Talking Points 29th October

Should someone be charged for helping a relative to commit suicide? A woman in Britain wants to clear up the law about whether her husband could be jailed for helping her to die.

Today’s court ruling hasn’t resolved the issue at all. So Debbie Purdy, 45, with MS, says she won’t now fly to Switzerland, where they carry out euthanasia, because she can’t guarantee her husband won’t be punished.

Elsewhere on Talking Points, Ahmed’s comments in Pakistan about his country’s earthquake stand out: “I know that once again a lot of money will be collected and it will end up in foreign banks under personal accounts.” Do you fear your donations to such disasters are misused?

Rebel fighters with a particularly nasty reputation are on the march in DR Congo. Some residents are so scared that they have reportedly stopped 50 aid workers leaving. What’s an aid worker’s job in this case — always put personal safety first, or stay in the face of real danger to help those who need you?

And, as a Dad of three, I’m still mulling over our recent blog on what to tell the boys about life: Should we tell children nothing but the truth? Prominent atheist Richard Dawkins says everything from Harry Potter to Santa Claus should potentially be banned. And don’t get him started on God.

118 Responses to “Talking Points 29th October”

  1. 1 Julie P
    October 28, 2008 at 19:47

    Ok, this goes down as one of life’s most embrassing moments. Man gets are stuck in toilet on French high speed train.


    What’s your most embarassing moment?

  2. 2 Jessica in NYC
    October 28, 2008 at 20:00

    Not looking good for the economy:

    From the AP: Consumer confidence plunges to lowest on record

  3. 3 Jessica in NYC
    October 28, 2008 at 20:03

    Ouch, McPalin.
    From the Washington Post: Sarah the Diva, Looking Past John the Runner-Up

  4. 4 Ed Tatton
    October 28, 2008 at 20:12

    ObaCain are one in the same. Standup for TRUTH. http://www.votenader.org/issues

  5. 5 Anthony
    October 28, 2008 at 20:15

    Jessica, your links aren’t working

    -Anthony, LA, CA

  6. 6 Anthony
    October 28, 2008 at 20:18

    @ Ed

    First, they are WAY different. Second, A vote for Nader is a vote for McCain. Third, America would crumble with Nader in charge. 🙂

    -Anthony, LA, CA

  7. 8 Robert
    October 28, 2008 at 20:33

    Ops short sellers get it wrong again. With some rather odd short term consequencies. Sure wish I had some VW shares.


  8. 9 robert1987
    October 28, 2008 at 20:35

    Evening all

    So house prices have fallen 8% which is £5,700 in September here in United Kingdom

    Heres the website http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/houseprices

  9. October 28, 2008 at 20:38


    The BBC has discovered evidence that Georgia may have committed war crimes in its attack on its breakaway region of South Ossetia in August.

    Eyewitnesses have described how its tanks fired directly into an apartment block, and how civilians were shot at as they tried to escape the fighting.

    I blogged that it was the Georgians who started it.

  10. 11 Venessa
    October 28, 2008 at 20:50

    Will ~

    Telling the facts did not serve special political interests. Fortunately for politicians a large portion of the population believe Faux News and other very trustworthy sources….

  11. October 28, 2008 at 21:22

    I blogged that it was the Georgians who started it.

    And I followed suit with mention of you lol

  12. 13 gary
    October 28, 2008 at 21:27

    @ Julie P
    While giving a slide show / seminar during a job interview, I highlighted important points for the audience, in permanent marker, directly on the projection screen. They were not amused.
    Then there was the time I proudly arrived exactly on time at the Doctor’s office; but with just one error. It was my wife’s gynecologist, she was nine moths pregnant, and I had forgotten to pick her up.

  13. October 28, 2008 at 21:29

    ObaCain are one in the same. Standup for TRUTH. http://www.votenader.org/issues

    Oh jesus…. not him again….

    (Nader, not the OP)

  14. 15 Anthony
    October 28, 2008 at 21:34


    What kind of world do you think America would be if Nader had his way with everything?

    -Anthony, LA, CA

  15. 16 Julie P
    October 28, 2008 at 21:39


    I’ve done a few things that were pretty embarrassing. While in cosmetolgy school I wore a summer top to class since it was hot outside. I walked across the clinic floor where women were already getting their hiar done and then into the classroom. As I walked passed a mirror I spotted that one of the shoulder straps had come untied and one of “the girls” was out.

  16. 17 Robert
    October 28, 2008 at 21:43

    I ran across this article from the times, the list will be completed over the next week, but what do people think of the choices so far? Who do you think will feature in the top 10?



  17. 18 Anthony
    October 28, 2008 at 21:55

    Here’s a GREAT question!!! Anyone dressing up for Halloween??? If so, what are you going to be??? I’m going to be “Alex” from “A Clockwork Orange” 🙂

    Also, what countries celebrate Halloween???

    -Anthony, LA, CA

  18. 19 Jessica in NYC
    October 28, 2008 at 21:56

    @ Ed Tatton

    “ObaCain are one in the same. Standup for TRUTH.”

    If “by the same” you mean McCain is night and Obama is day… then sure, because Nader is that swampy land where night and day merger together and resembles a shadow of a bleak thought of what is ignored in society.

    @ Anthony

    Thank you… that was weird. I always check my links. Can I blame it on a glitch?

  19. 21 Venessa
    October 28, 2008 at 22:13

    Thought this might add to the discussion from the TP yesterday re: child prostitution.


  20. 22 Julie P
    October 28, 2008 at 22:22


    One year we had a white trash party where people came in character, Bush, Sr., Quayle, members of the religious right. One guy came as a Baptist preacher and converted everyone to homosexuality! The guy who came as the preacher was a riot. He did excellent fire and brimstone as he converted people. It was so funny!

