24
Sep
08

Talking Points 25th September

Are we losing the chance for peace in the middle east? Today 21 Aid agencies working in the region have accused the Middle-East quartet (Russia, the US, the EU and the UN) of fundamentally failing in its mission.

The report said many objectives, including the removal of Israeli checkpoints, had failed and the daily lives of the Palestinians had actually deteriorated. This blogger is filming life in the Gaza strip and this Palestinian doctor writes about the difficulties of getting health care. So is the Middle East peace process about to fall apart? Will Bush get the peace deal he wants by the end of the year? This US columnist is sceptical.

******
The most senior Archbishop in the UK has expressed a hope for more morality in the market after the financial crisis. He says “our society is running the risk of idolatry in its relationship with wealth”. Does he have a valid point? Or is he not qualified to pronounce on the morality of the financial system and anyone working within it?

******

Johann Hari in the Independent in the UK says that on all the big issues of the day – bailing out banks, global warming, Iraq – the left side of politics has been proven to be correct. He says “a recession is when you most need an active government on your side, fighting for you.” So is the idea of the ‘small government’ the wrong idea for a recession? This blogger in the US says the Republicans are becoming the party of ‘big government’ but this blogger says no to Bush’s plans for a $700bn bail-out.

*****

One more thing to mention, today is Thabo Mbeki’s last day as President of South Africa. He is stepping down just months from the end of his term after being forced out by his party, the ANC. He was the successor to Nelson Mandela so he always had big shoes to fill, but how will he remembered?

Let us know what you think….


346 Responses to “Talking Points 25th September”


  1. 1 Julie P
    September 24, 2008 at 19:08

    Just to let everyone know, today is Nation Punctuation Day.

    http://marquee.blogs.cnn.com/2008/09/24/happy-national-punctuation-day/

    Any grammatical errors in this comment is the result of the copy editor.

  2. 2 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 19:10

    any good controversial topics. i am still running on adrenaline 😉

  3. September 24, 2008 at 19:17

    Imagine if Palin said something that stupid.

    Oh she says some pretty stupid stuff lol, you don’t have to imagine 😉
    Or she just lacks ‘substance’ all-together lol

    Sarah Palin’s Infomercial vs Fox Sean Hannity Interview

  4. 6 steve
    September 24, 2008 at 19:19

    @ Brett

    But does Palin think FDR was president in 1929 and does she think that TVs existed in 1929?

  5. September 24, 2008 at 19:20

    @ Steve:
    But does Palin think FDR was president in 1929 and does she think that TVs existed in 1929?

    Who knows, call her up and ask her.

  6. 8 Magoola Moses
    September 24, 2008 at 19:23

    I am a born again Christian in Uganda and entirely agree with Micheal’s decision simply because conscientiousness is a spiritual guiding foctor that shapes man’s external behavoiur. Micheal must have reached a point beyond human control and therefore chose to submit to a GOD’s calling. But if one’s conscientiousness is not affected at all during combat, I believe its their call from GOD to defend their respective countries

    Moses Magoola

    Kampala- Uganda

  7. September 24, 2008 at 19:24

    Another well known stupid Palin comment:

    “”Pray for our military men and women who are striving to do what is right. Also, for this country, that our leaders, our national leaders, are sending [U.S. soldiers] out on a task that is from God,” she exhorted the congregants. “That’s what we have to make sure that we’re praying for, that there is a plan and that that plan is God’s plan.””

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/09/02/palins-church-may-have-sh_n_123205.html

    Don’t know which is worse, a historical inaccuracy or the backing of an entire war as a “task from God”…

  8. 10 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 19:24

    steve,

    she believs the world is 6000 years old, nough said….

  9. 11 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 19:25

    @ Julie

    Thanks for pointing that out. I hope I’ve typed better than usual today. English was always my favorite subject in school. 🙂

  10. 12 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 19:29

    julie,

    i am screwed and go to punctuation hell. i don’t even have the excuse that english is my third language, i suck at it in german as well and never mind what was my 2nd language again, uhh freedom speak (aka french)

  11. 13 Count Iblis
    September 24, 2008 at 19:29

    Looks like Palin is the Christian version of Ahmadinejad 🙂

  12. September 24, 2008 at 19:29

    @ Julie:

    Yea, I’m with Jens… I tend to type in more of a conversational style than a proper essay for english class lol.

  13. 15 Julie P
    September 24, 2008 at 19:30

    @Jennifer,

    I am usually quite good when I write. I had an editor go over blog recently. After reading it he e-mailed me to compliment my grammar and punctuation. Of course, he doesn’t read some of comments.

  14. 16 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 19:33

    julie,

    i hope he does not read you last comment 😉

    and that is an analphabet like me commenting on it

  15. September 24, 2008 at 19:36

    It should be TP 25 Sept. Can someone change the title tag in the HTML?

    Music
    TP24Sept: 200 roebert September 24, 2008 at 5:23 pm
    Thank you for the info. I prefer a use of stops that results in a rich yet ethereal sound in the fuge of Bach’s T&F d-min. And while I grant that Baroque music is about one’s ability to improvise, I do not think that one should go out of his way to embellish every single detail that he can get away with. I really wish that those who want to use ornamentations in bach’s music would study his music well to know what kinds he commonly used so that his own additions would fit into Bach’s style. Btw, what is the German title of the “Keyboard Concertos”?

  16. 19 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 19:40

    @ Julie

    I try to be but a few typos sneak in usually! 😉

  17. September 24, 2008 at 19:40

    Religious Extremism
    49 Dwight From Cleveland September 24, 2008 at 5:15 pm
    ...the cultural canyon that exists between M-Sa capitalist /sunday morning Christians, and extremist Muslims. Oddly enough these two groups are the most vocal voices in favor of killing each other.

    All the more reason to put them both on an island together. MAke sure that it is not a coral reef first. Why do we bother with calls to condemn or to educate? Why not exercise a bit of prudent population control? I like my island idea for that.

  18. September 24, 2008 at 19:41

    Are We a Theocracy?
    76 Dwight From Cleveland September 24, 2008 at 6:17 pm
    Christmas vacation, bonuses, and celebrations should absolved across any government entity.

    We need not wait for an atheist government to take hold. Those ridiculous holidays should not exist based on separation of church and state. And national broccoli/cucumber/spider/classic car/whatever day need to all hit the road. Useless waste of taxpayer money. “Under God” – a later addition to the Pledge of Allegience – should never have been added; and it is high time that we got rid of it. “In God we trust,” too. (Bailouts will have more meaning with that ink no longer wasted.) Then we need to work on “God wanted me to be President” and “Jesus told me to bomb Iraq.”

  19. 22 Julie P
    September 24, 2008 at 19:41

    @Jens,

    At least punctuation hell is warm.

    @Brett,

    I am the same way on a lot of things I write. The very last paper I wrote for college was a dry business analysis paper. The professor I had was a grammar Nazi. (I have told him this to his face.) I rewrote that paper no less than five times. I had two English professors with Ph.D.s go over the paper to check for errors before I submitted it. Convinced I had a the most grammatically correct paper on the face of the earth, I turned it in. The grammar Nazi still found grammatical errors in the paper. They were minor and I still got a 96 for the paper, but geez…

  20. 23 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 19:43

    @ steve

    “But does Palin think FDR was president in 1929 and does she think that TVs existed in 1929?”

    That’s another subject that should be mandatory every year in school year: History.
    LOL– I guess, Bush & Co do not have the complete monopoly on saying dumb things.

  21. 24 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 19:44

    @ Nelson

    Re: Identity Theft

    I liked the article. Something I have noticed is that when I go to the store and am paying with my debit card; many times the next person in line is smack dab behind me. It always makes me feel as thought they could be trying to get my pin number or something.

    I remember when I was in college; we have people who actually would go through our dumpsters. It was really gross but I did purchase a shredder. You never know what type of information can be obtained from junk mail!

  22. 25 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 19:48

    @ Jens

    Me too… my carnal sin is misspelling in every language I know…That’s why the good lord invented spell check. 😉

    @ Julie

    It’s the curse of all editors I know.

  23. 26 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 19:54

    julie p,

    yes and they might even have a cigar bar there….

    jessica,

    shucks and i though it was bill gates who invented the spell check…

  24. 27 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 19:56

    julie,

    some people have nothing else left in their lives BUT grammer….a very very sad thought

  25. September 24, 2008 at 20:00

    What Happens when we die? Scientists explore the biology behind “out-of-body” experiences to see if “something” continues.

  26. 30 Robert
    September 24, 2008 at 20:01

    Nelson

    I wish I would get GBP5 for giving it away, but alas being British I don’t get the choice. My great government last year lost the bank details of half the families in the UK through the postal system. Sent on a CD with no protection.

    The one laugh that came out of it was that a newspaper columnist trying to show that the data lost couldn’t be used to remove any money volunteered his own information in The Times. Shortly after he found a GBP500 donation to charity on his behalf. Fraudsters with a conscience

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/money/2008/jan/07/personalfinancenews.scamsandfraud

  27. 31 Julie P
    September 24, 2008 at 20:03

    @Jens,

    Enjoy that cigar! 😉

    I still talk with that professor, we e-mail each other. Let me tell you any time I get an e-mail from him that has grammatical errors in it, I fix them, and then send the corrected e-mail back to him. I figure it’s pay pack time. 🙂

  28. 32 jamily5
    September 24, 2008 at 20:03

    about music,
    I like Bach’s concertos and fugues. But, I enjoy the baroque chamber music the best.
    Those strings and trumpets can’t be beat.
    But, yes, when people start improvizing, they need to make sure that they are not putting a different style into the music. then, it is not baroque, anymore.
    Hey, I think that Bach also had 21children.
    Can you imagine this?
    So much for population control.

  29. 33 Katharina in Ghent
    September 24, 2008 at 20:05

    @ Identity theft

    The other day I wanted to send a flower to a friend on facebook, and the program actually dared to ask me my credit card etc. information! What a complete joke! First of all we’re not talking of an actual flower, but a picture, and second… reveal this type of info on facebook? To me that has stupid/fraud written all over it. Of course there are many occasions where you have to reveal parts of it, and if this info gets into the wrong hands, but still, it’s smart to be careful about it and also to check your account statements regularly. If you’re getting robbed, it’s better to notice sooner rather than later.

  30. 34 Robert
    September 24, 2008 at 20:06

    Grammar

    I’m in trouble. I thought that learning Portuguese would help with my grammar overall. I’ve now developed my own unique grammar that mixes English and Portuguese and violates most rules of both languages.

    Well it seems I’m now the stereotypical Engineer being unable to either construct a proper sentence nor spell most words in the sentence.

  31. 35 jamily5
    September 24, 2008 at 20:13

    antidepressants harming sperm

    I am not surprised. whenever someone takes strong meds, I do imagine that there are either unknown or unreleased side effects. I can’t stand those drug commercials that have a long tag at the end of their promotion that quickly and softly state possible side effects.
    If I was depressed, I might try herbal remedies first – not that they can’t also have their side effects, yet I would want something more healthy.
    However, I realize that insurance mostlikely won’t pay for it.
    Bottom line – we should be quite careful about what we put into our bodies.

  32. 36 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 20:14

    robert,

    welcome to the club

  33. 37 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 20:16

    @ Jamily5

    I agree with you. I think it’s horrible that many medications seem to make light of the fact that they come along with many risks. We do have to be careful about what we put into our bodies because it can cause some pretty bad side effects.

  34. 38 Dennis@OCC
    September 24, 2008 at 20:17

    Welcome Jennifer!

    @ Just to let everyone know, today is Nation Punctuation Day….
    Thanks, It will be pronounced in my english class on Thursday….And also, if any mistakes are made, blamed the copy editor…..

    Dennis

  35. 39 steve
    September 24, 2008 at 20:19

    Mccain has suspended his campaign to focus on the economy. Asks Obama to do the same.

  36. 40 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 20:20

    @ Dennis

    Thank you! 😀

  37. 41 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 20:20

    @ Steve

    Are you serious?

  38. 43 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 20:24

    steve,

    that’s because he has no clue what he is talking about and needs a crash course in economics, just like “i can see russia from my window palin” needs one in forgein policy…..

    here goes the next argument…i should have just shut-up….

  39. 44 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 20:26

    @ Steve

    That is very interesting. Thank you for the link.

  40. 45 Robert
    September 24, 2008 at 20:28

    Jennifer

    I’m surprised that anybody would take a lot of the medications that are advertised on the TV. Half the side effects sound worse than the illness. If you’ve got something serious then it is worth the risk. But if you have something relatively minor then I can’t understand why doctors would even think of exposing the patient to the risk (or the costs).

  41. September 24, 2008 at 20:31

    Chaque personne que parle (1) le français parle la langue de la liberté (2).
    (1) conjugation?
    (2) spelling? gender?

    Better than speaking "Amurcan."

    On Air: 127 Tom D Ford September 24, 2008 at 7:09 pm
    Holy Cats, me too! Just that I am not on the mailing list, don’t bother to check the website for updates, am not in touch with any of the 32 people in my area who voted for him…I am a rock. I am an iiiiiisland. Poor me. But I totally dig the movement and vote for him every time that he runs.

  42. 47 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 20:31

    @ Robert

    That’s true. My mom says if your illness won’t get you then the side effects from your medicine will! 😦 It’s horrible. I think a few drug companies got in trouble about their commercials awhile ago. Some doctors want to downplay the side effects so they can “cure” the patient.

  43. 48 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 20:38

    @ Robert

    This is an interesting article.

    Do consumers understand drug ads?

    http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,1806946,00.html

  44. 49 Anthony
    September 24, 2008 at 20:42

    So, Clay Aiken has publicly said he is gay. I don’t know one person that was surprised. Not really news worthy, but I thought it was funny 🙂 !!!

    -Anthony, LA, CA

  45. September 24, 2008 at 20:43

    @ Robert/Jennifer
    Re: Id theft

    Watching the video, it seemed so easy to collect the info from them. I wonder how people could be so dumb

  46. 51 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 20:50

    @ Nelson

    Re:Id theft

    I think many people are way too trusting. They don’t realize that they can question why someone needs their personal information. They don’t want to make waves either.

  47. 52 steve
    September 24, 2008 at 20:51

    @ Anthony

    That was about as shocking to me as when I found out the Pope was catholic.

  48. 53 Amy
    September 24, 2008 at 20:58

    re: Clay Aiken,

    Steve you beat me to the punch. I was so shocked when I heard that you could have knocked me over with a feather (much sarcasm, in fact it is dripping from my fingers as I type.)

  49. 54 Robert
    September 24, 2008 at 21:00

    Nelson

    There is a British show called the real hustle (repeated ad nauseum on BBC3 at home and BBC Prime in Africa and I would guess most other parts of the world.) Basic premise of the show is that it explains the tricks that con men use to get information and money. Despite all the props they use, it all comes down to confidence of the person asking the question or pulling the con. If you appear to have a legitimate reason for information, people are all too willing to accept it.

  50. 55 Julie P
    September 24, 2008 at 21:01

    @Clay Aiken,

    My disinterest is at a fever pitch.

  51. September 24, 2008 at 21:01

    @ Jennifer,
    Re: ID theft

    The rule of the real hustle say’s if it’s too good to be true, it probably is. How much simpler can it get?

  52. 57 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 21:03

    @ Nelson

    Some people are pretty quick to weed out the scams but some aren’t like the elderly…

  53. 58 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 21:05

    @ Jens

    Nope, Bill Gates was god’s chosen one to delivery the software. He works in mysteries ways.

    @ Steve
    “Mccain has suspended his campaign to focus on the economy. Asks Obama to do the same.”

    HA! Obama doesn’t need economics lessons and hasn’t been saying our “the fundamentals of our economy are strong” like McCain.

  54. 59 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 21:08

    @ Jessica

    Do you think Obama will suspend his campaign. Really? If he doesn’t then won’t he seem insensitive to the economy issue?

  55. 60 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 21:13

    @ Jennifer

    I don’t know what he will do, but I do not think he should. McCain has been on the defense lately, this is just another political ploy for Republicans to try and get a on higher ground. Incidentally, McCain-Palin have been on full campaign mode these past few days, while Obama has not had any scheduled campaign outings. So, as always, McCain and camp will only say whatever he needs to to gain points without bothering to do what he preaches.

  56. 61 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 21:16

    Has anyone been listening to the World Service documentaries: My Senator, My Vote?

