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Sarah Palin is allowed first dibs on Alaskan wolfpack kills.

calendar   Saturday - August 29, 2009

Viking silver treasure hoard worth £1m unearthed after 1,000 years.

BMEWS regulars know I can never , ever resist this sort of thing.
How are things able to stay hidden for so long with all the upheaval and building and rebuilding etc.  I am always amazed at this.
Oh yeah the money is nice no doubt about that.  And who wouldn’t like to find buried treasure?  But the money thing aside. Way aside for me because it’s the pure discovery of antiquity like this that makes me all kinds of gee whiz there is really a santa. And a tooth fairy too.
My way I guess of saying ... It’s Magic!


Viking hoard of jewellery has made a father and son metal-detector team £1m

By Daily Mail Reporter
Last updated at 4:11 PM on 28th August 2009

An impressive Viking hoard of jewellery has made a father and son metal-detector team £1m, after being bought by two British museums.

The find, which is the ‘largest and most important’ since 1840, was found in a field in Harrogate, North Yorkshire in January 2007. It had been buried there for more than 1,000 years.

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Valued at £1,082,000, the hoard was purchased by the British Museum and the York Museum Trust after two years of fundraising.

The highlight of the collection is an intricately carved silver cup, estimated to be worth more than £200,000. It contains 617coins and various silver fragments, ingots and rings. Some of the pieces were from as far away as Afghanistan.

The treasure is believed to have belonged to a rich Viking who buried it during the unrest following the conquest of the Viking kingdom of Northumbria in 927 by the Anglo-Saxon king Athelstan.

It is believed he was unable to go back to the hoard, possibly as a result of turbulence during the period.

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The silver cup is worth around £200,000. Many of the coins were preserved as they were kept inside the vessel

Conservation work on the find began about a month ago and experts hope the process will reveal crucial details about the Viking era.Initial examinations suggest the treasure dates back to AD927 or 928.

Experts have spent over a month cleaning the hoard, often with a porcupine spine, to protect the delicate collection.
Enlarge Silver coins

Silver coins from the Vale of York Viking hoard. They will go on display in Yorkshire and London

The process, performed under microscope, has already revealed intricate designs which were invisible when the hoard was first discovered.

Detail on the silver jewellery fragments and in the designs and inscriptions on some of the coins is now apparent.

Close examination revealed small incisions made in the metal - evidence that the makers tested the silver before they began work.

Gareth Williams, curator of early medieval coins and Viking expert at the British Museum, said: ‘There’s been nothing like it for over 150 years.

‘The size and range of material gives us an insight into the political history, the cultural diversity of the Viking world and the range of cultural and economic contact at that time.’

He said some parts of the hoard came from as far as Afghanistan as well as from Russia, Scandinavia and continental Europe.

Most items were preserved because they were hidden in the cup.

Finders David Whelan, 53, and Andrew, 37, from Leeds, said: ‘Being keen metal detectorists, we always dreamed of finding a hoard but to find one from such a fantastic period of history is just unbelievable.

‘The contents of the hoard we found went far beyond our wildest dreams and hopefully people will love seeing the objects on display in York and London for many years to come.’

The pair will share the £1,082,000 with the owners of the field, who wished to remain anonymous.

Mary Kershaw, director of collections at York Museum, said: ‘The Vale of York Viking hoard is a once in a lifetime find. It will greatly add to the understanding of the early 900s in Yorkshire and its connections with the wider world.’

The treasure will go on display at the Yorkshire Museum in York from September 17 until November 1. It will then travel to the British Museum.

According to historians, Yorkshire is one of the areas which shows the strongest Viking influence.


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 08/29/2009 at 06:31 PM   
Filed Under: • Miscellaneous •  
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What’s it take exactly to put a creep away?

This is creepy. Gak.  Take a look at this guy. So then.  Bad heart, force kiss young girl in school, get outta jail free.
Come on.  I’m not suggesting the law has to lynch the guy.  But jail is exactly where ppl like this belong. Unless I read this wrong, he has a record of this sort of behavior.  What’s he doing teaching in school?  Oh. Silly me. Almost forgot.  His civil and human rights. Got it.

And can you just imagine being kissed by this? GAK, again. Stomach churning for the poor girls I’d say.

Teacher who French-kissed 14-year-old schoolgirl spared jail because of his heart condition
By Daily Mail Reporter

A science master who French kissed a 14-year-old girl and asked pupils about their sex lives was spared jail because he has a heart condition.

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Keith Ogunsola, 44, grabbed the teenager in his office before kissing her as she tried to push him away.
The married father also embarrassed girl pupils during a chemistry revision class by asking if they had performed sex acts on their boyfriends.

Ogunsola had been warned last month that he faced an inevitable prison sentence.
But Judge Martyn Zeidman, QC, suspended a 12-week jail term for 12 months after reading medical reports. The judge said: ‘Certainly what you have done doesn’t deserve a death sentence.

‘I’m just persuaded that it would be right in the circumstances of this case to suspend the sentence of imprisonment.
‘You will never again be employed as a school teacher. My primary concern is to protect members of the public and other potential pupils.’
The judge praised the victim’s courage, adding: ‘I want to pay tribute to the girl who bravely made this complaint. She’s a very impressive young lady.

Ogunsola was banned indefinitely from working with under-18s and will be placed on the sex offenders’ register for five years.
Snaresbrook Crown Court in East London heard how Ogunsola struck at the school where he taught in Ilford, Essex, on February 27 last year.
Describing her ordeal in Ogunsola’s office, the girl said: ‘He put his arms around my waist and said, “Do you want a kiss?”
‘He pulled me close and then kissed me and put his tongue in my mouth.

