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4001  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: October 02, 2010, 12:50:54 PM
"Whitman has a hypocrisy problem"

I am not so sure.  She had copies of ID and SSN.  She/husband was notified there was a descrepancy and she let the empolyee know to check into it.

I am not clear she was notifed person was *illegal*; just that SSN didn't match or check out. 

She paid this person well for her duties.   She paid taxes etc and other obligations for this employee.  If someone knows they are hiring an illegal they pay them cash under the table.  They don't submit work papers to the Feds.  It sounds like Whitman and or husband was actually being quite kind to this person and gave her the benefit of the doubt.  Yet for political purposes they are being accused of lying, treating her poorly and I guess not turning her in to ICE??

4002  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: October 02, 2010, 09:25:44 AM
That is what I figure.

You can card someone, suspect they are not legal and then what?  Who are you going to tell?

And *you* may be the one in trouble.  Criminally and civily.

And whomever you notify will do nothing anyway!

It is like a couple of people who came into my office some years back at different times.  They had each swindled narcotic prescriptions out of me.  Their stories were not totally believable but I gave them the benefit of the doubt in case they were really in pain.  I called the State's department that handles this and the response was , "well you gave them the prescription doctor!"  They sent me some waste of time forms to fill out, which I did and sent back and naturally I never heard another word.

In short they could care less.

And that would be the result now with employers checking for job prospects' immigration status.

So while I do feel empolyers should have some obligation to make some sort of attempt at verification, No one will back them up anyway.

And that is why the Allred thing is such a big deal.  It is a blatant example of *in the faces* of rightful, legal residents and to think that this criminal illegal alien who is being used as a pawn could possible effect the outcome of an election of our biggest state.  JDN, you don't think that is a big deal?

It is a Democrat lawyer defending potential votes for the party they have bought and paid for.

4003  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / The end of the human race? on: October 01, 2010, 03:42:16 PM
I saw parts of this on cable the other night.  The guy makes a lot of sense.

He predicts the end of humanity.
Crack pot or genius?

Anyone else see this?  See trailer below:
4004  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: October 01, 2010, 01:38:22 PM
JDN and Doug,
Yes I do agree on those points.
Getting ID verification from the employee by the employer requires some sort of enforcement and unfortunately, the gov. simply will not enforce ID fraud.
4005  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: October 01, 2010, 12:40:12 PM
"and interrupting each other and both saying nothing"

It seems you and I will never totally agree on anything.

Your conclusion that Whitman was justifed is same as mine.

Yet, if you don't think that Levin doesn't expose Allred for being full of BS than I can't help you.

Levin cannot get a straight answer from her about the facts.  That is clear.

"I don't understand why this is a big deal"

I don't undertand what you don't understand.  The big deal is Democrat operatives are using this illegal alien to whip up the hispanic vote.

We the people appear to have NO say as to come here, stays here, and any ability to do anything about it other than make noise while being labelled as bigots.

That IS the big deal.
4006  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Immigration issues on: October 01, 2010, 11:34:30 AM
Good audio of Marc Levin interviewing Gloria Allred the Democrat lawyer using the illegal alien for a hit on Whitman:

4007  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of His Glibness on: October 01, 2010, 09:59:20 AM
***Obama says people are inpatient but "now's not the time to took time to free the slaves...ultimately we'll make progress."***

When we hear a President comparing his agenda of dismantling the USA as we know it with freeing slaves we have a problem.

I guess enslaving one half of the country to pay taxes to support the other half that doesn't is ok. 

But as long as humans can be easily bribed we fight an uphill battle. 
4008  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Government Programs, spending, budget process on: September 28, 2010, 02:12:13 PM
Europe needs Warren Buffett and Joe Biden to simply tell them to stop the whining and to grow up:

Austerity whips up anger, protests mount in Europe AFP - Wednesday, September 29Send IM Story Print
Austerity whips up anger, protests mount in Europe
 BRUSSELS (AFP) - – Painful cuts by overspending EU countries come head to a head with mounting social anger on Wednesday when labour leaders call angry workers onto streets right across the continent.

Set for its largest Europe-wide protest for a decade is Brussels where labour leaders are planning to bring 100,000 people from 30 countries to say "No to austerity!"

"We will demonstrate to voice our concern over the economic and social context, which will be compounded by austerity measures," John Monks, general secretary of the European Trade Union Confederation.

The protest, the biggest such march since 2001 when 80,000 people spilled into the EU capital, is being held to coincide with a plan to fine governments running up deficits.

Detailed proposals are due to be released that day by the 27-nation bloc's executive arm, the European Commission, with the continent's finance ministers also gathering in Brussels this week.

Millions of jobs fell off the European map in the global downturn and many more look set to be squeezed as governments axe public spending.

"This is a crucial day for Europe," said Monks, "because our governments, virtually all of them, are about to embark on solid cuts in public expenditures.

"They're doing this at a time where the economy is very close to recession, and almost certainly you'll see the economy go back into recession as the effect of these cuts take place."

In Spain, where trade unions have called a general strike on Wednesday, unemployment has more than doubled, with one in five workers jobless in July.

Madrid in consequence is looking at a drastic overhaul of its labour legislation to ease flexi-time and hiring and firing. Pensions are frozen, wages cut for civil servants and VAT taxes on the rise.

But elsewhere labour leaders are equally concerned. At a glance: The human cost of the crisis in Europe

Portugal's leading labour confederation, the CGTP, which is close to the communists, has called protests in Lisbon and Porto and hopes for more than 10,000 participants.

Poland's main unions, Solidarity and OPZZ, expect "several thousand" at a protest outside government headquarters.

Similar marches are scheduled in Greece, Ireland, Italy, Latvia and Serbia, with labour leaders across the board clamouring for growth and protesting the injustice of workers paying for the errors of the financial sector.

"Those responsible for this crisis, the banks, the financial markets and the ratings agencies are all too quick in asking for help from states and public budgets and today want the workers to pay for their debts," said French labour leader Jean-Claude Mailly, who heads the FO union.

But while Europe tries to clean up its post-recession books, a backlash has begun among voters focused on vast anticipated numbers of public sector job cuts.

The worker backlash was clearly seen in Britain, where Labour unions, lawmakers and party members handed their leadership to left-leaning Ed Miliband -- in a surprise, last-minute defeat for his better-known, more centrist brother and former foreign secretary David.

"We're a rich part of the world," said Monks.

"We're going to keep this campaign going, fight for growth, fight for jobs, fight to protect social Europe. Don't go down the austerity route."

4009  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Morning Joe for Clinton! on: September 28, 2010, 09:24:39 AM
This guy has lost me forever:

Joe Scarborough Hints He Would Like to See Bill Clinton Run Again for President – If Only It Were Constitutional
By Matt Hadro (Bio | Archive)
Thu, 09/23/2010 - 16:19 ET   

MSNBC's Joe Scarborough – who when a Republican congressman voted to impeach President Clinton – seems to believe that a former President should be able to legally  run for office again after taking "a term or two off." His comments followed a gushing slew of praise for former President Bill Clinton, and he noted that many viewers "are just sitting there thinking 'Why can't [Clinton] run for President in a couple of years?'"

"It seems so short-sighted, just because the Republicans were upset that FDR was President for four terms," Scarborough complained of the 22nd Amendment, ratified during Truman's second term but passed out of Congress four years earlier in March 1947. Republicans did control both houses of Congress then, but the amendment would have excluded then-President Harry Truman and was supported by some Democrats.

Co-hosts of MSNBC's "Morning Joe" Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski conducted a glowing  interview of the former president at the Clinton Global Initiative in New York City. Story Continues Below Ad ↓
Topics ranged from Clinton's charitable work around the world to the 2010 elections to Newt Gingrich. Scarborough worked in some sharp criticism of his former GOP colleague and former Speaker Gingrich, due to his recent comments about the New York City mosque.

Yet Scarborough had nothing but praise reserved for Clinton."Listening to you talk right now, you've always been known as the brightest, the first-class, however you want to put it – but you've had the ability the past decade to go all around the world, start this initiative, understand issues – you've understood issues better than anyone in Washington, when you were President."

Scarborough, treading carefully, asked the former president why it wouldn't make sense for someone to run again for President. "I'm just wondering, not for you, but doesn't it make sense for this country to say, 'Okay, let a guy serve, or a woman serve for eight years, then they can take a term or two off – but then if they have something to give back to America in the terms of leadership, give them that opportunity'?"

President Clinton agreed with Scarborough, but added that an amendment shouldn't apply to him, but to future candidates for the Presidency. "If we change the Constitution, it shouldn't apply to me. That is, it shouldn't apply to anybody that served, it should all be forward-looking, so no one would think it was personal."

The interview about Clinton's organization became a slobbering love-fest for the Democratic president, conducted by the former Republican congressman. Scarborough, in describing the conflict resolution between the GOP Congress and Clinton's Presidency in the 90's, asked Clinton this gem: "Could you explain to Washington, DC, on both sides – how did you do that? How did you rise above it? How did everybody learn to work together, even if they fought each other like hell?

A transcript of this segment, which aired on September 23 at 8:17 a.m. EDT, is as follows:

JOE SCARBOROUGH: You know, it's a unifying concept, too. Because you speak to the small-government conservative in me, because conservatives always complained that government can't do everything, that government can't – it's actually Kennedy-esque, "Ask not what your country can do for you." You're saying "We're minding the gap. We're not expecting the federal government to do everything. We're expecting you to help."


MIKA BRZEZINSKI: Well I actually think the formula that you just described – not left/right, not right/wrong, and bringing people together from both sides – could apply beyond the Clinton Global Initiative. It could apply in Washington.

BILL CLINTON: I think so, too. I think that what we ought to talk about – I urged my fellow Democrats to tell the American people that the country wasn't back to work, nobody was happy, but according to all the numbers, the recession bottomed out and it was job-time, showtime. So the only real issue in this election should be what is each party going to offer to get the country moving again, which idea is most likely to work. I think that ought to be the debate. What are we going to do, who's more likely to do it? And I think – I believe they should say "Give us two more years to do this. If it doesn't work, you can throw us all out. We've got another election in two years, throw us all out. We're in a deep hole, couldn't get going in time."

That's what I – I think we ought to all be willing to be judged by what ___ does not empower other people.

SCARBOROUGH: I've talked to you about this before. We go out and give speeches all across the country, and sometimes to progressive crowds, and I always start with when I ran in '94, I couldn't stand Bill Clinton's image on TV! And they'll all rustle out there. I'll say "I came up to Washington, DC," and I'll go through this, and as I explain the story away, well he didn't really like us that much, either. But look what we accomplished together. Look what we – we learned. I learned so much from those five years, and they were tough, tough years for you, and for Hillary, and for a lot of people. Balance – Terry was talking about this. We balanced the budget four years – for four years, the first time that happened since the 1920's, reformed welfare, created 22 million new jobs. And those were two sides that didn't exactly love each other. Could you explain to Washington, DC, on both sides – how did you do that? How did you rise above it? How did everybody learn to work together, even if they fought each other like hell?

BILL CLINTON: Well first of all, you've got to know the difference between something that's real and something that's show. I remember one day, Senator Lott – who was a Republican senator – was on one of these Sunday morning shows. And he called me a "spoiled brat," or something like that. And one of our guys in the staff called and said "You know what Trent Lott said?" I said, "Don't worry about that." He said, "How could you say that?" I said, "Let me tell you what happened. Trent Lott agreed to be on a Sunday morning show, before he thought about it. He was exhausted all weekend, because we had been working long hours. He got up early in a bad mood, and somebody goaded him, and he took the bait." That's all. And I called Lott, and he said 'Oh, my God you're calling me.' I said, "No, I'm calling to tell you I've already forgotten about this." He said, "Why?" I said, "Because you shouldn't have done this show, you were too tired. And you woke up exhausted, you were mad you did this show, somebody goaded you, and you took the bait." He said "That's exactly what happened."

