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28751  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Tough Calls, Good Calls on: January 22, 2008, 05:21:27 PM
Tough Calls, Good Calls
January 22, 2008; Page A19

One of the most difficult and consequential decisions of the Bush presidency took place in January of last year: the decision to fundamentally change our strategy by "surging" more U.S. forces to Iraq.

This decision was taken against the backdrop of escalating violence in Iraq, calls for immediate or "phased" withdrawal, prognostications of imminent defeat, and an abundance of political blame directed at the White House. The president's move was met with skepticism and outright vilification, except for a few principled politicians like John McCain and Joe Lieberman. Today, people are getting in line to claim credit for the "surge."

Mr. Bush's decision was guided by a clear strategic principle. The president wanted the U.S. to win, and refashioning our strategy was the best opportunity to succeed in this goal, as well as to leave Iraq policy on a sounder basis for his successor. Whoever wins the presidency in 2008 will be pleased that he did. What a difference a year makes.

The surge may turn out to be Mr. Bush's most important decision. But he has made other such decisions since 9/11, including to commit ground forces to Afghanistan, to eradicate the regime of Saddam Hussein, to use the CIA to conduct strategic interrogation of high-level terrorists, and to conduct strategic surveillance of terrorists communications.

Mr. Bush has faced so many tough choices over the last seven years that his decision to withdraw from the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty has been at least partially forgotten. Yet this decision, announced in December 2001, was no less consequential. It also defied the critics who argued that it would lead to a new arms race, increase nuclear proliferation and ruin cooperation with Russia on nuclear arms control and terrorism.

None of these things have happened as a result of the ABM Treaty withdrawal. But the decision will enable us to counter a still-growing 21st century threat.

In the summer of 2006, when Kim Jong Il was again seeking to intimidate America and its allies with medium and long-range missiles, the president had no real options short of pre-emptive attack or retaliation. And yet here, as with the surge, our next president will have tools at his or her disposal because Mr. Bush did not hesitate to do what was necessary for U.S. security.

Mr. Bush has assigned direction of our missile-defense capabilities and their integration into our overall defense strategy to the United States Strategic Command, part of whose mission is the responsibility for defending the nation from strategic missile attack. A global command and control system is being built, and is already functioning, to network our existing sensors and weapons. This can exercise real forces against current and emerging threats.

Meanwhile, a test bed has been built in the Pacific that includes operational assets -- sensors and shooters -- from California to Alaska, from the Aleutian Islands to Hawaii. Despite critics' claims to the contrary, test after test of kinetic kill interceptors has demonstrated the effectiveness of our defenses.

The first strategic missile interceptors since 1975 are deployed in Fort Greely, Alaska and Vandenberg AFB, Calif. They stand guard against an attack on the entire country. Sea-based interceptors that have far greater capability than the Patriots of Iraq are being deployed, using the SM-3 missile and Aegis radars.

Cooperation with key allies on missile defense is at an all-time high, and we are finally able to cooperate in ways that protect both American and allied territory. In Japan, we have deployed a radar capable of providing data for protecting both Japanese and U.S. territory. We are also co-developing a new version of the SM-3 that will have greater capability against long-range threats.

None of this could have happened if President Bush had not decided to withdraw from the ABM Treaty. What are the next steps that the country should take to capitalize fully on this strategic choice?

First, the president's call for a third strategic missile defense site in Europe must be carried out. This site provides additional capability to protect the U.S., and to protect as well our European allies from a growing Iranian missile threat. The site would further cement the development of a global sensor-and-interceptor network necessary for effective missile defense. Failure to follow through would have implications for our alliances both inside and out of Europe.

Second, we can expect that rogue states such as North Korea and Iran are already looking at ways to counter our existing defenses. One way they might do this is to deploy decoys or other countermeasures on their existing offensive missiles that must be attacked, and could thus exhaust our limited supply of interceptors. Fortunately, we can now explore cost-effective solutions to this threat.

One solution is to develop interceptors with multiple kill vehicles -- something that was explicitly banned by the ABM Treaty. Another solution is to develop advanced discrimination techniques to tell the decoys from the real threats. These techniques include using radars, space-based sensors, or a new concept that uses dozens of miniature interceptors that can literally sweep away an entire threat cloud of decoys, allowing the missile interceptor to hone in on the real warhead.

None of these techniques is fully proven, but neither was the hit-to-kill technology begun by President Reagan and later successfully deployed by President Bush. We must focus investment in the discrimination problem and improve our existing systems with these new capabilities.

Third, we can do more to increase the capabilities of existing assets. We can, for example, improve our sea-based capabilities -- both our performance against long-range missiles and the number of assets deployed. Under the ABM Treaty, we had to "dumb down" our so-called theater systems to ensure that they could not be used to defend the U.S. from attack. Free from this restraint, as well as from the Treaty's prohibition on mobile-launch platforms, we can now do much more to integrate our defense with that of our allies and make the most of the assets we have deployed.

Finally, we must look again at space as a place to deploy interceptors.

There is no question that space provides the highest leverage against the missile threat: Targets are more visible, more accessible and more vulnerable when attacked from space. While there are concerns about "weaponizing space," these pale in comparison to the increasing vulnerability of U.S. space-based satellites by weapons from the ground traversing space. The recent Chinese anti-satellite test was a wake-up call.

Space-based interceptors, like those proposed by former President George H. W. Bush in 1991, have the potential to strengthen missile defense, and to provide protection for key intelligence and communications assets in space that are now vulnerable from ground-based attack.

The progress of the past six years stems from one tough decision. That very same decision will allow us to stay ahead of the 21st century ballistic-missile threat.

Messrs. Crouch and Joseph are senior scholars at the National Institute for Public Policy. Mr. Crouch was formerly deputy national security adviser and Mr. Joseph was formerly undersecretary of State in the George W. Bush administration.

28752  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The 2008 Presidential Race on: January 22, 2008, 05:11:19 PM
Not that I agree, but Fred Barnes makes the case for McCain.  I am intrigued though that he has gotten Jack Kemp and Phil Gramm on board.  Both of these men have my respect.

Now McCain Must Convince The Right
January 22, 2008; Page A19

John McCain has a problem. After winning South Carolina's primary last Saturday, he should be the overwhelming favorite to capture the Republican presidential nomination. He's not, at least not yet, and the reason is that he's alienated so many conservatives over the past eight years.

Mr. McCain may become the Republican nominee anyway -- in spite of thunderous opposition by conservatives including radio talk-show host Rush Limbaugh, former Sen. Rick Santorum, and American Conservative Union (ACU) head David Keene. Even then, to win the general election, he must find a way to reconcile with conservatives and unify the Republican Party.

Mr. McCain will have to take the initiative to repair the relationship, and he appears ready to do just that.

His victory speech in South Carolina marked a new step. Rather than dwell on the hardy perennials of his campaign message, national security and patriotism, Mr. McCain spoke more broadly about his conservative goals. "We want government to do its job, not your job," he said, "and to do it with less of your money." He praised "free markets, low taxes and small government."

Moreover, Mr. McCain intends to go beyond conservative boilerplate and actually campaign as a conservative. His congressional voting record is predominantly conservative (ACU rating 82.3%), qualifying him to do so. He's already stepped outside his comfort zone on taxes, endorsing a cut in the corporate tax rate to 25% from 35%.

If he echoes the talking points dispatched to his surrogates over the weekend, he'll be fine. Besides touting Mr. McCain's ability to step in as "commander in chief on Day One," they were urged to emphasize what an ally calls a "Kemp-Gramm mishmash" of tax and spending cuts. Another point to stress: "Winning in November" is crucial to putting conservative judges on the Supreme Court.

It's worth noting the presence of supply-sider Jack Kemp and spending foe Phil Gramm on the McCain team. In fact, the Arizona senator has attracted an impressive array of conservative supporters, including Republican Sens. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma and Trent Lott of Mississippi, former Gov. Frank Keating of Oklahoma, and ex-Secretary of State Henry Kissinger.

Still, Mr. McCain's ties to liberal Democratic senators, and his difficulty suppressing his maverick streak, are a problem. In a televised debate two weeks ago, he said pharmaceutical companies are "bad guys" and called for importing drugs from Canada. Mr. McCain also endorsed a bipartisan commission to reform Social Security, which many conservatives see as a scheme for raising taxes.

When Mr. McCain strays from conservative orthodoxy, it's often the result of impulse. Before running for president in 2000, he rarely jumped ship. But in his campaign against George W. Bush, he enthralled the media with his "straight talk," which consisted mostly of tweaking conservatives and Republicans.

Since then, he's joined with Democrats to enact campaign-finance reform, push for bills allowing illegal immigrants to stay in this country, and impose a national cap on greenhouse gas emissions. All this has estranged many conservatives. Mr. Limbaugh declared last week that the nomination of John McCain or Mike Huckabee would "destroy the Republican Party . . . change it forever, be the end of it." Former Sen. Santorum and ex-House majority leader Tom DeLay insist they won't vote for Mr. McCain, even if his Democratic opponent is Hillary Clinton.

The McCain campaign claims that it's only a handful of conservative luminaries who oppose him. Not true. Complaints about him are rife among grassroots Republicans, and exit polls from the two primaries he won provide unmistakable evidence. He split self-identified Republicans with Mr. Huckabee in South Carolina and Mitt Romney in New Hampshire. But he barely won "somewhat conservative" voters in those states, and lost lopsidedly with "very conservative" voters.

Mr. McCain won both primaries because of his appeal to moderates and independents, indicating that he'd be a strong general election candidate. But he's got to take the Republican nomination first. That means winning without independents in more states with Republican-only primaries.

Spotlighting his conservative positions is a start. A few gestures bound to gain national attention would help. Appearing at today's March for Life demonstration in Washington would underscore his anti-abortion voting record. As Mr. McCain campaigns in Florida before next Tuesday's primary, a visit to Rush Limbaugh's home in Palm Beach to discuss conservative issues makes sense.

Ultimately, Mr. McCain doesn't have to make conservatives adore him. But he'll never be president unless he persuades them he's the most conservative candidate available with a credible chance of winning the White House. That shouldn't be too hard a sell.

Mr. Barnes is executive editor of the Weekly Standard and co-host of "The Beltway Boys" on Fox News Channel.
28753  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: The Nat Geo Documentary on the Dog Brothers: Fight Club on: January 22, 2008, 04:46:50 PM

Here's another blog post.

Corey "C-Dog Pound" Davis


I keep getting older!  As a child, I looked forward to every birthday.
About the time I hit 40, I started fighting it every step of the way.  At
45, I decided I wanted to be stronger with every successive year.  That
goal was severely interrupted in 2005, when I blow a disc in my neck and
underwent spinal fusion (C5-C7).

Today, I?m a cheeseburger away from 300 lbs and my 50th year is getting
close, but I am stronger today than I was before my injury.  Last year, I
rode a bicycle 360 miles in six days.  Last October, I rode a century (100
miles in one day) and I am training for another century this May.  I've
had eight Dog Fights at the Gatherings last year.  I can hit harder, lift
more weight, and my cardio is better than a lot of younger (and lighter)

Am I bragging?  Sure, but I'm also very grateful.  I was blessed with a
supportive wife and kids, and some very good physical therapists and
conditioning coaches who have helped me met my goals.
28754  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: The Nat Geo Documentary on the Dog Brothers: Fight Club on: January 22, 2008, 01:33:43 PM

I am a Martialist Christian.
My understanding of what Christ expects of me as a Christian is found in
His words to love God with my whole being and love others as I love
myself.  There is nothing passive or small about practicing this kind of

I practice martial arts for many of the same reasons as other people - to
stay in shape and to hang out with friends.  However, I ride with a
bicycle club for those reasons.  If exercise and friends was all I am
after, I would stick to riding (less bruises).  I practice martial arts to
learn how to hurt people.  And yet I am unconflicted.

The Christian Warrior is not only allowed in my ethic, but it thrives.
What if I were being hurt?  What if it was my wife or my kid who was in
trouble?  I would want someone to help - to fight - and not just standby
and watch.  Christian love requires us to imagine ourselves in another's
place and to act.  On the other hand, bystanders keep their hands in their
pockets because they live in a fantasy where trouble always happens to
someone else.  In the New Testament parable of the Good Samaritan, the
Samaritan was good because upon finding the man after he was beaten and
robbed, he cared for him.  Would he have still been the hero of the story,
if he had stood by and watched while the man was beat down and then care
for him?  No!

Happily my life is not filled with bad guys who are constantly attacking
my family and friends.  However, it is satisfying to know that I can do a
lot as a Christian to help the people around me - including defend them.

28755  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: The Nat Geo Documentary on the Dog Brothers: Fight Club on: January 22, 2008, 01:04:24 PM
28756  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Islam in Europe on: January 22, 2008, 01:00:43 PM
English mosques are so extremist they'd be closed down in Baghdad, says IRAQ'S deputy prime minister

Certain English mosques are more radical than those found in Iraq and would be "illegal" in the war-torn country according to the Iraqi deputy prime minister.  The shocking remarks, made by Dr Barham Salih, related to mosques he visited in Blackburn and have angered Muslim leaders.  Dr Salih visited the east Lancashire town in 2005 as a guest of Jack Straw and made his remarks at a dinner party in Baghdad in November.

Shadow culture minister Tobias Ellwood, who attended the dinner, claimed the Iraqi politician said: "I am not surprised that you British are facing so many problems with extremists after what I saw in those mosques in Blackburn.  What I saw would not be allowed here in Iraq - it would be illegal."