  57. 62 selena in Canada
    September 24, 2008 at 21:20

    May I ask if someone is deleting Tom D Ford’s posts after they are approved. If so, for what reason?

  58. 63 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 21:21

    @ Missing post

    Is it me or are some missing? I was going to reply to a post, by Tom (I think) and now it’s gone… Maybe I need to get some ADHD meds… lol

  59. 64 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 21:23

    @ Selena

    LOL– you read my mind.

  60. 65 selena in Canada
    September 24, 2008 at 21:25

    Yes, the same thing happened to me. I read the post and before I could reply it was gone.

  61. 66 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 21:26

    @ Selena

    I approved it. Then came back and it was gone. Then it was re-posted so I deleted it again. I thought that someone had a problem with it. If someone else would like to approve it that would be fine.

  62. 67 Amy
    September 24, 2008 at 21:27

    Jennifer,

    I have even heard republican pundants saying that Sen. McCain should debate on Friday. What better place to talk about what their vision would be and what they think should be done. Weren’t you the one the other day that wanted Sen. Obama’s economic plan? Here is a place where that could be spelled out. To me, it seems like McCain doesn’t really want to be questioned about his economic ideas.

  63. 68 selena in Canada
    September 24, 2008 at 21:27

    Jennifer, where is it now?

    There was nothing wrong with it that I could see.

  64. 69 Tom D Ford
    September 24, 2008 at 21:30

    Once again:

    Hey! Mod/Censor! What’s wrong with a play on words with the word grammar?

    Like:

    “Both of my Grammas died long ago.”

    It is true and it also resembles a Gilda Radner SNL, “never mind” joke.

    A sense of humor please.

    Remember Emily Litella ranting about what wrong with violins on TV , only to be told the subject was “violence on TV”?

  65. 70 Tom D Ford
    September 24, 2008 at 21:32

    It’s a self deprecating joke.

    On me.

    Me playing the fool.

  66. 71 Roberto
    September 24, 2008 at 21:32

    RE “” i should have just shut-up….””
    ———————————————————————————————————-

    ——- Out of the mouths of babes…

    Seems prudent for McCain and Obama to suspend the campaign to study up what is shaping to be one of the most critical votes in US history.

    At any rate, financial experts can be seen as looting the world’s savings as George Soros alluded to several months back, so more “expertise” is the last thing needed,

  67. 72 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 21:33

    @ Selena

    1. I approved it when I saw it.

    2. I refreshed my browser and it was gone.

    3. I then assumed that I should not have approved it.

    4. When I refreshed my browser again it was there so I deleted it because I still assumed that it was supposed to be deleted because it had already been deleted once.

    5. I have no idea where it was.

    Several times posts have been double approved and I thought that someone else had made a differing judgment.

  68. 73 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 21:36

    @ Amy

    Thanks for your opinion. I think it’s curious too. I don’t know that they should have suspended their campaign. Personally, I think it’s kind of a bad judgment call too.

  69. 74 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 21:37

    @ Amy

    Exactly, brovo! That is what presidential debates are for to discuss their plans and polices for the US. I could care less about a “showing” to pretend to do something about the economy. McCain as Obama have no power to to anything. I personally want to keep hearing about their policies and how they plan to turn things around…. I am having a debate-watching party, wanna come?

  70. 75 Julie P
    September 24, 2008 at 21:43

    @Jessica,

    Let me book my airline ticket and I’ll be right up there for that debate watching party.

  71. 76 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 21:45

    jessica,

    i hope steve will be there…….. 😉

  72. September 24, 2008 at 21:46

    Jennifer , I sent you an email

  73. September 24, 2008 at 21:47

    McCain is running scared!

    Obama in press conference now and says debate should go forward.

  74. 79 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 21:49

    i am glad to see that islam is such an enlightened religion.

    geeze what is next……..swallowing buring coals?

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/england/manchester/7634275.stm

  75. September 24, 2008 at 21:50

    Obama: McCain can’t multi task.

  76. 81 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 21:50

    will,

    yeah would you not be scared in his place. he will lose his temper so badly and i cannot wait for him to be exposed as an angry man….

  77. 82 Luz Ma from Mexico
    September 24, 2008 at 21:50

    Hi everyone!
    First, thanks to Kelsie, Bob, Jonathan, Amy and Shirley for your posts in yesterday´s TP. I signed the contract today and officially I´ll start in my new job on October 1st 😀

    Bob, probably I´ll not have much time to blog 😦 , but I´ll try to do it. I love WHYS blog, it is so intelectually stimulating!!!

    @Punctuation
    I am obsesive about grammar (in my language). I would like to do it in English too, but I am far from that…

    @Medication and side effects
    I think overmedication is a severe problem in Western societies. I try to avoid taking drugs unless it is an absolute necesity. I have friends and relatives who have put their kids on Ritalin because they “have so much energy”. I am horrified about the serch for “quick fixes” for problems that need more assesment and theraphy.

  78. September 24, 2008 at 21:51

    Jennifer,
    Just a note that (as far as I have been able to tell), the usual way of doing things is to err on the side of posting, rather than on the side of deleting. I also remember Bob saying that he does not like to delete *anything* unless he consults with other mods. I know that it is tempting to think that someone else who knows better has gone above your head (I would, too), but it is also possible that the giant purple internet squid is eating posts. If another mod is going above your head and deleting posts, he or she really should explain to you. And another Bob-ism: Bob usually emails the person whose post has been deleted to explain what and why. I know that Bob is not the know-all end-all, but he does seem to have a level head on his shoulders and a fine understanding of how things work at BBC.

    Or was it a small green internet amoeba? Hmmmmm…

    I am also missing a post. Such is the life eh.

  79. September 24, 2008 at 21:53

    Obama: Spoke to McCain at 8.30 am – McCain returned call at 2.30 pm then went on TV to say he was taking presidential election to Washington – Obama disagrees and debates to go forward.

    Obama: Not in best interest to take political campaign to Washington while sensitive negotiations ongoing.

  80. 85 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 21:58

    @ Shirley

    Thank you for your explanation. That particular post was the only one I deleted. Because it had been deleted before by someone else unless of course, it disappeared after I approved it!

  81. 86 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 21:59

    @ Shirley

    I did approve your posts!

  82. September 24, 2008 at 22:00

    Jens –

    I think he will blow a gasket in the debate. Obama is way too cool and McCain just doesn’t have the right stuff to debate Obama.

    Jasus – Obama is a lawyer and McCain crashed a few aeroplanes!

  83. September 24, 2008 at 22:01

    Jennifer – do you use MSN Messenger? If you do mail the email address you see on this post – click edit to see it. Mail me so I can add you to MSN.

  84. September 24, 2008 at 22:02

    @ 700 BILLION for Wall Street

    I think that the government should bailout Wall Street by splitting this 700 billion equally amongst the American taxpayers. About $5,000 for each of the 138,000,000 of us.

    Our government, our politicians are telling us that they can “figure this out,” by the weekend. They can solve this by spending money. They just have to make up some good “New Rules.”

    Wall Street has been robbed of 50 or 60 trillion bucks… make sense of that!

  85. 90 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 22:03

    @ Will

    I don’t really use MSN messenger. I have it though.

  86. 91 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 22:03

    will,

    obama has to be carful not to come across too scholarly, apparently intelectuals are bad bad boys in ‘merica.

    plus don’t we know some lawyers that have some of the times issues staying cool and foused……. 😉

    yeah plus mccain was 395th out of 400 in his class. you got to try hard to be that low or you are just stupid like a rock.

  87. September 24, 2008 at 22:04

    Jennifer – please use it while you are moderating – it will make you life much, much easier. 🙂

  88. 93 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 22:06

    portlandmike,

    well it’s worse, we should trust the morons who gave us this debacle with 700 billion…….

    i mean why????? suddently overnight, virtually, they know how to fix it. do they realy belive all americans are on some form of medication….

  89. 94 steve
    September 24, 2008 at 22:06

    I’m not sure the real reason, but perhaps mccain thinks the economy is more important right now than his personal ambitions, while obama puts his personal ambitions ahead of the economy?

  90. 95 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 22:06

    @ Will
    That is exactly what this is, McCain is scared! Wants to avoid going one to one with Obama… I can’t wait to see Obama, you know what, you know where, you know how….

    @ Julie
    You’ll fit right in with my crew… Our drinking phrase will be “my friends”. LOL

    @ Jens
    Steve would be interested, some New Yorkers are not related to GOPs like me have have less patience. ;D

  91. September 24, 2008 at 22:06

    HAHAHAH! @ Jens

    Yeah – I was amazed that a successful guy could be seen as aloof and elitist – hey he has one car (Hybrid), a pushbike, one house and erm…….well!? LOL

  92. September 24, 2008 at 22:08

    I’m not sure the real reason, but perhaps mccain thinks the economy is more important right now than his personal ambitions, while obama puts his personal ambitions ahead of the economy?

    WWLDD? 😦

  93. 98 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 22:08

    @ Steve

    I agree.

  94. 99 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 22:11

    steve,

    maybe he needs to be educated about the economy. i don’t either his presence nor his limited knowladge will be helpfull in solving the crisis. ACTUALLY, i believe they are better off without his imput, since he still thinks the economy is sound. who would not with 7-plus houses and secure life style to the rest of his life…..

  95. 100 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 22:12

    @ Steve

    “perhaps mccain thinks the economy is more important right now than his personal ambitions, while obama puts his personal ambitions ahead of the economy?”

    LOL— what do you think McCain is doing taking a nap or gain a few points and learn something about the economy. Obama has a plan, McCain needs to get one and prepare for Friday… that’s all this is, McCain wants more time to study. Time is up, pens down.

  96. September 24, 2008 at 22:12

    Jennifer –

    I have just added you to MSN.

  97. 102 selena in Canada
    September 24, 2008 at 22:14

    @ Shirley

    The spam picks up many of your posts. I seem to retrieve a lot of them.

    @ Jennifer

    There does not appear to be very many posts that need attention. As far as I can see you did the right thing by approving Tom’s post. If someone approves a post with which other moderators have a problem, it would seem to be a good idea to consult a couple of people and go with the majority.

    Thanks for your response to my question.

  98. 103 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 22:16

    “Meanwhile, Palin’s infant son and two youngest daughters headed home to Alaska after a day of quintessential New York sightseeing with their father, Todd Palin. He took the children to the tip of Manhattan to see the Statue of Liberty. The family also visited ground zero, and then ate hot dogs and soft pretzels in Central Park.

    They stopped at the toy store FAO Schwarz, where daughter Piper tried on princess dresses, the campaign said.”

    is that because the think they will shortly become “US royalty”……..

    no wonder america is obese, pretzels and hot dogs.

    they realy should think about what the statue of liberty stands for…..realy realy hard

  99. 104 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 22:16

    @ Jens

    I really don’t think that’s it. At first, it seemed a really bad idea that McCain would suspend his campaign. But, when you think about it, really maybe he does want to help with the economy. After all, isn’t he affected as well?

    Why does everyone mention that 7 houses thing? Is Obama pinching pennies to buy food? No. Neither one of these men are even remotely like “regular” people.

  100. September 24, 2008 at 22:17

    Jess –

    “The fundamentals of the economy are strong” —–“erm, what I mean, my friends *Thumbs up* *stupid grin* is that what I mean is that the working people of this country – I mean, the working men and women (who I don’t think should get equal pay as men) are the real – um – …- My friends, the economy is the working men and women of America — they are…um…the fundamentals that I was talking about um……..*thumbs up* he he he he he *stupid smile* – I was a POW!”

    “Which debate?”

    Worse than Bush!

  101. 106 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 22:18

    jessica,

    i though it would be a great oppertunity for you two to discuss your wedding plans……plus we all could make sure that you two will have a blessed day…….

    🙂

  102. 107 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 22:18

    @ Will

    Alright

    @ Selena

    You are welcome!

  103. 108 selena in Canada
    September 24, 2008 at 22:18

    Neither one of these men are even remotely like “regular” people.

    You got that right Jennifer!

  104. 109 Robert
    September 24, 2008 at 22:19

    Jens

    Not sure if having McCain and Obama at the talks is good or bad.

    Perhaps an out going administration that doesn’t need to care about getting votes may have a more objective view on the difficult choices that need to be made. They might be able to maximize the long term recovery of the economy rather then minimizing the short term pain in the hope of securing an election.

    Then again the current administration might just be covering its back. Find a solution that last six months after which it can all be blamed on the new cabinet. Perhaps the two need to be there to make sure they inherit a decent recovery plan.

  105. September 24, 2008 at 22:19

    Jennifer –

    After all, isn’t he affected as well?

    Yeah – his wife may lose a few million out of her 100 million dollar fortune. 😉

  106. 111 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 22:20

    @ Jens

    I can’t wait to hear McCain justify “the fundamentals of our economy are strong”.

    Yeah, Wall Street and Washington could use a “smart” man like him figure what the big deal is, it’s only 700 billion.

  107. 112 viola
    September 24, 2008 at 22:20

    Other countries than China have food woes. From Canada: http://www.cbc.ca/consumer/story/2008/09/23/cfia/html

    Remember China’s killer pet food exports? Melamine was involved in that one, too.

    15 questions for the 1st debate: http://www.csmonitor.com/2008/0925/p08s01-comv.html

  108. 113 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 22:20

    jennifer,

    he knows he is going to go down like a flaming turd….

    i think having 7 houses and several million in the bank make it more comfortable to ride this storm out, than let’s say having lost your job, house and medical insurance. but that is just a humble guess on my part.

  109. 114 Michael
    September 24, 2008 at 22:21

    How about 2 year minimum, mandatory national service required for all US citizens.

    Four options:

    1. Traditional military service [Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines]
    2. Domestic defense and civil defense service [National Guard, Coast Guard, Police (local, state, federal), Port and Airport Security, Public School Security, etc]
    3. Peace Corps (going abroad to help undeveloped third-world countries)
    4. Americorps [staying in USA to help our own needs . . . think of the possibilities: teacher’s aides, front line social services, etc]

    No-one is exempt . . . people from all socio-economic levels and ethnicities/races and religions . . . all sexual orientations . . . even the physically disabled can be given something helpful to do. Perhaps, only those with serious mental disorders or mental disabilities would be exempt.

    All have initial training together and have to learn to live with each and cooperate. As training gets more specific, individual classes may be formed according to the specific training, but common living conditions and discipline remain between the services until eventual assignments or deployments.

    All are required to study a foreign language and culture during these 2 years, even if they have a domestic assignment.

    Satisfactory fulfillment of 2 years national service is required for acceptance into any post-secondary school or officer training type program.

  110. 115 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 22:23

    michael,

    a noble but impossible idea…….

  111. 116 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 22:24

    @ WIll

    “The fundamentals of the economy are strong” —–”erm, what I mean, my friends *Thumbs up* *stupid grin* is that what I mean is that the working people of this country – I mean, the working men and women (who I don’t think should get equal pay as men) are the real – um – …- My friends, the economy is the working men and women of America — they are…um…the fundamentals that I was talking about um……..*thumbs up* he he he he he *stupid smile* – I was a POW!”

    From your key board to god’s email.

  112. 117 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 22:26

    @ Jens

    I wouldn’t be so sure about that. 😀

    Obama may not have 7 houses but is he hurting? No. Will he do without medical insurance? Probably not. Loose his house? Nope. 😉 That’s why it doesn’t bother him to go right on with things as usual. At least McCain is doing something?

  113. 118 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 22:26

    @ Jens

    I think you and Steve make a much better couple. 😛

  114. 119 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 22:26

    viola,

    they already had one religious suck-up fest at the broke-back saddle church….

    the words christian and science do not go well in one sentence. unless it is a guy call Christian working in science.

  115. September 24, 2008 at 22:27

    JEss –

    I talk to God on a daily basis and …. well, you know the rest 😉

  116. 121 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 22:31

    jennifer,
    granted obama does ok, but i refer to the unemployed uninsured etc. there is simply no comparison.

    jessica,

    i would not want to whisk away the man of your dream, “my dear”, although it is ever so tempting………i think you two would make a wonderful and beautiful couple.

    i can already see steve administering free HPV shoots at the local school of your wonderfully gifted children….while you will be praticing at the shooting range with your personelized rose wood handel grip magnum 44.