  21. 23 steve
    October 28, 2008 at 22:23


    Nope, suicide bombers have nothing to do with religion

  22. 24 Anthony
    October 28, 2008 at 22:43

    @ Jessica

    HAHAHA!!! Awesome!!! I wanna come!!! I’ll be Karl Rove, but everyone will think I’m Darth Sidious!

    @ Julie

    I didn’t realize how popular “White Trash” parties are getting. It’s really amazing! Sounds fun though!

    Either way, I love dressing up 🙂

    -Anthony, LA, CA

  23. 25 DENNIS@OCC
    October 28, 2008 at 22:44

    Hi Robert, welcome to the moderator table…..

    Hi everyone else….

    I am enclosing a link about the weather that is
    affecting the area i am in right now and the rest of
    the state of New York!!!


    this is current as of 5.40pm eastern time….

    The BBC and the investigation about Georgia situation, i was the moderator on the weekend when the story broke…and i had some feelings that they were not behaving themselves….

    Sorry for the long post!


  24. 26 DENNIS@OCC
    October 28, 2008 at 22:46

    Re: Halloween
    i was going to be the queen of england, but due to the fact–i was unable to get my outfit…


  25. 27 Julie P
    October 28, 2008 at 22:53


    We did our “white trash” party in 1994. It was so much fun. If a person did not come as a political character, someone from the religious right, or anything mocking southern culture sufficed. We made an exception for two people. A couple came as Tonya Harding, and her husband.

  26. October 28, 2008 at 23:07

    Hamas Cleric Muhsen Abu ‘Ita: The Annihilation of the Jews in Palestine Is the Most Splendid Blessing for Palestine


    Any ideas about how to negotiate with someone like this?

  27. 30 Amy
    October 28, 2008 at 23:08


    Have fun tonight on your final night at the moderating table!!

  28. 31 Kelsie in Houston
    October 28, 2008 at 23:16

    @Jennifer re: TP 27 Oct
    I hope nobody minds if we move an ongoing debate from yesterday’s TP to this one…

    In many of these areas, we don’t have a strong diplomatic dialogue underway—we might not have any major diplomatic dialogue underway, in some places.

    The lasting, meaningful solution is in the long-term alleviation of poverty in places where families, driven by starvation, feel forced by circumstances to sell their children into torture. The U.S. Department of Justice’s internet site, on its page for sex tourism, includes an absolutely chilling quote from an American child predator:

    “On this trip, I’ve had sex with a 14 year-old girl in Mexico and a 15 year-old in Colombia. I’m helping them financially. If they don’t have sex with me, they may not have enough food. If someone has a problem with me doing this, let UNICEF feed them.”

    What we’ve been discussing here so far are “solutions” that impact American predators.

    I couldn’t care less about Americans and their predators when dealing with this international shame. We aren’t the only players in the game.

    The sex tourism trade won’t stop, even if the United States abruptly and quite unexpectedly finds the willpower to really examine solutions to it (again, probably not in my lifetime). The British paedophilic establishment is a big consumer of child sex slaves abroad (again, the recent spotlight on Gary Glitter) and we don’t even want to go into the horrors of the Continent’s thirst for children (Fritzl, anyone?).

    Coordinated action on both the consumer and the circumstances that create providers is the answer—not complicated monitoring schemes, questionnaires, or fancy legislation named after someone’s little boy or girl who yielded their existence to draw national attention to the problem.

    The attitude in much of the United States vis-á-vis the sex trade is summed up very nicely by the DoJ quote: “Let UNICEF handle it, at least they’re eating.” You’ve got to solve THAT as well, before we make any forward progress. It’s not an easy problem, there are no easy answers—and a commanding majority of humanity here and abroad, apart from occasional expressions of outrage, doesn’t seem to care.

  29. 32 Pangolin
    October 28, 2008 at 23:38

    Hamas Cleric Muhsen Abu ‘Ita: The Annihilation of the Jews in Palestine Is the Most Splendid Blessing for Palestine

    First, find out if he’s really in charge; if not ignore him. Every culture has loudmouths that blab about the guy across the river who they’re going to beat up on.

    If he is the guy in charge you sit down every day and ask “how’s that working out for you?” Listen politely for a short time and if all you have heard is propaganda after 30 minutes, leave. Repeat daily until an honest conversation is achieved or he’s replaced by somebody with sense.

    One guy talking to you is one less shooting.

  30. 34 Jennifer
    October 28, 2008 at 23:43

    @ Kelsie

    The American government should seek to control and implement regulations for people HERE. We are responsible for making the demand for this because some people choose to be ______. We can work with other countries to provide assistance to them but they should also start working to address the problems that lead the sex tourists to visit there such as poverty. This also means cracking down on government officials who are taking bribes.

    I don’t see that you can say that you care to work on the problem at all. If you are not willing to do what you can to curb it then you are in fact condoning it and allowing it to occur. Pfft….

    I am going to be sick.

  31. 35 Anthony
    October 28, 2008 at 23:46

    @ Portland Mike

    That was supposed to make democrats look dumb? I though it was making fun of republicans! Opps, lol.

    -Anthony, LA, CA

  32. 36 Kelsie in Houston
    October 28, 2008 at 23:51

    First, I don’t understand the ___. Please explain that: I’m missing something, apparently.

    Fine, yes, the US government should be working on solutions—but that is a separate issue. Related? “You betcha.” But not the same. The sex tourism industry is almost totally abroad.
    …but they should also start working to address the problems that lead the sex tourists to visit there such as poverty.
    That is essentially what I’ve been saying in at least the last three posts.

    I don’t see that you can say that you care to work on the problem at all. If you are not willing to do what you can to curb it then you are in fact condoning it and allowing it to occur. Pfft….

    No earthly idea where you got that. I do not owe a single person here an accounting of what my social activism or advocacy involves, nor does anyone on this blog or any blog have the grounds to question my advocacy/activism or assert that it doesn’t exist.


