Friday, August 31, 2007

(Despicable) Quote of the Day

"A man can marry a girl younger than nine years of age, even if the girl is still a baby being breastfed. A man, however is prohibited from having intercourse with a girl younger than nine, other sexual act such as forplay, rubbing, kissing and sodomy is allowed. A man having intercourse with a girl younger than nine years of age has not comitted a crime, but only an infraction, if the girl is not permanently damaged. If the girl, however, is permanently damaged, the man must provide for her all her life. But this girl will not count as one of the man's four permanent wives. He also is not permitted to marry the girl's sister."

-Ayatollah Khomeini

Sexual activity with a little girl is permissible if they're married? How can a little girl be consentually married?

Not permanently damaged? What does that mean? Physically? Emotionally? How can she not be?

Hello? This is pedophilia, not holy matrimony, that he's advocating.

This shocking quote cannot be chalked up to that of an errant, obscure cleric. No, this is the religious teaching on marriage and women by the leader of a religious and political revolution that overtook an entire country.

We have a place for men in our country that would use little girls this way. It's called prison.



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Monday, August 27, 2007

One Child Program Sucks for Girls

...and everyone else, over the long haul.

China's one-child family planning policy is generating serious long term problems for China and possibly for the world.

Because boys will carry on the family name, are more able to help with physical labor, and are just more valued culturally, people have responded to the one-child rule with abortion or infanticide of baby girls. As a result, the disproportionate ratio of boys to girls has skyrocketed.

From LifeNews:
The eastern city of Lianyungang is one of the worst offenders, according to a BBC
report, with 163.5 boys for every 100 girls four years old or younger.

But it's not alone as the family planning group reports that 99 cities out of 125 surveyed had ratios higher than 125-100.

But don't think fewer women will increase their standing or given them more power. On the contrary, the gender imbalance has "already led to the selling of girl babies, forced marriages, sexual slavery, an increase in crime and a host of other social problems."

Long-term, a nation of mostly men will find themselves without partners and experts predict serious mental health issues and other negative effects. It will also lead to fewer children supporting their older parents and grandparents and a potential financial collapse or poverty as a result.

With a surplus of young men, many may also find the military much more appealing. Just imagine lots of young men with no possibility of settling down seeking adventure elsewhere in the form of conquests.

It's not nice to fool with Mother Nature by messing up the birth ratios of males and females. There could be hell to pay.

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Saturday, August 25, 2007

Wilmington Land Grab

...or "we're from the government and we're here to help"....

The Wilmington City Council voted to use eminent domain to snatch properties from business owners in downtown Wilmington to turn them over to a developer. It's Kelo gone wild.
From the Wilmington News Journal:

After two hours of heated debate, the City Council overwhelmingly passed a plan Thursday that allows the city to use eminent domain to condemn as many as 62 properties in South Wilmington.

The council voted 11-1 to approve the South Walnut Street Urban Renewal Plan. The plan is the city's blueprint for South Wilmington's future and includes taking properties of up to 38 working businesses and selling them to developers who would continue high-end residential and commercial redevelopment of the once entirely industrial area.

Charles Potter Jr. was the only council member who voted against the plan....

Potter was unsuccessful in an attempt to get his colleagues to table the plan. He thinks private developers should be talking directly with the property owners in the area. "Let the natural progression of seller and buyer take place," he said. "The city shouldn't be involved in this, not at all."

A wonderful display of conscience by Mr. Potter.
One council member denied this vote had anything to do with eminent domain. Another said he would only vote to condemn a property if "there was clear evidence that serious, serious negotiations had taken place."

Well, that's encouraging. owners who pleaded with the council to table or reject the plan said taking away their livelihood was just as bad as taking their homes would be.

Keith Harvin of Harvin Foods said he came to Wilmington from Chester, Pa., 17 years ago. He was recruited by the city, which was trying to get businesses to locate in the then-barren area. "Now somebody wants to take my business," he said.

Gabe Feini, owner of Rodney Square Engineering, said he worked 14 hours a day, seven days a week, for years to make his skyscraper maintenance business a success. He used to live in his workplace as well, and he has thwarted four burglaries there over the years.

Now, he feels kicked to the curb by others wanting to share in the area's redevelopment, which he feels he helped launch.

Question: did those recruiters inform Mr. Harvin that the city council would take away his business seventeen years later when they no longer wanted him and he'd served their purposes?

Part of the area in question is across the street from the $200 million Christina Landing residential development. Christina Landing resident Catharine Lloyd suggested that both sides agree to do what's best for the city -- which is having the businesses agree to move. "You will get fair market value," she said to a chorus of boos from the property owners and their supporters.

Did Catharine Lloyd happen to notice those businesses across the way when she bought her home in Christina Landing? Why did she buy there if she didn't want to live across from them?

One of the reasons for the continued poverty of third world nations stems from a lack of property rights. (See the works of Hernando de Soto.) People aren't stupid. Why work day and not and take chances on a business if you don't have any right to the land and to your livelihood and everything can be taken at will by government thugs? While no one is accusing the Wilmington City Council of thuggery, having all one's worked for taken away by the government, offering "fair market value", can't feel good.

Why should anyone take a risk on establishing, operating and building up their business and clientele in Wilmington if the government can shut them down at will?

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Iran against Racism, (Cough)

Despite its numerous calls for Israel's destruction, and repeated denials of the Holocaust, Iran has been selected by the United Nations for a leading position in a committee that will plan the 2009 UN World Conference against Racism.

