Monday, July 21, 2014

Monday Post

In the middle...

It was a busy week-end in history.

On July 20th, 1969, Neil Armstrong became  the first man to walk on the moon. A French soldier serving under Napoleon found the Rosetta Stone on July 19th, 1799. On July 18th, 1969, Ted Kennedy let Mary Jo Kopechne die in Chappaquiddick.

History: not just a rich and fascinating subject but a lesson for us all.

Four days after Russian separatists shot down a Malaysia Airlines flight 17, Ukrainians hand over the black boxes of the downed air craft:

A senior separatist leader, Aleksander Borodai, handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts in the city of Donetsk in the early hours of Tuesday.

"Here they are, the black boxes," Borodai told a room packed with journalists at the headquarters of his self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic as an armed rebel placed the boxes on a desk.

Both sides then signed a document, which Borodai said was a protocol to finalise the procedure after lengthy talks with the Malaysians. 

"I can see that the black boxes are intact, although a bit damaged. In good condition," Colonel Mohamed Sakri of Malaysian National Security Council said in extending his thanks to "His Excellency Mr.Borodai" for passing on the recorders.

Borodai also said a train carrying the remains of the victims of the Malaysia Airlines plane catastrophe has reached Donetsk. It is on its way to Kharkiv, some 300 km (186 miles) north-west.

The Malaysian experts and a Dutch delegation also on site in Donetsk will travel along with it, he said.

Meanwhile, Russian separatists have been tampering with evidence and bodies, one Russian rebel leader claimed the bodies were somehow planted, a Dutch politician issued some vague threat to Putin (which I'm sure was ignored and forgotten) and a Sky reporter rifles through the belongings of the deceased.

Question: why wasn't this treated as a crime scene and sealed off?

Oh yeah- Europe.

Israel continues to destroy Hamas' tunnels through which it infiltrated Israel, kidnapped soldiers and ran weapons. As each dead sandbag Palestinian is somehow seen as a victory for the emotionally retarded Hamas, the death toll has climbed to five hundred.

There are now five hundred more reasons for thugs all across the globe to attack Jews and Israel supporters (though the numbers of the indignant are quite questionable).

Moving on...

Asian opinion of the Chinese has soured greatly:

A more interesting item, noted in The Washington Post, is a graphic of Pew Research polling data from Asian countries showing that majorities (or strong majorities) throughout the region are afraid of China’s bad touch. In all, 83% of South Koreans, 85% of Japanese, 84% of Vietnamese, and 93% of Filipinos are either “very concerned” or “somewhat concerned” that “territorial disputes between China and its neighbors will lead to a military conflict.” Most shockingly of all, 62% of Chinese agree.

Taiwan was not surveyed.

Why are we trading with them?

McDonald's and KFC in China faced a new food safety scare Monday after a Shanghai television station reported a supplier sold them expired beef and chicken.

The companies said they immediately stopped using meat from the supplier, Husi Food Co., Ltd. The Shanghai office of China's food and drug agency said it was investigating and told customers to suspend use of the supplier's products.

Dragon TV said Sunday that Husi, owned by OSI Group of Aurora, Illinois, repackaged old beef and chicken and put new expiration dates on them. It said they were sold to McDonald's, KFC and Pizza Hut restaurants.

The report added to a series of food safety scares in China that have battered public confidence in dairies, fast food outlets and other suppliers.

There's audacity and then there's this:

A standoff is brewing between the City of Vancouver and a group of protesters camped out in a Downtown Eastside park — but in a twist, the city itself has been handed an eviction notice. 
On Sunday, just over a dozen tents stood at Oppenheimer Park. Those living in them tell CBC News they're homeless with nowhere else to live. 

In the past three days, the campers have received two eviction notices from the city, which has bylaws prohibiting sleeping in parks and erecting structures on public property. ...

But the deadline to leave, 7 a.m. Sunday, came and went without the city taking any action to remove the tents. 

Now, some members of a local First Nation have stepped forward to challenge the city's right to issue the eviction orders — and issued an eviction notice of their own.

I hope they issued an eviction notice for water and electricity, as well.

(With thanks to one and many)

Friday, July 18, 2014

Friday Post

 Just in time for the week-end...

Yesterday, Malaysia Airlines flight MH 17 was shot down over eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 people aboard. A recording points to Russian separatists who, believing the air craft to be a Ukrainian plane, shot down the jet with a surface-to-air missile.

What comes out of this is not just enormous personal cost of human life sadly blown out of the sky but the complete lack of human empathy from Obama and Putin.

When Korean Airlines flight 007 was shot down in 1983, then-President Reagan addressed the American public for nearly seventeen minutes, calling the incident an "act of barbarism..." and even referenced families of the victims. He moved into action, calling for an emergency meeting at the UN (where Russia has a permanent seat which it used to veto the condemnation of the outrage) and conducted inquiries. Aeroflot could not operate flights to or from US air space. No apology from the Soviets was made, only statements defending their shooting down of what was clearly a passenger aircraft.

