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23401  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Team Dog Brothers MMA? on: February 23, 2009, 06:20:18 PM
I'm thinking all individuals involved should be screened by me , , , lets take this to email or the next time we meet (Sunday?)
23402  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Uh, nevermind , , , on: February 23, 2009, 05:59:25 PM
Death to the Infidels! Uh, Never Mind.

London's Daily Telegraph reports that one of the founding fathers of contemporary Islamist terrorism has had a change of heart:

Sayyid Imam al-Sharif, who goes by the nom de guerre Dr Fadl, helped bin Laden create al-Qaeda and then led an Islamist insurgency in Egypt in the 1990s.  But in a book written from inside an Egyptian prison, he has launched a frontal attack on al-Qaeda's ideology and the personal failings of bin Laden and particularly his Egyptian deputy, Ayman al-Zawahiri.

Twenty years ago, Dr Fadl became al-Qaeda's intellectual figurehead with a crucial book setting out the rationale for global jihad against the West.

Today, however, he believes the murder of innocent people is both contrary to Islam and a strategic error. "Every drop of blood that was shed or is being shed in Afghanistan and Iraq is the responsibility of bin Laden and Zawahiri and their followers," writes Dr Fadl.
The Telegraph notes that terrorist movements often go through a "process of disintegration" that "begins with a senior leader publicly denouncing his old colleagues. Dr Fadl's missives may show that al-Qaeda has entered this vital stage." Vital would seem the wrong choice of adjective, though, wouldn't it?

Taranto
WSJ
23403  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Economics on: February 23, 2009, 05:27:11 PM
Good call.  We are now at levels not seen since 1997.  cry  Look out below! shocked
23404  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Team Dog Brothers MMA? on: February 23, 2009, 05:21:25 PM
If you guys would like to meet in the South Bay area, I think I could put together a couple of options (Boxing Works, Rigan's place, a couple of other things).
23405  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Team Dog Brothers MMA? on: February 23, 2009, 02:08:27 PM
Sisco is gently alluding to the interaction that Lyotto and I had together at RAW a few years ago. wink
23406  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Afghanistan-Pakistan on: February 23, 2009, 12:47:21 PM
Jkrenz:

I see that our generals have asked for 34,000 or so additional troops and that President Barack Carter Obama is giving them 17,000 and today the NY Slimes reports that he will be looking to pay for the stimulus by cutting costs in Iraq and Afg.

What do you make of this?

==============================
WSJ

Last year, Pakistanis in the northern Malakand district voted overwhelmingly for the country's secular parties, including the Pakistan People's Party of President Asif Ali Zardari. Last week, Mr. Zardari repaid the favor by agreeing to the imposition of Shariah law in the area and suspending military operations against an encroaching Taliban.

We would call this terrifying, but that may understate matters for the people of the region. For several years, the Taliban and its allies have sought to gain control of the district, particularly its scenic Swat valley, once a popular tourist destination. Gaining control, Taliban-style, meant fighting the Pakistani military to a standstill. It also meant blowing up 180 girls schools and publicly beheading locals who offended them, including barbers who dared trim customer beards.


The deal was struck with longtime insurgent leader Sufi Mohammed, who has been fighting to impose Shariah law for 40 years. Sufi Mohammed is said to be at loggerheads with his even more radical son-in-law, the Taliban-connected Maulana Fazlullah, and the government hopes that the concession of Shariah law could marginalize Fazlullah while the Pakistan Army girds for more fighting in the spring. The Pakistan government portrays the deal as little more than a tactical concession and, according to Information Minister Sherry Rahman, is "in no way a sign of the state's weakness."

Yet no sooner was the deal signed than a Pakistani journalist was murdered while covering a "peace march" organized by Sufi Mohammed -- the 20th journalist killed around Swat in two years. Fazlullah has also refused to honor the government's cease-fire beyond a 10-day period that expires later this week. Local residents who had reluctantly acquiesced in hopes of gaining some kind of peace may soon find themselves living with Shariah, without peace.

This cease-fire smacks of a similar deal the previous government of Pervez Musharraf arranged in Pakistan's tribal areas in 2006. That deal created a Taliban sanctuary and led to sharp increases in terrorist attacks, both in Afghanistan and the Pakistan heartland. Sufi Mohammed has signed three previous pacts with various Pakistani governments extending the writ of Islamic law. None mollified the extremists; each invited the next round of violent demands.

"Now that the Taliban have pressured the Frontier's provincial government and Islamabad into acquiescence in one part of the country, what is to stop them from replicating their designs elsewhere?" asks Murtaza Razvi, an editor with the Dawn newspaper. Good question. It doesn't induce confidence that the government capitulated even when it was fielding 10,000 troops against a Taliban force estimated at 2,000. If Pakistan's military can't defeat a militia 100 miles from Islamabad, its reputation as the country's one competent institution and guarantor of security will fast evaporate.

Mr. Zardari's government has heretofore shown a willingness to fight the Taliban and has taken an openly pro-American line since gaining power last year. It has also allowed the CIA's Predator strikes, which have reportedly killed 11 top al Qaeda leaders. Pakistanis have also consistently repudiated Islamists at the ballot box.

This makes it all the more crucial that Mr. Zardari not squander this public support by backing down against Islamist terrorism. The longer the Swat cease-fire lasts, the more likely the region will become another safe haven for extremists inside Pakistan -- and an existential threat to Mr. Zardari's government and moderate Pakistani Muslims.
23407  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / WSJ: WOD a failure on: February 23, 2009, 12:39:11 PM
By FERNANDO HENRIQUE CARDOSO, CéSAR GAVIRIA and ERNESTO ZEDILLO
The war on drugs has failed. And it's high time to replace an ineffective strategy with more humane and efficient drug policies. This is the central message of the report by the Latin American Commission on Drugs and Democracy we presented to the public recently in Rio de Janeiro.

 
AP
A soldier stands next to packages containing marijuana at an army base in Cali, Colombia, August 2008.
Prohibitionist policies based on eradication, interdiction and criminalization of consumption simply haven't worked. Violence and the organized crime associated with the narcotics trade remain critical problems in our countries. Latin America remains the world's largest exporter of cocaine and cannabis, and is fast becoming a major supplier of opium and heroin. Today, we are further than ever from the goal of eradicating drugs.

Over the last 30 years, Colombia implemented all conceivable measures to fight the drug trade in a massive effort where the benefits were not proportional to the resources invested. Despite the country's achievements in lowering levels of violence and crime, the areas of illegal cultivation are again expanding. In Mexico -- another epicenter of drug trafficking -- narcotics-related violence has claimed more than 5,000 lives in the past year alone.

The revision of U.S.-inspired drug policies is urgent in light of the rising levels of violence and corruption associated with narcotics. The alarming power of the drug cartels is leading to a criminalization of politics and a politicization of crime. And the corruption of the judicial and political system is undermining the foundations of democracy in several Latin American countries.

The first step in the search for alternative solutions is to acknowledge the disastrous consequences of current policies. Next, we must shatter the taboos that inhibit public debate about drugs in our societies. Antinarcotic policies are firmly rooted in prejudices and fears that sometimes bear little relation to reality. The association of drugs with crime segregates addicts in closed circles where they become even more exposed to organized crime.

In order to drastically reduce the harm caused by narcotics, the long-term solution is to reduce demand for drugs in the main consumer countries. To move in this direction, it is essential to differentiate among illicit substances according to the harm they inflict on people's health, and the harm drugs cause to the social fabric.

In this spirit, we propose a paradigm shift in drug policies based on three guiding principles: Reduce the harm caused by drugs, decrease drug consumption through education, and aggressively combat organized crime. To translate this new paradigm into action we must start by changing the status of addicts from drug buyers in the illegal market to patients cared for by the public-health system.

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We also propose the careful evaluation, from a public-health standpoint, of the possibility of decriminalizing the possession of cannabis for personal use. Cannabis is by far the most widely used drug in Latin America, and we acknowledge that its consumption has an adverse impact on health. But the available empirical evidence shows that the hazards caused by cannabis are similar to the harm caused by alcohol or tobacco.

If we want to effectively curb drug use, we should look to the campaign against tobacco consumption. The success of this campaign illustrates the effectiveness of prevention campaigns based on clear language and arguments consistent with individual experience. Likewise, statements by former addicts about the dangers of drugs will be far more compelling to current users than threats of repression or virtuous exhortations against drug use.

Such educational campaigns must be targeted at youth, by far the largest contingent of users and of those killed in the drug wars. The campaigns should also stress each person's responsibility toward the rising violence and corruption associated with the narcotics trade. By treating consumption as a matter of public health, we will enable police to focus their efforts on the critical issue: the fight against organized crime.

A growing number of political, civic and cultural leaders, mindful of the failure of our current drug policy, have publicly called for a major policy shift. Creating alternative policies is the task of many: educators, health professionals, spiritual leaders and policy makers. Each country's search for new policies must be consistent with its history and culture. But to be effective, the new paradigm must focus on health and education -- not repression.

Drugs are a threat that cuts across borders, which is why Latin America must establish dialogue with the United States and the European Union to develop workable alternatives to the war on drugs. Both the U.S. and the EU share responsibility for the problems faced by our countries, since their domestic markets are the main consumers of the drugs produced in Latin America.

The inauguration of President Barack Obama presents a unique opportunity for Latin America and the U.S. to engage in a substantive dialogue on issues of common concern, such as the reduction of domestic consumption and the control of arms sales, especially across the U.S.-Mexico border. Latin America should also pursue dialogue with the EU, asking European countries to renew their commitment to the reduction of domestic consumption and learning from their experiences with reducing the health hazards caused by drugs.

The time to act is now, and the way forward lies in strengthening partnerships to deal with a global problem that affects us all.

Mr. Cardoso is the former president of Brazil. Mr. Gaviria is a former president of Colombia. Mr. Zedillo is a former president of Mexico.

23408  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Stratfor on: February 23, 2009, 12:36:34 PM
Iran announced on Sunday that it plans to “pre-commission” its nuclear power plant at Bushehr this week. The ceremony is to be attended by Sergei Kiriyenko, head of Russia’s state nuclear company. This announcement came two days after Iranian Defense Minister Brig. Gen. Mostafa Mohammad Najjar completed a five-day trip to Russia. The Iranians were not clear on what a “pre-commissioning” is, but they did say it would lead to launching the reactor (though no timetable for the launch was given). The pre-commissioning process appears to be some sort of operational simulation. That is less important than the politics of the matter.

During the Munich security meetings, the question of the U.S. ballistic missile defense (BMD) system in Poland and the Czech Republic came up, with the United States indicating that the deployment was going to proceed, pending discussions with the Russians. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton then floated the idea that if the Russians were to help rein in Iran’s nuclear program, the need for the deployment would be eliminated. The Russians’ decision to send Kiriyenko to the pre-commissioning signals that the proposal did not immediately excite the Russians and that they are going forward with at least the civilian side of Iranian nuclear power development. There is a distinction between the civilian and military side, but coming on the heels of a German delegation’s visit to Iran to discuss the program — and to float the idea of the internationalization of Iran’s nuclear development — Kiriyenko’s plan to attend the ceremony clearly indicates that the Russians are not ready to cooperate.

The reasons for that are fairly simple. For the United States, Iran’s nuclear program represents a major challenge and a priority issue. For the Russians, the BMD system in Poland is an irritant, but it is not by itself a fundamental national security issue. The United States was asking the Russians to help solve a major problem in return for Washington getting rid of a minor problem for Russia. Not surprisingly, the Russians signaled this weekend that this proposal, as it stands, is not enough to stop them from cooperating with Iran.

Iran is a significant lever for the Russians in managing their relations with the Americans. It is the one sure way to get Washington’s attention and some flexibility in other areas. The Russians are not eager to lose that lever — and if they do give it up, it will have to be for substantially more than BMD in Poland. For the Russians, BMD is not a threat. They are fully aware that they can overwhelm it with a tiny fraction of their systems. What is a threat is the idea of the United States arming Poland and moving U.S. forces into Poland.

The Russians want a buffer in Poland. If they accept BMD there, they know that in due course, they will see a highly militarized Poland. Thus, the Russians don’t simply want BMD gone from Poland; they want much firmer guarantees about the future of that country. The Russians want the Americans to abandon NATO expansion into the former Soviet Union. Indeed, they want the Americans to work in the former Soviet Union through Moscow, rather than through bilateral relations with individual countries — a point that was just demonstrated in Kyrgyzstan in the context of the Manas air base, which the Americans were told to leave.

The Russians are not going to help shut down the Iranian nuclear program simply for a concession on BMD. They will want a lot more for it. That is why they agreed to attend a pre-commissioning at Bushehr. Indeed, that is why a pre-commissioning is taking it place. It allows a Russian government official to attend the ceremony, thereby signaling to the Obama administration that Clinton’s offer did not even come close to the Russian price. And Iran was likely quite happy to arrange a pre-commissioning in order to send this message, given its own interests in negotiating with the United States.

23409  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Patriot Post on: February 23, 2009, 11:46:49 AM
Monday Brief
Vol. 09 No. 08
23 February 2009

THE FOUNDATION
"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal..." --The Declaration of Independence

 
We are "a nation of cowards," says Eric Holder
RE: THE LEFT
"Hey, black folks, do you know any white folks? Good. OK, I want you to go up to them right now and, as politely as you can, start sharing your most deeply held racial views. Hey, white folks, you're not off the hook. I want you to go and do likewise with any black people you know. Don't want to do that? Really? Well, then, you're a coward. That's the short version of Attorney General Eric Holder's speech this week celebrating Black History Month. Holder says we are 'a nation of cowards' because we're unwilling to discuss race to his satisfaction. ... Usually, when I hear a liberal call for a national conversation on race, I translate it as: 'People who disagree with me need to be instructed why they are wrong.' Indeed, in a sense it's no wonder America is a nation of cowards when it comes to race, because so many of us are terrified of being called racist the moment we step out of line with liberal orthodoxy. ... [Holder] says of the debate over affirmative action ... that, 'This debate can, and should, be nuanced, principled and spirited. But the conversation we now engage in as a nation on this and other racial subjects is too often simplistic and left to those on the extremes, who are not hesitant to use these issues to advance nothing more than their own narrow self-interest.' Perhaps. Or perhaps calling views you disagree with 'extreme' and accusing those who hold them of having dishonorable motives is just a clever way of saying that you don't want an 'honest conversation' at all." --National Review editor Jonah Goldberg

CULTURE
"The problem is not that we talk too little about race but that our discussion is often irrelevant to the problems at hand. When Holder and Clinton talk about confronting racial issues, what they really want is a national therapy session in which whites admit that their prejudice and discrimination -- past and present -- is responsible for all the ills that beset blacks today. Well, sorry, it just isn't so. ... If Attorney General Holder is really interested in improving the status of blacks, he could begin by addressing the issue of personal responsibility. The decision to have a child out of wedlock has enormous consequences for single moms and the children they bring into the world. If there is one factor above others that explains the huge differences between the well-being of whites and blacks in this society, it is that so many black children grow up in homes with no fathers. Those children do more poorly in school, are more likely to get in trouble with the law, and become single parents themselves, thus perpetuating a destructive cycle of despair. So, by all means, let's have some honesty in our discussions of race during Black History Month. Let's begin by having our most prominent black elected and appointed officials show a little courage by speaking out on the real problems in the black community, not the chimera of white oppression and unacknowledged guilt." --columnist Linda Chavez

