Friday, July 03, 2015

Friday Post

Lots to talk about...

An explosion at a Winnipeg law office injures one woman:

Lawyer Maria Mitousis was taken to hospital Friday morning following an explosion at the Petersen King law office on River Avenue where she works.

More to come.

I'm sure his lawyer can pony up the cash:

 A U.S. judge has granted $134.2 million in damages to the widow of an American soldier killed in Afghanistan and another soldier partially blinded by a hand grenade in their lawsuit against former Guantanamo Bay prisoner Omar Khadr.

And why can Paul Bernardo apply for day parole?

As Minister of Justice Trudeau proposed that life imprisonment be the penalty for murder (unless the victim is a police officer on duty or a prison guard, then the death penalty would be allowed). On July 14, 1976, Bill C-84 was passed by the House of Commons by a vote of 130 to 124 abolishing the death penalty completely and instituting a life sentence without parole for 25 years for first degree murder. Two days later Bill C-84 was approved by the Senate and received royal assent.

The UN sounds pretty confident that Iran, which is still enriching nuclear material, is abiding by a key agreement:

Iran has met a key commitment under a preliminary nuclear deal setting up the current talks on a final agreement, leaving it with several tons less of the material it could use to make weapons, according to a U.N. report issued Wednesday.

Obtained by The Associated Press, the confidential International Atomic Energy Agency report said more than four tons of the enriched uranium had been fed into a pipeline that ends with conversion of it into oxide, which is much less likely to be used to make nuclear arms.
This is not going to end well.


One can conceive of an arc that starts in the Ukraine, descends through the Black Sea to Turkey and Iran then follows the coast of the Mediterranean around through Syria, Lebanon, Israel and Egypt. That whole arc is now trembling on its foundations, while president Obama celebrates the supposed best week of his two terms. ...

Obama is paying for bottle service with a bearded ayatollah. All the same, the area from the Ukraine, Turkey and Tehran has the solidity of crumbling limestone. If the Russians advance, even with slow motion hybrid warfare, what will stop them? ...

The map currently shows “Syria” but it shouldn’t.  A senior Israeli defense official says that the Syrian Arab Republic “is gone”. All that is left now is a shattered collection of pieces.
“Syria is dying. The funeral will be declared in due time. This Bashar Assad, he will be remembered in history textbooks as the one who lost Syria.
“Until now he has lost 75% of Syria … He is, practically, governor of 20% of Syria,” Gilad added. “And his future, if I may predict it, is shrinking all of the time. And maybe we will have him as the president of ‘Alawistan.’”
Jordan is thinking about grabbing some of the loose pieces. “The Jordanian military is actively implementing plans to create a humanitarian buffer zone in the south of the country, Sam Jones, Roula Khalaf and Erika Solomon report for the Financial Times.” Israel has gotten into the act, moving to take some of militias under its wing. ...

Obama, on the other hand, is having trouble getting anyone in Syria to trust him. Stripes reported that “the U.S. military’s program to train and equip thousands of moderate Syrian rebels is faltering, with fewer than 100 volunteers, raising questions about whether the effort can produce enough capable fighters quickly enough to make a difference in the war against the Islamic State.”

But it’s not just the Levant any more. ISIS is now engaged in driving Hamas from Gaza, intent on replacing it right on the border of Israel. “Islamic State insurgents threatened on Tuesday to turn the Gaza Strip into another of their Middle East fiefdoms, accusing Hamas, the organization that rules the Palestinian territory, of being insufficiently stringent about religious enforcement.” ...

What is worse, ISIS has now struck multiple times across wide geographical distances.  It is hitting police stations, intelligence agencies and military targets in a calculated campaign to blind and humiliate the West. Once they take out law enforcement and inteligence they take out the state.  Intel hasn’t seemed to pick it up in time to warn the targets, which is worrying since they have every incentive to defend themselves.

The depth of the crisis is reflected in the fact that British parliament is considering air strikes in Syria in response to the massacre of British tourists in Tunisia. Downing Street has called up a “Dad’s Army”, consisting of retired police snipers and operatives, to meet the threat of an ISIS attack on Britain.

In the face of these physical threats all the administration appears able to do is respond with symbolic triumphs. Obama has reopened the Cuban embassy in America. “President Barack Obama said Wednesday that it was past time for the U.S. to re-establish diplomatic relations with Cuba as he announced that the two countries were reopening their embassies after more than 50 years”.  It’s “historic” but it also opens a base for Cuban espionage right in Washington DC.

When president Obama began his term he promised to end wars.  He was going to “reset” with Russia.  There was — and he gave this assurance in Cairo — going to be a new period of love and understanding with the Muslim world.  He was going to eliminate chemical weapons from Syria.  There would be racial healing throughout the land.  We could look forward to a world free of nukes.  Now the only uncertainty in the public’s mind is whether the Washington Redskins will get a new stadium.