And now, this is what passes for shock and call to action:

It might be a tragedy?

How could blowing up eighty children not be a tragedy?

The day of the incident, Obama helped himself to a hamburger and a photo-op. He carried on with his fund-raising tour (as one can see from the video), as he did after four Americans were killed in Libya.

Is anyone seeing a pattern here, one that shows a complete lack of human feeling? How does one call an act of terrorism a sort-of tragedy as Obama did (again, see the video)? How does one bounce into campaigning mode as though the shooting down of this jet is just an afterthought? What kind of person would look at Obama after this and still believe he represents the presidency so well?

Putin's callousness does not quite match Obama's but it still is as jarring. Obama is a narcissist, a man-child with a singular mind. Putin's disregard for human life echoes the Soviet response to the downing of Korean Airlines flight 007: it happened, don't blame us, it was someone else's fault:

Russian President Vladimir Putin has blamed the Ukrainian government for the crash of a Malaysian Airlines jet that was shot down over eastern Ukraine, killing all 295 people on board.

The government in Kiev is responsible for the fighting in eastern Ukraine between government troops and pro-Russian rebel forces which caused the downing of the civilian aircraft, Putin said at a cabinet meeting last night, according to a transcript released by the Kremlin. Putin has repeatedly denied Russian involvement in the fighting in Ukraine. ...
"I want to point out that this tragedy wouldn't have happened if there was peace in this land, or at least if fighting hadn't resumed in the southeast of Ukraine," Putin said. "And undoubtedly, the state on whose territory this happened is responsible for this awful tragedy."

Typical Soviet infantilism. No wonder Russians can't shake off their bloody and stunted past.

This incident isn't a win for Putin as it gains him no further ground but it is not a loss for him, either. Where Europe, dependent on Russian oil, dares not to lift its head even to squeak out a condemnation, countries like Canada and Australia have done so. This was certainly a time to some some Reagan indignation.

What a sea change it is to see the leader of the free world- the ever-useless adolescent that Obama is- wallow behind, preferring to luxuriate in the air of celebrity than to be an actual adult and feel anger over murder and now see countries like Canada and Australia- hardly super-powers- step up to the plate.

Israel has started its ground invasion into Gaza:

Israeli troops pushed deeper into Gaza on Friday to destroy rocket launching sites and tunnels, firing volleys of tank shells and clashing with Palestinian fighters in a high-stakes ground offensive meant to weaken the enclave's Hamas rulers.

The assault opens a new, potentially extended and bloodier stage in the conflict following a 10-day Israeli campaign of more than 2,000 airstrikes against Gaza that had failed to halt militants rocket fire on Israeli cities. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he told his military to prepare for a possible "significant" expansion of the operation.

This is a measured response to perennial attacks on a legitimate state and its people.

Just clarifying that.

Oh, it looks like Omar Khadr isn't moving after all:

Omar Khadr will remain in a federal prison. 

The former Guantanamo Bay detainee has agreed to a stay of a decision by Alberta's top court that ruled he should be serving his sentence as a youth and be transferred to a provincial jail. 

His lawyers say he's willing to remain at the federal Bowden Institution in central Alberta because he's doing well there. 

Oh, I'm sure he is.

Oh, isn't this a pity?

About 100 protesters gathered at the New Brunswick legislature on Friday as the province's only abortion clinic shut its doors.

The Morgentaler Clinic in Fredericton said it would perform its last abortions on Friday.

The private clinic has cited financial losses for the closure. However, more than $110,000 raised in a crowd-funding campaign may help the clinic to keep its lease and re-open sometime in the future should the province's laws become more accommodating.

(Sidebar: by pity, I mean a good thing because who needs this crap? Let its doors be shut forever.)

And now, wonderful things you can do with balloons.


Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Mid-Week Post

It's time...

Hamas rejected an Egyptian brokered peace deal:

A brief respite from the violence in Gaza appeared imminent Wednesday after both sides agreed to a U.N-requested temporary cease-fire.
"Factions of the resistance have agreed to accept the offer of the UN regarding a 'field calm' for 5 hours from 10 AM until 3 PM (local time) Thursday for humanitarian needs," Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zhuri said in a text message.

Israel had already accepted the proposal; however, the military warned it would not sit idle if attacked.

"Should the humanitarian window be exploited by Hamas or other terror organizations for the purpose of launching attacks against Israeli civilian or military targets the IDF will respond firmly and decisively," the Israel Defense Forces said in a statement.

An effort to permanently stop the killing stalled Tuesday when Israel resumed airstrikes following a brief, one-sided cease-fire brokered by Egypt. While Israel paused for six hours, Hamas leaders rejected the deal and continued firing rockets.