The 41-year-old MP made the claims during a Westminster debate on terrorism.

He said: "I know Jack Straw well, but my eyebrows raise when you have a very senior Iraqi leader make comments like that.  I do not believe these comments can be dismissed out of hand. I was absolutely shocked.  He went inside the mosques, and said literature he saw would be illegal. He was quite clear.  The comments are only directed at a very small proportion of mosques in the UK - the vast majority of Muslims wouldn't want to be labelled."

Salim Mulla, chairman of the Lancashire Council of Mosques, reacted furiously to the comments. He said Dr Salih spoke positively about what he had seen in the town when they spoke during his visit.

He said: "We are going out of our way to bring the community together. Nobody is working harder than us at breaking down barriers.  For Dr Salih to make these sort of comments is not very helpful at all.  I don't know where he's coming from. He was very co-operative when he visited, and took lots of photographs. How many incidents have we had in Blackburn? He is talking a load of rubbish."

Dr Salih, a Sunni Muslim, was elected in January 2005 to Iraq's first democratically held elections in 50 years.  During his visit, in the run-up to the 2005 general election, he told voters to support Jack Straw, then Foreign Secretary, and not to turn against him because of the war in Iraq.  Salim Mulla said he could not recall which mosques, Dr Salih visited.
28757  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Evolutionary biology/psychology on: January 22, 2008, 09:16:22 AM
NY Times

As the candidates have shown us in the succulent telenovela that is the 2008 presidential race, there are many ways to parry for political power. You can go tough and steely in an orange hunter’s jacket, or touchy-feely with a Kleenex packet. You can ally yourself with an alpha male like Chuck Norris, befriend an alpha female like Oprah Winfrey or split the difference and campaign with your mother. You can seek the measured endorsement of the town elders or the restless energy of the young, showily handle strange infants or furtively slam your opponents.

Just as there are myriad strategies open to the human political animal with White House ambitions, so there are a number of nonhuman animals that behave like textbook politicians. Researchers who study highly gregarious and relatively brainy species like rhesus monkeys, baboons, dolphins, sperm whales, elephants and wolves have lately uncovered evidence that the creatures engage in extraordinarily sophisticated forms of politicking, often across large and far-flung social networks.

Male dolphins, for example, organize themselves into at least three nested tiers of friends and accomplices, said Richard C. Connor of the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth, rather like the way human societies are constructed of small kin groups allied into larger tribes allied into still larger nation-states. The dolphins maintain their alliances through elaborately synchronized twists, leaps and spins like Blue Angel pilots blazing their acrobatic fraternity on high.

Among elephants, it is the females who are the born politicians, cultivating robust and lifelong social ties with at least 100 other elephants, a task made easier by their power to communicate infrasonically across miles of savanna floor. Wolves, it seems, leaven their otherwise strongly hierarchical society with occasional displays of populist umbrage, and if a pack leader proves a too-snappish tyrant, subordinate wolves will collude to overthrow the top cur.

Wherever animals must pool their talents and numbers into cohesive social groups, scientists said, the better to protect against predators, defend or enlarge choice real estate or acquire mates, the stage will be set for the appearance of political skills — the ability to please and placate, manipulate and intimidate, trade favors and scratch backs or, better yet, pluck those backs free of botflies and ticks.

Over time, the demands of a social animal’s social life may come to swamp all other selective pressures in the environment, possibly serving as the dominant spur for the evolution of ever-bigger vote-tracking brains. And though we humans may vaguely disapprove of our political impulses and harbor “Fountainhead” fantasies of pulling free in full glory from the nattering tribe, in fact for us and other highly social species there is no turning back. A lone wolf is a weak wolf, a failure, with no chance it will thrive.

Dario Maestripieri, a primatologist at the University of Chicago, has observed a similar dilemma in humans and the rhesus monkeys he studies.

“The paradox of a highly social species like rhesus monkeys and humans is that our complex sociality is the reason for our success, but it’s also the source of our greatest troubles,” he said. “Throughout human history, you see that the worst problems for people almost always come from other people, and it’s the same for the monkeys. You can put them anywhere, but their main problem is always going to be other rhesus monkeys.”

As Dr. Maestripieri sees it, rhesus monkeys embody the concept “Machiavellian” (and he accordingly named his recent popular book about the macaques “Macachiavellian Intelligence”).

“Individuals don’t fight for food, space or resources,” Dr. Maestripieri explained. “They fight for power.” With power and status, he added, “they’ll have control over everything else.”

Rhesus monkeys, midsize omnivores with ruddy brown fur, long bearded faces and disturbingly humanlike ears, are found throughout Asia, including in many cities, where they, like everybody else, enjoy harassing the tourists. The monkeys typically live in groups of 30 or so, a majority of them genetically related females and their dependent offspring.

A female monkey’s status is usually determined by her mother’s status. Male adults, as the ones who enter the group from the outside, must establish their social positions from scratch, bite, baring of canines and, most importantly, rallying their bases.
Page 2 of 2)

“Fighting is never something that occurs between two individuals,” Dr. Maestripieri said. “Others get involved all the time, and your chances of success depend on how many allies you have, how wide is your network of support.”

Monkeys cultivate relationships by sitting close to their friends, grooming them at every possible opportunity and going to their aid — at least, when the photo op is right. “Rhesus males are quintessential opportunists,” Dr. Maestripieri said. “They pretend they’re helping others, but they only help adults, not infants. They only help those who are higher in rank than they are, not lower. They intervene in fights where they know they’re going to win anyway and where the risk of being injured is small.”

In sum, he said, “they try to gain maximal benefits at minimal cost, and that’s a strategy that seems to work” in advancing status.

Not all male primates pursue power by appealing to the gents. Among olive baboons, for example, a young male adult who has left his natal home and seeks to be elected into a new baboon group begins by making friendly overtures toward a resident female who is not in estrous at the moment and hence not being contested by other males of the troop.

“If the male is successful in forming a friendship with a female, that gives him an opening with her relatives and allows him to work his way into the whole female network,” said Barbara Smuts, a biologist at the University of Michigan. “In olive baboons, friendships with females can be much more important than political alliances with other males.”

Because males are often the so-called dispersing sex, while females stay behind in the support network of their female kin, females form the political backbone among many social mammals; the longer-lived the species, the denser and more richly articulated that backbone is likely to be.

With life spans rivaling ours, elephants are proving to possess some of the most elaborate social networks yet observed, and their memories for far-flung friends and relations are well in line with the species’ reputation. Elephant society is organized as a matriarchy, said George Wittemyer, an elephant expert at the University of California, Berkeley, with a given core group of maybe 10 elephants led by the eldest resident female. That core group is together virtually all the time, traveling over considerable distances, stopping to dig water holes, looking for fresh foliage to uproot and devour.

“They’re constantly making decisions, debating among themselves, over food, water and security,” Dr. Wittemyer said. “You can see it in the field. You can hear them vocally disagree.” Typically, the matriarch has the final say, and the others abide by her decision. If a faction disagrees strongly enough and wants to try a different approach, “the group will split up and meet back again later,” said Dr. Wittemyer.

Age has its privileges, he said, and the older females, even if they are not the biggest, will often get the best spots to sleep and the best food to eat. But it also has its responsibilities, and a matriarch is often the one to lead the charge in the face of conflicts with other elephants or predatory threats, sometimes to lethal effect.

Hal Whitehead of Dalhousie University and his colleagues have found surprising parallels between the elephant and another mammoth mammal, the sperm whale, possessor of the largest brain, in absolute terms, that the world has ever known. As with elephants, sperm whale society is sexually segregated, the females clustering in oceanic neighborhoods 40 degrees north or south of the Equator, and the males preferring waters around the poles.

As with elephants, the core social unit is a clan of some 10 or 12 females and their offspring. Sperm whales also are highly vocal. They communicate with one another using a Morse code-like pattern of clicks. Each clan, Dr. Whitehead said, has a distinctive click dialect that the members use to identify one another and that adults pass to the young. In other words, he said, “It looks like they have a form of culture.”

Nobody knows what the whales may have to click and clack about, but it could be a form of voting — time to stop here and synchronously dive down in search of deep water squid, now time to resurface, move on, dive again. Clans also seem to caucus on which males they like and will mate with more or less as a group and which ones they will collectively spurn. By all appearances, female sperm whales are terrible size queens. Over the generations, they have consistently voted in favor of enhanced male mass. Their dream candidate nowadays is some fellow named Moby, and he’s three times their size.

28758  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Franklin: Children on: January 22, 2008, 08:27:30 AM
"And as to the Cares, they are chiefly what attend the bringing
up of Children; and I would ask any Man who has experienced it,
if they are not the most delightful Cares in the World; and if
from that Particular alone, he does not find the Bliss of a double
State much greater, instead of being less than he expected."

-- Benjamin Franklin (Reply to a Piece of Advice)

Reference: Franklin: Collected Works, Lemay, ed. (249)
28759  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Epidemics: Bird Flu, TB, etc on: January 22, 2008, 08:26:32 AM
KOLKATA, India : India's worst ever outbreak of bird flu could turn into a disaster, an official warned Tuesday, as five people were reportedly quarantined with symptoms of the virus.

Eight districts in the eastern state of West Bengal have been hit by the virus, and dead birds are being sold and locals said to be "feasting" on cheap chicken.

The state's animal resources minister, Anisur Rahaman, said authorities were "determined to cull all poultry in the districts in three or four days, otherwise the state will face a disaster."

More than 100,000 bird deaths have been reported, and teams are racing to cull two million chickens and ducks.

The Times of India reported five people in West Bengal have been quarantined with "clinical symptoms" of avian flu -- including fever, coughing, sore throat and muscle ache -- after handling affected poultry.

If the tests are positive, this will be the first case of human infection in India, home to 1.1 billion people and hit by bird flu among poultry three times since 2006.

Health officials in New Delhi said they were currently analysing blood samples from close to 150 people who have complained of fever.

On the ground, culling teams have been facing an uphill battle with villagers smuggling birds out of flu affected areas and selling them in open markets.

Thirty-year-old Sheikh Ali, a vendor in Birbhum's Gharisa market, 340 kilometres (192 miles) from the state capital Kolkata, said the sale of poultry had doubled in the past week.

"The prices of chicken have come down from 60 rupees to 20 rupees (1.5 dollars to 50 cents) per kilogramme (2.2 pounds).

"Poor villagers are feasting on chicken. At normal times, they cannot afford to buy as prices are so high. Now they are enjoying the meat," Ali said.

People typically catch the disease by coming into direct contact with infected poultry, but experts fear a flu pandemic if the H5N1 mutates into a form easily transmissible between humans.

Migratory birds have been largely blamed for the global spread of the disease, which has killed more than 200 people worldwide since 2003.

In Birbhum, police seized two trucks of smuggled poultry early Tuesday but culling teams were yet to arrive at the spot, an AFP correspondent said.

"Poultry owners are smuggling their birds out at night and transporting it to different places for fear of culling," said Shubhendu Mahato, a security guard at Arambagh Hatchery, one of the biggest in West Bengal.

Chicken shops had also sprung up along the main highways overnight with people crowding them, the AFP correspondent said.

Neighbouring Nepal, which has banned poultry imports from India since 2006, said its border posts were on high alert.

Bangladesh, which also borders West Bengal, was meanwhile battling its own serious outbreak -- with experts warning the situation was far worse than the government was letting on.

"Bird flu is now everywhere. Every day we have reports of birds dying in farms," said leading poultry expert and the treasurer of Bangladesh Poultry Association M.M Khan.

"Things are now very, very serious and public health is under danger. The government is trying to suppress the whole scenario," Khan said, adding that farmers were also holding back from reporting cases.


In a closely related vein

28760  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Mexico-US matters on: January 22, 2008, 08:16:20 AM
New York Times

January 22, 2008

Mexico Hits Drug Gangs With Full Fury of War

RÍO BRAVO, Mexico —

These days, it is easy to form the impression that a war is going on in Mexico. Thousands of elite troops in battle gear stream toward border towns and snake through the streets in jeeps with .50-caliber machine guns mounted on top while fighter jets from the Mexican Navy fly reconnaissance missions overhead.

Gun battles between federal forces and drug-cartel members carrying rocket-propelled-grenade launchers have taken place over the past two weeks in border towns like Río Bravo and Tijuana, with deadly results.

Yet what is happening is less a war than a sustained federal intervention in states where for decades corrupt municipal police officers and drug gangs have worked together in relative peace, officials say. The federal forces are not only hunting cartel leaders, but also going after their crews of gunslingers, like Gulf Cartel guards known as the Zetas, who terrorize the towns they control.

The onslaught has broken up a longstanding system in which the local police looked the other way for a bribe and cartel leaders went about their business.

In Río Bravo, for instance, the state police station sits across the street from a walled compound that until recently was used as a safe house by Zeta gunmen. A deadly gunfight broke out when federal agents tried to arrest men carrying machine guns in a car.

As grenades exploded and gunfire ripped the air, Jesús Vasquez, 65, dived behind the dusty counter of his store. He hugged the concrete and prayed.

“It was ugly,” he recalled. “It’s the first time something like this has happened.”

President Felipe Calderón, who won office in 2006 on a promise to create jobs, has spent most of his first year in office trying to break up organized crime rings. To the consternation of some liberals here, he has mobilized the military to do it, sending 6,000 troops into Tamaulipas state alone.