INSIGHT
"You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift. You cannot help small men by tearing down big men. You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. You cannot lift the wage-earner by pulling down the wage-payer. You cannot help the poor man by destroying the rich. You cannot keep out of trouble by spending more than your income. You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred. You cannot establish security on borrowed money. You cannot build character and courage by taking away men's initiative and independence. You cannot help men permanently by doing for them what they could and should do for themselves." --Presbyterian minister William J.H. Boetcker (1873-1962)

THE GIPPER
"Government has only two ways of getting money other than raising taxes. It can go into the money market and borrow, competing with its own citizens and driving up interest rates, which it has done, or it can print money, and it's done that. Both methods are inflationary." --Ronald Reagan


 

POLITICAL FUTURES
"America is not great because of the size of our government, but because of the vision and values of our people. I am convinced that those who believe in big government have little faith in self-governance. Their philosophy says that government should do what a man can't -- or won't -- do for himself. Perhaps I'm jaded, but I believe that the gush of taxpayer dollars issuing forth from Washington is not driven by compassion, but from an unspoken belief that Americans are not smart enough to govern their own lives, strong enough to take some risk or compassionate enough to help neighbors in need. Conservatism has gotten a black eye over the past few years, not because our core principles are less true, but because so many of our leaders lost their way. When conservatives forget the values that got them elected and morph into big-spending, favor-trading politicians, voters will simply vote for whoever offers change, and, in 2008, they did. I don't think such an outcome dictates a redefinition of conservatism. If anything, it is a stark reminder that we need to return to our fiscally conservative roots. Not just in Washington, D.C., but in every state in the nation." --Texas Gov. Rick Perry

GOVERNMENT
"[C]reating jobs is not difficult for government. What is difficult for government is creating jobs that produce wealth. Pyramids, holes in the ground and war do not produce wealth. They destroy wealth. They take valuable resources and convert them into something less valuable. Instead of iPods, great art, cures for diseases and machines that replace back-breaking work, we get the equivalent of digging holes and filling them up. Under President Obama's 'stimulus' plan, jobs will be created to weatherize buildings, construct schools and wind turbines, and repair roads and bridges. But outside the market process, there is no way to know whether those are better uses of scarce capital than whatever would have been produced had it been left in the private economy. Since government services are paid for through the compulsion of taxes, they have no market price. But without market prices, we have no way of knowing the importance that free people would place on those services versus other things they want. So although we'll see the government putting people to work and even some new schools and bridges, we won't be able to calculate how much wealth we've lost because scarce resources were misallocated by the politicians. Nevertheless, we can be sure we will have lost. If the government's projects were truly worthwhile, they would be undertaken by private efforts, and in their quest for profits, entrepreneurs would handle them more efficiently. Remember this when President Obama begins to boast about how successful his stimulus plan is." --ABC's 20/20 co-anchor John Stossel

FOR THE RECORD
"[N]ot all jobs are created equal. Valuable jobs provide products and services the free market supports; useless jobs provide products and services the free market would not support. Valuable jobs provide products and services that enrich quality of life, making it cheaper to live better; useless jobs provide products and services that have minor impact on quality of life. Here's the magic of private sector jobs. Imagine Bill owns a fruit stand. He sells his fruit for $2 per pound. Herman sees that Bill is doing well, and decides to open a fruit stand of his own. He figures he can undercut Bill and live on less of a profit margin, so he sells his fruit at $1 per pound. Pretty soon, Herman runs Bill out of business. It's tough for Bill. But meanwhile, customers are spending $1 less for their fruit than they were. They're spending that extra money at Bob's clothing store, keeping Bob employed -- and Bob can now hire Bill. The bottom line is this: The power of free enterprise creates competition that raises production, lowers prices, and makes lives better for consumers and producers. And that's true even if employment declines in the fruit stand business." --columnist Ben Shapiro

LIBERTY
"[W]hat is the driving force that explains how millions of people manage to cooperate to get 60,000 different items to your supermarket? Most of them don't give a hoot about you and me, some of them might hate Americans, but they serve us well and they do so voluntarily. The bottom line motivation for the cooperation is people are in it for themselves; they want more profits, wages, interest and rent, or to use today's silly talk -- people are greedy. Adam Smith, the father of economics, captured the essence of this wonderful human cooperation when he said, 'He (the businessman) generally, indeed, neither intends to promote the public interest, nor knows how much he is promoting it. ... He intends only his own security; and by directing that industry in such a manner as its produce may be of the greatest value, he intends only his own gain.' Adam Smith continues, 'He is in this, as in many other cases, led by an invisible hand to promote an end which was no part of his intention. ... By pursuing his own interest he frequently promotes that of the society more effectually than when he really intends to promote it.' And later he adds, 'It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker, that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest.' If you have doubts about Adam Smith's prediction, ask yourself which areas of our lives are we the most satisfied and those with most complaints. Would they be profit motivated arenas such supermarkets, video or clothing stores, or be nonprofit motivated government-operated arenas such as public schools, postal delivery or motor vehicle registration? By the way, how many of you would be in favor of Congress running our supermarkets?" --George Mason University economics professor Walter E. Williams

23410  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Help our troops/our cause: on: February 23, 2009, 11:12:24 AM
Sorry to have to report this, but we search for Truth.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Probe finds Army charity is hoarding millions

Military's biggest charity is stockpiling cash, rather than using it for aid

Feb. 22, 2009

FORT BLISS, Texas - As soldiers stream home from Iraq and Afghanistan, the biggest charity inside the U.S. military has been stockpiling tens of millions of dollars meant to help put returning fighters back on their feet, an Associated Press investigation shows.

Between 2003 and 2007 — as many military families dealt with long war deployments and increased numbers of home foreclosures — Army Emergency Relief grew into a $345 million behemoth. During those years, the charity packed away $117 million into its own reserves while spending just $64 million on direct aid, according to an AP analysis of its tax records.

Tax-exempt and legally separate from the military, AER projects a facade of independence but really operates under close Army control. The massive nonprofit — funded predominantly by troops — allows superiors to squeeze soldiers for contributions; forces struggling soldiers to repay loans — sometimes delaying transfers and promotions; and too often violates its own rules by rewarding donors, such as giving free passes from physical training, the AP found.

Founded in 1942, AER eases cash emergencies of active-duty soldiers and retirees and provides college scholarships for their families. Its emergency aid covers mortgage payments and food, car repairs, medical bills, travel to family funerals, and the like.

Army charity lent out emergency aid

Instead of giving money away, though, the Army charity lent out 91 percent of its emergency aid during the period 2003-2007. For accounting purposes, the loans, dispensed interest-free, are counted as expenses only when they are not paid back.

During that same five-year period, the smaller Navy and Air Force charities both put far more of their own resources into aid than reserves. The Air Force charity kept $24 million in reserves while dispensing $56 million in total aid, which includes grants, scholarships and loans not repaid. The Navy charity put $32 million into reserves and gave out $49 million in total aid.

AER executives defend their operation, insisting they need to keep sizable reserves to be ready for future catastrophes.
"Look at the stock market," said retired Col. Dennis Spiegel, AER's deputy director for administration. Without the large reserve, he added, "We'd be in very serious trouble."

But smaller civilian charities for service members and veterans say they are swamped by the desperate needs of recent years, with requests far outstripping ability to respond.
While independent on paper, Army Emergency Relief is housed, staffed and controlled by the U.S. Army.

That's not illegal per se. Eric Smith, a spokesman for the Internal Revenue Service, said the agency can't offer an opinion on a particular charity's activities. But Marcus Owens, former head of IRS charity oversight, said charities like AER can legally partner closely with a government agency.
However, he said, problems sometimes arise when their missions diverge. "There's a bit of a tension when a government organization is operating closely with a charity," he said.

Some reserves are prudent

Most charity watchdogs view 1-to-3 years of reserves as prudent, with more than that considered hoarding. Yet the American Institute of Philanthropy says AER holds enough reserves to last about 12 years at its current level of aid.

Daniel Borochoff, president of the American Institute of Philanthropy, said that AER collects money "very efficiently. What the shame is, is they're not doing more with it."
National administrators say they've tried to loosen the purse strings. The most recent yearly figures do show a tilt by AER toward increased giving.
Still, Borochoff's organization, which grades charities, gives the Army charity an "F" because of the hoarding.

The AP findings include:

*Superior officers come calling when AER loans aren't repaid on time. Soldiers can be fined or demoted for missing loan payments. They must clear their loans before transferring or leaving the service.

*Promotions can be delayed or canceled if loans are not repaid.

*Despite strict rules against coercion, the Army uses pushy tactics to extract supposedly voluntary contributions, with superiors using language like: "How much can we count on from you?"

*The Army sometimes offers rewards for contributions, though incentives are banned by program rules. It sometimes excuses contributors from physical training — another clear violation.

AER screens every request for aid, peering into the personal finances of its troops, essentially making the Army a soldier's boss and loan officer.
"If I ask a private for something ... chances are everyone's going to do it. Why? Because I'm a lieutenant," says Iraq war veteran Tom Tarantino, otherwise an AER backer. "It can almost be construed as mandatory."

Neither the Army nor Sgt. Major of the Army Kenneth Preston, an AER board member, responded to repeated requests for comment on the military's relationship with AER.
AER pays just 21 staffers, all working at its headquarters at Army Human Resources Command in Alexandria, Va. AER's other 300 or so employees at 90 Army sites worldwide are civilians paid by the Army. Also, the Army gives AER office space for free.
AER's treasurer, Ret. Col. Andrew Cohen, acknowledged in an interview that "the Army runs the program in the field." Army officers dominate its corporate board too.

Officers must recommend soldiers for aid

Charities linked to other services operate along more traditional nonprofit lines. The Air Force Aid Society sprinkles its board with members from outside the military to foster broad views. The Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society pays 225 employees and, instead of relying on Navy personnel for other chores, deploys a corps of about 3,400 volunteers, including some from outside the military.

Army regulations say AER "is, in effect, the U.S. Army's own emergency financial assistance organization." Under Army regulations, officers must recommend whether their soldiers deserve aid. Company commanders and first sergeants can approve up to $1,000 in loans on their own say-so. Officers also are charged with making sure their troops repay AER loans.

"If you have an outstanding bill, you're warned about paying that off just to finish your tour of duty ... because it will be brought to your leadership and it will be dealt with," says Jon Nakaishi, of Tracy, Calif., an Army National Guard veteran of the Iraq war who took out a $900 AER loan to help feed his wife and children between paychecks.
In his case, he was sent home with an injury and never fully repaid his loan.

The Army also exercises its leverage in raising contributions from soldiers. It reaches out only to troops and veterans in annual campaigns organized by Army personnel.
For those on active duty, AER organizes appeals along the chain of command. Low-ranking personnel are typically solicited by a superior who knows them personally.

Spiegel, the AER administrator, said he's unaware of specific violations but added: "I spent 29 years in the Army, I know how ... first sergeants operate. Some of them do strong-arm."

Many violations uncovered

Army regulations ban base passes, training holidays, relief from guard duty, award plaques and "all other incentives or rewards" for contributions to AER. But the AP uncovered evidence of many violations.

Before leaving active duty in 2006, Philip Aubart, who then went to Reserve Officer Training Corps at Dartmouth College, admits he gave to AER partly to be excused from push-ups, sit-ups and running the next day. For those who didn't contribute the minimum monthly allotment, the calisthenics became, in effect, a punishment.

"That enticed lots and lots of guys to give," he noted. He says he gave in two annual campaigns and was allowed to skip physical training the following days.
Others spoke of prizes like pizza parties and honorary flags given to top cooperating units.

Make no mistake: AER, a normally uncontroversial fixture of Army life, has helped millions of soldiers and families. Last year alone, AER handed out about $5.5 million in emergency grants, $65 million in loans, and $12 million in scholarships. Despite the extra demands for soldiers busy fighting two wars, AER's management says it hasn't felt a need to boost giving in recent years.

But the AP encountered considerable criticism about AER's hoarding of its treasure chest.

Jack Tilley, a retired sergeant major of the Army on AER's board from 2000 to 2004, said he was surprised by AP's findings, especially during wartime.
"I think they could give more. In fact, that's why that's there," said Tilley, who co-founded another charity that helps families of Mideast war veterans, the American Freedom Foundation.

Accumulates stocks and bonds with its wealth

What does AER do with its retained wealth? Mostly, it accumulates stocks and bonds.
AER ended 2007 with a $296 million portfolio; last year's tanking market cut that to $214 million, by the estimate of its treasurer.

Sylvia Kidd, an AER board member in the 1990s, says she feels that the charity does much good work but guards its relief funds too jealously. "You hear things, and you think, "`They got all this money, and they should certainly be able to take care of this,'" she said. She now works for a smaller independent charity, the Association of the United States Army, providing emergency aid to some military families that AER won't help.

Though AER keeps a $25 million line of bank credit to respond to a world economic crisis, its board has decided to lop off a third of its scholarship money this year. "We're not happy about it," Spiegel says.
23411  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Guro Crafty in Hemet on Sunday March 1 on: February 23, 2009, 11:09:12 AM
What would you like to see?
23412  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Citizens defend themselves/others. on: February 23, 2009, 09:18:52 AM
Fast food giant McDonald's has denied workers compensation benefits to a minimum wage employee who was shot when he ejected a customer who had been beating a woman inside the restaurant.

A representative of the administrator for McDonald's workers compensation plan explained that "we have denied this claim in its entirety as it is our opinion that Mr. Haskett's injuries did not arise out of or within the course and scope of his employment."

Nigel Haskett, then aged 21, was working at a McDonald's in Little Rock, Arkansas last summer when he saw a patron, later identified as Perry Kennon, smacking a woman in the face. A surveillance video of the incident, which had been posted to YouTube, was taken down after McDonald's charged copyright infringement, but according to written descriptions of the video, Haskett tackled Kennon, threw him out, and then stood by the door to prevent him from reentering.

(Update: The video is now available in a news report from KARK4 in Little Rock, which is not subject to copyright claims and which can be seen below.)

Kennon went to his car, returned with a gun, and shot Haskett multiple times. Haskett staggered back into the restaurant and collapsed.

Kennon, who has a long criminal record, was arrested a few days later and charged with first-degree battery. The judge at his arraignment praised Haskett as a hero.

Haskett has since undergone three abdominal surgeries and has incurred over $300,000 in medical bills. McDonald's has declined to comment on their reasons for refusing his claim, because the case is still pending before the Workers Compensation Commission, but according to Haskett's lawyer, Philip M. Wilson:

"McDonald's position now is that during thirty-minute orientation Mr. Haskett and the other individuals going through the orientation were supposedly told that in the event of a robbery or anything like a robbery . . . not to be a hero and simply call 911. Mr. Haskett denies that anything like that was even mentioned during orientation or at any time during his employment with McDonald's."

McDonald's may be on shaky legal ground in their attempt to deny benefits. As explained by the blog "Joe's Union Review," courts have repeatedly ruled that injuries incurred in the course of "good samaritan" acts while on the job are entitled to compensation, especially if they result in good will towards the employer.