‘I pushed him away. He pulled me really close. He was holding my wrists and he kissed me again.’
She said she was ‘shocked’ by Ogunsola’s advances and simply ‘froze’. She said Ogunsola asked her: ‘Aren’t you supposed to be my Valentine?’
The girl said she reminded Ogunsolahe was married with children. ‘I said, “You have got a wife and kids and I have got a boyfriend”. He said, “Dump your boyfriend”.’
The girl said Ogunsola had asked her about her love life, and added that other girls at the secondary school had described him as a ‘pervert’.

Jurors heard how Ogunsola asked other girl pupils of 14 and 15 whether they had performed sex acts on their boyfriends.

He also warned the youngsters that boys were ‘only after one thing’.
A jury convicted Ogunsola, of Banstead, Surrey, of sexual assault but cleared him of an attempted sexual assault on a girl of 15 at the same school in February 2006.

Jurors also acquitted Ogunsola of two indecent assaults on teenage girls at a school he taught at in Carshalton, Surrey, between January and May 2000.

Ogunsola left the school in Surrey in 2001 before stints at Islington Green School, North London, and the Pimlico Academy in Westminster before moving to Ilford in 2005.
The former headmaster of the school in Surrey revealed Ogunsola had been warned about his conduct with girl pupils prior to the alleged assaults in 2000.

SOURCE


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 08/29/2009 at 04:07 PM   
Filed Under: • CrimeDaily LifeEducationOutrageousUK •  
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Madonna is booed on stage in Bucharest after gypsy comments anger local fan.

Good. She’s a skank anyway.  But she most likely won’t care what they think.  It’s great to know that at least once, some self important entertainer exhibitionist found that people didn’t pay to listen to political statements from the stage. Of course, I can’t understand why anybody would pay good money to see her anyway.  But that’s me.

Off line all day yesterday and thought this a pretty good article to start with today.  What makes so many of these ppl believe an audience wants to be lectured to or listen to these so called ‘stars’ who bump and grind their way to fame?

Well, Drew’s moving, it’s beginning to feel like winter (to me) as this has not been a hot summer cept for a few days, and the postal people are threatening yet another strike. That’ll make three. I think.  Any other important news?  Uh, well maybe.

I hope this either a bad joke or just something I read and misunderstood.

Just a brief line in the paper yesterday with regard to one of BMEWs favorite subjects.

HEALTHCARE ...According to something I read, it says that Obama is thinking of naming whatever program he ends up with after the late Sen.Kennedy.
I could not make this one up.
He may call it KennedyCare.

So help me Hannah that is exactly what I read. And yes I did check to make sure the date wasn’t April 1.

I can’t believe that true even for him. But as Will Rogers once famously said. “ All I know is what I read in the papers.”
No not literally. Just a figure of speech. I hafta say that coz in case Macker is here and knowing his sense of humor, I thought I better cover myself.


Madonna is booed on stage in Bucharest after gypsy comments anger local fans

By Daily Mail Reporter

She’s never shied away from courting controversy, but Madonna may be wishing she’d never said a word this week.
The Queen of Pop was on stage in Bucharest, when she was booed by thousands of fans after making comments supporting gypsies.
Madonna, 51, spoke out in support of Roma gypsies, but was met with jeers and boos by the 60,000-strong audience.

‘It has been brought to my attention...that there is a lot of discrimination against Romanies and Gypsies in general in eastern Europe,’ she said.
‘It made me feel very sad.’
The singer started her show on stage with Roma musicians and a dancer, who were initially greeted with enthusiastic applause.


But the huge crowd turned when Madonna took a break during her performance to speak out against the prejudice suffered by gypsies across eastern Europe.
There was a small amount of applause when she added, ‘We don’t believe in discrimination … we believe in freedom and equal rights for everyone.’

But yet more boos followed when she also condemned injustice against gay people.  Madonna seemed unfazed by the experience and carried on with the concert.

The singer was performing in Bucharest, just yards away from the giant palace of ex-communist dictator Nicolae Ceausescu.
Human rights campaigners say gypsies probably suffer more humiliation and endure more discrimination than any other people group on the continent.
Nearly 50% of Europe’s estimated 12million Roma claimed to have suffered an act of discrimination over the past 12 months, according to a recent EU report.
In May 2007, Romanian President Traian Basescu was forced to apologise for calling a Romanian journalist a ‘stinky gypsy’, while in neighbouring Hungary, six Roma have been killed in recent attacks.

Of course she’s “unfazed.” That’s because she only listens to her egoself. And as for the persecution of all those poo gypsies, gee whiz.
Like, what is it they do and what kind of trouble do they cause wherever they go, that would make other ppl turn against em?
Now lets see ... this is a deep one huh?
Apparently Madonna is way too busy buying African children she can adopt, to read the papers and see the problems caused by these folk.
Anyway ... she was more then likely pontificating thinking her comments might endear her to the tone deaf fans who buy tickets.
Well, surprise Maddy.  Looks like this group of young people know something you don’t. Not that you’d be interested.

SOURCE


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 08/29/2009 at 03:11 PM   
Filed Under: • CelebritiesTravelers/Gypsies/Squatters •  
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Peronally, I Blame Bush

Adventures in moving, part 104

I went down to my bank last night, and asked for a change of address card.

“Oh, we can’t do that anymore. Because of the Patriot Act, you have to show us your driver’s license with the new address and a utility bill or a credit card bill with that address too.”

Say what? You mean, me standing here, putting money into my account, checks written to me, dealing face to face with the teller I always deal with, the one who opened this account for me, isn’t enough?