As those troops, along with thousands of federal agents, have begun putting pressure on drug gangs, the midlevel mobsters and hit men have put up a surprising amount of resistance. Again and again, they have chosen to fight it out rather than surrender.

They have ambushed and killed more than 20 police officers this year. In the past two weeks, four federal agents and three Baja California police commanders have been assassinated, along with the wife and child of one of them, apparently in retaliation for arrests, law enforcement officials said.

That violence has spread to the United States. On Saturday morning, drug-smuggling suspects from Mexico killed an American border patrol agent, Luis Aguilar, 32, when he tried to stop their cars in sand dunes about 20 miles west of Yuma, Ariz., then fled back across the border. Michael Chertoff, the homeland security secretary, said the killing demonstrated how Mexican criminal organizations had responded to the crackdown on their operations with increasing brutality.

“The Zetas are defying the state,” said Jorge Chabat, an expert on narcotics trafficking and security at CIDE, a Mexican research group. “This operation in the north of Mexico in recent days has no precedent.”

It remains to be seen whether Mr. Calderón’s strategy will work in the long run. Many of the nation’s most-wanted drug kingpins continue to elude federal forces, often with the help of local police officers.

Some federal officers admit privately that they face an uphill battle as long as local police officers continue to tip off drug gangs about their movements. The threat became clear on Saturday when federal officials arrested four local policemen in Nuevo Laredo, along with seven civilians, and charged them with feeding the Zetas information over police radio frequencies.

“You cannot count on the local police,” said a veteran federal inspector in Reynosa, who spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of losing his job. “The problem lies in the state police. They are completely at the service of these guys.”

In Tamaulipas state, just south of eastern Texas, the government’s focus has been on strangling the Zetas. Founded by former Mexican commandos trained in the United States, the Zetas have long been the professional assassins of the Gulf Cartel, which controls the flow of drugs along the Gulf Coast and across the Texas border. The group is believed to have scores of members, though the exact number is unknown.

The gunmen remain a formidable force, the authorities say. Federal police commanders in the state must stay on the move and keep their location secret to avoid assassination attempts. The state federal attorney general’s office has been vacant for months; officials in Mexico City say they are having trouble filling the post.

Edgar Millán, a federal police commander who is in charge of tracking down the Zetas, said a contingent of 1,200 officers in Tamaulipas searched every day for members of the group, hitting specific targets believed to be safe houses and watching for cars carrying gunmen.

The federal police also run a system of 10 checkpoints on major highways in the eastern half of the state. Most of the time, they stop cars with tinted windows that carry two or more young men, hoping to make it harder for the gunmen to move.

But the Zetas have a sophisticated spy network as well, Commander Millán said in an interview. They employ taxi drivers, store clerks, street vendors and members of the local police to keep them apprised of the movements of federal officers.

Several times in the past four months, the police have been close to capturing the leader of the cartel, Heriberto Lazcano, only to have him slip away at the last moment, Commander Millán said. Two other important reputed cartel leaders, Jorge Eduardo Costilla and Miguel Ángel Treviño, have also eluded capture.

While the Gulf Cartel leaders remain at large, the government scored a success in Sinaloa on Monday when it captured Alfredo Beltrán Leyva, one of five brothers who are high-ranking lieutenants in the Culiacan-based cartel.

Though the big bosses have slipped through the dragnet — the offensive that was started against the Zetas in late November after a prominent local politician was murdered in Río Bravo — it has paid off in many respects, officials said. The police have arrested about 40 reputed members of the gang and seized dozens of machine guns, rifles, side arms, grenades and boxes of ammunition.

The federal police have also begun to submit local police officers to a battery of tests to determine who might be linked to organized crime. Among the tests are polygraphs, drug tests and the vetting of personal finances. The goal is to weed out collaborators.

Many people here say they welcome the federal intervention, even if it means having columns of troops patrol their streets. But others voice doubt that government forces can ever stamp out the cartel, given its infiltration of the local police. All the federal forces have accomplished, they say, is unleashing more violence.

“Living in Mexico has become very difficult,” said one man who had been searched at a roadblock near Matamoros. He spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of drug dealers. “Even Colombia is looking better.”

Others complain that the presence of soldiers and federal agents, along with the gun battles, has scared away American tourists, an important source of income. Last year, about six million fewer people visited border towns than in 2006; hotel bookings are down and sales of package tours have fallen steeply, according to the Association of Mexican Hotels and Motels.

“A lot of people used to come over the border to eat and buy things,” said Alfredo Tantu, 40, the owner of El Cazador Restaurant near Río Bravo, as the smell of roasting baby goat wafted from his kitchen. “Now, almost no one comes because of all this police action.”
28761  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: The Nat Geo Documentary on the Dog Brothers: Fight Club on: January 21, 2008, 04:58:16 PM
Guro Crafty -

I couldn't post to the "open" forum - probably need to set up a separate user name or something... Pls forgive laziness, but feel free to post this if you think it's useful...

Name: John
Occupation: Enterprise IT Management Consultant
Age: 45

"Higher Conciousness through Harder Contact"...(c)

I found the DogBrothers online a few days after my first serious fencing bout.  I lost the bout on points (I was a beginner) but an amazing thing happened in my mind as I got hit again and again...  And I was amazed and excited to find a group that had already discovered the magic I'd felt in that bout.  It didn't matter that I'd lost - the explosion in my mind at the moment of hard contact was the real win.

When I saw the reality in the Dog Brothers apprach, I focused on real contact fighting.  I've never looked back.  I've been studying seriously for about a year now -- which brings me to the second credo...

"Walk as a Warrior for All Your Days"

I'm no longer a young buck, and have family and professional obligations.  Dog Brothers give me a chance to keep on the Warrior path anyway.  The comradirie I experienced at the '06 gathering - as well as the EXCELLENCE of the training videos produced by Guro Crafty Dog give me the resources I need to continue on a Warrior's path.  I train for a gathering, not to win, but to face my own fears, give myself a target and a way to judge my progress.  Knowing the intensity I will face at a gathering motivates my training and changes how I train.

I train a number of "styles" because they suit my psychology, physiology, and geography.  To borrow a line from a Dog Brother shown in one of the training videos - "You have to train yourself".  This leads to the next Dog Brother credo:

"Smuggling Concepts Across the Frontiers of Style" (c)

The thing that excited me most about the Dog Brothers was that "anything goes".  If it's a good idea that really works in a fight - bring it to a gathering and try it out.  Don't say what "should" work in a fight unless you're willing to show up and bring your skills to a full-out trial against determined resistance.  Then we can talk about what does and doesn't work in a fight.

Dog Brothers is about "truth in combat" - not what looks good in a kata.  Distilled experience from hard-fought combat - as close to the edge as we can go...  That's my idea of reality.

...Of the Same Tribe...

Finally, the idea that our purpose is to support each other in being prepared to protect our partners, our children and even our country - is a goal that gives meaning to the quest.  To test each other without breaking each other - so that each member of the "tribe" can reach their potential - that's my idea of true brotherhood.

Even if I "lose" to younger stronger members of the tribe, I will have tested myself and know my abilities far better than I could by any other means.
28762  DBMA Espanol / Espanol Discussion / Re: Videos: Estudios en applicacion on: January 21, 2008, 04:52:04 PM
Continuando con el tema del clip de Holanda:

Pensando en soluciones, me parece muy importante la linea de mi ataque.  Aunque el asesino parece muy enfocado en su matanza, lo que me preocupa es la posibilidad de un movimiento spontaneo y riesgoso hacia mi si mi linea de ataque no lo tome en cuenta.

He aqui un ejemplo de lo que hablo:
El policia muestra corazon y huevos de hombre, pero por el proposito que pongo este clip aqui quiero que Uds presten su atencion a lo que hace SIN PENSAR la mano con el cuchillo-- el movimiento resulta estar muy cerca al sangre femoral/los partes sexuales.

Aplicando este concepto al caso en Holanda, pienso lo siguiente:

1) No hay tiempo.  Hay que actuar.  Cada golpe con el cuchillo puede ser el golpe que mate.
2) Si tengo mis propias armas, la solucion es distinta.  Si tengo pistola, una bala en la cabeza (con cuidado por donde vaya la bala) o si tengo cuchillo soluciones usando dicho herramiento.
3) Pues, es Holanda, entonces poco probable que la gente tenga pistola o cuchillo-- por lo cual la solucion tiene que ser de mano desnudo.  Aceptando eso, para quitar el asesino de su monte sobre la mujer, un patada "side kick" (estilo Jun Fan/Bruce Lee  cheesy) desde 0300 o 0900 me parece logico.  En cualquiera de las dos lineas que sea, hay que usar la pierna que no deje expuesta la sangre femoral.
4) Hay que gritar a los otros sacar de alli la mujer, mientras yo me mantenga listo para continuar la situacion con el asesino.

!Ojala que Uds entiendan mi espanol!
28763  DBMA Espanol / Espanol Discussion / Re: Islamismo radical y España on: January 21, 2008, 04:36:06 PM
Gracias por matenernos informados sobre acontecimientos de este indole.
28764  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Mil-blogs: Michael Yon and others (support our troops) on: January 21, 2008, 09:17:34 AM
MY makes the NY Times!  Plus his most recent email letter:

Michael Yon covers the Iraq war intimately by staying with soldiers under fire.
Published: January 21, 2008
Michael Yon was not a journalist, and he wasn’t sure what a blogger was. He had been in uniform but not in combat, and he wanted to keep it that way. He went to Iraq thinking he would stay for a month, and maybe find a way to write about the war after he got home.

Enlarge This Image
© Michael P. Yon
Michael Yon, a former Special Forces fighter, writes dispatches and posts photographs from the front lines in Iraq.

Instead, he has spent most of the last three years in Iraq, writing prolifically and graphically, and racking up more time embedded with combat units than any other journalist, according to the United States military. He has been shot at, buffeted by explosions and seen more people maimed — fighters and civilians, adults and children — than he can count.

“The easiest thing in the world to write about is combat, because all the drama is there,” said Mr. Yon, a fit, ruddy-faced 43-year-old who was a Special Forces soldier more than two decades ago. He insists that he still does not really know the rules of journalism, but says he has recently, grudgingly, accepted that he has become a journalist.

His detailed, mostly admiring accounts of front-line soldiers’ daily work have won him a loyal following, especially among service members and journalists and bloggers who follow the war. One of his photographs showing an American soldier cradling an Iraqi girl injured in a car bombing (the girl later died) appeared on Time magazine’s Web site and was later voted one of top images of the year by visitors.

Mr. Yon, however, does not work for any organization; no news outlet pays him for the hundreds of dispatches and photos he has produced. He publishes his work on his own Web site, (some will appear again in a book set for release in April), and he also posts submissions from military people serving in Iraq. He says contributions from his readers have paid most of his costs, though he declines to say how much they have given.

Like most bloggers, Mr. Yon has an agenda, writing often that the United States’ mission to build a stable, democratic Iraq is succeeding and must continue. He rarely disparages those who disagree, though, and he does not shy away from describing the disturbing things he sees.

He sometimes criticizes United States forces, their Iraqi allies, and even decision makers in Washington; lately, he has warned that while the American focus is on Iraq, Afghanistan is being lost.

His upbeat outlook on the war has made Mr. Yon a favorite of the war’s supporters. But others in that camp have attacked him for insisting that Iraq is in a civil war, and for condemning American treatment of some detainees.

“His work has a remarkable, chin-out, unvarnished intimacy,” said Jackie Lyden, a National Public Radio reporter who has worked in Iraq. “He isn’t a guarded, diplomatically toned reporter; he can be very frank, and he questions his own assumptions.”

The Internet has fostered such citizen journalism, shaking up ideas about where news comes from, but few have taken on the expense and danger of working in a war zone. Mr. Yon’s daily expenses are small, but he has paid tens of thousands of dollars for computers, cameras, phones and body armor.

He went to Iraq believing that the mainstream news media were bungling the story, and he still often criticizes the media’s pessimism. But he has also praised particular reporters from major outlets, or defended the media in general, explaining how difficult and dangerous it is to cover the war.

Along the way, he created a niche outlet that is better reported than most blogs, and more opinionated than most news reporting, with enough first-hand observation, clarity and skepticism to put many professional journalists to shame.

“We saw the man lying face down, barefoot, in filthy, oily mud, human excrement all around him,” he wrote in 2005, describing the aftermath of a gun battle he had witnessed. “He had fallen in an open air toilet, where he lay, belly-shot,” Mr. Yon continued. “The man brought his hand to his head, and touched his forehead with his index finger, pointing right between his eyes. ‘Shoot me, shoot me,’ he said. ‘I want to die.’ ”

Col. Stephen Twitty, a brigade commander with whom Mr. Yon has spent time in Iraq, had high praise for his work, saying that he often takes the same risks as the soldiers he accompanies.


Frontline Blogger Covers War in Iraq With a Soldier’s Eyes
Published: January 21, 2008
(Page 2 of 2)

In his first year and a half of online writing, Mr. Yon carefully avoided a position on whether he thought the war should have been waged in the first place. He eventually said that he had supported it reluctantly because of claims that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction.

Mr. Yon aims some barbs at the military brass, but talking with him and reading his work, it becomes clear that he has also pulled punches, not wanting to undermine the war effort.

In an interview, he said that when he first went to Iraq, in December 2004, “I knew we were losing the war,” and that “it was worse than the news was portraying.”

He said that in the early going, the military mishandled both the fighting and the press, and that among field commanders, “I started finding quite a few that seemed to be dialed in and knew what they were doing, and I found quite a lot that were quite clueless.”

