Sunday, September 30, 2007

Panic In Iran

I think it is time to digest the results of the Israeli air raid on Syria that happened on September 6th and see how it has affected Iran. Let us start with an early report from the Guardian.

Syrian air defences opened fire on Israeli aircraft that violated Syrian airspace overnight, a Syrian military spokesman said today.

The Israeli planes broke the sound barrier and "dropped ammunition" over deserted areas of northern Syria, the official Syrian Arab news agency quoted the official as saying.

"We warn the Israeli enemy government against this flagrant aggressive act, and retain the right to respond in an appropriate way," the spokesman said.

Syria said the Israeli aircraft entered its territory through the northern border, coming from the Mediterranean and then heading east. "Air defence units confronted them and forced them to leave after they dropped some ammunition in deserted areas without causing any human or material damage," the spokesman said.

Witnesses said they heard five planes or more above the Tal al-Abiad area on Syria's border with Turkey, around 100 miles north of the Syrian city of Rakka. They said the planes then headed south.
We can see from the report that the Israeli planes covered quite a bit of Syrian territory. We also know that none of the planes were shot down. In addition there are unconfirmed reports of Israeli commandos on Syrian territory.
LONDON (Reuters) - A British newspaper said on Sunday Israeli commandos seized North Korean nuclear material in Syria to help secure U.S. approval for an Israeli air strike that destroyed a suspect weapons plant on September 6.

The Sunday Times report, citing Israeli and U.S. sources, was the latest version of an incident shrouded by contradictory accounts from officials and diplomats and by Israeli military censorship of media operating in the country, including Reuters.

As with previous such reports in foreign media, Israel's own public broadcaster led bulletins with the Sunday Times account.

Elements of the story, which did not say when the commando raid took place, coincided with what political sources in the Middle East told Reuters on September 6 and subsequently -- that an air strike reported by Syria that day was linked to a covert Israeli ground raid and that this was linked to Israeli fears its neighbor was developing "weapons of mass destruction".
About a week after the attack some North Koreans visited Syria.
ROME (AP) - A senior U.S. nuclear official said yesterday that North Koreans were in Syria and that Damascus might have had contacts with "secret suppliers" to obtain nuclear equipment.

Andrew Semmel, acting deputy assistant secretary of state for nuclear nonproliferation policy, did not identify the suppliers but said North Koreans were in the country and that he could not exclude that the network run by the disgraced Pakistan nuclear scientist A.Q. Khan might have been involved.

He said it was not known whether the contacts had produced any results. "Whether anything transpired remains to be seen," he said.
Interesting. However not only were North Koreans in Syria, but also Syrians were meeting with the North Koreans in North Korea about a week after that.
SEOUL, South Korea, Sept. 22 (AP) — North Korea’s No. 2 leader met with a Syrian delegation in Pyongyang, the North Korean capital, on Saturday, the North’s media reported, amid growing international concerns about weapons technology cooperation between the countries.

Kim Yong-nam, head of the North’s rubber-stamp legislature, had “a friendly talk” with the Syrian delegation, led by Saaeed Eleia Dawood, director of the organizational department of Syria’s Baath Arab Socialist Party, the official Korean Central News Agency reported.

The Syrian official expressed satisfaction that the “friendly and cooperative ties” between the countries were growing under President Bashar al-Assad of Syria and Kim Jong-il of North Korea, the news agency said.

On Friday, the Syrian official held talks with Choe Tae-bok, a senior official of the North’s ruling Workers’ Party.
Just hangin' with the homies I guess discussing the plans for the next partay.

Some people have a different idea about what might have been discussed.
On September 6, 2007, something very important may have happened in northern Syria near the Turkish border. It is believed that Israeli Air Force (IAF) F-16s and F-15s attacked a site in Syria that may have had nuclear material. What is alarming is not the increase in tensions from Syria and Israel, but the silence that exists on both sides. Complicating matters is the contention that North Korea is involved in Syrian nuclear ambitions.

There are scattered and unverifiable reports that Israel carried out a strike against a Syrian target. What exactly the target was and what was struck is not yet clear; however, something very important may have occurred, akin to the strike on Osirak in Iraq in 1981. Global Security has constructed a timeline of the events and news reports that have leaked out since the incident occurred.

An unnamed source stated four days after the incident that a pilot nuclear enrichment operation was the target of the strike. The next day, a U.S. government official stated that the target was a Syrian weapons shipment destined for Hezbollah militants in Lebanon. On September 13, 2007, Washington Post reporter Glenn Kessler wrote that "...a former Israeli official said he had been told that it was an attack against a facility capable of making unconventional weapons." On September 15th, Kessler reported that an Israeli official provided the U.S. with evidence of Syrian-North Korean cooperation on a nuclear facility.
Well, well, well. Most interesting. Most interesting indeed.

Even more interesting is the Russian connection.
Military experts conclude from the way Damascus described the episode Wednesday, Sept. 6, that the Pantsyr-S1E missiles, purchased from Russia to repel air assailants, failed to down the Israeli jets accused of penetrating northern Syrian airspace from the Mediterranean the night before.
Looks like all the old gang is back together again, eh comrades?

Evidently Iran is none too happy about the failure of the Russian eqipment to defend Syrian airspace.
September 28, 2007:
Information coming out of Iran indicates that the military there is very dismayed at how ineffective new Russian anti-aircraft systems were during the Israeli September 6th air strike on a Syrian weapons development facility near the Iraqi border. Syria and Iran have both bought billions of dollars worth of the latest Russian anti-aircraft missile systems. Apparently the Israelis were able to blind these systems electronically. Syria isn't saying anything, nor are the Israelis, but Iranian officers are complaining openly that they have been had by the Russians. The Iranians bought Russian equipment based on assurances that the gear would detect and shoot down Israeli warplanes.

Over the Summer Russia delivered the first dozen or so (of 50) Pantsir-S1 anti-aircraft systems to Syria. It is believed that some of these systems are going to Iran, if only because Iran is apparently paying for them. Russia made the sale to Syria, despite $13.4 billion still owned for past purchases. Russia forgave most (73 percent) of the old debt, and is taking some of the balance in goods. In return, Syria is able to buy $400 million worth of anti-aircraft systems, mainly the self-propelled Pantsir-S1. This is a mobile system, each vehicle carries radar, two 30mm cannon and twelve Tunguska missiles. The missiles have a twenty kilometer range, the radar a 30 kilometer range. The missile can hit targets at up to 26,000 feet. The 30mm cannon is effective up to 10,000 feet. The vehicle carrying all this weighs 20 tons and has a crew of three.
We now come to the heart of the story. The reaction of the Iranian government and their military.
"Everyone in the government and military can only talk of one thing,' he reports. 'No matter who I talked to, all they could do was ask me, over and over again, 'Do you think the Americans will attack us?' 'When will the Americans attack us?' 'Will the Americans attack us in a joint operation with the Israelis?' How massive will the attack be?' on and on, endlessly. The Iranians are in a state of total panic.'

And that was before September 6. Since then, it's panic-squared in Tehran. The mullahs are freaking out in fear. Why? Because of the silence in Syria. On September 6, Israeli Air Force F-15 and F-16s conducted a devastating attack on targets deep inside Syria near the city of Dayr az-Zawr. Israel's military censors have muzzled the Israeli media, enforcing an extraordinary silence about the identity of the targets. Massive speculation in the world press has followed, such as Brett Stephens' Osirak II? in yesterday's (9/18) Wall St. Journal. Stephens and most everyone else have missed the real story. It is not Israel's silence that 'speaks volumes' as he claims, but Syria's.