That's right. The same organisation that started this conflict and that used/uses people as human shields is the same one that does not want an end to this conflict in which Israel, despite its restraint, is seen as the villain.

Speaking for the party, foreign affairs critic Marc Garneau issued the standard Liberal trope urging “all parties to without delay seek an immediate ceasefire,” as though Israel hasn’t been demanding it almost since the day it ceded control over Gaza many years ago. (Indeed, Israel accepted an Egyptian ceasefire proposal on Tuesday, and Hamas kept right on shooting.) The statement completely ignores the fact that Israel has been bombarded routinely with rocket fire from Gaza, aimed at civilian targets, and both Israel and to varying degrees Egypt have had to consistently work to interrupt the Hamas terrorist infrastructure in the area.

The call for “all parties” is more evidence of the moral relativism that shows the total lack of spine in the Liberal foreign policy DNA.

This fact is made plainly evident when the comments of Mr. Garneau are contrasted with those offered as the official position of Canada by Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

He said, “The indiscriminate rocket attacks from Gaza are terrorist acts, for which there is no justification. It is evident that Hamas is deliberately using human shields to further terror in the region.” And then he went on the say that “Canada calls on its allies and partners to recognize that these terrorist attacks are unacceptable and that solidarity with Israel is the best way of stopping the conflict.”

The difference is clear and another welcome sign of the moral clarity that has guided Canadian policy for the region.

A lawyer representing Meriam Ibrahim's family has dropped the case against her:

A lawsuit brought by a Sudanese Muslim father against a Christian woman to formally establish her as his Muslim daughter was dropped on Wednesday, the lawyer handling the case said, a move that could allow her to depart for the United States.

The case of Mariam Yahya Ibrahim, 27, raised an international furore when a Sudanese court sentenced her to death in May on charges of converting from Islam to Christianity and marrying a Christian South Sudanese-American.

Ibrahim says she was born and raised as a Christian by an Ethiopian family in Sudan and was later abducted by the Sudanese Muslim family. The Muslim family denies that and insists she belongs to them.

An appeals court quashed the death sentence late last month, but the government accused her of trying to leave Sudan with falsified South Sudanese travel papers, preventing her departure for America with her husband and two children.

The government has not formally dropped its accusation but Ibrahim was allowed to leave police custody after a brief detention on June 26.

Even after lifting the death penalty, Sudan refused to acknowledge Ibrahim's new identity as a South-Sudanese Christian, and the lawsuit by her family raised another obstacle to her departure.
At this point, it would be very prudent for Mrs. Ibrahim to make haste to the US but not before telling her family what a pack of rotters they are for ruining her life. Her Muslim father walked out on her, leaving her Christian mother to raise her, making the charge (yes, charge) of apostasy moot. The Muslim half of her family would never accept her even if she did convert to Islam. And God forbid one should question ownership of another human being or that one can choose another religion. That would just be nutty.

Is there a reason to ban golden rice?

From the beginning, Golden Rice was conceived as a project that could significantly improve global health, even though it seemed terribly futuristic when it was first proposed.

"Identified in the infancy of genetic engineering as having the potential for the biggest impact for the world’s poor, beta-carotene-producing rice was initially funded by the Rockefeller Foundation and the European Union," writes Amy Harmon of The New York TimesBeta-carotene , the pigment that makes carrots and squash orange, turns into vitamin A in the human body. 

"In a decade of work culminating in 1999," Harmon writes, "two academic scientists, Ingo Potrykus and Peter Beyer, finally switched on the production of beta carotene by adding daffodil and bacteria DNA to the rice’s genome." Scientists later swapped out the daffodil DNA for corn DNA, vastly increasing the amount of beta-carotene in the special rice, whose resulting yellowish color resembled the flesh of a ripe mango. 

"From the outset, it seemed totally crazy," Potrykus said, in an interview with New Scientist, explaining what a longshot the technology was when they first tried it. "It was a surprise that it worked."

Many environmental groups voiced immediate concerns about Golden Rice and genetically modified food in general. (The scientific consensus on GM foods is that they are just as safe as any other food.) Neth Daño, an agricultural policy researcher and advocate in the Philippines, told NPR that some see Golden Rice as a public relations campaign for genetically modified foods and biotechnology, rather than the most pragmatic solution. ...

Finally, in a 2009 study, scientists showed that Golden Rice was an effective source of vitamin A, and i n a follow-up study, they found that it was as good as pure beta-carotene and better than spinach at providing vitamin A to children.

Professional tasters have even said that the high-tech rice tastes just like the original.

Today, five field trials are wrapping up in the Philippines, primarily testing whether the crop will behave in a way that makes it appealing to local farmers. Researchers will also do additional safety and efficacy testing before Golden Rice goes up for approval, which could happen as soon as 2016. ...