  33. 37 Venessa
    October 28, 2008 at 23:53

    Portlandmike ~

    Someone like that probably doesn’t have a basic respect of other human beings rights to life and opinions. He probably also thinks women are inferior as well. I could care less if that is the opinion of this man or anyone else; what I have a problem with is when people are killed, hurt and discriminated against using religion for justification of such ignorant behavior. Unfortunately it seems to be a human condition that will never change.

    I have to agree with Pangolin on this; one guy talking to you is one less shooting. You may not change their minds but if they aren’t hurting anyone they can spew whatever crap out of their mouths they want.

  34. 38 Count Iblis
    October 28, 2008 at 23:55

    Steve, I don’t think religion is important here. If Americans had to live under some form of occupation then you would have militant activity and terrorism. Perhaps you would not have suicide bombings, but you would probably see that people with different religious backgrounds would resist the occupation in different ways.

    We also have to remember that religion was shaped by conflicts. People have always fought each other and religion was just a tool that evolved during this violent history.

  35. 39 Pangolin
    October 29, 2008 at 00:03

    Kelsie~ re: sex trade

    It’s not just food. Mothers will sell their children for things like a handful of medicine that would cost a few dollars in the US, or water filters. If a few hours of trauma for a daughter buys a son’s life & health they will do that due to lack of old-age pensions.

    The flat truth is that we don’t really care about what happens to the children. If the girl saved from the sex trade has her brains blown out by cross-fire from a drug war it never makes the US papers. Ditto, death by disease, malnutrition, pollution, job accident, slave labor exclusive of sex or domestic violence due to early, forced marriage.

    The US and UK just have a lot of people who get off punishing other people and perverts are easy and justifiable targets. That’s why there’s all the gloating about prison rapes; the rape is pretty much ok with us. The fun part is controlling who gets raped. Hence the lack of real outrage about Sarah Palin charging for rape kits; if rape was that offensive her political career should be over. Why isnt’ it?

  36. 40 Jennifer
    October 29, 2008 at 00:13

    @ Kelsie

    You can insert a multitude of words into the “____” such as pervert, creep, horndog, lowlife, creep, or pig…..

    My statement did say “you” but it wasn’t you, Kelsie, as a person that I was speaking to or about. Calm down. My comment was that if people do not even attempt to do anything to even curb the problem they are contributing to it.

  37. 41 Kelsie in Houston
    October 29, 2008 at 00:13

    No, it’s not all about food—I don’t think that, the leading children’s NGOs don’t think that, and one would hope that the itsy bitsy sliver of the American electorate who give a damn don’t think that, either.

    I would not generalise quite so wide: there are people who care. My critique and that of many of my colleagues of the Iraq/Afghanistan conflicts has rotated almost entirely around what is being done to Iraqi, Afghani, and otherwise, children. The self-appointed buffoons who purport to speak for the anti-war movement have totally ignored this, because it would call into question parts of American war-making strategy, and few people want to question that.

    The United States has yet to ratify the U.N. Convention on the Rights of the Child—the anti-UN camp has a barrage of fine arguments that do little more than obscure the fact that American society, overall—apart from movements generally regarded as too “radical” for the genteel—has practically zero willpower to take meaningful moral steps on these issues if those will potentially endanger “foreign relations”—by which we mean, of course, economic interests.

    I don’t know much about prison rape, other than it is more widespread than anyone in the public thinks.

  38. 43 Kelsie in Houston
    October 29, 2008 at 00:19

    …if people do not even attempt to do anything to even curb the problem they are contributing to it.

    Perhaps, but doing things for the sake of doing things is like David Cameron’s opposition for opposition’s sake: good to feel busy and sound intelligent while doing so, but the effects barely outlast their causes.

  39. 44 Pangolin
    October 29, 2008 at 00:20

    The American government should seek to control and implement regulations for people HERE. We are responsible for making the demand for this because some people choose to be ______. -Jennifer October 28, 2008 at 11:43 pm

    Hey, great!! Can we pull out of Iraq, Afghanistan, Kuwait, Ecuador, Germany, Greece, Greenland, Guam, Italy, Japan, South Korea, Kyrgyzstan, The Netherlands, Panama, The Philippines, Portugal, Spain, Turkey, United Kingdom, Diego Garcia, and probably Antarctica? Because we’ve got problems at home that could use a little money and manpower to be sure.

    Reading that list, it does make one wonder where the habit of traveling overseas to have sex with kids came from?

  40. 45 Pangolin
    October 29, 2008 at 00:29

    The self-appointed buffoons who purport to speak for the anti-war movement have totally ignored this, because it would call into question parts of American war-making strategy, and few people want to question that.-Kelsie in Houston October 29, 2008 at 12:13 am

    Not to disagree with your general sentiment but the anti-war movement has been ringing that bell since before I was born. The US media and to a lesser extent The BBC simply do not cover peace activism with a strength relative to the concerned and active population. Those “self-appointed buffoons” you see are the clowns elected to make progressives look foolish on the two minute window we are allowed. The are living straw-men; meatpuppets used to disgrace peace activism.

    “The Revolution will not be televised” it’s on the internet though if you look.

  41. 46 Kelsie in Houston
    October 29, 2008 at 00:39

    Touche—and there are people like Rahul Mahajan looking at the whole warmaking edifice with a highly critical pair of eyes.

    But I think it is safe to say that the issue of children caught in the warzone is largely ignored all around—much of the anti-war movement is devoutly concerned with 1. the incorrectness of the policies leading us in; 2. the execution of the war, as related to our own troops (and maybe those of the UK, if CNN is feeling particularly international that day); and 3. exit strategy.

    Moving back to your point, this may again be due to that lack of media coverage—

    …and I’m off into something unrelated to the original issue.

  42. 47 DENNIS
    October 29, 2008 at 00:40

    Re: Julie P October 28, 2008 at 7:47 pm

    What’s your most embarassing moment?
    i have several, watch none of them will be put on the bbc!!!!