Why would the Syrian government be so tight-lipped about an act of war perpetrated on their soil? The first half of the answer lies in this story that appeared in the Israeli media last month (8/13): Syria's Antiaircraft System Most Advanced In World. Syria has gone on a profligate buying spree, spending vast sums on Russian systems, 'considered the cutting edge in aircraft interception technology.' Syria now 'possesses the most crowded antiaircraft system in the world,' with 'more than 200 antiaircraft batteries of different types,' some of which are so new that they have been installed in Syria 'before being introduced into Russian operation service.' While you're digesting that, take a look at the map of Syria: Notice how far away Dayr az-Zawr is from Israel. An F15/16 attack there is not a tiptoe across the border, but a deep, deep penetration of Syrian airspace. And guess what happened with the Russian super-hyper-sophisticated cutting edge antiaircraft missile batteries when that penetration took place on September 6th. Nothing.

El blanko. Silence. The systems didn't even light up, gave no indication whatever of any detection of enemy aircraft invading Syrian airspace, zip, zero, nada. The Israelis (with a little techie assistance from us) blinded the Russkie antiaircraft systems so completely the Syrians didn't even know they were blinded. Now you see why the Syrians have been scared speechless. They thought they were protected - at enormous expense - only to discover they are defenseless. As in naked. Thus the Great Iranian Freak-Out - for this means Iran is just as nakedly defenseless as Syria.

I can tell you that there are a lot of folks in the Kirya (IDF headquarters in Tel Aviv) and the Pentagon right now who are really enjoying the mullahs' predicament. Let's face it: scaring the terror masters in Tehran out of their wits is fun. It's so much fun, in fact, that an attack destroying Iran's nuclear facilities and the Revolutionary Guard command/control centers has been delayed, so that France (under new management) can get in on the fun too. On Sunday (9/16), Sarkozy's foreign minister Bernard Kouchner announced that 'France should prepare for the possibility of war over Iran's nuclear program.' All of this has caused Tehran to respond with maniacal threats. On Monday (9/17), a government website proclaimed that '600 Shihab-3 missiles' will be fired at targets in Israel in response to an attack upon Iran by the US/Israel.
Now comes the speculation part. By showing that the Russian equipment can't defend Iran, American and Israeli forces have tipped their hand. Iran is probably scrambling madly with Russian assistance to fix what ever the problem was. This means that if American or Israeli forces are going to attack Iran, their attacks must come soon. Probably within the next month or two.

Cross Posted at Classical Values

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Prevent Global Warming - Bring Back Slavery

First let me introduce you to a man you ought to know.

Tim Flannery, named the 2007 Australian of the Year for his work in alerting the public to the dangers of global warming, said the issue was the greatest challenge facing humanity in the 21st century.

Flannery said predictions in a 2001 UN report, warning the atmosphere was likely to warm by 1.4 to 5.8°C from 1990 to 2100 now appeared conservative.

“In the six years since then, we’ve collected enough data to (check) whether those projections are valid or not,” he said. “It turns out they’re not valid, but in the most horrible way – because for the key performance indicators about climate, change is occurring far in advance of the worst-case scenario.”
So what does our brilliant Mr. Flannery have to say about other dangers of runaway global warming from CO2?

Something pretty strange even for a climate scientist.
We really did not understand climate change until recently. That was largely a result of the computer models that we were relying on for vital data. These computer models were inherently conservative and a lot of the feedback was biased as a result.An example of this can be found in the way that data on the relation of global warming to hurricanes was projected. In 2004, the computer models predicted that global warming would increase hurricane activity by 20% by 2080. The next year Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans. With new computer models available to us, we have been able to measure the increase in the energy produced by hurricanes over the last three decades and we now know that it increased by 60% during that period. There is no way that this rise can be accounted for by hurricane cycles.

Another example of the way that new data is helping us understand global warming comes from the taking of core samples from the earth. In 2006, the first sediment core from the Arctic Ocean has shown that the ocean temperature in this area was around 24 degrees Celsius fifty-five million years ago. This was much warmer than has been previously realized, almost tropical in fact, and is dramatic proof of how the earth’s climate does change.

The evidence for global warming has been there all along and I really regret that it has taken us so long to understand it.
Can some climate scientist explain how a really warm Arctic 55 million years ago explains current CO2 caused warming?

I suppose it could if you assume natural cycles. However, I don’t think Mr. Flannery would agree with that.

This is craziness.

In any case Mr. Flannery knows what to do.
The more I think about it, the situation is like that of the people who launched the anti-slavery campaign in the late 1700’s. One of the group’s leaders, William Wilberforce, is a great hero of mine. When they began their efforts, people were getting rich by degrading the lives of the slaves brought over from Africa to work on the plantations in the West Indies and America. It must have seemed hopeless at first, faced by the opposition of corrupt parliaments and wealthy merchants and planters. Yet, these Abolitionists changed the world by the force of their moral argument and I believe that moral argument will win the day and lead to solutions for global warming.

Actually, the two causes, the abolition of slavery and stopping global warming are closely linked. In the 1800’s, the labor of slaves was replaced by steam-powered machines powered by coal and oil. Now, the use of these fossil fuels is confronting us with a moral dilemma and I am confident we will make the right choice.
So what is he proposing? A return to slavery to prevent global warming?

Pretzel logic.

Cross Posted at Classical Values

Friday, September 28, 2007

Dr. John Beresford Has Passed

Dr. John Beresford has died.

Dr. John Beresford died on September 2, 2007 in a hospital in Canada. British-born John Beresford began his psychedelic research interests in 1961, when he resigned his post as an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at the New York Medical College and founded the Agora Scientific Trust, the world's first research organization devoted to investigating the effects of LSD. In contrast to Leary's invitation to "tune in, turn on and drop out," Beresford wanted to keep LSD in proper perspective as a tool of scientifically trained specialists.
In 1999 I republished an article Dr. Beresford wrote comparing the Drug War to Nazi Policies. In his honor I'm republishing the article.

The Nazi Comparison

by Dr. John Beresford

Drug War prisoners that I correspond with call themselves POWs. Some write "POW in America" in the corner of an envelope under the writer’s name and prison number. "Political prisoner" and "gulag" are terms that enter conversation. Solzhenitsyn’s The First Circle and The Gulag Archipelago are works sometimes referred to.

America’s vast network of prisons, boot camps, and jails invites comparison with the detention machinery of former totalitarian regimes. The certainty of conviction that an accusation of a drug law violation brings -- through confession ( 95 percent ) or trial and a finding of guilt ( the remaining 5 percent ) -- matches the idea of automatic conviction that goes with popular belief about the nazi and communist systems. "Nazi" is a term used by Drug War prisoners and non-prisoners alike, as though it were a given that the mentality behind Nazi behavior a half-century ago and the operation of today ’s Drug War is no different.

The comparison is an uncomfortable one, and one’s first inclination is to reject it. A US judge has objected that nothing in the conduct of today’s Drug War resembles the terror tactics in Nazi Germany where SS troops could storm into a person’s home and no one saw or heard of that person again. The objection is understandable, but it rests on a false premise. The Nazis were not a bunch of crooks, operating outside the confines of the law. Everything they did had legal backing, and if on some occasion a law was needed they composed one.

Flat out, it will be objected that a world of difference separates a prison from a death camp. Drug War prisoners are not intended for a holocaust. Ominously for our peace of mind, however, until the last minute neither were the people held in concentration camps. They were held there to protect the health of society. Moreover, with the obsession with death that gains ground daily, it is probable that death is in the cards for people accused of drug law violations in the future. A questionnaire is making the rounds in Congress that has Yes and No boxes for questions which include: "Do you favor the death penalty for drug trafficking?" Who in their right mind in Congress, I wonder, will check No to that question, "trafficking" being the loaded term for what most people call dealing?