  117. September 24, 2008 at 22:32

    steve~

    Do you believe that a bunch of politicians, who are aching to get home for six weeks, can solve this economy with a Bill? They are using the acronym TARP, the Treasury’s Troubled Asset Relief Program.

  118. 123 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 22:33

    Will

    ME TOO! That’s how I know I am right.

  119. 124 Michael
    September 24, 2008 at 22:34

    @ Jens

    proposing, discussing and striving for the noble ideas is often what leads to the change necessary to make what seems impossible to become possible, or at the least may raise the level further above our least common denominators.

  120. 125 jamily5
    September 24, 2008 at 22:37

    About meds:
    some of the radio commercials even went as far as speeding up the side effects so that we could barely understand what they were saying.
    You could want a drug that would help you sleep better and end up with many many more side effects.
    You might sleep better, but are nausiated half of the time and have a dry mouth and you might be constepated and, you might be gaining weight… … and those are just the mild ones.
    The thing is: they might not be sleeping because of emotional stress that they might need to deal with or a change in schedule or something that is totally forgotten.
    It seems that we often treat the symptoms and not the direct cause.

  121. 126 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 22:37

    jennifer,

    you are right mccain is doing something. he clearly displays that he has no grasp of reality. sound economy = american workers. so why oh why is unemployment rising, pay going down, health insurance unaffordable, people have to work two jobs, if they can find it, workers houses are repossesed, family go bankrupt because of medical bills. is that healthy. surely people must finally see who is taking the proverbial “pee” here…..

  122. 127 jamily5
    September 24, 2008 at 22:39

    @Julie P.
    that is great! A Student who corrects her professor’s grammar.
    Way to go!

  123. 128 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 22:39

    michael,

    that is true, but let us just address the fundament issues first and then go for the lofty goal.

    i seriously thing there is something to your proposal. howvere one of the issues is that you might ruin some businesses, by having all thes national service programs, which can undercut prices just because they are goverment run.

  124. September 24, 2008 at 22:42

    @ ALL

    Blast from the past 🙂

    From good cop to bad cop

    The Rules by which WHYS operates Our Contributors’ Charter

  125. 130 Robert
    September 24, 2008 at 22:44

    jamily5

    Your comment are pure madness, why do you except pharmaceutical companies to make a profit if what is required to sleep is a better schedule or change in diet. Without being able to sell $5 a pill medication all the accountants and managers will be having many sleepless nights themselves 😉

  126. 131 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 22:45

    my spelling is terrible….espcially on such an important day like punctuation day, although they are two different things. comma period exlamation mark

  127. 132 Robert
    September 24, 2008 at 22:48

    Sorry that last comment was supposed to start with how do you expect, not why. D’oh

  128. 133 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 22:49

    @ Jens

    My spelling is pretty bad too and sometimes I type words I didn’t even mean to! I have no idea about myself sometimes!

  129. 134 Julie P
    September 24, 2008 at 22:49

    @Jamily5,

    I love having a BBA, so I can fix a DBAs (PH.D) grammar! Hahahahahahahahaha!

  130. 135 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 22:52

    @ Jens

    I could argue that Obama doesn’t have a firm grasp on reality. What about all those tax breaks he wants to give that he had to change around? I am not saying that everything McCain or Obama says could be taken to the bank but…….

  131. 136 jamily5
    September 24, 2008 at 22:53

    @Jens,
    got to love your humor!

    On the upside, Julie P. you will never have to worry about your own children ruining your flying experiences.

  132. 137 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 22:53

    American v British teeth, is a BBC debate.

    i think teeth are in large an issue if you can afford a dentist AND the fact that you take care of them. i have seen horrible teeth in both the UK and USA, especially so amongst the working poor in the USA..

  133. 138 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 22:54

    @ Nelson

    Ok policeman, Nelson. Most regular bloggers violate those rules from time to time.

  134. 139 jamily5
    September 24, 2008 at 22:55

    @Michael,
    That is a good idea, but we would have to offer incentives for it to work… …
    pying the volunteers for their good behavior???
    There would have to be a majority vote and you won’t get it.

  135. 140 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 22:58

    jennifer,

    yeah and mccain does not want to give tax breaks. at least obama targets the ones who need it, while maccain is going to give them to tom, dick and harry, especially if those three are very rich. 5 million buck is middle class? sure it is. i am ressonably well off but still ver very far from that target.

    the one that lacks grasp of reality is fly-boy, he was born with a golden spoon in his mouth and married a diamond encrusted spoon. i don’t begrudge him his life and fortune at all, but him telling me he is one of us makes me puke, or better in PC-lingo “regurgitate a protein, fat and carbohydrate rich substance having undergone partial digestion”

  136. 141 Amy
    September 24, 2008 at 23:00

    My favorite side effect given for a medication is for all of the sleep aids. They give the warning that it may cause drowsiness. If I am having trouble sleeping, don’t I want to get drowsy?

  137. 142 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 23:00

    jessica,

    we could have nelson come dressed as a policman to yours and steve’ wedding, or maybe for either your’s or steve’s bachlor/ette party…… 😉

    could be an added attraction… 😉

  138. 143 selena in Canada
    September 24, 2008 at 23:02

    Hey Nelson,

    As a moderator, I am somewhat surprised by your comments. What brought this on?

  139. 144 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 23:02

    @ Jennifer

    “I could argue that Obama doesn’t have a firm grasp on reality. What about all those tax breaks he wants to give that he had to change around? ”

    I could argue that you have not read or listen to Obama, because he always explains how he will fund this initiatives. Also, McCain has a lot of tax cuts he’s like to implement and but his explanation of where the funds will come from do not add up… let’s hope Friday’s debate will clarify this.

  140. 145 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 23:05

    amy,

    yeah, plus do not take with alcohol…….well i was on a muscle relaxant, percocet and had a couple of drinks. i can tell you that mix is pretty good…..almost too good. i was just sitting in fron of TV and grinned at the news, while pakistan and idia were ratcheting up talks about nuclear strikes. i was just like “stop talking I want to see the frigging mushroom clouds, come on before the meds wear off…..”

  141. September 24, 2008 at 23:09

    @ Jessica

    The blog’s becoming unreadable for topics for our beloved leaders.

    We’ve become a bunch of pals down at the corner bar instead of interested world citizens hammering out issues that we want to confront.

  142. 147 Count Iblis
    September 24, 2008 at 23:11

    Jessica:

    Obama has a plan, McCain needs to get one and prepare for Friday… that’s all this is, McCain wants more time to study. Time is up, pens down.

    Indeed. The problem for McCain is that the time he thought he had to prepare for the debates has evaporated, because of the financial crisis. But, there is enough room to have the debates and be present in Washington. As Obama pointed out, they both have private planes and it is possible to be in Washington and then make it to the debates on time as that takes less than an hour.

    Another factor may be that McCain doesn’t like the idea of working very hard all they long and then hurrying to the debates and then face a much younger and fitter Obama. So, this is like the “3 AM add” with Obama replaced by McCain 🙂

  143. 148 Jennifer
    September 24, 2008 at 23:12

    @ Jessica

    I don’t think any Candidate who wants to give tax breaks is going to be able to fulfill that promise because we are in no position to do that. I find Obama to be a smooth talker but that’s about it.

  144. 149 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 23:13

    @ Jens

    “while you will be practicing at the shooting range with your personalized rose wood handle grip magnum 44”

    I do know how to shoot a gun and a rifle. *wink*

  145. 150 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 23:16

    nelson,

    i am partially guilty of injecting humor into troubled issues. however, without looking at it with humor, or even sometimes being the devils advocate one runs into the risk of being too earnest.

    anyway, i think the discusion is lively and addresses a lot of issues in one blog at the same time. just think where can you discuss rinitalin, obesity, vaccinations, economy, iraq war, mass murder and violence, presidential campaigns all in one go.

    plus in general the discussions are pretty level headed. it is just a matter of reality that sometimes things get a wee bit out of hand. at least here nobody talks over anybody else….

  146. 151 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 23:18

    jessica,

    i am sure your future husband will be teaching you 😉 as you know he is a life member of the NRA…..

  147. 152 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 23:19

    @ Jennifer

    I agree that all politicians blow out a lot of hot hair during elections. Not all their ideas will be able to come to flourish, because a President does not single handily have that much power, he/she [ 🙂 ] need congress… In terms of making sense, Obama is logical and McCain is just more like Bush. That’s what I cannot afford.

  148. 153 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 23:24

    “Obama rebuffed his GOP rival, saying the next president needs to “deal with more than one thing at once.” ”

    really, that is news to me, i thought the president has only to deal with ONE thing “staying the course”……

  149. 154 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 23:25

    @ Count Iblis

    LOL– That’s right… Just like Bush, his supporters are afraid of what will come out of McCain’s mouth.

  150. 155 Robert
    September 24, 2008 at 23:28

    Jennifer

    As I think we discussed at the weekend both candidates will be holding the economic policy close to their chests because anything they say is likely to be outdated and open to criticisms instantly. McCain has the embarrassing “strong fundamentals” to live down, Obama will be challenged for his tax cuts as you say.

    As an impartial outsider the economic policies of both seem equally strong (weak is the better word, but I’m trying for an optimistic outlook this week). There are so many unknowns (both known and unknown) that I don’t think anybody could pull together a consistent plan that would work for all eventualities.

  151. 156 selena in Canada
    September 24, 2008 at 23:28

    @Nelson

    We’ve become a bunch of pals down at the corner bar instead of interested world citizens hammering out issues that we want to confront

    Well frankly, I would have no interest in being here if we are not pals. Pals can talk to each other and try to understand differences.

    Can you please tell me when interested world citizens have ever hammered out anything?

    The only way to ever make a change is to get to know each other and become friends. There are people here who came in with guns blazing who have now become (tentative) friends. This is because we have listened to each other and realize we are more alike that we imagined. But we are just at the beginning of a process. Change takes time.

    If you want to formalize (as always happens when something is good, by the way) the discussion, it will lose its appeal for the very people who can make a difference. Formalizing the blog will change its very nature. It has evolved this way for a reason.

    Manners are needed and we seem to be working on that aspect but formal debate will not be in the best interest of moving forward, as I see it.

    So pub or not that is the question? 🙂

  152. 157 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 23:33

    selena,

    ditto……the next step we will be calling one another “dear madame selena of the parliamentary democracy and constitutional monchary of canada”

  153. 158 selena in Canada
    September 24, 2008 at 23:36

    @Jens

    Now I know I am not supposed to respond but I am ROTFLMHO. 😉

  154. 159 Jens
    September 24, 2008 at 23:39

    on this note i wish you all the best and i hope selena of the parliamentary democracy and constitutional monchary of canada did not bang her head against any solid objects while rolling on the floor.

    ciao

  155. 160 jamily5
    September 24, 2008 at 23:43

    @Nelson and Jens,
    Besides, this is the art of debate.
    We get to know our allies and opponents.
    And, they can change with each debate.
    Getting to know our allies and opponents personally helps us understand why they think like they do. when talking about “hammering out issues,” as a WHYS community, have we ever decided on an action and responded as one community?
    I have not been here that long.
    But,I don’t think that we have ever unitedly confronted an issue or have made a collective change outside our whys community.
    So, we are for discussion only.
    We might as well discuss many things.

  156. 161 Jessica in NYC
    September 24, 2008 at 23:43

    @ Nelson

    Yes, we do get aggressive at times, but sometimes certain topics call for stronger language. I am all for minding my Ps and Qs, but asking us not to joke or poke fun of politics is not a discussion. A blog is an informal duologue.

    Frankly, if you cut out the Steves who push my buttons or Jens/Julies tickle my funny bone and I may not be an active blogger… It’s not maintaining formal debate, it’s also about the thought that bloggers provoke and the subjects they introduce. I have only been an active blogger for about 2 months, it was regulars here like– Selena, Bob, Will, Mike, Kathi, Lubna who made me want to jump in the conversation.

    @ Selena, Sele!

    Pub! And I promise not to talk politics. Haha.

  157. 162 Michael
    September 24, 2008 at 23:47

    @ Jamily5

    “That is a good idea, but we would have to offer incentives for it to work… …
    pying the volunteers for their good behavior???”

    The incentive to join is that it is “mandatory service” . . . participation is required, they are not volunteers, unless they choose to continue participation after the required 2 years . . . in that case compensation would be necessary, and is the incentive to stay.

    “There would have to be a majority vote and you won’t get it.”

    At this point in time a majority vote would be unlikely, but discussion of the idea might yield options more helpful than the current situation. These days the discussion of such things is avoided as so many people are stuck in their individualism and materialism.

  158. 163 Amy
    September 24, 2008 at 23:51

    If we are going to become formal, I ‘d love all of you to address me as Empress Amy since I am the Empress of all things 🙂 (but Nelson, you can still call me AA!)

  159. September 24, 2008 at 23:53

    Bush is up for a comedy routine in 2 hours – oh what joy!

  160. 165 Amy
    September 24, 2008 at 23:56

    Michael,

    I love the noble thoughts of the manditory service. I think talking about it is great but a lot more talk is needed before anything would even get close to getting off the ground. Maybe by the time my 4 year old graduates high school……

  161. September 25, 2008 at 00:07

    @ Jessica, @ your second paragraph

    *applause*
    but there should be a balance.

    what we want to do is to blog for others?…
    to blog for world wide issues?… to try and engage BBC listners into participating. ?

    there should be a balance.

  162. 167 Jennifer
    September 25, 2008 at 00:10

    @ Robert

    I agree! I think both candidates will be under the microscope majorly about the economy because it is a horrible mess.

  163. 168 Michael
    September 25, 2008 at 00:11

    @ Amy

    You may be right . . . engaging in discussion is the first step and any real practical application may be years in the coming . . . but I am a little more optimistic, maybe by the time your 4 y/o finishes gradeschool.

  164. 169 Bryan
    September 25, 2008 at 00:18

    Nelson September 24, 2008 at 11:09 pm

    The blog’s becoming unreadable for topics for our beloved leaders.

    We’ve become a bunch of pals down at the corner bar instead of interested world citizens hammering out issues that we want to confront.

    I agree 100%. We debated this a few months ago. I still think this blog needs a chat page. Then people who want to talk about their ailments/familes/recipes/pets/gardening/sexual innuendo etc etc and get all lovey dovey with one another with the endless personal stuff can congregate there while those who want to stick to the topic or suggest topics of interest on the world stage can stay on the page.

  165. September 25, 2008 at 00:19

    WHYS moderation
    86 Jennifer September 24, 2008 at 9:59 pm
    @ Shirley: I did approve your posts!
    Oops, my bad. All good. The one that I was looking for was on the On-Air (religion & military)thread.

    102 selena in Canada September 24, 2008 at 10:14 pm
    @ Shirley: The spam picks up many of your posts. I seem to retrieve a lot of them.

    Ohboy. I thought that when one or two of the others stopped seeing them in spam, it was becasue they were no longer going to spam. I will have another round with WordPress tonight or tomorrow, inshallah.

  166. September 25, 2008 at 00:21

    WHYS moderation
    146 Nelson September 24, 2008 at 11:09 pm
    @ Jessica
    The blog’s becoming unreadable for topics for our beloved leaders.
    We’ve become a bunch of pals down at the corner bar instead of interested world citizens hammering out issues that we want to confront.

    Nelson,
    Who has commented to that effect? Where? When?

    I have read the blog to your post, #146, and unless someone has continued a massive deletion campaign, the discussion seems to be heavily centred on world affairs topics. I have not seen recipe exchanges or garden updates since the last time that I raised such topics, nor has anyone tried to give an update on the rearing of their child od an assessment of their day at work. And who knows but that such topics could actually lead to a larger discussion that would merit an airing on the radio show? I noticed that the charter to which you posted a link stated, in part, If the answer to those three questions is yes, your comment will be published (WHYS, Our Contributors’ Charter, https://worldhaveyoursay.wordpress.com/whys-faqs/our-contributors-charter, retrieved 24 Sept 2008). If we only posted items that we thought had a serious chance of being broadcast on air, the blog portion of WHYS would die. My understanding of the blog is that it is not only a place to post up soundbytes about which we are hopeful, but also to develop ideas that might contribute to an on-air topic. As far as I can tell, you are acting a touch too uptight about this.

