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Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 09/21/07 - The gaffe of the day?

Saddams dead, Nelsons dead, is Osama dead? they are all dead, so maybe that's why they can't find Osama?


Bush's Mandela death gaffe 'out there'

By staff writers

September 21, 2007 10:27pm
Article from: NEWS.com.au

NELSON Mandela is still very much alive despite a gaffe by US President George W. Bush, who alluded to the former South African leader's death in a speech yesterday.

"It's out there," said Achmat Dangor of the Nelson Mandela Foundation of Mr Bush's comment, which received worldwide media coverage.

"All we can do is reassure people, especially South Africans, that President Mandela is alive," he said.

In a speech defending his administration's Iraq policy, Mr Bush said former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein's brutality had made it impossible to find a leader who could unite the country.

"I heard somebody say, 'Where's Mandela?'," he said.

"Well, Mandela's dead because Saddam Hussein killed all the Mandelas."

The bizarre gaffe was made in a press conference in Washington yesterday.

Mandela became South Africa's first black president in 1994. He won a Nobel Peace Prize for preaching racial harmony and guiding the nation into the post-apartheid era.

References to his death – Mandela is now 89 and increasingly frail – are seen as insensitive in South Africa.

With Reuters


++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

with thinking like this and a genius at the helm it's no wonder they can't solve problems, oh well George can solve it at the next OPEC meeting

Itsdb answered on 09/24/07:

What's bizarre Clete, is that the Aussie press was either too stupid to get his point or too biased to give him kudos for making it.

paraclete rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer
tomder55 rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
pradeep asked on 07/24/07 - your ideal job

briefly describe your ideal job

Itsdb answered on 07/30/07:

I'd like to be the guy in the pit crew that peels the windshield laminate off of a Nascar driver's car.

Steve

PrinceHassim rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
Dark_Crow asked on 06/22/07 - Why do the European’s hate America?..............

I’m told it is because of capitalism; especially Germany, others say it is still a “Jewish” problem. That the moods of the rural populations reflect the mood of the thirties, and when the economy fails, and it will, there will be hell to pay.

Which brings me to the other question: Why don’t we pay attention to where our future lies, across the Pacific, and forget about the E.U. and especially Germany; where Democracy will soon end - That is, stop asking why certain people are not our friends (I already know, they have become Socialist.) .

Itsdb answered on 06/25/07:

Ah, they're just jealous. They're no longer the big dogs on the world stage and they resent it ... but not enough to turn down our tourist dollars.

As to the second question, I think we are paying attention but why give up on Europe? Isn't it still in our interest to maintain friends in Europe?

Dark_Crow rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 06/21/07 - A lesson for George and Condi

on how to deal with the Iranians


'Robust' Aussies fend off Iranians

June 22, 2007 08:38am
Article from: AAP



* Colourful language helps Aussies avoid capture
* Aussies react quickly, Brits caught at most vulnerable
* Video: 'You can't take us, we're Aussies'

AN Australian Navy boarding crew in the Gulf of Persia repelled an Iranian gunboat that threatened them a matter of weeks before 15 British sailors were captured in a similar incident, it was reported today.

The capture of the British crew in March developed into a major diplomatic incident before their release was negotiated.

But BBC reporter Frank Gardner, a security specialist, reported the Australians managed to avoid a similar incident - pointing their guns at the Iranians and used "colourful language" before a gunboat withdrew.

Escape

"What I've been told by several sources, military sources, (is that) there was a similar encounter, in this case between the Royal Australian Navy and Iranian gunboats, some months ago, or at least some months prior to the seizing of the British sailors," Gardner said on ABC radio.

"The Australians escaped capture by climbing back on board the ship they'd just searched. I'm told that they set up their weapons.

"No shots were exchanged but the Iranians backed off and the Australians were able to get helicoptered off that ship and they didn't get captured."

Robust attitude

He did not mention the name of the Australian ship.

Australians ships rotate through duties in the Gulf, chiefly searching ships.

"What I'm hearing is that it was a pretty robust attitude by the Australians," Gardner said.

"The words that somebody said to me was that they used pretty colourful language but I'm sure that alone didn't make the Iranians back off.

"They reacted, I'm told, incredibly quickly, whereas the Brits were caught at their most vulnerable moment climbing down off the ship (and) getting into their boats."

Gardner said the British should be embarrassed about the incident, but the issue was whether military intelligence had been passed on.

Cowards

"The point of this story is not that the Aussies were fantastically brave and the Brits were a bunch of cowards, although I'm sure some people will interpret (it that way)," he said.

"Lessons should have been drawn from what happened to the Australian crew."

He said he had not been able to find out whether the information on the Australian incident had been passed on to the British.

Prime Minister John Howard said today he was not in a position to confirm the report, but told Channel 7: "I'll be getting some further advice on it later this morning.

"The only thing I can say is that the people we have in the Gulf are engaged in very dangerous work and the RAN has done a fantastic job and a very courageous job.

"As to the particulars of that claim, I'm not advised."

Itsdb answered on 06/25/07:

Clete, what does this have to do with George and Condi? Sounds like a lesson for the Brits and an example for the rest of us. Good job, guys.

Steve

paraclete rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
MarySusan asked on 06/14/07 - NEW MODERATOR TO BE MARYSUSAN

I will be the new moderator for the Improved Policics Board when it opens. At that time, I will post the guide of conduct for discussing Politics here.

Cordially,
Mary Sue

Itsdb answered on 06/18/07:

>>To people I like, Crow. :):):)<<

And to the rest?

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Question/Answer
MarySusan asked on 06/13/07 - SITE OF FUTURE IMPROVED POLITICS BOARD!!

I plan on upgrading this Board by inviting new folks to participate, citizens who want a lively give and take about political issues that effect the lives of all decent citizens.

People who want to learn about the serious issues of our time, and people who want to share their knowledge (not propaganda and/or hate)with others for the betterment of all concerned.

STAY TUNED FOR FUTURE ANNOUNCEMENTS.

Itsdb answered on 06/14/07:

Well thank you for the warm welcome.

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 06/07/07 - Letters for Libby

The letters submitted to the Judge in favor of Scooter Libby are linked at The Smoking Gun web site .

David Frum at National Review makes an interesting observation about the letter sent by Paul Wolfowitz .

I also remember how Mr. Libby offered his services pro bono or at reduced costs after he had returned to private law practice - to help former colleagues and friends with legal issues. In one case he helped a public official defend himself against libelous accusations, something that is extremely difficult to do for anyone in public office. The official in question was Richard Armitage who more recently served as - Deputy Secretary of State.

As we have learned from the trial . Not only was Richard Armitage the leaker that Plame worked for the CIA ,but both he an Colin Powell were aware of that fact at the beginning of the investigation.To add further to this misjustice ;prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald was aware of this fact before he even began to question Scooter Libby .

That Armitage and Powell remained silent during this whole affair shows how low they were willing to wallow to get Vice President Dick Cheney .Powell has permanenty soiled his previously fine reputation in my book .Armitage proved he is just pond scum p.o.s. for throwing someone who gave him a hand under the bus.

Itsdb answered on 06/07/07:

So not only did Libby work on Marc Rich's defense while Fitzgerald prosecuted, he defended the real leaker against "libelous accusations" as a favor. Is there anything about this that was about anything of substance?

Brian Carney wrote an excellent piece I believe explains it all rather well. Here is his conclusion:

    If there was a conspiracy, then, it was a conspiracy of dunces. At every stage where a top administration official could have exercised authority to ameliorate the problem caused by Wilson’s op-ed and Armitage’s indiscretion, that official failed to do so.

    If a lesson about the Bush administration lies buried in this tale, it is close to the opposite of the accepted one. It is a lesson about an administration caught in an uncomfortable position as a result of one State Department official’s indiscreet remark to a skilled columnist, an administration straining to appear to be doing the right thing even at the expense of actually doing anything right. But the real lesson here has nothing to do with the Bush administration, any more than it has to do with prewar intelligence or with the First and Fifth Amendment rights of CIA officers.

    The modern American government is a vast and largely self-sustaining bureaucracy. That bureaucracy acts, first and foremost, in its own interest, and not necessarily in the interests of its putative but temporary political bosses. The CIA, its intelligence having been challenged, sold out the White House on the sixteen words—even though that intelligence would later be upheld. The State Department, faced with the knowledge that one of its own was responsible for the Valerie Wilson leak, preferred keeping the White House in the dark to revealing what it knew. The Justice Department did what prosecutors do when ordered to investigate, which is to charge people with crimes.

    In other words, the Republican party’s alleged “full control” of government prior to the 2006 midterm elections was more myth than reality. The Bush administration lost control of the Wilson story almost from the beginning, and while on a number of occasions it failed to exercise the control available to it, it was also denied the opportunity to control its fate by entrenched interests that no elected administration can ever fully master without the consent of the bureaucracy that supposedly serves it.

    The President, however, does still hold one trump card, left in the hands of the chief executive by the founding fathers. The only unchecked power held by any single person in the federal government is the power to grant a pardon. That power is nothing more than the authority to restore personal liberty to another person—that is, to release a man or woman from the grip of the state.

    Within hours of Libby’s conviction, Democrats, led by the Senate majority leader Harry Reid, called on President Bush to preclude the possibility of a pardon. This the President has of course refused to do. Neither has he yet offered a pardon. But there are good reasons, partly political and partly personal, for delay.

    A pardon, it is generally agreed and the Supreme Court has ruled, carries with it the taint of guilt, and its acceptance an acknowledgment of guilt. This is something that Libby may yet hope to avoid. While he is due to be sentenced in June, his lawyers have announced their intention to appeal the conviction.

    A pardon, whether it comes now or later, will inevitably occasion another round of scab-pulling about the case for the war and the administration’s commitment to the rule of law. It was partly out of a wholly unjustified fear of such criticisms that Libby was put in his current position in the first place. Before the President leaves office, it would be a rough sort of justice to defy those criticisms, and those who level them, by setting him free.


What's one more round of "scab-pulling" at this stage?

tomder55 rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 06/06/07 - The world at a cross roads .


Increasingly, the world is divided between liberal democracies (or regimes that are striving or pretending to be liberal democracies) and regimes that are tyrannical or are tending in that direction. And it is states in the latter category that are the source of the growing security threats that confront us. Though these regimes differ greatly in many other respects, their leaders seem to be drawn together more and more by their common fear and hatred of liberal democracy--think of the unholy trinity of Ahmadinejad, Chavez, and Lukashenka. It is the tyrannical regimes that support terrorism and threaten not merely to acquire but to use nuclear weapons. Any illusions that might have emerged in the 1990s that the world was entering an era of peace or that the further expansion of liberal democracy would be smooth and inevitable have now been rudely dispelled. Liberal democracy has real and powerful enemies who are bent upon its destruction. We no longer have the luxury of pretending otherwise. Once again, as was the case during the Cold War, the imperative of maintaining our security and our way of life requires that we defend and support democracy.

Marc Plattner Editor' Journal of Democracy '

comments ?

Either 9-11 was an exception that Bush turned into a bumper sticker ;as John Edwards claims ,and all we need concern ourselves with is global warming ......or men like Marc Plattner and Frank Gaffney Jr. are correct ;and we need to consider a higher degree of mobilization than we currently are prepared to engage.

Itsdb answered on 06/06/07:

And don't forget, our ol' pal Daniel Ortega is back and buddying up to Chavez and the Mahdi Hatter.

But all of this is our fault as you know. If only we'd quit interfering in the affairs of other nations to feed our insatiable energy demands on behalf of big oil (and all that other crap we hear), we can create "a world where the rules really were fair for everyone" and no longer have to imagine peace - it will be a reality.

tomder55 rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 06/05/07 - 9-10 mentality

I tortured myself Sunday by watching a part of the Democrat debate . Mostly it was typical pablum not worth much commentary .

However, I was struck by a comment by Dennis Kuchinich that has mostly been overlooked (probably because of his overall irrelevence ) but that I thought was a stunning admission .

Mind you ;this was just hours after the announcement that the JFK plot had been foiled .Wolf Blitzer was asking the candidates if the country was safer because of GWB anti-terror policies. For the most part the candidates cynically dismissed the notion out of hand; Hillary being the big exception .She grudgingly admitted that the country was safer BUT we still had a long way to go AND the Iraq war of course is a distraction yada yada. Triple H Edwards [home,haircut,hedgefund] repeated the nonsense that the war on terror is a bumper sticker.Obama eventually conceded after an emphatic NO that “there are some things that the Bush Administration has done well,” but failed to name them.

When it came time for Kucinich to comment he said “Americans need to reconnect with our deeper sense of self here,” ... “And I want to have what I call the 9-10 Forum to recreate—to help us reconnect with a deeper sense of who we are as Americans.”
If that didn't encapsulate the whole Democrat attitude about the war against jihadistan I don't know what does !! .

The 9-10 Forum appaerntly is an invention byDennis and his lovely wife Elizabeth Kucinich ,and is tucked away in his 2008 campaign web site. It is mostly Age of Aquarian dribble ;read it if you must. If you open it link by link ;peeling away the onion, you find it is mostly tin-foil hat material .

But this campaign poster best illustrates the over-all premise of the site :



(excuse me while I have some fun)










ok ;where was I ... oh yeah ...Nationalism, defense of the Nation, and the ordinary person are all loathsome things beneath a true citizen of the World like the Democrat elites .If there is any doubt where a Democrat majority coupled with a Democrat Administration will take us ;I think this 9-10 Forum is a perfect indicator.




Itsdb answered on 06/05/07:



So we've got astrology, karma and whatever guiding the Kucinich's - and thus the nation - to a higher plane. I loved this:

    This year marks the fifth anniversary of 9/11, a series of events that marked a day of awakening for the people of the world to the revelation of the very real and powerful forces at play in these times. Not falling prey to the black hole of 9/11 rhetoric which highlights the evil of otherness, rhetoric into which our lives have been sacrificed, together with our freedom and liberty. No, I am speaking of the forces at play within the depths of each of our hearts and the dark side of our souls traveling the shamanic journey into the underworld and the opportunity for our transformation into beings of light.


Wow, I didn't realize there was a dark side of my soul "traveling the shamanic journey into the underworld." Thanks for pointing that out, Liz.

The rest sounds a bit like episode 4 of Kung Fu.

    Buchanan screams: "If I don't have a right to vengeance, who does?"

    Caine answers in that dreamy, perfectly intoned way Carradine gives the character: "No one."


I find it hard to believe these people are for real. And even harder to believe he's a congressman ... and people actually voted for him.

tomder55 rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 06/04/07 - Scooter Libby sentencing

Here are some highlights of the probation report in the Scotter Libby case .

http://www.scooterlibby.com/docs/sentencingmemo.pdf

Distinguished public servant. Generous mentor. Selfless friend. Devoted father. This is the rich portrait of Mr. Libby that emerges from the descriptions of him in the more than 160 heartfelt letters submitted to the Court on his behalf. The letter writers, who range from administrative assistants to admirals, neighborhood friends to former colleagues, Democrats to Republicans, bear witness to Mr. Libby’s character and patriotism. As detailed below, Mr. Libby’s accomplishments in the State Department, the Defense Department, and the Office of the Vice President demonstrate his extraordinary commitment to public service. His dedication to promoting freedom abroad and keeping American citizens safe at home is beyond question. Mr. Libby has also earned a reputation for treating people fairly and kindly and comforting those who are distressed. He has avoided the Washington limelight to focus on nurturing his young children. Even those who disagree vociferously with policies he supported while serving in the government believe his conviction is not characteristic of the life he has led .

The report requests probation or at worse no more than 15 - 21 months . It stresses the many factors factors warranting a diminution of his sentence;including that he has already suffered considerably as a result of this conviction and is expected to lose his license to practice law, his outstanding record of public service and prior good works, the improbability of recidivism and the fact that the conduct for which he was found guilty was aberrant and out of character.


Patrick Fitgerald has ignored the request and filed his own report that the judge should rightfully give Fitzgerald a smack down about. According to the Wall Street Journal :

Special Prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald has decided this was a leak case after all. Last week he filed a brief with the court arguing that Mr. Libby should receive a prison sentence in line with crimes that neither he nor anyone else was ever accused of committing. If the court accepts Mr. Fitzgerald's logic, the sentence meted out in this fantastic case would at least double, to a minimum of 30 months. So it goes in a case brought by an unaccountable prosecutor now requesting an unreasonable penalty based on evidence he never introduced at trial. This is America?

At trial, Fitzgerald denied the defense access to classified records about Plame's status, saying her status was irrelevant because he was charging no violation of that law.Now in his sentencing request he turns around and claims that Plame's status was indeed relevent.

Clearly Fitgerald has gone off the deep end . If Judge Walton goes along with this nonsense it is incumbent that President Bush issue an unconditional pardon. Scotter Libby should not spend one minute in jail due to the over-reaching of that lunatic Inspector Javert wanna-be .If anyone loses their license to practice law because of this case it should be he .




Itsdb answered on 06/05/07:

I guess you've now heard, 30 months and $250,000 fine. "We need to make the statement that the truth matters ever so much," said Fitzgerald.

Why now? It hasn't seemed to matter much for the past 7 years.

tomder55 rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
kindj asked on 06/04/07 - I hate to say "I told you so..."

Dunno if anyone remembers (or if I even said it here), but I've maintained since day 1 that Putin is a bad guy, who wants nothing more than a return to the bad ol' days.

Well, here's another reason:


Updated: 8:15 a.m. CT June 4, 2007
MOSCOW - Russian President Vladimir Putin warned that Moscow could take “retaliatory steps” if Washington proceeds with plans to build a missile defense system for Europe, including possibly aiming nuclear weapons at targets on the continent.

Read the rest: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/19013495/

I don't like the guy. I don't trust the guy.

DK

Itsdb answered on 06/04/07:

The responses are getting interesting...

    Washington wants to deploy interceptor rockets in Poland and a radar base in the Czech Republic to counter what it describes as a potential threat from "rogue states" such as Iran and North Korea.

    It insists the shield is not aimed at Russia.

    "As far as I am aware, the only country speculating about targeting Europe with missiles is the Russian Federation," Nato spokesman James Appathurai said.

    "These kind of comments are unhelpful and unwelcome."

    The new French president will hold his first talks with Mr Putin at this week's G8 summit in the German resort of Heiligendamm.

    "I will listen attentively to him. He called for a frank dialogue. From my side, it will be frank," Mr Sarkozy said.


"Sarkozy has promised to confront Putin about human rights violations in Chechnya and about the slaying last October of journalist Anna Politkovskaya."

I'm starting to like the French a bit more these days.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 06/04/07 - Peshmerga babes on patrol

Check out this recent posting by Gateway Pundit


Female pershmerga, the Kurdish security force, show off some moves during a hand-over ceremony from US forces to the Kurdish regional government in the northern city of Arbil. Reponsibility for security in Iraq's three northern provinces -- Sulaimaniyah, Arbil and Dohuk -- was given to the Kurdish regional government today.(AFP/Ahmad al-Rubaye)

Itsdb answered on 06/04/07:

They certainly look like a force to be reckoned with ... and easy on the eyes :)

I'm with Airborne Vet who commented, Way freakin' cool! Now why can't this be shown on the news?

Probably for the same reasons you won't hear this on the news:

    If George W. Bush ever fell into the hands of Peshmerga soldiers, what do you suppose they would do to him? Here, in vivid detail, is what our President might look forward to:

    “I would kiss him one thousand times,” the company commander, Sheikh Fattah, said. “I would carry him on my shoulders and shout songs to him,” another officer, Farouk Khaled, added. “I would sacrifice one thousand sheep and two thousand chickens for him,” a third officer, Mam Siamand, said.


We can't have anyone hearing that now can we?

Steve

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 06/03/07 - Just heard on the news...

Fred Thompson is running! Just heard on NBC news.

Cool?

DK

Itsdb answered on 06/04/07:

Now it's getting fun :)

Steve

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Question/Answer
ETWolverine asked on 06/01/07 - Follow-up of Steve's Global Peace Index post

I have now read the report. Thanks, Steve, for the link to the report.

Here's my take on it.

The Global Peace Index report put out by Visions of Humanity makes certain assumptions about what constitutes “peace” that are not necessarily true.

The report used 24 separate indicators of what constitutes peace, each quantified, translated to a 1-5 score and then given a weight within the overall index. The problem is that not all of the indicators used necessarily mean what the report assumes they mean. For instance, the report looks at the number of guns per 100,000 people as an indicator of “internal militarism” and “crime”, when in fact the opposite may be true… gun ownership may very well be a deterrent to both crime and internal militarism. Another example: the percentage of GDP used to support the military is considered an indicator of militarism, when in fact a strong military may be a deterrent to other countries making war against them. The number of population jailed per 100,000 might actually be an indicator of decreasing crime rather than an indicator of violence. And why is the indicator “Potential for terrorist acts” given the LOWEST weight of any indicator in the list? Terrorism would seem to me to be the single greatest threat to world peace in the modern era.

The indicators are as follows:

Indicator---------------------------------Weight (1-5)
Level of distrust in others--------------------4
Number of internal security
officers per 100,000 people------------------3
Number of homicides per 100,000 people---------4
Number of jailed population per 100,000--------3
Ease of access to weapons of minor destruction--3
Level of organized conflict (internal)---------5
Likelihood of violent demonstrations-----------3
Level of violent crime-------------------------4
Political instability--------------------------4
Respect for human rights-----------------------4
Volume of transfers of major weapons
as recipient per 100,000-----------------2
Potential for terrorist acts-------------------1
Number of deaths from organized conflict-------5
Military expenditures as a percentage of GDP---2
Number of armed services personnel
per 100,000 people---------------------------2
UN Deployments 2006-07
(percentage of total forces)-----------------4
Aggregate number of heavy weapons
per 100,000 people---------------------------3
Volume of transfers of major weapons
as supplier per 100,000----------------------2
Military capability/sophistication-------------2
Number of displaced people as a
percentage of population---------------------4
Relations with neighboring countries-----------5
Number of external and internal
conflicts fought: 2000-05--------------------5
Estimated number of deaths from
organized conflict (external)----------------5

Furthermore, the report tries to combine indicators of external war, internal war and crime into a single index. However, this ignores the fact that the reasons for each are different, and thus cannot be dealt with as a single item. Bringing an end to external war in a specific country will not necessarily end crime or internal conflict within that country. Lowering crime will not necessarily bring an end to war, either internal or external. To try to deal with all of these issues under the single banner of “peace” is naïve and shows a lack of understanding of what causes crime, war and internal conflict.

Finally, this report does nothing to state whether a specific war is or is not necessary. Nobody would rightly argue that defeating Hitler in WWII was a “bad” thing or that the war should not have been fought. Peace was not as desirable as victory against Hitler in that case. There have been other ‘righteous’ wars in the past as well… the war to free Kuwait from invasion by Iraq is a good example. Stating that armed conflict is bad without putting the conflict into context is naïve and not very useful to establishing true world peace.

For these reasons, I find the Global Peace Index report to be lacking in substantive information that can be used to bring peace. While it is an interesting attempt to quantify “peace” I believe that it fails in its goals of defining and quantifying peace and determining the indicators of peace.

What's your take?

Elliot

Itsdb answered on 06/01/07:

Thanks Elliot, all great points. I think it was just a meaningless, 'feel-good' liberal exercise. I'm sure they're all patting each other on the back and plotting on how to use this for 'meaningful change,' based on the innovative notion that a greater level of internal peace is likely to lead to, or at least correlate with, lower external conflict—in other words, if ‘charity begins at home’ - so might peace.

In addition to what you've said about war I think it's a waste of time to weigh the aspects relating to the military the same for all countries. For instance, volume of transfers of major weapons can affect peace differently depending on the country. Do F-15's in South Korea and Iranian weapons in the hands of Jihadists in Iraq have the same effect? How do you equate China arming the Janjaweed with sending Patriot missiles to Israel?

And why on earth should "Military deployments to UN peacekeeping missions worldwide 2006-07" get a weight of 4?

Steve

ETWolverine rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/29/07 - Hostage update

Well now ;it sure was a good idea to sit down over the weekend for a"positive " sup of tea with a representative of the thugocracy in Iran. It accomplished soooooooo much !!!

U.S. academic Haleh Esfandiari and two other Iranian-Americans have been ''formally charged'' with endangering national security and espionage, Iran's judiciary spokesman said Tuesday.

''Esfandiari has been formally charged with endangering national security through propaganda against the system and espionage for foreigners,'' spokesman Ali Reza Jamshidi told reporters. ''She has been informed of the charges against her.''

Jamshidi did not say when the specific allegations had been read to Esfandiari, director of the Middle East Program at the Washington-based Woodrow Wilson Center for Scholars. She has been held at Tehran's notorious Evin Prison since early May.

Jamshidi said the same charges also had been lodged against Kian Tajbakhsh, an urban planning consultant who also has worked for the World Bank, and journalist Parnaz Azima. No trial date has been announced and Jamshidi said the investigation against all three is continuing.


Imagine the progress we'd achieve if only we let Ahmamadjihad arm and train the Iraqi Army !

Itsdb answered on 05/30/07:

And now they've got another of those American 'Velvet Agents.' I guess we'll just have to get better at matching wits with the Jihadists in the spin and propaganda department.

Steve

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Question/Answer
ETWolverine asked on 05/30/07 - Doing the Booing Americans Won't Do

Michelle Malkin

The United States government is on the verge of approving a mass amnesty to millions of illegal aliens — a plan pushed aggressively by meddling Mexican officials who reap billions of dollars in remittances (illegal aliens' earnings sent back to Mexico) without having to lift a finger to clean up their own country.

And the thanks we get? Internationally televised public humiliation.

On Monday night, the beautiful young woman who represented America in the Miss Universe pageant was booed and mocked as she competed on stage in Mexico City. Rachel Smith, 22, did her best to respond with grace and dignity during the Top Five finalists' interview segment as the audience disrupted the event.

As soon as co-host Vanessa Minnillo invited Miss USA to pick a judge's name from a bowl of index cards, widespread howls broke out at the mere mention of "USA." The verbal derision continued as judge Tony Romo asked Smith to pick one moment in her life she would relive.

Definitely not this one.

Smith soldiered through her answer, describing an educational trip to South Africa. Catcalls and whistles nearly drowned out Smith's reply until she wrapped up with " Buenos noches, Mexico. "

I wouldn't have been so polite.

None of Miss USA's fellow Americans participating in the interview segment — neither Minnillo, nor macho co-host Mario Lopez, nor the dashing Romo — came to Smith's defense. Instead, Minnillo pleaded briefly with the unruly mob: "Okay, una momento, por favor. " Lopez stood mute with a dumb grin on his dimpled face. Pathetic.

In fact, Smith was subjected to anti-American hatred throughout the week-long event. Last week, during the contestants' national costume fashion show, Smith smiled bravely as a rowdy outdoor crowd hissed and booed at her. According to pageant observers, no other contestants received such treatment.

Pitifully, Donald Trump and his Miss Universe officials are downplaying Smith's experience — ignoring the fact that the last time the pageant was held in Mexico, Miss USA was abused in similar fashion. 1993 Miss USA Kenya Moore was infamously heckled when chosen for the semi-finals that year.

Just a tiny minority of America-haters, right? How quickly we forget.

Do you remember what happened in Guadalajara in 2004 during an Olympics qualification soccer match between the U.S. and Mexico? The stadium erupted in boos during the playing of "The Star-Spangled Banner." Fans yelled "Osama! Osama!" as the U.S. was eliminated by Mexico.

The following year, in March 2005, Mexican soccer fans again cheered the al Qaeda mastermind's name at a World Cup qualifier. ESPN reported the audience again booed and whistled during the U.S. national anthem, and plastic bags filled with urine were reportedly tossed on American players.

One Mexican fan told the Christian Science Monitor: "'Every schoolboy knows about 1848. . . . When they robbed our territory,' referring to when Texas, California and New Mexico were annexed to the U.S. as part of a peace treaty ending the war between the two countries, 'that was the beginning.'"

This bitterness is long-standing, deep-seated and stoked by top Mexican government officials and elites. But pointing this reality out in the context of our crucial national debate over sovereignty, immigration, assimilation, border security and the rule of law will get you labeled a bigot. Our leaders have concluded that it is better to pander, hide, pull out a friendly Spanish phrase like Minnillo did, and pray that the hatred will go away by giving the pro-amnesty lobby its legislative goodie-bag.

Meanwhile, as Manhattan Institute fellow Heather Mac Donald points out, the White House continues to attack opponents of the Bush-Kennedy amnesty package as "nativists." Conservative columnist Linda Chavez accused amnesty critics of "not liking Mexicans." Department of Homeland Security Secretary Michael Chertoff suggested enforcement advocates wanted to "execute" illegal aliens. And Republican Sen. Lindsay Graham trashed immigration enforcement proponents as "bigots" in front of the ethnocentric, open-borders group La Raza.

Yeah, we're the nativists.

Next, they'll tell us the mob at the Miss Universe pageant was simply "doing the booing Americans won't do."

Will President Bush speak out against the treatment Miss USA received in Mexico? Will any amnesty peddler in Washington? Imagine if Miss Mexico were booed, heckled and subjected to chants of "USA, USA" if the pageant had been held here.

Smith can hold her head up high. Those who are selling out our country, on the other hand, should hang their heads in shame.

Michelle Malkin is author of "Unhinged: Exposing Liberals Gone Wild." Her e-mail address is malkinblog@gmail.com.

COPYRIGHT 2007 CREATORS SYNDICATE, INC.


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

Great points by Michelle Malkin. I have no use for the Miss Universe pageant in any case. But why should anyone be forced to go through the publicly humiliating experience that Rachel Smith went through? And where is the thanks from the Mexican people for our open borders policy, the free money they get from us, and the de-facto citizenship they eventually attain though illegal means? Mexico doesn't reciprocate with its illegal aliens... it throws them in jail (if they are lucky, that's all that happens to them) and send them back to their countries of origin. Why are we pandering to a country that clearly hates us?

Elliot

Itsdb answered on 05/30/07:

I have no idea, Elliot, and it really ticks me off. I'm flat sick and tired of 'Americans' bashing their own country, Mexicans (and 'Mexican-Americans') and their blathering about stealing Texas, NM and California, ungrateful hypocrites that take our money then spew about how evil we are, more ungrateful hypocrites that want our tourist dollars but not our presence with them - and people like this that are afforded all manner of hospitality in our country then crap on us in theirs.

I guess I'm just a bigot, eh?

Steve

ETWolverine rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/29/07 - What happened to that vaunted and anticipated Taliban Spring offensive ?

While we continued to divert resources away from the "real " war on terror ;the Taliban prepared for an "intense " spring offensive .

Well ,so far things aren't going so well for Mullah Omar and his band of thugs . Mullah Dadullah ;the key military commander for the Taliban was killed by NATO troops May 12 .
Mullah Dadullah was the backbone of the Taliban,” said Asadullah Khalid, governor of the former Taliban stronghold of Kandahar. “He was a brutal and cruel commander who killed and beheaded Afghan civilians.”

Another key leader ,Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Osmani ,said to be a top aid to Mullah Omar ,was killed in December .

Evidently the killing of Mullah Dadullah has thrown the Taliban into disarray .The Economist reported that inside the Taliban there are rumors of him being betrayed . Something that the Guardian confirmed yesterday :


Taliban insurgents fighting in Afghanistan and Pakistan have been hit by a wave of defections and betrayals that has resulted in a witch-hunt within the militant movement....

..two of the Taliban’s most senior commanders have now been killed after being betrayed by close associates. Up to a dozen middle-ranking commanders have died in airstrikes or other operations by Afghan, Nato or Pakistani forces based on precise details of their movements received from informers. Few details have been publicly released, but senior military sources speak of ‘major hits’ that they wish they could talk about openly…
‘There is a feeling that there are spies everywhere,’ said one tribal leader speaking by telephone from the violent and anarchic North Waziristan ‘tribal agency’ along Pakistan’s border with Afghanistan. ‘People are very worried and no one is trusting anyone any more.’…
According to Rahimullah Yusufzai, a senior Pakistani journalist and expert on the Taliban, ’suspicion is now falling even on trusted men and is creating tension in Taliban ranks’.


The coalition ,primarily led by the British contingent launched a major offensive of it's own im March called Operation Achilles ;an operation involving 4500 NATO troops and 1000 Afghan soldiers. Although much of the news from the front is subject to a black out,initial reports is that it has been decisive with reports that "scores" of Taliban rebels have been killed during heavy fighting. This is being conducted concurently with Operation Silicon . Effectively ,the Taliban Spring Offensive stalled before it began.

But ;when all else fails they always have that ole' back up plan ......targetting innocent civilians .....putting the emphasis on "offensive ".

Itsdb answered on 05/30/07:

It seems the only thing I've seen in the news on Afghanistan lately has been about the 'deteriorating' situation there. I came across this humorous - but almost plausible - post from Wizbang on Dadullah:

    And Murtha will call for a war crimes investigation, saying the US attacked a handicapped man when they killed the Pegleg Mullah.


It's bad when you read something like that and think, "it wouldn't surprise me." But then the left doesn't seem to understand what we're fighting over there:

    One suspected traitor accused of betraying senior commander Mullah Akhtar Mohammed Osmani last December was decapitated with a knife by a 12-year-old boy before cameras.


At least the left is sticking to indoctrinating (and gagging) our kids on sex, drugs and Transgender Bisexual Gay Lesbian Awareness. They haven't quite gotten to the point of having them behead evangelicals ... I think.

This just makes me wonder how smart these Jihadists really are though:

    The suicide bomber was apparently targeting foreigners in an armored vehicle, but they were unhurt in the blast. A purported Taliban spokesman claimed responsibility for the bombing.


I'm sure they claimed it was a victory for Allah.

I kind of wish those senior military sources could speak more openly about their successes, too. Someone needs to report more on successes than the neverending gloom and doom we hear now.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/28/07 - Fred Thompson's Memorial Day posting

I remember when I was a kid; one thing was clear to me. The more I learned about the rest of the world, the luckier I felt just having been born in America. The more I learned about America, the more I appreciated what those who came before us built; and how exceptional they were.

Not that there aren't other great places to live, but America is unique. It's not just that we are the freest and most prosperous country the world has ever seen. America has also freed more people than any other nation in history.

A lot of people have done their part to see that we are blessed with the advantages we enjoy -- from hardworking pioneer mothers to the Framers of the Constitution. Memorial Day is coming up, though, and I'm thinking more about American soldiers who have made the ultimate sacrifice -- those who died to protect our way of life and make the world safe for democracy.

There are some people, though, who don't think that's such a good idea. Some people even want to use Memorial Day to protest our military's presence in Iraq. The irony is that their right to protest was paid for by people willing to risk everything to keep the forces of tyranny at bay -- here as well as Japan, Germany, France, Italy, Korea, Burma, Vietnam, the Philippines and dozens of other countries.

Over the years, a lot of people have tried to talk us out of feeling about America the way we do. Instead of pride in what America has done, they want us to feel guilty -- generally because we have so much more than rest of the world. Of course, it wouldn't help the rest of the world one whit if we had less -- either of freedom or of prosperity. On the contrary, it’s our liberties that have made us prosperous and there's no reason the rest of the world couldn't be just as well-off -- if they embraced freedom as well.

Almost always, when I talk to people who see America as the problem, their arguments are based on ignorance or an outright tangling of history. What they thought they knew about America and the world came second- and third-hand through people with axes to grind.

That's why I was troubled recently when I came across a report by the Intercollegiate Studies Institute. The report's conclusion was that American colleges and universities are failing to increase their students' knowledge of America's history and institutions.

Students polled in a wide range of colleges and universities showed no real improvement in their historical knowledge. Some actually forgot part of what they'd learned in high school by the time they graduated -- and I'm talking about some of our best-known Ivy League schools.

Less than half of college seniors knew that, "We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal" is from the Declaration of Independence. Less than half knew basic facts about the First Amendment. Half didn't know that the Federalist Papers were written in support of the Constitution's ratification. Only a quarter of seniors knew the purpose of the Monroe Doctrine.

This is our quandary. Memorial Day is about remembering. It’s about remembering those who died for our country; but it's also about remembering why they believed it was worth dying for. Too many Americans, though, have never been taught our own history and heritage. How can you remember something that you’ve never learned?

posted by Fred Dalton Thompson on 5/25/2007 4:17:26 PM

(click on link for podcast )

Itsdb answered on 05/29/07:

tom, I couldn't imagine what your average history class is like these days - especially in colleges and universities.

Over the years, a lot of people have tried to talk us out of feeling about America the way we do. Instead of pride in what America has done, they want us to feel guilty

And you know what puzzles me is how the left thinks a life of so much guilt is 'liberating.' Being a liberal must be a miserable existence.

Steve

tomder55 rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/28/07 - U.S. frees 42 Iraqi captives in raid

American forces freed 42 kidnapped Iraqis — some of whom had been hung from ceilings and tortured for months — in a raid Sunday on an al-Qaida hideout north of Baghdad, the U.S. military said.

Military officials said the operation, launched on tips from residents, showed that Iraqis in the turbulent Diyala province were turning against Sunni insurgents and beginning to trust U.S. troops.

"The people in Diyala are speaking up against al-Qaida," said Maj. Gen. William Caldwell, the top U.S. military spokesman in Iraq.



This is indicative of what the new Iraq would look like if we were to leave prematurely ......very simular to the Iraq we liberated. What is the utility of such slaughter houses ? Certainly they are not for information gathering . Why did Uday Hussein put his rivals into woodchippers? What did he gain beyond pure sadistic pleasure that the terror and fear produced ? This to him and I suspect to the al-Qaeda scum is nothing more than a form of recreation .

WE know by the capture of the illustrated torture manual (one of the most under-reported stories in this war )that this is what they have in mind as the future Iraq. This was not done to get information. This was done for the same reason Saddam Hussein and his thugs did it: To intimidate the civilian population.

What we fight is a cult of evil and it doesn't matter if it's leaders names are Hussein or bin Laden. They are all heads of the same hydra.

Happy Memorial Day . We have tasked our brave soldiers with a mission worthy of the fight by the 'Greatest Generation'.The liberation of a small torture cell is small compared to the liberation of the Nazi camps ;but the spirit is the same. Then we fought evil because we recognized the imperitive. Today too many of us see it as optional.

Itsdb answered on 05/29/07:

42 Iraqis freed, some of whom had been hung from ceilings and tortured for months BEFORE 'the "Face" of the American anti-war movement' resigns. I wonder if she'd mind commenting on this before putting away her "Imagine Peace" sign.

Steve

tomder55 rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/29/07 - Cindy Sheehad quits the Democrat Party

Guess they weren't radical enough for her . Her bitter resignation note is here at Kos .

Tammy Bruce translates Cindy's resignation posting for us :

1. Everyone hates me now, even the Dems ("I have endured a lot of smear and hatred since Casey was killed and especially since I became the so-called "Face" of the American anti-war movement...I have been further trashed on such "liberal blogs" as the Democratic Underground.")

2. The money has dried up. (" [W]hen I started to hold the Democratic Party to the same standards that I held the Republican Party, support for my cause started to erode...")

3. People stopped paying attention to me. ("I guess no one paid attention to me when I said that the issue of peace and people dying for no reason is not a matter of "right or left", but "right and wrong.")

4. Democrats are blind and stupid and just like Repubs because they don't agree with me, either. ("It amazes me that people who are sharp on the issues and can zero in like a laser beam on lies, misrepresentations, and political expediency when it comes to one party refuse to recognize it in their own party.")

5. America is evil. ("a fascist corporate wasteland...")

6. I wasted all my money and ignored my family to try to prove to myself I am not the attention whore that apparently I am. ("I have also reached the conclusion that if I am doing what I am doing because I am an "attention whore" then I really need to be committed.")

7. America is an ungrateful bitch. ("I have invested everything I have into trying to bring peace with justice to a country that wants neither.")

8. I'm in debt and won't pay my bills because America is evil. ("my hospital bills from last summer (when I almost died) are in collection because I have used all my energy trying to stop this country from slaughtering innocent human beings.")

9. Americans are stupid and vapid and don't care. ("Casey died for a country which cares more about who will be the next American Idol than how many people will be killed in the next few months.")

10. Everyone is jealous of me because I get all the attention. ("This group won’t work with that group; he won’t attend an event if she is going to be there; and why does Cindy Sheehan get all the attention anyway?")

11. Everyone is doomed, so I'm getting out while I can. ("Our brave young men and women in Iraq have been abandoned there indefinitely by their cowardly leaders who move them around like pawns on a chessboard of destruction and the people of Iraq have been doomed to death and fates worse than death ...I am going to take whatever I have left and go home.")

12. I need money. ("Camp Casey has served its purpose. It’s for sale. Anyone want to buy five beautiful acres in Crawford , Texas ? I will consider any reasonable offer.")

13. America is evil. ("Good-bye America ...you are not the country that I love and I finally realized no matter how much I sacrifice...")
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
To that I'd like to add :
George Bush will never be impeached because if the Democrats dig too deeply, they may unearth a few skeletons in their own graves

YA THINK ????

This isn't a surrender ,it is a redeployment to California.

What a sad person. It took her a long time to realize that she was just another useful idiot.



Itsdb answered on 05/29/07:

Maybe her pal Hugo Chavez will bail her out. I understand he needs some new TV personalities more to his liking...

Steve

tomder55 rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 05/27/07 - moonbat! LOL

Itsdb answered on 05/29/07:

Moonbats do exist. You have your "shrieking moonbats":



And "barking moonbats":



Apparently they're shapeshifters:







Moonbats are obviously delusional:



Research is ongoing:

Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/25/07 - Subject: Baby Boomers




It was fun being a baby boomer... until now.

Some of the artists of the 60's are revising their hits with new lyrics to accommodate aging Baby
Boomers.

They include:

Herman's Hermits - Mrs. Brown, You've Got a Lovely Walker.

Ringo Starr - I Get By With a Little Help From Depends.

The Bee Gees - How Can You Mend a Broken Hip.

Bobby Darin - Splish, Splash, I Was Havin' a Flash.

Roberta Flack - The First Time Ever I Forgot Your Face.

Johnny Nash - I Can't See Clearly Now.

Paul Simon - Fifty Ways to Lose Your Liver

The Commodores - Once, Twice, Three Times to the Bathroom.

Procol Harem - A Whiter Shade of Hair.

Leo Sayer - You Make Me Feel Like Napping.

The Temptations - Papa's Got a Kidney Stone.

Abba - Denture Queen.

Tony Orlando - Knock 3 Times On The Ceiling If You Hear Me Fall.

Helen Reddy - I Am Woman, Hear Me Snore.

Leslie Gore - It's My Procedure, and I'll Cry If I Want To.

Willie Nelson - On the Commode Again

any others ?

Itsdb answered on 05/25/07:

How about...

Rolling Stones - Can You Help Me up?

Turtles - Napping Together

The Lovin' Spoonful - Did You Ever Manage to Wake Up Your Mind?

The Lovin' Spoonful - Do You Believe in Viagra?

The Who - Who are YOU?

The Everly Brothers - All I have To Do Is Pee

Otis Redding - Sittin' On the Pot All Day

The Beatles - Here Come the Runs

Chicago - Does Anybody Really Know What Time it Is

Ringo Starr - You're Sixty-Four, You're Wrinkly, And You're Mine???

Eagles - Queasy, Greasy Feeling

The Beatles - Let Me Pee

The Osmonds - One Bad Apple (and I'm goin' all day)

And finally...

Village People - AARP

tomder55 rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/25/07 - Torture put in perspective

A torture manual ,fully illustrated ,was captured in a raid of an al-Qaeda safe house . Smoking Gun has the graphic photos.

It was there, during an April 24 raid, that soldiers found a man suspended from the ceiling by a chain. According to the military, he had been abducted from his job and was being beaten daily by his captors. In a raid earlier this week, Coalition Forces freed five Iraqis who were found in a padlocked room in Karmah. The group, which included a boy, were reportedly beaten with chains, cables, and hoses.

I looked for it ,but no where in the illustrations are pictures of water boarding or humiliation by women interrogators .

I will search to find the international condemnation ;the mass protests ;the human rights reports by the UN over the barbaric treatment but I don't expect to find much . Hmmm . what was on the menu at GITMO today ? Lemon glazed chicken ? Yum .

Itsdb answered on 05/25/07:

"blowtorch to the skin" and "eye removal" 101, eh? Since the left and al-Qaeda are on the same side it won't get much notice.

Steve

tomder55 rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/25/07 - Hostage update # 3

First posted on 5/9/07 .

The husband of Haleh Esfandiari ,Shaul Bakhash ( teacher of Middle Eastern history at George Mason University in Virginia),wrote an article published in the LA Times .
```````````````````````````````````````````````````
My wife, a prisoner in Iran

ON MAY 8, the walls of Tehran's Evin prison closed around my wife, Haleh Esfandiari, a 67-year-old scholar, grandmother and dual citizen of Iran and the United States.

Haleh, director of the Middle East Program of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, went to Iran in late December to visit her 93-year-old mother, a trip she has made almost twice each year for a decade or more. On Dec. 30, on her way to the airport to fly back to Washington, she was stopped by three masked, knife-wielding men who took all her belongings, including her Iranian and U.S. passports. In retrospect, it was clearly an inside job; Iran's Ministry of Intelligence fielding "highwaymen" against Iran's own citizens.

Without a passport, Haleh was forced to return to her mother's apartment. When she tried to apply for a new one, a member of the Ministry of Intelligence took her aside. Over the next six weeks, Haleh was subjected to 50 hours of interrogation.

At first, she told me by e-mail and phone, her inquisitors asked about her work, who spoke at what conference, where and when — things they could easily find with the click of a mouse on the Wilson Center's website. But Haleh told them what she remembered about the lectures, exchanges, panels and classes she had arranged. To help with the details, I e-mailed piles of downloaded documents at night.

If the questions seemed almost laughable, the interrogations were not. They were accompanied by threats, accusations and intimidation — and always the implication that Haleh was involved in something nefarious. She also was pressured to provide information she did not have, to identify alleged "networks" of whose existence she was unaware, to admit that she was holding things back. She refused.

Then, on Feb. 14, the interrogations ended. Except for two unpleasant phone calls from her interrogators inviting her to "cooperate" and warning her that worse things were to come if she did not, there was silence — for 10 weeks. But on May 7, Haleh was called to the Ministry of Intelligence. The next day, when she arrived for her appointment, she was arrested. The unofficial charge, we would later find out, was working for an organization that was conspiring to foment a "velvet" revolution in Iran.

Since her incarceration 17 days ago, Haleh has been allowed only one- or two-minute phone calls with her mother. She speaks as if a minder is present. No visits are allowed, no legal representation. With so little contact, I have every reason to assume the worst: that she is subject to blindfolding, solitary confinement and harsh, even brutal interrogation calculated to extract a false confession.

Some suggest that hard-liners wanted Haleh in custody to block next week's U.S.-Tehran talks. Others say the government wants to trade her for Iranians held in Iraq. This is mere speculation. The only explanation I've been given came in a statement issued Monday by the Ministry of Intelligence, a fantastical accusation that reveals the imaginary web Tehran wants to weave to entrap my wife and others.

It goes like this: American think tanks such as the Wilson Center are advancing a U.S. government plan for a "soft toppling" of Iran, creating "links" between Iranian intellectuals and U.S. institutions and forming "informal communication networks" that can then be used "against the sovereignty of the country." In effect, in the eyes of the Iranian government, any exchange among scholars is tantamount to treasonous conspiracy.

Should you wake up one day to find your wife or child or parent in the hands of the secret police in a country that routinely violates the rule of law, you will likely choose quiet probing over publicity. You have no recourse to law or courts. You fear publicity may make things worse. You believe, almost always wrongly, that if you work quietly, use the contacts you have and wait reasonably, the nightmare will be over.

When Haleh was initially prevented from leaving Iran and the interrogations began, it was principally at my insistence that we did not "go public." Repeatedly I was told by those who supposedly understand the inner workings of Iran: "Don't worry; it's only an interrogation; once they have finished with their questions, they will let her go."

Once Haleh was arrested, however, silence was no longer an option. It is preposterous that she is accused of conspiring to overthrow the Iranian government by organizing conferences and encouraging dialogue between Iranians and Americans. The Wilson Center issued a fact sheet; Lee Hamilton, its president and director, held a news conference; and I began to speak openly about Haleh's frightening predicament.

The extraordinary media attention, as well as the support for Haleh from presidential candidates and political leaders, from scholars and academic associations, from the students at Princeton University who she taught to love the Persian language, from women's groups, human rights organizations and people everywhere have astonished and gratified her family and friends.

It is easy to feel powerless in the face of a state's overweening power — especially a state that arrests, incarcerates and accuses its citizens at will. But the events of the last few weeks — the universal condemnation Iran has earned by imprisoning Haleh and others — have taught me that people also have power when they condemn injustice and stand up for wronged individuals. Is the Iranian government listening?
```````````````````````````````````````````````````
Sadly the answer to that last question is a definite no. The regime has defied the UN and all attempts to pressure it to change it's ways . Further I do not see the pressure ;the universal condemnation that he refers to .

Yes ;many of the Presidential candidates have made statements (as I refered to in my last posting on the subject ) ,but I do not see the international press picking up the mantle and ratcheting up the pressure at all.

In fact ,I see the opposite. As I posted yesterday ,I see a major attempt ,as represented by the ABC network leak ,to undermine efforts to influence the regime.






Itsdb answered on 05/25/07:

I haven't seen this universal condemnation either, but I'm sure the UN will 'deplore' something eventually. But what do you think will happen now that Iran has nabbed a 4th hostage with ties to George Soros?

tomder55 rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/24/07 - ABC News ,and the CIA

should be investigated by the Justice Dept. with the same dogged determination that Patrick Fitzgerald used to hound Scooter Libby.

As you know by now ;ABC disclosed a covert black-op authorized by the President to destabilize the Iranian Regime.It was aired on the ABC Evening News by Brian Ross .

The CIA has received secret presidential approval to mount a covert "black" operation to destabilize the Iranian government, current and former officials in the intelligence community tell the Blotter on ABCNews.com.
The sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the subject, say President Bush has signed a "nonlethal presidential finding" that puts into motion a CIA plan that reportedly includes a coordinated campaign of propaganda, disinformation and manipulation of Iran's currency and international financial transactions.


Well thank you very much ABC News !!!! It is no longer a secret .(or maybe I should just give ABC the benefit of the doubt ...that the President wanted this information putting our operatives at risk revealed ......but somehow I don't think so . )

Mitt Romney's reaction almost get's it :

“First of all, I woke up this morning, and I was shocked to see the ABC News report regarding covert action in Iran. I was not shocked because of the covert action. I was shocked because a news organization with such a renowned reputation as ABC News would deem it appropriate to publish information about a covert action existing, and publish that not only to America but to the entire world. The reporting has the potential of jeopardizing our national security. Stated quite plainly, it has the potential of affecting human life. We may never know.

“As you know, Iran is developing a nuclear bomb. Iran sponsors terrorist groups like Hezbollah and Hamas. Iran’s President has denied the Holocaust. Its leadership has incited to genocide. Its leadership has suggested the use of nuclear weapons. In fact, the spread of nuclear terror – nuclear proliferation – is certainly the most threatening of all the prospects on the planet today. And Iran is the most noted perpetrator of this nuclear proliferation. And Iran is supplying weapons and expertise that kill American soldiers in Iraq.

“And with all those things in mind and despite those factors, ABC News published classified information that warns Iran and that has the potential of putting Americans at risk. Now no one wants in a country like ours any form of censorship, but the media has a responsibility to police itself. And in the last little while, we’ve seen two examples of a failure in this responsibility. One by The New York Times with regards to reporting on the electronic eavesdropping on potential terrorists and the other is this report by ABC News. Responsible policing I just don’t think happened on their part. Responsible policy-making happened on their part.

“And I think it’s important to recognize that we have a global war on terror which continues. It’s a global war against violent jihad. We’ve seen six years of this. It’s not about to disappear anytime soon. With that in mind, I think it’s time for leadership in the media to consider and adopt voluntary rules of responsible reporting with regards to matters of national security. Of course, we have a First Amendment which we cherish and value. It provides for freedom of the press but with this freedom goes the responsibility of the press. I’m not looking, as I said, for government censorship. I’m looking for corporate responsibility.”


Corporate responsibility ? That is for big oil,the drug companies and Walmart .....not for the MSM gate-keepers . When it comes to news ,they are the decider ! Anyway Govenor ,you got it slightly wrong. In cases involving national security violations it is not for the corporations to self police;it is for the government to police. Judith Miller was jailed to compel her to reveal her source. I expect no less for Brian Ross.




Itsdb answered on 05/24/07:

>>When it comes to news ,they are the decider<<

Yep, which is why it was such an outrage to out Valerie Plame and put her life as a covert agent (at her desk in) in danger and not guys on the ground in the land of Ahminajihad, the Iranian Nutjob - while reporting that Iran is continuing to make progress on its expanded efforts to enrich uranium in CBS' case.

And did you notice ABC's little feature to their article?

    Click Here to See Photos of the Players in Another Iran Operation -- the Iran-Contra Affair: Where Are They Now?


Yeah, that's what's important here.

Steve

tomder55 rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/23/07 - Read a review

of Al Gore's new book here .

Itsdb answered on 05/23/07:

About all I can say is the left has a helluva lot of chutzpah.

"A visionary analysis of how the politics of fear, secrecy, cronyism, and blind faith has combined with the degration of the public sphere to create an environment dangerously hostile to reason.

You mean like these classics?

    “Robert Bork’s America is a land in which women would be forced into back-alley abortions, blacks would sit at segregated lunch counters, rogue police could break down citizens' doors in midnight raids, children could not be taught about evolution.” -Ted Kennedy

    "Shamefully we now learn that Saddam's torture chambers reopened under new management, U.S. management." -Ted Kennedy

    "Under the Bush administration and this Republican Congress, America is less safe, facing greater threats and unprepared for the dangerous world in which we live." -Harry Reid

    "This development on the Korean Peninsula is further proof that you can't trust Republicans to keep America safe." -Howard Dean

    "The truth is the American people can't trust Republicans with their security." -Howard Dean

    "By any measure, five years after 9/11, America is less safe and more divided because of President Bush and Secretary Rumsfeld." -John Kerry

    "The bottom line is Judge Alito cannot be trusted on the Supreme Court. We can't trust him to stand up to government abuse of power. We can't trust him to ensure all citizens enjoy equal protection under the law. We can't trust him to protect our right to privacy. We can't trust him to defend mainstream American values." -John Kerry

    The Durbin Classic


And on and on and on...

We live in an age when the thirty-second television spot is the most powerful force shaping the electorate's thinking, and America is in the hands of an administration less interested than any previous administration in sharing the truth with the citizenry. Related to this and of even greater concern is this administration's disinterest in the process by which the truth is ascertained, the tenets of fact-based reasoning-first among them an embrace of open inquiry in which unexpected and even inconvenient facts can lead to unexpected conclusions.

    "The first thing we're going to do is we're going to have ethics come back to Washington again." -Howard Dean


'Nuff said

Gore's larger goal in this book is to explain how the public sphere itself has evolved into a place hospitable to reason's enemies, to make us more aware of the forces at work on our own minds, and to lead us to an understanding of what we can do, individually and collectively, to restore the rule of reason and safeguard our future. Drawing on a life's work in politics as well as on the work of experts across a broad range of disciplines, Al Gore has written a farsighted and powerful manifesto for clear thinking.

And that answer is ... get out your tin-foil hats

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/22/07 -
Your tax dollars at work

May 8, Congress passed HR 1595(288 - 133 ) The Guam World War II Loyalty Recognition Act .

The bill recognizes recognizes the island's suffering and loyalty to America during WWII . Cool

But then it goes on to authorizes reparations for the descendants of those killed by the Japanese. So who else do we have to pay off for the atrocities of the Japanese during WWII ? Let's say we by some kindness think the survivors deserve restitution by us . Why would there descendents be simularily eligible ? Why don't we simularily pay the families of the American soldiers who paid the ultimate price to liberate the Island July 21,1944 -August 10,1944 (3,000 killed,7,122 wounded)?

Itsdb answered on 05/22/07:

Interesting. This is related to Guam Meritorious Claims Act of 1945 (pdf).

The original act basically gave residents of Guam a year to claim a loss that was "the result of or incident to hostilities or hostile occupation, or is caused by or incident to noncombat activities of the United States Army, Navy, or Marine Corps forces or individual members thereof, including military and civilian employees thereof.

This congress is giving them an extension - over 60 years later. I have no problem with compensating the folks in Guam, helping them get back on their feet, helping them rebuild, etc., but it seems this congress is just looking for excuses to give away money. I'm sure it's a guilt thing - along with keeping a constituency by in their pockets.

Steve

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 05/22/07 - Another one of my hypothetical questions....

Would the rise of a dictator/tyrant such as Hitler, Stalin, Lenin, etc. be possible in 21st century America?

I know the libs are already chomping at the bit on this one, but I think that's just a knee-jerk reaction in this particular day and age.

I was thinking about it some this morning. I'm no historian--not by a long shot--but didn't Hitler "campaign" on a platform of fear, and create a common enemy while at the same time bolstering national pride? I know there was more to it than that, but you get the picture.

Right now, I can see why the conservatives couldn't pull it off, despite the many accusations to the contrary. The left's illegitimate child, the press, would counter ANY move made by a conservative at this point. However, I personally worry more ABOUT the left than the right--even the far right (whoever THEY are). I mean seriously, let's look: the left is the group of "tolerance, love, peace, fairness," and whatever other PC words you want to toss in there. However, who is gradually squashing freedom of religion? The left, if that religion is Judaism or Christianity. Who is quite overtly trying to take away the 2nd Amendment? The left again. While they are not quite restricting freedom of speech (unless it's "non-PC"), who "filters" the information the average American gets? The left, via their willing lapdogs in the media. And so on and so on....

So is it possible that America could voluntarily elect and hail a leader that is, in fact, a cruel tyrant and dictator?

DK

Itsdb answered on 05/22/07:

You're right that it is the left doing all of those things ... while accusing Bush/Republicans/conservatives/compliant media of being the ones eroding our rights.

I can totally see it, in my opinion liberals/progressives or whatever you want to call them are a serious threat to this country. They're louder, meaner, more intolerant and basically don't give a damn what anyone else thinks. They believe they're superior in every way and anything not conforming to their ideology is not even worthy of consideration.

And what's frightening to me about it is the American public in general doesn't see it. Partly because it's been a well-orchestrated effort for decades to gradually erode rights, indoctrinate the most impressionable (our kids), and infiltrate the media and education.

So we now have a generation of Americans that grew up influenced largely by liberals/progressives/secularists, etc) - skulls full of mush - exactly as they've wanted it.

I'm telling you, if we get a Democratic president (beholden to the moonbat base) and a Democratic congress in 2008 we'll start seeing at least the beginnings of your scenario. The public was fooled by a bunch of lying opportunists last fall...

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/22/07 - A letter to my cousin serving in Iraq

The Guardian has a story today about Iran unleashing their al-qaeda and Sunni surrogates in a summer offensive that I guess is designed to have the same negative psychological impact the U.S. as the Tet Offensive .(sorta blows that theory that Sunni and Shia will not cooperate )



http://www.guardian.co.uk/frontpage/story/0,,2085195,00.html


The official said US commanders were bracing for a nationwide, Iranian-orchestrated summer offensive, linking al-Qaida and Sunni insurgents to Tehran's Shia militia allies, that Iran hoped would trigger a political mutiny in Washington and a US retreat.

"We expect that al-Qaida and Iran will both attempt to increase the propaganda and increase the violence prior to Petraeus's report in September [when the US commander General David Petraeus will report to Congress on President George Bush's controversial, six-month security "surge" of 30,000 troop reinforcements]," the official said. ...

US officials now say they have firm evidence that Tehran has switched tack as it senses a chance of victory in Iraq. In a parallel development, they say they also have proof that Iran has reversed its previous policy in Afghanistan and is now supporting and supplying the Taliban's campaign against US, British and other Nato forces.


Our feckless political leadership has set up this scenario ;and when the attacks come I'm sure Speaker San Fran Nan will be the first to the podium proclaiming the surge a failure.Our enemies know we have a 3 year tolerance ;but anything longer than a 100 hour campaign ,the white flags begin to unfurl .

To those who complain that we did not follow the Powell doctrine by having a clear exit strategy I have said that the exit from Iraq is a road that goes through Tehran and Damascus.

Sorry for the rant but it's frustrating reading stuff like that . I can just imaging how it affects our troops . Maybe I should just be like the rest of America. ........Gee ...I wonder who is going to win the American Idol finals ??

Tom




Itsdb answered on 05/22/07:

"Iran is perpetuating the cycle of sectarian violence through support for extra-judicial killing and murder cells. They bring Iraqi militia members and insurgent groups into Iran for training and then help infiltrate them back into the country. We have plenty of evidence from a variety of sources. There's no argument about that. That's just a fact," the senior official in Baghdad said..

Well I'm with you, this just infuriates me ... but not as much as the way Madame Pelosi and co. will likely interpret this. They'll say "this is all Bush's fault!!! Our presence there is the problem!!!"

Who cares about Idol, will Apolo Anton Ono win Dancing With the Stars???

Steve

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Question/Answer
ETWolverine asked on 05/22/07 - My e-mail to President Bush

Mr. President,

I realize that you most likely will never see this message. However, I felt it was my duty to log my concerns with your immigration policies.

First, I believe that I should tell you a bit about myself so that you understand my perspective on immigration. I am a 38-year-old banker working for a mid-sized bank in New York. I am the son and grandson of immigrants from Poland, survivors of the Holocaust. My parents were born in German DP camps after the war and are naturalized citizens. (My mother still keeps her green card as a keepsake due to her pride at having come to this country.)

My grandparents worked very hard to become successful in this country. My father’s parents were candy-shop owners (after years of running pushcarts to scrape together the funds needed to buy the shop) and my mother’s parents were tailors. They came to this country with literally nothing in their pockets, and managed to become productive members of society. They managed to put their children through college, and all of them became professionals. My father is an attorney and a stock broker for a major Wall Street firm (coincidentally, he was once the youngest attorney to be admitted to argue before the Supreme Court, a record that has since been broken but that my father is still proud of to this day), and my mother manages real estate. My family made good on the American dream within a generation, and I am very thankful for the opportunities that the United States afforded my family. Thanks to the opportunities that this country affords us, I became the first member of my family born in this country, and with the support of my family I graduated Brooklyn College with a BA in economics. I married a girl from your own home state of Texas (Houston, to be precise) and we have two wonderful children, a home in New Jersey, and a solid middle-class income. My sister is a teacher living in Brooklyn, and my brother is an MD, a graduate of SUNY Downstate Medical School. I truly believe that my family is a text-book success story for immigration within the USA.

As you can see, Mr. President, I am hardly an opponent of immigration. I value immigration as an important source for “new blood” and new ideas into the pool of American resources. I try to keep in mind that some of the greatest acheivements of our great country have come from immigrants: Albert Einstein and Nikola Tesla, perhaps the two greatests scientists of their times, were both immigrants. Eli Weisel is an immigrant. And there have been many others as well… too many to name in such a letter. Immigration is important to our national identity and an important tool for remaining at the top of the economic and technological food chain.

However, your recently announced immigration bill concerns me greatly.

Mr. President, part of the reason that my family was so successful in this country was the fact that we became part of American culture. Another important factor is that we didn’t demand support from the government for what was really our own responsibility to provide to ourselves. And finally, and perhaps most important, is the fact that we caqme here legally after waiting on the appropriate lists and doing the appropriate paperwork. We did not sneak into the United States, we came here legally.

Mr. President, these are important factors to consider, and none of them are addressed in your bill.

While I do not necessarily support making English our national language (though it would be nice to see), I also don’t believe that accomodating other languages in government business supports the idea of joining American culture. Language is one of the most important factors in any culture, and not giving immigrants a reason to learn English by forcing them to conduct government business in English is a barrier to cultural acclimation. It sets immigrant apart from the rest of society, which in turn hurts American society as a whole. (Not to mention the economic costs of providing government assistance in multiple languages.) Your bill does not address this point at all.

Secondly, your bill has not appropriately addressed the costs of illegal immigration. The vast majority of illegal immigrants are low-skilled labor. The Heritage Foundation did a study in which they found that the average cost of a low-skilled labor family to the US Government is roughly $22,000 after taxes. Mr. President, with 11 million illegal immigrants in this country, the government is spending roughly $242 Billion per year on supporting low-skilled laborers from other countries. That equates to $2.4 trillion over a 10 year period. When we consider that your proposed national budget for 2008 is only $2.3 trillion, the cost of illegal immigration is one of great concern. This is potentially the biggest disaster to our economy since the Great Depression. We can barely afford to support our own low-skilled workers and their families. We do not need to be importing poverty from other countries to support. Instead of low-skilled laborer’s, we should be encouraging the immigration of high-skill employees and innovators… the likes of Eli Weisel, Nikola Tesla and Albert Einstein… people who will push this country forward economically, socially and culturally, not those who will hold us back.

Thirdly, your bill grants amnesty to an entire sub-class of law-breakers. I know that you object to the use of the word “amnesty” in reference to this bill, but that is exactly what this bill is: an amnesty bill. Mr. President, the American Heritage Dictionary defines amnesty as "A general pardon granted by a government, especially for political offenses." It is difficult for me to see how this bill is anything but amnesty. It grants a general pardon to a specific group of people for the illegal political offense of entering this country illegally. This is potentially a very big mistake, Mr. President. It makes US citizenship cheap. My grandparents worked very hard to become citizens, and they hold that citizenship dear because it was something worth working for. But your bill makes it cheap. It makes coming to this country illegally a method of gaining relatively quick citizenship.

Mr. President, one of your predecessors, President Carter, made the mistake of legalizing illegal immigration. The result was the Mariel Boatlift, a huge rise in crime, particularly drug crime and violent crime, and influx of convicted murderers and rapists to the United States, and a financial and economic burden that we are still paying to this day. I beg you to reconsider your current course of action. Legalizing 11 million illegal aliens in one felt swoop is an economic, social and criminal burden that this country cannot bear without serious and irreversible consequences.

I have supported you with regard to the War on Terror and the War in Iraq (which I consider to be one and the same), the USA Patriot Act, your tax relief plans, and your handling of judicial appointments, as well as on most other issues. But on this issue, Mr. President, I must log my strong disagreement.

I know that you have the good of this country at heart, and I know that your compassion for your fellow man is what drives you to support this bill. I respect your motivation. But this is not good for America or the American people. I urge you to reconsider this immigration bill.

With greatest respect from your constituent and supporter,

Elliot (my full name)

Edison, New Jersey

God Bless the President of the United States of America

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

What do you think? Did I catch the high points?

Itsdb answered on 05/22/07:

Elliot ... well done!

Did you know this about the phantom immigration bill? According to our two senators, Kay Bailey Hutchinson and John Cornyn, This proposal would enable illegal immigrants to collect SS benefits for the time they were unlawfully in our country.

Come again? This bill would retroactively give illegal immigrants Social Security benefits?

I realize there is no easy answer to the problem of 11 or 12 million illegals already here, but to give them SS benefits for the time they've spent here illegally? Nice.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/20/07 - Want to buy some property in quiet upstate NY ?

In the United States al Qaeda, Hezbollah, Hamas, Islamic Jihad and the Muslim Brotherhood – to name but a few terrorist organizations – have set up regional headquarters in Boston, Chicago, New York, Dallas, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Tampa, Washington DC and over 38 other cities around the country. They are not only raising, laundering and funneling money back to the Middle East to support their terrorist organizations, they are setting up jihadi training camps right here in the United States.

This week Paul Williams of the Candian Free Press wrote an expose about one small enclave situated in the previously quite Catskill Mts. in N.Y. It is called Islamberg (I kid you not).

Situated within a dense forest at the foothills of the Catskill Mountains on the outskirts of Hancock, New York, Islamberg is not an ideal place for a summer vacation unless, of course, you are an exponent of the Jihad or a fan of Osama bin Laden.

The 70 acre complex is surrounded with "No trespassing" signs; the rocky terrain is infested with rattlesnakes; and the woods are home to black bears, coyotes, wolves, and a few bobcats.

The entrance to the community is at the bottom of a very steep hill that is difficult to navigate even on a bright sunny day in May. The road, dubbed Muslim Lane, is unpaved and marred by deep crevices that have been created by torrential downpours. On a wintry day, few, save those with all terrain vehicles, could venture forth from the remote encampment.

A sentry post has been established at the base of the hill.

The sentry, at the time of this visit, is an African American dressed in Islamic garb - - a skull cap, a prayer shawl, and a loose fitting shalwat kameez. He instructs us to turn around and leave. "Our community is not open to visitors," he says.

Behind the sentry and across a small stream stand dozens of inhabitants of the compound - - the men wearing skull caps and loose fitting tunics, the women in full burqa. They appear ready to deal with any unauthorized intruders.

The hillside is blighted by rusty trailers that appear to be without power or running water and a number of outhouses. The scent of raw sewage is in the air.

The place is even off limits to the local undertaker who says that he has delivered bodies to the complex but has never been granted entrance. "They come and take the bodies from my hearse. They won't allow me to get past the sentry post. They say that they want to prepare the bodies for burial. But I never get the bodies back. I don't know what's going on there but I don't think it's legal."

On the other side of the hill where few dare to go is a tiny village replete with a make-shift learning center (dubbed the "International Quranic Open University"); a trailer converted into a Laundromat; a small, green community center; a small and rather squalid grocery store; a newly constructed majid; over forty clapboard homes; and scores of additional trailers.

It is home to hundreds - - all in Islamic attire, and all African-Americans. Most drive late model SUVs with license plates from Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, South Carolina, and Tennessee. The locals say that some work as tollbooth operators for the New York State Thruway, while others are employed at a credit card processing center that maintains confidential financial records.

While buzzing with activity during the week, the place becomes a virtual hive on weekends. The guest includes arrivals from the inner cities of New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania and, occasionally, white-robed dignitaries in Ray-Bans from the Middle East.

Venturing into the complex last summer, Douglas Hagmann, an intrepid investigator and director of the Northeast Intelligence Service, came upon a military training area at the eastern perimeter of the property. The area was equipped with ropes hanging from tall trees, wooden fences for scaling, a make-shift obstacle course, and a firing range. Hagmann said that the range appeared to have been in regular use.

Islamberg is not as benign as a Buddhist monastery or a Carmelite convent. Nearly every weekend, neighbors hear sounds of gunfire. Some, including a combat veteran of the Vietnam War, have heard the bang of small explosives. None of the neighbors wished to be identified for fear of "retaliation." "We don't even dare to slow down when we drive by," one resident said. "They own the mountain and they know it and there is nothing we can do about it but move, and we can't even do that. Who wants to buy a property near that?"

The complex serves to scare the bejeesus out of the local residents. "If you go there, you better wear body armor," a customer at the Circle E Diner in Hancock said. "They have armed guards and if they shoot you, nobody will find your body."


At Cousins, a watering hole in nearby Deposit, a barfly, who didn't wish to be identified, said: "The place is dangerous. You can hear gunfire up there. I can't understand why the FBI won't shut it down."

Islamberg is a branch of Muslims of the Americas Inc., a tax-exempt organization formed in 1980 by Pakistani cleric Sheikh Mubarak Ali Gilani, who refers to himself as "the sixth Sultan Ul Faqr," Gilani, has been directly linked by court documents to Jamaat ul-Fuqra or "community of the impoverished," an organization that seeks to "purify" Islam through violence.

Though primarily based in Lahore, Pakistan, Jamaat ul-Fuqra has operational headquarters in New York and openly recruits through various social service organizations in the U.S., including the prison system. Members live in hamaats or compounds, such as Islamberg, where they agree to abide by the laws of Jamaat ul-Fuqra, which are considered to be above local, state and federal authority. Additional hamaats have been established in Hyattsville, Maryland; Red House, Virginia; Falls Church, Virginia; Macon, Georgia; York, South Carolina; Dover, Tennessee; Buena Vista, Colorado; Talihina, Oklahoma; Tulare Country, California; Commerce, California; and Onalaska, Washington. Others are being built, including an expansive facility in Sherman, Pennsylvania.

Before becoming a citizen of Islamberg or any of the other Fuqra compounds, the recruits - - primarily inner city black men who became converts in prison - - are compelled to sign an oath that reads: "I shall always hear and obey, and whenever given the command, I shall readily fight for Allah's sake."

In the past, thousands of members of the U.S. branches of Jamaat ul-Fuqra traveled to Pakistan for paramilitary training, but encampments, such as Islamberg, are now capable of providing book-camp training so raw recruits are no longer required to travel abroad amidst the increased scrutiny of post 9/11.

Over the years, numerous members of Jamaat ul-Fuqra have been convicted in US courts of such crimes as conspiracy to commit murder, firebombing, gun smuggling, and workers' compensation fraud. Others remain leading suspects in criminal cases throughout the country, including ten unsolved assassinations and seventeen fire-bombings between 1979 and 1990.

The criminal charges against the group and the criminal convictions are not things of the past. In 2001, a resident of a California compound was charged with first-degree murder in the shooting of a sheriff's deputy; another was charged with gun-smuggling' and twenty-four members of the Red House community were convicted of firearms violations.

By 2004 federal investigators uncovered evidence that linked both the DC "sniper killer" John Allen Muhammed and "Shoe Bomber" Richard Reid to the group and reports surfaced that Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl was captured and beheaded in the process of attempting to obtain an interview with Sheikh Gilani in Pakistan.

Even though Jamaat ul-Fuqra has been involved in terror attacks and sundry criminal activities, recruited thousands of members from federal and state penal systems, and appears to be operating paramilitary facilities for militant Muslims, it remains to be placed on the official US Terror Watch List. On the contrary, it continues to operate, flourish, and expand as a legitimate nonprofit, tax-deductible charity.


For perspective: the area is very rural, without too many rules or oversight. Yet it’s just a few hours drive from NYC, with fairly cheap land. As pointed out, there are many more little jihadist communites nestled in simular locations around the country where Islamist paramiltaries practice and train .We chastise other countries, including some who we consider allies, for allowing terrorist training camps to exist within their borders. This is the pot calling the kettle black.

The obvious question is : If most of the residents have criminal records then the use and ownership of firearms by felons is prohibited; Why haven't the authorities gone in and busted the community ?
They had no problem with the idea when they raided the Branch Davidians under far less pretext .


Itsdb answered on 05/21/07:

Well now Tom, just take a peek at Islamberg and see the wildflowers, playground and the beautiful sunsets and all your worries should be eased. Why, you can even donate to their Masjid building fund while you're there.

Apaprently we needed a training ground for all those Muslims converted in prison to eliminate the need to ship them off to Pakistan for Jihadi lessons. Where's Janet Reno when you need her?

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/21/07 - Fred Thompson v Michael Moore

Michael Moore's new docu-fantasy-propagandist film "Sicko" is released and is getting praises from the ususal souces and some suprising ones .

If you have been in a cave then you don't know that he critiques the US Healthcare system . Agreed; there are parts of it that could be improved upon ,but he 'jumps the shark 'when he tries to favorably compare it to Cuba's system.

In a key moment in the film, Moore takes a group of patients by boat to the U.S. military prison at Guantanamo Bay in Cuba because of its outstanding medical care. When they can't get into the U.S. naval base, Moore proceeds onto Havana where the patients are treated well and cheaply.Some of the patients were people with health problems resulting from the 9-11 attacks on the WTC.

This stunt was challenged by Fred Thompson in an editorial entitled Paradise Island .

The truth is that Cuban medical care has never recovered from Castro's takeover--when the country's health care ranked among the world's best....

As many as half of Cuba's doctors fled almost immediately--and defections continue to this day. Castro won't allow observers in to monitor his nation's true state, but defectors tell us that many Cubans live with permanent malnutrition and long waits for even basic medical services. Many treatments we take for granted aren't available at all--except to the Communist elite or foreigners with dollars.

For them, Castro keeps "show" clinics equipped with the best medicines and technologies available. It was almost certainly one of these that Moore went to, if the stories in the New York Post and the New York Daily News are true.


Well Michael Moore seized on this opportunity to promote his new flix. He published a letter on his web site (picked up by Drudge ) challenging Thompson to a debate ,and calling him a hypocrite for smoking cuban cigars .

Within hours Thompson responded on You Tube .... with an unlit cigar in his mouth .Thompson's video was played more than 200,000 times the day of it's release and has gotten extensive coverage on the net ,on Bill O'Reilley's show ,CNN MSNBC,The New York Daily News ;the Des Moines Register,and other venues.This on the same day as the Republican GOP Fox debate . Again ;Thompson stood out above the pack in this Sista Soulja moment.

"You know, I've been looking at my schedule, Michael, and I don't think I have time for you," ...."But I may be the least of your problems. You know, the next time you're down in Cuba visiting your buddy Castro, you might ask him about another documentary filmmaker. His name is Nicolas Guillen . He did something Castro didn't like and they put him in a mental institution for several years, giving him devastating electroshock treatment. A mental institution, Michael. Might be something you ought to think about."....