"McDonald’s is really living up to it’s reputation as an evil empire," another blog comments. "They’re no longer merely all about moving in on the little guy, or clogging your arteries with fry grease, or making kids big chunkers, but are also now turning on their employees."

This video was broadcast by KARK4 News and was posted at YouTube on February 22, 2009.

===========

If you want to let McDs know what you think , , ,

http://www.mcdonalds.com/contact/contact_us.html
23413  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Alignment on: February 23, 2009, 09:14:40 AM
C-Kaju:

Would love to see you and share what I think is a pretty slick and rather safe little program.   Please feel free to call me at your convenience.
23414  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Guro Crafty in Hemet on Sunday March 1 on: February 23, 2009, 09:10:37 AM
Family first Frankfurter.  Come by the house when your new schedule kicks in.
23415  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: The American Creed: Our Founding Fathers: on: February 23, 2009, 08:37:55 AM
"[W]hen the resolution of enslaving America was formed in Great Britain, the British Parliament was advised by an artful man, - who was governor of Pennsylvania, to disarm the people; that it was the best and most effectual way to enslave them; but that they should not do it openly, but weaken them, and let them sink gradually, by totally disusing and neglecting the militia."

--George Mason, speech in the Virginia Ratifying Convention, 14 June 1778
23416  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Iran on: February 23, 2009, 01:43:46 AM
What can Israel do?

Even Bush in his final months is reputed to have denied permission to act.  Do you think they will fly over Iraq without BO's permission?!?  Syria?  Turkey? (there is a relationship there, but not enough for this!)

Other than their nuke capable subs, I can think of no option.

Does this writer suggest that Israel is about to pre-empt Iran with Nukes?!?

Sorry, IMHO more thinking needs to be done here.
23417  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / I dunno about this , , , on: February 22, 2009, 11:54:47 PM

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090222/...as/as_pakistan

Pakistan to arm village militias

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

ISLAMABAD – Authorities in a Pakistani border province plan to arm villagers with 30,000 rifles and set up an elite police unit to protect a region increasingly besieged by Taliban and al-Qaida militants, an official said Sunday.

Stiffer action in the North West Frontier Province could help offset American concern that a peace deal being negotiated in the Swat valley, a Taliban stronghold in the province, could create a haven for Islamist insurgents only 100 miles (160 kilometers) from the Pakistani capital.

Village militias backed by the United States have been credited with reducing violence in Iraq. Washington is paying for a similar initiative in Afghanistan.
The United States is already spending millions of dollars to train and equip Pakistani forces in the rugged region near the Afghan border but there was no sign it was involved in the militia plan. A U.S. Embassy spokesman could not be reached for comment.

Pakistani Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi said Saturday he will try to "remove the apprehensions of the world community" about the Swat deal when he meets U.S. officials in Washington next week, state-run media reported.

But it was unclear if Sunday's announcement had the backing of national leaders or the powerful army — or if handing out more guns in an already heavily armed society was wise.

Mahmood Shah, a former head of security for Pakistan's tribal regions, said arming civilians could trigger civil war in the northwest, where tribal and political tension is at fever pitch.

Shah said authorities should focus on bolstering existing security forces.

"This is Pakistan, not Iraq or Afghanistan. There is complete anarchy in Iraq and Afghanistan, and that is not the case here," he said. "It is not going to help."

Haider Khan Hoti, chief minister of the provincial government, said authorities would distribute the guns only among "peaceful groups and individuals" so they could help police to guard their villages.

Officials would consult with local police chiefs before handing out the arms and would take them back if they were not used against "terrorists and troublemakers," Hoti's office said in a written statement.

Hoti said the guns were on hand, having been seized from "terrorists and anti-state elements." He said the province would meet the $40 million bill for the elite provincial police unit of 2,500 officers.

"The purpose of setting up this force is to combat terrorism and extremism effectively," he said.

The militia plan raises doubts about the coherence of Pakistani efforts to counter Taliban groups who have seized growing pockets of the northwest, forged links with al-Qaida and carried out a blur of suicide bombings.

Pakistani officials have encouraged residents to establish militias in the semiautonomous tribal areas sandwiched between North West Frontier Province and the Afghan border.

The pro-Western central government says it will come down hard on groups who refuse to renounce violence and stop supporting cross-border terrorism in return for reconciliation.  Federal officials insisted they have not handed out any weapons in the tribal areas, and appeared to be caught off guard by Sunday's announcement.

Army spokesman Maj. Gen. Athar Abbas said it had not been consulted about giving weapons to village militias. A spokesman for the Interior Ministry, supposedly in charge of national law and order issues, also was unaware of the plan. The provincial government did not say when the weapons would be handed out, or if villagers would be armed in the Swat valley, where security forces and Taliban militants are observing a week-old cease-fire while seeking a peace accord.

Earlier Sunday, Taliban gunmen abducted a senior government official and six of his security guards in Swat, demonstrating their unbroken hold in the valley, where they have defied an army offensive, beheaded political opponents and torched some 200 girls' schools. A Taliban spokesman said the official, Khushal Khan, would be freed "soon," but that his abduction was a warning to the provincial authorities, who he alleged had arrested two Taliban members in violation of the cease-fire.

"We wanted to show the government that we can also taken action against it," spokesman Muslim Khan said.

He declined to comment on the village militia plan.

The provincial government has sent a hard-line cleric to try to persuade the Swat Taliban to renounce violence in return for the introduction of elements of Islamic law.
Officials say the legal concessions meet long-standing demands for speedy justice in Swat and fall far short of the harsh version of Islamic law favored by Taliban militants.
__________________
23418  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Guro Crafty in Hemet on Sunday March 1 on: February 22, 2009, 11:49:02 PM
lester griffin, school 951-654-0210 cell 951-492-8362

 

WHEN: sun. march first 2009 11:00A.M. TO 4:00 P.M.

WHERE: 775 S SAN JACINTO BVL. OR ST. san jacinto ca. 92583

COST : $60.00 PRE PAY OR $80.00 AT THE DOOR
23419  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Another treasonous report from the NY Times on: February 22, 2009, 11:43:11 PM
Secret U.S. Unit Trains Commandos in Pakistan

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

February 23, 2009

Secret U.S. Unit Trains Commandos in Pakistan

By ERIC SCHMITT and JANE PERLEZ
BARA, Pakistan

More than 70 United States military advisers and technical specialists are secretly working in Pakistan to help its armed forces battle Al Qaeda and the Taliban in the country’s lawless tribal areas, American military officials said.

The Americans are mostly Army Special Forces soldiers who are training Pakistani Army and paramilitary troops, providing them with intelligence and advising on combat tactics, the officials said. They do not conduct combat operations, the officials added.

They make up a secret task force, overseen by the United States Central Command and Special Operations Command. It started last summer, with the support of Pakistan’s government and military, in an effort to root out Qaeda and Taliban operations that threaten American troops in Afghanistan and are increasingly destabilizing Pakistan. It is a much larger and more ambitious effort than either country has acknowledged.

Pakistani officials have vigorously protested American missile strikes in the tribal areas as a violation of sovereignty and have resisted efforts by Washington to put more troops on Pakistani soil. President Asif Ali Zardari, who leads a weak civilian government, is trying to cope with soaring anti-Americanism among Pakistanis and a belief that he is too close to Washington.

Despite the political hazards for Islamabad, the American effort is beginning to pay dividends.

A new Pakistani commando unit within the Frontier Corps paramilitary force has used information from the Central Intelligence Agency and other sources to kill or capture as many as 60 militants in the past seven months, including at least five high-ranking commanders, a senior Pakistani military official said.

Four weeks ago, the commandos captured a Saudi militant linked to Al Qaeda here in this town in the Khyber Agency, one of the tribal areas that run along the border with Afghanistan.

Yet the main commanders of the Pakistani Taliban, including its leader, Baitullah Mehsud, and its leader in the Swat region, Maulana Fazlullah, remain at large. And senior American military officials remain frustrated that they have been unable to persuade the chief of the Pakistani Army, Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, to embrace serious counterinsurgency training for the army itself.

General Kayani, who is visiting Washington this week as a White House review on policy for Afghanistan and Pakistan gets under way, will almost certainly be asked how the Pakistani military can do more to eliminate Al Qaeda and the Taliban from the tribal areas.

The American officials acknowledge that at the very moment when Washington most needs Pakistan’s help, the greater tensions between Pakistan and India since the terrorist attacks in Mumbai last November have made the Pakistani Army less willing to shift its attention to the Qaeda and Taliban threat.

Officials from both Pakistan and the United States agreed to disclose some details about the American military advisers and the enhanced intelligence sharing to help dispel impressions that the missile strikes were thwarting broader efforts to combat a common enemy. They spoke on condition of anonymity, citing the increasingly powerful anti-American segment of the Pakistani population.

The Pentagon had previously said about two dozen American trainers conducted training in Pakistan late last year. More than half the members of the new task force are Special Forces advisers; the rest are combat medics, communications experts and other specialists. Both sides are encouraged by the new collaboration between the American and Pakistani military and intelligence agencies against the militants.

“The intelligence sharing has really improved in the past few months,” said Talat Masood, a retired army general and a military analyst. “Both sides realize it’s in their common interest.”

Intelligence from Pakistani informants has been used to bolster the accuracy of missile strikes from remotely piloted Predator and Reaper aircraft against the militants in the tribal areas, officials from both countries say.

More than 30 attacks by the aircraft have been conducted since last August, most of them after President Zardari took office in September. A senior American military official said that 9 of 20 senior Qaeda and Taliban commanders in Pakistan had been killed by those strikes.

In addition, a small team of Pakistani air defense controllers working in the United States Embassy in Islamabad ensures that Pakistani F-16 fighter-bombers conducting missions against militants in the tribal areas do not mistakenly hit remotely piloted American aircraft flying in the same area or a small number of C.I.A. operatives on the ground, a second senior Pakistani officer said.

The newly minted 400-man Pakistani paramilitary commando unit is a good example of the new cooperation. As part of the Frontier Corps, which operates in the tribal areas, the new Pakistani commandos fall under a chain of command separate from the 500,000-member army, which is primarily trained to fight Pakistan’s archenemy, India.

The commandos are selected from the overall ranks of the Frontier Corps and receive seven months of intensive training from Pakistani and American Special Forces.

The C.I.A. helped the commandos track the Saudi militant linked to Al Qaeda, Zabi al-Taifi, for more than a week before the Pakistani forces surrounded his safe house in the Khyber Agency. The Pakistanis seized him, along with seven Pakistani and Afghan insurgents, in a dawn raid on Jan. 22, with a remotely piloted C.I.A. plane hovering overhead and personnel from the C.I.A. and Pakistan’s main spy service closely monitoring the mission, a senior Pakistani officer involved in the operation said.

Still, there are tensions between the sides. Pakistani F-16’s conduct about a half-dozen combat missions a day against militants, but Pakistani officers say they could do more if the Pentagon helped upgrade the jets to fight at night and provided satellite-guided bombs and updated satellite imagery.

General Kayani was expected to take a long shopping list for more transport and combat helicopters to Washington. The question of more F-16’s — which many in Congress assert are intended for the Indian front — will also come up, Pakistani officials said.

The United States missile strikes, which have resulted in civilian casualties, have stirred heated debate among senior Pakistani government and military officials, despite the government’s private support for the attacks.

One American official described General Kayani, who is known to be sensitive about the necessity of public support for the army, as very concerned that the American strikes had undermined the army’s authority.

“These strikes are counterproductive,” Owais Ahmed Ghani, the governor of North-West Frontier Province, said in an interview in his office in Peshawar. “This is looking for a quick fix, when all it will do is attract more jihadis.”

Pakistani Army officers say the American strikes draw retaliation against Pakistani troops in the tribal areas, whose convoys and bases are bombed or attacked with rockets after each United States missile strike.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/23/wo...terror.html?hp
23420  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / More treason from the NY Times on: February 22, 2009, 11:41:49 PM
Secret U.S. Unit Trains Commandos in Pakistan

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

February 23, 2009

Secret U.S. Unit Trains Commandos in Pakistan

By ERIC SCHMITT and JANE PERLEZ
BARA, Pakistan

More than 70 United States military advisers and technical specialists are secretly working in Pakistan to help its armed forces battle Al Qaeda and the Taliban in the country’s lawless tribal areas, American military officials said.

The Americans are mostly Army Special Forces soldiers who are training Pakistani Army and paramilitary troops, providing them with intelligence and advising on combat tactics, the officials said. They do not conduct combat operations, the officials added.

They make up a secret task force, overseen by the United States Central Command and Special Operations Command. It started last summer, with the support of Pakistan’s government and military, in an effort to root out Qaeda and Taliban operations that threaten American troops in Afghanistan and are increasingly destabilizing Pakistan. It is a much larger and more ambitious effort than either country has acknowledged.

Pakistani officials have vigorously protested American missile strikes in the tribal areas as a violation of sovereignty and have resisted efforts by Washington to put more troops on Pakistani soil. President Asif Ali Zardari, who leads a weak civilian government, is trying to cope with soaring anti-Americanism among Pakistanis and a belief that he is too close to Washington.

Despite the political hazards for Islamabad, the American effort is beginning to pay dividends.

A new Pakistani commando unit within the Frontier Corps paramilitary force has used information from the Central Intelligence Agency and other sources to kill or capture as many as 60 militants in the past seven months, including at least five high-ranking commanders, a senior Pakistani military official said.

Four weeks ago, the commandos captured a Saudi militant linked to Al Qaeda here in this town in the Khyber Agency, one of the tribal areas that run along the border with Afghanistan.

Yet the main commanders of the Pakistani Taliban, including its leader, Baitullah Mehsud, and its leader in the Swat region, Maulana Fazlullah, remain at large. And senior American military officials remain frustrated that they have been unable to persuade the chief of the Pakistani Army, Gen. Ashfaq Parvez Kayani, to embrace serious counterinsurgency training for the army itself.

General Kayani, who is visiting Washington this week as a White House review on policy for Afghanistan and Pakistan gets under way, will almost certainly be asked how the Pakistani military can do more to eliminate Al Qaeda and the Taliban from the tribal areas.

The American officials acknowledge that at the very moment when Washington most needs Pakistan’s help, the greater tensions between Pakistan and India since the terrorist attacks in Mumbai last November have made the Pakistani Army less willing to shift its attention to the Qaeda and Taliban threat.

Officials from both Pakistan and the United States agreed to disclose some details about the American military advisers and the enhanced intelligence sharing to help dispel impressions that the missile strikes were thwarting broader efforts to combat a common enemy. They spoke on condition of anonymity, citing the increasingly powerful anti-American segment of the Pakistani population.

The Pentagon had previously said about two dozen American trainers conducted training in Pakistan late last year. More than half the members of the new task force are Special Forces advisers; the rest are combat medics, communications experts and other specialists. Both sides are encouraged by the new collaboration between the American and Pakistani military and intelligence agencies against the militants.

“The intelligence sharing has really improved in the past few months,” said Talat Masood, a retired army general and a military analyst. “Both sides realize it’s in their common interest.”

Intelligence from Pakistani informants has been used to bolster the accuracy of missile strikes from remotely piloted Predator and Reaper aircraft against the militants in the tribal areas, officials from both countries say.

More than 30 attacks by the aircraft have been conducted since last August, most of them after President Zardari took office in September. A senior American military official said that 9 of 20 senior Qaeda and Taliban commanders in Pakistan had been killed by those strikes.