“Sorry sir, we just enforce the rules, we don’t make them.”

Well, then I guess I’d better comply like a good little subject. I wouldn’t want to wind up in the reeducation camps.




And they aren’t kidding:

Important Information About Procedures For Opening A New Account

To help the government fight the funding of terrorism and money laundering activities, Federal law requires all financial institutions to obtain, verify, and record information that identifies each person who opens an account.

What this means for you: When you open an account, we will ask you for your name, address, date of birth, and other information that will allow us to identify you. We may ask to see your driver’s license or other identifying documents.



So now I’ve got to jump through hoops, because this rule also applies to the credit card companies. But hey, every time you comply with the Patriot Act, another baby terrorist cries. Sheesh.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/29/2009 at 11:40 AM   
Filed Under: • Daily LifeGovernmentWar On Terror •  
Comments (4) Trackbacks(0)  Permalink •  

calendar   Friday - August 28, 2009

Bill would give president emergency control of Internet

CNet News

Internet companies and civil liberties groups were alarmed this spring when a U.S. Senate bill proposed handing the White House the power to disconnect private-sector computers from the Internet.

They’re not much happier about a revised version that aides to Sen. Jay Rockefeller, a West Virginia Democrat, have spent months drafting behind closed doors. CNET News has obtained a copy of the 55-page draft of S.773 (excerpt), which still appears to permit the president to seize temporary control of private-sector networks during a so-called cybersecurity emergency.

The new version would allow the president to “declare a cybersecurity emergency” relating to “non-governmental” computer networks and do what’s necessary to respond to the threat. Other sections of the proposal include a federal certification program for “cybersecurity professionals,” and a requirement that certain computer systems and networks in the private sector be managed by people who have been awarded that license.

“I think the redraft, while improved, remains troubling due to its vagueness,” said Larry Clinton, president of the Internet Security Alliance, which counts representatives of Verizon, Verisign, Nortel, and Carnegie Mellon University on its board. “It is unclear what authority Sen. Rockefeller thinks is necessary over the private sector. Unless this is clarified, we cannot properly analyze, let alone support the bill.”

Representatives of other large Internet and telecommunications companies expressed concerns about the bill in a teleconference with Rockefeller’s aides this week, but were not immediately available for interviews on Thursday.

A spokesman for Rockefeller also declined to comment on the record Thursday, saying that many people were unavailable because of the summer recess. A Senate source familiar with the bill compared the president’s power to take control of portions of the Internet to what President Bush did when grounding all aircraft on Sept. 11, 2001. The source said that one primary concern was the electrical grid, and what would happen if it were attacked from a broadband connection.

When Rockefeller, the chairman of the Senate Commerce committee, and Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) introduced the original bill in April, they claimed it was vital to protect national cybersecurity. “We must protect our critical infrastructure at all costs--from our water to our electricity, to banking, traffic lights and electronic health records,” Rockefeller said.

Hello one, hello all, going to jump right into the fray again, I’ve been away for FAR too long, sorry guys/gals.
It’s been clicking right along here in the Severa household. Kids started back to school this week.
Our youngest son turns 10 next week and our oldest son turns 13 (YIKES!) in January. Time flies when you’re having fun....
or not having fun, as the case has been since Obama was elected.
Now I’ll freely admit, I’m young (32) and somewhat new to politics (Reagan is the first President I can remember and I bawled like a baby during his funeral) but I swear on everything that’s holy (and a few things that aren’t) that I have NEVER been so scared of a President and his Administration as I am right now.
Every day it’s something new to add to the stack of stuff against Obama and his followers but it’s like America is asleep at the wheel of a speeding Corvette and that “bridge out ahead” sign is looming up awfully damned fast…


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Posted by Severa   United States  on 08/28/2009 at 11:27 PM   
Filed Under: • Nanny StatePolitics •  
Comments (9) Trackbacks(0)  Permalink •  

Moving Means Letting Go

I can not believe the crap we have acquired over the years.

7 or 8 years ago we tried to be friends with a guy my wife used to work with. He was into that Magic: The Gathering card game. We joined that circle of folks for a while, and got together to play Magic every other weekend. It didn’t last. Let’s face it, it’s a kids game. But we amassed over 100 pounds of Magic cards. Easily 8000 of them. And eventually we realized it was a cardboard crack addiction. So they went into the closet. The dust on them is thick. That’s a lot of money we’ve put into it. But we never use them.

I’m finding box after box of cassette tapes. My wife had a chintzy plastic Aiwa portable home stereo when I met her. It’s still in the closet. It’s the only thing in the house that plays those tapes. They won’t even work in my 12 year old car.

I have dozens and dozens of SVHS video tapes. SVHS was the total shizz: it was a VCR that recorded in DVD quality. And that thing is still hooked into my stereo. And it wasn’t cheap, not even close. But we haven’t used it in years! Seriously, in years!

I own 6 bowling balls. I might use 4 of them. 2 have to go.

We have several sets of kitchen knifes people have given us. We built our own collection of top quality knives.

I have lawn furniture, but no lawn. Beach furniture, and we haven’t been near the ocean in 3 years.

And so on. We need to thin out our lives. Intensely. I mean it. Not just a bit. By half. Or more! 1 thing in 4 we keep. The rest goes. It has to. We are drowning in stuff. And I have to move it all.

I’ve been doing this moving shit for a solid week now. And I feel like I’ve made no progress at all. That’s not true, but everything I get to the back of a closet, the dark corner of a cabinet, etc., I find more stuff we bought. Quality stuff, not cheap. And used it for a while, then lost interest.