"As to the cigars, they are the result of the generosity of a friend of mine who gives me a few from time to time. We intend to see to it that they are destroyed over the next few months."


The Hotline put the impact of the exchange this way :Thanks to Michael Moore, Fred Thompson may have upstaged the entire GOP field with out even showing up to 5/15's debate....

Thompson closes: "Mental institution Michael. It might be something you ought to think about." Bloggers went gaga:

Instapundit: "If this is a foretaste of a Thompson campaign, it's pretty potent."

Kausfiles: "More important ... the video is itself evidence of Thompson's actual presidential qualifications. You can't make a quickie spot like this unless

a) you know what you think (or have a really fast pollster)

b) you can react to new situations quickly, and

c) you have some sense of theater. Those are all extremely important things for a president to have."

Captain's Quarters: "It's 38 seconds of a down-home rhetorical spanking that manages to both address Moore and belittle him. I'm thinking Jack Palance in City Slickers, telling Bill Crystal, "I crap bigger than you." ... Man, I could watch this over and over again. Talk about pitch-perfect."

NRO's Jim Geraghty: "In a way, if every GOP candidate on stage tonight plays it safe, a potential candidate bit- er, slapping around Michael Moore might actually spur more discussion in GOP circles."


Thompson has taken internet campaigning to a new level . Howard Dean and others have been successful launching their campaigns and raising funds on the net ,but eventually he still slogged through snowy Iowa before he imploded . Thompson last week posted at Pajama Media and praised the Internet as a way to send a message beyond the Washington beltway.

Whether or not the Internet can elect any particular candidate in any particular race, it’s clear that all of you and our many friends across the blogosphere and the Web are part of a true information revolution. That’s why so much of my effort has been focused on talking to Americans through this medium. By empowering individuals and building communities, the Internet provides a way of going around the inside-the-beltway crowd to reach people in numbers unheard of not that long ago.

I believe this direct communication and discussion is going to have an enormous impact on our political process.....


It is apparent that Thompson intends to test the hypothesis that a candidate can run a successful internet campaign. "Hopefully, we'll continue this conversation."


















Itsdb answered on 05/21/07:

"Mental institution Michael. It might be something you ought to think about."

What other 'candidate' would dare utter those words let alone say them with such authority and flair? I'm with Elliot, I love this guy, and I would relish the chance to see him face the Dems in a showdown.

"We intend to see to it that they are destroyed over the next few months."

Beautiful.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/17/07 - Hillary took lessons from John Kerry

That's the only conclusion one can reach when reading this AP report

Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton voted Wednesday to advance legislation cutting off money for the Iraq war, then refused to pledge to support the measure if it came to a vote, then said she would........

"This is consistent with what I've been saying for several years."

Itsdb answered on 05/17/07:

We're as confused as anyone on Senator Clinton's position," said Connecticut Sen. Christopher Dodd's campaign spokeswoman, Christy Setzer.

Are they surprised by that? I've been confused about Democrats for years.

Steve

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Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 05/16/07 - He's bad and mean, ..

.. and worse than George Bush?

Does this mean he must be doing something right?
'Howard is a war criminal



Australia is funding terrorism and Prime Minister John Howard is a war criminal, Zimbabwe's Information and Publicity Minister Sikhanyiso Ndlovu says.

Zimbabwe's latest attack on the Australian government comes after Mr Howard banned the one-day cricket team from touring the southern African nation this September because of the despotic regime of President Robert Mugabe.

"The Australian people should really stand against John Howard's gestapo tendencies and interference with other states. He wants to cause insecurity in our country and that we will not allow," Dr Ndlovu told ABC Radio today.

"He is the international gestapo and a criminal ... he is worse than anybody else, his actions in banning the cricket is just one example of being the gestapo," Dr Ndlovu said of Mr Howard.

Last week, Mr Howard said he did not want the team to tour Zimbabwe because Mugabe was a "grubby dictator".

Cricket Australia was faced with the possibility of paying a multi-million dollar fine to the International Cricket Council for its failure to play the three one-day matches, but the council decided to not to impose the fine.

Dr Ndlovu said Australia was financing people who were destabilising the Zimbabwean regime.

"You continue to finance your puppets in our country who don't love their country.

"They are also the ... monies that come to them are to cause violence, you know, terrorist activities, I've got a long list of their terrorist activities here," Dr Ndlovu said.

AAP

Itsdb answered on 05/17/07:

Does this mean he must be doing something right? Obviously. Anyone that can call a true "grubby dictator" a "grubby dictator" is alright in my book.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/15/07 - I can't figure this shiite out

The Boston Globe,a NY Slimes affiliate reported yesterday about the Iraqi Shiites growing influence in Iran .

So some Iranians are intrigued by the more freewheeling experiment in Shi'ite empowerment taking place across the border in Iraq, where -- Iraq's myriad problems aside -- imams can say whatever they want in political Friday sermons, newspapers and satellite channels regularly slam the government, and religious observance is respected and encouraged but not required.

In Tehran's storied central bazaar, an increasing number of merchants are sending their religious donations, a 20 percent tithe expected from all who can spare it, to Iraq's most senior Shi'ite cleric -- rather than to clerics closer to Iran's state power structure, said Jawad al-Ghaie, 48, a wholesaler of false eyelashes and nail extensions and a respected lay donor.

Speaking carefully to avoid directly challenging the Iranian government, he and several fellow merchants suggested that Iraq's Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani holds more spiritual sway because of his lifelong commitment to quietism. That is the school of thought that says Shi'ite leaders should stay out of government, and Sistani has stuck to it despite the great temptation to wade into the chaos of Iraqi politics.


So here is some direct positive improvements rippling across the Iraq border (that coincidently neo-cons predicted )being reported by a NY Slimes sister paper .Potentially good news right ?

Yet the NY Slimes editorial board still is beating the drum that all is lost .


Itsdb answered on 05/15/07:

Potentially good news? You betcha, and the Times will have none of that in spite of their Boston child's temporary bout of sanity.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/13/07 - Update on The Howard Dean's tornado implode

So what do the Democrats do when they are caught with their pants down ? The unleash their lawyers. This 'cease and desist'letter was sent to the Freepers and another one was sent to XM Radio to silence Quinn (who still maintains his source is solid ).

SANDLE, REIFF and YOUNG, P.C.
50 E Street, S.E., Suite 300
Washington DC 20003

Telephone: 202.479.XXXX FAX: 202.479.XXXX

May 10, 2007

VIA E-Mail

Mr. James C Robinson FreeRepublic.com PO Box 9771 Fresno, CA 93794

Re: Statement re Democratic National Committee

Dear Mr Robinson:

We are writing on behalf of our client, the Democratic National Committee (DNC).

A post by “coffee260” on FreeRepublic.com today states that this morning, on the Quinn & Rose show on XM, co-host Quin stated that the DNC chairman, Gov. Howard Dean had called Gov Kathleen Sebelius (D-Kans) “around 5:00am on morning after a tornado destroyed the town of Greensburg, Kansas and discussed with here what to say about the tornado and how to blame the war in Iraq and the Bush administration on a slow response to the aftermath.”

The statement was made by Mr Quinn, repeated on FreeRepublic, is demonstrably, unequivocally and absolutely false. Gov Dean had no such conversation with Gov Sebelius, ever.

No effort was made by FreeRepublic to contact anyone at the DNC for comment or to check the accuracy of these statements before they were published. FreeRepublic not only repeated this statement, but further stressed that Quinn’s “source” was extremely reliable and in a position that would give him direct knowledge of these revelations.

The statements quoted above are false and defamatory, are libelous and slanderous and clearly threaten to interfere with the DNC’s operations and ability to solicit support and raise funds by predjuding the organization in the eyes of the Democratic Party supporters and the public. For these reasons, we demand that FreeRepublic immediately cease and desist from Further dissemination of the above quoted statements or any statements similar in substance and immediately post a retraction of these statements in a location on its web pages at least as prominent as that on which the original story appeared.

Please let us know by noon, May 11, 2007, whether you intend to comply with these requests.

Thanks for your time and immediate attention to this important matter.

Sincerely yours,
(Signature)
Joseph E Sandler



Sorry sreamin Dean .... I'm not sure about Quinn,but I am sure that the Coffee260 at FreeRepublic(and tropicalstorm for that matter )
is immune from defamation action based on The NY Slimes v.Sullivan ruling.It states that "no court of last resort in this country has ever held, or even suggested, that prosecutions for libel on government have any place in the American system of jurisprudence," and it endorses this tradition as being constitutionally mandated. In other words ,the threshold for libel suits by public figures is very high .

Here is Quinn's orginal story which btw also takes Sen.Brownback to task for not being upfront about thie conversation he had with Govenor Sebilius :

BREAKING NEWS From the Quinn and Rose Show
10 May 2007
Same Words -- Different Mouth Piece
By Rose
PLEASE NOTE: The following is information we have received from a reliable source. We have never been misinformed by this person in the past.

After Mother Nature did a number on the good people of Kansas, Governor Sebilius did a "Mother" of all numbers on the American people -- especially the people in Greensburg, Kansas.

Kansas Kathleen Sebelius had said that because Bush sent too many of our National Guard Members and resources to Iraq -- there weren't enough left to go around in Kansas. After those remarks to the media, she made a phone call to Senator Sam Brownback (R).

Keep in mind that Governor Sebelius has a decent relationship with Senator Brownback and other Kansas Republicans. In fact, she has, for the most part, led as a moderate rather than a liberal in Kansas.

According to our source; during her phone conversation with the Senator, she offered an excuse for her words to the media. She explained that because everything is so political right now -- she was told not to allow an opportunity like this pass.

She went on to say that "Howard" called her around 5:00 am and told her not to ask the White House for any help, or make any statements until she heard back from him. Then "Dick" (Durbin ?) called her an hour or two later and told her to use the excuse of the Guard being at war.

Hoping Brownback would understand, she apparently went on to say that he had to understand that with everyone feeling the heat about the war, they needed to get press on something else. She said she didn't think it was right to use it like this, but she didn't feel she had much of a choice with current climate.

She also promised that she'd try to move away from the comment when she and Brownback were to meet up later and tour the damage.

This certainly sheds a lot of light on Katrina -- and confirms the suspicions that many of us had at that time. Katrina was engineered in much the same way.

If they are going to read from the same script every time something like this happens, the least they could do is mix it up a little. The are just so darn predictable. They will do anything for political gain.

Brownback should show some spine and tell the American People and the Administration the truth. Where is his sense of deceny -- where is his loyalty to his party? Quinn and I were on Sean Hannity's radio program this afternoon. Sean had invited Senator Brownback to respond. So far, we haven't heard anything from him.

Let me ask this of Senator Brownback; What in the world would you have to lose if you were to be honest about the phone call from the Kansas Governor? Or, perhaps this is the better question; What do you have to gain by protecting Sebelious? Do you honestly think she would be there for you down the road? Do you think she gives a rat's ass about your bid for the Presidency? These aren't people you can count on -- when will we learn this?

Senator Brownback is not exactly the Paul Bunyan of Politics -- but he could be. He has an opportunity to do what no politician has done before him -- tell the truth.

Itsdb answered on 05/15/07:

If they are going to read from the same script every time something like this happens, the least they could do is mix it up a little. The are just so darn predictable. They will do anything for political gain.

Exactly what I said to TS, it was a page out of Blanco's book and Katrina - which makes me think Blanco took her cues from the DNC.

Here's something I'd like to ask the Deaniac and the DNC, how many Bush administration officials and other Republicans have you publicly defamed based on information from "a reliable source" or an official that "spoke on the condition of anonymity?" I mean geez, isn't that generally the entire basis for every Republican 'scandal' of the past 6 years, some anonymous source said something and we not only believe it but we're going to virtually beat the hell out of the person(s) involved?

The only way the left can accomplish their goals is to shut out, shut up and out shout the other side. And what's ironic is to do so they don't mind trampling every right necessary - including the ones they've accused Bush of tranpling - to accomplish their objective.

Steve

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 05/14/07 - Did you know.......................................

.......that trying to teach the concepts of chivalry (honor, dignity, selflessness, etc) to 7th grade wannabe gangsters is like trying to teach a damn pig to sing?

....sigh....

Where are we going, and why are we in this handbasket?


DK

Itsdb answered on 05/14/07:

Honestly Dennis, you might have better luck with the pig. Until you get more good parenting I don't think it's going to change much, you know parents that actually exhibit and instill some of that character in their kids. Plus, I know you guys have basically no options when it comes to discipline and the kids know it.

But hang in there buddy, just keep doing your part and you'll get some of them.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/13/07 - Culture of Corruption update

It's getting so bad that even AP is beginning to notice.

House Democrats are suddenly balking at the tough lobbying reforms they touted to voters last fall as a reason for putting them in charge of Congress.
Now that they are running things, many Democrats want to keep the big campaign donations and lavish parties that lobbyists put together for them. They're also having second thoughts about having to wait an extra year before they can become high-paid lobbyists themselves should they retire or be defeated at the polls.

The growing resistance to several proposed reforms now threatens passage of a bill that once seemed on track to fulfill Democrats' campaign promise of cleaner fundraising and lobbying practices.
"The longer we wait, the weaker the bill seems to get," said Craig Holman of Public Citizen, which has pushed for the changes. "The sense of urgency is fading," he said, in part because scandals such as those involving disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff and former Rep. Duke Cunningham, R-Calif., have given way to other news.

The situation concerns some Democrats, who note their party campaigned against a "culture of corruption" in 2006, when voters ended a long run of Republican control of Congress. Several high-profile issues remained in doubt Friday, five days before the House Judiciary Committee is to take up the legislation.


This of course was a completely predictable turn of events. The Democrat leadership has been there for years (and in some cases decades .... Charlie Rangel & John Conyers have been there 40+ years. John Dingell’s been there 50+ years. John Murtha has been their 30+ years).They had a vested interest in keeping the status quo .That makes them inherently anti-reform. The whole reform campaign to win Congress was a lie.

Several high-profile issues remained in doubt Friday, five days before the House Judiciary Committee is to take up the legislation.

They include proposals to:

Require lobbyists to disclose details about large donations they arrange for politicians.

Make former lawmakers wait two years, instead of one, before lobbying Congress.

Bar lobbyists from throwing large parties for lawmakers at national political conventions.


You can be sure that the version of the legislation that makes it out of Conyers Judiciary Comittee will be a very watered down version of the current bill .

The 'most ethical,most open least corrupt' Congress.........never mind.. The funny thing is ;I actually prefer it when the Democrats do nothing . I sleep better at night.


Itsdb answered on 05/14/07:

I read that over the weekend in my paper. It's getting a bit more common to find AP articles pointing out Democrat corruption and ineptitude. Not much, but it's getting a little notice. I've noticed the media is even getting tired of the Alberto Gonzales whimper.

And you're right, it was completely predictable, it was a complete lie, and the good news is they aren't accomplishing anything. Your followup points to more predictability, they aren't interested in any alternate views and the American public isn't interested in their radical ways so the only way they can accomplish their goal is to tie the hands of the opposition and stick a gag in their mouths. Or, by reviving the "fairness" doctrine.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/11/07 - Democrat logic

The House Democrats once again showed the electorate why they cannot be entrusted with national security. Incredibly, the Democrats passed provisions in the Intelligence Authorization Act funding a global warming study. Silvestre Reyes, Intelligence Committee Chairman argued that "this is an area we may vulnerable in terms of potential terrorists."



HUH ??????????

ok then ...there is a link between terrorism and global warming but none between al-Qaeda and Iraq.

and Chlorine truck bombs are not WMD.

Reyes claimed that a commission of 11 former Generals and Admirals support the plan .Vice Admiral Richard Truly did say "Its an issue, not in the sense the climate is going to declare war on the United States its not that kind of problem but its slowly building stress and its time to build into the nation's security planning." I guess I have to use the Democrat template to judge this statement ..... is it an imminent threat ????

Maybe I'm wrong....but with all the hot spots in the world (no I don't mean temperature ) ..tracking terrorist threats ,nukes in Iran and the NORKS .I'm sure there are more pressing concerns for our intelligence agencies resources.

The legislation passed this morning by a vote of 225-197.House members rejected a Republican bid to remove the provision of the bill requiring a study of climate change and its impact on national security, 185-230.

They also slipped in a provision as an amendment to the legislation saying that the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) should govern any domestic electronic surveillance used to collect foreign intelligence.(245-178 )

The bill authorizes funds for the intelligence community at around $44 billion or $45 billion.And what is gravy for the collective body of the Congress,most of the ear-marks in the bill are classified. We never get to see what is pork and what isn't .

The Senate will begin debating their version of the bill next week.






Itsdb answered on 05/11/07:

"there is a link between terrorism and global warming but none between al-Qaeda and Iraq."

That's due to the fact the Democrats have spent way too much time in this position:



But then, that's what we get when Madame Pelosi taps Reyes as Intelligence Committee Chairman - the guy who when asked about Hezbollah by Jeff Stein of Congressional Quarterly, answered, “Hezbollah. Uh, Hezbollah . . . “Why do you ask me these questions at five o’clock? Can I answer in Spanish? Do you speak Spanish?” Go ahead, said Stein. “Well, I, uh . . .” said the congressman.

Why then should he know anything about intelligence? And to think of the fit they threw over John Bolton...

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 05/10/07 - Howard Dean on the hurricane

Listen to
Jim Quinn of www.warroom.com
on XM satelite radio channel 165 6 a.m. to 9 a.m.

For follow ups on....

He says reliable source says

The Kansas Governor told Brownback that she
'could not allow an opportunity pass. I made sure not to blame anybody outside the whitehouse. With Bush's numbers you can't really blame me for that'.

Brownback replied he was 'disappointed in her'.

She said, 'you know me I wouldn't say that if I didn't have to but Howard Dean told me [to].' She tried explaining it away saying 'well it could happen' [that way someday]. 'I didn't think it was right to use it either but in this climate I had to' [to not disappoint Dean]

She also said they have more than enough National Guard and humvees.

QUINN SAID HIS SOURCE SAID 'HOWARD DEAN CALLED HER AT
5 AM AND SAID HE WOULD GET BACK TO HER WITH THE DETAILS' [of what he wanted her to say].
DICK DURBIN CALLED HER BACK WITH THE DETAILS.
Layhe is somehow involved too.

She (the governor) called Brownback's office and the call was forwarded to him personally on his cell phone.


Itsdb answered on 05/10/07:

Now what makes anyone think Howard the Scream would use a disaster for political advantage? She took a page right out of Blanco's playbook - who I'm thinking now may have taken a page out of Dean's. There is nothing sacred to these people, they can't put aside their BS over a natural disaster.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/10/07 - Rudy's donations

The MSM and bloggers on the left and right are all abuzz over an interview that Laura Ingraham had with Rudy .She took him to task for making donations to Planned Parenthood. He claimed he made them because of their work in adoptions . I find that doubtful but ...whatever.

There is no way to conclude by this donation (about $900) that Rudy supports their agenda regarding abortions . The truth is ;he has given far more to pro-family organizations .

Here is the breakdown according to David Brody

$1,200 To the Children's Aid Society (focus on adoption)
$150 To Adoption Provider Graham-Windham
$2,000 To the Hale House In 2006.(the Hale House tries to reunite birth parents with their child and deals with adoption)
$1,400 to The Boys & Girls Club
$1,100 To the Covenant House (helps runaways and homeless children)
$250 To the Starlight Children's Foundation (they Help Seriously Ill Children And Their Families Cope With pain and fear)
$100 To Great Joy Baptist Church
$200 To St. Agnes Church
$750 To St. Aloysius Church
$1,250 To St. Cyrils Methodist Church
$250 To St. Dominicks Church
$2,100 To St. Monica's Church

Hunter Baker at Red State has said Rudy's done because a donation to Planned Parenthood is considered the same as a donation to the KKK to conservatives .That is probably an exageration but if Rudy doesn't clarify his abortion position better ,his poll numbers will continue to drop. Will it be a decisive issue ? Possibly.




Itsdb answered on 05/10/07:

He may be right, I for one am a very vocal critic of Planned Parenthood - I find them to be one of the most vile, despicable organizations ever. I do know however they also do some good things - and I will reserve judgment on Rudy. We aren't going to get a perfect candidate and I'm looking for someone to run the country, not my church.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/10/07 - Democrats again display their lack of ability....

...to conduct foreign policy .Bob Novak describes the brutal treatment Colombia's President Alvaro Uribe received from the Congressional Democrats :

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Colombia's President Alvaro Uribe returned to Bogota this week in a state of shock. His three-day visit to Capitol Hill in Washington to win over Democrats in Congress was described by one American supporter as "catastrophic." Colombian sources said Uribe was stunned by the ferocity of his Democratic opponents, and Vice President Francisco Santos publicly talked about cutting U.S.-Colombian ties.

Uribe got nothing from his meeting with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other Democratic leaders. Military aid remains stalled, overall assistance is reduced, and the vital U.S.-Colombian trade bill looks dead. The first Colombian president to crack down on his country's corrupt army officer hierarchy, and to assault both right-wing paramilitaries and left-wing guerrillas, last week confronted Democrats wedded to out-of-date claims of civil rights abuses and to rigidly protectionist dogma.

This is remarkable U.S. treatment for a rare friend on the South American continent, where Venezuela's leftist dictator Hugo Chavez can only exult in Uribe's embarrassment as he builds an anti-American bloc of nations. A former congressional staffer, who in 1999 helped author Plan Colombia against narco-guerrillas, told me: "President Uribe may be the odd man out, and that's no way to treat our best ally in South America."

Uribe has not given up on the Yankees. When he returned to Colombia, he issued boilerplate about his visit being "very important in opening a dialogue with American leaders." This week he publicly urged the sluggish army to "rescue the hostages" held by narco-guerrillas and "go after the ringleaders," while privately chewing out the generals for inactivity. At the same time, Deputy Secretary of State John Negroponte, whose Foreign Service career includes Latin American duty, was in Bogota Tuesday insisting that the United States remains a great friend of Colombia.

A truer portent of the Colombian reaction to the rebuff in Washington last week was Vice President Santos's television interview Tuesday. Santos, a University of Texas graduate and former editor of the influential El Tiempo newspaper, said failure to ratify the free-trade agreement would "send a message to the external enemies of the United States" (meaning Venezuela's Chavez) that "this is how America treats its allies." He added that Colombia might "have to re-evaluate its relationship with the United States." A U.S. diplomat called that "a cream pie in the face" of the visiting Negroponte.

Hopes that the Democratic majority in Congress might perceive the importance of supporting Colombia were dashed April 20 when Al Gore canceled a joint appearance with Uribe at an environmental event in Miami. Gore cited allegations of Uribe's association with paramilitary forces a decade ago, charges denied by the Colombian president.

Gore's snub legitimized what the new congressional majority is intent on doing anyway. Democrats follow both left-wing human rights lobbyists and AFL-CIO President John Sweeney's protectionist campaign against the Colombian free-trade agreement. Rep. Sander Levin, chairman of the Ways and Means subcommittee on trade, as usual echoes labor's line against the bill.

In the wake of Uribe's visit to Washington, two prominent House Republicans -- former Speaker J. Dennis Hastert and Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, ranking minority member of the Foreign Affairs Committee -- made a quick trip to Colombia. Visiting there for the first time in many years, they were struck by the progress. They met with Colombian national police who had just returned from Afghanistan, where they advised NATO forces in techniques for dealing with narco-terrorists.

Democrats in Congress seem oblivious to such help or such progress. Sen. Patrick Leahy, chairman of the Appropriations subcommittee dealing with foreign aid, last month held up $55.2 million in military aid to Colombia because of "human rights" concerns. While Pelosi and her colleagues could not find a kind word for Uribe, Leahy insisted that he "supports" the Colombian president. As Lenin once put it, he supports him as a rope supports a hanged man.

President George W. Bush at least gave lip service to Uribe last week, but his concentration is on Iraq as the U.S. position in its own backyard deteriorates. Passivity is the best description of the administration's posture, while Democrats follow human rights activists, environmentalists and labor leaders on the road to losing an important ally.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

What we have here is a moderate leader ,a key ally in a region where trouble is brewing coming to Washington and seeing the extremism of the Democrat party in action .I'm sure all our allies and the other fence sitters around the world are looking on with interest and concern over the actions and rhetoric coming out of Congress .As VP Santos said failure to ratify the deal would ``send a message to the eternal enemies of the United States that ... this is how America treats its allies. I guarantee ;if the US doesn't do business with Columbia ,Panama ,Peru ,the Chinese will be more than willing to do so.

I'm sure if Hugo Chavez or Daniel Ortega were to pay Pelosi a call I bet she'd be orgasmic in her praise. Word of advice to Uribe ; Next time you visit Washington ,wear a Che Guevera T-shirt and chant "gringos out of Iraq" . You'll be treated like a rock star. .

Itsdb answered on 05/10/07:

tom,

Again I am at a loss to explain liberal behavior. Piling onto a guy like Uribe over human rights concerns while genuflecting to Islamists that not only represent EVERYTHING they hate about fundamentalism - but practice it to the extreme. How can anyone with a lick of sense explain that?

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/10/07 - National Guard Strength

Well first we have Guv. Sebelius claiming that the Kansas National Guard could not effectively respond in Greensburg because of some of them being deployed to Iraq . (this evidently is not the case ;the Kansas National Guard has responded well and with sufficient equipment for the task at hand.)Evidently some of the residents also disagree .

You saw the contrast yesterday .Bush provide empathy and support vs. Sebelius dirty political tricks.

Then we have the mathematically challenged Barak Obama saying that the National Guard is "over-stretched ".

But according to this report , The Army National Guard has exceeded its end-strength goal of 350,000 . In fact ,almost all the active duty and reserve forces have already met their goal for the year . http://airforcepundit.blogspot.com/2007/04/us-military-surpasses-recruiting.html

As far as I can tell the only thing that is hampering readiness is Congress' refusal to send a supplemental funding bill to the President's desk that doesn't have phony withdrawal dates and other earmarks attached to it.
Govenor crybaby and Obama can't have it both ways. If they are concerned about readiness then The Govenor should support the proper funding of the troops and Obama should get back to Washington and pass legislation without strings attached.

Itsdb answered on 05/10/07:

The good governor apparently took lessons from Blanco. But then that's what Democrats do best, bitch and whine while sitting on their hands. This has gotten way beyond old.

Apparently the Kansa National Guard also has a different take...

    More than 300 members of the Kansas National Guard have been activated in response to a powerful tornado that almost destroyed the town of Greensburg, Kan., May 4.

    Guard members are assisting in search-and-rescue efforts in the wake of the tornado, which was classified as an F-5, the highest rating given by the National Weather Service.

    The tornado wiped out much of the small town, knocking out power, water, natural gas and communications. To date, 10 deaths and more than 100 injuries have been reported.

    The Kansas National Guard's 278th Sustainment Brigade has established a joint task force near the incident site. In addition to search-and-rescue efforts, the troops are working on power generation, logistical support, debris clearing, support to law enforcement, supporting establishment of shelters and distribution of food and water.

    Currently, the Kansas National Guard has 88 percent of its forces available, 60 percent of its Army Guard dual-use equipment on hand, and more than 85 percent of its Air Guard equipment on hand, said Randal Noller, public affairs officer for the National Guard Bureau. Under the Emergency Management Assistance Compact, which is a national partnership agreement that allows state-to-state assistance during governor or federally declared emergencies, Kansas has more than 400,000 Guardsmen available to it, he pointed out. However, Kansas has not yet requested assistance from other states.

    The National Guard Bureau has offered liaison, operational, communications, contracting, search-and-rescue, public affairs and community relations support, and is prepared to support the governor in any way possible, Noller said.


I guess these Democrat governors can't figure out they have to follow protocol before they have anything to whine about.

If they have 60 percent of their equipment on hand, that would be at least:

211 Humvees
56 Heavy Expanded Mobility Tactical Trucks
14 medium and light tactical vehicles
91 2.5-ton cargo trucks
45 series 5-ton trucks
7 M916 tractors
522 trailers
31 Heavy Equipment Transport Systems
18 Palletized Load System Trucks
3 road graders
9 bulldozers
4 scoop loaders
43 dump trucks

Ya think they could handle Greensburg with that?

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/09/07 - Kansas

I lived there for 4 years . The Govenor of Kansas says they are being hampered in their relief efforts in Greensburg because the National Guard trucks are deployed in Iraq. As I recall ;there were never a shortage of trucks /tractors /pick ups in the state ;especilly deep hauling wheat trucks. Nor were there ever a shortage of willing civilians to volunteer to tackle natural disasters.There were many times when all the able bodies men would race to the river bank of the Arkansas River (pronounced Ar-Kansas in those parts ) to build sandbag barriers against a rising river .

I think that Govenor Kathleen Sebelius is taking a page out of the Govenor Blanco playbook . It doesn't fly .

Itsdb answered on 05/09/07:

I can't imagine a lack of heavy equipment in Kansas. Speaking of of overstating the problems there...

    RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Barack Obama, caught up in the fervor of a campaign speech Tuesday, drastically overstated the Kansas tornadoes death toll, saying 10,000 had died.

    The death toll was 12.

    "In case you missed it, this week, there was a tragedy in Kansas. Ten thousand people died—an entire town destroyed," the Democratic presidential candidate said in a speech to 500 people packed into a sweltering Richmond art studio for a fundraiser.

    Obama mentioned the disaster in Greensburg, Kan., in saying he had been told by the office of Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius that the state's National Guard had been depleted by its commitment to the Iraq War.

    "Turns out that the National Guard in Kansas only had 40 percent of its equipment and they are having to slow down the recovery process in Kansas," Obama said, his shirt sleeves rolled up and his head glistening with sweat.

    As the Illinois senator concluded his remarks a few minutes later, he appeared to realize his gaffe.

    "There are going to be times when I get tired," he said. "There are going to be times when I get weary. There are going to be times when I make mistakes."

    Obama spokesman Bill Burton said later that the senator meant to say "at least 10," instead of 10,000.


Ten, ten thousand, what's the difference? And what's with that "shirt sleeves rolled up and head glistening with sweat" stuff? Did Danielle Steele contribute to the article?

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/09/07 - Iran kidnaps again.

An employee of the organization that Lee Hamilton heads, the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, has been kidnapped and is being held hostage by Iran.

This must be disheartening to Hamilton who, along with James Baker, headed up the Iraq Surrender Group that proposed "outreach" and diplomacy with Iran as a solution to the Iraq war. The way I see it ;kidnapping "outreach" has always been a part of the Iranian diplomatic play book .

Itsdb answered on 05/09/07:

From the article:

Esfandiari and the other soft hostages appear caught up in an Iranian reaction to the Bush administration's $75 million program to promote democracy in Iran, which was unveiled last year. Tehran has since cracked down on human rights advocates, labor groups and women's rights campaigners, according to human rights activists.

What the heck is a "soft hostage?" Is that the PC way of referring to one of these Iranian kidnappings? Naturally of course, this is Bush's fault.

So when will the cries from the left over the crackdown on "human rights advocates, labor groups and women's rights campaigners" in Iran begin?

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/09/07 - Fort Dix

Here is my reply to Fred's post about Fort Dix.

What do you think of this??????????????????????????? arcura 05/08/07
6 Arrested in Alleged Fort Dix Murder Plot
Tuesday, May 08, 2007

MOUNT LAUREL, N.J. — Six Islamic militants from Yugoslavia and the Middle East were arrested on charges of plotting to attack the Fort Dix Army post and "kill as many soldiers as possible," authorities said Tuesday.
In conversations secretly recorded by an FBI informant over the past year, the men talked about killing in the name of Allah and attacking U.S. warships that might dock in Philadelphia, according an FBI criminal complaint.
"This was a serious plot put together by people who were intent on harming Americans," U.S. Attorney Christopher Christie said Tuesday. "We're very gratified federal law enforcement was able to catch these people before they acted and took innocent life."
One suspect reportedly spoke of using rocket-propelled grenades to kill at least 100 soldiers at a time, according to court documents.
"If you want to do anything here, there is Fort Dix and I don't want to exaggerate, and I assure you that you can hit an American base very easily," suspect Mohamad Ibrahim Shnewer said in one conversation secretly recorded by a government informant, according to the criminal complaint.
"It doesn't matter to me whether I get locked up, arrested or get taken away," a suspect identified as Serdar Tatar said in another recorded conversation. "Or I die, it doesn't matter. I'm doing it in the name of Allah."
Another suspect, Eljvir Duka, was recorded saying: "In the end, when it comes to defending your religion, when someone is trying attacks your religion, your way of life, then you go jihad."
White House spokesman Tony Snow said Tuesday there is "no direct evidence" that the men had ties to international terrorism.
The FBI was tipped off in January 2006 when a shopkeeper alerted agents about a "disturbing" video he had been asked to copy onto a DVD, according to court documents. The video showed 10 men in their early 20s "shooting assault weapons at a firing range ... while calling for jihad and shouting in Arabic 'Allah Akbar' (God is great)," the complaint said.
Six of the 10 men on the tape were identified as those arrested in the plot. They were arrested Monday trying to buy automatic weapons from an FBI informant, officials said.
Christie said one of the suspects worked at Super Mario's Pizza in nearby Cookstown and delivered pizzas to the base.
"What concerns us is, obviously, they began conducting surveillance and weapons training in the woods and were discussing killing large numbers of soldiers," said Justice Department spokesman Dean Boyd.
The six were scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court in Camden later Tuesday to face charges of conspiracy to kill U.S. servicemen, said Michael Drewniak, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office in New Jersey.
Four of the men were born in the former Yugoslavia, one in Jordan and one in Turkey, officials said. All had lived in the United States for years. Three were in the country illegally; two had green cards allowing them to stay permanently; the other is a U.S. citizen.
Besides Shnewer, Tatar and Eljvir Duka, the other men were identified in court papers as Dritan Duka and Shain Duka. Checks with Immigration and Customs Enforcement show that the Dukas were illegally in the U.S., according to FBI complaints unsealed with their arrests.
Five of the men lived in Cherry Hill, a Philadelphia suburb about 20 miles from Fort Dix.
"They were planning an attack on Fort Dix in which they would kill as many soldiers as possible," Drewniak said.
A law enforcement official, speaking on condition of anonymity because documents in the case remain sealed, said the attack was stopped in the planning stages. The men also allegedly conducted surveillance at other area military institutions, including Fort Monmouth, a U.S. Army installation, the official said.
By March 2006, the group had been infiltrated by an informant who developed a relationship with Shnewer, according to court documents. The informant secretly recorded meetings in August in which Shnewer said he and the others were part of a group planning to attack a U.S. military base, the complaints said.
Shnewer named Fort Dix and a nearby Navy base, explaining that the group "could utilize six or seven jihadists to attack and kill at least one hundred soldiers by using rocket-propelled grenades" or other weapons, the complaints said. The Navy base was not named in the papers.
Fort Dix is used to train soldiers, particularly reservists. It also housed refugees from Kosovo in 1999.
The base has been closed to the public since the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks and has heavily armed guards at entrances, yet the main road through neighboring Cookstown cuts through the base and is accessible to the public.




~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Forgetting the flippant answers you've received ;security at domestic bases have been low and they were vulnerable to the very type of plot that was being attempted. The jihadists had accumulated and were seeking a pretty impressive arsenal for the attack . Since they planned it to be a 'suicide ' attack ,they could've inflicted alot of casualties .And of course it would've been a P.R. boost to jihadistan to attack a base on U.S. soil.
But any attempt of additional security gets criticized by the ususal suspects .



After 9/11, the Pentagon began developing a database of people and groups in the United States that it deemed to be potential threats to defense facilities or workers. It drew widespread criticism when news reports revealed that some of the data included people who had been monitored at anti-war rallies. Last month the Pentagon's intelligence chief recommended the program be shut down.It is possible that the names of the plotters were on that list .

Thier plot was in fact detailed .Here is the charges Read attachment B . The jihadists had been active working on this plot since 2005. They saved money to buy weapons, and subsequently purchased them. They had maps of Fort Dix – one of them used to deliver pizza there. He also knew how/where to cause power outage on the Fort to make attack easier. They trained in the Pocono Mountains in PA. They wanted to kill as many GIs as possible .


Who knows ? It is very easy to ridicule the authorities after a plot is broken up and claim it was not a serious as it is being portrayed. But had the plot been carried out to conclusion the same people would've been ridiculing the ineffectiveness of the security measures taken.
The same people would've scoffed at the notion of terrorists using fertilzer as a weapon; until a plotter proved it could be done. Now in the UK jihadists have plotted to blow up venues including a nightclub in London using basic materials such as flour and hair bleach . Sounds dumb and implausable but ignore it at your peril .

Itsdb answered on 05/09/07:

tom,

I didn't bother to answer the post, it's an exercise in futility over there to explain the obvious.

Instead, I've opted to try a different tactic - occasional religion in the news pieces. :)

Steve

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Question/Answer
ETWolverine asked on 05/07/07 - A Change in France? For the better?

A FRENCH RUDY
By FRED SIEGEL

May 7, 2007 -- IF Nicholas Sarkozy, the new president-elect of France, reminds you of Rudy Giuliani, there's a reason. Sarkozy really is a kind of French Giuliani. More, he's clearly learned some things from Rudy (the two have met) - and his success may have lessons for Giuliani in his bid to become U.S. president.

Most accounts simply note that Sarkozy is remarkably pro-American for a French politician - describing America as "the greatest democracy in the world."

But when you get into the details of his admiration, you start hearing echoes of Rudy:

* "France," Sarkozy quips, "is like the Anglo-Saxon countries when it comes to inequality and poverty - but without their social mobility and full employment."

* He also mocks French anti-Americans as people who "envy" America's "brilliant success."

* Speaking to 300,000 French citizens who've fled the stagnation of their homeland for jobs in London, Sarkozy committed blasphemy by the normal rules of French politics: He praised England's less regulated and more dynamic economy as a model for France.

Yes, the French elected a man who promises a "rupture with the past" - for the same reason New Yorkers reluctantly elected Giuliani in 1993: because conditions were bad enough to risk change.

Some 70 percent of the French think their deeply indebted and grossly over-taxed country is in perilous decline; books on the country's bleak future have become a small publishing industry in Paris. Like Giuliani in ྙ, Sarkozy bluntly presents himself as a turnaround artist who can redeem the promise of lost greatness by challenging the conventional political assumptions of the permanent government of civil servants, political insiders and over-mighty interest groups who all feed off of a bloated state.

Both men are hard-edged originals with bruising political styles, energetic and inner-directed - outsiders to their political establishments who attract both a devoted following and bitter hostility.

Above all else, each has a hard-to-categorize politics - one that capitalizes on popular resentment of insulated elites clinging to the outdated ideologies of the 1960s.

Giuliani as mayor mocked the "compassionate" liberalism that left masses of people trapped in welfare while providing guaranteed jobs and votes for Gotham's Democrats. Sarkozy similarly mocks the "egalitarianism" of the French civil service - who have near-total job security and fat pensions, even as their management has left French unemployment running double the American rate for 30 years.

The two men met in 2002, when Giuliani had been invited to France to provide advice on how to combat the rising crime rate and Sarkozy was serving as Interior minister. The Frenchman talked to the American about "broken windows" policing and New York's famed COMSTAT program, which provided a meaningful metric for policing. More recently, Sarkozy has been talking up New York-style welfare reform - requiring the able-bodied to take available jobs.

Just as Giuliani wanted to make New York, with its Francified bureaucracies, more like the rest of America, Sarkozy wants to make France more like the more market-oriented Anglo-American economies. Both are critics of multiculturalism - and neither accepts that crime or terrorism can be explained by social causes.

Each talks in a language foreign to the elites - emphazing personal responsibility and the importance of the work ethic. In his recent book, "Témoignage" ["Testimony"], Sarkozy takes aim at those on the French left who depict the rioting Muslim youth of the banlieues as victims of police brutality and French racism. In a riff that's nearly pure Giuliani, he points to the massive social spending in the banlieue - and notes that it seems to have sown far more resentment than good will. Rudy-like, he argues that the young rioters have to adjust to France - rather than the other way around.

The similarities go beyond policy and persona. Sarkozy ran not only against Socialist candidate Segolene Royal, but against criticism of his own aggressive political style. Facing Royal in a crucial debate just days before the election, he managed to constrain his combatative personality lest he be seen as too aggressive. He passed the test, can Giuliani?

Sarkozy also had to overcome the unpopularity of sitting President Jacques Chirac, a member of his own party. Placed on the defensive by the failures of his fellow Gaullist, Sarkozy carefully but convincingly called for reversing the economic policies associated with the incumbent - without mentioning Chirac by name.

Giuliani, who has offered himself up as the salvation of a sinking Republican Party, should be watching closely. If he wins the Republican nomination, he'll similarly have to thread the needle of distancing himself from President Bush's foreign-policy failings without too directly criticizing the president.

The French Rudy pulled it off. Will the American Sarkozy manage it, too?

Fred Siegel is a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute; his books include "The Prince of the City: Giuliani, New York and the Genius of American Life."

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

Does this bode well for the future relationship between the USA and France, and regarding France's place in the GWOT? I would certainly like to think so.

And can Giuliani learn the lessons of restraint or rhetoric that Sarkozy managed to learn? Sarkozy has learned from Rudy. Can Rudy learn from Sarkozy?

What's your opinion?

Elliot

Itsdb answered on 05/07/07:

People who "envy" America's "brilliant success?

Requiring the able-bodied to take available jobs?

Wants to make France more like the more market-oriented Anglo-American economies?

A critic of multiculturalism?

Doesn't accept that crime or terrorism can be explained by social causes?

Emphasizes personal responsibility?

Thinks the young rioters have to adjust to France - rather than the other way around?

I like the guy already - makes me want to go out and buy some French wine.

Personally I think Giuliani just needs to be Giuliani and not overly concern himself with 'threading the needle.' I think Americans are looking for someone neither right nor left that will inspire, take charge and lead the way, and whoever gets that impression across best will be the next president.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/07/07 - Major James Gant

...will be receiving the Silver Star for heroic actions in Iraq.

The enemy on that stretch of road was well trained and waiting, Gant said. But he knew his crew was ready. After spending 17 years in the Army, he should know.

"I had a really well trained transition team," he said. That confidence was also extended to his Iraqi brethren as well, with good reason.

"On Nov. 24, (insurgents) hit my vehicle (with an improvised explosive device) and it flipped three times," said Gant, half of a dual-military couple of 11 years. His wife, Maj. Giselle Pozzerle, currently serves at Fort Bragg, N.C. "One of my Iraqis got me out of that vehicle."

That was just a recent example, and the training and experience of the Iraqi policemen and U.S. Soldiers were about to be tested. As the patrol headed south, machine gun fire started from the west.

Gant ordered his gunner, to return fire, eventually breaking contact and moving towards Baghdad. In the initial fight, one of his Iraqi Police "Commandos" was injured with a gunshot wound to the face.

"It wasn't a wound that we could continue without treatment right then and there," he said.

Using his advanced medical skills that he gained during his time in the Special Forces, he dismounted and rushed to stabilize the Iraqi and called in a medical evacuation helicopter.

In order for a helicopter to land, an area had to be cleared. They moved into nearby palm groves on foot pushing the enemy back in a close range fire fight.

"At this point, it became very apparent to me that the (insurgent's) intent was to destroy our patrol," he said. "We had over 20 vehicles with us that were spread out across a large area. It is a large enemy force to have our entire patrol engaged at once."

They moved back to their landing zone, but the fire intensity increased on both sides. If they could not clear the landing zone the helicopter would not be able to land.

"The fire was so heavy you could feel it inside; you could see and feel the shake of the gunfire, with the Commandos fighting just as heroically as the Americans" Gant said.

After pushing the enemy back, the bird was able to land, but before the fight took a turn for the worse, Gant wanted that helicopter out of the danger zone.

"I told the flight medic, ‘I believe you have about two minutes before we start receiving mortar fire. They know we are here and we are going to start receiving mortar fire within the next 60 seconds to two minutes,'" he said.

They swiftly loaded up the casualties and within 15 seconds of the helicopter taking off, the landing zone started receiving mortar fire, he said.

He considered the fact that they were still in contact a good thing, though.

"We try to maintain contact with the enemy as long as possible and kill as many as we can," Gant said. "We were going to do some serious damage that day.

"It is easy to sit in a room in safety and talk about it," he said. "I came here to fight. I came here to kill the enemy. I knew at the time what a huge engagement it was... I also had a huge concern for my team and my Iraqis, because I love these guys. I wanted to ensure that we didn't take unnecessary risks or have unnecessary casualties."

He decided that he needed to get the insurgents out of their well built positions. It was obvious to him that this complex attack was well planned. They mounted up and started to move again toward Baghdad still taking fire from both sides.

"We were receiving some sporadic machine gun fire (as we moved,) and I got word that the rear was being pinned down with intense small arms fire," he said.

He peeled his vehicle to the rear putting him between the patrol and the incoming fire. Laying down suppressive fire, his gunner went through 18,000 rounds that day. The rear of the convoy was moving up out of the hot zone, and Gant's humvee pushed back to the lead of the convoy.

They were moving toward an urbanized area, with the threat of improvised explosive devices and rocket-propelled grenade teams rising. This is when the heaviest fire of the day began, and in the middle of the median, was an obvious IED.

He wasn't going to put his team in a situation where they are forced to pull security in the area, especially since they were still under small arms fire. His logic was if the IED struck one of the police vehicles that did not have any protective siding the results will be catastrophic and they would be pinned down.

"We couldn't get off the road. There were markets and such on the sides of the road," Gant said. "The IED had to go off and I wanted it to be on an up-armored vehicle. I wanted it to be mine."

He told the rest of his patrol to push left, and pulled his gunner inside of the vehicle. He told his driver to have the IED detonate on his side.

"We moved up. Nothing. (We) got closer. Nothing," he said. "We were within about twenty feet, when (the IED) went off."

Nobody was hurt and the vehicle was still operational. They continued on, discovering a second IED about 50 feet from the first.

"My driver was fearless that day. He didn't even hesitate," he said.

They started the same drill but at this point a civilian vehicle had linked up with the convoy. He knew it was there, but he still needed the second IED to go off on an armored vehicle. The passengers braced themselves for the second blast. Everyone was all right, once again.

"There was a bend in the road. We were receiving machine gun fire from the front and both flanks," Gant said.

There was a third IED; a ploy to get them to stop and be sitting ducks for another ambush. It was a hoax.

This is when Gant received word that a woman in the civilian vehicle had been severely injured in the first blast. Still under heavy small arms fire in a hasty perimeter, he got out and tried to perform first aid on her.

"She didn't want me touch her. She was going to die and she didn't want me to touch her," Gant said. His Iraqi counterpart, consoled the woman saying, "It's OK. He is my brother."

She then allowed him to apply tourniquets to both of her severely wounded legs. There was also a little girl in the vehicle. Gant, a family man with two kids of his own back in North Carolina, Tristen, 9, and Scout, 7, wanted to keep this child safe.

"I realized that we might all die today, but this little girl will not," he said, talking about how he put the child in his up-armored vehicle. "We had some sporadic small arms fire after that, but we had broken their back. They wanted us to stop there.

"I later found out that the women lived, and the little girl," he said with a smile, "was still afraid of U.S. forces, but she was really small... maybe one. She didn't understand; (she) just knew that someone had grabbed her from her mom and dad. She didn't know that it was for her own protection. I hope that one day, her parents tell her what happened that day."

They engaged the insurgents until the patrol was able to get out of the area, eventually making it into Baghdad and down a route known for explosively-formed projectiles.
When they finally made it back that day, they were met with a celebration. There were more than 200 Commandos singing and bathing the road with goat's blood and planting bloody handprints all over there war-torn, bullet-ridden vehicles. There were celebrating.

"I will never forget them hugging and kissing us, their brothers in arms," he said of their return. "They do this in celebration, when they think we gave our lives for them, or could be dead."

Though nearly six months has passed since that battle occurred, Gant can tell the story of the battle like it was yesterday.

Only two Soldiers remain on his crew that were with him that day, most of the American Soldiers have rotated back to the United States, but he remembers all of his team.

“On that day, there were no Americans. There were no Iraqis, no whites and no blacks. There were no Sunnis, Shias, Christians. There was just a group of warriors working and fighting together,” he said. “All the men I fought with that day showed incredible courage and bravery. That was one of the highlights of my life; working with those men that day.”

Itsdb answered on 05/07/07:

"They do this in celebration, when they think we gave our lives for them, or could be dead."

And here I thought the Iraqis didn't want the Americans there. THAT is what it's all about, "a group of warriors working and fighting together" to defeat the Islamists. Winning the Iraqis' trust, dedication, bravery, selfless sacrifice - the stories we are NOT hearing - and the most important stories on the whole effort.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/06/07 - Pim Fortuyn

Europe's Champion of Liberty
BY BRUCE BAWER
May 4, 2007
http://www.nysun.com/article/53818?page_no=3

Sunday, May 6, marks the fifth anniversary of the assassination of Pim Fortuyn. Fortuyn was nine days away from an election from which he was expected to emerge as Dutch prime minister. As he walked out of a radio studio near Amsterdam, a left-wing activist named Volker van der Graaf pumped five bullets into his back. Fortuyn died almost instantly.

The killer would later explain that Fortuyn's views on Muslim immigration made him a "danger." It was the Netherlands's first political assassination in over 300 years.

Fortuyn had been an active politician for only a few months but had already shaken things up dramatically. Before him, Dutch politics had been essentially a closed club whose members shared broadly similar views on major issues and abhorred open conflict.

Then along came Fortuyn, a writer and sociology professor who'd grown increasingly concerned about the rapid Muslim influx into the Netherlands — and about the fact that while the Dutch government lavishly subsidized immigrant families, schools, mosques, and community centers, it made little effort to integrate newcomers and refused to challenge the patriarchal, often brutal values that held sway in Muslim enclaves.

Fortuyn recognized the rise of fundamentalist Islam in Europe as a menace to democracy. And he said it straight out — eloquently, forcefully, fearlessly. Back in 1997 he'd published one of the first books anywhere to sound the alarm. Only days before September 11, 2001, he wrote that communism's role as a threat to Western freedom "has been taken over by Islam."

But instead of recognizing him as a prophet, Dutch leaders saw him as a threat. On September 11, Dutch Moroccans gathered in the streets to cheer. But the interior minister, Zaken De Vries, ignoring these enemies within, warned instead that counterintelligence services would "pay sharp attention to persons who want to … conduct a cold war against Islam." Meaning Fortuyn.

In November 2001, Fortuyn became head of a new party, Livable Netherlands, only to be tossed out three months later for being too outspoken. So he started another party. The more he spoke out, the more journalists and politicians smeared him — an openly gay man and life-long liberal — as a right-wing extremist, a racist, a new Mussolini or Hitler.

Yet millions of his countrymen knew better. Accustomed to leaders who shunned controversy and spoke in empty formulas, Dutchmen were stunned and delighted to hear Fortuyn say things they'd long been thinking themselves. Voters from all over the political map became his ardent supporters. He seemed poised not only to transform the Netherlands but also to lead the way for all of Western Europe.

And then, suddenly, he was dead. Van der Graaf's explanation of his motives read like a précis of every lie that had ever been told about Fortuyn. Dutch citizens were justifiably outraged at the journalists and politicians who'd told those lies. Feeling the heat, the Dutch parliament reformed immigration law — to an extent. It overhauled integration policies — somewhat.

Leading the way in advocating these policy changes were two admirers of Fortuyn's — filmmaker Theo van Gogh and Parliament member Ayaan Hirsi Ali. But by early 2007 they, too, were out of the picture.

In November 2004, an Islamist murdered van Gogh. In 2006, in a crisis that brought down the government, Ms. Hirsi Ali was hounded out of Parliament by colleagues desperate to unload this troublemaker. When she moved to Washington, D.C., last year, polls showed that many Dutchmen wouldn't miss her. The elite, it seemed, had reasserted its power, and the Dutch people, tired of conflict, had embraced the status quo ante.

This was confirmed by the March 2006 elections, in which immigration — incredibly — was a minor issue. Five years ago, Fortuyn inspired widespread hope and determination. Today, all too many Dutch citizens seem confused, fearful, and resigned to gradual Islamization. No wonder many of them — especially the young and educated — are emigrating to places like Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.

Yes, some politicians, notably Parliament member Geert Wilders, are carrying on Fortuyn's battle. But momentum has given way to malaise. Politicians and journalists who once kept mum on Islamization now openly defend it as preferable to culture clash: Amsterdam mayor Job Cohen has called for "accommodation with the Muslims," including toleration "of orthodox Muslims who consciously discriminate against their women."

Only last week, Mr. Wilders was called in by Dutch intelligence and security officials who, he said, "intimidated" him by pressuring him to tone down his rhetoric on Islam. Fortuyn's brief shining moment seems very long ago.

Many political assassinations leave behind haunting questions. How would Reconstruction have gone under Lincoln? Could the Vietnam debacle have been avoided if President Kennedy had lived? Five years after Fortuyn's murder, it can feel as if Volkert van der Graaf robbed Europe not only of a brilliant champion of liberty, but of its one great chance to save itself before it's too late.

Mr. Bawer is the author of "While Europe Slept" and lives in Oslo, Norway.

Itsdb answered on 05/07/07:

>>Amsterdam mayor Job Cohen has called for "accommodation with the Muslims," including toleration "of orthodox Muslims who consciously discriminate against their women."<<

Whatever Perc's beef, (which I answered here), Cohen's position alone should be enough to bring out Perc's shouts of outrage. But somehow in the minds of these people they manage to justify excusing such behavior among Muslims in the name of 'tolerance' - yet watch them throw a fit if a male Christian quotes Ephesians 5:22.

Check out my next post along those lines...

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 05/04/07 - HIllary sHillary

she accents a southern gospel persona
now she pitches her voice to sound like a farmer claiming she grow up on the farm working along side with illegal migrant Mexican workers babysitting their children
yet here is her biography
does it all add up or not?

Hillary Diane Rodham was born at Edgewater Hospital in Chicago, Illinois, and was raised in a Methodist family in Park Ridge, Illinois. Her father, Hugh Ellsworth Rodham, was a son of English immigrants and operated a small business in the textile industry. Her mother, Dorothy Emma Howell Rodham, was a homemaker. She has two younger brothers, Hugh and Tony.

As a child, Hillary Rodham was involved in many activities at church and at her public school in Park Ridge. She participated in a variety of sports and earned awards as a Brownie and Girl Scout.[2] She attended Maine East High School, where she had participated in student council, the debating team and the National Honor Society

A curmudgeon was the way one Hillary biographer, Norman King described Hugh while another, Roger Morris finds him guilty of the "psychological abuse of his children. Chief Petty Officer Hugh Rodham was a drill instructor who trained recruits in the Navy during World War II. Afterward he became a successful businessman in Chicago who moved his family to Park Ridge, an upper middle class suburb from a city apartment three years after Hillary was born. He was a regal presence in this family; Hillary says it was like the television sitcom, Father Know Best. But the humor was lacking according to Dorothy who said of Hillary, "She had to put up with him." Of course, Dorothy did too.
Hillary was Daddy Hugh's girl but what does this mean?
She was Hugh Rodham's victim who wanted his love and approval even as she tried to escape his stinginess, irascibility and perfectionism. The victim survived and was marked by an identification with the aggressor. Like Hugh the adult Hillary became irritable, demanding and the family breadwinner but that's getting ahead of her story. When she brought home a report card with all A's, Daddy replied that it must be an awfully easy school. We're not told what Dorothy Rodham said when she saw the grades maybe because this wasn't important or perhaps Mother Dorothy was also hard to please. It was Dorothy who said there was no room in the house for cowards when little Hillary ran home after an attack by an "obnoxious girl." Forced to confront her attacker, she won the battle and now had the respect of the neighborhood players, says biographer David Brock.


While Hillary's childhood is usually described as solidly middle class, Oppenheimer offers a grim portrait. Hugh Rodham may have driven a Cadillac and owned a home in a white-bread Chicago suburb, he writes, but he was a cheapskate who refused to take care of the place, and his drapery business was a one-man shop with walls stained brown from chewing-tobacco juice. Hillary has her brother Tony to thank for many of these details, since Tony told Oppenheimer about a cousin, Oscar Dowdy, who became the source for them. Dowdy also says that Hillary's mother was given to making anti-Jewish slurs (some about Hillary's grandmother's second husband Max Rosenberg).





Itsdb answered on 05/04/07:

I heard a guy on the radio yesterday that said he went to high school with her, and the only non-whites were pretty much foreign exchange students.

>>the adult Hillary became irritable<<

Now THERE's a revelation, not only irritable but extremely irritating - even moreso when she lays on that nasal southern drawl, lol.

Grew up surrounded by farms? Not a chance I don't believe, and if she had one would think she could cook more than soft scrambled eggs. I guess those illegal Mexicans her family exploited cooked all their meals.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/04/07 - Republican debate

Well ,what do you expect when you have a rabid Democrat operative moderate a Republican debate packed with 3 serious candidates and 7 ankle biters ? You can read the transcript if you must . But here are some of the highlights :

to Romney (by far the strangest question in a night of them): What do you most dislike about America ?

to McCain : What's the difference between Shia and Sunni ?

to another candidate : How many Americans have been killed or wounded in Iraq ?

to Rudy: is there anything you learned ,or regret during your time as Mayor in your dealings with the African-American community ?

to Trancedo : will you work to protect woman's rights as in fair wages and reproductive rights ?

to Huckabee : do you believe global warming exists ?

to Gilmore : is Karl Rove your friend ?

to all : Does Rove deserve a pardon ? (Ron Paul really screwed this one up )

to all :how many of you believe in evolution ?

the dumbest question of the night :Would it be good for America to have Bill Clinton back in the White House ?


Kudos to all the candidates for knowingly stepping into a hornets nest ,the Dems. did not have the testicle fortitude to step up and answer questions from Fox (and Ihave no doubt Brit Hume would've elevated the playing field compared to Matthews ).Overall their answers were good (except Ron Paul is a joke .....He looked more like a Kossack than a libertarian).Rudy's answers seemed muddled at times .Romney and McCain seemed suprisingly comfortable .

But I can't help but think that Fred Thompson came out the big winner by not participating .

Itsdb answered on 05/04/07:

I didn't catch a minute of it, I'm not quite ready to put up with debates yet.

That reproductive rights question gets me though. How exactly does the abortion lobby get away with using "reproductive rights" as the PC term? Aren't 'reproductive' and 'abortion' on complete opposite ends of the spectrum?

Anyway, by the sound of those questions it seems the left was 'prepared' to try and trip them up. "Is Karl Rove your friend" the best they can come up with? And why the heck should anyone ask Republican candidates if it would good to have Clinton back in the White House? Maybe ol' Kos sent his best and brightest, lol.

Fred may very well be the winner, he seems to be creating quite a stir from where he's at.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/04/07 - Hillary calls for sunset of Authorixation bill

Evita took to the Senate floor yesterday to support Robert Byrd's call for a de-authorization of the declaration of war against Iraq. Can someone show me the Constitutional legitimacy for this ? I know Congress has the right to declare war . But I thought their only legit way to force the Commander in Chief to end the war is by defunding it.

Itsdb answered on 05/04/07:

tom,

I believe you're right, and George Will agrees:

    They lack the will to exercise their clearly constitutional power to defund the war. And they lack the power to achieve that end by usurping the commander in chief's powers to conduct a war.


What pisses me off in this is the blatant hypocrisy. The left has made it very clear over the past few years that they believe Bush - and the Republican congress - were running roughshod over the constitution:

    "They're running roughshod over the Constitution, and they're hiding behind inflammatory rhetoric" -Patrick Leahy

    "Just as disturbing as the president's use of press releases to announce which laws he will follow is the abject failure of the Republican-controlled Congress to act as a check against this executive power grab." -Patrick Leahy

    "It is not for George W. Bush to disregard the Constitution and decide that he is above the law." -Harry Reid

    "I was a constitutional law professor, which means unlike the current president I actually respect the Constitution." -Barack Obama

    "All of us in this body took an oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States and bear true allegiance to the same. Fulfilling that oath requires us to speak clearly and forcefully when the President violates the law." -Russ Feingold

    "The resolution before us today is not only a product of haste; it is also a product of presidential hubris. This resolution is breathtaking in its scope. It redefines the nature of defense, and reinterprets the Constitution to suit the will of the Executive Branch." -Robert Byrd

    By shunning the oversight of the courts and ignoring the express language of the laws passed by Congress, this president is, in my judgment, defiantly and stubbornly ignoring the Constitution and laws passed by Congress ... The Constitution took effect in 1789 - and it is still good law today. -Ted Kennedy


Now they find themselves in the same place, wanting to reinterpret the constitution to suit the will of congress.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/03/07 - Fred Thompson about socialized medicine Cuban style

“Paradise Island”
The myth of Cuban health care.

By Fred Thompson


You might have read the stories about filmmaker Michael Moore taking ailing workers from Ground Zero in Manhattan to Cuba for free medical treatments. According to reports, he filmed the trip for a new movie that bashes America for not having government-provided health care.

Now, I have no expectation that Moore is going to tell the truth about Cuba or health care. I defend his right to do what he does, but Moore’s talent for clever falsehoods has been too well documented. Simply calling his movies documentaries rather than works of fiction, I think, may be the biggest fiction of all.

While this p.r. stunt has obviously been successful — here I am talking about it — Moore’s a piker compared to Fidel Castro and his regime. Moore just parrots the story they created — one of the most successful public-relations coups in history. This is the story of free, high quality Cuban health care.

The truth is that Cuban medical care has never recovered from Castro’s takeover — when the country’s health care ranked among the world’s best. He won the support of the Cuban people by promising to replace Batista’s dictatorship with free elections, and to end corruption. Once in power, though, he made himself dictator and instituted Soviet-style Communism. Cubans not only failed to regain their democratic rights, their economy plunged into centrally planned poverty.

As many as half of Cuba’s doctors fled almost immediately — and defections continue to this day. Castro won’t allow observers in to monitor his nation’s true state, but defectors tell us that many Cubans live with permanent malnutrition and long waits for even basic medical services. Many treatments we take for granted aren’t available at all — except to the Communist elite or foreigners with dollars.

For them, Castro keeps “show” clinics equipped with the best medicines and technologies available. It was almost certainly one of these that Moore went to, if the stories in the NY Post and the Daily News are true.

Nothing about this story inspires doubt, though. Elements in Hollywood have been infatuated with the Cuban commander for years. It always leaves me shaking my head when I read about some big-time actor or director going to Cuba and gushing all over Castro. And, regular as rain, they bring up the health care myth when they come home.

What is it that leads people to value theoretically “free” health care, even when it’s lousy or nonexistent, over a free society that actually delivers health care? You might have to deal with creditors after you go to the emergency ward in America, but no one is denied medical care here. I guarantee even the poorest Americans are getting far better medical services than many Cubans.

According to Forbes magazine, by the way, Castro is now personally worth approximately $900 million. So when he desperately needed medical treatment recently, he could afford to fly a Spanish surgeon, with equipment, on a chartered jet to Cuba. What does that say about free Cuban health care?

The other thing that irks me about Moore and his cohort in Hollywood is their complete lack of sympathy for fellow artists persecuted for opposing the Castro regime. Pro-democracy activists are routinely threatened and imprisoned, but Castro remains a hero to many here. According to human rights organizations, these prisoners of conscience are often beaten and denied medical treatment, sanitation or even adequate nutrition.

If Moore wants a subject for a real documentary, I would suggest looking into the life of Cuban painter and award-winning documentarian Nicolás Guillén Landrián. He was denied the right to practice his art for using the Beatles’ song, “The Fool on the Hill,” as background music behind footage of Castro climbing a mountain. Later, he was given plenty of free Cuban health care when he was confined for years in a “mental institution” and given devastating, repeated electroshock “treatments.”

There are many other artists and activists who have enjoyed similar treatment. I suspect we’ll see movies with sympathetic portrayals of terrorists held in Guantanamo before we ever hear about the torture of true Cuban heroes. Even Andy Garcia’s brilliant fictionalized movie about the real Cuban experience, The Lost City , was given the Hollywood silent treatment. My bet, though, is that we’ll hear lots about how Michael Moore showed that Cuba’s socialized medicine is better than ours.

So go ahead and start working on the Oscar speech, Michael.

Itsdb answered on 05/03/07:

>>their complete lack of sympathy for fellow artists persecuted for opposing the Castro regime<<

Well now, that puzzles me, too, especially for a guy like Michael Moore that holds his own film festival.

I try and try but I just don't get these people. I think they are more in love with an idea than results. That would explain how they can fawn over Castro and gloat over his "show" clinics while missing the wreck that is the rest of Cuba. And it explains how they can bitch about Bush with no factual basis while the economy soars, unemployment is low and no terror attacks in almost 6 years.

Steve

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 05/03/07 - An add-on to TS's PC post....

Please don't misunderstand the meaning of my story. I love the school district where I work, and I love who I work for and with. I'm not exaggerating when I say it's the best place I've ever worked--bar none.

Earlier this year, we were figuring out how to spend our department budget. We'd spent quite a lot of our allocation on needed supples and stuff, and were really doing quite fine. However, as you know, these budgets are funny--spend every dime this year, or you don't get as much next year. Seems irresponsible to me, but who am I......

In any event, one of the things that my dept. head was going to order were these metal rods that you use to pull down the screen for overheads and stuff. Well, for four of them, they were going to charge us like sixty dollars. I said, "BS! I'll go to Home Depot and make us some good wooden ones for less than ten bucks." OK, Mr. K., you go and do that.

So I do. I bring them back, and there was much rejoicing and celebrating over my frugality, brilliance, ingenuity, and raw talent.

Until one day...

The principal (who I admire and respect, remember) comes to me and very apologetically said that we couldn't have our pull-down-rod-things. I asked if it was because I made them, to which she said no. I asked if we were supposed to irresponsibly over-spend to get them from the "approved" vendor. Again, no.

Why couldn't we have them, you ask?

Because the district (read: spineless, insulated, denying-there's-any-gang, violence, or drug problem school board, who are elected officials who don't know sh!t about education anyway) said they could be used as weapons.

My reply to my boss?

"You're damn right they could!"

You see, while it wasn't their original intent, I did in fact select the one-inch diameter dowel rods for my little project with just that very idea in mind.

I asked Ms. Principal if she would forward a question to our school board on my--and all the teachers in the school's--behalf: "So let me get this straight: We've had 3 students on 3 different campuses threaten violence in the school on a mss scale JUST IN THE LAST WEEK ALONE. Before that, a darn serious and well thought-out plot was discovered that involved the outright murder of MY principal and a few selected teachers--yours truly among them. There is NOTHING to prevent a student or an adult from strolling onto any campus in the district with heavy firepower and doing as they please.

Yet I can't even have a STICK? Well, OK. I'll do as I'm told. You see, I abide by the rules and laws that are given to me, unlike the aforementioned folks. The only request I have for you, Mr. School Board Dude, is 'Do you REALLY think that your dumbass and ignorant rules will be ANY comfort to my widow and my fatherless children? My blood--and that of countless other teachers and students--will be on YOUR inept hands."

She wouldn't relay my question, but did say that there was going to be a special meeting on school security over the summer, and she wanted me to present my plan for security that I had drafted at the beginning of the year to them.

But A STICK?

Don't do a damn thing to keep punks with cheap pistols off the campus, that's bad enough. But take away anything that someone can use to defend the students--THAT ARE THEIR RESPONSIBILITY--and themselves.

Genius. Pure genius.

See what you get when the inmates run the asylum?

DK

Itsdb answered on 05/03/07:

Gee, no pull-down stick thingy's. So who are they trying to protect from who? Does your school district have baseball teams? Do they use bats? How about football? Track? Golf?

I'm betting they do, I mean what Texas school is NOT going to have at least a football team? So I'd guess they already have some potentially powerful weapons; bats, balls, cleats, helmets, golf clubs, weights and weight bars, etc.

Perhaps the district would like to be consistent and eliminate the sports program, too?

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 05/02/07 - hotels taking Bibles out

of drawers and replacing them with An Inconvenient Truth.

California taking mom and dad out of books because some kids now have one parent or two same sex parents therefore promoting heterosexual behavior.

Pittsburgh delays smoking ban largely because of lawsuit by Mitchels restuarant (which happens to be where the Lawyers and Police go for lunch during court)

What next besides the threat of a ban on my barbque grill?

Itsdb answered on 05/03/07:

What, don't they get that the bible IS an inconvenient truth?

What's next is anything that could possibly physically harm anyone or the environment, including conservatives, hot coffee, deep-fat fryers and of course talk radio.

Soon they'll be collecting all the plastic Wal-mart bags, stuffing them in all the leftover leisure suits from the 70's and wrapping us up like the little brother in A Christmas Story so we can clean up the environment and can't get hurt.

Steve

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 05/03/07 - George Bush RESIGNS!!

We all have our disagreements with President Bush. Immigration, U.S. Attorney firings, Iraq, Darfur, etc. are all hot topics these days. The following "speech" was written yesterday by an ordinary Maineiac. While satirical in nature, all satire must have a basis in fact to be effective. An excellent piece by a person who does not write for a living. Sent with the author's permission.
The speech George W. Bush SHOULD give:

Normally, I start these things out by saying "My Fellow Americans." Not doing it this time. If the polls are any indication, I don't know who more than half of you are anymore. I do know something terrible has happened, and that you're really not fellow Americans any longer.

I'll cut right to the chase here: I quit. Now before anyone gets all in a lather about me quitting to avoid impeachment, or to avoid prosecution or something, let me assure you: there's been no breaking of laws or impeachable offenses in this office.

The reason I'm quitting is simple. I'm fed up with you people.

I'm fed up because you have no understanding of what's really going on in the world. Or of what's going on in this once-great nation of ours. And the majority of you are too damned lazy to do your homework and figure it out.

Let's start local. You've been sold a bill of goods by politicians and the news media. Polls show that the majority of you think the economy is in the tank. And that's despite record numbers of homeowners including record numbers of MINORITY homeowners. And while we're mentioning minorities, I'll point out that minority business ownership is at an all-time high. Our unemployment rate is as low as it ever was during the Clinton Administration. I've mentioned all those things before, but it doesn't seem to have sunk in.

Despite the shock to our economy of 9/11, the stock market has rebounded to record levels and more Americans than ever are participating in these markets. Meanwhile, all you can do is whine about gas prices, and most of you are too damn stupid to realize that gas prices are high because there's increased demand in other parts of the world, and because a small handful of noisy idiots are more worried about polar bears and beachfront property than your economic security.

We face real threats in the world. Don't give me this "blood for oil" thing. If I was trading blood for oil I would've already seized Iraq's oil fields and let the rest of the country go to hell. And don't give me this 'Bush Lied People Died' crap either. If I was the liar you morons take me for, I could've easily had chemical weapons planted in Iraq so they could be 'discovered.' Instead, I owned up to the fact that the intelligence was faulty. Let me remind you that the rest of the world thought Saddam had the goods, same as me. Let me also remind you that regime change in Iraq was official US policy before I came into office. Some guy named 'Clinton' established that policy. Bet you didn't know that, did you?

You idiots need to understand that we face a unique enemy. Back during the cold war, there were two major competing political and economic models squaring off. We won that war, but we did so because fundamentally, the Communists wanted to survive, just as we do. We were simply able to outspend and out-tech them.

That's not the case this time. The soldiers of our new enemy don't care if they survive. In fact, they want to die. That'd be fine, as long as they weren't also committed to taking as many of you with them as they can. But they are. They want to kill you. And the bastards are all over the globe.

You should be grateful that they haven't gotten any more of us here in the United States since September 11. But you're not. That's because you've got no idea how hard a small number of intelligence, military, law enforcement and homeland security people have worked to make sure of that. When this whole mess started, I warned you that this would be a long and difficult fight. I'm disappointed how many of you people think a long and difficult fight amounts to a single season of 'Survivor'. Instead, you've grown impatient. You're incapable of seeing things through the long lens of history, the way our enemies do. You think that wars should last a few months, a few years, tops.

Making matters worse, you actively support those who help the enemy. Every time you buy the New York Times, every time you send a donation to a cut-and-run Democrat's political campaign, well, dammit, you might just as well Fedex a grenade launcher to a Jihadist. It amounts to the same thing.

In this day and age, it's easy enough to find the truth. It's all over the Internet. It just isn't on the pages of the New York Times or on NBC News. But even if it were, I doubt you'd be any smarter. Most of you would rather watch American Idol.

I could say more about your expectations that the government will always be there to bail you out, even if you're too stupid to leave a city that's below sea level and has a hurricane approaching. I could say more about your insane belief that government, not your own wallet, is where the money comes from. But I've come to the conclusion that were I to do so, it would sail right over your heads.

So I quit. I'm going back to Crawford. I've got an energy-efficient house down there (Al Gore could only dream) and the capability to be fully self-sufficient. No one ever heard of Crawford before I got elected, and as soon as I'm done here pretty much no one will ever hear of it again. Maybe I'll be lucky enough to die of old age before the last pillars of America fall.

Oh, and by the way, Cheney's quitting too. That means the smiling, vacuous nitwit Pelosi is your new President. You asked for it. Watch what she does carefully, because I still have a glimmer of hope that there're just enough of you remaining who are smart enough to turn this thing around in 2008.

So that's it. God bless what's left of America. Some of you know what I mean. The rest of you, * off.





--
Charles F. Hovey, Jr.
Managing Director
Molpus Woodlands Advisors
85 Eastern Avenue
Gloucester, MA 01930
978-282-8251
Fax: 978-282-1182
Corporate offices in Jackson, Mississippi
please see: www.molpus.com

Itsdb answered on 05/03/07:

Well Dennis, Bush has surely thought those things, but since so many of us have been saying them for so long and still no one is listening it wouldn't much matter ... until they hear the words "President Pelosi."

Steve

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 05/02/07 - How much do you REALLY know about global warming?

This is interesting, and the science teacher on my hall (she has her MS, so I figure she's pretty smart) said the science was sound.

http://www.geocraft.com/WVFossils/GlobWarmTest/start.html

Itsdb answered on 05/02/07:

Well Dennis, I admit I missed 3, but one was just a mental lapse on my part. But not bad though. The one interesting thing I got (and missed) was that nightime temps would increase while daytime temps may even decrease. That doesn't sound so bad to me :)

Steve

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Question/Answer
ETWolverine asked on 05/02/07 - Global warming or just breaking wind?

Experts: Rice Farming Huge Source of Methane Emissions

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Associated Press
BANGKOK, Thailand —

As delegates to a climate conference here debate how to reduce greenhouse gases, one of the problems — and a possible solution — lies in the rice fields that cover much of Thailand, the rest of Asia and beyond.

Methane emissions from flooded rice paddies contribute to global warming just as coal-fired power plants, automobile exhausts and other sources do with the carbon dioxide they spew into the atmosphere.

In fact, the report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change meeting this week in Bangkok concludes that rice production was a main cause of rising methane emissions in the 20th century. It calls for better controls.

• Click here to visit FOXNews.com's Natural Science Center.

"There is no other crop that is emitting such a large amount of greenhouse gases," said Reiner Wassmann, a climate change specialist at the International Rice Research Institute in the Philippines.

"Methane emissions are unique to rice," he said. "If Asian countries are exploring possibilities to reduce greenhouse gas, they have to look at rice production. I'm not saying it's the biggest source, but in Asia it's a source that cannot be neglected."

It's the bacteria that thrive in flooded paddies that produce methane, by decomposing manure used as fertilizer and other organic matter in the oxygen-free environment. The gas is emitted through the plants or directly into the atmosphere.

A molecule of methane is 21 times more potent than a molecule of carbon dioxide as a heat-trapping gas.

Although carbon dioxide is still the bigger problem, representing 70 percent of the warming potential in the atmosphere, rising levels of methane now account for 23 percent, reports the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

After decades of atmospheric buildup, methane — also emitted naturally from wetlands and from other manmade sources, such as landfills and cattle farming — has leveled off in the past few years.

Some scientists credit changes in rice production, and some also trace it to repairs in oil and gas storage facilities that can leak methane.

A 2005 study by U.S. scientists focused on China, which produces a third of the world's rice and where rice fields have shrunk by 24 million acres in the past decade as farmers shifted to other crops and abandoned marginal land.

The study also found that nitrogen-based fertilizer has replaced manure, and many Chinese farmers are using less water on their fields.

For Asians, modifying rice production might prove easier and cheaper than some of the other fixes proposed in the IPCC draft report, such as switching from coal to solar, wind power or other renewable energy sources.

But despite the recent leveling off, the EPA projects that global methane emissions will rise again, as rice fields expand with growing populations.

Wassmann said few countries have followed China's example, instead ignoring such solutions as periodically draining their fields or shifting to locations that need less water.

Scientists say such measures pose the same challenge for poor countries as proposals to introduce environmentally friendly tilling methods or capping methane from livestock manure: Farmers often lack the funds and know-how to shift away from techniques in use for generations.

"In the developing world, you really have to think first and foremost about providing population with food," said Pete Smith of the University of Aberdeen in Scotland, lead author of the IPCC report's section on agriculture. "You can't start thinking about climate mitigation if you have to feed your family."

Thailand, the world's largest rice exporter, shows both the promise and limitations of trying to make the industry greener.