    The economy is getting downhill FAST…..


  43. 48 Pangolin
    October 29, 2008 at 01:03

    Well, you can’t go calling people who drop bombs on kids “baby killers” can you? If we started to do that who knows who those nasty labels, johnmccain, (cough, cough) might apply to.

    To the kids who’ve been blown up it doesn’t matter much whether the bombs came from an A-10 or wrapped in pita in a shopping basket. The results are the same.

    Support the (torturing, raping, baby and child killing invaders of other lands in order to steal oil) Troops.

  44. 49 Kelsie in Houston
    October 29, 2008 at 01:18

    Perish the thought—of course not. Because we all know the important aspect of the bomb is why it’s being dropped, not who it’s being dropped upon (what? those people have feelings, fears, and *gasp hopes and dreams, too?)…..and don’t forget, “We don’t do body counts!”

    In all honesty, I believe we’re stuck for the time being: speaking strictly from the issue we’ve been discussing, an abrupt, total pullout now—after the mess created in both countries—will leave UNICEF and the other NGOs with more work than could possibly reach completion in decades. A commanding part of the electorate cheered the military in for selfish reasons; now we’re ready to leave without cleaning up our mess for those same selfish reasons…

    …and the same Iraqi and Afghani (little) people will pay the price.

  45. 50 Jennifer
    October 29, 2008 at 01:23

    “Hence the lack of real outrage about Sarah Palin charging for rape kits; if rape was that offensive her political career should be over. Why isnt’ it?”

    Re: Sarah Palin “charging for rape kits”.

    What a lovely rumor you are perpetuating there! 😀

    Perhaps you’d like to read this little morsel.


    I am sure that Will would have caught this and brought it to your attention immediately but since this isn’t a funny and maybe you really believe this to be true, I wanted to let you know that it’s not! 😉

  46. 51 Kelsie in Houston
    October 29, 2008 at 01:30

    Hmm–this is interesting; I didn’t know this allegation was out there, actually.

    FactCheck.org doesn’t attribute the issue directly to Mrs Palin, but only acknowledges there is some vagueness about her role (if any….again, not versed in this particular teapot tempest).
    CNN attributes it to her town, not her personally (although wouldn’t they be one and the same, as mayor?)
    USA Today points out that, while the insurance companies were technically doing the ‘paying’ (as your link also points out), deductibles by claimants could be an indirect form of payment.

  47. 52 Jens
    October 29, 2008 at 01:34

    Julie ,

    with paris we will get tax cuts for hotels….

  48. 53 Alec Paterson
    October 29, 2008 at 01:36

    Count Ibis,

    Of course it has to do with religion. The Palestinian Arabs did not object when under Jordanian and Egyptian occupation. Hamas and Islamic Jihad are Islamists, whose aim is the end of the Jewish state( Dar al-Harb). Islam inculcates a view of a world that is divided in two, Dar al-Islam and Dar al-Harb.
    Between the two Houses, between Infidels and Believers, a permanent state of war exists and must exist, until the whole world belongs to Allah and to his people. This is not a fabrication made up by those who for some unaccountable reason have it in for Islam. This is Islamic doctrine.

    I am sure the congregation and listeners of Hamas Cleric Muhsen Abu ‘Ita take in his every word.

  49. 54 Luz Ma from Mexico
    October 29, 2008 at 01:39

    The other day I had an embarrasing moment. I took my daughter to school and we were getting late, so we were running. When we got to the school door, my daughter turned towards me to kiss me goodbye and then she said in full suprise: “Mom, look at your blouse!!!” It was unbottoned and my bra was in full view. There were a lot of parents around, I was embarrased and my daughter was more… poor her!

    But my most embarrasing moment was when my husband and I broke a bed (you can imagine what we were doing) while staying in my parents in law house during a holiday… The crash was so loud that they went to see what happened… Fortunately we had the door closed, but still it was embarrasing.

  50. 55 Venessa
    October 29, 2008 at 01:42

    Luz Ma ~

    Breaking a bed is not embarassing; that’s epic!

  51. 56 Julie P
    October 29, 2008 at 01:42

    @Luz Ma.


  52. 57 Jennifer
    October 29, 2008 at 01:43

    Re: Sarah Palin charging for Rape Kits

    “On September 22, it was CNN’s turn to highlight the charge. CNN also pushed the false idea that out of all of Alaska’s towns only Wasilla insisted on perpetrating this policy quoting former Democratic State Rep. Eric Croft to that effect.

    Former state Rep. Eric Croft, a Democrat, sponsored a state law requiring cities to provide the examinations free of charge to victims. He said the only ongoing resistance he met was from Wasilla, where Palin was mayor from 1996 to 2002.

    Farther down in the story, CNN does reveal that there are *no records and no proof* that Palin ever even knew about this charging the victim policy. CNN also finally mentions that Wasilla wasn’t the only town in Alaska that had this policy.

    In the end, it seems that this story is a wild exaggeration about Palin’s role in this policy. There is no proof that she ever knew about the policy until long after the situation hit the news, it is untrue that her town was “unique” in blocking the measure, no evidence that she, herself, was notorious for the policy, and no proof that any victims were ever charged for rape kits. In fact, according to the Uniform Crime Report there were only 5 rapes reported in the 6 years she was mayor of Wasilla and four of those happened after the state law in question was passed.”

    False 😀

  53. 58 Luz Ma from Mexico
    October 29, 2008 at 01:45

    Here in the North of Mexico we celebrate Halloween since we are close to the U.S. Also, we have the Day of the Death (Nov.2), a Mexican Holiday.

    My grandfather is Mexican-American, so Halloween is a family tradition.

    I am not dressing up this year, but both my girls will be witches… they are very excited, they even have their little brooms, lol.

  54. 59 Venessa
    October 29, 2008 at 01:46

    Jennifer ~

    Who cares? Hopefully we won’t have to hear about her again after the election.