In addition, a small team of Pakistani air defense controllers working in the United States Embassy in Islamabad ensures that Pakistani F-16 fighter-bombers conducting missions against militants in the tribal areas do not mistakenly hit remotely piloted American aircraft flying in the same area or a small number of C.I.A. operatives on the ground, a second senior Pakistani officer said.

The newly minted 400-man Pakistani paramilitary commando unit is a good example of the new cooperation. As part of the Frontier Corps, which operates in the tribal areas, the new Pakistani commandos fall under a chain of command separate from the 500,000-member army, which is primarily trained to fight Pakistan’s archenemy, India.

The commandos are selected from the overall ranks of the Frontier Corps and receive seven months of intensive training from Pakistani and American Special Forces.

The C.I.A. helped the commandos track the Saudi militant linked to Al Qaeda, Zabi al-Taifi, for more than a week before the Pakistani forces surrounded his safe house in the Khyber Agency. The Pakistanis seized him, along with seven Pakistani and Afghan insurgents, in a dawn raid on Jan. 22, with a remotely piloted C.I.A. plane hovering overhead and personnel from the C.I.A. and Pakistan’s main spy service closely monitoring the mission, a senior Pakistani officer involved in the operation said.

Still, there are tensions between the sides. Pakistani F-16’s conduct about a half-dozen combat missions a day against militants, but Pakistani officers say they could do more if the Pentagon helped upgrade the jets to fight at night and provided satellite-guided bombs and updated satellite imagery.

General Kayani was expected to take a long shopping list for more transport and combat helicopters to Washington. The question of more F-16’s — which many in Congress assert are intended for the Indian front — will also come up, Pakistani officials said.

The United States missile strikes, which have resulted in civilian casualties, have stirred heated debate among senior Pakistani government and military officials, despite the government’s private support for the attacks.

One American official described General Kayani, who is known to be sensitive about the necessity of public support for the army, as very concerned that the American strikes had undermined the army’s authority.

“These strikes are counterproductive,” Owais Ahmed Ghani, the governor of North-West Frontier Province, said in an interview in his office in Peshawar. “This is looking for a quick fix, when all it will do is attract more jihadis.”

Pakistani Army officers say the American strikes draw retaliation against Pakistani troops in the tribal areas, whose convoys and bases are bombed or attacked with rockets after each United States missile strike.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/23/wo...terror.html?hp
23421  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Potential and reality; Little Red Hen 2009 on: February 22, 2009, 08:02:24 PM
 A young boy went up to his father and asked him, 'Dad, what is the difference between 'potentially' and 'realistically'?'
 
The father thought for a moment, then answered, 'Go ask your mother if she would sleep with Brad Pitt for a million dollars.
 
Then ask your sister if she would sleep with Brad Pitt for a million dollars, and then ask your brother if he'd sleep with Brad Pitt for a
million dollars. Come back and tell me what you learn from that.'
 
So the boy went to his mother and asked, 'Would you sleep with Brad Pitt  for a million dollars?'

The mother replied, 'Of course I would! We could really use that money
to fix up the house and send you kids to a great University!'
 
The boy then went to his sister and asked, 'Would you sleep with Brad
 Pitt for a million dollars?'
 
The girl replied, 'Oh my Gawd! I LOVE Brad Pitt I would sleep with him
in a heartbeat, are you nuts?'
 
The boy then went to his brother and asked, 'Would you sleep with Brad
Pitt for a million dollars?'
'Of course,' the brother replied. 'Do you know what a million bucks  would buy?'
 
The boy pondered the answers for a few days and then went back to his
dad. His father asked him, 'Did you find out the difference between
'potentially' and 'realistically'?' 
 
The boy replied, 'Yes, 'Potentially', you and I are sitting on three million dollars.
But 'realistically', we're living with two hookers and a queer.
 
==============

The Little Red Hen, 2009 bringing it up to date.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------


"Who will help me sow my wheat?" asked the little red hen.

"Not I," said the cow.

"Not I," said the duck.

"Not I," said the pig.

"Not I," said the goose.

"Then I will do it by myself," said the little red hen, and so she did. She
planted her crop, and the wheat grew very tall and ripened into golden
grain.

"Who will help me reap my wheat?" asked the little red hen.

"Not I," said the duck..

"Out of my classification," said the pig.

"I’d lose my seniority," said the cow.

"I’d lose my unemployment compensation," said the goose.

"Then I will do it by myself," said the little red hen, and so she did.


At last it came time to bake the bread. "Who will help me bake the bread?"
asked the little red hen.

"That would be overtime for me," said the cow.

"I’d lose my welfare benefits," said the duck.

"I’m a dropout and never learned how," said the pig.

"If I'm to be the only helper, that's discrimination," said the goose.

"Then I will do it by myself," said the little red hen.


She baked five loaves and held them up for all of her neighbors to see.
They wanted some and, in fact, demanded a share. But the little red hen said,
"No, I shall eat all five loaves."

"Excess profits!" cried the cow. (Nancy Pelosi)

"Capitalist leech!" screamed the duck. (Barbara Boxer)

"I demand equal rights!" yelled the goose. (Jesse Jackson)

The pig just grunted in disdain. (Ted Kennedy)

And they all painted 'Unfair!' picket signs and marched around and around
the little red hen, shouting obscenities.


Then the farmer (Obama) came. He said to the little red hen, "You must not
be so greedy."

"But I earned the bread," said the little red hen.

"Exactly," said Barack the farmer. "That is what makes our free enterprise
system so wonderful. Anyone in the barnyard can earn as much as he wants.
But under our modern government regulations, the productive workers must
divide the fruits of their labor with those who are lazy and idle."

And they all lived happily ever after, including the little red hen, who
smiled and clucked, "I am grateful, for now I truly understand."

But her neighbors became quite disappointed in her. She never again baked
bread because she joined the 'party' and got her bread free. And all the
Democrats smiled. 'Fairness' had been established.

Individual initiative had died, but nobody noticed; perhaps no one
cared...so long as there was free bread that 'the rich' were paying for.

EPILOGUE
Bill Clinton is getting $12 million for his memoirs.
Hillary got $8 million for hers.

That's $20 million for the memories from two people, who for eight years
repeatedly testified, under oath, that they couldn't remember anything.


IS THIS A GREAT BARNYARD OR WHAT?

23422  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Alignment on: February 22, 2009, 07:58:38 PM
Thank you.  Next time we get together, remind me to show you the thoracic mobilization that I learned from Chris Gizzi.
23423  DBMA Espanol / Espanol Discussion / Batallas entre narcos y ejercito on: February 22, 2009, 07:42:57 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Jag1RMi2E4

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hz2YzLL-0vc&NR=1

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4sNLieyWwrA

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TIf80MWzNW4

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EnYbA4cDqLM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VSkK6JbFx6k

!Hijo de muchos padres!  ?Comentarios?!?
23424  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Two miles from the US on: February 22, 2009, 07:41:26 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Jag1RMi2E4

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hz2YzLL-0vc&NR=1

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4sNLieyWwrA

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TIf80MWzNW4

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EnYbA4cDqLM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VSkK6JbFx6k

When Mexico collapses, will this be happening on the streets of cities in the Southwest?  Phoenix already is second in the world to Mex City in kidnappings. 

And the Demogogue Party (and Bush-McCain) seeks to solidify its virtually filibuster proof majorities by making citizens of literally tens of millions of Mexicans. 


23425  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Economics on: February 22, 2009, 07:19:26 PM
Wonder how many hundreds the Dow will go down tomorrow? cry
23426  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Malkin on: February 22, 2009, 03:34:52 PM
http://michellemalkin.com/2009/02/21/tea-party-usa-the-movement-grows/

Malkin on the incipient tax revolt movement , , ,
23427  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re Holt Bill on: February 22, 2009, 03:08:31 PM
Huss:

See entry number 275 above.
23428  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / The price of Freedom is eternal vigilance on: February 22, 2009, 03:07:09 PM
http://www.carrollspaper.com/main.as...SectionID=&S=1

Guardsmen to conduct urban training at Arcadia in April

By BUTCH HEMAN
Staff Writer



The Carroll National Guard unit will train on urban military operations by holding a four-day exercise at Arcadia.

The purpose of the April 2-5 drill will be to gather intelligence, then search for and apprehend a suspected weapons dealer, according to Sgt. Mike Kots, readiness NCO for Alpha Company.

Citizens, law enforcement, media and other supporters will participate.

Troops will spend Thursday, April 2, staging at a forward operations base at Carroll. The next day company leaders will conduct reconnaissance and begin patrolling the streets of Arcadia to identify possible locations of the weapons dealer.

The primary phase will be done Saturday, April 4, when convoys will be deployed from Carroll to Arcadia. Pictures of the arms dealer will be shown in Arcadia, and soldiers will go door to door asking if residents have seen the suspect.

Soldiers will knock only at households that have agreed to participate in the drill, Kots noted.

"Once credible intelligence has been gathered," said Kots, "portions of the town will be road-blocked and more in-depth searches of homes and vehicles will be conducted in accordance with the residents' wishes.

"One of the techniques we use in today's political environment is cordon and knock," Kots explained. "We ask for the head of the household, get permission to search, then have them open doors and cupboards. The homeowner maintains control. We peer over their shoulder, and the soldier uses the homeowner's body language and position to protect him."

During this phase of the operation, troops will interact with residents and media while implementing crowd-control measures and possibly treating and evacuating injured persons.

The unit will use a Blackhawk helicopter for overhead command and control, and to simulate medevacs.

The drill will culminate in the apprehension of the suspected arms dealer.

Alpha Company will conduct a review of the drill on Sunday, April 5.

A meeting to give residents more information and accept volunteers will be held 7 p.m. Monday, March 2, in the Arcadia American Legion hall.

Kots said the exercise will replace Alpha Company's weekend drill for April.

"We have a lot of extended drills this coming year," he added.

In addition to surveillance, searching and apprehension, the exercise will also give the troops valuable experience in stability, support, patrol, traffic control, vehicle searches and other skills needed for deployment in an urban environment.

"This exercise will improve the real-life operational skills of the unit," said Kots. "And it will hopefully improve the public's understanding of military operations."

The pre-drill work with residents is as important at the drill itself.

"It will be important for us to gain the trust and confidence of the residents of Arcadia," said Kots. "We will need to identify individuals that are willing to assist us in training by allowing us to search their homes and vehicles and to participate in role-playing."

"We really want to get as much information out there as possible, because this operation could be pretty intrusive to the people of Arcadia."
=============
23429  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Afghanistan-Pakistan on: February 22, 2009, 12:04:34 PM
That is a very interesting article.  I did not know about the end of the Golden Triangle and what brought it about.

How do you see these lessons being applied in Afg?
23430  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Ike's second warning on: February 22, 2009, 11:10:51 AM
Ike’s Not So Famous Second Warning
by Dwight Schultz

On Saturday January 17, 2009, during the Fox 4 0′clock news hour, Shepard Smith recalled the anniversary of President Eisenhower’s famous 1961 farewell address to the nation, but he only mentioned one of  Ike’s threat warnings, the one that reminded us to beware of the “Military Industrial Complex.” This warning came from a military man, so it’s been a turn of phrase that slobbers off the lips of suspicious lefty infants shortly after they’re forced to abandon the nipple and accept Marx.



So I shouted at Shepard, “What’s wrong with threat number two, you big beautiful blue eyed capitalist! What’s wrong with Fox News and your staff? There are only two warnings in that speech for God’s sake, if you’re going to honor a historical document maybe somebody could at least read it, and maybe for once in almost fifty years remind us of Ike’s second warning: “…that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific-technological elite.” Does anything come immediately to mind when you read that?  Ike goes on, “…Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity.” And, “The prospect of domination of the nation’s scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present - and is gravely to be regarded.”

Do you think Ike was warning us that politicians like Al Gore and Barack Obama could cuddle with the scientific technological elite alike and, oh, I don’t know, maybe get behind Obama’s plan to tax your breath?  Do you think that perhaps some time in the near future you might not be considered a person but a carbon footprint … does something like that sound  ridiculous?

Have you seen how fast Obama has placed environmental academic hysterics and socialists in positions of real power? Steven Chu, John Holdren, Carol Browner and others are there to see to it that every exhaust in your life is a financial event favorable to the government.  So how is it that one of Ike’s warnings became famous and the other a historical ghost note?

It’s really not hard to grasp.  Our educational institutions monitor and control historical information and also educate and train the future guardians of public discourse — the indispensable journalists we read, see, and hear every day. By definition both the media and our nation’s scholars digest information and parcel it out in what should be an honest and thoughtful way. They digested Ike’s warning about the military and saw fit to warn us 10 billion times that the military is bad and needs to be feared and pushed off campus. They digested Ike’s warning about universities, scholars, federal money, science and policy, then gave it to Helen Thomas to scatter on some hot house tomatoes in the Nevada desert. It doesn’t get any simpler.

Think about this: How many times have you heard that the debate over anthropogenic global warming has ended?  When and where was this debate? The mere recitation of the words, “the debate has ended” closed the discussion without you having ever heard it because, get it! It’s ended! Get It! Neat trick! Gore says the debate has ended….McCain says the debate has ended…Obama says the debate has ended …Hanson says the debate has ended, and no one in the media wants to ask, “What debate?” When? Where?  Was there a scientific or political debate… or, God forbid, both, and who was for and who was against?

Gore’s film “An Inconvenient Truth,” has by now been proven to be almost a 100% big fat lie, and yet there is no media outcry against it or price for Gore to pay because he is supporting the scientific technological elite who want to hold public policy captive to the carbon tax that Socialists and Democrats have wanted since the 1992 Rio summit.

This is a clear example of years of liberal bias in protective favor of the university media structure. It just takes a lot of repetition and a strong ideological preference for saying: American military bad! American university good! CO2 bad! Tax our breath! Raise the tuition! Kick the Marines off campus! Long live man made global warming and the tax dollars we shall inherit from it. STING shall be our band and “Every Breath You Take” shall be our song … revenue streams for eternity.

Repeat after me this slogan … or, if you would rather stick this on the backside of your transportation vehicle , please do and remember, paying higher taxes is patriotic, so breathe baby, breathe for your country, just don’t breathe behind our back and not let us see you, ‘cause we’re talk’n money now, baby! The debate has ended!

…Hmmm?

Warning number two? What warning? Oh, you mean the military thing? We’ve taken care of that. Here’s Matt Damon’s number, he’ll tell you all about it. He went to Harvard you know. Remember, be upscale, don’t listen to Rush Limbaugh, breathe! And did I tell you to pay your taxes and act patriotic, especially when they’re going up?

Gotta run, I’m meeting Tom Daschle, Laurie David, Tyrano-Soros and secretary Geithner for lunch.
23431  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Economics on: February 22, 2009, 04:21:02 AM
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

http://www.ibdeditorials.com/IBDArticles.aspx?id=320027936229029

Is It Any Wonder The Market Continues To Sink?

By INVESTOR'S BUSINESS DAILY | Posted Friday, February 20, 2009 4:20 PM PT
Last Oct. 13, in trying to explain why the market had sold off 30% in six weeks, we acknowledged that the freeze-up of the financial system was a big concern. But we cited three other factors as well:

*The imminent election of "the most anti-capitalist politician ever nominated by a major party."