Someone will point to the absurdity of thinking that America would ever tolerate a "Fuhrer," a wild man with a funny mustache and a way of haranguing crowds burlesqued by Charlie Chaplin. The point, though, is that the Nazi comparison refers not so much to rhetoric, inevitably different in two quite different places and at different times, as to the dehumanization and trashing of large numbers of people for lifestyles and practices that violate the norms of mainstream society. For this we do not need a Hitler. We can do it the American way.

Myself, I am sympathetic to the Nazi comparison. I was in Nazi Germany as a child.

In the summer of 1938, when I was 14, my parents sent me on a two-week vacation with a family in a village in north-west Germany. There were Mr. and Mrs. Otting, their daughter Irmgard, and the youngest son Wolfgang, who wore his Hitler Jugend uniform at Wednesday night meetings. The two older sons I never saw. One was in the army. The other was doing two years of voluntary farm labor, which excused him from army service.

Mr. and Mrs. Otting were old-time Christians, and had the family bible on display in the china cabinet in the dining room. On the shelf above the Holy Bible you saw the red and white dust jacket of Mein Kampf, Hitler’s version of scripture. No one said anything about it, but there had to be a copy of Mein Kampf on display for two reasons. Every five or six houses or apartments had an informant who could sift through mail, collect gossip, and pay a visit to make sure the householder did not have suspicious material lying around. Also, schoolchildren were taught to report suspicious behavior to the police.

There wasn’t any TV, but there was plenty of entertainment -- parades, outdoor concerts, Hitler on the radio, sports.

The economy was great. Everyone had a job. Germany was strong. Hitler wanted peace. New construction was going up everywhere. The trains ran on time. You didn’t see beggars in the street, hanging around. Undesirables had been rounded up, got out of the way.

The newspapers were full of praise for the Nazi system. A weekly periodical with pictures showed who the Untermenschen were, the underclass of people who had no place in decent society. In those days the underclass consisted of gypsies, Jews, homosexuals, the wrong sort of artists, trade unionists, and communists. They were described in terms we now call demonization and scapegoating.

The universities had their share of academics who endorsed Nazi policy. Doctors, engineers, race specialists, and others spelled out theories which gave the Nazis a green light.

At 14 I was barely aware of all this. Yet by the end of my two weeks with the Ottings I had a feeling that to this day remains hard to describe. I took this feeling home to England, where I promptly forgot it. It wasn’t the sort of feeling you had there. I didn’t have it during the war, which started the next year. I didn’t have it when I studied medicine, emigrated to America, became an American citizen, and lived in New York for 20 years. I didn’t have it in Canada, where I practiced psychiatry for 15 years. I didn’t have it when I retired from practice and spent time in a Buddhist monastery.

On and off, I would read about Nazi Germany, but the feeling that I had when I was briefly in Nazi Germany as a child had gone.

In the fall of 1992 an ad appeared in the personal column of High Times Magazine, sent in by Brian Adams. Brian wrote that he was 18 years old, just out of high school, when he was arrested and sentenced to ten years of imprisonment for passing out LSD to his friends. If a High Times reader was interested in LSD sentencing methods, the reader could write to Brian and learn something.

I wrote to Brian, who introduced me to Tim Dean, who introduced me to other LSD prisoners and soon I was in the thick of a correspondence which has not stopped growing. In 1993 I began to visit Drug War prisoners in prison. I drove to the Canadian border, crossed into the United States, and talked with Pat Jordan in County Jail in Nashville, Tennessee. I drove to Michigan City to talk with Franklin Martz, sentenced to 40 years in the Indiana State Prison in that city. I drove to other prisons to speak with Drug War prisoners, paying attention to the information they provided. That started my Drug War education.

One day something happened. I realized that every time I left the monastery and entered the United States I was struck with a weird feeling that left as soon as I re-entered Canada. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but it was as real as day. When the meaning of this realization dawned, it hit me like a ton of bricks. The feeling I had acquired in Nazi Germany and forgotten more than half a century before was back. My Drug War education had clicked in.

The feeling told me everything. The exponent of democracy had fallen on hard times. America was treading the same path as Nazi Germany. The War on Drugs and Hitler’s war on anyone he took exception to -- the symptoms in the two cases were identical.

One thing I had to accept was that I could not stay on in the monastery. I could not sit back and watch disaster unfold. I had to get out in the world and become an activist, whatever becoming an activist entailed. Even if no one else saw the War on Drugs in the same light I did, I had to do what might lie in my power to stop it.

I won’t go into what has happened since, except to mention a friendship with Nora Callahan and a tie to the November Coalition. It is a relief to know that others share the perception that historically we are in big trouble, without their having once glimpsed life in Nazi Germany.

Where it will end, no one can say. But there is reason for hope. In 1938 people in Germany did not know the price they would soon pay for subscribing to Nazi policy. We, looking back, do know. With the benefit of hindsight and with concerted effort we may still halt the juggernaut, free Drug War prisoners, reverse an unsalutary policy, and restore meaning to the words "liberty and justice for all." If we don’t, we will have no one to blame for the disaster that lies just around the corner but ourselves.

Cross Posted at Classical Values


(A) The number of physicians in the U.S. is 700,000
(B) Accidental deaths caused by Physicians per year are 120,000
(C) Accidental deaths per physician is 0.171.

Statistics courtesy of U.S. Dept of Health Human Services.

Now think about this:

(A) The number of gun owners in the U.S. is 80,000,000. (Yes, that's 80 million..)
(B) The number of accidental gun deaths per year, all age groups, is 1,500.
(C) The number of accidental deaths per gun owner is .000188

Statistics courtesy of the FBI

So, statistically, doctors are approximately 9,000 times more dangerous than gun owners. Remember, "Guns don't kill people, doctors do."


Please alert your friends to this alarming threat. We must ban doctors before this gets completely out of hand!!!!! Out of concern for the public at large, we have withheld the statistics on lawyers for fear the shock would cause people to panic and seek medical attention!

Now some will bring up the fact that there are about 25,000 gun deaths a year total (the number being mainly due to criminals with guns) so the gun rate would go up to 0.00313. Making doctors still 540 times as dangerous as guns.

H/T linearthinker via e-mail

Thursday, September 27, 2007


On truthyness:

What we have is not a bunch of lies. What we have is merely truth unsupported by facts.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Too Much Liberty

Thomas Jefferson: "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it."

Camille Paglia: "Leaving sex to the feminists is like letting your dog vacation at the taxidermist."

Camille Paglia: "The only thing that will be remembered about my enemies after they're dead is the nasty things I've said about them”.

Camille Paglia: "It is capitalist America that produced the modern independent woman. Never in history have women had more freedom of choice in regard to dress, behaviour, career, and sexual orientation."

From Samizdata

Cross Posted at Classical Values and at The Astute Bloggers

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

The Elements

The Elements. A song by Tom Lehrer.

Cross Posted at Classical Values and at The Astute Bloggers

Bought And Paid For

I have been wondering for a long time why the Black Community supports the drug war, which is doing so much damage to that community. My old friend Cliff Thornton provides an answer. Cliff comes at politics from a Green point of view, but he is spot on about this one.