  55. 60 Luz Ma from Mexico
    October 29, 2008 at 01:48

    I can cross that from my “Before I die to do list”. The worst part was that it was the first time I stayed in my parents in law house… talk about a good first impression!!!lol

  56. 61 Pangolin
    October 29, 2008 at 01:49

    With all due respect an article from “LIfenews” has about the validity as an article from the Flat Earth Society. Scratch that, the Flat Earth people have the excuse that world at least looks flat. The anti-choice, anti-sex and anti-woman whackos wouldn’t recognize a solid fact if it was painted on the blade of a bulldozer coming at them.

    Prior to Sarah Palin’s tenure as mayor the city of Wasalia paid for those rape kits; a policy probably changed because they contain emergency birth control. Alaska has the highest rape rate per capita of any state in the nation; something Sarah’s actions did nothing to quell. I see her as pro-rape.

    If you have a real source serve it up.

  57. 62 Jens
    October 29, 2008 at 01:49

    Hurray, I am in Danville…

    freezing cold it is and a rather strange place, but heck maybe the job will be just fantastic.

  58. 63 Julie P
    October 29, 2008 at 01:49

    Palin and rape kits according to factcheck.or a non-partisan group.


  59. 64 Kelsie in Houston
    October 29, 2008 at 01:49

    Life will be almost interminably dull for some people after that, though…

  60. 65 Kelsie in Houston
    October 29, 2008 at 01:50

    Hehe Pangolin—so true…

  61. 66 Jens
    October 29, 2008 at 01:53

    Julie P,

    one of my more embaressing moments was peeing on an electric cow fence I did not see because of very high grass. trust me i felt it though and i was scream and jumping around clutching my crutch, while peeing myself in front of a bunch of strangers. they though it was funny, i did not think so, that much. although now i do appreciate the image and laugh, mind you i was only 14 and it was a not so coooool moment.

  62. 67 Julie P
    October 29, 2008 at 01:53


    Welcome to the south. Have no fear the weather will turn warm again, probably in a day or two.

  63. 68 Kelsie in Houston
    October 29, 2008 at 01:55

    @Robert or the current mod:
    Let me know who’s modding via MSN, please—the queue keeps backing up.

  64. 69 Venessa
    October 29, 2008 at 01:56

    Luz Ma ~ I think it’s completely hilarious!

    Jens ~ best of luck!

  65. 70 Jens
    October 29, 2008 at 01:56


    join the club. we did that one in an expensive hotel in a skiresort, during a conference i had…..kind of difficult to explain why the slats broke and the entire thing collapsed. my excuse was that it must have been a cheap bed….

  66. 71 Jens
    October 29, 2008 at 01:59


    i will leave when it gets warm


    thank you. they turned a supposed 3 hr interview into an 8 hour affair with me meeting the ceo, cso, all department heads and the HR person, while giving a presentation at THE END of the day, after having talked for 7 hrs.

    they either are so happy somebody from outside south virgina is visiting or they really liked my CV and expect wonders from me…..

  67. 72 Luz Ma from Mexico
    October 29, 2008 at 02:02

    The bed we broke was old, so I suppose that was a factor 😀

    Good luck with your interview!!!

  68. 73 Luz Ma from Mexico
    October 29, 2008 at 02:04

    … or maybe it is more appropiate to say: Good luck with your marathonic interview!!!

  69. 74 Jens
    October 29, 2008 at 02:05

    @ luz,


    what would the world be like without mishaps….

  70. 75 Julie P
    October 29, 2008 at 02:05


    How long are you going to be in Danville?

  71. 76 Luz Ma from Mexico
    October 29, 2008 at 02:06

    Why is “strange” Danville? (aside from the name)lol

  72. 78 Venessa
    October 29, 2008 at 02:08

    Jens ~

    Ugh, that sounds awful. What is it with employers and marathon interviews anyway? Hopefully it works out….

    One of the last jobs I interviewed for took 4 hours, I had to sit with a panel of 5 people and answer questions and then I had one on one time with 4 other people and a test. On top of it if they were completely unwilling to negotiate compensation and actually thought I would leave my current job for less than what I already had. Of course they were a little miffed when I declined the offer but they just called me again to interview for another position a couple weeks ago…..Sheesh!

  73. 79 Jens
    October 29, 2008 at 02:09


    yes it is a marathon……..luckely it’s cold so will not breaking out in sweats and break down dehydrated

  74. 80 Jens
    October 29, 2008 at 02:15


    you must have impressed them. while i am out of a job in a couple months, i am not inclined to jump at the first offer, BUT if it is a great place and good compensation, i will be seriously considering it.


    it is an old mill town in the middel of nowhere, with 50000 people and all i saw so far is a series of homedepots, lowes, car dealerships and a hotel that is stuck in the 70’s with dark wood panneling and yellow lights. not to mention the restaurant, which is supposed to be good serving a coarsly chopped lettuce with some slices of tomatoes and cucumbers topped with a grilled steak as their signature platter….huh, culinary capital city it ain’t, BUT then i have not seen the rest, which might well be a very charming place. the surroundings are really pretty, though.

  75. 82 Roberto
    October 29, 2008 at 02:25

    RE “” Alaska has the highest rape rate per capita of any state in the nation”

    ——– And what in the name of the Grand Poohbah does that have to do with the price of tea in Wasilla?

    Time to git thee a grip and just admit to a bias against any and everything about Ms Palin. Even Tip O’neil recognized that politics is all local and Wasilla just a speck in Alaska.

    What’s funny is that most are gonna vote for McCain or Obama even though both are clueless as to how to deal with the global economic crisis. McCain at least has some foreign policy plans which will have to altered to deal with all the shifting sands. All Obama is promising is the Lyndon Johnson pledge that he ain’t that crazy other guy who had no plans to escalate the Vietnam War like Lyndon ended up doing.