  167. 172 Jennifer
    September 25, 2008 at 00:27

    @ Shirley

    I am glad that you found the posts! 🙂

  168. 173 Amy
    September 25, 2008 at 00:28

    Bryan,

    From the “chit chat” can spring new topics. I remember that when recipes were being talked about it led to a discussion on organic produce and it went on from there. I believe it even ended up on air. Not all topics can be of interest to all people and you never know when something will grab your attention. It seems to me that your only interest is the topic of Israel and whether or not there is “jewish bashing” on the BBC (maybe it is just me.) If we had a little more chit chat from you maybe we could find more common ground and that could open up many more avenues of discussion.

  169. 174 Jennifer
    September 25, 2008 at 00:35

    @ Bryan

    I disagree. I have never seen people on here get lovey dovey with each other or seen anyone give any overly personal information. But, I haven’t been on here very long so maybe that’s why.

    I do see people having differences of opinion and sometimes it goes to the next level; which will happen because people have different opinions. Many of the topics discussed are serious and people have strong opinions. It helps to have humor sometimes instead of always taking on the dreaded doom personality. Maybe that’s just me though….

  170. September 25, 2008 at 00:51

    79 Jens September 24, 2008 at 9:49 pm
    i am glad to see that islam is such an enlightened religion.
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/england/manchester/7634275.stm

    I had forgot that of course there would be the sentencing. I was delighted to read that Zaidi had been convicted. But did you see the terms of the sentence? Zaidi, of Station Road, Eccles, was given a 26-week sentence, suspended for 12 months. A second order which will also last for 12 months means that if Zaidi is found to have allowed or encouraged anyone under the age of 16 to beat themselves he could be returned to court for sentencing.

    Twelve months?! That's it??!! As I followed this case, I began to have doubts about this person's mental stability and his grasp on the distinction between religion and culture. The snippets that were printed in the media of the youths' statements indicated that Zaidi forced them to do zanjir and used his status as an adult to intimidate them into using his zanjir blades. These boys had every intention to follow the rules of the Hussayniya that youth under 16 years of age not participate in zanjir zani; Mr. Zaidi had no right to force them to do anything at all. Honestly, it smacks of child abuse, and his sentence is terribly light for having brought physical harm to children. I am so disappointed in the sentence.

    I am glad that the case was handled in a civil court rather than in an arbitration agreement. If he had been judged and sentenced by fellow Pakistani Shia Muslims, I think that he would not even have been convicted, much less sentenced to anything. I could be wrong, of course. But there is such n attitude of allowing the staus quo to continue and of imposing this "respect of authority" on youth and women that he would more likely have been found innocent frm the start were an arbitration method to have been used. Yes? No? Do we have any Pakistani readers tonight? Thoughts, anyone?

  171. September 25, 2008 at 00:54

    I love everyone! 😀 Except right-wingers! >(

  172. 177 Tom D Ford
    September 25, 2008 at 01:16

    Considering that the US is in a time of War, I believe that the president as a War Time President with special powers just might have the power to declare Martial Law and suspend the elections by himself and also make some drastic and disastrous move about this financial problem.

    He certainly cannot be trusted.

  173. 178 Tom D Ford
    September 25, 2008 at 01:25

    @ Michael September 24, 2008 at 10:21 pm

    “How about 2 year minimum, mandatory national service required for all US citizens. …”

    Good ideas!

  174. 179 Roberto
    September 25, 2008 at 01:27

    The incentive to join is that it is “mandatory service” . . . participation is required,
    —————————————————————————————————–

    ——– This is a nonstarter. It’s unconstitutional.

    Public and private education could incorporate courses involving public service as part of graduation requirements. Americorps could expanded, better funded and better managed with a GI type Bill to finance college after service.

    As it is, much voluntary service already occurs through churches and various community cleanup and food drive types of events.

  175. 180 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 01:27

    @Will:
    LOL–ditto.

    @Tom D Ford:
    While I share your mistrust, I don’t think martial law would be quite so cut and dried–certainly not legally, but also on the civil level: how many people would tolerate such a declaration, and for how long?

  176. 181 Jennifer
    September 25, 2008 at 01:29

    Schwarzenegger signs bill to outlaw texting while driving!
    http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2008/09/schwarzenegger.html

  177. 182 Tom D Ford
    September 25, 2008 at 01:30

    @ jamily5

    What do you think of Michaels’ proposal of two years service for everyone? What would you serve given your disability?

  178. 183 Jennifer
    September 25, 2008 at 01:31

    Being as it’s getting closer to that time! A flu shot article;)
    http://www.mercurynews.com/nationworld/ci_10547176

  179. 184 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 01:32

    @”Texting”:
    Good on. A recent study argues that sending and receiving text messages while driving is deadlier than driving under the influence of alcohol.

  180. 186 Jennifer
    September 25, 2008 at 01:36

    @ Kelsie in Houston

    I couldn’t believe that when I heard it! I have seen so many people pull up next to me at a stop light and take off texting. I can see where it would be so deadly. It takes so much focus off the road and other cars.

  181. 187 Pangolin-California
    September 25, 2008 at 01:38

    @ Steve~ “I’m not sure the real reason, but perhaps mccain thinks the economy is more important right now than his personal ambitions, while obama puts his personal ambitions ahead of the economy?”

    ROFL!! Man, that was funny. You’re kidding right? John (Keating Five scandal) McCain putting his personal ambitions ahead of the country has a groove like the Grand Canyon to ride in. For him to climb out of that personal habit would require the psychiatric equivalent of an Everest assault team.

    John McCain has either been handed a medical pink slip or realized that he’s standing on a pile of gunpowder and throwing matches.

    How does a guy with 8 houses and 13 cars explain to people that have had to spend four hours hunting for the gas to get to work that he understands their problems? He can’t. Maybe Sara (let them shoot their own dinner) Palin can explain to the little kids why mommy and daddy are throwing their toys out because they get foreclosed tomorrow.

    He’s toast.

  182. 188 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 01:38

    I walk a half-mile across my university campus–walking, mind you–and even that becomes dodgy at times because of students paying no attention where they’re going due to their heads being buried in their cell phone.

    I can’t imagine how someone thinks they’re in control, plunking out messages on their bitty phone keyboard while flying down the interstate…maybe they aren’t thinking.

  183. 189 Tom D Ford
    September 25, 2008 at 01:39

    @Jens September 24, 2008 at 10:39 pm

    On undercutting prices:

    If you want to know what Conservative Republicans consider to be of no financial value to society, look in your newspaper at the page titled “volunteers wanted”. Those are all the jobs that deserve no pay.

    Caring for your fellow man has no value to a Conservative Republican.

  184. 190 Roberto
    September 25, 2008 at 01:39

    “”He certainly cannot be trusted.””
    ————————————————————————————————————

    ——– And you can?

    16 yrs of American voters have shown that approx 90% of these voters have been instrumental in voting in the current government bad actors they complain of, but do little to remedy at the ballet box.

    Republican and democratic voters generally share the same disability. They are too often unable to use the other sides of their noggins, but most assuredly these pols know how to run them through their paces in order to get elected to do whatever they want with little personal responsibility.

  185. 191 Michael
    September 25, 2008 at 01:42

    @ Tom D Ford

    I don’t believe the US Constitution gives the President any power to “suspend elections by himself”. Even in wartime, the president must cooperate with the Legislative and Judicial Branches of government.

    Technically, even the power to declare war belongs to the Congress. Often the president puts such a declaration forth, but the Congress must still approve it.

    The president can never make any laws on his own. Although, the executive branch, under the president’s leadership can choose how to enforce the laws. So, perhaps martial law is a possibility, but I don’t think a likely decision unless there is some wide spread, imminent and real physical danger to citizens.

  186. 192 Amy
    September 25, 2008 at 01:43

    Jennifer,

    I wonder if countries other than the US offer flu shots. Is it something that our friends in Africa even deal with. My girls are not looking forward to it but they know they have to have it.

  187. 193 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 01:44

    @Pangolin:
    “He’s toast”

    You and I can both only hope. The thought of any candidate–Obama, McCain, [insert your candidate’s name here]–placing the economy of impoverished suburb-dwellers in St Louis ahead of their own personal ambitions is laughable, to put it very mildly.

  188. 194 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 01:46

    @Michael:
    I wonder, though, about technical “declarations of unlimited national emergency,” such as would follow in the wake of a large-scale incident like a nuclear exchange.

    The president can never make any laws on his own.
    But he can issue executive orders–not legally the same, but they carry a weight all their own. I’m not suggesting that the President could issue an executive order declaring martial law, but in the short run, he could throw his office’s power and influence behind something using the order…

  189. 195 Michael
    September 25, 2008 at 01:50

    @ Roberto

    “The incentive to join is that it is “mandatory service” . . . participation is required,
    ——– This is a nonstarter. It’s unconstitutional.”

    I don’t believe “mandatory service” is unconstitutional. Although a “voluntary military” has been established, a draft (at any time and for any reason) is not prohibited.

    I think your other ideas are good . . . and would make good steps toward my proposal, which could include a 5th option: Religious service

  190. 196 Jennifer
    September 25, 2008 at 01:55

    @ Amy

    Flu shots are just one of those things! They have the FluMist now and I think it’d be so much better! My brother doesn’t really like needles so he’ll probably have that. Maybe you could check into that for your girls.

    I would be interested in knowing if other countries give flu vaccinations too.

  191. 197 Tom D Ford
    September 25, 2008 at 01:56

    @ Kelsie in Houston September 25, 2008 at 1:27 am

    “@Tom D Ford:
    While I share your mistrust, I don’t think martial law would be quite so cut and dried–certainly not legally, but also on the civil level: how many people would tolerate such a declaration, and for how long?”

    In time of War dissenters are punished severely, so your question is moot.

  192. 198 Michael
    September 25, 2008 at 01:58

    @ Kelsie in Houston

    “technical “declarations of unlimited national emergency,” such as would follow in the wake of a large-scale incident like a nuclear exchange.”

    For Sure, such a drastic situation would include widespread danger to citizens.

    “executive orders” may initially carry the weight of law and the support of the enforcement by the executive branch, but I believe the can still be overruled by laws made by Congress or blocked by the Judicial branch.

  193. 199 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 02:03

    @Tom:
    Point definitely taken.

    @Michael:
    “Executive orders,” of course, are not in the Constitution…I agree there has to be oversight somewhere; I’d like to know if/where that’s articulated.

    @all:
    I know we don’t like WHYS to get America-centric, but: is anyone watching Bush’s Bail-Out-the-Bankers address?

  194. 200 Jennifer
    September 25, 2008 at 02:05

    @ Kelsie

    I am watching Bush’s address. Waiting to see Bill Clinton on Larry King! 😀

  195. 201 Jennifer
    September 25, 2008 at 02:08

    I know this topic has already been discussed but I just want to say I love this lady!

    Campbell Brown on Sarah Palin-
    http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/09/24/campbell.brown.palin/index.html?eref=rss_topstories

  196. 202 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 02:13

    @Jennifer:
    Some silver lining on this huge cloud: he’s improving his vocabulary batting average 😉

  197. September 25, 2008 at 02:16

    Kelsie –

    I KNEW he would pick up on Obama’s ‘Make sure CEOs don’t profit’ – hell, even McCain is copying Obama. What’s wrong with them? 😐

  198. 205 Tom D Ford
    September 25, 2008 at 02:17

    @ Amy September 25, 2008 at 1:43 am

    flu shots.

    A good nurse can give a shot that doesn’t hurt at all. A bad one can make it a nightmare to remember.

    I’ve had both. The best was when I asked her to tell me when, and she just patted my bum and said, “OK., we’re done!”

    The worst was when she squeezed my glut muscles together, jabbed the needle in, let the glut muscles go while the needle was still in and so the muscles tore around the needle, to my great pain.

  199. 206 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 02:21

    @Will:
    Notice the distinct lack of specificity on just how the administration would prevent CEOs from profiting in this moment…

    McCain has trended towards Obaman rhetoric since at least the RNC get-together in Minnesota, it seems…

  200. 207 Michael
    September 25, 2008 at 02:22

    President Bush made his point . . . it is urgent to intervene now, but not so urgent to make any regulatory changes . . . deal with regulations and oversight later . . .

    however, to many economists and politicians, it seems that some regulatory and oversight changes are just as urgent to make sure the intervention actually works, so expect it to take more time . . .

  201. 208 Tom (of Melbourne)
    September 25, 2008 at 02:24

    @ Re: The article on life after death.

    Though fascinating the consistent nature of stories from people who have “came back from the death”, I still find that their visions do not consistute what happens after one has died. The article describes how death is not necessarily a boolean event. With improved technology a clinically dead person could be brought back to life – and hence the reports on the subject’s experience during “death”. Rather than death being a shade of gray, I’d interpret that with technical advances the boundary of death is being progressively pushed back. This boundary, or literally the “deadline”, though is still very sharply defined.

    I believe that during clinical death, the brain is still warm and alive though dying. The patient was “brought back” to life because he/she wasn’t exactly dead. Their experience is likely a sensation of dying not of death. Once the deadline is crossed, however, the fate of the individual is sealed and no stories could be relayed back to the living ones. He/she may end up in heaven or hell or nothingless, but we’ll never know except through faith and prayers.

    So yeah, I am a sceptic of the after-death trial, but the result will still be a fascinating one as they could well explain the origin of faith itself.

  202. September 25, 2008 at 02:25

    Kelsie –

    They can do it, nothing at all stopping congress from saying this is the way it will be – Paulson has basically said that if “compensation” is given the companies can walk away – one word in their ear would scare them to death – “Nationalisation!” 😀

    They can’t walk away from that. 😉

  203. 210 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 02:27

    @Will re nationlisation:
    OOH! The rhetorical weapon of mass destruction. I’ve no doubt Congress does not want for the power–only the will (pun somewhat intended 😉 ) “The spirit is willing, but the flesh is so weak…”

    (actually, the spirit might be weak as well, in Congress’s case).

  204. 211 Jennifer
    September 25, 2008 at 02:27

    @ Will

    Oh my goodness!

  205. 212 Julie P
    September 25, 2008 at 02:34

    @Will,

    It was more fear mongering.

  206. September 25, 2008 at 02:47

    Will Rhodes <~~~~~~~~~~~ Evil when it comes to politics! 😈

  207. 214 Venessa
    September 25, 2008 at 02:53

    @ flu shots

    The only time I ever had my flu shots was when it was required. Every year that I did have the shot I was sick more often than the years I did not.

  208. 215 Tom D Ford
    September 25, 2008 at 02:54

    From TP 24 Sep:

    @ Bob in Queensland September 24, 2008 at 6:41 am

    “Mention of climate and air conditioning reminds me of something I’ve been meaning to ask about: the care, feeding and etiquette of air conditioning.”

    I read in Scientific American magazine that the temperature that feels best to a naked human being is 84 degrees F. Needs no clothing to retain heat and no cooling.

    When I was a kid in the Mojave High Desert I was told stories that the old miners would wear full body long johns year around, for heat in the winter and to slow evaporation of their sweat in the summer.

    I’d say turn that A/C from zero to max and back down over several days and just find your own range to play in.

    And just treat yourself once in awhile as a reward for all the heat you’ve suffered through to get to where you are now. Sort of like an adult “popsicle”.

  209. 216 Amy
    September 25, 2008 at 02:55

    Jennifer,

    My pediatrician is considering Flu Mist for my girls. We will have to wait and see. I know in the past some insurance companies have covered the shot and not the mist. I think we are safe with either but we’ll see. My older daughter is due for her booster for the chicken pox so she is getting poked no matter what 😦

  210. September 25, 2008 at 02:56

    Michael~

    “…it is urgent to intervene now, but not so urgent to make any regulatory changes.” Same old hurry-up-trust-me, as the Patriot Act runup!?

    I also wish he had said what the estimated value of this pie in the sky, that he wants us to put down a down payment on, is actually worth? I have heard this mostly invisible money is claimed to be around 62 trillion? Is that possible?

    The New York Times just published an article titled Plan’s Basic Mystery: What’s All This Stuff Worth?

  211. 218 Michael
    September 25, 2008 at 02:57

    re: flu shots

    One year I got a flu shot because it was required for my work with hospice patients. I didn’t get the flu that year . . . but I never got the flu any other year either.

  212. 219 Venessa
    September 25, 2008 at 02:58

    Will ~

    I love the real reason why McCain picked Palin. I just about fell out of my chair laughing. You can be evil when it comes to politics…. 😉

  213. 220 Michael
    September 25, 2008 at 03:00

    @ portlandmike

    “hurry-up-trust-me” is his pattern

    I don’t know the possible costs . . . only that the Congressional Budget Office says that they are not able to calculate it.

