Shocked and Persuaded

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Separating Fact From Fiction

Quote of the Day

“You can’t be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline—it helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer.”

There will never be a nuclear war; there’s too much real estate involved.

Frank Zappa

Quote of the Day

Miles Davis wrote in his scabrous autobiography about being invited to a White House dinner in 1987. An older woman asked the not-so-modest trumpeter what he’d done to merit being there. Davis shot back, “Well, I’ve changed music five or six times.”

Hypocritical Activism

I wonder if when Senator Sessions refers to “a nominee…that is so activist like Goodwin Liu…if it’s somebody like that, clearly outside the mainstream…” is he on the same page with a presumed conservative partner-in-arms like Jerry Falwell Jr. who when asked about the objectives of Liberty University School of Law said it is “…to transform legislatures, courts, commerce and civil government at all levels.” (The Times, R. Shorto “How Christians were the founders?”, February 11, 2010)? I would hope not because otherwise this would make for an awkward moment if such a conflict of ideology were brought up by another member of the Judiciary Committee (Hint: Earth to Senator Leahy!).

Whats good for the flock is apparently not good for the herder.

Quote of the Day

From Ross Douthat’s latest opinion piece in The Times (Note: Not a big fan of this guy but he is dead on many regards with this latest observation):

“During a frustrating argument with a Roman Catholic cardinal, Napoleon Bonaparte supposedly burst out: “Your eminence, are you not aware that I have the power to destroy the Catholic Church?” The cardinal, the anecdote goes, responded ruefully: “Your majesty, we, the Catholic clergy, have done our best to destroy the church for the last 1,800 years. We have not succeeded, and neither will you.””

Between this latest issue in Wisconsin and the Pope’s issue in Germany along with the Evangelical association in Uganda (i.e., Homosexual cures!) where they want to kill all homosexuals you have to wonder: What would Jesus think?

Good and Bad of It!

GOOD

“The United Nations received today the 30th instrument of ratification for the Convention on Cluster Munition,” said a statement from Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s press office.

“The Convention on Cluster Munitions was opened for signature in December 2008, and it has taken only 15 months to attain the 30 ratifications necessary for it to become binding international law.”

“The Obama administration has not yet made its views on the convention known, but President Obama signed a law on March 11, 2009, banning the export of all but a very tiny fraction of the cluster munitions in the US arsenal.”

BAD

“Unfortunately, albeit unsurprisingly, the US, Russia, China, Israel, India and Pakistan – a group that includes the biggest makers and users of the weapon…” attended negotiations or showed any interest of signing an agreement.

“It’s also no surprise that the US, Israel, but also Russia refuse to ratify the 1997 Ottawa Treaty, signed by 158 countries – as of 2007 – which prohibits the production, transfer or use of landmines.”

UGLY

“According to the group Handicap International, one-third of cluster-bomb victims are children. Equally alarming, 98 percent of the weapon’s overall victims are civilians. The group estimates that about 100,000 people have been maimed or killed by cluster bombs around the world since 1965.”

Quotes of the Day II:

“Defense…has become this mantra…and once people hear the word defense they stop thinking.” Rabbi Arik Ascherman, Rabbis for Human Rights, Israel

Quotes of the day:

From The Economist January 3oth, 2010

“Thus Thomas Jefferson’s mandate to pursue happiness “falls like kerosene on the torch of liberty”, warming many but “scorching and blinding” countless others.”

From The New York Times:

“No matter how I look at the issue, I cannot escape being troubled by the fact that we have in place a policy which forces young men and women to lie about who they are in order to defend their fellow citizens,” Adm. Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told the Senate Armed Services Committee.

As a murmur swept through a hearing room packed with gay rights leaders, Admiral Mullen said it was his personal belief that “allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly would be the right thing to do.”