Read the whole thing.

The world is obsessed with obsolete flags, sham marriages and appeasing an ever-aggravated mass' self-imposed fast rather than worrying about conflict, economic crises and demographic implosion.

Tell me the world hasn't taken crazy pills.

A North Korean refugee talks about life in the Stalinist state:

As a schoolgirl in North Korea, Hyeonseo Lee was forced to watch executions, denounce her friends for fabricated transgressions and dig tunnels in case of a nuclear attack.
But Lee and her classmates grew up convinced they lived in the "greatest nation on earth" run by a benevolent god-like leader whom they loved in the way many children love Santa Claus.

It wasn't until she left North Korea at the age of 17 that she began to discover the full horror of the government that had fed her propaganda since birth. ...

Lee witnessed her first execution at seven. After Kim Il-sung's death in 1994 she recalls a spate of executions of people who had not mourned sufficiently.


Canadian and Ukrainian researchers are working together to build a portable device that soldiers, police and border agents could use to covertly detect concealed weapons and deter security threats.

The NATO-funded research project is headed up on the Canadian side by McMaster University electrical and computer engineering professor Natalia Nikolova.

“Part of this project is building collaboration with Ukraine and helping them acquire adequate instruments and equipment,” Nikolova told Yahoo Canada News.

“So, the goals of this project are not purely technical; they have significant social and political impact as well.”

The idea is to equip soldiers and law-enforcement officials with portable devices that could detect concealed guns and explosives up to 15 metres away.

These devices could be used at airports, borders or crowded events — anywhere a security threat may be looming — to stop disasters before they start.

The only good Indian is one who looks and acts like one:

Jindal vowed he’s “not running for president to be somebody,” but “running for president to do something.”

“Today’s Republican Party in Washington, D.C., has been beaten into submission. It is increasingly afraid to speak the truth. It’s time to say what everybody’s already thinking,” he said. “The emperors in Washington, they’re not wearing any clothes. In case it’s not clear right now, I am running for president without permission from headquarters in Washington, D.C.”

The Democratic National Committee responded to the announcement with a notably mocking fundraising email, subject line “Bobby Jindal wants to be president (seriously!).”

But opponents hit Twitter this evening with hashtags aimed at Jindal’s ethnicity, including #Jindian and #BobbyJindalIsSoWhite.
It must be made plain that the only people who have race an issue are usually white and most definitely leftist/liberal. For some reason, it bothers the nominally multicultural left  that an individual does not officially and outwardly subscribe to his or her racial or ethnic background or lifestyle choice. Leftists cannot wrap their heads around the fact that being Indian is something Bobby Jindal's parents were, not who he is, and because he is not this guy:'s going to be very hard to play the identity game, the game where details, valid or superficial, are more important than concrete facts and efforts of lasting importance, not manufactured crusades that amount to nothing.

Take another example, George Takei's shameful attack on Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and ultimately shameless attempt at an apology.

Thomas described the human being as having an inherent dignity that no government or group can give or take away. Whether one is a slave, interned or denied benefits, one's dignity cannot be added or detracted as it is an internal quality, not a legal one.

This apparently is a problem for people who see that dignity is given by others and that one cannot rise above any dehumanising hardship, including Mr. Takei:

A few fans have written wondering whether I intended to utter a racist remark by referring to Justice Thomas as a “clown in blackface.”

“Blackface” is a lesser known theatrical term for a white actor who blackens his face to play a black buffoon. In traditional theater lingo, and in my view and intent, that is not racist. It is instead part of a racist history in this country.

I feel Justice Thomas has abdicated and abandoned his African American heritage by claiming slavery did not strip dignity from human beings. He made a similar remark about the Japanese American internment, of which I am a survivor. A sitting Justice of the Supreme Court ought to know better.

While I'm sure Mr. Thomas' dignity remains intact because who cares what an actor who got tremendously famous by being an outed gay thinks but a good deal of people were appalled by this slur and the idea that George Takei might skirt around this by playing X identity card.

Now comes the attempt at an apology:

Perhaps Mr. Takei would be man enough to say it to Clarence Thomas' face, the one rich in melanin not cake make-up, the one that bears more dignity and integrity than low blows and spite?

Also: why Celebrity Apartheid matters more than ever:

However, not all celebrity philanthropists are created equal. According to the tell-all, actor Sean Penn and singer Christina Aguilera turned 2010’s earthquake disaster in Haiti into a calamity of egotism, and one celebrity who was not named likes his booze while on location in Sudan.

While assisting at a camp in Haiti for his Haitian Relief Organization, Sean Penn was allegedly a “camp manager [who] was initially known for turning up at UN meetings and yelling at those present that if they didn’t do what he said he’d name them personally on CNN as holding up the relief effort,” an aid worker said.

And now, cats in kimonos because cats in kimonos.

(Merci beaucoup)

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