Most large mills here burn leftover rice husks for power — a more climate friendly source than coal or oil — and are increasingly selling excess power back to the state.

"Instead of letting it rot in the fields and produce bad gas, we burn it and make use of it," said Rut Subniran, executive chairman of the Patum Rice Mill and Granary outside Bangkok. "This is good for the country because it can reduce our oil imports. It's good for the environment."

But a few miles away, impoverished rice farmers have largely ignored government calls to periodically drain their fields to help reduce methane emissions.

Busy harvesting the latest crop, some blamed tradition and habit, but others said draining the fields was just too costly.

"The government has told us how rice paddies release methane," said Adisak Wantayachiwa, who farms 28 acres north of Bangkok. But most farmers "don't want to pay the cost of draining their fields," he said. "They would just rather keep them flooded."

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

So... technology is not solely responsible for global warming. Agriculture, specifically rice paddies, which are a main source of a staple food product in most third world countries, are a major source of greenhouse gasses.

So, what are we to do. We can't use technology because it causes carbon dioxide, and we can't farm because it causes methane. Can't raise cows, pigs or chickens either... they are also major sources of methane production. We also have to cork our own butts, since we also fart methane. How will we live?

That is the idiocy of the whole eco-movement. They try to get us to change our lifestyles based on their biases, with no scientific proof to back up global warming or the greenhouse effect. But in order to comply with the restrictions they would have on us, we literally would have to kill ourselves off.

Between you and me, if it came down to a choice of possibly dying off in a few hundred thousand years or definitely dying off now, I'll choose the first option. But that's just me; I'm selfish that way.

Elliot

Itsdb answered on 05/02/07:

>>But in order to comply with the restrictions they would have on us, we literally would have to kill ourselves off.<<

Sadly, too many people are more interested in mother earth and manatees than people. They wouldn't miss you one bit Elliot, that would just be one less human carbon footprint.

Steve

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 05/02/07 - A primer on modern liberal tactics

The stuff in these articles probably won't surprise many of you.

Even though this is an article written by a Christian and geared toward the same, I don't see how ANYONE could NOT benefit greatly from reading it.

The link is to part 2; however, there is a link once you get there that'll let you read part 1.

http://www.crosswalk.com/homeschool/11538484/page1/

Let me know what you think.

DK

Itsdb answered on 05/02/07:

Dennis,

All one needs to do is visit the "Everyone hates Christianity board" as you so aptly named it, to see this article is true. For instance:

Article: I was offended to find the movie showing religious people to be intolerant, backward creatures who are afraid of progress.

Example

Article: Who makes it onto these news shows? Is it the normal looking Christian who is rationally and politely sharing God's love and God's Word? No.

Example

Article: As I mentioned earlier, the left has learned that if you yell something loud enough long enough, and get enough people to yell along with you, you can make anything look like a fact.

Example

And you know Dennis, I would love to have actually discuss issues with liberals and skeptics, but I can't seem to find many that will play by the same rules they expect of me.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 05/01/07 - Tenet to testify.

We hope Representative Henry Waxman, chairman of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee, enforces the subpoena of Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to discuss prewar claims about Saddam Hussein’s long-gone weapons programs. Ms. Rice, who was national security adviser before the war, says she has answered every possible question. Actually, we don’t have room for all our questions.

Just a few: Did she vet the briefing Mr. Bush got from Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld’s rogue intelligence shop on Iraq’s alleged efforts to acquire uranium? The Central Intelligence Agency and the State Department thought, correctly, that the report was false. So why did Ms. Rice permit the president to repeat it to the world? Or did Mr. Bush also know what he was claiming was wrong?

The same applies to other claims about Iraq, including a false report about the purchase of aluminum tubes for bomb building, talk of mushroom clouds and fairy tales about links between Iraq and Al Qaeda.......


Above quote is from the editorial pages of the NY Slimes last week.

Given that this is George Tenet's week of infamy ;perhaps the Slimes and Congressman Waxman could save us all alot of time and money by referencing the Tenet testimony to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence ;Feb.11,2003

Iraq has established a pattern of clandestine procurements designed to reconstitute its nuclear weapons program. These procurements include-but also go well beyond-the aluminum tubes that you have heard so much about

Iraq has tested unmanned aerial vehicles to ranges that far exceed both what it declared to the United Nations and what it is permitted under UN resolutions. We are concerned that Iraq's UAVs can dispense chemical and biological weapons and that they can deliver such weapons to Iraq's neighbors or, if transported, to other countries, including the United States.


Iraq is harboring senior members of a terrorist network led by Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, a close associate of Usama Bin Ladin.
We know Zarqawi's network was behind the poison plots in Europe that I discussed earlier as well as the assassination of a US State Department employee in Jordan.


Iraq has in the past provided training in document forgery and bomb-making to al-Qa'ida. It also provided training in poisons and gasses to two al-Qa'ida associates; one of these associates characterized the relationship he forged with Iraqi officials as successful.


Mr. Chairman, this information is based on a solid foundation of intelligence. It comes to us from credible and reliable sources. Much of it is corroborated by multiple sources. And it is consistent with the pattern of denial and deception exhibited by Saddam Hussein over the past 12 years.


If they wish to dig a little deeper they could refer to this post war address by Tenet entitled :Iraq and Weapons of Mass Destruction

Let me tell you some of what was going on in the fall of 2002. Several sensitive reports crossed my desk from two sources characterized by our foreign partners as "established and reliable."


The first, from a source who had direct access to Saddam and his inner circle said . . . Iraq was aggressively and covertly developing such a [nuclear] weapon. Saddam had recently called together his Nuclear Weapons Committee irate that Iraq did not yet have a weapon because money was no object and they possessed the scientific know how. The Committee members assured Saddam that once the fissile material was in hand, a bomb could be ready in just 18-24 months. The return of UN inspectors would cause minimal disruption because, according to the source, Iraq was expert at denial and deception.


The same source said Iraq was stockpiling chemical weapons and that equipment to produce insecticides, under the oil-for-food program, had been diverted to covert chemical weapons production. . . .


A stream of reporting from a different sensitive source with access to senior Iraqi officials . . . stated that a senior Iraqi official in Saddam's inner circle believed, as a result of the UN inspections, Iraq knew the inspectors' weak points and how to take advantage of them. The source said there was an elaborate plan to deceive inspectors and ensure prohibited items would never be found.


Now, did this information make a difference in my thinking? You bet it did. As this and other information came across my desk, it solidified and reinforced the judgments we had reached and my own view of the danger posed by Saddam Hussein and I conveyed this view to our nation's leaders.


Of course today Tenet claims that no one agreed that Saddam was a growing or 'imminent threat'. But this certainly shows he wasn't councelling caution. Perhaps it is he who needs a supoena to answer some questions. I wonder if he'll get the same soft ball treatment that Valerie Plame got ?





Itsdb answered on 05/01/07:

Yep, as Elliot noted, asked and answered, asked and answered, asked and answer ad infinitum. There is at this juncture NO POINT in going over it again.

The only point this congress wants to make now is a case for impeachment of someone. If they haven't made that case through all of the committees and reports and blowhards by now they aren't ever going to make it. And that, much to the chagrin of the NY Slimes. Bush should stand his ground and tell the Dems to shove their subpoenas up their arrogant butts.

Steve

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Question/Answer
Mathatmacoat asked on 04/28/07 - Now for something of absolutely Earth shattering importance!


Cricket World Cup

Adam Gilchrist


Farce ruins Cup defence

By Toby Forage
FOXSPORTS.com.au editor
April 29, 2007

AUSTRALIA won an historic third successive World Cup this morning, but not before celebrating prematurely as the tournament's troubled run ended in complete farce.

With three overs left in the match, reduced to 38 overs-a-side because of rain, Sri Lanka's batsmen were offered the light and accepted, sparking wild celebrations from the Australia players.

But after whoops of delight and much prancing around, Ricky Ponting's men were told the game wasn't over after all, and after a long discussion with umpires Aleem Dar and Steve Bucknor, as well as off-field officials, play continued in near darkness.

It was an appalling way to finish a tournament that has been pilloried for its excessive length and lack of depth, and the International Cricket Council will have much to ponder in the four years between now and the next tournament on the sub-continent

The biggest shame is that Australia historic moment, and a performance of sheer class from Adam Gilchrist, will be forgotten as a result of a quite ludicrous finale.

Even the presentation rostrum was sent back into the stands by the officials when the only result possible was an Australia victory.

Three overs in darkness and another wicket later, the game mercifully ended with Sri Lanka on 8-215, chasing Australia's imposing 4-281, losing by 53 runs in a match punctuated by rain delays and the chaos of the ilk Fawlty Towers scriptwriters would have been proud of.

Australia's total was set up by an awesome knock of 149 by Gilchrist, who racked up his runs in little more than two hours from just 104 balls to set a new individual high score record in the World Cup final, beating Ponting's record of four years ago of 140.

"It's been a while between drinks for my hundred, and really pleasing to do it on such an important day," Gilchrist said in the gloom as Australia celebrated in front of a crowd that was probably grateful for its bright yellow team colours, given the ridiculous gloom.

"It's an unbelievable feeling. The guys have worked so hard," he added, without making mention of the bizarre circumstances of victory.

Gilchrist, dropped on 31, and fellow left hander Matthew Hayden's stand of 172 was a World Cup final first-wicket record, surpassing the 129 shared by England's Mike Brearley and Geoff Boycott during West Indies' 92-run win at Lord's in 1979.

Gilchrist opened up in Chaminda Vaas's second over. He flicked the bowler's eighth ball for four over square leg, and next ball he drove him over long-on for six.

Vaas, after an expensive three-over spell costing 24 runs, was replaced by fellow quick Dilhara Fernando, retained despite conceding 45 runs in five overs during Tuesday's 81-run semi-final win over New Zealand.

Fernando, in his second over, dropped a low caught and bowled chance off Gilchrist's checked drive, with the keeper on 31 and Australia 0-47, and conceded 74 from his eight overs.

Next ball Gilchrist struck him for four through mid-wicket to bring up Australia's fifty. The ball after was lashed through long-on and Gilchrist immediately topped that with a six in the same area.

He completed a 43-ball fifty with two sixes and five fours.

Off spinner Tillakaratne Dilshan wasn't let off the hook, Gilchrist driving the bowler over his head for two superb straight sixes as he passed his previous best score this tournament, 59 not out against Bangladesh.

The 35 year old then saw Australia to 100 in just 102 balls by off driving Fernando for six.

Gilchrist swept Murali for a six that soared over mid-wicket before Sri Lanka skipper Mahela Jayawardene brought back trump card Malinga in a bid to break the stand. His first ball back was smashed for six over long-off by Hayden.

Gilchrist then struck Malinga to the same boundary to bring up a superb century in 72 balls with six sixes and eight fours.

Hayden, renowned as a power-hitter and the tournament's leading run-scorer, was still in the 30s.

Sri Lanka's chase began badly when Upul Tharanga edged a ball into Gilchrist's gloves behind the wicket after less than 10 minutes of the reply.

But Kumar Sangakkara and veteran left hander Sanath Jayasuriya gave Sri Lanka hope of a repeat of the 1996 final, when it beat Australia, with a partnership of 116 before Sangakkara was caught on 54 by Ponting off Brad Hogg's spin bowling.

When part-time bowler Michael Clarke clean bowled Jayasuriya for 63 with a short ball that didn't bounce, Sri Lanka's chase had faltered, and victory began to look inevitable.

After the farce of the end that wasn't, victory eventually was Australia's, and it's third straight World Cup in the bag.

Australia did not lose a single match at this World Cup, extending an extraordinary run of victories that goes back to 1999 and defeat to Pakistan in the group stage of that tournament, which it won to start the hat-trick of titles.

With Agence France-Presse

Itsdb answered on 04/30/07:

I have no idea what any of that means other than Australia won. Congratulations - even if it was a farce.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/28/07 - MNFI You tube cite

Multi-National Force - Iraq established this YouTube channel to give viewers around the world a "boots on the ground" perspective of Operation Iraqi Freedom from those who are fighting it.

Video clips document action as it appeared to personnel on the ground and in the air as it was shot. We will only edit video clips for time, security reasons, and/or overly disturbing or offensive images.

What you will see on this channel in the coming months:
- Combat action
- Interesting, eye-catching footage
- Interaction between Coalition troops and the Iraqi populace.
- Teamwork between Coalition and Iraqi troops in the fight against terror.

What we will NOT post on this channel:
- Profanity
- Sexual content
- Overly graphic, disturbing or offensive material
- Footage that mocks Coalition Forces, Iraqi Security Forces or the citizens of Iraq.

This YouTube channel is brought to you by www.mnf-iraq.com, the official Web site of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Check it out here

I have to say ;this is something General Casey would not have considered .As Jed Babbin says "Why is this there? Because for every snuff flick the terrorists use to recruit (showing their bravery in hacking off some handcuffed hostage’s head) there should be one showing the good guys winning. Petraeus gets it. Forget psychobabble about “hearts and minds.” Petraeus understands laptops and IPods. This guy gets it."

Read Babbin's article .It is eye opening .

Itsdb answered on 04/30/07:

It's about time we unleash "the power of the internet" to counter all the crap that's been put out by the critics and the terrorist themselves. "This guy gets it."

Indeed.

Steve

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 04/29/07 - A little reality for the left to deal with...

A bit long, but trust me, it's worth your time.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

When mass killers meet armed resistance.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

It took place at a university in Virginia. A student with a grudge, an immigrant, pulled a gun and went on a shooting spree. It wasn’t Virginia Tech at all. It was the Appalachian School of Law in Grundy, not far away. You can easily drive from the one school to the other, just take a trip down Route 460 through Tazewell.

It was January 16, 2002 when Peter Odighizuwa came to campus. He had been suspended due to failing grades. Odighizuwa was angry and waving a gun calling on students to “come get me”. The students, seeing the gun, ran. A shooting spree started almost immediately. In seconds Odighizuwa had killed the school dean, a professor and one student. Three other students were shot as well, one in the chest, one in the stomach and one in the throat.

Many students heard the shots. Two who did were Mikael Gross and Tracy Bridges. Mikael was outside the school having just returned to campus from lunch when he heard the shots. Tracy was inside attending class. Both immediately ran to their cars. Each had a handgun locked in the vehicle.

Bridges pulled a .357 Magnum pistol and he later said he was prepared to shoot to kill if necessary. He and Gross both approached Odighizuwa at the same time from different directions. Both were pointing their weapons at him. Bridges yelled for Odighizuwa to drop his weapon. When the shooter realized they had the drop on him he threw his weapon down. A third student, unarmed, Ted Besen, approached the killer and was physically attacked.

But Odighizuwa was now disarmed. The three students were able to restrain him and held him for the police. Odighizuwa is now in prison for the murders he committed. His killing spree ended when he faced two students with weapons. There would be no further victims that day, thanks to armed resistance.

You wouldn’t know much about that though. Do you wonder why? The media, though it widely reported the attack left out the fact that Bridges and Gross were armed. Most simply reported that the gunman was jumped and subdued by other students. That two of those students were now armed didn’t get a mention.

James Eaves-Johnson wrote about this fact one week later in The Daily Iowan. He wrote: “A Lexus-Nexis search revealed 88 stories on the topic, of which only two mentioned that either Bridges or Gross was armed.” This 2002 article noted “This was a very public shooting with a lot of media coverage.” But the media left out information showing how two students with firearms ended the killing spree.

He also mentioned a second incident. And while I had read many articles on this shooting for an article I wrote about school bullying not a single one mentioned the role that a firearm played in stopping it. Until today I didn’t know the full story.

Luke Woodham was a troubled teen. He felt no one really liked him. In 1997 he murdered his mother and put on a trench coat. He filled the pockets with ammunition and took a handgun to the Pearl High School in Pearl, Mississippi. In rapid succession killed two students and wounded seven others.

He had the incident planned out. He would start shooting students and continue until he heard police sirens in the distance. That would allow him time to get in his car and leave campus. From there he intended to go to the nearby Pearl Junior High School and start shooting again. How it would end was not clear. Perhaps he would kill himself or perhaps the police would finally catch up with him and kill him. Either way a lot more people were going to get shot and die.

What Woodham hadn’t planned for was the actions of Assistant Principal Joel Myrick. Myrick heard the gun shots. He couldn’t have a handgun in the school. But he did keep one locked in his vehicle in the parking lot. He ran outside and retrieved the gun.

As Myrick headed back toward the school Woodham was in his vehicle headed for his next intended target. Myrick aimed his gun at the shooter. The teen crashed his car when he saw the gun. Myrick approached the car and held a gun to the killer who surrendered immediately. There would be no further victims that day, thanks to armed resistance.

So you didn’t know about that. Neither did I until today. Eaves-Johnson wrote that there were “687 articles on the school shooting in Pearl, Miss. Of those, only 19 mentioned that” Myrick had used a gun to stop Woodham “four-and-a-half minutes before police arrived.”

Many people probably forgot about the shooting in Edinboro, Pennsylvania. It was a school graduation dance that Andrew Wurst entered to take out his anger on the school. First he shot teacher John Gillette outside. He started shooting randomly inside the restaurant where the 240 students had gathered.

It was restaurant owner James Strand, armed with a shot gun, who captured the shooter and held him for police. There would be no further victims that day, thanks to armed resistance.

It was February 12th of this year that a young man entered the Trolley Square Shopping Mall, in Salt Lake City. The mall was a self-declared “gun free zone” forbidding patrons from carrying weapons. He wasn’t worried. In fact he appreciated knowing that his victims couldn’t defend themselves.

He opened fire even before he got inside killing his first victims immediately outside the front door. As he walked down the mall hallway he fired in all directions. Several more people were shot inside a card store immediately inside the mall. The shooter moved on to the Pottery Barns Kids store.

What he didn’t know is that one patron of the mall, Kenneth Hammond, had ignored the signs informing patrons they must be unarmed to enter. He was a police officer but he was not on duty and he was not a police officer for Salt Lake City. By all standards he was a civilian that day and probably should have left his firearm in his vehicle.

It’s a good thing he didn’t. He was sitting in the mall with his wife having dinner when he heard the shots. He told her to hide and to call 911 emergency services. He went to confront the gunman. The killer found himself under gun fire much sooner than he anticipated. From this point on all his effort was to protect himself from Hammond, he had no time to kill anyone else. Hammond was able to pin down the shooter until police finally arrived and one of them shot the man to death. There would be no further victims that day, thanks to armed resistance.

In each of these cases a killer is stopped the moment he faces armed resistance. It is clear that in three of these cases the shooter intended to continue his killing spree. In the fourth case, Andrew Wurst, it is not immediately apparent whether he intended to keep shooting or not since he was apprehended by the restaurant owner leaving the scene.

Three of these cases involved armed resistance by students, faculty or civilians. In one case the armed resistance was from an off-duty police officer in a city where he had no legal authority and where he was carrying his weapon in violation of the mall’s gun free policy.

What would have happened if these people waited for the police? In three cases the shooters were apprehended before the police arrived because of armed civilians. At Trolley Square the shooter was kept busy by Hammond until the police arrived. In all four cases the local police were the Johnny-come-latelys.

Consider the horrific events at Virginia Tech. Again an armed man enters a “gun free zone”. He kills two victims and walks away long before the police arrive. He spends two hours on campus, doing what is unknown. He then enters another building on campus and begins shooting. He never encounters a police officer during this. And all the students and faculty present had apparently complied with the “no gun” policy of the university. So no one stopped him. NO ONE STOPPED HIM! And when he finished his shooting spree 32 people were dead. It was the killer who ended the spree. He took his own life and when the police arrived all they dealt with were the dead.

There were many further victims that day. The shooter never met with armed resistance.

Itsdb answered on 04/30/07:

Dennis,

Oh the horror, armed Americans walking around with concealed weapons taking the law into their own hands. That seems to be better than the alternative. I've already shown how it's worked in Texas, it'll be interesting to see how it works now that we'll soon have the right to use deadly force in self-defense without jumping through hoops first.

Steve
Don't mess with Texans...

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/30/07 - George Tenet's imaginary encounter

I saw him weave his tale last night on ླྀ Minutes' .I can't wait to read his book;Probably a better fiction than the latest Harry Potter episode.

Bill Kristol describes what must be either a flight from reality or an out right lie.
Tenet claims that the Administration ;or at least the neocons in it;were determined to get Saddam even before the facts were in. This I do not dispute. It is clear that the policy of the government regarding Iraq had been regime change for some time. Sept. 11 made the matter more urgent.

But Tenet claimed that he ran into Richard Perle,the head of the Defense Policy Board,and a card carrying neo-con on Sept. 12 ,2001 . He claims that Perle said "Iraq has to pay a price for what happened yesterday. They bear responsibility."

The problem with this narrative is that Richard Perle was out of the country until Sept. 15 . You would think that such an esteemed spook as George Tenet would've done some basic fact checking before he published.

Itsdb answered on 04/30/07:

I watched as much of it as I could stomach, and I have to say that at the time if what Tenet (or Tenant as that arrogant schmuck Pelley called him) claimed Perle said was true then it sounded damaging to me. Kudos to Kristol for debunking that so quickly.

Condi and State pointed out more of Tenet's memory problems. As reported in the NY Times:

    It quoted him as saying of the emerging terrorist threat, in the spring and summer of 2001, “reporting was maddeningly short on actionable details.”

    “The most ominous reporting hinting at ‘something big’ was also the most vague.”

    It also quoted him as saying that upon taking office, “The new group,” meaning the Bush administration in early 2001, “also immediately understood what we were talking about here, and bin Laden and Al Qaeda became an agenda item early on with the national security adviser and the president.”


And the drumbeat goes on - and on, and on...

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/27/07 - A big carbon foot print in South Carolina.

A flock of small jets took flight from Washington Thursday, each carrying a Democratic presidential candidate to South Carolina for the first debate of the political season.

For Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton, Barack Obama, Chris Dodd and Joe Biden, it was wheels up shortly after they voted in favor of legislation requiring that U.S. troops begin returning home from Iraq in the fall.

No one jet pooled, no one took commercial flights to save money, fuel or emissions.

All but Biden, who flew on a private jet, chartered their flights -- a campaign expense of between $7,500 and $9,000.

http://www.newsday.com/news/politics/wire/sns-ap-campaign-planes,0,4666247,print.story?coll=sns-ap-politics-headlines

The rest of the story is about how the campaigns paid for the flights. So much for fiscal responsibility . Edwards denies that he had an in-flight hair cut.

From the debate :

MODERATOR: Time has expired. Staying on the notion of the environment, which somewhat unbelievably is where that question started, what in your personal life, Senator Obama, have you done personally to make for a better environment? Personal life...


OBAMA: Well, you know, we just had Earth Day. And we actually organized 3,000 volunteers to plant trees, which...


MODERATOR: I mean, like light bulbs...


OBAMA: Well...


(LAUGHTER)


I thought the tree thing was pretty good.



MODERATOR: Well, yes, but...


OBAMA: We've also been working to install lightbulbs that last longer and save energy. And that's something that I'm trying to teach my daughters, 8-year-old Malia and 5-year-old Sasha.

And that was the only reference to the environment in a 90 minute debate.(except for the single inane comment by Kucinich who said we should "move away from global warming and global warring". ) ;Obama planted trees and changed light bulbs.

How can they claim to be stewards of the environment when they would not even coordinate with each other so that one chartered flight was used? I guess an 8 hr. bus trip was out of the question.They could've lived that stap-hanger life style they tell the rest of us to live by taking Amtrack .

The Goracle is shocked ! A Quinnipiac poll suggested Gore would run more strongly against the Republicans than either Clinton or Obama.

Any day now .



Itsdb answered on 04/27/07:

The Breck Girl didn't get an in-flight haircut? You know tom, if they suddenly became 'green' then they would save the planet, the aerth would no longer have a fever, and the issue would go away. We can't have that now can we?

Biden clarified the Iraq issue for us: this is not a game show. You know, this is not a football game. This is not win or lose.

Alrighty then. He also thanked God that Bork is not on the Supreme Court.

Obama stood his ground: I am proud that I opposed this war from the start, because I thought that it would lead to the disastrous conditions that we've seen on the ground in Iraq.

Did the "magic Negro" ever express those thoughts before the vote to authorize? I'm just curious.

Kucinich actually made sense at one point: Any of my appointments to the high court would necessarily reflect my thinking.

When asked what the most significant political or professional mistake they've made in the last four years, Sen. Gravel (I didn't even know was running), said I was beginning to feel like a potted plant standing over here.

Biden's worst mistake was Overestimating the competence of this administration and underestimating the arrogance.

The humility is breathtaking...

Asked about how they would respond in case of a terror attack on two American cities, not one said anything about doing everything they could to prevent that from ever happening.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/27/07 - Who's side is she on ?

the score card .

San Fran taliban Nan has met with Bashar Assad

Refused to meet with General Petraeus

and now refuses to meet with Colombian President Alvaro Uribe when he is in Washington next week.

Uribe has been struggling against communist terrorist groups financed by Venezuelan thug Hugo Chavez.If it were Chavez coming to town I'll wager she'd drool over him.

Uribe is a strategic partner with the US .It is irresponsible of her to give him the snub. The Gorical also refused to meet with him citing "human rights violations " but he is insignificant .Pelosi ,like it or not ,is in a leadership role in this country and even if she though Gore had a point;Uribe's human rights record cannot be any worse than Assad's . Gimme a break !

Itsdb answered on 04/27/07:

LOL, man these people sure have their outrages and priorities all mixed up. Who's side is she on? Apparently she made this secret visit while on her Jihad tour:



She then delivered his message to the president:

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/27/07 - The Taliban leaves a calling card

Read the gem that Wrechard at Belmont Club published today ...especially the excellent commentary (also do not neglect the followup comments ). The taking of Ghazni is not the relevent point (that will be retaken easily );it is the nature of how the war against jihadistan has evolved .As Wrechard points out ;if the jihadists are willing to invest so much in Afghanistan then what are they willing to invest in Mesopotamia ;the cradle of civilization and as Wrechard puts it "terra incognita"...that stretch of undiscovered country constitutes the single most valuable piece of real estate in the 21st century. America and radical Islam are locked in a battle for the future of Iraq and by extension the Middle East; for Afghanistan and by extension Southwest Asia; for the Horn of Africa and by extension for the vast swath of territory above the Sahara. Billions of people are watching to see what the outcome will be. Watching to see which side can lay claim on the future.

What is common in both the Afghanistan and Iraq campaigns is that we have not developed a plan to cut off the enemy from it's supply source . When this began President Bush said it was a war against terror and State Sponsors of terror. I still say that the only way to settle Iraq (short of the white flag surrender option that Congress passed this week)is to engage Iraq's neighbors....diplomatically if possible ;but not likely ,or squash them .

Itsdb answered on 04/27/07:

The first excerpt the defeatocrats and Sheehads, etc. need to take to heart in this:

Then the tables could be turned and Iraq, rather than being a political and ideological victory for the West could be transformed into its complete opposite: a demonstration of the moral and ideological superiority of of radical Islam.

That is what's at stake here and this congress' attempts to give the Islamists a surrender date is EXACTLY what bin Laden et al are waiting for and predicted would happen. That's a far cry from what they said leading up to this war, and their defeatist behavior is the polar opposite of the message that they - and the complicit media - should be sending, both to the terrorists and the American people.

If they don't get over themselves and change that message there's going to be more American and other innocent blood on their hands than they can imagine.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/27/07 - Who misled ?

The mantra of the Democrats has been that the country was misled into the Iraq war . They claim that intelligence was manipulated .

Senator Dick turban Durbin ,the number 2 ranking Democrat in the Senate ,who once compared the guards at GITMO to the henchmen of Adolf Hitler, Josef Stalin and Pol Pot ,claims he knew that the American public was being misled but remained silent because he was sworn to secrecy as a member of the intelligence committee. He made these statements on the Senate floor during the recent debate about troop funding .

"The information we had in the intelligence committee was not the same information being given to the American people. I couldn't believe it" ....

"I was angry about it. [But] frankly, I couldn't do much about it because, in the intelligence committee, we are sworn to secrecy. We can't walk outside the door and say the statement made yesterday by the White House is in direct contradiction to classified information that is being given to this Congress."

He claims there was no "ethical" way to notify the public of specific misleading information because it would have required revealing top-secret information .(like that has ever been an impediment before ).He said that 1/2 the Dem~rats from the Intelligence Committee voted against the original Iraq authorization bill ;which of course begs the question : Why did the other Democrats in the committee who were privy to the same intelligence as him ,vote in favor of the authorization ?

He got Mitch-slapped by an e-mail circulated by the office of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell.The e-mail said Durbin's comments were inconsistent with the words of other Democrats on the committee, including Sens. John D. Rockefeller IV and Carl Levin .Rockefeller voted for the authorization and Livin did not .

Do you believe his line of cr*p? If in fact the Administration was lying to us ,and he had the proof ,then it was incumbent on him to do something about it.His vow of secrecy certainly does not prohibit him from stating an opinion. God knows he's never been shy of doing that before .He could have announced he had seen additional intelligence information and came to a different conclusion than the administration. What is he really saying ....that he is responsible for the deaths of 3000 + US troops because he remained silent ? “Durbin lied, people died"

The best part of this loony line of reasoning is that now he can make this claim and STILL not have to provide the intelligence that lead him to a different conclusion.He cannot prove he saw information that “was not the same” unless he reveals it and the administration cannot confirm or deny intelligence information that is not even named.

Kathryn Jean Lopez at National Review accesses the e-mail .

SAY WHAT? DID SEN. DURBIN RUN THIS PAST HIS COLLEAGUES?


DURBIN SAYS INTEL COMMITTEE MEMBERS WERE AWARE THAT IRAQ INTEL
DID NOT SUPPORT THE RHETORIC IN RUN-UP TO IRAQ WAR


“I was a member of the Senate Intelligence Committee and I would read the headlines in the paper in the morning and I'd watch the television newscast and I'd shake my head. …[T]he information we had in the Intelligence Committee was not the same information being given to the American people. I couldn't believe it.” (Sen. Dick Durbin, Floor Speech, 04/25/07)


“You see, in the Intelligence Committee, we're sworn to secrecy. We can't walk outside the door and say, ‘The statement made yesterday by the White House is in direct contradiction to classified information that's being given to this Congress.’” (Sen. Dick Durbin, Floor Speech, 04/25/07)

“And so in my frustration, I sat here on the floor of the Senate and listened to this heated debate about invading Iraq thinking the American people are being misled. They are not being told the truth.” (Sen. Dick Durbin, Floor Speech, 04/25/07)

IS SENATOR DURBIN SAYING THAT DEMOCRAT INTEL COMMITTEE MEMBERS WILLFULLY MISLED THE PUBLIC?


SEN. CARL LEVIN (D-MI): “[Saddam] has ignored the mandates of the United Nations, is building weapons of mass destruction and the means of delivering them.” (Committee On Armed Services, U.S. Senate, Hearing, 09/19/02)


SEN. JOHN ROCKFELLER (D-WV): “There is unmistakable evidence that Saddam Hussein is working aggressively to develop nuclear weapons. And will likely have nuclear weapons within the next five years.” (Sen. John Rockefeller, Congressional Record, 10/10/02, p.S10306)


SEN. EVAN BAYH (D-IN): “Bill, I support the president's efforts to disarm Saddam Hussein. I think he was right on in his speech tonight. The lessons we learned following September 11 were that we can't wait to be attacked again, particularly when it involves weapons of mass destruction. So regrettably, Saddam has not done the right thing, which is to disarm, and we're left with no alternative but to take action.” (Fox News' "The O'Reilly Factor," 03/17/03)


AND THE CURRENT SENATE MAJORITY LEADER HARRY REID?


SEN. HARRY REID (D-NV): “Saddam Hussein, in effect, has thumbed his nose at the world community. And I think that the President's approaching this in the right fashion.” (CNN's "Inside Politics," 09/18/02)


But wait .......there's more !!! The e-mail forgot to mention these choice cuts :

"There is no doubt that ... Saddam Hussein has invigorated his weapons programs. Reports indicate that biological, chemical and nuclear programs continue apace and may be back to pre-Gulf War status. In addition, Saddam continues to redefine delivery systems and is doubtless using the cover of an ilicit missile program to develop longer-range missiles that will threaten the United States and our allies."
- Letter to President Bush, Signed by Sen. Bob Graham (D, FL,) and others, December 5, 2001

"We begin with the common belief that Saddam Hussein is a tyrant and a threat to the peace and stability of the region. He has ignored the mandated of the United Nations and is building weapons of mass destruction and the means of delivering them."
- Sen. Carl Levin (D, MI), Sept. 19, 2002

"We know that he has stored secret supplies of biological and chemical weapons throughout his country."
- Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002

"Iraq's search for weapons of mass destruction has proven impossible to deter and we should assume that it will continue for as long as Saddam is in power."
- Al Gore, Sept. 23, 2002

"We have known for many years that Saddam Hussein is seeking and developing weapons of mass destruction."
- Sen. Ted Kennedy (D, MA), Sept. 27, 2002

"The last UN weapons inspectors left Iraq in October of 1998. We are confident that Saddam Hussein retains some stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons, and that he has since embarked on a crash course to build up his chemical and biological warfare capabilities. Intelligence reports indicate that he is seeking nuclear weapons..."
- Sen. Robert Byrd (D, WV), Oct. 3, 2002

"I will be voting to give the President of the United States the authority to use force-- if necessary-- to disarm Saddam Hussein because I believe that a deadly arsenal of weapons of mass destruction in his hands is a real and grave threat to our security."
- Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Oct. 9, 2002

"There is unmistakable evidence that Saddam Hussein is working aggressively to develop nuclear weapons and will likely have nuclear weapons within the next five years ... We also should remember we have always underestimated the progress Saddam has made in development of weapons of mass destruction."
- Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D, WV), Oct 10, 2002

"He has systematically violated, over the course of the past 11 years, every significant UN resolution that has demanded that he disarm and destroy his chemical and biological weapons, and any nuclear capacity. This he has refused to do"
-Rep. Henry Waxman (D, CA), Oct. 10, 2002

"In the four years since the inspectors left, intelligence reports show that Saddam Hussein has worked to rebuild his chemical and biological weapons stock, his missile delivery capability, and his nuclear program. He has also given aid, comfort, and sanctuary to terrorists, including Al Qaeda members... It is clear, however, that if left unchecked, Saddam Hussein will continue to increase his capacity to wage biological and chemical warfare, and will keep trying to develop nuclear weapons."
- Sen. Hillary Clinton (D, NY), Oct 10, 2002

"We are in possession of what I think to be compelling evidence that Saddam Hussein has, and has had for a number of years, a developing capacity for the production and storage of weapons of mass destruction."
- Sen. Bob Graham (D, FL), Dec. 8, 2002

"Without question, we need to disarm Saddam Hussein. He is a brutal, murderous dictator, leading an oppressive regime...He presents a particularly grievous threat because he is so consistently prone to miscalculation...And now he is miscalculating America's response to his continued deceit and his consistent grasp for weapons of mass destruction...So the threat of Saddam Hussein with weapons of mass destruction is real."
-Sen. John F. Kerry (D, MA), Jan. 23. 2003


I excluded statements made during the Clinton years for berevity . oh ok .....one more

“As a member of the House Intelligence Committee, I am keenly aware that the proliferation of chemical and biological weapons is an issue of grave importance to all nations. Saddam Hussein has been engaged in the development of weapons of mass destruction technology which is a threat to countries in the region and he has made a mockery of the weapons inspection process.”

Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi (Democrat, California)
Statement on US Led Military Strike Against Iraq
December 16, 1998


Senator Durbin ;stick with dog food ...you are incompetent in matters involving national security .









Itsdb answered on 04/27/07:

There's more:

"I come to this debate, Mr. Speaker, as one at the end of 10 years in office on the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, where stopping the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction was one of my top priorities. I applaud the President on focusing on this issue and on taking the lead to disarm Saddam Hussein. ... Others have talked about this threat that is posed by Saddam Hussein. Yes, he has chemical weapons, he has biological weapons, he is trying to get nuclear weapons."

Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi (Democrat, California) Addressing the US Senate October 10, 2002

"We stopped the fighting [in 1991] on an agreement that Iraq would take steps to assure the world that it would not engage in further aggression and that it would destroy its weapons of mass destruction. It has refused to take those steps. That refusal constitutes a breach of the armistice which renders it void and justifies resumption of the armed conflict."

Senator Harry Reid (Democrat, Nevada) Addressing the US Senate October 9, 2002

"It is the duty of any president, in the final analysis, to defend this nation and dispel the security threat. Saddam Hussein has brought military action upon himself by refusing for 12 years to comply with the mandates of the United Nations. The brave and capable men and women of our armed forces and those who are with us will quickly, I know, remove him once and for all as a threat to his neighbors, to the world, and to his own people, and I support their doing so."

Senator John Kerry (Democrat, Massachusetts) Statement on eve of military strikes against Iraq March 17, 2003

"It appears that with the deadline for exile come and gone, Saddam Hussein has chosen to make military force the ultimate weapons inspections enforcement mechanism. If so, the only exit strategy is victory, this is our common mission and the world's cause."

Senator John Kerry (Democrat, Massachusetts) Statement on commencement of military strikes against Iraq March 20, 2003

And rather than drag this out even further, a personal favorite:

"There is now no incentive for Hussein to comply with the inspectors or to refrain from using weapons of mass destruction to defend himself if the United States comes after him. And he will use them; we should be under no illusion about that."

Joseph Wilson, Advisor to John Kerry 2004 Presidential Campaign in a Los Angeles Times editorial: "A 'Big Cat' With Nothing to Lose" February 6, 2003; Page B17

-5 months before his "What I Didn't Find in Africa" column, and a year after his trip to Niger

Steve

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Question/Answer
curious98 asked on 04/26/07 - Pat Tillman and Jessica Lynch

For quite sometime I have been hammering on the head of some of our colleagues on these Q&A boards that Government Administrations all over feel no repulsion whatsoever about lying to us in the most deliberate and obnoxious way. I have read today this article which seems to show that I am not totally wrong:

Quote:

The searing congressional testimonies from the family of Pat Tillman and Jessica Lynch may sound the long overdue death knell for mainstream American public support for the Bush administration and its criminal war.

Tuesday, one unwilling and outraged war poster child and the agonized family members of the other stood before Congress, looked the Bush administration in the eye, and said, “Enough.”

Kevin Tillman, who served with his brother, accused the Bush administration of intentional deceit.
The accounts of the Tillmans, Lynch, and their fellow soldiers lay bare the fact that the Bush administration engaged in an elaborate and deliberate criminal cover-up of Tillman’s fratricide, as well as Lynch’s ordeal, to deceive the American people.

In what can only described as post-facto rape, the administration hijacked the images of Tillman and Lynch for war propaganda, fabricated elaborate pro-war fantasies around both, and then flooded the media with these pro-Bush, pro-war falsehoods.

The violation of Tillman will prove to be even more grotesque and appalling if investigations determine that Tillman’s disapproval of the war contributed in any way to his death.

An historic turning point has been reached. The American people who embraced the Pat Tillman/Jessica Lynch lie will “get” the Pat Tillman/Jessica Lynch truth, now that it has been honestly and heroically presented.

Now the tidal wave begins.

Piece by piece, the Bush administration’s criminal construct is finally being undone. The Bush administration, and its “war on terrorism” (in its present incarnation), will not recover from this mortal blow.

By Larry Chin
Online Journal Associate Editor

Apr 26, 2007, 00:40”

Unquote:

Your comments, please.

Curious98

PS:
BTW. The above case is making a lot of noise in Europe and we are wondering what the Bush Administration is going to say in their defence.

Itsdb answered on 04/26/07:

Claude,

As tom touched on, President Bush does not have his fingers in every detail of anything.

I find it outrageous that the same people that criticize Bush incessantly over his delegating responsibilities - so much that they don't believe he has a brain other than Karl Rove, people who believe Bush couldn't find his butt with a GPS attached - actually believe Bush was on these two cases so fast as to concoct such heroic tales.

Of course Bush is ultimately responsible, but it starts with the Army. Someone screwed up, and you can bet they damn sure did NOT want this to reach the president. It is this Democratic congress that wishes to ignore channels, chain of command and constitutional duties, not Bush.

Steve

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 04/26/07 - Oil wars? Hmmmm....I think not.

Crude Oil and Total Petroleum Imports Top 15 Countries
February 2007 Import Highlights: Released on April 17, 2007
Preliminary monthly data on the origins of crude oil imports in February 2007 has been released and it shows that four countries have each exported more than 1.10 million barrels per day to the United States. Including those countries, a total of five countries exported over 1.00 million barrels per day of crude oil to the United States (see table below). The top five exporting countries accounted for 72 percent of United States crude oil imports in February while the top ten sources accounted for approximately 89 percent of all U.S. crude oil imports. The top sources of US crude oil imports for February were Canada (1.838 million barrels per day), Mexico (1.358 million barrels per day), Saudi Arabia (1.185 million barrels per day), Venezuela (1.115 million barrels per day) and Nigeria (1.061 million barrels per day). The rest of the top ten sources, in order, were Angola (0.451 million barrels per day), Algeria (0.392 million barrels per day), Iraq (0.325 million barrels per day), Ecuador (0.178 million barrels per day), and Kuwait (0.158 million barrels per day). Total crude oil imports averaged 9.047 million barrels per day in February, which is a decrease of 1.145 million barrels per day from January 2007.

Canada remained the largest exporter of total petroleum in February, exporting 2.386 million barrels per day to the United States, which was a slight decrease from last month (2.470 thousand barrels per day). The second largest exporter of total petroleum was Mexico with 1.507 million barrels per day.

Crude Oil Imports (Top 15 Countries)
(Thousand Barrels per Day)
Country Feb-07 Jan-07 YTD 2007 Feb-06 Jan - Feb 2006

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

CANADA 1,838 1,856 1,847 1,710 1,740
MEXICO 1,358 1,435 1,398 1,774 1,735
SAUDI ARABIA 1,185 1,559 1,382 1,418 1,375
VENEZUELA 1,115 955 1,031 1,178 1,204
NIGERIA 1,061 1,106 1,085 1,342 1,232
ANGOLA 451 553 504 464 441
ALGERIA 392 548 474 163 201
IRAQ 325 531 433 450 493
ECUADOR 178 269 226 222 302
KUWAIT 158 172 165 152 110
UNITED KINGDOM 137 61 97 82 58
BRAZIL 103 204 156 164 110
CHAD 87 70 78 77 76
COLOMBIA 73 137 106 126 148
LIBYA 63 9 35 58 48

Total Imports of Petroleum (Top 15 Countries)
(Thousand Barrels per Day)
Country Feb-07 Jan-07 YTD 2007 Feb-06 Jan - Feb 2006

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

CANADA 2,386 2,470 2,430 2,262 2,287
MEXICO 1,507 1,566 1,538 1,878 1,835
VENEZUELA 1,353 1,195 1,270 1,475 1,508
SAUDI ARABIA 1,207 1,563 1,394 1,451 1,408
NIGERIA 1,102 1,136 1,120 1,377 1,277
ALGERIA 554 778 672 446 586
ANGOLA 464 574 522 478 454
IRAQ 325 531 433 450 493
VIRGIN ISLANDS 312 425 371 318 297
UNITED KINGDOM 257 194 224 205 196
RUSSIA 236 347 294 304 259
ECUADOR 185 272 231 234 311
KUWAIT 168 172 170 158 114
BRAZIL 150 250 203 203 152
TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO 135 121 128 62 102

Note: The data in the tables above exclude oil imports into the U.S. territories.

Seems to me that if the left wants to insist that we are waging war in Iraq over oil, then they need to step us and explain why--if oil is our motivation--why we haven't taken over Canada, Mexico, etc.

This was easy to find, it's here: http://www.eia.doe.gov/pub/oil_gas/petroleum/data_publications/company_level_imports/current/import.html

So why do we still get this erroneous babble from the left?

DK

Itsdb answered on 04/26/07:

Dennis,

The hardcore left does not care about facts, the only thing they care about is their agenda - to be carried out at any cost.

Have you ever persuaded any of these liberal types here with facts? I didn't think so. I can't even get one to acknowledge a fact that contradicts their venom, was even presented - a concession would be miraculous.

You have to understand that liberal/progressive/freethinker, etc. knowledge is so far superior to anything that comes out of a conservative - especially a Christian conservative - that anything that conflicts with their wisdom is irrelevent and therefore dismissed out of hand. At least until they find a way to use it to their advantage.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 04/26/07 - new planet answer

the new planet they discovered that is 20 light years away may contain the answer for liberals they can take themselves and their PC life and live on that planet and leave us to destroy ourselves. Rosie O'Donell will weigh twice her current weight. I wonder what other wonders they would encounter when they get to their new planet????

Itsdb answered on 04/26/07:

Seems I recall Sean Penn (and probably some others) threatening to move out of the country if Bush were re-elected ... we've now found the perfect place for a relocation.

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/26/07 - Haditha revisited

Newsmax is reporting that an intelligence office provided substantial exculpatory evidence in the Haditha case, evidence he says the NCIS sat on, evidence that supports the defendants' version of the facts, and indicates the entire incident was an ambush which was being videotaped by our enemies who edited it and handed it over to anti-war activists to present the case in the worst possible way to our troops. If this is so, it would substantiate the belief of those who were skeptical of the claims underlying this case.

In a nutshell, the case exploded when an intelligence officer dropped a bombshell on prosecutors during a pre-hearing interview when he revealed the existence of exculpatory evidence that appears to have been obtained by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) and withheld from the prosecutors.


This officer, described by senior Marine Corps superiors as one of the best and most dedicated intelligence officers in the entire Marine Corps, was in possession of evidence which provided a minute-by-minute narrative of the entire day's action - material which he had amassed while monitoring the day's action in his capacity as the battalion's intelligence officer. That material, he says, was also in the hands of the NCIS.


Much of that evidence remains classified, but it includes videos of the entire day's action, including airstrikes against insurgent safe houses. Also included was all of the radio traffic describing the ongoing action between the men on the ground and battalion headquarters, and proof that the Marines were aware that the insurgents conducting the ambush of the Kilo Company troops were videotaping the action - the same video that after editing ended up in the hands of a gullible anti-war correspondent for Time magazine.


When asked by the prosecution team to give his copies of the evidence to the prosecution, he told NewsMax.com that he was reluctant to do so, fearing it would again be suppressed or misused, but later relented when ordered by his commanding general to do so.


Confronted by the massive mounds of evidence that Marine Corps sources tell NewsMax proves conclusively that the cases against the Haditha Marines are baseless, the prosecutors were forced to postpone the Article 32 against Lt. Col. Chessani and two of the enlisted men in an attempt to regroup.


I want that NCIS jerk-off keelhauled ! Between that and allegations that the NCIS mistreatment of the prisoners ;this is not a good day for the U.S. Navy . Looks like they have to clean house in NCIS and JAG . You can possibly expect this from an overly ambitious prosecutor like Nifong ,Sutton,
Fitzgerald,or Ronnie Earl,but not from the uniformed services .Naval and Marine officers are supposed to be made of better stuff

Speaking of that ;I'm expecting former Marine John Murtha to make a public apology to the troops anytime now...................still waiting .............





And of course I'll ask the obligatory question . Why wasn't this first page news in the New York Slimes?

Itsdb answered on 04/26/07:

Was this front page news anywhere but Newsmax? You know tom, more and more of the left's most outrageous tantrums are being discredited by the facts, and I'm really getting pissed that the exhonerations are getting shoved under the rug instead of trumpeted from every media outlet.

I'm really getting pissed that the Reids, Schmuckys, Durbins, and Murthas aren't getting their feet held to the fire over all the manure they've spread the last 4 or 5 years.

Instead, we have the media playing along with redundant things such as that bulldog Waxman demanding Rice testify about pre-war intelligence. I mean seriously, hasn't that been done to death already?

This story was nowhere to be found in my paper ... but al-AP made damn sure we knew about subpoenas, immunities and outrage over 8 fired US attorneys and 'insurgent' attacks in Iraq.

Steve

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Question/Answer
PrinceHassim asked on 04/25/07 - New adventures for Bush ..................


................... The discovery of a new planet thought capable of sustaining life has had the White House abuzz, says a correspondent.

It has been mooted that there could be vast oil reserves a little over twenty light years away, and already

White House staffers are preparing plans to invade the planet and take over all availble fuel sources.

Karl Rove is understood to be collecvting a dossier on the putative inhabitants of the newly discovered orb, and has posited that they will have WMDs capable of blowing the earth back into the past in little over twenty years.

The denizens are not known to be friendly towards the Buish administration, so a pre-emptive strike is already on the table in the White House War Room.

Should we be worried? Should we join the National Guard?



Itsdb answered on 04/26/07:

On a related note, Tom Cruise has reportedly purchased a sizable parcel on Gliese 581c for a proposed "Scientology outreach center."

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/26/07 - Rosie v Crow

When told about Sheryl Crow's idea about saving the earth by reducing the number of toilet paper sheets you use ,Rosie made perhaps here most profound contribution since she went on 'The View ' . She said have you seen my ass ?




It is not clear from the photo if she is demonstrating the size of her ass or her mouth in above photo

Itsdb answered on 04/26/07:

tom, she may be demonstrating the size of her rectum but that definitely wouldn't begin to cover the size of her ass. In any case, mouth, rectum, whatever, I think she'll have difficulty reaching her goal:



I know, that's a very disturbing image to consider...

Steve

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tomder55 asked on 04/25/07 - My 401 K thanks you

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Stocks rose on Wednesday, sending the Dow Jones industrial average above 13,000 for the first time , boosted by stronger-than-expected profits and Alcoa Inc.'s plan to sell its packaging unit.

Shares of Alcoa, the world's largest aluminum company and a Dow component, registered their biggest gain in more than two months after the company said it might put its packaging arm, whose products include Reynolds Wrap, on the block.


Maybe so ,but I got a simpler explanation for Alcoa's profit jump. In the last 4 months the sale of tin-foil hats and aluminum foil deflectors has sky-rocketted !!















Itsdb answered on 04/25/07:

It's not just tin-foil hats for moonbats, they're available for pets:



Office cubicles:



In cap style:



And check out this exciting new model for Pelosi's next mideast trip:

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/25/07 - Copperheads vs the tinfoil hat Congressional majority

I just find it striking the comparison between the cabal of appeasocrats led by Reid /Pelosi and their Civil War counterparts ,the Copperheads

Mackubin Thomas Owens at the Christian Science Monitor does a great comparison .

Owens explains that the Copperhead is a poisonous snake and that Northern “peace Democrats” of the Civil War era were often called “Copperheads.” Why? Although from the North, Copperheads were Confederate sympathizers and obstructionists against the Union war effort. In the end, they were almost successful in defeating President Lincoln’s effort to save the nation and end slavery.

Copperheads exploited antiwar sentiment. They actively interfered with recruiting and encouraged desertion. Their venom was so vile that by the end of the war,according to Owens, Union soldiers had more distain for Copperheads then they did for Confederate soldiers.

The Copperheads ended up on the wrong side of history. The lesson that has been lost is the effect that their polarizing actions had on their party. Copperheads radically politicized the country and helped to turn many Democrats into life-long Republicans. They also made a powerful enemy of the Union veterans.

Nancy Pelosi who recently met with Bashar Assad ,the terrorist thug dictator of Syria ,indicated that she has no plans to meet with General Petraeus ;nor will she attend when the General briefs Congress on the progress of the "surge ". What could she possibly have on her agenda that is more important ?



Harry Reid dismisses the General's testimony out of hand and pretty much called the General a liar.

BASH: You talked several times about General Petraeus. You know that he is here in town. He was at the White House today, sitting with the president in the Oval Office and the president said that he wants to make it clear that Washington should not be telling him, General Petraeus, a commander on the ground in Iraq, what to do, particularly, the president was talking about Democrats in Congress. He also said that General Petraeus is going to come to the Hill and make it clear to you that there is progress going on in Iraq, that the so-called surge is working. Will you believe him when he says that?

REID: No, I don't believe him, because it's not happening.


So that is what leadership means to the modern Copperheads ;Reid maligns the character of the General in the field and Pelosi just avoids him. Both claim that one of their major roles is oversight . Well;nows their chance. They are living in a cocoon where only their beliefs are to be heard and accepted. Now that they have power in Congress, they are doing their absolute best to lose this war as quickly as they possibly can.


Itsdb answered on 04/25/07:

>>They are living in a cocoon where only their beliefs are to be heard and accepted.<<

And isn't that EXACTLY the criticism been leveled at the Bush administration for all these years? It's just like his little 'feud' with Cheney yesterday:

    Cheney: "Some Democratic leaders seem to believe that blind opposition to the new strategy in Iraq is good politics ... Senator Reid himself has said that the war in Iraq will bring his party more seats in the next election ... It is cynical to declare that the war is lost because you believe it gives you political advantage."

    Reid: "I'm not going to get into a name-calling match with the administration's chief attack dog."


Of course not, he's just going to call people names and refuse to answer for his statements because he can't see out of his cocoon.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/24/07 - Fred Thompson vs, Ramesh Ponnuru on the nature of Federalism

These two are in the middle of a text book illustration of how to have a political debate . Thompson is looking more Presidential every day .

Ramesh Ponnuru fired the salvo in an editorial at National Review when he criticized Thompson's support for Tort reform or rather his inconsistent support for Tort reform . When he has opposed it is has been on grounds of federalism .

Ponnuru concludes his critique with the challenge if conservatives mean what they say when they complain about the dangerous rapacity of the trial bar, they ought to ask Senator Thompson a few hard questions.

Well Ponnuru did ,and Thompson was more than happy to reply at Redstate.com ;where Thompson is becoming a heck of a blooger as well . He gives a well reasoned explanation of his interpretation of federalism .

For the record, I oppose the federal regulation of any fees negotiated by two competent
parties at the state and local level. This goes for lawyers, doctors, butchers, bakers or the occasional candlestick maker. Even if excessive fees offend Congressional sensibilities, there are other remedies that make far more sense than the federal one. In the tobacco case, for example, those who negotiated the attorney’s fees had to run for re-election. Also, local courts strike down fees they find excessive. Apparently the absurdity of Patrick Leahy and me (or our staffs) rummaging through records to determine exactly what some second-year lawyer in a Hoboken law firm did to earn their hourly rates is lost on some of my conservative friends. All that matters is that I “sided with the trial lawyers.” This is always supposed to end the debate.

This discussion is not an idle exercise. Republicans have struggled in recent years, because they have strayed from basic principles. Federalism is one of those principles. It is something we all give lip service to and then proceed to ignore when it serves our purposes. During my eight years in the Senate, I tried to adhere to this principle. For me it was a lodestar. Not only was it what our founding fathers created – a federal government with limited, enumerated powers with respect for other levels of government, it also provided a basis for a proper analysis of most issues: “Is this something government should be doing? If so, at what level of government?”

As I understood it, states were supposed to be laboratories that would compete with each other, conducting civic experiments according to the wishes of their citizens. The model for federal welfare reform was the result of that process. States also allow for of diverse viewpoints that exist across the country. There is no reason that Tennesseans and New Yorkers should have to agree on everything (and they don’t).........

Adhering to the principles of Federalism is not easy. As one who was on the short end of a couple of 99-1 votes, I can personally attest to it. Federalism sometimes restrains you from doing things you want to do. You have to leave the job to someone else – who may even choose not to do it at all. However, if conservatives abandon this valued principle that limits the federal government, or if we selectively use it as a tool with which to reward our friends and strike our enemies, then we will be doing a disservice to our country as well as the cause of conservatism.


Ramesh Ponnuru replied yesterday .

The word “federalism” does not appear in the Constitution. But the Constitution does lay out specific rules for the interaction of states with one another and with the federal government, and a theory about those relations can be inferred from it. The federal government can, and has, violated those rules and that theory, and Thompson has steadfastly resisted those encroachments. But state governments can do the same thing, and increasingly do. Senator Thompson has given more thought to federalism than, I would guess, any of the other presidential candidates. But he has never shown any evidence that he understands this point, either in his Senate career or in this peculiar letter.

I can't wait for Thompson's reply . This exchange ;no matter which side of the debate you agree with is the template of how resonable political discourse should be approached .





Itsdb answered on 04/24/07:

And here I thought reasonable political discourse was a lost cause. Regardless of the subject matter here to me this sums it up There is no reason that Tennesseans and New Yorkers should have to agree on everything (and they don’t).........

It's not that people disagree, it's the manner in which we do disagree. These days there seems to be no common ground between opposing forces - and the left in particular has made it clear there is little or no room for debate - they've decided what's best for us and they intend to force it down our throats.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/23/07 - A response to Harry Reid

From Corporal Tyler Rock

From PatDollard.com (the site has quit posting the link )


This Email To Me, Harry, And America, Direct From A Grunt On The Front Lines Of Ramadi, Is Just Hours Old.



Corporal Tyler Rock, 1/6 Charlie Company, on the left

A view from OP Horea, “Most Dangerous Spot On Earth”, Downtown Ramadi. I no sh*t watched several terrorists die, on several different days, on this small strip of asphalt. We also took many IED strikes on it. This photo is from Corporal Rock.

Today, from Corporal Tyler Rock in an outpost in downtown Ramadi. His first sentence is in response to an email from me:

“yeah i know how you feel. its going to be very weird leaving this place and going back to america. weve been here for almost an entire year and have lived in the center of it the whole time. its crazy that when we got here it was so hectic and now its calmed down so much. so it was awesome to be able to see that turn out.

yeah news worth reporting…. well ramadi was once dubbed by everyone as the worst city in the world. but we have done such a great job here that all the families in the area have worked with us on driving out the insurgency and that we work directly with the IA and the IP’s. the city has been cleaned up so well that the IP’s do most of the patrols now and we go out with them to hand out candy and toys to the children. you can tell that the people want us here to protect them from the thugs and gangs (insurgents). granted they would rather have peace and quit but they know that if we arent here they will be thrown around by the insurgents. a good example is this one mission we did. long story short we got blown up in multiple buildings and had to run into a families house. i spent my christmas holidays covered in ash from the mortar fire and the IED’s, sleeping under a dirty rug i found in the house. everyone was sleeping way to close for comfort just to stay warm. anyways. a family was there and they obviously didnt want us there. atleast at first. the daughters were very sick so our corpsman treated them. they didnt have electricity so we got them a generator for power, they were cold so we got them gas heaters, we got them food and water and then we gave them $500. by the end of the week long visit with them we were drinking tea with them. when we left we cleaned their house better than it was when we got there. i even have pictures with the family. they told us that they liked marines and they would help us as much as they could and they gave us some information on the insurgents in the area. we ended up catching a HUGE target down the road from there house because of it.

yeah and i got a quote for that douche harry reid. these families need us here. obviously he has never been in iraq. or atleast the area worth seeing. the parts where insurgency is rampant and the buildings are blown to pieces. we need to stay here and help rebuild. if iraq didnt want us here then why do we have IP’s voluntering everyday to rebuild their cities. and working directly with us too. same with the IA’s. it sucks that iraqi’s have more patriotism for a country that has turned to complete shit more than the people in america who drink starbucks everyday. we could leave this place and say we are sorry to the terrorists. and then we could wait for 3,000 more american civilians to die before we say “hey thats not nice” again. and the sad thing is after we WIN this war. people like him will say he was there for us the whole time.
and for messages back home. i have a wife back home who is going through a tough time. i just cant wait to be back home and see everyone. haha and i cant wait to go back home and get some starbucks. i love it when those people serve me. hahaha”

Itsdb answered on 04/23/07:

>>people like him will say he was there for us the whole time.<<

Yep. Thanks tom, I hope "that douche harry reid" and Schmucky both got a copy of this.

Steve

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 04/23/07 - Liberals are "compassionate?" Please!!!

I've been practicing restraint for months now, trying to rise above the filth that contaminates a good portion of this globe. However, I am about to jump into the fray with both feet, loose the figurative broadsword and mace, and take some figurative scalps.

The "Everyone Hates Christianity" board is out of control, as most of you know.

The same group that preaches "tolerance," "compassion," and "understanding" cannot live by those words they spout everytime the opportunity comes up. I'm thinking of one in particular. She claims to be an "intelligent" person and a compassionate one; however, her posts belie her position, and reveal her as nothing more than a bitter, hate-filled person who has no tolerance or love for anyone who doesn't think exactly like her. A couple of the others that folks seem to have problems with will usually give credit where credit is due, and agree to disagree, at least to a point.

But a simple post showing the severe storms in our area--just for the sake of passing along the info--were met with disparaging comments about God by one (to which I think I responded appropriately) and another.....well, never mind.

I think I'm about done with them, on second thought. Between the people who rabidly defend their version of the faith while at the same time attacking others are getting on my nerves as much as the ones running any Judeo-Christian belief into the ground.

I seem to remember something about not casting pearls before swine.....you think that applies to that board?

D "gettin' just plain pissed off" K

Itsdb answered on 04/23/07:

D "gettin' just plain pissed off" K,

That board is a waste of time, but for some reason I can't seem to keep myself from still trying to point out the very intolerance and hypocrisy you're speaking of.

It makes me want to just step aside and let them fight it out, but I know the ones that speak the loudest are the ones being heard these days. I have difficulty sitting back while that "liberal compassion" is being forced down our throats, so I'll probably keep plugging away selectively to try and counter the biggest and most dangerous lies.

I gotta hand it to you though buddy, you have far more restraint most of the time than I do over there. Maybe I should learn more from your example - or then again maybe we should both "jump into the fray with both feet, loose the figurative broadsword and mace, and take some figurative scalps." :)

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/23/07 - More on Cheryl Crow

When it comes to Sheryl Crow's touring requirements, if it's Tuesday, this must be Bombay. Gin that is. The rock star's performance contract includes specific day-to-day instructions on what kind of booze Sheryl needs in her dressing room For each show, Crow requires 12 bottles of Grolsch beer, 6 bottles of "local" beer, and a bottle each of "good Australian Cabernet" and "good Merlot." As for the harder stuff, promoters are directed to purchase specific booze depending on what day of the week the concert falls, as the below rider excerpt reveals.

Additionally, when the global warming warrior hits the road, her touring entourage (and equipment) travels in three tractor trailers, four buses, and six cars. Now that's a carbon footprint!

Additional requirements found at The Smoking gun

Itsdb answered on 04/23/07:

They even have to furnish her a pack of Marlboro Lights and three large and many small ashtrays for the band? How many cities does she visit with smoking bans? There's no indication if the private toilets should have TP or not, but at least she demands hand soap for the guys.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/23/07 - Paul Wolfowitz

As you probably know ,there was a little firestorm at the World Bank over allegations of nepotism regarding Paul Wolfowitz current President of the World Bank and former Deputy Sec. Defense (that damned neo-con).

The charges are that he gave an increase in severance to his "companion" Shaha Riza who was working at the Bank as a senior communications officer at the bank with expertise in Middle East affairs . The increase was from $132,660 to $193,590 when she was ultimately transfered to the State Department .

This got under the skin of the establishment inside the Bank who's relationship with Wolfowitz has been nothing if not combative since he took the reigns .

When he came into the position he offered to recuse himself from any decision regarding Riza and he disclosed his relationship with her. An ethics committee refused his proposal. The panel decided Riza couldn't remain employed at the bank.She was in the middle of a successful career at the bank and was being told she would have to give it up. Yes it was a generous package ;but it likely would've cost the Bank more if she decided to litigate her dismissal. Since Wolfowitz was involved in the negotiations the clarion call about corruption was sounded by the establishment at the Bank,and the drumbeat calling for Wolfowitz's resignation began.

As I said ; the establishment has a burr in their ass about Wolfowitz that has nothing to do with this charge. Wolfowitz has made cleaning up corruption his primary objective at the bank, and in recent months, his efforts have made tremendous progress.In the past two years, 22 staff members have either been terminated or barred from being rehired and 11 others have been disciplined.Also;Wolfowitz obstructed the flow of funds to countries that he viewed as corrupt, disregarding staff judgments.

This I see is beginning to shape up just like the U.N. Why is the entrenched establishment so concerned about the reforms ? Could they be hiding something deeper ? Will Wolfy uncover another' Oil for Food' scandal ? Maybe ;giving them the benefit of the doubt ;they just don't want it disclosed how readily they were willing to finance corrupt regimes ? Their job is to dispense the money . They want to close their eyes as to what actually gets done with it.

Since Wolfy is shaking up the status quo ;he has to go . They latched onto this relatively minor issue as the exuse they need to do a coup de gras on him .

Suprisingly the Washington Compost has come out in favor of Wolfowitz on this issue .

So when Mr. Wolfowitz dictated her new terms of employment he was responding in part to the committee's instructions. Further raises were intended to be equal to what she might have earned had she stayed at the bank, responding to the committee's advice that she receive "compensation to offset negative career impact" from her reassignment.


Was the package nonetheless too generous, even by cushy World Bank standards? The executive directors should answer that question. But there's a relevant fact here, too. The ethics panel reviewed the situation again a half-year later, in February 2006, after receiving an anonymous complaint from a bank employee precisely on the issue of excessive pay. Once again it found, "on the basis of a careful review," that the allegations "do not appear to pose ethical issues appropriate for further consideration by the Committee."


If nepotism becomes an issue in International Organizations (hello Annan clan ) then some welcome reforms could come out of it. If the establishment at the World Bank is so concerned about nepotism regaring Wolfowitz perhaps they should look a little closer at their house before he came . The NY Sun documents some real examples there and at the U.N.

"Until 2005, the wife of the bank's managing director, Shengman Zhang of China, worked directly under him. The bank also employed a brother of its chief economist and senior vice president, Nicholas Stern of Britain, violating its own rule against employing siblings.[snip]


Mr. Melkert [the then-head of the Bank's Ethics Committee which demanded on conlfict grounds that Ms Riza be seconded from the Bank] has since moved on to the UNDP, an agency that habitually hires office employees recommended by local governments. In many cases, the United Nations ends up being represented locally by friends and family of the country's dictator.


During his visit to Syria this week, Secretary-General Ban should be on guard. A local UNDP officer, Khaled Mouallem, might relay internal U.N. communications to his father, Foreign Minister Walid Mouallem, at the dinner table. (The daughter of Walid Mouallem's predecessor, Farouk Shara, also worked for the UNDP during her father's tenure.)


What else should Mr. Ban watch out for? Someday, an Indian national who works for the United Nations Children's Fund in Nairobi, Siddharth Chatterjee, may want to be promoted to a top UNICEF position, known as country resident, in an African country. Such a promotion would require the approval of the U.N. secretary-general, who happens to be his father-in-law. Mr. Chatterjee's wife, Hyun-hee, is Mr. Ban's daughter, and she also works at UNICEF's Nairobi office.







Itsdb answered on 04/23/07:

>>Since Wolfy is shaking up the status quo ;he has to go .<<

That's the whole crux of it. That's why Bolton was never confirmed to the UN but you knew that. And anyone (any damned neocon that is) that tries to shake things up will get the same. As long as corruption (liberal/progressive/Democratic/globalist, etc.) runs in the family it's fine.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/20/07 - It's official

The Iraq war is lost . Harry Reid has proclaimed it so it must be true. "I believe ... that this war is lost, and this surge is not accomplishing anything, as is shown by the extreme violence in Iraq this week." He is as certain of it as Churchill was of victory .


Chuck the schmuck Shumer is besides himself with glee. “We are going to pick up Senate seats as a result of this war.”....“The war in Iraq is a lead weight attached to their ankle,” “We will break them [the Republicans ...not the jihadists ], because they are looking extinction in the eye.”

DNC will host a victory party this weekend .......BE THERE !!

Win the war, they lose. Lose the war, they win.

If buttercups buzz'd after the bee,
If boats were on land, churches on sea,
If ponies rode men and if grass ate the cows,
And cats should be chased into holes by the mouse,
If the mamas sold their babies
To the gypsies for half a crown;
If summer were spring and the other way round,
Then all the world would be upside down.

("The World Turned Upside Down")

Itsdb answered on 04/20/07:

I find it odd, or is it ironic, that Schmucky would speak of "looking extinction in the eye." These guys are demented ... and Schmucky sounds a little like al-Zawahiri in his quote. Has he been attending a madrasa recently?

Steve

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Question/Answer
ETWolverine asked on 04/16/07 - I finally figured out the cause of global warming.

I have done a study of this issue, and I have come to the conclusion that the Liberals are right. Global Warming is indeed a man-made occurance. Furthermore, it is the fault of the Federal Government of the United States, just as the Libs have been saying for years.

The cause of global warming?

Taxes.

After having done a study of the issue, I have come to the conclusion that there is a positive corallary between taxes and temperature records.

First of all, just as temperatures have been going up for years, taxes have been going up as well. So there is the first correlation.

But the evidence is much stronger than that. I have done a review of Federal tax receipts as a percentage of GDP for the period of 1946 - 2006. I have also done are review of temperature records to obtain the average temperatures for the month of April (tax month) in Albany, NY. While temperature records for Federal tax collections were complete, the temperature records for Albany were missing 9 years worth of information. Nevertheless, despite the incompleteness of the data, I continued my study. (After all, if the pseudo-scientists who make claims of global warming can do so with huge amounts of data lacking, so can I.)

My study led to the following conclusion. Over the past 60 years, tax receipts as a percentage of GDP have gone up by 190 basis points. If we eliminate the years for which we do not have temperature records, the increase in taxes as a percentage of GDP increases by 210 basis points. During the same period, temperatures for the month of April have increased an average of 0.03 degrees Celcius. This shows a clear correlation... taxes up, temperatures up.

Furthermore, there were 23 cases where both temperatures and percetage of GDP moved in the same direction. That is, when taxes as a percentage of GDP went up, the temperature went up, and when taxes as a percentage of GDP went down, temperatures went down. That's 23 out of 51 times when there was congruity between the movement of taxes as a percentage of GDP and temperatures in Albany. This shows a clear correlation between taxes and global warming.

Since US Federal taxes are a function of the US government, temperature change must also be a function of the US government. This would mean that the US government is at fault for Global warming, just as the Liberals have stated.

There are two clear solutions to global warming. The first would be to increase GDP while holding taxes at their current level. We need to increase the productivity of the United States so that taxes become a smaller percentage of GDP, thus driving environmental temperatures down. Of course, this would require an increase in our industrial performance and capacity. But since we have now proven that industrial emmissions aren't the real cause of global warming, that shouldn't be too much of a problem.

The second solution would be to hold GDP steady, but lower taxes. This too would result in taxes being a lower percentage of GDP. This might sound easier than the first solution... after all, it just takes a vote of Congress to make that happen. However, in reality, getting Congress to agree to lower taxes is never an easy task. It is easier to build thousands of new industrial plants than it is to get Congress to cut taxes. Nevertheless, it might be time for Congress to take the hard actions necessary to protect the world from tax-driven global warming. The US government has a responsibility to act.

Below are the data used to come to the above conclusions.

.......Taxes..%Chng..Albany..Chng in
Year...% GDP...GDP.. Temp....Temp.
1947...16.5...-1.1...6.4.....-0.7
1948...16.2...-0.3...8.5......2.1
1949...14.5...-1.7...9.1......0.6
1950...14.4...-0.1...6.3.....-2.8
1951...16.1....1.7...8.6......2.3
1952...19......2.9...10.2.....1.6
1953...18.7...-0.3...8.0.....-2.2
1954...18.5...-0.2...8.9......0.9
1955...16.6...-1.9...9.8......0.9
1956...17.5....0.9...5.8.....-4.0
1957...17.8....0.3...9.4......3.6
1958...17.3...-0.5...9.5......0.1
1959...16.1...-1.2...9.1.....-0.4
1960...17.9....1.8...9.8......0.7
1961...17.8...-0.1...6.8.....-3.0
1962...17.6...-0.2...8.7......1.9
1963...17.8....0.2...7.9.....-0.8
1964...17.6...-0.2...8.0......0.1
1965...17.0...-0.6...N/A
1966...17.4....0.4...N/A
1967...18.3....0.9...N/A
1968...17.7...-0.6...N/A
1969...19.7....2.0...N/A
1970...19.0...-0.7...N/A
1971...17.3...-1.7...N/A
1972...17.6....0.3...N/A
1973...17.7....0.1...9.2
1974...18.3....0.6...8.9.....-0.3
1975...17.9...-0.4...4.9.....-4.0
1976...17.2...-0.7...9.9..... 5.0
1977...18.0....0.8...8.6.....-1.3
1978...18.0....0.0...6.2.....-2.4
1979...18.5....0.5...7.7......1.5
1980...19.0....0.5...8.9......1.2
1981...19.6....0.6...9.1......0.2
1982...19.1...-0.5...7.2.....-1.9
1983...17.5...-1.6...8.0......0.8
1984...17.4...-0.1...8.8......0.8
1985...17.7....0.3...9.6......0.8
1986...17.4...-0.3...10.4.....0.8
1987...18.4....1.0...10.3....-0.1
1988...18.2...-0.2...8.0.....-2.3
1989...18.4....0.2...6.9.....-1.1
1990...18.0...-0.4...9.5......2.6
1991...17.8...-0.2...10.6.....1.1
1992...17.5...-0.3...7.0.....-3.6
1993...17.6....0.1...9.0......2.0
1994...18.1....0.5...9.0......0.0
1995...18.5....0.4...6.7.....-2.3
1996...18.9....0.4...7.9......1.2
1997...19.3....0.4...7.0.....-0.9
1998...20.0....0.7...9.5......2.5
1999...20.0....0.0...8.6.....-0.9
2000...20.9....0.9...7.4.....-1.2
2001...19.8...-1.1...8.7......1.3
2002...17.9...-1.9...9.9......1.2
2003...16.5...-1.4...7.0.....-2.9
2004...16.3...-0.2...9.3......2.3
2005...17.6....1.3...10.1.....0.8
2006...18.4....0.8...10.0....-0.1

Average Change 0.19..........0.03

Hey, it makes about as much sense as any argument the pseudo-scientific knuckleheaded environ-mental cases put out.

Elliot

Itsdb answered on 04/18/07:

And I thought I did a lot of research around here. But hey, I'd just as soon go with this as anything else, and now we have a concrete connection of how man is causing global warming - not to mention even more reason not to vote Democrat.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/16/07 - When is a slam dunk not a slam dunk ?

No; it's not when the NY Knicks play a game. It's when George Tenet tells the President that the case about Saddam Hussein's WMDs is a "slam dunk".

In George Tenet's new book 'At the Center of the Storm' he explains that a slam dunk may not really be a slam dunk.


maybe it should be called 'Hindsight' after his miserable performance in predicting 9-11 .

Bob Woodward reported in "Plan of Attack" that Tenet assured the president that it was a "slam dunk" case that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction. Pre-release promotional material says that Tenet will provide “real context” to the remark. You see ;when President Bush asked him for confirmation ,the President actually believed that in the opinion of his Director of the CIA that there was substance to what he is saying . Tenet evidently is going to argue that he was not telling Mr. Bush that there was rock-solid evidence that Mr. Hussein had chemical and biological weapons, only that the president could make a “slam dunk” case to the American public about these weapons programs. As Tenet's former boss said "it depends on what the meaning of the word "is " is. But then again;if President Bush was lying about WMD he was simply repeating a lie told by Clinton,and just about every other nations intelligence agencies .

Expect the Intelligence Committee's of both Houses to have high profile hearings with Tenet as the star witness ,quickly followed by all the obligatory subpoenas .Can Tenet support his claim when someone reminds him that he sat behind Colin Powell when Powell went before the UNSC and laid out in detail the Administrations case about Saddam's WMDs while Tenet nodded approvingly ?

But I hope that while they softball him on the above issue they also revisit his other slam dunk claim ;that being of Saddam's high level contacts with al-Qaeda. He wrote in an October 7, 2002 letter to head of the Senate Intelligence Committee, Senator Bob Graham (D-FL). "We have solid reporting of senior level contacts between Iraq and al-Qaeda going back a decade." That Iraq and al Qaeda "have discussed safe haven and reciprocal non-aggression." Tenet warned, "We have credible reporting that al-Qaeda leaders sought contacts in Iraq who could help them acquire WMD capabilities. The reporting also stated that Iraq has provided training to al-Qaeda members in the areas of poisons and gases and making conventional bombs." And, "Iraq's increasing support to extremist Palestinians, coupled with growing indications of a relationship with al-Qaeda, suggest that Baghdad's links to terrorists will increase, even absent US military action.”


Itsdb answered on 04/16/07:

>>But then again;if President Bush was lying about WMD he was simply repeating a lie told by Clinton,and just about every other nations intelligence agencies.<<

Those are inconvenient facts, tom. I think between you, Elliot and myself we've stated that at least several dozen times and I can't recall one instance of a Bush critic acknowledging that reality. It's much easier to just repeat the lie that "Bush lied."

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/14/07 - Another example of the Democrat era of accountability

California Senator Dianne Feinstein abruptly stepped down from the Military Construction Appropriations Subcommittee this week, hoping to stem the tide of questions surfacing about the role she has played in defense contracts won by her husband, Richard Blum. An investigation revealed that a number of defense contracts awarded to Blum’s companies have interesting links to appropriations actions made during Feinstein’s term on the committee.

