Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category
I don’t have much time for Piers Morgan. But after reading this I’m starting to have some sympathy.
The reason for his bad day centered around Janet Mock, a transgender woman he’d had as a guest on his program to discuss her new book Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identity, Love & So Much More. That’s right, he was helping her sell her book. But that wasn’t enough for Mock. She reallywants to sell her book. So a week after the interview was taped, she incited people in the transgender community, who accused Morgan of being “transphobic” and mistreating her by explaining that she was male before age 18. The fact is, Mock was born a boy with the name “Charles” and had a sex change at 18. Her beef is that she “identified” as a woman her whole life. And yet, she still had a penis.
Go have a read. It’s impressive just how much outrage was generated out of a situation that was 100% supportive of the supposed “victim”.
Speaking of victims, the NAACP has come out in favour of a wife beater. Seriously. In. Writing. Oh wait, he’s a politician – politicians are allowed to beat their wives… wait, what?!?
The NAACP, New England Area Conference (NEAC), respectfully requests that the Massachusetts House of Representatives abstain from voting in the matter of the expulsion of Representative Carlos Henriquez, expected to come before the House today. In the alternative, Members of the House are asked to vote against the expulsion of their colleague.
Seriously, the NAACP, one of the oldest civil rights organizations in the country is going to bat for Carlos Henriquez? Why on earth would they do this?
This brings the whole “if you criticise Obama you must be racist” meme to a whole, new, sick, level.
And finally, we have the feminist movement. This is a movement that set out to prove that women could and should be regarded as equal to a man. Oddly, those same feminists are now loudly decrying a simple (ok, it’s really creepy but, you know, art and all that!) statue of a man sleepwalking as threatening… or something.
Oddly, there’s no outcry at the fact that women-only colleges still exist in the USA in 2014.
It’s well recorded history that Michael Cullen, back in 1999, declared that anyone on $60,000 or more per year was a “rich prick”.
Later, he changed his mind, and changed the Working for Families policy to cover families earning up to $70,000 and in some instances $80,000.
Therefore, that under Labour what was considered Wealthy rose by about $10-20k per year.
Today, Cunliffe declared that everyone up to $150,000 needed welfare. That’s a massive leap $70,000 leap.
Given that success, it would be highly irresponsible to vote in another Labour government. Why, at that success rate, another two terms of National would put everyone under $300,000 on welfare!
Readers may be familiar with the “investigation” conducted by Aljazerra into Arafat’s death.
Paris, France - Swiss scientists who conducted tests on samples taken from Yasser Arafat’s body have found at least 18 times the normal levels of radioactive polonium in his remains. The scientists said that they were confident up to an 83 percent level that the late Palestinian leader was poisoned with it, which they said “moderately supports” polonium as the cause of his death.
A 108-page report by the University Centre of Legal Medicine in Lausanne, which was obtained exclusively by Al Jazeera, found unnaturally high levels of polonium in Arafat’s ribs and pelvis, and in soil stained with his decaying organs.
Essentially, they say they’ve found traces of Polonium in his clothing.
There’s just one problem with that – it’s virtually impossible. Here’s a couple of extracts from the aljazeera themselves.
Ingesting just 50 nanogrammes, or inhaling 10 nanogrammes, of the substance can cause death. This means one gramme of polonium-210 could theoretically poison and kill about 10 million people.
Natural levels of polonium that accumulate on surfaces barely register, and the element disappears quickly. Polonium-210 has a half-life of 138 days, meaning that half of the substance decays roughly every four-and-a-half months.
So to put it briefly:
- Poisinging with Polonium would require a very, very small amount of the stuff to produce a lethal effect.
- Every 138 days, the amount left would at least half (assuming it didn’t get removed by other processes)
- Arafat died 8 years ago
See the problem here?
Legal Insurrection points to this guy who seems to know what he’s talking about.
So if you gave someone a microgram (1/1,000,000th of a gram), after 138 days there would be a grand total of ½ a microgram left in him (actually there’d be even less because some of it would have been excreted during the time the victim was still living).
How much would be left after 8 years? Well take 8 * 365 = 2920 days. Divide by 138 to get 21 half lives.
If we start with 1/1,000,000 of a gram and divide by 2, 21 times… I’ll spare you the effort. your calculator will give up and tell you it’s nearly(*) nothing.
Realistically speaking there might be an atom or two(*) but we’re down in the depths of very small quantum things so it doesn’t take a Heisenberg to tell you finding this is uncertain. The only certainty is you won’t be able to detect it above background, even in a low activity room.