• The possibility of "a filibuster-proof Congress led by politicians who are almost as liberal."

• A "media establishment dedicated to the implementation of a liberal agenda, and the smothering of dissent wherever it arises."
No wonder, we said then, that panic had set in.

Today, as the market continues to sell off and we plumb 12-year lows, we wish we had a different explanation. But it still looks, as we said four months ago, "like the U.S., which built the mightiest, most prosperous economy the world has ever known, is about to turn its back on the free-enterprise system that made it all possible."

How else would you explain all that's happened in a few short weeks? How else would you expect the stock market, where millions cast daily votes and which is still the best indicator of what the future holds, to act when:
• Newsweek, a prominent national newsweekly, blares from its cover "We Are All Socialists Now," without a hint of recognition that socialism in its various forms has been repudiated by history — as communism's collapse in the USSR, Eastern Europe and China attest.

Even so, a $787 billion "stimulus," along with a $700 billion bank bailout, $75 billion to refinance bad mortgages, $50 billion for the automakers, and as much as $2 trillion in loans from the Fed and the Treasury are hardly confidence-builders for our free-enterprise system.

• Talk of "nationalizing" U.S.' troubled major banks comes not just from tarnished Democratic Sen. Chris Dodd, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, but also from Republicans like Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and former Fed chief Alan Greenspan.

To be sure, bank shares have plunged along with home prices, and many have inadequate capital. But is nationalization really the only solution for an industry whose main product — loans to consumers and businesses — has expanded by over 5% annually so far this year?

• A stimulus bill laden with huge amounts of spending on pork and special interests is the best our Congress can come up with to get the economy back on track. Economists broadly agree that the legislation has little stimulative power, and in fact will be a drag on economic growth for years to come.

The failure to include any meaningful tax cuts for either individuals or small businesses, the true stimulators of job growth, while throwing hundreds of billions of dollars at profligate state governments and programs — such as $4.2 billion for "neighborhood stabilization activities" and $740 million to help viewers switch from analog to digital TV— has investors shaking their heads.

• A $75 billion bailout for 9 million Americans who face foreclosure, regardless of how they got into financial trouble, is the government's answer to the housing crunch. Many Americans who have scrupulously kept up with payments are steaming at the thought of subsidizing those who've been profligate or irresponsible.

With recent data showing that as much as 55% of those who get foreclosure aid end up defaulting anyway, a signal has been sent that America has gone from being "Land of the Free" to "Bailout Nation."

• Energy solutions ranging from the expansion of offshore drilling and the development of Alaska's bountiful arctic oil reserves to developing shale oil in America's Big Sky country, tar-sands crude in Canada and coal that provides half the nation's electric power, are taken off the table.

The market knows full well what drives the economy and that restraining energy supply will make us all poorer and investing less profitable. Taking domestic energy sources off the table makes us more reliant on sources from hostile and unstable regimes, breeding uncertainty in a capital system in which participants seek stability.

• Lawmakers who seem more interested in pleasing special interests than voters back home now control Congress. Some of the leading voices in crafting the massive bank bailout and stimulus packages — including Sen. Chris Dodd, Rep. Barney Frank and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi — were the very ones who helped get us in this mess.

They did so by loosening Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac's lending rules and pushing commercial banks to make bad loans. Both Dodd and Frank were recipients of hefty donations from Fannie, Freddie and other financial firms they were charged with regulating.

• Trade protectionism passes as policy, even amid the administration's lip service to free trade. Congress' vast stimulus bill and its "Buy American" provisions limit spending to U.S.-made products and will drive up costs, limit choices and alienate key allies.

Already, it has triggered rumblings of retaliation in a 1930s-style trade war from trading partners, just as the Smoot-Hawley tariffs prolonged the Great Depression. Several European partners have begun raising barriers. Meanwhile, three signed free-trade pacts with Colombia, Panama and Korea languish with no chance of passage. Free trade offers one way out of our problems, yet it's been sidetracked.

• A 1,000-plus page stimulus bill is bulled through Congress with no GOP input and not a single member of Congress reading it before passage. It borders on censorship.

GOP protests of the bill's spending and the speed it was passed at were dismissed by Obama and other Democrats as seeking to "do nothing" or "breaking the spirit of bipartisanship." But voters are angry.

Along with thousands of angry phone calls to Congress, new Facebook groups have emerged, and street protests have sprung up in Denver, Seattle and Mesa, Ariz., against the "porkulus." CNBC Chicago reporter Rick Santelli's on-air denunciation of federal bailouts for mortgage deadbeats attracted a record 1.5 million Internet hits.

• Business leaders are demonized. Yes, there are bad eggs out there like the Madoffs and Stanfords. But most CEOs are hugely talented, driven, highly intelligent people who make our corporations the most productive in the world and add trillions of dollars of value to our economy.

They don't deserve to be dragged before Congress, as they have been dozens of times in the past two years, for a ritual heaping of verbal abuse from the very people most responsible for our ills — our tragically inept, Democrat-led Congress.

• Words like "catastrophe," "crisis" and "depression" are coming from the mouth of the newly elected president, rather than words of hope and optimism. Instead of talking up America's capabilities and prospects, he talks them down — the exact opposite of our most successful recent president, Ronald Reagan, who came in vowing to restore that "shining city on a hill."

Even ex-President Clinton admonished Obama to return to his previous optimism, saying he would "just like him to end by saying that he is hopeful and completely convinced we're gonna come through this."

• The missile defense system that brought the Soviet Union to its knees, and which offers so much hope for future security, is being discussed as a "bargaining chip" with Russia. This, at the same time the regime in Iran is close to having a nuclear weapon and North Korea is readying an intermediate-range missile that can reach the U.S.

This sends a message of weakness abroad and contributes to a feeling of vulnerability at home. A strong economy begins and ends with a strong defense.

All this in barely a month's time. And to think that more of the same is on the way seems to be sinking in. Investors are watching closely and not caring for what they see. Sooner or later, the market will rally — but not without good reason to do so.

23432  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Anti-semitism & Jews on: February 22, 2009, 04:11:20 AM
Defiance -- Go see the movie!!!

[Please read to the end.]

Good morning, all! One of our members, Dr. David Herschtal is a nephew  of the Bielski partisan fighters featured in the film 'Defiance.' He recently shared his personal thoughts about his Uncles portrayed in the movie.  Reading this before or after seeing the film will, I believe, add to a greater appreciation of this amazing historical story.       Rabbi Paul Plotkin 

DEFIANCE SPEECH

"You're about to see one of the greatest stories NEVER told: the largest documented armed resistance and rescue, of Jews by Jews, during the Holocaust. The 1200 people saved then, number an estimated 20,000 today. And I would now like to make it personal.  By 1957, my mother, Estelle Bielski Herschthal and all of the other Bielski brothers and sisters who survived the Holocaust had moved directly from Europe to America and had been living in Brooklyn with their families for 10 years. However, the Bielski Brothers that led the Partisans went directly to Palestine after surviving the Holocaust, and went to war again, to help establish the State of Israel.

So I was 6 yrs old, 1957, when my Mother told me that her brother Tuvia, a great war hero, would be moving from Israel to America.  He'd be our guest for a few weeks and would be arriving later that night.  I'd have to give my bed to him, and now share a bed with my younger brother, all three of us crowded into one small bedroom.  I was not pleased about this inconvenience and thought, after all, how big of a hero can he be if he has to share a room with us kids? My brother and I were fast asleep when he finally arrived late that night, as he was when we left for school early the next morning. To register my dissatisfaction, I poured baby powder all over the head of my sleeping uncle.  As I started to exit the room I was firmly and yet gently stopped and lifted by two steel-like arms. I was temporarily paralyzed with fear and was turned around to face a giant white powdered smiling laughing face, who gave me a big warm welcoming hug.  We were fast friends ever since.

Tuvia's family and the other remaining brothers and their families arrived from Israel soon afterward.  Now all the Bielskis and many of the other Partisan families lived within minutes of each other in Brooklyn as one large, mostly happy family.  We were close, at times it could seem too close, and did everything together, including observing and celebrating holidays, birthdays, bar mitzvahs, graduations, weddings and of course, funerals.

At all these events there was a certain protocol.  At a significant moment, typically after the blessing of bread and wine, came the equivalent of a blessing, an acknowledgement of Tuvia and the Bielski Brothers for making it possible for all of us to be there.  No matter the significance or insignificance of the event, there was always a respectful proclamation of gratitude to the Bielsky partisan unit. This practice continued well into the 2nd and now present 3rd generation. Tuvia could have cared less about these accolades. He derived his satisfaction from merely observing the thriving and increasingly multiplying descendants of those he saved.

As youngsters we were fascinated by the physical aspect of what they did but were mostly lost to the bigger picture. The Uncles were quite humble and hardly ever spoke of the military aspects of their struggle, and only spoke of them as saving Jewish lives.

It was their kids or the people that they saved that freely supplied us with all the graphic details of various battles, missions, raids, retributions and even executions. Tuvia would never have any part of these types of conversations. On the other hand, my Uncle Zus, when egged on, was all too glad to demonstrate to us kids some of his lethal hand to hand combat techniques.

We had absolutely nothing in common with other 2nd generation Holocaust kids as their commonality was their parents' reluctance to discuss the Holocaust, whereas for us it was part of our normal discourse and, frankly, entertainment. While they played cowboys and Indians, we played Nazis and Partisans. And guess who played the Nazi?

I was amazed, while growing up, at how many people personally told me over and over again how they owed their existence to my uncles' saving them and their families.  Nevertheless, it still seemed like a LOCAL vs global story. Even though there were many articles and books written about the Bielskis, they were mostly testimonials written by fellow Partisans: Chaim this or Chaim that.  They were not widely read or known.

 

As time progressed from the 80's through the 90's and the Holocaust was popularized as an academic and cultural subject, much more light was shed on the horror that occurred to the 6 million.  But The Bielski story was still little known. In fact, I must confess, that some of us, while never doubting the essence of the story, assumed that some of the more implausible aspects of the Bielski story just might be slightly embellished or exaggerated. Well, shame on us!!

The tipping point occurred several years after the last of the Bielski Commanders died, when an Irish Catholic New York Times reporter named Peter Duffy, wrote a popular and well researched book, published by Harper-Collins in 2003, documenting their story and placing it in its proper historical context.  The author had gone back to the then newly opened Archives of the Soviet Union and uncovered detailed records of the Bielski Partisans' achievements. The Bielski Partisans had some arms and intelligence supplied to them by the Russian Military, including a Russian liason officer who kept records and even some photographs of what they did.

The story turned out to be much, much bigger than previously reported. Academicians and historians started paying attention. Articles were written.  The press picked up on it and so did Hollywood. The movie rights were ultimately purchased from another book, hence the name 'Defiance.' Uncle Tuvia and the Brothers who saved over 1200 Jews, now, ironically had their story saved and immortalized by an Irish Catholic reporter and Hollywood.

To really understand how this act of Defiance came to pass, you have to appreciate the Bielski family background before the Holocaust. The Bielskis were  multi-generational, redneck, hillbilly Jewish farmers who lived on a poor Ponderosa at the edge of a forest in the middle of nowhere Poland, surrounded by a Jew-hating populace (anti-semitic is too mild a word). Mix into the Bielskis, a little bit of Robin Hood and lot of Sopranos, and you can first begin to appreciate their temperament. A recent NYT article described the Brothers as "casually violent, sexually predaceous and occasionally murderous."  I sincerely hope these traits are not hereditary. They were hard drinking and hard living men who were not likely candidates for future heroes. Yet, at the same time, they valued honor, family and a full love of life.

They were historically forced to defend themselves and their property, as the local laws did not protect them. Their acts of retribution were legendary, thus making them locally feared. Once the Nazis controlled their territory it would have been relatively easy to only save themselves, by simply hiding deep in the forest where they grew up. After all, they were expert horsemen, outdoorsmen and survivalists. They were not accountants. But Tuvia and the Brothers risked their own lives by saving those Jews, mostly strangers, unable to save themselves. And at the same time created a community, often-times referred to as a "Jerusalem in the Woods" that saved their cultural identity. And that's what makes this story one of a kind.  The brothers loved life and were determined to fully sustain it. They showed us that real Heroes are flawed human beings. They provided a glimmer of light and hope, in a time when there was none.

History will hopefully look at the Bielski story, not a corrective to the Holocaust's 6 million, but rather an inspiring addendum. Future genocides can only be stopped by international cooperation and early government detection and prevention. And while we pressure governments to act, one must ultimately summon, Defiance!          Thank you."             

David Herschthal MD

           
23433  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Wave of protests coming tomorrow! on: February 22, 2009, 03:56:54 AM
WASHINGTON — The Obama administration has told a federal judge that military detainees in Afghanistan have no legal right to challenge their imprisonment there, embracing a key argument of former President Bush’s legal team.

In a two-sentence filing late Friday, the Justice Department said that the new administration had reviewed its position in a case brought by prisoners at the United States Air Force base at Bagram, just north of the Afghan capital. The Obama team determined that the Bush policy was correct: such prisoners cannot sue for their release.

“Having considered the matter, the government adheres to its previously articulated position,” wrote Michael F. Hertz, acting assistant attorney general.

The closely watched case is a habeas corpus lawsuit on behalf of several prisoners who have been indefinitely detained for years without trial. The detainees argue that they are not enemy combatants, and they want a judge to review the evidence against them and order the military to release them.

The Bush administration had argued that federal courts have no jurisdiction to hear such a case because the prisoners are noncitizens being held in the course of military operations outside the United States. The Obama team was required to take a stand on whether those arguments were correct because a federal district judge, John D. Bates, asked the new government whether it wanted to alter that position.

The Obama administration’s decision was generally expected among legal specialists. But it was a blow to human rights lawyers who have challenged the Bush administration’s policy of indefinitely detaining “enemy combatants” without trials.

The power of civilian federal judges to review individual decisions by the executive branch to hold a terrorism suspect as an enemy combatant was one of the most contentious legal issues surrounding the Bush administration. For years, President Bush’s legal team argued that federal judges had no authority under the Constitution to hear challenges by detainees being held at the military prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, and elsewhere.

The Supreme Court rejected the Bush administration’s legal view for prisoners held at Guantánamo in landmark rulings in 2004 and 2006. But those rulings were based on the idea that the prison was on United States soil for constitutional purposes, based on the unique legal circumstances and history of the naval base.

Rights lawyers have been hoping that courts would extend those rulings to allow long-term detainees being held at United States military bases elsewhere in the world to sue for release, too. There are about 600 detainees at Bagram and several thousand in Iraq.

Jack Balkin, a Yale Law School professor, said it was too early to tell what the Obama administration would end up doing with the detainees at Bagram. He said some observers believed that the Obama team would end up making a major change in policy but simply needed more time to come up with it, while others believed that the administration had decided “to err on the side of doing things more like the Bush administration did, as opposed to really rethinking and reorienting everything” about the detention policies it inherited because it had too many other problems to deal with.

“It may take some time before we see exactly what is going on — whether this is just a transitory policy or whether this is really their policy: ‘No to Guantánamo, but we can just create Guantánamo in some other place,’ ” Mr. Balkin said.