In March 2003, after she asked the Pentagon about anti-terrorism protection on Army bases, Blum’s company, URS, won a $600-million contract to provide Army bases with anti-terror-protection services. Additionally Feinstein inquired as to when money would be spent on a maintenance facility for the C-17 Globemasters at Hickam Air Base in Hawaii. URS later announced a $42-million contract to build it. In 2005, the committee approved funds to reinforce roofs at military stations in Iraq, and in October of that year, another Blum company got a $185-million contract to perform the work.

Feinstein’s office, which at first refused to comment, has now predictably stated that she did not leave the committee because of the inquiry. Her spokesman Scott Gerber went so far as to say that Congress has no role in the awarding of military contracts, which is true; that is the job of the Pentagon. However, the Pentagon gets its approval from Congress, specifically from committees such as the one Feinstein chaired.

Itsdb answered on 04/16/07:

And yet, the Dems have still forgotten their main campaign theme, to end the "culture of corruption" in Washington. Gee, that sounded familiar.

Let's play a game, Google 'Halliburton Cheney' (without the quotes) and see how many scandal references you find - in spite of the facts. All the while we have DiFi, chairperson and ranking member of MILCON for six years while her hubby is making a killing on defense contracts. Can you say conflict of interest?

And let's not trivialize the fact that the subcommittee she headed oversees "quality of life" issues for veterans, which includes building housing for military families and operating hospitals and clinics for wounded soldiers. Walter Reed ring a bell?

Alrighy then, when is the drive-by media going to relentlessly harp on the Democrat "culture of corruption?"

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/14/07 - Top 10 things Steny Hoyer said to Mohammed Saad el-Katatni of the Muslim Brotherhood.

10. “Everything will be OK just as soon we get a Democrat in the White House.”

9. “I agree: the U.S. should apologize for..... what were we talking about again?”

8. “After we overcome the remaining Christians, then we can really remake the world!”

7. Did you know Nancy Pelosi has a burqa by Prada?”

6. “Essentially, I hold my office for life. Can you believe who people will vote for?”

5. “Where would we be without the New York Slimes!”

4. “I oppose increased border security .......a lot of my supporters sneak into America illegally.”

3. “Murtha is a useful idiot. "

2. “I receive a ton of my contributions from cab drivers in D.C.”

1. “So all you do is have your major backers break their donations up into lots of little checks from the unions they control, and then route those as “earmarked” for whatever candidate you want through your PAC, rather than sending in one oversized illegal check. Then it doesn’t matter what limits the law puts on you! I’m telling you, you could learn a lot from how we do politics in my country.”



Itsdb answered on 04/16/07:

And yet, the Dems have still forgotten their main campaign theme, to end the "culture of corruption" in Washington.

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 04/13/07 - now rap is being

the fault of the slave owners and the -white- kids who buy the music and made it popular. Not the black kids that buy it or the musicans that make it.
Sounds like a 'black' Peddler with her evolution=eugentics equation!

Itsdb answered on 04/16/07:

Well TS, I was wondering what this was in reference to, but I watched Michelle Malkin hosting O'Reilly's show Friday and saw morons in action.

It isn't just the fault of white kids making it popular, it's George Washington's fault!

And so while Imus is being crucified, "New Black Panther Party" leader Malik Shabazz refuses to apologize for convicting the Duke lacrosse players without a trial - the "real victim" is the girl - and thinks Michelle should apologize for being a "political prostitute."

Since it's all the white man's fault it apparently gives blacks free reign to call whoever they want a whore with impunity.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 04/13/07 - obama fraud?

What happened in Selma, Alabama and Birmingham also stirred the conscience of the nation. It worried folks in the White House who said, “You know, we’re battling Communism. How are we going to win hearts and minds all across the world? If right here in our own country, John, we’re not observing the ideals set fort in our Constitution, we might be accused of being hypocrites.” So the Kennedy’s decided we’re going to do an air lift. We’re going to go to Africa and start bringing young Africans over to this country and give them scholarships to study so they can learn what a wonderful country America is.
This young man named Barack Obama got one of those tickets and came over to this country. He met this woman whose great great-great-great-grandfather had owned slaves; but she had a good idea there was some craziness going on because they looked at each other and they decided that we know that the world as it has been it might not be possible for us to get together and have a child. There was something stirring across the country because of what happened in Selma, Alabama, because some folks are willing to march across a bridge. So they got together and Barack Obama Jr. was born. So don’t tell me I don’t have a claim on Selma, Alabama. Don’t tell me I’m not coming home to Selma, Alabama.
Obama told his audience that, because some folks had the courage to
> "march across a bridge" in Selma, Alabama, his mother, a white woman
> from Kansas, and his father, a black Muslim from Africa, took heart. It
> gave them the courage to get married and have a child. The problem with
> that characterization is that Barrack Obama, Jr. Was born on August 4,
> 1961, while the first of three marches across that bridge in Selma
> didn't occur until March 7, 1965, at least five years after Obama's
> parents met.
Obama went on to tell his audience that the Kennedys, Jack and Bobby,
decided to do an airlift. They would bring some young Africans over so
that they could be educated and learn all about America. His grandfather
heard that call and sent his son, Barrack Obama, Sr., to America.

A Kennedy program helped bring Obama’s father to the United States? Really? According to Obama’s first book,
He eventually won a scholarship to study in Nairobi; and then, on the eve of Kenyan independence, he was selected by Kenyan leaders and American sponsors to attend a university in the United States, joining the first large wave of Africans to be sent forth to master Western technology and bring it back to forge a new, modern Africa.
In 1959, at the age of 23, he arrived at the University of Hawaii – the first African student there.

Itsdb answered on 04/13/07:

TS,

Whoever posted this apparently made some corrections, as did Obama's camp, saying of the bridge march he was "speaking metaphorically about the civil rights movement as a whole."

Still, a fraud? Maybe - it's hard for me to picture him having a "claim on Selma" being raised by a white, middle-class mother and her maternal grandparents "mostly in Hawaii" with a significant stint in Jakarta with his white mother and Muslim, Indonesian stepfather. Sounds a lot like Kerry and Edwards stopping at a Wendy's to show how in tune they are with the common people before going to a 5 star dinner at Nikola's.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/13/07 - BRAINLESS HYPOCRITES WIN AGAIN


HEY, as long as we're at it, why not make every second week of April National Hypocrites Week? Yeah, a week in salute to those who teach us that identifying the difference between wrong and right should only be a matter of timing.

MSNBC on Wednesday fired Don Imus. That clearly indicates that on the day in 1996 when MSNBC hired him, its decision-makers had absolutely no idea what his show was about. I did. You did. But MSNBC didn't? MSNBC attached its name and financing to a five-day-a-week program that its execs had never before heard? Fascinating.

MSNBC didn't know that when Imus finishes playing cleaned-up patty-cake with media and political bigwigs, his show returns to "Dig Through the Dumpster with Don"? How odd. Everyone else, including his big-shot guests, knew for years.

Same with the advertisers who jumped Imus' barge the day before he was sacked. All that time they pumped millions into his show they had no clue? They got blind-sided? Remarkable.

And yesterday, Imus, heard here over WFAN, was canned by CBS Radio, which owns WFAN and whose execs apparently didn't know what the Imus show was about even longer than MSNBC's execs.

Those young women on Rutgers' basketball team? It's hardly surprising that they'd be deeply offended by Imus' characterization of them as "nappy-headed ho's." Exactly who was supposed to be amused by such a comment, anyway? And it's admirable that they'd be moved to speak their outrage during a university-facilitated news conference.

We can only presume, then, that none of them are in possession of music performed by, among many others, Jay-Z, Snoop Dogg and 50 Cent, artists who regularly refer to young women as "ho's" and "bitches" while black men are as regularly called "niggas."

As low as Imus has aimed, little can compare to much of the violent, bigoted stuff heard from so many popular rappers - and sold at a mall near you!

So it's not possible, is it, that even one of these young women has any of that racist and misogynistic stuff downloaded onto her iPod, right? After all, the use of "ho's" as a substitute for "women" can in large part be directly traced to black rap artists, not Don Imus.

And we can only presume that Rutgers, a state university, had well before Imus' comment worked diligently to rid its campuses of such hateful, hurtful and harmful words as those chanted in rap music.

Why I'll bet that RU must have long ago banned concerts that would include such offensive lyrics. And surely RU students known to enjoy such disturbingly hate-filled music were ordered to sensitivity training sessions - under threat of expulsion.

And with such socially sensitive souls as Jay-Z and Snoop Dogg increasingly called upon by shoe manufacturers, phone companies, clothing labels, automakers and breweries to push product, we're sure that the advertisers who cut and ran from Imus would never allow any public hate-speaker to speak for them.

Rev. Al Sharpton? Call me crazy, but does it strike you that if there was a fair-play advocate who ostensibly represents whites exactly as Sharpton ostensibly represents blacks, Rev. Sharpton would identify him as a selectively indignant, conveniently blind, hypocritical, divisive and dangerous race hustler?

And Sharpton would be given to slamming the media for empowering such an "activist." "How," Sharpton would be moved to ask, "can this man be anointed a legitimate, fair-minded voice of white America? Can't white America do any better than this guy?"

And most Americans would agree.

And perhaps if Imus, MSNBC and CBS Radio had immediately cut a check to one of Jesse Jackson's favorite "organizations," Imus would have only been in half as much trouble.

And gosh, look how in the last few days so many TV, radio and print commentators for the first time were moved to note that Imus and Co. have this nasty habit of speaking unfunny, hate-filled words. Some additionally noted that Imus would sanitize his show only when big shots were on with him. They just got around to mentioning that?

It's easy to kick a guy when he's down. No sweat. But how many were willing to kick Imus when he was up - when it counted? How many were willing to risk his nationally televised and syndicated radio ridicule?

Yep, the second week of April every year would be a good time to salute those professionals everywhere who call it as they see it and call it as they hear it - the moment the wind changes.

By PHIL MUSHNICK

phil.mushnick@nypost.com

Itsdb answered on 04/13/07:

Why just April? Why not have a "brainless hypocrites" day or week every month? I would be prefectly willing to submit names of honorees so nobody else has to do any more than just announce the winners.

al-Ap has been kind enough to explain why this particular incident cut so deep.

    NEW YORK - Call it "the other N-word." Since slavery times, "nappy" has been used to malign the natural hair texture of many people of African descent: dense, dark and tightly curled. So when Don Imus referred to the women of the Rutgers basketball team as "nappy-headed hos," it cut deeper than many who are unfamiliar with the term might realize.

    "When I hear it from someone who doesn't understand the depth of pain, they just don't have the right to say it," said Carla Lynne Hall, a singer from Harlem.

    During slavery, "If your hair wasn't straight, it was called nappy. Nappy hair meant you weren't beautiful or desirable," said Nsenga Burton, professor at Goucher College in Baltimore.

    There are accounts of African slaves attempting to change their hair using axle grease or dirty dishwater with oil, said Neal Lester, chairman of the English department at Arizona State University. "Slaves knew the ideal of beauty didn't fit them," he said...

    The irony of Imus' comment is that many of the Rutgers players have straightened hair - and at their news conference Wednesday, it seemed nary a straightened hair was out of place.

    "None of them fit the cultural description of what nappy is," Jacobs-Huey said. "Don is telling us something about himself."

    Making matters worse was Imus' use of the word "hos," a hip-hop slang synonym of "whore" or "slut" heard in many rap songs. "That is one of the lowest things you can call a woman," Burton said.


There you have it.

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/13/07 - Are the Democrats trying to take down Mubarak ?

I noted in the tail end of my response to tropicalstorm about Pelosi violating the Logan Act , that Dem. Majority Leader Steny Hoyer had taken a junket to Egypt and was schmoozing with the Egyptian opposition group The Muslim Brotherhood. I thought that this was a worse example of a foreign policy coup detat.

The website's editor, Khaled Salam , said the meeting "clearly signals a positive shift in the attitude of both sides to explore the prospects of a more formal dialogue which hopefully will gain more supporters in the U.S. if Democrats win the White House in 2008."

"The meeting is expected to cause anxiety in the U.S. especially among the powerful pro-Israel supporters who will not be happy to see any rapprochement between the U.S. and M.B. in any forms or shape," Salam continued.

"There are also many within the M.B. who are very reluctant about any possibility of dialogue with the U.S. and are highly skeptical of the U.S. intentions and plans for the region."



It gets better ;evidently the Democrats are not content to wait until 2009 for a formal change in U.S. policy. MEMRI is now reporting that Muslim Brotherhood General Guide Muhammad Mahdi 'Akef, several members of his office, and Muslim Brotherhood MPs had been invited by U.S. Democrat congressmen to visit the U.S. next month and to speak to Congress.

The Muslim Brotherhood as Elliot pointed out yesterday is the ideological grandfather of the al-Qaeda movement .Dr. Zawrahiri is a direct decendent of the movement.

I'm wondering ;have the Democrats suddenly discovered a new appreciation of democratization in the M.E.? ...or perhaps regime change ? If the Muslim Brotherhood is enabled in Egypt then surely Hosni Mubarak's days are numbered . Egypt's relatively moderate policies towards it's neighbors would certainly be replaced by a radicalized foreign policy .
Yes ;the Bush administration has pressured Mubarak to open up the political process in Egypt in the hope that legitimate democratic forces could ultimately offer a third way alternative from dictatorship and radical Islam .But it appears to me that the Democrats would more than welcome a radical Islamist takeover of Egypt by a group who's tenticles spread far beyond the borders of Egypt.

Itsdb answered on 04/13/07:

You and Elliot both make great points. I'm just absolutely puzzled though, and this local moonbat is an example of why I'm puzzled. Mr. William H. Seewald contends basically that the capture and abuse of the British captives is - you guessed it - our fault. If we hadn't been forcing 3 square halals a day, prayer rugs and prayer calls, rock music and pics of women on those detainees, we would not have "fueled Iranian determination to humiliate the West by abusing these British victims."

Yes, "diplomacy could well free its service members", the European "soft power" approach and "multilateralism is precisely what helped Britain avoid the need for the kind of unilateral, militaristic response" the Bushies are famous for.

"The number of countries like Syria that intervened on behalf of Britain to urge the release of the hostages surprised Iran and changed the dynamic."

I read this, your news of Dems schmoozing the MB and think of Pelosi's tour and all I can think is the left is perfectly willing to cut off their nose to spite their face. They are so blinded by their hatred of Bush and so infatuated with their 'solutions' they can't see the threat right in front of them.

To our local moonbat, the resolution of this hostage crisis was a smackdown of Bush, a victory for diplomacy and multilateralism, and vindication for the 'new direction' in foreign policy the Dems are taking on. He can't see the message to the rabid Islamic world that was sent by British troops groveling to a smiling Ahmadinejad. That's not just pathetic, it's extremely dangerous, and the Dems in congress are perfectly willing to travel that very treacherous road.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/12/07 - Who are they more afraid of ?

Monday Hillary ;John Edwards ,and Barack Obama withdrew from participation in a debate sponsored by The Congressional Black Caucus and Fox Network .

Color of Change.org , a black advocacy group, has issued petitions, launched a letter writing campaign, and orchestrated activists, including Jesse Jackson, to shame the caucus and demand that it scrap its plan to co-host debates with Fox . They call it "Dancing With the Devil". Other black bloggers are saying the CBC is for rent .

Jackson thinking he is clever wrote :

“I am disappointed by the Congressional Black Caucus Institute’s partnership with Fox, and strongly encourage them to reverse that decision. Why would presidential candidates, or an organization that is supposed to advocate for Black Americans, ever give a stamp of legitimacy to a network that continually marginalizes Black leaders and the Black community? Fox moderating a presidential debate on issues of importance to Black Americans is literally letting the Fox guard the henhouse – Fox should be rejected.”

But yesterday he fell short of calling for a break in the arrangement .The DNC and Howard Dean have already made it clear they would not support or sanction the debates .

Moonbats are besides themselves . Markos Moulitsas, of DailyKos, calls the CBC "corrupt and compromised" for "doing Fox's bidding." There is of course no evidence that there is a quid pro quo pay-ff to the CBC . But perhaps the CBC is uncomfortable taking it's marching orders from Markos or George Soros and the Moveon crowd ? The moonbats have already proclaimed they own the Democrat Party . They have tried to defeat Democrats like Joe Leiberman who won't tow their party line. Apparently the major players of the party cower at their presence. Democrats who would be moderate are drifting ever more to the left in the positions they take.

So back to the original question . Who are the 3 candidates afraid of :

1. The CBC

2. Fox Network

3. The moonbat coalition of lefty bloggers

To their credit ;the CBC has not capitulated to the will of the moonbats . Too bad the candidates aren;t made of stronger stuff.


Itsdb answered on 04/12/07:

Definitely 3, The moonbat coalition of lefty bloggers. I can imagine what Jackson would say if Republican candidates withdrew from participating in a debate sponsored by say, MSNBC - he'd be the one asking "what are they afraid of?"

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/12/07 - U.S. Navy Directive 16134 (Inappropriate T-Shirts)



The following directive was issued by the commanding officer of all
naval installations in the Middle East, (obviously directed at the
Marines.)

"To: All Commands Subject: Inappropriate T-Shirts

Ref: ComMidEast For Inst 16134//24 K All commanders promulgate upon receipt.

The following T-shirts are no longer to be worn on or off base by any military or civilian personnel serving in the Middle East:

"Eat Pork or Die" [both English and Arabic versions]

"Shrine Busters" [Various. Show burning minarets or bomb/artillery shells impacting Islamic shrines. Some with unit logos.]

"Napalm, Sticks Like Crazy" [Both English and Arabic versions]

"Goat - it isn't just for breakfast any more." [Both English and Arabic versions]

"The road to Paradise begins with me." [Mostly Arabic versions, but some in English. Some show sniper scope cross-hairs.]

"Guns don't kill people. I kill people." [Both Arabic and English versions]

"Pork. The other white meat." [Arabic version]

"Infidel" [English, Arabic and other coalition force languages.]

The above T-shirts are to be removed from Post Exchanges upon receipt of this directive. In addition, the following signs are to be removed
upon receipt of this message:

"Islamic Religious Services Will Be Held at the Firing Range at 0800 Daily."

"Do we really need 'smart bombs' to drop on these dumb bastards?"

All commands are instructed to implement sensitivity training upon receipt.


Itsdb answered on 04/12/07:

"The road to Paradise begins with me." I like that - and I may have to get me an 'infidel' T-shirt of my own. I wonder if they'll still be allowed to wear them in the US? Probably not once the guardians of free speech get wind of this...

Steve, just another infidel

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/11/07 - GWOT is merely a colloquialism

“When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said, in a rather scornful tone, “it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less.”

“The question is,” said Alice, “whether you can make words mean do many different things.”

“The question is,” said Humpty Dumpty, “which is to be master—that’s all.”




Rep. Ike Skelton, the Chair of the House Armed Services Committee decided lasst week that he is not comfortable with the phrase The 'Global War On Terrorism'. Can't say I blame him ;I quit using it a long time in favor of the 'War Against Jihadistan' or 'Islamo-Nazi scumbags' .

the chairman , said the decision to limit use of the “global war on terror” and the “long war” was done as part of an effort to the standardize grammar and terms to be used in writing the 2008 defense authorization bill. “Each year, the members and staff of the House Armed Services Committee work to prepare the best possible defense authorization bill,” Skelton said in a statement. “When writing legislation, the words we choose are important, and we make every effort to be as precise and specific as possible so that congressional intent may be understood.”

U.S. military operations in Iraq are “separate and distinct from the war against terrorists, who have their genesis in Afghanistan and who attacked us on 9/11, and the American people understand this,” Skelton said, adding that Republican objections to “our efforts to clarify legislative language represent the typical Republican leadership attempt to tie together the misadventure in Iraq and the overall war against terrorists.”


So his real transparent motivation is to isolate the funding of the Iraq theater from the global war against the jihadists . When they tire of that one they will soon tire of Afghanistan ;and so on and so on.

By banning the phrase Skelton hopes to
restore the sense of calm and peace that prevailed during the Clinton Administration ;in other words ;let's just bury our heads in the sand like the good ole days and ignore those who want us gone. In Harry Potter lingo it is "the war that must not be named" . Just sprinkle some pixie dust and wave that magic lexicon wand ..maybe if we don't mention it it will go away !

I got it ! Let's change the name "Armed Services Committee " to "Surender Monkey Committee".I think I'll email San Fran Nan Belle al-Pelosi with the idea .

Itsdb answered on 04/12/07:

Sounds a lot like Eurabia's "common lexicon." At least they still used the words Islam and terrorist in the same sentence - "terrorists who abusively invoke Islam".

Ike is right, the words they choose are very important, so if his intent is for congress to "be as precise and specific as possible so that congressional intent may be understood," I suggest they use your term, 'War Against Jihadistan.' Otherwise congress may be funding a "Dancing with the Muslims" competition where viewers get to vote one couple off each week until the last couple standing wins the Jihad of their dreams.

Steve

tomder55 rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 04/11/07 - LOL

driving directions from New york to London

1. Head southwest on Broadway toward Warren St 0.2 mi
1 min

2. Turn left at Park Row 0.1 mi
1 min

3. Slight right at Frankfort St 0.3 mi
1 min

4. Turn left at Pearl St 56 ft

5. Turn right onto the F.D.R. Dr N ramp 0.4 mi
1 min

6. Merge onto FDR Dr N 7.7 mi
12 mins

7. Take exit 17 on the left for Triboro Bridge/Grand Central Pkwy toward I-278/Bruckner Expy 0.4 mi
2 mins

8. Merge onto Triborough Bridge
Partial toll road 0.4 mi
1 min

9. Merge onto I-278 E via the ramp to I-87 N/Bronx/Upstate N Y/New England 0.6 mi
1 min

10. Take exit 47 to merge onto Bruckner Expy/I-278 E toward New Haven 1.9 mi
2 mins

11. Take the I-278 E exit toward New Haven 0.3 mi

12. Merge onto Bruckner Expy 5.0 mi
6 mins

13. Continue on I-95 N
Partial toll road
Entering Connecticut 62.1 mi
1 hour 12 mins

14. Take exit 48 on the left to merge onto I-91 N toward Hartford 36.8 mi
37 mins

15. Take exit 29 for US-5 N/CT-15 toward I-84/E Hartford/Boston 0.4 mi

16. Merge onto CT-15 N 1.7 mi
2 mins

17. Merge onto I-84 E
Partial toll road
Entering Massachusetts 40.7 mi
38 mins

18. Take the exit onto I-90 E/Mass Pike/Massachusetts Turnpike toward N.H.-Maine/Boston
Partial toll road 56.0 mi
56 mins

19. Take exit 24 A-B-C on the left toward I-93 N/Concord NH/S Station/I-93 S/Quincy 0.4 mi
1 min

20. Merge onto Atlantic Ave 0.8 mi
3 mins

21. Turn right at Central St 0.1 mi

22. Turn right at Long Wharf 0.1 mi

23. Swim across the Atlantic Ocean 3,462 mi
29 days 0 hours

...
24. Slight right at E05 0.5 mi
2 mins

25. At the traffic circle, take the 2nd exit onto E05/Pont Vauban 0.1 mi

26. Turn right at E05 5.7 mi
10 mins

27. Take the exit onto A29/E44 toward Amiens
Toll road 27.8 mi
23 mins

28. Take the exit toward Dieppe/Amiens/Calais/A151/Rouen
Toll road 1.1 mi
1 min

29. Merge onto A29/E44
Toll road 22.6 mi
19 mins

30. Take the exit onto A28/E402 45.6 mi
37 mins

31. Take the exit onto A16/E402 toward Boulogne/Calais
Toll road 44.3 mi
38 mins

32. Take exit 29 toward Boulogne-Centre/Outreau/Le Portel 0.6 mi
1 min

33. Merge onto N416 1.1 mi
1 min

34. At the traffic circle, take the 1st exit onto N1 0.4 mi
1 min

35. At the traffic circle, take the 2nd exit and stay on N1 0.1 mi
1 min

36. At the traffic circle, take the 2nd exit and stay on N1 0.9 mi
2 mins

37. At the traffic circle, take the 1st exit 0.6 mi
1 min

38. Slight left at Rue Ferdinand Farjon 427 ft

39. At the traffic circle, take the 2nd exit 0.4 mi
1 min

40. Slight right at Dover - Boulougne-sur-Mer 30.1 mi
1 hour 50 mins

41. Continue on Dover - Boulogne-sur-Mer 0.2 mi

42. Continue on Eastern Service Rd 0.3 mi
2 mins

43. Turn right at E Ramp 0.4 mi
2 mins

44. Slight right at Dock Exit Rd 0.1 mi

45. At Eastern Docks Roundabout, take the 2nd exit onto A20 0.6 mi
2 mins

46. Slight left to stay on A20 0.3 mi

47. At Prince of Wales Roundabout, take the 2nd exit onto A20/Limekiln St 0.2 mi
1 min

48. At Limekiln Roundabout, take the 3rd exit onto A20 0.3 mi
1 min

49. At Western Heights Roundabout, take the 1st exit and stay on A20 7.0 mi
8 mins

50. Continue on M20 (signs for M20/London/Ashford) 49.7 mi
47 mins

51. Continue on A20 (signs for London (SE)/Lewisham) 9.7 mi
15 mins

52. At Clifton's Roundabout, take the 2nd exit and stay on A20 2.2 mi
6 mins

53. At the traffic circle, take the 2nd exit and stay on A20 1.3 mi
4 mins

54. Slight left at A2 0.7 mi
2 mins

55. Slight right at A2/Kender St 72 ft

56. Turn right at Kender St 0.3 mi
1 min

57. Turn left at A2 1.9 mi
5 mins

58. At Brick Layers Arms, take the 1st exit onto A201/New Kent Rd 0.6 mi
2 mins

59. At the traffic circle, take the 2nd exit onto A302/St George's Rd 0.4 mi
1 min

60. Turn left at A3203/Lambeth Rd 0.6 mi
3 mins

61. At the traffic circle, take the 2nd exit onto A3203 0.2 mi
1 min

62. At Horseferry Rd, take the 3rd exit onto A3212

COMPARED TO

Driving directions from Myrtle Beach, S.C. to San Diego, Ca

1. Head northeast on N Kings Hwy toward 5th Ave N 0.4 mi
1 min

2. Turn left at Main St 0.2 mi
1 min

3. Continue on US-501 14.1 mi
20 mins

...
4. Turn left at US-378 28.8 mi
42 mins

...
5. Slight right at SC-51 29.8 mi
44 mins

...
6. Continue on W Evans St/SC-S-21-31 0.2 mi
1 min

7. Turn left at W David H McLeod Blvd 1.6 mi
3 mins

8. Continue on I-20 W
Passing through Georgia
Entering Alabama 420 mi
6 hours 17 mins

...
9. Take exit 136 for I-459 toward Montgomery/Tuscaloosa/Gadsden 1.1 mi
1 min

10. Merge onto I-459 S 28.5 mi
25 mins

...
11. Take the I-20 W/I-59 S exit toward Tuscaloosa 1.2 mi
1 min

12. Merge onto I-20 W
Passing through Mississippi, Louisiana
Entering Texas 1,084 mi
15 hours 50 mins

...
13. Merge onto I-10 W
Passing through New Mexico
Entering Arizona 542 mi
7 hours 33 mins

...
14. Take exit 199 to merge onto I-8 W toward San Diego
Entering California 336 mi
4 hours 43 mins

...
15. Take the CA-125 S/CA-125 N exit toward CA-94 0.3 mi

16. Keep left at the fork to continue toward CA-125 S and merge onto CA-125 S 2.4 mi
3 mins

17. Continue on CA-94 W (signs for CA-94 W) 8.5 mi
8 mins

18. Exit onto F St 0.7 mi
3 mins

19. Turn right at 9th Ave 0.1 mi

courtousy Google

from shore to shore
62 steps across the ocean
19 across the USA

Itsdb answered on 04/11/07:

It's only 7 more steps to get there from the Texas panhandle...and you still get to swim the Atlantic.

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Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 04/10/07 - So we are accused of hating Muslims?

I wonder why?


Time to stop all the anti-Western hatred

By Andrew Bolt

April 11, 2007 01:00am
Article from: Herald-Sun


MAYBE this time, I thought. Maybe this first Australian Islamic Conference would at last show us the moderate Muslim leaders we've searched for.

God, we need them. Look at the latest doings of the hate-preachers we have now.

Take the Mufti of Australia, Sheik Taj al-Din al-Hilali, who has just given interviews in Iran demanding Muslims stand "in the trenches" with its hostage-taking regime, and is now being investigated for allegedly giving $12,000 to a Lebanese propagandist linked to terrorists.

Meanwhile, the head of the Lebanese Muslim Association, which pays him to preach at Australia's biggest mosque, has had to seek police protection for suggesting this fool had best shut up.

Yet, even now, the Federation of Islamic Councils, which made Hilali mufti, refuses to sack him, though he's vilified Jews, praised suicide bombers as "heroes", called the September 11 terrorist attacks "God's work against oppressors", excused convicted pack rapist Bilal Skaf and said raped women should be "jailed for life".

The greatest pity is that Hilali isn't the only hate-preacher in our mosques.

Other radical sheiks have been accused of telling followers not to pay taxes to this infidel Government.

Worse, the Howard Government sidelined its Muslim Community Reference Group after finding a third of the 14 "moderates" it handpicked actually backed the Iranian-backed Hezbollah extremist group, notorious for its terrorist wing.

So, after all this and more, we desperately need to hear from those moderate Muslim leaders we keep telling each other must surely exist. Must.

Was it so dumb to think Mercy Mission would at last provide them - Muslim leaders who would demonstrate (in the mission's own words) that they "benefit the communities in which they live"?

You may have dared to hope, given this new group's leaders include the highly educated Tawfique Chowdhury, a Bangladeshi-born and Australian-raised IT project manager, and Adel Salman, who so impressed his employers at Cadbury Schweppes that he was selected for the prestigious Asialink leaders program.

It was Salman, so polished, who organised for Mercy Mission its first annual Australian Islamic Conference at Melbourne University over the Easter weekend.

The odd timing was surely just an innocent coincidence, because the conference had a noble aim: to "present a true picture of 'Islam in action' to the wider community" and convince Australians that "Islamic values are universal values".

So who, among all the Muslims in the world, did Mercy Mission choose to fly in to give us this "true picture" of a moderate Islam?

Of the six international speakers it advertised, let me introduce you to two.

The first is Bilal Philips, a Jamaican-born Canadian who was a communist and worker for the Black Panther terrorist group before converting to Islam and becoming a preacher.

His message is uncompromising: "Western culture led by the United States is an enemy of Islam." Which makes him an odd choice as speaker at a conference to reassure us that "Islamic values are universal values".

But the choice of Philips is even odder given the United States named him as an "unindicted co-conspirator" over the 1993 bombing of New York's World Trade Centre, and our own security agencies judged him such a threat he was banned from coming here.

Philips insists he rejects terrorism and considers al-Qaeda a "deviate" group. But from his own website and interviews you'd see why some might not take him at his word.

He freely admits he was hired by the Saudi air force during the first Gulf War to preach to American soldiers stationed in Saudi Arabia and convert them to Islam.

He says he succeeded, and "registered the names and addresses of over 3000 male and female US soldiers".

Philips didn't just take down their names; he also visited them back in America. "My role was confined to encouraging them to train Muslim-American volunteers and go to Bosnia to help the mujahidin and take part in the war (against Serbia)," he boasted. That worked, too.

Philips says his name was dragged into the investigation of the first World Trade Centre bombing, in which six people were killed, because some African-American soldiers he'd converted were offered by someone else to Sheik Abdel Rahmen, spiritual head of the terrorists behind the attack. These ex-soldiers would be great for domestic sabotage, the sheik was told.

But Clement Rodney Hampton-El, an al-Qaeda-trained American bombmaker now serving a 35-year sentence for the World Trade Centre bombings, claimed Philips also gave him the names of soldiers who were about to leave the military and who might help the Bosnian jihadists.

To repeat: Philips denies any links to al-Qaeda, and swears he is opposed to terrorism, although he does say Muslims are entitled to defend their faith by force.

But given his support for jihadists, his past contacts with jailed terrorists and the allegations against him, why on earth did Mercy Mission choose him to preach here?

To invite one such extremist speaker might seem like bad luck, but to invite two might make you think Mercy Mission wouldn't know a moderate Muslim if he blew up in their face.

I say that because also high on Mercy Mission's guest list was another convert, British journalist Yvonne Ridley, with a much nastier line in preaching.

Ridley didn't just marry a colonel in one terror group - Yasser Arafat's Palestinian Liberation Organisation - but has been busy since defending others like it.

Some highlights:

Soon after the September 11 terrorist attacks Ridley actually accused Islamic sheiks of going soft.

"Muslims have lost confidence since September 11," she complained. "Something as simple as suicide bombers being martyrs is being denied by prominent sheiks."

That's one of her mantras. At a Belfast meeting of Islamic students, she insisted there were no innocent Israeli victims in suicide bombings. Not even children.

"There are no innocents in this war," she reportedly raged, because Israeli children could grow up to become Israeli soldiers.

She even hailed as a "martyr" the Chechen terrorist Shamil Basayev, who planned the attack on the Beslan school in which 333 hostages - many of them children - were killed. An "admirable struggle", she called his life's work.

Ridley has never called on Muslims to boycott such terrorists, but instead demanded British Muslims "boycott the police and refuse to co-operate with them in any way, shape or form".

And when relatives of al-Qaeda's then leader in Iraq, the head-hacker Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, denounced his bomb attacks on three hotels in Jordan, she was livid.

"While the killing of innocent people is to be condemned without question, there is something rather repugnant about some of those who rush to renounce acts of terrorism," she sneered.

True, among the 61 dead were many members of a wedding party, she conceded, but some of them "were part of Jordan's upper echelons of society", and "others had flown in from America".

What's more, the "bars (were) serving alcohol", and the evil Jordanian regime "provides backing, support and intelligence to the American military".

Having proved to her satisfaction the guilt of the dead civilians, she asked: "I wonder if you see that attack on the Jordanian hotels in a different light now?"

And she concluded: "I'd rather put up with a brother like Abu Musab al-Zarqawi any day than have a traitor or a sell-out for a father, son or grandfather."

What, in Ridley's foul incantations of hatred and her defence of child-killers and wedding bombers, makes her the kind of Muslim who would "benefit the communities in which they live"?

What does it say about Mercy Mission that Ridley - and Philips - were hired as speakers to tell us "Islamic values are universal values" and we have nothing to fear?

Oh, and about that fear.

It was this same Ridley - happy to "put up with a brother" like Zarqawi, once filmed cutting off the head of American hostage Nick Berg - who last week accused Australians of being among the worst haters of Muslims.

How like her to condemn the fear her own words rightly provoke. And how disturbing that Mercy Mission holds her up as the kind of Muslim who does us good.

Or - I hesitate to ask - is this really the best our Muslim leaders can offer? Is this really their "true picture" of Islam?

I beg of them. Prove it isn't. Until you do, I'm afraid I shall take you at your grim word.

Itsdb answered on 04/11/07:

Clete,

Did you post this on the Christianity board? I'd love to see the reaction :)

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/10/07 - Imus

Why was he suspended when fools that spew hatred like Rosie ODonnell routinely get a pass (recall her insulting lame attempt at humor by speaking in broken Chinese ) ?

Personally it has been years since I have listened to him . Some of his schtick was amusing .He has always parodied racial issues as part of his act .But you would really be stretching it to believe he is a racist. I recall that on MLK day for years he would play the 'I have a dream ' speech in it's entirety .

He called the Rutger's woman's basketball team 'nappy headed hos' in a lame attempt at humor. Insensitive ? Sure ;but not as bad as many things he has said and done in the past . Besides ;I bet you could find scores of examples when hip-hop artists have referred to black women as hos.

Ironically it is Jesse Jackson (called NYC Hymetown )and Al Sharpton (called a Jewish store keeper a 'white interloper 'and perpetrated the Tawana Brawley hoax)who are leading the charge .Nary a liberal (who's cause Imus has championed for years ) is there to defend him. They dropped him like a hot potato. Don't be suprised if Jesse Jackson's and Sharpton's self directed charities and foundations get generous compensation /pay-offs by NBC network and CBS radio to shut them up . Jackson expanded the issue to include NBC's hiring practices yesterday on 'Hardball'. If he is to be canned it is for the bad judgement in winding up this pair of inflamers .

Both networks suspended him yeaterday ,but look for him to be toast .My guess is that he will follow Howard Stearn to satellite radio and ratings oblivion.Stern of course get's a pass on simular language because he has a black female side-kick.

Itsdb answered on 04/10/07:

I saw where Al also chastised Imus for calling himself a "cracker" on Al's show. He noted that it was Imus himself doing so and advised him to respect his own race on his show. By golly I think Al's finally got it, he needs to advise his following to repect their own race - maybe then much of this "ho" stuff will go away.

Like you said, sure it was insensitive, but as long as all these hip-hopping, gang-banging blacks are running around calling each other "niggas" and "hos" and whatever, what do they expect to happen? That's the example they've set.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 04/09/07 - Fred Thompson has joined the blogsphere...

at Red State .org and he smacks the Brits around because of their handling of the Iranian piracy .

Oil prices fell. The stock market rose. Video images of smiling British soldiers with Iranian President Ahmadinejad were everywhere. So were pictures of the 15 freed hostages embracing family members back home. The relief over the return of the Brits was so tremendous; you could almost hear birds singing.

Maybe it's because military action won't be needed or maybe it's just because the ordeal won't drag on and on, but the world is breathing easier now. A lot of folks are happy. The problem, as I see it, is that Ahmadinejad seems to be the happiest.

And why shouldn't he be? He has shown the world that his forces can kidnap British citizens, subject them to brutal psychological tactics to coerce phony confessions, finagle the release of a high-ranking Iranian terror coordinator in Iraq, utterly trash the Geneva conventions and suffer absolutely no consequences.

The UN Security Council summoned its vaunted multilateral greatness to issue a swift statement of sincere uneasiness. The EU, which has pressured Britain to rely on Europeans for mutual defense instead of the US, wouldn't even discuss economic sanctions that might disrupt their holidays. Even NATO was AWOL.

Please do keep reading . . .

Tony Blair doesn't appear to be in much of a mood for celebrating. I don't know how he could be, given the troubling spectacle of British soldiers shake the hand of their kidnapper as a condition of release. In the old days, they would have kissed his ring -- but wearing Iranian suits and carrying swag more appropriate to a Hollywood awards ceremony may have been as embarrassing. Ironically, Blair's options are fewer by the day as his own party moves to mothball the British fleet, once the fear of pirates and tyrants the world over.

Some in the West seem part of Iran's propaganda war; claiming that the release of the hostages was a victory that proves the Iranian dictatorship can be reasoned with. To misrepresent unpunished piracy as a victory is as Orwellian as the congressional mandate banning use of the term "the global war on terror." What are we — Reuters?

Ahmadinejad must be particularly pleased to see "deep thinking" journalists making the case that American actions in Iraq were the true cause of the kidnappings. To believe this, all you have to do is ignore the history of the Iranian Revolution, which has been in the extortion business ever since it took power. Between the 1979 American embassy crisis in Tehran and the seizure of Israeli soldiers last year by Iran's Hezbollah proxies, there have been more than a hundred other examples.

If you include the imprisonment of pro-Democracy dissidents and non-Shi'a Muslim minorities within Iran, the number reaches easily into the tens of thousands. The dwindling and persecuted Christian population of Iran, I suspect, found little joy in Ahmadinejad's explanation that he was freeing his victims as an "Easter gift."

It is critical that we see this incident as part of a long pattern of behavior -- that will continue as long as the current leadership is in power. More importantly, it will escalate unimaginably if Iran achieves nuclear status, and with it the ability to hold millions rather than individuals hostage.

I have no idea if Ahmadinejad and those who put him in power really believe the Shi'a Twelver doctrine that they can spur the messiah to return by triggering Armageddon. You have to admit, though, that the possibility that they look forward to entering paradise as martyrs would make them a whole lot scarier as a nuclear power than the USSR ever was.

There is hope, though. The Iranian people are not an anti-Western horde. They're an educated and freedom-loving people for the most part, and reformers there have been begging us for support and sanctions that would weaken the ruling theocracy. Instead, they've just seen the Iranian dictatorship successfully bully the West into impotent submission. This is not a good thing.

We need to understand this and use every means at our disposal, starting with serious and painful international sanctions, to prevent Iran's rulers from becoming the nuclear-armed blackmailers they want to be. Unfortunately, we are hearing demands that we abandon the people of the Middle East who have stood up to Islamo-fascism because they believed us when we said we would support them.

If we retreat precipitously, the price for that betrayal will be paid first in blood and freedom by the Iranian people, the Kurds, the Afghanis, the secular Lebanese, the moderates in Pakistan and the Iraqis themselves. And America's word may never be trusted again.

Right now, the pirate Ahmadinejad is clearly more confident about the outcome of the Global War on Terror than we are. That ought to give us pause.


Combine this with a report I had buried in my to do files from the NY Post ;and Thompson alludes to ; and it paints a bleek picture of the future of one of our steadfast allies :

THE STRANGE DEATH OF THE ROYAL NAVY
By ARTHUR HERMAN (BRITS WILL NOW RELY ON EUROPEANS FOR THEIR DEFENSE)

January 14, 2007 -- A 400-YEAR epoch of world history is about to draw to a close. If Britain 's current Labor government has its way, Britain 's Royal Navy will mothball at least 13, and perhaps as many as 19, of its
remaining 44 ships, or nearly half its effective fleet.

With one bureaucratic stroke, the Ministry of Defense will end a naval tradition reaching back to Sir Francis Drake - reducing the Royal Navy, which 40 years ago was still the second-largest fleet in the world, to the size of navies of countries like Indonesia and Turkey .

This decision, of course, has to be set against the background of Britain 's decades-long decline as a world power. But it also reflects a struggle for the soul of Great Britain that has been going since World
War II: Is Britain part of an English-speaking, Atlantic-based strategic alliance that includes the United States and Canada ? Or is it part of Europe as envisioned by technocrats in Paris , Brussels and Berlin ?

NEXT month's final decision on whether to scrap the Royal Navy may supply us with the answer. Because the Blair government's drastic plans include more than taking existing ships out of commission. The service's entire future as a blue-water navy (that is, a navy capable of operations outside Britain 's own waters) may be forfeit.

According to The Daily Telegraph, plans for two new fleet carriers of the kind vital for fighting today's War on Terror and projecting power overseas - and for which $6.9 billion had already been set aside - will
also be scrapped. Two new destroyers, which were supposed to replace at least some of the retired ships, are also out of the picture. The Telegraph even reports (Jan. 8) that all officer promotions in the navy
are to be suspended for the next five years.

Many in the government and in the media blame these cuts on Tony Blair's support for the U.S. war in Iraq . They claim the British troop presence there is eating up the British defense budget, leaving the other services like the navy to fight over table scraps.

But this is far from the whole story. Since the mid ྌs, British defense spending has shrunk by more than 30 percent, to less than 2.5 percent of GDP. Today it is at its lowest level since 1930. Even welfare states such as France and Germany spend more on their military. (Meanwhile, Blair is busy hacking back the British commitment in Iraq from 7,000 to 4,500 troops - less than 4 percent of the coalition total.

The truth is that for two centuries Britain and the Royal Navy played the role of globocop, policing the world's sea trade lanes which keep the global economy going. (Even today, 95 percent of the weight of all
intercontinental trade travels by sea.)

AFTER World War II, the U.S. Navy gradually took over that thankless but essential task; the British felt free to relax. From a postwar peak of 388 ships and submarines in 1950, the Royal Navy had dwindled to 112
vessels in 1980. By 2004. it was down to just 46.

Yet the British navy still takes pride in sharing the globocop burden with the United States in vital strategic areas like the Persian Gulf , and even being able to project power trans-oceanically alone when it has
to, as during the Falklands War.

Analysts agree that once these forecast cuts go through, this will be impossible. Indeed, a Royal Navy of only 25 vessels would require at least some cooperation from its European neighbors even to defend
Britain .

This is a ominous trend for many reasons. It not only increases the burden on the U.S. Navy around the globe. It also reflects a decision to move Britain away from its traditional maritime culture, which is the
basis of its strategic relationship with the United States , and toward a decaying Europe .

SINCE 1945, Britain has been torn between the two, like a would-be bride torn between two suitors. Winston Churchill (who was half-American) and Margaret Thatcher knew which to choose. "There is no hope for civilization," Churchill used to say, "if we drift apart," meaning the United States and England .

Blair, it is true, has been supportive on Iraq . But (like many recent British politicians) he has been eager to ingratiate himself with his continental neighbors, including by compromising Britain 's defense capability. For example, his government stuck with the ill-fated EFA-2000 Eurofighter project, even though it cost Britain 21/2 times the original estimated cost ($37 billion versus $13.7 billion) and the RAF only got its planes after a 41/2-year delay.

Then in 1998 he endorsed Germany and France 's idea of a European Defense Force separate from NATO - and the United States . Again, the cost of cooperation will be to reduce the British army to just one more unit in a European military coalition led from Brussels , not London .

Now come the naval cuts. Pure coincidence? It is not difficult to see the distant hand of the Paris-Brussels-Berlin axis at work.


And disasters like this will continue as long as British politicians fool themselves into thinking their future lies with the shrinking economies and aging populations of the continent of Europe .

IRONICALLY, Britain just celebrated the 200th anniversary of its naval vic tory over France at Trafalgar, which allowed Britain to build an empire and dominate the world's oceans. If these navy cuts go into effect, France will have a larger fleet than Britain for the first time since the mid-1600s.

The victory the French couldn't win at sea, they will win effortlessly and painlessly at the bureaucrat's desk.



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

Arthur Herman is the author of "To Rule the Waves: How the British Navy Shaped the Modern World," which was nominated for the Mountbatten Prize for best book in naval history in 2005. His latest book, a study of Gandhi and Churchill, will be published next year.




This is the future that Francis Fukuyama sees as the model . Admiral Lord Nelson wept .



Itsdb answered on 04/09/07:



Yeah ... the idiots really believe this was a good thing.

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Question/Answer
HANK1 asked on 04/07/07 - Wouldn't This Be A Hoot:



In 2008:

President: Hillary Clinton

Vice - President: Nancy Pelosi

Secretary of State: Bill Clinton

Is it probable and/or possible?

HANK

Itsdb answered on 04/09/07:

Possible? I suppose. Probable? No. Although having Bill as SecState would get him out of her hair more often - just think of all the foreign interns he could cross paths with and Hillary nowhere in sight.

Steve

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Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 04/02/07 - for itsdb, who thinks things are getting better in Iraq

Monday: 3 GIs, 1 Briton, 84 Iraqis Killed; 280 Iraqis Wounded, 10 Kidnapped

Updated at 6:10 p.m. EST, Apr. 2, 2007

At least 84 Iraqis were killed or found dead today and another 280 Iraqis were wounded in violent attacks. Also, 10 people were abducted at a fake checkpoint. In the largest incident, about 200 were wounded and 13 killed during a truck bombing in Kirkuk. Three American and one British soldier died in four separate attacks today.

An American soldier died during a truck bombing in Kirkuk; it is unclear whether the event is the same that killed 134 and wounded 200 Iraqis. Asecond GI was killed during combat operations today in Anbar Province. A roadside bomb killed a U.S. servicemember in Fuhaylat. Also, a British soldier died in Basra, the second in as many days.

Thirteen people were killed and about 200 were wounded during a truck bomb attack in the northern city of Kirkuk. Many children are believed to be among the dead and injured. The number of casualties is expected to rise. American soldiers were filmed among the injured.

The bodies of 23 men were found near Baquba in Bani Saad; among the dead were 19 who were kidnapped together at a fake checkpoint yesterday. Today, 10 more people were abducted from a fake checkpoint.

In Baghdad, 14 dumped bodies were found scattered throughout town. A suicide car bomber drove into a police checkpoint in the Doura neighborhood where he killed two people and wounded five others. Near a Bayaa area courthouse, a car bomb killed four and wounded ten. Elsewhere, an interior ministry motorcade came under fire; two guards were seriously wounded. Two guards were killed and three more wounded by a roadside bomb in Bab al Muathim. A roadside bomb in Qahira injured three people. A mortar damaged a school. In al-Ghadeer, a sniper killed an Iraqi soldier, while an off-duty Iraqi soldier was gunned down at a checkpoint in Yarmouk. Also, mortars fell in several neighborhoods late yesterday where they killed one person and wounded 20 more. And, the body of a Baghdad University director was found two days after he was kidnapped.

A suicide bomber killed four people and wounded 30 near a popular Khalis restaurant.

In Mosul, U.S. troops raided two homes where they killed six people who belonged to two families. Three dumped bodies were found.

Gunmen killed a police officer in Amara.

In Fallujah armed men killed a member of the Fallujah Clerics Council. Three unidentified bodies were discovered.

Mortars injured two civilians in Hibhib.

Mortar rounds fell on a U.S. base in Haditha, but casualties were not reported.

In Diyala province, clashes took place at Iraqi army headquarters in Ghalbia. Also, five civilians were injured when the were fired upon; the injured had to be taken to Baghdad as routes to other hospitals were too dangerous to use.

A truck carrying rice to Mandii was bombed; the blast destroyed seven months of food rations.

Iraqi and U.S. forces arrested at least 50 suspects in Dour, including the mayor. Two suspected al-Qaeda were arrested in Ramadi. Nine people were detained in Latifiya. Three gunmen were arrested in Karbala. Also, Iraqi forces killed two suspects during security operations.

Itsdb answered on 04/03/07:

Clete,

Did I just say things were getting better in Iraq? No, I believe my post was on "Good news on Iraq," and it was just heralding one day of no bad news in one newspaper. However, there IS progress:

Baghdad sees significant increase in street venders

IRAQ THE SURGE IS WORKING

I'm sure there's more if I wanted to take the time to post it, but I fear it wouldn't change your mind anyway. One day you're calling radical Islam the biggest threat we face and the next you're criticizing our fight against it, so you're a hard case to figure out. So whatever you feel about the war, how it reached the point of our engaging in it or whatever else, let me remind you what it's about now, at this present moment in time:

Bombing in Kirkuk injures schoolgirls near police building

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/30/07 - EU is the first 2 letters in Eurabia

The EU begins it's 2nd 50 years by celebrating one of the finest traditions of Europe that made the EU possible ........appeasement.

The European Union has drawn up guidelines advising government spokesmen to refrain from linking Islam and terrorism in their statements.

Brussels officials have confirmed the existence of a classified handbook which offers "non-offensive" phrases to use when announcing anti-terrorist operations or dealing with terrorist attacks.

Banned terms are said to include "jihad", "Islamic" or "fundamentalist".

One alternative, suggested publicly last year, is for the term "Islamic terrorism" to be replaced by "terrorists who abusively invoke Islam".


An EU official said that the secret guidebook, or, "common lexicon", is aimed at preventing the distortion of the Muslim faith and the alienation of Muslims in Europe.


This while they continue to celebrate their 50 years together by demonstrating a feeble weak lame (fill in the adjective) response to one of their fellow nation's sailors being kidnapped by the pirate regime of Iran. While the EU did nothing for over a week now ;these sailors have been forced to make confessions and other acts of public humiliation broadcast around the world . Where is there rapid response force ? What does this say to their strawman concept of "soft power" ? They talk a good game about unity but when one of their members needs their help they won't commit a dinghy to the effort .

They cowered and capitulated when rioters objected to the publishing of harmless cartoons . Now they may as well cut out their tongues for all the good it does them . These are our allies . We really are alone.

Itsdb answered on 03/30/07:

Yep, it is generally verboten to mention "Islam" and "terror" in the same sentence, just check the Christianity board. Just for that I think I'll make it even more a part of my 'common lexicon,' I refuse to say anything as pathetically PC as "terrorists who abusively invoke Islam". If "fascist right-wing homophobic Christian bigot" is ok to use, so is "Islamic terrorist." And Rosie thinks the view 'here' from 'over there' is frightening.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/30/07 - Shumer has an mole inside the Justice Dept.

That's the rumor I keep hearing ....that Shumer and Deputy Attorney General Paul McNulty are orchestrating and coordinating the attack on Attorney General Gonzales. Emails from the White House confirm that McNulty was deeply involved in the deliberation leading to the firings of the District Attorneys .Yet,in testimony , Shumer asked former Gonzales chief of staff Kyle Sampson to confirm that McNulty had been left out of the loop . A rather strange line of questioning knowing what White House Documents have already revealed. McNulty is a product of the same Southern District of New York that I unfortunately live in , which produced Comey and Fitzgerald. He shows the same loyalty to Schumer as do the other two.

Sampson for his part was unintentionally outstanding .....like he was trying to fall on his sword but missed . He called 'the distinction between 'political' and 'performance-related' reasons for removing' a U.S. attorney something 'largely artificial.' He pointed out that they simply 'may be asked to resign for almost any reason with no public or private explanation.' All correct and to the point

At the same time he squirmed and inadvertently pointed his finger at Gonzales who had in public statements claimed that he was not involved in the deliberation . Emails from the White House prove otherwise.

Shumer ,and Sen.Leahy are trying to set up another Scooter Libby situation ,hopefully to catch Karl Rove ,but anyone in the White House (except perhaps McNulty )will do. Leahy's euphanism 'misleading explanations'is just a clever way to accuse someone of pergury.

Monica Goodling certainly would like to go before the Senate Judiciary Committee and tell the truth . But her lawyer realizes that if they can't catch the big fish ,Shumer et al have no problem snatching the small fry. Remember the Libby standard ;'No crime, but different recollections of events will lead to prison time' and we already know that Mcnulty is trying to throw Goodling under the bus.Monica Goodling ,a bit player in this drama deserves better .

To sum it up . The President was in his right to fire the attorneys. To call them 'performance related 'firings was lame spin. McNulty to suck up to Shumer some more exposed it. The President fell into the trap once when he exposed his staff to FBI grilling during the Plame investigation and he is falling into the same trap again . He should invoke Executive Privilage and play hardball with both Houses of Congress and their never ending investigations ;run the clock out and go home in 2009 thumbng his nose at the whole lot of em .

Itsdb answered on 03/30/07:

That last sentence says it all for me. The Dems have nothing on their mind but getting Bush and he needs to flip them the proverbial bird and stand his ground. You notice after they finished their 蔴 hours" they've concentrated almost exclusively on the White House in one way or another - as if the only pressing issue in the country is revenge.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/30/07 - None dare call it pork

The Senate passed their version of the Iraq Surrender Act . Just like the House version it is loaded with bribes .This time they seem to prefer sugar beets and Christmas Trees . Washington Compost has an article that details some of the $20 billion in pork .

Specifically, it includes $40 million for a Tree Assistance Program that provides help for Christmas trees and ornamental shrubs. Also in the Senate's version of the Iraq bill: $24 million for sugar beets, $3 million for Hawaiian sugar cane, $13 million for the Ewe Lamb Replacement and Retention Program, $100 million in compensation for dairy losses, $165.9 million for fisheries disaster relief, and money for numerous other "emergencies."

Ewe Lamb Replacement and Retention Program ????

Notable in the article is the absense of the word "pork" .Instead the phrase of choice is “pet projects.” I guess the Lamb retention project means that the Democrat Senators have decided to adopt a Lamb as a pet.

Dana Millbanks is not alone in shunning pork .Andrew Taylor also has commentary where the word "pork " is never used . Headline : Conservatives Oppose Pet Projects .(Harry Reid will adopt Mormon Crickets as his pets)

So there you have it:
Republican earmarks =pork
Democrat earmarks =pet projects
Republican lobbyists are...lobbyists
Democrat lobbyists are activists .




Itsdb answered on 03/30/07:

That's correct, but not the whole story. According to al-AP, Democrat pork = "domestic priorities." I kid you not:

    The debate came on legislation that provides $122 billion to fund the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as domestic priorities such as relief to hurricane victims and payments to farmers.


See there, not "pet projects," they are much needed "domestic priorities" such as hurricane relief and payments to farmers - that Bush obviously neglected. How can anyone be against that?

Steve

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 03/29/07 - The Iron Code

After years of reading volumes of literature--from ancient to modern--and seeing countless movies and TV shows, and having observed the actions of others and ourselves, a friend of mine and I condensed what we think it is to be a man into a short and succinct form--a code, if you will.

You see, we (and others like us, few though they are) believe that today's passive and pu**ified world no longer has any standard whatsoever that a man may be measured by, or ideals to live up to. Therefore, I humbly submit to you a masterpiece, crafted by a friend:
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
THE IRON CODE (or "being male doesn't make you a man")



NEVER VIOLATE A WOMAN NOR HARM A CHILD.

DO NOT LIE, CHEAT OR STEAL. THESE THINGS ARE FOR LESSER MEN.

PROTECT THE WEAK FROM THE EVIL STRONG . NEVER ALLOW THOUGHTS OF GAIN TO LEAD YOU INTO THE PURSUIT OF EVIL.

NEVER BACK AWAY FROM AN ENEMY. EITHER FIGHT OR SURRENDER. IT IS NOT ENOUGH TO SAY I WILL NOT BE EVIL .

EVIL MUST BE FOUGHT WHEREVER IT IS FOUND.

Being born a male in this world doesn't make you a man. That is simply a process of horomones and D.N.A. Being a MAN is about the choices that we make and how we respond to the outcome of those choices. Do we follow the rest of the herd waiting to die? Just another number in the staus quo? Or, do we stand up and become the kind of men that GOD created us to be?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

This is teachable stuff. Even as we speak (or read), it is being crafted into a poster to hang in my classroom, in the hopes that this next generation won't turn out to be as f***ed up as they seem to be trying to be.

Next, I'm consulting with various strong and moral women to come up with one that can be taught to the young females who would like to one day become a lady.

What do you think?

DK

Itsdb answered on 03/29/07:

Dennis,

That's way too politically incorrect, man. In other words it's great! Just one suggestion for that 4th line, I'm not sure surrender is the right word. A real man needs to know humility, know when to admit they're wrong and how to choose their fights wisely. Whadyya think?

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 03/29/07 - why we banned Legos


Rethinking Schools Classic.

From RS Editor Bill Bigelow:

Why We Banned Legos

Volume 21, Issue 2 As they watched their elementary-age students playing with Legos, Ann Pelo and Kendra Pelojoaquin saw some disturbing trends.

In the current issue they describe how some kids hoarded the "best" pieces, denied their classmates any access at all to the pretend town they were building, and displayed other undesirable behavior surrounding ownership and the social power it conveys.

So the teachers banned Legos, and worked with the kids to surface the issues raised by the ways they had been using the popular building blocks.
Our children are political beans.

Legos ban )


more on Legos
)

Itsdb answered on 03/29/07:

Well now if that don't take the cake. People like this ARE what's wrong with our schools. Take a look at their philosophy:

    While the scope and influence of Rethinking Schools has changed, its basic orientation has not. Most importantly, it remains firmly committed to equity and to the vision that public education is central to the creation of a humane, caring, multiracial democracy. While writing for a broad audience, Rethinking Schools emphasizes problems facing urban schools, particularly issues of race ... At a time when racial and class inequalities are growing in our country, we believe that any vision of schooling must be grounded in "the common school."


What a load of crap. And these people can't put together a coherent sentence or tell the difference between people and fruits and vegetables - or is that what they're trying to produce in the classroom? I went to their "Just for fun" page to see what they consider 'fun.' I found this sentence, linking to a puzzle of 'produce':

    Put this jigsaw puzzle together for a picture of some of the most important people in education the students
.

Come again? And then, they whine and cry about childhood obesity while banning games like tag and dodgeball because it's 'dangerous' and 'creates self-esteem issues among weaker and slower children.' And then we all know how evil it is to have a family pizza night to encourage reading.

This nonsense just pisses me off...

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/28/07 - Bauer v. Bond

James Bond on Jack's Turf: Taunts Bauer Again, Calls Him "Rubbish"
-- New York Times headline, February 30, 2007

After months of transatlantic bickering and tabloid name-calling, the public feud between Jack Bauer and James Bond has taken on an ugly new coloring. The battle for espionage bragging rights, now affecting U.S.-UK relations, has become a classic barroom brawl, as the clandestine torture tactics championed by both principals is bandied about in television spots, print articles, and YouTube videos the world over, aided and abetted by the New Media Youth.

In an effort to calm the dispute, U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice issued a statement yesterday calling on the two men "to begin acting like gentlemen again. Their countries expect a certain degree of decorum from them, not adolescent temper tantrums." She added, "This is not, and never was, a competition." In London, Conservative Party leader and Calvin Klein model David Cameron struck a more partisan note. "Brits know about a stiff upper lip," he said, "and Commander Bond will show Mr. Bauer just what that means."

At U.S. detention facilities in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, this "spy war" is all too real. Detainees are terrified that the celebritized "torture tactics" championed by Mr. Bauer might tsunami their peaceful Caribbean retreat. A statement released through an ACLU-court-appointed-human-rights-free-of-charge lawyer said, "We prisoners of conscience worry we will lose our three daily, politically correct squares in an effort to boost the tough guy image of Jack Bauer." The Bond-leaning EU and ICC are considering sending "food troops" to the base to ensure that religiously ordained, and nutritious, meals are in fact still being served.

Despite mounting pressure from both governments to "hold the high ground," neither man appears willing to resist upping the ante. Commander Bond made a pre-emptive appearance on the Late Show with David Letterman Monday night, one day after being snubbed at the 79th Annual Oscars in Los Angeles. Asked by Letterman if he was Mr. Bauer's moral as well as tactical superior, Bond responded, "I don't try to have it both ways, Dave. I make decisions and let the chips fall where they may" -- a none too subtle allusion to Mr. Bauer's rather conflicted decision-making patterns. Letterman clearly understood, telling his guest, "That would imply you think Jack Bauer hasn't defended his country to the best of his ability." Bond merely smiled his famous "come hither" smile.

And with that, the fists began to fly again. Bond had to engage an extra security detail to escort him from the CBS Studios through the gauntlet of angry Bauer sympathizers arrayed outside.

To respond to Bond's accusations, Mr. Bauer immediately booked himself on a special world telecast sit-down with Ms. Oprah Winfrey, or Oprah, as she is popularly known. He said of the quarrel with Bond, "I am just a simple man with simple tastes. I believe in God. I believe in the love of a woman. I believe that good always triumphs over evil, and I believe in ice hockey." "But," Oprah prodded, "now that Congress is cutting funding to Homeland Security, won't that affect your ability to get your job done in order to protect us?" "I don't need fancy pants cars, watches, and the rest of it to do my job," Mr. Bauer intoned.

In a rare evening edition of the Guardian, 007 snapped back, "I can get down and dirty with the best of them, too!" Poll numbers, however, suggest that Bond is losing favor, even among his strongest demographic, the prep school educated Alpha male set. To bolster support for the MI6 agent, the BBC is putting together a special report entitled, "Men of the Shadows: Why the British Provide More Comforts and Resources to Special Forces Than the Yanks," to air on BBC Prime, a channel not available in the United States, but popular in India and points farther west.

As the feud rages on, pro-Bauer and pro-Bond websites and blogs are popping up all over the Internet, with Wall Street hearing rumors that should the clash continue, Google or MySpace will attempt to buy out a majority on one side in order to capitalize on the awesome advertising opportunities opening up as the entire world watches and waits for the next blow to land.

You Decide -- Who Is Tougher? Jack Bauer or James Bond?

Amy K. Mitchell is managing editor of The American Spectator.

Itsdb answered on 03/28/07:

Bauer is definitely tougher, no question. Besides all the comforts 007 is afforded, he's on his 6th incarnation in just 21 missions. Bauer is still Bauer, and Jack goes through that much every day! It's no contest.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 03/28/07 - what to do!

with San Francisco's ban on plastic garbage bags
what are the alternatives for people walking their dogs
and obeying the law to clean up after Rover?
Now I guess you have to walk with the dog chain in one hand and a super dupper pooper scooper and something to bag it in in the other. A paper bag doesn't sound very good of an option.
I think we should come up with an invention here.

Itsdb answered on 03/28/07:

Personally I think folks should carry their pooper scoopers along and deposit the contents in Gavin Newsom's office trash can. Being San Francisco though, I'm sure they'll find a way to turn dog poop into clean-burning briquettes for tailgating at Monster Park.

I actually despise those plastic bags. We live in an area where windy is almost a daily forecast, and at times it seems every other tree in town is flying a "Wal-Mart flag." People are pigs, and they let those things escape in droves to fly around and tangle up in your trees, shrubs and fences. So while I have problems with an outright ban I would not be sad to see them go away permanently ... along with morons that think might front yard must be decorated with a Budweiser bottle.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 03/27/07 - vote for your favorite







Itsdb answered on 03/27/07:

Actually none of the above...


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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/27/07 - Hide the pork

this is a "what a suprise !! "moment

According to John Fund at the Wall Street Journal ;the Congressional Research Service (CRS)...a publicly funded, nonpartisan federal agency has decided that after 12 years it will no longer track earmarks put into Congressional spending bills .This after a 12 year run of doing so.

What event happened 12 years ago? Well ...12 years ago the Republicans became the majority .Now they are no longer the majority so obviously pork spending is no longer a concern.

Itsdb answered on 03/27/07:

Well ain't that grand. So much for the transparent government the left has been clamoring for.

Did you catch Obey's remarks in the article? "The fact is, that an earmark is something that is requested by an individual member. This item was not requested by any individual member. It was put in the bill by me!"

Maybe he said that for the benefit of those "idiot liberals" he referred to earlier.

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/23/07 - Further proof

that the 'insurgency'/'civil war' in Iraq is being driven by Iran is being reported in USA Today .

The violent Shiite militia known as the Mahdi Army is breaking into splinter groups, with up to 3,000 gunmen now financed directly by Iran and no longer loyal to the firebrand cleric Muqtada al-Sadr, adding a potentially even more deadly element to Iraq's violent mix.
Two senior militia commanders told the Associated Press that hundreds of these fighters have crossed into Iran for training by the elite Quds force, a branch of Iran's Revolutionary Guard thought to have trained Hezbollah guerrillas in Lebanon and Muslim fighters in Bosnia and Afghanistan.

The breakup is an ominous development at a time when U.S. and Iraqi forces are working to defeat religious-based militias and secure Iraq under government control. While al-Sadr's forces have battled the coalition repeatedly, including pitched battles in 2004, they've mostly stayed in the background during the latest offensive.

The U.S. military has asserted in recent months that Iran's Revolutionary Guards and Quds force have been providing Shiite militias with weapons and parts for sophisticated armor-piercing bombs. The so called EFPs — explosively formed penetrators — are responsible for the deaths of more than 170 American and coalition soldiers since mid-2004, the military says.

In the latest such attack, four U.S. soldiers were killed March 15 by a roadside bomb in eastern Baghdad......

....In recent weeks, Mahdi Army fighters who escaped possible arrest in the Baghdad security push have received $600 each upon reaching Iran. The former Mahdi Army militiamen working for the Revolutionary Guards operate under the cover of a relief agency for Iraqi refugees, they said.

Once fighters defect, they receive a monthly stipend of $200, said the commanders.

Alireza Jafarzadeh, a spokesman for an Iranian dissident group, told reporters in New York on Tuesday that Iraqi Shiite guerrillas and death squads were being trained in secret camps in Iran with the blessing of top Tehran government leaders and at least three senior Iraqi political figures.


The Mahdi Army is of course the group we had surrounded twice and let off the hook.

Now the optimist in me says that the breakup of a large force of militia ,and it's leader discreditied is a good thing ,and further proof that the surge is winning ...leave it to al-AP to spin it as a major setback .God forbid that the cohesive leadership of fat Mookie is eliminated ! Let's just ignore the fact that he has been the most disruptive force in Baghdad .But ,I have contended almost since it became apparent that there is an "insurgency "that any "exit strategy " had to address the outside interferance of Iraq's neighbors. The Iraqi gvt. is holding talks with other armed groups with the dual goal of bringing them into the fold and expelling al-Qaeda according to IraqSlogger. Omar at Iraq the Model reports from the ground about progress in defeating al-Qaeda and the Mahdi militia . Conceivably the only reason our goals cannot be achieved is due to interferance from Iran and like it or not ;that is where we need to start focusing attention .

Itsdb answered on 03/23/07:

tom, there you go throwing stones again. "fat Mookie," "expelling" or "defeating al-Qaeda?" Wholly unacceptable coming from a Christian with ties to the Crusades and Inquisitions ... sorry, I must have been channeling another expert.

Have you ever wondered though, why the critics of those of us unafraid to call a Jihadist what he is never seem to understand that millions of other Muslims will benefit from the defeat of those Jihadists? But I digress again...

You're absolutely right, but proof of Iran driving the 'insurgency' will only open the doors to more teeth-gnashing over confronting the obvious Iranian threat.

Steve

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Question/Answer
ETWolverine asked on 03/22/07 - Some prices of common products (approximations only)

Jack Daniels Bourbon =$94.90 per gallon

1792 Bourbon = $149.90 per gallon

Reposado Tequila = $139.90 per gallon

Balvinie Single Malt Scotch Whiskey = $179.90 per gallon

Crappy domestic merlo = $29.90 per gallon

Crappy domestic beer = $23.09 per gallon

Sparkling water = $18.90 per gallon

Pantene Pro V shampoo with conditioner = $41.50 per gallon

Listerine mouthwash = $26.52 per gallon

Toothpaste (cheap stuff) = $42.45 per gallon

Evian bottled water = $11.43 per gallon

Tropicana Orange Juice = $7.99 per gallon

Coca Cola = $6.20 per gallon

Gatorade sports drink = $14.56 per gallon

Pet Promise canned dog food = $16.25 per gallon


And the cost of gasoline at the pump averages about $2.57 per gallon (nationawide average as of 3/19/07).

What in the hell is the big issue with gas prices. Why is everyone in such an uproar over the high cost of gas or the profits that oil companies are making? Your shampoo maker is making more per gallon than your oil company is. Why isn't anyone talking about the high price of shampoo and the shampoo company profits that should be taken away from them?

Elliot

Itsdb answered on 03/22/07:

You can however get a decent pinot noir for $37.45 per gallon. And stay away from the canned dog food...

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/22/07 - Fred Thompson continues to impress

Here is part of his commentary tha the delivered on the Paul Harvey show this week .

Southern Exposure

By Fred Thompson

We are all very well aware of the fact that we have an illegal-immigration problem in this country. As usual, we avoided the problem for as long as we could and when we couldn’t avoid it any longer we were told that, indeed, somewhere between 12 and 20 million people had somehow come into this country unnoticed.

It’s like we went overnight from “no problem” to a problem so big that it now defies a good solution. It’s become one of those “there are no good choices only less bad choices” that Americans are becoming all too familiar with.

We know that the overwhelming majority of illegals come across the Mexican border. Fortunately, we’ve got someone who is all too willing to tell us what we should do about it — the president of Mexico Philipe Calderon. President Calderon doesn’t think much of our border policies. He criticizes our efforts to secure the border with things such as border fencing. He says that bottle necks at U.S. checkpoints hurt Mexican commerce and force his citizens to migrate illegally in order to make a living (and of course send money back to Mexico). He apparently thinks we should do nothing except make American citizens out of his constituents. Calderon also accused U.S. officials of failing to do enough to stop the flow of drugs in to the United States. Mexican politicians gave President Bush an earful of all of this during his recent trip to Mexico.

I think its time for a little plain talk to the leaders of Mexico. Something like:
hey guys, you’re our friends and neighbors and we love you but it’s time you had a little dose of reality. A sovereign nation loses that status if it cannot secure its own borders and we are going to do whatever is necessary to do so, although our policies won’t be as harsh as yours are along your southern border. And criticizing the U.S. for alternately doing too much and too little to stop your illegal activities is not going to set too well with Americans of good will who are trying to figure a way out of the mess that your and our open borders policy has already created.
My friends, it’s also time for a little introspection. Since we all agree that improving Mexico’s economy will help with the illegal-immigration problem, you might want to consider your own left-of -center policies. For example, nationalized industries are not known for enhancing economic growth. Just a thought. But here’s something even more to the point that you might want to think about: What does it say about the leadership of a country when that country’s economy and politics are dependent upon the exportation of its own citizens?



— Fred Thompson is an actor and former United States senator from Tennessee.

© PAUL HARVEY SHOW, ABC RADIO NETWORKS

Itsdb answered on 03/22/07:

Sounds like ol' Fred may be getting serious about jumping in the race. Shouldn't be long before the left starts their preemptive strikes against him - if they haven't already. Oh, too late, he's apparently "a Denier."

Here's another Thompson commentary you should enjoy:

    Gandhi's Way Isn't the American Way
    Collective suicide is no foreign policy.

    By Fred Thompson

    I feel bad for Nancy Pelosi, AND her neighbors. Anti-war activists from the group Code Pink have been giving her the same treatment the president gets at his Crawford, Texas, ranch. Camping on her San Francisco lawn, they’re demanding she cut off funds to the troops in Iraq.

    Besides coolers and mattresses, protesters have brought along a giant paper mache statue of Mahatma Gandhi, who is pretty much the symbol of the anti-war movement. Code Pink was founded on his birthday, and when Saddam Hussein was being given a last chance to open Iraq to U.N. weapons inspectors, posters appeared around America asking “What would Gandhi do?”

    And that’s a pretty good question. At what point is it okay to fight dictators like Saddam or the al Qaeda terrorists who want to take his place?

    It turns out that the answer, according to Gandhi, is NEVER. During World War II, Gandhi penned an open letter to the British people, urging them to surrender to the Nazis. Later, when the extent of the holocaust was known, he criticized Jews who had tried to escape or fight for their lives as they did in Warsaw and Treblinka. “The Jews should have offered themselves to the butcher’s knife,” he said. “They should have thrown themselves into the sea from cliffs.” “Collective suicide,” he told his biographer, “would have been heroism.”

    The so-called peace movement certainly has the right to make Gandhi’s way their way, but their efforts to make collective suicide American foreign policy just won’t cut it in this country. When American’s think of heroism, we think of the young American soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan, risking their lives to prevent another Adolph Hitler or Saddam Hussein.

    Gandhi probably wouldn't approve, but I can live with that.

    — Fred Thompson is an actor and former United States senator from Tennessee.

    © PAUL HARVEY SHOW, ABC RADIO NETWORKS

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 03/22/07 - Hybrid green car lie

Once I get more facts and sources I plan to post this on the Christianity board----oooowwwwwhh!

"The Prius costs an average of $3.25 per mile driven over a lifetime of 100,000 miles"
"The Hummer costs a more fiscal $1.95 per mile to put on the road over an expected lifetime of 300,000 mile"

green car’ is the source of some of the worst pollution in North America; it takes more combined energy per Prius to produce than a Hummer.


the Prius is partly driven by a battery which contains nickel. The nickel is mined and smelted at a plant in Sudbury, Ontario. This plant has caused so much environmental damage to the surrounding environment that NASA has used the ‘dead zone’ around the plant to test moon rovers. The area around the plant is devoid of any life for miles.
The plant is the source of all the nickel found in a Prius’ battery and Toyota purchases 1,000 tons annually. Dubbed the Superstack, the plague-factory has spread sulfur dioxide across northern Ontario, becoming every environmentalist’s nightmare.
“The acid rain around Sudbury was so bad it destroyed all the plants and the soil slid down off the hillside,” said Canadian Greenpeace energy-coordinator David Martin during an interview with Mail, a British-based newspaper.
The Prius is powered by not one, but two engines: a standard 76 horsepower, 1.5-liter gas engine found in most cars today and a battery- powered engine that deals out 67 horsepower and a whooping 295ft/lbs of torque, below 2000 revolutions per minute. Essentially, the Toyota Synergy Drive system, as it is so called, propels the car from a dead stop to up to 30mph. This is where the largest percent of gas is consumed. As any physics major can tell you, it takes more energy to get an object moving than to keep it moving. The battery is recharged through the braking system, as well as when the gasoline engine takes over anywhere north of 30mph. It seems like a great energy efficient and environmentally sound car, right?