They've got to be kidding. With Iran's denial of the Holocaust and repeated calls for "Death to Israel", Iran's inclusion on a committee against racism is a complete mockery of the theme.

And we keep funding the UN because....?

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Thursday, August 23, 2007

Honor Suicides


But "when a man's honor is between the legs of a woman" it makes perfect "sense".

"When wrong boyfriends or clothes lead daughters to kill themselves," by Helena Smith for The Guardian:

Nuran Uca never made it to 61 Aydin Arslan Street. If she had gone to the colourful two-storey building, climbed its narrow stairwell, walked down a corridor and sat in the plump brown armchair that so many other women had used, she might be alive today. There, with counsellors from the Kam-er support group, she could have talked about the "crime" of falling in love with a man she could never marry.

Instead, on June 14 the Kurdish woman succumbed to the phenomenon that is claiming lives in this Kurdish area of south-east Anatolia: she hanged herself in the bathroom of her home.

"She was just 25 but it was especially tragic because both were teachers, educated people," said Remziye Tural at Kam-er, the women's organisation that has become a lifeline in Turkey's poor south-east for those who face death because of a perception of dishonour. "She was modern and wore tight clothes - which is why his family rejected her.

She was banned by her parents from seeing or speaking to him, and then they stopped her leaving the house. In the end the pressure was too much."
Invariably, survivors said it was their kader, or destiny, to meet such an end.
But women's groups and human rights advocates believe the suicides are tantamount to murder. Stories have emerged of girls as young as 12 being locked in rooms for days with rope, poison or a pistol.

"There's a lot of evidence to suggest that these are, in fact, 'honour killings' passed off as suicides - that these girls are being forced to take their own lives," said Aytekin Sir, a psychiatrist who has studied the practice. There is no evidence that Nuran Uca's family forced their daughter to kill herself.

Last year, Yakin Erturk, a special UN envoy, arrived at the same conclusion, saying "honour suicides" had clearly begun to replace "honour killings", with the deaths
increasingly being disguised as accidents.

Death sentences

For a long time the potent forces of fear and shame in the communities stopped young women visiting the Kam-er centre on Aydin Arlsan Street. But recently at least four girls a day have gone there, often in fear of death sentences issued by their fathers and brothers for infractions perceived to have brought shame on their families.

Nearly one-fifth of those who walked through the doors of the organisation since it started up in 1997 complained of threats from their families. Some had received text messages on their mobile phones saying typically: "You have blackened our name. Kill yourself or we will kill you."

According to Vildan Aycicek, at the organisation's headquarters in the city of Diyarbakir, west of Batman: "Women apply to us when they think they cannot survive the violence any longer. Most are illiterate and don't know their legal rights. If they do, they have no idea how to use them."

There had, she said, been cases of Kurdish and Turkish women calling Kam-er's hotline from Britain and other countries saying they also feared for their lives. Worldwide, the numbers of "honour killings" are notoriously difficult to estimate. But in Turkey the vengeful practice is cited by academics as the cause of death for
hundreds of women each year - far above the official annual figure of 70.

Sometimes adultery, or a woman's desire for divorce, prompts an all-male "family
council" to order a killing.

But the list of "offences" is long: rape, incest, pregnancy brought on by both, a girl ringing into a radio chat show, exchanging eye contact with a boy or wearing a skimpy shirt. Sometimes accusations are no more than rumours.

One villager near Diyarbakir explained the attitude of his home area. "Without rules you have chaos," said Seyikan Arslan. "If my sister or my mother made a mistake we [men] would have to make it right. They would have to pay to cleanse our honour."
The culture clash has played a large part in exacerbating tensions within families and particularly between patriarchal fathers and their female offspring. "Migration is behind the big rise in honour and suicide killings," said Dr Sir, whose research found that support for the deaths far outstripped other popular penalties such as a woman having her nose sliced off or head shaved.
Ironically, the suicides have also been blamed on Turkey's efforts to stop "honour crimes". With Ankara's reforming Islamic-rooted government determined to enter the EU, it has toughened laws against the killings. Lenient sentences for those who cite provocation as a mitigating factor are no longer possible. So, to save men from a life in prison, experts believe families are instead forcing women to kill themselves.
Absent from the campaign in Batman has been the mayor, Huseyin Kalkan, who was awarded damages by DC Comics after a lawsuit over the use of his town's name for the superhero Batman. That money, activists point out, could be used to save women like Nuran Uca.

In the spirit of cultural equivalency, I suppose we just need to understand and accept, even as hundreds (thousands?) of women die each year for some man's "honor". It's just the culture. Who are we to judge?

h/t: jihad watch

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Who's Up for Chinese?

Let's see if I've got the whole list:
  • tainted, deadly pet food
  • seafood with unknown or banned compounds
  • faulty tires
  • lead in toys
  • antifreeze in toothpaste
  • unsafe medicines
and now.....pre-used, never washed chopsticks.

Did I leave anything out-- other than the things we just don't know about yet?
A Beijing factory recycled used chopsticks and sold up to 100,000 pairs a day without any form of disinfection, a newspaper said on Wednesday, the latest is a string of food and product safety scares.

Counterfeit, shoddy and dangerous products are widespread in China...

China, on track to overtake the United States this year as the world's second-largest exporter, lacks a basic food safety law and the manpower to enforce food and drug safety regulations at home or for export. Imports are generally carefully scrutinized.

A lack of business ethics and a spiritual vacuum after China embraced economic reforms in the late 1970s have been blamed for unscrupulous business practices and corruption.