Little of that dark view made its way into his dispatches, especially in his first year.

Mr. Yon has spent much of his life traveling and immersing himself in new places. Along the way, he wrote and self-published a book about his childhood. He decided to see the Iraq war for himself after three of his friends were killed there in 2004, and the military decided that his book was credential enough to let him accompany a combat unit.

Since then, bloggers and independent journalists have grown in numbers in Iraq, while the mainstream media there has shrunk. Overall, the number of embedded reporters at a given time dropped from several hundred in the early going to a few dozen in recent months.

In 2005 and 2006, Mr. Yon went through a period of rocky relations with the military hierarchy, which at times tried to bar him from accompanying units. But since then, things have improved, and the military has generally become more conscious — and solicitous — of Internet journalists. To Mr. Yon, ever-hopeful about the war, that change is healthy for Iraq, as well as for him.

“If you have bad media relations, you don’t know how to run a counterinsurgency,” he said. “Now they’re very good at it.”

----- Original Message -----
From: Michael Yon
Sent: Monday, January 21, 2008 3:13 AM
Subject: Preparing for a return to Iraq

If you have trouble reading this email, go to the online version.

I am preparing to head back to Iraq at the end of this week.

We've added a lot of new material to the site in the past week, including updates on units I've embedded with and stories published during 2007, and links to news items, like a profile in the New York Times.

If you haven't been to the website recently, we have added new archive pages that can be accessed here.

News that my book, Moment of Truth in Iraq (which will be published in April 2008) is now available for special advance purchase has prompted renewed interest in my first book Danger Close, and we've republished the first chapter of that book here.

Also, at the suggestion of readers, my Dragon Skin body armor is up for auction on E-Bay. You can read why here, and follow the bidding here.

As always, reader support is greatly appreciated, especially as I organize and assemble the gear needed for this next embed. Without the generosity of readers, this mission could not go forward. And during this election year when important decisions will be made on Iraq, front line news will be critical for identifying political truth-tellers.

Thank you,



To change your email address or unsubscribe from this list, please click here.
If you want to forward this message to a friend, click here.
28765  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Franklin: Religion & Morals; MLK on: January 21, 2008, 09:07:21 AM
"In such a performance you may lay the foundation of national
happiness only in religion, not by leaving it doubtful "whether
morals can exist without it," but by asserting that without
religion morals are the effects of causes as purely physical as
pleasant breezes and fruitful seasons."

-- Benjamin Rush (letter to John Adams, 20 August 1811)

Reference: Americanism, Gebhardt (12); original Letters, Rush,
Butterfield, ed., vol. 2 (1096-97)

“I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.’... I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character... And if America is to be a great nation this must become true.” —Martin Luther King, Jr.
28766  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Monster Garage on: January 20, 2008, 06:04:59 PM
Good find!

For those who don't know, the past two Gatherings were held in the warehouse that was the set for the show "Monster Garage"
28767  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Subject Headings on: January 20, 2008, 09:51:28 AM
Woof All:

I'd like to remind everyone to please put in a subject heading for each post-- this greatly facilitates ease of the use of the search function and thus the value of this forum as a research resource. 

Thank you,
Crafty Dog
28768  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Terrorist Tort Travesty on: January 20, 2008, 08:58:33 AM
Terrorist Tort Travesty
January 19, 2008; Page A13

War is a continuation of politics by other means, the German strategist Carl von Clausewitz famously observed in his 19th-century treatise, "On War." Clausewitz surely could never have imagined that politics, pursued through our own courts, would be the continuation of war.

Last week, I (a former Bush administration official) was sued by José Padilla -- a 37-year-old al Qaeda operative convicted last summer of setting up a terrorist cell in Miami. Padilla wants a declaration that his detention by the U.S. government was unconstitutional, $1 in damages, and all of the fees charged by his own attorneys.

José Padilla
The lawsuit by Padilla and his Yale Law School lawyers is an effort to open another front against U.S. anti-terrorism policies. If he succeeds, it won't be long before opponents of the war on terror use the courtroom to reverse the wartime measures needed to defeat those responsible for killing 3,000 Americans on 9/11.

On Thursday, a federal judge moved closer to sentencing Padilla to life in prison. After being recruited by al Qaeda agents in the late 1990s, Padilla left for Egypt in 1998 and reached terrorist training camps in Afghanistan in 2000. American officials stopped him at Chicago O'Hare airport in 2002, based on intelligence gained from captured al Qaeda leaders that he was plotting a dirty bomb attack.

President Bush declared Padilla an enemy combatant and ordered him sent to a naval brig in South Carolina. After a federal appeals court rejected Padilla's plea for release, the government transferred him to Miami for trial for al Qaeda conspiracies unrelated to the dirty bomb plot. Federal prosecutors described Padilla as "a trained al-Qaeda killer," and a jury convicted him of conspiring to commit murder, kidnapping and maiming, and of providing material support to terrorists.

Now Padilla and his lawyers are trying to use our own courts to attack the government officials who stopped him. They claim that the government cannot detain Padilla as an enemy combatant, but instead can only hold and try him as a criminal. Padilla alleges that he was abused in military custody -- based primarily on his claim that he was held in isolation and not allowed to meet with lawyers.

But enemy prisoners in wartime never before received the right to counsel or a civilian trial because, as the Supreme Court observed in 2004, the purpose of detention is not to punish, but to prevent the enemy from returning to the fight.

Under Padilla's theory, the U.S. is not at war, so any citizen killed or captured by the CIA or the military can sue. In November 2002, according to press reports, a Predator drone killed two al Qaeda leaders driving in the Yemen desert. One was an American, Kamal Derwish, who was suspected of leading a terrorist cell near Buffalo. If Padilla's lawsuit were to prevail, Derwish's survivors could sue everyone up the chain of command -- from the agent who pressed the button, personally -- for damages.

Padilla's complaints mirror the left's campaign against the war. To them, the 9/11 attacks did not start a war, but instead were simply a catastrophe, like a crime or even a natural disaster. They would limit the U.S. response only to criminal law enforcement managed by courts, not the military. Every terrorist captured away from the Afghanistan battlefield would have the right to counsel, Miranda warnings, and a criminal trial that could force the government to reveal its vital intelligence secrets.

America used this approach in the 1990s with al Qaeda. It did not work. Both the executive and legislative branches rejected this failed strategy. In the first week after 9/11, Congress passed a law authorizing the use of military force against any person, group or nation connected to the attacks, and recognized the President's constitutional authority "to deter and prevent acts of international terrorism against the United States."

In the spring of 2002, I was a Justice Department lawyer asked about the legality of Padilla's detention. There is ample constitutional precedent to support the detention of a suspected al Qaeda agent, even an American citizen, who plans to carry out terrorist attacks on our soil. During World War II, eight Nazi saboteurs secretly landed in New York to attack factories and plants. Two of them were American citizens.

After their capture, FDR sent them to military detention, where they were tried and most of them executed. In Ex Parte Quirin, the Supreme Court upheld the detention and trial by military authorities of American citizens who "associate" with "the military arm of the enemy" and "enter this country bent on hostile acts." If FDR were president today, Padilla might have fared far worse than he has.

None of that matters to the anti-war left. They failed to beat President Bush in the 2004 elections. Their efforts in Congress to repeal the administration's policies have gone nowhere. They lost their court challenges to Padilla's detention. The American public did not buy their argument that the struggle against al Qaeda is not really a war.

So instead they have turned to the tort system to harass those who served their government in wartime. I am not the only target. The war's critics have sued personally Donald Rumsfeld, John Ashcroft, Robert Gates, Paul Wolfowitz and other top government officials for their decisions in the war on terrorism. Other lawsuits have resorted to the courts to attack the telecommunications companies that helped the government intercept suspected terrorist calls.

It is easy to understand why CIA agents, who are working on the front lines to protect the nation from attack, are so concerned about their legal liability that they have taken out insurance against lawsuits.

Worrying about personal liability will distort the thinking of federal officials, who should be focusing on the costs and benefits of their decisions to the nation as a whole, not to their own pockets. Even in the wake of Watergate, the Supreme Court recognized that government decisions should not be governed by the tort bar.

In a case about warrantless national security wiretaps ordered by Nixon's attorney general, John Mitchell, the court declared that executive branch officials should benefit from qualified immunity. Officials cannot be sued personally unless they had intentionally violated someone's clearly established constitutional rights.

The Padilla case shows that qualified immunity is not enough. Even though Supreme Court precedent clearly permitted Padilla's detention, he and his academic supporters can still file harassing lawsuits that promise high attorneys' fees. The legal system should not be used as a bludgeon against individuals targeted by political activists to impose policy preferences they have failed to implement via the ballot box.

The prospect of having to waste large sums of money on lawyers will deter talented people from entering public service, leading to more mediocrity in our bureaucracies. It will also lead to a risk-averse government that doesn't innovate or think creatively. Government by lawsuit is no way to run, or win, a war.

Mr. Yoo is a professor of law at the University of California at Berkeley and a visiting scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. He is the author of "War By Other Means" (Grove/Atlantic 2006).

28769  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: The Nat Geo Documentary on the Dog Brothers: Fight Club on: January 19, 2008, 11:28:52 PM
28770  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: The Nat Geo Documentary on the Dog Brothers: Fight Club on: January 19, 2008, 08:02:29 PM
From Joe Cary-- I love that "Dog Quixote"  cool:

I've trained one-on-one with Guro Crafty Dog for two years. I first came to him as an informal student seeking to build my knowledge base for a character I was creating in a novel. I quickly recognized that DMBA was, in my opinion, the most efficient and effective martial art I had practiced or studied.  I thus continued my training to build on the character of me in real life. My early training mixed intensity and fascination with a dash of disturbing. Some things I learned I was hesitant to know, others I embraced with an artist's passion. As my training progressed, I came to respect and value what had first disturbed me, partially through recognition of the inherent value of survival skills, but primarily through the relationship that developed between Guro Crafty and me. My training went beyond the physical, and our conversations and shared stories offered constant insight into the "Tao of the Dog". The multi-disciplined way of DBMA renewed my atrophied instincts in many areas, the primary of which was a deeper sense of what it is to “Walk as a Warrior for all your Days”.
I've never participated in a Gathering of the Pack and don’t yet imagine I will (I've joked of lobbying for the Candidate-Dog name "Dog Quixote", as my eagerness often surpasses my skill). That said, my knowledge of, and respect for basic, primitive weapons (empty hand, sticks, knives and staff) has increased to a level I never imagined possible.  This comes in part from a newfound awareness and quiet confidence in the adrenal state, and an ability to recruit my entire body into action when push comes to shove, smack or slash. My time with Guro Crafty is an asset I will carry with me for all my days.

28771  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Survival issues outside the home on: January 19, 2008, 08:56:59 AM
3. New OSHA booklet is designed to protect first responders from chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear hazards. "Preparing and Protecting Security Personnel in Emergencies" is viewable at
28772  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: 4 Day DBMA Camp in Germany with Guro Lonely on: January 19, 2008, 08:46:54 AM
I'll need to check some things concerning my son's Cub Scouts etc, and this week we are extremely busy getting some new things ready for the website, so it may be a week before I get to this, but how does July look?
28773  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Law Enforcement issues on: January 19, 2008, 08:43:57 AM

Deputy did not act unreasonably in fatally shooting a man who had refused to submit to a pat down and then disarmed the deputy of his baton. Lewis v. County of Riverside, #06-55764, 2007 U.S. App. Lexis 29148 (9th Cir.).$File/06-55764.PDF

City and its personnel were not liable for suicide of a man arrested for DUI and detained in a cell for intoxicated and combative prisoners.  The fact that he had fought with officers did not establish that he was suicidal. Branton v. City of Moss Point, #07-60653, 2008 U.S. App. Lexis 76 (5th Cir.).
28774  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Afghanistan-Pakistan on: January 19, 2008, 08:26:22 AM
I note that the level of  intel here from a retired Indian cabinet member, FAR exceeds just about anything that we read here.  Why is that?  If correct, and it reads to me like it is , , ,

Baitullah Mehsud Steps up Attacks in South Waziristan - International Terrorism Monitor---Paper No. 355

by B. Raman

The Mehsud followers of Baitullah Mehsud, assisted by some Uzbeks of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU), have stepped up their attacks on the thinly-manned outposts of the Frontier Corps (FC) in different parts of South Waziristan. These outposts were withdrawn under a peace agreement signed by the Pakistani Army with Baitullah at the Sararogha fort in February, 2005. When President Pervez Musharraf ordered the commandoes of the Special Services Group (SSG) to raid the Lal Masjid of Islamabad in July, 2007, he also ordered the re-establishment of these outposts of the FC since he apprehended that the Mehsuds, many of whose children were studying in the two madrasas attached to the Lal Masjid, could retaliate for the commando action.

2.  Baitullah interpreted the re-establishment of these outposts as a bad breach of faith by Musharraf and announced that the Mehsuds would no longer be bound by the ceasefire agreement of February, 2005. Since then, the Mehsuds have unleashed a wave of suicide attacks not only in South Waziristan, but also in the North-West Frontier Province (NWFP), Punjab, Balochistan and Sindh. He had also resumed the guerilla attacks of his force on the para-military forces and captured nearly 300 of them. Under a fresh cease-fire agreement reached in November, 2007, Baitullah agreed to suspend his operations and release the captured personnel of the FC in return for the Government closing again the FC outposts re-established in South Waziristan, releasing all Mehsuds arrested in South Waziristan and the NWFP, and also Maulana Abdul Aziz Ghazi, the chief cleric of the Lal Masjid, and the students of the madrasas of the mosque arrested during the commando action.