The plant is the source of all the nickel found in a Prius’ battery and Toyota purchases 1,000 tons annually. Dubbed the Superstack, the plague-factory has spread sulfur dioxide across northern Ontario, becoming every environmentalist’s nightmare.
“The acid rain around Sudbury was so bad it destroyed all the plants and the soil slid down off the hillside,” said Canadian Greenpeace energy-coordinator David Martin during an interview with Mail, a British-based newspaper.
All of this would be bad enough in and of itself; however, the journey to make a hybrid doesn’t end there. The nickel produced by this disastrous plant is shipped via massive container ship to the largest nickel refinery in Europe. From there, the nickel hops over to China to produce ‘nickel foam.’ From there, it goes to Japan. Finally, the completed batteries are shipped to the United States, finalizing the around-the-world trip required to produce a single Prius battery. Are these not sounding less and less like environmentally sound cars and more like a farce?
Wait, I haven’t even got to the best part yet.
When you pool together all the combined energy it takes to drive and build a Toyota Prius, the flagship car of energy fanatics, it takes almost 50 percent more energy than a Hummer - the Prius’s arch nemesis.
Through a study by CNW Marketing called “Dust to Dust,” the total combined energy is taken from all the electrical, fuel, transportation, materials (metal, plastic, etc) and hundreds of other factors over the expected lifetime of a vehicle. The Prius costs an average of $3.25 per mile driven over a lifetime of 100,000 miles - the expected lifespan of the Hybrid.
The Hummer, on the other hand, costs a more fiscal $1.95 per mile to put on the road over an expected lifetime of 300,000 miles. That means the Hummer will last three times longer than a Prius and use less combined energy doing it.
SO, IF you are really an environmentalist - ditch the Prius. Instead, buy one of the most economical cars available - a Toyota Scion xB. The Scion only costs a paltry $0.48 per mile to put on the road. If you are still obsessed over gas mileage - buy a Chevy Aveo and fix that lead foot.
One last fun fact for you: it takes five years to offset the premium price of a Prius. Meaning, you have to wait 60 months to save any money over a non-hybrid car because of lower gas expenses.

green lie
)

Itsdb answered on 03/22/07:

I thought the xB was a hideous looknig thing at first, then a buddy of mine bought one and let me drive it. It's HUGE inside - but it still reminds me of those vintage Fisher-Price "Little People" cars. Just cut some holes in the roof and plop the family in.



To be fair though, Greater Sudbury credits the Superstack as the "most important factor in improving Sudbury's air quality." I wouldn't buy a Prius though, but we do drive economical cars, an ག Corolla and a 1982 Toyota pickup. Try calculating the cost per mile on my truck...

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/22/07 - We have been challenged

One of the former participants of this board has posted the following insult at the Politics Board :

Apes Throwing Feces MarySusan 03/21/07

If you want to see modern day "feces throwing" ala our ancestors the great apes, go over to the Politics Board and read the questions and comments of: Tomder-de-der-der, Steve-anzee, kinji, and OrthodoxElliot :):):)

LOLOL!!!


Clarification/Follow-up by tomder55 on 03/22/07 3:19 am:


looks to me like a bunch of experts here are afraid to engage in debate with people who have different views than they do . You will notice that to a person ,all of us you have mentioned have come to this board to engage in the free and open exchange of ideas . You will also notice a lack of the personal insults that you find here on the board. So I challenge all to go over to the politics board and if you disagree with the positions there express your opinions . I can assure you that you will not be called an ape throwing feces or any of the other insults routinely flung on this board.



>http://www.answerway.com/viewques.php?pgtitle=&category=633&msection=0&quesid=59405

The apes throwing feces reference comes from my reply to this posting

Itsdb answered on 03/22/07:

Thanks for pointing that out tom, I feel quite refreshed after posting my opinions on it.

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 03/21/07 - Sudden Jihad Syndrome

Perspectives: 'Sudden Jihad Syndrome' - A reason to carry firearms for self-defense
Larry Pratt - Guest Columnist
OneNewsNow.com
March 8, 2007


I have compiled (quite easily, I might add) a list of murders and attempted murders carried out by Muslims acting on the basis of what the founder of Islam taught them.

Convinced that they will go to heaven if they die killing infidels who Mohammed taught his followers to hate, some Muslims don't bother joining al Qaeda or some other organized band of thugs. They get so filled with hatred from hearing Islamic sermons and visiting jihadi web sites that they decide to become freelance Jihadis.

The condition is recognizable and has been labeled Sudden Jihad Syndrome (SJS) -- although some people are unable, or unwilling, to recognize SJS. Politically correct spokesmen for the FBI and other agencies seem to be under orders to issue a denial that a SJS-related murder could possibly have anything to do with Islam.

The rest of the population should come to grips with the fact that many in America are susceptible to SJS. The best antidote for many SJS-related acts of terrorism is a bullet fired from the gun of a prospective victim.

The following list is offered to show that SJS is a reality, and that rational Americans should be prepared to deliver the most effective known antidote – a bullet administered at the first sign of an outbreak of SJS.



March 1994 – Rashid Baz, a Muslim from Lebanon, opened fire on a van containing members of the Lubavitch Hassids in Brooklyn. One was killed.

February 1997 – Palestinian-born Ali Abu Kamal opened fire on the observation deck of the Empire State Building, killing a tourist and injuring six other people before committing suicide. His daughter, Linda Kamal, said in 2007 that the family is tired of lying and admitted that a letter had been found on her father's body explaining his Muslim hatred for Israel and America.

July 2002 – Egyptian-born Hesham Mohammed Hadayet walked into the Israeli Airlines El Al terminal at the Los Angeles airport and began shooting Jews. He killed two and injured another four. He was known to sympathize with al Qaeda.

September 2002 – Patrick Gott killed one and wounded another in the New Orleans airport. He had entered the terminal with a shotgun and his Koran.

October 2002 – John Mohammed and Lee Malvo killed 13 people in the Washington, DC area. Both were converts to Islam and had attended a jihad training camp in southwestern Virginia.

August 2003 – Mohammed Ali Alayed almost totally decapitated his erstwhile Jewish friend, Ariel Sellouk, following Alayed’s getting serious about his Islamic faith. He went to a mosque after killing Sellouk.

October 2005 – Joel Henry Hinrichs III, a convert to Islam, was an engineering student at Oklahoma University. His student career ended when a bomb he had strapped on himself went off prematurely outside a crowed stadium, killing only himself. Police subsequently cleared explosives from the apartment that Hinrichs had shared with Muslim students from Pakistan.

April 2006 – Muslim Ayhan Surucu was so angry when his sister started to wear make-up and date men in Berlin, Germany, that he put a gun to her head at a bus stop and killed her. Boys at a nearby school, attended mainly by the children of immigrant Muslim families, cheered and applauded when news of the murder reached them.

May 2006 – Mohammed Reza Taheri-azar, a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill student, rented an SUV and drove it through a crowded part of the campus-- intentionally trying to hit people and wounding nine. In a series of letters to the student newspaper, he explained that he acted in obedience to Koranic dictates.

June 2006 – Michael Ford, a Muslim convert, walked into work at a Safeway warehouse in Denver and opened fire on his coworkers, killing one and injuring five. Relatives explained that he was being teased at work because he’s a Muslim and he could not take it anymore.

July 2006 – Naveed Alzal Haq, a Pakistani, walked into the Jewish Federation Center in downtown Seattle and shot six women-- killing one, and wounding five( one of whom was pregnant). He stated matter-of-factly: "I am a Muslim American angry at Israel."

August 2006 – Omeed Aziz Popal, a Muslim Afghan refugee, used his SUV as a weapon and ran down at least 14 people and a bicyclist in the San Francisco Bay area. He was targeting Jewish neighborhoods to terrorize.

January 2007 – A 22-year-old Muslim, Ismail Yassin Mohamed, stole a car in Minneapolis and rammed it into other cars before stealing a van and doing the same, injuring several drivers and pedestrians at crosswalks and on sidewalks before police caught up with him. Mohamed called himself a "terrorist."

February 2007 – Ibrihim Ahmed, a Nashville cab driver and Muslim, was enraged that two passengers did not agree with him about Islam. When they got out of the cab, he tried to run them down, striking one in a parking lot.

February 2007 – Sulejman Talovic, a Bosnian Muslim immigrant, went to a Salt Lake City mosque on a Friday night. Then he went to one of only two malls in the state which prohibits civilian carrying of concealed weapons. He killed five before an off-duty cop (not subject to ban) used a concealed firearm stopped his murder spree.

Cornell University did a study estimating that there are seven million Muslims in the U.S. If even a single percent of that population is motivated to go kill a few infidels for Allah, the country would be facing 70,000 murderers on the loose.

The examples that I have found of Islam being the driving force for murder show that the prospect of Sudden Jihad Syndrome should be reason to loosen the country’s concealed carry laws. The Utah Jihadi did not have a concealed carry permit, but he carried his weapons to the scene of the crime concealed anyway. Why should the laws make it harder for the rest of us to counter what criminals are already doing?

Put another way, our current restrictions on concealed carry on the books in most states facilitate murder by tying the hands of victims.
The law should be on our side, not on the side of the bad guys.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Seems like an irrefutable argument to me.

How 'bout you?

DK

Itsdb answered on 03/21/07:

Dennis,

That's about as politically incorrect as one can get - shame you didn't post this on the Christianity board so I could see the reactions :)

Fortunately, it seems Texas is about to give us the right to defend ourselves so we can legally have the antidote at hand.

It looks like we've even had a potential outbreak of SJS among the ranks of state-paid college professors. Kent State Associate Professor Julio Pino, at least formerly maintained a "Global War" blog. As Mike S. Adams notes, The heading for the site used to read "The Worldwide Web of Jihad: Daily News from the Most Dangerous Muslim in America." Now it reads "Are You Prepared for Jihad?" IN THE NAME OF OBL. 2007: THE YEAR OF ISLAMIC VICTORY!"

Though Mike is a big fan of guns he doesn't offer quite as big an antidote, he says Pino "deserves to be arrested and sent to an island off the coast of North America, striped naked, interrogated, and, if necessary, tortured to ascertain the extent of his involvement in assisting our enemies."

I can't argue with that either.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/21/07 - The Goracle is testifying now .......

He seriously compared his struggle to the movie 藼" ....the environmentalists being the 300 Spartans holding back the Persian horde. Sorry Al ;it is us skeptics that hold a thin line against concensus scientists and opportunistic politicians . And yes..he did talk about the need to level birth rates ;that abortion has helped 'stabilize' population ,and that as women become educated birth rates decline. I guess Tipper was dumber than a rock ... They have 4 children.

Joe Barton raised two parliamentary points of order. First, why does John Dingell not allow members of the full committee to sit on the dias — why must they sit in the audience? Second, the rules of both committees require testimonies to be submitted 48 hours in advance . The minority received Gore’s written testimony only at 7:00 a.m. this morning. The majority received it at 1:00 a.m.

Itsdb answered on 03/21/07:

This is ironic, it was just this past January when that bulldog Waxman, a member of the committee holding these hearings today, held a hearing on "Political Influence on Government Climate Change Scientists." So who do they call in to testify? They summon The Goracle to tell us “the planet has a fever.”

Nothing like bitching about political influence on climate change scientists for the past 6 years then bringing in the world's best at politicizing climate change to set things right.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 03/20/07 - animal rights nuts gone nuts?

Kill tame bear, say animal nuts

March 20, 2007

ANIMAL-RIGHTS activists have called for a zoo’s baby Polar bear to be KILLED — because it relies on humans.

Knut became a superstar after he was rejected by his mother at birth last December.

His twin brother died after just four days.

The hand-reared polar bear touched the hearts of the nation and became the symbol of Berlin Zoo.

He was even photographed by star snapper Annie Leibowitz for an international campaign.

But extremists in Germany claim Knut’s cuteness is against his own “animal rights” and he should be put to sleep.

Activist Frank Albrecht said last night: “The hand-rearing of Knut is a breach of the animal protection code.

“He’ll rely on humans forever and this cannot be right.”

Zoo director Wolfram Ludwig added: “He will not be a proper Polar bear. But it is too late to kill him now.”

Thousands of tourists flock to see Knut fed by a baby’s bottle every day. He was voted the city’s top citizen in a TV poll.

Wolfgang Apel, of the German Animal Protection Society, said: “We must be careful with Knut but killing him is not the answer.“


knut
)





Itsdb answered on 03/21/07:

Like Elliot, I'm more than a little bothered by Ludwig's and Apel's remarks, it doesn't seem Knut has much support among any of those that should be looking out for him.

Apparently there's a little "nuance" involved here, too.

    "Albrecht told The Associated Press his beliefs were more nuanced than reported by Bild, though he applauded the debate the article had started.

    He explained that though he thought it was wrong of the zoo to have saved the cub's life, now that the bear can live on his own, it would be equally wrong to kill him.


"Nuance" attributed to Activist Frank Albrecht:

    “The hand-rearing of Knut is a breach of the animal protection code.

    “He’ll rely on humans forever and this cannot be right.”

    "Feeding by hand is not species-appropriate but a gross violation of animal protection laws"

    "The zoo must kill the bear."


That's quite a bit of nuance from "the zoo must kill the bear" to "it would be equally wrong to kill him" now. My question is what exactly does he mean by "protection?" Apparently, "protection" does not necessarily include preserving the life of a healthy animal.

And just how is that a polar bear relying on humans "cannot be right?" If Albrecht wants to cite Germany's Animal Welfare Act as his authority then it follows he must also acknowledge the act allows for wild animals to be kept in zoos - either that or call for EVERY animal in the Berlin Zoo to be killed.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/20/07 - The gauntlet has been thrown


"The Viscount Monckton of Brenchley presents his compliments to Vice-President Albert Gore and by these presents challenges the said former Vice-President to a head-to-head, internationally-televised debate upon the question "That our effect on climate is not dangerous", to be held in the Library of the Oxford University Museum of Natural History at a date of the Vice-President's choosing.

"Forasmuch as it is His Lordship who now flings down the gauntlet to the Vice-President, it shall be the Vice-President's prerogative and right to choose his weapons by specifying the form of the Great Debate. May the Truth win! Magna est veritas, et praevalet. God Bless America! God Save the Queen!"

Monckton ,a former policy adviser to Margaret Thatcher during her years as
Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, said, "A careful study of the substantial corpus of peer-reviewed science reveals that Mr. Gore's film, An
Inconvenient Truth, is a foofaraw of pseudo-science, exaggerations, and errors, now being peddled to innocent schoolchildren worldwide."


Monckton and Gore have once before clashed head to head on the science, politics, and religion of global warming in the usually-decorous pages of the
London Sunday Telegraph last November.


Monckton calls on the former Vice President to "step up to the plate and defend his advocacy of policies that could do grave harm to the welfare of the world's poor. If Mr. Gore really believes global warming is the defining issue
of our time, the greatest threat human civilization has ever faced, then he should welcome the opportunity to raise the profile of the issue before a
worldwide audience of billions by defining and defending his claims against a serious, science-based challenge."

The Goracle tour will continue tomorrow when he will be the star ,testifying to both Houses of Congress .(DC will be a global warming 43 degrees tomorrow for the first day of spring )Drudge posted a few proposed questions to ask him that I doubt will be asked .

Mr Gore : You have said several times that we have 10 years to act to stave off global warming. Was that 10 years from the first time you said that or 10 years from now? We just wanted to get a firm date from you that we can hold you to.

Mr. Gore: How can you continue to claim that global warming on Earth is primarily caused by mankind when other planets (Mars, Jupiter and Pluto) with no confirmed life forms and certainly no man-made industrial greenhouse gas emissions also show signs of global warming? Wouldn’t it make more sense that the sun is responsible for warming since it is the common denominator?

Mr. Gore: Joseph Romm, the executive director for the Center for Energy and Climate Solutions, has said we must build 700 large nuclear plants to stave off climate change. Where do you stand on the need for nuclear energy?

Mr. Gore: Do you think the earth is significantly overpopulated and that is a major contributor to your view of climate change. (If yes, what do you think is a sustainable population for the planet?)


Meanwhile James Hansen ,the NASA scientist who claims the Bush Adm. muzzled him has acknowledged to Congress that he'd done more than 1,400 on-the-job interviews in recent years.

Finally , walkers braved a cold N.E. day for global warming awareness. http://www.nashuatelegraph.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070317/NEWS02/203170340/-1/sports



Itsdb answered on 03/20/07:

>>what do you think is a sustainable population for the planet?<<

That's the one I'm awaiting an answer for. I tell ya, this congress is putting on a show aren't they? What were some of the things they promised - to work with the president, less partisanship, support the troops, yada, yada, yada?

I know Clinton caught hell from the right, but these guys are making that look like a day at Disneyland. ANY excuse, and I do mean ANY excuse to go after the administration. And what's pathetic is little facts like Hansen's 1400 interviews go unnoticed while the left continues to hammer away at that very issue.

The "Interfaith Walk for Climate Rescue?" What a concept, climate 'rescue.' I guess their faith is a wee bit misplaced - and you'd think they'd schedule their little excursion for a sweltering day in July.

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 03/20/07 - is she hill=arious?????

Remake of an old super bowl commerical

big sister hillary )

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=99zvYV4kiKI

or
http://www.youtube.com
type in hillary big sister or vote different

Itsdb answered on 03/20/07:

Whoa, just the idea of seeing her in that context was kind of eerie. It's going to be interesting to see who is responsible for that. ABC on cue hints at a GOP conspiracy:

    CLAIRE SHIPMAN: "Robin, the ultimate conspiracy theory, some Democrats think a Republican operative could be responsible because it not only makes Hillary Clinton look bad but Barack Obama look bad, since it's an attack ad."

    ROBIN ROBERTS: "Something to think about."


I'm thinking more along the lines of someone from DU or the Kos - you know the moonbat wing ain't too happy with Hillary. But I'm betting Karl Rove's name will eventually come up...

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 03/19/07 - when will we hear the truth about dry runs

I keep hearing stories of dry runs like the other day the latest one I heard is a guy carrying metal bomb making devices in his rectum
and today the Pittsburgh airport found threatening letters

http://warroom.com/ )

ABOUT THOSE IMAMS
By RICHARD MINITER

THE notorious case of U.S. Airways Flight 300 gets stranger by the minute, as more facts emerge about why six traveling Muslim clerics were asked to deplane. A passenger on that flight - I'll call her "Pauline" - has inadvertently publicized some facts via a much-forwarded e-mail; she gave me more details in an interview this week. The airport police report confirms some of her claims and holds more revelations of its own. And U.S. Airways spokeswoman Andrea Rader also confirmed much of Pauline's account.

One detail that's escaped most reports is that other Muslim passengers were left undisturbed and later joined in a round of applause for the U.S. Airways crew. "It wasn't that they were Muslim," says Pauline. "It was all of the suspicious things they did." Sitting by Minneapolis-St. Paul's Airport Gate C9, she noticed one imam immediately. "He was pacing nervously, talking in Arabic," she said.

As the plane boarded, she said, no one refused to fly. The public prayers and an Arabic phone call triggered no alarms. But then a note from a passenger about suspicious movements of the imams got the crew's attention. To Pauline, everything seemed normal. Then the captain - in classic laconic pilot-style - announced there had been a "mix-up in our paperwork" and that the flight would be delayed.

In reality, the crew was waiting for the FBI and local police to arrive.

Contrary to press accounts that a single note from a passenger triggered the imams' removal, Captain John Howard Wood was weighing multiple factors.

* An Arabic speaker was seated near two of the imams in the plane's tail. That passenger pulled a flight attendant aside and, in a whisper, translated what the men were saying: invoking "bin Laden" and condemning America for "killing Saddam," according to police reports.

* An imam seated in first class asked for a seat-belt extender - the extra strap that obese people use because the standard belt is too short. According to both an on-duty and a deadheading flight attendant, he looked too thin to need one. A seat-belt extender can easily be used as a weapon - just wrap one end around your fist, and swing the heavy metal buckle.

* All six imams had boarded together, with the first-class passengers - even though only one of them had a first-class ticket. Three had one-way tickets. Between the six men, only one had checked a bag.

And, Pauline said, they spread out - just like the 9/11 hijackers. Two sat in first class, two in the middle and two back in the economy section, police reports show. Some, according to Rader, took seats not assigned to them.

* Finally, a gate attendant told the captain she was suspicious of the imams, according to police reports.

So the captain made his decision to delay the flight based on many complaints, not one. He also consulted a federal air marshal, a U.S. Airways ground-security coordinator and the airline's security office in Phoenix. All thought the imams were acting suspiciously, Rader told me.

One more odd thing went unnoticed at the time: The men prayed both at the gate and on the plane. Yet observant Muslims pray only once at sundown, not twice.

"It was almost as if they were intentionally trying to get kicked off the flight," Pauline said.

While the imams were soon released, Pauline is fuming: "We are the victims of these people. They need to be more sensitive to us. They were totally insensitive to us and then accused us of being insensitive to them."

The flight was delayed for some 31/2 hours. Bomb-sniffing dogs swept the plane, and every passenger got re-screened.

"I think it was either a foiled attempt to take over the plane or it was a publicity stunt to accuse us of being insensitive," Pauline told me. "It had to be to intimidate U.S. Airways to ease up on security."

So far, U.S. Airways refuses to be intimidated, even though the feds have launched an investigation. "We are absolutely backing this crew," Rader said.

Tucked away in the police report is this little gem: One imam had complained to a passenger that some nations don't follow sharia law and had said his job in Bakersfield, Calif., was a cover for "representing Muslims here in the U.S."

What are the imams really up to? Something more than praying, it seems.

Some argue that these Imans behaved this way in hopes that they would be deplaned. Once deplaned, they could yell discrimination. Others, like contributor to "The Aviation Nation", Annie Jacobsen, would argue that it is distinctly possible that they were practicing a dry run. That they may have wanted to see just how much they could get away with for a jihad attempt further on down the line. Annie makes a good argument for dry runs; the jihadists have been known to make several attempts on one target before they get it right. For example, Annie sites; "The recent dry run or probe on American Airlines flight 63 occurred on a flight that has already been saved once from a terrorist attack by the heroics of flight crew and passengers. If you recall, it was American Airlines flight 63 that "shoe bomber" Richard Reid tried to take down with explosives hidden in his shoes, in December of 2001". Click here to read her article

When it comes right down to it, I think that both arguments are quite right. While the Imans could have been hoping to make a cry of discrimination -- it doesn't negate the idea that, on it's own -- that, too, is a form of a dry run. It really is the perfect plan isn't it? Cry discrimination now on a "dry run" so that later, when they are fully prepared to execute another attack -- they are assured that their plan would go uninterrupted because we have become conditioned to be sensitive. We are learning that a Muslim passenger can do what the rest of us can not -- make those around us uncomfortable. Remember the story of the woman who became "claustrophobic" on the British flight? She had to be overcome by her fellow passengers and escorted off of the plane.

The reason she was escorted off the plane was because she made others on the plane uncomfortable by her behavior. That was o.k. because she was a white female. But, if an Arab-looking, loudly praying, Muslim who's behavior is questionable, should make you uncomfortable, you'd better just shake that feeling off as a discriminating thought.

While shaking it off -- we've once again made ourselves easy targets. Or, as "Pauline" would say; "we are the victims".

Itsdb answered on 03/19/07:

>>What are the imams really up to? Something more than praying, it seems.<<

That should be obvious. Miniter is right about this dangerous conditioning toward sensitivity, and enablers are going to try and take us all down via their misguided 'moral high ground.'

Steve

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Question/Answer
ETWolverine asked on 03/16/07 - A TRUE FEMALE LEADER

With all the media coverage such sub-par female leaders as Hillarious Rotten Clinton and Nancy "Stretch" Pelosi have been getting, I thought it might be nice to post this article about a REAL female leader... Lady Margaret Thatcher, the Iron Lady.



The Lady Is a Mensch
by Rabbi Irwin Katsof

Margaret Thatcher's lesson in what makes people truly great.


While working as a fundraiser for Aish HaTorah, I often moved among the rich and famous - most of them men - and learned a great deal about the drive for success, nerves of steel and risk-taking. But it was from a lady that I learned what it means to be a mensch -- a caring human being.

Larry King, with whom I had co-authored the book Powerful Prayers, introduced me to Lady Margaret Thatcher, and we invited her to receive the King David Award in recognition of her support for the Jewish people while she was the prime minister of Great Britain.

Why did she care so much for the Jews? In answer to that question, she told me a fascinating story.

During World War II, a Jewish family from Eastern Europe had somehow connected with her parents and requested that they temporarily house their daughter. The Jewish family could not get out, but they were able to arrange a visa and ticket for their only child. At the time, Lady Thatcher's family was very poor and had barely enough for themselves, but they took in this Jewish girl, who ended up staying with them the entire length of the war and sharing Lady Thatcher's room. Lady Thatcher said that her parents taught her that it was essential to help all people in need, but it was especially important to help the Jewish people, who had been so unfairly persecuted throughout history.

This was someone we very much wanted to honor.

CARING FOR THE LITTLE PEOPLE

After a year of back and forth discussions with her staff and attempting to co-ordinate her schedule with ours, she agreed to accept the King David Award at an elegant dinner at the Carlyle Hotel in New York to be held in March of 1997.

During the course of the evening, everyone wanted to have their picture taken with Lady Thatcher. She knew this would happen and she had her assistant call us before the evening to find out color of the wall coverings in the room, so that her outfit would not clash.

She was popular. All one hundred of the participating couples posed for a picture with her, one couple at a time. After they all filed through, you would think she'd had enough -- all the flash bulbs can be very irritating -- but then she requested that we ask the orchestra members if they too wanted their picture taken.

I was impressed. I had never seen such graciousness. I had worked with many celebrities and political leaders and some were quite haughty about the whole picture-taking experience. They limited the number of photos or they wouldn't do posed shots, or they insisted that no flash be used. Others were very accommodating but I have never had anyone suggest additional photos with staff.

After I arranged the photos for the violinist and the harp player, Lady Thatcher suggested that perhaps the chef of the hotel and his staff would also like their picture taken. I was amazed. I was also getting a bit concerned. I wasn't sure just how long this was going to continue. There is a big staff at the Carlyle -- we could be doing this all night. Luckily, it stopped after the chef. I was impressed though. She was a real lady who understood the importance of being good to "the little people."

IRON LADY

A few months later, she agreed to come on one of our missions to Israel and I witnessed the same behavior. She was accompanied by three Scotland Yard security personnel. She had an armored van and a chase car that followed the van. Her security detail came to Israel three days prior and cased each venue. They explained that for the first dinner -- at the Rockefeller Museum in Arab-populated East Jerusalem -- that everyone would need to be seated and then she would walk in and proceed straight to her seat and sit down. She would have her back to the wall with guards beside her to stop anyone from approaching her.

Well, I saw why she was known as the "Iron Lady." She had her own plans. She walked into the banquet room, and to the consternation of her Scotland Yard guards, she took the next 20 minutes to circle around each table and shake hands with each and every guest. People were so enthused and felt so touched by her personal warmth, lack of pompousness and genuine human caring.

When she came to our table, she stopped and kneeled down to meet my 5-year-old daughter Bracha eye-to-eye. She shook her little hand and had a short conversation. She asked Bracha her name and her age, and looked as if she was genuinely enjoying herself.

A dinner at the Knesset concluded the trip, and there were many important guests and speakers. Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu spoke, Mayor of Jerusalem Ehud Olmert spoke, Senator Joe Biden spoke, New Jersey Governor Christine Whitman spoke. Of course, each speaker was introduced, with their many accomplishments listed. During this time, the dinner participants had been served the salad course only. When it came Lady Thatcher's turn to speak, she got up and said only a few words, announcing that she had just ripped up her prepared speech "to ribbons." Then she declared, "I have never lost an election and this is because I can read a crowd. This crowd is hungry. As a woman and mother, I say 'Serve dinner!'"

As she sat down to tremendous applause, I was reminded of the quality that God values above all in a great leader. Both Moses and David were shepherds who were chosen to lead the Jewish people because they showed compassion for small defenseless lambs. It was when each had demonstrated this trait that God said "You who tend little sheep with such mercy will be a compassionate leader for My people."

Lady Thatcher brought home this important lesson about what makes people truly great: It is their sensitivity to the people they don't have to care about or be nice to. That's when you see their true character.

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

There is nothing like a great leader, and in my opinion, Hillary and Nancy are nothing like a great leader. But Maggie Thatcher sure is. G-d bless her.

Elliot

Itsdb answered on 03/16/07:

Amen, thanks Elliot. I actually miss Lady Thatcher, and wish the world had more like her.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/15/07 - None dare call it treason

Democratic Party Chairman Howard Dean has been meeting with world leaders to repair "the extraordinary damage" that the Bush administration has done to America's image and to prepare the way for a new Democratic president.

"I am trying to build relationships with other governments in preparation for a Democratic takeover," Dean told me. "I want to make clear that there is an opposition in America and that we are ready to take power and that when we do, we are going to have much better relationships with them.".........

Dean is very concerned about world affairs and believes that after the November election in 2008, the president-elect should take a month off and travel the world to bolster America's image.

"During the Cold War, we certainly had people who didn't like us, but they respected us," Dean said. "Now, unfortunately, they don't like us and they don't respect us. And that needs to be fixed. And I consider one of my informal jobs to help fix it with moonbat lefty like-minded world leaders so we do have some relationships."...............

I asked Dean if he agreed with some in his party who say that things look so good for the Democrats in 2008, they virtually can't lose.

"That is what I call magical thinking, and Democrats have been very guilty of it for a long time," Dean said. "I don't admire much about Republicans, but one thing I do admire is that they don't engage in magical thinking." (every once in a while there is some truth in what he says )

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Can we question his patriotism now?

When he says that he has been on the road meeting with like minded leaders he meams he has been hob-nobbing with groups like European Progressive Party Leaders .

"Progressives are the party of "we" vs. Conservatives who are the party of "me".

Well yeah ,liberty and freedom is a concept built around the individual, the "me" . Collectivism, socialism or communisim, is built aroung the "us" or the collective.


"Progressive parties are the parties of innovative solutions...We believe that American policy should no longer deny that global warming exists. The E.U. has led the way in understanding how dangerous global warming is and, America should be your partner. "

or in other words here comes carbon trading schemes and energy taxes as national policy .

It's bad enough when elected members of Congress go overseas to undermine policy ,but Dr. Dean is an unelected political hack .It is also quite clear that the party has adopted the Ted Kennedy strategy of doing everything it can do to undermine US interests for pure party advantage (Ted Kennedy made multiple overtures to the Soviets seeking to undermine President Reagan).

Hate to burst his bubble btw ,but Ségolène Royal has taken a major hit in the polls in the French elections and whoever is President of the US after 2008 may just have to deal with Nicolas Sarkozy .








Itsdb answered on 03/15/07:

I would dare call it treason, I believe all the posturing and all the witch hunting during the past 4 years by the left, including and especially this Democratic congress and their party reps - are treasonous. They are literally on a feeding frenzy right now and the best interests of this country are not at the heart of it.

The guy that wrote this article even makes the claim that one of Dean's "significant contributions" was "he ushered in a new era of aggressive in-your-face campaigning". Yeah, that's a done a lot to heal the country and set it on the right course ... just like the current feeding frenzy. It's going to backfire - I hope. Could that be why the GOP is laying low, waiting for them to self-destruct?

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 03/14/07 - 'nother sue crazy knucklehead

Man sues IBM over firing, says he's an Internet addict
POSTED: 11:17 a.m. EST, February 18, 2007
• Man says he needs sympathy, treatment for Internet addiction
• James Pacenza was fired by IBM for visiting adult chat room on work computer
• Attorney: Pacenza's Web surfing at work no different from other IBM employees
• Company says its policy is clear, and Pacenza had been warned in past

WHITE PLAINS, New York (AP) -- A man who was fired by IBM for visiting an adult chat room at work is suing the company for $5 million, claiming he is an Internet addict who deserves treatment and sympathy rather than dismissal.

James Pacenza, 58, of Montgomery, says he visits chat rooms to treat traumatic stress incurred in 1969 when he saw his best friend killed during an Army patrol in Vietnam.

In papers filed in federal court in White Plains, Pacenza said the stress caused him to become "a sex addict, and with the development of the Internet, an Internet addict." He claimed protection under the American with Disabilities Act.

His lawyer, Michael Diederich, says Pacenza never visited pornographic sites at work, violated no written IBM rule and did not surf the Internet any more or any differently than other employees. He also says age discrimination contributed to IBM's actions. Pacenza, 55 at the time, had been with the company for 19 years and says he could have retired in a year.

International Business Machines Corp. has asked Judge Stephen Robinson for a summary judgment, saying its policy against surfing sexual Web sites is clear. It also claims Pacenza was told he could lose his job after an incident four months earlier, which Pacenza denies.

"Plaintiff was discharged by IBM because he visited an Internet chat room for a sexual experience during work after he had been previously warned," the company said.

IBM also said sexual behavior disorders are specifically excluded from the ADA and denied any age discrimination.
Study: Some choose Internet over food, sleep

If it goes to trial, the case could affect how employers regulate Internet use that is not work-related, or how Internet overuse is categorized medically. Stanford University issued a nationwide study last year that found that up to 14 percent of computer users reported neglecting work, school, families, food and sleep to use the Internet.

The study's director, Dr. Elias Aboujaoude, said then that he was most concerned about the numbers of people who hid their nonessential Internet use or used the Internet to escape a negative mood, the same way that alcoholics might.

Until he was fired, Pacenza was making $65,000 a year operating a machine at a plant in East Fishkill that makes computer chips.

Several times during the day, machine operators are idle for five to 10 minutes as the tool measures the thickness of silicon wafers.

It was during such down time on May 28, 2003, that Pacenza logged onto a chat room from a computer at his work station.

Diederich says Pacenza had returned that day from visiting the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington and logged onto a site called ChatAvenue and then to an adult chat room.
Looking for 'titillating conversation'

Pacenza, who has a wife and two children, said using the Internet at work was encouraged by IBM and served as "a form of self-medication" for post-traumatic stress disorder. He said he tried to stay away from chat rooms at work, but that day, "I felt I needed the interactive engagement of chat talk to divert my attention from my thoughts of Vietnam and death."

"I was tempting myself to perhaps become involved in some titillating conversation," he said in court papers.

Pacenza said he was called away before he got involved in any online conversation. But he apparently did not log off, and when another worker went to Pacenza's station, he saw some chat entries, including a vulgar reference to a sexual act.

He reported his discovery to his boss, who fired Pacenza the next day.

Pacenza says he would have understood if IBM had disciplined him for taking an unauthorized break, but firing him was too extreme.
Pacenza: Couple who had sex on desk merely transferred

He argues that other workers with worse offenses were disciplined less severely -- including a couple who had sex on a desk and were transferred.

Fred McNeese, a spokesman for Armonk-based IBM, would not comment.

Pacenza claims the company decided on dismissal only after improperly viewing his medical records, including psychiatric treatment, following the incident.

"In IBM management's eyes, plaintiff has an undesirable and self-professed record of psychological disability related to his Vietnam War combat experience," his papers claim.

Diederich says IBM workers who have drug or alcohol problems are placed in programs to help them, and Pacenza should have been offered the same. Instead, he says, Pacenza was told there were no programs for sex addiction or other psychological illnesses. He said Pacenza was also denied an appeal.

Diederich, who said he spent a year in Iraq as an Army lawyer, also argued that "A military combat veteran, if anyone, should be afforded a second chance, the benefit of doubt and afforded reasonable accommodation for combat-related disability."

Itsdb answered on 03/15/07:

"I was tempting myself to perhaps become involved in some titillating conversation"

I don't think that falls under the ADA guidelines against discrimination. Now, no doubt there can be benefits from chatrooms targeted for certain disorders, but it's awfully easy to get carried away and start lookinmg for those titillating conversations instead. And that is a choice Pacenza must be held accountable for, not treated as a victim.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/14/07 - Schumer's selective memory

Yesterday he was on a roll . I haven't seen him so worked up since the last time he got between a camera and (fill in the blank) .

News that the White House was involved in the decision to replace the U.S. attorneys - reportedly after complaints from GOP senators that they failed to probe voting fraud - may have "shaken" Sen. Chuck Schumer's "faith," as he put it yesterday, while looking stern for the cameras.

But that doesn't alter the fact that even Schumer, if pressed, would have to concede that U.S. Attorneys are political employees - and, as such, they serve strictly at the pleasure of the president.



But it goes even deeper than that .Chucky is saying that they were fired because a Republican Senator put the squeeze on the White House and was making inquires into an ongoing investigation.

Pressure and inquires that appear to resemble this :

January 22, 2004
The Honorable James Comey
United States Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20530

Dear Deputy Attorney General Comey:

I write to request an update on the investigation into allegations that senior administration officials committed a federal felony by leaking the identity of a covert CIA operative.

The investigation has been underway for four months now and we have received no meaningful reports regarding the progress you are making. I realize there are limitations on information that can be disclosed regarding an ongoing criminal investigation, but, as we have discussed, a prosecutor has the responsibility to assure public confidence in criminal investigations, especially those of such a serious nature.

In the wake of recent calls by former intelligence operatives for a Congressional investigation, I write to ask that you publicly answer several questions regarding the progress you are making:

Has a grand jury been empaneled in this case? Have members of the White House staff signed waivers, permitting journalists to discuss confidential communications? If so, what percent of the White House staff has signed such waivers? Has anyone who has been asked to sign such a waiver refused to do so?

Have journalists been interviewed as part of the investigation? Has any journalist who has been released from confidentiality (assuming any has), refused to answer questions regarding previously confidential communications?

Were White House staffers ordered as a condition of employment to submit to interviews? Has anyone asked for or been offered immunity? If so, how many individuals fit in each category and what types of immunity have been asked for and offered to each?

What other information can you provide us regarding the progress you are making with this investigation?

I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Sincerely,
Charles E. Schumer
United States Senator


But part of this is the continued lame response by the Republicans to relentless assaults by the Democrats ;evident by the lame mea culpa by Att Gen Gonzales. As an example ;did the Repubicans enmass demand Chucky step down when his flunkies were dumpster-diving forging for Michael Steele's private papers during the 2006 campaign. Schumer et al have shown a blue print on how the game is to be played .It's time for the Republicans to get in the game .

Itsdb answered on 03/14/07:

You know tom I do not get it, why the Reps aren't fighting back - or is it some part of the strategy?

Something that Schmucky and Hillary are overlooking is, didn't Janet Reno fire all 93 federal prosecutos back in 1993?

    She was not in charge from the beginning. Upon taking office, in an unexplained departure from the practice of recent Administrations, Miss Reno suddenly fired all 93 U.S. attorneys. She said the decision had been made in conjunction with the White House. Translation: The President ordered it.


Nah, I'm sure they aren't overlooking it, just ignoring it. They will stop at nothing in their quest to destroy Bush - heck, I bet in December of 2008 they'll still be going after him.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/13/07 - At the Nevada debate


By William Tate
[Satire]


"Welcome to the Nevada Democratic Party presidential debate. My Name is Tim Russert and I'll be you moderator tonight--"


"Excuse me, Tim."


"Yes, candidate Edwards?"


"As you know, Tim, we simply refuse to appear on any media outlet that doesn't present a lib... uh, a fair perspective of this election. And I'm afraid that, before we continue, we need to establish your credentials."


"I'm the Washington bureau chief of NBC News and the host of Meet the Press."


"All well and good, Tim, but I was referring to your background in politics."


"Well, Mister Edwards, I used to work for Democratic Senator Daniel Moynhihan."


"I don't know if that passes muster, Tim. Moynihan could be kind of independent. Anything else?"


"I also worked for Mario Cuomo."


"More like it! He's a true Democrat."


"Oh, and I waived my normally sacrosanct journalistic responsibility to protect my sources in order to help convict Scooter Libby."


"Well, okay. We'll let you proceed ... for now."


"Thank you so much, Mister Edwards. I won't let you down. I promise.


Joining me on tonight's panel is the host of ABC's This Week, George Stephanopoulos."


"Good evening, Tim."


"Uh, Tim?"


"Yes, Mister Edwards?"


"Before we proceed, I'm afraid, Mister Stephanopolous, that we need to establish your credentials to ask non-biased questions of presidential candidates."


"Well, I don't really have too many journalistic credentials, Mister Edwards."


"We don't care about that, George. What about your politics?"


"I served as a senior advisor to President Clinton."


"Is that all?"


"I helped him get elected."


"Hmm. I'll have to think about that."


"While you're doing that, candidate Edwards, let me introduce the other member of tonight's panel, my colleague at NBC News, Chris Matthews. Chris is the host of..."


"Tim?"


"Yes, Mister Edwards?"


"I think we need to establish--"


"I know, the credentials..."


"I was an aide to Tip O'Neill, you southern nitwit. You simply can't get more Democrat than that."


"Just one job, Chris?"


"I was a speech writer for President Carter, pretty boy."


"Oh. I guess you're okay."


"Unfortunately, because of time constraints, we can't make similar introductions for the rest of our unbiased panel, which includes representatives from the New York Times, the Washington Post, CBS, PBS, CNN, NPR, Time, Newsweek, and, at the far end down there, the one in the red dress, Helen Thomas."


"George W. Bush is still the worst president ever, Tim!"


"Yes, well. Thank you Helen. We'll start with opening statements from our selected candidates. The order of those statements was determined by random drawing--"


"Tim?"


"Again, Mister Edwards?"


"I would like to make a formal protest to the results of that drawing.


My campaign staff has determined that it was conducted by someone who we suspect may have once watched the Fox News Channel."


"Your protest is duly noted. Now, we'll start with the opening statement of candidate Edwards."


"Thanks, Tim. Let me start by stating how glad I am that we are able to have this debate in front of such an unbiased media panel. As candidates for the highest office in the land, we have an obligation to talk to everyone ... so long as they agree with us."


"Candidate Obama?"


"This nation is at a critical point in its history, Tim. This election presents us with a clear choice: to appear on the Fox News Channel, or not. I, for one, want to inspire America ... to avoid FNC."


"Candidate Clinton."


"Tim, unlike my opponents, I actually have experience in dealing with the country's problems. I have avoided Fox News Channel for years. But that's not all. I'd like to announce tonight that my attorneys have filed suit to prevent FNC from saying my name or showing my picture on air ... unless the face is blurred, and then only from the waist up."


"Alright, it's time for our unbiased panelists to ask questions. George?"


"This question is for all the candidates, Tim. Candidates, who do you think is more evil: Satan or George W. Bush?"


"Bush."


"Bush."


"Bush."


"Uh, Tim?"


"Yes, Mister Edwards?"


"Could I amend my response? Bush ... and the Fox News Channel."


"Now an unbiased question from Chris Matthews."


"Alright, you slack-jawed spineless substitute for real Democrats, the current administration has run roughshod over the constitution, which leads me to ask, which part of the constitution is most important to you? Senator Obama?"


"All of it, Chris. But especially the part that allows senators to make money in their blind trusts."


"Senator Clinton?"


"Well, Chris, I have studied the constitution extensively looking for legal loopholes ... uh ... I mean, overlooked details, and I find the part that allows presidents to grant pardons to be very important."


"Mister Edwards?"


"Why the right to free speech, of course.

Itsdb answered on 03/13/07:

LOL, but where's Kucinich? Oh that's right, he's already got his vote locked up.

tomder55 rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/13/07 - Arctic Global Warming awareness trek cancelled ......

....because the adventurers got frost bite .

Details here

Then there was the cold — quite a bit colder, Atwood said, then Bancroft and Arnesen had expected. One night they measured the temperature inside their tent at 58 degrees below zero, and outside temperatures were exceeding 100 below zero at times, Atwood said. "My first reaction when they called to say there were calling it off was that they just sounded really, really cold," Atwood said. She said Bancroft and Arnesen were applying hot water bottles to Arnesen's foot every night, but had to wake up periodically because the bottles froze.

What would the Goracle say about that ?

Itsdb answered on 03/13/07:

About all I can say is, it's a cryin' shame the Goracle wasn't on that trek. He could use a little humbling.

tomder55 rated this answer Excellent or Above Average Answer

Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/12/07 - Like Libby Like Zimmerman

BY JOHN BATCHELOR
March 7, 2007
URL: http://www.nysun.com/article/49981

The dangerous elements of the Wilson Plame Affair, or Libbygate, where one American citizen has been found guilty of felonies, are war, intelligence gathering, espionage, presidency, American public, credibility, press, partisanship, and falsehood.

Once before in American history, the American people were asked to make a profound decision about war based upon disputable and unverifiable intelligence evidence without any more certainty than was true in 2003 with regard to the Iraq war.

And it is fair to measure the Bush administration today not on the basis of the clumsy, inarticulate, and peculiar falsehoods of one man, but rather on how it handled the intelligence it had at the time and how it regarded its mission to persuade the American public to go to war.

It was the Zimmerman Telegram affair, in the winter of 1917, and it turned America from a prospering neutral into a belligerent in World War I. What is striking is that the same values were at risk during the Zimmerman Telegram affair as are found in the Wilson Plame Affair: the fate of the world, the worth of intelligence, the nastiness of espionage, the truthfulness of the president to the American people, and the manipulation of the press and enemies to win a debate.

The long-term result of the Zimmerman affair was invasion, massacre, chaos, revolution, and collapse and America entangled in a series of long, draining wars over 70 years on a distant continent. But at the time, an immediate result was much argument about intelligence in Washington, Mexico, London, and Berlin. And by no means was the debate settled to anyone's satisfaction, especially not to the American people's comfort.

The established facts now, after all the parties are gone, are that the German foreign office conceived of a plan to entice Mexico to declare war on America in order for Mexico to recapture its lost territory of the Western states, which would keep America too preoccupied to enter the war against Germany. The Mexicans were also told that the Japanese would fight alongside them.

This whole plot was outlined in a single telegram, written by the German foreign secretary, Arthur Zimmerman, and sent by American diplomatic cable — provided free of charge by the peace-loving President Wilson — to Mexico City via Copenhagen, London, and New York.

The sneaky British secretly intercepted it in London, but this left the British in a quandary. How could they convince the "Too proud to fight" Wilson that it was a true telegram? And how could they do this without offending America by admitting Britain was spying on American peacemaking efforts?

The British gambit to convince Wilson was farfetched, involving stealing another version of the telegram in Mexico City, decoding it, and then delivering it to the American ambassador in London, claiming it was the product of a confidential friend, Senor H, which was a bald lie.

Wilson was handed the product on February 25. He blinked, since it upset his worldview, and passed it to the open press on March 1.

Still, no one much wanted to believe it. Mexico was going to invade America to retake California? And the Japanese were going to attack the Philippines and Hawaii?

After a month of debate in Congress, influenced heavily by the German decision to launch unrestricted submarine warfare against American shipping that was profitable for Wall Street, Congress acceded to Wilson's request for a declaration of war.

Recently, the original of the decoded telegram handed by the British to the American ambassador in London, who sent it on to Wilson, was discovered in a trunk. Most of the rest of the paper trail was destroyed. Ask yourself now, how did Wilson, Congress, the American press, and the American people know at the time that the Zimmerman Telegram wasn't entirely a British fabrication?

The true answer is that, at the time it most mattered, no one had any confidence in the Zimmerman Telegram. It was a true work of intelligence gathering, but no one could prove it. And it was also an espionage trick of the desperate British, but no one could prove it.

And it made it easier for Wilson to convince the public to support a war declaration when it was released to the press, but the press had no verification when they published it. And it made it easier for Congress to declare war on April 6, 1917, but not one member who voted affirmative could be certain that the telegram was a valid document.

The Bush administration's intelligence on the war in 2003 was vastly better than Wilson's was on Germany in 1917. And if Wilson had sent an ex-ambassador to Mexico City to ask a preposterous question, "Are the Japanese going to join you in an attack on America?" and the agent had returned to Wilson, via State, "There is no evidence, sir," and then written it up for the New York Times, we can suppose a proto-Libby might have invented himself while the Wilson administration campaigned in the newspapers for war.

When someday 90 years from now documents are found in a trunk that demonstrate there was a fantastic conspiracy to procure nuclear weapons for Iraq as well as its kindred of Cain, Libby will still be guilty of lying under oath to a federal grand jury.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
From the pen of Joe Wilson:
I spent the next eight days drinking sweet mint tea and meeting with dozens of people: current government officials, former government officials, people associated with the country's uranium business. It did not take long to conclude that it was highly doubtful that any such transaction had ever taken place.

The conversation went something like this :

Are you sell uranium to Iraq ?

No .

Well thank you for your time ....care for some tea ?

Yes ;there were apparently forged documents discovered but the fact is that three years before the fake documents became public,intelligence sources from a number of countries picked up repeated discussion of an illicit trade in uranium from Niger. One of the customers discussed by the traders was Iraq.

Ironically ;one of the WMD retrieved from Iraq was a large qty. of yellow cake uranium. Gotta wonder where that came from .




Itsdb answered on 03/12/07:

Interesting parallel ... and interesting that this story by the NY Times received so little attention and publicity. But then, what's a few hundred tons of uranium here and there when you've got a trophy to bag...

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/11/07 - The 2 gators

Two alligators were relaxing in the swamp talking.
The smaller one turned to the bigger one and said,

"I can't understand how you kin be so much bigger 'n me.We're the same age, and we was the same size as kids.I just don't get it."


"Well," said the big 'gator, "What you been eatin', boy?"


"Politicians, same as you," replied the small 'gator.



"Hmm. Well, where do y'all catch 'em?"



"Down 'tother side of the swamp near the parkin' lot by the capitol."


"Same here. Hmm. How do you catch 'em?"


"Well, I crawls up into one of them Lexus
and wait fer one to open the car door.

Then I jump out, grab 'em on the leg,
shake the sh*t out of 'em, and eat 'em!"

"Ah!" says the big alligator,
"I think I see your problem.
You ain't gettin' any real nourishment."

"See, by the time you get done shakin'
the sh*t out of a Politician,there ain't nothin' left but an a**hole and a briefcase!"



Itsdb answered on 03/12/07:

That much left, eh? LOL...

Democrat in Hell

While walking down the street one day, a Democrat head of state is tragically hit by a truck and dies. His soul arrives in heaven and is met by St. Peter at the entrance.

"Welcome to Heaven," says St. Peter. "Before you settle in, it seems there is a problem. We seldom see a high official around these parts, you see, so we're not sure what to do with you."

"No problem, just let me in." says the Democrat.

"Well, I'd like to but I have orders from higher up. What we'll do is have you spend one day in Hell and one in Heaven. Then you can choose where to spend eternity."

"Really, I've made up my mind. I want to be in Heaven," says the Democrat head of state.

"I'm sorry but we have our rules." And with that, St. Peter escorts the Democrat to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to Hell. The doors open and he finds himself in the middle of a green golf course. In the distance is a club and standing in front of it are all his friends and other politicians who had worked with him, everyone is very happy and in evening dress. They run to greet him, hug him, and reminisce about the good times they had while getting rich at expense of the people. They play a friendly game of golf and then dine on lobster and caviar. Also present is the Devil (a Democrat, too), who really is a very friendly guy who has a good time dancing and telling jokes.

They are having such a good time that, before he realizes it, it is time to go. Everyone gives him a big hug and waves while the elevator rises. The elevator goes up, up, up and the door reopens on Heaven where St. Peter is waiting for him.

"Now it's time to visit Heaven." So 24 hours pass with the Democrat head of state joining a group of contented souls moving from cloud to cloud, playing the harp and singing. They have a good time and, before he realizes it, the 24 hours have gone by and St. Peter returns.

"Well then, you've spent a day in Hell and another in Heaven. Now choose your eternity."

He reflects for a minute, then the head of state answers: "Well, I would never have thought it, I mean Heaven has been delightful, but I think I would be better off in Hell."

So Saint Peter escorts him to the elevator and he goes down, down, down to Hell. Now the doors of the elevator open and he is in the middle of a barren land covered with waste and garbage. He sees all his friends, dressed in rags, picking up the trash and putting it in black bags. The Devil comes over to the Democrat and lays an arm on his neck.

"I don't understand," stammers the Democrat head of state. Yesterday I was here and there was a golf course and club and we ate lobster and caviar and danced and had a great time. Now all there is a wasteland full of garbage and my friends look miserable.

The Devil looks at him, smiles and says, "Yesterday we were campaigning. Today you voted for us!"

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 03/11/07 - a start anyway at disillusionment of Moore fans

USTIN, Texas - As documentary filmmakers, Debbie Melnyk and Rick Caine looked up to Michael Moore.

Then they tried to do a documentary of their own about him — and ran into the same sort of resistance Moore himself famously faces in his own films.

The result is "Manufacturing Dissent," which turns the camera on the confrontational documentarian and examines some of his methods. Among their revelations in the movie, which had its world premiere Saturday night at the South by Southwest film festival: That Moore actually did speak with then-General Motors chairman Roger Smith, the evasive subject of his 1989 debut "Roger & Me," but chose to withhold that footage from the final cut.

The husband-and-wife directors spent over two years making the movie, which follows Moore on his college tour promoting 2004's "Fahrenheit 9/11." The film shows Melnyk repeatedly approaching Moore for an interview and being rejected; members of Moore's team also kick the couple out of the audience at one of his speeches, saying they weren't allowed to be shooting there.

At their own premiere Saturday night, the Toronto-based filmmakers expected pro-Moore plants in the audience heckling or trying to otherwise sabotage the screening, but it turned out to be a tame affair.

"It went really well," Melnyk said. "People really liked the film and laughed at the right spots and got the movie and we're really happy about it."

Moore hasn't commented publicly on "Manufacturing Dissent" and Melnyk thinks he never will. He also hasn't responded to several calls and e-mails from The Associated Press.

"There's no point for Michael to respond to the film because then it gives it publicity," she said.

"(President) Bush didn't respond to `Fahrenheit 9/11,' and there's a reason for that," Caine added.

The two were and still are fans of all his movies — including the polarizing "Fahrenheit 9/11," which grossed over $119 million and won the Palme d'Or at the
Cannes Film Festival — and initially wanted to do a biography on him. They traveled to his childhood home of Davison, Mich., visited his high school and traced his early days in politics and journalism.

"The fact that he made documentaries entertaining was extremely influential and got all kinds of people out to see them," said Melnyk, whose previous films with Caine include 1998's "Junket Whore." "Let's face it, he made documentaries popular and that is great for all documentary filmmakers."

"All of these films — `Super Size Me,' `An Inconvenient Truth' — we've all been riding in his wake," said Caine. "There's a nonfiction film revolution going on and we're all beneficiaries of that. For that point alone, he's worth celebrating."

But after four months of unsuccessfully trying to sit down with Moore for an on-camera interview, they realized they needed to approach the subject from a different angle. They began looking at the process Moore employs in his films, and the deeper they dug, the more they began to question him.

The fact that Moore spoke with Smith, including a lengthy question-and-answer exchange during a May 1987 GM shareholders meeting, first was reported in a Premiere magazine article three years later. Transcripts of the discussion had been leaked to the magazine, and a clip of the meeting appeared in "Manufacturing Dissent." Moore also reportedly interviewed Smith on camera in January 1988 at the Waldorf Astoria hotel in New York.

Since then, in the years since "Roger & Me" put Moore on the map, those details seem to have been suppressed and forgotten.

"It was shocking, because to me that was the whole premise of `Roger & Me,'" Melnyk said.

She and Caine also had trouble finding people to talk on camera about Moore, partly because potential interview subjects assumed they were creating a right-wing attack piece; as self-proclaimed left-wingers, they weren't.

Despite what they've learned, the directors still appreciate Moore.

"We're a bit disappointed and disillusioned with Michael," Melnyk said, "but we are still very grateful to him for putting documentaries out there in a major way that people can go to a DVD store and they're right up there alongside dramatic features."

Itsdb answered on 03/11/07:

Hmm, two self-proclaimed left-wingers somewhat disillusioned with Michael Moore making a documentary on his controversial methods named "Manufacturing Dissent?" alGore may have to find a new cause because hell must have frozen over...

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/10/07 - THEY BAGGED BAGHDADI

The Iraqi gvt. says they've arrrested thehead of the 'Islamic State of Iraq'(ISI), Abu Omar al-Baghdadi (Who's your BagDadhi?) in a raid of Abu Ghraib.http://www.usatoday.com/news/world/iraq/2007-03-09-al-baghdadi_N.htm?POE=NEWISVA

The reported arrest followed rumors this week that al-Baghdadi's brother had been arrested in a raid near Tikrit....

Unlike al-Zarqawi, virtually nothing is known of al-Baghdadi, including his real name. It is widely assumed that the name al-Baghdadi was taken as part of a campaign to make al-Qaeda appear more of a homegrown Iraqi movement rather than an organization dominated by foreigners.

Al-AP is deeply saddened by the news.

The ISI is another of those groups that feed from al -Qaeda and Iran (so much for the Shia and Sunni not cooperating ).Did I happen to mention the capture took place at Abu Ghraib ?

But was it a big headline ? With all the talk lately about pursuing al-Qaida and dropping the ball/taking our eyes off the prize , it seemed strange that the capture of the biggest al-Qaida operative in Iraq would get so little coverage. Too busy telling us about the Dems. bolting from a Fox News debate I guess. Did I happen to mention the capture took place at Abu Ghraib ? I sure hope no one makes him wear panties on his head ,but a Saddam necktie seems to be in order. Just a week ago, the ISI posted videos of the executions of 18 Iraqi security troops.

The understated news of this is that it was an Iraqi Army operation . I have heard as yet no news of US involvment .

Itsdb answered on 03/10/07:

Tom, the only 'news' about the 'surge' is that it isn't working, and more importantly that Patraeus insists there is no military solution, and the 'surge' will involve more troops than what President Bush announced in January and is likely to last longer than expected. Little things like the Iraqis getting a huge capture are insignificant.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/09/07 - Polar bears 'thriving as the Arctic warms up'

Pictures of a polar bear floating precariously on a tiny iceberg have become the defining image of global warming but may be misleading, according to a new study.

A survey of the animals' numbers in Canada's eastern Arctic has revealed that they are thriving, not declining , because of mankind's interference in the environment.

In the Davis Strait area, a 140,000-square kilometre region, the polar bear population has grown from 850 in the mid-1980s to 2,100 today.

"There aren't just a few more bears. There are a hell of a lot more bears," said Mitch Taylor, a polar bear biologist who has spent 20 years studying the animals.

His findings back the claims of Inuit hunters who have long claimed that they were seeing more bears.

advertisement"Scientific knowledge has demonstrated that Inuit knowledge was right," said Mr Taylor.

While fellow scientists have accepted Mr Taylor's findings, critics point out that his study was commissioned by the Inuit-dominated government of Nunavit.

Critics claim the government has an agenda to encourage polar bear hunting and keep the animals off the endangered species list.

In small Inuit communities, hunters kill bears that wander too close to human settlements and, in this particular region, they are licensed to kill six polar bears a year.

Polar bear experts said that numbers had increased not because of climate change but due to the efforts of conservationists.

The battle to ban the hunting of Harp seal pups has meant the seal population has soared - boosting the bears' food supply.

At the same time, fewer seal hunters are around to hunt bears.

"I don't think there is any question polar bears are in danger from global warming," said Andrew Derocher of the World Conservation Union, and a professor of biological sciences at the University of Alberta in Edmonton. "People who deny that have a clear interest in hunting bears."

Bear numbers on the west coast of Hudson's Bay had shrunk by 22 per cent over the past decade, he said.

"They are declining due to global warming and changes in when the ice freezes and melts in Hudson's Bay," he added. He and other scientists in his group are concerned that the retreating ice in the Arctic may pose a danger to future generations of polar bears because of 'habitat loss'. "The critical problem is the sea ice is changing. "We're looking ahead three generations, 30 to 50 years.

"To say that bear populations are growing in one area now is irrelevant."

However, Prof Derocher conceded that some polar bear-related evidence of the damaging effect of global warming was misplaced.

Contrary to concern over a celebrated photograph of a bear and its cub floating on a tiny iceberg, the animals often travel in that way, he said.

"Bears will often hang out on glacier ice or large pieces of multi-year ice," he said.

The state of Alaska yesterday questioned the scientific justification for proposals to add polar bears to the US endangered species list.

Tina Cunnings, a biologist attached to the Alaskan government, questioned whether they needed sea ice to survive, saying they could adapt to hunt on land and find alternative food sources to seals.

Prof Derocher said the theory was "absolutely fanciful".




Itsdb answered on 03/09/07:

I am literally amazed at what some people will say.

>>While fellow scientists have accepted Mr Taylor's findings, critics point out that his study was commissioned by the Inuit-dominated government of Nunavit.<<

What? They accept the findings ... BUT, there must be a problem because of who funded it, as if that somehow changes the facts.

>>"I don't think there is any question polar bears are in danger from global warming ... People who deny that have a clear interest in hunting bears."<<

Huh? Yeah, I have a clear interest in hunting polar bears. I don't know what it is but I must have because he said so.

>>questioned whether they needed sea ice to survive, saying they could adapt to hunt on land and find alternative food sources to seals.

Prof Derocher said the theory was "absolutely fanciful".<<

According to Seaworld, "The most southerly dwelling polar bears live year-round in James Bay, Canada."

Here's a pic of James Bay:



Apparently some can do alright without sea ice.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 03/09/07 - school issues

I have heard for over 10 years about how the schools are not only teaching kids to accept the gay lifestyle but to also consider it for their own self. Sort of like try it you might like it leave your options open.

Booklet on Homosexual Tolerance Sent to Nation's Schools
By Jim Burns
CNS Senior Staff Writer
23 November, 1999

(CNSNews.com) - A coalition of medical, mental health, educational and religious groups today is sending the nation's 14,700 public school districts a 12-page booklet outlining "just the facts" about homosexuality.

The Just the Facts Coalition - including the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Psychological Association, and the National Education Association -- said the booklet "provides information that will help school administrators and educators to create safe and healthy environments in which all students can achieve to the best of their ability."

The New York Times reports that among other things, the book says there is "no support" for the idea that homosexuality is abnormal or mentally unhealthy. It also says "therapy directed specifically at changing sexual orientation ... can provoke guilt and anxiety while having little or no potential for achieving changes in orientation."

Conservative groups say the booklet isn't factual - it's propaganda.

Janet Parshall, chief spokeswoman for the Family Research Council (FRC) told the newspaper, "If they're going to talk about the facts, here's a fact: All the major religions of the world consider homosexuality wrong."

But homosexual advocacy groups applaud the effort. Kevin Jennings, executive director of the Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network called the booklet's mailing a "history changing moment." Jennings said, "The entire mainstream education and mental health establishment has said that it isn't lesbian, gay and bisexual students who need to change, it is the conditions in our schools that need to change."

The booklet is entitled "Just the Facts About Sexual Orientation and Youth." It is divided into chapters, including sections on how sexual orientation develops; reparative therapy, transformational ministries and other efforts to try to help homosexuals change their sexual orientation, and laws protecting gay men and lesbians from discrimination.

Bruce Hunter, director of public affairs for the American Association of School Administrators said his organization agreed with the booklet's message and believes the booklet is likely to be used by school administrators based on community values.

Hunter also said, "There are many communities in this country that are just too conservative for that and I trust superintendents know their communities. On the other hand, when push comes to shove, occasionally you have to stand up and we would hope they would stand up for tolerance."

Other coalition members endorsing the booklet are the American Federation of Teachers (AFT), the National Association of Social Workers, the National Association of School Psychologists and the Interfaith Alliance Foundation.


Walter Cronkite endorses Campaign to Force Christianity out of U.S. Public Life
US “First Amendment First” Campaign Targets Churches, Religious Groups

By Gudrun Schultz

SAN JOSE, California, February 28, 2007 (LifeSiteNews.com) - A new campaign to force Christian influence out of the public sphere was launched last week in San Jose, California, in response to what is seen as a returning strength of religious organizations in American society.

Led by members of the Interfaith Alliance, an organization dedicated to countering the influence of the conservative Christian Coalition on federal politics, the new campaign is designed to promote policies that would silence the political voice of the “religious right.”

Called ‘First Amendment First’, the campaign has been billed as a defense of the separation of church and state, which organizers claim is threatened by religious organizations’ involvement in political lobbying and endorsement of candidates.

Recommendations promoted by the campaign would see sweeping bans imposed on church activities affecting public policy, including a prohibition on church endorsement of political candidates. Research and health policies should not be founded on “religious doctrine”, the campaign states and a ban should be imposed on schools promoting a particular religion.

As well, campaign petitions include an end to state funding of any charitable organization that “discriminates in its hiring” or requires people hold a particular faith to receive services.

American news personality Walter Cronkite, a veteran of US media, endorsed the campaign, as did the Rev. Welton Gaddy, president of the Interfaith Alliance.

Cronkite, now 90, served as anchor for CBS Evening News from 1962 to 1981. He is the spokesman and honorary chairman of the Alliance, which includes multi-faith and atheistic members. In addition to opposing religious influence on politics, the organization is dedicated to promoting public acceptance of homosexuality, calling for an end to “discrimination based on sexual orientation.”


Itsdb answered on 03/09/07:

Well if it's backed by the NEA it must be ok. Geez, what next? Perhaps a little "thought reform" like Michigan State?

    AST LANSING, Mich., December 14, 2006—It may be almost 2007, but it feels more like “1984” at Michigan State University. The university’s Student Accountability in Community Seminar (SAC) forces students whose speech or behavior is deemed unacceptable to undergo ideological reeducation at their own expense. The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) is challenging Michigan State to dismantle this unconstitutional program, which presents a profound threat to both freedom of speech and freedom of conscience.

    “Michigan State’s SAC program is simply one of the most invasive attempts at reeducation that FIRE has ever seen, yet it has been allowed to exist at the university for years,” FIRE President Greg Lukianoff said. “As bad as it is to tell citizens in a free society what they can’t say, it is even worse to tell them what they must say. Michigan State’s program is an immoral and unconstitutional program of compelled speech, blatant thought reform, and pseudo-psychology.”

    According to the program’s materials, SAC is an “early intervention” for students who use such “power-and-control tactics” as “male/white privilege” and “obfuscation,” which the university cryptically defines as “any action of obscuring, concealing, or changing people’s perceptions that result in your advantage and/or another’s disadvantage.” Students can be required to attend SAC if they demonstrate what a judicial administrator arbitrarily deems aggressive behavior, past examples of which have included slamming a door during an argument or playing a practical joke. Students can also be required to attend SAC for engaging in various types of constitutionally protected speech, including “insulting instructors” or “making sexist, homophobic, or racist remarks at a meeting.” When participation in SAC is required, “non-compliance typically results in a hold being placed on the student’s account,” an action that leaves the student unable to register for classes and thus effectively expelled from the university. Students are required to pay the cost of the SAC sessions.

    Once in the program, students are instructed to answer a series of written questionnaires. In their answers, students must specifically describe how they are taking “full responsibility” for their offensive behavior and must do so using language that the director of the session deems acceptable. Most students will be asked to fill out this questionnaire multiple times, slowly inching closer to what administrators deem to be “correct” responses.


I'm sure the NEA would back that one, too. As for "the campaign to force Christian influence out of the public sphere," at least they're coming right out and admitting what many of us have known all along.

En Garde!

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 03/08/07 - I want one to scrap!

Four F-14 fighter jets seized at two California airfields

03:20 PM MST on Wednesday, March 7, 2007

By SHARON McNARY
The Press-Enterprise

Federal authorities seized four F-14 Tomcat fighter jets from two air museums in Chino and a Victorville company on Tuesday, declaring that a Navy official improperly sold them.
Story continues below
Terry Pierson / The Press-Enterprise
William J. Hayes, an assistant special agent with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, right, stands with an agency officer near one of the F-14 Tomcats seized at the Chino Airport.

Featured in the 1986 film "Top Gun," the Navy stopped using its fleet of F-14s last year.

Two Tomcats were seized at Yanks Air Museum, and a third at Planes of Fame, both located at the Chino Airport.

A Yanks employee, who showed the plane to an undercover investigator in 2005, bragged that he had rebuilt the F-14 from parts and that it still had its afterburners, which give a jet extra thrust, according to an affidavit prepared by an investigator with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.

The fourth Tomcat, used as a prop on the TV show "JAG," about military lawyers, was seized at Aviation Warehouse, a business tenant of the Southern California Logistics Airport in Victorville.

The seizure was intended, in part, to prevent the non-functioning jets or their parts from being bought by U.S. companies acting on behalf of Iran, the only country whose air force still flies the F-14, the affidavit said.

The Inland owners of the jets are not suspected of supplying parts to Iran, according to a federal agent involved in the investigation.

A Navy official sold three of the planes to a scrap dealer, who sold them to a used aircraft dealer who sold them to Yanks, which sold one to Planes of Fame. The Navy official sold the fourth plane to a scrap dealer which resold it to Paramount Pictures, which sold it to the aircraft dealer, according to the affidavit.

The F-14 was introduced in 1972 as a replacement for the Navy's primary fighter, the F-4 Phantom.

The United States permitted the government of Iran to buy F-14s during the 1960s and 1970s under the regime of Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the shah of Iran.

After the fall of the shah and the Iranian hostage crisis, the United States placed an embargo on the trade of parts for the plane, and a flourishing black market developed, the affidavit said.

The Pentagon halted sales of spare parts from its recently retired F-14 fighter jet fleet because of concerns they could be transferred to Iran, The Associated Press reported in February.

Investigators from the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, the Navy Criminal Investigative Service and the Defense Criminal Investigative Service seized the four planes, immigration and customs spokeswoman Virginia Kice said.

The agency has the authority to seize military and technical equipment to prevent it from falling into the hands of terrorists or countries hostile to the United States. The other two agencies have jurisdiction over the disposal of surplus military equipment.

"It is important that we eliminate the vulnerability that any of this technology could be transferred to those who would wish to harm us or our national security," said William Hayes, assistant special agent in charge of investigations for the immigration and customs agency in Orange County.

Headed for Scrap

The planes will be reduced to scrap, Hayes said.

The owners of the airplanes are not suspected of selling spare parts to Iran or any company representing Iran, Hayes said.

Investigators discovered the planes' existence in September 2005 during the probe of a Bakersfield company that is suspected of being a company secretly acting on behalf of the Iranian government.

Federal law requires military aircraft to be destroyed when they are sold as scrap for recycling, but an officer put in charge of disposing of the four planes at Point Mugu Naval Air Station failed to do so, the affidavit said.

Instead, the officer sold relatively intact planes to two scrap metal companies for $2,000 to $4,000 each in 1999, depositing the proceeds in a base "morale, welfare and recreation" account.

An investigation is continuing into the circumstances of those sales,

rest of story


page


Itsdb answered on 03/08/07:

You betcha, even if I couldn't fly it I think it would make an awesome lawn sculpture, it would make my home look rather intimidating ... as long as I didn't plant any azaleas in the intakes :)

Steve

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Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 03/07/07 - A cost of climate change that can't be counted in dollars - survival, or can it?

In a week that has seen one group absolutely refute man's imput into climate change, isn't it time we stoped arguing the why's and started arguing the abatement of the effects? Who is going to make room for the displaced, look after the sick and increase food production to make up for losses? There will be no point Australia opening it's doors to the displaced of the Pacific rim when it's own agriculture will be devistated, or Europe opening it's doors to the displaced of Africa. America already has a migrant problem whether it admits it or not.

Tony McMichael
March 8, 2007

Doubts about the reality of human-induced climate change have largely dissipated, so now we must face the challenge.

The primary and urgent task is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. However, since the climate change genie is already partly out of the bottle, we must also devise ways of adapting and lessening adverse effects.

Much of the early public debate about climate change focused on the need to keep the economy ticking over, protect infrastructure, and maintain tourism and recreational facilities. The real problem, though, goes much deeper. Climate change, if not constrained, is ultimately a biological threat. We have been slow to grasp this fundamental point.

Warming is affecting physical and biotic systems. Icesheets are melting faster than was expected just five years ago. Long-term drying is emerging in southern and western Africa, southern Europe, India and Australia. The seasonal cycles of birds, bugs, bears and buds are changing, and are getting out of kilter with one another. This evidence that climate change is disrupting many of Earth's life-support systems means that human health is also at risk.

Initially, the health risks will be greatest in - though not confined to - poorer and vulnerable populations. Many of these vulnerable populations are in tropical and subtropical regions.

In Australia, climate change (including greater weather variability) will cause more death, illness and injury from heatwaves, storms, floods and bushfires. It will influence the range and seasonality of various infectious diseases. For example, outbreaks of the mosquito-borne viral disease dengue will tend to extend southwards, near the coastlines.

Changes in climate will also impair various ecological processes that underpin our health. Crop yields, for example, will be affected by changes in soil moisture, pollinating insect activity, and temperature-sensitive photosynthesis. Recent research indicates that rice yields will decline with warmer temperatures. Such changes in local food production and, hence, prices will affect food choices, nutrition and health.

Meanwhile, the rising probability of population displacement and environmental refugee flows in much of the Asia-Pacific region, due to climatic and other large-scale environmental changes, will pose other risks to social stability, wellbeing and health.

The severity of this drought raises another worrying prospect. Much of rural southern Australia now seems destined for long-term drying. CSIRO modelling indicates that drought frequency is likely to increase over much of Australia this century.

This prospect of prolonged dry conditions casts a long shadow over the outlook for rural livelihoods and living conditions. Rural communities are likely to suffer a range of adverse effects on their health. Their specific health risks include increased exposures to extremes of heat, airborne dusts, and bushfire smoke.

Mental health may be affected. In the more vulnerable communities, where collective resources and resilience are low, there are well-recognised risks of anxiety, depression and suicide. Child health, too, will be jeopardised - especially in relation to emotional experiences, family tensions and the loss of community facilities for play and development.

There are also issues of fresh water and hygiene; food choices and nutrition; and the effect of economic stresses and community erosion on unhealthy behaviours (such as smoking, alcohol consumption and self-medication). For remote indigenous communities, there is the additional risk of loss of traditional plant and animal food species.

This all poses a major research challenge. We need to understand the health risks. We need to understand how different patterns of community response can modify the impacts on wellbeing and health. This will help us shape intervention strategies, social policies and health-care services.

Such interventions are needed more generally in Australia. We should be developing adaptive strategies to protect communities everywhere against the health risks posed by climate change. This discussion is already well advanced in Europe, Canada and, recently, the US.

Meanwhile, two things are clear. First, some degree of human-induced climate change has very likely already occurred. Second, more warming is in the pipeline from recent greenhouse gas emissions whose climatic effects have not yet been fully realised.

Yet the world community has not really understood the full biological and ecological import of this remarkable human-induced environmental change.

The UK Stern report highlighted the long-term risks from unabated climate change to our economic system. Awareness of the risks to species survival, ecological systems and human health should draw our attention to the more serious, fundamental prospect of damage to the world's life-support system.

Tony McMichael is the director of the National Centre for Epidemiology and Population Health at the Australian National University. This is an edited version of an ABC Radio National's Perspectives program and is based on a paper given yesterday at the National Rural Health Conference.

Itsdb answered on 03/08/07:

>>Climate change, if not constrained, is ultimately a biological threat. We have been slow to grasp this fundamental point.<<

What does he mean 'we?' I don't know a soul that doesn't get that climate change - in the form the consensus has relentlessly bashed us over the head about - is ultimately a biological threat. Perhaps Mr. McMichael lives in a much more sheltered world than I do.

It has nothing to do with us not getting it, it is only that not everyone is buying into the scare. And so people like McMichael are going to step up the fearmongering. It must be a miserable existence to live one's life in constant fear of this impending doom. Me, I think I'll have a glass of pinot noir and relax...

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/08/07 - Gore steps into it a little deeper

Turns out Gore isn't even buying those carbon offsets from the company he owns . He get's em as a perk; they are in fact an employee benefit .

The confusion, Campbell said, arose because GIM pays to offset the energy use of its operations and the personal emissions of its 23 employees, including Gore.

So, the firm will cover the cost to offset the energy use at Gore's home, or his global jet travel, as it would the offset cost of any other employee, Campbell said.

GIM, which Gore started with former Goldman Sachs executive David Blood in 2004, uses the Chicago Climate Exchange and the British-based Carbon Neutral Company to cover the high energy use of GIM and its employees.

Just how lucrative the company is for Gore is unclear.

"Mr. Gore, as a private citizen, does not release his private income,"


Well yeah ,but curious minds want to know does Gore report this as income or is this an allowable tax-exempt employee benefit like employer provide health insurance?

Why was GIM formed in England instead of the US ?Perhaps this explains it :

Investors in Carbon Credits Partnerships are generally likely to be persons with substantial income or capital gains that they wish to shelter from tax - Premiership footballers, investment bankers and directors of the top 100 companies are prime candidates. The potential savings in any example are calculated on the taxpayer being liable at the 40% tax rate.

Partnerships are effectively transparent for UK direct tax purposes, as is a Limited Liability Partnership, in that each partner, or member of the LLP, is usually treated for tax purposes as if he incurred his proportionate share of any partnership trading profit or loss himself. A member of a trading partnership which incurs a loss would usually be able to relieve his share of the trading losses against his income or capital gains.

Expenditure in the first year will almost inevitably give rise to losses which will be, with most partnerships, close to 100% of the investor’s subscription.


Just another rich guy's write-off. Good thing his primary concern is the climate.

Itsdb answered on 03/08/07:

>>Good thing his primary concern is the climate<<

Yes, and the primary concern for the rest of the democrats is for the troops.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/08/07 - Doug Feith

The legend and mythology of the Iraq war is being written by the MSM and the opposition party .The White House has been inept in defending it's position/making it's case so the mythology is becoming written in stone .

One of the most popular versions has a cabal of Neocons led by Dick Cheney ,Paul Wolfowitz and Doug Feith conning the President and manipulating the intel . to rationalize the war.

Doug Feith has criticized the Bush administration for not doing more to respond to the media as it developed the narrative that the president lied the country into war by manipulating intelligence.He is convinced that they will not do so sufficiently so he has taken matters into his own hand .

He set up his own blog site after the Washington Compost wrote a false hit piece about him that was attributed to the office of the Pentagon Inspector General but was in fact the words of Senator Carl Levin. The Compost correction in small letters is here along with the original article.But as usual there was sufficient time laps between the publishing of the article and the correction that the original article has added another chapter to the mythology .