I’ve got a plastic .50 caliber ammo can filled with expensive cigars. I go in there and add water to the humidor two or three times a year. I haven’t had a cigar in 8 years. I hear they age well though.

Once upon a time we were fly fishermen. I’ve got the waders, a dozen hi-tech little aluminum boxes with fancy flies in them, all the gear. And a handmade, custom designed bamboo fly rod, made by a friend who was also into it at the time. It’s a big rod, made for bass or pike, not for graceful little trout. And it works great, and is a work of art. I’ve never caught a fish with it, and I haven’t used it in 6 years.

Who wants a ski machine? We picked up one of those at a garage sale once upon a time, and spent one winter swishing back and forth in the living room, getting exercise. It’s a great workout if you’re already in shape. If you have a beer gut, the pad thing tends to chafe you underneath the rollover.

Hey look, his ‘n her file cabinets! 9 years ago we were going to get organized, and keep meticulous records of everything. Never happened.

My mother in law used to do “crafts”. She painted stuff. Mostly birdhouses. Spent thousands of dollars on it, then one day just put it down and walked away. We have 8 of them, and they’re lovely little bits of primitive art. And nowhere to put them.

So I’m going to have to make some hard decisions. But nobody is touching my guns or my tools. I’ll happily throw out the two somewhat broken inflate-a-beds.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/28/2009 at 07:44 PM   
Filed Under: • Miscellaneous •  
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Bloggus Interruptus

I’m down to the point where the computer is about to be packed up.

I won’t have internet until Tuesday afternoon.

So it looks like BMEWS will be in the capable hands of Peiper and the gang until then.  Try not to break the furniture while I’m gone guys. Thanks.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/28/2009 at 12:21 PM   
Filed Under: • Blog Stuff •  
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calendar   Thursday - August 27, 2009

I object to being forced by politicians to change the way I use light

I like this guy. I feel a bit less like the Lone Ranger now.

I really wasn’t going to raise this subject again until I saw his comment in one of our papers.
Just felt like sharing it.

John Walsh: “I object to being forced by politicians to change the way I use light”

Tales of the City

From a week today I shall be a marked man. An outlaw. A renegade, beyond the reach of polite society. Call me a dreamer but I believe there are others like me, out there on the hillsides, like wartime maquis or partisans, storing and stockpiling our precious supplies. I can’t be sure. This could be a one-man crusade.

I’ve always considered myself a hyphenated sort of person, a go-ahead, onwards-and-upwards, into-the-future kinda guy, an early embracer of technologies. I was the first guy in my generation to go for the Sony Walkman-cum-roller-skates look, circa 1981. I didn’t acquire it myself, obviously, but I was the first to acquire a girlfriend who had it. She was called Sue and soon Sue roller-skated into the embrace of someone called Jimmy, but the principle holds. Technology and progress, I’m your man. Even things which initially seemed foolish and badly-thought-out have had my blessing. Electric carving knife? Sinclair C5? Lava lamp? Bring ‘em on.

Sometimes, though, you hit a wall. You bunch your fists, you grind your teeth and you refuse to be told what to do. You risk looking like an obstreperous six-year-old, but that’s the price you pay for being a renegade. You risk sounding like Charlton Heston saying he won’t give up his .44 Magnum until they prise it from his cold, dead hands, but you must banish all negative thoughts. You’re going into battle against a repressive government and a fascist diktat from Europe, and taking this rebellious stance won’t be easy. But it’s something a man’s gotta do. From next Tuesday.

Didn’t I mention what it was? Sorry. It’s light bulbs. As of 1 September, that’s it for light bulbs. Finito. It’s Goodnight Vienna for old-fashioned, Osram 40-watt or 60-watt, I’ve-just-had-a-good-idea light bulbs, the ones shaped like Philip Larkin’s head. Also the incandescent 100-watt ones that floodlight your kitchen. They’ve all been banned by European law, and nobody will be allowed to make them, import them or sell them in British shops after next Tuesday – from which day I’ll be stockpiling them like Fagin under the floorboards of my home, arranging secret “bulb drops” in Brockwell Park with the bloke from Herne Hill Electrical Goods Ltd and organising meetings in my draughty, lamplit cellar with similar suburban mavericks with whom I’ll plan the backlash ...

The Brussels legislators want everyone henceforth to buy energy-saving bulbs, the harsh ones with fat filaments like tubular pasta. I could tell you that I think they’re rubbish, and they don’t light a room properly, but you’ll think me a whinger. I could point out that, by 2012, we’ll all be required to use compact fluorescent “green” light-bulbs from Chinese factories where many workers have been poisoned by their mercury content, but you’ll think me alarmist. My main objection is that I cannot stand any longer being told what to do by manufacturers, governments and shops. When computers brought built-in obsolescence into the world, when Currys stopped selling camera film, when Sainsbury’s stopped accepting cheques, when parts of Canary Wharf objected to people smoking in the open air, when Dixons stopped selling audio cassettes, I rode each blow and accepted it, telling myself to get with the digital thing and stop living in the past. But there’s something about light bulbs that goes in deep. I object to being forced by politicians to change the way I use light, and the strength of the light I use, because it will supposedly have an effect on climate change. It’s a simple objection, but a fundamental one. It’s, literally, elemental.

INDEPENDENT


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 08/27/2009 at 04:16 PM   
Filed Under: • Climate-WeatherEnvironmentUK •  
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IS THERE REALLY A MEAN STREAK IN MAINSTREAM AMERICA?  I MUST HAVE MISSED IT.