Golden Rice, once it is widely released, will be much more cost-effective, as agricultural economist Alexander Stein has shown. Despite common misconceptions, no one stands to get rich when poor farmers start growing Golden Rice. Instead, it will represent a fundamentally different approach, an embodiment of the old "teach a man to fish" adage. ...

Dr. Antonio Alfonso harvests Golden Rice during a field trial in The Philippines.

"It can be planted by the farmers using seeds from their own harvest and that would provide sustained supply of betacarotene," Antonio A. Alfonso, Ph.D., the Golden Rice project leader at the Philippine Rice Research Institute told Business Insider. "The bottom line is that [vitamin A deficiency] affects millions of children and women, making them prone to blindness and susceptible to common infections. Golden Rice, if given the chance, could help."

Patrick Moore, Ph.D., an early member of Greenpeace and an outspoken, sometimes controversial, advocate of Golden Rice, is even more emphatic. "At a certain point, you need to be willing to make a leap of faith," he said, in a phone interview. "The risk of not moving forward with this is the continuation of 2 million children dying every year."

"If Golden Rice were a medicine that could cure a disease like malaria," he added, "it would have been approved ages ago."

And now, watch as a puppy comforts an older dog having a nightmare:

Monday, July 14, 2014

Monday Post

A happy Bastille Day to all.

Mais oui!

Mesdames et messieurs, La Môme, Edith Piaf.

But not all is parfait in France:

French interior minister Manuel Valls condemned "with the greatest force" attacks on two Paris synagogues Sunday by pro-Palestinian protesters who broke away from an otherwise peaceful demonstration.

Le Parisien reported six police officers who prevented the marchers from advancing were injured, as were two Jewish residents who also attempted to block the way, the paper said. The AP said the protesters attempted to fight their way into one of the buildings with bats and chairs. 

Gary Assouline, a former reporter for Le Figaro who lives near one of the synagogues, live-tweeted the incident, saying that members of the rue de la Roquette congregation were forced to stay inside for more than an hour as the assault occurred. He linked to a video posted by another resident that showed the scene 20 meters away from the building.

There is nothing peaceful about being barricaded in a house of worship. That sort of thing is expected in Iraq. In a land where streets are cut off due to Friday prayers and teachers are stabbed to death, this sort of thing will be considered normal.

(Make your own Picard facepalm here)

It's not the first (or, sadly, the last) time some ignoramus or a group thereof have attacked and/or blamed Jews for the trouble Hamas puts its own people in, as evidenced below:

Israel can do nothing, it seems, without scathing from a select community of the deliberately blind. No one understand that if Israel so wished, it could wipe out the entire Palestinian population in the West Bank. That it goes out of its way to warn and minimise injuries and deaths (ergo, not at all bloodthirsty) is just lost on those who side with the worst sort of fanatics.

If there is any ray of sunshine in this it is that the Palestinians only hurt themselves in the end:

A rocket fired from Gaza hit electricity infrastructure in Israel that supplied power to Gaza, cutting power to about 70,000 people in Gaza.


While Canada calls out Hamas' use of human shields and its violence toward the nation that feeds itObama takes a different approach:

 Obama patronizingly urged both sides to display “restraint” and not be motivated by “revenge.” His special assistant and White House coordinator for Middle East affairs, Philip Gordon, was the keynote speaker at a “Peace Conference” in Tel Aviv under the auspices of the Haaretz newspaper. With rockets disrupting the conference, Gordon slammed Israel for failing to come to terms with the Palestinian Authority and dismissed Netanyahu’s security concerns – pointedly ignoring that PA President Mahmoud Abbas had just consummated a merger with Hamas, which his government had effectively sanctioned.

Related: the same administration that now shows a callous disregard for its former ally has deemed it necessary to pour investigative resources into- wait for it- an outhouse float:

The U.S. Department of Justice has joined the discussions over a controversial float in the Norfolk Independence Day parade.

The department sent a member of its Community Relations Service team, which gets involved in discrimination disputes, to a Thursday meeting about the issue. Also at the meeting were the NAACP, the Norfolk mayor and The Independent Order of Odd Fellows.

The Odd Fellows organized the parade. One of the floats included a zombie-like mannequin standing near an outhouse labeled “Obama Presidential Library.”
The float’s creator, Dale Remmich, has said the mannequin depicted himself, not President Barack Obama. He said he is upset with the president’s handling of the Veterans Affairs Department.

Lackeys of the African dictator don't need to exercise the same restraint a nation under attack must.

That is the Narcissist-in-Chief for you.

Liberal voters will be getting not only the government they voted for but the enormous budget, as well:

Ontario's newly elected Liberals steamrolled ahead Monday with the same big-spending budget that triggered the June 12 election, despite opposition warnings that the $130.4-billion plan will trigger a downgrade of the province's debt rating and lead to massive public-sector job cuts.