That's what happens when you know somebody as a person, as well as a political opponent. When you cut people a little slack, and you realize that doesn't have anything to do with the job, and you just work on getting the job done. When we hung Lott's portrait in the Capitol, Newt Gingrich and I spoke for him. And we talked about the fights, but then we talked about what we achieved. That's what I think we have to do. We've got to get back into "We're all hired hands here." And we've got to – it's a good think to have a philosophy. I could give you – if you look at the stuff we're debating here, I could give you a more conservative and a more liberal position about how to deliver health care in Haiti, or re-set-up the schools, or promote economic growth. But in the end, what matters is half the kids have never been to school – do they go to school or not? They've never had a health care system at all – will they have one? They've never had a government that functions, 17 percent of the government was killed on earthquake day – are they going to have one? And that's – somehow we need to drive our political debate toward that.

SCARBOROUGH: But we seem to be losing ground. You brought up Newt Gingrich. I talked to your wife and you and others about what I learned – that you can disagree without being disagreeable – I made a lot of mistakes in the 1990's, I think a lot of people did. But you brought up Newt Gingrich. Here's a guy that should know better. And yet he's going out there comparing one of the great religions of the world to Nazism, Kathleen Sebelius to Stalin – it's really disappointing that in some ways we seem to be losing ground.

CLINTON: Well, but I think part of that is – you saw what happened in these Republican primaries, he might want to run for President, and frankly, it's a version of what he did in '94, as opposed to what he later came to do after we had the huge fight over the government shutting down and then we all calmed down and went to work. And I think, at least I know he knows better. And that's not a good thing.

SCARBOROUGH: Doesn't that make it worse?

MIKA BRZEZINSKI: I think that does make it worse.

SCARBOROUGH: I think that's what depresses me about it is, he's such a bright guy, and he's got so many gifts –

CLINTON: But he sees all these other people being rewarded for it, and so I think that's what –

BRZEZINSKI: He sees the payoff.

CLINTON: Hm-hmm.


SCARBOROUGH: Let me ask you a Constitutional question. Because sitting here listening to you talk – I know there are a lot of people that are opinion leaders and shapers that watch this show, that are just sitting there thinking "Why can't he run for President in a couple of years?"

CLINTON: There's a little Constitutional –

SCARBOROUGH: I know. I was just going to say, does it make sense – because listening to you talk right now, you've always been known as the brightest, the first-class, however you want to put it – but you've had the ability the past decade to go all around the world, start this initiative, understand issues – you've understood issues better than anyone in Washington, when you were President. But to go around the world for a decade, all of this knowledge – and I'm just wondering, not for you, but doesn't it make sense for this country to say, "Okay, let a guy serve, or a woman serve for eight years, then they can take a term or two off. But then if they have something to give back to America in the terms of leadership, give them that opportunity. It seems so short-sighted, just because the Republicans were upset that FDR was President for four terms.

CLINTON: Well, that's what I believe the rules should be. But it isn't what it is. I think if I were writing – there's a very strong argument for telling – for saying you shouldn't serve three terms in a row. Because by the time you've appointed everybody, there's just – people get relaxed, there's too much opportunity for people, even if not for corruption, just for bad things happening for the taxpayers. (Unintelligible) But with life expectancy being so long, and people being alert until they're in their seventies, and sometimes in their eighties – look at Paul Volcker – he's mid-eighties, you know, he might as well be 40 years old, in some ways. I think there's an argument for that. But if we change the Constitution, it shouldn't apply to me. That is, it shouldn't apply to anybody that served, it should all be forward-looking, so no one would think it was personal. But, you know, that's kind of what I think it should be. 

SCARBOROUGH: It makes so much sense.

—Matt Hadro is News Analysis intern at the Media Research Center. You can follow him on Twitter here.
4010  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / senate:dems51to55;rep45to49 on: September 27, 2010, 04:43:19 PM
So says Rasumussan polling thus far:

Election 2010: Senate Balance Of Power
Senate Balance of Power: Dems 51 GOP 45 Toss-Ups 4
Monday, September 27, 2010 Email to a Friend ShareThisAdvertisement
New polling in Delaware moved that state's senate race to Leans Democrat from Solid Democrat.

Current projections suggest that the Democrats would hold 51 seats after Election Day while the Republicans would hold 45. Four states are in the Toss-Up category (Colorado, Illinois, Nevada, and Wisconsin). All four Toss-Ups are seats currently held by Democrats.

Republicans have the edge in four Democratic-held Senate seats--Arkansas, Indiana, North Dakota, and Pennsylvania.

At the moment, no Republican-held seats appear headed for the Democratic column.

The state results and overall projections will be updated whenever new polling data justifies a change (to learn how Rasmussen Reports determines its Balance of Power rankings, click here).

In the table below, the states marked in red currently have a Republican senator. Those in blue currently have a Democratic senator.

Solid Dem  Lean Dem  Toss-Up  Lean GOP  Solid GOP 
New York
 N. Hampshire
New York (S)
 West Virginia

        North Carolina
        North Dakota
        South Carolina
        South Dakota

Recent changes include:

 Shift From
 Shift To
 Solid Dem
 Leans Dem
 Leans Dem
 Leans GOP
 Solid GOP
 West Virginia
 Leans Dem
 Leans Dem
 Leans Dem
 Solid Dem
 Leans GOP
 Leans Dem
 Leans GOP
 North Carolina
 Leans GOP
 Solid GOP
 West Virginia
 Leans Dem
 Leans GOP
 Solid GOP
 Leans Dem
 Solid GOP
 Leans GOP
 Leans GOP
 West Virginia
 Solid Dem
 Leans Dem
 Leans GOP
 Leans Dem
 Leans Dem
 Leans GOP
 Leans GOP
 Solid Dem
 Leans Dem
 North Carolina
 Solid GOP
 Leans GOP
 Leans GOP
 Leans Dem
 Leans GOP
 Leans GOP
 Leans Dem
 Leans GOP
 Leans GOP
 Solid GOP
 Leans GOP
 North Carolina
 Solid GOP
 Balance of Power Published - Initial BoP Data
Rasmussen Reports is an electronic media company specializing in the collection, publication and distribution of public opinion polling information.  We poll on a variety of topics in the fields of politics, business and lifestyle, updating our site’s content on a news cycle throughout the day, everyday.

Rasmussen Reports Platinum Members get an all-access pass to polling news, analysis and insight not available to the general public.

Scott Rasmussen, president of Rasmussen Reports, has been an independent pollster for more than a decade. To learn more about our methodology, click here.
United States Senate  Balance of Power Tables:
Current Projected Result 
Election 2010 To Date 
Solid Democratic
Leans Democratic
Leans Republican
Solid Republican
No Senate Race In 2010 

 *Independent Senators and candidates in CT, FL and VT are counted here as Democrats

U.S. Senate Snapshot: 
Held/Solid Democratic
Leans Democratic
Leans Republican
Held/Solid Republican


Daily Presidential Tracking Poll

Senate Balance of Power: Dems 51 GOP 45 Toss-Ups 4

 Connecticut Senate: Gap Between Blumenthal (D), McMahon (R) Narrowest Since May

 Delaware Senate: Possible Castle Write-In Drops Coons (D) Below 50% Against O’Donnell (R)

Nevada Senate: Reid (D) 48%, Angle (R) 48%

What They Told Us: Reviewing Last Week’s Key Polls

Governor Scorecard: GOP 27 Dems 13 Toss-Ups 10

California Senate: Boxer (D) 47%, Fiorina (R) 43%

Most Voters Continue to Favor Repeal of Health Care Law, Expect Costs To Rise

Race Pits Dream Prosecutor Against S.F.'s Nightmare DA By Debra J. Saunders

©2010 Rasmussen Reports, LLC

About Us | RR In The News | Advertise With Us | Privacy Policy | Terms & Conditions | Contact Us | Careers

Media Interviews & Advertising Sales: 732-776-9777

Web development by Kurani Interactive and Mugo Web

4011  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / weightlifting on: September 27, 2010, 11:18:48 AM
I had a patient tell me the benchpress record is well over 1,000 pounds now.  I asked how is this possible.   He said and I looked it up.

Not only steroids, but wraps, body suits that support muscle.  Probably the highest natural unaided bench press is around 650:
4012  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / weightlifting on: September 25, 2010, 11:58:08 AM
I had a patient tell me the benchpress record is well over 1,000 pounds now.  I asked how is this possible.   He said and I looked it up.

Not only steroids, but wraps, body suits that support muscle.  Probably the highest natural unaided bench press is around 650:
4013  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / fastest pitch on: September 25, 2010, 11:51:17 AM
105 mph!  I looked up his size - 6'4" but onlty 185 pounds.  Pretty lanky.  All leverage and technique.  Like Brazalian ju jsitsu masters:

***Chapman throws fastest pitch ever recorded
By Steve Henson, Yahoo! Sports
– Aroldis Chapman(notes) was summoned from the bullpen one batter too late to make a difference in the game. No matter. The 22-year-old Cincinnati Reds left-hander made do by making history Friday night, throwing the fastest pitch recorded in a major league game, a 105-mph fastball.

Ardolis Chapman's 25 pitches on Friday night (each registering 100 mph or faster, including his record-breaking 105 mph heater) must have been a blur to Padres batters.

(Christopher Hanewinckel/US Presswire)
 The blazing pitch pushed a white-hot pennant race to the back burner. Yes, the San Diego Padres won the game 4-3 to pull ahead of the Atlanta Braves in the National League wild-card race. Sure, the San Francisco Giants all but buried the Colorado Rockies thanks to a dominant performance by Tim Lincecum(notes).

But the lingering memory was of a now-you-see-it, did-I-actually-see-it fastball to Tony Gwynn(notes) in the eighth inning. The pitch was not a fluke: Chapman threw 25 pitches in his 1 1/3 innings of relief, and every one was at least 100 mph. He didn’t throw a slider. He didn’t throw a changeup. Why would he?

More From Steve HensonJamie McCourt is admittedly clueless Sep 21, 2010 Latos belongs in the NL Cy Young discussion Sep 11, 2010 From Walter Johnson to Bob Feller to Steve Dalkowski to J.R. Richard to Nolan Ryan to Stephen Strasburg, blistering velocity is etched forever in baseball lore. Rush Chapman to the head of the list. Has anybody in the history of the game had a comparable 25-pitch sequence?

“I didn’t see it until the ball was behind me,” Gwynn said. “I was trying not to look at the radar reading because I’d be intimidated. I saw how hard he was throwing and just tried to be slow and work my hands.”

The 105-mph pitch was inside for a ball and evened the count at 2-2. Gwynn had fouled off the previous two pitches and fouled off the next before striking out. He ought to be pleased with his effort, forcing Chapman to make seven pitches, the slowest of which was 102 mph.

Gwynn’s father, Tony, a Hall-of-Famer and one of baseball greatest hitters, never saw a pitch as fast as the one Chapman threw. Maybe nobody else has, either. Since radar guns were introduced in the 1980s, the fastest pitch recorded was 104.8 mph by Joel Zumaya(notes) of the Detroit Tigers in a playoff game Oct. 10, 2006. Chapman, who defected from the Cuban national team in 2009, was clocked at 104 on Sept. 1 in his second major league appearance and also hit 105 mph with a pitch for Triple-A Louisville earlier this season.