Well, I do believe that’s what this writer for The Independent is saying. She has btw way discovered that the left in America isn’t exactly what the left is in Europe and the UK. ??  Could’ve fooled me.  She says the American left is still quite a bit more right then Europe.  Not right enough for BMEWS.
Here, give us your take on her editorial.  In fact, you can email her if ya want to. 
This is from The Independent
oh yeah, catch that next to the last paragraph for sure. I kinda mention that for those who won’t read all of this.

Mary Dejevsky: A mean streak in the US mainstream

The US tolerates more inequality, deprivation and suffering than is acceptable here

When we Europeans – the British included – contemplate the battles President Obama must fight to reform the US health system, our first response tends to be disbelief. How can it be that so obvious a social good as universal health insurance, so humane a solution to common vulnerability, is not sewn deep into the fabric of the United States? How can one of the biggest, richest and most advanced countries in the world tolerate a situation where, at any one time, one in six of the population has to pay for their treatment item by item, or resort to hospital casualty wards?

The second response, as automatic as the first, is to blame heartless and ignorant Republicans. To Europeans, a universal health system is so basic to a civilised society that only the loony right could possibly oppose it: the people who cling to their guns, picket abortion clinics (when they are not trying to shoot the abortionists) and block funding for birth control in the third world. All right, we are saying to ourselves, there are Americans who think like this, but they are out on an ideological limb.

If only this were true. The reason why Obama is finding health reform such a struggle – even though it was central to his election platform – is not because an extreme wing of the Republican Party, mobilised by media shock-jocks, is foaming at the mouth, or because Republicans have more money than Democrats to buy lobbying and advertising power. Nor is it only because so many influential groups, from insurance companies through doctors, have lucrative interests to defend – although this is a big part of it.

It is because very many Americans simply do not agree that it is a good idea. And they include not only mainstream Republicans, but Democrats, too. Indeed, Obama’s chief problem in seeking to extend health cover to most Americans is not Republican opposition: he thrashed John McCain to win his presidential mandate; he has majorities in both Houses of Congress. If Democrats were solidly behind reform, victory would already be his.

The unpalatable fact for Europeans who incline to think that Americans are just like us is that Democrats are not solidly behind Obama on this issue. Even many in the party’s mainstream must be wooed, cajoled and even – yes – frightened, if they are ever going to agree to change the status quo. Universal healthcare is an article of faith in the US only at what mainstream America would regard as the bleeding- heart liberal end of the spectrum.

As some of Obama’s enemies warned through the campaign – and I mean warned, not promised – this is the philosophical terrain where, his voting record suggests, this President is most at home. But many more are not. The absence from the Senate of Edward Kennedy, through illness, and Hillary Clinton, elevated to the State Department, has left his pro-reform advocacy in the legislature sorely depleted.

But there is something else at work here, too, beyond defective advocacy, and it lays bare a profound misunderstanding. Europe hailed Obama’s landslide election victory as evidence that America had reclaimed its better self, turned to the left and bade farewell to ingrained racial divisions as well. That was a benevolent, but ultimately idealistic, gloss.

Obama’s victory can indeed be seen as a reaction to eight years of conservative Republicanism under George Bush and a turn by US voters to the left. But that left is still quite a bit further right than in most of Europe. Nor was it just a leftward turn that cost John McCain the White House; it was also a rejection of the weaker candidate. Obama’s great asset was that he came across as more competent on the economy, at a time of global financial meltdown. From this side of the Atlantic, we convinced ourselves that Americans had voted with their hearts, but there was a considerable element of the wallet as well.

That wallet element helps explain the deep-seated misgivings that have surfaced about Obama’s plans for health reform. A majority of Americans believe they have adequate health cover. Their choice of job may be limited by their insurance requirements (and labour mobility reduced). And their calculations may be upset – sometimes disastrously – by accident or illness.

But with most pensioners protected by the state system known as Medicare, an “I’m all right, Jack” attitude prevails. It coexists with the fear that extending the pool of the insured, to the poorer and more illness-prone, will raise premiums for the healthy and bring queuing, or rationing, of care – which is why stories about the NHS inspire such dread. The principle that no one should be penalised financially by illness is trumped by the self-interest of the majority, then rationalised by the argument that health is a matter of personal responsibility.

The point is that, when on “normal”, the needle of the US barometer is not only quite a way to the political right of where it would be in Europe, but showing a very different atmospheric level, too. For there is a mean and merciless streak in mainstream US attitudes, which tolerates much more in the way of inequality, deprivation and suffering than is acceptable here, while incorporating a large and often sanctimonious quotient of blame.

This transatlantic difference goes far beyond the healthcare debate. Consider the give-no-quarter statements out of the US on the release of the Lockerbie bomber – or the continued application of the death penalty, or the fact that excessive violence is far more common a cause for censorship of US films in Europe than sex. Or even, in documents emerging from the CIA, a different tolerance threshold where torture and terrorism are concerned.

Some put the divergence down to the ideological rigidity that led Puritans and others to flee to America in the first place; others to the ruthless struggle for survival that marked the early settlement years and the conquest of the West. Still others see it as the price the US pays for its material success. What it means, though, is that if and when Obama gets some form of health reform through, it will reflect America’s fears quite as much as its promise. And it is unlikely to be a national service that looks anything like ours.

MARY


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 08/27/2009 at 03:30 PM   
Filed Under: • EditorialsUK •  
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The Senator of Sleaze who was a drunk sexual bully…

After listening to the mawkish whitewash last night on the BBC (radio), I was quite surprised today to find this in the Daily Mail.  And it wasn’t the only commentary written in the Mail on this subject.

I do not gloat in his death even though I did not like the man. There was nothing to like or admire in my opinion.
Anyway, this commentary says enough and says it far better then I ever could.  As does the commentary by Ruth Dudley Edwards, link below.