    Well, maybe/maybe not Obama ain’t Lyndon, but point is nobody knows what will happen, but in the meantime, essentials of rape kits for maybe a dozen women will be the call to arms for some.

    Guess it’s the next grade above the lipstick on the pig issue, but more likely a canary sounding the last call: Twas uneducated, unprincipled voters that killed the beast to paraphrase KING KONG.

  76. 83 Kelsie in Houston
    October 29, 2008 at 02:27

    What’s funny is that most are gonna vote for McCain or Obama even though both are clueless as to how to deal with the global economic crisis

    Agree completely….stunning.

  77. 84 Jennifer
    October 29, 2008 at 02:37

    @ Vanessa

    I thought that ensuring that only facts were discussed was of upmost importance…….I guess it’s only for certain issues and people though. I find it very interesting….Hopefully, she will be around for a very long time! We will find out soon enough! 😀

  78. 85 Jennifer
    October 29, 2008 at 02:38

    @ Venessa

    Sorry for spelling your name wrong!

  79. 86 Luz Ma from Mexico
    October 29, 2008 at 02:46

    OMG… at least your are open to new experiences… I have always lived in big cities, I cannot see myself in a small town…

    I hope it turns to be a fantastic job… best of luck!

  80. 87 Venessa
    October 29, 2008 at 03:08

    Jennifer ~

    The truth is important and links were provided to discredit whatever was said. The additional 3-paragraph excerpt you provided was probably overkill since it was probably already read by anyone interested by clicking the links.

    In all honesty I am sick of hearing about her and any other lies spread about all of the candidates and look forward to the election being over.

  81. 88 Jens
    October 29, 2008 at 03:23


    well no point walking the planet with closed eyes…

  82. 89 Jennifer
    October 29, 2008 at 03:54

    @ Venessa

    The 3 paragraph overkill I copied/pasted was for Kelsie who was still attempting to find any way possible to attribute it to Sarah Palin.

    I am sick and tired of hearing lies spread around too! I will be very happy when the election is over as well. Until then………I expect to hear and see quite a bit of fluff floating around. It’s one of those cases where we have to like it or lump it! 🙂

  83. 90 Pangolin
    October 29, 2008 at 03:55

    Saving the economy with ‘green jobs’ for idiots. The trick about economic stimulus is that you don’t just want to hand out beer money. You give people free money, they buy beer, and unless Bubba wees in the garden the value is lost.

    A green job is different. Green Jobs agency gives ACME Solar money to put panels on Bubba’s roof. Bubba saves $30 every month on his power bill that he now pays to the Green Jobs agency. Solar installer guy now has a job and pays taxes. Bubba has $30 extra beer money every month (pays taxes). Green Jobs agency breaks even in the long run. The agency uses payback money to install a ground-source heat pump on Bubba’s house. Bubba saves another $30 monthly; another job is created. The beer company hire’s Bubba Jr. due to new demand. That’s about it.

    Unlike windmills or car plants, everyone has a roof, everybody needs heat or cooling; the jobs go everywhere. In ten years when the solar panels and heat pumps are paid off all the Bubbas get a retirement bonus of free power and cheap heat and cooling. Bubba buys a bass boat with the savings. Also the air is cleaner, fewer mountaintops are torn of of Appalachia, etc, etc.

  84. 91 Kelsie in Houston
    October 29, 2008 at 03:57

    No…I wasn’t. I was posting news bits related to it and summarising what they said. I quite frankly don’t give a solitary damn about this “election” at this point: people idealistic enough to buy into the myth that this single vote is going to change the world as we know it obviously haven’t a clue vis-á-vis American political history. If John McCain and Sarah Palin win, I think I’ll be able to live with myself somehow. If Barack Obama and Joe Biden win, ditto.

    There are very few things in life worth committing oneself fully to: an American presidential election is nowhere close to that list, imho.

  85. 92 Pangolin
    October 29, 2008 at 04:20

    Jens~ Here’s 271 banjo jokes.

    Some kudzu recipes. A guide to holding a pig pickin. (don’t forget the cinder blocks) put on some Trailer Park TroubadorsJens~ Here’s 271 banjo jokes. Some kudzu recipes. A guide to holding a pig pickin. (don’t forget the cinder blocks) put on some Trailer Park Troubadours and you’re home.

    You should probably deep fry your turkey this Thanksgiving just to get into the practice. Just remember to do it outdoors.

  86. 93 Amy
    October 29, 2008 at 05:16


    You forgot to tell Jens to THAW the turkey before you deep fry it. Important tip – otherwise you might burn the house down.


    Best of luck!!

  87. October 29, 2008 at 05:50

    I am sure that Will would have caught this and brought it to your attention immediately but since this isn’t a funny and maybe you really believe this to be true, I wanted to let you know that it’s not!

    I have been intently busy for some time today, but I see you bring my name into your conversation.

    Palin was mayor of Wasilla when the women were charged for the rape kits. Their insurance companies were charged directly, if they had insurance, other than that – they were charged for the kits “because it was wrong for the tax payer to pay for them”.

    Lifenews is as much use in a conversation as an atheist at a nuns conference!

    While there is no confirmed evidence that she said that women who were raped should pay for the kits – it does go to prove how much of a crap mayor she was. If she had no handle on her police chief – who did? All we have to do is look at the circumstantial evidence that is there.

    Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CCx7A2lwCWE

    Video: http://www.wasillaproject.com/index/2008/10/sarah-palin-the.html

    Website: http://www.wasillaproject.com/index/about.html

    As we say in England – read and weep!

  88. October 29, 2008 at 06:08

    PS – Look in on this site, interesting reading.

  89. October 29, 2008 at 06:44

    hey guys, can you something about the modern trend in democratic world? Like Britain restricting people with “extreme” religious pointview (heard that news on BBC), and Thai Govt blacklisting “anti-royal” bloggers ?
    I think that it’s better to engage all extremists in a verbal tirades rather than pushing them toward more fanatic expression.
    I’m afraid that our Maoist government might ban people like from expressing views against them citing reference to such measures from “democratic” world.