Racism, classism, and the war on drugs are inextricably parts of one huge lie, one cannot address one part effectively without addressing the other. This is not a war on drugs but a war on poor people, primarily people of color. I can talk about the race issue, which is well documented and blacks as usual are the perceived primary pariahs, but what I want to talk about is the burgeoning class separation. The religious community has always been the backbone of the black community. We have seen this through out our history with slavery, segregation and the civil rights movement. Why are they (black politicians, preachers and leaders) bemoaning racial profiling and not the war on drugs, when racial profiling is a direct result of the drug war? Why are they not talking about AIDS and that the war on drugs is the primary culprit for the spread of this incurable disease in their communities? Why do they have this dumb look on their faces when you mention that intravenous drug users, through homosexual and heterosexual encounters are the primary conveyers of AIDS in prisons and our communities? Is it because the religious community is tied to local, state and federal funding and the authorities forbid discussion? Is it because they have become employers and employees of the drug war through rehabilitation centers and drug counseling etc.? Is it because they have become gatekeepers where their prosperity depends on not solving the drug problem but perpetuating it?
I really had no idea that Black ministers were colluding in the destruction of their own people for money. What self delusion it must take to keep "helping".

Cross Posted at Classical Values August 2010.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Self Destruction

The rawest deal blacks get in this society are the result of drug prohibition.

And yet when the subject is brought up what do the vast majority of blacks call for? Harsher enforcement.

Okey doak.

Jesse Jackson in one of his more brilliant moves (in a career of mostly bad moves) called for an end to drug prohibition. He got no traction.

The result is that blacks - like the Italians before them - now have a criminal reputation.

Swell. Just swell.

I marched in the 60s for civil rights. I went to the State Capitol to demonstrate.

Seeing blacks calling for their own destruction just sickens me.

Where Is Rev. Al?

What About Our Daughters has a series of posts on a truly horrific story.

"The City of West Palm Beach, Florida is still stuck on stupid almost 4 months after a 35 year-old woman was brutally gang raped by ten African American teens and forced to perform a sex act on her own child at gunpoint. At the time, we all were asking..How on earth did something like this happen? How could her neighbors listen to this woman and her child scream for three hours and not call 911. How could one of this woman's neighbors say "So what a lady got raped...crime happens here all the time." Well folks we are seeing irrefutable proof that there is something in the water in Florida. The Mayor, Lois Frankel isn't the only one whose performance in this matter is way past poor.

Following the international spotlight landing on their city for this heinous crime, the city commissioners moved into "action" and set up a private security patrol in a place the residents called "hell on earth." Now the money is running out and folks are fighting over funding more security. Now mind you these folks can't even install light bulbs in the street lamps of Dunbar Village, the residents live in Florida without air conditioning despite air conditioners being donated and the Police Chief, Delsa Bush has said that a $1,000 reward is sufficient to induce people into providing information on the remaining six gang rapists that are running around West Palm Beach, four months later.
Why isn't this story getting any traction?

It doesn't fit The Narrative

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Jena - Searching For Facts

My search for facts was prompted by this post by my friend Eric at Classical Values. I have found a few.

First off let me say that of all the main stream reporters so far Jason Whitlock has actually done his homework.

Now we love Mychal Bell, the star of the 2006 Jena (La.) High School football team, the teenage boy who has sat in jail since December for his role in a six-on-one beatdown of a fellow student.

Thursday, thousands of us, proud African-Americans, expressed our devotion to and desire to see justice for the “Jena Six,” the half-dozen black students who knocked unconscious, kicked and stomped a white classmate.

Jesse Jackson compared Thursday’s rallies in Jena to the protests and marches that used to take place in cities like Selma, Ala., in the 1960s. Al Sharpton claimed Thursday’s peaceful demonstrations were to highlight racial inequities in the criminal justice system.

Jesse and Al, as they’re prone to do, served a kernel of truth stacked on a mountain of lies.

There are undeniable racial and economic inequities in our criminal justice system, and from afar the “Jena Six” rallies certainly looked and felt like the righteous protests of the 1960s.

But the reality is Thursday’s protests are just another sign that we remain deeply locked in denial about the path we need to travel today for true American liberation, equality and power in the new millennium.
He has way more. RTWT.

Althouse complains that she can't seem to get a straight story from the Big Liars Media. Yep. The Narrative has taken over and there is not much truth to be found.

So let me start with the nooses that are supposed to be an ignored hate crime. This seems like a credible report from a local:
The square at Jena High School has been known for the center of school spirit and/or pranks for many years. I've seen everything from "funerals" of opponent football teams to the tree and surrounding area covered with toilet tissue. Jena High School is known for themed activities surrounding football games. This particular week, JHS was playing a team in which the mascot is Cowboys! Hence, the nooses in the tree..."hang'em high!" Not for one moment did the thought of racism cross my mind or the majority of the others. It was football season. We were playing the cowboys. The kids, girls and boys, wore boots to school and had a western themed pep rally! Nooses = cowboys and horse theives in my world. Maybe I've watched too much Gunsmoke, but racism was not even a thought. Due to the reaction of ADULTS in the black community, not the kids at the school, the boys were suspended. The entire punishment for those boys was never published because of the confidentiality of the issue. However, the boys were suspended. They and
their families were required to go to counseling. The boys had hours of community service. The boys and their families continue to receive threatening phone calls, but yet no one has addressed that issue.
It seems like an excessive punishment for excessive school spirit. There is more. RTWT

Eddie Thompson, a pastor in Jena, seems to have been ambushed by the drive by media.
The truth is no longer important. Jena is officially the poster child for prejudice and bigotry in the south. America found a perfect, flawless lamb to be offered on its national altar of racism. Practically drooling with anticipation, reporters and professional race-crusaders poured into the small southern town of Jena, where the country accents are as thick as the pines that cover the rolling hills of central Louisiana. With such severe charges placed upon the six black students known as the “Jena Six,” the logical conclusion was “racism.” Any inconvenient facts that contradict that conclusion have been dismissed in an Orwellian attempt to shape this story into “Mississippi Burning” revisited. The “Jena Six” can thank their lucky stars that it was a white student and not a bulldog they are accused of beating then stomping on December 4, 2006. Otherwise, PETA and the national media may have pounced on them with the same vitriol afforded Michael Vick. Instead, Jena certainly has a color problem now: black and white and yellow—prejudice, bigotry, and slanted journalism.

My name is Eddie Thompson. I am the white pastor referenced by Howard Witt of the Chicago Tribune in his article that forced the story of the “Jena Six” onto the national stage. On December 8, 2006, when I wrote my article concerning racism in Jena Louisiana I believed that perhaps the biggest obstacle to our town’s prosperous future was the ignorance of prejudice and bigotry. I am now convinced that the biggest enemy to our future as a whole community has become the misinformation, lies, and prejudice of a national media that refuses to seek out the truth concerning the events of last fall. My evolution forces me to voice the concerns of the majority of our town who believe that any interview or statement given to the media will simply be twisted and mangled to support the forgone conclusion that we are nothing but country hicks, rednecks, who have no compassion on the minorities in our community. Most of the white community would not be content with me being such a mouthpiece for their perspective, but since they won’t speak, I’ll do my best to speak for them. The following are questions and statements I’ve heard privately from the white community:
Yep. The Narrative has taken over.

Eddie also had this to say about athletic privilege:
The “Jena Six” have repeatedly been held up as heroes by much of the race-based community and called “innocent students” by the national media. Some of these students have reputations in Jena for intimidating and sometimes beating other students. They have vandalized and destroyed both school property and community property. Some of the Jena Six have been involved in crimes not only in LaSalle Parish but also in surrounding parishes. For the most part, coaches and other adults have prevented them from being held accountable for the reign of terror they have presided over in Jena. Despite intervention by adults wanting to give them chances due their athletic potential, most of the Jena Six have extensive juvenile records. Yet their parents keep insisting that their children have never been in trouble before. These boys did not receive prejudicial treatment but received preferential treatment until things got out of hand.
He has more. Much more. RTWT.