3. Baitullah released all the FC personnel captured by his force. In return, Musharraf ordered the release of all but six of the Mehsuds arrested by his security agencies. He has not ordered the release of these six on the ground that they are under trial before the Anti-Terrorism courts and hence he has no powers to order their release. He has not agreed to release those arrested during the commando raid in the Lal Masjid. Nor has he agreed to withdraw the FC outposts re-established in the area. On the contrary, after the assassination of Mrs. Benazir Bhutto on December 27, 2007, allegedly at the instance of Baitullah, he has reinforced the FC posts in South Waziristan in an attempt to hunt for Baitullah.

4. This has provoked Baitullah to step up attacks on the FC posts. Though the FC consists largely of Pashtun tribals recruited in the Federally-Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) and the NWFP, these Pashtuns are looked upon by Baitullah and Al Qaeda as apostate for allegedly collaborating with Musharraf, who has already been declared an apostate by Al Qaeda since 2003. The FC comes operationally under the General Headquarters (GHQ) of the Army and administratively under the Ministry of the Interior.

5.  Between 1878 and 1903, the British set up the various tribal agencies, which, after Pakistan's independence in 1947, were constituted into the Federally-Administered Tribal Areas (FATA). The British created in each agency para-military forces called militias recruited from amongst the various Pashtun sub-tribes in that agency. Thus came into existence militias such as  the Khyber Rifles (1878), the Zhob Militia (1883), the Kurram Militia (1892), the Tochi Scouts (1894), the Chagai Militia (1896), the  South Waziristan Scouts (1900) , the Chitral Scouts (1903) etc. Lord Curzon, who became the Viceroy in 1899, created the Frontier Corps to serve as the umbrella organisation of these militias and to co-ordinate their functioning in all the tribal agencies. This arrangement has continued till now. The Frontier Corps, whose General Headquarters are located in Peshawar, functions under the over-all supervision of the Corps Commander of the Pakistan Army at Peshawar.

6. As mentioned by me in my article of November 15, 2007, titled "The State of Jihadi Terrorism in Pakistan" (, a major blunder committed by Musharraf was the over-use of  para-military forces such as the Frontier Constabulary and the Frontier Corps in the operations against terrorists in the tribal areas. He wanted to avoid using the Punjabi-dominated Army for ground operations. While the Army is actively involved in the ground operations against the Baloch freedom-fighters in Balochistan, it was confining itself to the barracks in the FATA and in the Provincially-Administered Tribal Areas (PATA) of the North-West Frontier Province (NWFP). American officials and their counterparts in Pakistan often claim that Musharraf has deployed nearly 80,000 troops in the tribal areas. The Americans cite this as one of the reasons for their strong backing to the General despite his growing unpopularity.

7. What they do not mention is that many of these security personnel are the tribal members of the para-military forces, who come from that area, and not Pakistani military personnel recruited from other areas of the country. A large number of the Pakistani army personnel are used not for ground operations against the terrorists, but for providing physical security to American and other NATO military supplies to Afghanistan from the Karachi port after they are landed there. This has been creating resentment among the tribal personnel of the para-military forces, who feel that Musharraf, under US pressure, is making not only Muslims kill Muslims, but also Pashtuns kill Pashtuns, in the name of the so-called war on terrorism. The FM radio stations operated by pro-Al Qaeda jihadi leaders in the tribal areas have been repeatedly alleging in their broadcasts directed to the fellow-tribals in the para-military forces that innocent tribals are being killed in order to save American lives in the US homeland.

8. As a result of this, there has been a growing number of desertions of Pashtuns serving in the para-military forces.  Musharraf did use regular Army units to counter the supporters of Maulana Fazlullah in the Swat Valley, but afraid that the Pashtun soldiers of the Army too might start deserting their units like the Pashtun members of the para-military forces, he has been avoiding the use of the army in ground operations and has instead been relying increasingly on helicopter gunships. This has, on the one hand, resulted in an increase in the number of civilian casualties due to indiscriminate air-mounted actions and, on the other, further fuelled the resentment in the para-military forces, whose personnel are asking: Are the lives of the Army personnel more precious than those of the Frontier Constabulary and the Frontier Corps?

9. I had also written that Musharraf has so far not told his people and the international community that Al Qaeda and pro-Al Qaeda organisations in the tribal areas have been increasingly targeting Shias and Christians. Captured Shia members of the para-military forces are being treated with brutality and killed by beheading or by cutting their throats. Shia members of the civil society are also being targeted. The FM radio stations have been indulging in the most horrible anti-Shia broadcasts. Shias are being projected as American agents in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iraq. They are alleging that the majority of the prostitutes in Pakistan are Shias and projecting the Shias as the sect of the prostitutes in the Ummah. A highly reputed school for poor tribal girls run in the FATA by a Christian missionary organisation was targeted and forced to close through intimidation. There are no Buddhists in the tribal areas, but many historical Buddhist heritage sites are there. These too are systematically being attacked. Al Qaeda is trying to replicate Iraq in Pakistan by exacerbating the already existing divide between the Shias and the Sunnis in the civil society as well as in the Army.

10. In their renewed offensive in the wake of the assassination of Benazir, the Mehsuds and the Uzbeks of the IMU have been taking advantage of the low morale of the personnel of the FC. After overrunning the FC outpost in the Sararogha fort on January 15, 2008, they are reported to have overrun another post  of the FC located at a place called  Seplatoi in South Waziristan.  What is disquieting  is that whereas the FC personnel at   Sararogha put up a fight against the Mehsuds and Uzbeks and suffered fatalities before they were overrun, those ( 60 in number) at Seplatoi are alleged to have either run away or surrendered without even a semblance of a fight.

11. Of course, the Army has strongly denied this, but other reliable sources say this incident did happen. The declining morale of the Pashtun members of the Frontier Corps should be a matter of serious concern. Can it spread to the Pashtuns in the Pakistani Army? That is a question, which should worry not only Musharraf, but also the international community.

12. The time has come for Pakistan and the international community to review the physical security arrangements in Pakistan's nuclear establishments in order to look for signs of declining morale there. While Pakistan's principal nuclear establishments are located in Punjab and are guarded by carefully selected Punjabi soldiers, its nuclear waste dumps are located in the tribal areas of the NWFP such as Dera Ismail Khan and are guarded by the FC.

(The writer is Additional Secretary (retd), Cabinet Secretariat, Govt. of India, New Delhi, and, presently, Director, Institute For Topical Studies, Chennai. E-mail:
28775  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: The Nat Geo Documentary on the Dog Brothers: Fight Club on: January 18, 2008, 09:26:10 PM
The shame! The Shame! 

We have been mentioned in the NY Times
(towards the bottom)
28776  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: The Nat Geo Documentary on the Dog Brothers: Fight Club on: January 18, 2008, 08:34:09 PM
This email was sent to us and because it leaves me unsure as to the appropriateness of including the author's name here, I leave it out.  I do post it because I think it quite worthy of being included here.


Dear Dog Brothers,

Thanks for the message and the invite regarding the NatGeo blog. I feel
particularly unqualified to participate in this thing for NatGeo,
inasmuch as I want to. I have never been able to clear the time or money
to make a gathering or do any training aside from keeping what (few)
skills I have sharp on my own. My canine side is taken care of  in the
time I carve out for it, usually odd hours, and usually solo. I read
voraciously, I try out new things, and I have even been making some
sticks and practicing with improvised impact weapons or sharp pointed
things not normally considered for self-defense, but as far as formal or
organized, I am neither.

In pack terms, I am at best, a transient, and more than likely, an
outrider, or maybe even a fleacatcher. Definitely a mutt, with all the
best qualities of the breed.

If there was a qualification for being a "Spirit Dog," then I am there.
I get what you're all about and I applaud it. I refer friends and anyone
else who's interested not only to your site, but to dig deeper into what
you're doing and why. "Higher Consciousness Through Harder Contact" is
more than a motto on a T-shirt or sticker. It is an ethos, not so much
of overcoming fear or pain or anything as ephemeral as all that as it is
in becoming a better person by embracing those things and learning from
the experience. You sure as hell don't get that from movies or games or
TV. But physically? I am so far away from even what anyone might
consider proficient in sticks it is not funny. But that doesn't keep me
from wanting to come someday and join you all. I don't think we were put
on this planet to be spectators. I'll probably go to a nursing home
years from now going, "One of these days,....WOOF!"

People can take away your fun, your money, your job and your stuff. But
they can't take away the stuff that's packed between your ears and the
things that make your heart beat with purpose, and that is what I think
you folks are all about.

I'll be watching when this show comes on, or at least recording it for
when I get home.

Keep up the faith, keep up the great work.

Best regards,
28777  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: The Nat Geo Documentary on the Dog Brothers: Fight Club on: January 18, 2008, 07:06:55 PM
Poi Dog:
28778  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The 2008 Presidential Race on: January 18, 2008, 11:35:58 AM
Fred on the Bus
by Erick Erickson

Traveling through snowy South Carolina with Fred Thompson, I’m struck by the sense that finally, the man has arrived. The candidate so many conservatives were excited by early in 2007 is finally walking the land.

The Fred Thompson in South Carolina this week is the one America saw knock into Mike Huckabee as a pro-life liberal with “blame America first” beliefs whose economic policies would destroy the economy. And the crowds love it.

Though barely mentioned in the national media, Senator Fred Thompson has been on a barn storming tour crisscrossing South Carolina for more than a week. In a unique approach, he is not just going to major media markets, but to rural areas of South Carolina. On my first day on the trail with Senator Thompson, he drew a crowd of 180 people to a small Mennonite restaurant in Abbeville, South Carolina — population 26,000 with a median income of $15,370. He capped off the day at the Orangeburg-Calhoun County Technical College in Orangeburg, South Carolina with over 200 people braving a rare snow shower to hear him. The day before I joined him on the campaign trail, Senator Thompson’s campaign saw large capacity auditoriums overflowing with people standing outside the buildings waiting to get in.

The crowds are enthusiastic and relieved. Finally, the Fred Thompson they hoped for is on the campaign trail. “Saying the Reagan Coalition is dead is like saying the Constitution is dead,” Thompson began one speech, taking on Newt Gingrich and Mike Huckabee. “The Reagan Coalition was never about the man. It was and is about the principles and values we apply to issues.” He continued, “The issues may change, but the principles do not.” The crowd roared its enthusiasm.

Later in the day, an elderly gentleman asked Senator Thompson about immigration. Senator Thompson responded, “Securing the border is popular for a lot of candidates to talk about these days. They’ve changed their positions. I embrace change, but some of these guys are wearing out the road to Damascus.” The crowd ate it up. Thompson pointed out that he, unlike the other candidates, has been consistently supportive of increased border security and consistently opposed to lax enforcement.

It’s refreshing to hear Senator Thompson. He is not the candidate the media likes. He gives good sound bites, but he is plodding, methodical, and issue oriented. Senator Thompson’s is not a personality driven campaign. It is about issues, issues, issues. And it is conservative to the core. On the campaign trail, it seems Thompson has never met an issue he was ready to solve based on what he perceives as real conservative principles. Chief among them is that if government gets involved, it will probably make the situation worse. There is no pandering. John McCain may give straight talk, but Thompson gives no bull.

Since Mitt Romney’s call for a government plan to save the automotive industry, Senator Thompson has been on a tear blasting him as the candidate who tailors his message to whichever group he is talking to. Taking on Mike Huckabee, Senator Thompson points out that he likes Mike Huckabee, but his policies and agenda are full of empty rhetoric and policies anathema to the entrepreneurial spirit in the United States. He points out that he and John McCain are friends, but he has “strong disagreements” with John McCain on issues such as immigration and taxes.

Polling in South Carolina shows Fred Thompson gaining momentum in the state. The campaign staff has noticed the crowds growing since Fred Thompson took on Mike Huckabee in the Fox News Debate. The message is clear -- Thompson is the real conservative in the race.

There is an opening for Thompson. Mitt Romney has written off South Carolina, ceding the field to John McCain. Mike Huckabee is losing ground as voters learn more about his liberal record. Conservative rallying has begun to impact John McCain. There is a palpable sense in the crowds and among South Carolina reporters that the momentum is with Fred Thompson. And so the campaign soldiers on.

In Orangeburg, South Carolina, Fred Thompson fired up the crowds with humor and substance. After a long day of talking, he coughed and took a sip of water. “Yeah, I’m choked up,” Thompson said, “but I’m not getting emotional.” The crowd roared. Then Thompson went into his hallmark campaign routine -- questions from the crowd. Every event ends that way.

An attendee asked Thompson what he would do about Israel and the Palestinians. While complementary of the President, Thompson said, “Every President has thought he could solve the problem on the force of his personality, but he can’t.” He continued, “There are a lot of things that are possible in that situation, but one non-negotiable — the right of Israel to exist.” More applause. Another attendee asked about immigration. “A nation that cannot control its borders ceases to be a sovereign nation,” Thompson responded. The crowd drowned him out with applause. Then Thompson does what so many of the other candidates fail to do. He talks specifics and policies, mixed with humor and the recognition that what he is doing is rather unique.