After becoming president last month, Mr. Obama issued orders requiring strict adherence to antitorture rules and shuttering the Guantánamo prison within a year. He also ordered a review of whether conditions there meet the standards of humane treatment required by the Geneva Conventions, and a review of what could be done with each of the 245 detainees who remain at the prison.

On Friday, government officials said that a Pentagon official had completed the Guantánamo report, concluding that the site complies with the Geneva Conventions’ requirements for humane treatment — including procedures for force-feeding prisoners on hunger strike by strapping them down and inserting a nasal tube, a practice prisoners’ lawyers have denounced. The report does recommend that some prisoners be given greater human contact, however.
23434  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: DBMA Class at Inosanto Academy on: February 22, 2009, 01:29:17 AM
More KT with the same folks.  A lot of hands on interaction.  Good times. cool
23435  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Daily Expression of Gratitude on: February 22, 2009, 01:03:19 AM
Grateful for you guys who keep this thread alive.

Grateful for a wonderful 4 hour nap this afternoon!
23436  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Our man in Iraq reports on: February 22, 2009, 12:56:08 AM
To our Brit friends-- alll the love and respect in the world.  Please take our intrepid reporter's words below in the spirit of brotherly banter.
===========================

The Iraqis I met in Basrah basically hold the Brits in utter disdain.  They feel the Brits came but did not come to fight.  They played pussyfoot with the militias down there.  They negotiated things like "we will stay in our bases if you don't attack us."  The Iraqis I met flat out said the Brits are what made the situation so bad down there.
 
Then several years ago came the Iraqi Army "Operation of the Knights."  This was the Iraqi Army ground operation (supported by U.S. air power) and personally led my Maliki (in Sadr City also).  The Iraqi Army came to kick ass.  And they did for the most part.  When the militias heard that the U.S. Marine Corps was in reserve and they would come in and "Fallujah" Basrah, the militias wanted no part of that and negotiated a solution (that kept them alive).
 
When I asked so what has become of the militias I was told they are either all dead, in prison or they have have disappeared into the woodwork because they don't want to be dead.  And this was all the Iraqi Army.  The IA rules Basrah.  Let there be no mistake about that.  Good men can argue about whether they could have dominated Basrah the way they did without U.S. support, but it is the IA who killed all the militiamen and sent the rest fleeing for their lives.  And it is the IA who have maintained those gains with essentially zero help from the Brits.
 
The Brits are held in contempt by the Iraqis in Basrah.  The Americans are held in very high regard.  Because the Iraqis know Americans come to fight and will kill people who need killin'.
23437  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / 360 degrees on: February 21, 2009, 09:35:06 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x4Mp_UvbfTY&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JTPNv9_8o_k
23438  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Sam Tendencia on: February 21, 2009, 08:54:22 AM
Some of you may remember the name Sam Tendecia.  He appears in our "The Grandfathers Speak" DVD,  and has done some wonderful hilot healing work on both Top Dog and me. 

He is in his late 80s now and recently we received word of his new website and are glad to post hear about it:
http://www.arnistendencia.com/
23439  DBMA Espanol / Espanol Discussion / Stratfor: La Tercera Guerra on: February 21, 2009, 08:23:09 AM
Por Fred Burton y Scott Stewart

México tiene bastante mucho siempre fue un áspero y lugar de caída. En los últimos años, sin embargo, el ambiente de la seguridad ha empeorado rápidamente, y las partes del país han llegado a ser increíblemente violentas. Es ahora común ver granadas militares de armas como fragmentación y asaltar rifles utilizados casi diario en ataques.

De hecho, justo la semana pasada nosotros notamos two separate strings of grenade attacks Dirigido contra policía en Durango y Michoacan indica. En el incidente de Michoacan, la policía en Uruapan y Lazaro Cardenas fue concentrada en por tres ataques de granada durante un período de 12 horas. Entonces en febrero. 17, un tiroteo mayor ocurrió justo a través de la frontera de Estados Unidos en Reynosa, Cuando las autoridades mexicanas procuraron prender varios hombres armados cabalgar visto en un vehículo. Los hombres huyeron a una cerca residencia y comprometieron a la policía que sigue con disparo de fusil, las granadas y granadas propulsadas por un cohete (RPGs). Después de que el incidente, en cuál cinco pistoleros de cártel fuera matado y varios pistoleros, las policías, los soldados y los civiles fueron heridos, las autoridades recuperaron un 60 mortero de Mm, cinco series de RPG y dos granadas de fragmentación.

No haga error, teniendo en cuenta las armas militares ahora ser utilizado en México y el número de muertes implicadas, el país está en medio de una guerra. De hecho, hay realmente tres guerras concurrentes ser emprendidas en México que implica el Mexican drug cartels. El primer es la batalla para ser emprendida entre los varios cárteles mexicanos de droga que buscan control sobre contrabando lucrativo pasillos, llamadas plazas. Uno tal campo de batalla es Ciudad Juarez, que proporciona acceso al Interestatal 10, Interestatal 20 e Interestatales 25 pasillos Estados Unidos interior. La segunda batalla es luchada entre los varios cárteles y las fuerzas mexicanas del gobierno que procuran interrumpir operaciones de contrabando, limitar violencia y traer a los miembros de cártel a la justicia.

Entonces hay una tercera guerra para ser emprendida en México, aunque a causa de su naturaleza es dominada un poco más. No consigue el mismo grado de atención internacional de medios engendrada por los tiroteos y la granada corrientes y ataques de RPG. Sin embargo, es no menos verdadero, y en muchos sentidos es más peligroso a civiles inocentes (así como turistas y viajeros de negocios extranjeros) que las batallas campales entre los cárteles y el gobierno mexicano. Esta tercera guerra es la guerra para ser emprendida en la población mexicana por criminales que pueden o no pueden ser implicado con los cárteles. A diferencia de las otras batallas, donde miembros de cártel o fuerzas de gobierno son los objetivos y los civiles primarios sólo son matados como daño colateral, en este frente de batalla, los civiles son directamente en los retículos.

La Frente Criminal

Hay muchas formas y los tamaño diferentes de pandillas criminales en México. Mientras muchos de ellos están en alguna manera relacionada a los cárteles de la droga, otros tienen varios tipos de aplicación de la ley de conexiones — Verdaderamente, algunos grupos criminales son compuestos de policías activas y jubiladas. Estos varios tipos de pandillas criminales concentran en civiles en varias maneras, incluyendo, el robo, el robo con fractura, asaltar en automóvil, la extorsión, el fraude y falsificando. Pero de todos los crímenes cometidos por estas pandillas, quizás el que crea el daño más esparcido, psicológico y emocional rapta, que también es uno de los más underreported crímenes. No hay figura exacta para el número de secuestros que ocurre en México cada año. Todos los datos con respecto al secuestro son basados en la estadística parcial de crimen y cuentas anecdóticas y, al fin, puede producir sólo estimaciones de mejor-adivinación. A pesar de esta falta de datos duros, sin embargo, hay duda pequeña — basado aún en el fin bajo de estas estimaciones — Que México ha llegado a ser la capital de secuestro del mundo.

Uno de las cosas difíciles acerca de estudiar el secuestro en México es que el crimen no sólo es esparcido, afectando casi cada rincón del país, pero también es ejecutado por una gran variedad de actores que poseen niveles que varían del profesionalismo — Y motivos muy diferentes. En un fin del espectro son el alto-fin que rapta las pandillas que secuestra a individuos de red de valor alta y demanda rescates en el millones de dólares. Tales grupos emplean los equipos de operativo que lleva a cabo tareas especializada como reunir la inteligencia, realizando vigilancia, arrebatando el objetivo, negociando con la familia de la víctima y estableciendo y para proteger los pisos francos.

En el otro fin del espectro son las pandillas que vagan las calles y raptan al azar objetivos de oportunidad. Estas pandillas son generalmente menos profesionales que las pandillas alto-finales y a menudo tendrá a una víctima para sólo un tiempo corto. En muchos casos, estos grupos tienen a la víctima justo utilizar lo suficiente tarjeta de ATM de la víctima para desaguar su cuenta corriente bancaria, o para recibir un pequeño rescate de quizás cientos de o de unos pocos mil dólares de la familia. Este tipo del secuestro oportunista a menudo es referido a como un “express kidnapping”. Exprese a veces raptando víctimas son contenidas el tronco de un coche durante su prueba dura, que puede durar a veces por días si la víctima tiene una cantidad grande en una cuenta corriente bancaria y un pequeño límite diario de retirada de ATM. Otros tiempos, si una pandilla de secuestro de expreso descubre que ha asido un objetivo de alto-valor por casualidad, la pandilla tendrá a la víctima más larga y demandará un rescate mucho más más alto. Ocasionalmente, éstos expresan raptando los grupos aún le “venderán” a una víctima de alto-valor a una más pandilla del secuestro del profesional.

Entre estos extremos hay una gran variedad de los grupos que se caen en algún lugar en el centro. Estos son los grupos que quizás concentren en un vicepresidente o el director de sucursal bancarios antes que el director general del banco, o eso quizás rapten al propietario de un restaurante u otro pequeña empresa antes que un industrial rico. La presencia de un espectro tan ancho del secuestro los grupos aseguran que casi ningún segmento de la población sea inmune de la amenaza de secuestro. En los últimos años, la magnitud completa de la amenaza en México y el temor que lo engendra ha llevado a un crimen llamado virtual kidnapping. En un secuestro virtual, la víctima no es raptada realmente. En vez de eso, los criminales procuran convencer la familia de un objetivo que un secuestro ha ocurrido, y entonces amenazas de uso y presión psicológica forzar la familia a pagar un rescate rápido. Aunque el secuestro virtual haya sido alrededor durante varios años, las familias involuntarias continúan caerse para la estafa, que es una fuente de dinero abundante a bajo tipo de interés. Algunos secuestros virtuales han sido realizados aún por criminales que utilizan teléfonos las prisiones interiores.

Cuando notado arriba, los motivos para raptar varía. Muchos de los secuestros que ocurren en México no son realizados para el rescate. A menudo los cárteles de droga raptarán a miembros de pandillas rivales o government officials Para atormentar y ejecutarlos. Este tormento es realizado para extraer información, intimide a rivales y, aparentemente a veces, para tener justo una diversión pequeña. Los cuerpos de tales víctimas son encontrados con frecuencia beheaded O de otro modo mutilado. Otros tiempos, pistoleros de cártel raptarán a narcotraficantes que son atrasados en pagos o que se niega a pagar el “impuesto” requirió a operar en el área del cártel de control.

Por supuesto, pistoleros de cártel no raptan sólo sus rivales ni policías. Cuando las guerras de cártel han calentado, y cuando rentas de droga han dejado caer debido a interferencia de cárteles rivales o el gobierno, muchos cárteles han recurrido al secuestro para el rescate a suplementar su flujo de caja. Quizás el grupo más extensamente conocido que entra en esto es el Arellano Felix Organization (AFO), También conocido como el Cártel de Tijuana. El AFO ha sido reducido a una sombra de su ser anterior, sus operaciones de contrabando dramáticamente impactado por los esfuerzos de EEUU y gobiernos mexicanos, así como por ataques de otros cárteles y de una lucha por el poder interna. A causa de una disminución escarpada en contrabando rentas, el grupo ha girado al secuestro y la extorsión para levantar los fondos necesarios para mantenerse vivo y para volver a la prominencia como una organización de contrabando.

En la Línea de tiro

Hay muy poco oportunidad que el gobierno mexicano podrá establecer integridad en sus agencias de aplicación de la ley, o traer orden público a porciones grandes del país, el tiempo pronto. La corrupción y la incapacidad oficiales son endémicas en México, que significa que ciudadanos mexicanos y extranjeros visitantes tendrán que encarar la amenaza del secuestro para el futuro previsible. Creemos que para civiles y extranjeros visitantes, la amenaza del secuestro excede la amenaza de ser golpeado por una bala perdida de un tiroteo de cártel. Verdaderamente, las cosas empeoran tan mal eso aún professional kidnapping negotiators, Una vez que visto como la llave a un pago garantizado, ahora son raptadas a sí mismo. En una torsión aún más increíble de ironía, el anti secuestro las autoridades son secuestradas y son ejecutadas.

Este ambiente — y el lo concierne ha chispeado — Ha proporcionado oportunidades financieras inmensas para la industria privada de la seguridad en México. Las ventas blindadas del coche han atravesado el techo, como tiene el número de guardias uniformados y personal ejecutivo de protección. De hecho, la demanda para el personal es tan aguda que esas compañías de la seguridad trepan para encontrar a candidatos. Tal camino difícil presenta a un anfitrión de problemas obvios, recorriendo de la falta de requisitos al vetting insuficiente. Los servicios además pasados de moda de la seguridad, nuevas compañías de la seguridad-tecnología también sacan partido del ambiente de temor, pero de rastrear aún de alta tecnología dispositivos pueden tener significant drawbacks and shortcomings.

Para muchas personas, armored cars y guardaespaldas armados pueden proporcionar un sentido falso de la seguridad, y la tecnología puede llegar a ser un mortal crutch that promotes complacency Y aumenta realmente la vulnerabilidad. Las medidas de seguridad físicas no son suficiente. La presencia de guardaespaldas armados — o guardias armados combinaron con vehículos blindados — No proporcione la seguridad absoluta. Esto es especialmente verdad en México, donde equipos grandes de pistoleros realizan regularmente crímenes que utilizan artillería militar. Francamente, hay muy pocos detalles ejecutivos de protección en el mundo que tiene la instrucción y el armamento para resistir a un asalto por docenas de atacadores armados con rifles de asalto y RPGs. Los guardas de seguridad privados son agobiados con frecuencia por criminales mexicanos y o matados o forzado a huir para su propia seguridad. Cuando notamos en el 2008 de mayo después del asesinato de Edgar Millan Gomez, actuando cabeza de la Policía Federal mexicana y la alto-clasificación policía federal en México, medidas de seguridad físicas deben ser suplementadas por situational awareness, Countersurveillance e inteligencia protectora.

Los criminales buscan y explotan las vulnerabilidades. Sus oportunidades para el aumento de éxito mucho si ellos son permitidos realizar vigilancia en hace y es dados la oportunidad de valorar completamente el programa protector de la seguridad. Hemos visto varios casos en México en El que los criminales escogieron aún atacar a pesar de medidas de seguridad. En tales casos, los criminales atacan con recursos adecuados para vencer la seguridad existente. Por ejemplo, si hay agentes protectores, los atacadores planearán neutralizarlos primero. Si hay un vehículo blindado, ellos encontrarán que maneras de derrotar el blindaje o asir el objetivo cuando él o ella están fuera del vehículo. A causa de esto, los criminales no deben ser permitidos realizar vigilancia en hace.

Como muchos crímenes, secuestro es un proceso. Hay ciertos pasos que debe ser tomado para realizar un secuestro y ciertos tiempos durante el proceso cuando esos ejecutarlo es vulnerable al descubrimiento. Mientras estos pasos pueden ser condensados y pueden ser logrados bastante rápidamente en un anuncio éste expresa raptando, ellos sin embargo son seguidos. De hecho, a causa de los pasos particulares implicados en realizar un secuestro, el proceso no está a diferencia de que siguió para ejecutar un terrorist attack. Los pasos comunes son selecciones de objetivo, la planificación, el despliegue, el ataque, el escape y la explotación.