The US has made claims that a Chinese national living in Canada has been stealing air craft secrets:

The Department of Justice has charged a Chinese executive living in Canada, Su Bin, with stealing sensitive info for Boeing and Lockheed Martin warplanes like the C-17 cargo hauler and F-22 fighter. Reportedly, Su partnered with two people to hack into the aircraft makers' networks and either pass along or sell any secrets to interested parties in China.

Leftists/liberals create a political environment in which they not only eat each other but whose ideologies eat themselves:

Since race is merely an idea—a pinch of invisible magical dust held lightly between the thumb and forefinger—I can close my eyes, wiggle my nose, click my heels, and reconstruct myself as a black man of pure dark-chocolate 100% swampy sub-Saharan ancestry, and I don’t care if you like it or not. No, actually, I do care if you like it—in other words, I will MAKE you like it. And since none of you will be able to find my black parents, I will also register as an orphan, depending on whether I qualify for government assistance based on that status. I would think that being a poor black orphan would be worth—what?—at least $500 combined monthly from local agencies and President Obama’s personal stash? I can be whatever I want to be, and you can’t stop me, and that’s my right, and I’ll take it all the way to the Supreme Court, so don’t push me, or I will call you a hater and get you fired from your job.

If only people weren't so obsessed with the ideas of race and gender just accepted what they saw with their own eyes. 

It would also help people weren't douches to people who thought differently from them.
The Fur. That is all.

The Germans have won their fourth World Cup against Argentina in a drawn-out game in Brazil.

Good for them.

(Merci to everyone)

The World Is Taking Crazy Pills (Ultra-Redux)

If someone still questions whether either the American or Canadian governments want to end Islamists, question no more:

U.S. Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl is transitioning to regular active duty status, having completed therapy and counseling following his return from captivity in Afghanistan, the Defense Department said on Monday.

Bergdahl, who was released in May after five years as a Taliban prisoner of war in Afghanistan, is being assigned to work at the Army North headquarters at Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio, the department said in a statement.

Bowe Bergdahl sent an e-mail to his parents declaring that he was "ashamed to be an American" before walking off his base in Afghanistan unarmed and carrying only a light pack. Six soldiers were killed searching for him. His own government agreed that he had walked off his base deliberately in 2010. Bergdahl has been photographed smiling with a Taliban commander. His own father thanked "Allah" upon hearing his son had been released. Even if Bergdahl wasn't cringing in disgust that he was a citizen of a First World nation, the set precedent of dealing with the Taliban for a soldier or any national is a dangerous one. Now, Bergdahl is all but absolved of his crime of desertion, as though it was never any matter at all.

This is not that different from confessed murderer Omar Khadr's transfer to a provincial prison when his deliberate terrorist crimes require harsher imprisonment. Khadr has never denied killing Christopher Speer nor has he renounced the Taliban or terrorism. For all one knows, the bombs he constructed may even have killed Canadian soldiers.

What part of either of these deals is in the greater interests of justice? How have either Bergdahl or Khadr been punished?

Both governments have screwed over their citizens. They have given a boon to their enemies.

They simply are unwilling to fight.

Wednesday, July 09, 2014

Mid-Week Post

A dose of verbiage....

Rather, he's not going because he knows what another colossal disaster this is:

President Barack Obama on Wednesday evening called on Congress to quickly pass a $3.7 billion supplemental funding request to deal with the humanitarian crisis along the U.S.-Mexico border. 

During a Wednesday evening statement in Texas, Obama also rebuffed congressional critics who slammed him for not visiting the border during his two-day swing in the state. 

" This isn't theater. This is a problem. I'm not interested in photo ops. I'm interested in solving the problem," Obama said during a press conference in DalFort Fueling, Dallas, where he had met with Texas Gov. Rick Perry, other local officials, and faith leaders.

(SEE: total crock)

Obama's entire presidency has been street theatre. Has he ever faced serious vetting during or after an election? When was the last time he calmly answered a question? Has anyone ever seen him be selfless or humble? Has anyone ever noticed how he refers to himself in virtually everything? He may charm the ever-obedient popular press but by now the American electorate (which had stupidly voted for him twice even though he promised to treat the mad theocracy of Iran with ease, let four Americans die in Libya, alienated Canada and Israel, has used the IRS and NSA to repress and spy on citizens, forced an unworkable healthcare tax that has left thousands without medical care, ignored the climbing debt and unemployment rate, stood idly by as countries like Russia and China made incursions into sovereign territory, treated Islamists as favourites, threatened to act unilaterally, golfed, vacationed and treated himself while the average American has struggled to get by) has soured of his antics. One would think the deaths of four American nationals would be the straw that breaks the camel's back rather than the floodgates of illegal immigration (bringing in things like drug-resistant TB). Obama has done his best to keep his distance and others have done their best to cocoon him.

There can be no distance from this. If Obama or any leftist won't own the messes they helped make, who can be held to account - the ones who caused the catastrophe or the ones who let it happen?