Ted Kennedy: The Senator of Sleaze who was a drunk sexual bully… and left a young woman to die

By Charlie Laurence
Last updated at 3:31 PM on 27th August 2009

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Senator Edward ‘Ted’ Kennedy stood for sleaze. Bloated and drunken, he used his standing in the Kennedy clan to chase vulnerable women - which brought his dream of reaching the White House to a shameful end.

He was the youngest of the four Kennedy brothers, and by far the longest lived.

Incredibly, he was in line to inherit his brother John F. Kennedy’s legendary presidency, but his chances were dashed following the drowning of the pretty, young campaign assistant Mary Jo Kopechne.

Forever known as the Chappaquiddick Incident after the Massachusetts island where it took place, the scandal in 1969 broke the Kennedy grip on the White House.

A drunk Ted had been driving back from a party to the family ‘compound’ on Martha’s Vineyard when he veered off a bridge and into a deep tidal dyke.
Drowned: Mary Jo Kopechne was killed after Ted Kennedy drove his car off a bridge with her inside

Mary Jo was in the back seat and, while he claimed he was just giving her a lift back to her hotel, it was widely thought that he had picked her up for sex. Kennedy swam ashore to save himself, but left Mary Jo to drown - in fact, it was even worse than that.

It was nine hours before he reported the accident. In the meantime, he walked back to his motel, complained to the manager about a noisy party, took a shower, went to sleep, ordered newspapers when he woke up and spoke to a friend and two lawyers before finally calling the police.

Divers later estimated that if he had called them immediately, they would have had time to pull out Mary Jo. She had not drowned, but had survived in an air pocket inside the car - she was asphyxiated only when the oxygen ran out several hours later.

As always, Ted used the family name to save his neck. In any other state but Massachusetts, the Kennedys’ home turf, and with any other name, he would have been charged with homicide.

Instead, he escaped with a slap on the wrist: a two-year suspended sentence and the loss of his driving licence for a year. He had been allowed to plead guilty to no more than the charge of leaving the scene of an accident.

Kennedy lawyers arranged for him to pay £55,000 to the Kopechne family from his own pocket with a further £30,000 from his insurance. Mary Jo’s mother later said: ‘I don’t think he ever said he was sorry.’

At the height of the scandal, Kennedy went on TV to explain himself in an extraordinary 13-minute address in which he denied driving drunk and rejected rumours of
‘immoral conduct’ with Kopechne.

He said he was haunted by ‘irrational’ thoughts immediately after the accident, and wondered ‘whether some awful curse did actually hang over all the Kennedys’.

He said his failure to report the accident right away was ‘indefensible’.

Yet the tragedy and his actions appalled millions of Americans.

The steamroller Kennedy political machine, combined with his popular opposition to the then raging Vietnam War, made him favourite for the 1972 presidential election, but the drunken drive that killed Mary Jo snuffed out his bid.

Edward Kennedy’s character flaws would have sidelined any man from a lesser family before his career had begun. Schooled in the height of privilege, like his brothers, at exclusive boarding ‘prep’ schools, Kennedy went on to Harvard.

But he was expelled from that Ivy League bastion for persuading another undergraduate to take his Spanish exams for him. It was an episode that should have served as a warning to the voters.

Kennedy joined the Army to redeem himself and was later readmitted to Harvard. He followed the classic path of the American elite to law school, graduated and was admitted to the Massachusetts Bar.
Irish support: Kennedy with Sinn Fein’s Gerry Adams - for years the Democrat was seen as a cheerleader for American Irish supporters of the IRA

Irish support: Kennedy with Sinn Fein’s Gerry Adams - for years the Democrat was seen as a cheerleader for American Irish supporters of the IRA

But he did not take a single case. He believed that, like his brothers, he was destined for greatness. As he could not stand for the Senate until he was 30, the Kennedy machine arranged for a ‘stooge’ candidate to hold the family seat for two years, when JFK left it for the White House.

He reeked of drink by nine in the morning and could be relied on to be bawling drunk at four in the afternoon. In Washington’s top La Brasserie restaurant, he once threw a waitress over a table in a private room and tried to have sex with her.

His face, once handsome, became as round as a football, bloated and criss-crossed with the broken veins of an out-of-control drinker.

IT’S A LONG COMMENTARY AND THE REST IS HERE WITH PIX

SEE RUTH DUDLEY EDWARDS COMMENTARY HERE


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 08/27/2009 at 02:16 PM   
Filed Under: • CrimeDemocrats-Liberals-Moonbat LeftistsCorruption and GreedHistory •  
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Another day, another bunch of boxes to pack

Today The Kitchen, Tomorrow The World?




I can’t believe how much stuff we’ve accumulated in the kitchen. I’m on my second cup of coffee this morning, and I’ve got 4 boxes full of glassware already, and it’s hardly made a dent. Red wine glasses. White wine glasses. Coffee cups, coffee mugs. Margarita glasses. More pots and pans then I realized. Yesterday I got most of the dry goods moved. Talk about heavy lifting - we’ve been buying canned tomatoes and soup in bulk. And then there are cookbooks. Dozens. And a microwave. And a toaster. And ... you name it. I’ve got a box going just for our knife collection. We have dozens of them.

You want really heavy? I’ve got ammunition to move. A lot. Amounts that would cause a reporter to wet their panties in fear. Crivens, you’d think that stuff was made out of lead! Oh, wait, never mind.