Chapman, speaking through an interpreter with bags of ice strapped across his arm, credited his stepped-up velocity Friday to the fact that he’d pitched only once in the last week. He didn’t allow an earned run in his first eight relief appearances after being promoted Aug. 31, but the Astros nicked him for two runs a week ago. He pitched a scoreless inning on Monday against the Brewers, then had three more days off.

“My arm had been a little sore and the rest helped,” he said. “I felt as good as I did a couple weeks ago. Not the best I’ve ever felt, but I felt good.”

Reds manager Dusty Baker appreciated the moment, but the loss grated on him. Chapman was warming up in the bullpen when Miguel Tejada(notes) delivered a bases-loaded, two-out single in the seventh against Nick Masset(notes) that drove in the Padres’ third and fourth runs. Chapman came in and struck out Adrian Gonzalez(notes) on three fastballs that registered 101, 102 and 103 mph.

Baker had been reluctant to summon Chapman to face Tejada with the bases loaded and the Reds holding a one-run lead, envisioning a wild pitch or a walk.

“A guy throwing that hard, looking back you can say I should have brought him in earlier, but he can’t pitch against everybody all the time,” Baker said.

Asked if that was the hardest he has seen Chapman throw by a small degree, Baker replied, “By a big degree.”***
4014  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / War with Iran may have already started on: September 25, 2010, 10:17:18 AM
While listening to Savage yesterday he mentioned a computer attack may have already started closing down some of Irans nuclear sites.  I looked this up.  I never thought of possibly stopping them this way. grin

***Is a Cyber Attack Targeting Iran's Nuclear Plant?

Published September 23, 2010
The reactor building of Iran's Bushehr Nuclear Power Plant is silhouetted in this November 2009 photo released by the semi-official Iranian Students News Agency (ISNA).
A destructive cyber worm designed to bring down industrial complexes has Iran's new nuclear power plant in its sights. And a nation such as Israel or China -- or even the United States -- could be behind it, experts say.

The "Stuxnet" worm sparked both awe and alarm among digital security experts when first identified in June. Far more advanced than the mainstream malware often used for identity theft, Stuxnet is reportedly able to take over a computing system via nothing more than a USB memory stick, without any user intervention.

"This is the first direct example of weaponized software, highly customized and designed to find a particular target," said Michael Assante, former chief of industrial control systems cyber security research at the U.S. Department of Energy's Idaho National Laboratory.

Stuxnet targets industrial control systems, such as those that power Iran's Bushehr nuclear plant. And some experts speculate that it was written by a nation explicitly to take out Bushehr. But Sanjay Bavisi, president of the international cybersecurity research group EC-Council, thinks it's too early to be certain.

"It's too soon to rule out the power of the hacking underground" or terrorists, Bavisi told "Yes, the first impression is nation-states, organized states, and it points back to the U.S. and Israel," two of the most cyber-savvy countries. "But organized criminals have the power, and hackers for hire are very common too," he said.***

4015  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / evaluation of missle threat on: September 25, 2010, 09:29:07 AM

How serious is the P800 Yakhont threat? Does it have a destabilizing effect on the Middle East?
September 20, 2010 at 12:23 am tamir_eshel No comments

The launch vehicle unit carrying two Yakhont anti-ship missiles in container launchers. The missiles are carried in the recessed position and launched vertically from the erected canisters.
The expected arrival of the P800 Yakhont supersonic anti-ship missile in Syria is considered the first serious attempt by Syria to directly challenge the Israel Navy since the 1973 war, when the Israeli Navy sunk five Syrian vessels in the first missile-boat engagement known as the ‘Battle of Latakia’. Four decades later, the P800 Yakhont is far superior than the Styx missiles that failed to protect the Syrian Navy in 1973.  Much like the Russian-Indian Brahmos, the earlier Moskit and Supersonic Alpha, Yakhont has the capability to strike its target at supersonic speed, flying at very low level, leaving the defender much shorter time to react. Yet, ship defenses have come a long way since the Electronic Warfare (EW) systems that saved the day and won the battle for the Israelis.

AEGIS systems, used on U.S. Navy and many NATO vessels, the European PAAMS, used by the Royal Navy, French and Italian navies and Israel’s new Barak 8 ship air defense system are designed to match such treats. So does Israel’s ‘Magic Wand’ system, employing the Stunner missile interceptor, capable to counter these potent missiles effectively if employed in surface/surface or ship/surface role. However, the majority of smaller naval vessels, still equipped with ‘point defense’ anti-missile systems were not designed to counter such high speed attacks, particularly when it comes in salvos of two or four missile.

Such elements are at risk within ranges of 300 km, by missiles fired from the Mediterranean Syrian naval bases at Tartus and Latakia. Yakhont typically cruises to the target area at high altitude, and then descends for a sea skimming attack from under the horizon. The distance at which it begins its descent can be programmed before launch, by determining the achievable range, which is between 120 (low level flight) – 300 km (high mid-course, low-level beyond the horizon to the target.

The potential coverage of P800 Yakhont missiles fired from coastal sites (Tartus) or land sites in Southern Syria cover Israel's Mediterranean Naval Bases.
While some navies could avoid this area, for Israel, the long range of the P800 means its naval vessels could be at risk, even at their main base in Haifa, a site already compromised by rockets fired from Lebanon during the 2006 war. Israel’s second naval base in Ashdod could be targeted from land-based sites in Southern Syria. Furthermore, when targeting Israeli naval patrols in international waters off the Lebanese coast, P800 can be vertically launched from inland sites in Syria or Lebanon, fired behind the Lebanon mountain ridge, avoiding detection from the sea, thus minimizing the early warning for the targeted vessels. Therefore, accelerated fielding of Barak-8 and Magic Wand systems should be a top priority for Israel. Another risk for Navies operating in the Persian Gulf presents a technology leak – by such a missile falling into Iranian hands, which could accelerate the introduction of such potent weapons in Tehran’s growing anti-shipping arsenal.

The operational concept of the Bastion P coastal defense system employs multiple mobile launchers each carrying two Yakhont missiles, capable of attacking targets at a distance of 250 km from the coast. Targeting is provided by helicopters or other airborne platforms, coastal radars or ships at sea. Each launch unit is operating independently, or coordinate its activity with another launch vehicle located up to 15 km away, targeting, command and control are provided by the central command vehicle and regional command post that can be located more than 25 km apart.

The current contract, estimated to be worth $300 million includes the delivery of two Bastion coastal defense systems, each includes 36 missiles. It is yet unclear if the Syrian navy will also opt to equip its naval platforms will with these new weapons. The Yakhont can be fitted with relatively small vessels, from corvette size and larger. The Bastion system is operated from mobile launchers on land, each launcher carries two ready to launch missiles. Another configuration is designed for airborne platforms. But even with these potent weapons in hand, the Syrians may not yet be ready to employ them effectively. Syria currently does not have the means to effectively target the missile beyond the horizon, lacking maritime patrol aircraft, unmanned aerial vehicles or attack aircraft capable of carrying such missiles. Even their largest Petya class Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) frigates do not have a flight deck for the Ka-28 (Helix) helicopters, operated by the Syrian Navy. The Syrians do not have the capability to detect, track and designate targets at those ranges since, being a small, defensive force, they did not have any weapon reaching out to these ranges. This is particularly true when the target is ‘silent’ and cannot be targeted by surface-based Electronic Support Measures (ESM).

Each mobile transporter-launcher carrying two Yakhont P800 missiles.
If the Syrians are seriously planning to extend their operational reach with the missile, one has to watch out for Syria to reach for UAVs, naval patrol aircraft (Be-200 or Il-38 from any CIS nation or other countries (decommissioning such aircraft could be an option). Such transfer of equipment could be unnoticed as it does not involves weapons transfer. They could also opt for upgrading the Su-24MK ‘Fencer D’ to take on maritime recce role. Even more serious is a combination of Su-27/Su-30 and P800s, which could provides the P800 with the stand-off targeting and attack capability against surface targets. The Russians are using their Onyx version of the weapon with their Su-33 carrier-based naval fighters. By knowing the P800 is within range, the Israeli Navy will definitely lose its dominant and unchallenged position in the Eastern Mediterranean, particularly along the Lebanese coast, and therefore should take defensive measures – certainly be on guard, which it failed, during the Second Lebanon War in 2006, when ISN Hanit was hit unexpectedly by a Hizbollan C-802 missile – having turned off its on-board defensive systems.

Of course, for deliberate ‘ambush’ attacks Syria could try deploying forward targeting using merchant or fishery vessels sailing in the Eastern Mediterranean  or submarines, provided by allies such as Iran (since Syria do not have any submarines now, after decommissioning their 3 Romeo subs about six years ago). But this is really a long, long shot that would cost Syria dearly.

Altogether, for the short term, the arrival of the P800 in the Mediterranean is a serious threat. Over time, as the Israel Navy gets its Barak-8 missiles and ‘Magic Wand’ deployed, the threat could be contained, given the Syrians will not deploy large numbers of these missiles on platforms and constellations that would maximize its capability to launch saturation attack against the IN leading vessels. Whatever the case may be, both sides, the Syrians and the Israelis need time to deploy and defend so the threat may be serious, at first sight, but viable solutions are already in sight.
4016  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / titanic mistakes on: September 23, 2010, 01:57:02 PM
Interesting piece.  Granddaughter of the most senior surviving Titanic officer states he claimed two giant errors were made and covered up.  First the person steering the boat turned the boat the wrong way after the iceberg was spotted - as though he was steering a sailing and not steam vessel.  Then instead of stopping cold in the water they kept sailing effectively hastening the sinking of the vessel.  Even then they were afriad of lawsuits and covered up the truth - (assuming this is true).  I wonder if law firms have anyone they can sue now for the benefit of the descendants?

****Wed Sep 22, 11:50 am ET
LONDON (Reuters) – The Titanic hit an iceberg in 1912 because of a basic steering error, and only sank as fast as it did because an official persuaded the captain to continue sailing, an author said in an interview published on Wednesday.

Louise Patten, a writer and granddaughter of Titanic second officer Charles Lightoller, said the truth about what happened nearly 100 years ago had been hidden for fear of tarnishing the reputation of her grandfather, who later became a war hero.

[A brief history of the Titanic]

Lightoller, the most senior officer to have survived the disaster, covered up the error in two inquiries on both sides of the Atlantic because he was worried it would bankrupt the ill-fated liner's owners and put his colleagues out of a job.

"They could easily have avoided the iceberg if it wasn't for the blunder," Patten told the Daily Telegraph.

Click image to see recent Titanic expedition photos

AP/Premier Exhibitions, Inc.-Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
"Instead of steering Titanic safely round to the left of the iceberg, once it had been spotted dead ahead, the steersman, Robert Hitchins, had panicked and turned it the wrong way."

Patten, who made the revelations to coincide with the publication of her new novel "Good as Gold" into which her account of events are woven, said that the conversion from sail ships to steam meant there were two different steering systems.

[Video: A closer look at the Titanic disaster]

Crucially, one system meant turning the wheel one way and the other in completely the opposite direction.

Once the mistake had been made, Patten added, "they only had four minutes to change course and by the time (first officer William) Murdoch spotted Hitchins' mistake and then tried to rectify it, it was too late."

Patten's grandfather was not on watch at the time of the collision, but he was present at a final meeting of the ship's officers before the Titanic went down.

There he heard not only about the fatal mistake but also the fact that J. Bruce Ismay, chairman of Titanic's owner the White Star Line persuaded the captain to continue sailing, sinking the ship hours faster than would otherwise have happened.

[The price of tickets, the case of the drunk survivor, and other fascinating Titanic facts]

"If Titanic had stood still, she would have survived at least until the rescue ship came and no one need have died," Patten said.