Okay, so the chopsticks didn't quite make it to the American market before the Chinese government discovered that used chopsticks were being resold on the Chinese market at an alarming rate sans disinfectant, but can anyone ho hum this away? Shouldn't we put the brakes on imports until China can deal with its domestic and export manufacturing? The safeguards just aren't in place. Of course, our economy is so tied in with China's now that they can wreck havoc by dumping bonds, etc.

h/t: Reformed Chicks Blabbing
Related posts: Time for a Ban, Blackmail, Chinese Style

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Not Easy Being Green

You Are Kermit

Hi, ho! Lovable and friendly, you get along well with everyone you know.
You're a big thinker, and sometimes you over think life's problems.
Don't worry - everyone know's it's not easy being green.
Just remember, time's fun when you're having flies!

I actually still sing "It's Not That Easy Being Green" sometimes.

h/t: AO

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Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Lizard Attack

This is priceless. I had to watch it twice though because I didn't catch what had happened and how the first time.

Thanks to Michele from Reformed Chicks Blabbing

Michelle Swipes at Hillary?

"One of the things, the important aspects of this race is role modeling what good families should look like," Michelle Obama said at a Women for Obama event. "And my view is that if you can't run your own house, you certainly can't run the White House."

Mrs. Obama brings up a good talking point. What should the First Family look like? Should they be role models for the rest of us? How much dysfunction should be tolerated in the First Family?

John F. Kennedy appeared to have the perfect family. The country reportedly enjoyed the notion of this loving couple and their adorable children. Few at that time knew that JFK was a male whore (or is whoremonger a better word?) Would the country have tolerated this behavior and admired him so if they had known?

Then there were the Reagans. While their children were obviously dysfunctional, there was no mistaking the love between Ron and Nancy. Though a second marriage, the two certainly demonstrated lifelong loyalty to each other.

Some have jumped on Michelle Obama's statement as an attack on Hillary Clinton whose marriage has been less than idyllic. The Obama camp denies this charge. Obama's words can certainly be viewed as a positive rather than a negative statement. Rather than an attack on others, she could have intended merely to build up her husband whom she feels is a positive example of manhood-- a good father and husband, one whom she believes handles his personal affairs in an honorable way-- and who will therefore be able to handle the White House in an honorable manner as well.

On the other hand, if it were an attack on Hillary, it was a low blow.

Look, I don't like Hillary Clinton one bit. I never have. I certainly don't understand her marriage. But to blame her for Bill's inability to keep his tongue in his mouth and his hands to himself and off his zipper is ludicrous. If Hillary is such an awful wife that Bill needs to find love and companionship from another woman, he should have been honest about it and left her long ago. Monica wasn't a one-time affair. No siree. Bill has a long history of philandering and womanizing and even had a rape accusation against him from a woman whom I found credible, especially when many other women had made allegations of sexual misconduct against him. Even if Hillary is the worst wife in the world, she didn't cause Bill to behave so dishonorable again and again. That was his choice, his responsibility. Does anyone believe he would be completely faithful to any woman? To in any way blame Hillary for not controlling Bill's behavior is a low blow. No one should be expected to control her spouse. What kind of person would want to?

That said, I do have strong opinions on Hillary's marriage. It has nothing to do with her inability to keep Bill under control. It instead has everything to do with Hillary's toleration of him. This is not the early 1900's. In today's world, a woman doesn't need a man for financial support and protection as she once did. If Hillary, a capable and educated woman, can't make it on her own without her man, how can any of us? If Hillary can't disengage herself from a dysfunctional relationship, from a man who has repeatedly dishonored and humiliated her and endangered her own health through the possible contraction of std's, what hope do any of us have?

Now, I'm all for the sanctity of marriage and for reconciliation. I understand that any person can lose his (or her) own way for a time. There are marriages in which one person was unfaithful for some reason or another that have been reconciled successfully. The injured party has forgiven a truly repentant errant spouse and they've worked to reestablish trust and loyalty and love. Those marriages are often a beautiful example of forgiveness and redemption.

The Clinton marriage is quite different, however. Bill was well-known for his infidelities and has allegedly not ceased from them in true repentance. Hillary did know for years about his affairs and reportedly helped cover them up and then led the attacks on the women involved when any sensible and professionally competent woman would have left his sorry @$$. If she didn't know, then I would question her competence in generally as she would have to be stupid or willfully blind in Bill's case.

This is my beef with Hillary about her marriage, not that she couldn't run her own house to begin with. When she received support from those who were impressed by her "stand by your man" baloney, I was trying not to toss my cookies as my stomach turned. Personally, I would have had far more respect for her if she had said no woman should be so disrespected by her husband again and again and had declared she could make it on her own and went out and did it (even if she had waited until the day after Bill's presidency ended so as not to disrupt the nation). I know women with far fewer opportunities and abilities who bravely left horrible marriages. If they can do it, why couldn't she of all people? How can she live that way? She can't control Bill and shouldn't, but she can control herself. Where is her self respect?

So, if Michelle Obama's comment was in fact a veiled attack on Hillary for not being able to control Bill, shame on her. But Hillary's apparent lack of self-respect and inability or unwillingness to make it on her own are real issues.

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Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Newt's Speech on Phoney War

"If they [the irreconcilable wing of Islam] were in charge tonight, not a single woman would be in this room."

Why, why, why is it a conservative male who makes such obvious complaints? Where are the feminists on radical Islam? Certainly not complaining in large enough numbers about widespread radical Islam and its effects on women around the world.