    DIVAS from Nepal

  90. October 29, 2008 at 06:47

    P.S. Sorry. I meant “Can you say something…”

  91. 98 Pangolin
    October 29, 2008 at 08:12

    Divas~The whole point of having a Maoist government is that the central organization can override the wants/needs of any individual in order to mobilize resources to wherever they are needed. The nasty part about a Maoist government is if they decide that what the state really needs is well-pampered elites.

    If your government decides to restrict the actions of minority religions this isn’t too unusual. If your government decides to restrict the beliefs and free expression of religious minorities they might find themselves in slight disfavor.

    Personally, I think they need to focus on rice bowls and birth control. Too many people in Nepal given the farmland available.

  92. 99 Ahmad Hammad
    October 29, 2008 at 09:02

    In Pakistan, Balochistan, we just have suffered from an earthquake again.
    I know that once again, in the name of rehabilitaion funds, a lot of money will be collected. And that money will be thereafter deposited in the foreign banks under the personal accounts.

  93. October 29, 2008 at 09:13

    Hi Count Iblis
    Reyr October 28, 2008 at 11:55 pm post
    What you said doesn’t make sense, but it takes a lot of guts to say it because you are right.
    It escapes reason, but we mould and fashion religion not the other way round, like everything else around us. “Shaped by conflicts,” you say!
    Islam may have started with the Arabs but we owe its development, civilization, conquests and occupation of the Arabian Peninsula, Asia Minor, Greece, the Caucasus, onwards to the gates of Vienna in 1529 to the Ottomans. Turks were the mainstay of Islam for seven centuries.
    Many of my Jewish friends in Europe are in the rag trade and hairdressers. Some have moved up. They are no more or less Jewish for having done so, but they have become English, French and Italians in the process. That’s what it’s all about.
    Pakistanis and Indians run the markets in the littoral states of the Gulf because Arabs consider it beneath them to work, but Pakistanis and Indians are not Arabs. This is the history of man. Jews, Arabs, Hamas, Fatah, Shiites, Sunnis, we are no different, until someone comes along like Sir Winston Churchill to put America on the map.
    The Pilgrim Fathers got there first. Americans were good, hard working and dedicated people, running wild with the Indians at times and toying with the idea of KKK, Mormons, Huguenots and Neo-Cons until Henry Kissinger came along to put them back on track. Call it evolution if you like!
    My son says I have my head in the Web and have lost touch with the real world, but this is my world, his is business!

  94. 101 robert1987
    October 29, 2008 at 09:19

    @ Ahmad

    I heard about that and it has flattened one of the towns which is in your country of pakistan

  95. 102 Jack Hughes
    October 29, 2008 at 10:16

    Difficult day for Brand and Wossy at the BBC:

    My grandfather is distraught…now sack these sickos, says the Sun

    Brown turns up heat on Ross, at the Mail

    Brown demands action from BBC over lewd stars, says the Telegraph

    Clamour grows for BBC to act over radio insults, says the Times

    The BBC mot du jour to describe the affair is “prank”, with its overtones of schoolboy larks. Russell Brand is 33. Jonathan Ross is 47.

  96. 103 Bob in Queensland
    October 29, 2008 at 10:48

    @ Jack Hughes

    Brand and Ross may be 33 and 47 respectively but their humour, even at the best of times is downright childish!

    Following on from last night’s “on air”, I think we need to separate the principle from the specifics on this one.

    I would stand by the principle that you really can’t ,make any topic “off limits” in terms of comedy. However, the specific is that you have to judge the audience and people involved when deciding on the suitability of a joke. The humour you can get away with at the stag party is very different to what will be taken as funny at the wedding in front of Aunt Bessie. Beyond that, most humour involves only fictional characters. If you choose to involve real people, such as Andrew Sachs and his family in this case, they you have to accept the consequences if there’s an objection.

    In this case, the “venue” for the joke was a national radio network–and one aimed at a more “mature” audience than some. It was inevitable that there would be objections to this sort of humour from a Radio 2 audience and the application of the BBC standards clearly failed here. This prank might have been acceptable if it had happened live in a comedy club with Sachs in the audience–then broadcast late at night on Radio 1. It was less appropriate broadcast on Radio 2 without Sachs’ consent.

    There’s not such thing as a global “not acceptable” label in comedy–but there does have to be judgement about what jokes will play where.

  97. 104 roebert
    October 29, 2008 at 11:44

    Offensive humour is seldom funny to the offended party. Brand and Ross obviously have something to learn in the good taste dept. Pranks and satire have their place and the world would be poorer without the Rabelaisian streak, but I’ve never heard passages of Rabelais broadcast on a public program. To publicly punch someone in the solar plexus and defend your action as a joke is just weak-mindedness. What were these guys drinking?

    Dawkins: OK, let’s have Dawkins’ censored versions of the Iliad, Odyssey, Aeneid, Peer Gynt, The Wind in the Willows, Alice in Wonderland, A Midsummer Night’s Dream etc. etc. This is one atheist that is definitely more dangerous than a medieval pope when it comes to allowing freedom of the imagination.

  98. 105 selena in Canada
    October 29, 2008 at 13:38


    I know small towns well. They are what you make of them.

    Good luck! My thoughts are with you.