The essence of Feith's argument was that his office properly questioned some of the CIA conclusions and intel. ;not manipulate it. Feith explains on his web site :

This IG report controversy is, in essence, a debate over whether the CIA should be protected against criticism by policy officials. The IG found that the Pentagon's policy organization acted entirely lawfully and with proper authority and did not mislead the Congress. But the IG also offered his opinion that the policy organization's criticism of the CIA was "inappropriate."

In effect, the IG proposed cumbersome regulations for policy officials who want to criticize the CIA. The IG later admitted never having determined if the pre-war criticism of the CIA was actually correct. He called it "inappropriate" whether or not it was right, simply because it deviated from the "consensus of the intelligence community."

The current Under Secretary of Defense for Policy, Eric Edelman, emphatically rejected the IG's opinion on this point. He said that heeding it would discourage policy officials from challenging the CIA. I agree with Mr. Edelman.

The IG got this point wrong and it would be dangerous to follow his badly reasoned opinion on the issue. It would damage the quality of the government's intelligence and policy. The CIA has made important errors over the years - think of the Iraqi WMD assessments. To guard against such errors, policy officials should be praised, not slapped, for challenging CIA products.


Feith said one of the ways to prevent intelligence failures is for consumers of the intelligence to interrogate the suppliers of intelligence more thoroughly, and that's what his office was doing.


So then ;is the CIA perfect ? Is it proper for policy administrators working for the elected President to question the raw intel and conclusions of the CIA ? WE know what happens when you cross the CIA ;they leak intel damaging to the adminstration in question ;especially during the election cycle.If you attempt to make sure the truth is a part of the reporting .....well just ask Scooter Libby how they respond.

Anyway ;it is instructive to open the links to his MEDIA MYTHS VS. FACTS page ;espeically the question of the link between Saddam and al-Qaeda . It is also troubling to contemplate how the false narrative about the Iraq war will be an anchor on the decision makers when considering policy about how to address the Iran growing threat .

Itsdb answered on 03/08/07:

Ah those subtle differences, similar quotes with entirely different meanings by entirely different people. Mistakes happen, right? Just ask George Allen.

I did notice something missing from the Compost's correction, the customary apology. Whenever a correction is printed in my paper they always at least say they "regret the error," but not the Compost.

I'm glad Feith is going on the offensive, it's about time someone did, and maybe, just maybe it will encourage others to get a spine. If not, his effort will just fade into oblivion. It won't get any publicity until the noise is so loud the media can no longer ignore it, and that is what will bring your concerns about Iran to fruition.

Can't wait to see the response from the critics over yonder - it's been rehearsed so much we could write them ourselves :)

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/08/07 - Captain America RIP

dead at 66 .Bumped off by a sniper bullet ? Say it aint so ! The Super Hero who k.o.ed Hitler cannot be offed so easily ! Will Jihadi Joe claim responsibility ?

How long will this last ? After WWII Marvel comics packed the Cap. in pre-global warming iceberg.But we need Captain America today more than ever. First Super Hero registration and now the Cap .being gunned down by a terrorist? What kind of Hillary Clinton alternate universe does Marvel comics live in ?

Itsdb answered on 03/08/07:

Take heart tom, all is not always as it seems - especially when it comes to making money. Joe Gross of the Austin American-Statesman analyzes the 'tragedy' ...

    As mainstream media writes wrings its hand over the “death” of Captain America, here are 12 things to keep in mind:

    1) In most cases, a comic book character only dies when it makes financial sense for him or her to do so.

    2) In most cases, a comic book character only stays dead as long as it makes financial sense for him or her to do so.

    3) In most cases, a comic book character will be revived when it makes financial sense for him or her to do so.

    4)There’s not a tremendous amount of evidence to suggest the “death” of Captain America is any sort of exception to the above three rules. It is “most cases.”

    5) Mainstream media has done this before with the “death” of Superman in 1992.

    6) The Man of Steel didn’t stay dead for all that long.

    7) According to the complex continuity that is the 60-year histroy of the Marvel Universe, other characters have donned the Captain America outfit before.

    8) Right now, the implication is that villian-slaughtering vigilante the Punisher donning the red, white and blue.

    9) Debate is on-going as to whether this would be the very height of cyncism, a savvy marketing ploy, or the very height of cynicism because it is a savvy marketing ploy.

    10) All of this mishigas spins out of the “Civil War” inter-title crossover event over at Marvel, which was actually a neat idea undone by chronic lateness, inconsistent characterization across the company’s titles and some of the very worst super hero comic book writing in recent memory. “Civil War” was also a smash hit.

    11) For those who need more “death” of Captain American news and analysis, check out the always-excellent “Comics Reporter” site.

    12) Anyway, there are lots of excellent comics out there (some of them produced by Marvel, actually) that have nothing to do with any of this. What’s Good will discuss them further when all of this SXSW stuff dies down.

    As you were.


Then again, there's always the notion that Marvel is making a statement "about the divisive national mood."

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 03/07/07 - someone on yahoo asked can my trailer court
do this too???

BOSTON (Reuters) - More than 30 Vermont towns passed resolutions on Tuesday seeking to impeach
President Bush, while at least 16 towns in the tiny New England state called on Washington to withdraw U.S. troops from
Iraq.

Known for picturesque autumn foliage, colonial inns, maple sugar and old-fashion dairy farms, Vermont is in the vanguard of a grass-roots protest movement to impeach Bush over his handling of the unpopular Iraq war.

"We're putting impeachment on the table," said James Leas, a Vermont lawyer who helped to draft the resolutions and is tracking the votes. "The people in all these towns are voting to get this process started and bring the troops home now."

The resolutions passed on Vermont's annual town meeting day -- a colonial era tradition where citizens debate issues of the day big and small -- are symbolic and cannot force Congress to impeach Bush, but they "may help instigate further discussions in the legislature," said state Rep. David Zuckerman.

"The president must be held accountable," said Zuckerman, a politician from Burlington, Vermont's largest city.

After casting votes on budgets and other routine items, citizens of 32 towns in Vermont backed a measure calling on the U.S. Congress to file articles of impeachment against Bush for misleading the nation on Iraq's weapons of mass destruction and for engaging in illegal wiretapping, among other charges.

Five Vermont towns passed similar resolutions last year.

The idea of impeaching Bush resides firmly outside the political mainstream.

The new Democratic-controlled Congress has steered clear of the subject, and Wisconsin Sen. Russell Feingold's call last year to censure Bush -- a step short of an impeachment -- found scant support on Capitol Hill, even among fellow Democrats.

Vermont's congressional delegation has shown no serious interest in the idea.

'SOLDIERS HOME NOW'

Sixteen Vermont towns passed a separate "soldiers home now" resolution calling on the White House, the U.S. Congress and Vermont's elected officials to withdraw troops from Iraq.

"The best way to support them is to bring each and every one of them home now and take good care of them when they get home," the resolution said.

It was unclear how many towns had put the resolutions to a vote, and the results of all the town meetings in the state of about 609,000 people may not be known for days.

Residents of Burlington were voting on a separate question calling for a new investigation into the September 11 attacks.

Voters were asked to circle "yes" or "no" to the question: "Shall Vermont's Congressional Delegation be advised to demand a new, thorough, and truly independent forensic investigation that fully addresses the many questions surrounding the tragic events of September 11, 2001?"

Doug Dunbebin, who gathered signatures to get the issue on the ballot, said questions linger about September 11, when hijacked plane attacks killed nearly 3,000 people at New York's World Trade Center, at the
Pentagon and in Pennsylvania.

A group known as Scholars for 9/11 Truth believes the events of that day were part of a conspiracy engineered by the U.S. government and that it took more than two planes to bring down the Twin Towers in New York.

Vermont's new U.S. representative, Peter Welch (news, bio, voting record), a Democrat, said there was no need for a further investigation.

Itsdb answered on 03/07/07:

Oh yeah, anyone can offer meaningless symbolic resolutions just like congress. Clueless idiots are everywhere.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/07/07 - Libby's lawyer should be disbarred for incompetence.

The lone juror who decided to have his 15 minutes of fame after the conviction of Scooter Libby was jury foreman Denis Collins . Collins is a 10 year veteran of the Washington Compost and author of the book 'SPYING: The Secret History of History ' a love fest about espionage ,and secret covert agents.

The longtime journalist, who has also written for The Miami Herald and the San Jose Mercury New, is recalled as smart,hardworking and energetic, although not always "coloring within the lines."


In the jury selection phase, before Collins name came out, he was identified as having worked with Bob Woodward at the Post and being a neighbor of NBC's Tim Russert. Both would later testify in the case.

Later, on Larry King's CNN show, Collins said he would write about the trial, but "I'm not sure of format or where it will be." He added that he "never expected to be accepted to serve on the jury."


DUH ya think ? How the hell did Ted Wells permit this guy on the jury ? This is beginning to resemble John Grisham's 'The Runaway Jury ' where a plant inside the jury takes control of the process and determines the outcome of a trial .In the book the jury appears to be headed towards one verdict but delivers a different one. Yesterday ,only three hours before delivering their verdict, the jury sent a note to the judge, saying that they couldn't figure out what Libby was accused of doing. Friday they had asked what "reasonable doubt "meant.Andrew Napolitano of Fox News said yesterday that these should've been questions asked on the 1st day of deliberations.

Collins said that the jury felt sorry for Libby and was questioning why Rove ,Cheney and others were not on trial ;that Libby was the fall guy (something that Wells also brought up in opening and summary but never persued through the trial) That means that Collins at least bought into Fitzgerald's notion about some dark conspiracy to "out" Plame and discredit administration critics. Which of course would rub someone who has a fascination with the espionage industry the wrong way .Given that ,and his long time association with some of the witnesses it is beyond curious how Wells could've overlooked the implications of his seating .



Itsdb answered on 03/07/07:

Ya think maybe Collins being the foreman and a Compost writer steered the whole thing? I mean I've sat on several juries and half the people - or more - would've bought into just about anything by whoever was most persuasive or 'authoritative.' And I don't know about DC, but someone with ties like that to witnesses would have NEVER made a jury here.

I heard a guy claiming to be a federal prosecutor say Wells lost the case in his opening arguments - the minute he played it as Libby being the fall guy - it leaves an impression in the minds of the jurors from the start.

And what is it to Dems if Bush pardons the guy? I'm curious if Reid objected to Clinton's pardon of Rich - or Susan McDougal, Mel Reynolds, Cisneros or Rostenkowski? Oh I know, he's the only guy in the administration they've been able to nail since they started gunning for Bush in 2000. Without Scooter they've got nothing.

I kind of hope he does pardon the guy ... one last finger in the eye before leaving office.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 03/06/07 - Libby verdict

WASHINGTON - Former White House aide I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby was convicted Tuesday of obstruction, perjury and lying to the
FBI in an investigation into the leak of a
CIA operative's identity.
ADVERTISEMENT

Libby, the former chief of staff to Vice President
Dick Cheney, was accused of lying and obstructing the investigation into the 2003 leak of CIA operative
Valerie Plame's identity to reporters.

He was acquitted of one count of lying to the FBI.

Libby had little reaction to the verdict. He stood expressionless as the jury left the room. His lawyer, Theodore Wells, said they were "very disappointed" with the verdict.

The verdict was read on the 10th day of deliberations. Libby faces up to 30 yeaerrs in prison, though under federal sentencing guidelines likely will receive far less.

U.S. District Judge Reggie B. Walton ordered a pre-sentencing report be completed by May 15. Judges use such reports to help determine sentences.

Libby faced two counts of perjury, two counts of lying to the FBI and one count of obstruction of justice. Prosecutors said he discussed Plame's name with reporters and, fearing prosecution, made up a story to make those discussions seem innocuous.

Libby's defense team said he learned about Plame from Cheney, forgot about it, then learned it again a month later from NBC newsman Tim Russert. Anything he told reporters about Plame, Libby said, was just chatter and rumors, not official government information.

Special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald said that was a lie. But Libby's defense team had argued that it would be unfair to convict Libby in a case where so many witnesses changed their stories or had memory problems.

Wells said he would ask the court for a new trial by April 13. Such requests are common following criminal convictions.

"Despite our disappointment in the jurors' verdict, we believe in the American justice system and we believe in the jury system," Wells told reporters outside the federal courthouse. "We intend to file a motion for a new trial and if that is denied, we will appeal the conviction. We have every confidence that ultimately Mr. Libby will be exonerated.... We intend to keep fighting to establish his innocence."

Libby will be allowed to remain free while awaiting sentencing, which is set for June 5.

As the verdicts were read, Libby's wife choked out a sob and sank her head. Moments later, she embraced the defense attorneys.

The jury acquitted Libby of one count of lying to the FBI about his conversation with Time magazine reporter Matthew Cooper.

Itsdb answered on 03/06/07:

I have to post what tom referred to, Reid's press release:

    "I welcome the jury's verdict. It's about time someone in the Bush Administration has been held accountable for the campaign to manipulate intelligence and discredit war critics. Lewis Libby has been convicted of perjury, but his trial revealed deeper truths about Vice President Cheney's role in this sordid affair. Now President Bush must pledge not to pardon Libby for his criminal conduct."


It's amazing to me the thing has morphed from "outing a CIA operative," to "Rove's dirty politics" to "Cheney's role in this sordid affair." But then that's typical liberal politics, you just move the goalpost to fit the situation. They couldn't get Bush, Cheney or Rove on this so they'll seize on Libbey's conviction as first some vindication - and watch out, maybe another push for Cheney.

What I want to know is, when is someone going to hold scoundrels like Reid accountable for all the BS they've used to try and discredit the administration.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/06/07 - Where's Asgari ?

Retired Gen. Ali Reza Asgari of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard may have defected and is seeking asylum in the U.S. The Iranians claim he was kidnapped ....possibly by the Mossad . But ABC News The Blotter is making the claim that this is a defection .

One respected analyst with sources in the Iranian Revolutionary Guard says Gen. Ali Reza Asgari has defected and is now in a European country with his entire family, where he is cooperating with the U.S…
“This is a fatal blow to Iranian intelligence,” said the source, explaining that Asgari knows sensitive information about Iran’s nuclear and military projects. Iran called tens of its Revolutionary Guard agents working at embassies and cultural centers in Arab and European countries back to Tehran out of fear that Asgari might disclose secret information about their identities, according to the analyst…
Asgari’s years with the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and the Iranian defense ministry would make him an invaluable source of information. He was reportedly based in Lebanon in the 1990s and was in charge of ties with the Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah.
Still others like DEBKA and the NY Post are theorizing that he was captured by the US in retaliation for the abduction and murder of five American soldiers in Karbala, an operation that Asgari may have run.According to DEBKA ;On Feb. 6, two non-Turkish citizens made a reservation for Askari for three nights at the Istanbul Ceylan Hotel, paying cash. But after the general arrived, he booked himself into the cheaper Hotel Ghilan. He left his luggage in his room, walked out and disappeared. Maybe he was persuaded to defect ?

Hmmm ;if he was captured do we introduce him to a waterboard ....or call in the ACLU .....tough choice.

He is also implicated in the kidnapping of IAF navigator Ron Arad.Maybe intersted groups will line up and take a number to 'interview' him .But at least they can be assured that he will not show up on an internet video having his head sawed off by a rusty knife. The Iranians have formally requested that the government of Turkey and Interpol begin searching for Asgari.

The events in Iran continue to amaze ,and perplex. In recent months there have been reports :

-of the grave illness of Supreme Leader Ayatollah ali Khamenei

-of at least 4 mysterious plane crashes

-The Majlis (the national assembly) passed a law effectively reducing the presidential term of Ahmamadjihad by a full year. This was universally seen as an attack in favor of former President Hashemi Rafsanjani.

-The Mahdi-hatter left a meeting with the Saudis this weekend without any significant accomplishments .Shortly before midnight, it was announced suddenly that he was returning to Teheran. I believe that the talks blew up.

-They encountered major technological complications in their attempts to enrich uranium.

-The mysterious death of a top nuclear scientist who could've been a target of the Mossad .Before the attack on Osirak ;at least three Iraqi nuclear scientists died under mysterious circumstances.

Add to this ,the Rice/Maliki gambit to hold regional talks ....Don't know where all of this is leading ,but things are rapidly changing . It seems to me that the Iranian negotiating position has deteriorated in recent weeks .








Itsdb answered on 03/06/07:

Hmmm, waterboard - ACLU? Waterboard. Definitely. You know what's interesting to me? I haven't read any of these reports in my paper. I did read where the Mahdi Hatter was going to Saudi Arabia but not that he left so quickly. And I read today an al-AP 'report' that Iran launched a space launch vehicle.

It sounds like if nothing else, someone's intelligence is doing their job. I hope they keep step it up.

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/05/07 - How plausable is this ?

Steve Spielberg is a collector of Norman Rockwell paintings . 1989 he purchases a very rare Rockwell painting called 'Russian Schoolroom' that just happend to have been stolen from a Missori Gallery 34 years ago.It was not your typical Rockwell painting . Rockwell painted it when he travelled to Russia at the end of the Cold War. The color red is prominent inside the painting as well as the bust of Vladimir Lenin .



I find it unlikely that a collector of Rockwell paintings would not have realized at the time of the purchase that such a rare piece had been stolen .

Last week ,a rep. for Speilberg informed the FBI about his possesion of the stolen piece. Someone associated with him had recently noticed a year-old alert on the FBI’s Web site describing the stolen painting (here's a hint ...try Google ) . Suprisingly ,this was just about the same time A NY member of the FBI Art Crime Team began questioning dealers and galleries in order to determine the most prominent collectors of Rockwells.(along with Speilberg ,others include Ross Perot and George Lucas). After they were informed ,the FBI in LA. began a negotiation to have the painting returned .Special Agent Chris Calarco of the FBI's Art Crime Team and Jessica Todd Smith, curator of American art for the Huntington Library, inspected the painting Friday afternoon at Spielberg's offices on the Universal Studios lot. The filmmaker was not present.

"He's an absolutely unknowing victim in this," Calarco said.

The FBI has a lead on a prime suspect for the original theft .



Should Spielberg get the benefit of the doubt ? How could he not know the painting was hot if he is such a collector and connoisseur. He certainly didn't buy it at Walmart.


Itsdb answered on 03/05/07:

tom,

On the surface it sounds to me like Spielberg was clueless about it's history. What's less certain is how it managed to get sold at an auction in 1988 without raising an eyebrow. It would seem to me the "art dealer" he bought it from should have known it was stolen - or perhaps they did. If that's the case then Spielberg should be more careful about what dealers he does business with.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/02/07 - Pakistan

I have to say ;a little bit of pressure does wonders .

It appears that Dick Cheney's mission to Pakistan and Afghanistan is already paying dividends .

The former Taliban defense minister was arrested in Pakistan on Monday, the day of Vice President Dick Cheney’s visit, two government officials said Thursday. He is the most important Taliban member to be captured since the American-led invasion of Afghanistan in 2001.
The man, Mullah Obaidullah, was a senior leader of the Afghan insurgency, which has battled American and NATO forces with increasing intensity over the last year.

He is one of the inner core around Mullah Muhammad Omar, the Taliban leader. The leadership is believed to operate from the relative safety of Quetta, Pakistan, where Mullah Obaidullah was arrested.

It was not clear whether he was picked up before, during or after Mr. Cheney’s visit. But the timing may be significant because Mr. Cheney’s mission was intended to press Pakistan to do more to crack down on members of the Taliban and Al Qaeda who use Pakistan as a sanctuary.


Gee ;it's like they knew he was there the whole time .Surpised the headline wasn't "Innocent Afghan tourist abducted in Pakistan" or "Democratic Congress putting pressure on President Bush to shift emphasis to Afghanistan reaps immediate results " .

He was captured before in Kandahar by the Northern Alliance early in the war ,but was released .
Mullah Obaidullah is one of the closest lieutenants of Mullah Omar and at the time of the war was believed to have close contacts with OBL . The other two were Mullah Akhtar Osmani and Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansoor.Mullah Osmani, who was a former Taliban army chief, was killed in a US airstrike in December .


By all accounts I've read Obaidullah has had a large part in planning this upcoming Spring offensive .He has bragged about the Taliban capability to standing up to NATO forces but at the same time has warned that this offensive will rely less on direct attack and more on homicide car bombs.




Itsdb answered on 03/02/07:

I'm starting to like the new (or is it the old) Cheney. Running around the world telling it like it is, getting results and not backing down from Queen Armani ... who knows, it might encourage a few more Republicans to get a spine.

Now he's back and doing the same thing here:

    While noting that the House already had passed a nonbinding resolution voicing opposition to Bush's Iraq policy, Cheney said that “very soon both houses of Congress will have to vote on a piece of legislation that is binding.”

    The legislation would, among other things, help pay for the additional 21,500 troops Bush is sending to Iraq.

    “I sincerely hope the discussion this time will be about winning in Iraq, not about posturing on Capitol Hill. Anyone can say they support the troops, and we should take them at their word. But the proof will come when it's time to provide the money and the support,” Cheney said. “We expect the House and the Senate to meet those needs on time and in full.”


Of course the Dems still don't get it, after mocking Bush's mandate of 2004 they're determined to press their own mandate.

    “We're going to report out” a war spending bill “that's responsive to the will of the voters last November and brings our troops home as soon and safely as possible,” Moran, D-Va., said in an interview.


But once again Cheney is right on target:

    “If our coalition withdrew before Iraqis could defend themselves, radical factions would battle for dominance. The violence would likely spread throughout the country and be very difficult to contain. Having tasted victory in Iraq, the (militants) would look for new missions. Many would head for Afghanistan to fight alongside the Taliban,” Cheney said.

    He said others would head for capitals across the Middle East and work to undermine moderate governments. “Still others would find their targets and victims in other countries on other continents. Such chaos and mounting danger does not have to occur. It is, however, the enemy's objective,” Cheney said.


And how's this for the quote of the day?

“In these circumstances, it's worth reminding ourselves that, like it or not, the enemy we face in the war on terror has made Iraq the primary front in that war ... To use a popular phrase, this is an inconvenient truth.”

Brilliant - but a truth the left will ignore nonetheless.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/02/07 - Gore buys carbon offsets from himself

yes it's true . He buys them from Generation Investment Management LLP of which he is a cofounder and chairman of the board .

Gore helped found Generation Investment Management, through which he and others pay for offsets. The firm invests the money in solar, wind and other projects that reduce energy consumption around the globe, she said.

I assume he also takes a salary from Generations . So he pays himself to burn all the carbon he wants and keep this phony pretext going that he lives a 'green'“carbon-neutral” life.

The intended goal of carbon offsets is to combat global warming. The appeal of becoming “carbon neutral” has contributed to the growth of voluntary offsets, which often are a more cost-effective alternative to reducing one’s own fossil-fuel consumption. However, the actual amount of carbon reduction (if any) from an offset project is difficult to measure, largely unregulated, and vulnerable to misrepresentation.

So the offsets are meant to be alternatives to changing your carbon hogging life-style BUT “the actual amount of carbon reduction (if any) from an offset project is difficult to measure, largely unregulated, and vulnerable to misrepresentation.”

Yes ,I'd say Gore is misrepresenting something . By playing the the end of the world clarion he brings up the value of companies like Generation that invests other peoples monety for a fee into other green companies who's values also increase as he touts the end of the world . The NY Slimes actually has an intersting take on carbon offsets .

Still, as demand for greener living grows, the number of companies jumping into the game has multiplied. At least 60 companies sold offsets worth about $110 million to consumers in Europe and North America in 2006, up from only about a dozen selling offsets worth $6 million in 2004, according to Abyd Karmali of ICF International.Yet another perverse effect, say critics, is that some types of carbon-offset initiatives may actually slow the changes aimed at coping with global warming by prolonging consumers’ dependence on oil, coal and gas, and encouraging them to take more short-haul flights and drive bigger cars than they would otherwise have done.
Climate Care, for example, has linked up with Land Rover, a maker of sport utility vehicles, to help the company offset its own emissions. As part of a promotional program, Climate Care also helps purchasers of new Land Rovers offset their first 45,000 miles of driving.
In that way, the program may actually help sell “larger cars with higher emissions” and thus contribute more to global warming, according to Mary Taylor, a campaigner with the energy and climate team at Friends of the Earth.


Me ...I think instead of buying technolgy delaying offsets they should instead be investing their monies into auto engines that maximize the efficiencies of alternative fuels ,or developing the next generation of coal burning emission scrubbers . Since no matter what the wackos say ,no one is going to stop the emerging economies from buring coal.

Itsdb answered on 03/02/07:

I think I'll take Rush's advice and start selling offsets on eBay, I need to cushion my retirement account and do some traveling. Ain't that something though, Gore's making a killing on his 'cause.' Oscar winner, potential Nobel winner - and he can pollute all he wants by investing in his own offsets. Isn't that the kind of thing that's dogged Cheney relentlessly over Haliburton contracts?

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 03/02/07 - Hillary Clinton's Indian name



Senator Hillary Clinton was invited to address a major gathering
Of The American Indian nation in upper New York State .She spoke for almost an hour on her future plans for increasing every Native American's present standard of living, should she one day become the first female President.

She referred to her career as a New York Senator, how she had
Signed "yes" for every Indian issue that came to her desk for approval.
Although the Senator was vague on the details of her plan, she seemed most
Enthusiastic about her future ideas for helping her "red sisters and brothers".

At the conclusion of her speech, the Tribes presented the Senator with a
plaque inscribed with her new Indian name - Walking Eagle.

The proud Senator then departed in her motorcade, waving to the
Crowds. A news reporter later inquired of the group of chiefs of how they
Had come to select the new name given to the Senator.

They explained that Walking Eagle is the name given to a bird so full of sh*t it can no longer fly.


Itsdb answered on 03/02/07:

LOL, that's good. I found several Indian name generators, here are some of the results for Hillary:

Grouchy Cloud
Dark Shark
Walking Wind
Red Porcupine
Yawning Loon
Small Elephant
Dark Rock
Sleepy Crawfish

Just for fun I spun for a new name for Bill and came up with Prancing Unicorn and Diving Beaver. LOL

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/28/07 - Who Won in Iraq: The Iraqi People

just got this in an email :


By Jalal Talabani


Posted February 2007

The past four years have been a roller-coaster for the Iraqi people. We’ve been liberated from our oppressive tyrant, only to be thrust into deadly sectarian warfare. But the fight for Iraq is not just the fight of the Iraqi people; the entire civilized world has a stake in what happens here. And simply abandoning the country to the terrorists would be everyone’s shame.

The news coming out of Iraq is not promising. Daily headlines declare death and destruction that reverberate far beyond the country’s borders. But you cannot understand the situation of the new Iraq simply by following the news. By their nature, media outlets concentrate on the negative. They are in the business of selling newspapers and attracting viewers. And news of a car bomb that kills a person makes for more compelling television than the construction of a university in a stable region of the country.

Iraq’s current situation is much more nuanced—and positive—than the one you’ll likely see on the evening news. Since April 9, 2003, Iraqis have wrestled with more than just regime change. They have been living a revolution that has marked a new era in the country’s history. They have seen justice brought to their murderous tyrant. They have won. The good people of Iraq are trying desperately to transform their country from one ruled by fear, repression, and tyranny into a democracy that upholds the values of equality, tolerance, human rights, and the rule of law. In doing so, we must rely on the will of the majority of Iraqis who have benefited from liberation and have a sense of ownership of the new Iraq. They know that their country is no longer the property of the bloodthirsty authority of Saddam Hussein. Iraq today has an elected and representative government that came about after a landmark election in which 12 million out of 15 million eligible voters from all segments of society participated.

As we are rebuilding what Iraq’s bloody past destroyed, we have had to redefine the political and economic foundations upon which the country was built. For the first time in Iraq’s history, its citizens have a constitution that enshrines many of the democratic values of human rights, equality, rule of law, and good governance. We are working to build independent commissions that regulate political and economic life, a new concept for the people of Iraq. Despite the unsettled security situation, we are taking the first steps in creating a vibrant private sector. And, as is the key to development in so many countries, we’re seeing signs that our middle class is growing. A university professor today receives around $1,000 a month. Under Saddam, the same professor would have received about $17.

For the Iraqi people, this process is historic and monumental. History tells us that changes so significant are almost always followed by a period of unrest, uncertainty, and even chaos. Iraq proves that’s never been more true. As we Iraqis are trying to rebuild our country, an unholy alliance of international terrorists, Baathists, and fundamentalists are aiming to divide Iraq and send it back to the dark ages. To some extent, they have succeeded. They have managed to provoke violent sectarian reactions from extremist elements in Iraqi society against their fellow Iraqis. Their dark deeds threaten to undo much of the progress Iraqis have made in the four years since liberation.

With this bitter reality in mind and with a clear understanding of the dangers of the situation, Iraqis must be—and we are—determined to defeat the terrorists and prevent further acts of sectarian violence. To do so, we must adopt a two-track approach: A political track, through the process of national reconciliation and the inclusion of all elements of the Iraqi political spectrum that condemn terror and violence, and a security track, through a tough security plan that deals equally with all those who conduct violence.

To rid Iraq, especially Baghdad, of the constant threat of violence, we must exercise zero tolerance against anyone who perpetrates violence. We realize that ending sectarian violence is an Iraqi responsibility. But ending terrorism is a responsibility for Iraq, its neighbors, and the international community.

Hence, security and stability in our country should be a point of concern for every democratic country of the world and for our neighbors who want to live in peace and security. After all, the people of Iraq are not the only beneficiaries of the new Iraq. A democratic and stable country in the heart of a strategically vital region could serve as a powerful ally to all freedom-loving nations, as well as to corporations and nongovernmental organizations who crave access to the Middle Eastern market.

On the fourth anniversary of Iraq’s liberation, we remind the world and ourselves: Security and stability in Iraq is the security and stability of the world. Abandoning Iraq would only unleash the terrorists, and the prospect of a safe Iraq and Middle East would be completely lost. The battle raging in Iraq is the war of everyone in the civilized world. Losing it is not an option.




Jalal Talabani is president of Iraq.

Itsdb answered on 02/28/07:

Thanks tom, I wonder how many MSM outlets will print or report Talabani's column? Probably very, very few - but I wouldn't be surprised to see a lot of people latch onto the 'real' winners in Iraq that you pointed out:

1. Iran
2. Moqtada al-Sadr
3. Al Qaeda
4. Samuel Huntington
5. China
6. Arab Dictators
7. The Price of Oil
8. The United Nations?
9. Old Europe
10. Israel

Just about everyone but Iraq apparently won.



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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/28/07 - Dear Abby,

My husband is a liar and a cheat. He has cheated on me from the beginning, and, when I confront him, he denies everything. What's worse,
everyone knows that he cheats on me. It is so humiliating.

Also, since he lost his job 6 years ago, he hasn't even looked for a new one. All he does all day is smoke cigars, cruise around and
bullsh*ts with his buddies while I have to work to pay the bills.

Since our daughter went away to college he doesn't even pretend to like me and hints that I may be a lesbian. What should I do?

Signed: Clueless



Dear Clueless:

Grow up and dump him. Good grief, woman. You don't need him anymore. You're a United States Senator from New York. Act like one.

Itsdb answered on 02/28/07:

That's priceless :)

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Question/Answer
JacquelineA2006 asked on 02/27/07 - 2007..


This is not exactly political but still a good question to put up in my opinion. I would like to say i am 25 before continuing. You know it use to be like this.. the guy would pick the girl up and take her out and then take her back home after the date. Nowadays i run across men and these are all types that want you to drive out and meet them at the club you were planning to go dancing at or drive into the city and meet up somewhere and go from there. If a lady has to drive out and meet them then that is not a date! Why are these men like this..? Why do they not want to treat the opposite sex like a lady? I like your responses to the other topics we talk about and wanted to get your views on this.

Itsdb answered on 02/28/07:

Jacqueline, I'm sorry you aren't finding men that still treat a lady like a lady, but that's the way it is nowadays.

I've been married for 22 years and I still hold the door for my wife - or any other lady I come across. But I gotta tell ya, even if a man is still old-fashioned in that way they can tend to be gun shy. He never knows if a woman will be grateful or rip into him for being such a condescending chauvinist.

I have to say it is a direct bi-product of the feminist movement, they wanted to be treated as equals - at times to the point of not only "not needing a man" but downright hatred toward men.

Think of the code words and phrases we men have been hamered with through the years like:

Patriarchal
Male-dominated
Phallocentric
Keep your laws off MY body
It’s MY body, MY choice

Think of all the campus productions of "The Vagina Monologues" where angry feminists gather to assert their ... vagina rights? It's no wonder there aren't many gentlemen any more - and where they are they have walk very carefully.

Steve

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Question/Answer
rusty asked on 02/27/07 - Iraq


What are your opinions about the war in Iraq? Do you think that it should be wrapped up and the President should focus on our current problems over here?

Itsdb answered on 02/27/07:

I think most of us would like to see it wrapped up, but my vision of wrapped up is to win - to crush the 'insurgency' and see a free Iraq that is able to stand up for itself.

I believe the president - regardless of what mistakes he may have made - has the right focus on Iraq, extending to his focus on the greater war on terror.

I don't see the 'problems' at home as anything to override that focus. The economy is humming along just fine. Illegal immigration is a concern as is healthcare, but to me the problem that most needs to be addressed he can't do much about - and that's the division among us.

We can't come together as a nation as long as there is such an irrational personal hatred of Bush among the left. That hatred is evidenced in virtually all areas of the media and the entertainment industry on a daily basis - all areas that influence public opinion - and it's unprecedented in scope.

Bush seems to be one of the very few that get it when it comes to terrorism, and I would say specifically Islamic fundamentalist terrorism. That my friend is the number one threat we face and he's working his a$$ off to confront and neutralize that threat. A higher minimum wage is pointless if we aren't safe.

Steve

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Question/Answer
_JacquelineA asked on 02/23/07 - gun control


I recently came across some information that really seems to be more anti-american propaganda than actual fact.

I really find it amusing that people in other countries immediatly decide they can pass judgement on the United States concerning gun control while ignoring facts.

The Death Rate in the US is 167,184 for all forms of death.

Gun related deaths in 2004, latest numbers available: 29,569
Stabbings: 2,799
poisoning: 30,308
suffocation: 14,043
Total: 47,150

Now these are the INTENTIONAL deaths, or to put it acurately, people wanted to kill someone.

Unintended Firearm Deaths: 649

So, if you non-americans really want to criticise the US for allowing its citizens to purchase guns, at least use the right information.

One more thing, in the cities that have made it illegal to own handguns have seen a rise in gun related crimes.... so gee, you tell me, is gun control the way to stop violent crimes?

By the way, strangely enough, world wide, for every 10,000 people in a population, the rate of violence increases, until it hits around a half million people, then it goes up expotentially.

One last thing, at least in the United States, we are NOT under the constant video surveilence by dozens of cameras per block as in some cities!

Itsdb answered on 02/26/07:

So .01% of the US population is killed intentionally using a gun every year, and .00022% are killed by guns unintentionally. Geez, run for cover.

What also isn't noted here is that for 2004, 16,750 of those were suicides, so .0043% of firearm related deaths were violence-related firearm deaths ... that is if my math is correct. More than half of gun-related deaths were suicides, and more than half the suicides were by firearm.

Statistics don't mean much unless they're put into perspective, and that's the last thing a critic wants to do. And by the way, the stats are furnished by the CDC.

Steve

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Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 02/24/07 - Is Japanese militarism on the rise again?

Let's face it folks to we have more to fear from a resurgent Japan than from Iran or North Korea. What purpose can Japan have for spying on the rest of the world?


Japan completes set of spy satellites

From correspondents in Tokyo

February 24, 2007 06:31pm


JAPAN launched its fourth spy satellite today, improving its ability to monitor potential threats including North Korea, whose missile and nuclear tests have spooked the region.

An H-2A rocket, delayed three times by bad weather, finally lifted off from the southern island of Tanegashima, carrying a radar satellite that will join two optical satellites and another radar satellite already in operation.

With the full complement of four satellites, Japan will be able to monitor any point on Earth once a day, government officials have said.

Japan's spy satellite program was initiated after North Korea launched a ballistic missile in 1998 that flew over Japan.

The program was delayed in 2003 when a rocket carrying two satellites veered off course and had to be destroyed in a spectacular fireball.

North Korea ratcheted up regional tensions last year when it conducted a nuclear test in October after a salvo of missile tests in July.

In January, China destroyed one of its own satellites by firing a ballistic missile at it, in an experiment that sparked criticism around the world.

Japan's space scientists have long complained that the country's technical prowess has fallen behind because of a 1969 parliamentary resolution limiting the use of space to peaceful purposes.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's ruling Liberal Democratic Party is likely to soon submit a bill that would ease regulations and allow non-aggressive military use of space.

The rocket launched today was also carrying an experimental optical satellite, aimed at improving the level of detail obtained from the next generation of satellites.

At present, Japan's satellites can distinguish objects a metre or more in diameter, whereas US military satellites are said to be able to do so for items one-tenth as large.






Copyright 2007 News Limited. All times AEDT (GMT +11).

Itsdb answered on 02/26/07:

Clete,

Once again your logic fails to inspire any fear. The US has 47,000 troops deployed in Japan, with 48 F-15's, 36 F-16's, 12 F/A-18's, 6 AV-8 Harriers and numerous other support aircraft.

This includes naval support in the way of Task Force 71, Task Force 73, Submarine Group 7, Yokosuka Amphibious Group 1, Okinawa Amphibious Sq 11, Sasebo Mine Countermeasures Div 1, and Carrier Air Wing 5 with the aircraft carrier Kittyhawk and its 10 F-14B's, 36 F/A 18's and other support craft.

For Japan, Article 9 of the 1947 constitution states, "The Japanese people forever renounce war as a sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as a means of settling international disputes." As Dennis noted their forces are under civil defense control as the Self-Defense Forces. Understaffed and underequipped, Japanese forces depend on the US for anything significant. Their deployment to Iraq as our ally was the first Japanese deployment to a country at war in over 50 years.

It sure sounds like Japan has more nefarious interests besides keeping an eye on their more adventurous and unstable neighbors doesn't it?

Steve

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Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 02/25/07 - May God curse the terrorists?

We could hope the Muslims are at last getting the message, Islamic terrorism is a curse and it is the Muslims who are cursed.

Bomber slaughters 40 in attack at business collegeFrom correspondents in Baghdad
February 26, 2007 05:04am

A SUICIDE bomber wearing a vest packed with explosives killed 40 people in a Baghdad college overnight, a day after Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki expressed optimism about a security crackdown in the capital.

Guards stopped the bomber in the reception lobby of the Baghdad Economy and Administration College but the man managed to blow himself up, police said.

Police put the death toll at 40, with 35 people wounded.

Most of the victims were students, witnesses said.

"May God curse the terrorists," shouted some students after the attack. Others sat on the ground outside weeping.

A string of car bombings and rocket salvos also hit Baghdad overnight as insurgents defied efforts by US and Iraqi security forces to stabilise the capital.

A professor said the college attack happened as students were leaving morning classes and arriving for afternoon lessons.

Others doing exams were wounded by flying glass that tore through their classroom, the professor said.

"There were bodies everywhere," said the professor, who declined to be identified.

The blast left large pools of blood in the college's reception area. Textbooks and pens lay scattered on the floor.

The college is part of nearby Mustansiriya University, which was hit by twin bomb attacks last month that killed 70 people, mainly students.

Insurgents have repeatedly attacked universities and colleges in Baghdad, trying to strike fear into the city's middle class.

Many college professors and intellectuals have also been killed.

Mr Maliki expressed optimism yesterday about the 10-day-old security plan, regarded as a last chance to reverse Iraq's descent into civil war, and said US and Iraqi forces had killed about 400 suspected militants since it began.

US military officers have said they expected an increase in the use of suicide vests after security forces set up more checkpoints on Baghdad's roads to search vehicles and try to prevent car bombs.

Among the attacks overnight, rockets and mortar bombs crashed into a market in a Shiite area in southern Baghdad and there were conflicting reports about casualties, police said.

One police source said 10 people were killed in the attack in the Abu Dsher area of Doura neighbourhood. Two other police sources said no more than three people had been wounded.

A car bomb also killed one person and wounded four in central Baghdad, not far from the Iranian embassy, police said.

Police said the diplomatic mission did not appear to have been the target. The embassy compound was not damaged.

US forces have set up joint security outposts with Iraqi forces around the city and the crackdown does appear to have reduced the number of bodies found tortured and shot in the city, the apparent victims of death squads.

A typical daily body count had been about 40 or 50 a day in recent months but since the start of the plan it has been between five and 20. However, US commanders say it will take months to judge the success of the offensive.

A fuel tanker rigged with explosives killed 45 people yesterday when it blew up near a Sunni mosque in restive western province of Anbar, after the mosque's imam had criticised al Qaeda militants at Friday prayers, police and residents said.

US President George W. Bush is sending 21,500 extra troops to Iraq to help with the clampdown in Baghdad. Most are heading for the capital although 4000 will be sent to Anbar, the most dangerous province in Iraq for American forces.
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
all of this leads me to believe the fight is not being won

Itsdb answered on 02/26/07:

Hmmm, 400 suspected militants dead since it began, a huge reduction in body counts, and Iraqi students shouting "May God curse the terrorists." Yeah, those are all good indicators the fight is not being won. I don't quite follow your 'logic' Clete.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/25/07 - Look for Kerry to follow the Gore model of reconstruction

Yes it's true The Kerry's have written a book about the environment. It's called'This Moment on Earth: Today's New Environmentalists and Their Vision for the Future.' It is 352 pages of the same old same old .It is described as a "passionate and personal book." That must be the Theresa contribution because I can't see Kerry being passionate about anything unless you consider this quote passionate .

"My mother's example was lifelong. She was ahead of the curve, advocating river cleanup, serving on the town's Board of Health, starting a recycling program and always with her Audubon guide nearby. I squirrel-and- woodchuck hunted as a kid. I dug my toes into the mud and seaweed of Buzzards Bay in Massachusetts, looking for clams and mussels, which were abundant and edible in those days ... I was introduced to the fragility and power of oceans and mountains and given a sense of responsibility for the stewardship of these God-given gifts."

I suppose that's about as passionate as he can get .

Look for Kerry to start getting rid of his gas guzzling fleet of cars ;his energy inefficient uber-mansions ,and to travel passenger class on airlines instead of the latest model Gulf Stream Jet. Oh wait.....if he did that then he wouldn't be following the Gore blue print after -all ! Wonder how many carbon offsets the Kerry's will have to purchase ?


Itsdb answered on 02/26/07:

He hunted poor little ol' woodchucks and squirrels? Oh that's right, he kills all manner of defenseless creatures. I wonder if he used his mother's Audubon guide to identify that goose he clipped?

I doubt if the Kerrys will abandon any of their comforts, that would mean he'd have to start carrying his own dead goose.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/26/07 - The despicable AP..

...has hit a new low....if that were possible . At first sight this hit piece by Glen Johnson looked like a parody article out of Onion .

Though Mitt Romney condemns polygamy and its prior practice by his Mormon church, the Republican presidential candidate's great-grandfather had five wives and at least one of his great-great grandfathers had 12.

Polygamy was not just a historical footnote but a prominent element in the family tree of the former Massachusetts governor seeking to become the first Mormon president.

Romney's great-grandfather, Miles Park Romney, married his fifth wife in 1897. That was more than six years after Mormon leaders banned polygamy and more than three decades after a federal law barred the practice.

Hannah Hood Hill, Romney's great-grandmother, was the daughter of polygamists. She wrote vividly in her autobiography about how she "used to walk the floor and shed tears of sorrow" over her own husband's multiple marriages.


Of course it stands to reason that if Romney's great-grandfather and great-great grandfather had multiple wives that Romney approves of the practice.He has already condemned the practice of poligamy so what exactly is the issue here ?

Of course the answer is that the AP is trying to create a rift between Romney his growing support amongst the Christian conservatives.

One has to wonder how deeply the AP will dig into Barak Obama's Muslim roots if they are willing to probe 4 generations into the past.

There are plenty of questions that Romney needs to address in this campaign .I don't think his great grandfather's marriages need be one of them .


Itsdb answered on 02/26/07:

I'm not sure this is a new low even for al-AP, it's just business as usual. They are of course as you say just trying to drive a wedge between Romney and conservative Christians. Hopefully most are wise enough to not give a hoot about how many wives his great and great-great-grandfathers had.

It must be their weekend for geneaolgy though, Rev. Sharpton "wants a DNA test to determine whether he is related to former segregationist Sen. Strom Thurmond through his great-grandfather." Someone has apparently found something "more shocking" to the Rev than 'Kramer's' tirade.

Steve

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Question/Answer
_JacquelineA asked on 02/23/07 - extremely angry!!


I would like to let everyone know that i did not post the last topic titled frustrated. My roommate's younger sister who is eleven had gotten onto this page because i keep myself automatically signed-in and posted lyrics to some stupid song. i would like to just delete it but am not sure how..

Itsdb answered on 02/23/07:

Don't sweat it Jacqueline :)

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Question/Answer
ETWolverine asked on 02/23/07 - I think Hell may be freezing over.

The following two articles may indicate the end of the world as we know it.

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

Barry aims for gun-ban hiatus
By Gary Emerling
THE WASHINGTON TIMES
February 7, 2007

D.C. Council member Marion Barry yesterday introduced legislation that would suspend the District's 30-year ban on handguns, providing gun owners a 90-day period to register weapons they would then be allowed to legally own.

"We are in the midst of a gun-violence epidemic," said Mr. Barry, Ward 8 Democrat. "We need to see gun violence as an emergency in the District of Columbia."

Mr. Barry's bill, which only applies to pistols, would allow D.C. residents with no criminal record to register guns for 90 days from the law's enactment. After the 90-day period, current gun restrictions would be reinstated.

Barry spokesman Keith Perry said the bill is "an acknowledgment that people do have guns" in the District and would help police better track weapons used in the commission of crimes.

The District has some of the toughest gun laws in the nation and restricts ownership of most guns that were not registered before 1977. Privately owned rifles and shotguns must be kept at home and stored unloaded, disassembled or bound by a trigger lock or a similar device.

Mr. Barry's proposal would increase the penalties for possessing an unregistered weapon in the District from a maximum of one year in prison and a $1,000 fine to 15 years in prison and a $10,000 fine.

A second offense could result in 30 years in prison and a $20,000 fine, according to the bill.

Mr. Barry, who was robbed at gunpoint in his Southeast apartment in January 2006, cited statistics that said police had confiscated 2,656 guns last year, with 51 percent of those weapons being seized east of the Anacostia River.

A recent Metropolitan Police Department report on homicides from 2001 to 2005 states that 901 of 1,126 homicide victims, or about 80 percent, were fatally shot.

Mr. Barry, who served four terms as D.C. mayor, also referenced the recent shooting deaths of D.C. teenagers Cynthia Gray and Taleshia Ford, both 17, in urging support for the measure.

"We all get outraged ... and we all go home," Mr. Barry said. "Nothing is done to get the guns off the streets of Washington, D.C."

Mr. Barry's bill was co-sponsored by council members Jim Graham, Ward 1 Democrat; Kwame Brown, at-large Democrat; and Tommy Wells, Ward 6 Democrat. It was referred to the Committee on Public Safety and the Judiciary.

Mr. Brown acknowledged that the bill "needs some working and flushing out" but that it was a proactive approach to taking guns off of city streets.

"To me, it's the end result," he said. "How do we get guns off the streets of the District of Columbia, get public input and find out how we can make the streets safer?"

Phil Mendelson, at-large Democrat and chairman of the public safety committee, said he had reservations about aspects of the bill. He said the 90-day period during which people who have owned illegal guns can register their weapons seems "counterproductive."

"The intent is right, to deal with gun violence," Mr. Mendelson said. "The amnesty thing, I think, goes against the need to reduce the number of guns in our city." He said the bill would likely be considered during the course of a larger hearing on gun violence.

Peter Hamm, a spokesman for the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, said yesterday the organization was not sufficiently familiar with Mr. Barry's bill to give an opinion on it but that the measure could be a tough sell in the District.

"It seems like a real uphill struggle for Mr. Barry to get a lot of broad support for something like this," Mr. Hamm said. "Washington, D.C., is suffering from a lot of gun violence lately and to say, 'Let's bring more guns into the equation as a solution,' doesn't sound like it makes a great deal of sense."

Chris W. Cox, chief lobbyist for the National Rifle Association, also said Mr. Barry's proposal was a surprise and that the organization would study the bill.

"Obviously, we support efforts to allow law-abiding residents of the District to own firearms," Mr. Cox said. "And we will continue in those efforts."

Congressional attempts to repeal the District's gun ban in recent years have been criticized as attacks on the District's right to home rule.

In 2004, the House of Representatives voted in favor of repealing the city's restrictions on gun ownership and registration, even though the measure was opposed by the District's mayor, 13 council members, the police chief and the city's congressional delegate. The bill was not brought to a vote in the Senate.

A federal appeals court heard arguments in December about whether the District's decision to prohibit residents from owning guns is a violation of the Second Amendment. That decision is pending. A U.S. District judge rejected the argument, brought by six D.C. residents, in 2005.

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

NUCLEAR & GREEN
By PATRICK MOORE

February 23, 2007 -- AS co-founder and former leader of Greenpeace, I once opposed nuclear energy. But times have changed, and new facts of compelling importance have emerged - and so my views have changed as well, as have those of a growing number of respected, independent environmentalists around the world.
There are few places where nuclear power makes as much sense or is as important as in New York. Indeed, the state is a microcosm of the challenges America and the world face to have ample, clean and reasonably priced electricity. As such, I strongly support renewal of the license for the Indian Point nuclear plants in Westchester, which provides 30 percent or so of the electricity used in the New York metro area.

Let me explain.

Climate change is now high on the global agenda, and I believe nuclear energy holds the greatest potential to arrest the dangers we face from global warming. It is the only non-greenhouse-gas-emitting power source capable of effectively replacing fossil fuels and satisfying growing demand.

Hydroelectric is largely built to capacity. And while other key renewable energy sources will play a growing role, wind and solar power are unreliable and intermittent. They simply can't provide "baseload" electricity - especially in densely populated areas like downstate New York.

And with Mayor Bloomberg's 2030 Commission projecting the growth of the city's population by 1 million over the next few decades, New York's power needs can't be expected to shrink.

Worldwide, nuclear energy is one of the safest industrial sectors. Here in North America, no one has been harmed in the entire history of civilian nuclear-power generation. Indeed, it's proven safer to work at a nuclear power plant than in the finance or real-estate sectors.

Nuclear energy is already the No. 2 source of electricity in the United States; it accounts for nearly 30 percent of New York state's electricity.

Another environmental benefit: Nuclear power plants improve air quality by reducing smog.

Downstate New York arguably has the worst air quality of any region in the country, thanks to high levels of ozone and particulate pollution.

The five boroughs and four other New York counties - Nassau, Orange, Rockland and Suffolk - are in violation of both the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's ozone standards and its regulations on fine particulate matter.

It is well established that this pollution has harmful health effects, especially for children and the elderly. This needs to be addressed now.

Because of the many environmental and economic benefits, dozens of business associations, labor unions, community groups and others support Indian Point license renewal.

Nuclear energy also makes economic sense. The cost of producing nuclear energy in the United States is on par with coal and hydroelectric. That's a very important consideration in New York, which has the country's second-highest elec- tricity costs. This impacts the poor and elderly, in particular, and makes it difficult for the business sector to operate efficiently as well.

What about nuclear waste? The notion is misleading. This used fuel is not waste. After its first cycle, spent fuel still contains 95 percent of its energy. Future generations will be able to put this valuable resource to work, powering the country.

Nuclear energy is not a silver bullet - it alone can't meet all of our energy needs. But the path toward cleaner air lies in the reduction of fossil fuels in favor of a mix of nuclear and renewable energy.

A growing consensus among environmentalists, politicians, industry and labor groups, academics and community leaders strongly supports a move in that direction.

Nearly 70 percent of Americans think more needs to be done to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions. I believe nuclear energy is well positioned to help achieve this goal and bring New York in line with the federal Clean Air Act.

The time for fresh thinking and renewed leadership on New York's energy needs is now.

Patrick Moore co-founded Greenpeace and is chair and chief scientist of Greenspirit Strategies Ltd. in Vancouver, British Columbia and an adviser to the New York Affordable Reliable Electricity Alliance (area-alliance.org).

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Holy crap!!! Ubber-lib Marion Barry is calling for a moratorium on the DC gun ban!?!?!? Patrick Moore, the chief enviro-mental-case himself, is supporting nuclear power?!?!?

Add to that the fact that a recent poll showed that Americans overwhelmingly support the troop surge, and we've got a Twilight Zone moment in the making.

And if you add Paraclete agreeing with Dick Cheney, it becomes too absurd even for TV.

What the hell is going on? Liberals are actually agreeing with my positions. I must be doing something wrong?

HHHHHEEEELLLLPPPP!!!! Somebody get me out of this crazy nightmare!!!!!!

I think I need some brain-floss.

Elliot

Itsdb answered on 02/23/07:

You're traveling through another dimension, a dimension not only of sight and sound but of mind. A journey into a wondrous land whose boundaries are that of imagination. That's the signpost up ahead— your next stop, the Twilight Zone!

Yeah, things seem a bit ... odd

BWAAA HAA haa haaa!

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Question/Answer
HANK1 asked on 02/22/07 - IRAN:



I just heard that Iran is going to expand its nuclear interests. Today is the deadline for them to end the testing et al. They didn't. Look out now!

HANK

Itsdb answered on 02/23/07:

You never know what to think about Iran - other than their president is a real whack job. Abbas Milani noted this in a NY Times column:

    After a meeting with the supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the leader’s chief foreign policy adviser, Ali Akbar Velayati, declared last week that suspending uranium enrichment is not a red line for the regime — in other words, the mullahs might be ready to agree to some kind of a suspension. Another powerful insider, Ali Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, said much the same thing in a different setting, while a third high-ranking official acknowledged that the Islamic Republic is seriously considering a proposal by President Vladimir Putin of Russia to suspend enrichment at least long enough to start serious negotiations with the United Nations.

    There have also been indications that the Iranians are willing to accept a compromise plan presented by Mohamed ElBaradei, the director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency. That plan calls for the suspension of all major enrichment activities but allows the regime to save face by keeping a handful of centrifuges in operation.

    The mullahs are keen on damage control on another front as well. After his meeting with Ayatollah Khamenei, Mr. Velayati announced that the Holocaust is a fact of history and chastised those who question its reality. Ali Larijani, Iran’s chief nuclear negotiator, also declared the Holocaust a “historical matter” to be discussed by scholars (and not, he implied, by ignorant politicians). In short, there is a new willingness among the Iranian political elite to avoid the rhetoric of confrontation and to negotiate.


Seems possible what the Mahdi Hatter says in public may not exactly be what the Mullahs are thinking, but again who knows? I'm not sure I agree with Milani's assessment of why the turnaround - I would never in its present state give the UN that much credit - but stranger things have happened. Nevertheless, we certainly can't relax and ease the pressure on Iran.

Steve

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Question/Answer
_JacquelineA asked on 02/22/07 - frustrated............


i am so sick of these black men treating women like thier peaces of shit.. i am going to go ahead and paste this song that appeals to me.. please give you comment and opinions on it!!!!

"Papa'z Song"
(feat. Wycked)

Daddy's home...

[2Pac]
Heh, so?
You say that like that means somethin to me
You've been gone a mighty long motherfuckin time
for you to be comin home talkin that "daddy's home" shit (nigga)
We been gettin along fine just without you
Me, my brother, and my mother
So if you don't mind, you can step the FUCK off, POPS.. fuck you!

[2Pac]
Had to play catch by myself, what a sorry sight
A pitiful plight, so I pray for a starry night
Please send me a pops before puberty
the things I wouldn't do to see a piece of family unity
Moms always work, I barely see her
I'm startin to get worried without a pops I'll grow to be her
It's a wonder they don't understand kids today
so when I pray, I pray I'll never grow to be that way
And I hope that he answers me
I heard God don't like ugly well take a look at my family
A different father every weekend
Before we get to meet him they break up before the week ends
I'm gettin sick of all the friendships
As soon as we kick it he done split and the whole shit ends quick
How can I be a man if there's no role model?
Strivin to save my soul I stay cold drinkin a forty bottle
I'm so sorry...

[Chorus]
I'm so sorry
for all this time (I'm so sorry)
for all this time
for all this time (don't lie)
I'm so sorry
for all this time (so, sorry)
for all this time
for all this time, so sorry baby!

[Wycked]
Moms had to entertain many men
Didn't wanna do it but it's time to pay the rent again
I'm gettin a bit older and I'm startin to be a bother
Moms can't stand me cause I'm lookin like my father
Should I stay or run away, tell me the answer
Moms ignores me and avoids me like cancer
Grow up rough and it's hard to understand stuff
Moms was tough cause his poppa wasn't man enough
Couldn't stand up to his own responsibilities
Instead of takin care of me, he'd rather live lavishly
That's why I'll never be a father;
unless you got the time it's a crime don't even bother
(That's when I started hatin the phony smiles
Said I was an only child)
Look at mama's lonely smile
It's hard for a son to see his mother cry
She only loves you, but has to fuck with these other guys
I'm so sorry...

[Chorus]
I'm so sorry
for all this time
for all this time
for all this time
I'm so sorry
for all this time
for all this time (so sorry)
for all this time, so sorry baby!

[2Pac]
Man child in the promised land couldn't afford many heroes
Moms was the only one there my pops was a no-show
And ohh -I guess ya didn't know
that I would grow to be so strong
Lookin kinda pale, was it the ale oh pops was wrong
Where was the money that you said, you would send me
talked on the phone and you sounded so friendly
Ask about school and my welfare
but it's clear, you ain't sincere hey who the hell cares
You think I'm blind but this time I see you comin, Jack
You grabbed your coat, left us broke, now ain't no runnin back
Ask about my moms like you loved her from the start
Left her in the dark, she fell apart from a broken heart
So don't even start with that "wanna be your father" shit
Don't even bother with your dollars I don't need it
I'll bury moms like you left me all alone G
Now that that I finally found you, stay the Fuck away from me
You're so sorry..

[Chorus]
I'm so sorry (so sorry)
for all this time (so, so sorry)
for all this time (I'm so so sorry)
for all this time (fuck that!)
I'm so sorry
for all this time (no)
for all this time (so sorry)
for all this time, so sorry baby!

[Tupac - impersonating his father]
I never meant to leave but I was wanted
Crossed too many people every house I'd touch was haunted
Had to watch the strangers every brother was in danger
If I was to keep you breathin, had to be out of range-a
Had to move, one to lost my name and pick the number
Made me watch my back I had no happy home to run to
Maybe it's my fault for being a father livin fast
But livin slow, mean half the dough, and you won't get no ass
Hindsight shows me it was wrong all along
I wanted to make some dough so you would grow to be so strong
It took a little longer than I thought
I slipped, got caught, and sent to jail by the courts
Now I'm doin time and I wish you'd understand
all I ever wanted was for you to be a man
and grow to be the type you was meant to be
Keep the war fightin by the writings that you sent to me
I'm so sorry...

[Chorus w/ variations til end]


Itsdb answered on 02/22/07:

Well JacquelineA, I agree with your opening assessment - no matter what color the man is. But I have to say that while the song may make some valid points, I find about as much value in angry, profane music as I do in worthless men who treat their women like crap. There are much better ways to make a point ... to me angry music in an angry culture just leads to even more angry people.

Steve

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Question/Answer
ETWolverine asked on 02/22/07 - State of the US Economy

This article is from The Christian Science Monitor
February 21, 2007 edition -

My comments are in Italics.

http://www.csmonitor.com/2007/0221/p01s03-usec.html

    US deficit is shrinking, for now
    With the robust economy, tax revenues are pouring in. But rising costs lie ahead.
    By Mark Trumbull | Staff writer of The Christian Science Monitor

    Despite the ongoing costs of US military campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan,


And exactly why was it necessary for them to cite the war in Iraq and Afghanistan in the opening sentence of an article about national debt? Seems like the CSM is trying to take potshots at Bush, even as they report on something good taking place.

    the outlook for the federal budget has grown substantially brighter.

    Tax revenues are rising much faster than spending,


Remember this sentence. I'll be referencing it later

    according to Treasury Department numbers released last week. The recent trend is strong enough that, were it to continue, the budget could move into surplus in barely a year, one economist calculates.


One year, huh? That would be about 5 years ahead of the best predictions of most economists two years ago... and MUCH better than the predictions of the anti-Bush anti-tax-cut doomsayers.

    Already, the federal deficit is shrinking toward about half the size that it has averaged since 1970, when analyzed as a percentage of gross domestic product.

    The shift reflects a strong economy, with higher incomes and corporate profits generating a bigger flow of tax revenue.


Again, notie the discussion of HIGHER TAX REVENUE. This is an important point that I will come back to later.

    In turn, the Treasury's progress could help the economy by buoying investor confidence in the nation's fiscal position.

    Although it is a welcome change, the improvement does little to stave off the long-run challenges to the nation's financial health, many economists say. Baby boomers are starting to retire, placing new demands on government. Costs for healthcare programs like Medicare are still projected to rise faster than overall inflation.


Isn't that the perfect argument for personal healthcare accounts? I would think so... but it seems that others think it means we need to be pouring more money into a failing (faile?) system that can't be fixed.

    "The picture is getting brighter," and if there's no recession over the next several years "there are going to continue to be some good strides made," says Mark McMullen, a senior economist at Moody's Economy.com in West Chester, Pa. But "it's unlikely that we're going to see a balanced budget anytime in the near or long term."


Why not? If the deficit is decreasing to the point where we will see the deficit disappear within the next couple of years, why would we not see a balanced budget? If tax revenues remain strong and continue to grow, the result SHOULD be a balanced budget. The only thing that could keep the budget from balancing would be spending increases. So is someone planning to say "We have too much money coming in, we should spend more"? Apparently so. The problem isn't tax revenue, its government expenditures.

    Some experts say the budget could achieve balance in the short run of the next few years. In unveiling its proposed budget this month, the Bush administration forecast black ink on the federal ledger in 2012. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO), in its recent annual outlook, also shows a surplus for that year.

    A year ago, the CBO's forecast for the 2007 fiscal year called for a deficit of $270 billion. In the annual outlook released last month, the 2007 gap is projected at $172 billion.

    "Right now, we're in some sense in a relatively good spot," says Jim Horney, a budget analyst at the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities, a liberal think tank in Washington. "We're in the sixth year of an economic expansion," a time when federal revenues often rise along with a growing economy.

    But both the CBO and the White House make important assumptions that are far from assured.


And what makes them unassured? They seem to have been born out until now, despite the doomsayers' negative predictions.

    The CBO's annual outlook assumes that President Bush's tax cuts phase out in 2010 as scheduled, thus adding new tax revenues.


Remember what I mentioned above about higher tax revenues NOW? Why would anyone predict that higher taxes would increase tax revenues when history has clearly shown the opposite to be true? As is the present case. Bush's tax cuts have resulted in higher tax revenue for the government. Why would phasing them out in 2010 increase tax revenue? If you do the opposite of what you are doing now, wouldn't you logically get the opposite result of what you are getting now?

    Mr. Bush's budget calls for the tax cuts to be made permanent, but foresees a surplus in 2012 thanks to a sharp fall in Iraq spending and robust productivity growth in the economy.


Why is this an unrealistic assumption? Why should we believe that the war in Iraq will continue to cost as much as it has, and that we won't see any economic benefit from Iraq? And why wouldn't there be robust productivity growth? Is the CSM aware of some economic indicators of which nobody else knows?

    But several issues are unsettled. Among them: How much will military operations in Iraq and elsewhere cost?


It doesn't really matter. If we are receiving more tax revenue, we can handle more expenditures for the war.

    Will Congress make some of the Bush tax cuts permanent?


That is a key question. I think we can be certain that the current Congress WON'T make them permanent. But after 2008? Who knows.

    Will Congress scale back the alternative minimum tax (AMT), which is poised to take a rising tax toll on middle-class Americans in the years ahead?


Another good question.

    The answers will have a big impact on the budget, and may not be resolved before a new president takes office in 2009.


But since Bush will be in office until then, and since he will keep his tax cuts in place until then, we can expect his economic growth projections to be met or exceeded until then.

    The long-term outlook remains sobering, all sides agree. The cost of Medicare, in particular, is slated to soar due to healthcare inflation and an aging population.


Again, can you say Personal Healthcare Accounts?

    Even the near-term outlook comes with an asterisk. When Bush took office in 2001, the CBO was forecasting a decade of budget surpluses totaling more than $5 trillion. Then came a recession, the terrorist attacks of 9/11, and enormous wartime spending. The Bush tax cuts helped to stimulate the economy, but at the cost of lower tax revenue.


Ahem.... remember the sentence that I told you to keep in mind above? "Tax revenues are rising much faster than spending..." Is it just me, or did this article just contradict itself badly? On one hand it says that tax revenues are rising faster than spending, on the other hand it says that tax revenues decreased as a result of the Bush tax cuts. Well, which is it?

    "We had three years where revenues went down," says Mr. Horney. "All that has happened is that we have ... caught up from the really bad decline that we had."


Actually, we far exceeded what tax revenues were before 9/11 and the recession. Horney doesn't know what he's talking about.

    Still, analysts say the recent budget gains are good news for the government and the economy.

    The budget deficit now stands at about 1.4 percent of the nation's GDP, well below the 2.3 percent that's been the norm since 1970, according to economist Michael Darda of MKM Partners in Greenwich, Conn. "At the current pace, the budget could move back into surplus as early as May 2008," Mr. Darda wrote in a report to clients last week.

    That isn't a forecast, but it shows how the nation's fiscal health is closely related to that of the overall economy.


Duh... ya think?

    A more stable budget outlook, in turn, has benefits for the economy.


No $h!t. I never would have guessed.

    The less money the government has to borrow to pay its bills, the more is left for investment in new goods and services. Alternatively, the nation will be less reliant on foreign lenders to fund that investment – debt that siphons away a portion of national wealth.

    "Unexpectedly strong revenue growth" has improved the outlook quite a bit, says Mr. McMullen.

    In the CBO projections, for example, the nation's public debt is forecast to fall from 37 percent of GDP in 2006 to 30.5 percent of GDP in 2012.

    In the longer run, the rise of entitlements such as Medicare could force difficult choices to keep that debt from rising again.


PERSONAL HEALTHCARE ACCOUNTS!!! How many times do I have to say it?

    Conservatives say it will be vital to contain costs. "If nothing changes in Washington then both revenues and spending will be higher," says Chris Edwards, a tax expert at the libertarian Cato Institute in Washington. "It'll hammer the economy," he says, as government takes a larger share of GDP.


Definitely true. While I love the Bush tax cuts, I am pissed at his lack of use of the veto pen to kill pork. And I'm pissed at the former Congress' Republican leadership for not holding spending down. We definitely need a change in Washington.

    Others say the answer will probably involve tax hikes as well as some reductions in promised entitlement benefits – and that a modest increase in taxes need not damage economic growth.


I don't really have a problem with the decreases in benefits. But if the Bush tax cuts have resulted in higher tax revenues, why would you then raise taxes and reverse that trend?

    Both sides agree on the need to tame medical inflation, if not on how to do it.


Have I mentioned Personal Healthcare Accounts? Cut the insurance companies out of the loop, and healthcare costs for the patient will drop, without decreasing payment to the doctors. We cut costs by cutting out the middleman... like Geico."

    "If we were able to reduce the growth of the cost of healthcare," says Horney, "that would definitely be good for the economy."


Again, a comment that falls into the "no $h!t" category.

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

Good news, badly reported.

Hey maybe that should be the Christian Science Monitor's new slogan.

Elliot

Itsdb answered on 02/22/07:

I think your assessment is right, I can't recall any CSM article I've read having anything to do with Bush that wasn't obviously biased. It has to be an affliction, the only way the MSM can bite their lips and report news that reflects well on Bush is to present it with caution - it's good, but...

I think most of the MSM should adopt a take on your slogan, News ... reported badly.

Steve

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 02/22/07 - Ahead of her time?

The following is a poem written by a woman over 40 years ago. Hmmmmm....think she might've seen a glimpse of the future?

The Angry Man
by Phyllis McGinley

The other day I chanced to meet
An angry man upon the street —
A man of wrath, a man of war,
A man who truculently bore
Over his shoulder, like a lance,
A banner labeled “Tolerance.”
And when I asked him why he strode
Thus scowling down the human road,
Scowling, he answered, “I am he
Who champions total liberty —
Intolerance being, ma’am, a state
No tolerant man can tolerate.

“When I meet rogues,” he cried, “who choose
To cherish oppositional views,
Lady, like this, and in this manner,
I lay about me with my banner
Till they cry mercy, ma’am.” His blows
Rained proudly on prospective foes.

Fearful, I turned and left him there
Still muttering, as he thrashed the air,
“Let the Intolerant beware!”

Itsdb answered on 02/22/07:

I would say so. She sounds like my kind of gal, too. Here's a brief outline on Mrs. McGinley, whose book "Sixpence in Her Shoe (1964) was written as a direct response to Betty Friedan's best-selling book The Feminine Mystique."

    I lay about me with my banner
    Till they cry mercy, ma’am.” His blows
    Rained proudly on prospective foes.


A perfect description of today's angry liberal - hypocritically and relentlessly battering anyone who doesn't fall in line. I still say the left is in serious need of therapy.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/21/07 - Libby case

It is now clear if the was ever any doubt that prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald's main target was never Scooter Libby . He has been and always was persuing a case against Vice President Dick Cheney.

The NY Sun reported today that Fitzgerald went on a hissy fit during closing statements .

"There's a cloud over the vice president," Mr. Fitzgerald told the jury. "We didn't put that cloud there. That cloud's there because the defendant obstructed justice. That cloud is something you just can't pretend isn't there."

The prosecutor also asserted that Mr. Libby violated a request from investigators by discussing his recollections about the case with his boss, Mr. Cheney, while the probe was under way. "He's not supposed to be talking to other people," Mr. Fitzgerald said of Mr. Libby. "The only person he told is the vice president. … Think about that."


There you have it . He decided to destroy Libby because Libby wouldn't give him the information he wanted on the Vice President .

Byron York expands on that theory in his column.

“What was all the hullabaloo about?” Fitzgerald asked as he discussed the reaction in the vice president’s office to Wilson’s attacks, which had begun after the CIA sent him on a fact-finding trip to Niger. “The question of who sent Wilson was hugely important, and they wanted everybody to know it wasn’t the vice president.”

That was undoubtedly true; testimony at the trial established, and the prosecution conceded, that the vice president’s office did not, in fact, send Joseph Wilson to Africa. And since that was the case, it was also true that Cheney, and Libby, wanted everyone to know that the vice president’s office had not sent Wilson to Africa. Some observers might ask, “What’s wrong with that?” But the undertone of Fitzgerald’s argument, and, in retrospect, of his entire investigation, was that a simple effort at political pushback — the bid to discredit Wilson — was somehow a criminal act.

Fitzgerald spent a long time going back and forth between Cheney’s handwritten notes on a copy of Wilson’s New York Times op-ed and a set of talking points developed by the vice president’s office. They tracked closely with each other. The talking points said things like, “The vice president’s office did not request the mission to Niger,” and “The vice president’s office was not informed of Joe Wilson’s mission,” and “The vice president’s office did not receive a briefing about Mr. Wilson’s mission,” and “The vice president’s office was not aware of Mr. Wilson’s mission until this spring, when the press reported it.” And — here Fitzgerald’s voice dripped with accusation — “It is not clear who authorized Joe Wilson’s trip to Niger.”

Fitzgerald’s presentation proved, if anyone doubted it, that the vice president’s communications staff endeavored to make points that the vice president wanted made. But for Fitzgerald, it was part of something quite sinister. “The question of who sent Wilson is important,” Fitzgerald told the jury. “It’s the number-one question in the vice president’s mind.”

“There was a focus on who sent Wilson on this trip,” Fitzgerald continued. “There was an obsession with Wilson.” And that, the prosecutor charged, led to an obsession with revealing the role that Wilson’s wife, former CIA employee Valerie Plame Wilson, played in sending her husband to Africa. “Any effort to tell you that the wife was just separate, an unrelated matter, is just an effort to take your attention away from what the facts are,” Fitzgerald said. “Wilson’s wife was an answer, a fact, an argument.”

It was all led by Cheney, Fitzgerald charged. And it all sounded quite ominous.


The Sun's article concludes by saying that Mr. Fitzgerald's pregnant statements yesterday about Messrs. Bush and Cheney may have been intended to bolster the chance of convicting Mr. Libby by tying him to the unpopular political figures atop the executive branch. Another possibility is that the closing statements offered the prosecutor who has headed the investigation for more than three years his last clear opportunity to opine on the actions of the president and the vice president in the case.

Throughout the case ; judge Reggie Walton had excluded any testimony opining on the status of Valerie Plame .Which was odd because it would've put the underlying crime that was being originally investigated into some context. Still in his closing statement Fitzgerald managed to put the thought that Plame was some 007 super spy into the minds of the jury .

As he built up to the climax of his presentation, Fitzgerald told the jury that exposing Valerie Plame Wilson’s role in Joseph Wilson’s trip to Africa could have gotten her killed. And defendant Libby — remember him? — knew it at the time.

Fitzgerald argued that Libby must have known that the subject of Mrs. Wilson’s role was important — and therefore it is unlikely that he forgot about it, as he contends — because he was “discussing something with people that could lead to people being killed.” “If someone is outed,” Fitzgerald said, “people can get in trouble overseas. They can get arrested, tortured, or killed.”


Again ...there was NO evidence presented to the jury about Plame's status and indeed the judge blocked ANY attempt to introduce it into evidence. That part of Fitzgerald's statement should have been stricken.

As York however pointed out ,Fitzgerald changed his tune to adding the caveat that it could have happened. And, more importantly, that Libby might have thought it could have happened. And if he did, that would make it important, wouldn’t it? So it would be something he wouldn’t forget, right? Fitzgerald told the jurors they should think about this imagined “people being killed” scenario to understand Libby’s “state of mind,” but they should not draw any conclusions about “whether it’s true or false.”

That is about as weasley a charge as I have ever heard . The jury is to convict Libby on what he MIGHT HAVE THOUGHT and what his state of mind MIGHT HAVE BEEN !!!His use of innuendo is despicable and unethical.

I can't believe it !!! Millions of dollars wasted on this investigation and that is what Fitzgerald's case comes down to ...No illegal outing of a covert operative .... but Libby lied ...no possibility he could have forgotten the facts because MAYBE his state of mind was on this grand conspiracy being directed by the Vice President (now get this) who was so obsessed about a single article in the NY slimes that he was willing to destroy an entire covert network to get even.

I really have to wonder how many rolls of tin foil it took to make Fitzgerald's hat ????? What is Libby's crime ?? He is a reachable surrogate . Look for Fitzgerald to offer a deal to Libby if he will testify against VP Cheney in chapter 2 of this absurd comedy .This is Bush Derangement Syndrom on steroids .



Itsdb answered on 02/22/07:

Well, unfortunately for Libby most judges allow for a little creativity in closing arguments. Fitzgerald has to have something to show for all the time and taxpayers money he wasted.

Here's my simple take on the whole matter - it was all a bunch of BS. Libby apparently perjured himself and he shouldn't have done that so here we are. Otherwise this whole %$@&* thing boils down to one issue in my view, Wilson brought all of this on.

The Senate Select Committee On Intelligence reported that Cheney was never briefed on his report. Tenet testified “Because this report, in our view, did not resolve whether Iraq was or was not seeking uranium from abroad, it was given a normal and wide distribution, but we did not brief it to the President, Vice-President or other senior administration officials.”

So what does Wilson do? You know the story, he talked, Kristoff reported. Then the Washington Post reported and the Slimes published Wilson's infamous op-ed. As I see it, regardless of who sent Wilson he started this crap by trying to discredit Bush - who reportedly had not even been briefed on his findings - which according to Tenet did not resolve the issue of Iraq's attempt to purchase uranium.

Because of Wilson's indiscretion we've had 3 years of nonsense from the left - Rove was indicted without a trial (and never exhonerated by his accusers), Plame, Wilson and Miller are now legends, and Bush and Cheney are villianized over doing what should come naturally - defending themselves against a partisan loose cannon named Joseph Wilson. Am I wrong?

Steve

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Question/Answer
ETWolverine asked on 02/21/07 - Are Americans finally waking up?

From today's NY Post.

AMERICA SAYS LET'S WIN WAR
By ANDY SOLTIS


February 21, 2007 -- In a dramatic finding, a new poll shows a solid majority of Americans still wants to win the war in Iraq - and keep U.S. troops there until the Baghdad government can take over.

Strong majorities also say victory is vital to the War on Terror and that Americans should support President Bush even if they have concerns about the way the war is being handled, according to the survey conducted by Public Opinion Strategies.

The poll found that 57 percent of Americans supported "finishing the job in Iraq" - keeping U.S. troops there until the Iraqis can provide security on their own. Forty-one percent disagreed.