It is a unique campaign. Like John McCain, who was written off for dead last June, Fred Thompson has begun a comeback. He has come back as the candidate everyone wanted to get in the race. In the process, he is owning the crowd.
28779  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: The Nat Geo Documentary on the Dog Brothers: Fight Club on: January 18, 2008, 11:18:22 AM
Posted on behalf of C-Scurvy Dog


I began my journey into martial arts in 1994 after watching a skinny Brazilian named Royce Gracie decimate his much larger opponents by using technique and leverage in what would later be called the start of the MMA movement that has since swept the country.  I was so impressed with this “new style” that I rushed down and began training with him the very next week.  After about a year of training in GJJ I also found my way into a school that taught muay thai kickboxing, JKD, shoot wrestling, freestyle BJJ and the Filipino martial arts as instructed by Dan Inosanto and his contemporaries. I was immediately drawn to incorporating these new techniques into my style which would later be the building blocks of many great mixed martial artists.


The only style I couldn’t seem to wrap my hands around at the time was the Filipino martial arts. I just didn’t see the practicality of the techniques being used in a real life environment. Enter the Dog Brothers. I witnessed my first Gathering of the Pack in 1996 when one of my training partners went down to test his skills against other like minded opponents. To say I was shocked by what I saw was an understatement. Here were guys fighting full contact just like I was used to watching yet they were doing it not only with various weapons but in a spirit of camaraderie that I had only previously witnessed with my time in the Army Scouts/Snipers. These guys were putting themselves on the line to see if their skills and techniques really worked under pressure and pulling it off with nothing but mutual respect and handshakes at the end of each fight regardless of the outcome. I had nothing but admiration for these guys but after watching several such events I thought to myself that I would never have the nerve to put myself into such a potentially dangerous environment even though I recognized the learning potential it entailed.


Ten years later and past what I considered to be my fighting prime due to age and a number of accumulative fighting injuries I again attended several more Gatherings of the Pack. This time I noticed that the fighters were not a bunch of young bucks in their primes but a broad range of guys who were actually from all walks of life and many of whom were not only my age but in many cases much older. Of course, this had always been the case but I had never been cognoscente of this fact. It was then that the realization of the Dog Brothers credo to “walk as a warrior for all your days” really sunk in. The next thing I know I found myself training with the North Hollywood Clan of Dog Brothers and three months later feeling the first solid strike to my body by a 1 ¼” rattan stick in a Gathering that instead of crippling me actually invigorated me and sent me into that adrenal state that I had previously only heard about. I have been hooked ever since and now as a candidate Dog Brother I have a different view on life and what it means to me to walk as a warrior for all of your days.


I know that I am by far not the toughest, youngest or strongest guy on the block. However I am fully aware of what I am and am not capable of through the intense testing and self enlightenment that the Gatherings provide. This gives me something that the tougher, younger and stronger guys may not necessarily have. Mind, Heart and Balls and the willingness to fight if need be regardless of the odds. I will carry this warrior mentality with me as I continue my journey through life and apply it not only to fighting but to any challenge that puts itself in my path. I have effectively found a higher consciousness through harder contact!

Tim “C-Scurvy Dog”
Landscape Architect
28780  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Politically (In)correct on: January 18, 2008, 08:40:41 AM
Burglars have rights too, says
[British] Attorney General
by By Melissa Kite and Andrew AldersonA fresh row broke out last night about the rights of householders to fight back against intruders after the Government's most senior lawyer defended the rights of burglars.

Lord Goldsmith, the attorney-general, flew in the face of the Prime Minister's pledge to look again at the law with a view to giving homeowners more rights when he said that existing legislation was adequate.

He said that criminals must also have the right to protection from violence, prompting David Davis, the shadow home secretary, to accuse the government of being dangerously split on the issue.

Lord Goldsmith's intervention came as Sir John Stevens, the Metropolitan Police Commissioner, dismissed fears that giving homeowners greater freedom when tackling burglars would lead to an "arms race" that would put them in greater danger.

He denied that a change in the law, which currently gives homeowners the right to use "reasonable force" when tackling intruders, would encourage burglars to become more aggressive.

In an interview with The Telegraph, Sir John - who last weekend came out in favour of the Right to Fight Back campaign, launched by this newspaper two months ago - said: "I am convinced that enabling householders to use whatever force is necessary will discourage burglars.

"The fact that a would-be intruder knows a householder can respond without the fear of being prosecuted will undoubtedly deter criminal acts." Sir John, who will step down next month after five years as commissioner, said fellow police officers were confident that it would act as a deterrent.

"We are on the ground," he said. "We smell it, we see it, we hear it. We know what we are talking about."

Last week, Tony Blair told the House of Commons that he would look at strengthening the law and a Tory MP has introduced a private member's bill to do so.

Lord Goldsmith, however, appeared to take issue with the Prime Minister's pledge to act. "We must protect victims and law abiding citizens," he said.

"But we have to recognize that others have some rights as well. They don't lose all rights because they're engaged in criminal conduct."

Mr Davis said: "They certainly do lose quite a lot of rights. The Government ought to make up its mind. The Prime Minister says one thing and the Attorney General says another.

"Of course all human beings have rights, but when somebody enters your home to commit a crime they give up a large portion of them."

Some critics of a change in the law have voiced concerns that burglars will feel they have to carry guns, knives and other weapons to protect themselves from householders.

Sir John, however, did not see this as a problem. "I have confidence in the good judgment and common sense of the public in knowing how far they should go."

He said that householders should be able to use whatever force is necessary even if - in exceptional circumstances - it involved killing the intruder.

He spoke of his regret about the repercussions over the verdict on Tony Martin, the farmer who shot dead one burglar and seriously injured another during a break-in at his farm in August 1999.

There was a public outcry when Martin was found guilty at Norwich Crown Court and sentenced to life in prison. The charge and sentence were later reduced to five years for manslaughter.

Sir John did not suggest that the jury had reached the wrong verdict, but added: "The Tony Martin case is unfortunate because it has skewed the debate [on the public's right to protect their home]. But it is a fact that burglars have acted with greater confidence since the Tony Martin verdict and that has to be a matter of regret."

Lord Goldsmith, however, warned of the dangers of using the Martin case to make bad law: "There are very few cases that have given rise to this problem. Besides Tony Martin, there's only one I know about.

"It's always possible to extrapolate from one case and think that something is happening across the country when it isn't."

Mr Blair's announcement of a review of the law came three days after the Conservative Party threw its weight behind a new parliamentary attempt to win more rights for householders to protect them from burglars.

The Telegraph revealed last weekend how Patrick Mercer, the Tory MP, would introduce a Private Member's Bill to change the law in favour of homeowners.

In an article in this newspaper today, Mr Mercer described Mr Blair's promise to consult before taking action as a "classic delaying tactic".

Michael Howard, the Tory leader, yesterday praised this newspaper's campaign. "I pay tribute to the highly effective campaign run over so many months by The Sunday Telegraph. It was the first newspaper to highlight this crucial issue and its persistence has been a key factor in winning this change to the law and in forcing Tony Blair's U-turn," he said. "We now need to ensure that Patrick Mercer's bill gets through parliament. The Sunday Telegraph's continued vigilance will be crucial in ensuring this."
28781  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / This day in Terrorism on: January 18, 2008, 07:46:42 AM
1982 Beirut, Lebanon:  Malcolm Kerr, President of American University, assassinated by Islamic Jihad.
28782  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: The Dog Brothers Tribe on: January 18, 2008, 07:13:06 AM
Woof Brothers:

Our webmaster is going to be taking care of updates this weekend.  Please check when he has done so to see if he has entered your name correctly.

Crafty Dog
28783  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / F. Ames: Licentiousness and Liberty on: January 18, 2008, 05:58:40 AM
"The known propensity of a democracy is to licentiousness which
the ambitious call, and ignorant believe to be liberty."

-- Fisher Ames (speech in the Massachusetts Ratifying Convention,
15 January 1788)

Reference: The Works of Fisher Ames, W.B. Allen, ed., vol. 1 (546)
28784  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Chess on: January 18, 2008, 05:56:10 AM
I've been having lots of fun playing with my children.

Anyway, saw this in the news:

Bobby Fischer, Former World Chess Champion, Is Dead

REYKJAVIK, Iceland (AP) -- Bobby Fischer, the reclusive chess
master who became a Cold War icon when he dethroned the
Soviet Union's Boris Spassky as world champion in 1972, has
died. He was 64.

Mr. Fischer died Thursday in a Reykjavik hospital, said his
spokesman, Gardar Sverrisson. There was no immediate word on
the cause of death.

Read More:
28785  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Movie Fights on: January 18, 2008, 05:52:12 AM
I liked that Donnie Yen fight. 

I almost went to see Eastern Promises when it was in the theaters, but as family man it can be hard to get out in the evenings-- so now I will wait for it to show up on sat-TV  smiley

Lucy Liu?  Maybe she got bit by the bug with the role in "Kill Bill".
28786  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: The Nat Geo Documentary on the Dog Brothers: Fight Club on: January 18, 2008, 05:48:57 AM
Here's Poi Dog's contribution:

It all started innocently enough.  One fine day in April 1995, a friend and training partner told me about a tape he'd just rented called 'Real Contact Stickfighting - Power'.  "Check it out, man, they fight for real," he said.

There's no way they were actually fighting, I thought.  They can't be.  I mean, I had already been training for several years in the Filipino martial arts and I knew how dangerous a stick strike could be.  A single stick hit to the wrist would break bones.  A hit to the knee would cripple.  A hit to the head would kill.  There's no way they were fighting for real.  I rented the tape, threw it in the VCR and hit play.

They were fighting for real.

The next day, I found an ad for the video series in a magazine and ordered the full set.  I immediately incorporated the drills into my training.  I nearly beat a palm tree to death in my backyard practicing full power strikes.  I told all my other training partners about these crazy guys who fought for real.  I tried to lend them the tapes.

I wanted to fight for real.

Problem was, no one else did.  I left Hawaii for college in New Mexico 2 years later.  In the summer of 2000, I found myself in Santa Fe, at the home of Arlan "Salty Dog" Sanford, one of the founding members of the Dog Brothers.  At a small park (one I recognized from the tape!), I stepped out for the first time against an actual Dog Brother.  I was sore for the next 3 days.  The welts disappeared after a week or so.  I couldn't wait to go back.

I was fighting for real.

I fought at my first Gathering in July 2002.  I've fought in 6 Gatherings so far.  I've trained with four of the clans - Santa Fe, Hawaii (I was there for the founding), North Hollywood and Hermosa Beach.  I made full Dog Brother July 2007.  I've been dropped from shots to the temple (through the mask) and to the back of the head (without the mask).  I've tapped to omoplatas and elbows to the face.  I was hit across the kidneys once so hard I had blood in my urine for a couple of days.  I have scars on my arms, thighs and shoulders from some of the stick hits I've taken.

Why the hell am I fighting for real?

It's not for the money, because we don't get paid.  It's not for the adulation from the legions of adoring fans, because there aren't any.  It's not for the crazy sex from hot anonymous groupies because there are none (I'm REALLY hoping this one will change).  There are no extrinsic rewards for doing this and I don't imagine that changing anytime soon.  I don't want it to change, ever (except for that groupie thing).

I fight for real because it grounds me in the essential qualities of being human.  I know great triumph and joy in successfully defending myself from a truly committed opponent.  I know the tragedy and pain of failing to do the same.  I know the fear and doubt that comes from standing alone against a man much bigger and stronger than I who is determined to test my courage and resolve.  I know the camaraderie and bond of the tribe, and know I will never actually have to stand alone.  In the chaos of struggle, I can give form to my inner demons, and exorcise them through the physical ritual of the fight.

Besides, it's fun as hell.
28787  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: 4 Day DBMA Camp in Germany with Guro Lonely on: January 17, 2008, 05:10:38 PM
Hmmmmmm , , , ,
28788  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Nat Geo's blog on: January 17, 2008, 04:01:38 PM
This from Peter Bouchard, who heads up the blog for Nat Geo on the show:


Greetings from the National Geographic Channel!  We want to hear from you about your experiences with Dog Brothers Inc.

What we are looking for is to hear about your experiences in this group and why you decided to join.  It doesn't have to be anything long, a short paragraph will do.  We'll pick the best ones and publish them on our channel's blog in a post leading up to the show and possibly as the show re-runs later through the year.

What we will need from you:

  - The short paragraph that was mentioned above

  - Your first name (We want to respect your privacy)

  - Your professional occupation

We can’t promise much, except an additional story that you will be able to brag to your friends about. We bet you all have some!

We look forward to hearing from you.

Peter Bouchard
NGC Blog

28789  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Politically (In)correct on: January 17, 2008, 12:29:24 PM
Amateur dramatics group ordered by police to use plastic swords - and keep them under lock and key

An amateur dramatic group performing "Robinson Crusoe" has been ordered to lock up its PLASTIC swords - over health and safety fears.

Members of the Carnon Downs Drama Group are staging the pantomime which features several swashbuckling sword fights using toy cutlasses.

But the actors have been told the props - including a plastic spear and toy gun which fires a flag with the word 'bang' - are classed as "replica weapons".

Police have warned the troupe, based in Truro, Cornwall, the fake arms must be kept in a secure case in a "locked room" with restricted access.

As well as informing officers they had no "malicious intent" the group were told to notify the fire brigade and make adequate arrangements for security.

Organisers also had to appoint a named individual responsible for the prop weapons who must accompany them whenever they are moved.

The amateur players have been told all of the procedures form part a risk assessment in line with new legislation affecting film, stage and TV productions.