Here is a time line that gives the barest outline of events. They seem to be missing a lot of nuance. I have already provided some. I'm probably missing things. However, we are at least getting a little closer to the "truth" which is ultimately unknowable. A complete dissertation on epistemology is for another day.

The Naked Emperor, a former resident of Jena has a few words. Among them:
Was charging the alleged assailants racist? I find no evidence of it. If a victim chooses to press charges, and there is sufficient evidence to support those charges, it is the duty of the District Attorney to file said charges. That is a matter of law.

At one point, the alleged assailants were charged with attempted murder. Even a cursatory glance at the situation shows those charges to be unwarranted, and they were not pressed. But there does seem to be enough evidence to bring the current charges.

And are the alleged assailants guilty? I have no clue. That's a matter of fact, not law, for a jury to decide.

And while we are on the subject of the jury, one of the assailants has already been tried. Much has been made of the fact that the jury was all white. But of the 150 people receiving jury summons, only 50 showed up, and there were no blacks in that number. Sorry, but lack of performance of civic duty is not the DA's fault.
Man The Narrative is just falling apart. I hate it when that happens.

Cross Posted at Classical Values and at The Astute Bloggers

Michael Totten On The Anbar Awakening

Michael Totten visited Ramadi in Anbar and reports.

“It was nothing we did,” said Marine Lieutenant Colonel Drew Crane who was visiting for the day from Fallujah. “The people here just couldn’t take it anymore.”

What he said next surprised me even more than what I was seeing.

“You know what I like most about this place?” he said.

“What’s that?” I said.

“We don’t need to wear body armor or helmets,” he said.

I was poleaxed. Without even realizing it, I had taken off my body armor and helmet. I took my gear off as casually as I do when I take it off after returning to the safety of the base after patrolling. We were not in the safety of the base and the wire. We were safe because we were in Ramadi.
It is quite long. You should read the whole thing. Lots of pictures. Happy smiling faces.

What happened? It seems like living under Islamic fascism is not as popular in practice as it is in theory.

Cross Posted at Classical Values and at The Astute Bloggers

Mimi For Rudy

Mimi Miyagi who ran for Governor of Nevada in 2006 is supporting Rudy for President.

She is a big fan of the Right to Keep and Bear Arms as you can see by this picture. Free Republic has an interview.

She is also a porn star.

You can see her 2006 Campaign site which is NSFW.

As to the rest of her oeuvre, you are on your own.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Ground Zero Will Visit You

Scott Ott reports:

(2007-09-19) — President George Bush today said he would consider “alternative means” to accommodate a request by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to visit ‘Ground Zero‘, the former site of the World Trade Center towers, during his trip to the United Nations next week.

“You know the old expression,” Mr. Bush said. “If Mahmoud can’t come to Ground Zero, we may have to bring Ground Zero to Mahmoud.”

The White House refused to clarify the president’s statement.

HT linearthinker

Fred Hochberg and Norman Hsu - Joined At Birth?

Gateway Pundit has an explosive bit of news on the Hsu scandal.

Ever since Hsu became a major fundraiser, there have been notable similarities between his and Hochberg/Lillian Vernon's contributions that strain the limits of coincidence. Not only is there significant overlap among several far-flung candidates who wouldn't typically be of much interest to New York businessmen, but the size and timing of many of the transactions further suggest the efforts are coordinated...
Yes, Fred Hochberg, a dean at the school where Hsu served as a trustee, one of Hsu's fellow HillRaisers, CEO of the company that officially bundled at least one of Hsu's direct contributions as recently as this summer, and the apparent architect of Hsu's favored candidate slate, was installed as one of the country's senior-most federal policymakers by Bill Clinton.
Fred Hochberg and his life partner Tom Healy hosted a fundraising event at their home in New York with Hillary for Minnesota senatorial candidate Amy Klobuchar in 2006.
A culture of corruption?

If this sinks Hillary who else do the Dems have besides Nation of Islam friendly Obama?

Who is Fred Hochberg?
From 1998 through 2000, he served as deputy then acting administrator of the Small Business Administration (SBA), an agency elevated to cabinet rank by President Bill Clinton, with more than 4,000 employees and 100 offices across the country.
So you can buy a cabinet seat with enough money? Evidently.

Update: See Suitably Flip who has done the heavy lifting.

Cross Posted at Classical Values and at The Astute Bloggers

Friday, September 21, 2007


Over at Climate Audit they are discussing “Miscalculation, poor study design or self-serving data analysis”.

Let me relate this to my current field of study - Nuclear Fusion.

The big money is going into projects like ITER (the US is spending something like $200 to $400 mil a year on this project). All the scientists involved say we are at least 30 years away from a net power reactor delivering watts to the grid. When that net power device is built it will be too big 17GW (most power plants built today are under 100MW and the largest are in the 1 GW range), too expensive (at 20X to 30X the current cost of electricity), and too late. All this is inherent in trying to get fusion by heating things up. And yet funding rolls on. Grant money is relatively easy if there is an ITER angle.

Contrast this with IEC fusion. In the US there are 5 to 10 projects going on at a funding rate that is probably on the order of $20 million or less total. The thing about IEC Fusion is that instead of heating up a mass of gas to get fusion in the high energy tail, particles are accelerated directly to fusion speeds. This makes the devices much smaller, less costly, and quicker to develop. So who is doing IEC Fusion? Basically a bunch of old cranks who see ITER and the Tokamaks as useless except as science fair projects. Let me quote Plasma Physicist Dr. Nicholas Krall who said, "We spent $15 billion dollars studying tokamaks and what we learned about them is that they are no damn good."

And yet the money rolls on.

If I was in charge of science I would see that in any discipline 70% went to mainstream and 30% to dissenters. That would tend to keep everyone honest. Does it mean some money would go for stupidity? Sure. As Murray Gell-Mann says - there is a reason most new stuff ought not get funded, most of it is flat wrong. However, if we do not encourage dissent from orthodoxy we will never learn anything new.

Our current ratios are out of balance.

Let me add that a significant part of the 30% should go towards replication by dissenters.

If we are really going to do good science we must encourage a climate of dissent and replication.

Let me add that we see this in Cold Fusion. The mainstream derided it because at first replication was difficult. Now at least the laboratory aspects are better under control and replication is the norm. We still do not understand what is happening or why. However, finally progress is being made. So far it seems to be a low energy process. Heat is created. Just not enough to even boil the water (actually D2O) in the experimental apparatus. It is being researched. We will find out why. We lost 10 years of useful work because of clinging to orthodoxy.

In many way science is like religion. Woe be unto him who strays from the canon.

Interestingly enough the US Navy is funding IEC Fusion and Cold Fusion. Why? They don't look at it from a right/wrong basis. It is all about risk vs reward. They are not crazy. They do require at least a minimum of results before funding. They come at it from: "we don't know everything" and "mathematics can be helpful but is not definitive. Only real world results count".

Why not more dependence on math? Because with math - if you pick the right assumptions - you can prove anything.

Cross Posted at Classical Values and at The Astute Bloggers

Thursday, September 20, 2007

I'm With Joe

I'm with Joe Lieberman.

Leaving Iraq would put us in a much worse situation than the current one.

Evidently the Democrats want to test that proposition.

Interesting times.

Pin Ups For Vets

Here is a project I can get behind. Pinups for Hospitalized Vets. Check out the Gallery link. Not necessarily safe for work.