By 53 percent to 43 percent they also believe victory in Iraq over the insurgents is still possible.

Despite last November's electoral victories by anti-war Democrats, the survey found little support among voters for a quick pullout of U.S. forces.

Only 25 percent of those surveyed agreed with the statement, "I don't really care what happens in Iraq after the U.S. leaves, I just want the troops brought home." Seventy-four percent disagreed.

The survey was conducted before last week's House of Representatives resolution repudiating Bush's war policies.

But by 53 percent to 46 percent, Americans said Democrats are going too far, too fast in demanding troop withdrawals.

But the poll of 800 registered voters found Americans pessimistic about Iraq's fledgling democracy.

Only 34 percent felt it would become a stable democracy, compared with 60 percent who said it would not.

Among other key findings of the poll conducted Feb. 5-7:

* When given a choice of four policies, an immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops was the least popular (17 percent).

* The most popular option (32 percent) was a withdrawal timetable.

* The next most popular policy, favored by 27 percent, was expressed by the statement: "The Iraq war is the front line in the battle against terrorism and our troops should stay there and do whatever it takes to restore order until the Iraqis can govern and provide security to the country."

The fourth option, favored by 23 percent, was the statement: "While I don't agree that the U.S. should be in the war, our troops should stay there and do whatever it takes to restore order until the Iraqis can govern and restore security to their country."

With Post Wire Services

andy.soltis@nypost.com


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

Interesting, no? Americans are a lot smarter about our options in Iraq than the Dems give them credit for. 50% of Americans expect and WANT the troops to stay in Iraq for as long as it takes to get the job done and support strategies that include a long-term deployment in Iraq.. Fully 82% of Americans are against an immediate pullout option, and 50% are against ANY option that includes a pullout until the job is over. And 57% of Americans say that we should support Bush on Iraq even if we don't agree with every aspect of how the war is run. These are SOLID numbers that favor Bush's policies.

It would seem that Murtha, Pelosi, Kennedy and Kerry's strategy of demanding immediate withdrawal at all costs is a losing stance for the Dems. I expect Clinton to gravitate towards the idea of a "timetable" as time goes along. Obama is in a bad spot... the darling of the far left, he can't easily shift to the right without losing some of his constituency.

I expect an all-out scramble within the Dem hierarchy to reposition themselves in lieu of this poll.

Are any other news outlets reporting this poll?

What is your opinion of the poll?

Elliot

Itsdb answered on 02/21/07:

Elliot,

It certainly wasn't in my paper - but every news outlet (except Fox News) is reporting on Tony Blair's announcement that Bush will soon be going it alone in Iraq. Fox Reported it as evidence of progress.

I don't doubt this poll one bit, it seems far more reasonable than all of the polls that showed America's dissatisfaction with things in Iraq. Either that or the people are finally waking up to the Dems posturing since taking office and are pushing back. Even if the majority of Americans were unhappy about things they darn sure didn't vote for the left to come in and run roughshod over the president which is exactly what they're trying to do.

Their true colors are coming out and America doesn't like it. All of those 'moderate democrats' are suddenly nowhere to be found, and the party heavies can't contain their glee over that 'stinging rebuke' last week - or their intention to do all they can to undermine Bush as I pointed out earlier.

I don't expect the Democrat hierarchy to reposition themselves, they smelled blood and they're going for the kill. That is, until someone from within points out that they've been outed for their stealth campaign last fall and it's backfiring.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 02/20/07 - Do you really know Hillary?

"Where is the G-ddamn f**king flag? I want the G-ddamn f**king flag up every f**king morning at f**king sunrise."
(From the book "Inside The White House" by Ronald Kessler, p. 244 - Hillary to the staff at the Arkansas Governor's mansion on Labor Day, 1991)

"You sold out, you motherf**ker! You sold out."
From the book "Inside" by Joseph Califano, p. 213 - Hillary yelling at Democrat lawyer.

"It's been said, and I think it's accurate, that my husband was obsessed by terrorism in general and al-Qaida in particular."
Hillary telling a post-9/11 world what a great commander in chief her husband was; Dateline, NBC 4/16/2004.

"I have to admit that a good deal of what my husband and I have learned [about Islam] has come from our daughter."
(TruthInMedia.org 8/8/1999 - Hillary at a White House function, proudly tells some Muslim groups she is gaining a greater appreciation of Islam because Chelsea was then taking a class on the "religion of peace")

"F**k off! It's enough that I have to see you shit-kickers every day, I'm not going to talk to you too. Just do your G-ddamn job and keep your mouth shut."
(From the book "American Evita" by Christopher Anderson, p. 90 - Hillary to her State Trooper bodyguards after one of them greeted her with "Good morning."

"You f**king idiot."
(From the book "Crossfire" p. 84 - Hillary to a State Trooper who was driving her to an event.)

"If you want to remain on this detail, get your f**king ass over here and grab those bags."
(From the book "The First Partner" p. 259 - Hillary to a Secret Service Agent who was reluctant to carry her luggage because he wanted to keep his hands free in case of an incident.)

"Get f**ked! Get the f**k out of my way! Get out of my face!"
(From the book "Hillary's Scheme" p. 89 - Hillary's various comments to her Secret Service detail.)

"Stay the f**k back, stay the f**k away from me! Don't come within ten yards of me, or else! Just f**king do as I say, Okay?"
(From the book "Unlimited Access" by Gary Aldrige, p. 139 - Hillary to the Secret Service detail.)

"Many of you are well enough off that [President Bush's] tax cuts may have helped you. We're saying that for America to get back on track, we're probably going to cut that short and not give it to you. We're going to have to take things away from you on behalf of the common good."
Hillary to her fellow liberals in a fund raising speech in San Francisco ; SFGate.com 6/28/2004.)

"Why do I have to keep proving to people that I am not a liar?"
(From the book "The Survivor," by John Harris, p. 382 - Hillary in her 2000 Senate campaign)

"Where's the miserable c**ksucker?"
(From the book "The Truth About Hillary" by Edward Klein, p. 5 - Hillary shouting at a Secret Service officer)

"No matter what you think about the Iraq war, there is one thing we can all agree on for the next days - we have to salute the courage and bravery of those who are risking their lives to vote and those brave Iraqi and American soldiers fighting to protect their right to vote.
(Posted on Hillary's clinton.senate.gov web site 01/28/05)

"Put this on the ground! I left my sunglasses in the limo. I need those sunglasses. We need to go back!"
(From the book "Dereliction of Duty" p. 71-72 - Hillary to Marine One helicopter pilot to turn back while en route to Air Force One.)

"A right-wing network was after his presidency...including perverting the Constitution."
(To Barbara Walters about the Republicans who impeached her husband; 20/20, ABC 6/8/2003.)

"Son of a bitch."
(From the book "American Evita" by Christopher Anderson, p. 259 - Hillary's opinion of President George W. Bush when she found out he secretly visited Iraq just days before her highly publicized trip to Iraq)

"What are you doing inviting these people into my home? These people are our enemies! They are trying to destroy us!"
(From the book "The Survivor" by John Harris, p. 99 - Hillary's reaction to an aide, when she found out that some Republicans had been invited to the Clinton White House)

"I mean, you've got a conservative and right-wing press presence with really nothing on the other end of the political spectrum."
(C-Span, 1/19/1997 - Hillary complains about the mainstream media, which are all conservatives in her opinion)

"Come on Bill, put your dick up. You can't f**k her here."
(From the book "Inside The White House" by Ronald Kessler, p. 243 - Hillary to Gov. Clinton when she spots him talking with an attractive female at an Arkansas political rally)

”You know, I'm going to start thanking the woman who cleans the restroom in the building I work in. I'm going to start thinking of her as a human being”-Hillary Clinton
(From the book "The Case Against Hillary Clinton" by Peggy Noonan, p. 55)

"You show people what you're willing to fight for when you fight your friends."
(From the book "The Agenda" by Bob Woodward, ch. 14)

Being a [ Chicago ] Cubs fan prepares you for life—and Washington .
(Newsweek, April 18, 1994 p. 17)

"We are at a stage in history in which remolding society is one of the great challenges facing all of us in the West."
(From the book "I've Always Been A Yankee Fan" by Thomas D. Kuiper, p. 119 - During her 1993 commencement address at the University of Texas)

"The only way to make a difference is to acquire power" (p. 68).
(From the book "I've Always Been A Yankee Fan" by Thomas D. Kuiper, p. 68 - Hillary to a friend before starting law school.)

"We just can't trust the American people to make those types of choices.... Government has to make those choices for people"
(From the book "I've Always Been A Yankee Fan" by Thomas D. Kuiper, p. 20 - Hillary to Rep. Dennis Hastert in 1993 discussing her health care plan

Itsdb answered on 02/20/07:

None of this is surprising to me, I can easily picture her saying most of those things. What I did know is this mindset, "the only way to make a difference is to acquire power." That's what it's all about, acquiring power - and you can see what she means by 'making a difference.'

Steve

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Question/Answer
_JacquelineA asked on 02/18/07 - hilary clinton


how do you all feel about hilary clinton wanting to run for president?

she is extremely and ambitious and is going to run but i do not care for her.. i am not going to vote for her..

Itsdb answered on 02/19/07:

How do I feel about her running? Nauseated. Even worse if she gets elected.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/19/07 - my weekend

I took the opportunity to don my long neglected snow shoes this weekend and found some fresh snow covered mountain trails to hike.I thank God that the days were sunny with very little breeze to contend with . After 2 days of this my body is telling me I should do that more often .I am sore in muscle groups I forgot I had. But that is not my point.

The trails were near a SUNY [State of NY university] campus . While driving home there were oh about 50 protesters on the side of the road with the ususal signage like "end the war now" ,"no surge ".."Bush is a war criminal " etc.

I was about to pull over and engage them in some civilized debate but my wife was against it ,and the cop on the scene directing traffic did not look like he was in the mood for any issues on this peaceful sunny weekend day.

So I rolled down the window and sang in my loudest off key voice " All we are saying is give Petreaus a chance " .

I don't think they got it.

Itsdb answered on 02/19/07:

LOL, wish I could've been there I would have sang along with you. Of course they don't get it, they're just useful idiots saying what they've been told to say.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/17/07 - The end of the electoral college ?

Wednesday I posted about attempts to undermine the primary process. Today I post about the possibilty of the end of the electoral college. Yes it is a possibility and sooner than you think.

A movement is afoot to undermine the Electoral College. The key player in this effort is a group called National Popular Vote , a 501(c)(4) non-profit group that advocates having the popular vote dictate presidential selection.

Because the Constitution states that “Each state shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors,”[Art.2 Sec.1] their effort is concentrated on getting as many states as possible to enact a bill that would, “guarantee that the presidential candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states and the District of Columbia will win the Presidency.”

23 states currently have bills in their legislatures awarding the state’s electors to the winner of the national popular vote rather than the votes in their state.
To illustrate the absurdity of this let's suppose Kansas and Conn. enact the law and 90 % of Kansans votes Republican and 90% Conn.'s popular vote is a Democrat .As it stands now all Kansas goes Republican and all Conn. goes Democrat. With this law it could be that both go either Republican or Democrat depending on the national outcome. The way I see it ,one of these states gets disenfranchised.

As with the movement of the primary dates ,the aim of this is to minimize the influence of the smaller states in the electoral process. Why would a candidate care about the vote in Wyoming when they can concentrate their efforts into a few urban centers and come away with a majority ? The winner would be the candidate willing to pander to the big cities. Small state issues would be ignored. Rural America would be further marginalized. Los Angeles, New York, and Chicago would elect the president. The Electoral College was designed to prevent large states (then Virginia and New York) from having the only say in electing the president, to keep radical swings in public opinion from causing radical swings in government, and to keep the small states in on the action.

I view these as nothing less than the abolishment of federalism. Why not abolish the Senate while they are at it ? or make it's membership based on population of the state ?

How can this possibly be fair when each State has it's own election laws . Do they now propose to make national standards for all voting also ?

I do not understand this . In 2 centuries there have been 2 elections where the President did not get the majority of the popular vote.Oh wait...yeah I do get it.... One of them was President Bush in 2000.

Itsdb answered on 02/19/07:

tom, as with all things liberal or "progressive," it just depends on who is being disenfranchised/discriminated against/censored, etc. It's ok, to do such to Republicans/conservatives/Christians/and white males.

All that matters is the agenda. Reason, fairness, common sense, cooperation, respect, etc. are cast aside for the agenda. And what we have now is that mob mentality the framers feared.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/17/07 - Si vis pacem, para bellum

The Democrats aren’t content with the surrender resolution and the steps Murtha is putting on the table for Iraq. Pelosi this week led her party colleagues in pre-emptive surrender with Iran stating that there is no "previous authority for the president, any president, to go into Iran.”

Leaving aside for a moment the separation of powers issues ; what does it say about the party in control of Congress when it openly announces that the military option for dealing with Iran will not be available to the United States? Is there any way more certain to embolden an enemy than to announce openly that the military option is not an option?
Of course we would prefer that the challenges posed by Iran can be resolved without resorting to war, but it is folly to tell a potential adversary that it faces no threat of war and it severly undermines our diplomatic leverage . Good job Madam Mimi ! Again you have proven what true leadership is .

Itsdb answered on 02/19/07:

I'm sure that the eye batting, Armani wearing, giggling grandma was a hit with Jihadists everywhere last week ... as were Murtha, Chucky and Evita.

    "This is a process where step by step, we ratchet up the pressure on the president and on his Republican colleagues in the House and Senate and force them to do what the American people want."

    “There will be resolution after resolution, amendment after amendment . . . just like in the days of Vietnam,” Schumer said. “The pressure will mount, the president will find he has no strategy, he will have to change his strategy and the vast majority of our troops will be taken out of harm’s way and come home.” -Chuck Schumer.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    "That stops the surge, for all intents and purposes ... They know they can't sustain the surge if these restrictions pass the House and Senate. The president can always veto it, but then he won't have any money."

    "They won't be able to continue. They won't be able to do the deployment. They won't have the equipment, they don't have the training and they won't be able to do the work. There's no question in my mind." -Jack Murtha on his proposed funding restrictions

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    "We have to get Republicans on record in order to have them as possibly the core of Republicans who will stand with us to cap troops or cut funding." -Evita


That's a heckuva lot of talk about cutting funding and undermining the mission after boasting about supporting and "protecting" the troops. Bush was right on when he said "This may become the first time in the history of the United States Congress that it has voted to send a new commander into battle and then voted to oppose his plan that is necessary to succeed in that battle."

Seems this congress will be no different in handling an Iranian threat.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 02/16/07 - Another Greenpeace cracks

up under pressure. The David Lawerence Convention Center was built according to Greenpeace regulations. Ever since it was built it has been plagued with problems and needs constant renovations Almost every time that they do major work at least one person gets killed. Now the floor crumbled because it was not made to withstand the drastic temperature changes of the Pittsburgh climate. So much for Greenpeace.

Also the bridge right around the corner from it just recently got a name change on Rachael Carson's birthday
---from the 9th street Bridge to The Rachael Carson bridge. Two blocks down on the other side of the Rachael Carson bridge is the Andy Warhol Museum

A Pittsburgh tour brought to you by

sapph

Itsdb answered on 02/16/07:

We have Greenpeace regulations? God help us if we do. If I were you I'd be careful taking that bridge now...

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/16/07 - Murtha's gambit

What only can be called Murtha's 'Slow Bleed until we have no choice but retreat plan' amounts to putting unconstitutional restrictions on how defense allocations regarding Iraq can be spent . Yes that 's right,I said unconstitutional !!

The idea is to pass a series of small measures that curtail the president's ability to make war, while at the same time cynically showing 'support'for the troops.

In detail Murtha's surrender plan :

would not allow American troops to deploy to Iraq unless they meet certain (impossibly high) standards of manpower, equipment, and training. Murtha believes few of the units Bush intends to use for the surge would be able to meet his requirements.

will limit the length and number of deployments by soldiers in the American armed forces, thereby making it more difficult for the Pentagon to replace troops it rotates out of war zones.

will mandate that troops get a year off in between stints at the front lines.

would end the construction of bases in Iraq.

would raze Abu Ghraib (already under the complete control of the Iraqi Government ).

He will try to sneak this in as a rider to an Iraq War Supplemental Spending bill coming up .Then when and if the Republicans vote against it ......viola ! ;it was the Republicans who are anti-troop and are cutting off funding !!

But in fact it is anti-troops because the surge will be well underway while this bill gets debated.

In an interview on the website MoveCongress.org Murtha made his intentions clear ... and it's not simply to prevent the surge either :
Chairman Murtha will describe his strategy for not only limiting the deployment of troops to Iraq but undermining other aspects of the president’s foreign and national security policy.

In the interview he said ,The Bush administration "won't be able to continue. They won't be able to do the deployment. They won't have the equipment. They don't have the training and they won't be able to do the work," .... "This vote will limit the options of the president and should stop this surge."

The president is commander-in-chief. That is not just a title ,it is a constitutional duty that may not be performed by any other branch. Congress can deny him funding; it cannot exercise commander-in-chief functions. Rotating troops and assigning material is an executive function -- just like deciding which target to hit. In The Federalist 73 , Hamilton explained that the Constitution gave that obligation to the executive in order to defend against “the propensity of the legislative department to intrude upon the rights, and to absorb the powers, of the other departments.”

If Murtha is looking for a Constitutional crisis then just see what happens when and if the Congress ever attempts to pass this folly.

The sooner this comes to a head the better the way I see it. They have already made moves to undermine the militaries ability to wage this war. Since BRAC is mandated by law, the Army will have to move money from other accounts in order to meet the BRAC requirements.




Itsdb answered on 02/16/07:

So THAT's the legislation Pelosi said would be following the gutless resolution. Perhaps the GOP needs to follow with a binding resolution against congessmen who admit their intent to undermine the CIC, or heck, just charge the SOB with treason and be done with this moron.

This is VERY revealing:

    Led by Rep. John P. Murtha, D-Pa., and supported by several well-funded anti-war groups, the coalition's goal is to limit or sharply reduce the number of U.S. troops available for the Iraq conflict, rather than to openly cut off funding for the war itself.

    The legislative strategy will be supplemented by a multimillion-dollar TV ad campaign designed to pressure vulnerable GOP incumbents into breaking with President Bush and forcing the administration to admit that the war is politically unsustainable.


We not only have a congressman openly planning his treason, we've got the moonbats backing him on it and showing their hand. I've said all along that it was public pressure from the left, and the intentional, constant dismal news reports is what swayed public opinion against the war, consequences - and truth - be damned.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/15/07 - Iranian elite troops killed in car bombing

oh the irony is just too delicious ... the conspiracy and espionage theories could keep this thread going for a while .

TEHRAN, Iran - A car bomb killed 11 members of Iran's elite Revolutionary Guards on Wednesday in the deadliest attack in years near the Pakistani border, and Iran accused the United States of backing militants to destabilize the country.

Who knows ? Asymetical warfare is a game anyone can play be it in the deserts of the ME ; with the opposing teams uniforms in Karablah ,the jungles of the Phillipines the shopping malls of Salt Lake City or even the badlands of Baluchistan.Maybe it is internecine battles between forces loyal to Rafsanjani and the Mahdi -hatter.....or maybe the CIA is doing it's job.

Itsdb answered on 02/16/07:

Could things possibly be going our way now? I think so, although you wouldn't know it by the news. See my next post...

Steve

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 02/14/07 - I gotta tell you, this guy looks interesting:

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/02/13/romney.announce/index.html

What do y'all think?

Itsdb answered on 02/14/07:

I think I'll watch and wait a bit. What I fear is the religious conservatives are going to once again back someone with no chance of winning instead of sucking it up a little and getting on board with someone that's electable. I think that would do far more toward Republican chances than if they plant their feet and stubbornly refuse to budge.

Personally, I'll give Romney a chance and I don't care that he's a Mormon. I'm open to Rudy as well even if he isn't as socially conservative as I am, and heck, I'd probably even vote for McCain if it means keeping the White House out of Democrat hands.

I'm just wondering if they're going end up putting our governor on the ticket. I don't think he deserves it, but he can sure campaign and he has really good hair.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/14/07 - The 2008 election season

It came upon us faster than I can remember and it appears to be already in full swing. Much of the rush to announce and organize appears due to many States changing their primary dates in an attempt to have greater influence in the outcome.

The latest example came out of Kalifornia.Their Senate passed a measure that would enable Democrats and Republicans to choose nominees Feb. 5 instead of June 3. The bill is expected to be heard in the Assembly next week and to pass easily. The Governator has said he will sign it.

Simular legislation is pending in Illinois, Texas, Florida and New Jersey. NY politicians and other states are also considering it .Pennsylvania and Indiana have legislation that would move their primaries to the first week of March.

This will force candidates to get organized quicker and to get their funding ducks in a row earlier . It clearly gives front-runners the advantage for 3 obvious reasons .

1. Well funded front runners will be in a better position to take their campaigns to a national-wholesale level.It will be over after Feb. 5.and expensive media markets will be in the deciding mix. The candidates with the most money on hand are the prohibitive favorites. Besides the above mentioned states the following will also hold primaries on Super Tues. Feb. 5 :Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Missouri, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Utah, West Virginia

2. Dark horses will not have a change to gain momentum before the bulk of the delegates are already selected .

3. With the primaries spread out the way they were there was more room for debate amongst the candidates with the possibility of a glaring slip up changing the dynamics of the campaign . With all the primaries grouped together like this it will be possible for a front-runner to skip debates without consequences (as Hillary is already threatening )

Do you think that there is any advantage to just going to a national primary day ? I don't but that is where I see this heading to.



Itsdb answered on 02/14/07:

I can see an advantage - if they move it all to sometime in say, April or May. I'm already sick of this campaign - too much too soon. With primaries, general elections and locals it seems we're in a perpetual election cycle. With all the clamor about low voter turnout you'd think they could see people are sick of non-stop campaign politics. We need a break of more than, oh, a month...

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/14/07 - Chicken Shiite :al-Sadr gettin'while the gettin' is good


The "coward"(see hudna ) Moqtada al-Sadr made a bee-line express to Iran in the weeks after President Bush announced the surge .

Sources believe al Sadr is worried about an increase of 20,000 U.S. troops in the Iraqi capital. One official told ABC News' Martha Raddatz, "He is scared he will get a JDAM [bomb or as I like to call it ;"the Zarqawi treatment"] dropped on his house."

Sources say some of the Mahdi army leadership went with al Sadr.


According to ABC Sadr is staying with family but The Fourth Rail blog claims to have sources that know Sadr is under the protection of the Iranian Qods Force.

How long will he stay there ? He may try to wait us out .He may come back and try to force us out of Iraq (lol) . He may try to reconcile with us ;another unlikely scenario since by all appearances Iran is calling the shots for him. What should be apparent to forces inside Iraq is that he has no wheres near the control of the situation there as he thinks .

I also think he has played his political hand badly . He has alternated between being an active member of the gvt. to trying to undermine it when he hasn't gotten his way. Despite all of that Maliki has survived and the gvt. is still functioning . If he chooses to go into extended exile I think whatever thin support he has will be further shredded .Who will the Shia's rely on ? ....The mahdi militia who's leader is clearly an Iranian stooge ,and who cuts and runs when things get hot ???..... or a permanent National Iraqi Army .

Meanwhile ;Nancy Pelosi will continue holding a debate this week to disapprove of a strategy that has already demonstrated success.

Itsdb answered on 02/14/07:

Mookie a coward? What a shock. It's easy to be a coward and run and hide when your whole life is about doing cowardly deeds. The thing about him cuttin' and runnin' is it won't deter his followers - for a while anyway. That's one of those mysteries of jihad, even when the coward bugs out he'll find a way to convince his people how heroic he was.

Nevertheless, it still shows what we've been saying all along, the only thing they understand is force, that "Zarqawi treatment" is pretty intimidating and effective.

Meanwhile, as you note - congress, the drive-by media & others are having a lot of fun waging their own hysterical jihad.

John Edwards wants to cut troop funding, "At this point, the escalation is under way, so blocking it is not enough. So what I'm doing today is calling on Congress to take the next step, which is to cap funding."

Pelosi said "No more blank checks" and added "A vote of disapproval will set the stage for additional Iraq legislation, which will be coming to the House floor."

She also spoke of "damaging the standing of the United States in the international community," while ambassadors from Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan and Qatar warned of the consequences of an early withdrawal. Take that along with John Howard's comments and it seems not everyone in the "international community" agrees with the Democrats.

Last but not least, Obama stepped in it pretty good while announcing his candidacy, "We ended up launching a war that should have never been authorized, and should never been waged, and on which we have now spent $400 billion, and have seen over 3,000 lives of the bravest young Americans wasted."

At least he's apologized for that last comment. Now if everyone else that's talked about our troops lives "wasted" and having "died in vain" would see their error also.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 02/13/07 - what a laugh

Limbaugh is playing parodies of
Johnny cash ball of fire
Louey Armstrong what a beautiful world and
Arthur Brown Fire

for al gore

Itsdb answered on 02/13/07:

I don't care what anyone else thinks of Rush, the man is funny and his parodies are the best. One of my all time faves by the man who does most of them, Paul Shanklin, is In a Yugo.

As the snow flies...
At a used car lot on the edge o' town
a liberal guy and a liberal gal buy a Yugo
And they drive with pride...


LOL!

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Question/Answer
HANK1 asked on 02/13/07 - LINCOLN:



Lincoln was against the spread of slavery into the territories but was NOT an abolitionist. Why was he called the great emancipator and a champion of black freedom?

HANK

Itsdb answered on 02/13/07:

Well Hank I'm not sure what you're looking for here, but the obvious is Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation by executive order and secured passage of the thirteenth amendment, though his position on slavery evolved over time.

In 1837 he opposed abolition saying the Congress of the United States has no power, under the constitution, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the different States, but also wrote, the institution of slavery is founded on both injustice and bad policy.

In 1855 while still maintaining a constitutional right, he wrote to a friend, You know I dislike slavery...I confess I hate to see the poor creatures hunted down, and caught, and carried back to their stripes, and unrewarded toils; but I bite my lip and keep quiet...You may remember, as I well do, that from Louisville to the mouth of the Ohio there were, on board, ten or a dozen slaves, shackled together with irons. That sight was a continual torment to me.

Many notable quotes from the Lincoln-Douglas debates in 1858 noted Lincoln's distate for slavery including this:

    It is the eternal struggle between these two principles -- right and wrong -- throughout the world. They are the two principles that have stood face to face from the beginning of time; and will ever continue to struggle. The one is the common right of humanity and the other the divine right of kings. It is the same principle in whatever shape it develops itself. It is the same spirit that says, "You work and toil and earn bread, and I'll eat it." No matter in what shape it comes, whether from the mouth of a king who seeks to bestride the people of his own nation and live by the fruit of their labor, or from one race of men as an apology for enslaving another race, it is the same tyrannical principle.


April 16, 1959 he wrote to Henry L. Pierce:

    This is a world of compensations; and he who would be no slave, must consent to have no slave. Those who deny freedom to others, deserve it not for themselves; and, under a just God, can not long retain it.


February 1, 1861 he wrote to William H. Seward:

    I say now, however, as I have all the while said, that on the territorial question -- that is, the question of extending slavery under the national auspices, -- I am inflexible. I am for no compromise which assists or permits the extension of the institution on soil owned by the nation. And any trick by which the nation is to acquire territory, and then allow some local authority to spread slavery over it, is as obnoxious as any other.


He may not have begun as an abolitionist but his public position against slavery is well known - and he eventually acted on it. That makes him the great emancipator.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/12/07 - Obama v. John Howard

US presidential hopeful Barack Obama has blasted as "empty rhetoric" Australian Prime Minister John Howard's attack on Senator Obama's plan to bring US troops home from Iraq .

The 45-year-old senator waded into a major foreign policy row just one day after formally announcing his candidacy, telling Mr Howard he should dispatch 20,000 Australians to Iraq if he wanted to back up his comments.

"I think it's flattering that one of George Bush's allies on the other side of the world started attacking me the day after I announced," Mr Obama told reporters in the mid-western US state of Iowa.

"I would also note that we have close to 140,000 troops in Iraq, and my understanding is Mr Howard has deployed 1400, so if he is ... to fight the good fight in Iraq, I would suggest that he calls up another 20,000 Australians and sends them to Iraq.

"Otherwise it's just a bunch of empty rhetoric."

Mr Howard earlier attacked Senator Obama's plan to withdraw US combat troops from Iraq by March 31, 2008.

The conservative leader said on commercial television that Senator Obama's pledges on Iraq were good news only for insurgents operating in the war-ravaged country.

"I think he's wrong. I think that will just encourage those who want to completely destabilise and destroy Iraq, and create chaos and a victory for the terrorists to hang on and hope for an Obama victory," Mr Howard told the Nine Network.

"If I were running al-Qaeda in Iraq, I would put a circle around March 2008 and be praying as many times as possible for a victory not only for Obama but also for the Democrats."





Time for some math (I will round it out to make it simple for the Senator ):

Aussies population is around 20 million

The US has a population around 300 million .

That is 15 x more people.

Now Australia has 1,400 troops currently in Iraq which would be the equivalent if the US has 21,000 troops there . Obama's call for an additional 20 ,000 Aussie troops would equate to America adding 300,000 troops. The correct matching per capita contribution for the surge would be about another 1,400 additional troops for Australia .

Maybe Obama ,being a person who thinks he's ready for prime time should at least do his homework . If he did he would find that Australia has been in the front-lines in the war against jihadistan ,with commitments in Afghanistan, Fiji, East Timor, Indonesia and the Philippines.

I would also point out that since WWII Australia has sent troops in every major conflict we have been involved in the only ally who has done so. But then again ,because they have been our most consistent ally makes them a prime target for the Dhimmicrats .

Foreign Minister Alexander Downer reacted to Obama's rant by saying :

"That would be half of our army. Australia is a much smaller country than the United States and so he might like to weigh that up..."
"It's entirely appropriate the Australian Government expresses its view in a free world. You won't get anywhere trying to close down debate." ...
"A precipitous withdrawal by the United States from Iraq would be a catastrophe."


The linked article above also has some bizzare comments by other Democrats who felt compelled to weigh in on the issue . You can read them and judge them for yourself . I think Republican Congressman Duncan Hunter summed it up best :

"I think the Aussies have earned a right to comment on the world stage about their partner in this endeavour because they've been fighting side-by-side with us in Iraq"

Indeed . I did not hear the clamor of Democrats running o the microphones to comment on Vladimir Putin's comments this weekend . Nor did they oppose John Kerry sending his sister down under to try to influence their elections .Besides , President Bush has not been shy in offering his opinion of Australian internal politics just as I'm sure their labor party has no hesitation in attacking President Bush .

Obama's statements may best represent the Democrats vision of a "diplomatic solution" to Iraq. Insult our allies and inspire our enemies is one way to end the war....end it badly ....but end it nonetheless .The bottom line is that Australia has been with us from the beginning. They are entitled to their opinion.








Itsdb answered on 02/12/07:

No tom, only those in line with prevailing liberal opinion in this country have a right to their opinions and to establish what is acceptable international dialogue/interference in foreign policy. That's been made perfectly clear by watching their actions as you've noted. And you certainly can't cross Obama - the Anointed One.

So I say speak up Mr. Howard, you've earned the right.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 02/09/07 - What if?

Hilliary becomes President do you think the china, silverware, antiques and other things they stole from the Whitehouse will return with them?


(Read ETW's reply to my Pelosi post for how
extravagant and expensive the plane she wants is)

Itsdb answered on 02/09/07:

Are you kidding? I hear they didn't even give back Monica's beret. Bush stole the White House they say...at least he hasn't stolen FROM the White House that we know of.

If she does win I have the perfect place for her to go pick out her new furnishings...

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 02/09/07 - Vote against Rep/dem

Michael savage says if he gets enough votes he will consider running for President. Even if you do not like him it might be worth the vote to get him to run to get the rep's and dem's to see just how tired the American public is getting with the way things are. And we really can't get much worse can we?

He has almost a half a million votes already
You can't vote twice cause it won't go through a second time.

http://www.homestead.com/prosites-prs/index.html

Itsdb answered on 02/09/07:

I'm afraid about all Savage would do is reflect even more poorly on conservatives. He's a bit too out there for my taste, and I'm sure if he ran it would only fit right in with the liberal moonbat agenda in marginalizing conservatives. I wouldn't want to give them that satisfaction.

Steve

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Question/Answer
Closer_To_The_Heart asked on 02/08/07 - FOR ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES...ENJOY

Somebody from California apparently wrote the top part, but somebody from Texas came back and put them on their butt's at the bottom.

CALIFORNIA:

I can wear sandals all year long.

I go to the Beach - not "down to the shore."


Our chicks are WAYYYY hotter than yours. Well... Miami can hang.


I say "like" and "for sure" and "right on" and "dude" and "totally" and "peace out" and "chill" and "tight" and "bro" and I say them often.


I know what real cheese & avocados taste like.

Everyone smokes weed and its no big deal.

We'll roll up 40 deep when something goes down.

I live next door to Mexicans, but we call them American's!

All the porn you watch is made here, cause we're better and that's how it is.

I don't get snow days off because there's only snow in Mammoth, Tahoe, Shasta, and Big Bear.

I know 65 mph really means 100.

When someone cuts me off, they get the horn and the finger and high speed chase cuz we don't fuck around on the road.

The drinking age is 21 but everyone starts at 14 (legally 18 if you live close enough to the border).

My governor can kick your governors ass.

I can go out at midnight.


You judge people based on what area code they live in, and when asked where you're from, you give your area code.

I might get looked at funny by locals when I'm on vacation in their state, but when they find out I'm from California I turn into a Greek GOD.

We don't stop at stop signs... we do a " California roll" No cop no stop baby!

I can get fresh and REAL Mexican food 24 hours a day.

All the TV shows you "other" states watch get filmed here.

We're the Golden State. Not the Cheese State. Not the Garden State ...GOLDEN!!!

We have In-N-Out (Arizona and Vegas are lucky we share that with them).


I have the most representation in the House of Representatives, which means MY opinion means more than yours, which means I'm better than you [geez.... hahaha].

The best athletes come from here.

*******IF YOU'RE FROM CALIFORNIA, REPOST THIS*******
******IF YOU'RE NOT, GO SIT IN A CORNER AND CRY******

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

TEXAS :

Ahem... So.. Um.. yeah... I read this, and thought I would reply...

Hey... California, listen up... Texas is where its at!

I too can wear sandals all year long... plus I can put on boots to stomp your toes and I won't even stick out.

You may be able to go to the "beach" instead of the "shore"... but can you go to the drive thru "Beer Barn?" What now surfer boy?

Your chicks aren't way hotter than ours... they are almost equal... and that's only due to silicone, saline, Botox, lasers and hair dye... We have the real ones and they can beat yours up.

We're taught to say "Yes Sir" and "Yes Ma'am" and respect our elders because of it. We also say "Howdy" and "fixin" and "Y'all" which are pretty much recognized right away anywhere in the world :) We're famous.

You may know what real cheese and avocados taste like... but I know what 100% Grade A Angus Beef tastes like. Who wants avocados and cheese when you can have steak and potatoes?

Ha Ha ... who do you think grows the weed and sells it to you?

Why roll 40 deep when something goes down if 5 corn fed country boys can get the job done...

I live next door to Americans, but we call them Mexicans.

About your Porn.... 3 words... "Debbie Does Dallas "... You can brag about it now, but we started it.

Why would you brag about not getting snow days off?

We're smart enough to know 65mph means 65, but our speed limit is 70.

When someone cuts me off, they get run over by my big ass truck, then I give them the finger and tell them to go back to California.

The drinking age is 21, but if you aren't chasin' the beer by 1 yr. old... you're behind.


Yeah, Well my governor became the President of the United States … yours isn't even eligible.

You can go out at midnight? That's nice, I haven't even come home by then.

Ok... you said, "You judge people based on what area code they live in, and when asked where you're from, you give your area code" and as hard as I try I have no idea what you're talking about... I think you're watching too much TV.

Yeah, you'll definitely get looked at funny when you come to visit but we have another name for you pretty boys, and its not Greek, its French.

Of course you don't stop at stop signs... none of you can drive.

You can pick up Real Mexican food 24 hours a day huh... well I can swing by home depot and pick up 24 Real Mexicans anytime of day. Can you say catering?

All the TV shows get filmed there... but where does your favorite poker game from? Texas Hold'em anyone? Besides, we've got Walker Texas Ranger. Chuck Norris knows where it's at! LOL. (I had to add something 'bout that! LMAO)

You can keep your golden state... We're the Lone Star State ...the one and only!! Not to mention we are the ONLY flag that can fly at the same level as the United States flag. Everyone else is beneath it.

Do I have to remind you about the drive thru Beer Barn again? Does In-N-Out serve alcohol? (Oh and did I mention Dr. Pepper was created in Texas?)

You guys have the best athletes huh?... Nine words... Lance Armstrong and The University of Texas at Austin.

Though I could mention MICHAEL JOHNSON - Olympic Sprinter, World record holder in 200m and 400m, 5 Olympic Gold metals, 9 time World Champion (born Dallas, Tx ).

Oh and remind me again who won the Rose Bowl between USC and Texas ????? I believe it was the LONGHORNS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Football is a religion, not a sport.

90% of football "movies" you guys are making are about Texas Football.

Texas is the only state that can still separate to become its own country. The only way California's gonna accomplish that is if another earthquake comes along and you guys sink into the ocean. Can you say Atlantis... HaHaHa.

Come on Texans Show Your Colors! Repost!

And as the Great Sam Houston once said " Texas could survive without the United States , but the United States could not survive without Texas !!"

Itsdb answered on 02/09/07:

OK, let's let a true Texan have his say - and I'll even add a caveat - IF I could afford to live in the most expensive place on earth I would move to San Diego in a heartbeat. I absolutely love it there - but I would always remain a Texan.

So without further adieu from my realistic Texas perspective to the idiot Californian...

My sandals come off sometime in October...we actually have distinguishable seasons.

I've never heard any Texan refer to our beaches as the "shore" ... "shore" means "certain" as in "shore 'nuff."

The chicks don't get any better than in Texas ('cept for maybe Miami)...can anyone say Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders? The rest are imitations.

We're taught to say "Yes Sir" and "Yes Ma'am" and respect our elders because of it. We also say "Howdy" and "fixin to" and "Y'all" (and know how to spell it right), and don't give a rat's a$$ how you idiots talk.

I got news for ya, we make our own cheese and grow our own avocados, grapefruit and oranges and we could care less if your cows are 'happy.' Ours are 'tasty.'

Weed is something we mow, not something we brag about.

Why roll 40 deep when you the Winchester Super X3 in the gun rack of your pickup or that Black Widow tucked under your jacket will do?

I live next door to my neighbors.

About your Porn.... please keep it to yourselves.

Snow days are such an important ritual you idiots made a movie about it. Ya forget that one?

We're smart enough to know 65mph means 65, but our speed limit is 70 and I dare you to challenge one of troopers on it.

When someone cuts me off I get out of the way.

The drinking age is 21, and we tend to frown on liqourin' up our young 'uns.

Yeah, well my governor has really good hair....and he can say "California." Oh, and it's ro-DEE-o not ro-DAY-o.

You can go out at midnight? Good for you, I like to sleep at night.

Ok... you said, "You judge people based on what area code they live in, and when asked where you're from, you give your area code" and as hard as I try I also have no idea what you're talking about....earth to California, come in? And what's that I kept hearing about 90210? You made a show about a zip code?

Yeah, you'll definitely get looked at funny when you come to visit but we have another name for you pretty boys, and its not "Greek god." "Geek god" maybe.

Of course you don't stop at stop signs...you don't stop at anything.

You can pick up Real Mexican food 24 hours a day huh... we have our own world-reknowned cuisine...Tex-Mex. And it beats the hell out of that bland crap you call Mexican food. I'll give you this though, as much as I hate to admit it fish tacos were an ingenius innovation.

So 'most' of the TV shows get filmed there...but most aren't ABOUT there. Can you say Who Shot J.R.?

Golden schmolden, who cares? We're the Lone Star State and we're second to no one. Silicon Valley? Chumps. Who invented the transistor radio, the integrated circuit, the handheld calculator, the single-chip microcomputer, received the first patent on a single-chip microprocessor, the first computer controlled home thermostat and the first single chip speech synthesizer (can you say E.T. phone home)? Texas Instruments. Use a cell phone? Most likely it uses a TI chipset. Mission Control? It ain't in Los Angeles. (That flag height thing though, that's a myth)

You guys have the best athletes huh?... Whether they were born here or just came to play here think about these. Who did Emmitt Smith, the all time NFL rushing leader and the man who made dancing look manly play for, the 49ers? What a stupid name for football team. Can you say Roger Staubach, Troy Aikman, Zach Thomas, Lance Armstrong, Earl Campbell, Tony Dorsett, Mercury Morris, Babe Didrikson Zaharias, Carl Lewis, Mary Lou Retton, Nolan Ryan, Ben Hogan, George Foreman? Or how about the Nazareth Swiftettes, holders of a national public school record 17 girls basketball state championships?

90% of football "movies" you guys are making are about Texas Football...and now a series on the legendary Mojo, Friday Night Lights. Or about the first college team to start an all black squad, Texas Western? Heck, you guys are even making a movie about my home town legend Amarillo Slim.

Can't get enough Texas can ya?

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Question/Answer
HANK1 asked on 02/08/07 - COMPARISON:



Are the World War II kamikaze pilots equivalent to the suicide bombers in Iraq and elsewhere? Some weird stuff, huh?

HANK

Itsdb answered on 02/09/07:

I'd say equating - as tom accurately calls them - "%^@"#*%ing homicide bombers" with Japanese Kamikazes is an insult to the Kamikaze. The "%^@"#*%ing homicide bomber" can only dream of having as much honor and courage as the Kamikaze, if only for the already mentioned fact that they did not fly their fateful missions into office buildings, markets, buses, hotels and such.

Also, as with other insane objections to calling despicable things what they are, there is debate over the use of the term 'homicide bomber' because it doesn't reflect the distinction that the means will end in the bomber's death. I personally don't think a "%^@"#*%ing homicide bomber" deserves any credit for that distinction, and it ignores the effect of their actions - typically the death of innocents.

So if "%^@"#*%ing homicide bomber" is unacceptable I'll compromise and use Professor Raphael Israeli's term, Islamikaze.

Steve

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Question/Answer
HANK1 asked on 02/08/07 - BAGHDAD & LOS ANGELES:


Both cities are about 81 square miles. BAGHDAD has the Tigres River and Los Angeles has the Pacific. The Iraq war has been going on for five years. Do you think our troops could 'take over' Los Angeles in five years?

HANK

Itsdb answered on 02/09/07:

Hank,

I second the notion that it depends on the rules of engagement. Of course being in the US the troops would have the advantage of knowing the territory, fewer communication difficulties and having more support from the average Los Angelean. I'm sure peaceful residents wouldn't want their neighborhoods bombed out but they also would not likely join the insurgents in targeting the troops, planting IED's, detonating themsleves in crowded markets and firing rocket and grenade launchers.

On the other hand who needs troops when you have this guy?

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 02/08/07 - Hiroshima, Enola Gay, and Paul Tibbits

A little long, but in no way boring!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Here is a bit of American history which has yet to reach the history books. It’s an interview by Studs Terkel with Paul Tibbets, the pilot of the B-29 which dropped the first atom bomb; fascinating.






Studs Terkel: We're seated here, two old gaffers. Me and Paul Tibbets, 89 years old, brigadier-general retired, in his home town of Columbus, Ohio, where he has lived for many years.

Paul Tibbets: Hey, you've got to correct that. I'm only 87. You said 89.

Studs Terkel: I know. See, I'm 90. So I got you beat by three years. Now we've had a nice lunch, you and I and your companion. I noticed as we sat in that restaurant, people passed by. They didn't know who you were. But once upon a time, you flew a plane called the Enola Gay over the city of Hiroshima, in Japan, on a Sunday morning - August 6 1945 - and a bomb fell. It was the atomic bomb, the first ever. And that particular moment changed the whole world around. You were the pilot of that plane.

Paul Tibbets: Yes, I was the pilot.

Studs Terkel: And the Enola Gay was named after...

Paul Tibbets: My mother. She was Enola Gay Haggard before she married my dad, and my dad never supported me with the flying - he hated airplanes and motorcycles. When I told them I was going to leave college and go fly planes in the army air corps, my dad said, "Well, I've sent you through school, bought you automobiles, given you money to run around with the girls, but from here on, you're on your own. If you want to go kill yourself, go ahead, I don't give a damn." Then Mom just quietly said, "Paul, if you want to go fly airplanes, you're going to be all right." And that was that.

Studs Terkel: Where was that?

Paul Tibbets: Well, that was Miami, Florida. My dad had been in the real estate business down there for years, and at that time he was retired . And I was going to school at Gainesville, Florida, but I had to leave after two years and go to Cincinnati because Florida had no medical school.

Studs Terkel: You were thinking of being a doctor?

Paul Tibbets: I didn't think that, my father thought it. He said, "You're going to be a doctor," and I just nodded my head and that was it. And I started out that way; but about a year before I was able to get into an airplane, fly it - I soloed - and I knew then that I had to go fly airplanes.

Studs Terkel: Now by 1944 you were a pilot - a test pilot on the program to develop the B-29 bomber. When did you get word that you had a special assignment?

Paul Tibbets: One day [in September 1944] I'm running a test on a B-29, I land, a man meets me. He says he just got a call from General Uzal Ent [commander of the second air force] at Colorado Springs, he wants me in his office the next morning at nine o'clock. He said, "Bring your clothing - your B4 bag - because you're not coming back. " Well, I didn't know what it was and didn't pay any attention to it - it was just another assignment. I got to Colorado Springs the next morning perfectly on time.

A man named Lansdale met me, walked me to General Ent's office and closed the door behind me. With him was a man wearing a blue suit, a US Navy captain - that was William Parsons, who flew with me to Hiroshima - and Dr Norman Ramsey, Columbia University professor in nuclear physics. And Norman said: "OK, we've got what we call the Manhattan Project. What we're doing is trying to develop an atomic bomb. We've gotten to the point now where we can't go much further till we have airplanes to work with."

He gave me an explanation which probably lasted 45, 50 minutes, and they left. General Ent looked at me and said, "The other day, General Arnold [commander general of the army air corps] offered me three names. "Both of the others were full colonels; I was a lieutenant-colonel. He said that when General Arnold asked which of them could do this atomic weapons deal, he replied without hesitation, "Paul Tibbets is the man to do it." I said, "Well, thank you , sir." Then he laid out what was going on and it was up to me now to put together an organization and train them to drop atomic weapons on both Europe and the Pacific - Tokyo.

Studs Terkel: Interesting that they would have dropped it on Europe as well. We didn't know that.

Paul Tibbets: My edict was as clear as could be. Drop simultaneously in Europe and the Pacific because of the secrecy problem - you couldn't drop it in one part of the world without dropping it in the other. And so he said, "I don't know what to tell you, but I know you happen to have B-29's to start with. I've got a squadron in training in Nebraska - they have the best record so far of anybody we've got. I want you to go visit them, look at them, talk to them, do whatever you want. If they don't suit you, we'll get you some more." He said: "There's nobody could tell you what you have to do because nobody knows. If we can do anything to help you, ask me." I said thank you very much. He said, "Paul, be careful how you treat this responsibility, because if you're successful you'll probably be called a hero. And if you're unsuccessful, you might wind up in prison."

Studs Terkel: Did you know the power of an atomic bomb? Were you told about that?

Paul Tibbets: No, I didn't know anything at that time. But I knew how to put an organization together. He said, "Go take a look at the bases, and call me back and tell me which one you want." I wanted to get back to Grand Island Nebraska, that's where my wife and two kids were, where my laundry was done and all that stuff. But I thought, "Well, I'll go to Wendover [army airfield, in Utah] first and see what they've got." As I came in over the hills I saw it was a beautiful spot. It had been a final staging place for units that were going through combat crew training, and the guys ahead of me were the last P-47 fighter outfit. This lieutenant-colonel in charge said, "We've just been advised to stop here and I don't know what you want to do... but if it has anything to do with this base it's the most perfect base I've ever been on. You've got full machine shops, everybody's qualified, they know what they want to do. It's a good place."

Studs Terkel: And now you chose your own crew.

Paul Tibbets: Well, I had mentally done it before that. I knew right away I was going to get Tom Ferebee [the Enola Gay's bombardier] and Theodore "Dutch" van Kirk [navigator] and Wyatt Duzenbury [flight engineer].

Studs Terkel: Guys you had flown with in Europe?

Paul Tibbets: Yeah.

Studs Terkel: And now you're training. And you're also talking to physicists like Robert Oppenheimer [senior scientist on the Manhattan project].

Paul Tibbets: I think I went to Los Alamos [the Manhattan project HQ] three times, and each time I got to see Dr Oppenheimer working in his own environment. Later, thinking about it, here's a young man, a brilliant person. And he's a chain smoker and he drinks cocktails. And he hates fat men. And General Leslie Groves [the general in charge of the Manhattan project], he's a fat man, and he hates people who smoke and drink. The two of them are the first, original odd couple.

Studs Terkel: They had a feud, Groves and Oppenheimer?

Paul Tibbets: Yeah, but neither one of them showed it. Each one of them had a job to do.

Studs Terkel: Did Oppenheimer tell you about the destructive nature of the bomb?

Paul Tibbets: No.

Studs Terkel: How did you know about that?

Paul Tibbets: From Dr Ramsey. He said the only thing we can tell you about it is, it's going to explode with the force of 20,000 tons of TNT. I'd never seen 1 lb of TNT blow up. I'd never heard of anybody who'd seen 100 lbs of TNT blow up. All I felt was that this was gonna be one hell of a big bang.

Studs Terkel: Twenty thousand tons - that's equivalent to how many planes full of bombs?

Paul Tibbets: Well, I think the two bombs that we used [at Hiroshima and Nagasaki] had more power than all the bombs the air force had used during the war in Europe.

Studs Terkel: So Ramsey told you about the possibilities.

Paul Tibbets: Even though it was still theory, whatever those guys told me, that's what happened. So I was ready to say I wanted to go to war, but I wanted to ask Oppenheimer how to get away from the bomb after we dropped it. I told him that when we had dropped bombs in Europe and North Africa, we'd flown straight ahead after dropping them - which is also the trajectory of the bomb. But what should we do this time? He said, "You can't fly straight ahead because you'd be right over the top when it blows up and nobody would ever know you were there." He said I had to turn tangent to the expanding shock wave. I said, "Well, I've had some trigonometry, some physics. What is tangency in this case?" He said it was 159 degrees in either direction. "Turn 159 degrees as fast as you can and you'll be able to put yourself the greatest distance from where the bomb exploded."

Studs Terkel: How many seconds did you have to make that turn?

Paul Tibbets: I had dropped enough practice bombs to realize that the charges would blow around 1,500 ft in the air, so I would have 40 to 42 seconds to turn 159 degrees. I went back to Wendover as quick as I could and took the airplane up. I got myself to 25,000 ft, and I practiced turning, steeper, steeper, steeper and I got it where I could pull it round in 40 seconds. The tail was shaking dramatically and I was afraid of it breaking off, but I didn't quit. That was my goal. And I practiced and practiced until, without even thinking about it, I could do it in between 40 and 42, all the time. So, when that day came...

Studs Terkel: You got the go-ahead on August 5.

Paul Tibbets: Yeah. We were in Tinian [the US island base in the Pacific] at the time we got the OK. They had sent this Norwegian to the weather station out on Guam [the US's westernmost territory] and I had a copy of his report. We said that, based on his forecast, the sixth day of August would be the best day that we could get over Honshu [the island on which Hiroshima stands]. So we did everything that had to be done to get the crews ready to go: airplane loaded, crews briefed, all of the things checked that you have to check before you can fly over enemy territory.

General Groves had a brigadier-general who was connected back to Washington DC by a special teletype machine. He stayed close to that thing all the time, notifying people back there, all by code, that we were preparing these airplanes to go any time me after midnight on the sixth. And that's the way it worked out. We were ready to go at about at four o'clock in the afternoon on the fifth and we got word from the president that we were free to go: "Use me as you wish." They give you a time you're supposed to drop your bomb on target and that was 9.15 in the morning , but that was Tinian time, one hour later than Japanese time. I told Dutch, "You figure it out what time we have to start after midnight to be over the target at 9 am."

Studs Terkel: That'd be Sunday morning.

Paul Tibbets: Well, we got going down the runway at right about 2:15 am and we took off, we met our rendezvous guys, we made our flight up to what we call the initial point, that would be a geographic position that you could not mistake. Well, of course we had the best one in the world with the rivers and bridges and that big shrine. There was no mistaking what it was.

Studs Terkel: So you had to have the right navigator to get it on the button.

Paul Tibbets: The airplane has a bomb sight connected to the autopilot and the bombardier puts figures in there for where he wants to be when he drops the weapon, and that's transmitted to the airplane. We always took into account what would happen if we had a failure and the bomb bay doors didn't open: we had a manual release put in each airplane so it was right down by the bombardier and he could pull on that. And the guys in the airplanes that followed us to drop the instruments needed to know when it was going to go. We were told not to use the radio, but, hell, I had to. I told them I would say, "One minute out," "Thirty seconds out," "Twenty seconds" and "Ten" and then I'd count, "Nine, eight, seven, six, five, four seconds", which would give them a time to drop their cargo. They knew what was going on because they knew where we were. And that's exactly the way it! worked , it was absolutely perfect.

After we got the airplanes in formation I crawled into the tunnel and went back to tell the men, I said, "You know what we're doing today?" They said, "Well, yeah, we're going on a bombing mission." I said, "Yeah, we're going on a bombing mission, but it's a little bit special." My tail gunner, Bob Caron, was pretty alert. He said, "Colonel, we wouldn't be playing with atoms today, would we?" I said, "Bob, you've got it just exactly right." So I went back up in the front end and I told the navigator, bombardier, flight engineer, in turn. I said, "OK, this is an atom bomb we're dropping." They listened intently but I didn't see any change in their faces or anything else. Those guys were no idiots. We'd been fiddling round with the most peculiar-shaped things we'd ever seen. So we're coming down.

We get to that point where I say "one second" and by the time I'd got that second out of my mouth the airplane had lurched, because 10,000 lbs had come out of the front. I'm in this turn now, tight as I can get it, that helps me hold my altitude and helps me hold my airspeed and everything else all the way round. When I level out, the nose is a little bit high and as I look up there the whole sky is lit up in the prettiest blues and pinks I've ever seen in my life. It was just great. I tell people I tasted it. "Well," they say, "what do you mean?" When I was a child, if you had a cavity in your tooth the dentist put some mixture of some cotton or whatever it was and lead into your teeth and pounded them in with a hammer. I learned that if I had a spoon of ice-cream and touched one of those teeth I got this electrolysis and I got the taste of lead out of it. And I knew right away what it was.

OK, we're all going. We had been briefed to stay off the radios: "Don't say a damn word, what we do is we make this turn, we're going to get out of here as fast as we can." I want to get out over the sea of Japan because I know they can't find me over there. With that done we're home free. Then Tom Ferebee has to fill out his bombardier's report and Dutch, the navigator, has to fill out a log. Tom is working on his log and says, "Dutch, what time were we over the target?" And Dutch says, "Nine-fifteen plus 15 seconds." Ferebee says: "What lousy navigating. Fifteen seconds off!"

Studs Terkel: Did you hear an explosion?

Paul Tibbets: Oh yeah. The shockwave was coming up at us after we turned. And the tail gunner said, "Here it comes." About the time he said that, we got this kick in the ass. I had accelerometers installed in all airplanes to record the magnitude of the bomb. It hit us with two and a half G. Next day, when we got figures from the scientists on what they had learned from all the things, they said, "When that bomb exploded, your airplane was 10 and half miles away from it."

Studs Terkel: Did you see that mushroom cloud?

Paul Tibbets: You see all kinds of mushroom clouds, but they were made with different types of bombs. The Hiroshima bomb did not make a mushroom. It was what I call a stringer. It just came up. It was black as hell, and it had light and colors and white in it and grey color in it and the top was like a folded-up Christmas tree.

Studs Terkel: Do you have any idea what happened down below?

Paul Tibbets: Pandemonium! I think it's best stated by one of the historians, who said: "In one micro-second, the city of Hiroshima didn't exist."

Studs Terkel: You came back, and you visited President Truman.

Paul Tibbets: We're talking 1948 now. I'm back in the Pentagon and I get notice from the chief of staff, Carl Spaatz, the first chief of staff of the air force. When we got to General Spaatz's office, General Doolittle was there, and a colonel named Dave Shillen. Spaatz said, "Gentlemen, I just got word from the president he wants us to go over to his office immediately." On the way over, Doolittle and Spaatz were doing some talking; I wasn't saying very much. When we got out of the car we were escorted right quick to the Oval Office.

There was a black man there who always took care of Truman's needs and he said, "General Spaatz, will you please be facing the desk?" And now, facing the desk, Spaatz is on the right, Doolittle and Shillen. Of course, militarily speaking, that's the correct order: because Spaatz is senior, Doolittle has to sit to his left. Then I was taken by this man and put in the chair that was right beside the president's desk, beside his left hand. Anyway, we got a cup of coffee and we got most of it consumed when Truman walked in and everybody stood on their feet.

He said, "Sit down, please," and he had a big smile on his face and he said, "General Spaatz, I want to congratulate you on being first chief of the Air Force," because it was no longer the air corps. Spaatz said, "Thank you, sir, it's a great honor and I appreciate it." And he said to Doolittle: "That was a magnificent thing you pulled flying off of that carrier," and Doolittle said, "All in a day's work, Mr... President." And he looked at Dave Shillen and said, "Colonel Shillen, I want to congratulate you on having the foresight to recognize the potential in aerial refueling. We're gonna need it bad some day." And he said thank you very much.

Then he looked at me for 10 seconds and he didn't say anything. And when he finally did, he said, "What do you think?" I said, "Mr... President, I think I did what I was told." He slapped his hand on the table and said: "You're damn right you did, and I'm the guy who sent you. If anybody gives you a hard time about it, refer them to me."

Studs Terkel: Anybody ever give you a hard time?

Paul Tibbets: Nobody gave me a hard time.

Studs Terkel: Do you ever have any second thoughts about the bomb?

Paul Tibbets: Second thoughts? No. Studs, look. Number one, I got into the air corps to defend the United States to the best of my ability. That's what I believe in and that's what I work for. Number two, I'd had so much experience with airplanes... I'd had jobs where there was no particular direction about how you do it and then of course I put this thing together with my own thoughts on how it should be because when I got the directive I was to be self-supporting at all times. On the way to the target I was thinking: I can't think of any mistakes I've made. Maybe I did make a mistake: maybe I was too damned assured. At 29 years of age I was so shot in the ass with confidence I didn't think there was anything I couldn't do. Of course, that applied to airplanes and people. So, no, I had no problem with it. I knew we did the right thing because when I knew we'd be doing that I thought , yes, we're going t o kill a lot of people, but by God we're going to save a lot of lives. We won't have to invade [Japan].

Studs Terkel: Why did they drop the second one, the Bockscar [bomb] on Nagasaki?

Paul Tibbets: Unknown to anybody else - I knew it, but nobody else knew - there was a third one. See, the first bomb went off and they didn't hear anything out of the Japanese for two or three days. The second bomb was dropped and again they were silent for another couple of days. Then I got a phone call from General Curtis LeMay [chief of staff of the strategic air forces in the Pacific]. He said, "You got another one of those damn things?" I said, "Yes sir." He said, "Where is it?" I said, "Over in Utah." He said, "Get it out here. You and your crew are going to fly it." I said, "Yes sir." I sent word back and the crew loaded it on an airplane and we headed back to bring it right on out to Tinian and when they got it to California debarkation point, the war was over.

Studs Terkel: What did General LeMay have in mind with the third one?

Paul Tibbets: Nobody knows.

Studs Terkel: One big question. Since September 11, what are your thoughts? People talk about nukes, the hydrogen bomb.

Paul Tibbets: Let's put it this way. I don't know any more about these terrorists than you do, I know nothing. When they bombed the Trade Center I couldn't believe what was going on. We've fought many enemies at different times. But we knew who they were and where they were. These people, we don't know who they are or where they are. That's the point that bothers me. Because they're gonna strike again, I'll put money on it. And it's going to be damned dramatic. But they're gonna do it in their own sweet time. We've got to get into a position where we can kill the bastards. None of this business of taking them to court, the hell with that. I wouldn't waste five seconds on them.

Studs Terkel: What about the bomb? Einstein said the world has changed since the atom was split.

Paul Tibbets: That's right. It has changed.

Studs Terkel: And Oppenheimer knew that.

Paul Tibbets: Oppenheimer is dead. He did something for the world and people don't understand. And it is a free world.

Studs Terkel: One last thing, when you hear people say, "Let's nuke 'em," "Let's nuke these people," what do you think?

Paul Tibbets: Oh, I wouldn't hesitate if I had the choice. I'd wipe 'em out. You're gonna kill innocent people at the same time, but we've never fought a damn war anywhere in the world where they didn't kill innocent people. If the newspapers would just cut out the shit: "You've killed so many civilians." That's their tough luck for being there.

Studs Terkel: By the way, I forgot to say Enola Gay was originally called number 82. How did your mother feel about having her name on it?

Paul Tibbets: Well, I can only tell you what my dad said. My mother never changed her expression very much about anything, whether it was serious or light, but when she'd get tickled, her stomach would jiggle. My dad said to me that when the telephone in Miami rang, my mother was quiet first. Then, when it was announced on the radio, he said: "You should have seen the old gal's belly jiggle on that one."

Itsdb answered on 02/08/07:

Thanks Dennis, that was fascinating and definitely not boring. Would that we had a few more Tibbets' today, I like his attitude.

We've got to get into a position where we can kill the bastards. None of this business of taking them to court, the hell with that. I wouldn't waste five seconds on them.

And that comment on the newspapers? :):):)

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 02/07/07 - pelosis demand or else

she says she will cut military funds
The Bush administration has agreed to provide House Speaker Nancy Pelosi with regular access to an Air Force passenger jet, but the two sides are negotiating whether she will get the big aircraft she wants and who she may take as passengers, according to congressional and administration sources.
A congressional source said that Rep. John P. Murtha, chairman of House Appropriations subcommittee on defense, which controls the Pentagon's spending, has telephoned administration officials to urge them to give the speaker what she wants.
The congressional source said Pentagon officials complained that Mr. Murtha, Pennsylvania Democrat, is accusing them of sexism for not immediately heeding her request.
Megan E. Grote, Mr. Murtha's press secretary, said, "Mr. Murtha absolutely never said anything about being 'sexist.' We have no further comment."
Meanwhile, Republican Conference Chairman Adam Putnam of Florida said Mrs. Pelosi's request represents "an arrogance of office that just defies common sense" and called it "a major deviation from the previous speaker."
Minority Whip Roy Blunt of Missouri called it a "flying Lincoln Bedroom," and Rep. Patrick T. McHenry, North Carolina Republican, labeled the speaker's plane "Pelosi One."
"This is a bullet point to a larger value -- Pelosi's abuse of power continues," Mr. McHenry said yesterday. "It began when the speaker denied minority rights to Republicans, continued with her 'TunaGate' scandal, and now she's exploiting America's armed forces and taxpayers for her own personal convenience."

The congressional source said government lawyers are trying to reconcile Mrs. Pelosi's request with Defense Department policy and congressional travel rules.
The Washington Times first reported last week that Mrs. Pelosi's staff was pressing the administration for access to Air Force aircraft. Sources said the request went beyond what was offered to former House Speaker J. Dennis Hastert, Illinois Republican.
Mr. Hastert used an Air Force commuter-type jet to travel to and from his district. Mr. Hastert gained the access for security reasons after the September 11, 2001, attacks. Previously, the House speaker, who is second in the line of succession to the presidency, used commercial flights for such trips.
Mrs. Pelosi wants a larger aircraft that can fly to her home district of San Francisco nonstop. She also wants to be able to ferry other members of the congressional delegation, family members and her staff.
The speaker's request is being handled by her chief counsel, Bernard Raimo, a veteran Democratic lawyer on Capitol Hill.
"Who she can take is being worked out, outside the Air Force," said Ed Gulick, an Air Force spokesman at the Pentagon.
He said the Air Force is studying what types of planes are available for long, cross-country flights. Currently, three planes assigned to the 89th Airlift Wing at Andrews Air Force Base can make such nonstop flights year-round -- the C-32, C-40B and C-37.
Such VIP planes are in high demand.
"She's effectively taking a bird out of the fleet," said a defense source. "It will most directly impact the House, because they're the heavy users of the large aircraft. Congress looks at that Andrews fleet as their Hertz rent-a-car."
The congressional source said the speaker's office requested an Air Force plane to take her to a weekend Democratic retreat in Williamsburg, but the Pentagon declined.
The source said Mr. Hastert on one occasion used an Air Force plane for such an event. The Air Force later determined it was a mistake, and such flights were not repeated.
The source said the Pentagon will likely give in to Mrs. Pelosi's requests for a large plane and travel entourage, given her and Mr. Murtha's power over defense spending.
Mr. Raimo argues that Mrs. Pelosi needs a military aircraft, as opposed to commercial flights, for security reasons.
The defense source, who asked not to be named, termed her request "carte blanche," saying she wanted a plane that could carry an entourage just like President Bush, who flies on Air Force One, and Vice President Dick Cheney, who also always flies on military planes.

Itsdb answered on 02/07/07:

Ah, so Madame Speaker wants the equivalent of either a Gulfstream G500 (formerly Gulfstream V - 'C-37'), a 737-700 (C-40B), or a 757-200 (C-32) to jet her and her buddies around. Probably needs to hop over and check on those Samoan workers exempted from her minimum wage bill. That's the 'tunagate' mentioned here where canneries in Samoa - run by her SF constituents Starkist and Chicken of the Sea - are still allowed to pay workers 3 dollars and something an hour.

I'm sure that makes it a lot easier to take her wardrobe with her, and greatly diminishes her ecological footprint.

Steve

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Question/Answer
ETWolverine asked on 02/07/07 - A MUST READ FOR ALL AMERICANS

Excerpts from a speech by Joe Leiberman to Congress. This is must-read material for anyone who questions the war in Iraq. THIS is the speech that Bush should have given.

New York Post

A BATTLE OF WILLS
By JOE LIEBERMAN

February 7, 2007 -- EDITOR'S NOTE: The following is adapted from Sen. Joseph Lieberman's remarks to the Senate Monday on the Warner-Levin resolution to condemn the president's new Iraq strategy.

OUR nation has reached a critical crossroad in the war in Iraq. A new course has been chosen; a new commander is in place - and a new strategy has begun to be put into action on the ground by our troops.

It is altogether proper that we debate our policy in Iraq. It should be a debate that is as serious as the situation in Iraq and that reflects the powers the Constitution gives to Congress in matters of war. But that is not the debate this resolution invites.

The resolution before us won't stop the new strategy from going forward. Instead, its sponsors say, it will send a message of rebuke from the Senate to the president, from one end of Pennsylvania Avenue to the other. But there is a world beyond Pennsylvania Avenue that is watching and listening.

What we say here is being heard in Baghdad by Iraqi moderates, trying to decide whether the Americans will stand with them.

We are being heard by our men and women in uniform, who will be interested to know if we support the plan they've begun to carry out.

We are being heard by the leaders of the thuggish regimes in Iran and Syria, and by al Qaeda terrorists, eager for evidence that America's will is breaking.

And we are being heard across America by our constituents, who are wondering if their Congress is capable of serious action, not just hollow posturing.

This resolution is not about taking responsibility. It is the opposite - a resolution of irresolution.

If you believe that Gen. David Petraeus and his new strategy have a reasonable chance of success, then resolve to support him and his troops through the difficult days ahead. If you believe that this new strategy is flawed or that our cause is hopeless, then vote to stop it. Vote to cut off funds. Vote for a binding timeline for U.S. withdrawal. Have the courage of your convictions to accept the consequences of your convictions. That would be a resolution.

The non-binding measure before us, by contrast, is an accumulation of ambiguities and inconsistencies: at once for the war but also against the war; pledging support to the troops in the field but also washing its hands of what they are doing.

Cynics may say this kind of thing happens all of the time in Congress. They're wrong: If it passed, this resolution would be unique in American legislative history.

I contacted the Library of Congress on this question last week; I was told that, never before, when American soldiers have been in harm's way, fighting and dying in a conflict that Congress had voted to authorize, has Congress turned around and passed a resolution like this, disapproving of a particular battlefield strategy.

We heard from Gen. Petraeus during his confirmation hearing that war is a battle of wills. Our enemies believe they're winning in Iraq today. They believe that they can outlast us; that, sooner or later, we'll tire of this grinding conflict and go home.

That's the lesson that Osama bin Laden took from our retreats from Lebanon and Somalia in the ྌs and ྖs. It is a belief at the core of the insurgency in Iraq, and of radical Islam worldwide. And this resolution - by codifying our disunity, by disavowing the mission our troops are about to undertake - confirms our enemies' belief in American weakness.

What does this resolution tell our soldiers? I know that everyone here supports our troops - but actions have consequences, often unintended. When we send a message of irresolution, it doesn't support our troops. When we renounce their mission, it doesn't support our troops.

Everyone here knows that the American people are frustrated about the lack of progress in Iraq. Everyone here shares that frustration. And as elected representatives of the people, everyone here feels pressure to give expression to that frustration.

But this challenge is one that every democracy in every long, difficult war has had to confront. Nearly a century and a half ago, an American president wrestled with just this problem. It was in the midst of a terrible war - a civil war - in which hundreds of thousands of Americans were fighting and dying to secure the freedom of millions long and cruelly denied it.

"We here highly resolve" - that was Lincoln's message at Gettysburg. It was a message of resolution, of conviction against adversity, of hope against despair, and of confidence in the cause of freedom, which is America's cause.

Today, in the depths of a terrible war, on the brink of a decisive battle for Baghdad, let us have a serious debate about where we stand and where we must go in Iraq. That's the debate we should have - but not the debate that this resolution would bring.
------------------------

Why aren't more people in a position to speak out saying this?

Elliot

Itsdb answered on 02/07/07:

Excellent speech Joe, and thanks for posting it Elliot.

People are saying this, just not the right people. If Reid or Pelosi said this heads would turn just as quickly as when Hagel or Warner criticize the war. If Bush said this it would be analyzed to death as more of his stay the course incompetence. When a Limbaugh or a Hannity says this they're mocked as obstinate flag-waving idiots. When we say this we are branded as right-wing warmongering neocon extremists.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 02/07/07 - Newest resort

A guy in Washington (state) is now trying to get a petition up where married couples will have to have kids within three years or their spouse will not be entitled to benefits.

Itsdb answered on 02/07/07:

Gotta agree with tom. Just another ridiculous ploy to show gay marriage is no different than heterosexual marriage. And when and if it's rejected it will be another opportunity to cry discrimination.

That's how it works with liberalism, just like religion. There can be no honest debate, anyone that holds to traditional values or believes in God must be forced into making a choice with no acceptable outcome to the one doing the forcing until they capitulate to their demands. It's really quite pathetic.

Steve

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Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 02/06/07 - when you should not ask google?

This gives a new meaning to being googled.

Send for the search party, Google gives a bum steer



Stephen Hutcheon
February 7, 2007 - 1:30PM

For most people, the journey from the Shelbourne Hotel at 200 Sussex Street to Google's Sydney headquarters across the road at 201 Sussex Street would be a 30-step, 30-second trip.

But according to Google's new mapping service, the recommended route would see you take a 10.4-kilometre scenic detour that involves crossing the Harbour Bridge twice.

Google calculates that this route would entail an off-peak travel time of 18 minutes. It doesn't tell you that you'd also be up for a $3 bridge toll.

Google Maps Australia, which was launched on Tuesday as a fully functional mapping and search service, purports to offer directions between any two addresses.

But in a quirk, all driving directions queried from points east, south and west of Google's headquarters will suggest the same cross harbour detour - one that involves using the tunnel or the bridge, driving up to Falcon Street in Crows Nest before coming back down across the bridge.

For an eight-kilometre drive from Coogee in Sydney's east to Google's headquarters - a trip that normally takes 15-20 minutes in off-peak conditions - the Google directions suggest a circuitous 17.2-kilometre, 29-minute journey that involves two harbour crossings.

The recommended route would also incur tolls of $4.50 for using the Eastern Distributor and a $3 toll on the southbound journey back across the Harbour Bridge.

There are similar roundabout directions suggested from points in Vaucluse, Kings Cross, Surry Hills, Haymarket, Glebe, Rozelle and many other suburbs.

The blame for the wayward directions appears to lie with MapData Sciences, the Sydney-based company that supplies the mapping data to Google.

It incorrectly locates 201 Sussex Street on the Western Distributor, one street south of where it should be.

A similarly inaccurate set of driving directions is given on the Telstra-run WhereIs.com mapping service, which uses the same data.

"Google Maps Australia is currently a beta product and we welcome feedback as we continue to enhance the product for users in Australia," Google's Carl Sjogreen, a senior product manager for the new service, said.

Beta products are effectively in a testing phase even though they might have been released for public use, as in the case of Google Maps Australia.

Itsdb answered on 02/07/07:

That seems rather unfair to Google. One would think it was Sydney-based MapData Sciences that "gives a bum steer." But I have to wonder, what idiot needed a map to get across the street?

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 02/06/07 - Which would you guess

The super bowl ad of the two guys accidently kissing is being banned. Which group do you think wants it banned?

If you already know would that have been your guess?

The gays want it banned because it is homophobic.
NOTE The homophobics didn't have a problem with it
They didn't say they wanted it banned because it was offensive or anything! Can't people just chill and laugh any more without finding problems where they don't exist?

Itsdb answered on 02/07/07:

I overheard something about them pulling the ad yesterday but I figured it was because some eveangelical group found it tasteless - which it was. I didn't know until this morning it was because Mars was so homophobic.

This may be news to GLAAD and others, but the idea that heterosexual men find two guys in a lip lock repugnant is a no-brainer. And no matter how hard they push for acceptance there isn't anything they can possibly do to change that. As they have often said about themselves, "I was born that way."

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/06/07 - An offer we can't refuse

Have you seen the latest Citgo sponsored commercial for 'Citizens Energy Corporation'? The 30 second ad (see here )opens with a man who complains he needs 2 pairs of long underwear and a jacket to stay warm inside his house. We then fade into the image of an elderly “84 and alone” woman dragging an iron cot into her kitchen from her basement so she can, as her voice-over tells us, “sleep by the oven.” The next voice we hear is that of Joseph Kennedy II, who assures us that “help is on the way.” The son of Robert Kennedy then explains that heating oil is available at 40% off thanks to “our friends in Venezuela at Citgo.” In closing, tyrant Hugo Chavez’s good buddy asks us to give him a jingle at 1-877-JOE-4-OIL because “no one should be left out in the cold.”

USA Today wrote :It's not entirely clear which "good friends" Kennedy is referring to. Chavez, who has called Bush "a genocidal murderer and a madman"? The Venezuelan people, whose natural resources Chavez is squandering?

Along with Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Chavez lobbied unsuccessfully this week for cuts in Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries oil production. He'd happily drive up the price everyone pays, including millions of poor people who don't benefit from his discount heating oil.

The USA doesn't need handouts from Chavez, who acquires undeserved credibility by associating himself with the Kennedy name. In September, leaders of four Alaskan villages rejected an offer of free heating oil from Citgo. They saw Chavez's "gift" for what it is — a transparent effort to embarrass the United States.


Yesterday it was a mild 5 global warming degree day here. Chicago dipped to 35 below zero wind chill (a metaphor for their offensive performance Sunday). With all due respect for the principled stand that Nelson Lagoon, Atka, St. Paul and St. George, Alaska; I think they are taking the wrong approach to this .

All around the country the American people are going to be seized with the sticker shock that will accompany their utility bill this month . Why not take Chavez up on his offer ? I think everyone in the country should!! Spread the word ...everyone call up 1-877-JOE-4-OIL now and ask for help . I'm not against getting free gas and oil from our enemies . That's 300 million Americans asking for direct aid from 25 million Venezuelians . Chavez should spread some of his petro-wealth this way instead of using it to beef up his military .

What can he do ....say no ? Maybe he will insist that we first provide proof that we need it . Fine with me. I have no problem sending information to the 10s of thousands of desk jockeys he would have to hire to process the paperwork.

Ultimately we would either destroy his base of oil wealth or he would just retract the offer like the hypocrite he is . Either way it's a lose /lose situation for him if we call his bluff.

Remember ;the number to call is :

1-877-JOE-4-OIL

1-877-JOE-4-OIL

1-877-JOE-4-OIL


Itsdb answered on 02/06/07:

I had that sticker shock on Saturday in spite of the fact I was told natural gas prices would be on average 13 percent less this winter. Less? I reached an all time high for last month.

On a related note, the nation's first "Terror-Free" gas station has opened. I think I'll call Joe instead.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 02/05/07 - Itsdb made me think

I would like to see the RICH politicans and the celebraties take money out of their own pocket instead of the middle class. Heck, if I don't have a middle class to look forward to striving toward WHAT'S the use!?