I'm sure this is embarrassing:

Numerous polls have shown that Americans who are also Latino oppose illegal immigration.

Fifty-nine percent of Hispanics in a 2012 poll by the Pew Research Center agreed that, “We should restrict and control people coming to live in our country more than we do now.”

A June 2013 Gallup poll showed that only 25 percent of Hispanics wanted immigration increased, while 30 percent wanted immigration reduced, and 43 percent wanted it to stay level.

A June 2014 poll of 800 registered Latinos by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg showed that “77 percent [support] for an E-Verify system for employers, 78 percent for stronger border security, and 90 percent for allowing undocumented immigrants to obtain legal status if they pass a background check, pay a fine and taxes owed, have a job, and learn English.”

A 2013 poll by John McLaughlin that included 470 registered Hispanic voters showed that 64 percent wanted employees to verify that job applicants are legal, and 59 percent wanted enough border security to block 90 percent of border-crossers. Sixty percent of the respondents in the poll said they would delay legalization of illegals until the 90 percent border-security level is reached, and 56 percent would deny welfare benefits to illegals until the border is fixed.

I'm going to defer to the side that sees how unrestricted immigration with people who are decidedly unassimiable is not good for its native-born citizens or legitimate refugees and immigrants:

Australia on Wednesday rejected accusations of mistreatment by Sri Lankan asylum seekers returned to the island nation, saying the move sent a strong message to those thinking of following in their footsteps.

Israel batters Gaza for a third day after Hamas fires rockets Israel:

Israel pressed on with a punishing aerial offensive in Gaza for a third day on Thursday, killing eight members of a family including five children in a predawn strike, Palestinian officials said, while militants fired rockets at Israeli cities.

The Israeli military had no immediate comment on the deadliest single bombing raid since the start of the offensive on Tuesday. The attack destroyed at least two homes in Khan Younis in southern Gaza, killing the eight people, the Palestinian Health Ministry said.

Sixty-one Palestinians have been killed in the violence, more than 50 of them civilians, Palestinian medical officials said.

Israel says its offensive is intended to halt rocket fire at its cities from the Gaza Strip. More than 200 rockets have been fired during the campaign, striking deep into the country's heartland, it said.

I'm sure the Palestinians can find refuge in the other Arab states, like Syria or in Iraq where those pesky WMDs have finally been located and taken by ISIS.

Wait - someone let them stay in a bomb shelter? Why?

A group of Canadian MPs and senators were shaken up by air raid sirens during their visit to Jerusalem on Tuesday, the trip’s organizer said.

The four MPs and three senators were dining in a restaurant when the sirens went off, indicating rocket attacks from Hamas militants based in the Gaza Strip, said Shimon Fogel, CEO of the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs.

“When the sirens went off, they descended to the bomb shelter within the restaurant and waited there with the others who were there until the all-clear sign came,” Fogel said in a telephone interview late Tuesday.

The Canadian group, which included members from all three parties, was able to understand some of the challenges confronting Israel, he said.

I am a firm believer in air-lifting the congenitally stupid to the globe's hot spots and leaving them, even if they learn nothing from the experience. For far too long, such idiots have insulated themselves from the illogical and/or wicked things they support. What better teacher could there be than experience? Also, it's worth it to watch these yahoos soil themselves.

Forget it, guys: it's Toronto-town:

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford walked past reporters at city hall Wednesday morning with no comment after a report published in the Toronto Star claiming Ford shoved, fought and was verbally abusive with other rehab residents at GreeneStone, a rehabilitation centre north of the city.


Toronto councillors expressed outrage on Wednesday after Toronto Mayor Rob Ford intentionally slighted World Pride organizers at city hall, refusing stand for two separate ovations while councillors and city staff celebrated the successful international festival.

(Sidebar: Kristin Wong-Tam was the registered owner of the website for the notorious Jew-hating group, Queers Against Israeli Apartheid. Carry on.)


So how 'normal' is John Furr, someone who histrionically screamed at Rob Ford while the mayor was trying to explain his opposition to a proposed LRT line along Eglinton Avenue? ...

Furr is a supporter of Ford's rival Olivia Chow, which the media that interviewed him, such as The Toronto Star, didn't bother to ask or disclose. While it did emerge that Furr ran a brief candidacy for the School Board, the mainstream media neglected to note his positions, such as that education should not teach facts but values.

Jack Layton was found laying naked on a bed by Toronto Police at a suspected Chinatown bawdy house in 1996, a retired Toronto police officer told the Toronto Sun. ...

Olivia Chow, Layton's wife, denied her husband had done anything wrong in an e-mail statement late Friday night.

"Sixteen years ago, my husband went for a massage at a massage clinic that is registered with the City of Toronto," Chow wrote. "He exercises regularly; he was and remains in great shape; and he needed a massage.

"I knew about this appointment, as I always do."