Any way the above page takes you right to the link to the good stuff. If you are in the mood for some music you can hear The Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy of Company B on their front page. Nice Lady in a quasi sailor uniform in front of a Tall Ship. Cute.

H/T Instapundit

Is It True?

I'm continually asked at various places around the www if the news about Dr. Bussard's Fusion Reactor being funded is true. Yes it is.

Dr. Bussard has been funded. Unfortunately I can't give details due to agreements with my sources. However, none of this is a deep dark secret and if you ask the right questions to the right people in the right way you can get answers.

I have heard from more than one of my sources that Congress is ready to get involved if WB-7 test reactor results look promising.

There are a lot of forces converging on this if it looks like an energy solution.

1. The CO2 crazies
2. The no coal for energy nuts
3. The no (fission) nukes people
4. The where will our energy come from in 2100 fear mongers
5. The Space Transport wackos
6. The We hate Saudi Arabia fanatics
7. The What about the plutonium people
8. The think about what it means for the Navy jokers
9. The windmills are bad for yacht owners lobby

As soon as I get releases from my sources I will report in more detail.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

They Will Cut You Some Slack

The Church of the subGenius will cut you some slack.

From the Wiki:

The central belief in the Church is the pursuit of Slack, which generally stands for the sense of freedom, independence, and original thinking that comes when you achieve your personal goals. The Church states that we are all born with Original Slack, but that Slack has been stolen from us by a worldwide conspiracy of normal people, or "pinks". The Church encourages originality and frowns on actions seen as pinkness, which happens when one bows down to authority and the accepted limits of society. Popular Church phrases supporting these goals are "Give Me Slack or KILL ME!", "The SubGenius Must Have Slack" and "Fuck 'Em If They Can't Take A Joke."

The Linux distribution Slackware is named for Slack. The card game Chez Geek uses Slack to keep score; the object of the game is to accumulate Slack counters until one player wins by reaching his or her Slack Goal.

"Slack" has a Marxist explanation: once capitalism has thoroughly "rationalised" using electronic technology, there will be no slack as the wage paid to labor is in real terms driven down to the level of the reproduction of labor. Since the product of labor is taken away from labor in alienation, people naturally are alienated from the real conditions of life and feel they have no slack, no extra energy to do other than reproduce daily existence. The Church of the Subgenius, like any other religion, promises exit from this intolerable situation.
However, until that blessed day comes when we all have enough Slack the Church is accepting donations.

You can listen to the Hour of Slack.

No Price To Pay

The New York Sun reports that a prominent Saudi cleric, Salman al-Awdah, once praised by Osama has turned against him. Howerver, that is not the most interesing point of the article.

Mr. al-Awdah asks, "Have we reduced Islam to a bullet or a rifle? Has the means become an end?"

The editor of an Arabic International Daily, Asharq Alawsat, Tariq Alhomayed, suggested the letter was published too late.

"Sheikh Salman al Ouda's distancing himself from Bin Laden at a time when those absolving themselves of Al Qaeda's leader have nothing to lose and no price to pay." Mr. Alhomayed wrote in an editorial published yesterday. "This comes at a time when no one is shedding any tears for the leader of Al Qaeda organization."
It seems Osama is no longer the hero he once was and the cleric has joined the bandwagon.

Cross Posted at Classical Values and at The Astute Bloggers

The big deal of course is the bandwagon. Osama is no longer driving it. In fact he appears to have been thrown under the wheels.

H/T Insatpundit

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Will Blog For Abuse

So I'm reading Stuart Taylor guest blogging over at The Volokh Conspiracy and one commenter notes that a previous guest blogger only lasted for two posts.

No disrespect to her but maybe she was unfamiliar with the level of discourse on the blogging medium?
Well yeah.

So my friend Eric at Classical Values makes a similar point today.
I'm convinced there has to be a blogging gene. I mean, who would do this voluntarily without pay, day in and day out? Think about it.
And then a bit earlier I had a couple of real charmers show up at this post: Conspiracy Theories. My attitude? Some of us enjoy the abuse.

So my motto is "Will blog for abuse. At least it increases the traffic." I'm in this for the abuse. Pile on.

Cross Posted at Classical Values and at The Astute Bloggers

Monday, September 17, 2007

Moral Relativism Wins

The New York Times has a bit up on the Canon (Culture) Wars and how they have affected academia. It centers around a discussion of Alan Bloom's The Closing of the American Mind.

Today it’s generally agreed that the multiculturalists won the canon wars. Reading lists were broadened to include more works by women and minority writers, and most scholars consider that a positive development. Yet 20 years later, there’s a more complicated sense of the costs and benefits of those transformations. Here, the lines aren’t drawn between right and left in the traditional political sense, but between those who defend the idea of a distinct body of knowledge and texts that students should master and those who focus more on modes of inquiry and interpretation. However polarizing Bloom may have been, many of the issues he raised still resonate — especially when it comes to the place of the humanities on campus and in the culture.
Here comes the punch line. And on the first page too!
All this reflects what the philosopher Martha Nussbaum today describes as a “loss of respect for the humanities as essential ingredients of democracy.” Nussbaum, who panned Bloom’s book in The New York Review in 1987, teaches at the University of Chicago, which like Columbia has retained a Western-based core curriculum requirement for undergraduates. But on some campuses, “the main area of conflict is trying to make sure that the humanities get adequate funding from the central administration,” Nussbaum wrote in an e-mail message, adding, “Our nation, like most nations of the world, is devaluing the humanities vis-à-vis science and technology, so constant vigilance is required lest these disciplines be cut.” Louis Menand, a Harvard English professor and New Yorker staff writer who serves on Harvard’s curriculum reform committee, concurs: “The big question for humanists is, How do we explain why what we do is important for people who aren’t humanists? That’s been tough, really tough.”
The Professor is complaining that the people think the Humanities have no relevance. If she is a liberal she should be cheering that moral relativism has won. If no judgments can be made no need to teach judgment, eh? I guess the downside of that bothers the Professor. Isn't it ironic, just a bit, don't ya think?

Bloom was wrong about Rock 'n Roll though.

Cross Posted at Classical Values

Sunday, September 16, 2007

The Northwest Passage

The melting of Arctic sea ice has caused the North West Passage to open up again.

The Northwest Passage is a sea route through the Arctic Ocean along the northern coast of North America via the waterways amidst the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, connecting the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans. The various islands of the archipelago are separated from one another and the Canadian mainland by a series of Arctic waterways collectively known as the Northwest Passages or Northwestern Passages.

Sought by explorers for centuries as a possible trade route, it was first navigated by Roald Amundsen in 1903-6.
How about some other voyages:

1940 Canadian RCMP officer Henry Larsen
1957 the United States Coast Guard cutter Storis
1977 sailor Willy de Roos
2005 47 ft aluminium sailboat, Northabout, built and captained by Jarlath Cunnane

I blame it on man made global warming. Except for 1903-06, 1940, 1957, and 1977.

Fortunately The BBC knows the real truth.
The most direct shipping route from Europe to Asia is fully clear of ice for the first time since records began, the European Space Agency (Esa) says.

Historically, the Northwest Passage linking the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans has been ice-bound through the year.

But the agency says ice cover has been steadily shrinking, and this summer's reduction has made the route navigable.

The findings, based on satellite images, raised concerns about the speed of global warming.

The Northwest Passage is one of the most fabled sea routes in the world - a short cut from Europe to Asia through the Canadian Arctic.

Recent years have seen a marked shrinkage in its ice cover, but this year it was extreme, Esa says.

It says this made the passage "fully navigable" for the first time since monitoring began in 1978.
I guess no one was monitoring it in 1903-06,1940, 1957, and 1977. Too bad. They might have seen some interesting things about.