So what does this stuff turn into? Mostly something called Lead-206 − 206Pb. Now what a lab might have done is look to see if Arafat had more of this than would be expected, but considering the poisoning dose of Polonium-210 is so low to start with, that would also be impossible. We all have a bit of lead in us, especially those people who were alive back in the days of lead in gasoline!
With the most amazing measuring equipment, in the most physically shielded room possible, you couldn’t find a piece of radioactive Polonium-210 eight years after it was made. Looking for some in an exhumed body or belongs is astonishing.
The decay products of Polonium-210 are not uncommon enough to look for either.
There’s no way on earth this lab found anything scientifically significant in the corpse of Arafat (hence their very cagy language).
In short, this is complete bunk.
…Yahoo! answers some questions about polonium poison and informs us:
Swiss scientists say Arafat had symptoms commonly linked to radiation poisoning, including nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and liver and kidney failure — but not two other classic symptoms, hair loss and a weaker immune system.
While the liver and kidney were not reported at the time, “persistent vomiting, diarrhea and stomach pains” were. As any of the last pictures of Arafat recall, (see above) his face was still adorned with a beard at the time he was brought to France for the last time. Actually these symptoms would be consistent will gall bladder disease, and Arafat, at the time, was reported to be suffering from gallstones. Like the symptoms mentioned above this too was reported by the New York Times. Why didn’t the reporter see if there was anything in her own paper’s reporting that supported her current reporting?
Seems pretty conclusive.
But of course, you’ll always have people who are only too ready to believe stuff like this. Cos you know, Israel is eeeeevvvvvviiiiiil.
What visitors rave about most is the gob-smacking, pristine scenery of these shaky isles. So the prospect of a monorail traversing a section of back country South Island conservation land makes me more than a little uneasy.
I’ve done my share of tramping and the only thing more satisfying than marvelling at the splendour of this country’s rugged landscapes is the knowledge that some real effort has been required in order to experience it first-hand. Views of the magnitude afforded by our most isolated beauty spots should be earned with a bit of sweat.
Translation: our conversation estate should be for the able-bodied only. Disgusting.
Snowdon Forest, as a stewardship area, doesn’t have the same level of conservation protection as our national parks but that doesn’t mean running a monorail through it is a good idea.
Seriously, hands up who’s ever heard of Snowdon Forest? Anyone?
No doubt it’s a special place, but it’s a place no one has heard of or goes to at the moment. Why tramp into a forest in the middle of nowhere, when you can see the same sort of forest in other places, as well as the views of say, the Routeburn?
The thought of clearing a 29.5km-long, 6m-wide corridor of native trees to build a high-tech transport link, when there are already other options to reach the end point, leaves me cold.
Six metres may sound like not much, but pace it out next time you take a bush walk. Imagine that area cleared and a sleek rail line in its place.
6 meters does not sound like much. You could cut a 6 meter track through a lot of our beech forest and not miss any of the trees.
If allowed to proceed, the proposed monorail track will be the longest in the world. That may – initially – be something we can market. But, in time, a longer track will be built elsewhere and we will still have lost a tract of our magical beech forest.
While the able-bodied may have “lost” a 6 meter stretch in hundreds of miles of forest that they’d never visit anyway, the less-able will still be able to view the forest in all it’s glories. Funny thing is, that’ll still be the case when the track is no longer the longest in the world. Weird eh?
I’m willing to bet that most of the people who use Snowdon Forest recreationally are New Zealanders and they will be the big losers if this project goes ahead.
Quite how that works is not explained. Because… conservation!
Tourists have always come here, despite there not being a cable car up every mountainside. And they will continue to do so, with or without the monorail.
They like our country the way it is.
Translation: Let them eat cake.
That’s the only way to describe this.
It is also concerning that some people seem quite happy to have equality by pursuing the lowest common denominator - i.e. everyone equally in abject poverty.
But think a bit further, and you’d realise that this means we would never have things a huge number of things that make modern life what it is, because those things involved one person being exceptional.
Like I say, utter madness.
This pretty much sums up the state of the US government’s finances after the shutdown.
When Washington raised the debt ceiling this week, the Beltway media breathlessly reported thatthe fiscal crisis had ended. Lawyers danced in hallways, bureaucrats twerked on the Metro, congressional aides kissed strangers in the streets — the Tea Party has been defeated! It was likeVJ day for wonks.
As our political class exchanged high fives and reporters praised a return to “sanity,” I wondered how these odd creatures defined insanity.
America’s fiscal crisis is not that our debt ceiling was too low, the fiscal crisis is that our debt is too high. When I mentioned this to left-leaning folks, they seemed indifferent. “Obama lowered the deficit.” “I think Bush spent more.“ “It’s Reagan’s fault!”
