in eastern Seoul.
Hospitals in Seoul were put on alert for bird flu after health officials issued emergency warnings to all hospitals in the capital city to watch out possible bird flu symptoms, the Korea Herald reported on Thursday.
The Korea Center for Disease Control and Prevention has urged medical institutes in the capital to make immediate reports of any patients who have symptoms of the H5 avian influenza virus, such as a high fever, severe coughing, a sore throat and difficulty in breathing, the daily newspaper said.
"Detailed examinations of patients will be conducted and cooperation measures between government branches will be strengthened," Lee Jong-ku, head of the KCDCP said Wednesday.
"We will also distribute the antiviral drug Tamiflu to regional offices and make efforts to secure the necessary budget to deal with the matter," he said.
Blood tests will be done on patients who may have been infected by the virus, the official said.
The measures came after the government confirmed an outbreak of deadly H5N1 strain of bird flu in eastern Seoul on Monday. It is the first time that bird flu has been discovered in the capital city.
THIS IS BAD NEWS:
SEOUL IS A HUGE CITY, ONE OF THE MOST POPULATED IN THE WORD; THE METROPOLITAN AREA HAS 23 MILLION PEOPLE.
On the eve of Israel's 60th Independence Day, President Shimon Peres cites the country's achievements but he is also aware of the public's sense of cautious joy, and how that feeling exists despite the government, not because of it.
"So what?" he says in an interview this week at the President's Residence. "It's not terrible that there is no rejoicing at the government. Governments all over the world are losing their strength. Besides, the Jews gave the world dissatisfaction. Celebration is not a Jewish thing. Still, I'm optimistic, though I'm not satisfied."
Such an expression uses the plays on words Peres enjoys so much, but it does not mask the deep change in his rhetoric and of his world view. The past decade has handed him some disappointments.
"Although in '98 everything seemed dark because of Rabin's murder, I believed we could still move the peace process ahead more quickly. I did not think we'd have so many problems. I believed the separation between the West Bank and Gaza would make things easier, not harder. I did not imagine that we would leave Gaza and they would fire Qassams from there; I did not imagine that Hamas would show so strongly in the elections.
WE MUSTN'T BE SO NAIVE ABOUT IRAN... PERES CLAIMS HE'S NOT (RTWT). ARE WE?
US oil consumption down a million barrels a day...
sharply diminished U.S. demand, which fell in February to 19.7 million barrels a day. That was down a million barrels a day from the 2007 average.
... EIA’s latest data show that oil inventories rose by 5.7 million barrels last week more than four times the average analyst forecast of a 1.4 million barrel rise in stockpiles, according to Dow Jones Newswires.
Gasoline stockpiles also jumped by 800,000 barrels compared with expectations for a 400,000 barrel draw, while refinery usage fell 0.4 percentage point to 85%, rather than rising by 0.4 percentage points as forecast.
BUT THE PRICE KEEPS GOING UP - LIKE A BALLOON ... ABOUT TO POP!
NEED MORE PROOF? HERE: GOLD IS DROPPING; THE DOLLAR IS STRENGTHENING, AND THE SEC TREAS SAYS THE WORST OF THE SUB-PRIME DEBACLE IS BEHIND US.
THE SPECULATORS BETTING THE PRICE WILL GO UP SOME MORE HAD BETTER STOP SPECULATING, OR THEY'RE GONNA GET HURT.
THE PRICE OF OIL IS ABOUT TO COME DOWN - WAY DOWN...
The information below is an encouraging development that provides some anti-dhimmitudinal satisfaction. Nevertheless, the case may not have larger significance in the greater counter-jihad.
Excerpt from the May 7, 2008 edition of the Baltimore Sun:
Saying "I divorce thee" three times, as men in Muslim countries have been able to do for centuries when leaving their wives, is not enough if you're a resident of Maryland, the state's highest court ruled yesterday.
Yesterday, the Court of Appeals rejected a Pakistani man's argument that his invocation of the Islamic 'talaq', under which a marriage is dissolved simply by the husband's say-so, allowed him to part with his wife of more than 20 years and deny her a share of his $2 million estate.
The justices affirmed a lower court's decision overturning a divorce decree obtained in Pakistan by Irfan Aleem, a World Bank economist who moved from London to Maryland with his wife, Farah Aleem, in 1985. ...
Irfan Aleem had lived for nearly twenty years at the top echelons of the bankings in the West. But when his wife filed for divorce in Montgomery County, Maryland, in 2003, Mr. Aleem decided to pursue a shari'a avenue to limit the cost of the settlement terms:
But before the legal process could be completed - and without telling his wife - Aleem went to the Pakistani Embassy in Washington and invoked the 'talaq', in effect attempting to turn jurisdiction of the case over to a Pakistani court that later granted him a divorce.
The Maryland Court of Appeals nullified his Aleem's plan, although
Muneer Fareed, secretary-general of the Islamic Society of North America, said that if Aleem had traveled to Pakistan and invoked his talaq there, it might have been recognized in a U.S. court under the concept of comity, under which nations accept the premise of a law in another country "whether or not we agree with the law or its spirit."
The above small victory for anti-dhimmitude, apparently achieved because Irfan Aleem didn't physically travel to Pakistan to invoke 'talaq', is encouraging. But, at the same time, another form of shari'a law — shari'a banking — continues to gain ground within Western nations.
Islamic Sharia banking is coming to the United States and other western nations, thanks to global banks such as Citigroup, HSBC, Deutsche Bank, Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs. Great Britain is now pledging to become the Islamic banking center of the world. Clearly the headlong rush by all global banks to enter the world of Islamic banking is well underway. Why do western banks seek to participate in Sharia banking; because it gives them a chance to enter the Islamic banking industry which has over $1.5 trillion available today and is growing at a steady and explosive rate of over 15% per year.