Update: 16 Sept 007 1321z

Evidently this is not the first time in the 21st Centiry the BBC has found an opening.

Cross Posted at Classical Values and at The Astute Bloggers

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Islam In The West

Dean's World is having a Carnival of Islam in the West. Some very interesting posts are linked.

Here is a good one posted by some time commenter Ali Eteraz at Jewcy. Ali discusses the different schools of Islam up to the modern day.

He leaves out two of the most destructive influences from the West.

Communism/Socialism and National Socialism.

Both quasi religious doctrines disguised as political beliefs. A difficulty also seen in Islam although the emphasis may be reversed.

To become modern Islam must separate the public from the private. However, the result will be (as the "fundamentalists" do see) the end of Islam except as a vestige. Thus the war within Islam and between Islam and the West.

Islam will lose because people are human. Given the choice between heaven on earth and heaven in heaven people tend (by a wide margin) to choose the former over the latter. Material progress leads to spiritual decline.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Nazi Porn In Hebrew

That's right. There is Nazi S&M porn in Hebrew. Written by Jews. In lurid comic book style.

Read under the table by a generation of pubescent Israelis, often the children of survivors, the Stalags were named for the World War II prisoner-of-war camps in which they were set. The books told perverse tales of captured American or British pilots being abused by sadistic female SS officers outfitted with whips and boots. The plot usually ended with the male protagonists taking revenge, by raping and killing their tormentors.

The most famous Stalag, “I Was Colonel Schultz’s Private Bitch,” was deemed to have crossed all the lines of acceptability, prompting the police to try to hunt every copy down.
Some nice pictures of the cover art at the above site. If you are into that sort of thing. For research purposes. Heh.

In America we tend to do popular culture S&M in True Detective type pulp fiction. A matter of taste and culture I suppose.

Here are some nice pictures of Israeli women who may have qualified with heavy weapons. From Maxim NSFW. It is only tangentially related to to the subject at hand. But you know. I. Just. Couldn't. Resist.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Libertarians On Drugs

This essay Freedom Fetishists by Kay Hymowitz is making the rounds in libertarian and conservative circles.

Ilya Somin of the Volokh Conspiracy has some things to say about Kay Hymowitz, Libertarianism, and Lifestyle Excesses:

To reiterate a simple but oft-misunderstood point: that which should be legal is not coextensive with that which is desirable or right. Libertarians believe that racist and communist speech should be legal; that does not mean that libertarianism implies support for such speech. The same is true of excessive drug use, cheating on your spouse, and so on. "People ought to be free to do whatever the hell they want, mostly, so long as they aren't hurting anyone else" is not "the libertarian vision of personal morality." It is the libertarian vision of the limits we should place on the power of government.
Well the "excessive drug use" bit caught my attention. What exactly is up with that?

How can drug use still be called destructive when people who chronically take drugs do so because of medical need?

Addiction Is A Genetic Disease


PTSD and the Endocannabinoid System

People who think drugs are a "lifestyle" issue have bought into the "conservative" view of the subject. Of course it is why after 90 years of trying we have made so little progress. We are lost in "choice" when we should be focused on "need".

If we don't want people to take drugs to solve their problems then we have to make sure their problems are solved some other way. Of course that just multiplies government intervention. Better than jailing people for their needs and jailing their suppliers for serving those needs.

So of course the question comes up what portion of the chronic drug users population is need based on need and how much is recreation.

Actually we don't know if those who need are a few, many, most, or all.

No comprehensive studies have ever been done on the subject. The closest we come is Dr. Lonnie Shavelson's book/study mentioned in the above "Heroin" link.

He found that 70% of the women chronically using heroin were sexually abused when children. So for women using heroin we can say the number is at least 70%.

My take on the subject: no one will do the study because our whole drug war will be seen to be based on a wrong premise. You might as well say insulin use is a life style choice.

Ever notice how hard the courts fight the medical necessity defense? There is a reason for that. It would open the floodgates if allowed.

Cross Posted at Classical Values

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


Because I was attacked that day.

Zell Miller at the Republican National Convention 2004
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Monday, September 10, 2007

Democrats Admit - Conservatives Won The Election

From Politico comes the admission that Democrats lost the last election.

The other lawmaker on the call, Rep. Jim Moran (D-Va.), defends Pelosi. “The speaker doesn’t have the votes,” he said. “If you see what has happened in the Democratic Caucus, I don’t think you’d be quite as critical of the speaker. She really is trying. … We cobbled together a majority by winning in a lot of seats that tend to be conservative: in the South, in the rural Midwest, and so on. These members are very much afraid that if they get too far out front, they’re going to lose their seat, and they’re being advised to not take risks so we can sustain this majority.”
So the Democrats are advising their party to not go all out anti-war because it is a losing strategy.

I seem to recall saying not too long after the election that the Conservatives had won. The 2006 elections changed the Party in Control. It didn't change the governing philosophy at all.

H/T Instapundit

Sunday, September 09, 2007


KC Johnson is doing profiles on the faculty at Duke. Today he is doing Kathy Rudy.

Lots of readers, meanwhile, laughed at Rudy’s statement that “complexifying this equation to include race meant identifying ourselves as white oppressors.” Reader Eugene Dillenberg writes:
"I teach at a major Midwestern university where most students, and large sections of the faculty, generally laugh off the kind of racist/sexist nonsense Kathy Rudy spouts. We are preparing our students to take their places in the world, and we have little time for this kind of childishness.

"But one word caught me up short. “Complexifying”? This is a college-educated person? This is a college professor? My undergraduates know better than to make up words like this. If they try, they get their essay returned to them, with the offending text circled and the grade lowered accordingly.
I believe Rudy has been compactutated.

She should be redestinated.

Before lexifying further.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Democracy Not Democrats

The new Osama tape has created quite a buzz among Democrats. Here is what one commenter at ABC News/Political Radar has to say:

i am not surprised that the real issue is being sidestepped here, and once again, americans are being dumb! hello....democracy does not mean democrats! take your political science seriously for once!

Posted by: the educated girl | Sep 7, 2007 3:24:15 PM
I think she must be very educated indeed to get that right.

Democracy doesn't mean Democrats. Pass it on.

Friday, September 07, 2007

Democrats Not Following Orders

It seems a new Osama tape has surfaced and bin Laden is really pissed with the Democrats.

"People of America: the world is following your news in regards to your invasion of Iraq, for people have recently come to know that, after several years of tragedies of this war, the vast majority of you want it stopped. Thus, you elected the Democratic Party for this purpose, but the Democrats haven't made a move worth mentioning. On the contrary, they continue to agree to the spending of tens of billions to continue the killing and war there."
Well my Democrat friends, are you going to follow bin Laden's orders or not?

Don Surber says not.
After a month-long vacation, Democrats returned to the nation’s capital this week, an army in disarray. They left in August confident that Republicans would go home, get chewed out about the war, and raise the white flag. Instead, the Surge worked and the Democrats are losing it.

S.A. Miller at the Washington Times reported:
Rank-and-file Democrats in Congress are criticizing the party’s leaders for allowing the White House to sap momentum from the antiwar movement during the August recess.

“The White House is taking great advantage of the Democrats not pushing back,” said Rep. Lynn Woolsey, California Democrat and co-founder of the antiwar Out of Iraq Caucus.

“We need bolder steps from the Democrats,” she said. “The people of this country are waiting for some leadership — some bold leadership — from the people that they elected to be the majority of the House and the Senate.”
It appears that Osama is waiting for that same kind of leadership.

I think it is well past time that the Democrats made up their collective minds and decide whose side are they on.