Como los perpetradores de un ataque terrorista, esos realizar que un secuestro es la mayoría del vulnerable to detection cuándo ellos realizan vigilancia — Antes ellos están listos para desplegar y realizar su ataque. Cuando hemos notado varias veces en por delante de analiza, uno del secrets of countersurveillance Es que la mayoría de los criminales no son muy buenas en realizar vigilancia. La razón primaria que ellos tienen éxito es que nadie los busca.

Por supuesto, los secuestradores son también muy obvios una vez ellos lanzan su ataque, tiran sus armas y quizás comienzan aún a disparar. Por esta vez, sin embargo, quizás sea muy bien escapar demasiado tarde su ataque. Ellos habrán seleccionado su sitio de ataque y empleado las fuerzas que ellos creen que ellos necesitan para completar la operación. Mientras los secuestradores podrían fastidiar su operación y el objetivo podría escapar ileso, simplemente no es práctico sujetar uno espera en esa posibilidad. Es claramente mejor marcar a los secuestradores tempranos y evitar su trampa antes es saltada y los fusiles salen.

Hemos visto muchos casos de people in Mexico with armed security being kidnapped, Y creemos que hacemos probable ve más casos de esto en los meses venideros. Esta tendencia es debida no sólo a la presencia de criminales sumamente armados y agresivos y la calidad baja de algún personal de la seguridad, pero también a personas que colocan su confianza únicamente en seguridad física reactiva. Ignorando el valor muy verdadero de medidas críticas y proactivas como conocimiento situacional, countersurveillance e inteligencia protectora pueden ser un error fatal
23440  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / WSJ: Bill Moyers and the FBI on: February 21, 2009, 08:06:00 AM
One of the darker periods of modern American history was J. Edgar Hoover's long reign over the FBI, as we have learned since he died in 1972. So it is more than a historical footnote to discover new records showing that prominent public television broadcaster Bill Moyers participated in Hoover's exploits.

Under the Freedom of Information Act, the Washington Post has obtained a few of the former FBI director's secret files. According to a Thursday front-page story, Hoover was "consumed" with exposing a (nonexistent) relationship between a gay photographer and Jack Valenti, the late film industry lobbyist who was then an aide to Lyndon Johnson. Hoover's M.O. was to amass incriminating personal information as political blackmail.

But as the Post reports in passing, the dossier also reveals that Mr. Moyers -- then a special assistant to LBJ -- requested in 1964 that Hoover's G-men "investigate two other administration figures who were 'suspected as having homosexual tendencies.'"

More
Hoover's Institution 07/20/05
– Laurence H. Silberman
This isn't the first time Mr. Moyers's name has come up in connection with Hoover's abuse of office. When Laurence Silberman, now a federal appeals judge, was acting Attorney General in 1975, he was obliged to read Hoover's secret files in their entirety in preparation for testimony before Congress -- and as far as we know remains one of the only living officials to have done so. "It was the single worst experience of my long governmental service," he wrote in these pages in 2005.

Amid "bits of dirt on figures such as Martin Luther King," Judge Silberman found a 1964 memo from Mr. Moyers directing Hoover's agents to investigate Barry Goldwater's campaign staff for evidence of homosexual activity. A few weeks before, an LBJ aide named Walter Jenkins had been arrested in a men's bathroom, and Mr. Silberman wrote that Mr. Moyers and his boss evidently wanted leverage in the event Goldwater tried to use the liaison against them. (He didn't, as it happened.)

When that episode became public after Mr. Silberman testified, an irate Mr. Moyers called him and, with typical delicacy, accused him of falling for forged CIA memos. Mr. Silberman offered to study the matter and, should Mr. Moyers's allegations pan out, he would publicly exonerate him. "There was a pause on the line and then he said, 'I was very young. How will I explain this to my children?' And then he rang off."

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Memories are short in Washington, and Mr. Moyers has gone on to promote himself as a political moralist, routinely sermonizing about what he claims are abuses of power by his ideological enemies. Since 9/11, he has been particularly intense in criticizing President Bush for his antiterror policies, such as warrantless wiretapping against al Qaeda.

Yet the historical record suggests that when Mr. Moyers was in a position of actual power, he was complicit in FBI dirt-digging against U.S. citizens solely for political purposes. As Judge Silberman put it in 2005, "I have always thought that the most heinous act in which a democratic government can engage is to use its law enforcement machinery for political ends."

Mr. Moyers told us through a spokeswoman that he "never heard of the Valenti matter until this story and had nothing to add to it." He also pointed to a 1975 Newsweek article in which he wrote that he learned of the LBJ-Hoover relationship in "the quickly fading days of my innocence." In the Nixon days, this was called a nondenial denial.
23441  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Richard Henry Lee: An armed people on: February 21, 2009, 07:43:04 AM
"[W]hereas, to preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them; nor does it follow from this, that all promiscuously must go into actual service on every occasion. The mind that aims at a select militia, must be influenced by a truly anti-republican principle; and when we see many men disposed to practice upon it, whenever they can prevail, no wonder true republicans are for carefully guarding against it."

--Richard Henry Lee, Letters from the Federal Farmer, 1788
23442  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / US-Canada and the tar sands on: February 21, 2009, 07:33:56 AM
U.S., Canada: Drawing the Outlines of an Oil Sands Deal
Stratfor Today » February 19, 2009 | 2238 GMT

DAVID BOILY/AFP/Getty Images
A woman holding small Canadian and U.S. flags outside the Canadian parliament building in Ottawa, OntarioSummary
U.S. President Barack Obama visited Canada on Feb. 19, where he discussed energy and environmental issues with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper. A potential deal regarding Canadian oil sands could affect greenhouse gas emissions protocols, and has implications for regional oil-producing state Venezuela.

Analysis
U.S. President Barack Obama visited Canada on Feb. 19, marking his first foreign trip since his inauguration. Obama met with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper for talks that focused on interrelated energy and environmental issues.

It is pretty clear what the two states want from each other. The United States wants energy security and a renewed military commitment from Ottawa in Afghanistan, while Canada wants investment of money and technology in its energy sector and cooperation on dealing with related environmental issues. The Feb. 19 discussions presage more comprehensive negotiations that ultimately could reshape the global framework for dealing with greenhouse gas emissions — and could deal a blow to the energy industry in Venezuela.

Energy security is a key strategic concern of the United States, and Canada is the largest foreign supplier of crude oil to the U.S. market (followed by Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Venezuela, Nigeria and Iraq, in that order). In addition to its proximity, Canada is an attractive energy trading partner for the United States because it does not face the same challenges that limit Washington’s ability to rapidly increase supplies from other significant producers — such as a hostile government in Venezuela’s case, legislation restricting foreign participation in Mexico’s case, or militancy in the case of Nigeria.

Securing robust oil supplies from Canada will necessarily mean expanding exploitation of oil sands, which comprise most of the country’s crude production. (Canada produces only a small amount of conventional crude.) This is an expensive proposition, however. Oil sands are not like conventional crude, which can simply be pumped and shipped via pipeline. Instead, they have to be strip-mined and then melted to extract the crude — a machinery- and energy-intensive process. The resulting cost barriers have resulted in a freezing of new work on oil sands since the ongoing global recession has driven oil prices downward. Profitable oil-sands production requires a sustained crude price of $50 to $60 per barrel, but oil prices have been well below that level since the end of 2008.

The U.S. interest in energy security and the Canadian interest in boosting investment appear to be in sync on the oil sands issue, and Harper has been pushing for a deal. But Ottawa has two conditions.

The first is that the United States provide the bulk of the investment. Canada wants to smooth out the boom-bust cycle of energy production in general, and that of oil sands specifically. Because oil prices have not reliably stayed above the break-even point for oil sands production (despite a spike in mid-2008), oil companies are not likely to invest in the process on their own initiative.

Second, there is a greenhouse gas issue. The mining and processing of oil sands requires a considerable energy input in its own right, roughly 50 percent more than that of normal crude. Oil sands production by itself is thwarting Canada’s ongoing efforts to comply with its obligations under the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, and Canada hardly uses any of the crude it produces. Ottawa simply cannot meet these requirements as long as it is producing oil sands at all, much less expanding production.

Thus, Canada wants the United States to join it in taking a common position on greenhouse gas talks globally — or really, for the two to become a single entity for purposes of meeting treaty guidelines. In other words, the United States would become primarily responsible for picking up the carbon tab from the production of Canadian oil sands. The United States would take on a slight — but not crippling — increase in costs associated with emissions-reduction efforts, in return for the benefits of a strategic oil supply deal with Canada.

As a result, Washington would also share with Ottawa technological advances in the capture and sequestration of carbon from the oil-sands production process. This technology is now being tested on coal power plants in the United States, and as the technology matures, Canada will try to apply it to the oil sands. Once the carbon is captured and sunk underground, the emissions-related costs associated with the oil sands will become much less.

In return for these strategic concessions, Washington likely also will want a commitment from the Harper government to extend its military commitment in Afghanistan. Canada has about 2,700 troops deployed in the country, though its military commitment there is scheduled to end in 2011. With Afghanistan occupying one of the top slots in Obama’s foreign policy agenda, and with Washington embarking on a new military strategy of a U.S. and allied troop surge to fight the Taliban insurgency, continued military cooperation might be the price Ottawa will have to pay to secure its stake in a strategic energy and emissions deal with Washington. Attempting to deploy additional troops would trigger a backlash from Harper’s political opponents, but extending Canada’s commitment beyond 2011 at the current level might be more politically palatable.

Should such a comprehensive deal go through, with all its conditions and counterconditions, it will have two major implications internationally: one regarding greenhouse gases and one regarding Venezuela.

First, a joint U.S.-Canadian position on greenhouse gases will more or less determine the boundaries of any future global legal regime for dealing with the issue. The United States is set to emerge as the global leader in negotiating the next major climate treaty, a protocol to the 1992 U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change. The Obama Administration has signaled that it is willing to accept the general global consensus that the world must reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent before 2050 — and with that, the United States is emerging as the leader in the next round of talks. (And if Washington and Ottawa effectively act as a single entity in these negotiations, Canada will share the driver’s seat.) How that will shape global carbon policy will be up to Canada and the United States to debate, but any new protocol will also require a more informal mechanism that directly engages China and India, two of the countries with the largest carbon footprints. A failure to get Beijing and New Delhi on board would effectively doom any new protocol — and the United States would be unlikely to ratify any such convention in any case, believing it will be penalized while China and India gain.

The second major effect of a U.S.-Canadian understanding on oil sands would be to wreck the future hopes of the other major producer of nonconventional crude oil in the Western Hemisphere: Venezuela. The Venezuelan Orinoco belt contains roughly the same amount of oil as do the Canadian oil sands. Venezuela’s crude, like the output of the oil sands, is considered “unconventional” output, because it is very heavy and sour. It requires specialized refining processes, as does oil-sands crude, and a significant percentage of it — about two-thirds of Venezuelan exports — is refined in the United States. If Canada should absorb all the limited investment capital available for unconventional crude, and if it should take over the heavy crude refining capacity in the United States along with the available specialized technical knowledge and personnel, Venezuela will largely get shut out of the global market as its own industry degrades. The result would be to put further limits on the ability of the Chavez government in Caracas to use oil revenues to support the populist policies that keep it in power.
23443  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Alignment on: February 21, 2009, 07:11:01 AM

"The foam roller has been a large part of my longevity program. I use it atleast 5 times a week to work out adhesions, scar tissue and subluxations."

Yes!  Very good!  Chris Gizzi showed me using the medicine ball in the manner.  Stupidly I regularly forget to do this regularly. tongue
 
"4. inlocate dislocates with a broom stick or band for the shoulders"

What's this?
23444  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Big Picture WW3: Who, when, where, why on: February 20, 2009, 11:09:46 PM
February 20, 2009
NATO defense ministers met Thursday in Krakow, Poland, to discuss critical topics ranging from Afghanistan to Russia to Iran. The meeting ended in disappointment for the United States — which had been looking for a consolidated position and increased support from its allies — while the other NATO members are still waiting to hear from Washington what exactly is the game plan for each of the issues.

The meeting comes just two days after U.S. President Barack Obama announced that 17,000 more U.S. soldiers and Marines would deploy to Afghanistan in the coming months — U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates went to Krakow to ask NATO for more alliance troops as well. The hope in Washington was that Gates would be able to capitalize on the new president’s commitment to Afghanistan and receive a similar pledge from the European allies.

But no such guarantee materialized. True, there were some small pledges of troops from the Europeans, but these numbered in the hundreds, not thousands. Even the large NATO states with the biggest troop contingents are sending relative handfuls — 600 from Germany and 500 from Italy. The other heavyweights of Europe — France, Poland and the United Kingdom — have made it clear that they have no plans to send more troops at all.

The lack of enthusiasm for the Afghanistan surge was matched by growing questions among the Europeans over the military plan itself — both the overarching strategy and the lines of supply. Moreover, the Europeans are anxious to know how and to what extent the U.S. plan involves the Russians.

With Russia at its back door, Europe has been divided on its ability to work within a U.S.-dominated NATO. The lines were drawn during the Cold War — though, since the fall of the Soviet Union, NATO has expanded and pushed right up against Russia’s borders. This has complicated the issue and caused a rift among the European members of the alliance on how to handle Moscow. The larger European NATO members have teetered between wanting a united stance against Russia on one hand, and wanting to prevent any confrontation on the other.

But the United States has further complicated things by sending mixed signals about its position on Russia.

Washington has been negotiating with Moscow about using Russian and (formerly Soviet) Central Asian territory for an alternative route to supply troops in Afghanistan. The United States made some headway on this front when it hinted that it is open to negotiating a new arms-control treaty and that it might be willing to reconsider its position on ballistic missile defense (BMD) efforts in Central Europe. As NATO ministers were meeting Thursday, the first train of American non-military supplies left a port in Latvia to travel across Russia, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan to support forces in Afghanistan.

In some ways, however, the old antagonism remains. Russia is still looking for concrete evidence that Washington is stepping back from installing BMD sites in Poland and the Czech Republic — and that it is erecting firm barriers to NATO expansion, especially where Ukraine and Georgia are concerned.

There is a very real split among the Europeans on this new and confusing relationship between Washington and Moscow. Some of the European heavyweights, notably France and Germany, see the U.S.-Russian negotiations as something to be nurtured into a real rapprochement. At the Munich Security Conference earlier in February, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nicolas Sarkozy each emphasized the importance of cutting a deal with Russia on security and international issues. Merkel said that Russia should be included in any European security structure, and Sarkozy emphasized that NATO needs Russia in any serious international negotiation, such as talks aimed at securing an alternate supply route to Afghanistan through Iran.

Meanwhile, other European states are horrified that the United States and Russia could be forming a new relationship. Poland refuses to give up on the prospect of getting an American BMD deployment on its turf to solidify U.S. military protection against Russia. Also, the British defense secretary proposed Thursday that NATO create a 3,000-strong rapid-deployment force to defend Europe. The proposal is aimed at Russia, which recently announced a similar plan to create an agile, multinational military formation within its own security alliance, the Collective Security Treaty Organization. Both the British and Russian proposals are mainly rhetoric for the time being, but London and Moscow are clearly eyeing each other.