The implications for the west, and especially for the United States, are staggeringly destructive. Islamic banking working through global banks is doing for Islam what it could never do on its own: giving legitimacy to Sharia law and infiltrating it into the fabric of western society.
For those not familiar with Sharia Banking; it is a system which creates and sells services and products that are in strict accordance with Sharia law. Sometimes it is referred to in the Islamic culture as "Sharia finance". It dictates how the practices of banking, investment, bonds, loans, brokerage, etc, are to be conducted. To insure compliance and to become "Sharia banking" compliant, banks must hire Sharia experts to review and approve each product and practice of the bank....There is a shortage of such Sharia experts so there is competition among banks to find such experts to sit on their boards of directors. By having an "expert" involved in banking decisions, this provides the legitimacy to each banking decision because it is made at the director rather management level. However, most of these Sharia experts" are from the radical Wahhabi school of Islam in Saudi Arabia and elsewhere, and they hold views diametrically opposed to the basic values of Western civilization.
At the first Earth Day celebration, in 1969, environmentalist Nigel Calder warned, "The threat of a new ice age must now stand alongside nuclear war as a likely source of wholesale death and misery for mankind."
C.C. Wallen of the World Meteorological Organization said, "The cooling since 1940 has been large enough and consistent enough that it will not soon be reversed."
In 1968, professor Paul Ehrlich, former Vice President Al Gore's hero and mentor, predicted that there would be a major food shortage in the U.S. and "in the 1970s . . . hundreds of millions of people are going to starve to death."
Ehrlich forecast that 65 million Americans would die of starvation between 1980 and 1989, and that by 1999 the U.S. population would have declined to 22.6 million.
Ehrlich's predictions about England were gloomier: "If I were a gambler, I would take even money that England will not exist in the year 2000."
In 1972, a report was written for the Club of Rome warning that the world would run out of gold by 1981, mercury and silver by 1985, tin by 1987 and petroleum, copper, lead and natural gas by 1992.
Gordon Taylor, in his 1970 book "The Doomsday Book," said Americans were using 50% of the world's resources and "by 2000 they (Americans) will, if permitted, be using all of them."
In 1975, the Environmental Fund took out full-page ads warning, "The World as we know it will likely be ruined by the year 2000."
Harvard biologist George Wald in 1970 warned, "Civilization will end within 15 or 30 years unless immediate action is taken against problems facing mankind."That was the same year that Sen. Gaylord Nelson warned, in Look magazine, that by 1995 "somewhere between 75% and 85% of all the species of living animals will be extinct."
It's not just latter-day doomsayers who have been wrong; doomsayers have always been wrong.
In 1885, the U.S. Geological Survey announced that there was "little or no chance" of oil being discovered in California, and a few years later they said the same about Kansas and Texas.
In 1939, the U.S. Department of the Interior said American oil supplies would last only another 13 years. In 1949, the secretary of the interior said the end of U.S. oil supplies was in sight.
Having learned nothing from its earlier erroneous claims, in 1974 the U.S. Geological Survey advised us that the U.S. had only a 10-year supply of natural gas. The fact of the matter, according to the American Gas Association: There's a 1,000- to 2,500- year supply.
Here are my questions:
In 1970, when environmentalists were making predictions of man-made global cooling and the threat of an ice age and millions of Americans starving to death, what kind of government policy should we have undertaken to prevent such a calamity?
When Ehrlich predicted that England would not exist in the year 2000, what steps should the British Parliament have taken in 1970 to prevent such a dire outcome?
In 1939, when the Department of the Interior warned that we only had oil supplies for another 13 years, what actions should President Roosevelt have taken?
Finally, what makes us think that environmental alarmism is any more correct now that they have switched their tune to man-made global warming?
Here are a few facts:
More than 95% of the greenhouse effect is the result of water vapor in Earth's atmosphere. Without the greenhouse effect, Earth's average temperature would be zero degrees Fahrenheit.
Most climate change is a result of the orbital eccentricities of Earth and variations in the sun's output. On top of that, natural wetlands produce more greenhouse-gas contributions annually than all human sources combined.
Hope is deeply ingrained in the Israeli consciousness, along with resilience, creativity, progress, democracy, self-criticism, and decency. There is sometimes unavoidable friction among them, but cumulatively they make Israel a unique modern miracle among nations. May 8, the 60th anniversary, offers the lesson of Israel's experience to the world.
Israel's Left and Right argue and re-argue about how to relieve Israel of the burdens and threats from Gaza and the West Bank, and Iran. These arguments, however, are largely subsumed by hope, hope without much evidence to support it. There's quite a difference between constructive optimism and potentially lethal leaps. Still, the strengths of Israel's other national characteristics are what makes hope possible. For example, Colette Avital, a Labor Party Knesset member, argues:
At the end of the decade, the traditional disagreements between left and right have lost much of their relevance, as a majority of Israelis support the end of occupation and the creation of a Palestinian state. Moreover, the debate on the path to follow seems to be over, too. Unilateralism is largely discredited as an option. Our negotiating partner is our partner, however imperfect. Israelis may be less hopeful than they were, but they are more realistic in their demands. They know the limits of military power. What's more, they know that time is running out. It may just be that sense of urgency that will make an agreement possible at the end of 2008.
One may be excused for dismissing this hopefulness. But, it must be realized it is deeply felt by a broad range of the public in Israel and the US, and comes more from strength than from weakness of spirit. Hope is what Israel is, ultimately, about. Israel's national anthem is Hope, Hatikvah. That Hope is based upon the diaspora's return to Israel to live in peace and progress.