Director Linda Barker said: "In some scenes pirates are hitting each other with frying pans and sauce pan lids but there's no problem with them.

"We've got several wooden and plastic swords, two plastic spears and gun which cost £2 from a joke shop. But now we need to keep them locked away and fill out all sorts of forms.

"You can't have a play like this without a fight scene and you can't have a fight scene without a sword. It's ridiculous."

Co-director Elaine Gummow says she was told about the laws by the National Operatic and Dramatic Association.

She said: ""There was an article in a recent magazine about the use of weapons in productions.

"It told members that they had to carry out and follow new health and safety guidelines if any weapons, including replica weapons, are used on stage.

"It would be impossible to stage it without the use of a few swords and cutlasses, as well as a traditional pop-gun which emits nothing more than a flag which says 'bang'.

"It all seems a bit absurd but it is perhaps a sign of the times - health and safety is everywhere. All of us see there's a serious side to this, but I really don't think we pose a threat."

Cast member Steve Cleaver added: "It seems rather absurd and totally silly that pirates would not have weapons."

The Association advised members to contact local police and make them aware of their 'weapons' stash.

Devon and Cornwall police urged the Carnon Downs group to keep the props locked away.

PC Nigel Hyde, of Devon and Cornwall Police, said the props are classed as replica weapons and are considered dangerous.

He said: "I gather we've made a note and it seems a bit unusual. But other forms of replica weapons have been used to carry out crimes and the consequences have been serious."

The version of Robinson Crusoe is a traditional panto with a Cornish flavour and is set in Falmouth harbour.

It runs from January 22 and to January 26 at the Perran Ar Worthal Memorial Hall at Perranwell near Truro.
28790  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / DBMA DVD: "The Dos Triques Formula" on: January 17, 2008, 12:03:28 PM
Woof All:

Ron a.k.a "the Night Owl" and I are putting the final touches on the next
DBMA DVD "The Dos Triques Formula".

As many of you may remember, the term "Los Triques" is our neologism for
blending the initials "KKK".  For us, KKK are the initials of Kali-Krabi
Krabong, but of course the vile associations in America of these initials
made it necessary to develop another name for our blending of these two
arts-- hence "Los Triques" which, while sounding Filipino, simply means "The
Three Ks".

In "Dos Triques Formula" the "Dos" simply refers to the fact that this
material is for double stick.  As for the word "Formula", , ,  well, let me
see if I can explain.

As most of you know,  DBMA has as its mission statement "Walk as Warriors
for all our days" and in the real world this entails 360 degree awareness,
often with weapons involved.  It is my belief that the chance of success in
360 degree situations is greatly enhanced by the physical ability to operate
with either side forward.  To give a simple example, if I must operate in a
left lead (i.e. left foot forward) and I face one person coming from my
North, that is fine.  But if a friend of his approaches from my East and I
must fight him left lead I will be giving my back to the man to my North.
On the other hand, if I can shift to a right lead (probably while moving
Southeast), it will be much easier  for me to keep track of the man coming
from the North.

In DBMA the ability to fight with either side forward while moving in any
direction is developed in double stick.  Unlike single stick, we have a
weapon in front no matter which foot is forward.  Yes, very good fighting can
be done single stick in the off-lead (stick in rear hand) as we show in
"Krabi Krabong" by Ajarn Salty and in the "Los Triques" DVD, but in my
opinion this is less applicable to the requirements of 360 degrees.  And if
we don't care which foot is forward, we can use all the triangular footwork
which changes leads-- and if we can use all the triangles while moving and
striking (see "Combining Stick & Footwork DVD") we can manifest the
potential of the Art in real time.

In "Dos Triques Formula" I offer what I believe to be a formula of
tremendous simplicity and ferocity.  Pulling numbers out of the air wink
against what 95% of fighters do 95% of the time, you will have a clear and
simple way of seeing one of three basic structures and have three basic
combinations to use in conjunction with three basic triangles.

Mastering this material in training provides an underlying understanding of
footwork, zoning and striking that applies in all categories; not just
double stick, but single stick, staff, knife, Kali Tudo and streetfighting.

And because "It is Dog Brothers Martial Arts, if you see it taught, you see
it fought."(c)

As soon as we finish the edit, Cindy will design the box, Night Owl will put
together the promo clip, and we will send the master to the duplication
house.   We estimate we will begin shipping in two to three weeks.

The Adventure continues!
Guro Crafty

28791  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The 2008 Presidential Race on: January 17, 2008, 11:58:07 AM
I have zero tolerance with folks who praise Louis Farrakan.
WSJ Political Diary


When it came to illegal immigrants, Mike Huckabee spent his decade as governor of Arkansas as a compassionate conservative. He pushed for a bill allowing immigrant students in-state tuition rates if they went to state colleges, failed to complete an agreement to let state police enforce federal immigration law and criticized federal anti-immigration enforcement efforts. He dismissed as "racist" the motivations of sponsors of a bill that would have required state residents to show proof of citizenship to vote. He often said it was wrong to punish the children of parents who had entered the country illegally.

Well, that was then and now Mr. Huckabee is running for president. Competing in the hotly-contested South Carolina primary this week, he signed a pledge to support a plan that would send all illegal aliens home.

The pledge, sponsored by the advocacy group Numbers USA, commits Mr. Huckabee to oppose any path to citizenship for illegal aliens now in the country and to use law enforcement measures to deport them back to their countries of origin.

Numbers USA leader Roy Beck had previously been a critic of Mr. Huckabee's immigration record, calling it "poor" and "a disaster." But yesterday, he was all smiles at a news conference with Mr. Huckabee in South Carolina: "Probably, this is the strongest no-amnesty, attrition plan of any of the candidates," he told reporters.

But anti-immigration backers of the former Arkansas governor should be wary. He can and often does turn on a policy dime. Jim Gilchrist, founder of the border control group Minutemen, endorsed Mr. Huckabee in December when the candidate "looked me in the eye" and pledged to fight for a constitutional amendment to end birthright citizenship, which currently makes any child born inside the borders automatically a U.S. citizen. Now Mr. Huckabee says he doesn't support such an amendment and Mr. Gilchrist has been unavailable for comment to reporters asking how he now feels about his candidate.

-- John Fund
Has Romney Broken the Code?

COLUMBIA, S.C. -- One Republican who isn't changing his message after Michigan is Mitt Romney. The former Massachusetts Governor finally hit pay dirt in an early primary by pounding away on jobs and the economy. His first campaign events here suggest he's sticking with the theme that won up north.

At the University of South Carolina yesterday, Mr. Romney launched into his now-honed stump speech about how "Washington is broken" and has failed to "secure the border," "fix Social Security" or "fight for every good job." Back in Michigan, Mr. Romney discovered that jittery voters responded strongly to promises to address the economy, especially those in the ailing auto sector who were quick to buy the argument that their problems begin in Washington. He continues to hammer away on that theme here, promising to cut taxes and reduce pork-barrel spending and insisting that "lobbyists" and "long-term politicians" are quaking "in their boots" after his Michigan win.

Can a weakening economy save Mitt Romney? It's too early to tell, since the South Carolina polls probably haven't caught up with the changing dynamics of the race yet -- they currently have him trailing John McCain and Mike Huckabee by ten points or more. But his crowd at the university was heaving -- so big that many couldn't fit in the main ballroom. And even if Grandpa Romney doesn't prevail in the end, attendees got an early view of another Romney politician in the making -- the governor's 20-month-old grandson, Parker, who delighted the masses by crawling into Mr. Romney's arms and burbling into the microphone.

-- Kim Strassel
Dr. Coburn Makes a House Call

GREENVILLE, S.C. -- This state was John McCain's Waterloo in 2000, in no small part because he struggled to gain traction with core Republican voters. The Arizona senator is now trying to avoid a repeat by shoring up his conservative credentials. One bulwark rolled out yesterday was an endorsement from conservative Oklahoma Senator Tom Coburn.

Senator Lindsey Graham set the tone for a packed auditorium here in the religious Upcountry, introducing Senator Coburn as a "rock-solid fiscal, social and economic conservative," who represents "everything that was right about the Republican Party." Senator Coburn (just in case anybody was still missing the point) began his own talk by noting that his "credentials as a conservative are unquestioned" and explained that Mr. McCain was the only candidate who could be trusted on the crucial question of appointing conservative judges and protecting "innocent life." Senator McCain hopped in next, praising his own pro-life record and promising to "nominate the closest thing to a clone of [Supreme Court Justice] John Roberts." Only at the end did anyone mention what has been Mr. McCain's traditional selling point elsewhere, his qualifications to serve as commander-in-chief.

The Arizona senator needs all the help he can get from conservatives like Dr. Coburn. Parked outside the rally were a variety of protest groups, some waving signs about Mr. McCain's immigration positions, others waving confederate flags (the candidate's criticism of which earned him the ire of many residents in 2000). But unlike in his 2000 race against George W. Bush, several GOP candidates this year are seriously chasing the conservative vote -- including Mike Huckabee and Fred Thompson. That may be Mr. McCain's salvation, and why he's currently the front-runner with support in the mid-20s.

-- Kim Strassel
The Biggest Loser

Michigan Democratic Senator Carl Levin fought tooth and nail to shake up the primary calendar this year and break what he called the "stranglehold" of Iowa and New Hampshire on the nominating process. But while the accelerated Michigan primary produced a contest of some significance on the Republican side, it was a complete flop on the Democratic side. The vote was virtually meaningless for the Democrats' presidential race, generating little local enthusiasm while producing a feud with the national party that has yet to be resolved.

Because most Democratic hopefuls acceded to the national party's request to keep their names off the Michigan ballot, Tuesday's turnout represented only 20% of the state's registered voting population and in real terms was only 4.8% larger than 2000, the last seriously contested primary. Compare that to the record-shattering Democratic turnout in both Iowa and New Hampshire this year.

Adding insult to injury, the Democratic National Committee voted earlier this year to strip Michigan of all 156 of its delegates to the national convention. While Mr. Levin remains confident the DNC won't make good on its threat and that Michigan's delegates will be seated in the end, the DNC took the unusual step of canceling the block of hotel rooms set aside for the Wolverine State delegation in Denver in August.

Florida Democrats, who casts their vote twelve days from now, are in a similar situation, having also been stripped of their delegates. But at least the Florida beauty contest will include all the candidates on the ballot, and the entire media universe will be watching the outcome, guaranteeing the Sunshine State a big impact on the presidential race as it hurtles toward a critical moment the following week on Tsunami Tuesday.

Not so Michigan. Even as Mr. Levin publicly urged Democrats to turn out Tuesday and register their choice between Hillary Clinton and "uncommitted," the eyes of his party were focused thousands of miles of away on the televised debate between the top contenders in Las Vegas. All in all, the outcome has not brought credit on Mr. Levin, who faces embarrassing question about whether the costs associated with his gamble were worth the unimpressive result.

-- Tom Bevan, executive editor

The Semi Natural

Sometimes it takes a well-connected journalist to articulate what a lot of people are feeling, but can't quite express in public.

Time columnist Joe Klein did just that when he used a Council on Foreign Relations meeting this week to suggest that "an element of unwitting sabotage" may be behind Bill Clinton's frequently unhelpful comments that have thrown his wife's campaign off-stride. According to the New York Observer, Mr. Klein suggested that Mr. Clinton may be "worrying" that "maybe she's going to be a better president" than he was. But Mr. Klein hastily added that Mr. Clinton is probably ambivalent about his wife's candidacy, because he also has been supportive in fundraising and other areas: "Consciously, I think that he sees her election as president as the final validation of his presidency."

Such amateur psychology would be meaningless if it were not for the fact that Mr. Klein knows the Clintons so well. He spent many long conversations with them during the 1992 campaign and afterwards. In 1997, he anonymously published the best-selling novel "Primary Colors," a thinly fictionalized retelling of Mr. Clinton's rise to the White House that later became a movie. In 2002, he wrote a largely positive non-fiction review of the Clinton presidency called "The Natural."

28792  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: Emergency Tips and Emergency Medicine on: January 17, 2008, 08:45:19 AM
Sent to me by a friend at Border Protection:

STROKE: Remember The 1st Three Letters.... S.T.R.

My nurse friend sent this and encouraged me to post it and spread the word. I agree. If everyone can remember something this simple, we could save some folks. Seriously..

Please read:


During a BBQ, a friend stumbled and took a little fall - she assured everyone that she was fine (they offered to call paramedics) .....she said she had just tripped over a brick because of her new shoes.

They got her cleaned up and got her a new plate of food. While she appeared a bit shaken up, Ingrid went about enjoying herself the rest of the evening.

Ingrid's husband called later telling everyone that his wife had been taken to the hospital - (at 6:00 pm Ingrid passed away.) She had suffered a stroke at the BBQ. Had they known how to identify the signs of a stroke, perhaps Ingrid would be with us today. Some don't die.... they end up in a helpless, hopeless condition instead.

It only takes a minute to read this...

A neurologist says that if he can get to a stroke victim within 3 hours he can totally reverse the effects of a stroke... totally . He said the trick was getting a stroke recognized, diagnosed, and then getting the patient medically cared for within 3 hours, which is tough.

Thank God for the sense to remember the "3" steps, STR . Read and Learn!

Sometimes symptoms of a stroke are difficult to identify. Unfortunately, the lack of awareness spells disaster. The stroke victim may suffer severe brain damage when people nearby fail to recognize the symptoms of a stroke .