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Bailey's Academic Winter

J. Michael Bailey, a psychologist at Northwestern University, has experienced an academic's version of a harsh Siberian winter, having crossed the transgender community with an idea of all things. Ideas from an academic--imagine that. But ideas that don't conform with political correctness must be attacked. Scratch that. People with ideas that don't conform with political correctness must be attacked, vilified, sued, fired, investigated, accused, etc., and those closest to them must suffer vile attacks as well.

Bailey's academic crime? He published a book, "The Man Who Would be Queen" in the spring of 2003.
In his book, he argued that some people born male who want to cross genders are driven primarily by an erotic fascination with themselves as women. This idea runs counter to the belief, held by many men who decide to live as women, that they are the victims of a biological mistake — in essence, women trapped in men’s bodies. Dr. Bailey described the alternate theory, which is based on Canadian studies done in the 1980s and 1990s, in part by telling the stories of several transgender women he met through a mutual acquaintance. In the book, he gave them pseudonyms, like “Alma” and “Juanita.”

Dr. Lynn Conway, a computer scientist at the University of Michigan who had apparently been born male herself, seems integral to the attack. She consulted with the four transgendered women whom Bailey had interviewed for "The Man Who Would Be Queen". They wrote letters of complaint to Northwestern. One accused him of having sex with her. They also wrote to the Illinois state regulators requesting an investigation. Dr. Conway, the NY Times article says, also kept a running list of the accusations against Bailey on her site.

Things got worse.
[Dr. Conway's] site also included a link to the Web page of another critic of Dr. Bailey’s book, Andrea James, a Los Angeles-based transgender advocate and consultant. Ms. James downloaded images from Dr. Bailey’s Web site of his children, taken when they were in middle and elementary school, and posted them on her own site, with sexually explicit captions that she provided. (Dr. Bailey is a divorced father of two.) Ms. James said in an e-mail message that Dr. Bailey’s work exploited vulnerable people, especially children, and that her response echoed his disrespect.

Not only has Dr. Bailey and his children suffered from this abuse but also those academically associated with him. Two researchers, for example, "were advised by a government grant officer that they should distance themselves from Dr. Bailey to improve their chances of receiving financing."

Dr. Alice Dreger, an ethics scholar, had assumed Dr. Bailey was guilty of the charges against him and decided to investigate. She found the opposite. Of the four who complained, two were never mentioned in the book and the other two knew their stories would be used. The sexual misconduct allegations weren't made until five years after the supposed event, and emails between Dr. Bailey and his ex-wife indicate that he was actually at his ex-wife's home at that time, caring for their children. Dr. Dreger also contends that the book doesn't qualify as scientific research but was merely anecdotal.
“What happened to Bailey is important, because the harassment was so extraordinarily bad and because it could happen to any researcher in the field,” said Alice Dreger, an ethics scholar and patients’ rights advocate at Northwestern who, after conducting a lengthy investigation of Dr. Bailey’s actions, has concluded that he is essentially blameless. “If we’re going to have research at all, then we’re going to have people saying unpopular things, and if this is what happens to them, then we’ve got problems not only for science but free expression itself.”

Once again, we see that academic freedom is extended only to those who espouse views currently in vogue among academics and the politically correct. Run afoul of those individuals, and they'll do what they can to make your life miserable. It's not just your ideas they'll attack. They'll instigate investigations and attempt to get you fired. They'll accuse you of sexual or other misconduct. Even your children won't be safe.

All quotes are from the New York Times article: "Criticism of a Gender Theory, and a Scientist Under Siege" by Benedict Carey.

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Monday, August 20, 2007

Kid Nation?

Kid Nation? Who thought this show up? Kids ranging in age from 8 to 15 running their own society with no adult intervention, and parents let their kids go?

h/t: drudge report

Convert or Die

But I thought there was no compulsion in religion.....

From Compass Direct:

Christians and Hindus in northern Pakistan have received dozens of letters threatening them with death if they refuse to become Muslims, church sources and a police official said yesterday. Police continued to provide security around churches and temples this week, even as Christians received new deadlines for converting to Islam.

Though the original August 10 deadline for conversion has passed, Peshawar’s minorities continue to live in fear, canceling church activities and skipping services, a Catholic priest said. “Embrace Islam and become Muslims … otherwise, after next Friday, August 10, your colony will be ruined,” read more than a dozen identical letters collected by the Church of Pakistan (COP) in Peshawar, 150 kilometers (93 miles) west of Islamabad...

Explaining that they were delivered to neighborhoods heavily populated by minority families living in small houses around a common courtyard, Dean [assistant director of communications for COP’s Peshawar diocese] said that the letters probably reached more than 100 Christians and Hindus.

A separate letter mailed to COP diocesan priest Joseph John threatened suicide attacks against churches...

Christian leaders immediately informed local police about the threats, prompting a meeting with City Police Chief Abdul Majeed Marwat on August 10. “The security in their areas has been beefed up around churches and other places of worship,” Marwat told Compass yesterday....

A Christian politician also brought the letter to the national government’s attention on Friday....“The speaker [of the house] took the matter very lightly and asked [Pervaiz Masih] to remind him about it in the presence of the interior minister,”

While some Christian sources told Compass that Peshawar police had done a good job providing security, others were hesitant to speak openly on the telephone for fear that their criticism would draw police anger.

“It’s just a hoax, I presume,” said Police Chief Marwat, explaining that a similar incident in May had turned out to be a teenage prank....

When asked why Christians did not pursue a court case against the Muslim youths, Dean said that their faith placed emphasis on reconciliation and that a court case could have backfired. “If we had been harsh, things would have escalated and gone against our interests,” said Dean. The cryptic comment reflects years of violent (though often isolated) incidents against Christians in Pakistan.