We got a lot done yesterday. My brother came down with his pickup truck, and we boxed and hauled several loads over. Most of the day was spent folding and packing clothing. About half of that is moved already. I would really love to have nothing in this place by Saturday other than large furniture and the TV set. Keep dreaming Drew.

And I haven’t even started on the garage. Maybe if I get “bored” moving kitchen stuff I’ll take a “break” and schlep over some more gun stuff from my reloading factory in the garage. Crap, I’ve got 40 pounds of gunpowder out there. And only Teh One knows how much in bullets. That’s the downside to shooting large caliber rifles for fun - a handful of bullets weighs a pound. And I have cases of them.

This must be really boring to a lot of you, so here’s a link to the latest Ann Coulter column, Liberal Lies About Health Care, Part 2. Enjoy.

Despite being a thousand pages long, the health care bills passing through Congress are strikingly nonspecific. (Also, in a thousand pages, Democrats weren’t able to squeeze in one paragraph on tort reform. Perhaps they were trying to save paper.)

These are Trojan Horse bills. Of course, they don’t include the words “abortion,” “death panels” or “three-year waits for hip-replacement surgery.”

That proves nothing—the bills set up unaccountable, unelected federal commissions to fill in the horrible details. Notably, the Democrats rejected an amendment to the bill that would specifically deny coverage for abortions.

After the bill is passed, the Federal Health Commission will find that abortion is covered, pro-lifers will sue, and a court will say it’s within the regulatory authority of the health commission to require coverage for abortions.

Then we’ll watch a parade of senators and congressmen indignantly announcing, “Well, I’m pro-life, and if I had had any idea this bill would cover abortions, I never would have voted for it!”

No wonder Democrats want to remind us that they can’t be trusted with foreign policy. They want us to forget that they can’t be trusted with domestic policy.




Have you written, emailed, and called your elected representatives about this insane bill this week? Do so. It’s wrong is every possible way. And “quangos” are just wrong. Period. Every aspect of the entire government must be open to public scrutiny and accountability. (except for spies and military secrets) Kill the Bill !


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/27/2009 at 01:09 PM   
Filed Under: • Miscellaneous •  
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Churchill believed he could charm anyone - even Stalin.

But apparently not.

Here are some edited extracts from Max Hastings and The Daily Mail.  For you history buffs and even if you aren’t, this is interesting reading as well as an insight into the ppl and events of WW2.  I hadn’t known before, for example, that

The sick Roosevelt drifted in and out of consciousness of the proceedings,

during meetings with Churchill and Stalin in the closing years of the war.

The Mail has been running various chapters from the Max Hastings book on Churchill and the war and aftermath.

I’ve simply chosen some parts from a chapter that appeared a few days ago.  You can read all of it RIGHT HERE. From the link you can catch up on all the other chapters that have been published so far.


Churchill believed he could charm anyone - even Stalin. Yet the dictator humiliated him with insults, lies and foul-mouthed jokes

By Max Hastings

The prime minister was not to know that Stalin had an edge on him. Through spies in London - traitors such as Anthony Blunt and Kim Philby - the Kremlin had advance knowledge of the positions and policies the British would take and what they hoped to achieve.

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Churchill after meeting with Stalin:
“They respect us here and I am sure they wish to work with us.”
The Truth:
He couldn’t have been more wrong. He was being played for a sucker.Stalin no longer had any need for him.

Stalin could always raise a laugh from his courtiers by saying, as he often did: ‘We f***ed England!’

Britain had gone to war in 1939 over Poland, after Hitler invaded it. Throughout the war there had been a Polish government in exile in London. A quarter of a million Polish soldiers and airmen fought on the Allied side. But Churchill had to concede that it was ‘Moscow’s Poles’ who would rule in Warsaw.
Hitler’s troops invade Poland, only for the country to be later taken by the Soviets - exactly what Churchill did not want

He was mortified by this outcome. It seemed to him unbearably tragic that impending Allied victory should merely offer a new servitude to the people on whose behalf Britain had declared war on Germany. Yet this was the case.

Stalin was astonishingly amiable, as well he might be, as the most conspicuous profiteer from the war. The sick Roosevelt drifted in and out of consciousness of the proceedings. When he engaged, it was to accede to Soviet views. He seemed to be trying to distance himself from Churchill whenever he could as a way of reaching out to Stalin.

Again and again, the British found themselves isolated. Churchill opposed the ‘ dismemberment’ of Germany, to which Stalin was committed, and also argued against imposing extravagant reparations on the vanquished. But the Americans and Russians had already settled on a provisional figure of $20 billion, of which the Soviet Union was to receive half.

In Churchill’s eyes, the foremost business of Yalta was the future of Poland and whether he could snatch at least a shred of democratic freedom for its people. Stalin brushed him off with his usual serpentine skill, promising elections of a sort but nothing more.

Churchill professed satisfaction. An agreement had been reached about Poland, which, if Stalin kept his word, might sustain some fig leaf of democracy.

‘The Poles will have their future in their own hands, with the single limitation that they must honestly follow a policy friendly to Russia. That is surely reasonable. I know of no government which stands to its obligations more solidly than the Russian Soviet Government.’

Over a drink in the smoking room afterwards with friends, he said that he did not see what else he could have done at Yalta. He had had no choice but to accept Stalin’s assurances.

No course short of war with Russia could have saved Polish democracy in 1945, and only a compound of vanity and despair could have caused Churchill to pretend otherwise.

The Soviet Union believed that, having paid overwhelmingly the heaviest price to achieve the defeat of Hitler, it had thus purchased the right to determine the future of Eastern Europe in accordance with its own security interests. And the Western Allies lacked power to contrive any different outcome.