Cross Posted at Classical Values and at The Astute Bloggers

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Tell Fred What You Think

Fred Thompson is in the race for President.

He has a real life blog up at his site where you can Ask Fred Questions.

If there is something you want to ask the Next President Of The United States, now is a very good time.

Cross Posted at Classical Values and at The Astute Bloggers

Global Warming Causes.....

We hear all the time that global warming causes this and global warming causes that. So what does a scientist have to say on the matter? Michael Schirber, a staff writer at Live Science reports.

Since the late 1960s, much of the North Atlantic Ocean has become less salty, in part due to increases in fresh water runoff induced by global warming, scientists say. Now for the first time researchers have quantified this fresh water influx, allowing them to predict the long-term effects on a "conveyor belt" of ocean currents.

Climate changes in the Northern Hemisphere have melted glaciers and brought more rain, dumping more fresh water into the oceans, according to the analysis.
That is not all that global warming causes. Let us look at another report from Catherine Brahic a writer at New Scientist.
Tim Boyer of the US National Oceanographic Data Center and colleagues compiled salinity data gathered by fisheries, navy and research ships travelling across the North Atlantic between 1955 and 2006. They found that during this time, the layer of water that makes up the top 400 metres has gradually become saltier.

The seawater is probably becoming saltier due to global warming, Boyer says.
So there you have it. Global warming is the cause if oceans get saltier and global warming is the cause if the oceans are becoming less saline.

I think this proves the science is settled. Any change in the environment is caused by global warming. You may now give Al Gore all your money.

Cross Posted at Classical Values and at The Astute Bloggers

H/T Commenter Mark R at Climate Audit

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

It Doesn't Seem To Work

In Ireland they seem to be reviving the popular sport of tarring and feathering. It seems the miscreant in this case was a drug dealer.

This man was subjected to the painful tarring and feathering on the Taughmonagh estate, a loyalist stronghold in the city.

Locals had accused the victim, who is in his thirties, of being a drug dealer. And when police allegedly did not act, they took the law into their own hands.

Two masked men tied up the accused victim, poured tar over his head and then covered him in white feathers, apparently from a pillow case.

A small crowd including women and children looked on as the men then adorned their victim with a placard reading: "I'm a drug dealing scumbag".

Pictures of the punishment were sent to a local newspaper.
You have to deal with root causes.

Why do people take drugs?

Schizophrenics are well known to use tobacco at rates well above average.

So instead of treating the cause: people getting insufficient medical treatment, we go after the result - a market for unapproved treatments.

This is craziness.

It doesn't seem to work.

We want more.


H/T Instapundit

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

John Edwards In Iowa

My mother visited John Edwards in Osceola, Iowa, Monday. Mom is a die hard Democrat and likes Edwards. My mom met Edwards and told him she was a breast cancer survivor and had lost a young son (my brother Jeff). Edwards put an arm on mom's shoulder said "God Bless You" and gave her a little hug.

Now I really don't like Edward's policies, but I have to say that mom's story humanized him a lot for me. BTW mom (who is about to turn 88) thought Edwards was really handsome.

Cross Posted at Classical Values and at The Astute Bloggers

Rationing Health Care

Here is how it is done in Britain.

The rules of our local wheelchair services state very clearly that unless you use a power wheelchair for a minimum of six months full time solely indoors, they will not even consider you for a powered wheelchair capable of outdoor use. That ruled me out straight away. I refused to give up the limited amount of mobility I did have, which at the time was pretty much crawling around the house anyway, knowing full well if I went into a wheelchair full time not only would I never regain any further function, but that it would be incredibly damaging to all my joints and overall condition. I also knew sitting in a wheelchair full time indoors would rapidly lead to hypothermia and pressure sores. I weighed all of 32 kilograms at the time. I felt being forced to comply with such a rule would probably kill me. So did the initial assessor at the wheelchair services. I was told that despite all this, despite them knowing that I was physically incapable of propelling myself in a manual wheelchair due to dislocating shoulders, elbows and wrists I could not have a powered wheelchair. I could however have a manual self propel wheelchair at any time I wanted. Or a wheelchair someone else could push me in. Although they were aware that at the time I did not have anyone to push me. Sorry. Those were the rules. Ridiculous though they may be.
The blog owner makes a trenchant comment:
This is, as you might think, a completely stupid situation but is, of course, actually derived from the rationing necessary in a state-funded NHS.
There is no such thing as top quality free medical care. At least with privately funded and owned care givers you can be sure the money is going into medicine (not counting all the paper work to comply with government regs.).

Monday, September 03, 2007

Carbon Positive

The Brits are not just carbon neutral, they are carbon positive.

Using previous international research into climate change, the report estimated that covering the social cost of carbon emissions would have cost £11.7 billion in 2005.

But receipts from green taxes such as fuel duty, road tax and the Climate Change Levy totalled £21.9 billion. On average every household in the UK paid £400 more in levies than it cost to cover their own footprint, the TPA claimed.
The British pound is currently worth about $2 American.

Evidently the Brits opinion on this (read the article) is that "Green" taxes are not about the environment they are about taxes. Al Gore is having a hard time fooling any one.

H/T Instapundit

Cross Posted at Classical Values and at The Astute Bloggers

Science Blog

Al Fin 2100 has a number of interesting posts on science and technology. Plus a few political opinions worthy of note.

Conspiracy Theories

I have some Google Alerts that have directed me to some strange and wonderful sites.

Here are two real conspiracy cases. Read them for amusement. At your own risk.

Winter Patriot.

Aftermath News.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

The Gold Standard

It appears that money and jewelery and chip manufacturing are not the only things gold is good for.

His idea might have sounded crazy but he wasn't. Here are the basics of his idea.

Radio waves for the most part are harmless but they will heat certain metals. Gold is one of those metals and was also previously FDA-approved for use in humans.

A lab provided Kanzius with what is essentially gold, broken down into the tiniest possible size. They're called nanoparticles.

These nanoparticles are injected into a cancer patient and are attracted to the abnormalities of the cancerous cells, attaching themselves to those bad cells. What's more, the nanoparticles ignore healthy cells.

The patient is then exposed to radio waves and only the bad cells heat up and die. The healthy cells, which have no metal on them, are not warmed up at all and are unaffected.

Early, crude experiments done on hot dogs in his garage seemed to work. In 2004, Kanzius showed the results to a prominent cancer researcher.

"He said, 'You know this is the most amazing thing I've ever read in my life,'" proudly recalls Kanzius.

Today Kanzius has several universities working on his research and a manufacturer now builds clinical-sized versions of the machine he first built with radio parts and his wife's pie pans.
It is an amazing story of how technology and pie pans meet compassion. Read the whole thing.

H/T no justice, no peace commenter at Durham in Wonderland

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Do Not Argue With Fools

“do not argue with fools. They will drag you to their level and beat you by shear experience”

Well it is a hobby of mine. I can't help myself. And, when I run out of fools I argue with myself.

Inspired by:

Commenter Andrey Levin at Climate Audit.

Prevent Global Warming - Give Up Soda Pop

That would be one little change that could help put off the advent of catastrophic global warming.

Soda pop drinkers and the companies that supply the soda drinkers are intentionally destroying the planet. One thing soda drinkers could do is to put one can out of every six they drink in storage. That would sequester at least part of the CO2.

So some one is going to tell me next that the CO2 is coming from natural sources. OK. So they have it in tanks. Why are they putting it in soda pop instead of burying it?

How can they release dangerous gases into the world?

Inspired by papertiger in the comments at The Reference Frame

Cross Posted at Classical Values and at The Astute Bloggers