In November 2005, a mob of several thousand Muslims destroyed four churches, a convent and Christian schools in the Punjabi town of Sangla Hill after a Muslim accused a Christian of committing blasphemy. No one was held responsible for the attacks.

“We have experience of our [Christian neighborhoods] being attacked by extremists, so we took this very seriously,” Dean commented.

While there supposedly is no compulsion in religion and Christians and Jews have special status as people of the Book, these minority Christians and Hindus are being threatened to convert or die. As Christians have been attacked before with impunity, they are understandably wary even though the deadline has passed. Perhaps they're concerned that once police protection is lifted, they'll be harmed?

Also, can you imagine anyone in the U.S. fearing reprisals for complaining about the police? Complaining about authorities is practically a way of life for us.

h/t: Jihad Watch

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Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Ready for Martyrdom

From Hamas TV's child star says she's ready for martyrdom:

GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Saraa Barhoum picked at the buttons on her pink bellbottom jeans as she twisted on a chair inside the bustling new Hamas television headquarters. The afternoon light bounced off the sparkly outlines of butterflies on her frilly top, and a colorful hijab framed her 11-year-old face.

Saraa wants to be a doctor. If she can't, the young star of Hamas television's best-known children's show said, she'd be proud to become a martyr. Saraa says little Jewish girls should be forced from their homes in Israel so that Palestinians can return to their land....

Saraa is the sweet face of "Tomorrow's Pioneers," a weekly, hour-long Hamas television children's show best known for bringing the world a militant Mickey Mouse look-alike and then having him killed off by an Israeli interrogator...

The station, which operates with a license from the Palestinian Authority, also features religious lessons, cartoons, advice shows and militant music videos. One video hailed a female suicide bomber whose young daughter vows to follow her mother's example.

"Tomorrow's Pioneers" sparked an international furor in April when it began featuring Farfour, the Mickey Mouse look-alike who sounded more like Iran's firebrand President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad than a Disney character...

After two months, Farfour was beaten to death on the show by an Israeli interrogator. Nahoul, a larger-than-life bee, is now carrying his message...

"A lot of people in Palestine have died as martyrs, and lots of Palestinians hope to be martyrs," Saraa said of Farfour's demise. "This is one of the ends."

Asked if she hoped one day to be a martyr, Saraa instinctively nodded her head.
"Of course," Saraa said. "It's something to be proud of. Every Palestinian citizen hopes to be a martyr."

Saraa helps deliver similar messages to Palestinian children from a Hamas TV set filled with colorful numbers and pictures of kittens. During the show, Saraa fields calls from Palestinian children who warble songs about Islam, liberating Jerusalem and finding answers in the barrel of a machine gun...

Could the ongoing problems between Israel and Palestine be the result of brainwashing the youth to continue fighting rather than trying to live peaceably?

Could the conflict stem from competing philosophies: Palestinians want Israelis dead and Israelis want to live?

Does this kind of propaganda qualify as child abuse?

Hat tip: The Bos'un Locker

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Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Cruelty to Animals on Hamas Children's TV

YouTube presents this children's video courtesy of Palestinian Media Watch.

Witness the Hamas Bee (Nahool) at the Gaza Zoo, swatting and kicking cats and twirling a kitty by its tail to squeals of delight from children. Next view Bee throwing stones at caged lions. Only at the end, a girl says she shows this bad behavior as an example of what not to do. Somehow I think the message will be lost on its immature viewers. Cruelty to animals rarely succeeds in discouraging cruelty to animals. Go figure.

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Duct-Taped Bandit Vanquished by Virile "Victims"

In case you missed this story....

For the Stupid Files:

While duct tape has countless uses, robbery masks are probably not among them.

This would-be desperado wrapped his face with duct-tape and attempted to rob Shamrock Liquors in Ashland, Kentucky. Kasey Kazee was thwarted in his ill-conceived plan by store manager Bill Steele who brandished his own duct-tape tipped club at Kazee. After fleeing the store, Kazee was then tackled in the parking lot by employee Craig Miller who held him until police arrive. As Miller explained, Kazee was lucky he was sweating profusely, making removal of the duct tape head wrap a snap.

Steele remaining serious during the news video is priceless. He's obviously holding back laughter. Kazee tells interviewer that police have the wrong man.

A picture is worth a thousand words, but if the video link doesn't work, try this news article.


Monday, August 13, 2007

Don't Let the Bedbugs Bite

Bed feeling a little crowded? Maybe you have company.

The Cimex lectularius, better known and despised as the common bedbug, is snuggling into households across Southern California, giving people the heebie- jeebies. The blood-sucking, heat-seeking, pint-size parasites aren't believed by the experts to transmit disease, but they do have a way of cranking up stress levels...

For much of the second part of the last century the liberal use of the eventually banned pesticide DDT seemed to all but do away with them. Now bedbugs have moved into single-family homes with a vengeance and taken up lodging in schools, hospitals and college dormitories too....

"Bedbugs are just going ballistic everywhere," said Michael Potter, a professor of entomology at the University of Kentucky. "It is going to really rock this country. I'm not trying to sound sensationalist.

"Bedbugs hitchhike on humans or in luggage and burrow into bedding, books, sofas and just about any cozy place, even picture frames. Once they establish squatter's rights, evicting them isn't easy. Or cheap. Casting them out of the average house in Southern California can cost thousands of dollars and require multiple visits...