Itsdb answered on 02/06/07:

Wow, I made someone think? Judging by the remarks of certain others over at the Christianity board one might believe that to be the ultimate exercise in futility...kind of like convincing a rich celebrity or a rich politician of how hypocritical it is to parade around whining about rich people.

Steve

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Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 02/05/07 - Have we played along too long?

At the risk of being vilified by certain dizzens of this Board, I post this article for informed discussion. Is it time to say to Israel and the Arabs, enough is enough?

Denounced, but Jewish dissent grows
Antony Loewenstein
February 6, 2007

Other related coverage
British Jews split over support for Israel

In a recent essay published by the American Jewish Committee, reflecting widely shared attitudes, Jews who criticised Israel and its policies were accused of stirring anti-Semitism. The executive director of the committee said "those who oppose Israel's basic right to exist, whether Jew or gentile, must be confronted".

It is clear, however, that a growing number of concerned Jews in the United States and Britain are no longer staying silent in the face of Israeli policies in Palestine and Lebanon.

A new organisation has just been launched in Britain giving voice to such Jews, for example. Independent Jewish Voices includes prominent British figures such as the historian Eric Hobsbawm and the Nobel Prize-winning playwright Harold Pinter. Hobsbawn told the Independent: "It is important for non-Jews to know that there are Jews who do not agree with the apparent consensus within the Jewish community that the only good Jew is one who supports Israel."

For too long, Jews in many Western nations have shunned and intimidated fellow Jews who speak out against the illegal settlements or the cruelty of the 40-year occupation. However, uncritical allegiance to Israel by its "supporters" is arguably a greater cause of anti-Semitism than the dissent they seek to suppress.

The recent release of a book by the former US president Jimmy Carter, Palestine: Peace not Apartheid, has ignited similar debates in the US. He says occupied Palestine is comparable to apartheid South Africa. Carter told Newsweek "the plight of the Palestinians - the confiscation of their land, that they're being suppressed against voicing their disapproval of what's happening, the building of the wall that intrudes deep within their territory, and the complete separation of Israelis from the Palestinians" - is a guarantee of further bloodshed between Israel and the Palestinians.

His book, a bestseller, generated fierce discussion in the US. Carter wrote in the Los Angeles Times that for the past 30 years "I have witnessed and experienced the severe restraints of any free and balanced discussion of the facts". He blamed the Zionist lobby for its success in bullying politicians and the media into obedience.

Since the book's release, David Horowitz has called Carter a "Jew-hater, genocide-enabler and liar". Alan Dershowitz calls the book "biased" and "indecent". Deborah Lipstadt says Carter is giving comfort to anti-Semites. Some Jewish members of the Carter Centre's advisory board have resigned and rabbis of America's largest synagogue cancelled a scheduled appearance at the centre.

More measured responses have appeared from Israelis, such as the Knesset member Yossi Beilin who wrote in the newspaper Forward that Carter's words "are simply not as jarring to Israeli ears, which have grown used to such language, especially in respect to the occupation". Although he rejects Carter's claims of racism against the occupation - it is "rather a nationalist drive for the acquisition of land" - Beilin says Israel's path almost guarantees turning the Jewish state into an international "pariah". Indeed, soon after the conclusion of the recent Lebanon war, Ha'aretz admitted the existence of an "apartheid regime" in the territories.

Despite Israel's denials of expansionist policy, the Israeli peace group Peace Now says about 40 per cent of settlements have been built on private Palestinian land. Such moves are illegal and do not provide more security as claimed. Furthermore, in towns such as Hebron, hundreds of fundamentalist Jews are allowed to live freely while tens of thousands of Palestinians suffer daily indignities.

The controversy surrounding Carter's book is designed to avoid discussion of such matters. The smears against Carter are similar to the reception of two US academics, John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt, who released a paper, The Israel Lobby, which was critical of that lobby in the US. It sparked a furore. The Zionist lobby has not realised playing the man no longer works.

While the settlements continue to expand, the Israeli Prime Minister, Ehud Olmert - who recently praised the Iraq war as bringing "stability" to the Middle East - has appointed a far-right extremist as deputy prime minister. Avigdor Lieberman has called for the bombing of Iran and Egypt and the murder of Arab Knesset members who talk to Hamas.

How can a democracy in the heart of the Middle East support a man who campaigns for the forced separation of Jews and Arab in Israel proper and the occupied territories?

Now that a growing number of concerned Jews are raising their voices publicly despite their community's pressure, there is a hopeful sign for more dialogue and thereby wider public understanding.

Antony Loewenstein is the author of My Israel Question, published by Melbourne University Publishing.

Itsdb answered on 02/06/07:

How can a democracy in the heart of the Middle East support a man who campaigns for the forced separation of Jews and Arab in Israel proper and the occupied territories?

It's easy Clete, until the Arabs quit trying to kill all the Jews it's a no-brainer. Meanwhile, the Palestinians can't even keep from killing each other, (good for global warming I hear), and the Israelis now treat their wounded.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/05/07 - Super Bowl ads

There is a heavy discussion going on the Christianity Board about the Super Bowl ads . In case you missed the sublime deeper meaning of the ad campaign during yesterday's game ,The NY Slimes is more than hapy to clue you in .

They say that the adds were too violent and in an insane jumping the shark moment put the blame on the Iraq war. (these are the same jokers who delight in headlining every violent act coming out of Iraq)

It was as if Madison Avenue were channeling Doc in “West Side Story,” the gentle owner of the candy store in the neighborhood that the two street gangs, the Jets and Sharks, fight over. “Why do you kids live like there’s a war on?” Doc asks plaintively. (Well, Doc, this time, there is.).....

Then, too, there was the unfortunate homonym at the heart of a commercial from Prudential Financial, titled “What Can a Rock Do?”

The problem with the spot, created internally at Prudential, was that whenever the announcer said, “a rock” — invoking the Prudential logo, the rock of Gibraltar — it sounded as if he were saying, yes, “Iraq.”


They forgot one . There was a commercial when a guy threw a rock at his friend so he could get the last beer .

Those commercials the Slimes believes were all metaphors for a nation deflated, defeated, and obsessed with Bush's misguided war. Yeah that's the ticket !!! Madison Ave. spending millions per min. to complain about Bushes war? Give me a break !!

Here's a clue to the Slimes.....Superbowl Sunday has become a day of escapism .The whole country settles down for a few hours to use a football game as an excuse to party .It is a happy time and not one for us to dwell on reality .If the brains of Madison Ave. were using the events of the war to remind us of our alleged depressed state (which I doubt they were ) they were making a terrible error in judgement and completly misreading the American psyche . Truth be told ; they resorted to slap stick humor in commericals like the Rock ,Paper Sissor ...and the slapping faces because slap stick humor is FUNNY !!! It's a simple as that .






Worse commerical was the snickers one where the guys accidentally kiss (ala Lady and the Tramp at the Italian restaurant)while munching on something that initially looked like a brown sausage but turned out to be a snickers bar. They decide to pull out swatches of their chest hair to prove how manly they are .

Itsdb answered on 02/05/07:

Gee, how stupid of me. I was so busy watching football, eating nachos and getting the occasional chuckle out of an ad that I failed to get the deeper significance. And here I thought Anheuser-Busch was just trying to sell beer.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 02/05/07 - Can sHrillary do this

legally? She says the oil company has made its biggest profit last year and she wants to take their profit to use for 'smart energy'. Isn't she actually 'taking' their profit if she does?

I heard some things on the radio where democrats were actually admitting they will be raising taxes too.

Itsdb answered on 02/05/07:

To Hillary and the rest of the left it doesn't matter. The poor and the "shrinking middle class" are "disproportionately affected" by not getting "their share" of the pie. Rising CEO salaries and exhorbitant corporate profits are obscenities as long as there are millions of Americans that don't have it as well as they do.

Never mind that the middle class has never had it so good, the Democrats' agenda is the same old song and dance, take from one group and give it to another. Whether it be in the guise of energy, environmentalism, healthcare, wages or "Middle-class angst," what's yours is not yours if they say it ain't yours.

Of course they say that from their 28 acre estates while managing their investments and giving themselves a raise every year.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/04/07 - a 21st century answer to an age old question

A little boy goes to his father and asks "Daddy, how was I born?"
The father answers: "Well son, I guess one day you will need to find out anyway! Your Mom and I first got together in a chat room on Yahoo. Then I set up a date via e-mail with your Mom and we met at a cyber-cafe. We sneaked into a secluded room, where your mother agreed to a download from my hard drive. As soon as I was ready to upload, we discovered that neither one of us had used a firewall, and since it was too late to hit the delete button, nine months later a little Pop-Up appeared that said:




'You got Male!'

Itsdb answered on 02/05/07:

Too funny, tom. I won't even come back with another joke this time :)

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 02/02/07 - Out of the mouth of Democrats

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

Itsdb answered on 02/02/07:

Well don't you know that none of that matters because they were all misled. Which of course if true I guess it would just show how dumb and gullible the Dems are.

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Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 02/01/07 - The dirty tricks brigade of US business is at it again?


Reward offered to dispute climate report

From correspondents in London

February 02, 2007 12:48pm
Article from: Agence France-Presse

A RIGHT right-wing American think-tank is offering $US10,000 ($12,940) to scientists and economists to dispute a climate change report set to be released in Paris later today by the UN's top scientific panel.

The Guardian newspaper reported today that the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) sent letters to scientists in the United States, Britain and elsewhere offering the payments in exchange for articles emphasising the shortcoming of the UN's report.

AEI, which the paper said receives funding from oil giant ExxonMobil, also reportedly offered additional payments, and to reimburse travel expenses.

The UN report, due to be released today in Paris by the UN's Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (IPCC), is likely to give a bleak assessment of the damage to the future of the environment.

It is the culmination of four days of debate between more then 500 scientists at a closed-door meeting in Paris, who have been poring over the first review of the scientific evidence for global warming in six years.

AEI's letters characterise the IPCC report as "resistant to reasonable criticism and dissent and prone to summary conclusions that are poorly supported by the analytical work" and request articles that "thoughtfully explore the limitations of climate model outputs," The Guardian said.

Kenneth Green, the AEI visiting scholar who sent the letters, confirmed to The Guardian that the think-tank had approached scientists and analysts to pen essays that would be compiled into an independent review of the IPCC's report.

"Right now, the whole debate is polarised," Mr Green was quoted as saying by the newspaper.

"One group says that anyone with any doubts whatsoever are deniers and the other group is saying that anyone who wants to take action is alarmist. We don't think that approach has a lot of utility for intelligent policy."

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
there can be no independence if you are paid to write the article

Itsdb answered on 02/02/07:

Clete,

I have to wonder why you don't sometimes think things through a little better. For instance, why does a red flag go up just because the name ExxonMobil is mentioned? Do you not wonder who funds the other side, or are these other scientists doing it all out of the goodness of their hearts? No major scientific research is carried out minus the funding. I wonder how much say, George Soros contributes to environmental groups?

Secondly, are you in favor of science by consensus? As tom pointed out the consensus among scientists goes against your beliefs in other areas, so why is this consensus to be trusted without a challenge?

I think Mr. Green's explanation is entirely reasonable, and I think it entirely reasonable to give an incentive for scientists to dare speak out with conflicting findings given they are generally lambasted, ridiculed and ostracized for challenging the consensus.

"One group says that anyone with any doubts whatsoever are deniers and the other group is saying that anyone who wants to take action is alarmist. We don't think that approach has a lot of utility for intelligent policy."

I don't think it does either, do you?

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 02/01/07 - I found the answer

Why liberals claim they 'do not recall'.
They can't remember which lie went to which story to which person at which time

Itsdb answered on 02/02/07:

OK, I'll bite since nobody else has. To be fair I think this is a bipartisan disease, although it sure seems liberals are, to borrow one of their favorite terms, "disproportionately affected."

But let me tell you about another mystery that's been solved by Whoopi Goldberg. I was flipping through the channels last night hoping to get an update on something I overheard about my Dallas Cowboys when I heard that Whoopi was about to be on O'Reilly (I know - you don't watch the Leprechaun).

He was discussing celebrities - such as Fonda, Sarandon & Robbins and Sean Penn who protested over the weekend - and whether or not they had a responsibility to justify their claims. Whoopi said no, and here's why. These people are just telling us how they 'feel.'

That's right, as long as they're just sharing their feelings there's no reason to justify anything. That explains to me why liberals have no solutions, and more importantly to me why they refuse to acknowledge a fact that contradicts their claim.

I have long wondered why someone can present a compelling, factual case to a lib only to see that lib not only shrug it all off, but to later return with the same drivel, having learned nothing.

Let's say in this fictional example that Sean Penn says "Bush lied." You ask Sean, "what was the lie?" Sean responds, "the war in Iraq was about oil and Halliburton and fascist corporate rule."

Simple question - avoided - and justified because Sean was just telling us how he feels. See how liberalism works?

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/01/07 - John Edwards other America

He delights to recount on the campaign trail of the 'two Americas' and that he is a champion of the "other America" .

Well .... here is a brief glance at the other America that John Edwards resides in :



102-acre spread is likely the largest home in Orange County, N.C., and tax officials say it's likely to be the most valuable. The 28,200 square-foot estate, expected to be valued at more than $6 million, includes:

The recreation building (15,600 square feet) contains a basketball court, a squash court, two stages, a bedroom, kitchen, bathrooms, swimming pool, a four-story tower, and a room designated “John’s Lounge.”......

The heavily wooded site and winding driveway ensure that the home is not visible from the road. “No Trespassing” signs discourage passersby from venturing past the gate.
Sure to keep the other America out .

Itsdb answered on 02/01/07:

A guest garage? Two stages? I wonder if they have something flown in from Nikola’s for karaoke night? At least they don't have to get out in the weather to get to their recreation building like the other America does.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 02/01/07 - Ever notice?

Ever notice how all the looney liberal women ALL have that same shrill yell?
SHrillary, Jane Fonda, Cindy Sheehan, just to name a few
I cringe every time I hear the conservative radio talk show hosts play anything Cindy sheehan has to say,
Shrillary's 'PULL OUT NOW!' (was she yelling at Bill?)
and the one that screams, "Take your V and put it in a lock box NOW!" (Some sexual quote that I can not remember exactly how it goes).

WHY do they have to sound soooo hysterical and like they are mind controlled or what ever it is?

Itsdb answered on 02/01/07:

Ever notice? How can you not notice? O'Reilly was asking callers yesterday about why so many Americans loathe Hillary (I didn't wait around for the calls), but I have to say that's one reason. Yeah, it's shallow, but I can't stand to listen to or look at the woman (which brings up a previously discussed subject, liberal women are uglier than conservative women).

My theory on why they all sound that way is that liberalism is the "ideology of perpetual outrage." Same with feminism. How can you not sound shrill when you're always pissed off?

I bet if you did a double blind study with participants listening to audio of prominent liberal and conservative women, liberals would overwhelmingly be described as shrill and annoying. Some comparisons could be Hillary Clinton/Laura Bush, Rosie O'Donnell/Elisabeth Hasslebeck, Nancy Pelosi/Kay Bailey Hutchinson.

It's a no-brainer.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 02/01/07 - Insurgencies Rarely Win

Insurgencies Rarely Win – And Iraq Won’t Be Any Different (Maybe)

By Donald Stoker



Vietnam taught many Americans the wrong lesson: that determined guerrilla fighters are invincible. But history shows that insurgents rarely win, and Iraq should be no different. Now that it finally has a winning strategy, the Bush administration is in a race against time to beat the insurgency before the public’s patience finally wears out.

Not invincible: The that insurgents can’t be beaten is a myth, because history shows otherwise.
The cold, hard truth about the Bush administration’s strategy of “surging” additional U.S. forces into Iraq is that it could work. Insurgencies are rarely as strong or successful as the public has come to believe. Iraq’s various insurgent groups have succeeded in creating a lot of chaos. But they’re likely not strong enough to succeed in the long term. Sending more American troops into Iraq with the aim of pacifying Baghdad could provide a foundation for their ultimate defeat, but only if the United States does not repeat its previous mistakes.

Myths about invincible guerrillas and insurgents are a direct result of America’s collective misunderstanding of its defeat in South Vietnam. This loss is generally credited to the brilliance and military virtues of the pajama-clad Vietcong. The Vietnamese may have been tough and persistent, but they were not brilliant. Rather, they were lucky—they faced an opponent with leaders unwilling to learn from their failures: the United States. When the Vietcong went toe-to-toe with U.S. forces in the 1968 Tet Offensive, they were decimated. When South Vietnam finally fell in 1975, it did so not to the Vietcong, but to regular units of the invading North Vietnamese Army. The Vietcong insurgency contributed greatly to the erosion of the American public’s will to fight, but so did the way that President Lyndon Johnson and the American military waged the war. It was North Vietnam’s will and American failure, not skillful use of an insurgency, that were the keys to Hanoi’s victory.

Similar misunderstandings persist over the Soviet Union’s defeat in Afghanistan, the other supposed example of guerrilla invincibility. But it was not the mujahidin’s strength that forced the Soviets to leave; it was the Soviet Union’s own economic and political weakness at home. In fact, the regime the Soviets established in Afghanistan was so formidable that it managed to survive for three years after the Red Army left.

Of course, history is not without genuine insurgent successes. Fidel Castro’s victory in Cuba is probably the best known, and there was the IRA’s partial triumph in 1922, as well as Algeria’s defeat of the French between 1954 and 1962. But the list of failed insurgencies is longer: Malayan Communists, Greek Communists, Filipino Huks, Nicaraguan Contras, Communists in El Salvador, Che Guevara in Bolivia, the Boers in South Africa (twice), Savimbi in Angola, and Sindero Luminoso in Peru, to name just a few. If the current U.S. administration maintains its will, establishes security in Baghdad, and succeeds in building a functioning government and army, there is no reason that the Iraqi insurgency cannot be similarly destroyed, or at least reduced to the level of terrorist thugs.

Insurgencies generally fail if all they are able to do is fight an irregular war. Successful practitioners of the guerrilla art from Nathanael Greene in the American Revolution to Mao Zedong in the Chinese Civil War have insisted upon having a regular army for which their guerrilla forces served mainly as an adjunct. Insurgencies also have inherent weaknesses and disadvantages vis-à-vis an established state. They lack governmental authority, established training areas, and secure supply lines. The danger is that insurgents can create these things, if given the time to do so. And, once they have them, they are well on their way to establishing themselves as a functioning and powerful alternative to the government. If they reach this point, they can very well succeed.

That’s why the real question in Iraq is not whether the insurgency can be defeated—it can be. The real question is whether the United States might have already missed its chance to snuff it out. The United States has failed to provide internal security for the Iraqi populace. The result is a climate of fear and insecurity in areas of the country overrun by insurgents, particularly in Baghdad. This undermines confidence in the elected Iraqi government and makes it difficult for it to assert its authority over insurgent-dominated areas. Clearing out the insurgents and reestablishing security will take time and a lot of manpower. Sectarian violence adds a bloody wrinkle. The United States and the Iraqi government have to deal with Sunni and Shia insurgencies, as well as the added complication of al Qaeda guerrillas.

But the strategy of “surging” troops could offer a rare chance for success—if the Pentagon and the White House learn from their past mistakes. Previously, the U.S. military cleared areas such as Baghdad’s notorious Haifa Street, but then failed to follow up with security. So the insurgents simply returned to create havoc. As for the White House, it has so far failed to convince the Iraqi government to remove elements that undermine its authority, such as the Mahdi Army. Bush’s recent speech on Iraq included admissions of these failures, providing some hope that they might not be repeated.

That’s welcome news, because one thing is certain: time is running out. Combating an insurgency typically requires 8 to 11 years. But the administration has done such a poor job of managing U.S. public opinion, to say nothing of the war itself, that it has exhausted many of its reservoirs of support. One tragedy of the Iraq war may be that the administration’s new strategy came too late to avert a rare, decisive insurgent victory.



Donald Stoker is professor of strategy and policy for the U.S. Naval War College’s Monterey Program.

Itsdb answered on 02/01/07:

>>The cold, hard truth about the Bush administration’s strategy of “surging” additional U.S. forces into Iraq is that it could work.<<

It can if we clear these areas and hold them. It would be even better if the critics that claim support for the troops and our security would change their tone. Every day that they open their mouths against this effort and file their objections against 'anything that places more of our troops in harm's way' is a day they place those very men and women in greater danger.

It's time for the naysayers to become cheerleaders, not for war but for victory against terrorism. The mood of the country would change in a heartbeat. Our troops would be encouraged, the Iraqis that want this to succeed would be encouraged and the Jihadists would be killed or scattered.

It won't happen - unless the progress is so visible they would have no alternative to admitting it's working. Otherwise, victory serves them no purpose so why hope for the best if it gives an ounce of momentum to the real 'enemy,' Bush and the GOP.

Steve

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Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 01/31/07 - I'm doing my bit, now how about you?

Feeling totally vindicated, I will go on sequestrating Carbon but what are the rest of you going to do?


No time for never-never solutions
Mike Archer
February 1, 2007

It was suggested recently that if everyone on the planet started gorging themselves on fatty foods, the amount of carbon sequestered could reverse global warming as long as no one did a stitch of exercise other than to produce more butterball humans. It's a tasteless idea, but it does raise some important themes that bear thinking about as scientists gather for the latest diagnosis of the state of the Earth's climate.

It seems pretty clear that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change will tell us the patient is far worse than we thought and that her condition is deteriorating far faster than we thought when it releases its latest report tomorrow.

Naysayers and sceptics can argue all they like about how much of this change is "natural" and how much is the result of human activity: the bottom line, in terms of treating the patient, is that the hotter she gets the less time we have to fix her up. Likewise, our options become more and more limited the longer we stand around like stunned mullets. We need to take action, now.

The trouble is that most of the major solutions being suggested to Australians are of the never-never kind. Whatever the relative merits of carbon sequestration and nuclear energy, for example, they will take decades to develop and decades more to have any serious impact on atmospheric carbon dioxide levels.

Worse still, these prescriptions carry an in-built assumption that we have the luxury of time in which to administer them. We don't.

More disturbingly, we now have plenty of evidence to suggest that swings in the global climate can happen faster than we previously believed. Much faster.

The US National Academy of Sciences' 2002 report Abrupt Climate Change: Inevitable Surprises noted, for example, that although general global warming and a glacial meltdown began about 15,000 years ago, the process came to an abrupt halt about 3000 years later in the span of a couple of decades.

Known as the Younger Dryas event, it featured a rapid, steep drop in global temperature and an abrupt return to full-on glacial conditions for about 500 years. It ended even more abruptly than it began, with a return to global warming that took perhaps as little as one decade.

The Hollywood sci-fi blockbuster The Day After Tomorrow began with a climatologist lecturing thick-headed US politicians about the vital message of the Younger Dryas event that abrupt climate change could happen again just as quickly, with awesome consequences.

For example, if the Greenland and Antarctica icesheets melt (which they are doing in spectacular fashion), sea levels could rise, as they have done many times in the past, by 100 metres. If that were to happen, forget the metre-in-a-century mantra, and forget half of Sydney, along with most of the world's coastal populations. Why climates swing so violently is less relevant than the consequences when they do.

As a palaeontologist and geologist who has studied the history of climate change and its effects on life, it's clear to me from Earth's fossil record that major swings in climate have had massive consequences for living things. Extinctions are the most common outcome.

In short, if we don't want these consequences, we don't have the luxury of time to dither. We must respond now.

I don't have all the answers, but I remind everyone of the 2001 Amsterdam Declaration on Global Change, put together by an eminent group of scientists from four international global change research programs. It pointed out that the dynamics of global systems "are characterised by critical thresholds and abrupt changes" and that "human activities could inadvertently trigger such changes with severe consequences for Earth's environment and inhabitants". Those changes could be irreversible and will be far less hospitable to human life.

The broader message here is that we shouldn't focus on climate change as the only threat looming on the horizon. We need to look as well to the other ways humans are increasingly modifying the planet for their own purposes and question whether we're at risk of crossing other thresholds that may lead, faster than expected, to ugly outcomes.

As the Amsterdam declaration noted, the planet behaves as a single, self-regulating system, with complex interactions and feedback between its component parts.

Humans are influencing environments in many ways, not just the atmosphere but the oceans, fresh water, biological systems and so on. All the signals coming back are that the way we live as a species is not sustainable.

While some might take comfort in the thought that "ugly" will not happen in their lifetime, new studies of thresholds and accelerating rates of change suggest these are problems that will challenge all generations now living on the planet.

The Prime Minister has rightly acknowledged that our way of managing the Murray-Darling Basin has passed its use-by date. That's a step in the right direction. Next, we all have to acknowledge that the same is true of our overall environmental management. We must invest now in environmentally friendly technologies, such as solar hydrogen to produce energy that won't cost the world.

Sooner or later, we're all going to have to cease our collective state of denial and accept that business and technology as usual is not an option. We simply can't keep gorging ourselves on the world's resources (even if 6 billion obese, inactive humans would sequester a lot of carbon). Civilisations exist by the grace of Earth, subject to change without notice. Let's hope we all realise that in time.

Mike Archer is dean of science at the University of NSW.

Itsdb answered on 02/01/07:

We need to look as well to the other ways humans are increasingly modifying the planet for their own purposes...As the Amsterdam declaration noted, the planet behaves as a single, self-regulating system, with complex interactions and feedback between its component parts.

If ever there was a case for euthanasia this is it. It's obvious that the one element of this delicate system that's out of balance is man. The only cure for the planet's woes is to reduce the population. No?

    “Man is always and everywhere a blight on the landscape.” -John Muir, founder of the Sierra Club

    “Given the total, absolute disappearance of Homo sapiens, then not only would the Earth’s
    community of Life continue to exist, but in all probability, its well-being enhanced. Our presence, in short, is not needed.” -Paul Taylor, author of Respect for Nature, A Theory of Environmental Ethics

    “I got the impression that instead of going out to shoot birds, I should go out and shoot the kids who shoot birds.” -Paul Watson, Founder of Greenpeace and Sea Shepard

    “[W]e have no problem in principle with the humans reducing their numbers by killing one another. It’s an excellent way of making the humans extinct.” -Geophilus, spokesman for Gaia Liberation Front

    “Human beings, as a species, have no more value than slugs.” -John Davis, editor of the journal Earth First!


There you have it. Fewer humans of 'slug value' mean less blight to the landscape, less demand for energy and therefore less emissions, less loss of wildlife and then the earth can have "its well-being enhanced." Also makes a good excuse for global jihad.

Steve

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 01/31/07 - You gotta be kidding me!

Franken for Senate?

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/16910222/

Itsdb answered on 02/01/07:

It ain't no joke. Well, technically speaking. I'm glad I don't live in Minnesota, but I'm all for the guy running for office. In fact, I think more nutjobs like Al should run for office.

For instance, I'd love to see these people run for office:











And especially...


I think it would be great fun, and the whole world would see how vile and pathetic they are.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 01/31/07 - Were Iranians responsible for the recent Karbala attack ? Part II

ok ;so what has been the Bush Administration's reaction to this news ? Unfortunately I cannot say it's been forceful .Despite the fact that the Iranians are the leading suspects ;the adminstration's response has been cautionary to say the least .

President Bush did indicate immediately after the attack that the gloves were off and authorized American forces to kill or capture any Iranian agents found operating in Iraq.Adminstration officials made it known they intended to offer proof of Iranian mischief in Iraq. But now those plans have been suspended .

Officials had said a "dossier" against Iran compiled by the U.S. likely would be made public at a press conference this week in Baghdad, and that the evidence would contain specifics including shipping documents, serial numbers, maps and other evidence which officials say would irrefutably link Iran to weapons shipments to Iraq.

Now, U.S. military officials say the decision to go public with the findings has been put on hold for several reasons, including concerns over the reaction from Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad — as well as inevitable follow-up questions that would be raised over what the U.S. should do about it.


There is no longer any secrets that Iran is involved directly and indirectly in attacks against our troops . Like it or not ;the war in Iraq is escalated .We are in a shooting war with Iran. Even the MSM understands that reality .

We know they were involved in Beirut when 240 Marines were killed . We did nothing . We know they were involved in the attacks on the Khobar Towers in 1996 and did nothing .Now we know that they are supplying weapons to our enemies in Iraq and that they are materially ,financially and with personel supporting the war against our troops . Now we know they are in fact attacking our soldiers with their Qods Force and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps . What are we waiting for ?

I can only hope that the delay is due to additional planning being undertaken in the Pentagon and not a hesitation due to domestic politics....but I suspect the later .





Itsdb answered on 01/31/07:

I guess the encouraging news is that Gates said "We're not simply going to stand by and let people bring sophisticated IEDs into the country that can disable an Abrams tank, and give them a free pass."

I'm kind of thinking Bush is going to press forward.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 01/31/07 - Name that country part II

Yup it's "Palestine" . That wonderful creation of enlightened diplomacy and peacemaking that sucks more direct aid out of the world then any other nation .

http://news.scotsman.com/international.cfm?id=238542004

And what returns we get for the investment !!!
Caroline Glick reports it this way :

In the State of Palestine 88 percent of the public feels insecure. Perhaps the other 12 percent are members of the multitude of regular and irregular militias. For in the State of Palestine the ratio of police/militiamen/men-under-arms to civilians is higher than in any other country on earth.

In the State of Palestine, two-year-olds are killed and no one cares. Children are woken up in the middle of the night and murdered in front of their parents. Worshipers in mosques are gunned down by terrorists who attend competing mosques. And no one cares. No international human rights groups publish reports calling for an end to the slaughter. No UN body condemns anyone or sends a fact-finding mission to investigate the murders.

In the State of Palestine, women are stripped naked and forced to march in the streets to humiliate their husbands. Ambulances are stopped on the way to hospitals and wounded are shot in cold blood. Terrorists enter operating rooms in hospitals and unplug patients from life-support machines.

In the State of Palestine, people are kidnapped from their homes in broad daylight and in front of the television cameras. This is the case because the kidnappers themselves are cameramen. Indeed, their commanders often run television stations. And because terror commanders run television stations in the State of Palestine, it should not be surprising that they bomb the competition's television stations.

So it was that last week, terrorists from this group or that group bombed Al Arabiya television station in Gaza. And so it is that Hamas attacks Fatah radio announcers and closes down their radio station claiming that they use their microphones to incite murder. Because indeed, they are inciting murder. What would one expect for terrorists to do when placed in charge of a radio station?

And so it is that in the State of Palestine, journalists - whether members of terror groups or not - are part of the 88 percent of their public who are afraid. Sunday they protested outside the offices of one terror faction or another that controls the Palestinian Authority.

Speaking to The Jerusalem Post, reporter Ala Masharawi explained, "No one goes outside, no one moves without thinking twice. Gaza's streets have become terrible streets, especially at night. Gaza is a ghost town."

As the Post's Khaled Abu Toameh reported last week, in the State of Palestine, Christians are persecuted, robbed and beaten in what can only be viewed as a systematic campaign to end the Christian presence in places like Bethlehem. As Samir Qumsiyeh, owner of the Beit Sahur-based private Al-Mahd (Nativity) TV station lamented, "I believe that 15 years from now there will be no Christians left in Bethlehem. Then you will need a torch to find a Christian here."


Wrechard at Belmont Club sums it up this way in a stinging rebuke:

The collateral damage inflicted upon the people of the Third World by the Left in pursuit of their fantasies will someday rank with the Slave Trade and the Holocaust in the annals of historical outrage. It is the last form of imperialism. And the worst.

Don't mince words Wrechard .....tell us how you really feel !!




Itsdb answered on 01/31/07:

Wrechard is absolutely right. And again what gets me is how blind, conveniently or not, the left is to their hypocrisy. For all the venom they spew at conservatives for their alleged war-mongering, homophobia, Islamophobia, sexism, intolerance - you would think they could see their own failure.

The shame of it is they see the collateral damage, they just have trouble properly placing blame and seeing their own hand in it.

In all fairness though, I did some checking and Human Rights Watch does report on Palestinian violence...along with some of the other usual stuff.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 01/30/07 - why Katie couric's ratings LOW

Now the 'explanation' is gender bias of sexist America. People don't take her serious because she is a woman.

Here I thought it was because she only asks the fluff questions!

Itsdb answered on 01/31/07:

There's an explanation for everything in this country - one that has nothing to do with those responsible that is. It gets really old to be called sexist, racist, etc. simply for being a white male.

There are a number of females in the media I love to watch, some even because they're good at what they do :)

I did watch Katie a couple of times last week and I gotta say she bored me. And it had nothing to do with her looks or 'gender bias.' She was just plain boring.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 01/31/07 - Name that country.

For more than sixty years it has been the recipient of aid from the United Nations, Europe and the United States. In fact, "the highest per capita aid transfer in the history of foreign aid anywhere." Statesmen all over the world have paid homage to it. It's leadership has been praised and defended by former American Presidents and world leaders . Charities have been established to support it. Fund raising in its name takes place every day. It has been provided with security training and weaponry by the International Community. If any country deserves to be called the proud creation of enlightened diplomacy and peacemaking, this is is it.

Itsdb answered on 01/31/07:

I would have to go with the 'country' of Palestine.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 01/31/07 - ban light bulbs

what a bright idea!

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/energy_california_lightbulbs_dc

while America is on a ban kick what are some things you think NEED banned and why?

Can we ban idiots?
how about dirty dishes?
or haunted cemetaries?

Itsdb answered on 01/31/07:

I am all for banning idiots, maybe then we could stop all these idiotic bans. On the other hand, we've switched a lot of our lighting to compact fluorescents and they're ok if you get the right brand. The problem is they don't work in a lot of existing light fixtures if you want they equivalent of more than 60 watts...and they ain't worth a hoot in a drop cord light.

Speaking of idiots, a local news anchor was talking about someone's proposed ban on trans fats (probably LA) and called it a "voluntary ban." How does one enact a "voluntary ban?"

As for other bans, how about...

Snow/ice/cold weather on weekends
Ted Kennedy
Stupid drivers

I'll leave it at that.

Steve
P.S. I haven't noticed any reduction in electricity use or my electric bills. Maybe that's because a 60w bulb uses much less electricity than a microwave, fridge, home theatre...

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Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 01/30/07 - Boy, am I glad I DON'T LIVE THERE

I left this place in 1979 and now I know why.


Climate change to 'devastate' Sydney

January 31, 2007 06:37am
Article from: The Daily Telegraph

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SYDNEY is looming as one of the world's major climate change casualties, with temperatures expected to soar 50 per cent higher than the average rise forecast for the entire planet.
For the first time, Australian scientists have charted in detail, the impacts on the nation's largest metropolis of man's insatiable demand for energy and burning of fossil fuels.

The Daily Telegraph today exclusively reveals the landmark CSIRO report commissioned by the State Government which - for the first time - specifically details the impact of climate change on NSW.

It paints a picture of a city baking under average temperatures almost 5C higher than now - which will kill 1300 people a year - and one battered by extreme winds and permanent drought.

NSW Premier Morris Iemma said the report's findings were alarming.

"This might sound like a doomsday scenario, but it is one we must confront," Mr Iemma said.

And it will put pressure on Prime Minister John Howard to commit to the same tough targets set by NSW - to reduce greenhouse gases 60 per cent by 2050.

Comparing today's climate, the CSIRO predicted Sydney would resemble the harsh dry conditions of the tiny village of Paterson, 150km northwest of the state capital, in less than 25 years.

By 2070, average temperatures will have soared by 4.8C - compared with 3C forecast for the planet by the International Panel for Climate Change this week.

In summer, maximum temperatures could rise by as much as 7C by 2070. But heat-related deaths will jump from 176 a year - the current annual average - to 1312 by 2050.

Our dams will be drained of water as the city plunges into a virtually permanent dry spell and evaporation rates increase by 24 per cent.

The frequency of droughts now average three every decade. By 2070 there will be only one year out of 10 that is free of drought.

The bleak assessment suggested Sydneysiders would have to reduce water consumption by 54 per cent for the city to remain sustainable within the next 20 years.

Extreme weather events, including 110m storm surges by 2100, will devastate the coastline as well as property.

Bushfire frequency will almost double, with rainfall expected to be reduced by up to 40 per cent.

The report will prompt calls for the creation of a national emissions trading scheme to be put back on the agenda despite Mr Howard's reluctance to sign up.

"The Commonwealth can no longer put its head in the sand on this issue. I have repeatedly asked the Prime Minister to show national leadership by convening a climate change summit," Mr Iemma said.

"I do not want my kids to ask me in 10 years time why I didn't do more to address the issue of climate change."

The CSIRO report warned that the city must work out how to adapt quickly, with the impacts of human-caused global warming now apparently inevitable.

"The future climate of Sydney is likely to be warmer and drier," the report says. "Such trends would also increase evaporation, heat waves, extreme winds and fire risk.

"Nevertheless, despite this trend towards drier conditions, the possibility of increases in extreme rainfall events remain.

"Although average changes in temperature, rainfall and evaporation will have long-term consequences for the catchment, the impacts of climate change are more likely to be felt through extreme weather events."

Climate change forecasts for the coastal zone put Narrabeen and Collaroy on the hot zone for storm-inspired sea surges of about 22m - which would inundate homes.

Freak surges of 110m would be catastrophic.

"Such increases in storm surge in conjunction with sea level rises, would increase the risk of coastal inundation," the CSIRO said.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
I can't help feeling someone left the decimal points out of those storm surges but 5'C is a big increase in summer temperatures which can already hit 105'F, from what I read the Tsumami has nothing on this and if it happens here it happens everywhere?

Itsdb answered on 01/30/07:

They don't have to worry about storm surges yet but the folks in Phoenix can literally have their shoes melted to the asphalt with their 120 degree F plus temps already. What's a few more degrees?

Seriously Clete, I think we all get it that climate change is real and that cutting back on emissions is a good thing. What we don't get - or at least some of us - is the presence of so much conflicting evidence. As I asked before, what are we supposed to believe? Weather happens and climate change happens - always has - and it's always been out of our control.

So, conserve your water, plant some trees, walk more - and relax for a change.

Steve

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Question/Answer
kindj asked on 01/30/07 - The way things ARE....

...NOT the way some WISH they were.

Been awhile since I've seen this level of absolute, raw truth. Agree or disagree, this is the reality of the matter.

There's the way things oughta be, and there's the way things ARE. And the two rarely, if ever, meet. Read on....
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Read this. Then file under Takin Care of Business




In response to the news blurb about the Marine who put two rounds in a wounded insurgent's head in Fallujah, here's a response from a Marine:

It's a safety issue pure and simple. After assaulting through a target, we put a security round in everybody's head. Sorry al-Reuters, there's no paddy wagon rolling around Fallujah picking up "prisoners" and offering them a hot cup a joe, falafel, and a blanket. There's no time to dick around on the target. You clear the space, dump the chumps, and moveon.org.

Are Corpsman expected to treat wounded terrorists? Negative. Hey libs, worried about the defense budget? Well, it would be waste, fraud, and abuse for a Corpsman to expend one man-minute or a b attle dressing on a terrorist. Its much cheaper to just spend the $.02 on a 5.56mm FMJ.

By the way, in our view, terrorists who chop off civilian's heads are not prisoners, they are carcasses. Chopping off a civilian's head is another reason why these idiots are known as "unlawful combatants." It seems that most of the world's journalists have forgotten that fact.

Let me be very clear about this issue. I have looked around the web, and many people get this concept, but there are some stragglers.

Here is your situation Marine: You just took fire from unlawful combatants (no uniform - breaking every Geneva Convention rule there is) shooting from a religious building attempting to use the sanctuary status of their position as protection. But you're in Fallujah now, and the Marine Corps has decided that they're not playing that game this time. That was Najaf. So you set the mosque on fire and you hose down the terrorists with small arms, launch some AT-4s (Rockets), some 40MM grenades into the building and things quiet down. So you run over there, and find some tangos (bad guys) wounded and pretending to be dead. You are aware that suicide martyrdom is like really popular with these idiots, and they think taking some Marines with them would be really cool. So you can either risk your life and your fire team's lives by having them cover you while you bend down and search a guy that you think is pretending to be dead for some reason. Most of the time these are the guys with the grenade or vest made of explosives. Also, you don't know who or what is in the next room You're already speaking English to the rest of your fire team or squad which lets the terrorist know you are there and you are his enemy. You ar e speaking loud because your hearing is poor from shooting people for several days. So you know that there are many other rooms to enter, and that if anyone is still alive in those rooms, they know that Americans are in the mosque. Meanwhile (3 seconds later), you still have this terrorist (that was just shooting at you from a mosque) playing possum. What do you do? You double tap his head, and you go to the next room, that's what!!!

What about the Geneva Convention and all that Law of Land Warfare stuff? What about it. Without even addressing the issues at hand, your first thought should be, "I'd rather be judged by 12 than carried by 6."

Bear in mind that this tactic of double tapping a fallen terrorist is a perpetual mindset that is reinforced by experience on a minute by minute basis. Secondly, you are fighting an unlawful combatant in a Sanctuary, which is a double No-No on his part. Third, tactically you are in no position to take "prisoners" becau se there are more rooms to search and clear, and the behavior of said terrorist indicates that he is up to no good. No good in Fallujah is a very large place and the low end of no good and the high end of no good are fundamentally the same .. Marines end up getting hurt or die. So there is no compelling reason for you to do anything but double tap this idiot and get on with the mission.

If you are a veteran, then everything I have just written is self evident. If you are not a veteran, then at least try to put yourself in the situation. Remember, in Fallujah there is no yesterday, there is no tomorrow, there is only now. Right NOW. Have you ever lived in NOW for a week? It is really, really not easy. If you have never lived in NOW for longer than it takes to finish the big roller coaster at Si x Flags, then shut your hole about putting Marines in jail for "War Crimes".

Itsdb answered on 01/30/07:

Dennis,

To be perfectly honest this troubles me somewhat. First, there's no names here so I don't know how much to believe. Second, I really don't think it's a very universal tactic by our troops - but I do get what the guy is saying. So how about 'the rest of the story?'

    War crimes?
    By Oliver North
    Friday, November 19, 2004

    WASHINGTON, D.C. -- By now, almost everyone in the world with a television has seen the videotape that appears to show a U.S. Marine shooting a wounded Iraqi terrorist inside a mosque in Fallujah. For the record, here are the facts, because facts -- not rumors or emotions -- really are important. Here is what those who were there told me:

    On Friday, Nov. 12, U.S. Marines were fired upon by terrorists armed with AK-47s, RPD machine guns and rocket-propelled grenades from a mosque and an adjacent building. The Marines returned fire, first with M-16s and 240G machine guns, and then, as they continued to take fire and casualties, they escalated to an MK-19, a 40mm grenade launcher and then an AT-4 missile.

    When none of these weapons successfully eliminated enemy fire, the platoon commander called for and received permission to open fire with the main gun of an M-1 Abrams tank and then storm the buildings. In the ensuing assault, 10 terrorists were killed and five others were wounded, as the Marines went room-to-room clearing the buildings. Immediately afterward, two correspondents accompanying coalition forces were shown a large quantity of AK-47s, machine guns, mortar rounds, explosives, RPGs and hand grenades that had been stored in the mosque.

    While the print and broadcast cameramen were photographing the evidence of a war crime -- weapons being stored in a place of worship -- the Marine unit received an order over the radio to advance and secure another building. As the bone-tired troops departed for their next objective, one of the correspondents asked what would become of the wounded terrorists. A Marine sergeant replied that another unit was to move up and evacuate the injured enemy to the rear for treatment and detention.

    The following morning -- Saturday -- another platoon of Marines from a different company was attacked from the mosque. A second gunfight ensued, and once again, a squad of Marines assaulted the structure. They were accompanied by NBC correspondent Kevin Sites and his cameraman, taping for the "pool" -- meaning that whatever tape he filed would be available to all the networks accredited to cover Operation New Dawn.

    According to the videotape and the report filed after the action, as the Marines burst into one of the rooms inside the mosque, they found four terrorists -- one dead and three wounded. In the video that has now been seen around the world, one of the battle-weary Marines points his weapon at one of the enemy combatants lying against the wall and shouts, "He's (expletive) faking he's dead. He's faking he's (expletive) dead." An instant later, the Marine raises his rifle and fires into the insurgent's head. Immediately thereafter, another Marine can be heard saying, "Well, he's dead now."

    For American broadcasts, the actual shot is "blacked out." But when the tape airs on Al Jazeera, Al Arabiya, Lebanon TV and other Arab media outlets, nothing is left to the imagination. Unfortunately, neither version is accurate -- though both are very troubling. Like so much of what's on television today, only the goriest, most sensational portion of the tape has aired. As a consequence, "the rest of the story" -- as my friend Paul Harvey puts it -- has been lost in the clamor created by 15 seconds of videotape.

    Only a few have seen the footage shot the day before -- providing irrefutable evidence that the mosque was a well-defended arms depot. And fewer still have viewed the very next sequence after "the shooting," which shows two Marines pointing their weapons at another combatant lying motionless. Suddenly, one of the Marines jumps back as the terrorist stretches out his hand, motioning that he is alive. Neither Marine opens fire.

    According to the Marines, a Navy medical corpsman was then summoned to treat the two wounded prisoners. In his original written report
    , Sites, the correspondent who videotaped the shooting, doesn't mention the medical treatment provided to the injured enemy combatants, but he does note that four of the combatants were some of those who had been left behind from the firefight on Friday. If the NBC reporter knew that from being there the day before, why didn't he tell this new group of Marines before they rushed into the room?

    None of that is included in the tape, which is now being used to raise Islamic ire at the "American invader." Why? And why did it take more than a day to learn that the Marine seen shooting on the videotape had been wounded in the face the day before if the correspondent knew that when he filed the videotape? Why didn't the original story include the fact that a Marine in the same unit had been killed 24 hours earlier while searching the booby-trapped dead body of a terrorist?


    Within hours of the videotaped incident in the mosque, another Marine was killed and five others wounded by a booby-trapped body they found in a house after a gunfight. Why was this not made part of the original story? Even Amnesty International, no friend to the American armed forces, has reported that the Iraqi terrorists have illegally used white flags to lure coalition forces into ambushes. Yet this, too, is absent in the original story.

    Though the Arab media doesn't mention it, the incident is being fully investigated -- even as combat operations continue. If a court martial is convened, the young Marine in the videotape will have a chance to defend his actions. Meanwhile, Arab broadcasts outside Iraq that won't even mention the murder of relief worker Margaret Hassan will replay the "shooting video" for weeks to come as an incitement to join the Jihad.

    In the rush to air sensational footage, the "pool" system failed us all. Worse yet, it failed the young soldiers and Marines and their brave Iraqi allies who are fighting to liberate Fallujah from the terrorists' bloody grip. Even though the "shooting video" lacked context and failed to tell the full story -- it became the big story. If it becomes the story of Fallujah, that would be a crime.

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 01/30/07 - New Iraq Report Makes Case for Victory

New Iraq Report Makes Case for Victory



WASHINGTON, Jan. 30 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A new report on Iraq was
released today that covers many subjects not touched on by the Iraq Study
Group. Titled Citizens Report on Iraq: Attainable Victory vs. the
Propaganda of Defeat, the report was conceived, researched and authored by
independent citizens with experience in Iraq who are concerned that the
American people and politicians are ill-informed about the situation in
Iraq.
The 86-page report is available for download at the Free Republic website:

http://www.freerepublic.com/CitizensReportonIraq.pdf
In the Citizens Report on Iraq, readers will learn that progress is
being made in Iraq; there are large areas of Iraq that are safe and
prospering; that the enemy is being killed and wounded in astounding
proportion to American casualties; that the reporting on Iraq by the
dominant media is universally despised as inaccurate and misleading by
those fighting for Free Iraq -- Americans and Iraqis alike; that the
so-called antiwar movement, including the organizers of this past weekend's
protest in Washington, is led by terrorist supporting Marxists as part of a
global alliance seeking America's defeat in the Global War on Terror and
that a prominent White House correspondent has allied herself with one of
these groups.
The report includes frank interviews with dozens of Operation Iraqi
Freedom veterans, their families and several Gold Star parents. Those who
think their support for President Bush and victory in Iraq has waned will
be sorely disappointed.
The report also includes an overview of captured Saddam Hussein era
Iraqi government documents that demonstrate Saddam's commitment to
international terrorism and research in to Weapons of Mass Destruction,
including nuclear weapons.
Contributors include a history professor, an American contractor who
has spent the past three years in Iraq, an Iraqi living in Baghdad, and
numerous soldiers who spoke frankly on condition of anonymity.
The information in the report was gathered from original research and
interviews, publicly available government reports, blog entries, news
articles and transcripts.

.....................................................

The report is not meant to be the last word on the situation in Iraq. It is meant to add information and balance to the debate so that the American people are better informed. I would like to give special kudos to Omar from 'Iraq the Model 'who is a contributor to this report and from whom I frequently use as a primary source as an eye witness to history . Related to Elliot's post about the GWOT please refer to Omar's contribution on page 63 and especially the section on enemy casualties beginning on page 56 .

Since it is an 84 page report I will not C/P it .Suffice it to say that much of the information about progress in Iraq that various experts have cited here is included .





Itsdb answered on 01/30/07:

Judging from the opening statement I like it already.

This report can best be described as a middle finger of defiance aimed at the gloom and doom armchair generals in Congress, the media and Fort Living room.

That's doomed it already. There is no way the "armchair generals in Congress, the media and Fort Living room" are going to let anything like this have much of an impact. That's a shame.

Steve

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Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 01/29/07 - We did it, now how do we undo it?


We're to blame for sick planet

By staff writers and wires

January 30, 2007 06:53am
Article from: NEWS.com.au



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NEARLY 20 environmentalists have scaled the Eiffel Tower to hang protest banners about the threat of global warming as the world's top climate scientists gathered nearby to issue a key report.

Greenpeace activists yesterday climbed to the top platform of the 324-meter Parisian tower and unfurled three huge banners, one showing a thermometer topping out at 2 degrees celsius.

The European Union has set the target of limiting earth's global temperature rise to 2 degrees celsius or less by the end of the century compared to pre-industrial levels.

Another of the banners was inscribed with the slogan, "It's not too late", in an appeal to policy makers and governments to take action on climate change.

About 500 experts in the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will on Friday release a much-anticipated report - its first since 2001 - on the state of scientific knowledge on global warming.

A leaked draft copy of the report has detailed the main thrusts of the finding and incudes how scientists have now found the connection between man-made carbon emissions and global warming, proving once and for all that human activity is changing the world.

Scientists have also debunked the myth that global warming is simply a global cycle, saying that according to its cycle the earth should be in a period of cooling, not warming.

"It is highly likely (greater than 95 per cent probability) that the warming observed during the past half century cannot be explained without external forcing human activity," the draft says.

And while the naysayers might dismiss the findings as a conspiratorial hoax, the IPCC is traditionally regarded as being conservative, with a preference for erring on the side of caution. Its assessment could not be more damning.

Eleven of the earth's 12 warmest years since 1850 have occured since 1995; Indications are the earth's temperature will rise 3C by 2100, possibly as much as 6C. This could be catastrophic, with a similar temperature shift marking the last ice age 12,000 years ago.

It is virtually certain (99 per cent probability) that carbon dioxide levels and global warming is far above the range in the atmosphere over the past 650,000 years.

It is virtually certain that human activity has played the dominant role in this.

It is likely that human activity is responsible for other observed changes to the earth, such as ocean warming and melting of the Arctic sea ice.

The IPCC report revealed climate change could be far worse than previously thought.

With The Mercury and AFP

Itsdb answered on 01/30/07:

That's a far cry from how I saw the report previewed yesterday. It was one of the few al-AP articles on the subject that actually highlighted dissent on the subject.

    The melting ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica are a fairly recent development that has taken scientists by surprise. They don't know how to predict its effects in their computer models. But many fear it will mean the world's coastlines are swamped much earlier than most predict.

    Others believe the ice melt is temporary and won't play such a dramatic role...

    The early versions of the report predict that by 2100 the sea level will rise anywhere between 5 and 23 inches. That's far lower than the 20 to 55 inches forecast by 2100 in a study published in the peer-review journal Science this month. Other climate experts, including NASA's James Hansen, predict sea level rise that can be measured by feet more than inches.


Let me get this straight, we're still basing all of this on computer models, which, when it comes to weather are correct at about the time you step outside and see it snowing. We're also trusting computer models to prove our nuclear facilities would be safe from a terrorist flying a 747 into the reactor - how much faith would you have in that?

And so far we have predictions of a sea level rise of anywhere from 5 to 23 inches, 20 to 55 inches, and "by feet more than inches."

    Even so, there are questions about how permanent the melting in Greenland and especially Antarctica are, said panel lead author Kevin Trenberth, chief of climate analysis at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Colorado.

    While he said the melting ice sheets "raise a warning flag," Trenberth said he wonders if "some of this might just be temporary."

    University of Alabama at Huntsville professor John Christy said Greenland didn't melt much within the past thousand years when it was warmer than now.


What are we supposed to believe?

Steve

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Question/Answer
ETWolverine asked on 01/30/07 - Where is the war on terror?

Most members of the Democratic leadership have denounced the war in Iraq as not really part of the global war on terror. Nancy Pelosi in particular has argues that Iraq is not part of the war on terror, and others, like Harry Reid, Ted Kennedy, John Kerry and more have followed suit. (The fact that the majority of Muslim terrorists in the world are currently fighting in Iraq doesn't seem to sway them at all.) They claim that oth Shia and Sunni Muslims are being alienated by the war.

During the war between the terrorist organization Hezbollah and Israel this past summer, much of the same Democratic leadership called on Bush and Rice to negotiate a peace agreement between the two parties, saying that Israel fighting Hezbollah was not helpful to the global war on terrorism. They claim that not negotiating with Hezbollah alienates Shia Muslims.

For a while now, Democrats have criticized Bush for not regularizing diplomatic relations with the terrorist organization Hamas in the Palestinian Authority. They claim that not having open dialogue with Hamas is bad for the global war on terror because it alienates Palestinians.

Now we are hearing criticism of the posibility of open war with Iran, and criticism of Bush not negotiating with Iran. They claim that this is bad for the global war on terrorism, because it alienates Shia Muslims.

So the fighting in Iraq isn't good for the GWOT. Neither is fighting against Hezbollah, Hamas and Iran.

So where, exactly, is the appropriate place to fight the GWOT, according to the Democrats? Where do the Democrats, (who want us to believe that they support the GWOT but not the war in Iraq, and claim that they support the troops but not the war in Iraq), want us to fight the GWOT?

Just wondering.

Elliot

Itsdb answered on 01/30/07:

>>The fact that the majority of Muslim terrorists in the world are currently fighting in Iraq doesn't seem to sway them at all.<<

Yes Elliot, that one stumps me nearly every time I read a quote by a liberal on the war in Iraq. Then again, there aren't many times a lib speaks when I'm not stumped.

How does one explain an ideology that believes negotiatating terrorists will ever work, that gives a Nobel peace prize to Arafat? For that matter, why are they concerned with alienating people that would cut their heads off if given the opportunity? For all their posturing about Bush and his grand scheme and dream for spreading freedom and democracy why can't they see the method they prefer to reach their own utopian dream has failed miserably?

I still wonder how they sleep at night while demanding a withdrawal or redeployment, admitting to the chaos and death that would follow - embracing a Michael Moore mentality of sitting back to watch until we can swoop in and help pick up the pieces. I can only surmise they have no conscience unless it benefits them.

They're blind to the fact (as tom pointed out earlier) that their chosen spokesman for SOTU response spoke of Eisenhower 'ending' the Korean war while we have troops still there keeping the truce more than 50 years later. As Jonah Goldberg put it, "One wonders if the untold millions of North Koreans who've starved, bled and died since then would similarly applaud Eisenhower's courage and wisdom.".

Goldberg rightly wonders if Democrats would support the effort in Iraq if it became a "humanitarian crisis." Iraq was a humanitarian crisis for years - and still is - yet the left has conveniently brushed that fact aside, a cause they once championed.

They support our involvement in the fighting between factions ('civil wars') in Afghanistan and Darfur - just like they did in Yugoslavia and Somalia. If Iraq were once again a humanitarian crisis they would have no excuse not to support being in the middle of that 'civil war.' But they wouldn't do it for Iraq - at least not while Bush is president.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 01/29/07 - one more post on waste contributing to pollution

over the past half century many mechanics and so forth have invented cars that last forever (Tucker). Carboraters that will triple your gas mileage (the ones they have at Advanced Auto and so forth are inferior compared to the ones they don't want us to know about).
And back in the fifties and sixties (even since) several people have invented alternative fuels. My ex's grandfather invented a clean clear corn fuel in the fifties. But what happens to these inventions? NOBODY hears about them because the government pays them off to NOT market them. WHY? Because big business would suffer since people would not have to buy cars and gas as often.
This really applies to everything. If you notice the insulation in stoves and refridgeraters nowadays it is nothing compared to the old. I use to be able to buy brooms that lasted years, now the bristles start falling out within months or the handle swivels off and
taping or gluing it doesn't work.

Itsdb answered on 01/30/07:

I don't think it's government payoffs, but I do believe certain industries are guilty of some payoffs and suppression of technology - not to mention the lobbying.

But you have touched on something that irritates the crap out of me, inferior products. That's exactly what's happened to American automakers. There are many like me who for years wouldn't even consider buying one of the big 3 cars. I haven't owned an American car since purchasing a new 1986 Ford Tempo. After that my wife drove a Mazda for 11 years until I bought her a new Toyota Corolla last summer. I've driven my 1982 Toyota pickup for about 8 years.

I honestly believe many items and parts that could be longer lasting are designed with a limited life span. And I also cannot believe some of the engineering that makes it to market. Part of the blame for that is this inexplicable need of millions of Americans to have something "new and improved" or the "latest and greatest" (and it isn't just American companies designing crap).

In the last year or so we tried 4 different coffeemakers and 3 grinders before we found one that worked well. I believe I'm on my 3rd stereo/CD player in my pickup and this one won't eject the CD's. If I don't use my CD player at home for a few days I have to unplug it and plug it back in to use it. My high dollar Yamaha DVD player quit working in about a year - I doubt if we'd used it more than a dozen times. My Dish DVR inexplicably formatted the hard drive without my permission and takes 20 minutes to reboot.

A good mop (or broom as you note)? Forget it. Virtually any HP consumer printer? I'm on my third have no plans to ever buy another. Even my Dell (Lexmark) printer started mucking things up after about a year and a half. It took me over a year - or I should say it took Microsoft that long - to come up with an update that would make my Windows Media Center Edition PC function as advertised. And though my graphics card can show video of stunning quality there apparently isn't a TV tuner for a PC that can generate anything better than YouTube quality. How long have TV's been around?

Sigh...I've ranted long enough. I will grant there are still quality products out there, just good luck finding and paying for them. And on that note we love our Cuisinart 14 cup coffeemaker (not the one that everyone seems to have), our Capresso grinder, our flat screen Sony and our George Foreman grill. Just thought I'd plug a few good items, too. :)

Anyway, all that junk adds up.

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Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 01/28/07 - i don't know why this seems to be a problem only here?

I don't see this sort of think reported in other countries, is there a news blackout in force?


Call to gag Muslim radicals

By staff writers and wires

January 29, 2007 10:54am
Article from: NEWS.com.au

NSW Jewish leaders want the state's anti-vilification laws applied to a radical Muslim group that has sparked outrage by bringing to Australia its call for an Islamic superstate.

But they have stopped short of joining the Federal Opposition and NSW Government in demanding an outright ban on the extremist group, Hizb ut-Tahrir, a move that Prime Minister John Howard today reiterated that cannot occur until it is proven that anti-terrorism laws have been broken.

Indonesian cleric Ismail Yusanto yesterday outlined his vision for an Islamic utopia before a crowd of about 500 Muslims at Lakemba, in Sydney's south-west.

Dr Yusanto and fellow members of Hizb ut-Tahrir said it could ease suffering around the world by creating an Islamic superstate - ruled by Sharia law - through jihad, or holy war.

The NSW Jewish Board of Deputies CEO Vic Alhadeff today said Hizb ut-Tahrir's language - particularly in relation to Jews - overstepped the legal mark.

But it was up to the authorities whether an outright ban should be slapped on the group.

"Any ban is a matter for the Government to make a decision," Mr Alhadeff said.

"However, our concern is that any person or any organisation should not be permitted to make inflammatory remarks or engage in racial hatred in NSW and we believe the full force of the law should be brought down on (them).

"Sharia law requires that non-Muslims be regarded as second-class citizens and, furthermore, when one looks at the website of this Hizb ut-Tahrir, there is a lot of inflammatory hate speech ... it calls for death to Jews and things like that."

Mr Howard told Southern Cross Broadcasting that people should be able to say ridiculous thing without being accused of breaking the law.

"If they break the present anti-terrorist laws or indeed any other laws then they will be dealt with, but until there is sufficient evidence of that made available to the attorney-general, we can't, or shouldn't, act," he said.

"There is often a thin line between stupid extravagant language and language which is deliberately designed to incite violence ... or to threaten the security of the country.

"People can say a lot of ridiculous things and they should be able to say ridiculous things in a democracy without that language constituting violence and extreme incitement to violence."

But Mr Alhadeff rejected the notion that Hizb ut-Tahrir was merely a lunatic fringe that was best ignored.

A small minority in the otherwise law-abiding Australian Muslim community was bound to be influenced by the rhetoric, he said.

"We have here in NSW a society which espouses racial harmony," Mr Alhadeff said.

"We have a vast number of different faiths and ethnic groups who live together, side by side, and get on with each other and that's what makes NSW a great society.

"But when an organisation like this stands up and promotes racial hatred, to ignore it will not solve the problem.

"Racial hatred will not go away just by looking the other way."

With AAP

Itsdb answered on 01/29/07:

News blackout? No, we call it "hate speech" here and it doesn't apply to jihadists, gays, feminists and assorted lef-wing moonbats - they have free speech. It only applies to conservatives, particularly on college campuses.

Steve

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tropicalstorm asked on 01/28/07 - ironic, hypocrites or what?

Hollywood Among World's Biggest Polluters

Ironically, the climate-change disaster warning film The Day After Tomorrow was a big contributor to actual climate-change disaster.

Special effects explosions, idling vehicles, teams of workers building monumental sets -- all of it contributes to Hollywood's newly discovered role as an air polluter, a university study has found.

The film and television industry and associated activities make a larger contribution to air pollution in the five-county Los Angeles region than almost all five other sectors researched, according to a two-year study released Tuesday by the University of California, Los Angeles.

Although Hollywood seems environmentally conscious thanks to celebrities who lend their names to various causes, the industry created more pollution than individually produced by aerospace manufacturing, apparel, hotels and semiconductor manufacturing, the study found.

Only petroleum manufacturing belched more emissions.

Movie production tops hotels, aerospace, and apparel and semiconductor manufacturing in traditional air pollutant emissions in Southern California, according to the UCLA study, initially prepared for the Integrated Waste Management Board. The industry is probably second only to petroleum refineries, for which comparable data were not available.

In greenhouse gas emissions, the entertainment industry ranks third, The Times reported.

Itsdb answered on 01/29/07:

LOL, that's about as surprising as Ariana, Michael Moore and Laurie David jetting around the country. Have you ever been to a Universal Studios? The amount of propane, electricity and natural gas they use every day has got to be phenomenal.

Besides their contribution to 'climate change can you imagine how many kids they could feed, clothe and give healthcare to with all the millions Hollywood wastes in fuel, cars, fires and explosions?

Definitely hypocrisy - blind hypocrisy. Of course I'm sure they justify it because of all the good they do by promoting awareness.

Steve

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Question/Answer
Choux... asked on 01/28/07 - End War in Iraq by Jan 2009

AP Iowa -
"Hillary Rodham Clinton said Sunday that
President Bush should withdraw all U.S. troops from
Iraq before he leaves office, asserting it would be "the height of irresponsibility" to pass the war along to the next commander in chief.

"This was his decision to go to war with an ill-conceived plan and an incompetently executed strategy," the Democratic senator from New York said her in initial presidential campaign swing through Iowa.

"We expect him to extricate our country from this before he leaves office" in January 2009, the former first lady said."

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~`

It was Bush's blundering that caused this mess in the MiddleEast...time for him to wind up the war

Itsdb answered on 01/29/07:

Hillary is just running for president, that's all. She knows she can't win without doing an about face after all the criticism she received last year from the moonbat wing of the party. That, and I'm sure she has no clue about how to fix Iraq herself so she's hoping it goes away before she takes the oath.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tomder55 asked on 01/26/07 - Saph made an great point about the rules of engagement

The current ROEs for Baghdad ;including Sadr City, have seven steps that must be satisfied before our troops can take the gloves off and engage the enemy with appropriate violence .

(1) You must feel a direct threat to you or your team.

(2) You must clearly see a threat.

(3) That threat must be identified.

(4) The team leader must concur that there is an identified threat.

(5) The team leader must feel that the situation is one of life or death.

(6) There must be minimal or no collateral risk.

(7) Only then can the team leader clear the engagement.

If we can find what they are then you can be sure the jihadists /insurgents whatever know them also.

Hopefully General Petraeus has revised these rules to read :
(1) kill the enemy wherever you find them
(2) see rule # 1

Itsdb answered on 01/26/07:

Sounds like a typical government process. I get calls from TDCJ (our correctional system) all the time to buy parts. You can bet if it's over $50 I'll get anywhere from 3-7 calls requesting a quote over a period of several days, followed by a faxed request for quotation from the state. I can't imagine what they'd do if they had a fire (we sell fire protection equipment). I like your rules much better.

Steve



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Question/Answer
Dark_Crow asked on 01/25/07 - Distinction between democrat and leftist.

Why do you suppose that “Leftist” attached themselves to the Democratic Party and not to the Republican Party? After all, aren’t Democratic values traditional American values, that is, “God, Country, and Honor”?

Itsdb answered on 01/26/07:

DC,

Let's not confuse democratic values with Democratic values. I know that one would throw Democrats in a tizzy, but there is a definite distinction. The Democrats as a party left or redefined core democratic values a long time ago. So, as a leftist - or a conservative or whatever - you go where you're welcome.

Republicans, though drifting leftward, generally don't welcome many of the values that leftists embrace, socialism, anarchism, progressivism, etc. You can't claim to embrace traditional democratic values while violating them has become your mantra and your mission, and that is what the left has done. For instance...

Life - the number one untouchable issue for Democrats has been abortion.

Liberty - Universal citizen service, universal healthcare, wealth redistribution, political correctness, speech codes...a political solution for everything. Smoking and trans fats are bad so they must be banned (also applicable to pursuit of happiness).

Pursuit of happiness - What right do I have to be happy while someone else isn't? What right do I have to my money, my property while there are poor and downtrodden individuals in society? As one blogger wrote, "It disgusts me, all those people running around in their SUV's to Nordstrom's and those fancy restaurants. It's outrageous and destructive to America's moral fiber. A good confiscatory tax rate above what's needed to survive should do the trick...Not to mention taxing estates substantially so we have fewer of those binge-drinking Hummer-crashing sybarites spending Daddy's inheritance..."

As for those you mention...

God - If God is still welcome in this country why is there a need for organizations such as this?

Honor - Rep. William "Cold Cash" Jefferson Gets Standing Ovation

Country - GLOBALIZATION AND THE NATION STATE

The left cannot coexist with Republicans, that's a part of the 'big tent' that's off limits.

Steve

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Question/Answer
paraclete asked on 01/24/07 - Is it all for nothing?

Will climate change wipe out the gains in the middle east?


Climate change 'fanning conflict, terror'

From correspondents in London

January 25, 2007 05:43am
Article from: Reuters


GLOBAL warming could exacerbate the world's rich-poor divide and help to radicalise populations and fan terrorism in the countries worst affected, security and climate experts said today.

"We have to reckon with the human propensity for violence," Sir Crispin Tickell, Britain's former ambassador to the United Nations, told a London conference on "Climate Change: the Global Security Impact".

"Violence within and between communities and between nation states, we must accept, could possibly increase, because the precedents are all around."

He cited Rwanda and Sudan's Darfur region as two examples where drought and overpopulation, relative to scarce resources, had helped to fuel deadly conflicts.

Experts at the conference hosted by the Royal United Services Institute said it was likely that global warming would create huge flows of refugees as people tried to escape areas swamped by rising sea levels or rendered uninhabitable by desertification.

Sir Tickell said terrorists were likely to seek to exploit the tensions created.

"Those who are short of food, those who are short of water, those who can't move to countries where it looks as if everything is marvellous are going to be people who are going to adopt desperate measures to try and make their point."

John Mitchell, chief scientist at Britain's Met Office, said al-Qaeda had already listed environmental damage among its litany of grievances against the United States.

"You have destroyed nature with your industrial waste and gases more than any other nation in history. Despite this, you refuse to sign the Kyoto agreement so that you can secure the profit of your greedy companies and industries," al Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden wrote in a 2002 "letter to the American people".

Paul Rogers, professor of peace studies at Bradford University, said any attempt by countries to build fortress walls to keep out climate change refugees - what he called the "barbarians at the gate" mentality - was doomed to fail.

"If you just take the example of Bangladesh, if 60 million of 140 million people could not survive in Bangladesh yet they were kept there, you would have A) gigantic human suffering and B) progressive very deep radicalisation - very, very angry people - and that is not in anybody's security interest."

Bangladesh, with a 580km coastline on the Bay of Bengal, is acutely vulnerable to rising sea levels, cyclones and droughts.

Climate scientist Mr Mitchell said the Mediterranean and Middle East were likely to receive less rainfall as a consequence of climate change, adding to existing tensions over water.

John Ashton, special representative for climate change at Britain's Foreign Office, voiced concern that this could further destabilise a region already beset by conflict.

"Given the volatile nature of that region, given the global consequences of that volatility, yes I'm hugely worried by that," he said.

Itsdb answered on 01/25/07:

>>Will climate change wipe out the gains in the middle east?<<

What gains? I thought it was perfectly clear there are no gains in the Middle East, that Bush has screwed up the entire region.

You know Clete, this "climate change" thing is getting way too ridiculous. Now it's "fanning terror?" I guess there's one more argument against the Bush policy in Iraq. He needs to stop the shooting so he can focus on the real cause of terrorism, the weather.

And that bin Laden, what an astute guy. How did he know that America was the reason his native country has zero lakes and rivers, limited arable land and nonrenewable aquifers? I'm sure his time in the wastelands of Afghanistan and Sudan made clear America's role in the destruction of those ecosytems.

What will they come up with next, that climate change is responsible for hemorrhoids?

Steve

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Question/Answer
Choux... asked on 01/24/07 - State of the Union Address

".....I thought of Willy Loman as I watched George Bush deliver his State of the Union address. Here was a man like Willy who was absolutely confident of his own charm, a personality man who had nothing of substance to sell; a man who brings ruin to all around him as he clings to his fantasies of success. Only unlike Willy, George Bush is our Salesman of Death. He stood there delivering his tired spiel, unpacking his tawdry goods; the misbegotten war, while peddling terror and no taxes as if they were shiny new stock. He dragged out all the initiatives that he should have considered six years ago, which now seemed shopworn, threadbare, and counterfeit in his hands, new sources of energy, health care, and his disastrous No Child Left Behind and its destruction of our educational system. Never has America had a leader who is so incorruptible, because there is nothing in George Bush that could be corrupted. To corrupt someone implies that they begin with some virtue, and it was difficult to think of any virtue known to man possessed by this President.

George W. Bush had death to sell to the Congress and the American people, the death of our young soldiers to be sacrificed to his desperate need for another chance, another big score, all part of his fantasy of success, and his dread of failure. As even the Democrats in Congress bobbed up and down in response to his lies and banalities, I was a bit confused, and annoyed; then I realized that nobody was paying close attention to his words, this sign of deference may have been an effort to stay awake, like the snoozing John McCain, or the jumping up and down of Nancy Pelosi to keep her foot from falling asleep. I expected Laura, like the loyal Linda Loman, to shout out from the balcony, "Attention must be paid," but instead she was playing a game of three card Monte, undoubtedly taught to her by Rove himself, exploiting the heroism of an African American working man, one who never enjoyed any of the benefits of Bush's America, to distract from her husband's failures and lend George some of this hero's aura. Perhaps the real Linda Loman was Condi Rice whose face was a mask of tragedy. Medea or Medusa, take your pick, it was awful to behold in its desperation for Condi like Laura and the Cheneys the tragedy wasn't what they had done to America, but what they had lost for themselves, power, respect, and honor. Perhaps the material profits of war are not enough for some people. Sadly, one knows that George W. will never have a moment when he understands how he went wrong, and what a disaster he has brought down on the American family. The big difference between that great play and this President is that you could weep for Willy Loman but never for this salesman of death."

Part of an excellent blog by Sherman Yellen.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I was specially touched by his reference to the twisted, angonized face of Condi Rice when she was captured on camera. Her face told it all about the Bush years, the Bush failures...most specially the failure of the Iraqi War.

Itsdb answered on 01/25/07:

You have a strange sense of 'excellence,' but then that's typical of the left. Excellence apaprently means "with the highest or finest degree of malice and ignorance to one's own hypocrisy."

Yellen calls the President "a man who had nothing of substance to sell." What pray tell, is of substance in this alleged "excellent blog?" And how can a man - and you by implication of posting in agreement - live with themselves while speaking so maliciously about the president of the United States and his "lies and banalities" while posting their own "lies and banalities?" Where is his conscience? Where is your conscience?

Whether one likes NCLB or not, the president has addressed education from the beginning, and the bill was steered through the Senate by none other than Ted Kennedy himself. He has raised the issue of new energy sources many times, even Webb in his response acknowledged Bush has mentioned the subject 7 times in SOTU addresses.

Yellen speaks of how the president "clings to his fantasies" yet Yellen himself is clinging to the fantasy that Bush is the "salesman of death" instead of recognizing the reality of the true "salesman of death" that cheers the likes of Mr. Yellen on...

In the mind of the terrorist, this war began well before September the 11th, and will not end until their radical vision is fulfilled. And these past five years have given us a much clearer view of the nature of this enemy. Al Qaeda and its followers are Sunni extremists, possessed by hatred and commanded by a harsh and narrow ideology. Take almost any principle of civilization, and their goal is the opposite. They preach with threats, instruct with bullets and bombs, and promise paradise for the murder of the innocent.

This "excellent blog" is nothing more than the same "tired spiel" of a group of people so obsessed with hatred for one man, one of their own, that reality has totally escaped them.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 01/24/07 - why do people dread jury duty?

Replies for IF people dread jury duty and really don't want to do it.

A. I stick to my own race, I wouldn't know
B. I am all for profiling
C. I am for the little guy, companies have their racket.
D. Let the criminal rot in jail; at least send them all to their own island.
E. No I am not KKK, but I can't relate to anything outside my own problems

Itsdb answered on 01/25/07:

If I'm called chances are I'll be on the jury. I've served 3 times and my first was a murder trial. I also served in a malpractice trial (boring, and we let the doc off the hook), and sexual abuse of a child. That was tough - much tougher than the murder trial. And if I recall, that was the time I sat through the voir dire as something like 3rd from the last to be questioned. They stopped the questioning a couple of people before me and I was picked anyway, so you never know :)

I never dread it though, it's at least a day off from the grind, I don't lose any pay at work and it's really quite fascinating - usually.

Steve

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Question/Answer
ETWolverine asked on 01/24/07 - The smirk

I watched the State of the Union address and the Democratic rebuttal last night.

Was it just me, or did Jim Web look like he was smirking during his rebuttal?

How many times has Bush been accused of smirking when giving a speech? Why should we not apply the same standard to Web?

Just wondering.

Elliot

Itsdb answered on 01/24/07:

It's not allowed Elliot. Just like you can't criticize blacks no matter how much frozen cash has been found in their freezers. Single women (or single black women that change their rape stories) no matter how much they sleep around. Or Mexicans, no matter how many times they've illegally crossed the border to protest our immigration policies while waving a Mexican flag, you can't criticize Democrats.

With Webb, that "self-styled warrior-poet," he isn't smirking, he's delivering "a forceful nine-minute response...promising an aggressive challenge to Bush's Iraq and economic policies."

The "decorated Marine veteran of the Vietnam War" (another reason you can't criticize him) "displayed the same blunt manner that won over Virginia voters in November and later generated headlines after a face-to-face exchange with Bush at the White House."

You can't criticize Webb because as Harry Reid said, "He represents...what the new America is all about."

There couldn't have been a smirk, as Webb was the first Democrat responder to be broadcast in HDTV, which "prompted Webb's staff to hire a makeup specialist who could make sure that Webb looked good in crystal-clear pictures."

You can't criticize Webb because he "puts patriotism first" (even though Republicans are scorned for flag-waving patriotism).

That was no smirk, Webb "appeared intense and smiled infrequently. He rarely stumbled in delivering the speech."

Good G_d man, how can you say that was a smirk?

On the other hand, Evita looked as if she had a giant pickle up her a**.

Steve

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Question/Answer
tropicalstorm asked on 01/23/07 - figured I'd put this here

rather than get flack pos