Here’s his chart:
Now. If you listened carefully to commentators talking about the shutdown, there was a subtle shift.
Originally, the talk was “if the debt ceiling is not extended we won’t be able pay for our debt”. That is nonsense. Rather obvious nonsense – if you don’t have enough money, you proprieties. And you place interest payments at the top of your list. So there was never any chance of a default.
So the talk shifted subtly to talking about “obligations”. This was intended to make other spending (social security for example) sound like debt repayments. It pretended that a contractual obligation was the same as a policy decision.
But the reality is that the US national debt is serious. And like New Zealand in 1990, serious decisions need to be made. The Tea Party is trying to push for those decisions to be made. They are the adults. Obama is the guy offering icecream.
The analogy is imperfect, but imagine the green is your salary, the yellow is the amount you’re spending over your salary, and the red is your Visa statement. Then imagine your spouse runs into the room and shouts, “great news honey, our fiscal crisis is over. We just got approved for a new MasterCard!” Your first call would be to a marriage counselor or a shrink.
Unfortunately in the US’s case, the counselor (the media) is joining in the celebrations.
But hey, I’m sure it’ll all be fine.
I’m sure everyone remembers the succession movements that sprung up after Obama was re-elected.
Well, we now a good example of craziness from the American left.
To date over 50,000 people have signed a petition calling for the prosecution of the house GOP leadership to be tried for sedition. In other words, if you oppose Obama, you must be committing a crime.
Legal Insurrection thinks this is a case of people showing the tyrant within. That’s probably true, but I think it simply shows that in any population, you’ll always find people who will put their partisan politics above all common sense.
I mean, the Communist League candidate in the Auckland Mayoral election received 849 votes. And that’s just the people who didn’t vote strategically!
In terms of “the law is an ass” cases, this one is a real dozy.
Donald Eugene Miller Jr. walked out of Hancock County Probate Court on Monday as legally dead as ever.
In 1994, the court ruled that Miller was legally dead, eight years after he disappeared from his Arcadia rental home.
The same judge, Allan Davis, ruled Monday that Miller is still dead, in the eyes of the law. Miller’s request for a reversal came well after the three-year legal limit for changing a death ruling, Davis said.
I guess he didn’t want to reverse himself
I noticed this on MSN… which for some reason has become my home page.
Cristy Nicole Deweese, 21, is a first-year Spanish teacher at Rosie M Collins Sorrells School in Dallas, but in February 2011 she was Playboy’s “Coed of the Month”.
The local independent school board has acknowledged it is aware of parents’ concerns while a spokesperson said it was a “personal matter and will not be discussed”.
A spokeswoman for the Texas Education Agency said it was a “murky situation” because Ms Deweese posed in the shoot before she was hired as a teacher.
“It wasn’t an illegal activity, but it raises the question about whether that action violated the Educators’ Code of Ethics,” agency spokeswoman Debbie Ratcliffe said.
Texas educators are governed by a Code of Ethics that requires them to be of “good moral character and be worthy to instruct or supervise the youth of this state”.
One concerned parent who spoke anonymously to the Dallas Morning News was upset that Ms Deweese was not removed from her position following the revelations last Friday because she was clearly a distraction to students.
“Are her male 16- and 17-year-old students looking at her without picturing her nude?” the parent said.
Speaking to local media, attorney John Browning specialising in employment and internet law said that Ms Deweese’s fate depends on what she said in her interview but the real lesson is for everyone to remember your digital past can and will catch up with you.
Having read the article, I thought that there may be a case for the teacher to claim youthful innocence. But there’s some problems with that.
1. She’s 21 – just out of college. This is not a mistake she’s long since regretted, it’s something she did only a couple of years ago.
2. In the video, she actually talks about her training with the expressed intention to become a teacher. So it’s clearly not a case of someone finding out in hindsight that something they’d done was hindering a new found passion.
Seems pretty clear cut. She flouted the rules, and flagrantly so. If you want to be considered a person of good character, there’s a list of things you should try and avoid, and posing for playboy is certainly one of them. There’s no way any school with this woman as a teacher can teach boys that porn is wrong. And any school that doesn’t consider porn to be wrong isn’t one anyone should be sending their kids to.
Also, what’s with the “your digital past” thing? Playboy has existed long before the digital era. This is straight out ordinary “you did something wrong” stuff.
Sadly, I have little doubt that there are enough people who aren’t worried about the pornification of society, and thus this woman will be back in the teaching profession very soon.