  214. 221 Amy
    September 25, 2008 at 03:00

    Vanessa,

    At least for my girls, the shot has helped a lot. I think over the past few years, they have missed school maybe one or two days each year. There are other kids who haven’t gotten the shot and ended up missing close to two weeks over the school year. My older daughter is considered “at risk” since she was a premie and she cannot afford to lose any weight. I just keep my fingers crossed every year that they don’t get sick because if they do, even if it is just a little, I always end up sick as a dog.

  215. 222 Venessa
    September 25, 2008 at 03:04

    Amy ~

    Don’t the schools require the shots as well? I had to have them when I worked in skilled nursing facilities and assisted living.

  216. 223 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 03:04

    @Bush pep talk:
    The overriding ambience of “do or die” reminded me of a passage from Robert Greene’s The 48 Laws of Power:

    The best deceptions are the ones that seem to give the other person a choice…. Force them to make choices between the lesser of two evils…[p]ut them on the horns of a dilemma: They are gored wherever they turn.”

    According to Mr Bush, et al, we’ve two choices: “1. Follow my plan; 2. The economy dies.”

  217. 224 Venessa
    September 25, 2008 at 03:12

    Kelsie ~

    Ugh, I can’t even watch because this administration frightens me so much. With every decision they make things seem to spiral down more. At least we can continue staying the course with Bush….it has worked phenomenally so far.

  218. 225 Julie P
    September 25, 2008 at 03:16

    @Venessa and Kelsie,

    Just when you thought things couldn’t possibly get more bizarre it does. I think this was all planned for Halloween.

  219. 226 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 03:25

    @Venessa:
    Quoting that all-American, Ricky Ricardo: “Morbid curiosity makes me want to hear more.”

    @Julie P:
    Haha!

    @parlous state of the economy:
    Maybe Phil Gramm will come out now and accuse Wall Street of “whining”!

  220. 227 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 03:26

    @all interested:
    Power just now came back on at my home…we will cross our fingers and pour out appropriate libations to the electricity gods that all remains well.

  221. September 25, 2008 at 03:39

    Just me, V – just me 😀

    I love the real reason why McCain picked Palin. I just about fell out of my chair laughing. You can be evil when it comes to politics…. 😉

  222. 229 Amy
    September 25, 2008 at 03:43

    Vanessa,

    While schools require lots of immunizations, a flu shot isn’t one of them. They are highly recommended but not required.

  223. 230 Pangolin-California
    September 25, 2008 at 04:06

    @ Bush Con (speech)~ This is called the fallacy of the false choice. It’s a classic sophist debating tactic as well as a favorite way to sell a con.

    A contractor knocks on the door in Texas and finds and elderly person there. “Look at your roof” he says “you got real beat up in the hurricane.” The dim-sighted elderly person can’t see any damage but then really can’t see any detail on the roof at all. “It didn’t leak.”

    “Well the shingles are pulled away from the underlayment and the first wet freeze that’s going to just fall apart. I’m working down the road but if you don’t get somebody on it the repair cost will triple.” Then he says…

    I’ll fix that for only $700 (billion) but you have to decide in three days. I’m leaving town after that. I’ll need cash up front too.

    It’s the roof patch con times a billion.

  224. 231 Bob in Queensland
    September 25, 2008 at 04:06

    @ Kelsie

    As soon as you said there was an official announcement you’d not have power until Monday, I had a hunch you’d be back on soon. They never get things like that right!

    A note to other moderators: I’m off to Brisbane for the day shortly so I won’t be around for my usual “graveyard shift”.

  225. 232 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 04:11

    @Bob:
    This is one time we’re VERY thankful they didn’t get it right!

  226. September 25, 2008 at 04:33

    The conundrum of the finical debacle is that we are addicted to credit. Much like some addictions that the withdaws will kill you, so it might be with credit to the US economy. If the credit instituions fail, then the American consumer will have to rely on “cash on hand” to spend on stuff. That willing cause a lot of people to stop buying things. if people stop buying things, then the people who make the product or supply the service will no longer have jobs. that will mean less people will be able to afford buying things, which will men more people will not have jobs.

    The problem is that if you bail out the credit entities then people will be able to continue down the same road we are already on. How long before that falters?

  227. 234 Jessica in NYC
    September 25, 2008 at 04:39

    @ Sir, Nelson of the Great Nigeria:
    Since some people have picked how they wish to be address in a formal debate I hear by announce my title. Please address me as “Your Hummable Highness” something modest for me, thank you.

    @ Mr. Bryan in lovey dovey world
    Come one, gives us a a hug!

    @ Madam Shirley of Pinkville,
    Speaking of “recipe exchanges or garden”, I received my first two plants ever as a gift, and am having a hard time keeping them alive. 😦 I don’t understand. I even scheduled regular water feeding on my palm pilot’s to-do list. *sigh*

    @ Madam Jennifer,
    Welcome to the mod table, hope you enjoyed yourself.

  228. 235 Jessica in NYC
    September 25, 2008 at 04:59

    @Empress Amy, Honorable Lord Bob Of Queensland and madame Selena of the parliamentary democracy & constitutional monchary of canada– I am having name tags made.

    @ Pangolin-California
    RE Economy
    Now I’m rolflmho. I am borrowing the “Sara (let them shoot their own dinner) Palin”. Did you see her interview with Katie Curic, she was asked to name one policy in which McCain’s History of supporting regulation and she was stumpted (again!). Palin could not name a single instance in which McCain has advocated for more regulation of the market. Boy you’d think she had been prepped for the interview by her staff. She’ll she did say “I’ll get back to ya.” hahahahahahahahaha oh, Biden will take her to town even if he does think the TV existed in 1929.

    @ Kelsie in Houston
    McCain is toast, 9 points behind Obama. He is scared and trying to stay relevant in an a discussion where he completely doesn’t understand anything about the economy. I hop Obama keep running the ad that shows McCain says, ” “I still believe our fundamental underpinnings of our economy are strong.” He can take that to the bank.

  229. 236 Jessica in NYC
    September 25, 2008 at 05:06

    @ Text messaging while driving
    Jiminy cricket, isn’t using your cell phone while driving illegal? So their are bright people out there who think text messaging is safe and does not apply? Thank everything holly, I am in NYC safely seated in my subway cart eating/texting/sleeping/reading/dancing/etc without having to worry of killing someone.

    @ Jennifer
    RE: Campbell Brown on Sarah Palin-
    “Allow her to show her stuff.?” I agree, Free Sarah Palin from McCain sexism!!!

  230. 237 viola
    September 25, 2008 at 06:49

    Did anyone see the Tony Blair interview on Charlie Rose? He reaffirmed the existential battle going on within Islam and between Islam and the rest of the world. His summing up: A leader has to do what he believes is right, not what is popular.

  231. 238 Pangolin-California
    September 25, 2008 at 07:11

    @ Jessica in NYC~ New York specific question. On NPR they had a bit where they were talking about these banks the Feds are planning to bail out not paying employees anything more than the highest federal pay grade.

    Apparently the bankers were protesting that the $450K the president gets paid amounted to a hardship posting in NYC and wouldn’t even buy a 1 bedroom penthouse in TriBeCa.

    Just wondering; who the freak is so insane to spend a million dollars on a one bedroom apartment that probably has building fees on top on that? Is this a peculiar NYC illness?

  232. 239 Tom D Ford
    September 25, 2008 at 07:17

    @ viola September 25, 2008 at 6:49 am

    ‘Did anyone see the Tony Blair interview on Charlie Rose? …”

    Early in Bushs’ first term he declared a new Crusades and eventually Tony Blair signed on.

    The biggest problem in the world is Fundamentalist Religionists, and they are named right-wing-Conservative Christian Republican Evangelicals and Fundamentalist Muslims like Osama Bin Laden.

    Both extremes need to be stopped in their tracks!

  233. 240 roebert
    September 25, 2008 at 07:19

    Re: Blair “A leader has to do what is right, not what is popular.’ No, only a fascist dictator does ‘what is right.’ Democratically elected leaders are supposed to heed the wishes of the electorate.

    The (American) classic that all Americans need to be reading right now: Moby Dick, with Bush as Ahab and Iraq as Moby. For this pupose, it seems, did the great Melville write this prophetic thing.

  234. 241 Bryan
    September 25, 2008 at 07:33

    Jessica in NYC September 25, 2008 at 4:59 am

    @ Mr. Bryan in lovey dovey world
    Come one, gives us a a hug!

    Consider yourself virtually hugged.

    Amy September 25, 2008 at 12:28 am,

    That’s a bit unfair. I don’t only concentrate on Israel and often my defence of the country is in response to an ignorant or malicious remark on this forum. Here’s some of the subjects I have dealt with in quite a lot of depth this month:

    Katrina

    Terrorism

    US elections

    Media bias

    International aid

    Iraq

    South Africa

    And I’ve made the occasional joke.

    But guess I was a bit unfair at 12:18 am so we’re equal.

    Here’s a talking point I’d really like aired:

    Should a news organisation that is funded by the public and committed by its charter to impartiality be energetically promoting the fortunes of one political party over another?

    I’ve mentioned it before a couple of times and it is just cheerfully ignored. Some people on this blog even claim the BBC is impartial in its coverage of the US elections. You gotta be kidding.

  235. 242 roebert
    September 25, 2008 at 08:26

    Bryan: Partiality is unavoidable as long as the thing is being run by human beings. The problem is how wrong-headed that partiality can be, especially in a total society that is committed to one or another preconceived socio-political ideology. Europe is left of centre, and until that changes, the BBC will follow the left-of-centre line, right or wrong. The nice thing about the BBC coverage, however, is that you can always auto-correct by moving your mind right-of-centre in compensatory fashion. Watch out, too, for BBC subtleties: a certain tone of voice, a snort of contempt that can only be heard in the BBC ether. Given all these devices, and using your own ability to read between the lines, BBC coverage can be quite informative and even accurate.

  236. 243 Tom (of Melbourne)
    September 25, 2008 at 08:27

    @ Air-conditioning,

    An office that I visited in tropical Kuala Lumpur last year had its aircon turned on so strongly that the windows are damped with condensation. Apparently this was to enable office workers to come to work in their full suit and tie! That is a classic example of vanity over practicality, not to mention a big waste of electricity. What would those office workers do with their suits once they step back out into 33°C 100% humidity condition?

  237. 244 Jonathan
    September 25, 2008 at 09:31

    @Jessica/Spelling/Grammar/FreudianSlip

    Misspelling may be a “cardinal sin,” but it is never a “carnal sin.”

    That’s something quite different (and much more fun).

    [/dirtyoldman]

  238. September 25, 2008 at 09:36

    Jennifer,

    I refer you to my last post re. Truth and Consequences.

    Did you see it and were unable to respond due to the veracity of the information within? I look forward to a counter position if you or anyone else think they can mount one.

    I urge you and others very strongly to consider whether it is principled or indeed ethically appropriate to support the McCain & Palin ticket, in any way whatsoever.

    I am convinced that it is yours and many like you with your blinkered opinions and points of view that has allowed America to get to the position where it currently finds itself. You have a lame president leading a ruderless administration, spending billions of your tax paid dollars on unwinnable wars, and now your economy is facing possible meltdown because the “Bush Billionaires” and similar couldn’t wait to ride on the backs of your ignorance, and round you all up for the interminable journey into a town called “Financial Hell.” You only have yourselves to blame for allowing such a narcissistic bunch of self-serving Republican cowboys selling you down the river on a boat called – False Promises & Lies.

    By the way I get the feeling that you would’ve supported Hilary Clinton, if she’d made it to the nomination, mainly because she’s a woman. If it were at all possible, she would’ve killed to become the first woman president, such was her GOD GIVEN RIGHT in her eyes. She has a similar misplaced Christian/political zeal to that of Tony Blair.

    The accounts in her book when accompanying her husband at Sarajevo airport in Bosnia as opposed to the visual evidence that clearly shows her calmly accompanying him and receiving a bouqet of flowers from a totally unflusterd and stationery little Bosnian girl on the tarmac, completely counters her version that she had to run for shelter from Serb sniper fire all around them, for risk of being shot and killed. That is a BLATANT LIE! And you and so many other women either want to switch your allegiance from the Democrats to McCain so as to spite Obama and potentially stop him getting an honest shot at the presidency. Or you want to place your faith and trust in someone who so casually PERVERTS THE TRUTH of a situation, and not forgetting that she let slip that she’d have NO QUALMS about NUKING IRAN if necessary. In all honesty I ask you! You and the millions of women like you do your international political homework now and everytime your so convinced of someone’s integrity, just because she’s a WOMAN!

  239. 246 Robert
    September 25, 2008 at 10:20

    Bryan

    Just a thought but if the BBC is publicly funded and the UK public are naturally left of center (compared to American politics) then surely they are simple following the political mindset of its owners? Much like all other news organisations.

  240. 247 Jonathan
    September 25, 2008 at 10:35

    @Mandatory national service

    This would be solution to what problem exactly? Lack of fascism?

  241. 248 Jonathan
    September 25, 2008 at 10:45

    @Michael

    It’s evidently escaped your notice that the US is no longer governed according to the rules that used to apply.

    A few examples include fighting an undeclared “war” or two, a vice president who claims he is not in the executive branch, and best of all the “signing statements” by which the president can sign a bill, then proceed to ignore it and violate it. Great piece in the Washington Post (I think) a few years ago about signing statements.

  242. 249 roebert
    September 25, 2008 at 11:20

    About the self-correcting telepathic service of the BBC: Just to clarify what I mean: some time ago, during the xenophobic episode in South Africa, the BBC asked a young South African why the reactions had been so violent. The person replied, as usual, that the violence was the result of the legacy of apartheid. In the brief but pregnant pause which followed this statement I distinctly heard the word “Bullsh*t” transmitted by the BBC telepathic service, and understood what the true position was. Of course the BBC will vehemently deny that they transmitted such a thing, or even that the telepathic service exists. But I can only testify as to my own indisputable experience of it.

  243. 250 Bryan
    September 25, 2008 at 11:24

    roebert September 25, 2008 at 8:26 am,

    I’ll reflect on that.

    Robert September 25, 2008 at 10:20 am,

    According to the results of recent local elections in Britain and polls, the left has lost popularity to an extraordinary extent. Will the BBC reporting and staffing reflect this change? One might as well ask: Will Osama bin Laden convert to Christianity?

  244. 251 Roberto
    September 25, 2008 at 11:25

    RE “”whether it is principled or indeed ethically appropriate to support the McCain & Palin ticket,””
    ——————————————————————————————————-

    ——– About the same principles and ethics of supporting the Obama/Biden ticket of Chicago politics and Maryland credit card industry.

    All depends whether the voters prefer the flashy red packaging or the flashy blue packaging because most assuredly that is all the average voter sees as can be seen in the comments on this forum.

    While congress dickers over the trillion dollar wallstreet bailout, they passed a routine 610 billion dollar spending bill chock full of earmarks, including those engineered by earmark king, indicted 85 yr old senator Ted Stevens who is still active.

    The voters have already displayed even lower principles and ethics in previous votes the previous 16 yrs, so there is a concern in the two parties that they may need to put a new gloss on the ethics and principles pig for the big show as the economy collapses to the center of the earth.

  245. 252 rick
    September 25, 2008 at 11:32

    @ Michael Re: conscription
    Canada would fill up with healthy young men real quick. (just like last time)
    And – You ain’t getting my sons (even if I was American)
    Problem is that you join the local home defence and some nutter of a president calls a war and off you go to the the other side of the world and get blowed up real good. Naa, we won’t be doin that.

  246. 253 roebert
    September 25, 2008 at 11:47

    If incorrect grammar were a carnal sin, language would mutate more rapidly than virus.

  247. September 25, 2008 at 11:47

    @ Will:

    Your commentary for this blank page has been absolutely stellar. Thanks for the morning read! 😉 lol

  248. 255 steve
    September 25, 2008 at 12:20

    For all of you proposing mandatory service in the US, I recommend you read the 13th amendment, which I have taken the liberty of copying and pasting:

    Section 1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime where of the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.

    Section 2. Congress shall have the power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

  249. 256 steve
    September 25, 2008 at 12:23

    wow, thanks for the laughs this morning, with all the conspiracy talk of Bush suspended the elections. I’m curious, given that this is an impossibility and won’t happen, is it what you want?