The RMS Titanic was the world's biggest passenger liner when it left Southampton, England, for New York on its maiden voyage on April 10, 1912. Four days into the trip, the ship hit an iceberg and sank, taking more than 1,500 passengers with it.

(Reporting by Mike Collett-White, editing by Paul Casciato)****
4017  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of His Glibness on: September 23, 2010, 01:48:56 PM
Agreed.  Keith Oberman of MSLSD of course had a guest on last night who spins it thus:

Obama et. al. should pay Woodward for writing the book because it shows him to be such a strong commander in chief who is able to stand up to the generals.

This brings to mind paintings of Custer's last stand.  Obama is Custer with a few remaining bluecoats trying to fend off the inevitable.

Was it on Savage or Levin (I listen to both) who stated we have debt obligations that are equivalent to 2.5 the entire net worth of the planet.

And Barack thinks spending more is the answer?

In France they are demonstrating because they will have to retire at 62 rather than 60.  Just wait till people here start to wake up to that same realization.

The country is in denial.   

4018  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: 2010 Elections; 2012 Presidential on: September 23, 2010, 01:37:23 PM
Interesting theory.  Those Dem districts that are in trouble for the Dems were those where the Dems favored the Hillary and not Bamster in 2008.  It may be that those Dems are not running away from the Bamster as much as they were not strongly for him to start with.  More weight to my theory that there will be a dem groundswell of voices calling for the return of the Hill.  It is just a matter of time till Obama's poll numbers fall so much and  hit a ciritical mass that the lame stream media will pick up on this. 

****Victory in paradise?

By George Will | LANGHORNE, Pa. — From the 1930s through the 1950s, Bucks County northeast of Philadelphia acquired a glamorous reputation as a retreat for Manhattan celebrities, including Oscar Hammerstein, who, according to local legend, was inspired by the view from his Doylestown front porch to write "Oh, What a Beautiful Mornin'," the opening song of "Oklahoma!" Today the county, which is 93 percent of Pennsylvania's 8th Congressional District, figures in Republicans' plans to sing that song on the morning of Nov. 3.

The district has about 209,000 Democrats, 189,000 Republicans and 66,000 independents. The seat is held by a Democrat, Patrick Murphy, 36, the first Iraq War veteran to serve in Congress. He was elected in 2006 when he defeated the one-term Republican incumbent, Mike Fitzpatrick, 47, an attorney, who is Murphy's opponent again this year.

More than half of the 7 percent of the district that is not in Bucks County is in northeast Philadelphia, where a lot of the city's police and firefighters live — they are required to reside in the city — and many conservative Democrats, too. The remainder of the district is in suburban Montgomery County. Lower Bucks County is primarily blue collar, the upper county is agricultural and the central portion is an upper-income bedroom community for Philadelphia.

Fitzpatrick, who had been a Bucks County commissioner for 10 years, won in 2004, a good Republican year. He lost in the Republicans' annus horribilis of 2006, when they suffered the first of two consecutive wave elections. (In a wave, a party gains or loses a net of at least 20 seats in the House of Representatives.) The Democrats' 2006 candidate for governor was Ed Rendell, the former Philadelphia mayor who was much loved in the suburbs for making the central city — he was called the "mayor from Pine to Vine," two downtown streets — safe for them to go in for meals and entertainment. Rendell defeated his Republican opponent in the 8th District by 40 points. So, 2006 was a Republican nightmare: incumbent U.S. Sen. Rick Santorum lost the district by 20 percent.


  Every weekday publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". HUNDREDS of columnists and cartoonists regularly appear. Sign up for the daily update. It's free. Just click here.

Still, Fitzpatrick lost by just 1,518 votes out of 249,817 cast, and he carried the Bucks County portion of the district. He did not attempt a comeback in 2008 because he was receiving chemotherapy and radiation for colon cancer. He is now well.

Although Bill Clinton campaigned for Murphy in 2006, perhaps with his wife's 2008 presidential candidacy in mind, Murphy became the first Pennsylvanian holding federal office to endorse Barack Obama's candidacy. Today, the Clinton-Obama contest still reverberates.

Political analyst Charles Cook doesn't hire dummies, and one of his talented associates, David Wasserman, has this theory: Democratic members of Congress who are in peril are disproportionately from districts where Democrats preferred Hillary Clinton over Barack Obama in 2008. She decisively beat Obama in the 8th District with 63 percent, and in November 2008 her voters were not Obama swooners: They simply hired him to fix the economy.

Murphy has voted with Speaker Nancy Pelosi 97 percent of the time, including on the stimulus, health care, cash for clunkers, the cap-and-trade climate legislation and organized labor's priority, "card check," which would abolish workers' rights to secret ballot elections in workplace unionization decisions. Fitzpatrick is a centrist in a Republican Party where the center is migrating to the right. He favors extending all the Bush tax cuts and rescinding to the Treasury all unspent TARP and stimulus funds.

The 8th is a swing district that should swing in a year like this. Polls indicate, however, that the race is not yet settled.

Fitzpatrick says that although he was his family's first Republican, his seven siblings have all seen the light. He and they grew up in the 8th District, in Levittown, one of the instant suburbs (the first, also called Levittown, is on Long Island) that were mass produced after World War II by William Levitt. They were incubators of the postwar middle class, many of whose members' bought their first homes from Levitt for $7,990.

Bucks County is emblematic of not only 20th-century America, but 18th-century America, too. It was from the Bucks County bank of the Delaware River that George Washington, on Christmas night, 1776, launched the boats that carried the attackers that surprised the Hessians in Trenton. Republicans hope that on Nov. 2 a piece of another, if rather less momentous, moment in America's political evolution will occur.****
4019  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / UN speech/lecture a disaster *again* for USA on: September 23, 2010, 01:18:29 PM
I watched the beginning of Bama's *lecture* to the UN.  After a few minutes I just couldn't stand it.  His line that he saved the American economy from catastrophy told me it was time to turn him off.   This was more or less the lead headline on drudge today as well.

His new nick name should be "Dah?Bama".

He is clueless.

The only question is will Hillary run in 12 or 16?

I notice in Woodward's book Alexrod supposedly question bamster about the wisdom of hiring Hill for Sec of St. 

Rod man  was right.  Instead of her fading into the distance she appears (I don't know why) to have enamored the public with the appearance that she is doing such a great job.  She is a threat to bamster in 12 imho.  As he fades watch for the lame stream media and her polical war machine to rev the engines.  The motor is already turned off idol and she has shifted from neutral to drive.

4020  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / The great divider on: September 22, 2010, 12:03:57 PM
I keep seeing Bama's "call to arms" on the cabel news but cannot tell if this was an official phrase or the media's label.

Doe anyone know if he or his keepers are using this phrase?

If yes this has got to be the dictionary example of what Levin means when he says a "soft tyranny".

BO calling for his followers to rise up and fight to keep his power intact.

He has been a fabulous uniter of Americans?  No?
4021  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / link to world trade center site on: September 22, 2010, 11:56:54 AM
Better than before:
4022  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Government Programs, spending, budget process on: September 21, 2010, 10:57:36 AM
People are asking if the American dream is dead or if they will have to keep working hard. To the former the answer is no.  To the latter the answer is yes.  No politician has been honest about it yet. 

****US Government 'hiding true amount of debt'
By Gregory Bresiger From: NewsCore September 20, 2010 9:09AM Increase Text Size Decrease Text Size Print Email Share Add to Digg Add to Add to Facebook Add to Kwoff Add to Myspace Add to Newsvine What are these? THE actual figure of the US' national debt is much higher than the official sum of $US13.4 trillion ($14.3 trillion) given by the Congressional Budget Office, according to analysts cited on Sunday by the New York Post.

"The Government is lying about the amount of debt. It is engaging in Enron accounting," said Laurence Kotlikoff, an economist at Boston University and co-author of The Coming Generational Storm: What You Need to Know about America's Economic Future.

"The problem is we're seeing an explosion in spending," added Andrew Moylan, director of government affairs for the National Taxpayers Union.

In 1980, the debt - the accumulated red ink incurred by the Federal Government - was $US909 billion.

This represented some 33 per cent of gross domestic product, according to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO).

Thirty years later, based on this year's second-quarter numbers, the CBO said the debt was $US13.4 trillion, or 92 per cent of GDP.

The CBO estimates the debt will be at $US16.5 trillion in two years, or 100.6 per cent of GDP.

But these numbers are incomplete.

They do not count off-budget obligations such as required spending for Social Security and Medicare, whose programs represent a balloon payment for the Government as more Americans retire and collect benefits.

In the case of Social Security, beginning in 2016, the US Government will be paying out more than it is collecting in taxes.

Without basic measures - such as payment cuts or higher payroll taxes - the system could be on the road to bankruptcy, according to officials.

"Without changes," wrote Social Security Commissioner Michael Astrue, "by 2037 the Social Security Trust Fund will be exhausted. There will be enough money only to pay about $US0.76 for each dollar of benefits."

Mr Kotlikoff and Mr Moylan agree US national debt is much more than the official $US13.4 trillion number, but they disagree over how to add up the exact number.

Mr Kotlikoff says the debt is actually $US200 trillion.

Mr Moylan says the number is likely about $US60 trillion.

That is close to the figure quoted by David Walker, the US Comptroller General from 1998 to 2008.

He launched a campaign to convince Americans that the federal spending and debt is a greater threat than terrorism.

But whichever figure is accurate, all three agree that the problem has worsened in the last few years.

They say it is because Congress and the Administration, whether Republican or Democrat, consistently overspend.

Read more:****
4023  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Government Programs, spending, budget process on: September 21, 2010, 10:33:14 AM
Maybe CNN's Soledad O'Brien can do an hours long, "Kenyan in America" without, of course, a *single* mention about the costs to legal Americans.
Only that they are human like us, with hopes and dreams, and all want to work go to school and live in peace and harmony.

Is da bamster's aunt adorable??

4024  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Murkowski on: September 20, 2010, 03:50:24 PM
The arrogance of some the politicians is truly annoying.

Appointed to the Senate to begin with by her father?!

Bought a property well below value - a popular bribery scheme apparantly rampant amongst those who bribe politicians.  Look at the bamster.  Another is cattle futures.  Another is owing property near where the house member gets approval for federal money to build a highway there  (several examples of this scheme).   Another is having contractors fix up your house (ala Stevens).
4025  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Queen of the Klingons.eom on: September 20, 2010, 11:18:31 AM
4026  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / witchcraft in high school on: September 20, 2010, 10:00:26 AM
I agree, no big deal.  MSLSD covers this like it is some sort of major scandal.  Yet when da bamster spoke about using cocaine there was silence.  Got to protect the ONE.

****ABC News By RANDALL CHASE, Associated Press Writer Randall Chase, Associated Press Writer – Sun Sep 19, 5:24 pm ET
LINCOLN, Del. – Republican Senate candidate Christine O'Donnell is making light of comments she made more than a decade ago when she was in high school about having dabbled in witchcraft.

"How many of you didn't hang out with questionable folks in high school?" she asked fellow Republicans at a GOP picnic in southern Delaware on Sunday.

"There's been no witchcraft since. If there was, Karl Rove would be a supporter now," O'Donnell jokingly assured the crowd.

Rove, the former GOP strategist and adviser to President George W. Bush, has suggested that O'Donnell's win in last week's GOP primary cost Republicans a chance to retake the Senate seat long held by Democrat Joe Biden before he was elected vice president.