Western Exterminator Co., which serves California, reported a 240% increase in bedbug work from 2000 to 2006. Isotech Pest Management Inc. in Pomona is conducting about 1,000 inspections a month -- 700% more than last year...

A number of reasons are cited for the infestations, among them the DDT ban and an increase in international travel. "It's not a case of being a lower socioeconomic thing," said William Brogdon, a research entomologist for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "These things can happen to anybody."...

"A bedbug is really a wonderful survivor" that can persevere for as long as 18 months without nourishment, said entomologist Frank Meek, a technical director for Orkin. "They can hide and live a long time."...

They arrived in the New World with the first colonists and were plentiful until about the 1940s, when DDT seemed to do away with them. Their comeback means public education is vital, Potter said. For example, it's foolhardy to retrieve a mattress or couch from a curb or a dumpster... He's not optimistic about the future, given current restrictions on powerful chemicals and the bugs' knack for adapting to them. "Our arsenal is depleted of effective products," he said, and there's no "silver bullet in the wings."

from (boldface mine)

Read the whole article to hear the first-hand horror stories of average middle class Americans managing a modern day plague in their homes.

Once again, is it time to rethink the ban on DDT?

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China Frees Slaves

At least they're trying to do something:

China is still freeing people—including children—forced to work as slaves in illegal brick factories, two months after the scandal involving the brick yards was exposed, officials said Monday.

The scandal erupted in early June after children as young as 8 were abducted or recruited from bus and train stations with false promises of well-paying jobs and sold to kilns for about $65.

"Another 359 slave migrant workers have been rescued in Shanxi since late June, including 15 child workers and 121 mentally handicapped ones," said Xue Yanzhong, executive vice governor of Shanxi province.

I'm always amazed when someone looks at me and says, "People are basically good." Who does stuff like this?

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Sunday, August 12, 2007

British Girls Targeted by Immigrants

Excerpts from "Grooming of white girls for sex is exposed as two Asian men jailed":

A hidden world in which Asian men “groom” young white girls for sex has been exposed with the jailing yesterday of two men for child-abuse offences.

Zulfqar Hussain, 46, and Qaiser Naveed, 32, from east Lancashire, were each jailed for five years and eight months after exploiting two girls aged under 16 by plying them with alcohol and drugs before having sex with them.

Both men pleaded guilty at Preston Crown Court to abduction, sexual activity with a child and the supply of a controlled drug...

The trial came amid growing concern at the attitudes of some Asian men towards white girls which campaigners for women claim few people wish to address.

Parents have complained that in parts of the country with large Asian communities white girls as young as 12 are being targeted for sex by older Asian men yet the authorities are unwilling to act because of fears of being labelled racist....

Although campaigners claim that hundreds of young girls are already being passed around men within the Asian community for sex, she said that attempts to raise the problem with community leaders had met with little success, with most of them being in a state of denial about it...

"Asians cannot go to Asian girls because it would be a terrible breach of the honour of the community and their family to have sex with an Asian girl before marriage.”

Apparently, the police aren't the only ones afraid of being labeled racist. The Times Online is too since the use the term "Asian" instead of Muslim or Pakistani. Several commenters were incensed about the term, and some Asians and Brits complained that the paper was afraid of insulting Muslims but not afraid to insult Asians in general. What a surprise.

Why do European nations fear insulting immigrants more than they fear harm to their own women and children?

h/t: Jihad Watch

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Saturday, August 11, 2007

Til Death Do Us Part

Mr. Venger used to tease about taking a second wife, funny not in a close to the truth sort of way, but because it was preposterous. I would retort that that would be a bad idea because this would be the result:

NORRISTOWN, Pa. — A woman killed her longtime husband hours before he was to leave on a trip to Morocco to try to impregnate his new second wife, prosecutors said in murder charges filed Thursday.

Myra Morton, 47, turned herself in Thursday to face murder and related charges in the death of Jereleigh Morton, 47, who was shot in his bed early Sunday morning in his million-dollar home outside Philadelphia.

In seriousness, in the U.S. women have rights and legal recourse. She should have divorced him. Now she will probably spend the rest of her life in prison. We never have the right to take a life like that. On the other hand, I can't imagine this guy was worth going to prison for. I'm still wondering if there were mitigating circumstances.

While U.S. law forbids more than one spouse (for now), that didn't stop Jereleigh Morton from taking a second wife in another country. It seems likely that he was trying to bring her here:
Shortly after her husband married Toural, Myra Morton sent a letter to the U.S.
State Department in which she said her husband was trying to bring Toural over
on a tourist visa. She urged the government to keep Toural out of the United
States, going so far as to accuse the other woman of having connections to

This should be an interesting court case.

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Friday, August 10, 2007

1998 Not Such a Hot Year

Since the NASA data correction, here are the top ten hottest years:

From Climate Audit via Michele Malkin (see also Hot Air)


1998 has been downgraded to second hottest year since data flaws have been acknowledged.

1934 was the hottest.

Now, let's from the 1920's, four from the 1930's, one from the 1950's, three from the 1990's and then last year. So half were before we humans could possibly have caused much damage.

I just can't get all worked up into a religious frenzy over global warming. Yeah, I believe Earth is currently warmer than in the past but don't see enough evidence to begin self-flagellation for my evil global-warming ways, especially since I'm darn sure I didn't cause global warming on Mars, too.

As a matter of fact, the whole global warming discussion so bores me that I think maybe I'll go for a drive. Better yet, I'll walk.