What a festering pile of excrement Hog Town is. It would need a solid reason to avoid a disaster of Biblical proportions to keep it standing. It just would.

And now, the awesomeness of tae kwon do:

(Merci to all)

Monday, July 07, 2014

A Post For a Monday

May the light of Tanabata not be extinguished by a cat.

A happy Tanabata to all.

Not so in Japan:

A powerful typhoon forced Japanese authorities to cancel flights and urge more than 100,000 people to evacuate their homes on Tuesday as the storm threatened to bring torrential rain and high winds to Japan's southern islands.

Typhoon Neoguri weakened from its original status as a super typhoon but remained intense, with gusts of more than 250 km per hour (155 mph). It was powering towards the Okinawa island chain where emergency rain and high-seas warnings were in effect.

More than 100,000 people in the tropical island chain, some 1,600 km (1,000 miles) southwest of Tokyo, were urged to evacuate. Nearly 7,000 households lost power and an oil refinery halted operations.

There are no nuclear plants on Okinawa but there are two on Kyushu, Japan's westernmost main island, which lies in the area through which the typhoon is likely to pass after hitting Okinawa. There is another on Shikoku island, which borders Kyushu and could also be affected.

The last time someone claimed there was a link between cancer and the oil sands, it was debunked. Anyone claiming there is should be scrutinised to the nth degree as they may have ulterior motives and/or benefit from a resource they claim is dirty.

Carbon taxes raise prices on goods and services:

FAMILIES face a carbon tax increase on their electricity bills to about $24 a month — after it is supposed to have been axed.

Gas prices are set to rise again in British Columbia as the final instalment of the province's carbon tax comes into effect on Canada Day

The increase of 1.11 cents per litre is the last of several steady increases over the past four years that have seen the carbon tax on gasoline rise to almost seven cents a litre. 

The B.C. government says the carbon tax has brought in $500 million in revenue, which has gone towards reducing personal income taxes and business taxes.

The price of a bag of coal is going up by €1.20 today, with a bale of briquettes costing 24 cent more.

The price rises are the result of the implementation of the second phase of the Solid Fuel Carbon Tax.

Recent Census information shows that more than 200,000 people in Ireland rely on either coal or peat to heat their home.

The tax applies to kerosene, marked gas oil, liquid petroleum gas, fuel oil, natural gas and solid fuels.

Canada is vast as it is beautiful with a limited growing season in places capable of producing food. The average income of a Canadian family is $76,000. The average price of one liter of milk is $2.30 CDN (average food prices here and here). With a fifteen percent harmonised sales tax (that being the highest in the country), one might pay $2.64 for that one liter of milk. Because carbon taxes affect goods production and services and because transportation is a big chunk of food prices, costs will be passed on to the consumer (one-point-nine cents in the province Justin Trudeau believes is better than the rest of Canada- that's high praise for you). Convert that to a percentage and add that percentage onto existing sales taxes. Would anyone like to five dollars for a liter of milk?

That's just milk.

And that's if you buy that carbon or carbon dioxide are pollutants.

This is why Justin Trudeau's lead-from-behind and utterly wrong-headed plan for a carbon tax should not only be opposed but stopped forever in its tracks.

Freezing in the dark was his father's legacy. There should be no repeat of it.

Why wait for your government to rescue you when you can just escape on your own?

At least 63 Nigerian women abducted by Islamist militants last month escaped over the weekend, local vigilante leaders said, offering a rare bit of good news for a region reeling from a spate of kidnappings and attacks.

Banning bus ads only serves to highlight the enormous girl-killing elephant in the Islamic room:

The City of Edmonton is being sued for removing controversial advertisements from transit buses that claimed to offer help to Muslim girls threatened with honour killings.

The advertisements appeared on five city buses in October, and showed a photo of seven young women above the caption “Muslim girls honour killed by their families. Is your family threatening you? Is there a fatwa on your head? We can help.”

The placards contained a link to a website which warns readers about the “encroachment of Islam on western civilization.”

The advertisements were removed after eight days and numerous complaints.

In a statement of claim filed in April, the non-profit, New York-based group that placed the advertisements said their removal is a violation of its right to freedom of expression.

“The advertisement was designed to provide Muslim women and girls with help, should they feel threatened, as well as challenging the opinion that honour killings are in any way acceptable or justified,” the statement of claim filed by the American Freedom Defense Initiative reads. “The advertisement also sought to change public attitudes, to support gender equality and the rule of law.”

This is what decency looks like:

Israel's prime minister phoned the father of a murdered Palestinian teenager on Monday to promise that the attackers would be prosecuted, the government said, as anger over the killing fuelled Arab street protests.

Meanwhile, Obama, who has done what he can to stymy the Mideast peace process, has demanded that the murderers of the Palestinian youth be caught (not so much Neftali Frankel):

The Obama administration is condemning the killing of a Palestinian teenager as a "despicable act" and is calling on the perpetrators to be brought to justice, The Associated Press reported.