  250. 257 steve
    September 25, 2008 at 12:25

    Saying that the BBC is left of center because the British people are left of center is like seaying Fox News is left of center because it’s owned by an Australian, and australians are left of center.

  251. 258 Bob in Queensland
    September 25, 2008 at 12:43

    Fox News is owned by a rich FORMER Australian who gave up his citizenship to allow him to buy Fox when American law prohibited foreign ownership.

    As for the left/right of centre argument, it’s probably more accurate to say that pretty much all of America is to the right of the rest of the world. Compared to the UK (which is the country I probably know best) the Democrats are probably roughly on a par with Tory “wets” and the American spectrum spreads right from there.

    …not a comment on right or wrong (pun intended) just a statement of fact.

  252. 259 roebert
    September 25, 2008 at 12:47

    No it isn’t saying the same thing. The BBC is a public broadcaster which reflects the viewpoint of the majority of the public. Fox news isn’t.

  253. September 25, 2008 at 12:50

    One day from the foothills of Mordor, the vile liberal ‘agenda’ will spread across Middle Earth and Fox news too, will fall to the liberal Orcs and Demons of Isengard.

  254. 261 Jonathan
    September 25, 2008 at 12:58

    @Bob

    So America is to the right of the rest of the world, and has the highest standard of living in the world (i.e., is the wealthiest), the lowest unemployment rate, etc.

    Likewise, UK is to the right of France, and has a commensurately healthier rate of economic growth, and a lower unemployment rate, etc.

    One can place countries on a continuum of left/right by generally accepted criteria (degree of state control of industry, and other objective indicia), and with I’m sure a few exceptions, I think the “right” countries will be richer than the :left” ones all the way along.

    Of course for truly “left” countries, you’d have to go back in time, since the big ones have seen the light and set themselves right, but you can compare, say, China, India, and Russia then vs. now; it hasn’t been all that long. Or, hmm, Cuba, either with the rest of the world, or the rest of the Caribbean–its 50-odd years of left rule have “left” it behind, from being the richest in the region to the second-poorest, just above Haiti and continuing to sink.

    Just a statement of fact.

  255. 262 Robert
    September 25, 2008 at 13:05

    Bryan

    As I said it’s just a thought. Unfortunalty as roebert says as soon as any human decision is made a bias is introduced. Add to that the fact that all people have a tendency to see information that supports their view as impartial and information that doesn’t as biased and it is an impossible task to appear to be impartial by any news organisation. The BBC although not perfect, overall does a reasonably good job overall. Yes there are some articles that show a slight bias but in the grand scheme of the shear numbers of articles it produces a few are likely to slip through. What would you want instead? A large thought control section within the news team that slows down the reporting process adds to the cost for the license fee payers in the UK or that the number of articles produced is reduced?

    If people truely want impartial views then they will seek more than one source of the information to constrast and compare. Otherwise they will simply seek out a single source of information they aligns with their own personal viewpoints.

  256. September 25, 2008 at 13:07

    Hi Kate
    EU is out of the peace process in the Mideast because it has lost touch. This elaborate system of Russia, NATO and UN hasn’t worked because it has failed to tackle problems at the root.
    Look at Iran, essential to any comprehensive peace package in the region, we are simply ignored.
    As former president Seyd Mohammad Khatami says: “You call us terrorists, we call you heathens,” and so the charade goes on, until we fight it out. That’s how the Eight Year War with Iraq started. Some people on both sides are trigger happy. Iranian prelates are provoking a scrap becasue it will keep them in power and eliminate their opponents at home. Radicals, Republicans or Neo-Conservatives in Europe and America are itching for war since it will entrench them in power.
    Khatami says dialogue is the only alternative and it doesn’t cost anything, but let’s talk the talk and walk the walk with a purpose and strive for peace.

  257. 264 Bob in Queensland
    September 25, 2008 at 13:11

    @ Jonathan

    Your theory falls down slightly if you include most of the Scandinavian countries which are heavily socialised…but offer an extremely high standard of living. Or perhaps they’re just the exception that proves your rule.

    On the original discussion, my point about America being right of centre in a global context was to do with the BBC. In global (or even British) terms it’s pretty central in its editorial balance–but inevitably this will seem more liberal than the USA is used to.

  258. 265 Jonathan
    September 25, 2008 at 13:14

    @semantics

    Just for fun, and so selena can say “I told you so,” I saw Bernard-Henri Levi on the tube a day or two ago; he talked about the “deregulated” financial system in the US, free trade, and the rest of what people routinely, and wrongly, refer to as “right wing” or “conservative.”

    He called it “ultra-liberal,” and as a leftist, he condemned it. But at least he got the concepts and the nomenclature right.

  259. 266 John in Salem
    September 25, 2008 at 13:14

    One way to see this bailout is in terms of Republican strategy – their philosophy of smaller government and reducing entitlement programs is aided by massive debt. It forces lawmakers to restrict or cut off programs that the government can no longer afford. This debacle fits very neatly into that goal, and if Obama wins the election he’ll be the one holding the bag (and the blame).

  260. September 25, 2008 at 13:14

    Hi Pink (Shirley)
    I posted a response to your question on the other page.

  261. 268 steve
    September 25, 2008 at 13:20

    @ Roebert

    In the US we have National Public Radio, which is very left leaning, even my liberal friends call it Socialist Public Radio, and the US is not a left leaning nation, and NPR is publicly funded.

  262. 269 Jonathan
    September 25, 2008 at 13:21

    @Bob

    Sure, of course an honest comparison would have to include the Scandinavian countries. Good standard of living, on a par with Europe, yes? Very high taxes and gov’t control, but still most of industry is privately owned, so I’m not sure how much of an exception they are. They fall outside the curve, but not far outside it, if you see what I mean.

    (I never understood that expression, “the exception that proves the rule.” How can an exception prove a rule?)

  263. 270 steve
    September 25, 2008 at 13:31

    Check out the Iranian president’s UN speech:

    http://www.finalcall.com/artman/publish/article_5253.shtml

    “The dignity, integrity and rights of the American and European people are being played with by a small but deceitful number of people called Zionists. Although they are a miniscule minority, they have been dominating an important portion of the financial and monetary centers as well as the political decision-making centers of some European countries and the US in a deceitful, complex and furtive manner. It is deeply disastrous to witness that some presidential or premiere nominees in some big countries have to visit these people, take part in their gatherings, swear their allegiance and commitment to their interests in order to attain financial or media support.

    This means that the great people of America and various nations of Europe need to obey the demands and wishes of a small number of acquisitive and invasive people. These nations are spending their dignity and resources on the crimes and occupations and the threats of the Zionist network against their will. ”

    Right. I’m sure by zionist he’s not referring to Jews. Please.

    This must be the most antisemitic speech in UN history.

  264. 271 Jonathan
    September 25, 2008 at 13:42

    @Archbishop’s notion of morality and markets

    Organized religion has been a dedicated enemy of free markets throughout history, because capitalism, being essentially meritocratic, is a revolutionary force and a mortal threat to the old order of aristocracy and theocracy. The rise of the middle class has exactly coincided with the decline in the fortunes of
    religious authority and the royalty with which it coexisted.

    The Pope (every Pope I remember or have hard of) always lectures on the evils of capitalism, and the Archbishop carries on the tradition. Qualified to talk about morality? Perhaps. Qualified to talk about economics? Emphatically not. Free to spout nonsense? Sure, and we’re free to ignore it.

  265. 272 John in Germany
    September 25, 2008 at 13:46

    Concerning the statement of a senior Bishop in UK.

    Of couse he has a right to make a stement that is true to the bone. The financial world has got out of hand, in all countries. Most ,but not all of these gamblers are cold calculating, greedy, self opinionated, and do not care a damm about those that have nothing. The law makers are at fault as well for not controlling the whole system by effective laws. The tax payer has saved a lot of them, without a chance of a return. (he cant say no). The government decide. Trouble is, some one has cocked up at the beginnig, made mistakes that would be the sacking in most industries, and are so cold that they even collect bonuses for making greivious errors. Some one has made a hell of a lot of money on provision for arranging the deals, There is even money to be made on transfering money.

    It is clear when listening to the BEEB at the moment ,from which side the speakers come. i bet you can see the dollar signs in the eyes of some.

    Well they will be saved, will laugh all the way to their banks.- The jobless caused by the incompetance of others will cry, commit suicide, marriages will break up, chilldren will be placed on the bread line, and not one of those who are at fault will care a damn…i would like to be proven wrong.

    A lot more church men could speak up, and make thier sorrow public.

    Bless you all.
    John in Germany.

  266. 273 Michael
    September 25, 2008 at 13:47

    Is mandatory National Service constitutional?

    Seems to be some disagreement on this . . .

    The United States has practiced several forms of mandatory National Service throughout its history. The Militia Act of 1792 and the Selective Service System (a.k.a. the Draft) are the two most referenced examples. Probably the most commonly experienced form of mandatory service is jury duty. Also, it can be argued that paying taxes is a form of mandatory National Service.

    One can reference dozens of US Supreme Court Cases that weighed individual rights versus civic obligations. The most prominent case on this matter is Butler v. Perry (1916). In this instance the Court ruled that the 13th Amendment does not apply to mandatory national service.

  267. 274 Jonathan
    September 25, 2008 at 13:47

    Actually Steve, that sounds about average for the UN.

  268. 275 Michael
    September 25, 2008 at 13:50

    from Butler v. Perry (1916)

    From the US Supreme Court (February 21, 1916): “[The 13th Amendment] introduced no novel doctrine with respect of services always treated as exceptional, and certainly was not intended to interdict enforcement of those duties which individuals owe to the state, such as services in the army, militia, on the jury, etc. The great purpose in view was liberty under the protection of effective government, not the destruction of the latter by depriving it of essential powers.”

  269. September 25, 2008 at 14:09

    Hello again Matthew, Please this post cannot be approved in it’s current form Kindly shorten and repost.
    Kindest regards,

    Jennifer,

    Cat got your tongue?

    Roberto, all your arguments side on the part of America, whether it be Democrat or Republican. You don’t appear to see the bigger picture beyond the “Land of the Free” (so called), a misnomer if ever I’ve heard one. Of course you suffer at the whim of your politicians, and their selfish supporters.

    You, like many of your fellow countrymen don’t seem to be able view the world outside your own insularity as a nation.

    Where’s your comment about Hilary Clinton’s LIE at Sarajevo airport, Bosnia. Her NUKE IRAN policy if she so wished.

    Take the blinkers off! Reagan, Bush Snr, Clinton, Bush (Cowboy) it doesn’t matter who, even Jimmy Carter to a lesser extent, all have sown considerable seeds of discontent around the world in recent times throughout differing regions. Spent millions and billions of your tax paid dollars, spreading the message that we’re your friend as long as you LISTEN, OBEY and FOLLOW ORDERS my dear compliant and subjugated friends.

    Recent examples of this before Iraq and Afghanistan being Yugoslavia and Kosovo. The Dayton agreement carved up everything, the US allowing Germany to support Croatia’s wish for independence sparked everything off, and the domino effect of Bosnia becoming embroiled after the first shot fired from Bosnian Muslim snipers upon a Serb wedding party in Sarajevo. These are FACTS my friend. The US actively encouraging and supporting on the ground the influx of Mujahedeen/Al Qaeda fighters and recruiting and arming the KLA (Kosovo Liberation Army) so as to try and ethnically cleanse and eradicate any previous evidence of Serb life there. Ironically, they accused the Serbs of doing the very same, of what in fact was happening to the Serbs then and for many years beforehand, being primarily biological by the Kosovar families producing more children than the average Serb family ever could.
    It’s just not reported to a mass audience. Can you work out why? It’s not too clever to release this information for mass consumption is it, really? Not exactly holding the US, GB and NATO up to a good light does it?

    Then the largest NATO Coalition air force since the Second World War concertedly bombed and indiscriminately targeted cities and towns across Serbia for 78 days, killing thousands of citizens, official numbers of those killed and injured still not released to this day. I’ve been to Belgrade and witnessed what you guys did firsthand, and believe you me it’s nothing to be proud of. Now I’ve seen what US and British planes can do to a city for a limited period, without troops following up on the ground, so can you begin to imagine what devastation your capable of achieving with an army of occupation in Iraq for 5 years?

    Now Bush has given official recognition to the terrorist backed government of Kosovo. We will fight and root out terrorism wherever we find it the mantra of George Bush, oh apart from where it suits our purposes to support it and set up an army base with 40,000 US soldiers in Europe. We know best. And guess what your hard earned dollars are paying for it and others similar, and damn the consequences for all those innocent caught up in your web of lies and deceit. Worst of all is the fact that the American public are being deceived as to what’s really going on in your name. If you’re happy with that then go straight ahead into the next one and the next one, but don’t be surprised when it comes back and bites you literally, metaphorically, and financially. You don’t have an endless war chest, particularly when your stretched to your military breaking point!

  270. September 25, 2008 at 14:10

    Hi BBC,
    What happen letter by Goff?
    It was on the website yesterday and now is not there.
    went to point a friend to the “open letter to Christian soldiers,” and somehow the BBC had deleted the letter.
    I had to find it on the internet. why was the letter removed?

  271. 278 Michael
    September 25, 2008 at 14:14

    @ Jonathan

    I don’t believe the popes have lectured against Capitalism, so much as its negative effects, such as individualism, consumerism and the type of materialism that undermines basic human dignity by treating human beings as an “impersonal force needed for production”

    see John Paul II’s encyclical “Centessimus Annus” which actually discusses some of the positive effects of Capitalism: its criticisms being “directed not so much at an economic system as against an ethical and cultural system”.

  272. 279 Steve
    September 25, 2008 at 14:15

    While the court has said the draft doesn’t violate the constitution, that was one of those they needed to come to that conclusion for nation security reasons, but state it in one of the deference to the military manners. If national service were mandatory, and it were something like community service, it would absolutely be found unconstitutional by the courts.They always make exceptions for the military. The first amendment doesn’t apply to people in the military, but the courts just call it “Deference to congress”

  273. 280 roebert
    September 25, 2008 at 14:18

    Steve: Don’t know about NPR and its leanings, but I’d bet it doesn’t have a telepathic service. Of course the beeb leans to the left, and don’t I ,as a South African, just know it! Perhaps it’s an intellectual thing, a policy thing, a better-safe-than-sorry thing. Perhaps it’s just the Right Thing. But there are those subtleties of balance….the BBC doesn’t tolerate bs.

  274. 281 Shaun in Halifax
    September 25, 2008 at 14:19

    I have an interesting thought that occurred to me, and I’ll deliver it by way of an analogy:

    Note: Since we’re dealing with group dynamics, I will generalize and say that any group of people, no matter what subject, level or interest, mirrors this analogy. It represents a cross-section of human skills.

    Think about the last time you were in a classroom. Or conference room. Or group of around 25 people. Now think about what I call the intelligence demographic. I bet it looks something like 3-4 people right at the top – super-keeners, over-achievers, hard-workers, etc – 3-4 people right at the bottom – wasting oxygen, don’t care, can’t be bothered to work – and everybody else is somewhere in the middle. Now ask yourself who you would rather have lead that classroom? The 3 or 4 at the top or the 3 or 4 at the bottom?

    But I propose that that example represents a cnallenge to democracy. All else being equal, I’d rather have the top 3 or 4 in the leadership position than the bottom 3 or 4. But i argue that democracy is decision by lowest common denominator because the voters are simply not intelligent enough to truly understand how the machine of government works. And that lack of understanding undermines their ability to make a truly informed vote. It’s not an insult to the public, it’s just fact. Living and worrying about our own lives is a full-time job, and we just don’t have the time to learn about whether increasing or decreasing the overnight lending rate will fix the problem. My argument is that we NEED to learn this stuff. An educated population capable of critical thought is the ONLY way we can keep government honest.

    Thoughts? Comments?