And now a tire recall of, you guessed it, Chinese manufactured tires. The U.S. distributor has been sued after faulty tires caused an accident resulting in two deaths. Anyone, noticing a pattern here?

Blackmail, Chinese Style, Time for a Ban?

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Raunchy Reading Rap

Well, this is different. A profane rap commercial on BET encourages people to read. Remember, I did warn you about the content.

Somehow I don't think an audience encouraged to read by this will read the kind of the stuff I read. Different strokes?

I especially enjoy it when people list their reasons: "1., b., and lastly", but I do have an odd sense of humor.

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From a Man Who Knows

Michele finds the coolest stuff! This man has definitely lived what he sings and understands the frustrations (and joys!) of parenthood and life....

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Thursday, August 09, 2007

Addicted to Blog

58%How Addicted to Blogging Are You?

Minneapolis Singles from Mingle2

Well, kinda.

h/t: Jeff

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Better than Body Armor

Who needs body armor when he's got God's Word? A sniper's bullet failed to kill this soldier, stopped by a Bible over the young man's heart.

Blackmail, Chinese Style

Blogger buddies at Reformed Chicks Blabbing and The Bos'un Locker both referenced this story of blackmail yesterday from the Telegraph:
By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard

The Chinese government has begun a concerted campaign of economic threats against the United States, hinting that it may liquidate its vast holding of US treasuries if Washington imposes trade sanctions to force a yuan revaluation.

Two officials at leading Communist Party bodies have given interviews in recent days warning - for the first time - that Beijing may use its $1.33 trillion of foreign reserves as a political weapon to counter pressure from the US Congress...

Described as China's "nuclear option" in the state media, such action could trigger a dollar crash at a time when the US currency is already breaking down through historic support levels.

It would also cause a spike in US bond yields, hammering the US housing market and perhaps tipping the economy into recession. It is estimated that China holds over $900bn in a mix of US bonds...

"Of course, China doesn't want any undesirable phenomenon in the global financial order," he added....

A bill drafted by a group of US senators, and backed by the Senate Finance Committee, calls for trade tariffs against Chinese goods as retaliation for alleged currency manipulation...

While tariffs generally aren't a good idea, this extreme threat from the Chinese to blow up our economy clearly demonstrates their underlying attitude toward the U.S. and our weakness.

Earlier we saw that the Chinese government's response to an FDA testing mandate was to claim it was "illegal under world trade rules." The FDA mandate came after tainted pet foods killed our pets, toothpaste and toys contained unsafe substances and "15 percent of farm-raised shrimp, eel and catfish contained dangerous or unapproved substances"--all courtesy of Chinese businesses. (see Time for a Ban?)

Granted this latest threat to nuke our economy is probably mere political posturing since the Chinese would damage their own economy greatly in the process, but for their threat to have any impact on the U.S. at all exposes our weakness. Although national debt often grows during times of war, the U.S. debt has been increasing for decades just to fund our normal operating expenses. Is it any surprise we are now blackmail victims? The debtor is, after all, the servant of the lender.

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Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Discrimination or Common Sense?

It makes sense that women would want someone who will stick around for the long haul, but is there any correlation between strongly masculine features and negative male traits of infidelity and excessive dominance? I'd hate for masculine-looking men to be unfairly discriminated against on the basis of looks alone.

And more importantly, should I take tweezers to my son's eyebrows to ensure I get grandchildren one day?

Time for a Ban?

Nearly two-thirds of Americans would support a ban on Chinese imports, a poll yesterday said.
Asked by pollster Zogby International whether they were concerned about buying Chinese products, 82 percent of respondents said yes and only 30 percent said they believed food imports from China were safe.

Some recent imports of seafood, toys, pet food and toothpaste from China have been mislabeled, contaminated or otherwise proven unsafe. Consumers consequently remain wary.

Meanwhile, in another report:
At least 1 million pounds of suspect Chinese seafood landed on American store shelves and dinner plates despite a Food and Drug Administration order that the shipments first be screened for banned drugs or chemicals...

So, can the FDA competently handle their current workload and identify unsafe products? Carl R. Nielsen doesn't seem to think so. He should know. He oversaw import inspections at the FDA until 2005.

Normally, the FDA tests 1% of imports, but when food products fall under an import alert, they are supposed to be held "until private tests that cost importers thousands of dollars show the seafood is clean. Sometimes, the FDA double-checks those tests in its own labs. Products can be detained for months, irking importers."

China's response fails to generate confidence. On the one hand, they agree to inspect fish farms for use of dangerous drugs and chemicals while on the other they call "the FDA's testing mandate illegal under world trade rules."

Last summer, FDA labs began accumulating evidence that 15 percent of farm-raised shrimp, eel and catfish contained dangerous or unapproved substances. The agency started throwing individual companies on its watch list, and ultimately issued a sweeping mandate that all shrimp, eel and catfish raised on Chinese farms be stopped and tested.

Federal food safety officials said that while the seafood poses no immediate danger, long-term exposure could increase the risk of cancer or undermine the effectiveness of drugs used to fight outbreaks of disease...

The Chinese government and U.S. importers say the FDA overreacted. It would be impossible, importers say, for a person to eat enough seafood to be affected by the trace levels that FDA found of substances such as the antifungal chemical malachite green and the antibiotic Cipro.

It still smells fishy to me. With fifteen percent of imported seafood tainted, I don't think the FDA overreacted. Consumers expect food on American shelves to be safe. Would an American company be allowed to get away with this? I doubt it. Lawsuits would force them out of business if the government didn't clamp down on them first.