O'Donnell, a conservative Christian activist, rode a surging tide of tea party activism to an upset victory over GOP moderate Michael Castle, Delaware's longtime congressman and former two-term governor. She faces Democratic county executive Chris Coons in November.

O'Donnell's comments about witchcraft were made during a 1999 taping of comedian Bill Maher's "Politically Incorrect" show.

"I dabbled into witchcraft. I never joined a coven," she said on the show, a clip of which hit the Internet as O'Donnell canceled Sunday appearances on two national news shows, citing commitments to attend church and the GOP picnic in Delaware.

"I hung around people who were doing these things. I'm not making this stuff up. I know what they told me they do," O'Donnell told Maher.

"One of my first dates with a witch was on a satanic altar, and I didn't know it. I mean, there's little blood there and stuff like that," she said. "We went to a movie and then had a little midnight picnic on a satanic altar."

Russ Murphy, executive director of the 9-12 Delaware Patriots, a group that joined in the tea party effort to propel O'Donnell to Tuesday's primary victory, said the focus on her comments about witchcraft was just another attempt by pundits and political opponents to discredit her.

"They're going to be pulling for straws from the sky to do anything to stop this momentum, and they don't realize it's not going to work," he said.

O'Donnell's victory in the primary came after a bruising campaign in which her supporters and Castle's, led by state GOP chairman Tom Ross, traded attack ads, with Ross saying O'Donnell was a liar and a fraud who couldn't be elected dogcatcher.

Ross did not attend Sunday's Sussex County Republican Committee picnic. Sussex County GOP chairman Ron Sams said Ross was in Washington trying to drum up support from the national GOP campaign committees.

Despite her improbable primary victory, O'Donnell sounded upbeat about her chances in November.

"We're going to win this by uniting the party," she told supporters. "I'm very confident that we're going to win this election."****

4027  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / IF ugly is a disqualifier? on: September 20, 2010, 09:34:37 AM
Oh my God!   Give compazine STAT!
4028  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: 2010 Elections; 2012 Presidential on: September 17, 2010, 02:33:00 PM
Marc Levin's (who mostly I like) ranting and raving aside I will be very pissed if all this conservative stuff winds up keeping the Reps from winning the Senate.  OK O'Donnell lets see what you can do besides raise money for a perenial late payer of your own bills.  OK Palin lets see what you can do if you are a serious national candidate.  I couldn't agree more with Charles on this one:

****The Buckley rule

By Charles Krauthammer | Tuesday in Delaware was a bad day not only for Republicans but also for conservatives. Tea Partyer Christine O'Donnell scored a stunning victory over establishment Republican Mike Castle. Stunning but pyrrhic. The very people who have most alerted the country to the perils of President Obama's social democratic agenda may have just made it impossible for Republicans to retake the Senate and definitively stop that agenda.

Bill Buckley -- no Mike Castle he -- had a rule: Support the most conservative candidate who is electable.

A timeless rule of sober politics, and particularly timely now. This is no ordinary time. And this is no ordinary Democratic administration. It is highly ideological and ambitious. It is determined to use whatever historical window it is granted to change the country structurally, irreversibly. It has already done so with Obamacare and has equally lofty ambitions for energy, education, immigration, taxation, industrial policy and the composition of the Supreme Court.

That's what makes the eleventh-hour endorsements of O'Donnell by Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) and Sarah Palin so reckless and irresponsible.

Of course Mike Castle is a liberal Republican. What do you expect from Delaware? A DeMint? Castle voted against Obamacare and the stimulus. Yes, he voted for cap-and-trade. That's batting .667. You'd rather have a Democrat who bats .000 and who might give the Democrats the 50th vote to control the Senate?

Castle wasn't only electable. He was unbeatable. Why do you think Beau Biden, long groomed to inherit his father's seat, flinched from running? Because Castle, who had already won statewide races a dozen times, scared him off. Democrats had already given up on the race.

O'Donnell, a lifelong activist who has twice lost statewide races, is very problematic. It is not that the Republican establishment denigrates her chances -- virtually every nonpartisan electoral analyst from Charlie Cook to Larry Sabato to Stuart Rothenberg has her losing in November.

Nor is opposition to O'Donnell's candidacy a sign of hostility or disrespect to the Tea Party. Many of those who wanted to see Castle nominated in Delaware have from the beginning defended the Tea Party movement from the mainstream media's scurrilous portrayal of it as a racist rabble of resentful lumpenproletarians. Indeed, it is among the most vigorous and salutary grass-roots movements of our time, dedicated to a genuine constitutionalism from which the country has strayed far.

And its complaint that it is often taken for granted by the Republican establishment (interestingly parallel to the often-heard African American community's complaint against the Democratic Party) is not to be dismissed. Tea Partyers should not, as many of them fear, simply be used by the Republican Party as a source of electoral energy while their own candidates are ignored and dismissed. But the question is: Which of their candidates?

Marco Rubio in Florida is strong, serious, dynamic. He has a great future as a Republican leader. Joe Miller, who upset the Murkowski dynasty in Alaska, is a man of remarkable achievement: West Point graduate, decorated veteran, judge. Both will win.

Moreover, geography matters. Rand Paul may not be the best candidate in the world -- it is not a very good idea to start your general election campaign by expressing reservations about the Civil Rights Act -- but he is running in Kentucky. He will almost certainly win.

Delaware is not Kentucky. If Republicans want to be a national party, they cannot write off the Northeast, whose Republicanism is of a distinctly moderate variety. Scott Brown broke Republican ranks to vote for Obama's financial reform. Are conservatives going to now run him out of the Senate? Wasn't it just eight months ago that his victory in Massachusetts was hailed as a turning point in the campaign to stop the Obama agenda?

You don't stop that agenda by nominating an O'Donnell in Delaware and turning a Senate seat from safe Republican to safe Democratic.

If DeMint and Palin want to show that helping O'Donnell over the top -- she won late and by six points -- wasn't a capricious spreading of fairy dust, perhaps they should go to Delaware now and get her elected to the Senate.

You made it possible. Now make it happen. I would be happy to be proved wrong about O'Donnell's electability -- I want Republicans to win that 51st seat. Stay in Delaware and show us you were right. The beaches are said to be lovely in the fall.***
4029  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: September 17, 2010, 11:10:45 AM

They are not coming to become Americans and blend in.
They are coming to take over.
and this is why I am not for increasing legal immigration and not for amnesty in any way shape of form.
And I oppose the birth right thing.  It is being used against us.

The immigrants of today are not the same as those of our forefathers.

Same for the mosque thing.  They are not building the mosgue to celebrate our freedoms our country.  It is as Geller put it, " a giant middle finger to America".

Do not let this Iman's subtle voice and con game fool you.

Many people who come here are gaming our own system.

We are being duped.  Like Savage says, Bloomberg proves that even billionaires can be duped, can be fools.
4030  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: September 17, 2010, 10:26:36 AM
"Israel is intended to be a homeland for Jews."  Period.

Absolutely.  Israel will cease to exist otherwise.  But let me make myself clear - I defend that position.

That is why there has been since 1948 a *two state* solution.

What Arab country would allow Jews to come in and multiply like freaken jack rabbits till they are the majority and then turn around and tell them what to do?

Lets stop using America as some sort of standard by which Israel should be compared against. 

But comparing Israel to S. Africa is also absurd.

And I think the comparison of La Raza to Palestinian has some parallels.  They are clearly a type of terrorist intimidation organization.  Question the Latinos and we will come after you in every way shape and form.  We wil call you bigots, we will post your name, ruin your life, mobilize illegals as well as illegals and on and on and on.
Just short of violence but every other tactic they can think of.
4031  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: September 16, 2010, 05:05:50 PM
"I've heard it said America is a Christian nation, but that is not true.  We tolerate all religions without discrimination or favoritism."


True but Israel is not and is not intended to be like America.  Nor should it be. 

We are a gigantic nation that can absorb all kinds (although not without limit and recent decades call all of it into question).

Israel is intended to be a homeland for Jews.  Palestinians are multiplying at a rate as fast as any group in the world.  They would soon if not already outnumber Jews.

Do you think they would be so tolerant if they had some sort of majority power in Israel??
4032  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: 2010 Elections; 2012 Presidential on: September 16, 2010, 02:08:46 PM
 poem is a riot grin

I also like the short and sweet, "throw the bums out" line.

Fascinating in-fighting to those on the right of center.  It was a *shock* to watch Rove on Hannity a few nights ago *trashing* O'Donnel!!! shocked  Now he is trying to do damage control by coming on several shows since.

I tend to agree with Krauthammer though on electing candidates who are not strictly conservative if that is what it takes to win and not because I don't agree with them in principle.  I am not sure if I agree with Rove or not. 

Chris Christy would never have been elected in NJ if we were looking only for strict "conservatives".

Only time will tell if the strict conservatives can appeal to enough indepedents to pull in the less than red states.
4033  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Al andalus (i.e. Spain) on: September 16, 2010, 01:40:50 PM
Fascinating history GM.
I notice the year 1492 was the year Moors driven out of Spain.
It was also the year Jews were driven out of Spain.
Nowadays Christains and Jews seem to be more in alliance.  In those days everyone hated us.

1492 was certainly a busy year for Spain.

****Back to Jewish History Sourcebook | Back to Medieval Sourcebook | Halsall History Web Sites Page |
Jewish History Sourcebook:
The Expulsion from Spain, 1492 CE


In the spring of 1492, shortly after the Moors were driven out of Granada, Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain expelled all the Jews from their lands and thus, by a stroke of the pen, put an end to the largest and most distinguished Jewish settlement in Europe. The expulsion of this intelligent, cultured, and industrious class was prompted only in part by the greed of the king and the intensified nationalism of the people who had just brought the crusade against the Muslim Moors to a glorious close. The real motive was the religious zeal of the Church, the Queen, and the masses. The official reason given for driving out the Jews was that they encouraged the Marranos to persist in their Jewishness and thus would not allow them to become good Christians.

The following account gives a detailed and accurate picture of the expulsion and its immediate consequences for Spanish Jewry. It was written in Hebrew by an Italian Jew in April or May, 1495.

And in the year 5252 [1492], in the days of King Ferdinand, the Lord visited the remnant of his people a second time [the first Spanish visitation was in 1391], and exiled them. After the King had captured the city of Granada from the Moors, and it had surrendered to him on the 7th [2d] of January of the year just mentioned, he ordered the expulsion of all the Jews in all parts of his kingdom-in the kingdoms of Castile, Catalonia, Aragon, Galicia, Majorca, Minorca, the Basque provinces, the islands of Sardinia and Sicily, and the kingdom of Valencia. Even before that the Queen had expelled them from the kingdom of Andalusia [1483]

The King gave them three months' time in which to leave. It ,vas announced in public in every city on the first of May, which happened to be the 19th day of the Omer, and the term ended on the day before the 9th of Ab. [The forty-nine days between the second of Passover and Shabuot are called Omer days. The actual decree of expulsion was signed March 31 and announced the first of May, the 19th day of the Omer. The Jews were to leave during in May, June, and July and be out of the country by August I, the 8th of Ab.]

About their number there is no agreement, but, after many inquiries, I found that the most generally accepted estimate is 50,000 families, or, as others say, 53,000- [This would be about 250,000 persons. Other estimates run from 100,000 to 800,000.] They had houses, fields, vineyards, and cattle, and most of them were artisans. At that time there existed many [Talmudic] academies in Spain, and at the head of the greatest of them were Rabbi Isaac Aboab in Guadalajara [probably the greatest Spanish rabbi of his day], Rabbi Isaac Veçudó in Leon, and Rabbi Jacob Habib in Salamanca [later author of a famous collection of the non-legal parts of the Talmud, the En Yaakob]. In the last named city there was a great expert in mathematics, and whenever there was any doubt on mathematical questions in the Christian academy of that city they referred them to him. His name was Abraham Zacuto. [This famous astronomer encouraged the expedition of Vasco da Gama.] . . .