Please note the pills were supposed to kill someone who is clearly a Kryptonian baby:

An 18-week-old baby from Ireland has given new meaning to the phrase “born a fighter.” Megan Hui of County Kildare, Ireland, was originally deemed dead by doctors at Rotunda hospital in Dublin after five scans concluded 31-year-old mom Michelle Hui had lost her baby. The mother hadn't known she was actually pregnant with twins. However, she was instructed to take two abortion pills to clear her uterus after the miscarriage of what she (and doctors) thought was one child. A pregnancy test later, doctors found Megan.

NOW was never an organisation that should have been taken seriously anyway:

The National Organization for Women has included the Little Sisters of the Poor on their “Dirty 100″ list of entities who have had the audacity to challenge Obamacare’s contraception mandate in court.

Scratch a man-hating feminist, find a fascist every time.

And yet the KGB relied on them:

Over 12 years Mitrokhin smuggled handwritten copies of the files from the archive and hid them in his country house outside Moscow.

After the fall of the Soviet Union he travelled to Riga in 1992– dressed in scruffy clothes to avoid attention – with a small number of documents in a suitcase, hidden under a pile of dirty clothes. 

Staff at the American embassy were not convinced by his story but he was able to meet with MI6 representatives at the British embassy ,who were astonished to discover the material, detailing the innermost machinations of Soviet intelligence.

The documents, which were smuggled back to Britain by M16, contain information about hundreds of Britons who were spying for Russia, including the notorious Cambridge spy ring.

Guy Burgess, Donald Maclean, John Cairncross, Anthony Blunt and Kim Philby were a group of disaffected undergraduates at Cambridge University who began spying for the Soviet Union during the Second World War.

The Mitrokhin papers paint detailed – and often critical – profiles of the five men, according to Russian researcher Svetlana Lokhova who has translated parts of the archive into English.

In the first six months of 1945, Burgess handed over 369 top secret files to the Russians but his record was blotted after the Second World War.

Ms Lokhova said: “It says Burgess was not taking care of his looks and was constantly under the influence of alcohol.

“Once on his way out of a pub he was seen dropping on the floor the filed he had to hand over from the Foreign Office.”

The documents contain details of Burgess’ sex life, including a number of affairs he had while in America.

Maclean’s file said he was “not very good at keeping secrets” since he told his brother and a girlfriend about his intelligence work whilst drunk.

Kim Philby is often regarded as Britain’s most notorious double agent but these documents reveal the Russians valued a secretary from Bexleyheath named Melita Norwood far higher.

Mrs Norwood created a sensation when she was unmasked by Mitrokhin in 1999 as the KGB’s longest serving spy in Britain – aged 87.

She was credited with helping the Russians develop their own atom bomb by passing secrets from her job at the British Non-Ferrous Metals Research Association.

The file on the grandmother spy reveals she was awarded a lifetime pension in 1962 for “many years of excellent work”.

(Sidebar: why wasn't that broad garrotted? Has James Bond taught the British nothing?)

It's a little too late to undermine the importance of agents now.

And now, the cats of Gotoku-ji Temple. Enjoy.

Friday, July 04, 2014

Friday Freakout

Let the Americans party like t'was 1799!

How the first Independence Day was celebrated:

Yesterday the 4th of July, being the Anniversary of the Independence of the United States of America, was celebrated in this city with demonstration of joy and festivity. About noon all the armed ships and gallies in the river were drawn up before the city, dressed in the gayest manner, with the colours of the United States and streamers displayed. At one o'clock, the yards being properly manned, they began the celebration of the day by a discharge of thirteen cannon from each of the ships, and one from each of the thirteen gallies, in honour of the Thirteen United States.

What can be more French and American than Lady Liberty?

The Statue of Liberty was nearly a decade late to her own party. By the time she was completed in July 1884, Bartholdi had spent 19 years on the project. Laboulaye had died the year before. For half a year, Liberty stood completely assembled in Paris’s 17th arrondissement, waiting to catch a ride to America. When she finally did, she was disassembled into 350 pieces and packed in 214 boxes.

It took 26 days on a frigate to reach Bedloe’s Island in New York Harbor, her new home. The pedestal wasn’t completed until April 1886. It took another four months to reassemble her skeleton and rivet on Lady Liberty’s pre-patina skin, which was still a deep, ruddy brown. And because the pedestal was so small, no scaffolding could be erected around her! Workers dangled from ropes latched to the framework, buffeted by the harbor winds.

On October 28, 1886, the Statue of Liberty was finally ready. New York held its first-ever ticker tape parade for her unveiling. And while hundreds of thousands cheered from Manhattan, only 2,000 people were on the island when she was finally opened to the public-a "tidy, quiet crowd," an officer on duty told The New York Times.

Go and enjoy yourselves, Americans.