The confusion and anxiety over the U.S.-Russia relationship has nearly frozen the Europeans on all matters. The Europeans want a clear answer on the nature of the evolving relationship between Washington and Moscow before they can formulate a firm policy on any matter involving NATO — such as Afghanistan, BMD or Iran.

The resulting uncertainty has spilled over into every other calculation being made by the Europeans, whether that involves EU structures or energy deals. Neither Europe nor its constituent states can formulate a policy on any major security issue until the United States has made a clear decision about where and how to cooperate with Russia, and where and how to oppose it.

============

By the way, in the discussion on this I would like to suggest that we remember that Bush, IMHO left us seriously out of position with Russia , , , and that interfaces with our being seriously out of position in Afpakia.  Sure BO said that Afpakia is "the right war" instead of Iraq, which he now seeks to throw away, but we need to discern what it is we need to do and not just complain about him.
23445  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Iran on: February 20, 2009, 09:09:12 PM
When Iran successfully orbited its Omid satellite earlier this month, many in the U.S. responded with indifference. David Albright, a noted analyst of nuclear proliferation, downplayed the Iranian space launcher as "not that sophisticated" and the satellite itself as "Sputnik technology, a little metal ball that goes 'beep beep beep.'" Unnamed U.S. officials concurred, stating that "There are no alarm bells ringing because of this launch," calling the event "largely symbolic."

But such equanimity is entirely unwarranted.

Let's first look at the Omid satellite. The Iranians concede its limited capabilities. Its main payload is a simple transmitter/receiver, and it has a short lifetime limited by the capacity of its small internal batteries. At 60 pounds it is minute compared to modern military and civilian satellites. Yet as a first satellite for a novice space-faring nation, it compares well with the rudimentary Sputnik and even more so with the tiny Explorer 1, America's first venture into space. Those modest machines ushered in today's giant military and commercial satellites girdling the earth. When the first Iranian spy satellite starts transmitting high resolution photographs of U.S. installations in the Middle East and elsewhere to Tehran, the true significance of the Omid will become evident.

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But it is the Safir space launch vehicle that calls for even closer scrutiny. The strong synergy between ballistic missiles and space launchers has existed since the early days of the space age when the Soviet Union's first intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM), the R7, was used to orbit Sputnik 1. The U.S.'s first intermediate-range ballistic missile, the Redstone, was used to orbit the Explorer 1. Iran has followed the same route, as is evident from the Safir first stage, which is almost indistinguishable from the Shahab 3 ballistic missile. True, its propulsion technology hails back to the Scud missiles of the 1950s. But in the missile business old is not necessarily obsolete. Witness for example the Soviet R7 rocket that lofted Sputnik 1 half a century ago and is still going strong today as the first stage of the very reliable Soyuz launcher. Similarly, the Safir's rocket technology will continue to be used for ballistic missiles in the foreseeable future.

The real sophistication of the Safir lies in its second stage, with its elegant configuration and lightweight design. Its propulsion is based on the more modern technology of storable liquid propellants that can be kept almost indefinitely inside the missile, making it launch-ready at any moment -- a significant advantage for military missiles. The U.S. used this technology in the past and so do some of Russia's contemporary ICBMs and submarine-launched ballistic missiles.

A cleverly designed clamshell nose fairing (a protective cover), evidently made of composite materials, shields the Omid satellite during the Safir's liftoff. Such fairings are key elements not only in space launchers but also in multiple-warhead ballistic missiles.

The Safir ground support system is also remarkable. The missile is transported by and fired from a Shahab ballistic missile mobile launcher, while a hinged service tower provides access for the ground crews.

Contrary to statements such as David Albright's, the Safir demonstrates a fair amount of sophistication for an initial launcher. The question remains whether this sophistication is indigenous and what features, if any, have been imported from abroad. Some of the Safir's features bear the telltale signs of previous space launching experience, implying outside help. Such help could come from any country that possesses Soviet-era missile and space technology. Yet the Safir is far more advanced than North Korea's space launcher. This fact -- and the magnitude of the entire Iranian space enterprise -- indicates that much of the success is homegrown.

The magnitude of the Safir launch becomes more apparent when we consider it alongside the much less advertised launch of the Sajeel two-stage solid-propellant ballistic missile that preceded it in November 2008. Within the space of four short months the Iranians demonstrated a mastery of three different rocket propulsion technologies (liquid, storable liquid, and large diameter solid), three different thrust vectoring technologies (graphite jet vanes, tungsten jet vanes, gimbaled rocket motors), two systems of stage separation, and an embryonic multiple-warhead nose fairing. All the above are proscribed technologies whose international transfers are controlled by the Missile Technology Control Regime and by the national legislations of its subscribing countries. By rights, none of those technologies should have been available to Iran. This is a significant setback to international nonproliferation efforts and an encouragement to future proliferators.

To argue that the Safir is too puny to be used as an ICBM is to miss the big picture. It is the technology and talent behind the Safir that is cause for trepidation. Taken in context, the Safir demonstrates scientific and engineering proficiency coupled with global-range missile technology in the hands of a radical regime and a nuclear wannabe. Iran's disclosed road map to space includes more capable, heavier and higher orbiting satellites. This will require heftier space launchers, the construction of which would enrich Iran's rocket-team experience and whose building blocks could easily be used for ICBMs in due time.

Trivializing Iran's first space launch as "largely symbolic" demonstrates a lack of appreciation of what it really symbolizes: That Iran is now poised to project power globally. If alarm bells aren't yet ringing for the Obama administration, they should be.

Mr. Rubin, head of Israel's Missile Defense Organization from 1991 to 1999, won the Israel Defense Prize in 1996 and 2003.

 

23446  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: DBMA Kali Tudo (tm): The Running Dog Game on: February 20, 2009, 09:05:17 PM
Woof All:

We have just found some footage of me being trained in Panantukan by Manong Kalimba (sp?), friend of GT Gaje, in Bacolod circa 1997.  Snippets of it will appear on RD Game  cool

TAC,
Guro Crafty
23447  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / WSJ: Who is the coward? on: February 20, 2009, 08:59:38 PM
By JAMES TARANTO
Attorney General Eric Holder ruffled some few feathers Wednesday, when he gave a Black History Month speech in which he described America as "a nation of cowards" when it comes to "things racial":

Though race related issues continue to occupy a significant portion of our political discussion, and though there remain many unresolved racial issues in this nation, we, average Americans, simply do not talk enough with each other about race. It is an issue we have never been at ease with and given our nation's history this is in some ways understandable. And yet, if we are to make progress in this area we must feel comfortable enough with one another, and tolerant enough of each other, to have frank conversations about the racial matters that continue to divide us.

We are inclined to disagree with Holder's suggestion that everyday life is impoverished by an insufficiency of "frank conversations" about racial subjects. Often it is just plain sensible to put aside "matters that continue to divide us" and focus on common purposes or interests. What Holder desires sounds nightmarish to us: a cross between "No Exit" and "All in the Family," with none of the latter's wit.

Still, there is a grain of truth to Holder's infelicitous description of America as "a nation of cowards." The subject of race does make people uneasy, and for reasons that go beyond common sense and courtesy. An incident on the same day as Holder's speech illustrates the problem.

On Wednesday the New York Post published a cartoon by Sean Delonas depicting a pair of policemen and a the bullet-riddled body of a chimpanzee. As one of the cops holds a smoking gun, the other says, "They'll have to find someone else to write the next stimulus bill."

Reuters describes what happened next:

Hundreds of demonstrators rallied to boycott the New York Post on Thursday, branding the newspaper as racist for publishing a cartoon that appeared to compare President to a chimpanzee.  Demonstrators led by civil rights activist Al Sharpton chanted "End racism now!" outside the parent company's skyscraper in midtown Manhattan and called for the jailing of Rupert Murdoch, whose international media conglomerate News Corp owns the Post. . .
.
Because Obama promoted the $787 billion economic stimulus that he signed into law on Tuesday, critics of the cartoon interpreted the dead chimp as a reference to Obama, who became the first black U.S. president on January 20. . . . "You would have to be in a time warp or in a whole other world not to know what that means," said demonstrator Charles Ashley, 25, a model who did not believe the cartoon was an innocent political joke.

Others said it made light of assassinating Obama, a possibility they said that worries many African-Americans.
Here we should note that News Corp. also owns The Wall Street Journal and this Web site. The Post is standing its ground, declaring in an editorial today:

To those who were offended by the image, we apologize.

However, there are some in the media and in public life who have had differences with The Post in the past--and they see the incident as an opportunity for payback.

To them, no apology is due.

The claim that the cartoon was a racist caricature of President Obama is awfully far-fetched. It played off a news item involving an actual chimp (a story with which we are thoroughly bored, so click here if you want to learn more about it). The president did not write the stimulus bill; indeed, he has been widely criticized for giving congressional Democrats too free a hand in crafting it. And anyone who is familiar with Delonas's surrealistic oeuvre knows that he is an equal-opportunity offender. His work is in the spirit of "South Park," not Stepin Fetchit.

All that notwithstanding, some will say that Delonas should have known better. We see their point, and we remember thinking a couple of years ago, upon seeing the umpteenth simian caricature of George W. Bush, that nobody had better do that if Sen. Obama becomes president. We were aware that that would constitute an invidious stereotype, in a way that it did not when the president was a person of pallor.

But what if someone is unaware of this? Suppose that a columnist or cartoonist is so innocent of racial prejudice that he has never even thought to make a connection between black people and lower primates? Such a person would be a racial kerfuffle waiting to happen. The moment he inadvertently employed an idea or image that carried offensive connotations, he would be pilloried as "insensitive."

Consider the paradox: Racial "sensitivity" requires not eradicating racial stereotypes but keeping them alive--and not only keeping them alive but remaining acutely conscious of them at all times. Delonas and his editors are under attack for seeing "chimp" and failing to think "black guy." Perhaps this is an editorial failing, but it is certainly not a moral one.

Which brings us back to Eric Holder. If Americans are shy about discussing race, a big reason is the culture of intimidation promoted by people like Al Sharpton in the name of racial sensitivity. "Frank discussion" requires a willingness to trust that one's interlocutor is acting in good faith. If Attorney General Holder is serious about promoting racial candor, let him use this incident to make the point. That would show a bit of courage on his part.
23448  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: We the Well-armed People on: February 20, 2009, 05:32:53 PM
Subject: Gun Law Update by Alan Korwin, Democrats have already leaked a gun-ban list. Forward or send to every gun owner you know....
Gun Law Update by Alan Korwin, Author Gun Laws of America Jan. 5, 2008 &g t; > Gun-ban list proposed.
Slipping below the radar (or under the short-term memory cap), the Democrats have already leaked a gun-ban list, even under the Bush
administration when they knew full well it had no chance of passage (HR 1022, 110th Congress) It serves as a framework for the new list the Brady's plan to introduce shortly.

I have an outline of the Brady's current plans and targets of opportunity, It's horrific. They're going after the courts, regulatory agencies,
 firearms dealers and statutes in an all out effort to restrict we the people. They've made little mention of criminals.

Now more than ever, attention to the entire Bill of Rights is critical. Gun bans will impact our freedoms under search and seizure, due process,
confiscated property, states' rights, free speech, right to assemble and more, in addition to the Second Amendment.

The Democrats current gun-ban-list proposal (final list will be worse):

Rifles (or copies or duplicates):

M1 Carbine, Sturm Ruger Mini-14, AR-15, Bushmaster XM15, Armalite M15, AR-10, Thompson 1927, Thompson M1; AK, AKM, AKS, AK-47, AK-74, ARM, MAK90, NHM 90, NHM 91, SA 85, SA 93, VEPR; Olympic Arms PCR; AR70, Calico Liberty, Dragunov SVD Sniper Rifle or Dragunov SVU, Fabrique National FN/FAL, FN/LAR,or FNC, Hi-Point20Carbine, HK-91, HK-93, HK-94, HK-PSG-1, Thompson 1927 Commando, Kel-Tec Sub Rifle; Saiga, SAR-8, SAR-4800,  SKS with detachable magazine, SLG 95, SLR 95 or 96, Steyr AU, Tavor, Uzi, Galil and Uzi Sporter, Galil Sporter, or Galil Sniper Rifle ( Galatz ).

Pistols (or copies or duplicates):

Calico M-110, MAC-10, MAC-11, or MPA3, Olympic Arms OA,  TEC-9, TEC-DC9, TEC-22 Scorpion, or AB-10, Uzi.

Shotguns (or copies or duplicates):


Armscor 30 BG, SPAS 12 or LAW 12, Striker 12, Streetsweeper.


Catch-all category (for anything missed or new designs):

A semiautomatic rifle that accepts a detachable magazine and has:

(i) a folding or telescoping stock,
(ii) a threaded barrel,
(iii) a pistol grip (which includes ANYTHING that can serve as a
grip, see below),
(iv) a forward grip; or a barrel shroud.

Any semiautomatic rifle with a fixed magazine that can accept more than 10 rounds (except tubular magazine .22 rimfire
rifles).

A semiautomatic pistol that has the ability to accept a detachable
magazine, and has:

(i) a second pistol grip,
(ii) a threaded barrel,
(iii) a barrel shroud or
(iv) can accept a detachable magazine outside of the pistol grip, and
(v) a semiautomatic pistol with a fixed magazine that can accept more
than 10 rounds.

A semiautomatic shotgun with:
(i) a folding or telescoping stock,
(ii) a pistol grip (see definition below),
(iii) the ability to accept a detachable magazine or a fixed magazine capacity of more than 5 rounds, and (iv) a shotgun with a revolving cylinder.

Frames or receivers for the above are included, along with conversion kits


Attorney General gets carte blanche to ban guns at will:

Under the proposal, the U.S. Attorney General can add any semiautomaticrifle or>&g t; shotgun originally designed for military or law enforcement use, or a  firearm based on the design of such a firearm, that is not particularly suitable for sporting purposes, as determined by the Attorney General."

Note that Obama's pick for this office (Eric Holder, confirmation hearing set for Jan. 15) wrote a brief in the Heller case supporting the position that you have no right to have a working firearm in your own home.

In making this determination, the bill says, "thereshall be a rebuttable presumption that a firearm procured for use by the United States military or any
federal law enforcement agency is not particularly suitable for sporting purposes, and a firearm shall not be determined to be
particularly suitable for sporting purposes solely because the firearm is suitable for use in a sporting event."

In plain English this means that ANY firearm ever obtained by federalofficers or the military is not suitable for the public.


The last part is particularly clever, stating that a firearm doesn't have a sportin g purpose just because
it can be used for sporting purpose -- is that devious or what? And of course, "sporting purpose" is a
rights infringement with no constitutional or historical support whatsoever, invented by domestic enemies of the right to keep and
bear arms to further their cause of disarming the innocent.

Respectfully submitted,
Alan Korwin,
Author Gun Laws of America
http://www.gunlaws.com/gloa.htm

23449  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Energy Politics & Science on: February 20, 2009, 05:25:34 PM
That's really scary , , ,

BTW did any one catch that CA's budget crisis could have been solved if only they allowed off-shore drilling? 
23450  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / POSTPONED!!! Guro Crafty in Hemet on Sunday March 1 on: February 20, 2009, 05:19:55 PM
I will be doing a seminar at Surf Dog's school in Hemet on Sunday March 1.

Contact info to follow shortly.
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