In the course of the three months' respite granted them they endeavoured to effect an arrangement permitting them to stay on in the country, and they felt confident of success. Their representatives were the rabbi, Don Abraham Seneor, the leader of the Spanish congregations, who was attended by a retinue on thirty mules, and Rabbi Meïr Melamed, who was secretary to the King, and Don Isaac Abravanel [1437-1508], who had fled to Castile from the King of Portugal, and then occupied an equally prominent position at the Spanish royal court. He, too, was later expelled, went to Naples, and was highly esteemed by the King of Naples. The aforementioned great rabbi, Rabbi Isaac of Leon, used to call this Don Abraham Seneor: "Soné Or" ["Hater of Light," a Hebrew pun on Seneor], because he was a heretic, and the end proved that he was right, as he was converted to Christianity at the age of eighty, he and all his family, and Rabbi Meïr Melamed with him . [Seneor and his son-in-law, Meïr, were converted June 15, 1492; Ferdinand and Isabella were among the sponsors.] Don Abraham had arranged the nuptials between the King and the Queen. The Queen was the heiress to the throne, and the King one of the Spanish nobility. On account of this, Don Abraham was appointed leader of the Jews, but not with their consent.

The agreement permitting them to remain in the country on the payment of a large sum of money was almost completed when it was frustrated by the interference of a prior who was called the Prior of Santa Cruz. [Legend relates that Torquemada, Prior of the convent of Santa Cruz, thundered, with crucifix aloft, to the King and Queen: "Judas Iscariot sold his master for thirty pieces of silver. Your Highness would sell him anew for thirty thousand. Here he is, take him, and barter him away."] Then the Queen gave an answer to the representatives of the Jews, similar to the saying of King Solomon [ProverbS 2 1: 1]: "The king's heart is in the hand of the Lord, as the rivers of water. God turneth it withersoever He will." She said furthermore: "Do you believe that this comes upon you from us? The Lord hath put this thing into the heart of the king." [Isabella says it is God's will that the Jews be expelled.]

Then they saw that there was evil determined against them by the King, and they gave up the hope of remaining. But the time had become short, and they had to hasten their exodus from Spain. They sold their houses, their landed estates, and their cattle for very small prices, to save themselves. The King did not allow them to carry silver and gold out of his country, so that they were compelled to exchange their silver and gold for merchandise of cloths and skins and other things- [Ever since 1480 Jews and Gentiles were forbidden to export precious metal, the source of a nation's wealth.]

One hundred and twenty thousand of them went to Portugal, according to a compact which a prominent man, Don Vidal bar Benveniste del Cavalleria, had made with the King of Portugal, and they paid one ducat for every soul, and the fourth part of all the merchandise they had carried thither; and he allowed them to stay in his country six months. This King acted much worse toward them than the King of Spain, and after the six months had elapsed he made slaves of all those that remained in his country, and banished seven hundred children to a remote island to settle it, and all of them died. Some say that there were double as many. Upon them the Scriptural word was fulfilled [Deuteronomy 28:32]: "Thy sons and thy daughters shall be given unto another people, etc" [all Spanish Jews, who were still in Portugal in 1493, were enslaved by King John (1481-1495). The children were sent to the isle of St. Thomas, off the coast of Africa.] He also ordered the congregation of Lisbon, his capital, not to raise their voice in their prayers, that the Lord might not hear their complaining about the violence that was done unto them.

Many of the exiled Spaniards went to Mohammedan countries, to Fez, Tlemçen, and the Berber provinces, under the King of Tunis. [These North African lands are across the Mediterranean from Spain.] On account of their large numbers the Moors did not allow them into their cities, and many of them died in the fields from hunger, thirst, and lack of everything. The lions and bears, which are numerous in this country, killed some of them while they lay starving outside of the cities. A Jew in the kingdom of Tlemçen, named Abraham, the viceroy who ruled the kingdom, made part of them come to this kingdom, and he spent a large amount of money to help them. The Jews of Northern Africa were very charitable toward them. A part of those who went to Northern Africa, as they found no rest and no place that would receive them, returned to Spain, and became converts, and through them the prophecy of Jeremiah was fulfilled [Lamentations 1:13]: "He hath spread a net for my feet, he hath turned me back." For, originally, they had all fled for the sake of the unity of God; only a very few had become converts throughout all the boundaries of Spain; they did not spare their fortunes; yea, parents escaped without having regard to their children.

When the edict of expulsion became known in the other countries, vessels came from Genoa to the Spanish harbors to carry away the Jews. The crews of these vessels, too, acted maliciously and meanly toward the Jews, robbed them, and delivered some of them to the famous pirate of that time who was called the Corsair of Genoa. To those who escaped and arrived at Genoa the people of the city showed themselves merciless, and oppressed and robbed them, and the cruelty of their wicked hearts went so far that they took the infants from the mothers' breasts.

Many ships with Jews, especially from Sicily, went to the city of Naples on the coast. The King of this country was friendly to the Jews, received them all, and was merciful towards them, and he helped them with money. The Jews that were at Naples supplied them with food as much as they could, and sent around to the other parts of Italy to collect money to sustain them. The Marranos in this city lent them money on pledges without interest; even the. Dominican Brotherhood acted mercifully toward them. [The Dominican monks were normally bitterly opposed to Jews.] On account of their very large number, all this was not enough. Some of them died by famine, others sold their children to Christians to sustain their life. Finally, a plague broke out among them, spread to Naples, and very many of them died, so that the living wearied of burying the dead.

Part of the exiled Spaniards went over sea to Turkey. Some of them were thrown into the sea and drowned, but those who arrived, there the King of Turkey received kindly, as they were artisans. He lent them money and settled many of them on an island, and gave them fields and estates. [The Turks needed smiths and makers of munitions for the war against Christian Europe.]

A few of the exiles were dispersed in the countries of Italy, in the city of Ferrara, in the [papal] countries of Romagna, the March, and Patrimonium, and in Rome. . . .

He who said unto His world, Enough, may He also say Enough unto our sufferings, and may He look down upon our impotence. May He turn again, and have compassion upon us, and hasten out salvation. Thus may it be Thy will!



Elbogen, pp. 80-86; Roth, pp. 218-232; Sachar, pp. 204-220.


Graetz, IV, pp. 334-356; Graetz-Rhine, IV, pp. 207-244; Margolis and Mary, pp. 440-476.

Abbott, G. F., Israel in Europe, pp. 141-166.

Milman, H. H., The History of the Jews, II, Book xxvi.

Prescott, W. H., History of the Reign of Ferdinand and Isabella the Catholic, 11, Part I, Chap. xvii: "Expulsion of the Jews from Spain." An interesting. scholarly presentation.

JE, "Spain."


Halper, B., Post-Biblical Hebrew Literature, "The Advantages of a Republic over a Monarchy," 11, pp. 221-224. A brief discussion on political science by Isaac Abravanel.

Lindo, E. H., The History of the Jews of Spain and Portugal, pp. 277-280 contains the decree of expulsion. Comments on the expulsion by Isaac Abravanel, financial adviser to Isabella, may be found on p, 284. Another contemporary account occurs on p. 285.

Marx, A., "The Expulsion of the Jews from Spain," JQR, 0. S., XX (1908), pp. 24off.; JQR, N. S., 11 (1911-1912), pp. 257-258. This is the complete account of which source No. 11 is an extract.



Jacob Marcus, The Jew in the Medieval World: A Sourcebook, 315-1791, (New York: JPS, 1938), 51-55

Later printings of this text (e.g. by Atheneum, 1969, 1972, 1978) do not indicate that the copyright was renewed)

This text is part of the Internet Jewish History Sourcebook. The Sourcebook is a collection of public domain and copy-permitted texts for introductory level classes in modern European and World history.

Unless otherwise indicated the specific electronic form of the document is copyright. Permission is granted for electronic copying, distribution in print form for educational purposes and personal use. If you do reduplicate the document, indicate the source. No permission is granted for commercial use of the Sourcebook.

© Paul Halsall, July1998
4034  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: September 16, 2010, 12:35:07 PM
"I was pointing out that the American President's obligation is to place America's interests before Israel's interests."
"Hopefully they coincide."

Admittedly not clear to me.  Certainly Bamster doesn't think so.  I see no evidence he ever did.  Quite the contrary.

If Israel is not a Jewish state than frankly the Jews are again without a homeland.

My main point was that Israel is being threatened with annhilation.  And force is the only way to stop it.  Unless, as I have said, that by some miracle, events in Iran change.

There is no other logical solution at this point.  Iranian leadership is clear on their intentions.

American support for military action is not there.  Whether it is in our interests is an important side topic.  Is Israel going to wait to be the recipients of a first strike because of world opinion or defend themselves with preemptive action?  It appears the former.

4035  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: September 15, 2010, 11:27:32 AM

Good points.

Surely there are people who know a lot more and are a lot smarter than me who have not been ready to come out and advise (at least publically) an attack on Iran.

However, I definitely don't trust Obama.  His goals and interests are not with Israel or the Jews.  That is clear.  And Bush was very weak politically after Iraq.  I wonder if he would have been against a pre-emptive attack against Iran if it wasn't for other events, Iraq, Afghanistan, a collapse in the economy, total loss of political support, and avalanche of political weight for the opposing political party.  He was in NO position in any way shape or form to advocate any kind of strike against Iran.

The collapse of our power couldn't have come at any better time for Iran than it did.  Or any better time to get a veiled marxist into the white house with a Muslim middle name adding to the great luck of the Mullahs.

Netenyahu may be caving to US pressure.
4036  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: September 14, 2010, 10:40:54 AM
"Now that we have been outplayed and out testosteroned by Iran and its nuke program, we strengthen the Arabs (Saudi's et al) vs. the Aryans (the Iranians)."

And it has always come back to haunt us.  Shah thrown out.  Mullahs take power and take hostages.  We give arms to Afghanistan.  Al Quaeda/Taliban use same arms against us.

We strengthen Saddam in war against Iran and he uses the same arms against us. 

Now like dopes we give jets to Saudis who at same time help fund Al Quaeda and probably ground zero mosque.  Perhaps they will be less belligernet against the Jews now they might see them as buffer against Iran.  The arms race in the Mid East is only just beginning.  And why would the Saudis not want to get nucs now?

As for Israel I don't see any way around it.  They use everything they have to destroy as much of Iran's military and nuc capability soon or wait to be driven from Israel or die. 
I still say the choice is a terrible one but one of survival - the enemy or themselves.  Even Bolten who has hinted he may run for President (he would be great - I think!) continues to stop short of saying military strikes.  He continues to say Israel needs to take action but never then says what action.

US Generals say using nucs is crazy.  Yes and no.  Waiting to die or be confronted with being driven from Israel or continue to hope for some other miracle are the only choices.

4037  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Science vs. God on: September 11, 2010, 08:04:42 PM
Stephen Hawking seems to think we don't need God or philisophy.  We have science.  This Economist writer did not think much of his book:

4038  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Way Forward for the American Creed on: September 11, 2010, 07:57:35 PM
"He is currently one point up in a Dem. district"

He answers the questions I see all over CNN when a Black comes on and begs the question, "well what does the Republican party (or tea party for that matter) offer us???"

Well here is your answer,

A free and strong, and safe and properous nation with equal opportunity for all.