In the last months of Churchill’s war premiership, his satisfaction about the defeat of Germany and the Nazis’ imminent downfall was almost entirely over-shadowed by his dismay at the triumph of Soviet tyranny in Eastern Europe.

Stalin flouted Yalta in both its spirit and its letter. Almost daily, news reached Downing Street of savage Soviet oppression in Poland and the deportation to labour camps of thousands of non-communists. Churchill drafted a fierce cable to Stalin, for which he invited American approval. The dying Roosevelt vetoed it.

A stream of messages followed from Churchill, emphasising the urgency and gravity of the Polish situation. Most went unanswered.

For years Churchill had danced around the Russian bear, but in the end it had caught him and cuffed him out of the ring. When it came to determining the shape of postwar Europe, he was irrelevant.

But perhaps he would have one last snap at the bear’s heels. He told Jock Colville, his private secretary, that he would refuse to be cheated over Poland, ‘even if we go to the verge of war with Russia’. And, as we will see tomorrow, that is precisely what he drew up plans to do.

Recruit German soldiers to continue the fight with soviets.  If necessary, nuke Moscow.


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Posted by peiper   United Kingdom  on 08/27/2009 at 07:12 AM   
Filed Under: • History •  
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exhausted

Packing and hauling stuff all day. It’s a never ending chore. Moving sucks. I am wiped out.

Gosh, I hear Teddy Kennedy died. Oh gosh, that’s just terrible.  Is it true that 20 million illegal aliens are all in mourning?


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/27/2009 at 12:53 AM   
Filed Under: • Miscellaneous •  
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calendar   Wednesday - August 26, 2009

Thirty Two Fifty

Last post for summer bowling league. Winter league starts Monday!


We went into the final night in 3rd place, 7 points over the 4th place team whom we played.

The hard partying college girls, that team that gets the huge handicaps from everyone, was in 2nd place, 2 points over us. The previous week they had been in 1st, but the “PITAs”, a team made up of young folks who work at the bowling alley (there were 2 of those teams on this little league), beat them 5-2 last week to take the lead. So we had a chance to take 2nd - if the girls got shut out and we won at least one game, then we would take 2nd because our Total Pins count was higher. If they won one (2 points) and we won two or more (4 - 7 points) then we would beat them just on points.

The team we played last week, the one made up of semi-pro ringers (who all also work at the bowling alley), dropped all the way to 5th place because of the beat down we delivered then. hahaha!

So we were slotted to play team Just Us. We have a lot of fun with those guys, and it’s usually just about a heads up, no handicap competition. We got 12 pins in handicap last night, and both teams were out to win.

We bowled really well the first team. I started off with 5 strikes in a row, left an open in the 6th, then struck again in the 7th, and finished with a 211, nearly 40 pins over average. Our anchor, Rex, started game 1 with 6 strikes in a row and finished with a 238. Our ladies did well too, coming in a bit over average. But the old guys and Air Doug, the team we were playing, had their game on. They also bowled really well. So it went back and forth the whole game. At one point they were up 40. At another point we were up 64. But in the end we won. By 6 pins.

The college girls won their first game too. The Pressure!! We had to win another game and they had to lose from that point forward if our team was going to take 2nd. But there was no collusion at all from our competition. Which is as it should be. There were on fire. Well, as on fire as you can be when it’s Old Guy Bowling. Which is a really slow approach, a soft swing, no bending, no super strong releases that rip the cover off the ball and rev it up like a dynamo. Just walk forward, give the ball a flick and drop it. But drop it in the right spot, and flick it just so every time. And that gets the job done.

Our ladies did even better in game 2. My wife threw in the 170s, a 30 over game for her. I was very tired; I’d been up since 5am moving our stuff all day. But I still managed to roll a 185, a decent 10 over game. And Rex threw a 247. But the old guys were cooking, and for once Air Doug was NOT caving in to pressure, or having a fit about his thumb fit, or even losing his marbles because the hand dryer wasn’t working. And he was still high on his 687 series from last week, so he was confident. The best we could do was pace them. They took the lead after the 5th frame, and as hard as we tried to close the gap, they wound up winning by 43 pins.

The college girls got smeared. They were bowling really well, throwing their best games of the season, but the PITAs rolled an 800 game. So we still had a chance. But we had to trample in game 3 so we would finish with 4 or 5 points for the night.

We did what we could. At one point in game 3, maybe around the 4th frame, we were up 47 pins. Then our ladies faltered. And I wasn’t having a great game in the early frames either, and Rex kept leaving 10 pins. Changing lane conditions; time to make an adjustment. Improvise, adapt, overcome! But our attempt at a rally didn’t happen, and the old guys were charging. They were striking left and right, and getting spares when given the chance, while we were leaving open frames. We did manage to get all strikes in the 5th frame, which won us the Beer Frame, and that was actually the only Beer Frame won on this league all season. Nice for us. Miller Lite for me ("free" only covers the cheap beer) and ice cream for the rest of my team. I finished with a 176, only a couple pins over average. Rex threw a 188, which is a bad game for him. Icky low scores from our ladies. And the old guys pulled a 700 game. So we got beat. And we wound up 2-5 for the night.

The college girls lost their third game as well. I didn’t notice the score.

So in the end, the final standings were exactly the same as they were going into the night. PITAs took the win, the party chicks held onto 2nd, we finished 3rd, and team Just Us was in 4th. Plus all the other lower finishing teams, who cares?

And our big prize money?

$32.50 per person. Woo hoo.

Summer league is just for fun. Winter league is where the big money is.


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Posted by Drew458   United States  on 08/26/2009 at 11:45 AM   
Filed Under: • Bowling Blogging •  
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