  275. September 25, 2008 at 14:25

    @Tom,
    I think that Michael’s proposal has merritt, i just think that it would be terribly difficult to get others to agree to such a thing.
    W,Americans, want to serve (if we serve at all) when it is convenient for US. And, we can be quite materialistic, etc.
    Since “Even disabled people would be mandated to serve,”
    IO supposewe until I found a paying job.
    I’d serve before and after college.
    The fact is thyunemployed and more are not valued as comparable workers. when I go to volunteer, I am scrutinized and asked all sorts of questions: most of which are not relevant. People are much more comfortable seeing the disabled as recipients of “help” and not givers. They don’t understand the concept of a reciprocal community and are quite uncomfortable when a disabled person offers their assistance – especially when it is to them, personally.
    chael, you have your first recruit.
    sign me up for th…. which by the way, will accept blind people, as long as they do not have other health issues. However, most other volunteer orgs are not as acommodating. They want you to have a personal “attendant,” with you at all times.

  276. 283 Jonathan
    September 25, 2008 at 14:26

    @Michael

    I think I stand corrected in the particular, and confirmed in the general, case.

    I don’t know how one can criticize both “individualism” and an “impersonal” system at the same time.

    I’d have to say that the evidence is pretty much in by now, about whether “basic human dignity” was better served by the aristocracy/theocracy of the past, or the meritocracy/capitalism of the present.

  277. 284 steve
    September 25, 2008 at 14:27

    @ Roebert

    http://www.npr.org/

    also look to the shows they have such as the diane rehm show.

    Diane once had a show about the arab-israeli conflict, and she had a panel of three guest, one a palestinian, one an american (who was anti israel) and an israeli who was anti israel. There was no attempt at any kind of balance, but at least Diane read the email on air about the criticism of the lack of balance on the show, so she at least acknowledged it.

  278. 285 Shaun in Halifax
    September 25, 2008 at 14:28

    P.S. Sorry for the essay. It looks so much shorter in the typey-box.

  279. 286 steve
    September 25, 2008 at 14:31

    @ Jamily

    Even the socialists here are materialistic. I cannot believe how many people I see who are very left leaning with their beyond their means homes, BMWs, every new gadget. Imagine if they donated that money instead to some feed the world’s hungry instead of getting the latest 52″ 1080p HDTV like they want done with public money…. At least with conservatives, they at least do what they say they want to do. But regardless, materialism is bad because it just leads to misery. Nothing is every enough, they always want more, so they are incapable of being happy. It’s absolutely rampant in the US, and hence why everyone and their mother is on prozac, because nothing is enough for them.

    If people could just sit down and be thankful they have running water, water that is safe to drink, and a roof over their head. But that’s not enough. I need this! I need that! If I had this, then I’d be happy.. Absolutely miserable nation full of miserable people.

  280. 287 jamily5
    September 25, 2008 at 14:32

    My computer ate half of my post, so I am posting again.
    Sorry.
    @Tom,
    I think that Michael’s proposal has merritt, i just think that it would be terribly difficult to get others to agree to such a thing.
    We,Americans, want to serve (if we serve at all) when it is convenient for US. And, we can be quite materialistic, etc.
    Since “Even disabled people would be mandated to serve,”
    I suppose I would serve until I found a paying job.
    I’d serve before and after college.
    The fact is the disabled are highly unemployed and more are not valued as comparable workers. when I go to volunteer, I am scrutinized and asked all sorts of questions: most
    of which are not relevant. People are much more comfortable seeing the disabled as recipients of “help” and not givers. They don’t understand the concept
    of a reciprocal community and are quite uncomfortable when a disabled person offers their assistance – especially when it is to them, personally.
    So Michael, you have your first recruit.
    sign me up for the peace corps. Maybe I will get to use my social work degree afterall. and …. which by the way, the peace corps **will accept blind people, as long as they do not have other health issues. However, most other volunteer orgs are
    not as acommodating. They want you to have a personal “attendant,” with you at all times. We have to pay for the attendant to be with us. So, what’s the point of going to volunteer in the first place. some friends have said that they have noticed the same type of attitude with the Red cross.

  281. 288 Roberto
    September 25, 2008 at 14:40

    RE “” NPR is publicly funded.”
    —————————————————————————————————-

    ——– NPR and affiliates get approx 1/3rd their funding from state and federal government, 1/3rd from corporate underwriting, 1/3rd from member pledges.

    Me thinks neo-cons should properly call the US the Socialist States of America since the US government is “publically funded.”

    Of course this would require the dem-wits to offer up the alternative People’s Republic of America.

    Not a bad idea at all come to think about it. Debate could freeze congress for at least a year. Meantime the Wall Street boys can have completed their global money laundering and come back and make an offer to buy out the US lock stock and pork barrel.

  282. 289 Jennifer
    September 25, 2008 at 14:46

    @ Jessica

    I did, thank you 😀

  283. 290 Shaun in Halifax
    September 25, 2008 at 14:47

    @ Roberto

    What’s WRONG with a little socialism? I’m a much bigger fan of a public health care system than a private one. I like the idea that we all take care of each other — my tax dollars help little Jimmy when he needs his cancer treatment, and in turn his tax dollars help me if I break my leg or something. Tommy Douglas (the father of Canadian health care) was recently voted Greatest Canadian in a nation-wide contest.

  284. 291 steve
    September 25, 2008 at 14:51

    @ Shaun

    30% of the US population is OBESE. Not overweight, but OBESE. That means probably over 50% of the population is overweight. This means that tax dollars would be used to fund the unavoidable health consequences of being overweight which includes cancer, heart disease, diabetes. Why should I as a taxpayer have to cover the cost of people’s irresponsible choices in life?

    300,000 people die prematurely each year due to obesity, and how many more have medical expenses they wouldn’t have had but for the obesity?

    And you want the taxpayer to pay for this, especially the ones that aren’t obese? No thanks.

    I’d be more willing to have this if they forced people to lose weight, banned smoking, banned meat, banned alochol, but who would agree to that?

    So it’s not gonna happen.

  285. 292 Roberto
    September 25, 2008 at 14:51

    RE “”An educated population capable of critical thought is the ONLY way we can keep government honest.””
    ———————————————————————————————————

    ———– My o my, where o where did you ever get the idea that educated peoples equals honesty?

    When the anarchy comes, you’ll see some honest feelings when the unwashed simple minded peasants go on a rampage and start hunting down and whacking out “intellectuals” who have stolen all the chickens out of the henhouse.

  286. 293 Jennifer
    September 25, 2008 at 14:53

    @ Matthew

    Yes, I read your post however I chose to disregard it for personal reasons! 😉

  287. 294 Michael
    September 25, 2008 at 14:56

    @ jonathan

    “I don’t know how one can criticize both “individualism” and an “impersonal” system at the same time.”

    Not against a system which by definition is “impersonal, but against materialism that disregards the human person.

    Against “individualism” in so much as it involves becoming over-concerned with making money and separating oneself from the common good of society for the sake of making money . . . Against materialism that involves undermining human dignity by treating human beings as an “impersonal” force needed for production.

    The criticism is really about honoring human dignity.

  288. 295 jamily5
    September 25, 2008 at 14:57

    I agree Steve, about the points concerning materialism.
    And, while prozak might help their depression: which could never be attributed to their own decisions, it does have side effects which exacerbate the situation.
    I am not putting down those on prozak. But, docs prescribe it way too much to people who (I have seen) really don’t need it and could use some life skills.
    One thing that I am not opposed to is scholarship entities mandating community service. If people want the money for college, then they will need to do a bit of service. Not bad.
    Now, o
    Now, of course,there will be those who don’t/won’t serve because they don’t need the money.
    But,.
    this is a good place to start.

  289. 296 Shaun in Halifax
    September 25, 2008 at 14:58

    @ Steve

    Why should I as a taxpayer have to cover the cost of people’s irresponsible choices in life?

    Because when YOU get sick from the ulcers, long hours and other stress-related effects of your job, THEY will return the favor. Don’t think you’re invulnerable. And skinny people get sick too y’know.

  290. 297 Shaun in Halifax
    September 25, 2008 at 14:59

    @ Roberto

    What are you, Pol Pot? “Everybody who wears glasses must die! They’re smart!”

  291. 298 steve
    September 25, 2008 at 15:02

    @ Shaun

    My working in the office is what funds socialized healthcare, and when obese people are too sick to work,or cannot even move around, they obviously aren’t paying their taxes. So why should I have to fund the healthcare costs for their choice to be obese (the 99% of obese people who don’t have glandular problems).

    Shaun, I don’t know if you have seen it, but some people are so overweight they cannot even leave their homes. I see on a daily basis here people who are barely able to walk they are so obese. They eventually cannot support the weight of their bodies on their knees and need knee surgery, which the tax payer would have to pay for.

    Not gonna happen. i refuse to pay to support someone else’s poor choices, just like I wouldn’t pay to pay for the damage done from smoking (and believe me, I smoke when I drink, so I wouldn’t want someone’s tax dollars to pay for my stupid choices).

  292. 299 Jonathan
    September 25, 2008 at 15:04

    @Michael

    Right, human dignity. I’ll just say again that the church had its chance running things, and I think it’s safe to say that humans have more dignity now that the church doesn’t run things anymore.

  293. 300 Jonathan
    September 25, 2008 at 15:05

    @Steve

    Goodness, you are sounding quite like the Dalai Lama today!

  294. 301 Roberto
    September 25, 2008 at 15:07

    Tommy Douglas (the father of Canadian health care) was recently voted Greatest Canadian in a nation-wide contest.
    ————————————————————————————————————

    ——– Not much a fan of beauty contests since the best looking ones are seldom chosen which is really all a vote is.

    Sure, since Putin or Chavez ain’t volunteering to come over and hold GW’s hand while he nationalizes the finance industry, perhaps a Canadian emergency response team can come over and properly run the government so he can get in quality mountain biking time and play with Barney until such time as he can retire to become the best little Texas cedar chopper in Texas.

    Sounds like a plan for a screen play to me!

  295. 302 steve
    September 25, 2008 at 15:08

    @ Shaun

    Also, canada is able to have their national healthcare because they rely on the US for defense. If Canada actually had to have a military powerful enough to defend its borders, they would have less money for health care, so in reality, the US subsidizes healthcare in Canada.

  296. 303 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 15:09

    “i refuse to pay to support someone else’s poor choices”

    Mr Bush just forced you, me, and everyone we know from sea to shining sea to do exactly that.

  297. 304 steve
    September 25, 2008 at 15:10

    @ Kelsie

    If you don’t think the democrats agree with Bush, then I have beachfront property in Arizona to sell you.

  298. 305 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 15:10

    Steve:
    Doesn’t matter. If/When the Congress passes the “relief” package, tax dollars get spent anyway.

  299. 306 Shaun in Halifax
    September 25, 2008 at 15:12

    @ Steve

    Haven’t studies shown the large majority of obese people in North America are low income earners because they either can’t afford the good wholesome food they need or don’t know enough about nutrition?

    Guess we’ll have to agree to differ. I get your points and see how you don’t want to pay for other people’s dumb choices, and I agree with that. But as the old proverb goes, ‘many hands make the work go quicker.’ Just because a small but vocal/visible minority is abusing the system, does not mean everybody should have to suffer as a consequence. I believe that if a government is ‘of the people’ it should, at minimum, be required to take care of said people.

    But if that’s not your view, then I don’t think it’s fair to make some poor fellow – who probably had no choice in the matter and is a victim of genetic circumstance – have to pay for his lukemia treatment because some fat guy won’t do a sit-up or some smoker won’t butt out.

  300. 307 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 15:12

    The question is whether or not you and I are being required to pay for Wall Street’s (someone else’s) mistakes, not WHO is doing the forcing. I think you and I would definitely agree that there seems to be bipartisan consensus (in the Congress) overall that this is a “good” idea (never minding what the nameless masses think). I understand (as a non-Democrat) that the Democrats–concerned with upcoming donations and votes–are supporting it strongly….but that doesn’t absolve us from the reality that, contrary to whatever refusals you or I might make, we are still “paying for someone else’s mistakes.”

  301. 308 Michael
    September 25, 2008 at 15:14

    @ Jonathan

    I am certainly not arguing that the Catholic Church should run things, nor ignoring its failures in the past . . . just clarifying its teachings and noting that thoughtfully considering its teachings (not necessarily its example) often provides helpful and valuable insights into the human condition that can lead to improving the quality of life in this world

  302. 309 jamily5
    September 25, 2008 at 15:15

    . if 25 people were in a classroom and the top … 4 which is about 16% is quite intelligent and the bottom 16% is lazy unintellectuals. Who would you choose?
    A. you are corelating intellect with work ethic, kindness, charisma, etc. Just because someone is intelligent does not mean that they are a good worker, charming, and intelligent in other areas. To expect that 16% of the population of this classroom possess all of the positive characteristics and 16% of the classroom population possess none of the positive characteristics is setting up a very fictional hypothesis. I know that a hypothetical situation is, at its core, fictional. But, you have forgotten some very important facts which would make this situation more real and ultimately, change the outcome.
    B. Why must we only choose from the top 16% or the bottom 16%? Can’t we choose someone from the remaining 68%?

  303. 310 jamily5
    September 25, 2008 at 15:16

    So, Jessica, you are hummable and dancing on the subway?? You might have missed your calling as Cruise ship activities director. Maybe we can put you in that role at the WHYS conference.

  304. 311 Shaun in Halifax
    September 25, 2008 at 15:16

    @ Steve

    Whenever our two forces hold joint operations, OUR guys WIN. I realize they’re piss-poorly funded, but does your defence spending REALLY need to be greater than the sum total of everybody else’s? Did I mention that we’re the only country to ever successfully invade your country and burn its capital? Not even the Soviets managed that….

  305. 312 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 15:19

    Also, canada is able to have their national healthcare because they rely on the US for defense. If Canada actually had to have a military powerful enough to defend its borders, they would have less money for health care, so in reality, the US subsidizes healthcare in Canada.

    That last clause is quite a stretch. Who exactly is the U.S. defending Canada from?

  306. 313 steve
    September 25, 2008 at 15:19

    @ Shaun

    That’s totally irrelevant, and your helicopters are held together with duct tape. The point it, Canada has a tiny military, incapable of defending canada, and relies on the US for national defense, which frees up a lot of money for healthcare.

  307. 314 steve
    September 25, 2008 at 15:21

    @ Kelsie

    It’s a duty of every nation to be able to provide for national defense, even if they have no enemies. What would happen in the off chance they got invaded? They need a military to defend themselves. The nation owes that to its citizenry. If Canada didn’t need any defense, why did Canada insisit on forming NORAD with the US? canada has lots of resources and they are having fighting words with Russia now over rights to the artic.

  308. 315 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 15:22

    @Shaun
    “Did I mention that we’re the only country to ever successfully invade your country and burn its capital? Not even the Soviets managed that….”

    You have me choking with laughter right now…I had a young man elsewhere badgering me about my Anglophilia, pointing out that we “kicked British [expletive] in 1776 AND 1812!!”…..he was, unsurprisingly, rather shocked to find out that the White House needed renovation at one point to remove fire-damaged timbers left in the structure after it was rebuilt following Washington, D.C.’s, burning at the hands of the British.

  309. 316 jamily5
    September 25, 2008 at 15:23

    Isn’t obesity defined as 30lbs over weight?
    There is a big difference in being 30lbs (us standards) and a man who can’t walk because he is soo obese. What percentage of the population is so obese that they can’t perform daily activities such as walking, standing etc? Steve, do you have the same distain for those who drink/smoke too much and need organ replacements – or is it just obese ppl? Just a question.

  310. 317 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 15:25

    @Steve:
    You are implying that the Canadians are totally incapable of defending themselves: not true. Perhaps they do not fund a massive military machine a-la-the Pentagon, but that is hardly a case for ridiculing their defense capability. The United States, in the siege mentality of National Securitology, has chosen to define “defense” as massive worldwide power projection. The Canadians have no need for that.

    “In the off chance they get invaded” – by whom? Russia? I’ve not heard a whisper of such rhetoric. Russia seems more concerned with the largest “defense” spender on the planet, not Canada.

  311. 318 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 15:27

    Perhaps Canadian definitions of “what the government owes its people” does not include enormous military expenditures at the loss of the people’s health.

    I don’t see the veracity of claims that every nation owes its people some kind of “all-borders/all-points” defense system, especially when most nations are not, for whatever reason, under the direct or even indirect threat of a physical invasion.

  312. 319 Steve
    September 25, 2008 at 15:28

    @ Jamily

    No, that’s not the definition of obesity:

    Obesity: The state of being well above one’s normal weight.