Not a country where we are wards of the state, where the elite decide what to do with our money, where property and wealth are not stolen, where we have leaders who are honest and proud of our nation etc.
4039  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Health costs are bad? What about education? on: September 10, 2010, 09:53:19 AM
From the Economist:

Declining by degree
Will America’s universities go the way of its car companies?
Sep 2nd 2010

FIFTY years ago, in the glorious age of three-martini lunches and all-smoking offices, America’s car companies were universally admired. Everybody wanted to know the secrets of their success. How did they churn out dazzling new models every year? How did they manage so many people so successfully (General Motors was then the biggest private-sector employer in the world)? And how did they keep their customers so happy?

Today the world is equally in awe of American universities. They dominate global rankings: on the Shanghai Ranking Consultancy’s list of the world’s best universities, 17 of the top 20 are American, and 35 of the top 50. They employ 70% of living Nobel prizewinners in science and economics and produce a disproportionate share of the world’s most-cited articles in academic journals. Everyone wants to know their secret recipe.

Which raises a mischievous question. Could America’s universities go the way of its car companies? On the face of it, this seems highly unlikely. Student enrolments are higher than ever this year, as Americans who cannot find jobs linger or return to education. Cambridge, Massachusetts, shows no outward sign of becoming Detroit. Yet there are serious questions about America’s ivory towers.

Two right-wing think-tanks, the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) and the Goldwater Institute, have both produced damning reports about America’s university system. Two left-wing academics, Andrew Hacker and Claudia Dreifus, have published an even more damning book: “Higher Education? How Colleges are Wasting Our Money and Failing Our Kids and What We Can Do About It”. And US News & World Report, a centrist magazine, says in its annual survey of American colleges that: “If colleges were businesses, they would be ripe for hostile takeovers, complete with serious cost-cutting and painful reorganisations.”

College fees have for decades risen faster than Americans’ ability to pay them. Median household income has grown by a factor of 6.5 in the past 40 years, but the cost of attending a state college has increased by a factor of 15 for in-state students and 24 for out-of-state students. The cost of attending a private college has increased by a factor of more than 13 (a year in the Ivy League will set you back $38,000, excluding bed and board). Academic inflation makes medical inflation look modest by comparison.

As costs soar, diligence is tumbling. In 1961 full-time students in four-year colleges spent 24 hours a week studying; that has fallen to 14, estimates the AEI. Drop-out and deferment rates are also hair-curling: only 40% of students graduate in four years.

The most plausible explanation is that professors are not particularly interested in students’ welfare. Promotion and tenure depend on published research, not good teaching. Professors strike an implicit bargain with their students: we will give you light workloads and inflated grades so long as you leave us alone to do our research. Mr Hacker and Ms Dreifus point out that senior professors in Ivy League universities now get sabbaticals every third year rather than every seventh. This year 20 of Harvard’s 48 history professors will be on leave.

America’s commitment to research is one of the glories of its higher-education system. But for how long? The supply of papers that apply gender theory to literary criticism remains ample. But there is evidence of diminishing returns in an area perhaps more vital to the country’s economic dynamism: science and technology. The Kauffman Foundation, which studies entrepreneurship, argues that the productivity of federal funding for R&D, in terms of patents and licences, has been falling for some years. Funding is spread too thinly. It would yield better results if concentrated on centres of excellence, but fashionable chatter about the “knowledge economy” stirs every congressional backwoodsman to stick his fingers into the university pie.

The Goldwater Institute points to a third poison to add to rising prices and declining productivity: administrative bloat. Between 1993 and 2007 spending on university bureaucrats at America’s 198 leading universities rose much faster than spending on teaching faculty. Administration costs at elite private universities rose even faster than at public ones. For example, Harvard increased its administrative spending per student by 300%. In some universities, such as Arizona State University, almost half the full-time employees are administrators. Nearly all university presidents conduct themselves like corporate titans, with salaries, perks and entourages to match.

At least the Naval Academy is free

Given the size and competitiveness of America’s higher-education system, you might expect these problems to be self-correcting. Why don’t some universities compete by hiring teaching superstars? And why don’t others slash prices? The big problem is that high-status institutions such as universities tend to compete with each other on academic reputation (which is enhanced by star professors) and bling (luxurious dormitories and fancy sports stadiums) rather than value for money. This starts at the top: Yale would never dream of competing with Harvard on price. But it also extends to second-division universities: George Washington University has made itself fashionable by charging students more and spending lavishly on its facilities.

This luxury model is unlikely to survive what is turning into a prolonged economic downturn. Parents are much less willing to take on debt than they were and much more willing to look abroad for better deals. The internet also poses a growing threat to what Bill Gates calls “place-based colleges”. Online, you can listen to the world’s best lecturers for next to nothing.

America’s universities lost their way badly in the era of easy money. If they do not find it again, they may go the way of GM.

4040  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / what a business this is on: September 09, 2010, 07:18:30 PM
We have race baiting Reverends.  Now we have religious baiting "imams".

What a racket!  This is becoming a tried and true business model.

4041  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Pathological Science on: September 09, 2010, 07:14:11 PM
"They were fallible human beings with mortgages to pay and funds to raise"

So says GW of the climate change croud:

****The environmental movement in retreat

By George Will | The collapsing crusade for legislation to combat climate change raises a question: Has ever a political movement made so little of so many advantages? Its implosion has continued since "the Cluster of Copenhagen, when world leaders assembled for the single most unproductive and chaotic global gathering ever held." So says Walter Russell Mead, who has an explanation: Bambi became Godzilla.

That is, a small band of skeptics became the dogmatic establishment. In his Via Meadia blog, Mead, a professor of politics at Bard College and Yale, notes that "the greenest president in American history had the largest congressional majority of any president since Lyndon Johnson," but the environmentalists' legislation foundered because they got "on the wrong side of doubt."

Environmentalists, Mead argues, have forgotten their origins, which were in skeptical "reaction against Big Science, Big Government and Experts." Environmentalists once were intellectual cousins of economic libertarians who heed the arguments of Friedrich Hayek and other students of spontaneous order -- in society or nature. Such libertarians caution against trying to impose big, simple plans on complex systems. They warn that governmental interventions in such systems inevitably have large unintended, because unforeseeable, consequences.

In the middle of the 20th century, Americans, impressed by the government's mobilization of society for victory in World War II, were, Mead says, "intoxicated with social and environmental engineering of all kinds." They had, for example, serene confidence that "urban renewal" would produce "model cities." Back then, environmentalism was skepticism.

It was akin to the dissent of Jane Jacobs, author of the 1961 book "The Death and Life of Great American Cities." She argued that ambitious social engineers such as New York's Robert Moses were, by their ten-thumbed interventions in complex organisms such as cities, disrupting social ecosystems. The apotheosis of technocratic experts such as McGeorge Bundy and Robert McNamara gave us "nation-building" in conjunction with a war of attrition -- the crucial metric supposedly was body counts -- in a Southeast Asian peasant society. Over time, Mead says, "experts lost their mystique":
  Every weekday publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". HUNDREDS of columnists and cartoonists regularly appear. Sign up for the daily update. It's free. Just click here.
 "An increasingly skeptical public started to notice that 'experts' weren't angels descending immaculately from heaven bearing infallible revelations from G0d. They were fallible human beings with mortgages to pay and funds to raise. They disagreed with one another and they colluded with their friends and supporters like everyone else."

And expertise was annoyingly changeable. Experts said margarine was the healthy alternative to butter -- until they said its trans fats made it harmful.

Environmentalism began as Bambi doing battle with Godzillas, such as the Army Corps of Engineers. Then, says Mead, environmentalism became Godzilla, an advocate of "a big and simple fix for all that ails us: a global carbon cap. One big problem, one big fix." Mead continues:

"Never mind that the leading green political strategy (to stop global warming by a treaty that gains unanimous consent among 190-plus countries and is then ratified by 67 votes in a Senate that rejected Kyoto 95 to 0) is and always has been so cluelessly unrealistic as to be clinically insane. The experts decree and we rubes are not to think but to honor and obey."

The essence of progressivism, of which environmentalism has become an appendage, is the faith that all will be well once we have concentrated enough power in Washington and have concentrated enough Washington power in the executive branch and have concentrated enough "experts" in that branch. Hence the Environmental Protection Agency proposes to do what the elected representatives of the rubes refuse to do in limiting greenhouse gases. Mead says of today's environmental movement:

"It proposes big economic and social interventions and denies that unintended consequences and new information could vitiate the power of its recommendations. It knows what is good for us, and its knowledge is backed up by the awesome power and majesty of the peer review process. The political, cultural, business and scientific establishments stand firmly behind global warming today -- just as they once stood firmly behind Robert Moses, urban renewal and big dams. They tell us it's a sin to question the consensus, the sign of bad moral character to doubt. Bambi, look in the mirror. You will see Godzilla looking back."

Mead, who says that he is a skeptic about climate policy rather than climate science, says that the environmental movement has "become the voice of the establishment, of the tenured, of the technocrats." This is the wrong thing to be in "Recovery Summer" while the nation wonders about the whereabouts of the robust recovery the experts forecast.****
4042  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Communicating with the Muslim World on: September 09, 2010, 02:14:09 PM
I guess if the pastor simply painted a picture of the quran burning and dipped it in urine. He could call it art and apply for a NEA grant.
I am so glad Hillary weighed in on this.
4043  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Rants & interesting thought pieces on: September 09, 2010, 02:01:56 PM
"But just as old problems return, so do equally old solutions. Once-stodgy ideas like a free-market economy, strong defense, secure borders, and national unity are suddenly appearing fresh and wise."

To many it does, including me and most on this board.

But "old solutions" are going to come with MUCH pain.  I don't hear many politicians being honest about that.

Bamster who has criticized the previous politicians for kicking the can down the road has done more to kick the can down the road then everyone before him.

The left is still hanging on hoping he is not the disaster that I/most of us think he is.
4044  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Islam in America and the rest of the western hemisphere on: September 04, 2010, 10:19:02 AM
Those who don't listent to history are doomed to repeat it:

""We were expecting Islam to adapt to France and it is France adapting to Islam," Robin said"

If the Bloomberg's of the country have their way it will happen here too.

****'Islamization' of Paris a Warning to the West
By Dale Hurd
CBN News Sr. ReporterSaturday, September 04, 2010RSSPodcasts

The latest version of Adobe Flash Player is required to watch this video. Please click on the link below to download the latest version. Thanks!

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Ad Feedback PARIS - Friday in Paris. A hidden camera shows streets blocked by huge crowds of Muslim worshippers and enforced by a private security force.

This is all illegal in France: the public worship, the blocked streets, and the private security. But the police have been ordered not to intervene.

It shows that even though some in the French government want to get tough with Muslims and ban the burqa, other parts of the French government continue to give Islam a privileged status.

An ordinary French citizen who has been watching the Islamization of Paris decided that the world needed to see what was happening to his city. He used a hidden camera to start posting videos on YouTube. His life has been threatened and so he uses the alias of "Maxime Lepante. " 

Lepante's View

His camera shows that Muslims "are blocking the streets with barriers. They are praying on the ground. And the inhabitants of this district cannot leave their homes, nor go into their homes during those prayers."

"The Muslims taking over those streets do not have any authorization. They do not go to the police headquarters, so it's completely illegal," he says.

The Muslims in the street have been granted unofficial rights that no Christian group is likely to get under France's Laicite', or secularism law.

"It says people have the right to share any belief they want, any religion," Lepante explained. "But they have to practice at home or in the mosque, synagogues, churches and so on."

Some say Muslims must pray in the street because they need a larger mosque. But Lepante has observed cars coming from other parts of Paris, and he believes it is a weekly display of growing Muslim power.