  99. 106 gary
    October 29, 2008 at 13:46

    @ Tom
    Perfect honestty is uncommon (or non-existent). Some portion of every wealth stream is diverted for private use. In time past, I decided to bring pastries to office in the morning and set out a small container to recover the cost. I wasn’t interested in profit, so the suggested “donation” was just the average cost of an item. The shop was on the way you see. This worked well for about two mornings. The third day the loss was more than half. After two weeks the take from the till wouldn’t feed the parking meter in front of the shop! This was an office filled with perfectly nice people; all Ph.D and MA degreed professionals, devote Christains, a Moslem from Pakistan, & etc. For a second or two, I was very disturbed by this turn of events. Then I laughed and thought: Stupid —– ! What did you expect? I vowed on the spot to trust every human being implicitly – to trust them to be exactly that which they are-and to judge their veracity by two dimensions: Do they know the truth? & Will they speak it to me? It’s done worlds of good! A little analysis will convince even the most trusting folks – most people have some portion of it wrong (even me!), no matter which side they take. I still enjoy a chat with folks about controversial topics, only now there are no raised voices and few disappointments, and a good chuckle several times daily. I still send aid donations, though. Some portion gets through, and when you’ve nothing, even a little is useful and appreciated

  100. 107 DENNIS@OCC
    October 29, 2008 at 13:49


    I am sending my prayers and thoughts to the affected people in Pakistan—following the earthquake in Pakistan…..

    Do you fear your donations to such disasters are misused?
    Because in most times it is the case that money is mis-used!


  101. 108 DENNIS@OCC
    October 29, 2008 at 13:51

    it is a good thing that the bbc, suspending them because there behaviour was anti-social…


  102. 109 DENNIS@OCC
    October 29, 2008 at 13:58

    Does anyone remember the BARENAKED LADIES…They put some music years ago…The lead singer Steven Page was in court in Fayetteville, New York, a suburb of Syracuse, New York….



  103. 110 DENNIS@OCC
    October 29, 2008 at 14:06

    October 28, 2008 at 11:07 pm
    The Blogosphere predicts the College results: Mr Obama, 338; Mr McCain, 200.
    Pretty much anyone with a brain—pretty much knows that Obama has a HIGH chance of winning the elections….over McCain!


  104. 111 Steve
    October 29, 2008 at 14:49


    Well, the NAACP is covering all bases in case if Obama doesn’t win. So in that case, they already have the racism lawsuit ready. The ironic thing is that the person they are suing, Governor Kaine of Virginia, is a democrat, and a close personal friend of Obama…. Shows how low people will go if they don’t get their way.

  105. October 29, 2008 at 14:57

    Hi Gary
    Reyr October 29, 2008 at 1:46 pm
    I sympathize but you asked for it. Goodwill and honesty are probably some of the most misused words in the English language. I say English because we are suckers for being taken for a ride. What we deem to be good nature and generosity is taken for stupidity, docility and submission over here.
    You have probably discovered since that the work place is a serious, profit motivated place where the mind, money and action must be directed to that one aim.
    Academic qualifications are a marked disadvantage in the work place unless it is related to the machinery or the specific jobs being performed. The religion of business is money; anything that deviates from that, get rid of it.
    You see over here and probably all over the Middle East, Asia and Africa, men make the laws as they go along. Anything that gets in the way must disappear, and anyone who has lived beyond his use must go, it is as simple as that.
    1. The welfare state, medicare, national education and the rest are unheard of over here. You’ve got it or you ain’t! Religion yes, absolute purity but wield it to your advantage, call it Islam, Christianity or Buddhism, as you will!
    2. You know what the German school of philosophy says: What is valour and courage in an independent free state becomes cunning, deviousness and stealth under occupation. We have been overrun a dozen times.

  106. 114 jamily5
    October 29, 2008 at 16:15

    Well, total integration is when you start tal writing with a southern drawl. You will find some things different, but hopefully, you will find the personability of the town refreshing.
    Good luck!!

    @Ahmed, Give us a report that we can’t get from BBC. How are things. Glad to hear that you can still post.

  107. 115 jamily5
    October 29, 2008 at 16:23

    Hey Tom, I read that article about the women with ms wanting to commit suicide. Barring my own beliefs on suicide, I dislike the idea of assisted suicide because I have seen too many times that a person can desire this in times of adjustment to their own limitations.
    And, then, there is the factor of manipulation.
    Within the disabled community: many quads and multiply disabled people have heard the advice from doctors about their life quality and their burden on their families… … etc.

  108. 116 gary
    October 29, 2008 at 16:52

    @ Akbar Javad,
    Hello back to you and good afternoon. Yes, you are right of course. Still, it would be nice if these things were not true, if money didn’t count uppermost in peoples’ hearts, if debts of conscience were acknowledged and paid, if a person’s word could be taken as an iron-clad contract binding their action. I know this will not be; but I miss its possibility all the same.
    Have a good evening,

  109. 117 Jennifer
    October 29, 2008 at 16:57

    @ Kelsie

    “If John McCain and Sarah Palin win, I think I’ll be able to live with myself somehow. If Barack Obama and Joe Biden win, ditto.” ME TOO! 🙂 As I have said many times, I will be happy when this election is over!

    @ Will

    Yes, I did bring your name into the conversation because you seem to know alot about “rumors” and you take them very seriously. I was sure that you would convey the need to be 100% sure or else someone could look silly! Checked out your links….and I am not buying unconfirmed stories today but thanks for taking the time! 🙂 P.S. where are the links to rape statistics for Alaska and specifically Wasilla? Nevermind that…… 😉

    Re: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/10/27/AR2008102702289.html

    Yeah, because everyone who’s not voting for Obama is racist! Hmm!

  110. 118 Ed from NYC
    October 7, 2009 at 17:13

    @ Anthony @ Jessica in NYC.

    McCain didnt come close, and Obama is failing……

    Republicrats never learn.

    At least the wars are over in the middle east.. oh wait we are sending more troops into Afghanistan? Thanks Obama. Did we not learn anything from Vietnam? what about the russians, didnt the shells of burned out russian tanks give us any hint? no one can win a war when the enemy is hiding.

    Well at least we will all have healthcare. what happened to all those promises of change? environmental change? green energy? how come Obama has not supported the Pickens Plan?

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