    A person has traditionally been considered to be obese if they are more than 20 percent over their ideal weight. That ideal weight must take into account the person’s height, age, sex, and build.Obesity has been more precisely defined by the National Institutes of Health (the NIH) as a BMI of 30 and above. (A BMI of 30 is about 30 pounds overweight.)The BMI (body mass index), a key index for relating body weight to height, is a person’s weight in kilograms (kg) divided by their height in meters (m)squared. Since the BMI describes the body weight relative to height, it correlates strongly (in adults) with the total body fat content. Some very muscular people may have a high BMI without undue health risks.

    Obesity is often multifactorial, based on both genetic and behavioral factors. Accordingly, treatment of obesity usually requires more than just dietary changes. Exercise, counseling and support, and sometimes medication can supplement diet to help patients conquer weight problems. Extreme diets, on the other hand, can actually contribute to increased obesity.

    Overweight is a significant contributor to health problems. It increases the risk of developing a number of diseases including:

    Type 2 (adult-onset) diabetes
    High blood pressure (hypertension)
    Stroke (cerebrovascular accident or CVA)
    Heart attack (myocardial infarction or MI)
    Heart failure (congestive heart failure)
    Cancer (certain forms such as cancer of the prostate and cancer of the colon and rectum)
    Gallstones and gall bladder disease (cholecystitis)
    Gout and gouty arthritis
    Osteoarthritis (degenerative arthritis) of the knees, hips, and the lower back
    Sleep apnea (failure to breath normally during sleep, lowering blood oxygen)
    Pickwickian syndrome (obesity, red face, underventilation, and drowsiness).

  313. 320 Jonathan
    September 25, 2008 at 15:36

    @Michael

    Fair enough. There are certainly much more worrisome things to worry about than the church, whose heart is arguably in the right place. It’s just that I cringe whenever they talk about materialism, because I know what comes next: an explicit or implicit endorsement of “equality” or “fairness” or some similar notion, which empirically means redistribution of wealth, which is always and everywhere disastrous.

  314. 321 Jonathan
    September 25, 2008 at 15:43

    @Steve

    It’s surely at least as legitimate, and quite probably smarter, to ensure the safety of one’s country by the simple expedient of not gratuitously pissing off the rest of the world, and living in peace with it, rather than arming the nation to the teeth at a massive cost in every sort of resource.

    It’s not the snarling embrace of the American Eagle’s talons, missiles, bombs, etc. that keeps Canada and Costa Rica safe.

  315. 322 steve
    September 25, 2008 at 15:46

    @ Jonathan

    It’s still irresponsible to not have a military capable of defending your nation. It would be like choosing to not have a fire extinguisher in your kitchen, despite how competent a cook and how careful you are, there’s always a risk of a fire, but the money you save on the extinguisher you could spend on your HDTV.

  316. 323 Shaun in Halifax
    September 25, 2008 at 15:49

    @ Steve and Kelsie

    You guys make a good points, but there is also a practical reason for having a small army. Canada is a nation of 34 million people sitting on 9,984,670 sq km (6204473 sq miles) of land. Manitoba has a population density somewhere around 1 person for every 6 sq km. The country is physically too large and our population is too spread out for a foreign nation to successfully invade and occupy. And don’t forget, we have our own brand of crazy woodsman writing angry letters to the government by the light of a bare bulb in his shack – and there’s a lot of ’em out by the Rockies.

    Plus, like Russia, you don’t mess with Canadian winter. I’d LOVE to see some foreign army try and weather a minus-40C freeze-your-boys-to-the-bedpost prairie winter gale. At that temperature, exposed skin freezes in something like 2 minutes. In winter, in most of the provinces we have to plug our cars in at night or they won’t work in the morning. Now THAT’s cold.

    Canada has a military tradition comparable with that of the US. We figured out how to beat trench warfare in WWI (Vimy Ridge) and we were so good at taking Juno and Gold beaches that we had to slow down and wait for Utah, Omaha and Sword to catch up. Yeah, you’re bigger. But Iraq and Afghanistan and Vietnam have proven that bigger isnt’ always better.

  317. 324 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 16:08

    @Jonathan:
    Spot on.

    @Steve:
    Define your context: defend themselves from whom? Their southern neighbor, the Big Bad Wolf? A revolt in Yukon Territory? A Danish invasion via Greenland?

    @Shaun:
    Point VERY well taken about size: the sheer volume of land encompassed by Canada would make both defending and invading the country (by whomever) very difficult.

  318. 325 Jessica in NYC
    September 25, 2008 at 16:12

    @ Jonathan
    “Misspelling may be a “cardinal sin,” but it is never a “carnal sin.”
    😛 I was disappointed no one caught my freudian pun… 😉

    @ Bryan
    Ah, as young kids say, I feel the love…
    RE: Media bias

    I would love for that to be a topic. For a change, I have strong opinion on the issue (innocent smile), but the dates in which it has been mentioned on the BP/TP I was away. SO I missed my oppertunity.

  319. 326 Shaun in Halifax
    September 25, 2008 at 16:12

    @ Jonathan

    Lol nicely done! I KNEW there was a reason I could slap a maple leaf on my backpack and other countries will welcome me…..

  320. 327 steve
    September 25, 2008 at 16:22

    @ Kelsie

    From Russia

  321. 328 Jessica in NYC
    September 25, 2008 at 16:24

    @ Pangolin-California
    RE: 1 bedroom penthouse in TriBeCa.

    “Just wondering; who the freak is so insane to spend a million dollars on a one bedroom apartment that probably has building fees on top on that? Is this a peculiar NYC illness?”

    *SIGH & shaking my head at silly rich people*

    Last time neighborhood real estate came out Tribeca was the most expensive per square feet to buy property in the USA (so really the world). It continues to be one of the top most expensive places to buy an apartment. So I do not feel bad for the schmucks who cannot afford to live there.

    PS–a penthouse would never-ever be a one bedroom apartment and would certainly cost several million. I had an oppertunity to see a 2 tribeca penthouses (they were used as event halls) for a weddings (yes, GOP & very rich). I know each paid something like 15-25K per H-O-U-R to use it.

  322. 329 Shaun in Halifax
    September 25, 2008 at 16:38

    @ Kelsie

    Well we are currently having some disputes with Russia, and to extents Greenland and Iceland. Supposedly the Northwest passage is now going to be ice free year-round and that makes it a valuable shortcut to the Pacific/Atlantic. Canada claims, and maritime law backs this up, stewardship of the Arctic and polar region. However Russia claims that, underneath the water, the arctic landmass actually falls on their tectonic plate. It’s funny how Russia wasn’t interested at all in Arctic waters until they found all the oil and mineral wealth….

  323. 330 Jessica in NYC
    September 25, 2008 at 16:51

    @ Pangolin-California
    RE: who the freak is so insane to spend a million dollars on a one bedroom apartment that probably has building fees on top on that

    And rats… New Yorkers are it’s the cost of living here. For 450K anyone in NYC could live a very comfortable life! CEO and Presidents of Banks are use to $500 meals, 5K for suits and personal assistants (more than 1) that pick up their dry cleaning.

  324. September 25, 2008 at 16:58

    234 Jessica in NYC September 25, 2008 at 4:39 am
    Speaking of “recipe exchanges or garden”, I received my first two plants ever as a gift, and am having a hard time keeping them alive. I don’t understand. I even scheduled regular water feeding on my palm pilot’s to-do list. *sigh*

    Jessica, it might need some fertilizer. You might also need to find out if the pot is the right size and check out the soil type. Maybe someone at a garden shop could help? Google the name of the plant and the word “sun” to see how much sun it should get.

    267 Akbar Javadi September 25, 2008 at 1:14 pm
    I posted a response to your question on the other page.

    Akbar, which page? (Thank you)

    268 steve September 25, 2008 at 1:20 pm
    In the US we have National Public Radio, which is very left leaning, even my liberal friends call it Socialist Public Radio, and the US is not a left leaning nation, and NPR is publicly funded.

    Those guys are so centrist. The people whom I know call it national petroleum radio. I think that Bob is correct. We are so far right that we don’t know left when we see it. We can only see pink when faced with a real left.

  325. September 25, 2008 at 17:00

    Btw, how does a WordPress member change the name that appears on one’s “name” slot when posting comments to blogs at WordPress?

  326. 333 Kelsie in Houston
    September 25, 2008 at 17:13

    @Shirley:
    We can only see pink when faced with a real left. Pun intended? Just kidding 🙂

  327. September 25, 2008 at 17:15

    Palestine
    The international community lacks the collective will to enforce international law on the ground in Palestine. If we continue to allow breaches of UN resolutions and Geneva Convention Articles, Palestine will continue to hurtle into the economic and social pit of Hell into which it has been cast. If we continue to pester and harass the Palestinian people into an oppressed sort of pacification, they will only continue to seethe with resentment. Violence is certain to spring a leak from such a pressure cooker. The best way to deal with the situation is to impose complicity with international law on the nation which most often breaches it in the Middle East: Israel. Only then will the political, economic, and social lives of the Palestinian people begin to improve. And only then will peace begin to breed where once violent resistance spawned.
    Number of words: 142
    nts:b

  328. 335 Jens
    September 25, 2008 at 17:30

    @ Your hummable highess jessica of the great state of new york, Empress Amy, Honorable Lord Bob Of Queensland and madame Selena of the parliamentary democracy & constitutional monchary of canada–

    oh dear oh dear if only i knew what i would start.

    i was suggesting to just call you jess, but that could be misconstrued as too lovey-dovy, or what die nelson the great ambassodor of nigeria call it.

    J

  329. 336 Dennis@OCC
    September 25, 2008 at 18:09

    It is sad that Mbeki in South Africa, is to leave office…

    Dennis

  330. September 25, 2008 at 18:10

    Hi Steve
    Reyr September 25, 2008 at 1:31 pm
    Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has been saying this for the last three years, but hasn’t the west exaggerated the significance of Israel?
    Admittedly, here we have a bunch of talented men and women who, at one time, were supposed to act as a bridge between Europe, the States and the Arab world.
    All of a sudden, Washington itself is inextricably involved in the region. The alliance against US includes Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, China and Russia, and becoming stronger and louder by the day.
    Where does that leave Israel? Is this the centre of Zionism, many think it isn’t. Is it a gathering point for the Jews of the world? If so, they are going about it the wrong way.
    Unfortunately the United States is becoming more unpopular by the day. The Soviets disappeared comparatively quietly after the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. Is it all that surprising that the blunders and miscalculations of the Washington power block should bring down an entire nation?

  331. 339 Roberto
    September 25, 2008 at 19:09

    RE “”The alliance against US includes Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, China and Russia””
    ———————————————————————————————————-

    ———- Oh, please tell me you were being silly and failed to include France and Canada.

    Yeah, the US’s largest trading partner, it’s space and nuclear disbandment partner and 3 large US economic and miltary aid states, why they are just frothing mad plotting to make war against the US.

    That leaves Iran which is ripe for a people’s revolt.

    US makes a few stupid blunders and all of sudden the world is against it, eh? Well, I got a good deal for you on the London Bridge that I have stored away and need to sell before the hordes of civilized nations invade and destroy it.

  332. 340 Roberto
    September 25, 2008 at 19:33

    RE “”Violence is certain to spring a leak from such a pressure cooker.””
    ———————————————————————————————————–

    ———- Violence she says. Oh pray tell us how a peaceful bunch of loving people could ever even think of violence, much less carry out hundreds of suicide bombings on Israel?

    No, never in the history of the Palestinian people had they ever been so prosperous, healthy, and stable when 8 yrs ago mean old Israel sent Israeli agents dressed as Palestinian men, women, and children into Israel itself to carry out dastardly suicide bombings on Israeli jews and arabs so they could blame and attack peaceful Palestinians.

    Yesssss, revisionist history really rocks and it’s so easy to learn too.

  333. 341 Bryan
    September 25, 2008 at 23:46

    roebert September 25, 2008 at 12:47 pm

    No it isn’t saying the same thing. The BBC is a public broadcaster which reflects the viewpoint of the majority of the public.

    I don’t think this is the case. As I said, leftie Labour got thoroughly trounced in the recent local elections, apparently their worst showing in 40 years and even in multiculti Londonistan the far-left, radical Muslim friendly Mayor Ken Livingstone lost to a Tory. I ain’t no expert on this but it is probably fair to say that the left-leaning BBC does not reflect majority opinion in Britain. And even if it did, why should it totally ignore the opinions of the minority? Isn’t that a tyranny of the majority?

    Robert September 25, 2008 at 1:05 pm

    Yes there are some articles that show a slight bias but in the grand scheme of the shear numbers of articles it produces a few are likely to slip through. What would you want instead? A large thought control section within the news team that slows down the reporting process adds to the cost for the license fee payers in the UK or that the number of articles produced is reduced?

    You’ve inadvertently put your finger on it. The bit I’ve highlighted is precisely how the BBC operates, with its careful, PC manipulation of the news.

  334. 342 Bryan
    September 25, 2008 at 23:54

    Roberto September 25, 2008 at 7:33 pm

    I could not have said it better.

    Pink September 25, 2008 at 5:15 pm,

    Close to a century of Arab terror against Jews in the Holy Land has somehow escaped your notice. You might like to have a look at it. You might also like to have a look at the Palestinians’ obligations under the Road Map. Yes, they do have obligations. I’ll bet you have never heard of them.

  335. 343 selena in Canada
    September 25, 2008 at 23:56

    @Bryan

    You’ve inadvertently put your finger on it. The bit I’ve highlighted is precisely how the BBC operates, with its careful, PC manipulation of the news.

    You say the BBC operates in a certain manner. Do you have any idea how manipulation is planned?

  336. September 26, 2008 at 01:23

    Jennifer,

    Cat got your tongue?

    Roberto, all your arguments side on the part of woe is America, whether it be Democrat or Republican. You don’t appear to see the bigger picture beyond the “Land of the Free” (so called), a misnomer if ever I’ve heard one. Of course you suffer at the whim of your politicians, and their selfish supporters.

    You, like many of your fellow countrymen don’t seem to be able view the world outside your own insularity and insecurities as a nation. You’re so loathe to take criticism on the chin. That’s one of your greatest and far reaching faults to date. Vietnam – what a resounding success that was for your foreign policy! Tell that to the 55,000 US soldiers who died out there, and for what, tell me? You guys just have this wonderful habit of repeating the same mistakes of the past, please see Iraq and Afghanistan, not so many US casualties (confused and angry American families once more though) I’ll grant you, but the Iraqi people are scarred for generations to come. When the reporters leave, the cameras are switched off and refocused elsewhere, to a problem of America’s making yet again, unless there’s a political sea change of attitude, and a new era of communication and diplomacy is ushered in by your government on behalf of others, then Iraq will just be a discarded and forgotten footnote of no consequence. Whilst unwitnessed and unseen by you and me via the media the suffering and conflict will long continue for many years. Ignorance is bliss when you sleep safely in your bed at night!

    Where’s your comment about Hilary Clinton’s LIE at Sarajevo airport, Bosnia? Just because it happened some years ago now doesn’t mean there’s no relevance to it today. It’s a prime example of her two faced nature, unseen by her blinded to the truth and ever loyal supporters. Her NUKE IRAN policy if she so wished, not so hot either.

    Take the blinkers off! Reagan, Bush Snr, Clinton, Bush (Cowboy) it doesn’t matter who, even Jimmy Carter to a lesser extent, all have sown considerable seeds of discontent around the world in recent times throughout differing regions. Spent millions and billions of your tax paid dollars spreading the message that we’re your friend as long as you LISTEN, OBEY and FOLLOW ORDERS my dear compliant and subjugated friends.

  337. 345 Bryan
    September 26, 2008 at 07:25

    selena in Canada September 25, 2008 at 11:56 pm,

    The BBC ain’t got no need to plan no manipulation. It simply goes ahead and manipulates the news out of a need to campaign and push its own agenda onto an unsuspecting public. I have witnessed this in hundreds of articles on the website and hundreds of programmes on the World Service. You’ll see it also on TV shows like Question Time, in which both the panel and the audience are frequently manipulated to guarantee a left wing bias, and Newsnight with its slanted ‘news’.

    It is high time the BBC output began to reflect the fact that many of the people who pay its licence tax (and quite possibly the majority) have a different range of opinion from that of the left wing readers of the Guardian and the Independent.

  338. 346 Emile Barre
    September 27, 2008 at 12:15

    I am afraid it has been a Tower of Babel in The Middle East for some time. I see no end to it.


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