Now doctors say a bystander can recognize a stroke by asking three simp le questions:
S * Ask the individual to SMILE.
T * Ask the person to TALK and SPEAK A SIMPLE SENTENCE (Coherently)
(i.e. It is sunny out today)
R * Ask him or her to RAISE BOTH ARMS.

If he or she has trouble with ANY ONE o f these tasks, call 999/911 immediately and describe the symptoms to the dispatcher.

New Sign of a Stroke -------- Stick out Your Tongue

NOTE: Another 'sign' of a stroke is this: Ask the person to 'stick' out his tongue.. If the tongue is 'crooked', if it goes to one side or the other , that is also an indication of a stroke.

A cardiologist says if everyone who gets this e-mail sends it to 10 people; you can bet that at least one life will be saved.



28793  DBMA Espanol / Espanol Discussion / Estudio: Ataque mientras esta' en coche on: January 17, 2008, 08:41:15 AM

Muchas errores obvias aqui, por ejemplo:

1) Estar alli'
2) No salir cuando se le da la oportunidad
3) Salir del coche

Pero tambien podemos

1) Ver en vivo un ataque por la ventana contra un persona sentada en su coche.  ?Como se puede defender este tipo de ataque?
2) Ver Jab-cruzada fuerte y agresivo
3) Ver ataque desde pie contra persona en el piso
4) Ver necesidad de pensar en 360 grados
5) estudiar el papel de los observadores-- ?que hacen?

28794  DBMA Espanol / Espanol Discussion / Videos: Estudios en applicacion on: January 17, 2008, 08:34:36 AM
El nuevo fenomeno de clips en sitios como youtube nos ofrece una tremenda oportunidad para observar, estudiar, y preparnos mentalmente.

Para comenzar, he aqui en Holanda un hombre montado sobre un mujer tratando de matarla con un cuchillo.  Sepa que lo que se ve aqui' es muy, muy feo.  Fijense en las acciones, y falta de acciones, de la gente alli'.  ?Que harian Uds?

28795  DBMA Espanol / Espanol Discussion / Re: Mexico on: January 17, 2008, 08:29:32 AM
Guau Jose:

Buenisima idea.  Voy a abrir un hilo para este proposito.


28796  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / NY Times: Rudy's in trouble (Ya think?) on: January 17, 2008, 07:29:35 AM
For months, the Republican establishment in New York and New Jersey marched nearly in lock step behind Rudolph W. Giuliani, the former hometown mayor they were confident would become their party’s nominee for president.

But as Mr. Giuliani has plummeted from first to fourth — or worse — in some national polls, as he finished near the bottom of the pack in the nation’s earliest primaries, and as his lead evaporated even in Florida, the state on which he has gambled the most time and money, those Republican leaders are verging toward a grim new consensus:

If Mr. Giuliani loses in the Florida primary on Jan. 29, they say, he may even have trouble defeating the rivals who are encroaching on his own backyard.

“It’s pretty certain that he has to win Florida,” said Guy V. Molinari, the former Staten Island borough president, who is co-chairman of Mr. Giuliani’s campaign in New York.

Those supporters say they are confident that if Mr. Giuliani carries Florida or runs a very close second, he will remain the odds-on favorite to claim virtually all of the delegates from the New York, New Jersey and Connecticut primaries on Feb. 5, when Republicans in 22 states vote.

But if Mr. Giuliani is relegated to a distant second or worse in Florida, even some of his supporters acknowledge that New York’s primary one week later would most likely be up for grabs, with Senator John McCain of Arizona and former Gov. Mitt Romney of Massachusetts being Mr. Giuliani’s strongest rivals. Like Mr. Giuliani, both are fielding full delegate slates in all 29 of the state’s Congressional districts.

“If he carries Florida, he carries New York,” said Fred Siegel, a Cooper Union historian who has served as an adviser to the former mayor and written a largely admiring biography of him. But winning Florida would require “a miraculous comeback,” he said, adding: “I wouldn’t bet on it.”

With 101 delegates from New York, 52 from New Jersey and 30 from Connecticut, the region accounts for about 15 percent of the magic number needed for the Republican nomination. All three are winner-take-all contests.

Mr. Giuliani’s precipitous decline in national and state polls in recent weeks has prompted many of his leading supporters in the metropolitan area to raise questions about his strategy of largely ignoring early races in Iowa, New Hampshire and Michigan to focus on Florida. He received little news coverage during those primaries, then finished poorly in each.

“I think that a lot of what’s happening in general is the early campaigning in Iowa, New Hampshire and Michigan playing an active role, and the fact that Rudy chose not to compete,” said Guy F. Talarico, a Giuliani supporter who is the former chairman of the Republican Party in Bergen County, N.J. “People are focusing on that and saying, ‘When are we going to get in the game?’ ”

Still, once the campaign circles back to the metropolitan area, “I think he’s going to win New Jersey,” Mr. Talarico said.

A senior Republican strategist, who is allied with Mr. Giuliani and is working with Republican legislative candidates in New York, said Mr. Giuliani’s decision to circumvent the early primaries was a “big gamble” that for the moment looked in danger of failing.

“Who knows if it will work,” said the strategist, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he had not been authorized by the campaign to speak publicly. “But the danger is what you are seeing now. We’re obviously concerned.”

In Florida, a Quinnipiac University poll of likely Republican voters found last month that Mr. Giuliani was leading the pack with 28 percent, followed by former Gov. Mike Huckabee of Arkansas with 21 percent and Mr. Romney with 20 percent. But a follow-up survey last week found the race statistically tied among four candidates: Mr. Giuliani, Mr. McCain, Mr. Huckabee and Mr. Romney.

Mr. Giuliani’s poll numbers have declined in Florida even though he has invested heavily there. The former mayor spent almost $600,000 on television advertising in Florida between Dec. 8 and Jan. 6, second only to Mr. Romney, who spent $676,851, according to Campaign Media Analysis Group, a political advertising research firm.

Almost all of Mr. Giuliani’s spending came in the final 10 days of that period, when Mr. Romney stopped buying ads.

The race has also narrowed in New Jersey, according to a poll released this week by Monmouth University/Gannett. The poll showed Mr. McCain leading by 29 percent to Mr. Giuliani’s 25 percent, a difference that is within the poll’s margin of sampling error. In September, the same poll found Mr. Giuliani 32 percentage points ahead of his nearest rival, Mr. McCain.

On Wednesday, Mr. McCain vowed to compete hard in New York. “I’m going there a lot for money,” he said. “I ought to go there for votes.”

Page 2 of 2)

Nationally, a New York Times/CBS News poll released on Sunday found that Mr. Giuliani, who led the Republican field with 29 percent nationally in October and was tied with Mr. Huckabee at about 22 percent last month, had plummeted to 10 percent, behind Mr. McCain and Mr. Huckabee.

In New York, with its three million enrolled Republicans, polls indicate Mr. Giuliani’s edge was eroding even before the victories by Mr. Huckabee, Mr. McCain and Mr. Romney in Iowa, New Hampshire and Michigan, respectively. In October, Mr. Giuliani led his nearest opponent by a commanding 33-point margin. By last month, he was still ahead, but his lead had shrunk to 22 percentage points.

New public polls are expected to show the race has tightened even more, polling experts said.

“I have a feeling that the sag in Florida and the sag in New Jersey will probably be matched by a sag in New York,” said Maurice Carroll, director of the Quinnipiac Poll, which plans to release a new New York poll next week.

It is unclear what impact Mr. Giuliani’s weak poll numbers and poor primary finishes have had on his fund-raising, as new quarterly campaign spending reports will not be filed until the end of the month. But his campaign reported last week that some workers had given up their paychecks for the month to help save dwindling funds. The campaign reported having $7 million in cash on hand at the time.

There are also concerns among Giuliani supporters that if he does not gain momentum before Feb. 5, he will have to spend precious funds just to win New York, where advertising is particularly expensive.

Anthony V. Carbonetti, Mr. Giuliani’s senior political adviser, said on Wednesday: “Rudy has a long history of fighting for New York, and with his track record and the campaign team we’ve put together here, we’re going to win on Feb. 5.”

Mr. Giuliani has some clear advantages in the region. In addition to having more organizational support from Republican elected officials, he is counting on the fact that in New York and Connecticut, Italian-Americans constitute about one-fifth of the voters in Republican primaries.

But while his popularity soared after the World Trade Center attack, Mr. Giuliani is still reviled by some New Yorkers, including well-organized firefighters who blame him for communications failures on 9/11 and Republicans who have never forgiven him for endorsing a Democrat, Mario M. Cuomo, for governor against George E. Pataki in 1994. Mr. Pataki won.

Mr. Pataki said through a spokesman, David M. Catalfamo, on Wednesday that he was “continuing to evaluate all the candidates and will make an endorsement sometime in the future.”

But several people who worked in his administration, including his former counsel, Michael C. Finnegan, have made their allegiances clear: They are running as McCain delegates.

28797  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Jefferson: Natural Aristocracy on: January 17, 2008, 07:22:40 AM
"The natural aristocracy I consider as the most precious gift
of nature for the instruction, the trusts, and government of
society. And indeed it would have been inconsistent in creation
to have formed man for the social state, and not to have provided
virtue and wisdom enough to manage the concerns of the society.
May we not even say that that form of government is the best
which provides the most - for a pure selection of these natural
aristoi into the offices of government?"

-- Thomas Jefferson (letter to John Adams, 28 October 1813)

Reference: Jefferson Writings, Lemay, ed., 1306.
28798  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / Re: full contact medicine on: January 17, 2008, 07:21:17 AM
Woof Teetsao:

Very kind of you!

Please use the address here on the website:

Marc Denny
Dog Brothers Martial Arts
703 Pier Ave #664
Hermosa Beach, CA 90254

My email address is


28799  DBMA Martial Arts Forum / Martial Arts Topics / 4 Day DBMA Camp in Germany with Guro Lonely on: January 17, 2008, 07:04:52 AM
*Dog Brothers Martial Arts*

*4 Day Training Camp !!*

*15. May -- 18. May*

*Turner und Jugendheim Loreley
St. Goarshausen - Germany

Thursday 15. May: 12.00 lunch, Organized training from 14.00 until 17.00
+ 1h free Training
Friday 16. May: Organized training from 09.00 until 12.00 and 14.00
until 17.00 + 1h free Training
Saturday 17. May: Organized training from 09.00 until 12.00 and 14.00
until 17.00 + 1h free Training
Sunday 18. May: Organized training from 09.00 until 12.00 with the
chance for sparring afterward

200 Euro (price includes food and lodging!)

Please register before the 10th of May (sooner is better as space is

Christian Eckert
0049 (0)170 - 7521890

Wuff, wuff

We are looking forward to this training camp. Four days of intense
training and sitting around the campfire at night. The Loreley is the
perfect training location. Huge meadows and a big gym if it rains. Three
meals a day provided. Sleeping will be in log cabins (Bring your
sleeping bag with you!).

Each class will have a special topic (single stick, double stick, staff,
stick-grappling etc.). As last year the camp will conclude with a few
rounds of light sparring. This is a perfect way to get prepared for the
European "Dog Brothers Gathering of the Pack" at the end of September.

Space is limited so get registered as soon as possible. The camp is
primarily for DBMA members but friends of the pack are welcome (with
prior approval from Lonely dog).

See you there.....


Guro Benjamin "Lonely Dog" Rittiner und Dog Christian Eckert
28800  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Epidemics: Bird Flu, TB, etc on: January 17, 2008, 06:58:01 AM
Here is one interpretation of the meaning underlying the preceding article.  Comments?


( - A drug-resistant strain of a deadly staph infection found in some U.S. hospitals is now spreading among homosexual men, researchers said. A conservative group has characterized the problem as the result of "unnatural behaviors."

Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, or MRSA, killed about 19,000 Americans in 2005 -- most of them in hospitals, according a report published in October in the Journal of the American Medical Association. But now the infection is popping up outside hospitals in San Francisco, Boston, New York and Los Angeles, according to Reuters.

"The medical community has known for years that homosexual conduct, especially among males, creates a breeding ground for often deadly disease. In recent years we have seen a profound resurgence in cases of HIV/AIDS, syphilis, rectal gonorrhea and many other STDs among those who call themselves 'gay,' said Matt Barber, policy director for cultural issues with Concerned Women for America (CWA).

Active homosexual men in San Francisco are considered 13 times more likely to be infected with MRSA than heterosexuals, researchers reported in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

"Once this reaches the general population, it will be truly unstoppable," Reuters quoted Binh Diep, a researcher at the University of California, San Francisco who led the study, as saying. "That's why we're trying to spread the message of prevention," he added.

"The human body is quite callous in how it handles mistreatment and the perversion of its natural functions," said Barber. "When two men mimic the act of heterosexual intercourse with one another, they create an environment, a biological counterfeit, wherein disease can thrive. Unnatural behaviors beget natural consequences."

He blamed television shows like "Will and Grace," which "glorify the homosexual lifestyle," and homosexual indoctrination in schools for the "laissez-faire attitude toward sexual deviancy."

"'Stay out of our bedrooms!' we're often commanded by militant 'gay' activists," Barber said. "Well, now the dangerous and possibly deadly consequence of what occurs in those bedrooms is spilling over into the general population. It's not only frightening, it's infuriating."

Barber called for parents to speak out against "politically correct cultural elites" who "endanger our children and larger communities through propagandist promotion of this demonstrably deadly lifestyle."

"Why does it take a potentially deadly staph epidemic for people to acknowledge reality? Will that even do it? Enough is enough!" Barber added.
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