Also, after our pets have been killed, our toothpaste made unsafe for use, lead found in our children's toys, and our own food supply tainted, the burden should fall on the Chinese to pay for testing to prove their purity of their products. For us to pay through our taxes for all this testing would cause the true price of imports to be masked with Americans paying a hidden price for each product while believing it truly cheaper than American or other imported products. American companies would surely be run out of business for this kind of behavior. Why should foreign companies get a pass?

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Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Atheists Beware

Funny skit!

Hattip: rightwingnews

Fudge Frenzy

We've all heard of chocolate cravings and of the munchies, but breaking and entering in a midnight raid on a fudge store is a bit over the top. (See link for video.)

I wonder what her defense will be. A severe case of PMS? Think she'll get off?


Monday, August 06, 2007

Botulism Warning

Please note a botulism warning for canned green beans manufactured by Lakeside Foods and marketed under various labels. Please see list at link.

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Huckabee's Dead On

Does this guy make sense on the issue of foreign oil, or what? I've been saying for well over a decade that we need to end our dependence on foreign oil. Someone, however, told me that there was some sense in using foreign oil---use it up first, then use our own. This has been to our detriment as we have funded the very terrorists who wish to destroy us. For that reason, I would love to open up ANWR for oil drilling in conjunction with efforts to find fuel alternatives since that supply can't last forever and isn't renewable.

Notice Huckabee also mentions the need to feed ourselves. This is another concern I have about ethanol. There is a temptation to grow more and more corn and fewer of other crops with increased use and subsidizing of ethanol. I think we're barking up the wrong stalk with this one.

Forget the Corn

hattip: Reformed Chicks Blabbing, again

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The Catty Post

The Washington Post published a very uncomplimentary piece on Jeri Thompson. I don't recall it being customary to display such negativity toward spouses' of candidates, especially so early on, and I'm not going to repeat the spin here. I'm not all that concerned about a candidate's spouse anyway, unless she (or he) makes clear that she will be leading the country as a co-President. The article came across as high school girl catty, so I scrolled back to see the authors' names. I was shocked to find that the writers were male. Then again, it was the Washington Post. Perhaps finding catty guys on their staff shouldn't surprise me.

hattip: Reformed Chicks Blabbing

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Eight Random Facts

Yikes! Greg tagged me.

Here's how it works:

In the 8 facts about [name], you share 8 things that your readers don’t know about you. Then at the end you tag 8 other bloggers to keep the fun going.

Each blogger must post these rules first.

Each blogger starts with eight random facts/habits about themselves.

Bloggers that are tagged need to write on their own blog about their eight things and post these rules.

At the end of your blog, you need to choose eight people to get tagged and list their names.
Don’t forget to leave them a comment telling them they’re tagged, and to read your blog.

Always a challenge while remaining anonymous, I've listed eight more things about me, carefully avoiding mentioning key things that would make me completely identifiable.

  1. I caught an awful case of mumps from my "boyfriend" in first grade.
  2. When I was in fifth grade I had an argument with my teacher over the lack of information on women in our history text as I couldn't (and still don't) believe women had no place in history.
  3. I wanted to be an FBI agent when I was a little girl but was told during a tour of the FBI building that I couldn't be because I was female. My mother was ticked. (That rule was changed shortly thereafter.)
  4. In high school I was in all-state chorus.
  5. I still don't know what I want to be when I grow up.
  6. My kids think I'm a health food nut, but I don't because I still eat junk food sometimes and it still finds its way into our home. Junk food tends to be treated as party food however. Ice cream is somewhat of an exception though as I have long believed it is a food group in its own right.
  7. My parents were divorced when I was a small child.
  8. I attended the University of Delaware.

Tagging: Thomas, Mt. Pleasant Classical Academy, Duffy, Michele, Robin, AO, Paul, and Jeff


Thursday, August 02, 2007

Oh, my.....

I suspect there will be an awful lot of people rather upset with the new musical, Jihad--the Musical, at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Scotland.

h/t: Rhymes with Right

Never Too Late to Learn

A 94-year-old Australian great-great-grandmother who quit school at 12 is
said to have become the world's oldest person to earn a university masters

Medical Science Masters Degree graduate Phyllis Turner, from Australia's
Adelaide University, began studying for her postgraduate degree at age 90 and
received her award this week.

Truly inspirational. Next time I feel I'm too old to try something new, I'll remember Phyllis Turner.

Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Mall Brawl

Surely most Delawareans know about the Christiana Mall brawl last Friday night. I certainly wouldn't have wanted my kids involved in a food fight involving a thousand teenagers, and I wouldn't have wanted to be a patron of the mall at that time, either. Police closed the mall 45 minutes early, judging the situation to be a threat to public safety.

Personally, I would have preferred keeping all the kids involved there until they cleaned up every last morsel of food and drop of drink, but that probably would have been too difficult to enforce. A second choice would be to have them all perform community service.

On the bright side, there are no reports of injuries, though I suppose some kids might have had some bruises if they were fist fighting. There were no reports of brass knuckles, knives, or guns, either. Things could have been a lot worse.

Many propose curfews on teenagers at the mall as an appropriate response. Some suggest that teenagers be accompanied by parents, which will undoubtedly make the mall less attractive to many of them who just want to hang out with their friends. The mall will have to weigh economic and public safety issues carefully. But I think it's a shame that once again good kids will be penalized for the antics of the unruly.

Links: Action News, Delaware online

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The U.N. a Problem?

According to Dr. Nile Gardiner, it is. View "Why We Should Be Suspicious of the U.N." here.