"They are coming there to show that they can take over some French streets to show that they can conquer a part of the French territory," he said.

France's Islamic Future?

If France faces an Islamic future, a Russian author has already written about it. The novel is called "The Mosque of Notre Dame, 2048," a bestseller in Russia, not in France.

French publisher Jean Robin said the French media ignored the book because it was politically incorrect.

"Islam is seen as the religion of the poor people, so you can't say to the poor people, 'You're wrong,' otherwise, you're a fascist," Robin explained.

The book lays out a dark future when France has become a Muslim nation, and the famous cathedral has been turned into a mosque.

Whether that plot is farfetched depends on whom you ask. Muslims are said to be no more than 10 percent of the French population, although no one knows for sure because French law prohibits population counts by religion.

But the Muslim birthrate is significantly higher than for the native French. Some Muslim men practice polygamy, with each extra wife having children and collecting a welfare check.

"The problem of Islam is more than a problem of numbers," said French philosopher Radu Stoenescu, an Islamic expert who debates Muslim leaders on French TV. "The problem is one of principles. It's an open question. Is Islam an ideology or just a creed?"

"It doesn't matter how many there are," he aded. "The problem is the people who follow Islam; they're somehow in a political party, which has a political agenda, which means basically implementing Sharia and building an Islamic state."

In Denial or Fed Up

From the 1980s until recently, criticizing or opposing Islam was considered a social taboo, and so the government and media effectively helped Islam spread throughout France.

"We were expecting Islam to adapt to France and it is France adapting to Islam," Robin said.

About the burqa controversy, one French Muslim man told a reporter that Europeans should respect Muslim dress. One Parisian woman wearing a headscarf said "the veil is in the Koran" and "we only submit to God and nobody else."

But even if many government elites are in France are in denial over Islam, the people in the streets increasingly are not. Some have become fed up with what they see as the growing Islamization of France.

They've started staging pork and wine "aperitifs," or cocktail parties in the street. They're patriotic demonstrations meant to strike back against Islam.  Another national demonstration is planned for Saturday, Sept. 4. 

A Warning to the West

The French parliament is expected to debate the burqa law in September. Jean-Francois Cope, president of the Union for a Popular Movement political party, has a warning for the West and for America. 

"We cannot accept the development of such practice because it's not compatible with the life in a modern society, you see," he said. "And this question is not only a French question. You will all have to face this challenge. "

For more insight on the slide toward a post-Christian Western society, check out Dale Hurd's blog Hurd on the Web.

For more insight on 'Islamization' around the world, check out Stakelbeck on Terror.

**Originally published September 1, 2010.****
4045  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / freedom of speech?/how about a cultural theme park on: September 03, 2010, 12:39:43 PM
"this site goes to the high bidder - strip club, pot shop, shooting range, what ever"

Good idea Doug.

Rush had suggested a gay bar open next door.  May I add a strip club titled "99 virgins" would be excellent for the other side of the mosque.

Across the street a Church with a statue of Jesus and Mother Mary.  Adjacent to that my favorite = a museum about Zionism.

A NOW center also would help complete a culturally diverse theme park around the mosque. 

OK you wise guys (there is certainly no nicer way to put it).  You want to speak of freedom of speech - lets give you the whole works! In your faces too.  grin
4046  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Rants & interesting thought pieces on: September 03, 2010, 09:42:10 AM
Some have said that the mosque on ground zero is akin to the Japanese building a religious shrine at Pearl Habor.

Looking at it from the opposite perspective:

Could any American dream or think it a good idea to build a memorial to Harry S. Truman on the site of Hiroshima?

It seems to me the fact I have never heard anyone even use this as an analogy suggests no American would be that obnoxious to even think of doing that to the Japanese.

There is simply no other explanation for building this mosque at the WTC site than it is meant to be a symbol of of victory.  The progressives who than turn around and agree with the argument that it is all about religious freedom - it is as Malken would say, "head exploding."  angry

4047  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: 9/11 memorial that never made the press on: September 03, 2010, 09:33:39 AM
I never saw this before!

I should take a drive up to see it.

4048  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Here it comes on: September 03, 2010, 09:31:44 AM
Yes, go after our own law enforcement for doing it's job and report to the UN. angry

Feds sue Arizona sheriff in civil rights probe
           DOJ Going After America's Toughest Sheriff? FOX News By AMANDA LEE MYERS and PAUL DAVENPORT, Associated Press Writer Amanda Lee Myers And Paul Davenport, Associated Press Writer – Thu Sep 2, 7:49 pm ET
PHOENIX – The Justice Department sued the nation's self-proclaimed "toughest sheriff" on Thursday, calling Joe Arpaio's defiance of an investigation into his office's alleged discrimination against Hispanics "unprecedented."

It's the first time in decades a lawman has refused to cooperate in one of the agency's probes, the department said.

The Arizona sheriff had been given until Aug. 17 to hand over documents the federal government first asked for 15 months ago, when it started investigating alleged discrimination, unconstitutional searches and seizures, and jail policies that discriminate against people with limited English skills.

Thomas Perez, assistant attorney general for the department's civil rights division, said it's unfortunate the department had to sue to get the documents, which neither the agency nor Arpaio would describe.

But Arpaio called the lawsuit "a ruse" and said the federal government is just trying to score a win against the state, which has found itself at the center of the nation's argument over illegal immigration since passing a law that mirrors many of the policies Arpaio has put into place in the greater Phoenix area.

"I think they know we have not been racial profiling, so what's the next step — camouflage the situation, go the courts, and make it look like I'm not cooperating," Arpaio said Thursday.

Arpaio said he provided "hundreds of thousands" of reports but hasn't turned over others because the department's request was too broad.

Kevin Ryan, former U.S. attorney for the Northern District of California and a law professor at the University of San Francisco, said he thought the department's characterization of Arpaio's behavior as unprecedented was overstating it.

He said the contentious relationship between the sheriff and the department is no secret.

"You really can't hold it against the sheriff and assume he's guilty because he's not rolling over for the Justice Department," he said.

But Rory Little, a law professor at the University of California Hastings College of the Law who formerly worked at the Justice Department, disagreed, called Arpaio's actions "pretty unusual" because the lawsuit says Arpaio's office signed agreements promising to cooperate with civil-rights investigations and other reviews when it accepted federal law enforcement grants.

Last year, the nearly $113 million that Maricopa County received from the federal government accounted for about 5 percent of the county's $2 billion budget. The lawsuit listed $16.5 million of funding provided Arpaio's office through several programs.

"Normally when you receive $113 million in grants you're going to cooperate and send over whatever they want to see," Little said. Otherwise, "it raises the level of suspicion pretty significantly."

He also said it's rare for a law enforcement agency to push the department all the way to a lawsuit.

"Cooperating with the Department of Justice is usually not a bad thing so long as you're not the target of a criminal investigation, and the federal government has a lot of power in terms of grants and you don't want to get on their bad side," he said.

Arpaio believes the department's inquiry is focused on his immigration sweeps, patrols where deputies flood an area of a city — in some cases heavily Latino areas — to seek out traffic violators and arrest other offenders.

Critics say the deputies pull people over for minor traffic infractions because of the color of their skin so they can ask them for their proof of citizenship.

Thursday's lawsuit is the latest action in a slew against Arizona by the federal government.

In 2009, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security stripped Arpaio's office of its special powers to enforce federal immigration laws, and in May, the Obama administration urged the U.S. Supreme Court to prevent Arizona from enforcing its employer sanctions law.

In July, the Justice Department filed a lawsuit to overturn portions of Arizona's strict new immigration law that would require police officers to question people about their immigration status if there is reason to suspect they are in the country illegally. A federal judge put that provision and most of the law on hold.

The continued attention on the state sends a clear political message that the federal government doesn't want Arizona enforcing federal immigration laws, said Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Immigration Studies, which advocates for strict immigration laws.

"It's surprising that the administration would focus on Arizona and go after it on such a high-profile and persistent way," he said.

In a separate investigation, a federal grand jury in Phoenix is examining allegations that Arpaio has abused his powers with actions such as intimidating county workers by showing up at their homes at nights and on weekends.

A Hispanic activist said a federal judge might have to threaten jail time to get Arpaio to cooperate in the lawsuit filed Thursday.

"It's going to take the hard hand of the judge to order some sanctions against the sheriff's office," said Lydia Guzman of the Phoenix-based civil rights group Somos America.

Arizona Republican Sen. Russell Pearce, author of the new Arizona law, called the Justice Department's actions against Arpaio a "witch hunt."

"This is the game that's played," he said. "They couldn't find any violations ... that's why they're very vague about what they want. It doesn't take a very high IQ to figure out what's going on with these folks."


Associated Press Writer Jacques Billeaud contributed to this report.

4049  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Hill vs vahvahvahvoom! on: September 02, 2010, 08:50:03 PM
Did you see Hillary between Abbas and Netenyahu today?  What a political setup.

They might as well have put a sign behind her asking "should I run in 12 or wait till 16"?

If Bamster continues to screw up I would certainly be very surprised if there wasn't a big push for the Hill to save the crats in 12.

IF only people voted based on how one looks in a bikini.
4050  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Health Thread (nutrition, medical, longevity, etc) on: September 01, 2010, 07:04:37 PM
I don't know the details.  Persistant hoarseness in an older person especially one who smokes is always a red flag.  OTOH is not unusaul for someone to smoke for 50 years knowing full well of the risks and then when they do come down with something turn around a blame the doctors because they didn't catch it fast enough or something else doesn't turn out perfect. 

Irregardless, Michael Douglas, and his father are two of my favorite actors so I am saddned to hear this.  I wish them well.

***Catherine Zeta-Jones furious Douglas' cancer went undetected
LOS ANGELES (Reuters) – Actress Catherine Zeta-Jones admits having a hard time watching husband Michael Douglas battle throat cancer and has told People magazine she is furious with doctors for not detecting his disease sooner.

Douglas, the Oscar winner of "Wall Street" and a veteran of Hollywood movies and television, told the celebrity magazine that he spent months seeking attention for persistent throat and ear pain only to be told nothing was wrong until August.

The son of actor Kirk Douglas announced on August 16 that doctors had found a tumor in his throat and that he would undergo radiation and chemotherapy, which he has now started.

"It makes me furious they didn't detect it earlier," Zeta-Jones told People. "He sought every option and nothing was found."

The actress, herself an Oscar winner for "Chicago," has been married to Douglas for 10 years and the couple have two children together, Dylan, 10, and Carys, 7.

Douglas, 65, is now undergoing radiation and chemotherapy five days-a-week every three weeks to rid himself of a walnut-sized tumor at the base of his tongue.

Zeta-Jones said she can't stand the thought of watching her husband undergoing chemotherapy and radiation and loosing his strength as he battles the disease.

"I know maybe I should be stronger, but emotionally I just don't want to see that," she said, later adding, "the hardest part is seeing his fatigue, because Michael is never tired."

Douglas made his first post-announcement TV appearance on Tuesday on "The Late Show with David Letterman," and told the talk show audience that although his cancer was late "stage four," doctors say he has an 80 percent chance of recovery.

He told People magazine that he was optimistic about his odds. "I'm treating this as a curable disease," he said. "It's a fight. I'll beat this."

But he admitted that he was uncertain about the future, and noted that "you just never think it's going to be you."

Still, after months of feeling the pain creep up on him, of having a dry throat and hoarse voice, the news of his cancer came as little surprise to both Hollywood stars.

"It wasn't a huge shock. I knew something was up. He knew something was up," said Zeta-Jones.

And while she is furious about the lack of an early diagnosis, Douglas seems more understanding. "Without having to blame anybody ... these things sometimes just don't show up," he said.***

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